Aconcagua: Sony forgot the game, but the fans didn’t

Sony has always prided itself on exclusive games released for its consoles and used them as one of the main differentiators from the competition. However, this did not prevent the title from being forgotten in the past, it did not have a re-release, sequel or even a western location. Fortunately, fans wanted to save this game, which you may know as Aconcagua.

Credit: Publicity/Hilltop

Developed by Sony Computer Entertainment and first released for the PlayStation in 2000. Aconcagua It can be described as a survival adventure with a very interesting premise. In it, we get to know a country called Meruza, inspired by Argentina’s Mendoza province, which is under strict dictatorial control. Dissatisfied with the current situation, people organize to overthrow the government, which has led to several conflicts.

As Independence Day approaches, Japanese journalist Kato travels to the region to cover the event, and on the same plane is Pachamama, the activist daughter of Merusa’s first president and a pro-separation activist. Controlling all the steps of the protesters, the terrorists see a good opportunity in the trip to finish the leader of the movement, and after the bomb explodes, the plane falls on the mountain that gives the game its name.

After recovering from the disaster and realizing what happened, Kato and Pachamama discover that only five people have survived and begin to organize for help, trying to find a safe way to escape this hell. Gameplay that approached the point-and-click style, the group will still have to deal with the terrorists who are chasing them, solve puzzles disguised as problems and use items that have resisted falling.

Credit: Publicity/Hilltop

However, even with this proposition quite different from other games, including about 80 minutes of non-interactive cutscenes and multiple endings that could be reached based on our decisions, Aconcagua It never became a commercial success. The game even received a 29/40 rating in Famitsu magazine, but after the PlayStation 2 hit stores, Sony refused to port the game to the West, even though it already had an English dub.

Well, 22 years after launch, when no one remembered the game anymore, the guy who made his name translating PlayStation games shows up as a localizer. Aconcagua. Also responsible for translation Racing LagoonCanadian Hill classified A new success as “a rollercoaster ride of obscure technical obstacles and clever solutions.”

Since this is a fan-made work, it is necessary to apply a translation patch to the game ISO. Those interested can find the files on the translator’s Patreon page, where he is asking for contributions to continue “bringing” other titles to Western audiences.

Initiatives like this help to show that there are still some titles that are hidden due to lack of location. I confess I have never heard of it Aconcagua And even as the game showed signs of aging, it drew attention to non-interactive cut-scenes and the characters’ good lip-syncing, which is still hard to come by today.

Another good example of how the Japanese PlayStation library counts forgotten gems is that Mizurna waterfall. Thanks to the dedication of people who wanted to localize it in English, I recently came across this title that Human Entertainment released there in 1998.

Considered one of the first open-world games, in it we will go to the fictional town of Mizzurna Falls, Colorado, where we must investigate the mysterious disappearance of a classmate. We are given only seven days to complete the task, we will have to talk to the residents in the game, and due to the limited time, we will not be able to experience all the events of the city in just one match.

Even with somewhat confused gameplay – in the best style Resident Evil – Or the graphics, which show the limitations of the console, were impressive with a dynamic weather system and characters with daily routines. The hero could still use a cell phone to talk to other people or call establishments, and even the Beetle he was driving needed fuel.

Unfortunately, none of this was enough to make it to the West Mizurna waterfall Localization only started in 2017, when a professional translator known as Resident Evie released the game script in English. Two years later, it was time to release an incomplete patch, and the situation would only improve in 2021, when another translator decided to finish the work and thus make a better version of the translation available.

“Evie has released her translated script in the hope that another group of hackers will one day use it to create a patch that works,” the file shared with the translation reads. “This project does just that, using the Eve script as a base. Nikita, a professional mobile developer, and Tsirosan, a professional translator and localization editor, collaborated for several months to finally create a translation patch that works Mizurna waterfall.”

In the case of this project, in addition to carrying out the translation, the people involved also had to develop a data understanding system to ensure that the huge script could fit on just one disc, as in the original Japanese. All this just for the pleasure of bringing the game to a wider audience, a work that deserves all the praise and that once again saved the game from almost complete oblivion.

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