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Haeleth speaketh

October 5th, 2010, by zalas
Posted in Translation , Tagged: ,

As some of you may have noticed by now, the front page for Haeleth’s website has now been replaced with a Japanese message dated “Autumn, 2010″. In it, he apologizes for his absence and the problems he’s caused and regrets having to end his participation this way, believing that there’s no point in trying to start up again after all this.

The message, translated into English, reads:

It has been a long while, so I guess everyone has already given up on me, right? I can finally say that people have been correct to have done so. I am truly sorry for having caused various problems for everyone.

I regret to see these very delightful several years come to an end like this, but
it seems that even if I were to try to fulfill all these promises at this late hour, there wouldn’t be any point. After all, I’m too embarrassed to even show my face, so there’s nothing much more that I can do.

There’s no real way for me to truly apologize, but I sincerely hope you all understand.

Autumn, 2010

The original message is as follows:





Haeleth, originally with the ROM hacking community, is most well known for having started a translation project for Key’s popular game, Kanon, in 2002 or shortly before. This was one of the first attempts at translating such a game (the project for Radical Dreamers started probably around a year or so earlier), at a point when the visual novel translation community hadn’t yet split off from the ROM hacking community proper. The translation had a few releases from Haeleth until it was postponed indefinitely in 2006, or at least until he could secure the permission of the original copyright holder. This translation was eventually finished and released by Non-directional Translations, with several leaks involved along the way. Haeleth also ran a set of forums called the “gemot”, in which people could discuss about his projects and related interests and where registration was not needed for posting (The reason he gave for allowing guest posting was that registration doesn’t prevent a determined individual from posting and that he had liked the way 2ch worked).

Haeleth contributed to several other translation projects, including narcissu and its sequel. He was also behind various pieces of software needed for translations of games, including tools needed to disassemble and recompile games running under Visual Art’s’ game engines AVG32 and RealLive, as well as PONScripter, a fork of the open source engine for running NScripter games, ONScripter. PONScripter added better internationalization and font support and was used originally in the translation for narcissu -SIDE 2nd-. He eventually started gradually disappearing from public view of the visual novel community, contributing less and less to PONscripter and the slow narcissu -SIDE 2nd- project before finally posting the current message on the website after a long period of silence.


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  1. Tweets that mention encubed » News Archive » Haeleth speaketh -- Topsy.com Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 12:52 am

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Rudokon, zalas. zalas said: Well, I guess he finally made his exit… http://novelnews.net/2010/10/05/haeleth-speaketh/ [...]

  2. Anya Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 12:54 am

    I bought Kanon because of the existing translation effort at the time. Even if it was a small gesture, this is the direct result of Haeleth’s effort. I hope he’s OK.

  3. mayoi Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 3:30 am

    Everything you did was GAR! I feel like a gay now…

  4. IceD Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 4:35 am

    Those are preety sad news, indeed… Is there a bit more info about this turn of events, because I’d still like to know why he decided to finally leave the scene like that.

    Anyway, his input into the community was great and most propably, without all his hard work we wouldn’t be where we are today. For that, I will be forever grateful to him.

  5. pondrthis Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 6:01 am

    Despite reading the Narcissu Side 2nd notes that said his TL would be less pristine than Agilis’… I read Haeleth’s anyway! Long live slightly more liberal TLs, even despite British English.

  6. SomeLurker Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 7:31 am

    Haeleth’s message reads like a suicide note and the article reads like an obituary. Depressing stuff.

  7. ETERNAL Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 1:04 pm

    I’m somewhat curious about why he wrote this in Japanese, unless he was well-known in Japanese circles as well (which would be odd conidering he translates things into English… but anyway). I never realized that his work stretched back to 2002; I always mentally view Narcissu and the Insani stuff as the earliest. I’m going to have to poke a bit deeper since this sounds pretty interesting.

  8. Anonymous Says:
    October 5th, 2010 at 4:46 pm

    Maybe he really is too ashamed to post his farewell in public view?

  9. Stratford Says:
    October 6th, 2010 at 4:26 am

    Haeleth is part of that gp32/zalas tradition that has a general contempt for those who do not know Japanese. I believe this is the reason the post was in Japanese.

  10. anomaly Says:
    October 6th, 2010 at 7:30 am

    That doesn’t make any sense. Why would Haeleth have the rest of the site in English, and zalas translate his post?

  11. 32 Says:
    October 6th, 2010 at 9:57 am

    Zalas translated his post to gain enjoyment out of the technical and artistic challenge involved. If you or any other fanboy/girl got any understanding out of his translation, then that is a strictly secondary side-effect that is beyond his control.

  12. anomaly Says:
    October 6th, 2010 at 12:33 pm

    Shut up troll

    Tomo Kataoka doesn’t think that way, and would be ashamed of you.

  13. boingman Says:
    October 7th, 2010 at 1:18 am

    Why does he even feel the need to apologize for anything? Did he disappear completeley, i.e. doesn’t even post anywhere anymore?

  14. Anonymous Says:
    October 7th, 2010 at 5:52 pm

    Well it was a bit depressing to read. I sure hope someone isn’t dying or anything because that would be even sadder…

    I do feel slight sorry that the permission thing didn’t work out for him. But if it’s any consolation, the whole drama put me off enough to the point that I never touched the Kanon VN. I don’t know if that helps anyone achieve anything in some weird way, but there you go.

  15. anomaly Says:
    October 7th, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    zalas needs to delete the troll comment.

  16. SomeLurker Says:
    October 8th, 2010 at 5:03 am


    Who the hell are you to judge whose comments should be deleted and tell the site administrator what do do? Perhaps we should delete your comments as well?

    Please do us all a favor and kindly fuck off.

  17. anomaly Says:
    October 8th, 2010 at 8:01 am

    That comment is there SOLELY to add stupid trolling to the situation, and not to express genuine opinion.

  18. Ymarsakar Says:
    November 21st, 2010 at 5:20 am

    While it’s a problem promising to get Kanon released from the copyright holders, failure in this matter is not entirely shameful. After all, there have been other successes on the matter and not all companies can be convinced to do the same as NNL plus Mangamers.

    Your word is your bond yet failure isn’t equivalent to lying.

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