[RELEASE][Shenmue III] Eric Kelso as Guizhang Chen

LemonHaze

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This mod replaces the telephone conversations you can have with Guizhang Chen in Shenmue III, with re-recorded lines by Eric Kelso, the original voice actor for Guizhang in Shenmue I.

Full credits to @paddyj for the organization and recording of Eric Kelso as Guizhang. I just cut up the audio and created the mod.


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Requires Forklift (for Shenmue III).

To install, extract this archive into your Shenmue3/Content/Paks/~mods folder (if ~mods doesn't exist, create it).

To uninstall, delete GuizhangMod.pak from your Shenmue3/Content/Paks/~mods folder.


Download here!
 
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Hearing Eric's voice literally made me cry. It just proves how he was missed. This was not an impossible thing to make happen, and i don't accept any excuse given. Not when i know Eric had prepared as best he could on his end for it to happen.
 
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Hearing Eric's voice literally made me cry. It just proves how he was missed. This was not an impossible thing to make happen, and i don't accept any excuse given. Not when i know Eric had prepared as best he could on his end for it to happen.
Is there any reason you are aware they dropped ball and didn’t bring him back?

I know he’s not US based but given he did this I assume for free and for love of fans/franchise I can’t expect he was expecting a big payday and quality is much more than serviceable.

For a game filled with fan service and nods to series, it seems like an odd omission.
 

B-Man

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Is there any reason you are aware they dropped ball and didn’t bring him back?

I know he’s not US based but given he did this I assume for free and for love of fans/franchise I can’t expect he was expecting a big payday and quality is much more than serviceable.

For a game filled with fan service and nods to series, it seems like an odd omission.
He said in an interview that he offered to fly himself to L.A. and stay with his nephew. He didn't take any vacations for two years because he was waiting to hear from them, but they never even contacted him to tell him he wasn't doing it.

It really is a mystery what happened there and I agree with Peter that there's no excuse. The way he was treated was pretty disrespectful. And he still did these recordings for free because the fans wanted it. Makes me really sad.



I also felt that the end of the game really suffered from Paul Lucas being replaced with whoever it is that voiced Lan Di in this game.
 
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It really is a mystery what happened there and I agree with Peter that there's no excuse. The way he was treated was pretty disrespectful. And he still did these recordings for free because the fans wanted it. Makes me really sad.



I also felt that the end of the game really suffered from Paul Lucas being replaced with whoever it is that voiced Lan Di in this game.
That’s even worse than I imagined. I played the game with Japanese VA, but from clips I saw, they horribly miscast Lan Di’s voice who didn’t have any of the menace or icy cold exterior that original voice actor portrayed.
 
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B-Man

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That’s even worse than I imagined. I played the game with Japanese VA, but from clips I saw, they horribly miscast Lan Di’s voice who didn’t have any of the menace or icy cold exterior that original voice actor portrayed.
Definitely. It didn't even sound like he was trying to voice match Paul Lucas. Neither his voice nor his tone was even remotely similar. Not cold or menacing at all, as you said. As a fan of the English voice acting, it kind of ruined the moment for me. Ryo finally confronted Lan Di and as soon as Lan Di opened his mouth, it felt like he was a different person. I actually thought that they did a phenomenal job with his character model, animations, and facial expressions. Because of that, the disconnect between his looks and his voice was even greater.

I honestly find the whole thing pretty bizarre. They signed on Corey Marshall almost immediately after the Kickstarter began, but made literally no effort at all to bring back the other important English voice actors even though they wanted to do it.
 
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Yes the model and Lan Di’s animation were definitely on point. His model was typically the most detailed and well constructed in the Dreamcast games and I was pleased to see this trend continue in Shenmue 3.

I do agree the whole situation regarding former voice actors is bizarre and frankly is one area they dropped the ball hard on.
 
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Jan 22, 2020
So when is the Eric Kelso as Ren mod coming out??? He's done 2 out of 3 come on! Yes it's more complex then a telephone call but there's always a way.
 

spud1897

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Did you know the JP voice of Lan Di is apparently the same dude from 1 and 2
 
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Is there any reason you are aware they dropped ball and didn’t bring him back?

I know he’s not US based but given he did this I assume for free and for love of fans/franchise I can’t expect he was expecting a big payday and quality is much more than serviceable.

For a game filled with fan service and nods to series, it seems like an odd omission.
More or less what @B-Man said. I understand to most people, this is just a job, and I don't mean to put Shenmue on a pedestal above other games, but there is something a little different about these games. The voice actors are not just random people, they have been part of the Shenmue family for 20 years, and have been on this journey with us. Meeting fans, interacting with them on social media, conducting interviews, helping with Shenmue 3... They love the franchise and the fans for what should have been, "just another job" for them.

I should also say that's absolutely no disrespect to the new studio and voice actors that came on board for Shenmue 3. I'd say they were in an unwinnable position, and despite everyone giving their best efforts, fans were always going to have wanted those actors back, at least for the main/iconic roles.
 
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Did you know the JP voice of Lan Di is apparently the same dude from 1 and 2

It is. He's also Cloud Strife's VA and many others.
So casting him wasn't that cheap I guess.

I also think Guizhang's VA in 1 and 2 japanese dub reprised his role in 3.
 

B-Man

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I should also say that's absolutely no disrespect to the new studio and voice actors that came on board for Shenmue 3. I'd say they were in an unwinnable position, and despite everyone giving their best efforts, fans were always going to have wanted those actors back, at least for the main/iconic roles.
In all fairness, I think that Ren's voice actor did a pretty good job in this game. His portrayal was different from Eric Kelso's and I certainly would have preferred that he reprise the role. But Ren's performance in this game wasn't bad at all and was perhaps more fitting of this game's tone and the current state of Ryo and Ren's relationship.

Unfortunately, I don't really have anything positive to say about Lan Di's new English voice. I liken it to Ryo's voice in the original E3 2015 trailer, except that was just a tech demo to introduce a Kickstarter campaign and Lan Di's new voice was actually in the final product.

I will say that the writing for Lan Di didn't help matters. "Hmph, it seems you've improved a bit" is something that I don't think Lan Di would ever say. Not that he wouldn't remark on Ryo's improvement, but the "Hmph," "it seems," and "a bit" parts felt like way too much. I would imagine him saying something more along the lines of simply "You've improved" or "I see you've been training."

Even if Paul Lucas had reprised the role, I feel like some of Lan Di's comments still would have felt out of character. It's probably at least partially the fault of the localizers and directors that Lan Di's English voice missed the mark so badly.
 

spud1897

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In all fairness, I think that Ren's voice actor did a pretty good job in this game. His portrayal was different from Eric Kelso's and I certainly would have preferred that he reprise the role. But Ren's performance in this game wasn't bad at all and was perhaps more fitting of this game's tone and the current state of Ryo and Ren's relationship.

Unfortunately, I don't really have anything positive to say about Lan Di's new English voice. I liken it to Ryo's voice in the original E3 2015 trailer, except that was just a tech demo to introduce a Kickstarter campaign and Lan Di's new voice was actually in the final product.
Yeah I'd agree, he did a good job with Ren overall. I missed Eric for Guizhang's voice more than anything tbh.
 

B-Man

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Yeah I'd agree, he did a good job with Ren overall. I missed Eric for Guizhang's voice more than anything tbh.
Yeah, same here. Guizhang and Nozomi's phone calls were the worst. Their voices sounded nothing like the originals, they were both a bit out of character, and there were localization errors in both (the Warehouse #8 password and Ryo and Nozomi calling each other by their last names).
 

spud1897

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Yeah, same here. Guizhang and Nozomi's phone calls were the worst. Their voices sounded nothing like the originals, they were both a bit out of character, and there were localization errors in both (the Warehouse #8 password and Ryo and Nozomi calling each other by their last names).
Some of those errors are unforgivable IMO. All it needed was a little care/attention and they could have made that a whole lot better.
 

TwiceFriedRice

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I seem to be in the minority, but I hated Ren's new VA.

Please do Ren.
 
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Ryo and Nozomi calling each other by their last names.
Technically not necessarily errors, since that's what they do in Japanese (even in the first game). I know in the localization for the first game they called each other by their first names, but there's an argument to be made that that was a localization error. I'm not sure what else they really could do that would actually convey the figurative distance between yobi-sute (dropping honorifics), and using first names, though. Ryo actually refers to all of his female classmates in the same way. Even Mayumi.
 

B-Man

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Technically not necessarily errors, since that's what they do in Japanese (even in the first game). I know in the localization for the first game they called each other by their first names, but there's an argument to be made that that was a localization error. I'm not sure what else they really could do that would actually convey the figurative distance between yobi-sute (dropping honorifics), and using first names, though. Ryo actually refers to all of his female classmates in the same way. Even Mayumi.
They clearly made the conscious decision to change it to be more westernized in the English dub of the original, so I don't see how that can be seen as an error. It makes sense because it would sound weird to an English speaking audience for a high school student to refer to his classmates by their last names.

On the other hand, it's obvious they just did a literal translation of the Japanese script for these phone calls without bothering to even play the original games or at least watch a YouTube video or something. How else do you explain the Warehouse #8 password? Or do you also think that "Father's Heaven" and "Comrades" were localization errors and that "Father Sky" and "My Friend" are better? What about Fuku-san referring to Iwao as "your father" instead of "Hazuki-sensei?" That's basically the opposite situation; the original game's English translation used honorifics but Shenmue III did not.

There's more to localization than just running a Japanese script through Google Translate and calling it a day. If I'm playing in English, I expect there to be some consistency with the original English dubs. This is doubly true for something as fanservicey as phone calls to old characters.
 
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I realize it's semantics, but those sound like continuity errors, to me, and not necessarily localization errors. I didn't play SIII in English at all, though, so I can't say much on the quality of the translation. Personally, I think both "Comrades" and "My Friend" are serviceable translations for 'wa ga tomo.' (我が友). I think there's probably room for improvement with either one, but I can't really come up with something on the spot. "Father Sky" sounds a little weird, but it potentially more accurately conveys the meaning of 'chichi naru ten' (父なる天), than does "Father's Heaven" (which I think also sounds really weird), because it's something akin to the Japanese translation for the title "God the Father": 'chichi naru kami' (父なる神). Obviously they shouldn't have messed with the continuity in this type of game, where fans really care about that sort of thing, though, and there should have been more of an emphasis on keeping these things the same.

My point about the names is really that there's a lot of nuance lost in mostly using first names all the time. A lot of it is cultural, so it's potentially lost in translation no matter what they did, but, for instance, Ryo is close enough with his guy friends that he uses their first names without honorifics--or just says, "hey" without even addressing them by name. Tajima Eri has a little more of a head-strong personality, so she mimics this by calling Ryo simply, "Hadzuki," and Nozomi simply, "Nozomi." Nakamura has a softer personality, so she calls Nozomi, "Nozomi-chan." Nozomi calls Ryo, "Hadzuki-kun" as sort of a middle-ground, because she's not quite close enough with him to use his first name. Mishima Mayumi does the same thing. Maybe it's a regional thing, but when I was in highschool, some people would use each other's last names when they were less familiar. I think it was probably even more common in my dad's era.

Honestly though:
the original game's English translation used honorifics but Shenmue III did not.
This is more about the localization team for the first game being inconsistent. Using first names all over the place, but adding honorifics for some is trying to have it both ways. When Fuku-san talks about Iwao in Japanese, he literally just says, "sensei." So I can understand why they would translate it the ways they did in either case, but, "your father," would be more consistent, since it's attempting to keep more in line with English speaking cultures, even though it potentially misses some of the meaning, from Fuku-san's perspective.
 

B-Man

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I realize it's semantics, but those sound like continuity errors, to me, and not necessarily localization errors. I didn't play SIII in English at all, though, so I can't say much on the quality of the translation. Personally, I think both "Comrades" and "My Friend" are serviceable translations for 'wa ga tomo.' (我が友). I think there's probably room for improvement with either one, but I can't really come up with something on the spot. "Father Sky" sounds a little weird, but it potentially more accurately conveys the meaning of 'chichi naru ten' (父なる天), than does "Father's Heaven" (which I think also sounds really weird), because it's something akin to the Japanese translation for the title "God the Father": 'chichi naru kami' (父なる神). Obviously they shouldn't have messed with the continuity in this type of game, where fans really care about that sort of thing, though, and there should have been more of an emphasis on keeping these things the same.

My point about the names is really that there's a lot of nuance lost in mostly using first names all the time. A lot of it is cultural, so it's potentially lost in translation no matter what they did, but, for instance, Ryo is close enough with his guy friends that he uses their first names without honorifics--or just says, "hey" without even addressing them by name. Tajima Eri has a little more of a head-strong personality, so she mimics this by calling Ryo simply, "Hadzuki," and Nozomi simply, "Nozomi." Nakamura has a softer personality, so she calls Nozomi, "Nozomi-chan." Nozomi calls Ryo, "Hadzuki-kun" as sort of a middle-ground, because she's not quite close enough with him to use his first name. Mishima Mayumi does the same thing. Maybe it's a regional thing, but when I was in highschool, some people would use each other's last names when they were less familiar. I think it was probably even more common in my dad's era.
Well yeah, I consider it a "localization error" because it should have been localized in the same way as the original. I guess you're right that it's technically more of a continuity error than anything else.

While you may have a point about the nuances of the different characters' relationships being lost in translation, it's been this way for 20 years now and it shouldn't have been changed in Shenmue III. I don't mind the format of Chinese names switching back and forth. I can deal with Zhu Yuan Da becoming Yuanda Zhu and then becoming Zhu Yuanda. But Corey Marshall's Ryo referring to Nozomi as "Harasaki" is not okay.

It's also inconsistent even within Shenmue III because he does refer to her as "Nozomi" once in the game.

even though it potentially misses some of the meaning, from Fuku-san's perspective.
This is what I'm getting at. Fuku-san also considered Iwao to be a father figure and referring to him as "your father" when speaking to Ryo is too impersonal (from Fuku-san's perspective). It makes it sound as if Fuku-san no longer thinks of Iwao as his own sensei and father figure, but simply as "Ryo-san's father."

He also referred to him as just "Sensei" in Shenmue I's English translation at least once and it would have been fine if he had done the same here. This was a much less egregious continuity error to me than Nozomi's name or the warehouse password, mind you. But it was noticeable to me since I can't remember him ever referring to Iwao by any name that didn't at least include the word "sensei."
 
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