Voidworks wrote:Hi. If you ever happen to work on this again, please revert "Neko", "Mecha", etc.
Romanization is a number of different systems that don't play well with each other, and romanization by itself does not mean anything without the original source. Because of these two things, there is no right or wrong romanization.
We have the original source, so how to handle the romanization isn't as cryptic as you're imagining.
"Neco" and "Mech" are correct because that was what was written. Attempting to change the names at all suggests a questionable move by someone who's rushing a translation out. To do so this late into the public knowledge "life" of the series borders on a reactionary play by someone who has little respect for the source.
Those are some pretty rude comments, aren't they? Trust me, the translation was nowhere near "rushed", and I'm not sure what we're supposed to be "reacting" to in your mind. It also couldn't be further from the truth when you say that we don't respect the source. Rather, it is BECAUSE of our respect for the material that we make sure to do the best job we can. Type-Moon is notoriously bad with engrish and romanization. Just because they made a poor choice, it doesn't mean that we're forced to follow them on it -- that's not a matter of respect, but of doing a proper job on our end. We are translating/localizing, not running the game through Google Translate and calling it a day. The experience we provide to our audience (you guys!) is the top priority here, and that means keeping things both smooth AND accurate while following the spirit of the material.
Here's something interesting... you mentioned "Mech" and "Neco", but you left out "Yumiduka" -- did you know that that was the romanization Type-Moon uses for her? mirror moon has been changing that from "Yumiduka" to "Yumizuka" for a long time now, since "Yumiduka" is undeniably a poor choice. There are a few different romanization styles out there, but using "du" for づ is generally considered poor form as it doesn't approximate the sound correctly.
Moving away from romanization styles, "Mecha" is an easy change just on the grounds of common sense. The Japanese is メカ (meka) -- if you listen to the dialogue being spoken, they are LITERALLY saying "mecha". It also works better when you speak the name. The hard-to-soft transition of "Mech-Hisui" sounds more like "Mek kisui" when spoken, while "meka hisui" has much better distinction. It's unclear why Type-Moon decided to deviate and write "Mech" in the text, but they even contradicted themselves here -- and again, it doesn't mean it was a good choice.
As for "Neco", going through the scripts you'll see that TM uses three different methods of describing the neko-arcs: 猫, ネコ, and NECO (always all-caps). Neko, neko, and... NECO? That's an outlier. In fact, NECO is only used in a couple of instances... the grand majority of the time they use one of the first two forms. Their race is very clearly described as some kind of freakish "cat" in almost every single case. So again, they have ruined their own consistency by using a weird romanization. And honestly, the signs all point to incorrect romanization based on poor English skills. "Neco Arc" is without a doubt INTENDED to be "Cat-Arcueid", which (combined with everything else I mentioned) makes "Neko-Arc" a better choice.
I'm well aware that the fanbase has already adopted "Neco Arc", and I brought it up with the rest of the team when we were discussing this. However, we ultimately decided that we didn't have to be bound by any preset community decisions. Type-Moon makes some very great things, but they are not infallible. It is not an act of blasphemy to smooth out some of the wrinkles when there doesn't appear to be any reason for them to exist besides a lack of English knowledge.