YKK Forum

Want to see YKK in the U.S.? Request it here!


You know what to do!

Yeah, it's still fairly unlikely, but if everyone who reads this goes and requests it there, Tokyopop will know there's at least SOME audience for it, and they just might consider licensing it. It's worth trying!

- Whismur
Tuesday, April 22, 2003

I really doubt Tokyopop would bring it here since they are really into the low-teen shonen and shojo market. Plus, their translation is really bad, and would often add Americanized dialog instead of proper translation. I'm scared of what they would do to YKK.

I don't now how good of a translation job Del Ray would do, but Random House has tons of resource available and should do a better job. I hope they would bring it here, as I've posted in my own thread.

- Jeffrey Chen
Sunday, July 20, 2003

I voted, hope it'll make a difference..

- newgohan
Saturday, March 20, 2004

Groovy stuff. I went ahead and cast my vote;
1. Yokohama Kaidashi Kikou
2. Eden (by Endo Hiroki)
3. GANTZ (by Oku Hiroya)

Don't know if it'll result in some localising - and as for the latter two I guess they have a bit bigger chance of being localised (/westernised, but hey, I can get almost everything that's relesead in the US at the main manga parlour here in Iceland). But they're my favourite titles being scanslated at the moment.
One more voice out of the gutter, at least:P

But speaking of that, have any of Endo's or Oku's works been released officially in English? I'm not aware of any such releases - but they're both relatively new on the scene of course (right?).

- Yrobianot Beni Caliamadte
Wednesday, March 31, 2004


There hasn't been an official release of Endo's work in English, but I believe it's been released in Europe. Some of the English fan translations use the European translation as a base (meaning it's a translation of a translation, and the meaning drifts a good deal from the original Japanese).

I really like Eden, even though it can be summed up as "create a compelling back story for a character and them kill 'em off."



- dDave
Wednesday, March 31, 2004

I really would rather not see TokyoPop have anything to do with YKK.

I was paid $200 to clean up nearly 200 pages of scans for one volume of another manga, and I waited three months for the editors to provide the text of the translation. They never did. It took TokyoPop seven months and numerous unanswered letters for them to pay my invoice.

I thought it might be fun to work on a project like that, maybe meet some people with like interests, but it was little more than minimum-wage drudge work for unresponsive, self-important otakus.

Not my idea of a good company. If Ashinano-san cared about translating the series for Americans, I would advice him to oversee it himself and let Kodansha produce the translated series in Japan.

I have the mangas, the CDs, the DVDs and two calendars (even the LDs). With Dave's good work, I'm happy right now. But I would vote gladly for placing an official English-language YKK project in his hands.

Maybe we could start a write-in campaign to Kodansha?

- seaweb
Thursday, April 1, 2004


>With Dave's good work, I'm happy right now.

Just to be clear, it's Neil who deserves all the thanks.



- dDave
Thursday, April 1, 2004

I thought I got that wrong. D for Dave. D for neild.

But I never see Neil post to the Forum...I guess he's busy! :)

- seaweb
Friday, April 2, 2004

> But I never see Neil post to the Forum...

Another misconception ;)

Look for alias "dn"...

- muff
Saturday, April 3, 2004

Yes, Endo's Eden and the short story compilation have been released in Germany I believe - they're available on some online stuff parlour I bumped into while trying to find more about the series.

You can see in some of the scanslations around the web that the sound effects aren't really what would be used in English - like explosions having the onomatopoeia "BOOUUM", for example.
These scanslations are based on the European releases.

I agree with you on the "setting up back-story only to kill someone off" bit, and sometimes it seems like the series is kind of without proper aim. But so is life:P No, well - around volume 8 I was a bit disoriented as to where the story would go, but after finishing it I'm confident it will sum up into something interesting and focused. What has gone before was an interesting way to set up the world the manga resides in - introducing the characters and how they came to know each other, and so on.

Regarding licencing and official localisation of manga - which firms are actually considered the best at this? (or at least adequate?)
Of course there must be seperate groups that work on the numerous mangas being localised (to English) in firms like Tokyopop and Viz, it can't really come down to which giant is better than the other (unless the management pulls the quality up or drags it down).
But I've not really heard anyone say they really like [insert company]'s localisations.

Penny for your thoughts?

- Yrobianot Beni Caliamadte
Wednesday, April 14, 2004

"...which firms are actually considered the best at this?"

There are many varied opinions on the work of many companies big and small. I was involved in a discussion two years ago that included people in the industry. Here is a very brief summary:

VIZ is generally considered to be the best publisher for quality of translation and art production. The books are printed and bound very well. They have also published some sophisticated manga series that appeal to intellectuals. The company has some problems, however. They move very slowly. The books are more expensive. They neglected shoujo manga for years in favor of shonnen manga that sold well in comic book stores. They were slow to develop the bookstore market.

Tokyopop revolutionized the American manga market by:
1. Cutting its production costs
2. Dropping the price of tankobans to $10
3. Increasing the frequency of publication
4. Aggressively marketing to GIRLS in BOOKSTORES (not comic book stores)
5. Experimenting with different subgenres and styles

Non-Americans may be unaware that bookstores did not sell comics or manga until recently. Comics and manga were traditionally sold in specialty stores. These specialty comic book stores sold mostly American superhero comics to adult males. This customer base of "fan-boys" was getting older and smaller as time went by. The business was dying. The customers were disgusting. Neither girls nor the general public would visit an American comic book store. Marketing comics for girls or children in such an environment was hopeless.

Tokyopop changed all that, but at a cost. The books are not as pretty as VIZ manga. Tokyopop cut production costs by keeping the right to left page format. They did not translate the sound effects. They printed the books on lower quality paper. At the time, the existing manga fan community thought they were crazy to adopt these measures. The fans complained that the "low quality" would drive away customers accustomed to high quality production values. Tokyopop proved them wrong. The sales of manga in America increased at triple digit rates since this decision. Most of that spectacular growth has been in Tokyopop shoujo manga sold in chain bookstores. The new customers are teenaged girls who do not care about the print job or the format. They just want the next episode of their favorite manga.

So I say forget about quality. I would love to see Tokyopop publish YKK. They would ensure that it was shared with millions of people in America.

- Loran
Thursday, April 15, 2004

I posted my votes to this list (with YKK being #1) a while ago... is there any way to see what kind of results came of it?

- Tabyk
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

I'm doing my part. In an extraordinary stroke of good luck, I was able to sit down with David L. Williams and Matt Greenfield of ADV at Sakuracon in Seattle this past weekend. I mentioned that YKK is my favorite manga. I also lamented that the YKK anime is simply never going to get licensed, to which Matt Greenfield said "Never say never." I doubt this means they are in negotiations to license it, but at least they know this is one more fan with money in his pockets who wants YKK, both the anime and the manga. To tell you the truth, I'd prefer ADV Manga license it if it happens, because I'm sure they'll keep all the color pages. I don't feel so confident about any other company doing that.

- martialstax
Monday, April 26, 2004

Hi all, I'm a relatively new fan of YKK. I saw the original 2 OVAs a few years ago, but only read these manga scanslations recently, when I got copies from my brother. Hope you won't mind if I add my 2 cents to this thread, since I know I'd buy copies if they were brought over stateside.

Has anyone tried out Del Rey's entries into the manga market? I noticed this thread's last comment was entered before they were released; I bought Tsubasa, Negima!, and xxxHolic recently. Tsubasa and xxxHolic had several color pages at the very beginning, so I'd imagine they could do the same for YKK's color chapters. All three had useful notes (with pictures of the scenes) in the back, spanning several pages that explained cultural references, as well as in-jokes, easter eggs, and references to other titles that I would've otherwise missed; this left a very good impression on me. The sound effects and signs seemed to be preserved, with translations in a small unintrusive font nearby. I felt that the dialogue was very slightly localized, and nowhere nearly as blatent as Tokyopop's work (I own some volumes of King of Bandit Jing, and also read several of their samplers). There were even previews for the next volume, where a few pages were printed with the original Japanese text.

Overall, I've been impressed with Del Rey's work; if they keep the quality at this level, I'd be happy to see them work on YKK. I'm wondering if anybody here has also read their titles, and how it compares to the original manga? And if you also thought their details were well thought-out?

ADV Manga was pretty good too though their notes section was harder to find (based on my experience with FMP). I liked the larger size of the books, because it made the art's detail easier to see. They also had nice color printouts at the beginning of each volume, like martialstax mentioned.

I also thought seaweb had an interesting idea; if Kodansha were to oversee translations themselves. Aren't there manga in Japan, used as English teaching aids, that are printed with translations printed in the margins? However, I'd imagine it would be less practical than having a US company handle it, with their established local publishing facilities and distribution channels.

In all honesty, I would hesitate about making a purchase if it's published by Tokyopop; I feel that YKK's subtleties are delicate and would need more faithful translating. Still, I'd probably buy at least a volume or two before deciding if I like the translations.

Wow, I've rambled on for longer than I intended... I guess in summary, if I were to choose a US publisher, I'd pick Del Rey, and I think many people will be pleasantly surprised by the quality of their work.

- kyaa
Monday, May 3, 2004

Should YKK get published in the states, I really hope it will be by someone who treats the artwork well. In particular, when looking at ADV's Azumanga Daioh and the original tankobans side by side, it is amazing how badly the art has been mangled. It looks like their source material was a bad photocopy -- the nice clean screenwork is smudged out and often almost solid black. I'm rather saddened that with prices almost twice that of the original works, the US releases of manga often look so much worse.

- Brian
Monday, May 3, 2004

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