Have You Ever Heard of “Moe”?

[Source: Actual NIS America PR letter]

I had, actually, heard of “moe” at the time of this writing, but was not fully aware of its meaning. The explanation here did little to clarify.

Years later, I still have little idea of what “moe” means. From what I can tell, it’s something along the lines of “Like pedophilia, only slightly less creepy.”

Aside from the cover letter above, I’ll always remember Ar tonelico because it hated me and wanted to ruin my life. It was assigned to me at Hardcore Gamer Magazine under mysterious circumstances (anime RPGs are not exactly in my realm of expertise), and the preview I wrote for it ended up not actually making it into the magazine.

The in-progress localized version that I played was buggy and machine-translated. Lines of text spilled over the edges of dialog boxes. Characters spouted reams of gibberish when approached. It was pretty great.

It stopped being great when it froze after I tried to save my game. On a memory card that didn’t belong to me. Which I had also used to store save data for Okami — a very, very, very long game that I was in the middle of reviewing at the time.

The card was hosed — it crashed the PlayStation 2’s memory card manager. I was able to extract my Okami save by loading the data in-game and swapping cards, but as far as I know, the affected card is still basically unusable. I bought its owner dinner at Whataburger as an apology.

It’s worth noting that save problems still exist in the final version, though they probably (hopefully) aren’t as catastrophic.

Lesson learned: When playing buggy preview code, don’t ever try to save your game.

Lesson learned #2: “Moe” is a very popular Japanese word used in Japan.

8 Responses to “Have You Ever Heard of “Moe”?”

  1. Xkeeper Says:

    Ar tonelico is actually a pretty fun game with some interesting quirks, if you don’t mind thebugs. Ar tonelico 2 is more like a hurr rhythm timing game for battles and has a really nasty bug at the end of the game.

    I’d recommend giving the final a shot if you’re up for it.

  2. Sonicandtails Says:

    If you have any means of running homebrew code on your ps2 just run mcformat.elf and it’ll wipe the memory card clean. I bought a corrupted memory card from gamestop that froze the memory card manager, and this did the trick.

  3. Kid Fenris Says:

    “Like pedophilia, only slightly less creepy.”

    That is correct, with the “slightly less” part up for widespread debate.

    This press release was the best one I ever received back when I covered games for a magazine, and I once found myself wishing that I’d saved it. Good thing someone else did.

  4. Chris Says:

    Oh yeah! I remember that memory card… man good times. I think having phrases like “I’ll beat them to death with my sword!” permanently embedded into my vernacular was absolutely, positively worth the price of a cheap memory card I didn’t even realize I had left at your place. The Whataburger was delicious too, so of course all was and is forgiven.

    I really love this blog! I’ve been checking it every day and my favorite part is, of course, the Wizards. Keep it up! It’s awesome to see the return of the comedy title tags.

  5. ArnoldRimmer83 Says:

    Of course I’ve heard of Moe. The Three Stooges are awesome.

  6. Moe Says:

    My name is moe, thanks a lot. I know you love the thing I got. You’ve never seen the likes of me? Why I’m the biggest thing since world war III.

  7. halfassured Says:

    I love that it is called “Hardcore Gamer Magazine” and they had you playing Ar Tonelico. I guess the fact that it was untranslated and unplayable makes it more hardcore, though.

  8. Anonymous Says:

    Not surprised in the least given NISA’s reputation for making the games they localized into buggy messes. In fact, it’s actually surprising the final build of the game operates more or less as well as the JP version it does, leaving aside graphic bugs and some senseless script changes they introduced.

    And the final version fortunately features no save corrupting or memory-destroying bugs, though it and all other Gust PS2 games do have a penchant for corrupting PS3 virtual memory cards.

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