Friday, June 24, 2022

Périlleuses contrées: Fangenoire (Blackmarsh in French)

While I enjoy getting the revenues I get from my sales as Bat in the Attic Games. The biggest reward is getting to share my material and doing in it a way that is professional and useful. Since the point is sharing, I like to release most of the material I make as open content. Why?

Part of it is promotion. Making it easy for others to share my stuff so people will seek out the other things I have. But the other important reason is to allow projects to happen that I don't have the resources or time to do, like translation into other languages.

So I am pleased to announce that Blackmarsh has been published in French!

This is due to the efforts of Philippe Tromeur and his team. They have a bunch of translations on DriveThruRPG for other products with open content. There will be a print version of this available in the next few months on Lulu 

I appreciate this and hope this makes Blackmarsh more accessible for those whose primary language is French. 

Important Rob's Note: I am perfectly fine with the fees charged by people who use my open content. A lot of work went into this and folks deserve to be compensated in the matter they see fit. If I had a problem with it I wouldn't have released it as open content. For Fangenoire, Philippe has opted to make the PDF free to download on DriveThruRPG.

Other Translations

Other Versions


Dick McGee said...

Congrats. French is still "the classy language' to me, although I suspect that's a delusion based on lack of familiarity. I mean, it *was* the language of international diplomacy for a long, long time. That must count for something, right? :)

Philippe said...

We've chosen to translate most names (those in the English language) into French, sometimes twisting things a little bit. That's what translating is about !

Examples :
- "Strangeholm" => "L'Isle-d'Yeuse", because "strange" in places names often means "strong" (for example in Manchester, "Strangeways" actually means "strong water" from old English "strang gewaesc"), and "holm" is probably an allusion to the "Holm River" nearby. Then "strong River Holms" probably means it's a place often surrounded by water, and by the way one meaning of "holm" is also "inland island". We've translated "Holm River" as "L'Yeuse" because the holm tree is called "yeuse" locally in northern France (the usual name is "chêne vert"). "strangeholm" => "place surrounded by water when the holm river is strong" = "isle of the river of the holm tree" = "L'Isle-d'Yeuse"
- "Ealdorman Paddock Ryburn" => "Bailli Paddock Chevrette". We had no ealdormen in mainland Europe; here replaced by a close equivalent, the bailiff. "Ryburn" means something like "river of the roe buck". By chance, the main river of the city nearby where I live, Brest, is now called "Penfeld" but was also called "Chevrette" in the middle-ages *, which is the name of a roe doe (female roe deer) in French. I borrowed the former name of our river to name the guy.
- "The Viz Club" => "La Société du Viz" : an allusion to the "Société du Vril", a british occult society which probably never existed, but is commonly used in French conspiracy theories and fiction.

We've also used personnal translations for creatures :
- "Halfling" => "Tinigen" is a weird translation used in the earlier translations of D&D in French in the early 80's. But it definitly sounds better than the current official "Halfelin", so many French OSR publishers use it again.
- "Wraith" => "Afterganger" is taken from Icelandic. The usual French translation, "Âme-en-peine" (lost soul) is kinda lame...
- "Merfolk" => "Ondin" comes from the French translation of the "Battle for Wesnoth" video game, which I love. The cover art recycles (open-source) art from the game. That Mermaid Priestess is lovely !

And "Lands of Adventure" => "Périlleuses contrées" (Perilous countries), because unfortunately "Terres d'aventures" is a registered trademark...

* You probably wonder how "Chevrette" became "Penfeld" ? That's an old translation mistake ! The name "Caprella" (roe doe) was probably invented by the Romans, but the locals only spoke the Breton language and understood "kap huellañv" (higher cape), which made sense since Brest is on a promontory. A promontory is also translated in Breton as "penfeld". That's why "Caprella" became "Penfeld", and both names "Chevrette"/"Penfeld" (the French translation of Caprella, and the Breton mistake) were used.

Robert Conley said...

Thanks for sharing that.

Kevin Mac said...

Wow, global..

Philippe said...

Now slightly revised and available in Print-on-Demand :