Monday, February 24, 2014

News: Card Lores to Cease Web Publication on February 28th

Early this morning in Japan the card of the today profile for Dragonic Overlord the "Яe-birth" brought with it a special announcement. On February 28th, the "Unit Information" feature in the Japanese card of the day profiles will end, with card profiles being moved exclusively to Monthly Bushiroad magazine as "Unit Description Original Novels: Stories from the Planet Cray." In place of the card lores, on March 3rd the Today's Card section will instead feature "A Word from Vanguard R&D" discussing card mechanics and the design ideas behind cards.

Monthly Bushiroad's most recent short story, page 1/3.
The announcement comes as a major disappointment to international fans, and has been subject to strong criticism in the west. While the English-language equivalent column never included the "Unit Information" section, unofficial translations of the Japanese card profiles have been circulated since they first began in January 2011. By dropping these lores from web circulation and moving them exclusively to Monthly Bushiroad--which until now had specialized in supplementary short stories about the units--the card game's narrative has been restricted to a much smaller readership of Japanese-literate consumers.

As Japanese fans rarely provide clear scans of Monthly Bushiroad, this may be the end of the card lore for the west. Overseas fans would have to purchase and scan issues of the magazine to make the lore easily available again. As Monthly Bushiroad is an anthology-sized monthly magazine with a short print run, and subscriptions to foreign publications are difficult to obtain in the United States without going through Kinokuniya, the task of acquiring and scanning each month's short stories is daunting. And because the lores are also longer and more detailed, and cannot be quickly transcribed for assistance from electronic dictionaries and machine translators, the translation will also prove considerably more difficult than before.