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Xenoblade Chronicles X director explores the importance of localization changes

'As a developer, I do feel like it'd be ideal to be able to adjust the content so that it's culturally acceptable, whether it's in the US or in the EU,' explains Takahashi.
"I think what's important is that we make sure the end user who actually plays the game doesn't have a bad experience. If that change is going to help alleviate that, then I think we should definitely make it."

- Tetsuya Takahashi shares his take on Xenoblade Chronicles X's somewhat controversial localization. 

The process of localizing a game for release outside of its country of origin can lead to some tough decisions and important conversations, particularly when changes to a game are met with fan outcry. 

At E3 this past week, Kotaku reached out to Tetsuya Takahashi, the executive director of Xenoblade Chronicles X and CEO of Monolith Soft, to gather his thoughts about the localization process that ultimately was responsible for cuts made to the game prior to its Western release.

In short? Takahashi says the changes, which included removing a character's revealing outfit from the game and cutting the character creator's breast size slider, really didn’t bother him that much.

“As a developer, I do feel like it’d be ideal to be able to adjust the content so that it’s culturally acceptable, whether it’s in the US or in the EU,” Takahashi told Kotaku.

"For example, there was a discussion about the breast slider. Jokingly, I said, 'Well would it help if we had a crotch slider for the male?' Obviously it was a joke, but they responded obviously it’s not gonna work out. I do realize there’s a cultural difference between what Japanese people think and what the rest of the world thinks."

Takahashi stressed that localizing a game should, first and foremost, be about ensuring that as many players as possible will be able to enjoy a game. Sometimes, this means altering content for cultural differences in each release.

For more from Takahashi on localization, including thoughts about how a simultaneous worldwide release can affect that process, head over to Kotaku to catch the full interview

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