Things That You For the Love of God Should Not Do

Article, Fansubs — By on August 7, 2013 8:41 pm

This post was written by Calyrica. She is not Dark_Sage.

Most of these horrible, horrible things happen in old official rips from more then ten years ago, but you’d be surprised at the shit that still pops up.

Reviews will happen. This is not me slacking. I’ve just been busy.

By the way, all of these are random pics I’ve taken over the past few months, so that’s why they’re not all full screenshots. But you get the idea.

1. Make all lines the same length and ignore overlaps.

Screenshot comes from Neon Genesis Evangelion: Death and Rebirth.

This is nearly impossible to watch. I sat through all of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure with subs that did this, too. You have to constantly pay attention to the subtitles to keep track of what was there and what is new. You can’t even shift your focus to the image behind the subs, since you might lose focus just enough to wonder, “Did I read that line or was that there before?”

2. Have rainbow karaoke for everything.

I’m looking at you, WhyNot.

3. Have overlaps without some sort of differentiation.

Both this and the screenshot before it comes from WhyNot’s Bakumatsu Gijinden Roman.

Okay, so this is a typesetting issue, but even so, it’s a cluttered mess.

4. Have three-(or more!)-liners.

This is from Commie’s Monogatari Season 2, but fonts do render a bit differently on libass, so I don’t want to call them out on a 3-liner when it probably looks fine on vsfilter. However, there are some very obvious cases of multi-liners in other shows, and this should just not happen.

Not only does it cover up more of the screen than it should, it forces the viewer to dedicate a large chunk of time reading the subs before focusing on the animation. Breaking lines up means that not only will the viewer not miss out on the dialogue, but they won’t miss out on the action, either.

5. Forget to run spellcheck.

Picture from Chihiro’s Zettai Karen Children.

Look, I’m guilty of this too. I rarely spellcheck edits I do, saying the QC will check it. It’s pure laziness on my part. However, spellchecking will reduce the number of errors in your releases, and will make you look like less of a fucking idiot.

6. If you’re going to typeset, at least try to make it look nice.

This is from Princess Resurrection.

At this point, don’t even try. \an8 that shit and move on.

(By the way, this was their dialogue font.)

Also, don’t put effort in and mess up signs so badly that they do this:

This is from Planetes. The sign goes on top of the characters, apparently.

7. Insert stupid memes into your releases.

I don’t remember what this is from, either.

Look. I know this is funny and cool, but either leave it in the script comments or release a total troll release, labeling it as such. Otherwise, this just disrupts the flow and is unwanted.

8. Have obnoxious and unnecessary TL-notes.

Can’t remember what this is from, either.

If I didn’t know what an I-beam was (I didn’t), telling me that in a TL note isn’t going to change that. It’s a waste of your effort to put it there. I have to divert my attention to read it, and it covers up part of the screen for no reason. TL notes are handy in some situations, but it is not one of them.

9. Skip QC.

This is from Soul Eater if that’s not obvious already.

I don’t think I need to elaborate here. Also, if you’re a ripper and you just plan to slap the DVD sub on and release, at least watch your way through the entire first ep to decide if it’s okay to just release and move on. Otherwise, you end up with tons of issues like we’ve seen in this rant so far.

10. Use fonts that don’t support the characters your script uses.

This is HorribleSubs’s rip of Cardfight Vanguard.

I talked about this in my Vividred review, but that wasn’t the first time I saw it. It pops up a lot more often than you’d think. If you haven’t encountered it before, you’re lucky.

Sometimes, you don’t even get blank characters (like in Vividred) or boxes (like above). You get shit like this:

I don’t even know what happened here. I do love me some math symbols, though!~


Anyway, we could all add a bunch of things to this list, but I’m gonna stop at ten since it’s a nice number and open it up for your comments.

Tags: , ,


ar says:

> This is HorribleSubs’s rip of Cardfight Vanguard.

Horriblesubs releases don’t use the same font that Crunchyroll does, so the original font probably had the necessary glyphs unlike the one it was changed to. And before you say well Horriblesubs should have checked, truth is they don’t care about these things. So Horriblesubs is probably a bad example~

Also Commies three-liner somehow slipped by QC or lack there of.

Calyrica says:

Yeah, but it’s just a screenshot I had in my account. The second one is more impressive. XD

Also, thanks for confirming that Commie’s three-liner wasn’t just a libass issue. I remember accusing FFF of a three-liner once, but it was actually libass, and someone provided a screenshot of the same line using vsfilter. I felt really stupid for awhile.

Pacific says:

Calyrica, don’t forget 5a: Run a grammar check assuming that it will catch my mistakes.

You wrote: “However, spellchecking will reduce the amount of errors….” That is a quantifier error. The phrase should be “number of errors,” or perhaps “amount of error” on the presumption that the errors can’t be discretely identified.

Many grammar checkers miss this ubiquitous type of error, which fact helps explain why it’s a pet peeve of mine.

Calyrica says:

Many grammar checkers miss a lot of things. Notorious in Microsoft Word’s grammar error is plurality mismatches. It wants to “correct” a sentence that’s already fine to something that is very, very incorrect.

Mistake noted. Will fix.

Hey says:

Shouldn’t number one be “Attempt to sub anime or edit other people’s scripts without a competent translator”? You’d think it would be common sense, yet every season there are three or four groups who just can’t get their shit together.

Calyrica says:

I was going more for the blatant obvious mistakes even a 5-year-old could spot, but yes, that’s definitely a problem.

(Also, the items weren’t in any particular order, so don’t assume I thought the first item was the most important. It’s not.)

anon says:

I think that a good editor who doesn’t know Japanese can polish up official subs and ultimately improve a script if they write well and know their limits. But it seems few people are so qualified, unfortunately.

thecowgoesmoo says:

>[Don’t f]orget to run spellcheck.


Goes back to qc-ing

Calyrica says:

<3 you, moo. Even if I do hate applying your QC reports. :-P

Pacific says:

>Things That You For the Love of God Should Not Do
>[Don’t f]orget to run spellcheck.

>Don’t don’t forget to run a spellcheck.

That’s a double negative. You were right the first time, Calyrica. Sometimes the QC needs a QC. :-P

Calyrica says:

No, you misunderstood moo. He was thanking me for mentioning that and stated it as a standalone rule. I mentioned the QC reports because I worked with him in GotWoot.

Pacific says:


I don’t know why I took that ironically. I think my brain is starting to shut down from cacao withdrawal.

Pacific says:

Unless, of course, removing the “Don’t” from No. 5 was what moo mean’t and you had already done so. If so, then… never mind.

Anon says:

No mention of using Aegisub’s default font padding? No mention of COMIC SANS?
I’m disappoint.

ar says:

Comic Sans dabes.

Solaristics says:

Comic Sans best font.

corocoro says:

> I don’t remember what this is from, either.
Looks like it might be from one of Soul Eater’s later episodes. Art style matches and he does have a Death mask on his shoulder.
Anyway, what I wanted to say: don’t watermark your videos. Just like with scanlations, only bottom-of-the-barrel groups tend to do that, which really begs the question: why do they want to be remembered for being complete crap?

> Also, if you’re a ripper and you just plan to slap the DVD sub on and release, at least watch your way through the entire first ep to decide if it’s okay to just release and move on.
Almost all rippers of R1 DVDs don’t bother to QC or actually do anything but a straight encode. If it’s from the professionals, it has to be perfect! o.O

FalseDawn says:

I’d extend the tl note bit to “Don’t overuse TL notes” because there is a tendency to tl note everything – even things that are well-known in English. My current rule is that tl notes are only for pretty obscure Japanese culture (i.e. non-Wiki-able) or for puns that just can’t be translated/localised no matter how hard you try without fudging the whole thing up (usually comes about when there’s a visual cue, because working with visual cues is hard in pun work).

My favourite TL note fail was Koda’s one about “just deserts” which included a wiki link in it :D I can’t remember what series it was though… Toradora?

Kristen says:

While this may be true, this really is a preference more than anything else. There may be a few people who like lots of TL notes clarifying everything. This post is more highlighting things that are definitely facepalm worthy, rather than preferential things.

zanon says:
While this may be true, this really is a preference more than anything else. There may be a few people who like lots of TL notes clarifying everything.

In that case it’d still be reasonable to consider the technical angle, namely that this is 2013, we’re using MKV and softsubs, and multiple sub tracks are not a bad thing. So I’d still lean towards being extremely conservative with TL notes for the default track, because if desired a second track with full TL notes/commentary can always be included for those who want it. Really though with the Internet right there all the time less is definitely more, if someone is curious about something they don’t understand it really isn’t a big deal to just go look it up. Whereas a TL note on the only track will be there every single time, whether someone knows it already or not.

Kristen says:

Oh, I know. I’m not saying that excessive TL notes is a good thing or that I prefer it. I’m just saying that this post wouldn’t be a good place to mention it. It’s like saying don’t encode to XviD. Preferential because it’s better, not because it’s a mistake/failure.

FalseDawn says:

I think tl noting an English phrase because you think 4chan is gonna call you dumb because they think you’ve got it wrong is definitely a fail, rather than just preferential.

Don’t assume everyone can access the Internet anytime.

In many places/situations connections sucks, are time-limited and even 56Kb/s.

Then there are occasions where the connection is downright unavailable, like while traveling, on cruises, in the army, etc.

With that said, I don’t like on-screen notes, but I think putting them in a separate file would be nice.

Pelfmiester says:

#7 is Soul Eater as well I think.

Kawwmoi says:

Pretty sure it’s from when Death turns the city into a giant robot or something

Enz says:

If you happen to have too much time on your hands, I’d like to suggest reviewing this one.

Calyrica says:

Hm. I do someday plan to watch that, but…

How about when they complete subbing the entire series, you remind me again and I’ll review it, okay?

Sakuya says:

The funny thing is, the One Outs one actually started to work for me after a while xD No more random signs on my side.

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