The Legend of Zelda, Nintendo Entertainment System word that Nintendo REMOVED from Zelda games
. Those games have huge worlds and grand stories., But I prefer the little world of Links Awakening. Its so quaint and tiny., But surrounding this game is a 20 year long battle and its all about one little word.. When Nintendo created Links Awakening in the 90s. I dont think anyone could have known just how much trouble this one word would cause them. Lets start at the beginning, with the original Japanese version of Links Awakening for the Game Boy in glorious, green and black.. Now, in case you didnt know, this game was originally started as a secret project for a few developers at Nintendo. After their work was done for the day in the evenings. This group of developers would gather to work on a very weird and unique Zelda game for the Game. Boy. The project was never meant to be serious, but a few months on, they decided to show the game to their bosses at Nintendo. And, to their delight, these bosses loved it And that’s how Links Awakening got its start. So because of that, the game is very Weird. Yoshi is in it, Goombas are in it a Chain, Chomp is in it and almost every character. You talk is a little bit unique to put it nicely. And in the Summer of 1993 the game was released in Japan. People loved it, and the game was a big success., And so a few months later, Nintendo of America started working on an English translation of The game in order to bring Links Awakening to American audiences.
And the man in charge of writing. The English script was Dan Owsen.. Just a few years ago. Hed done the English script for A Link to Past. So it was no surprise that he was back for the games follow up too. However, as Owsen worked his way through writing all of the English text for the game, he came across one character who posed a bit of a problem, or at least some difficulty. Right at the beginning of the game. You wake up in this little house.. You leave the house and, as you explore the village youll bump into THIS old lady sweeping the floor.. If you speak to her, the very first thing she says is iyah. In fact, EVERY time you talk to her, the very first thing shell say is iyah, But what is this characters? Name? Even Who is she Well in the game itself? Her name is never actually mentioned, she’s nameless, But luckily the game also has a manual. And inside the manual there’s descriptions of the characters from the game.. While this old lady doesnt actually have a description of her own, her HUSBAND, does., It says …, his wife is the woman who loves to sweep Iyah obaasan. Now obaasan means grandma or old lady.. So her name according to the manual is Old, Lady Iyah. So why does she pose such difficulty? Well, its that one word Iyah In Japanese theres, a fairly common greeting yah Yah. So the first thought when translating this womans catchphrase is to go with a casual English greeting like hey or heya.
However, the woman isnt actually saying yah, she says iyah Theres, an ee sound at the start. That’s. Why I’ve been saying her name, kinda weirdly …, And that is not a common Japanese greeting., Its weird.. It would sound strange to Japanese speakers. So when he wrote the English script for Link’s Awakening Dan Owsen decided to emphasise that weirdness of it and instead of going with a common English greeting, he went with something kinda weird in English Yahoo, And so that became her Name: … Grandma Yahoo. Every time you speak to her in the game, she starts her sentences with quotyahooquot. However, little did Dan Oswen know that a decade down the line, his decision would have some well unexpected consequences. In 1994, one year after Links Awakening came out. Something else happened on the other side of the world.. A website was founded, called Yahoo.. Double? U? Double? U double? U dot yahoo dot! Com.! You could search for things on the internet. You could check the weather. It was pretty neat.. The year is now 2011 and Nintendo have a new handheld console the 3DS.. Its E3 and Shigeru Miyamoto himself announces that the Virtual Console where you can play old games on new systems is coming to 3DS that very day., And the first two games available would be Super Mario Land and Links Awakening.. Now this was really cool. Now a whole new group of people could experience this game Thats. Also how I found and fell in love with Links Awakening.
, So Im gon na dig up my 3DS, because I wan na show you something really interesting in the game.. Normally, these virtual console versions of old games are untouched., They dont fix bugs they dont change the graphics or the text., But look at this. First Ill leave. The house that I woke up in. Then Ill go find the old, lady. And look. HELLO. She says Hello. What on earth happened? What happened to Yahoo? Well, if we look into things a bit more, it turns out that Nintendo actually removed every single mention of Yahoo from Link’s Awakening script.. Some of the time yahoo is replaced with hello, as you saw, and sometimes they replace it with yippee, which I guess is a little more fun at least., Its not just in the game itself. Though. I dont want to be dramatic, but Nintendo went out of their way to purge this one word from all Zelda media.. Let me show you.. In 2018, they released a book called The Zelda Encyclopaedia.. This was a big thick book full of information about the entire Zelda series.. Every single Zelda game has pages and pages of information about it, including Links Awakening., And here theres, this chart of every character in the game. Here’s Old Man. Ulrira – and here is the sweeping woman. – Her name is not Grandma Yahoo anymore.; Instead, they changed it to Grandma, Ulrira Dun, dun dun. So what about the games manual where Grandma Yahoos name was first mentioned in Japanese? Well, the English version doesnt mention Grandma Yahoos name at all.
, Its been completely removed.. So what on earth is going on here? Why did Nintendo go out of their way to get rid of the word yahoo? Well, you can probably take a good guess. Between the creation of the original game in the 1990s and this release in 2011, a major event had taken place.. The web giant Yahoo had been created in by the 2000s. It had become a behemoth of the internet. As game translation expert, Clyde, Mandelin explained. Presumably this change was made because YAHOO, including the all caps spelling and the exclamation mark at the end, has since become a giant global corporation and household name.. So while Nintendo have, unsurprisingly, not explained their reasoning for this removal, the only plausible explanation is that it seemed a little too risky to have this companys trademark plastered throughout their game. Either they were worried about getting some kind of legal threat from the company or more Likely they just didnt Yahoo’s logo, all throughout Link’s Awakening.. What about in Japanese, though, Did Nintendo remove that original iyah from the game? No, they didnt. If you play the game in its original language, then the sweeping womans catchphrase remains intact.. So why is this Well? Yahoos? Japanese name is not iyah its yah, which sounds a lot closer to the original.. So, while in English, yahoo and yahoo are identical in Japanese theyre, completely different., Iyah and yah., So theres no clash or trademark issue there., And so the japanese version of Links Awakening is untouched.
. And if I made this video a couple of years ago, this would be where things ended. With yahoo completely purged from the Zelda series.. However, there is now a twist Because one rainy February evening in 2019 Nintendo revealed a big surprise. They had up their sleeve., They were remaking Links Awakening from the ground up for the Nintendo Switch.. It had this beautiful anime style opening and the graphics were just breathtaking. But while I watched this original reveal trailer, there was one little question on my mind. What would happen to Yahoo Would Nintendo bring it back, or was it really gone forever? Well, as I happened, I got my answer before the game even launched.. At E3 later in the year, some Nintendo employees were demonstrating the game just wandering around that opening area. In the village. And on the corner of the screen was the woman sweeping., The person playing the game walked up to her and just look … Yahoo. She says Yahoo again For the first time in 20 years., But not only that just look at her name. Grandma Yahoo, In English, the characters name was never actually confirmed to be Grandma Yahoo. Up until now, This was the first time they had ever official translated her name as Grandma Yahoo and believe me, I was very happy about it, But why? What changed? Well, we can only theorise since again, Nintendo have not talked about the Yahoo incident.. However, while in 2011 Yahoo was an internet giant in 2019, things had changed.