Story tidbits from a forum member at Daizenshuu EX
, a Dragon Ball fansite.
Hey, since DBO has recently gone into OB, I've been doing some translations, and I've noticed that there are some stuff that people still don't seem completely informed about, so I figured I'd contribute some of my findings.
First off, unless I'm missing something, the villains are no longer known as the "Dark Eye". I was actually the person who translated the article with that information a long time ago, when the game was first announced (believe it or not). At the time, it stated something along the lines of, "the world has been divided by a villainous organization called the Dark Eye, which is controlled from behind the scenes by a mysterious individual". Whatever the reason, it seems to have been dropped, since it hasn't been used in a long time.
Instead, as it currently stands, the villain is typically only referred to as the "Pale Man", and his forces, which are comprised of the remnants of the Freeza and Red Pants Armies, are usually called the "Pale Man's Army".
Now, I haven't read much about this stuff on any English sites, so I thought I'd share some information. Some is from the game, some from the official site, and some of it's a bit older, from a press conferances:
The Pale Man, Miira
The Pale Man's name is Miira, and the current main goal for players is to uncover and prevent his evil plans. Miira is a humanoid that was created in the Dark Demon Realm (Ankoku Makai), and invaded Earth in Age 2000 to try and conquer it. He recruits the remnants of the Freeza and Red Pants Armies and begins gathering life energy, then travels back in time with a time machine to try and obtain Goku's DNA to become even stronger. Kami-sama (Dende) asks Trunks to prevent this, leading to the formation of the Time Patrol.
You may or may not know that in one of the recent Dragon Ball guidebooks, Akira Toriyama introduced the concept of Makaioshin, corrupted Kaioshin (Supreme Kais) that rule over the Dark Demon Realm (where Dabura is from). It was speculated that he brought this up because he planned to use them in DBO. Though I'm pretty sure Miira isn't a Makaioshin, I feel fairly confident in saying that the female character he's been pictured with probably is, and that she may be the one who created him.
The Human Race and Classes
Of the three races, the humans have the longest established culture on Earth, and they're also the most prolific, having spread to all corners of the world, including the Wastelands. As of Age 1000, the human race has become cross-bred with the Saiyan race, and as such, many believe that the race holds a powerful, hidden potential. In Age 820, the remnants of the Freeza Army invaded Earth; the war and environmental destruction has given the human race an intense drive to protect the planet.
You may have also noticed that humans in the Age 1000 are well aware of advanced fighting techniques. This is all thanks to Son Gohan, who published the book "Groundbreaking Science" around Age 800, presumably introducing concepts such as ki control to the general public and ushering in a worldwide revolution in martial arts (details on this aren't completely clear).
Introducing the New Hermits
After Gohan wrote "Groundbreaking Science", which advocated martial arts and increased expectations to use them, many began to call for a revival of the Turtle and Crane Schools. However, the Turtle and Crane Hermits had retired due to old age, and the task of revival was passed on to Kuririn and Tenshinhan.
Kuririn founded the New Turtle School. Having fought many battles alongside Saiyans and Namekians, he understood that humans simply couldn't compare to aliens and developed techniques that revolved around working together. Even if they're unable to deal a killing blow to kill their opponent, they can still weaken them, and by combining their efforts with others, would be able to contend with far stronger enemies.
Tenshinhan, on the other hand, came to a different conclusion, believing that it was more important to develop aggressive attacks by controlling ki than it was to provide support. Having witnessed the Genki Dama that Son Goku used to defeat Majin Boo, he realized that it was possible for an individual to defeat even the strongest opponent by raising their power to the limits and gathering tremendous amounts of ki. As such, he developed techniques that revolved around strategically collecting ki and unleashing bursts of intense energy with percise timing.
Founding of the groundbreaking Kikoukenjutsu Sword School
In Gohan's "Groundbreaking Science", he wrote that the Katchin metal (that was used to test the Z-Sword) could, in fact, be cut, which caused many to become interested in learning swordplay. When Trunks and Goten learned about this, they got all fired up and decided that they'd start an awesome sword school of their own. This lead to the founding of the groundbreaking Kikoukenjutsu Sword School. Kikoukenjutsu, or "Spiritual Swordsmanship", revolves around elegant swordplay and infusing blades with ki to overpower opponents.
The Namekian Race and Classes
After the namekian's homeworld, Planet Namek, was destroyed, they migrated to New Namek. However, that was attacked by Miira in Age 853, forcing them to move yet again. They settled on Earth, primarily around "Porunga Rocks", a region that was terraformed to resemble Namek. They now work on behalf of Kami-sama Dende to prevent Miira from causing global destruction.
Unlike other races, namekians are genderless and reproduce asexually.
The Namekian Warriors are warrior-type namekians that follow the teachings of the legendary namekian warrior, Piccolo, and they fall into two categories Makai Warriors and Madou Warriors. Makai Warriors follow Piccolo's teachings, while the Madou Warriors are those who have reinterpreted Piccolo's teachings to develop a new style.
Namekian Dragon Clansmen are the rare namekians born into the Dragon Clan, who have the ability heal others and to create and control shenlongs. The Dende Priests follow the teachings of Kami-sama Dende, who is regarded as the greatest spirtual teacher in Namekian history, and emphasize healing and strengthening their allies. Poko Priests, on the other hand, vomit eggs that hatch into demon shenlongs called Pokopen, which they can control, similar to Piccolo Daimao; these Pokopen include Bongo and Gamelan.
The Majin Race and Classes
After Goku left to train Oob, Mr. Boo and Mr. Satan won the 28th Tenkaichi Budokai by cheating, and remained undefeated through the 29th and 30th. However, after a while, Mr. Boo became envious of the humans and the close relationships they had with their sweethearts. In Age 790, Boo accidentally found and read Mr. Satan's copy of "Bob and Margaret", a controversial adult book, in his library. He began to study it in order to create a "Female Boo" that would be just his type. With the name Booby in mind, he removed part of his body and molded it into a wife for himself, then finished by hitting her with a Love Beam, causing her to give birth to a "Baby Boo". From then on the population grew quickly, and, in time, the descendants of Boo were recognized worldwide as the Mmajin race. They're an optimistic and joyful people who dedicate themselves to making "fun days" for otherse, though they can become dangerous when they're angry or confused. They stand against Miira in order to create a more pleasant Earth.
The majin fall into two basic categories: Daimajin (Large Majin) and Imajin (Strange Majin). The Daimajin are happy and have a natural gift for uplifting the spirits of those around them and are also able to reduce the impact of enemy attacks with their soft bodies. They can become Ultima, musicians who enjoy fighting and rally their friends with songs, or Granma, chefs who torment their enemies with a mischievous and fattening fighting style and use maces that resemble foods.
The Imajin, on the other hand, are majin that at some point experienced the corrupting influence of sin. They're aggressive, and develop fighting techniques capable of really hurting their enemies. They can become Plasmas, who become too fixated on enjoying themselves and taking pleasure in nature; like monks, Plasmas use their drums to draw on the power of nature (like lighting), but can also use the drums to fill their friends with rhythm. The Karmas are majin who have developed a dark side due to past experience with sin, and they dance and wear masks to frighten or entrance their enemies.
General Translation Notes
Regarding Martial Artists and Fighters, the Japanese terms, "budoka" and "kakutouka". Budo is a catch-all term referring to any sort of fighting style, while kakutou refers more specifically to hand-to-hand and competetive martial arts, though both are often translated as just "martial arts".
I've generally used "spiritual" as a catch-all for the Japanese term "kikou", or "ki control". This is actually the Japanese translation for the Chinese art of Chi Kung, and in Dragon Ball, refers to the cultivation and channeling of ki. The term's notable used by Tenshinhan in his "Kikouhou", which was dubbed as "Tri-Beam". In the "Kikoukenjutsu" (Spiritual Swordsmanship), the term implies that the sword techniques revolve around channeling ki into the blade.
The Crane and Turtle Hermits aren't called "Roshi". Roushi literally means "old man that teaches", and it's Muten Roushi's name. The Turtle and Crane Hermit classes are "Kame-senshi" and "Tsuru-senshi", with "senshi" meaning "hermit". Senshi is used to differentiate the class from the original Turtle and Crane Hermits, which are written as "Kame-sennin" and "Tsuru-sennin".
Regarding the namekian classes, the Makai Warriors (Makai Senshi) and Madou Warriors (Madou Senshi) are two different takes on Piccolo's teachings. Makai means "demon realm", and Madou means "demon arts". Dende Priests (Dende-doushi) are obviously disciples of Dende (his name is written as "Denden" in Korean). Poko Priests (Poko-doushi) are based on Piccolo Daimao, who summoned his demon offspring by chanting "Pokopen". In DBO, the demon dragons that Poko Priests summon are called Pokopen, and the two that are available are named Bongo and Gamelan, named after musical instruments just Piccolo Daimao's children.
Also, the Poko Priests don't use "hearthstones". They use "demon stones", or "maseki". The reason machine translations translate it as "hearthstone" is because that's the name of a World of Warcraft item that's called a "magic stone" in the Korean version, and that has the same hanja as "demon stone". Hearthstones in WoW are items you can use to teleport to whichever inn is currently set as your home, hearthstone (hearth means home).
Daimajin literally means "Large Majin"; "dai", meaning "big" or "large", refers specifically to size, even though female majin are obviously not big and fat. Some have been using "Mighty Majin", but I must say that the Japanese word for "mighty" is actually kyoudai, "large strength". Most likely, when they originally created the majin race, they intended for Daimajin to be fat and Imajin to be skinny, but instead decided to just make the males fat and the females skinny.
Imajin literally means "Strange Majin", referring to the fact that these are majin that have been tainted by sin, making them different from the Daimajin that live to make others happy. "I" means "strange", "abnormal", "unsual", etc., and though "wonder" is certainly apt, I don't think "Wonder Majin" accurately depicts them as being corrupted by sin.
Ultima, Granma, Plasma, and Karma are all obviously words that end in -ma, a referance to the "ma" in majin. Granma might very well come from "Grandma", as grandmother's are often known to cook for their families. The Plasmas are also pretty clearly inspired by the Japanese Thunder God, Raijin, who is usually depicted with a ring of drums on his back that he uses to create thunder.
More info on NTL, the developers, and how DBO got conceptualized
Bit of news, an "NTL X Bandai Korea Interview", following up on DBO's rapid rise into Korea's top ten online games chart.
They basically explain that NTL is a company that exists in Korea and Japan at the same time, and was originally founded in Japan in 2003 to work on some Disney 3D animation projects. They were then brought into the Dragon Ball Online Project in late 2003, and it entered into the conceptualization phase in 2004. Because the online gaming market is stronger in Korea, they worked in tandem with Bandai Japan and Bandai Korea, then formed their own Korean branch in 2004. Six years later, NTL is a company that is currently dedicated solely to Dragon Ball Online. They go on to explain their relationship with Bandai Korea, CJ Internet, and Shueisha and how that relates to the DBO Project.
They again summarize that the idea behind DBO was to unite Korean experience in online game development with Japanese creative force to create something that could transcend their respective cultures and make an impact on the whole world. They say that their motto is "harmony", with both Japanese and Korean staff members working together, bringing their own talents to the table. They currently have about 80 people working on the game between Japan and Korea, and the staff is growing. The game has been in direct development for five years, and has existed conceptually for about six. They'd originally planned to have it out in 2007, but they make a veiled mention of the release of World of Warcraft in 2004, and their need to greatly expand DBO to raise standards so it could compete, and also to incorporate as many requests from players as possible.
Next, they talk a bit about the story, and Akira Toriyama's involvement. Basically, they say that the story of Dragon Ball Online can't be the same as the original story, because it's set 250 years later, and they need to have new events for the present setting. They say that they're trying to implement the most original stories, and that everything is produced under the supervision of the original author, Akira Toriyama, and Shueisha, the copyright holders.
They then go on to discuss the hows and whys of implementating familiar elements from the manga, like the Tenkaichi Budokai, Scouters, and Jan Ken, and what sort of content they'd like to add in the future. They say that those things had to be included because it wouldn't feel like Dragon Ball without them.
They mention that when it comes to special techniques, they have to strike a balance for the sake of gameplay and that they can't always just look at how powerful they were in the original, though it's really cool to see a famous skill thrown in at the end of a combo. They want to eventually implement team-up attacks. They also mention that they have to come up with a lot of completely original abilities, simply because they're required for the sake of gameplay, but that it can be a difficult process because Akira Toriyama and Shueisha have to consent to every ability they come up with. This is taken very seriously, so that anything they develop can be considered an official part of Dragon Ball.
They then basically emphasize that everything that actually gets developed has to be supervised by Shueisha and checked by Toriyama before being placed in the game, and that such an influence gives an official touch to everything in the game.
They talk a bit about why they decided to move from console games to an online game, and to shift from a game about fighting to a more thoughtful game about going to important places, where players can enjoy the world of Dragon Ball firsthand. They mention that, even though it's set 250 years in the future, they implemented a lot of features to allow fans of the original to enjoy it, too.
They talk a bit about the original concept, which was that rather than copying or imitating the original, they'd make an official sequel set 250 years later, to make something that's "the real deal". They mention that they also wanted to make it for the sake of the people who already love the setting, and because of that, it can appeal to people all over, from schoolchildren to the middle-aged. They say that DBO is the rare sort of MMORPG that could be cross-generational in a positive way. They didn't want to make a game that targets any one country, but rather something that could be considered world-class. They talk a bit about localization, and basically say that, since people all over the world already love the setting, and that they're developing it with a worldwide audience in mind, they don't want changes and mistakes in the localization process (like changing items, gameplay balance, how clothing or characters look, etc.). They say that if things get changed, they'll get flamed by Dragon Ball fans all over.
They go on to say that NTL and Bandai have to "move very carefully" with Shueisha when it comes to targeting Japan and the rest of the world, and they apologize to the fans waiting for such details, because they can't reveal anything about that yet. Even so, they're eager to start working on the Japanese release, they plan to expand to a worldwide release, and they think it'll be a game that can be continually updated and expanded on indefinitely.
They finish up a bit by talking about other projects, to which they say they're pretty much focused entirely on DBO, then giving some shout outs to the Japanese fans. It's mentioned that there seem to be some preconceptions in Japan, like free-to-play MMORPGs being more expensive due to the cash shops, or that copyrighted stuff shouldn't be put into online games. They basically ask fans to wait for more information or to keep an eye on the Korean version.
So as you can see, the game's been in development for a quite
a long time. Haven't updated a long while, but that's a good amount of info for ya'.