"Quiz!! Untouchables #12 - Company Name Special"
by "Miso" Suzuki

Here is a rather rough translation of the salient points and funny moments of this comic.  I would like to do a more thorough translation, but right now I'm a busy father & husband, and have no time / mental energy. [sob!] Enjoy!!

Page 1

Nothing much of note: they introduce the first contestant, then skip the remaining 3, with the excuse that there was no time.

In the intro to the 1st question, though, they note that one of Nintendo's old names (or brands, maybe?) was "Marufuku Nintendo" yzCV, a name like a ramen company.  But what was the company's previous name/brand?

The answer is CV@v, "Nintendo Koppai", the latter kanji meaning "bone tiles", AKA dominoes, mah-jong tiles, or even karuta cards.

Contestant #4 decides to illustrate his answer on page 2 with a similar-sounding visual gag.  Look for it...

Page 2

The next question is: "Of Yanoman, Yutaka, and Sega, which company was named after its president?"  The contestants all answered "Sega", but #4 again chose an odd answer, "Naxat", making a joke about Islam, which I really don't get.  Does anybody out there?

The correct answer is not Sega, of course, since that comes famously from "Service Games", but rather Yanoman, coming from its president Yano Mitsuru (also read "Man").

The host cracks a joke that Mitsuru was lucky his family name was Yano, and not Kou.  Geddit?  Kou Man? (meaning "conceited" but I suspect that's not the thrust of his joke...) Man Kou?  (meaning vagina or cunt)

They then go to a recorded segment where PR man (and sometimes planner) Akio Matsuda of NCS Masaya asks a question...

NCS Masaya's Akio Matsuda in 1990

Page 3

"We usually call our company NCS, but its official name is 'Nihon Computer Systems Co. Ltd.'  We have the other 'MASAYA' brand name, a Japanese transcription of the word 'messiah.'  It is also said to come from the name of our president, Masaya () [sic], however."

"And then we have our logo mark, the star with the winged Pegasus in front of it.  So, the question: why the inclusion of Pegasus?"

Contestant #4: "Because NCS's president..."
Host: "Oh! Yes!  You might have landed on the answer!"
Contestant #4: "...is hung like a horse?"
(The host bashes contestant #4 over the head, making a 'CAPCOM'-like sound.)

Another contestant correctly guesses that the president was born in the Year of the Horse in the Chinese zodiac.

Next, HAL director Satoru Iwata and PR person Ishiyama, come onstage and ask where the name HAL came from.  An easy question, since H-A-L is "one step ahead" of I-B-M, typographically.  Iwata notes that HAL from the movie "2001" being the origin is not incorrect either.

After an easy end to that question round, HAL's PR person starts complaining, "That's it?  All that trouble for just a cameo in a manga?"etc.

Page 4

Next question, what does NAMCO stand for?

Contestant #1 gets the answer wrong (thinking the "CO" stood for a Japanese word), so Namco PR man Konbe says it actually is an abbreviation from the English name "Nakamura Manfacturing Company."

But then contestant #4 makes a point that if one abbreviates the company name in English in that way, logically the name should be "NAMACO."  Contestant #1 agrees, thinking that NAMCO is a seemingly-forced abbreviation, with NAMACO being the most natural.

The host announces to PR person Konbe that everyone has reached a consensus: the company should really be named NAMACO.  "THE NAMCO NAME STAYS!" yells back the PR man.

*Namaco (i}R), by the way, means "sea cucumber" in Japanese.


I love the way in which Miso Suzuki subtly takes the piss out of game companies for their slight arrogance in changing the meaning/spelling of their names on a whim.


The chart at the bottom of this comic's page is also packed with information, so check out the translation I made of it!