||This article possibly contains original research. (August 2014)|
In video games, an international version is a relocalized version of a previously released title in its native territory that has gained additional features and contents in foreign releases. While the concept of "international versions" in North American, European, and Australian games is virtually non-existent, it is quite popular in Japanese games, where games are often given additional features by the developers when they are exported to other markets.
A few, if not most, developers are content with simply adapting the foreign version... domestically (even if the only difference is relatively superficial, such as translating text and voice dialogue into a local language).
The earliest known "International Version" of a game in Japan was the arcade title Mikie: High School Graffiti (released in 1984), which was a relocalized version of a game released in the Mikie, which in turn was an Americanized version of a previously released Konami game titled Shinnyūshain Tōru-kun (新入社員とおるくん?, lit. "Freshman Employee Tōru").
- Animal Crossing - Re-released in Japan as "Dōbutsu no Mori e-Plus"
- Biohazard 2: Dual Shock Ver. - Contained "USA Version mode" as a new difficulty setting.
- De La Jet Set Radio - Re-release with bug fixes, additional music tracks, and new levels from the localized versions. This version was only sold in Japan via Dreamcast Direct.
- Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII International - Includes all changes from the localized versions and adds the Multiplayer mode cutscenes from the original Japanese version.
- Dissidia: Final Fantasy Universal Tuning - Contains all changes and additions made to the localized versions and adds battle voices in English and Japanese.
- Final Fantasy VII International - Contains changes and additional bosses from the localized versions and adds a fourth disc containing artwork, information, trivia and maps.
- Final Fantasy X International - Includes English voices and adds additional exclusive content. This version was also used for the European release.
- Final Fantasy X-2 International + Last Mission - Includes English voices and theme songs and includes exclusive content, such as an additional playable storyline and battle arena mode.
- Final Fantasy XII International Zodiac Job System - Includes English voices and contains additional content from the localized versions in addition to exclusive content.
- Final Fantasy XIII International - Includes English voices and Leona Lewis's "My Hands" theme song along with an Easy mode and a booklet with additional content. This version was released for the Xbox 360 only, debuting that version in Japan.
- Kingdom Hearts: Final Mix - Includes the additional bosses, English voices, and new difficulty level from the localized version and adds exclusive content.
- Kingdom Hearts II: Final Mix+ - Includes the English voices and content edits from the localized versions and adds additional content and a second disc containing a PS2 remake of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories.
- Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep Final Mix - Includes English voices and additional content from the localized versions and adds additional bosses, modes and content.
- Life Force - Arcade rerelease of Salamander using North American title.
- Metal Gear Solid: Integral - Includes English voices and additional difficulty modes along with exclusive content and a third disc containing 300 VR missions.
- Metal Gear Solid 2: Substance - Includes English voices, and additional storyline content and VR missions. A special skateboarding minigame was included in the PS2 version only.
- Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence - Includes additional content and a new multiplayer mode.
- Mikie: High School Graffiti - Arcade re-release of Shinyûshain Tôru-kun based on American version.
- Shadow Hearts 2: Director's Cut - Japanese re-release featuring additional content and gameplay changes.
- US Shenmue - Includes English voices.
- Sonic Adventure International - Japanese re-release that features all the changes made internationally.
- Star Ocean 3: Till the End of Time Directors Cut - Enhanced version of the original game with additional characters, content and a 2-player battle mode. This version was localized for the North American and European releases.
- Star Ocean: The Last Hope International - PlayStation 3-exclusive re-release with new content. It was released in North America and Europe.
- Super Mario USA - Japanese release of the game known outside of Japan as Super Mario Bros. 2
- Super Mario 64: Shindou Edition - Japanese re-release that features all the changes made internationally plus rumble pak support.
- White Knight Chronicles: International Edition - North American and European release of the Japanese EX Edition of the game.
Japanese Monster Movies
With the popularity of the first few Godzilla films in the United States, Toho Studios of Japan began the practice of having the movies dubbed in Asia for overseas export. These versions are often called "international versions" by fans. Most US distributors would commission their own English dubs, and as such, many of these international version went unused in the US. By the time Japanese monster movies were losing popularity in the 1970s, US companies would release Toho's international versions with edits, only removing harsh language and moments of violence. With the exception of Godzilla 2000, every Godzilla film released in the United States after 1985 has been an international version commissioned by Toho.
Since the late 1990s, most of the original US versions have become replaced on home video by Toho's international versions. Kaiju films that have been released on DVD as international versions include Atragon, Godzilla vs. The Sea Monster, Son of Godzilla, Destroy All Monsters, Space Amoeba, and Godzilla vs. Hedorah. All of these films were originally released in the United States with dubbed versions created by Titra Studios (later Titan Productions).
Aside from the Godzilla films, Toho also produced or distributed international versions of its other films. The original English-language version of the 1978 anime film, Lupin III: The Mystery of Mamo (originally titled Lupin III), for instance, has received recognition for being of a higher quality than many other international versions of the time (Frontier Enterprises, the dubbing company responsible for Mystery of Mamo's first English version, dubbed many of the international versions of the Godzilla films).
- The Mystery of Mamo (A History of Mamo in EnglishDiscotek Media. 2012.).