All your base are belong to us
"All your base are belong to us" is a broken English ("Engrish") phrase found in the opening cutscene of the 1991 video game Zero Wing which became a popular Internet meme. The quote is included in the European version of the game, which features poorly translated English from the original Japanese version.
|Original script||English version of game[a]||Accurate translation from Japanese[b]|
|機関士：何者かによって、爆発物が仕掛けられたようです。||Mechanic: Somebody set up us the bomb.||Engineer: Somebody has planted a bomb. (lit. It appears that an unknown party has planted an explosive.)|
|通信士：メインスクリーンにビジョンが来ます。||Operator: Main screen turn on.||Radio Operator: We're getting a video on the main screen (lit. A visual is coming on the main screen.)|
|CATS：連邦政府軍のご協力により、君達の基地は、全てCATSがいただいた。||CATS: All your base are belong to us.||CATS: With the cooperation of Federation Forces, all your bases now belong to us (lit. CATS has received all of your bases.)|
|CATS：せいぜい残り少ない命を、大切にしたまえ・・・・。||CATS: You have no chance to survive make your time.||CATS: Treasure what little time remains in your lives.|
|艦長：たのむぞ。ZIG！！||Captain: Take off every 'ZIG'.||Captain: I ask of you, ZIG [units]...|
|艦長：我々の未来に希望を・・・||Captain: For great justice.||Captain: ...let there be hope for our future (lit. ...to our future, [restore] hope.)|
Mentions in media
The phrase or some variation of lines from the game has appeared in numerous articles, books, comics, clothing, movies, radio shows, songs, television shows, video games, webcomics, and websites.
In November 2000, Kansas City computer programmer, Something Awful forum member, and part-time DJ Jeffrey Ray Roberts of the Gabber band The Laziest Men on Mars made a techno dance track, "Invasion of the Gabber Robots", which remixed some of the Zero Wing video game music by Tatsuya Uemura with a voice-over phrase "All your base are belong to us.". Tribal War forums member Bad_CRC in February 2001 created a video combining Roberts' song and the various images created in a Something Awful AYB photoshop thread, which proceeded to go viral.
On April 1, 2003, in Sturgis, Michigan, seven people aged 17 to 20 placed signs all over town that read: "All your base are belong to us. You have no chance to survive make your time." They claimed to be playing an April Fool's joke but most people who saw the signs were unfamiliar with the phrase. Many residents were upset that the signs appeared while the U.S. was at war with Iraq and police chief Eugene Alli said the signs could be "a borderline terrorist threat depending on what someone interprets it to mean."
In February 2004, North Carolina State University students and members of TheWolfWeb in Raleigh, North Carolina exploited a web-based service provided for local schools and businesses to report a weather-related closing to display the phrase within a news ticker on a live news broadcast on News 14 Carolina.
On June 1, 2006, YouTube, a relatively new service at the time, was taken down temporarily for maintenance. The phrase "ALL YOUR VIDEO ARE BELONG TO US" appeared below the YouTube logo as a placeholder while the site was down. Some users believed the site had been hacked, leading YouTube to add the message "No, we haven't be [sic] hacked. Get a sense of humor."
Use in government
The US National Reconnaissance Office issued a mission patch bearing the inscription "Omnis Vestri Substructio, Es Servus Ad Nobis", which translates from Latin to English as "All Your Base are Belong to us".
- Original broken English translation as it appeared in the released videogame.
- The direct translation from the original Japanese game text has been created by Wikipedia editors with the help of native speakers.
- Tufty (2007-02-13). "All Your Base Are Belong To Us". h2g2. Archived from the original on 27 February 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-04.
The GIF slowly started to spread across the Internet, but it wasn't until 2000 that it properly gained popularity. By the end of the year, altered images of various road signs, cereal packets and other photographs containing the words 'All Your Base Are Belong To Us' had started to appear, and by 2001 the phenomenon was in full swing.
- Dibbell, Julian (2008-01-18). "Mutilated Furries, Flying Phalluses: Put the Blame on Griefers, the Sociopaths of the Virtual World". Wired.
- Toaplan (31 May 1991). Zero Wing (in Japanese). Sega Mega Drive. Taito. Scene: Intro sequence.
- Toaplan (1992). Zero Wing. Sega Mega Drive. Taito. Scene: Intro scene.
- Taylor, Chris (2001-02-25). "All Your Base Are Belong To Us". Time. Archived from the original on 21 June 2007. Retrieved 2007-06-29.
- Benner, Jeffrey (2001-02-23). "When Gamer Humor Attacks". Wired.
- Doyle, Holly (2003-04-04). "Men arrested for "All Your Base" prank". WWMT NEWSCHANNEL 3. Archived from the original on 29 August 2010. Retrieved 2009-07-10.
- Poulsen, Kevin (2004-03-05). "Wags hijack TV channel's on-screen ticker". The Register. Archived from the original on 25 May 2006. Retrieved 2006-05-15.
- Sandoval, Greg (2006-06-02). "YouTube: Our humor, not our hack". CNET News. Archived from the original on 2012-07-11.