Step back in time about twenty years to the dawn of The Legend of Zelda for the Nintendo Entertainment System. You tear the plastic wrap from the game box, open up your prize (you don't yet know that special music should be playing at this point), and dive right into Hyrule. Then at some point you get lost in the overworld and find yourself searching the instruction manual for clues. While scanning through the pages you come across this image which seems familiar, yet is teasingly different. Is that the boomerang the old man is offering Link in addition to the wooden sword seen at the start of the game? What trickery is this? Such madness! What does that Japanese text mean? People with sleuthing skills and free time at the Digital Press forums have figured it all out.
Hmmm, I don't have my dictionaries with me, but looking around onlne while at work reveals that none of the definitions for suki make any sense besides "liking, fondness, love." Perhaps it is "Take the weapon you like," in proper English. But maybe "Take the weapon of liking," literally? Or to be really literal, "The weapon of liking, take it." Engrish, whatever. I have no idea if I'm right because my Japanese grammar blows.
Take a moment and read through the messages as the scribes piece it together one letter at a time. One wonders if the boomerang had more power in this early version of the game. As one of the forumites wonders, if Nintendo had favored the boomerang over the sword at this early point, would we have later seen such iconic weapons as the Master Boomerang or classic games like The Legend of Zelda: Four Boomerangs Adventures? Someone needs to dial up an alternate universe and ask them about their Zelda games.
(via Lost Levels)