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MH Interviews: Illuminati-Manga

+ posted by Lingwe in Interviews on Feb 21, 2009 02:29

Welcome to the second of our Mangahelpers Interviews. This time with GGpX of Illuminati-Manga.

Before we begin though I just want to give a big thanks to bax who has been making the graphics at the top of the interviews. I'm no good at it myself so bax has been kind enough to agree to make them for us. Big thanks to him for that.

Illuminati-Manga has one of the highest numbers of linked scans on Mangahelpers (226 as of writing) so we've got links at the bottom to help you find them all.

On a side note I keep on trying to spell/pronounce it as Illumanti-Manga. watch out for that.

1. Please give a short introduction of yourself and your manga scanlation group. What kinds of manga does your group scanlate, how did it get started etc.

Hi. I'm GGpX. I'm the leader of Illuminati-Manga. I've been in Illuminati-Manga since week one! The other important members in Illuminati-Manga are antifon, Nitouryu and Zenquibo, all of which I have a great amount of trust in.

Illuminati-Manga was a ST-based (StopTazmo) group co-founded on November 11th 2005 by coolerimmortal and SealBroken in the hopes of getting Gantz Manual scanlated. Three and a quarter years later, it looks less and less likely with every passing day that we'll ever scanlate it, but it might happen one day. Maybe.

At first, outside of Gantz Manual, we wanted to do mangas that had started being scanlated but for whatever reason (Group died, group dropped the project, etc.) had been dropped. We still do that occasionally, but we try to focus on our current projects and new, completely unscanlated projects.

Right now, Illuminati-Manga does mostly Seinen series. Occasional oneshot here and there.

2. How did you get into scanlating, and how hard did you find it at first? Has it gotten any easier with more practice? Why did you get into it in the first place?

I joined Illuminati-Manga roughly in the first week it was created. I didn't find scanlating very hard, just time consuming. Sure, it's gotten easier over time, but it's still just as time consuming.

I had originally become a scanlator to "give back to the community" even though I was never someone who downloaded very much. If you were to ask me the question "Why do you still scanlate today?", it would definitely not be to give back to the community. The community (The vast majority) doesn't really care about the scanlators who put effort into the series they work on, and care about the "quick fix", no matter how awfully translated, edited or typeset the chapter may be (hint hint).

3. What types of manga are your personal favourite? Which manga titles do you like in particular? Any genres you don't like?

I have the same taste as everyone who reads manga (Hopefully); Entertaining manga. Don't care about the genre or demographic (Okay, I lied, any demographic not called yaoi), as long as it's entertaining. Are there some genres I prefer above others? Sure, like Action and Drama, but I'll gladly read a Romantic Slice of Life Sci-Fi if the series is good.

The mangas I like in particular are probably all of the mangas I scanlate. Other than that, nothing much.

Only genre I will not read is yaoi. I can read Shounen-ai, again, assuming the series is good.

4. How do you feel the amount of fan feedback and thanks is for the work that you have done? How do you feel overall seeing people read and discussing the manga that you have scanlated?

There's fan feedback and fan thanks? Really? I must of not gotten the memo, because I never get any of that. Sure, the occasional thanks here and there, but for the most part, people will come to download/read and leave.

I've come to accept this as fact. Even though I try to make the mangas I work on good looking (To the point I've bought a $200 scanner to scan books) and keep a high standard for everything I release, people are just more interested in a quick fix more than quality releases.

Let's just take Saru Lock volume 1 for example. Saru Lock is probably our most popular project and one of our most difficult projects to scanlate (That or Holyland). We released volume 1 a few months back. I've estimated, through counting download numbers and statistics on online reading sites, that we've had around 20 to 30 thousand (Probably more, but I can't count the extra ways) people read it. I think I've honestly had 200 total people come and thank us for that. That's about 1% of the 20,000 who've read it.

But for the most part, our series aren't exactly the most popular. Which is fine with me, because download totals don't matter to me.

5. Are there any other hobbies or things that you like to work on in your spare time?

When I was younger, I used to play hockey a lot on my free time, but I broke my ankle that required surgery and have a permanent (albeit small) limp on my right leg. I can't skate anymore, so I can't play hockey anymore. I settle for watching hockey now.

My job is a cook. Currently unemployed due to the economic times (You might of heard of it, global crisis or something).

6. What do you feel about multiple groups scanlating the same manga? e.g 5 seperate releases of Bleach and Naruto each week while other series go unscanlated.

Heh. This is my favorite topic to ridicule these people.

I feel that it's laughable more than anything. Everything about it, really.

Just looking at Naruto 434 from this week. There are nine English scanlations.

Out of these nine, you can easily say that seven of the nine are irrelevant.

Which begs the question to those seven groups "Why do it in the first place?" Because you like the series? Perhaps. But it's a load of shit.

These people doing it in one of these seven groups are the definition of one of two words; stupidity or egoistical. Let me explain.

The ones stupid are the ones who do it in their group because they want to spread the Naruto love. What they fail to understand is that the vast majority won't be downloading their releases. They'll be downloading SleepyFans or Franky-House's version. So how will you be spreading the Naruto love when only a tiny, tiny minority of people bother downloading your releases? You're better off joining one of these two groups and helping them out instead of being irrelevant. Then you'll be spreading the Naruto love!

The ones egoistical are the ones who form their own groups and don't care about the amount of people already scanlating it, as long as they can be doing it too! They're the same people who care about download totals and attribute the worth of a series to it's total download amount and popularity. They're the same people who don't care about the scanlation quality and care all about people reading what they worked on. They're the same who will never wait for better quality releases and download the first thing available. They have no respect for anyone except their own, selfish needy-me-me-me ways. I like to call these people "Scum."

7. You've started scanlating Full Metal Panic Sigma after it has lain dormant for a while. What is the coolest part of this manga? Do you prefer the mecha parts or the scenes between Sousuke and Kaname?

The mecha is definitely not the reason I like this manga. The Sousuke-Kaname relationship evolving along with Sousuke's awkward adventures into normal Japanese life is what makes the series interesting.

8. Would you like to use this chance for publicity to beg people to join your group?

Not beg, no. Makes us look like we're desperately looking for staff, which we aren't. But putting an ad saying "Illuminati-Manga sure could use some staff on their projects!" would be fine by me. More specifically;

We could use a Holyland translator for volume 6 & up.
We could use some editors for Sengoku, which our good friend akika has been translating.
Various other series. Yes, I know the page looks silly. Coding problems and the coder is too busy with real life stuff to fix it.

If you'd like to apply, make an application here.

For those of you who haven't checked out their work, you can download it here:

Blame2 Oneshot

Diadem Oneshot

Full Metal Panic Sigma

Hello Baby Oneshot

History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi



Kamen Teacher


Mercenary Pierre

My Street

Obake Life Oneshot

One Day

One Missed Call

Oshitone Tenzen




Saru Lock


Shonan Pure Love Gang

Souten no Koumori

Space Adventure Cobra


Have you shown your appreciation today? Click the thanks button or write your appreciation below!

#1. by GGpX ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
It's better it ends at the right time when it's still good, then stretching it out for the money while the series keeps on deteriorating (Hello, Bleach).
#2. by thefolenangel ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
lol poor gg, not getting the memo about the fan's feedback :D

Nice interview i liked it :D
#3. by fxu ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
>>"Why do you still scanlate today?", it would definitely not be to give back to the community.

That's one for the history books.
#4. by shrimpy ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009

keep these interviews coming.
#5. by segua ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Good read. Sucks having a messed up ankle. One thing though, you ain't afraid to say it like it is, GGpX.
#6. by avatar ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Great read.

Actually I agree with most of what GGPX said up there.... especially point #6.
(Its one of the reasons why I'm ok with helping out Illuminati-Manga).
#7. by molokidan (Hidden Boss ΣΣ(゚Д゚;)ナヌッ)
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Excellent interview. GGpX speaks truth.
#8. by Mr. Death ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Cool, Damn 5 Character limit...
#9. by Fitrojoke ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Thanks guys but I wait Jackals... please keep up that manga.
#10. by GGpX ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
@ #10. by Fitrojoke

It's stalled at the moment because we're focusing on other things. We'll have a translator for it in the future, but we're just trying to finish other mangas first. Notably, Battle Royale 2, Blood+ A, Elfen Lied, Manhole, Mercenary Pierre and Riki-Oh.
#11. by yal ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
#12. by Laika ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Nice read, I've always liked Illuminati's projects. By the way, what's the criteria behind which questions get selected for the interview?
#13. by Lingwe ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
There's a base list of comments that I'll ask everyone and then one or two interviewee specific questions.

But I can change it up if people want me to. Any suggestions for new questions?
#14. by methanol ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
I don't really have anything to add but to say that GGpX has always been good to me.
#15. by Zenquibo ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
one of the few I guess...
#16. by jide ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Loved Q6 out of the whole interview, so cold… yet so true! XD
#17. by anpan ()
Posted on Feb 21, 2009
Cooks are sexy.
#18. by Digital_Eon ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
zomg u no like yaoi wut u meanie?!111

Shout-out to antifon, Zen, and Nito who are awesome. But not GGpX. :3

Aww, no, I lied. Great response to the multiple scanlation thing. I'm surprised that was allowed, what with how critical (and true) it was. Awesome.
#19. by segua ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
I've heard cooks have bad tempers.
#20. by GGpX ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
@anpan: No you

Digital_Eon: (._.; ) Can you QC this week? .-,

segua: A lot do, I don't. I dunno, I'm not good at yelling at people.
#21. by kim09 ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
I 110% agree with GGpX on point 6!! Ever since I visit this site I wonder while cursing the multiple scans. I mean there are loads of good manga out there waiting to be scanlated!!!
#22. by kim09 ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
Their scans are just a waste of space!!! People already read it,there are better scans but they insist on scanlating those shit!!
#23. by manu ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
Nothing here is really that new to me, just glad to see Illuminati is alive.
#24. by slippy ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
this guy speaks a lot of true words
#25. by ◆ T.D.A ◆ ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
That was a very entertaining interview.
#26. by moonster x ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
im still waiting for Jackals release patiently....
yeah still waiting patiently.....zzzzzzzz......zzzzz.....
#27. by mathi36 ()
Posted on Feb 22, 2009
thx mate for all the work you put into scanlating! It's cool to work with ya.
#28. by shadow-skill ()
Posted on Feb 23, 2009
Very nice interview! Love your take on the 9 groups doing Naruto...
#29. by sabret00the ()
Posted on Feb 23, 2009
You guys are awesome. Thank you for your work on Holyland, it keeps me smiling.
#30. by miyagiCE ()
Posted on Feb 24, 2009
Hey, I felt offended by that scum remark. As should Molo! ;P
#31. by Gcat88 ()
Posted on Feb 24, 2009
i want to let you guys know that some ppl appreciate what you do.
#32. by kingdomkey101 ()
Posted on Feb 24, 2009
hay gg just figure I would let you know I found a Japanese for full metal panic sigma, if you could meet me in the channel that would be great.
#33. by Revilenigma ()
Posted on Feb 26, 2009
love illumanti so much!!!
#34. by erik-the-red ()
Posted on Feb 27, 2009
I thank Lingwe for taking the time to do the interview, but I don't see why I should give praise to a person who revels in arrogance but still expects unconditional respect.

I try to always thank SleepyFans for their work on Bleach and Naruto, and I am grateful for their work. Having said that, I find it ironic that GGpX wails on the “vast majority” of the community for wanting a “quick fix” yet deems SleepyFans as worthy despite their obviously being a speed-scan group.
#35. by GGpX ()
Posted on Feb 28, 2009
Dear erik-the-red-kun,

I'm glad that reading comprehension is not your strong point, because you don't seem to understand anything I wrote. Which isn't really surprising, coming from someone like you, erik-kun.

I don't see why I should give praise to a person who revels in arrogance but still expects unconditional respect.

Where did I ask for praise? Where did I say I expected unconditional respect?

Also, what does my arrogance have to do with anything? How does me being arrogant have anything to do with me getting or not getting respect?

Please show me, erik-kun.

I try to always thank SleepyFans for their work on Bleach and Naruto, and I am grateful for their work. Having said that, I find it ironic that GGpX wails on the “vast majority” of the community for wanting a “quick fix” yet deems SleepyFans as worthy despite their obviously being a speed-scan group.

Where did I ever deem SF as being "worhty"? Matter of fact, I think SF is one of the worst groups out there. Along with Franky-Horrible. Read this before this gets edited like my interview did.


But feel free to read into what I wrote and assume (Because that's all you seem to be able to do) there's a deeper, underlying meaning to my words. I'll feel free to ridicule you as usual.
#36. by erik-the-red ()
Posted on Feb 28, 2009
Hi, GGpX, thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to respond to me. Please know that I appreciate it.

Where did you ask for praise? If you had utilized your critical reading skills more fully, you would have noticed that I didn’t say you “ask[ed] for praise.” Your second question makes more sense. But, as I’m sure you know, inference is an aspect of critical reading. With remarks like “the vast majority [of the community] doesn’t really care about the scanlators…” and “There’s fan feedback and fan thanks? Really?” you make it clear that you think you can be rude to your audience but still deserve respect for your work. Hmm…so you would like for more of your readers to thank you, but you believe there’s nothing wrong with disrespecting them. A+ for entitlement!

What does your arrogance have to do with anything? Going back to what you quoted, why don’t you tell me why anyone should give praise to a person who is proud of his arrogance? Personally, I see no point to it as I’m not interested in making the already arrogant even more so.

You never deemed SleepyFans “worhty” [sic]. You did, however, say that seven of the nine English scanlations for Naruto 434 were irrelevant. Logically, if seven out of nine are irrelevant, then the remaining two must be relevant. And, which were these remaining two groups? SleepyFans and Franky-House. But, I concede: relevance does not imply value. Let’s continue, then. You wrote that if “spread[ing] the Naruto love” is why member X wants to get into scanlating, then he’d be “better off joining one of these two groups…instead of being irrelevant.” So, you’re encouraging those members of the community whose rationale for starting is Naruto advocacy to join one of two groups. Well, if you didn’t think either group was “worhty”, then why are you asking a specific portion of the community to volunteer their services to them?
#37. by Jinoh ()
Posted on Mar 1, 2009
actually erik-the-red, the remaining two he meant are binktopia and japflap.
#38. by Digitalr ()
Posted on Mar 3, 2009
Lovely. Censorship is evil however!

Greetings to my mom, my dad, my family and my friends
#39. by Fugitive ()
Posted on Mar 4, 2009
Word, on the speed-scans.
But to each their own so whatever...

I like I-M because the dedication to seinen and Manhole is my favorite manga from you guys.

Keep\'em coming and thanks!

About the Author:

Alias: Lingwe
Registered: Sep 23, 2008
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