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Pikmin 3’s “Scaly Custard” Has a Rather NSFW Name in Japan

Oftentimes, certain aspects of writing are lost when translated to other languages. This is especially true for game localization, which considers the cultures that the games are being translated for. One perfect example of this is the Avocado in Pikmin 3, whose original name is something far less… savory.

In the Pikmin games, which we continue to insist are RTS games, the player can collect a number of real-world objects. The protagonist doesn’t know about earth culture, however, and will give these items their own names, often misinterpreting their usage. A good example is when they find a glove, which they mistake for a “5 person sleeping bag.”

In Pikmin 3, one particular item is an avocado. Not knowing the name, they decide to call it Scaly Custard, referring to the outer flesh similar to reptile skin and the dense, mushy inside. But that’s not the item’s original name. According to the wiki, brought to our attention by Twitter user reggie_800, the original Japanese name for the item translates to Crocodile Scrotum (or Crocodile Testis, depending on how you translate it).

Looking into the etymology of the word, we find that the name Avocado originates from the āhuacatl, a word given to the fruit when it was discovered by the Aztecs in 500 BC. This word roughly translates to “testicle.” So the comparison has been made since its finding.

There’s not been any confirmation on whether the name will change in the upcoming Nintendo Switch release of the title. Though if we had a choice, I’d prefer the Scaly Custard.