Social Game Translation & Localization

The Translation Industry’s Role in the World of Gaming

Playing gamesThere are four stages to a successful social game. (1) The game is first conceived in the mind and imagination of the developer. At the time of conception, the game may or may not be highly marketable. Believe it or not, playing games is a significant part of the job description posted for many positions in a game developer’s business. This is to ensure that a mediocre game becomes something that is phenomenally alluring to prospective players. (2) After the necessary tweaking has been done, the game is ready to be released by a game publisher. It is possible for a game publisher to also be a game developer. (3) If it is conceived that the game may be appreciated in different countries by people of different cultures, it is then localized into various languages. This is where language service providers play a very important role in an industry that has fast moved into a billion-dollar business. (4) After passing through all of the above stages, the game is then monetized. This is where a game publishing company can really make a developer happy and in turn be greatly compensated! This final stage determines in the mind of the developer whether or not the game is a success.

The translation and localization industry needs to keep a keen eye on this sudden burst of activity by social game developers, since localization companies are now in direct competition with game developers and publishers who are now acting as “middle men” who are constantly seeking the most competitively priced and technologically advanced language services to assist them in attaining the jealously guarded position of the top of their industry.

As in every other industry, the quality of work rendered by online game localizers is crucial to the success of any game. Through the use of language and cultural adaptation, online game localizers must help their clients to make a great impression on their multi-tiered target market, starting with other developers down to the individual game player. Many and varied are the cultural gaps to be bridged.

In order to deliver a superb product to clients and players, the online game localizer should be a native speaker of the requested target language of the game. The language service provider should also be well versed in the respective terminology pertaining to each game and able to work in a variety of formats, including graphic arts programs and game applications (sometimes called tools). The online game localizer should be adept at transferring the game from one culture into another. The very evaluation of localization jobs can be challenging since for larger projects, special software will be needed to count the words in the above mentioned formats. For very small projects, the social game localizer will need to convince the game publisher or developer to accept to pay a minimum charge since a per-word rate will not work for a job of under three to five hundred words!

The Language Shop has collaborated with scores of project managers, team leaders and freelance linguists in all continents and time zones to complete 83 complex, multi-tiered translation projects for facebook and other platforms into English, French, Spanish, German, Italian, Japanese, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Russian, Arabic, Dutch, Portuguese, Czech, Indonesian, Turkish, Greek, Finnish, Hindi, Norwegian, Swedish from Chinese or English.

Some games translated were Gangster Wars, World War, Serial Kidnapper, Illegal Parking, Texas Holdem Poker, 6waves Poker, Daily Horoscope, Happy Harvest, Pirates of the World, My Fishbowl, Happy Farm, Happy Harvest, Garbage Cleaner. Animal Paradise, Shadow Empire, Frosmo World, Kingdoms of Camelot, Bingo World, Ultimate Slot Machines, World Poker, Chinese New Year, Medical Mayhem, Friends Quizzes, Daily Tarot Cards, Wonder Garden, King of Kung Fu, Give Hearts, App Creator, Sunny Beach, Mall World, Plants vs. Aliens, Resort World, Island Paradise, Battle Punks and Party Town.