We talked about what video game localization is and how you can choose the ideal languages for your game. Today, we dive into perhaps the most important aspect of a game localization process: choosing the ideal team for game localization. Video game localization is intricate especially if you are unfamiliar with localization, but if you can find a good game localization team with dedicated linguists and testers, that whole process can go seamlessly.
How did Facebook infiltrate our homes in the late 2000s? How did Google become our number-one choice when we need to look something up? Or how did Seattle-based Starbucks become a global coffee place? Yes, you guessed it right: localization. None of these would be in our lives if it weren’t for localization.
Finding the Best Game Localization Company
Localization is not enough on its own, it also needs to be done professionally by a game localization team. If you think you can hand your game over to just a translator, your game might be doomed. Well, unless the translator is a superhuman equipped with the skills of a whole team. It’s also not easy to find the best game localization company for your localization needs. Of course, it all starts with a Google search, but you need to have information as to how a good localization company should work so that you can make an informed decision.
So, who do we need in this game localization team?
1- Project Managers
Firstly, we need a project manager who will manage the project (this one was obvious). But what do we mean when we say “manage the project”? Project managers monitor the whole project based on its special needs, act as the bridge between the client and the localization team, and ensure that the process goes smoothly. We can’t just get the to-be-localized files and get on with our work. We need to create a style guide, and in some cases, a glossary. These are done under the supervision of the project manager.
Depending on the size and difficulty of the project, the number of translators may vary. The ideal translators for a game localization project have enough gaming knowledge, they are familiar with gaming jargon and they can be creative and adapt the game according to the target market. Also, one of the most important qualities of translators is the fact that they are native speakers of the target language. This plays a huge role in ensuring that the game looks like it was made for the target market. Players need to feel like they are not playing through a translated game, and this atmosphere can only be created when the translators are native speakers of the target language.
Although the number of translators varies, there is usually one editor in game localization projects. The editor can get rid of any inconsistencies that occurred during the translation phase. The editors also need to be familiar with gaming in general.
4- QA Testers
Localization does not stop when everything is localized and embedded into the game. Since this is not a translation of a simple document, we need to see if everything falls perfectly into place. QA testers check the final version of the game, report inaccuracies and inconsistencies, and provide feedback.
One Overlooked Component of The Game Localization Team
Although this may come as a surprise to some, a very important yet overlooked component of the localization team is the clients themselves. The collaboration between the game localization team and the client forms relatively easier when the client is informed about game localization, but this is not always the case.
As mentioned before, we need to create a glossary and a style guide. There needs to be some back and forth between the client and the localization team during this stage because good localization companies prioritize the client’s needs. It is also extremely important for the localization team to get answers when they have questions during the localization phase.
The Benefits of Choosing a Full-Service Game Localization Company
As the client, you might have more criteria when it comes to choosing the best localization company. It might be smart to give importance to ISO 17100 certification to guarantee quality. Also, especially if you don’t really have any idea about the target market, choosing a native localization team is of utmost importance. The game localization team should be familiar with the gaming community, gaming platforms like Twitch and Discord, and preferably publishers and Turkish gamers in the target market.
By choosing the best localization company, you can also benefit from the extra services they may provide, such as marketing, advertising, publishing, and legal help. They may have in-house teams that take care of these services, or they may be able to connect you to their external partners.
All in all, a localization team does not consist of just translators. It is a group of people with different specialties who work together to open a new world for gamers. Working with a good localization team leads to higher quality and higher satisfaction.
Looking for getting tailored solutions for your game localization projects? Let’s open up a whole new world together!