What we call translation doesn’t mean just expressing the text in the target language. While translating, we need to take many factors into account. The target audience of the translated source text and the geography of the intended market are the main issues to be considered. This is where “localization” translation comes into play.
So, why is localization so important?
Let’s write a short script.
Suppose you are a company that wants to open up to the global market. You want to take the first step of this expansion by having your product’s promotions translated into many languages. Presenting the product in the customer’s language and eliminating any confusion will be an excellent initiative for customer satisfaction. At this point, something just as important as deciding to present your product to the world market is knowing your target audience. The next crucial step is to research factors such as the target audience’s social structure, economic and political tendencies and proceed accordingly. In the meantime, you gain a better understanding of your target audience, their needs, and sensitivities. Having your product promotion translations done according to these factors provides you with an advantage.
You own a gaming company.
Your greatest desire is to have your games played in the global arena, appeal to large audiences, and be available for purchase on all kinds of platforms. So, an essential starting point is localizing the game.
Games are tools that can attract the attention of almost everyone, from the very young to the very old. Within this spectrum of “everyone” there may be those who do not speak any foreign languages, or live in volatile areas, 12-year-olds or 63-year-olds. Therefore, translating games, localizing them in this case, is a very comprehensive process requiring the skill of a translator.
Cyberpunk 2077, which many gamers eagerly awaited, was released with Turkish language support in December 2020. However, a sentence encountered in one part of the game, whether a localization error or a simple translation error, caused much debate. The game referred to Mustafa Kemal Atatürk’s “The future is in the skies!” quote using foul language (on the “is in the skies” part), and this caused quite a controversy that got the attention of many. While some argued that this was a simple translation error, others stated that a different language was intended to be used while localizing but the results could not be predicted or described it as deliberate disrespect. After the reactions intensified, the translation company apologized in a statement and advised that the swear words would be removed in the next version.
To avoid encountering such situations or causing similar mistakes, a game translator should have sufficient command of the language, a high level of creativity, and a minimum level of computer and software knowledge. The translator should stick to the jargon and terms of the game but should enhance these terms in the target language when necessary through research. At the same time, the translator should be familiar with the gaming culture or playing games, and most importantly, be quite familiar with the target audience.
Professional translation teams with all these qualifications are ready to localize your game at Mirora.