Do you want your game to be accessed by a wide number of audiences? For this, you need to localize your game for global markets. To reach a globalized world and to put your creative developments in front of more gamers you need to communicate in their language. In this way, more people will download your games and you will reap more revenue. Here the question comes as to what is game localization. Some people think that it is the same as a translation, that is changing the words on the screen in other languages. But, this is not the case. Your game needs to be translated with cultural nuances. For example, if you are in the USA then your context should not be the same for the audience in China. In the same way, if you are developing the game in Japan, will the USA gamers find your game user-friendly? Therefore, here comes the importance of game localization.
What is Game Localization?
Video game localization helps you to prepare your game in a way that you can sell it in any region. No doubt, translation of the text is important but localization is a step ahead of translation. In this way, the gamer will feel that the game is developed for them. Thus for game localization specialists need to consider the following things.
· Altering idioms according to cultural differences.
· Removing slangs with regional equivalents.
· Changing dates and currencies according to the local format.
· Dubbing and adding voiceovers according to new actors.
· Altering soundtracks and music to make it more culturally appropriate.
· Eliminating unsuitable plot lines.
· Redesigning the characters and altering the scenes.
· User interface edits like accommodating the expansion and contraction of the languages.
If you don’t follow these things, it will create a confusing experience for the gamer.
Cost of Game Localization
The cost of game localization depends upon the number of words, language pairs, and translation rates. The charges of game localization which is done by a human translator depend upon the language. If you are translating Chinese characters then it may cost you 0.11 and €0.15 per word or character. These rates can give you a rough idea about prevailing prices in the market. No doubt, the quality of translation matters a lot. Therefore, human translation is more expensive than machine translation.
Game Localization will Reap More Profits
Game localization helps to present your game in front of the masses. Consequently, it gives you more profits. There are only 27% of game users in the English-speaking target market. The other language segment includes Chinese, Russian, Korean, Japanese. Moreover, they also include other languages like French, Italian, German, and Spanish.
Important Languages for Game Localization in 2021
History shows that game localization was started by Japanese developers. They started translating their games into English to reach the US markets. After that, they translated their games into French, Italian, German, and Spanish for the European market. To reach Asian markets, they translated their games into Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. This shows that game localization covers all the important languages.
Let's have a look at important languages for game localization in 2021.
If you localize your games in the French language then it can give you a lot of opportunities to tap into France, Belgium, Switzerland, and Canadian French-speaking communities. French people give more importance to their language. Moreover, France has a very lucrative game developing industry. Therefore, to cater French global market, you need to localize your games in the French language.
Italian gamers download games with an average of 204.42k. This shows they download more games than average. Also, it is the 10th largest gaming market in the world. To penetrate such a massive gaming market, you should opt to localize your games in the Italian language.
The German gaming market is one of the biggest gaming markets in the world. This is because of the reason that Germans prefer to take technical education. German industry in Europe is thriving with high revenues that are more than the film industry. So why not localize your games in the German language.
Spanish is the third most spoken language in the world. It is the official language of Spain. Spain has 19.5 million gamers. Out of the 6.0 million of them play games on all the gadgets. Apart from Spain, the largest Spanish community called Hispanic resides in America. So, to cater to Spain and America's lucrative market, you need to localize your games in the Spanish language.
China's video game market is one of the major markets of the world. Half a billion of China's population plays video games. It is estimated that revenue from the gaming industry will exponentially increase in China. So, are you ready to localize your games in the Chinese language so that you can tap into the biggest market in the world?
Japanese hold an important place in the hearts of gamers. Besides the USA, Japan was a pioneer of the gaming industry. It is the origin of giant games like SEGA, Nintendo, Sony, and many more. It is ranked third after the USA and China for having enthusiast gamers. Therefore, you should localize your games in the Japanese language to reach the hearts of gamers.
South Korean gamers are famous for dominating esports. Korea has a very influential gaming culture that supports the gaming market. The South Korean government is also supporting gamers to conduct gaming events. Therefore, if you translate your games into the Korean language then you will get many opportunities to earn a high profit.
Russia is the eleventh largest gaming industry. It is expected that by 2024, the Russian gaming industry will exceed 2.8 billion dollars. Therefore, it will be a rational decision of yours if you translate your game into the Russian language.
English is the international language. It is a probability that English is the first language in which you want to localize your game. Localizing the game in the English language will not only give you access to the USA market but you can have access to the entire Western world and China. No doubt that players want to play the game in their native language but if the game is good in itself then people will prefer playing in the English language too. You can say this about Chinese and Korean people as they have fewer speakers outside their countries. Therefore, you can reach them by localizing the game in the English language.
Future of Game Localization
Video game localization is constantly changing. Here the question arises what will be the future of constantly changing video localization. With time, translation and interpretation services are changing and video game localization is one of the branches that is adapting to change. The boost in technology has brought new mediums in the game industry like virtual and augmented reality. Therefore, if you localize your games in the native language with virtual and augmented reality then it will give the gamers a pleasant gaming experience.
Game developers spend a lot of time creating and developing games. What is the use of that hard work if games are not accessible to a global audience? Therefore, the best way to reach global customers is to use trending languages for game localization.
About the author:
Enthusiast reading is what led Isabella to become a creative writer for CCJK Technologies, and she passionately got interested in various dialects from all over the world. Being half Hispanic and half Mexican (from both sides of the family) her unique ethnicity led her to the road of learning languages and work as an interpreter and as a writer at hand.