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Game Localization Software for autodidact?
Thread poster: xxxtranzlator
xxxtranzlator
Local time: 18:14
English to German
Apr 21, 2007

Hi,

I am a translation student from Germany and I want to get involved in the game localization business. In order to do this, I guess I have to learn the nuts and bolts of the localization process myself since there are no such courses at the university.
So how do I start as an autodidact(apart from reading the few localization publications on the internet)? Is there any software (Passolo?) which extracts the UI text just like for "normal" localization projects? Or are there resizing features.
I understand that Passolo costs about 1400 EUR (well I don't really understand it), so this is no option for me.
Is it even usual that game localizers just get the binary and that's it or are the texts extracted by the customer before?

I would be glad for any answer.


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xxxOlaf
Local time: 18:14
English to German
Try Nero Across Apr 21, 2007

You could give Nero Across a try:

http://www.across.net/en/demo_request_pe.php

I think it's still free for students and freelance translators.

Olaf


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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 12:14
English to French
+ ...
Take a look at Enlaso Tools Apr 21, 2007

These are free and do have features for localization of resource files and such. In any case, you will find them useful, I'm sure.

http://www.translate.com/technology/tools/index.html

I agree that across has unique visual UI translation features. I haven't used them, but they look like something other, expensive counterparts don't offer. Using across will also help you to get familiar with computer-assisted translation.


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Martin Wunderlich
Local time: 17:14
English to German
+ ...
Not so easy... Apr 21, 2007

Viktoria Gimbe wrote:

...

I agree that across has unique visual UI translation features. I haven't used them, but they look like something other, expensive counterparts don't offer. Using across will also help you to get familiar with computer-assisted translation.


Please correct me, if I am wrong, but I doubt that the usual visual UI translation features are much help in the arena of _games_ localisation. These features are more directed at standard Windows apps. The textual resources in games can come in all sorts of formats, the complexity of which depends on the number, type and technical sophistication of the actors between games publisher and translator.

For instance, I have received games resources in simple formats like Excel sheets. In such a case, the translation is no different from translating your normal bog-standard Excel file. You may or may not have to watch out for length restrictions. Other possible formats are, for example, plain text resource files, in the key-value format. Each line in the file would consist of a unique identifier and the text string. These files are relatively easy to deal with and should be supported by regular CAT tools.

At the far end of the complexity scale you would have niceties like:

- Proprietary resource file formats. I was recently involved in a games localisation project where a special filter tool had to be written to extract and re-insert the translatable text.

- Graphics with embedded text. The text might be on a separate layer in the original format, making extraction easier. But that original file mightn't be available and you have to work off the jpg, bmp or whatever.

- Flash files with embedded text. There are tools available for this.

- Audio formats, which require careful translation, in particular, when they have to be synched with video sequences.

- Translatable text embedded in source code. Ideally, all translatable text should be extracted to resource files. But not all developers are aware of this.

- Screenshots. Which have to be retaken, after localisation.

I am not a specialist for games localisation, so there's probably a lot more out there. There might be standard formats that are used in the industry.

Anyway, interesting topic this, and I am looking forward to reading more about it from the other colleagues.

Cheers,

Martin


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Jalapeno
Local time: 18:14
English to German
... Apr 23, 2007

tranzlator wrote:


Is it even usual that game localizers just get the binary and that's it or are the texts extracted by the customer before?



In my experience (I've been involved in the localization of video games as a freelance translator for the past 5 years or so), the texts are extracted by the client in 99% of all cases. I usually get an Excel file with the text to be translated. Some clients also have their own, often web-based, translation tools. I've never had the need for any third-party application (apart from Trados).

NB: This may not be true for all clients out there, but it's true for those I have worked with so far ...


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xxxtranzlator
Local time: 18:14
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
thanks Apr 23, 2007

Thank you for all your answers!

I am glad to hear that translators in the video game business do not rely on too much software (apart from TMs) to do the jobs.

It is indeed true that Across is still free for students, so I will try the application.


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Renate Reinartz  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 18:14
English to German
Sisulizer localization tool Apr 30, 2007

tranzlator wrote:
Is there any software (Passolo?) which extracts the UI text just like for "normal" localization projects? Or are there resizing features.


At which university are you studying? Sisulizer is another software localization tool, and several German universities have already class-room lics, you could use.

In any case you can start working with the 30-day fully functional evaluation copy. Just contact me if you need more time. At Sisulizer we support well educated students.


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