International Arabic?
Thread poster: Zikit
Zikit
Israel
Local time: 10:15
English to Hebrew
Apr 2, 2012

One of my customers who is in the online gaming industry is thinking about addressing major Arabic player audiences and is looking to do so with as few languages as possible.

Countries of interest include Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Algeria, Jordan, Iraq, UAE and Lebanon.
Obviously they all speak different dialects and Literary Arabic might not be known by many people and not cool enough for others.

He noticed some countries speak Berber (Wikipedia) but they differ in dialects as well. Is there is a single or perhaps two languages, which most of these audiences could read & listen to?
The idea is for them to remain cool enough for online games.

Thanks in advance,
Shany Orian
Zikit Translation Services


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Chakir Mahjoubi  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:15
English to Arabic
+ ...
Morocco Apr 2, 2012

Zikit wrote:

He noticed some countries speak Berber (Wikipedia) but they differ in dialects as well. Is there is a single or perhaps two languages, which most of these audiences could read & listen to?
The idea is for them to remain cool enough for online games.



Moroccans understand standard Arabic but they don't feel at ease to speak it. It is very heavy and it poses them to exert more effort. Concerning berber, there are various names for the different Berber dialects (Rifia (Tarifit), chalha (Tachalhit) and soussia (Tamazight)), but Tamazight is seen as the root language. Tamazight is written in the unified letter "Tifinagh" which is probably derived from the Phoenician alphabet and has only symbols for consonants.

Read more: Amazigh, (Berber) the Indigenous Non-Arab Population of North Africa, and Their language. http://phoenicia.org/berber.html#ixzz1qt1bB1kU


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shfranke  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:15
English to Arabic
+ ...
Online gaming system - interactive with audio or only visuals & graphics?y? Apr 2, 2012

Greetings.

Kindly clarify if that proposed online gaming system includes features which enable subscribers/players to interact with audio [someone/dealer at the gaming site] or only by entering visual [drop-down lists for entering choices and numbers] & graphic responses?

If no interactive speaking function is included -- which function could bloat the database of a large population of audio samples of expressions and cues recorded in selected Arabic dialects -- the concern about a dialect of Arabic is irrelevant, as the displayed Arabic text would be in MSA.

Hope this helps.

Regards

Stephen H. Franke
San Pedro, California

(Recently did very similar work on developing multilingual content for interactive "serious games" applications.)


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Viacheslav Eliseev  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 11:15
Russian to Arabic
+ ...
International arabic Apr 3, 2012

Dear Zikit! Thank you for your question - it is very actual question
Although there are a big group of dilacets in all the arabic countries but according to my experience and my opinion the simple literary arabic wil be the best choice for your project
If you will choose one of widespread dialect which will be understood in group of dialect - for example - mix of sirian-lebanon-palestinian dialects (dialects of these countries generally are very similar) will not be appropriable for the countries of NOrthern Africa and Arabic Gulf and so on
I think the simple literary arabic will be understood in all the countries though there are some small differrences and features for literary in each country
Or you have to make a dialect version of game interface to every region - it will be at least 3-4 options

Thank you
Viacheslav


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Zikit
Israel
Local time: 10:15
English to Hebrew
TOPIC STARTER
Morocco and Arabic Apr 3, 2012

Chakir Mahjoubi wrote:

Zikit wrote:

He noticed some countries speak Berber (Wikipedia) but they differ in dialects as well. Is there is a single or perhaps two languages, which most of these audiences could read & listen to?
The idea is for them to remain cool enough for online games.



Moroccans understand standard Arabic but they don't feel at ease to speak it.




Thanks Chakir for the quick reply.
Would you say that Moroccans would feel comfortable with a game in Arabic, where there is both spoken text and audio, or would you think that it is better to use Berber (in which case, please tell me which dialect is the best in your opinion as I am a little confused).


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Zikit
Israel
Local time: 10:15
English to Hebrew
TOPIC STARTER
To Stephen regarding audio Apr 3, 2012

Stephen Franke wrote:

Greetings.

Kindly clarify if that proposed online gaming system includes features which enable subscribers/players to interact with audio [someone/dealer at the gaming site] or only by entering visual [drop-down lists for entering choices and numbers] & graphic responses?

If no interactive speaking function is included -- which function could bloat the database of a large population of audio samples of expressions and cues recorded in selected Arabic dialects -- the concern about a dialect of Arabic is irrelevant, as the displayed Arabic text would be in MSA.

Hope this helps.

Regards

Stephen H. Franke
San Pedro, California

(Recently did very similar work on developing multilingual content for interactive "serious games" applications.)



Yes, this game will have both audio and visual (written).


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Chakir Mahjoubi  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:15
English to Arabic
+ ...
Greetings Apr 3, 2012

Would you say that Moroccans would feel comfortable with a game in Arabic?
Moroccan Arabic "Darija" is extremely different from Standard Arabic and is also slightly influenced by French or Spanish, depending on where in the country you are, so don't expect to understand a word of what the locals say to each other even if you are competent in Standard Arabic, or any non-Moroccan dialect. However, all Moroccans learn standard Arabic (MSA) in school, so while not the first language of choice, speakers of standard Arabic should not have any problems in communicating


Which dialect is the best in your opinion?
Native speakers typically would consider Moroccan Arabic (Darija) as the best way to address each other. I am attaching for you some links. I hope they will be useful.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IC6a7BH-ovY
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E5913oronhQ&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bTRMRbxg2AM&feature=endscreen


Links concerning Language:
http://www.mapsorama.com/linguistic-map-of-morocco/
http://www.ethnologue.com/show_map.asp?name=MA&seq=10
http://www.travel-exploration.com/page.cfm/Languages
http://www.ethnologue.com/show_country.asp?name=MA
http://www.morocco.com/culture/language/


Best Regards
Chakir Mahjoubi



[Edited at 2012-04-03 21:02 GMT]


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Zikit
Israel
Local time: 10:15
English to Hebrew
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks for all the comments! Apr 4, 2012

I think I have enough information at the moment. Will get back to you all if I have any more questions.

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