Any experience doing video game localization in Frankfurt?
Thread poster: Alex Farrell

Alex Farrell  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 04:59
Japanese to English
Aug 6, 2009

If you handle game localization, you've probably noticed ads recruiting translators to work for a major player in the industry in Frankfurt, Germany. It sounds interesting but you have to actually be in Frankfurt to do it since they need translators to work in-house. I'm in Kyoto, Japan, but if this sort of thing is still open in a couple years, then my wife (Japanese) and I might want to make a temporary move to try it out for a year or something. Our son is only 9 months old now, so it wouldn't be very convenient at all right now since although we do speak some German, it is VERY basic. But if we can do it for a little while before our son enter elementary school in Japan, then it might be a good experience.

But is it a good gig money-wise? Does anybody have experience with it or know anybody who does? I did a forum search but nothing came up. Any info would be appreciated. As for our requirements, after looking at today's exchange rate I'd say a monthly income of around 3,000 euros would probably work out.

The companies posting the ads, by the way, have all had great Blue Board ratings. And I believe there are multiple companies involved. No need to name names since this is not the appropriate place for it. I'm just wondering about general employment conditions.

Thanks in advance!

P.S. I hope I've posted this question in the appropriate forum. Sorry if this is the wrong place.


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Dan_Lambert_MBA
Germany
Local time: 20:59
English to German
+ ...
OK… well, not naming names makes it a bit difficult. Aug 6, 2009

I just happened across a post today in a forum for English speaking expatriates in Germany (ToyTownGermany.com). They were talking about companies in Frankfurt that spoke English at work and about the biggest household name in computer games was mentioned as a wonderful work environment. The person speaking has taught classes there.

Perhaps you could search places like LinkedIn or Xing (Xing is way more popular in Germany) for people who work at the company you’re asking about.

Dan


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Woodstock  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 20:59
Member (2005)
German to English
+ ...
Working in Germany Aug 7, 2009

As a long-time US expat living in Germany, I have a few suggestions for you about working and living here, which I hope may be helpful.

1)
Since it appears you are a citizen of the US, and not of an EU country, make sure you get all relevant information from the German Embassy/Consulate nearest you to determine if you are even eligible to move here and under which conditions. I obtained resident and work permits easily with a German spouse, since divorced. I don't know what the laws are nowadays, but with the unemployment rate being quite high, it may not be so easy for non-EU citizens to emigrate.

2)
If you get past that hurdle and end up here, it is expensive and the games companies do not pay very well, in general. The fun factor is high, lots of young people do it for little money, so make sure the potential salary can support you and your family, especially in a city like Frankfurt, where costs are higher. Obviously there will be variations in pay, I'm no expert, but just be aware that it might be poorly paid. Health care and other social services are also not what they used to be, because of the cost of integrating the former GDR and the changing demographic (too few births, an aging population), so citizens have to pay more and more for fewer and fewer services.

3)
If the first 2 points have been settled in your favor, there are the cultural differences to consider. Being half German, having grown up here in part and having spent most of my adult life in this country, I'm well adjusted, but it is quite difficult for some. And I still have my frustrations with some aspects of the German mentality. A friend of mine from South Africa never felt comfortable here in eight years, just to cite one example. She has since left and is very happy not to be here anymore.

So these are a few things to check out before making any decisions.

Best of luck to you!

Woodstock


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Geraldine Oudin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Japanese to French
+ ...
I was wondering about this too Aug 8, 2009

Because I have also received many similar offers through PM.
I thought the conditions might not be so good, since they seem to be looking quite desperately. But I have not answered any of those offers, since I am not planning to go back to Europe before a couple of years.
I think Frankfurt is a nice city, I have been there many times since it's only 2 hours drive from Strasbourg (France). Frankfurt Airport has always been closer to us than Paris...and they offer cheaper fares to Japan.
Weather in Alsace is definitely better than in Frankfurt, though...


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