If you’re involved in the video game industry, you may have heard the term video game localization. However, many people ask what is video game localization. What does it involve? And does it affect games?
In simple terms, localization takes a product initially created for one region and adapts it to suit another area.
Video game localization is much more than translation since it goes beyond translating texts from one language to another.
There are several factors to consider during localization, including:
- Modifying cultural references or jokes that the intended audience will not understand.
- Translating dialogue and texts to the target language.
- Considering the players’ cultural and religious backgrounds and censoring explicit content to suit the country’s regulations.
- Changing the names of characters and locations, game design, and tone to appeal to the audience.
The best localization initiatives involve meaningful changes based on the target user’s language and cultural expectations. However, the process varies depending on the size and genre of the game, target, resources, etc.
What is Video Game Localization?
The four core elements of video game localization include:
The process of translating the game dialogue and text to be suitable for your intended audience is a crucial part of video game localization. A professional approach to translation is required to avoid language mistakes.
There are many cultural practices across the world. Attitudes about money, alcohol, sex, religion, violence, etc., vary. This is why video game localizers must first understand the region’s culture before localization.
This aspect of localization is often overlooked, but it is a crucial part that makes the game infrastructure adaptable to any region. Internationalization covers UI details like date, character name display, and time conversions.
This is vital to maximize revenue from various regions. Games with in-app purchases should have clear instructions for making purchases. The cost should also be indicated in the local currency.
Benefits of Video Game Localization
Video game localization is beneficial for both the game developer and the gamer. Users enjoy an exciting gaming experience where the characters speak their language.
Here’s why video game localization is essential.
It Drives Sales
Localizing your game to reach more people will ultimately increase sales. Games released in English get to only about 27% of the global gaming market. So as a game developer, it is crucial to look for ways to tap into different markets.
Localizing your game to reach a wider audience like the Chinese, Japanese, and European regions will definitely increase revenue. However, your gaming niche should be considered before deciding on the areas to localize.
Improves User Experience and Ratings
User experience and satisfaction are important when it comes to gaming. One fail-proof way to improve user experience is by providing them with the best gaming experience. You can achieve this through localization.
The gaming world is evolving and has become more interactive. Gamers can create their narrative and play their story. Game lovers who can play games that cater to their culture, language, and preferences will have better experiences, leading to better ratings for your game.
Helps You Remain Competitive in a Tough Market
Some video game companies may not go the extra mile to localize their games for other regions. However, good game developers are strategic with game localization.
So if you want to stand out and remain relevant in the gaming industry, you must be strategic in your localization. There are millions of games worldwide, so you must localize your game.
Game localization remains a viable solution for generating more revenue and boosting your fan base while competing with other game developers.
Increase in Downloads
Video game localization is the fastest way to see a significant increase in your downloads or purchases. Since you adapted your game to suit more regions, more gamers become interested in downloading it. This is also a brilliant way to widen your market reach.
When you do it professionally, end-users are unaware you localized the game. Though it takes a lot of time, effort, and process, video localization is well worth the effort.
Here at Day Translations, we have video game localization professionals with state-of-the-art studios ready to localize your games. Give us a call today and one of our localization experts will answer all your questions and even provide you with a free quote.