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The Art of Localizing Video Games

How to Integrate Language Technology Into the Game Development Process for Extraordinary Results

12 August 2020

Report by Miguel Sepulveda.

In the past decade, video games have conquered mainstream culture. Revenue generated from video games has been growing nonstop, from USD 70.68 billion in 2012 to an expected USD 180.1 billion in 2021.

The skyrocketing popularity of video games can be attributed to two primary factors.

Firstly, advances in technology have allowed the overall video game industry to develop rapidly. This has created a landscape today in which studios of vastly varying sizes around the world are producing games for multiple platforms.

Secondly, as we now live in a world with few digital barriers, distributing a product worldwide has never been easier. An example of this might be distributing a game in the App Store. The App Store is available in 175 countries and regions, and Apple provides support in 40 languages. In order to access this sea of opportunities there are only three requirements you need to follow: join the Apple Developer Program, configure your game’s metadata and required info in the App Store Connect record, and submit your game for review. In most cases, it takes about one to three days to receive approval. It can take up to 24 hours for your app to appear in the App Store after approval, but once your game has been listed there, it’s just one tap away from millions of potential customers.

Creating a video game and making it available to millions of potential gamers is now possible thanks to a multitude of distribution channels, including Google Arcadia, Steam, app stores, PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch — a game developed in a tiny Portuguese village can easily be made available to gamers in Vietnam.

The technology available to game developers today is nothing short of spectacular, and they have transformed playing video games into an amazing experience. Facial recognition technology, gesture control, high-definition displays, and virtual reality are just some examples of the incredible advances in video games made over the past few years.

What about the language technology that’s used to offer an exceptional gaming experience to millions of players in their native language? Has it evolved at the same speed?

Adapting a video game to the languages and cultures of the various markets continues to be one of the top recommendations for any company seeking to go global. Localizing a video game is the key to opening the door to international growth.

This report will illustrate how four types of technology available within the localization industry can be integrated into game development, combining to help reach a global audience in a meaningful and impactful way.

Information contained in this report

  1. TL;DR
  2. Decisions, decisions
  3. Connector: one little piece of software to rule them all
  4. Content management systems: content is the key to keeping players engaged
  5. Hello, machine translation
    1. Factors to consider
    2. Which content is best for MT?
  6. Localization QA technology
    1. Preventive LQA
    2. Corrective LQA
  7. Language technology takes a game to the global level

This has been an extended preview.

The full report goes into detail on the different language technology options available to game developers, and how they should integrate these into the game development process so their games reach millions of players around the world. If you are not a Nimdzi Partner, contact us.

Miguel_Sepulveda_Globalization_Specialist_Nimdzi_Insights

This report has been researched and written by Nimdzi's Globalization Specialist, Miguel Sepulveda. If you wish to learn more about how language technology can enable the success of a video game on the global stage, reach out to Miguel at [email protected].

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