Nowadays adapting a video game is a fundamental element for the success of a new game. The video game industry is getting bigger and bigger, releasing a lot of AAA games all over the world thanks to the localization in different languages. The extremely complex process at the heart of the expansion of the market is the translation of interactive products, which involves many professional figures: from the project manager to the sound designer, the voice actors, the linguistic testers and many more.
The importance of a specialised figure
To develop a video game localization project and conclude it completely is essential to have many specialised professionals. Each role involves the use of specific technical tools, without them the localization process would be longer and more complicated. The ultimate goal is to shatter the linguistic barriers, giving the user the possibility to have an interactive experience in its entirety. This also happens through cultural adaptation, which takes into account the social stratification and the words with different nuances in each country.
CAT Tools as a translation software: advantages and features
To allow an optimised translation process, there are various software available on the market, which allow to reduce the working time and the mistakes, presenting various advantages:
- Advanced terminology management
- More precision regarding the translation
- Fast and automatic word count
- Lower translation costs
The most used tools that need to be mentioned are the CAT Tools (Computer Assisted Translation). What is a CAT? The Computer Assisted Translation is a translation method through which the translator uses a software to improve the translation process both in terms of quality and productivity. Between the most used Cat Tools there are two that stand out for their functionalities:
Trados Studio and MemoQ.
What does it do? It divides the text into smaller units (segments of text) greatly reducing the time needed to translate and giving the translator a parallel visualisation of the source text and the target text. A Cat Tool can highlight the clauses that aren’t repeated in the text, give a percentage based on progress and do spelling checks. Moreover, this type of software uses the clauses present in the TM and highlights the words that have to be translated for the first time, in order to focus the attention on the new information. This allows to work in a complete translation environment, suited for every need.
Translation Memory (TM)
A TM is a linguistic database that allows the professional to store glossaries and translations of previous works. It gives a percentage based on possible matches between already inserted words and the requested translation, giving possible linguistic solutions already stored in the memory. The translator must constantly update the TM, to make the translation process faster while keeping stylistic, terminological and global coherence.
A termbase can be described as a glossary containing approved words inserted by the translator to increase productivity. Focusing on the single terms allows the professional to quickly (and safely) intervene on the terminology.
XLOC & MEMOQ: examples of professional localization software
XLOC is a software used to manage the game assets, to make the localization process easier reaching as many users as possible. This type of software can be useful to finalise the project and manage the localization project while the game is still being developed. Regardless of the type of game, the main feature of XLOC is the management of the global resources, texts, audio and graphics included, during the entire development of the multilingual game.
MEMOQ is one of the most advanced CAT Tools on the market, available both to professionals and companies, it has lots of advanced customizable functionalities, a flexible management of files, an excellent quality check and the possibility to work on multiple files at the same time.