Increasing the number of global users playing your game is the best way to increase revenue. But does the localisation process need to be so damned tricky to manage?

Taking your game global: Should it be so troublesome?

The team at LocalizeDirect all used to make games, so they’re perfectly placed to understand the pitfalls when localising for foreign markets. Their increasing frustration with the lack of localisation process tools that did exactly what they wanted, led to them developing systems to combat these woes.

StoreFront

StoreFront was released mid-2014 and has been developed to remove the hassle of localising App Store pages. Localising these is a clear way to push awareness of your game. But the number of languages makes this tricky to manage, especially when there are multiple updates in lots of languages.

One of the key features is previewing your App Store page on different iOS devices, in each language. StoreFront also features a translation memory, so if the bulk of your text is the same and you only update a line or two, the existing text will be retained and only changes will be translated.

You can share this through the app to receive feedback. Now you submit through Connect and hope for the best. There’s no way to know if it is formatted correctly and if the translated text has caused alignment issues resulting in a page that looks unprofessional.

StoreFront is free to use so there’s every reason to try it out.

LocDirect

Have you experienced overlong strings, change control, translator queries? If not, then you probably haven’t localised. As more and more companies experience the pain of loc string management, the demand for a solid process will increase. One issue is the perceived lack of cost of working in traditional offline files like Excel. Using a spreadsheet is ‘free’, but how ‘free’ is it? How much time is spent managing the files, making sure changes are reflected and sent for translation?

Since its launch in 2010, LocDirect has been a popular choice when it comes to managing localisation. LocDirect manages source strings and logs all action taken, on a per string level. So you can see what changes were made and who made them.

At any point, you can export a file in the format most suitable for your needs. This is useful if you just want to run some tests using translated text before final delivery.

Now back to time saving specifics. The vast majority of bugs found during localisation QA are overlong strings. LocDirect allows you to specify a maximum character length per string. This dramatically reduces the number of bugs and if done correctly should really result in zero instances.

There is also an API solution. When set up, any changes made to source and translations are refreshed and imported into your code on the fly. This further reduces the update and test time required.

LocalizeDirect offers a translation service through an extensive network of professional game translators. Although you can alternatively license LocDirect and give your preferred translation partner access to your projects.

If you’re still not sure whether you should localise or want some tips on how best to do this, then check out the LD blogs found here: localizedirect.com/pages/posts.

LocalizeDirect will be at the Nordic Game show in May. If you would like to set up a meeting to discuss your loc woes, email: ms@localizedirect.com.

You can find out more about LocalizeDirect and its services at www.localizedirect.com.

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