I ask that becouse I want to know how many members of our community whose English is not their native language and is it worth it to do localisations. You know, except that a lot of us are too lazy for read a lot of text, to overcome the language barrier is some hard. So sense from playing RPG, visual novels and especially text adventures. Most, and I in particular, just trying to skip everything.
I’m from Ukraine.
Я спрашиваю это, потому что я хочу знать много ли членов из нашего комьюнити не владеют в совершенстве английским и стоит ли делать для них локализации. Знаете, кроме того что многим из нас просто впадлу читать много текста, тяжело преодолевать языковой барьер. Поэтому изщезает смысл играть в RPG, визуальные новеллы и особенно текстовые сообщения. Большинсто, и я вчасности, пытаются как можно быстрее проскипать всё.
I’m British!, sorry. But I can read some French, a little German and Italian, and a few words of Malay (the ones you might say to dogs - long story). They tried to teach me Latin at school, it didn’t stick!
It’s honestly hard to translate text-based games perfectly. I had high hopes for my own game, but soon realised the grammar of the language was getting coded into the core of the game and gave up.
Interesting to see the increase in discussion around this topic as of recent. So I am going to address some of this conversation from two different angles, localization for the site and localization for games.
Now one thing to note is localization is not the same as translation, and is a much more complex process that deals with much more than just translation but that is a whole nother topic.
So from Weight Gaming’s perspective localization is something we kind of get for free but is also a bit out of our reach. Discourse (the forum framework we use) has a fair amount of localization already and is constantly improving thanks to localization efforts by volunteers helping with the opensource project. Since it is an open source project though that means localization can be slow and it not guaranteed that a specific localization will be implemented.
Now the larger part is with posts, as localization of the sites framework only helps with things like menus, but not with topics, replys, or anything else created by site users. Manually localizing such content is usually cost prohibitive so automated translators are usually used and we actually have one available using the Bing API:
The thing is these services are not cheap and the only reason we use the Bing API is its translation service is one of the few with a free (though limited) version that we can use.
The largest issue for us though is the lack of demand. Around 73% of our user base comes from English speaking countries (US, UK, Canada, Australia) and I am sure the registered users tilt more toward the 80-90% mark. Now you might be thinking that “well that leaves 27% of users that come from a non-English speaking country, shouldn’t we try to support them since that is such a large chunk?” The answer to that is its complicated. While it is true that 27% of our traffic comes from non-English speaking countries, even ignoring factors like VPNs or other systems that could be distorting those numbers, Germany is currently where we get most of our traffic from that is not an English speaking country at a whopping 3% of our traffic.
That means all other non-English speaking nations each make up less than 3% of our traffic and with that I think you can began to see how that is hard problem to solve.
Now from a game development standpoint localization is usually too expensive for most small-med projects (much less free/hobby ones) to do. This is why the open source and indie markets depend so heavily on giving their fans the ability to localize games for them. In all practical concerns fan localization will be the only option for most projects or very focused localization efforts in rare cases.
I’m from the flemish part of Belgium! This means that my native language is flemish, a subset of Dutch with some minor differences, but I also need to learn French, English and I could choose to also learn German. But I’m fine with flemish, English and some really crappy French.
If it’s any consolation, even native speakers are kind of screwed with the grammar, lol. There’s bloody exceptions for everything.
My native language is English. I took Russian in university, but to call it rough would be an understatement. Currently been studying Mandarin, though progress has admittedly been slow. Despite my country of origin, I know next to no French. My first French teacher in school was quite good. Her family came here in the 70’s from Haiti, but my first year of study was her last teaching. The next teacher we had didn’t speak a word of the language, and the classes became something of a joke.
But at least I know how to properly spell “colour.”
I can read English if I read slowly, but I prefer google translation and check the original text.
I’m a Chinese. 99% of the people in our country are not interested in WG. (But even so, tens of millions of people are interested.)
Most of us are better at writing than speaking English. Most young people know some English (for exams), but they are not good at translating.