For today's exclusive Gamasutra feature
, veteran localization associate producer Corinne Isabelle Le Dour, who has worked on such titles as Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory
and Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
, continues her original Gamasutra series on the challenges of localization, this time focusing on localizing game audio.
In this excerpt, Le Dour offers an overview of video game localization, noting that as games have become more complicated, thanks in part to the introduction of next-generation console platforms and the “massive” content expected from publishers, localization has likewise escalated in difficulty:
“Localizing in-game and video dialogue is a hot topic: it is complicated and expensive and it usually takes place at a time when you have a million other fish to fry (the first of which being this game you need to finish). This difficulty originates from our games’ high level of sophistication, but also from worldlier principles: the intricacy of level design, programming, animation, script writing (and many other yet to be described tasks) result in what one could describe as a real house of cards. Add pressure from publishers for last minute changes and your production calendar is offset by four weeks while a cold wind of anxiety blows over your already sleep-deprived teams.
Finally, localizing dialogue means dealing with external resources that will carry out translation, casting, recordings and linguistic testing, all tasks that also need to fit into your schedule while your submission date isn’t likely to change.”
You can now read the full Gamasutra feature on the subject
, with more in-depth discussion from Le Dour on video game localization, including characterization, scripting, and quality control (no registration required, please feel free to link to this column from external websites).