Game Development Reference
coordinated by the localisation studio's representative and can quickly be
passed onto the translators of all versions.
You should be prepared to answer the questions that come from the
translators, either through the representative, if using a studio, or from each
of them individually if that is how the translation work is being carried out.
Even though you may have commented the scripts thoroughly, there will
always be a few lines or scenes that need further clarification and your
understanding of them is better than anyone's. It is vital that you answer these
questions as swiftly as possible - the localisation of the game will be on a
tight schedule and it is important that none of the deadlines are missed.
There will be times that you may be asked to work on scripts that have been
translated from another language into your own. Although translators in
general do an excellent job, in a game that relies heavily on characterisation
and the interaction between characters, if the style is not right for the
language the dialogue may come across as a little dry. This can be disastrous
for humorous games that not only rely on jokes and one-liners, but also on
the tone and presentation of the dialogue in general.
When editing a translated set of game scripts you need to ensure that you
understand what the original creators' intentions were. As you read through
the whole of the dialogue you must try to see through the translation to what
they were trying to say in each of the scenes. If possible, you should try to
get hold of the original game or voice samples so that you can hear the tone
of the dialogue, even if you cannot understand the language. Even more
advantageous would be to get hold of an original build of the game and play
it through so that you can see each of the scenes as originally intended.
Once again, much of this relies on understanding the context and tone. A
simple line like, 'You've got to get out of town' may be a threat, it could be
advice, or perhaps the character is pleading with the person they are talking
to. Usually, the way the scene plays out will establish the context, but if the
lines spoken are in subtle conflict with the real meaning of the scene you may
need to be clear what that meaning is meant to be.
Where a scene is a humorous one, the humour can often be lost because
the rhythm of the exchange between the characters is not quite right.
Although it is rarely possible to change the number of lines in a scene -
because the game's implementation relies on the scene's structure remaining
the same - you can still improve the rhythm by re-writing the individual