8-bit Translations offers unique solutions for unique demands
Video game translation involves a wide variety of text types: from the promotional to the technical and the literary. This convergence of styles makes this industry so exceptional and unusual when compared with other types of translation.
To guarantee critical aspects, such as glossary consistency, adherence to age ratings like PEGI, ESRB, and overall coherence, 8-bit Translations works with the development of the game from the very beginning in a tightly integrated manner. As such, with an attentive, result-driven, and tailored approach, our work will convey not only the words, but also the tone, atmosphere and feel that are present in the source language.
8 bit translations
My first video game system was an 8-bit computer. Sorry, I’m kidding. My first video game system was a Game & Watch electronic game, but I was too young to even understand how to play it. So, my first video console was an 8-bit computer. It was an Atari 2600, I was 6-years old, and my favorite game was H.E.R.O. Boy. I would spend what spare time I had after school, homework, and soccer practices playing that game (that and reading Asterix comic books). Those were the days…
Fast-forward to the early 2000s. I’ve spent two years pursuing a diploma in Industrial Engineering before I realized that wasn’t my thing really, so I decided to go for a bachelor’s degree in Translation, a choice I have never regretted. After my studies, I spent 7 years in the professional arena, gathering extensive experience as a translator, proofreader and project manager.
Video game development has come a long way since early days in 1970s, from the time of classic titles like Pac-man, to the present, where studios handle budgets similar to those of big screen blockbusters (well, sometimes).
Those old games were rather simple and allowed the player to enjoy themselves having little or no knowledge of the source language. However, video games have evolved dramatically and they barely resemble the old two-action games with a monochromatic palette. They now submerge the player in a world of their own, full of rules and possibilities, where every decision leads to a new path. As a result, an extensive development phase has arisen: it might take months to recreate the movement of the hair of the main character, endless hours trying to replicate the texture of an old rusty pipe. Numerous meetings are held to come up with puzzles which are compelling enough but, at the same time, solvable, and not only by Sherlock Holmes.
That is why the effort you put in creating the game, whether it is invested in graphics, character creation or in the storylines of dialogues, should be reflected flawlessly in the target language. The equation is simple: if the original language quality is an essential element of your storyline and the desired atmosphere for your game, the same will apply in any language.
Localization of video games should not be seen as an extra cost, separate from the production process, but as an integrated part of development, and seamlessly intertwined with it.