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  #1  
Old 04-27-2011, 08:24 AM
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Hercule Hercule is offline
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Default Localization, is it worth it ?

I'm developping my first iphone game and I need to decide right now what budget I will allocate to translation.

I've worked in a java game mobile company. Games I've made during that time, were translated in at least 7 languages. I know that some translations were more political than effective in term of extra sales.
And my compagny have a big advertisement budget ( around 100 000$ ), and a minimum number of sales guarantee.

Is it worth to add several languages for my iphone game form the first release ?
Is it better to allocate a little more money in the art, and support new languages in an update, if the game has enough sales ?
Which language is worth ?

I will at least translate in French ( I'm french..), and get a native english speaker to proof read texts.

If some of you have any feedback ( % sales numbers feedback!), that would be helpfull.
Thanks
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  #2  
Old 04-27-2011, 08:35 AM
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Astraware Astraware is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hercule View Post
I'm developping my first iphone game and I need to decide right now what budget I will allocate to translation.

I've worked in a java game mobile company. Games I've made during that time, were translated in at least 7 languages. I know that some translations were more political than effective in term of extra sales.
And my compagny have a big advertisement budget ( around 100 000$ ), and a minimum number of sales guarantee.

Is it worth to add several languages for my iphone game form the first release ?
Is it better to allocate a little more money in the art, and support new languages in an update, if the game has enough sales ?
Which language is worth ?

I will at least translate in French ( I'm french..), and get a native english speaker to proof read texts.

If some of you have any feedback ( % sales numbers feedback!), that would be helpfull.
Thanks
First question to ask yourself is how much text does the game include? If it's just a few buttons and the rest of the gameplay is pretty obvious, then you may not need to. If it's a game with lots of text, dialog and tutorials, then localizing becomes more important if you want to sell outside of just French and English speaking countries.

We did localized game descriptions for the App Stores for one of our first titles and found it made very little difference to sales when we added it. We suspect that's because a lot of people don't bother to read the game descriptions.
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Old 04-27-2011, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hercule View Post
Is it worth to add several languages for my iphone game form the first release ?
In a word, no. At least not at first. Unless your game is more of a graphic novel (loads of text), it won't really affect your sales. If your game has good reception, you can consider translating to different languages to help your international sales.

Quote:
I will at least translate in French ( I'm french..), and get a native english speaker to proof read texts.
We do the same. English and Spanish (we're from Argentina) to begin with. That at least makes sure your game is ready for localization.

In our experience, localizing a game has little to no impact on sales. We've localized some of our games more as a service to our customers than a marketing strategy.
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Old 04-27-2011, 12:39 PM
DrummerB DrummerB is offline
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I think in most cases it isn't worth it. I suggest to build the game localizable and translate it to the languages you (or helpful friends) speak fluently, but don't spend a lot of time and money on translating to other languages.
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Old 04-27-2011, 04:14 PM
starjimstar starjimstar is offline
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It is a nice gesture but I don't see any evidence of increased sales. I wouldn't allocate any money for translations. Maybe find out if there is a group of international developers who will translate each others' game text. If there isn't one already, there should be.
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Old 04-27-2011, 04:58 PM
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Ok thanks. I thought localisation have more impact on sales.
I will focus on art.
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  #7  
Old 04-28-2011, 09:37 AM
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Photics Photics is offline
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I think Localization is worth the effort. Well, I'm not prepared to pay like $5,000 to translate my textbook to Japanese. But for BOT, I designed it with localization in mind. It's a sci-fi RPG with no words. The only word in the game is the title.

Why did I do this?

Without any words, I only need one binary. I can create descriptions for all the different languages. It's not that expensive to have a short description translated. It's easy to manage and it's smart marketing. Now I can reach the entire iTunes App Store, not just the English speaking players.

I had Commove and some of my other apps translated into German and I think it helped.
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Old 04-28-2011, 02:23 PM
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Without any words, I only need one binary.
Even with words you'd still only need one binary.
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Old 04-28-2011, 03:26 PM
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Even with words you'd still only need one binary.
Yes, if you added an option for changing languages.
(Commove has this. It even has Polish, which is surprisingly not a language choice for iTunes.)

But if your game has a lot of text... or a lot of text as images... localization adds a lot of bloat to your app. If you're just under the 20 MB over-the-air download limit, adding multiple languages could push the app over the edge.
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  #10  
Old 04-28-2011, 04:54 PM
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pchukwura pchukwura is offline
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I think it's worth it to have your game/app translated. I've read countless stories about folks topping the charts in other non-English markets.

Besides you can get translation for as cheap as $0.05/word at MyGengo http://mygengo.com/

There are also free crowdsource alternatives such as Get Localization: http://www.getlocalization.com/

I also think most games out there have a very low number of words to begin with so it shouldn't break the bank to have it localized
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