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Yomar

How to save up to 20%-100% on localization/translation costs

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At this site you can find some interesting trade secrets about the translation/localization industry. A must for game developers who need to localize their games but are on a tight budget. Even if your budget meets your current localization needs, the FAQ on the same site sheds an interesting light on possible questions you might want to confront your current language vendor with. This information about direct business models is for free and comes straight from someone who has been working full-time in the localization/translation industry for 11 years. The site also contains tips about how to handle game localization/translation in general. [Edited by - Yomar on June 27, 2006 11:34:59 AM]

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P.S. Of course I'm also willing to answer any questions you might have about localization in general (don't ask me about the programming aspects though - I'm merely a translator).

I promise I will answer those from man to man, without starting a sales talk right away :)

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Nice and professional site, there was interesting info on it.

I have a comment (I'm Flemish ;))

Quote:

Our game will also be released in Northern Belgium (Flanders). I've heard people speak Flemish there, not Dutch. What's the difference?

The written word: Flemish is considered a variant of Dutch. Using Dutch in Belgium is therefore totally acceptable. However, it is not acceptable to use Flemish in The Netherlands. Therefore, you should always have your games localized by a translator living in The Netherlands, unless you are planning to release your game in Belgium only. This is because Flemish translators will undoubtedly use Flemish idioms in their translations, which will make your game look ridiculous in the eyes of the Dutch.


There are idioms in North-Dutch that can look ridicioulous for Flemish people as well. Flemish is a variant of Dutch and so is North-Dutch. Also there are many different kinds of Flemish as well as different kinds of North-Dutch.

Also, as Flemish person, I find that many Dutch translations are North-Dutch-oriented. Disney movies often get a separate Belgian and North-Dutch translation.

[Edited by - Lode on June 27, 2006 6:14:54 PM]

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Thank you Lode! You are correct, I know of at least one Dutch word that looks ridiculous to Belgian people: faciliteiten (facilities). My Flemish collegues tell me it means something very different in Flanders (was it close to brothels or what?) ;)

You are correct in stating that most games are localized to Dutch as it is spoken in The Netherlands, while actually, Belgium deserves a language version on its own. And indeed Disney is one of the very few companies that localizes games to both Dutch and Flemish.

Unfortunately, because of budgetary constraints, Flemish is often forgotten and Belgian users have to cope with a Dutch version. This applies not only to games, but to many other things too: ERP software, vacuum cleaner manuals, et cetera.

Still, experience has shown that it's easier to have a Dutch translator make a Flemish-friendly version that can be sold in both countries, than having a Flemish translator make a Dutch-friendly version that can be sold in both countries. The number of Dutch idioms in the Flemish language is higher than the number of Flemish idioms in the Dutch language, so to speak.

I feel sorry for my Flemish collegues really, because I know from experience that generally, Flemish translators have a far better command of the Dutch language than Dutch translators. The problem is the relatively large number of 'exotic' idioms they use. Hence my advise to go for Dutch first and Flemish second if there are budgetary constraints. Using both is of course the best solution.

One of my Flemish collegues has specialized in doing translations which are acceptable in both Holland and Belgium. It took him a few years to get there. The above is what he told me.

And between you and me: I think Flemish is much more beautiful than Dutch ;)

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