A brief look at gaming localization

Author: Maciej Sobolewski

Although the beginning of the gaming industry dates back to the 1970s, it wasn’t up until the last decade that the industry exploded into the Internet Age and became a worldwide sensation.

During the 1970s, technology limitations made it impossible for developers to create complex games. Because of this the games often presented simple mechanics and graphics. Lack of any in game linguistic content resulted in games having only the original language. This changed drastically during the 1980s, when the biggest videogame companies in Japan such as Nintendo, Sony and Sega saw a huge opportunity to ship their games to other markets, especially to the English ones. With more linguistic content, games became available in two languages – Japanese as the original and English as the localized one. However, lack of experience in this field led to the birth of a completely new language – Engrish, which haunted the translators and produced quite a lot of funny mistranslations such as all your bases are belong to us or Conglaturation.

The 1990s were characterized by revolution and rapid development in gaming, ranging from graphics and bigger environments to vast, branched out plots with more character dialogues. This, combined with the growing demand for localized content coming from non-English markets, drove the necessity in having a specialized branch of software translation – gaming localization.

The following decade saw the consolidation of the gaming market and the emergence of well backed, AAA studios associated with major entertainment companies. Game publishers realized that the best way to grab the market was to ship a game alongside its localized versions in different languages rather than localizing a game after releasing the original version. Thus the simultaneous shipment was designed. This was the start of interactive online gaming.

Nowadays, the gaming industry has grown immensely, thanks in great part to improved broadband access that led to the explosion of online games. Game localization is a vital function of the ever-expanding global game industry as it’s responsible for half of the industry’s total revenue stream and according to Newzoo games market will reach $102.9 billion in 2017.


The future does look bright for the gaming industry.

If you wish to discuss anything gaming related feel free to contact me at Maciej.Sobolewski@lionbridge.com


[1] http://www.newzoo.com/insights/global-games-market-will-reach-102-9-billion-2017-2/

19 Replies

  1. Personal Trainer - May 12, 2015 at 12:14 am Reply

    I’m amazed, I have to admit. Rarely do I come across a blog that’s both
    equally educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head.
    The issue is something too few people are speaking intelligently
    about. I am very happy I stumbled across this in my hunt for something regarding this.

  2. bcrglobaltextile.co.uk - June 9, 2015 at 5:31 pm Reply

    It’s a shame you don’t have a donate button!
    I’d most certainly donate to this excellent blog! I suppose
    for now i’ll settle for book-marking and adding your RSS feed to my Google
    account. I look forward to new updates and will share this website with my Facebook group.
    Chat soon!

  3. Isabelle - June 17, 2015 at 1:31 pm Reply

    This is a rеally ցood tip espеcіally tto thoѕe fresh to the blogοspɦеre.

    SҺort but very accuratе informɑtion… Thank you for sharing this one.
    A must read article!

  4. FidelTRierson - June 20, 2015 at 3:03 am Reply

    I enjoy looking through a post that will make men and women think.

    Also, thanks for permitting me to comment!

  5. RusselPParonto - June 21, 2015 at 5:18 pm Reply

    Heya i’m for the first time here. I came across this board
    and I in finding It really helpful & it helped me out a lot.
    I’m hoping to give one thing back and help others such as you
    aided me.

  6. JoeannORhoe - July 19, 2015 at 5:42 pm Reply

    Hi! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a team of volunteers and starting
    a new project in a community in the same niche. Your blog provided
    us beneficial information to work on. You have done a extraordinary job!

  7. vancouver seo - September 23, 2015 at 4:01 am Reply

    Great post! I just added it to my favorites!

  8. Nicholas Climes - October 2, 2015 at 2:14 pm Reply

    Thanks very nice blog!

  9. kayaşehir evden eve taşımacılık - January 16, 2016 at 12:22 am Reply

    Thanks-a-mundo for the blog post. Cool.

  10. http://jar-medic.pl/ - February 24, 2016 at 10:33 am Reply

    Some really fantastic content on this web site , appreciate it for contribution.

  11. fiverr backlinks - March 5, 2016 at 10:53 am Reply

    Only wanna tell that this is very helpful , Thanks for taking your time to write this.

  12. Www.blackplanet.com - March 27, 2016 at 11:13 pm Reply

    Excellent, what a web site it is! This web site provides useful data to us, keep it up.

  13. Danita Camel - March 28, 2016 at 3:41 pm Reply

    It’s actually a nice and useful piece of info. I am happy that you shared this useful information with us. Please keep us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

  14. seo fiverr - March 31, 2016 at 1:34 pm Reply

    Appreciate you sharing, great article post.Much thanks again. Great.

  15. Arnoldo Chmelicek - April 11, 2016 at 3:16 am Reply

    I’m really impressed with your writing skills as well as with the layout on your blog. Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself? Either way keep up the excellent quality writing, it’s rare to see a nice blog like this one these days..

  16. bayrampaÅŸa nakliyat - April 23, 2016 at 5:28 pm Reply

    Thanks again for the blog article.Really thank you! Really Great.

  17. Reimar Hoven Information Security - April 28, 2016 at 8:09 am Reply

    Great post. Awesome.

  18. http://jp.miricoperu.info - May 10, 2016 at 4:35 pm Reply

    Wow! This could be one particular of the most helpful blogs We’ve ever arrive across on this subject. Actually Magnificent. I am also an expert in this topic therefore I can understand your effort.

  19. اخذ ویزای شینگن تضمینی - May 15, 2016 at 10:58 am Reply

    I really like and appreciate your blog article.Thanks Again. Awesome.

Leave a Reply