Langugage and Localization on MOBILE

Discussion in 'Buildbox General Discussion' started by Jamie, Oct 18, 2015.

  1. Jamie

    Jamie Avid Boxer

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    I am considering adding some "narrativity" in a mobile game I am working on, using lots of text.
    Since there are a large number of Apple App stores across the globe -- many of them in a different language -- I wanted to know others' thoughts on solving the problem of language barriers when localizing for different local app stores.
    I plan to use GENGO.com for professional language translations, and perhaps another service, in order to get my (1) in-game text, (2) in-app store descriptions, and (3) the descriptive text I include on my screenshots, all translated into XYZ language (whatever language is appropriate for a particular app store).
    However, I cannot figure out which language translations I should use for which local Apple Ap Stores. How do I solve that issue? How are others solving this issue?
    I should also note that I still have not opened my developer account with Apple yet, so maybe I have missed something for that reason, but I want to reach out and ask in case anyone has answers from their experience or expertise.
    I know that an easy, simple way out of this problem is to get rid of text. However, this particular game of mine really needs text to bring narrativity to the overall value of the game.
    Thanks
     
  2. jcalle

    jcalle Miniboss Boxer

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    Hello, I use "google translator", I translate the text to all possible languages, Chinese, Japanese, Romanian, Zulu, Catalan, etc ...
    You never know which country you can get to succeed your game
     
  3. Jamie

    Jamie Avid Boxer

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    @jcalle I worry that Google Translator is not as reliable as a person translator, which is what services like gengo.com offer.
    Also, yes, I am concerned about which countries will be the best markets for my game.
    However, my main concern here is about which how to match language translations (e.g. in English and French, or just English) to the countries.
    I am hoping someone here has done this before and would be willing to share this process.
     
  4. Jamie

    Jamie Avid Boxer

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    Eureka!
    Problem: You can only submit one build of Xcode as the currently published app for a particular app title, and then you control which local stores it goes to. However, this means you cannot use language-specific versions of your game as that one build.
    Solution: Submit the different language-specific builds as different titles. So, if your game name in English is "Santa: North Pole Escape," then what you can do is publish that one to stores where English is most spoken. Then, to publish to Japan, make a new build that has Japanese in it, and publish it as "Santa: [japanese translation here]", and publish it as a separate title!
    This solution is feasible so long as Apple and Google do not prohibit this way of releasing games. I think they would prefer an implementation of language localization in one app, but I don't see anything that bars the possibility of what I am suggesting.
    Consequence: The thing you would have to accept, if you take this overall route that I have outlined, is that when you release separate titles this way, these separate titles will not simply require language-specific ASO keyword updates, but they will also have different app store rankings (sine they are not one app title).
    This is something I may personally try for one of my games because I am really set on narrative elements for this particular game.
     
  5. Jamie

    Jamie Avid Boxer

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  6. Jamie

    Jamie Avid Boxer

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    If my strategy for submitting separate language-specific builds of a narrative game to the app stores does not work (i.e. if Apple or Google don't really like it), then I may just take the narrative out of the game and put it in the app store description as a brief story paragraph or something to introduce the player to the story that sets up the gameplay.
    Once I set up a dev account with each, I will try to get in touch with their dev support teams (Apple and Google) to see if they will permit the separate builds approach, so that way I might get their input before even trying it.
    If any of you try any of this, please let me know how it goes.
     
  7. Florian Porkert

    Florian Porkert Boxer

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    Hey Jamie,
    I have just read your messages. First of all: Localization is the right step. But what is the best method to do a localization? You could simply translate all text in your app. Let us start with the basic elements of an app: the GUI. Most developers of smaller apps still use text and nothing than text on their buttons. Now guess what happens when someone from Russia or China opens your app. Or what about 6 year old children that want to play your newest game? Solution: Use symbols on the buttons. Either a combination of symbols and text or symbols only.

    2 years ago I had developed Alpha Translator. I was able to translate all meta data like description, title, keywords and so on for smaller apps and submit it to the App Store within 5 minutes. Just because of this localization by translating this data, I earned about twice as much as before. I used the APIs of Google Translate and Microsoft Translator and optimized it with my own algorithms and tools. The result was okay for smaller apps.

    If you are planning a premium app, you should get it translated by native speakers only. For my newest games, I usually wait until I have finished all text and information for about 5 games. Then I pay about USD 2,000 for all translations. I support all languages of the App Store. Might be 23 languages. For countries like Russia, China and Japan you should translate the title of your game, too.

    You mentioned to publish one app for each country. Well, I do not recommend it. It is way too much work. Some big companies like this "Free App per Day" had used this strategy. But usually you are wasting too much time. It is only recommended for some very specific apps. To give an example: You have a quiz app and now you want to put the flag of each country onto the game icon because it will double your download numbers. Or you have a huge game like "The Simpsons" and you want to put full audio localized files into the binary so that the user does not need to load the files via internet when running the app for the very first time. But usually it is not necessary for the kind of apps we are developing.
     
    Jamie and Simon Crack like this.
  8. Jamie

    Jamie Avid Boxer

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    @Florian Porkert The trouble is that Buildbox does not support localization in the game itself. As a nonprogrammer, the only options I am left with are to either try it the way I outlined in my posts above, or spend more money hiring someone to build and implement the code for the localization itself in my iOS and Android exports from Buildbox (a sort of post-Buildbox programming effort).
     

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