Feb 1

When I started out as a freelance translator, I worked mainly on IT projects (owing to my previous career) and press releases in various fields. About four months into my freelancing career, I was contacted by a Spanish colleague – Iván Madrigal from Logic Lingo – who specializes in the localization of video games, asking me whether I would be interested in a collaboration.

I was very excited about this opportunity because I’ve grown up playing video games, after picking up my first games console when I was just five years old. For me games were not only a great means of having fun, they were also crucial in acquiring my English language skills at an early age. Despite preferring to play games in the English, rather than the German version – the German localizations too often lacked atmosphere or were outright poor – I never actively pursued a career as a video game translator.

Needless to say, I accepted the Logic Lingo job: translating a manual and the box text for a Wii game. The best thing about this job was that it led to something much bigger. A couple of weeks later, Iván asked me to act as lead translator/editor for a localization project totalling more than 200,000 words which was to be split between four translators. It sounded like a daunting task at first but I agreed to do it. And the project did turn out to be quite daunting as the source text wasn’t an original source, but the English translation of a Korean source text. To add insult to injury, the English translation hadn’t been done by a professional translator, but by a group of Korean students, resulting in a cryptic (and that’s putting it mildly) English “source” text. Despite all the problems of this project, my team – German Game Translators – was excellent and put in a great deal of effort to ensure the job was completed to the client’s satisfaction.

This is basically how my career in video game translation took off and ever since 2009 I’ve been working exclusively in the field of computer and video games.

My customer base mainly comprises agencies specialized in games localization and some direct clients. The types of projects I work on are for all platforms and game genres, and span every aspect of video games: in-game text such as dialogues, quests, monster/character names, items/weapons/armour names etc.; user interfaces; as well as manuals, box texts, websites, subtitles for trailers/videos, press releases and so on.



one comment so far...

  • Game Translation Said on February 8th, 2011 at 12:18 am:

    Hi Kay!
    I’m working (not as a translator though) for a game localization company and it’s true there’s a always a chance for people who have talent and who want to do proper translations – by this I mean recreate the game’s original atmosphere and feel. It seems you can do this quite well, so congrats and keep up the good work :)