Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Crowdsourced translations

We have an idea that we would like to discuss with you.

In the past, we have paid significant amounts of money for localization of our games. Just translating German Truck / UK Truck generation games into 12 languages cost us about the same as a full year salary of a member of SCS Software's team. Even after the huge expense, there were still several important languages left out, so many of our fans and customers had to play the game without official support for their native language. We also heard complaints from some of you about the quality of the translations. It may be a better idea to spend the money on extra art or extra features and employ another designer or programmer.

What if we asked you for help? Would you be ready to donate your free time to help us localize Trucks & Trailers (which is not so much text), and ETS2 later (which will be quite a lot of text)?

There are technologies out there to facilitate the job, for orchestrating the crowd-sourced localization. Technically, multiple people could even work in parallel on translating to the same language, to distribute the burden. With voting on quality of other people's translations sentence by sentence or word by word, the system should even catch any mistakes.

With your help, we could hopefully cover more languages than we would dare to spend on with the usual approach, and make the games enjoyable for more people around the world.

Chances are our strong community would come up with much better translation than even profi translators who are never knowledgeable enough about transportation industry. What do you think?

Meanwhile, to satisfy your hunger for images, here is a couple of work-in-progress screen grabs from the Euro Truck Simulator 2 again, this time from the UK.