Production diaries: la localisation chez Atlus
Quand on s'appelle Atlus et que l'on est spécialisé dans le RPG nippon, si il y a bien un domaine dans lequel on se doit d'exceller, c'est bien la localisation !
Pour rappel aux deux/trois du fond qui se sont trompé de blog, la localisation, c'est le process de traduire un jeu d'une langue à une autre. Et non, en fait, c'est plus compliqué que de réécrire tous les textes.
Déjà, il faut savoir que les langues ont le don d'être doté d'une foultitude de symbole tous divers et varié, comme les vulgaire accents chez nous. Ensuite, rien ne dit que le texte se trouve sous la forme de texte, ca peut parfaitement être une texture ou une asset 3D. Oh, et puis les voix aussi! Et enfin, pour couronner le tout, traduire des concepts qui n'ont de sens que du coté d'une petite ile à coté de la Corée, ç'est pas forçément façile.
Mais comme c'est Atlus, et que chez Atlus, on aime bien partager, ils ont fait toute une série d'article sur le sujet, et ç'est peu dire que ç'est très instructif:
Previous Production Diaries have already given you a great insight into how we localize item and character names, but there's more to editing text than finding cool names and adding honorifics to them.
I'll be showing you how variables come into play in the editing process, and hopefully showing you some examples of things that we deal with here (and what happens when we fail to before debug catches it).
As an editor, an important part of writing for games is not only to make the text read well, but to make sure it all fits, too. Some games will give you a little leeway here or there, while others won't. For example: a currently unannounced game I'm working on now has a variable-width font.
If I made a line of all "W" (usually the widest character in the font), I could fit 38 of them in a single line before going out of the message box. If I had a line of all "I", I could cram in a whopping 112 of them.
When editing for that game, we make an assumption that the average line should have no more than 39 characters, because not every character is as wide as a W and some Is, ls, and spaces are going to be in there, too.
Of all the aspects of localization and all the choices a localizer has to make, the most controversial is almost always voice acting. Fans can be very particular and demanding when it comes to the voices in a game-some have even gone so far as to follow in the Japanese tradition of letting casting decisions influence their purchasing habits.
But while these voice acting devotees may have heard or read a lot about the acting process from the voice actor's point of view, there's not as much information out there from the angle of the production company. So settle back as we take you through each step of the voice acting process-Atlus style.
There's a famous saying: You never get a second chance to make a first impression. When it comes to announcing a game, the saying should be: Screw this up and you'll be doing damage control until the game's release.
Almost no one knows what a marketing department actually does. The most basic explanation is that we work to create demand for our product, and this starts by making an impactful announcement.
We want our fans to be excited enough to remember that game in the coming months, even while hundreds of other lesser titles compete for their attention. Case in point: in the month of June alone, there were 134 games released, and each one of those fought to be heard above the noise. How the heck to do that?
When our Japanese partners asked what we wanted do for the cover on this latest edition of Trauma Center, we looked back at the original Under the Knife with its dramatic gestural feel and asked them to take their lead from that image. Thus, Derek and Angie are back on it, front and center.
After a brief vacation from the series in New Blood, the thoracic duo have returned to take their rightful place in this, the most important of our marketing materials. We like character art and so do our fans so we made sure to use some of our most identifiable characters on the cover this time. In fact, one of the reasons that we did not use figural art on the front of the New Blood packaging was the absence of Derek and Angie from the game.
We felt Vaughn and Blaylock, at least in the art we had available, weren't enough to capture gamers' attention. That's no slight to the character art for that game though, and if you haven't tried it out, you are missing one of the best games available for the Wii system.