Language translation, global marketing support, gaming industry expertise — these companies have it all.
There’s a lot that goes into game localization. Here at wappier, we’re particularly passionate about global IAP pricing optimization, but before we can help game developers increase conversions, the game needs a strong international player base, which requires language localization!
Video game localization is a complex process, with game publishers’ needs often going beyond basic language translation. With so many game localization services available, it’s hard to know where to start. To that end, we’ve rounded up a list of top-tier game localization services with established success stories. Whether you need text translations, QA, or other services, these video game localization companies can help make the process more manageable, no matter the budget.
What are game localization services?
Game localization services are used to modify video games to make them playable and understandable outside of their country of origin. Publishers might use external services to complement their in-house localization team or take control of the entire process; every publisher has different needs.
Here are a few things publishers should look for in game localization services:
- Available languages and native speakers: It goes without saying that video game localization companies should be able to translate into your desired languages. Some companies can translate into around a dozen languages, while others offer five times as many language pairs.
- Budget and pricing structure: Some services have project and budget minimums, while others can be utilized a la carte. Consider how these services fit into your budget, particularly if you’re a smaller studio.
- Video game expertise: Because of their interactive nature, localizing video games is very different from other forms of media translation. You want a company that fully comprehends the industry and the unique properties of video games.
Top video game localization services
Level Up Translation
Led by “seasoned game translators,” Level Up Translation works with publishers to deliver localized versions of games in over 20 languages, including French, Spanish, Japanese, and Chinese. Level Up uses native speakers and experienced gamers to deliver localized versions of games on almost every platform, from PC and console to mobile and browser. What’s key here is Level Up’s promise to “make sure your game’s localization feels natural, speaks to the players and their culture, meets compliance requirements, and uses appropriate first-party terminology.”
This well-rounded array of game localization services helps publishers pass compliance tests and QA standards while delivering “expert and affordable” game translations. The company even helps with marketing and press kits, further helping to expand publishers’ international reach. Rates vary depending on the project, but Level Up provides free estimates to inquiring game publishers.
A “quality-first localization company,” Alconost localizes games, apps, and websites into more than 70 languages. In addition to localization, Alconost also offers video products and multilingual marketing. Among its 1,500 completed projects are linguistic QA of Paradox Interactive’s Stellaris: Galaxy Command and BattleTech, continuous localization for mobile hits like MyCafe, and even the 150,000-word translation of the massively popular TikTok app.
While Alconost doesn’t focus solely on localization, its work with publishers like Paradox proves the company’s pedigree. Additionally, Alconost’s expertise in multilingual video production is essential in an increasingly visual marketing landscape. The company tailors its solutions and prices to each publisher’s project, rather than applying a one-size-fits-all approach to localization.
Nitro is technically owned by Alconost, but its unique pricing structure and quick turnaround times make the service an essential tool for smaller game developers and publishers. As a standalone service, Nitro offers pay-as-you-go pricing with no minimum orders, with rates for language translations listed clearly on its website. Oh, and speaking of languages, Nitro employs professional native-speaking translators for over 70 of them, with 96% of orders ready within 24 hours.
While Nitro isn’t as robust as the other services on this list, it’s easy, fast, and affordable — perfect for publishers on a tight deadline who need translation help with shorter pieces,or less text heavy games across just a handful of territories. All you need to do is paste the text and leave a comment for your translator, and approximately a day later, you’ll have your translation.
Glyph Language Services
According to its website, Glyph uses “cutting-edge technology and translation tools that enable us to improve video game translation consistency and efficiency.” Glyph’s services include computer-assisted translation tools like MemoQ, which assists publishers with terminology and project management, QA, filters for non-translatable terms, and more. Boasting big-name clients like EA and Epic Games, Glyph Language Services assists with everything “from script localization all the way to final in-game testing.”
These robust offerings make Glyph Language Services a one-stop shop for game publishers looking for help on every step of the localization process. Glyph even offers ongoing support for post-launch updates, which is becoming ever more necessary with “games as a service” dominating the landscape. Like most of the other services on the list, Glyph provides quotes based on each publisher’s unique needs. It also offers a la carte services as modest as two-page document reviews or small rush projects.
Offering translation, quality assurance, and a custom CMS designed with localization in mind, Localize Direct starts out at a mere €0.11 per word (minimum order €40) with payments in EUR and USD. Among the 1,000+ games Localize Direct has localized are titles from publishers like Warner Bros., Square Enix, Bethesda, Rebellion, and a number of other recognizable studios. And with more than 65 language pairs, Localize Direct very likely has native speakers in your desired language.
What’s interesting about Localize Direct is that it was founded by ex-game developers with more than two decades of game development experience. The company knows the ins and outs of the game industry, with clients praising its timeliness and accuracy. The fact that Localize Direct helped a game as delightful as LEGO Harry Potter go global is just a bonus.
Don’t forget about IAP localization!
The companies on this list go above and beyond when it comes to language translation, global marketing assistance, and quality assurance, but there’s one more important step in the localization process for mobile publishers: monetization. That’s where wappier comes in. We help publishers maximize revenue opportunities by localizing in-app purchase pricing for individual countries, taking local economies into account. Our Predictive Econometric Models analyze macroeconomic, microeconomic, device, and game statistics data in order to derive a Country Pricing Index, and multivariate testing framework enables us to optimize IAP pricing on a per country basis. Want to know more? Get in touch!