MAGAZINE

#206 – August

Localizing Elden Ring The Words of The Lands Between

Elden Ring is a massive game. So it’s no surprise that the task of localizing it for a worldwide audience was an equally massive undertaking.
Highly anticipated from its announcement in 2019, From Software’s Elden Ring is the culmination of the game-design philosophy the studio charted since the release of Demon’s Souls in 2009. It implements gameplay mechanics from almost every preceding title while introducing an open world that players can explore with few limitations.

POSTEDITING

H

umanity’s relationship with technology is a puzzling one.

Technology makes our lives easier — for the most part. It certainly makes us more efficient. The development and use of technology is one of the traits that distinguishes humankind among the animal kingdom. But a quick tour through history shows countless examples of a technological revolution’s disruptive power.

That shouldn’t be news to anyone working in linguistic professions. MultiLingual has featured numerous articles on the impact of machine translation in the past, and this month is no exception. Our interview with machine-translation expert Derick Fajardo covers the past and future of machine translation in the industry. Likewise, Molly Naughton makes a compelling case on why language work will always require a human touch.

Our suite of reviews this month concerns technology in many forms, too. Óscar Curros’ extensive review of the latest Trados Studio release, for instance, covers everything you need to know about the translation platform. And on the entertainment side of the language/technology intersection, we examine the localization process for the hit video game Elden Ring to learn how developer From Software built a global fanbase.

There’s no question that the role of technology in the language industry is far from settled. But we’re committed to exploring its influence every step of the way. 

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PROFILE

Derick Fajardo. Testing the Limits of Machine Translation

Interview by Cameron Rasmusson

The optimal process for translating and localizing mountains of copy has yet to be discovered. Project leaders are feeling out procedures and technological platforms to fine-tune the recipe that pinpoints the sweet spot between quality and quantity.
It’s a process of trial and error that Derick Fajardo knows all too well. As the head of machine translation (MT) at Harvard Business Publishing and in his previous roles, he’s worked on optimal solutions for improving translation efficiency while preserving quality. He’s accumulated no shortage of experience since the 1990s, and he recently took the time to share some insights with us.

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FEATURE

Localizing Elden Ring: The Words of The Lands Between

By Alexis Andres Biro and Cameron Rasmusson

Elden Ring is a massive game. So it’s no surprise that the task of localizing it for a worldwide audience was an equally massive undertaking.
Highly anticipated from its announcement in 2019, From Software’s Elden Ring is the culmination of the game-design philosophy the studio charted since the release of Demon’s Souls in 2009. It implements gameplay mechanics from almost every preceding title while introducing an open world that players can explore with few limitations.

Academic Translation for Unpublished Manuscripts

By William Dan

What do scholars need when they come to you asking for translation? Do they need faithful renditions of their work, or do they need someone to help them get published in another language? Generally speaking, there are two main categories of academic translation. One is the translation of books already published in English, in which case, the goal of translation is to help the author reach a wider audience. The second category is the translation of unpublished manuscripts for the sake of publication, typically in English.

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PERSPECTIVES

The Pieces of Cake at the Localization Party

By Camilla Amici

What is in the pot? Something is moving in the localization industry, and it has the sound of a loud protest. Today, some fundamentals that once were taken for granted such as optimism, diversification, flexibility, and love for innovation are cracking. People on the bottom line are now standing up, because just following global trends and passively accepting the rules of a deregulated free market no longer seems fair.

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COLUMNS

Pangea

By Tim Brookes

My major Endangered Alphabets carving project for this year — actually the largest carved sculpture I’ve ever done — is finished. That is to say, I have completed more or less what I intended to do, and now it is about to enter a new life in the imagination.
It’s fascinating, the way a piece of art changes when it moves from the creator to the observer, and in this rare instance I was able to see it from both points of view..

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TECH

For the Best Translations Humanity is Key

By Molly Naughton

Three decades ago, when I started working as a professional translator, I sent documents to clients by post . . . and then waited days or weeks to find out their approval, questions, or additional needs. Now, email makes sending my work a question of seconds at most, and if a client doesn’t get back quickly, I know more is going on than something being lost in the mail.
This is just one of a myriad of ways translation has dramatically changed over the past few decades.
We use technology not just to communicate on projects but also to assist in the work, and it’s become our competition. But while the benefits of technology in the translation world are undeniable in certain ways, I’m not worried that “computers are going to take our jobs” any time soon.

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TOOL REVIEW

Trados Studio 2022: An Accelerated Journey to The Cloud

By Óscar Curros

What’s Trados but a desktop program? That’s the thought that comes to my mind when I recall my experience as a freelance user. After all, desktop has been the main platform offered by RWS to the 270,000 translators using the Studio version worldwide.
However, the 2022 version comes with a revamp of the whole product portfolio around the cloud. Not just Trados Studio, mostly addressed at freelancers, but also Trados Team and Trados Enterprise.

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LIFE SCIENCES

Stress and Trauma in the Field of Behavioral Health Interpreting

By Afaf Steiert

More than ever, psychological therapy is a necessity in the 21st century. Between COVID-19, artificial intelligence (AI), and war, people are scattered around the world as immigrants and refugees, worried about their similarly stressed families back home. Despite the rapid development of translation studies over the last 20 years, the psychology of translation is still underdeveloped as a scholarly discipline. As a consequence, there are no proper psychology courses for future specialists that might provide insight into translators’ and interpreters’ professional activity and aid them in performing their jobs.

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