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GalCiv IV: Supernova Dev Journal #27 - Localization

Published on Monday, October 2, 2023 By Frogboy In GalCiv IV Dev Journals

One of Stardock's big challenges has been localizing our games.
GalCiv IV has over 180,000 words in it.  That's a lot to translate.  But that's not really the biggest issue.  The biggest issue is that we are constantly adding new text to the game which makes it hard for our linguistics team to keep up.
We typically use Trados for this sort of thing.  It's very powerful but it is not fast.  So I decided to write my own app called GC4TranslatorUI.  Fancy eh?
The format of our strings
The English files do have different names than the Chinese files.  Under the covers, they're just XML files like this:
        <String>Arcean's stoic nature makes them unlikely to be [HS=HS_Ideology]ideological[/HS]. Instead they revere the military and Arcean soldiers gain additional [HS=HS_Approval]Approval[/HS] and are never pacifists.</String>
Where your app needs to match the labels together.
Due to finding Trados so slow, we are using this app which I'll walk you through how to use:
Step 1: The app is called GCTranslatorUI.exe and in the root of the Github project.  Load it.
It should look like this:
Step 2: Load the English source directory:
It's located here.
Your dialog should look something like this:
Step 3:  Choose Chinese as the language you want to use:
Step 4: Translate
I size the window to make it comfortable to use.  You will notice on the left side we have the priority of the translation.  (Normal, High).  We will also be adding additional strings.
Right now, all of the text has been machine (AI) translated.  So this would be a good way to get your linguists to take a look to and see what looks right and what doesn't.  You can see the English next to the Chinese on this screen.  If something needs to be changed, double click the entry and type in the correct translation.
Here is text that hasn't been translated.   The English source file is ModifierText.xml and the Chinese file it's to be translated into is AdditionalStrings_3.xml.   I double click on it and translate it.
This particular example highlights the issues with translation because what I actually wanted here was Sectors (not clusters) so even the English side is wrong.   But even if it were sectors, we mean sectors as in space sectors in a Sci-Fi context.  So even an AI translation would likely get it wrong.
Stardock is handling English, French, Russian, German, Chinese professionally (though the community has been super helpful with French, thank you!)
Eventually, we will have a large set of languages available to play the game in.  It's just a matter of how fast we are able to get to them.  But if the community wants to help, we welcome it.  
I didn't know Github at all when I started this. It's been a blast.  I've had ChatGPT teach me so I don't end up asking my engineers a bunch of newbie questions.  Link to ChatGPT:


Galactic Civilizations IV: Supernova Dev Journals