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The french translation was poorly made

french translation bad

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#1
Agraell

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I know, the title is a bit harsh but hear me out on this one.

 

When you give game's assets a name, like "The Deadfire Archipelago", "Ashen Maw" or even "The Leaden Key", they all have a nice, even poetic, ring to them. Even if what it relates to isn't clear, you still get some meaning out of it like :

 

- The Deadfire Archipelago: unforgiving, tropical, deadly

- The Leaden Key: A heavy, unmovable key to lock away a shameful secret.

- Ashen Maw: those who know what it is don't need me to explain. No Spoil right :-

 

 

And here comes the translation.. stripping many names of their poetic sense, or not using the french language at its fullest :

 

- The Deadfire Archipelago becomes "Archipel du Feu Éteint", which means "Extinguished fire Archipelago", like it has been stripped from its life spark, losing all other meaning.-(

- Druids' Rejuvenation (healing) school becomes "Rajeunissement" Which means getting younger.. This one is just wrong. It might sound appropriate for a healing school in english, but in french it has the LITERAL "getting younger" meaning.

- The Leaden Key becomes "Clef Plombée" which means "lead coated key", now this one is nice enough when it comes to its meaning, but there may be a better way to say it because as it is, it doesn't sound good.

 

 

 

Now, the question is, is the game's translation still up for debate ?

Or do we have to mod the game to get it right ?

 

I know it sounds a lot like bickering over something not that important, but when a language as rich as french is so poorly used, as if the names simply went through google translator, I wouldn't mind spending some time correcting that.


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#2
OldViking

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I know, the title is a bit harsh but hear me out on this one.

 

When you give game's assets a name, like "The Deadfire Archipelago", "Ashen Maw" or even "The Leaden Key", they all have a nice, even poetic, ring to them. Even if what it relates to isn't clear, you still get some meaning out of it like :

 

- The Deadfire Archipelago: unforgiving, tropical, deadly

- The Leaden Key: A heavy, unmovable key to lock away a shameful secret.

- Ashen Maw: those who know what it is don't need me to explain. No Spoil right :-

 

 

And here comes the translation.. stripping many names of their poetic sense, or not using the french language at its fullest :

 

- The Deadfire Archipelago becomes "Archipel du Feu Éteint", which means "Extinguished fire Archipelago", like it has been stripped from its life spark, losing all other meaning.-(

- Druids' Rejuvenation (healing) school becomes "Rajeunissement" Which means getting younger.. This one is just wrong. It might sound appropriate for a healing school in english, but in french it has the LITERAL "getting younger" meaning.

- The Leaden Key becomes "Clef Plombée" which means "lead coated key", now this one is nice enough when it comes to its meaning, but there may be a better way to say it because as it is, it doesn't sound good.

 

 

 

Now, the question is, is the game's translation still up for debate ?

Or do we have to mod the game to get it right ?

 

I know it sounds a lot like bickering over something not that important, but when a language as rich as french is so poorly used, as if the names simply went through google translator, I wouldn't mind spending some time correcting that.

I feel you. The german translation is not better. Without a mod unbearable.

If you translate a game Obsidian, never use google translator because google is ***t. Oh and don't translate a word's meaning always literally. That's not how translation works. ;(


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#3
Flouride

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I feel you. The german translation is not better. Without a mod unbearable.

If you translate a game Obsidian, never use google translator because google is ***t. Oh and don't translate a word's meaning always literally. That's not how translation works. ;(

 

 

Translations are always outsourced to a local company that is then paid to translate eveeeeerything in the game to that said language. You can probably find the company that did the French and German localization by looking through the credits.


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#4
theBalthazar

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Hello, Agraell.

 

I have created a topic in technical support, since the release date.

https://forums.obsid...aise/?hl=french

 

I understand your point of view. But in fact, Obsidian have 0 beta debbugging/testing (and backer beta was only 5 % of the game WITHOUT translation). They do not do pre-test of the game, and have a reputation to create buggy games. It is a poor studio, so the quality testing doesn't exist in this kind of company.

 

A lot of

 

Fait une Feu attaque (Do a Attack fire ?!)

nonsenses

etc.

 

Virtually it is a shame, but it is especially problematic in the UI with variables... (absolute disaster) The "bulk" text is less ruined.


Edited by theBalthazar, 17 June 2018 - 04:47 AM.


#5
xzar_monty

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As a professional translator with twenty years of experience on this, I feel qualified to comment. Mind you, this is speculation, not fact.

 

My hunch is that Obsidian, being a North American company, understands nothing about languages other than English. Therefore, it is absolutely not qualified to make any judgement about whether the translations it receives are worth anything. Also, translations are likely to be extremely unimportant to Obsidian. Thus, whoever does them is paid next to nothing and needs to work in a terrible hurry.

 

What you get, as a result, is a shambles, and nobody at Obsidian knows enough about languages to notice this. Also, they don't really care.

 

It is extremely sad, but the likelihood of the situation getting any better is realistically zero.


Edited by xzar_monty, 17 June 2018 - 04:40 AM.

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#6
malchiorita

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Italian translation it's in the same situation, it looks made by using (badly) google translate

#7
Lord_Mord

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Same for the german translation. I said something about the translation of PoE1 a while ago. All I got was responses like: "It wasn't thaaaat bad" or "nowadays all games have bad translation". I think it's unbearable. Even more for Deadfire. I play it it english and in english it's a masterpiece. There is so much going on on the linguistic level. As for the german translation you can be glad if you still get what's going on. They even did the same mistakes as in PoE1 (Weapons have names like Penetration. I think repeating that bull**** isn't excusable it's just insulting. I wouldn't work with sch a company ever again.), but even without that mistakes, that's no way to translate such a game. The whole mood that builts up in the english version is totally butchered. And I normally don't use such strong language to critisize anything in that game. 

 

 

 

My hunch is that Obsidian, being a North American company, understands nothing about languages other than English. 

I'm not shure, but Josh Sawyer speaks german well enough, that he could see what's going on here. He's into linguistics and that kind of stuff, so one would assume that this would be important to him.

I think it's very sad. They do such a great job delivering a kind of storytelling and language that is hard to find these days, even in fantasy literature and nothing, I repeat nothing of that survives the translation. In german language the game makes the impression that someone really dumb tried to be clever and wanted to tell a great story.


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#8
theBalthazar

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Actually the game is level google translate.

 

No context the most of the time.

 

UI is ruined. Resolve is level 1 of ...resolve inspirations, inversion, incomprehensibles phrases. Short, This gives the impression that it's amateurish. And Obsidian by association.

 

The only reason of relative silence of reviewers/testers on this poiny is because all theses guys test few hours (port maje... : p ?) the most of time without check all the tooltips... (A disaster)

 

That's why Pillars 2 did not go down...


Edited by theBalthazar, 17 June 2018 - 06:12 AM.


#9
xzar_monty

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Google translate understands nothing about context, so it is bound to produce terrible translations. If you worked in a context where quality of translation matters, relying upon google translate would mean instant career suicide. Apparently it doesn't matter here.


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#10
OldViking

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I feel you. The german translation is not better. Without a mod unbearable.

If you translate a game Obsidian, never use google translator because google is ***t. Oh and don't translate a word's meaning always literally. That's not how translation works. ;(

 

 

Translations are always outsourced to a local company that is then paid to translate eveeeeerything in the game to that said language. You can probably find the company that did the French and German localization by looking through the credits.

 

Yes but that is even worse is it not? Let's say they outsource it, in my case to a german company to translate the game.

That german company has done a piss poor job translating the game. I would be embarrassed. I mean translators should know that you not translate every word or meaning literally.

Obsidian could have saved money by not translating at all.


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#11
xzar_monty

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What you said last is precisely the point. A very poor translation is a waste of time and money, for everybody, and it frustrates the player an awful lot.

 

Really, if the choice is between making an awful translation and not making one at all, surely it is best not to make one at all. Unfortunately, we are unlikely to hear Obsidian's view on this, I suppose.



#12
Abel

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Well, I hardly ever heard about US guys actually trying to learn any foreign languages. I even saw, on the net, these guys arguing that any langage other than english has nothing to do in the game chats because everyone should speak english so that everyone understands what is said (wut?).

 

I'm french, i learnt (and still learning english, spanish and Japanese (though this one is a pain in the ass :p)). I knew a 20 y o corean who spoke fluently 7 languages (french included). But US guys can hardly see any value in learning anything other than english. Even Obsidian releases its video updates without much care for non native speakers (speaking fast, not articulating), like they are assuming ''well, we are the world, you know, if anything, you should understand this". This kind of thing kind of gets of my nerves since many years. And InXile is the same, by the way. The state of french translation for Wasteland 2 was... it was not even insulting anymore past this point.

 

I even started to wonder at how anyone could butcher a translation to this extent. I was amateur translator for some time: i know what it means to translate things in order to preserve the color of the original text. It's hard to do. But if US guys don't care about anything other than english, give the work to localized company. I'm pretty sure a german company would have some more respect towards english than US people have towards the rest of the world, and thus, would give a more serious job for the german translation. Were the translations done by US companies?

 

I did not try Pillars 2 yet, but Pillars 1 was awfully translated, to the point that sentences did not make any sense. To solve some quests, you had no choice but top switch langage to english in order to get what was going on. Sad to learn that Pillars 2 has suchs problems, too.

 

Guys should stop being absorbed by their own navel. LA has never been and will never be the center of the world. Sounds like a rant, and actually, it is.

 

Et ouais, le français est l'une des langue les plus riches (si compliquée) qui soient... La voir ainsi maltraitée, ce n'est pas juste insultant... C'est carrément déprimant...


Edited by Abel, 17 June 2018 - 09:30 AM.


#13
xzar_monty

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English-speaking people tend to be particularly poor when it comes to learning other languages. The funny side of this is that a shocking number of English-speaking people speak very, very poor English. So, they are fluent in no languages at all.

 

But anyway, I don't think foreign-language markets are that big a deal for a company like Obsidian, so the honorable thing to do would be to refrain from these godawful translations altogether. It would reflect much better on the company.



#14
Abel

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English-speaking people tend to be particularly poor when it comes to learning other languages. The funny side of this is that a shocking number of English-speaking people speak very, very poor English. So, they are fluent in no languages at all.

 

French are the same by the way. We are awfully bad with foreign langages, and the fact that everything is dubbed on TV or at cinema does not help, either. It's kind of hard, nowadays, to watch this chinese film in Chinese, with subtitles. *sigh*. The reason people like polish or northern europeans are impressive to me, is probably because they are not polluted since they were born with the idea that their native language is everything, like us, french, are. At least, i think so. The funny part of this, is that almost everyone seems ok with people coming to live in France, but never learning to speak a single french word in decades, implying that the french society now tries to translate french in their native langages for them to be at ease. LOL... Poor France...

 

And yes, i kind of know about this. Believe it or not, but altough my english is not this good yet, more than once, i met occasions when i had to set their english right... Or occasions where i watch a japanese series fansubed in english and the tanslation is using such a ****ing poor english, that i almost have to ignore it and just do with the original japanese audio whenever i can... When translators do not know about anything other than ''get'' or ''pull'', they will translate everything vaguely using these with affixes like ''through'', ''out'', ''up'', or whatever. Even english has many more specific words than just this.

 

Still, even if the translations of the games are awfull, there are still an awful lot of people that play it who don't get a single word of english. Even i tend to struggle a lot to play Pillars or Wasteland in English. I can do it, but tend to end up with a headache pretty fast. The writting is good. I learn new words a lot. But in the cases of people who don't understand english at all, even disrespectful, butchery translations are better than nothing. Though it hurts to admit it.

 

Like i said, Obsidian, InXile, and such companies need to stop being absorbed by their own navel. They sell copies of the game all over the world. The least they can do is make sure the translations do not insult their customers. They need to really care about more than just their little world in California.


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#15
gloomseeker

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When it comes to videogames translations are usually made by people who are paid very little money and never get enough time to do a decent job. 

 

In France anyone can work as a translator which only makes matter worse. 

 

Even AAA games get terrible French translations so if you're proficient in English you're better off playing in the original (to a lesser degree this also applies to English speaking movies). 

 

Last but not least the most irritating thing is that most French games are actually made in English first and that even applies to a game like Assassin's Creed Unity. 

 

The only French speaking games I know that are actually made in French first are Shiness the Lightning Kingdom and Aurion Legacy of the Kori Odan (a very nice game from Cameroon). 

 

On an unrelated note the only nice thing I have to post about French localisations is that Michael Mando did the voice acting for Vaas in Far Cry 3 in both English and French. 



#16
Suen

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Italian translation it's in the same situation, it looks made by using (badly) google translate

I checked this out. A google translation would have been an improvement. 

 

Not only I doubt anyone actually speaking italian ever looked at the translation, but some of the mistakes suggest the translator couldn't even speak english or understand the game rules at all. 


#17
malchiorita

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Italian translation it's in the same situation, it looks made by using (badly) google translate

I checked this out. A google translation would have been an improvement.

Not only I doubt anyone actually speaking italian ever looked at the translation, but some of the mistakes suggest the translator couldn't even speak english or understand the game rules at all.

The icing on the cake is that most of the tooltip are plain wrong. The description says things not true (i.e. Duality of mortal presence adding deflection or sword profiency adding deflection). Looks like they did a Google translation on the alpha stage and then forgot it

#18
Flouride

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Yes but that is even worse is it not? Let's say they outsource it, in my case to a german company to translate the game.

 

That german company has done a piss poor job translating the game. I would be embarrassed. I mean translators should know that you not translate every word or meaning literally.

Obsidian could have saved money by not translating at all.

 

 

Localizations were one of the most asked features during the Fig campaign. I wouldn't ever want to play a game translated into Finnish, but especially in central/southern europe there are just that many people who don't speak english well enough.

 

Obsidian has to outsource it. They are an American company and don't have a large number of translators who can do the job for them. It's a normal business procedure. Even EA outsources it's translations. They probably have enough data and experience to stay away from the companies that do  piss poor job at it.



#19
Flouride

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As a professional translator with twenty years of experience on this, I feel qualified to comment. Mind you, this is speculation, not fact.

 

My hunch is that Obsidian, being a North American company, understands nothing about languages other than English. Therefore, it is absolutely not qualified to make any judgement about whether the translations it receives are worth anything. Also, translations are likely to be extremely unimportant to Obsidian. Thus, whoever does them is paid next to nothing and needs to work in a terrible hurry.

 

What you get, as a result, is a shambles, and nobody at Obsidian knows enough about languages to notice this. Also, they don't really care.

 

It is extremely sad, but the likelihood of the situation getting any better is realistically zero.

 

You are right about Obsidian not being able to review the finished work. They would have to hire a 3rd party to do a proof reading to check it, even then the end result might be what it is. Everytime someone translates the original text gets a bit twisted and changed, no matter how good you are.

Not to mention at that point it's too late to change the company, the game is about to get released.

They have to work in hurry though. But that's the job, when you are a translator doing movies etc. You get the finished product pretty late, and even then they might end up changing something you've already translated.

 

Translators get paid poorly. At least in Finland, they aren't making much money translating books/movies/tv-series. Can't remember if it was one of the least paid jobs you could land with University degree that you specifically speciliaze into at University. But it made the news some years ago, how poorly translators doing movies/tv series were paid. Enough so, that many quit their jobs.

 

Calling the translations unimportant is wrong though. Europe is a big market for cRPGs and Obsidian knows this. Thus the translations are an important part. It's not by chance they threw in those localizations into pretty much every Fig reach goal tier. They had clear data from the 1st game.

 

Obviously they care. Bad translations hurt their review scores in said countries, not to mention it makes people steer away from the game thus hurting their income.


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#20
Flouride

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Well, I hardly ever heard about US guys actually trying to learn any foreign languages. I even saw, on the net, these guys arguing that any langage other than english has nothing to do in the game chats because everyone should speak english so that everyone understands what is said (wut?).

 

I'm french, i learnt (and still learning english, spanish and Japanese (though this one is a pain in the ass :p)). I knew a 20 y o corean who spoke fluently 7 languages (french included). But US guys can hardly see any value in learning anything other than english. Even Obsidian releases its video updates without much care for non native speakers (speaking fast, not articulating), like they are assuming ''well, we are the world, you know, if anything, you should understand this". This kind of thing kind of gets of my nerves since many years. And InXile is the same, by the way. The state of french translation for Wasteland 2 was... it was not even insulting anymore past this point.

 

I even started to wonder at how anyone could butcher a translation to this extent. I was amateur translator for some time: i know what it means to translate things in order to preserve the color of the original text. It's hard to do. But if US guys don't care about anything other than english, give the work to localized company. I'm pretty sure a german company would have some more respect towards english than US people have towards the rest of the world, and thus, would give a more serious job for the german translation. Were the translations done by US companies?

 

This is from the Credits. Same company did Italian, German and Spanish.

 

Localization: GameScribes

Producer William Farrell

French Translators Bertrand Bonnet-Badille, Sebastien Bigay, Laurent Calluaud, Catherine Dussault, Loic Laulanie, Adriaan Maitre, Juliette Martin, Thierry Soual

French Editors Grégory Bardin, David Manson


Edited by Flouride, 17 June 2018 - 09:58 PM.

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