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The french translation was poorly made

french translation bad

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#41
Heijoushin

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Professional translator here. 

If we give these translation companies the benefit of the doubt, they may have been translating with 0 context (just from a spreadsheet, as someone said). Even if you're really good at your second language, jumping in the deep end without any context or any idea what's happening on screen is extremely difficult. Even worse, they may have divided the job between many people. Now you have even less idea what's going because you're doing chapter 3 while another guy is doing chapter 1&2. Add an extra layer of awful if they didn't play PoE1.

On the other hand, if they used non-natives or, heaven forbid, google translate, that's just embarrassing.


Edited by Heijoushin, 19 June 2018 - 06:13 AM.


#42
Lord_Mord

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Professional translator here. 

If we give these translation companies the benefit of the doubt, they may have been translating with 0 context (just from a spreadsheet, as someone said). Even if you're really good at your second language, jumping in the deep end without any context or any idea what's happening on screen is extremely difficult. Even worse, they may have divided the job between many people. Now you have even less idea what's going because you're doing chapter 3 while another guy is doing chapter 1&2. Add an extra layer of awful if they didn't play PoE1.

On the other hand, if they used non-natives or, heaven forbid, google translate, that's just embarrassing.

 

I gave up with the german version during the tutorial. It reads like the translator didn't even know what the current quest was about. As if it was translated line by line in a random order. And not even that was done well. So definitely no benefit from my side. We had the same discussion about PoE1 and at some point I did shut my mouth. But I have enough. This is unbearable and even if it doesn't really affect me, I think it's stupid and wrong. Not even that this attitude leads to people becoming estranged from their languages, it affects how this specific game is viewed. In my opinion this is a quality of storytelling that you hardly see in fantasy games these days, but for a french, german, italian or spanish player it has become impossible to see in what regard this game is better than any of that cheap fantasy crap out there. This should be important to Obisidan.

 

 

A well, Germany had a symbol of quality that was worth much around the world "Made in Germany".

Today it is a shallow phrase. Quality work is to much to ask in in these days.

Maybe it's because i am old, but my parents taught me from the start, if you do something do it right or not at all.

 

Stichwort Dieselskandal. :)

I thought that too, when I read how translations are done these days: Am I really that old?


Edited by Lord_Mord, 19 June 2018 - 08:23 AM.

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#43
xzar_monty

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A real translation is ALWAYS from a foreign language to a mothertongue language, it's the first rule in professional translation.

 

This is not true. Although I agree that it is generally best to translate into your first language, this is by no means a rule. I, for instance, have translated quite a lot of stuff into English, which is not my first language.

 

Just think of writers like Joseph Conrad or Vladimir Nabokov who happen to be some of the most remarkable users of the English language of the past 150 years. They were not natives. Or, just think of any internet forum and how they demonstrate to you that a stunningly large proportion of native English speakers have a very tenuous grasp on the only language they know.

 

Besides, it's not as if PoE represents ambitious, extremely well-written English that is demanding to translate. I am happy to admit that there are good ideas there and the writing is by no means bad, but in terms of challenge and literary quality, it's fairly straightforward and easy stuff.



#44
Abel

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I would just ask a question: whose responsability is it to give the translators the actual context needed?

 

In Pillars 1, there is a quest in Gilded Vale (I think). If i remember correctly, you have to ring bells in a certain order at some point. In order to do so, you have clues, written in a journal which you have in the inventory (or something like that). In french version (and i bet in others too) this journal did not make any sense. It was confusing and nonsensical. Had to switch to the english version to get things right.

 

I agree with Lord Mord. There are many occurences when sentences do not even make sense. And it's not only in the UI or tooltips. Sometimes, it's the same in raw dialogue text.

 

If Obsidian does not provide their texts with actual notes intented to various translators to help them understand what they are translating is all about, isn't that the responsability of Obs too? Are they really giving just raw text to translators, without giving any effort to help them have a clue of what they are translating? Regarding the UI? it would need screenshots, at least, and notes about how mechanics are working, roughly. So that we don't have this

 

 


"Non armés armes".

It is like in english i say :

 

"Non weapon weapons" (Unarmed weapons)

 

This is unbelievably embarrassing. This makes Obs look like, well, not even a 3rd rate company. Actually, i would translate this by "non armed weapons". But with an atrocious mistake. Since "armes" is a f.noun, "armés" should be written "armées". The nonsensical translation mistake is not even done correctly. You learn how to write correctly the participe passé agreeing to the genre and number of the noun in 2nd and 3rd grade. I know it for sure. I worked 2 years in elementary school.

 

The club is equiped >>> Le gourdin est équipé (because club is masculine)

3 clubs are equiped >>> 3 gourdins sont équipés ("s" is added because there are more than 1)

The sword is equiped >>> L'épée est équipée (because sword is a feminine noun, not masculine)

3 swords are equiped >>> 3 épées sont équipées (same, because there are 3 of them >>> +"s")

They equiped 3 swords >>> Ils ont équipé 3 épées (because when it is ''avoir'' (ont), to the difference from when it is "etre" (est) like before, participe passé (équipé) does not agree anymore)

Here is the sword i equiped >>> Voici l'épée que j'ai équipée (because even if there is "avoir" and not "être", in this sentence "épée" is before "ai" (avoir), not after like before, and thus if the word which answers the question "What is it i have equiped?" is before "avoir", then participe passé (équipée) agree.

 

Well, may be boring, but this is basic french, learnt in grade school. Whoever can't even understand these basic rules should not even pretend to be a translator. Makes me angry.

 

Is the problem Obs is not willing to pay enough for a good translation that would take some more time to finish? Because Obsidian doesn't care and is not willing to provide the translators with the things they need to contextualize the raw text? Because they think that as long as the US version is ok, other people can just go ahead and get ****ed by a camel if they want? Is it because the translators get the text to translate too late to have the time to do a good job? Because of schedule constraints? Because the companies who translate the games are rotten and they will just take the money and don't give a **** anymore? Because tanslators are bad? Because companies like QLOC want to pay their translators as little as possible and would recruit anyone, except actual skilled people who would cost more?

 

I don't know... But here is one guess nonetheless. You can't achieve such an unbelievable mess, unless everyone involved is willing to help out achieving it.


Edited by Abel, 19 June 2018 - 09:57 AM.

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#45
xzar_monty

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Abel: The likely problem, I would say, is that Obsidian doesn't really care, doesn't pay properly, doesn't give enough time for the translators, doesn't care who the translators are and isn't qualified to make sure whether the translation makes any sense. Consequently, the translators make an awful mess in an awful hurry, and get paid very little.

 

It's heartbreaking.


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#46
Manveru123

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Do you know what "localization testing" is? It's that thing where you get raw text, done with Google Translate or on a knee, and you have to translate it into coherent sentences. You then send your work to the developers, they put it into the game, then send it back to you for a re-test. So yeah, the company who did the Google Translate is not really important here: the actual translators are.

Is that really how it works, or do you exaggerate it a bit? Do I understand you correctly that the localization testers get chunks of ****ty text, have to correct them somehow and that's what they call a translation?

 

Basically yes. But you all have to understand something. The translators often don't have context because of one important thing - TIME. They have goals that have to be met on schedule. In a big game like PoE, there is often no time to properly play the game to see the text "in action". There is nothing Obsidian can provide (I think) that could help them visualize the whole game, they would have to just play it. Often they cooperate with functionality QA testers, ask them about stuff they are unsure about etc (the fun we had when trying to translate "Cipher" to Polish :D Oh dear god) but this is not really required of them, because actually playing the game is what functionality QA is for. Often, the best they can do in limited time they have is to try to make every sentence have sense. The reason why some translations are better than others purely depends on the person who did the translation. I don't really blame Obsidian. Like I said, Polish version is more or less fine. I heard Russian is ok too?



#47
ilfiniol

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A real translation is ALWAYS from a foreign language to a mothertongue language, it's the first rule in professional translation.

 

This is not true. Although I agree that it is generally best to translate into your first language, this is by no means a rule. I, for instance, have translated quite a lot of stuff into English, which is not my first language.

 

This may not be true abroad, but in France, in translator studies, it's what you learn.



#48
Lord_Mord

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 I heard Russian is ok too?

 

At least for Poe1 it was. My wife switched to Russian, because it was easier to understand even considering the fact that her russian is far worse than her perfect german. I convinced her that for Deadfire english is the only real option :)



#49
xzar_monty

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A real translation is ALWAYS from a foreign language to a mothertongue language, it's the first rule in professional translation.

 

This is not true. Although I agree that it is generally best to translate into your first language, this is by no means a rule. I, for instance, have translated quite a lot of stuff into English, which is not my first language.

 

This may not be true abroad, but in France, in translator studies, it's what you learn.

 

 

Whether something is true or not does not depend on the country where you are. If this is what is taught in France, it doesn't make it true. It may also be the first rule in professional translation in France, which is fine with me, but even this does not make it true. (I would go so far as to argue that any proper discipline should also encourage its students to question the discipline itself, just to keep themselves from becoming too dogmatic.)

 

It's perfectly sensible to start with the idea that translations should be done into one's native language. But translating into other languages, too, is not only a possibility, it is also something that people do incredibly well.

 

But, I agree, this is slightly off-topic.



#50
gloomseeker

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A real translation is ALWAYS from a foreign language to a mothertongue language, it's the first rule in professional translation.

 

This is not true. Although I agree that it is generally best to translate into your first language, this is by no means a rule. I, for instance, have translated quite a lot of stuff into English, which is not my first language.

 

This may not be true abroad, but in France, in translator studies, it's what you learn.

 

 

Whether something is true or not does not depend on the country where you are. If this is what is taught in France, it doesn't make it true. It may also be the first rule in professional translation in France, which is fine with me, but even this does not make it true. (I would go so far as to argue that any proper discipline should also encourage its students to question the discipline itself, just to keep themselves from becoming too dogmatic.)

 

It's perfectly sensible to start with the idea that translations should be done into one's native language. But translating into other languages, too, is not only a possibility, it is also something that people do incredibly well.

 

But, I agree, this is slightly off-topic.

 

 

For the record I'm French and what my compatriot says is true. 

 

In order to gain employment in France you have to translate in your native tongue. 

 

I personally think it is stupid because in order to translate accurately you first need to fully understand the original (and yes context is key). 

 

Charles Baudelaire did such a magnificent job translating Edgar Allan Poe's stories that they are probably even more enjoyable in French than in the original English (but a genius translating the work of another genius is a truly unique situation). 

 

Back on topic in all likelihood the translators who did the job here probably didn't get any context and most of them were probably freelance translators. It's all a matter of managing costs and frankly there is nothing remotely glorious about a gig like that. 



#51
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Dunno about GameScribes but I can assure you that QLOC has all of their workers on-site. I happen to be an ex-employee, so I kinda have first hand knowledge.

 

Do you know what "localization testing" is? It's that thing where you get raw text, done with Google Translate or on a knee, and you have to translate it into coherent sentences. You then send your work to the developers, they put it into the game, then send it back to you for a re-test. So yeah, the company who did the Google Translate is not really important here: the actual translators are.

 

It's called testing, not actual translating for a reason. Like I said, the actual translating was done by different company than QLOC on Pillars 1. QLOC also did some normal Q&A for both games and did the translations for Polish, Russian and Chinese on Deadfire.

 

Paradox uses that same company on pretty much every game they publish. Obsidian went with multiple different companies this time.

 

You honestly think anyone would pay a bunch of Polish people to translate games into Italian, German or French? I seriously ****ing doubt it when there are so many translators on those said languages to hire at a relatively cheap price.



#52
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Professional translator here. 

If we give these translation companies the benefit of the doubt, they may have been translating with 0 context (just from a spreadsheet, as someone said). Even if you're really good at your second language, jumping in the deep end without any context or any idea what's happening on screen is extremely difficult. Even worse, they may have divided the job between many people. Now you have even less idea what's going because you're doing chapter 3 while another guy is doing chapter 1&2. Add an extra layer of awful if they didn't play PoE1.

On the other hand, if they used non-natives or, heaven forbid, google translate, that's just embarrassing.

 

That's how translations work on both movies and tv series as well. The translator doesn't have the context for what he is translating as he isn't seeing what is happening on the screen. That leads to stupid translation mistakes, but that's just how it goes most of the time.

Everytime I watch a movie on NetFlix and I pay any attention to the actual subtitles, I notice multiple simple errors that even a 7th grader would notice. But since the translator has no actual context it becomes a guessing game when words can mean multiple things.



#53
Abel

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A real translation is ALWAYS from a foreign language to a mothertongue language, it's the first rule in professional translation.

 

This is not true. Although I agree that it is generally best to translate into your first language, this is by no means a rule. I, for instance, have translated quite a lot of stuff into English, which is not my first language.

 

This may not be true abroad, but in France, in translator studies, it's what you learn.

 

 

Whether something is true or not does not depend on the country where you are. If this is what is taught in France, it doesn't make it true. It may also be the first rule in professional translation in France, which is fine with me, but even this does not make it true. (I would go so far as to argue that any proper discipline should also encourage its students to question the discipline itself, just to keep themselves from becoming too dogmatic.)

 

It's perfectly sensible to start with the idea that translations should be done into one's native language. But translating into other languages, too, is not only a possibility, it is also something that people do incredibly well.

 

But, I agree, this is slightly off-topic.

 

 

It's indeed pretty much off-topic. But being french, i would daresay that YES, France is dogmatic and pretty narrow minded in my opinion. While you're taught to think by yourself at school, in the end, it's ok only if you abide by the dogma of the day :). And you will be regarded as a weirdo if you dare surprise anyone by saying even a casual line that is not expected. There are much more social, tight up codes that you would think.

 

I guess good tanslators have a price. Be it paying their skill or the time they need to do a proper job. Question is: considering the stretch goals, does it take this much money to get a proper translation? I thought these stretch goals were already costly enough during the campaign.



#54
Manveru123

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Dunno about GameScribes but I can assure you that QLOC has all of their workers on-site. I happen to be an ex-employee, so I kinda have first hand knowledge.

 

Do you know what "localization testing" is? It's that thing where you get raw text, done with Google Translate or on a knee, and you have to translate it into coherent sentences. You then send your work to the developers, they put it into the game, then send it back to you for a re-test. So yeah, the company who did the Google Translate is not really important here: the actual translators are.

 

It's called testing, not actual translating for a reason. Like I said, the actual translating was done by different company than QLOC on Pillars 1. QLOC also did some normal Q&A for both games and did the translations for Polish, Russian and Chinese on Deadfire.

 

Paradox uses that same company on pretty much every game they publish. Obsidian went with multiple different companies this time.

 

You honestly think anyone would pay a bunch of Polish people to translate games into Italian, German or French? I seriously ****ing doubt it when there are so many translators on those said languages to hire at a relatively cheap price.

 

It's called "testing" because it isn't done from scratch, as I've explained. This isn't conjecture, I'm literally telling you how it went. Original translation might've been created by someone else, but everything you see in-game is the result of Localization QA work.

 

They weren't "polish people". Each language had a native translator. Usually recruited through a Facebook ad by the type of "does anyone know of any guy from country XXX who likes games?" or from a pre-defined pool of freelancers, used previously on different projects.

 

Feel free to believe whatever you want to I guess.



#55
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Abel: The likely problem, I would say, is that Obsidian doesn't really care, doesn't pay properly, doesn't give enough time for the translators, doesn't care who the translators are and isn't qualified to make sure whether the translation makes any sense. Consequently, the translators make an awful mess in an awful hurry, and get paid very little.

 

It's heartbreaking.

 

You are just pulling that out of your ***.  If they didn't care about translations they wouldn't do them in the 1st place. No one works for free, not even translators who I bet are paid according to the norms since they are using a well known company to do the translations. Is it enough? Dunno, but it's up the contractor to decide what they pay their employees. Obsidian can't go handpicking people off the streets/LinkedIn to translate their games and paying them more than they would get by working for a translating company.

 

Should they do immense background check on everyone who their contractor hires? They aren't fluent in said languages and can't check millions of words due to that, you have to trust these companies to do the job they are hired to do. They even changed the company that did the Pillars 1 since they got flak on the translation.

 

 If they hire a 3rd party, it doesn't solve ****. You still have someone who isn't deep into the lore doing the reviews, they will miss stuff. Josh even said Jorge Salgado did some reviews on the translations, but obviously you can't have your staffers reading endless amount of translations since they have other stuff to work on.

 

Translators rarely if ever, have enough time to translate properly. Bigger project, bigger the mess. 



#56
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It's called "testing" because it isn't done from scratch, as I've explained. This isn't conjecture, I'm literally telling you how it went. Original translation might've been created by someone else, but everything you see in-game is the result of Localization QA work.

 

They weren't "polish people". Each language had a native translator. Usually recruited through a Facebook ad by the type of "does anyone know of any guy from country XXX who likes games?" or from a pre-defined pool of freelancers, used previously on different projects.

 

Feel free to believe whatever you want to I guess.

 

 

So, in your words. Gaming companies 1st pay professional translators X amount of dollars to translate their games into a language, then some amount to an editor in the same company to edit all the translations and then they go ahead and hire some 3rd party company to **** it all up by having someone pulled from the street with no apparent translating skills to go ahead and change up anything they want in "Localization testing" without the actual translators having a say in it?

 

Sounds like great method to **** up games. Why anyone would do that... I don't understand. But if that's localization testing, then the whole gaming business is beyond retarded on this issue.



#57
Lord_Mord

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Why anyone would do that... I don't understand.

 

I can answer that. It started in some company, where a person who was told that he is "in charge" felt the need to justify his pitiful existence. So he decided to make things more efficient. He managed to make the product cheaper by hiring unemployed coal miners from the street instead of qualified workers and totally ****ed it up in the process. But no one told him (so they wouldn't get replaced by an unemployed coal miner from the street, too) and besides he wouldn't have cared anyway. Problem was that now this company could offer their services cheaper than every other company in the field. At first that was not a big problem, but some of their customers didn't care much about quality so they had their little niche on the market. Which constantly grew. Why? Because out there's always someone "in charge" who feels the need to justify his pitiful existence. And before you can say "The free market regulates itself" hiring unemployed coal miners had become industry standard, the prices dropped and the end customers got so much used to buying games with 200 hours of gameplay for 5.99$ (Delivered next thuesday, without delay and in perfect condition) that they took higher prices for an insult and started attacking you with pitchforks if you dared offering them additional DLC content or (god forbid) a full expansion.


Edited by Lord_Mord, 19 June 2018 - 01:36 PM.

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#58
xzar_monty

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Translators rarely if ever, have enough time to translate properly. Bigger project, bigger the mess. 

 

Just out of curiosity: how much do you actually know about what you're talking about? I've been doing translations for twenty years, I've translated 70+ books and quite a lot of academic writing, song lyrics, poetry, magazine articles etc. I have always had time to translate properly. That is a prerequisite for me taking the project in the first place.

 

There are specific areas where translators often don't have enough time (television and movies, for instance), and interpreters nearly always have to work under incredibly tight time constraints, but what you're saying simply isn't true.


Edited by xzar_monty, 19 June 2018 - 10:03 PM.


#59
xzar_monty

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<quotation error, cannot delete post, ignore>


Edited by xzar_monty, 19 June 2018 - 10:02 PM.


#60
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Just out of curiosity: how much do you actually know about what you're talking about? I've been doing translations for twenty years, I've translated 70+ books and quite a lot of academic writing, song lyrics, poetry, magazine articles etc. I have always had time to translate properly. That is a prerequisite for me taking the project in the first place.

 

There are specific areas where translators often don't have enough time (television and movies, for instance), and interpreters nearly always have to work under incredibly tight time constraints, but what you're saying simply isn't true.

 

 

I know few translators and I've talked with them about their job, since I considered it as a job at one point. Obviously their take on the issue won't be true in every company and country.

 

Printed media is a different beast than the gaming and film industry. Some of the smaller printing houses at least here in Finland take their time translating books. It might take over a year for them to finish the translated version. It shows in the quality. Books are way better translated than say movies.

 

Games and films you need to get them out at the same time pretty much everywhere. Translators had more time back in the day (and they could actually do the translations while watching the show), when tv shows would air a year later in Finnish tv, but thesedays you will need to have the translations done when the show airs on HBO/NetFlix etc. since it will get released here on the same day as well. And quite often they don't have the context on what they are translating (doing it from transcripts or audio only) and they might get the text/audio quite late, so they are in a rush.


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