Arabic is one of the world’s ancient languages. It is the official language of 26 states. Being the 5th most spoken language and with a huge gaming community, the Arabic language has unique attributes as a language. It is quite different from the other European languages.
That’s why the biggest community businesses have to opt for Arabic translation services to reach Arab audiences. Arab countries are among the top ones having the maximum number of users and game players.
The Arab market is the most revenue-generating in terms of games. That further motivates the game owners to go for services targeting the Arab world. However, localization could get tough and complicated for Arabic audiences due to the Arabic language and its complexities.
Here are a few of the factors which make it hard for localization experts to navigate through the whole localization process and its challenges.
Language, its Dialects, and Nuances
The Arab world is one of the leading markets for video games and there is only one percent of content that is available in the local app stores in the Arabic language. This 1 percent tempts businesses to come forward and get indulged in the localization process to compete in the Arab market.
Arabic as a language is quite different. It has several linguistic idiosyncrasies and uses gender specifications too. However, the most challenging part is the difference between the spoken versus formal written language and the consideration of the regional dialects.
The font and writing system of Arabic is quite expanded as compared to English or other languages. The localization experts have to work hard to fix the content in the limited space provided. Furthermore, the use of the language also varies with the platform it is being used for.
For instance, if you are localizing content for some newspaper or website, it is better to prefer modern standard Arabic as the target audience would prefer having their content in this variant of the Arabic language.
However, this might not go well with the creative content including marketing messaging and in-game content as high levels of engagement and establishing an emotional connection with the audience are vital.
Such situations ask for a linguist who knows the language locally and is a native speaker. He can further help the localization experts with his outputs.
Cultural and Religious Appropriateness
Games are created and developed for the leisure factor. The immersive quality and the various characters with beautiful landscape games should contain an element of entertainment and not controversies. All these things need to be developed while staying within the boundaries and not going against cultural and religious factors.
Localization experts also face a tough time where they have to modify and adapt the aspects according to the Arab region. To make sure that there is nothing that can infuriate their target masses, you should hire professional game localization services.
Happy farms are one of the best examples to quote here. It is a popular social network game and has a huge fan following and players based in the Asian regions.
It has been localized for the Arabic people successfully and the local version of this game doesn’t feature pigs as Muslims do not raise these or eat their meat. This further implies that having thorough research and hiring native translators and speakers can ease the localization process.
However, it is tough overall to take into account the cultural and religious factors particularly when both of these are different from that of the western world.
RTL Languages and Game Localization
Another challenging part of the game localization for Arabic languages addresses the writing position of the Arabic language. Arabic is written from right to left. This brings up a technically challenging situation. It further creates hindrances in bringing up a balanced vision and the page layout with the user interface.
Despite the tools and technologies going beyond expectations these still need to make the applications perfect. The localization experts then have to consider multiple ways to address the shortcoming which come with customized coding.
A good localization and translation company is one that is mindful of the different facts regarding every language. That is what makes them hire and prefer native translators to avoid a lot of hassles.
The text and font of the Arabic language take more space to fit in as compared to English. This is due to the nature of the fonts that are used in the Arabic language. It is another serious technical challenge.
This further leads to bugs and issues. Arabic translations take up to 25 percent more space on average. This also causes text expansion errors and the experts have to take care of this factor which is quite time-consuming.
Professional translation services understand all popular languages and the problems which come with these so they ensure they have the solution to encounter these problems and to avoid unnecessary delays.
Localizing video games for Arabic audiences is quite challenging. As the Arabic language is written from right to left, takes more space to fit in and the localization process has also considered the cultural and religious factors, the localization experts and translators have to be more vigilant about the whole process.