Outsourcing and in-house models in video game localisation: Pros and cons
Video game localisation is carried out following either an outsourcing or in-house model. In the outsourcing model, game companies send files needing translation to video game localisation vendors or directly to freelance translators, but they rarely send a playable copy of the game which translators can familiarise themselves with. In the in-house model, by contrast, game companies hire translators, so they work in their facilities from the beginning of the project to its completion, and always have access to the game. Both models have certain advantages and disadvantages depending on the translator’s or game company’s point of view. Although translators may benefit from working closely with the developers of the game, more economic resources are needed to make this possible, as game companies are usually responsible for the translators’ travel and accommodation expenses. This presentation, based on the professional experiences of a freelance translator specialised in video game localisation and a translator who has worked in the localisation department of a renowned game company, aims to discuss the different pros and cons of the outsourcing and in-house models in video game localisation.
Pablo MUÑOZ SÁNCHEZ holds a degree in Translation and Interpreting from the University of Granada (Spain) and is currently taking the online MA in Audiovisual Translation at Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona (Spain). He spent a year abroad as an Erasmus student at Dublin City University (Ireland). He has worked as a professional translator for the University Translation Service of the University of Granada (Spain), was an in-house English-Spanish translator and IT assistant at AbroadLink, a translation agency based in Granada. He currently works in the localisation department of a renowned game company. He is extremely interested in everything related to video-game and software localisation, CAT tools and fan translation. He writes a blog about translation called Algo más que traducir in Spanish and has published several papers on game localisation and translator’s tools in journals such as The Journal of Specialised Translation, Translation Journal or Tradumàtica.
Elisabeth SÁNCHEZ LEÓN holds a degree in Translation and Interpreting from the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Spain). She is currently working on a PhD (at the same university) related to the areas of Audiovisual Translation and CAT tools. Furthermore, she is taking an MA in Audiovisual Translation: Localisation, Subtitling and Dubbing from the University of Cádiz (Spain). She has more than five years of experience as a freelance translator in the fields of localisation, technical translation and audiovisual translation, having participated in the localisation process of the localisation tool Passolo and, among others, the video game Guitar Hero II. She writes a blog called El taller del traductor, where she reflects on her experience as a freelancer and gives hints to other translators with respect to the profession. Her research interests include translator training, localisation, CAT tools and technical translation.