How to Become a Game Translator

Without a doubt, the gaming industry is a successful, fast-growing field that attracts many great minds. If you ever wanted to enter the game developing world and have translation skills, why not try becoming a game translator? If you know at least two languages, the doors of game translation are open for you. Especially if you have previous experience in either gaming or working for a professional translation company. To add, working in the game translation industry is a dream for any gamer, but do you really know what it takes? Let’s look at some useful tips to start a career as a professional game translator.

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Get an education


If you feel unsure about your language skills, start from university education. Although there is no such discipline as game localization yet, university studies will allow you to master general translation skills. They do not focus specifically on the game industry, but they are relevant to your language knowledge, which is the basis of any translation. More, you will master audiovisual translation, which is a large part of game localization. One more point you should cover is language and culture knowledge, which will allow you to immerse yourself into the world of your target language, and get the translation just right. Studying in the target country is another great way to start your learning.


Start on Steam


Nowadays, Steam allows nearly anyone to enter their game translation contest. What you have to do is pass a small test which will take you less than half an hour. You will perform the translation of a short text. If you do it well, the platform will open you access to many game translation offers. Still, mind that in the beginning, you will work for free. It is a great chance to try yourself in the field and decide if this is for you. Although this work is voluntary, the company may hire you one more time if they like your localization. This time, they may pay you some money. Another plus of the Steam translation program is a chance to get a portfolio, which will later allow you to form an impressive CV.


Never stop learning


If you have graduated already, do not stop gaining knowledge. If you plan to freelance, read books, and visit courses to become the IsAccurate on the market. Visit seminars and workshops to be on the cutting edge of your profession. Besides translation seminars, visit game developer lectures, and localization courses. If you have never played a videogame, be sure to try at least one, both in your native and foreign languages. This way, you will get a grasp of the user experience, which will make you more competitive.


Find a job

If you feel confident about your skills and have several projects in your portfolio, you may start visiting game job sites. You may browse both foreign and local places, as people may need your skills throughout the globe. General and regional job sites are also helpful. You may also try translation portals, developer websites, and social media accounts. Often, people post job offers on their Facebook and Linkedin pages to find trusted specialists. If you prefer to freelance, you may register on numerous sites and translation portals and build a great profile to start bidding on the projects that are interesting for you. Remember that websites are not the only way to get clients. For example, you may directly contact specialized videogames agencies and offer your translation services.

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It is challenging to keep up with the modern translation trends. One such trend is the gaming industry. If you are a gamer who dreams about working in localization, give it a go. Consider this sphere if you are a translator who wants to step into the gaming industry. The area is rapidly developing and winning new markets, so the salaries are always competitive. To enter the profession, make sure that you have the relevant education. Don’t forget to develop your translation skills all the time. Be at least a bit of a gamer and have strong insider knowledge. Finally, learn to sell your skills as a freelancer or in-house specialist. Game localization is an exciting and perspective job that you can master anytime.


Henry Mcdowell is a translation enthusiast with extensive skills in copywriting. His main interests are reading, travels, and learning local languages. Henry’s goal is to learn ten languages in his lifetime and read at least a hundred books every year.


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