Let’s get it straight and simple: Russian localization quality is getting worse gradually.
Every time that I compare cinematics in English and Russian I’m earning a butthurt of epic proportions. As the only option for Russian realms is switching on the English sound (not the texts), every now and then I compare the things spoken and the things posted in game chat, and it’s butthurt again.
I mean I could deal with the dwarf accents which are totally absent in Russian version, it’s a bearable thing. As well as losing some troll speech flavor from Carribean “mon” to a more common “dude” – they still tried.
But I can’t deal with the multiple examples of when the original text is simplified to nothing, the most basic phrases which have no flavor, no character speech peculiarities. And even more: even the very character motives are lost in translation which gives birth to complete misunderstanding of a major character.
Kil’Jaeden death cinematic:
- Illidan (original): Khadgar, take us home!
- Illidan (Russian): Khadgar, teleport!
- Kil’Jaeden (original): I never believed Sargeras could be stopped. Maybe you can prove me wrong.
- Kil’Jaeden (Russian): I could never push Sargeras back. Now you have a chance.
Illidan’s response was mocked a lot among the Russian community – it’s what a player would post in chat, not a hero in cinematic. Seriously? Khadgar, tp to Dal 50g?
Kil’Jaeden’s response makes him an active opposition – as if he actually tried to stop Sargeras all the time. I mean, what the fuck? More examples:
- (original): Let them feel our blades!
- (Russian): Kill them!
Darkshore world quest completion:
- Sylvanas (original): You were the right arrow for the shot.
- Sylvanas (Russian): I knew you could cope with that.
It’s but a top of an iceberg. I had a rant discussion with a Blizzard employee on Twitter, one of the responsible for localization, and his arguments were:
- You don’t know and/or understand a shit about translation process because you are not a pro, but he has an education;
- The meaning is all the same, and you’re too picking;
- There’s lip sync, rhyme tempo, audio file length, phases of the moon responsible – so you cannot provide an adequate translation;
- If you know how to do better – here’s the link to Blizzard vacancy page.
Even if I have some experience and a thing or two about audio recording, audio programs, adjusting the lyrics to the line length, translation and everything else, you don’t have to be a pro to understand that this is simply lame. Even my wife, who knows practically nothing about WoW, audio recording and hasn’t got a special linguistics education like myself, reacts WHAAAAAA…? to the examples alike. This is just bad translation, the work is done poorly – end of story.
This Sylvanas Darkshore example finally brings me to the project of epic proportions: transferring my toons to EU English-speaking realms. It’s a big and a long-term project. I have lots of toons as you know, and transfers cost some IRL cash too.
I’m paid at my day job every two weeks, and every time I get my cash – it’s a character or two transfer. This pace will also serve as a natural gating to leveling and catching up with my alt army.
So far I’ve already moved 4 toons for the initiate BfA leveling:
- Micromantica the Gnome Frost Mage
- Pietra the Gnome Subtlety Rogue
- Schlitzchen the Goblin Enhancement Shaman
- Gorhaug the Orc Fury Warrior
Catch me at EU-Doomhammer! :)
Transfers serve two extra reasons – blogging reasons.
First, I will have a match between the names in game and in my blog – as you know, Russians spell in Cyrillic letters, so upon transfer we’re required to spell the nicknames in Latin. It will feel much more comfortable.
Second, while I can go to Wowhead and easily find an English/Russian equivalent to any game things, achievements, boss names, I’m more often than not lazy to do so. So I often merely describe the things (like Argus currency) rather than give its actual name. With playing in English in the first place, I’ll be using the names naturally, which will improve my blogging of course :)
So, a new exciting journey begins now. It already feels like a completely new game, and even leveling would feel much different if I opt to do so :)
Our realms, both English and Russian are now online – and I’m ready to see the Teldrassil story finale. I’ll return to you with my thoughts upon the questline and the cinematic – there’s a lot to tell and discuss.