Offering an additional language in a pre-existing game?

I’m new to the forum so please feel free to redirect me if I am not posting in the adequate category!

I’ve browsed the forum and I understand why you cannot create a game in a different language, however, would it be possible to offer an additional language in a pre-existing game?

Also, thinking purely from the author’s perspective: is there a demand for games in different languages? Would it increase value to a pre-existing game or make it more complex to integrate?

I strongly believe that ‘Choice of Games’ is a fantastic tool to promote reading through interactive and immersive stories. Moreover, the writing is sometimes a lot better than some of the popular mainstream authors. This should be accessible to as many people as possible, including those who cannot read English very well and would be deprived of the full experience if they had to rely on Google Translate.

The translation in itself is not the issue as there are people out there who would do it for free(myself included) provided there is no time pressure for it! It might not be a widely known fact for English speakers, but there is a very extensive community of people creating support content in foreign languages (mostly movie subtitles but also games translations) mostly for free.

I am keen to get other people’s perspectives, in particular authors and experienced players.

Thanks in advance for your reply!

Only COG LLC can speak for themselves. I’m just throwing my two cents here.

I, as well as many members of this community, as far as I can tell, would want the games to be available in different languages. Personally, I have no difficulties with English, but it’s hard to recommend the games to friends when most people where I come from would turn the nose to the idea of reading in English in their free time. It’s hard enough to get people to sign up to interactive fiction as is, if they are not a fan already, much harder if it’s in a different language. So, I think there is a market out there for sure, even if their experiment with Choice of Dragon wasn’t as successful as they had hoped.

However, I do understand why the company won’t pursue this route. The first problem is legal. They are a profitmaking company, and they would be profiting from your work. Even if it’s voluntary, it would put them on some turvy waters. I know there are many small companies, especially in the indie scene, that makes use of voluntary work to localize their products. I’ve even contributed myself a couple of times to projects on Kickstarter.

The second problem is, even if they accepted voluntary help, it would be hard for them to verify the quality of the translation and to ensure it is faithful to the original work and respectful of their guidelines.

In the end it’s safer to hire professional hands for the job, but then it comes down to cost-benefit. Only they can tell if it would be worth it or not. And, since it would be to their best benefit, yet they are not jumping to the idea, it’s safe to conclude it’s not profitable.

I think that the only way a game would come out on a different language is if the author translated it themselves (many authors are non-native speakers). Still, I imagine, there would need to be some convincing going on.

In terms of technical implementation, of course, it would be better if ChoiceScript had native support for multilanguage. But it’s totally feasible, if a little cumbersome, to have the various versions in the same game and being able to switch back and forth using only choicescript code.


For what it’s worth, COG did release a Spanish translation for Choice of the Dragon a couple years ago, so they definitely have explored trying to expand their audience that way. Whether they still are exploring that as a business venture is unknown to me, but I think it’s worth another shot considering that there is a considerable amount of users on this site whose first language isn’t English.


This has already been discussed many times. Find the other threads and read them.