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NCsoft Content Writer David Noonan has put together this developer journal about what he learned through the process of localizing Aion's two million words for the Western market.
When I started working on Aion, we were staring at about two-million words…and a looming deadline. The two-million words were coherently translated into English, but they still needed significant help if they were to resonate with a Western audience. From the very first story meeting—heck, from the car ride to the very first meeting—we realized that we were doing something that hadn’t been done before. We were taking a full-fledged MMO, stripping it down to its narrative essence, then rebuilding it so that Aion’s story showed as much polish as its art and gameplay.
As I write this, those two-million words are done—“done” being a euphemism for “mostly done but still subject to tweaks, bug fixes, and all the last-minute changes you expect right up to launch.” Here are some things that what we jokingly called the “Aion Westernization Army” learned along the way.