Weekly Update #70: Happy Holidays!

This was a shorter week development-wise due to spending Christmas with my family. I hope that if you celebrated a holiday it was a great one, and if not, I hope you were able to get some time off for games!

This week I spent most of my time working on localization. Starcom: Nexus is currently officially only available in English, but unofficially supports a dozen “experimental” languages. These were initially translated using Google Translate with player submitted suggestions providing ad hoc improvements. Some of our players are working on a more complete and consistent solution for some languages. While most of the text has at least a baseline translation, there are still gaps. It’s been tricky to test because I don’t speak any language fluently besides English.

Earlier this week I added a new language: Progent-A. Progent-A (a reference to a mysterious vanished race in the game and the real world language Linear-A from ancient Crete) is my implementation of pseudolocalization. At a glance, it looks like an alien tongue, but on closer inspection it is English with characters substituted by similar looking accented Latin, Greek and Cyrillic characters. Also, some common letter doubles and triplets have been given additional characters.

Example of localization failure

The purpose of this is to allow me to play the game while testing for:

  • Untranslated text
  • Text that has been translated but not had its font changed (leading to characters displayed as little squares called “tofu”)
  • Text that been translated with the incorrect text
  • Text that when translated no longer fits in the UI space provided

Now that that’s implemented, I’m going through and cataloging the various areas where localization is missing/broken.

Finally, we’ve gotten more testers in the 1.0.9 patch and unless any bugs crop up soon I plan on pushing that to the default branch in a couple days.

Until next week! In the meantime you can find me on Twitter, Discord or the game’s Steam Forums.