New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle East

October 20, 2010 -

Media firm Rubicon Group Holding has partnered with Modern Electronics Co. Ltd., the sole distributor of Sony products in Saudi Arabia, in order to localize content appearing on various Sony platforms for Middle East users.

United Arab Emirates publication The National (thanks The Escapist) details the plans, which will include dubbing "certain games” into Arabic, adding Arabian characters and eliminating scenes that could run afoul of censors. Rubicon Executive Director Ghassan Ayoubi explained, “Those games that are extra-violent, or have sensitive issues for the region, will be edited for content.”

Ayoubi appeared wary of the “C” word, but used it anyway, stating, "It's not censoring … it's tailoring or customising it for the market.”

Rubicon will begin by altering existing (already completed) PlayStation 3 titles, but eventually plans to join the production cycle and brings its expertise to games still in development. The firm expects to work on two to four games per year, with FIFA Soccer 11 and the latest in the Uncharted series, being among the first to receive the Rubicon treatment.

Some titles are so far out from would be accepted in the Middle East that attempts to cleanse them will not even be undertaken. Ayoubi stated, that such games are “off the chart, because they would need reinventing.”

A release on the Rubicon website also indicates that the company would develop its own educational and entertaining games, “based on Arabic culture Storyboards.”

Recent games that never made their way into the UAE, for example, include Heavy Rain, Dante’s Inferno (which wasn’t even submitted to censors), Darksiders, God of War, Grand Theft Auto IV and Mafia II.


Comments

Re: New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle ...

Localisation is an important part of selling any product; you tailor your product to the desires and laws of the target region to be able to sell there.

If another area wanted to sell games in the west, they'd have to use characters that the west could identify with. Final Fantasy springs to mind as an example.

If you want to say that only one version of the game should be made, to be used wherever the game is sold, you cut out a lot of areas you could be selling your game. Australia, for instance, has many sanitised games because of their Byzantine laws - they are criticised for it, and some companies choose not to change their games to sell there. But many companies do change their games to sell there, which is no different to this.

Companies want to sell their product, so they tailor their product to their target audience. With multiple audiences, multiple products.

Re: New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle ...

but you cant get a taste of other cultures if everything coming into yours gets tailored to yours and that works both ways.

its stupid and xenophobic.

Re: New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle ...

Rohin: It depends how far you go. Translating a language is the most obvious part of localization and so certain things have to be changed for context, like how the Phoenix Wright games had to refer to different pop culture instead of the ones mentioned in the original Japanese version. Yet then we had hostess clubs being removed from Yakuza 3 which some people were annoyed at - clearly certain gamers want to have the experience be as close to the original as possible and I agree. If the game is completely changed, what's the point?

I'm not sure it'll be as atrocious as people are imagining - just look at Mariah Carey's edited album covers in the Middle East, she simply had more clothes added to her to reduce the skin on show, rather than, as I'm sure a xenophobe would have you believe, a digital burkha added to her head.

Re: New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle ...

this is why they cant have nice things ... they're not allowed to have them.

not until the things are made less nice ... oh is it racist to say changing the races to Arab ones makes the games less nice?.

the politcally correct would say little to nothing about this but if a company was changing arab races to western ones it would be out right war.

double standards urgh ... I dont hate arab people I think they should get to play the games uncensored and NOT kept from them by their own government just because they dont agree with the content let "THE PEOPLE" themselves decide.

Re: New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle ...

Censorship is censorship.You can try to sugarcoat it however you like but in the end its still censoring content.

 

Re: New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle ...

Kinda like how win and beer used to be refered to as juice in video games.

Re: New Partners will Sanitize, Localize Games for Middle ...

heck, sugarcoating is a form of censorship

岩「if Phyllis Schlafly wants to undo Women's Rights, she should lead by example and get back in the kitchen」

岩「…I can see why Hasselbeck's worried about fake guns killing fake people. afterall, she's a fake journalist on a fake news channel」

 
Forgot your password?
Username :
Password :

Shout box

You're not permitted to post shouts.
Craig R.Ok, my internal debate was short-lived. If Win10 is still a year out, I'm not waiting that long for an SSD, so on Win7 I will remain.09/30/2014 - 7:52pm
Matthew Wilsonits called windows 10, and I am happy to get the start menu back.09/30/2014 - 7:18pm
Jessy HartIs this stuff about Windows 10 legit? Is it actually called Windows 10 or is it just some stupid joke?09/30/2014 - 6:57pm
ZippyDSMleeSo I been trying to play Bioshock Infinite I got all the DLC,ect but do not want the extras to make your charatcer over powered from the start.....they force you to take them which is quite annoying......09/30/2014 - 6:45pm
Craig R.I need to upgrade to an SSD, still seriously debating moving to Win8.1 from 7 at the same time09/30/2014 - 6:07pm
Craig R.Win10 is probably Win8.1 with more cleanup and the Start button back.09/30/2014 - 6:06pm
Sora-ChanAhh, it's just weird seeing someone's post all of a sudden have replies from days prior before it was posted due to that.09/30/2014 - 5:49pm
MechaTama31sora: I broke the ordering intentionally, as AE's and my conversation had squeezed the text boxes down to be quite slim. I replied to an earlier post of his instead of the one I was actually replying to.09/30/2014 - 5:46pm
MechaTama31So, 9 would have been the good one, but they are skipping it to do two crap ones in a row?09/30/2014 - 5:41pm
Sora-ChanSo, judging from the poll post for #gamergate, it looks like too many thread replies breaks the ordering of posts, as seen with the recent post from Infophile.09/30/2014 - 5:31pm
Andrew EisenOr no! It wasn't Y3K compliant. Microsoft thought it best to super future proof its OS and skipped straight to 10 which is Y3K compliant!09/30/2014 - 5:01pm
Andrew EisenJust tell them it wasn't Y2K compliant.09/30/2014 - 5:00pm
Craig R.Looking forward to having to explain to coworkers down the road what ever happened to 9 *sigh*09/30/2014 - 4:57pm
Craig R.2k was crap. XP was solid, 7 is good, 8.1 is actually really good once you make it look like 7 :)09/30/2014 - 4:52pm
Sora-Chan@MP As someone who has used each version of windows since 3.1... I prefer Vista over 7 for various reasons. The only thing I give 7 over Vista is preformance. They really screwed up a bunch of things when making 7. Also, XP was a pain. 2k was better.09/30/2014 - 4:13pm
Jessy Hart@E. Zachary Knight Is that show called Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures?09/30/2014 - 3:34pm
IanCWin 8 isn't bad, it just can't decide whether to be a desktop OS or a tablet OS.09/30/2014 - 2:40pm
IanCI think its a way of getting round giving it free to Win 8 users...09/30/2014 - 2:39pm
MaskedPixelanteWindows alternates between bad and good versions. XP was good, Vista sucked, 7 was good, 8 sucked, therefore 10 will suck, QED.09/30/2014 - 2:18pm
E. Zachary KnightPerhaps they are calling it "10" because on a scale of 1-10 of how awesome it is, it is a clear 10.09/30/2014 - 2:06pm
 

Be Heard - Contact Your Politician