Black Mesa International
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A forum dedicated to the translation of the Black Mesa mod, a complete re-creation of the game Half-Life on the Source engine, formerly known as Black Mesa: Source.
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 Frequently Asked Questions

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Join date : 2010-02-04
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Frequently Asked Questions Empty
PostSubject: Frequently Asked Questions   Frequently Asked Questions EmptyFri Sep 21, 2012 11:47 am

These Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) are designed to provide a better understanding of our project, offering introductory answers to frequently asked questions about what we do, how it works, and how to volunteer. Should you have any further questions, please consult our Help subsection, contact the Language Subforum Moderator of the language you're interested in, or contact the Project Leader.

01.- What is this whole thing about?

The Black Mesa International effort was created with the objective of gathering people who speak similar languages, and who are interested in bringing Black Mesa closer to their fellows by translating the caption files offered with Black Mesa, a free remake of Half-Life on the Source Engine.

02.- How does this work?

Working with the subtitles is not really complicated. The captions are in a .txt file; people just need to organize in groups to translate the captions, with good grammar and punctuation, of course. After the files have been translated, proofread and corrected, they are given to the developers for compiling, and are added in later patches.

03.- What languages are already available with Black Mesa?

  • Italian
  • Spanish
  • Norwegian
  • German
  • Finnish

04.- What languages are being worked on?

  • Albanian
  • Brazilian Portuguese
  • Chinese
  • Czech
  • Esperanto
  • European Portuguese
  • French
  • Greek
  • Hebrew
  • Korean
  • Russian
  • Polish
  • Bulgarian
  • Romanian
  • Swedish
  • Turkish

05.- The subtitles for #mylanguage# suck! What can I do?

Currently, Italian and Finnish are being remade. If you have any complaint about the other languages, notify the members by posting on the right subforum, or PM the subforum moderators.

06.- When will the subtitles in #mylanguage# be available?

That depends on several factors. First, remember that, just like Black Mesa, the subtitles are being made by volunteers in their spare time; once the first translation is finished, it needs to be checked over and over, proofread, and then sent to the developers. At this point the process is out of our control; the developers are the ones who compile the captions and patch them in later, and unfortunately we have no way to know when a new patch will be up.

07.- Oh no, #mylanguage# is not being translated! Who will do it?

Once again, these people are volunteers. If there's no translations in your language being worked on, that probably means nobody has applied for the job. If you feel like a challenge, feel free to try your hand at it!

08.- How can I join, then?

Joining is very easy. Just post in this thread! As for now, Russian, Italian, Brazilian Portuguese and French will not take any more volunteers. You, however, will need to make sure you have a good command of English and your own language. This translation needs to be a serious piece of work; the mod bay be free, but that is no reason to make it look sloppy, specially since the developers, unfortunately, have no way to do quality control here.

09.- Can I use something like Google Translate? Do you use any kind of tool and/or suite? What does your workflow look like?

No, just slapping the paragraphs into Google Translate does NOT count as translating. Volunteers need to know the language they plan on translating into. We ask translators to be, preferentially, native speakers of the target language, because, that way, they should be able to make the lines sound natural and believable. The workflow also depends on the team; most of them post threads with their progress by chapter, so others can check them out and offer corrections. Everybody has the chance of choosing their working style. A common working method is keeping two Notepad instances (source and target language), supported by an array of electronic dictionaries, and occasionally the use of google translate for difficult words.

10.- Can I just come here and take some text lines i've been seeing here & there among the topics?

Contact the translators and ask them. If they refuse your request, please accept that's how it will be. Don't be a thief.

11.- How will the subtitles be available for use in-game?

I order to enable subtitles in your language of choice, you need to set the language of the Steam client to that language. So, if you live in Germany, you'll need to set Steam to German. In order to change language, log into your Steam account, click the Steam menu in the top menu bar, go to the 'Settings' option, then go to the 'Interface' tab, choose the language you want from the drop-down menu, then click 'OK' and restart Steam. Once this is done, launch the mod, go into the 'Audio' options. Subtitles or Closed Captions should be available to enable in the 'Options' menu on the 'Audio' tab. Here is a screenshot of working subtitles in Half-Life 2.

12.- What's the difference between 'Closed Captions' and 'Subtitles (dialog only)'?

'Closed Captions' provide subtitles for the regular dialog, and text indicators for sound effects for the hearing impaired. 'Subtitles (dialog only)', on the other hand, is just text subtitles for spoken dialog in the game. This project encompasses both.

13.- Are you translating the last unreleased levels yet?

No. The developers have said that the additional levels will not have much dialog, so it is possible they may have no subtitles at all. So, if you just joined to get a sneak peek at Xen, sorry to disappoint!

14.- So, what's the point of all of this hassle?

I personally believe it is a great way to get Black Mesa to a broader audience. It is a fantastic mod and deserves more attention; not to mention many English speakers will simply shake their heads and tell others to learn English, which is not always an option for many people. And, of course, there is the added bonus of having a chance of being included in the mod's credits, which surely sounds great!

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