Book review
Silvia Pettini. The Translation of Realia and Irrealia in Game Localization: Culture-Specificity between Realism and Fictionality
Abingdon and New York: Routledge, 2022. xi, 231 pp.

Reviewed by Jiannan Song
Xi’an International Studies University
Publication history
Table of contents

Congruent with the popularity of video games in the global entertainment landscape, research has demonstrated the importance of video game localization, which involves linguistic, socio-cultural, and technical adaptations of an audiovisual entertainment text for a specific region (Mejías-Climent 2021). Audiovisual games that take place in a virtual environment generally contain a large number of fictional and/or non-fictional elements with cultural specificity. Until recently, however, little scholarly attention had been paid to the phenomenon of translating these (non-)fictional elements in the localization of video games. The book under review, written by Silvia Pettini, fills this gap by unraveling how cultural specificity manifests itself at the interface of the real world and the game world and suggesting which strategies are adopted by game translators in the were linguistic and cultural localization of (non-)fictional elements.

Full-text access is restricted to subscribers. Log in to obtain additional credentials. For subscription information see Subscription & Price. Direct PDF access to this article can be purchased through our e-platform.


Bernal-Merino, Miguel Á.
2015Translation and Localization in Video Games: Making Entertainment Software Global. Abingdon: Routledge.Google Scholar
Dietz, Frank
2006 “Issues in Localizing Computer Games.” In Perspectives on Localization, edited by Keiran J. Dunne, 121–134. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Loponen, Mika
2009 “Translating Irrealia – Creating a Semiotic Framework for the Translation of Fictional Cultures.” Chinese Semiotic Studies 2 (1): 165–175. DOI logoGoogle Scholar
Mejías-Climent, Laura
2021Enhancing Video Game Localization Through Dubbing. London: Palgrave Macmillan. DOI logoGoogle Scholar