Case study

Localization of humor in gaming industry

One of Publitrad’s most valued customers is an international marketing agency. They design marketing strategies for their clients and Publitrad localizes them into multiple languages so that their clients can benefit from being internationally marketed in one go.

at a glance

  • Humor is not just about translation, it needs to be adapted
  • A completely different cultural basis
  • Taking into consideration the demographic profile of the users


Localization of a video game that featured quite a lot of humor from English to Korean and make sure the impact on user engagement and revenue is a positive one.


With players and developers located worldwide, it is essential to provide content in different languages to ensure an immersive gaming experience. And nothing is harder than to “translate” the humor in the games, as jokes and puns often have no direct translation.


Translation in games can be complex and require expertise and attention to detail. It goes beyond translations for game descriptions or game tutorials or instructions. When you add humor...well.. that requires a deep understanding of the target culture's humor and language. Additionally, wordplay, sarcasm, and irony are all elements of humor that can be challenging to translate accurately.


Understanding the mechanisms of cross-cultural adaptation was the center focus of this project.

So, in order to overcome the challenges, we carefully chose a team of linguists that are fluent in the targeted languages and worked closely with the game developer to ensure an accurate reflection of the original content, tone and meaning. This included colors, dates and number formats, icons, images, and so much more.


We decided with the developer on an A/B testing with a sample of group users. The results showed that the translated Korean version of the game outperformed the original version in terms of user engagement by 25%. We have to be honest, that made us incredibly proud.

“Video game localization is key to success in crossing cultures and increasing revenue in gaming. We aimed to create a seamless transition into another culture and we had a more than satisfied client on our hands.”

Alina Chiteală

CEO Publitrad