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Launching the First One-Stop Video Game Culturalization Management Platform

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - AltaGram 4.0 (Launching the First One-Stop Video Game Culturalization Management Platform)

Reporting period: 2017-02-01 to 2017-07-31

At Altagram GmbH, we are the one-stop solution for video game localization and culturalization. Our dedicated team of 29 employees supplemented by a network of over 600 freelancers translate into over 40 languages. Our CEO Ms. Amigues created the company only three years ago in December 2013 and we have grown into a €2 million revenue company since then.

Our customers are game development companies and game publishers ranging from small indie developers to leading global video gaming companies. Our most important customers are from France, US, Netherland, Germany, Spain, China. Japan and Korea.

The Problem: High Attrition Rates in Video Gaming Industry

• The biggest challenge for the gaming industry is to retain players - only 16% of games have a retention rate of over 50%
• Gamers prefer culturally coherent games over simply translated ones. Translating words is not enough, also the context (colors, symbols, icons, avatars, etc.) needs to be “translated”, i.e. a game needs to undergo culturalization as shown in the picture in the top right corner.
• Game culturalization is a complex process that involves many specialists: specialized translation (localization), software interventions, design adaptation interventions, video captions, voice-over and transcriptions, conversion of requirements and addressing regional, national and local regulations.
• Plus, 51% of game companies need to update their products weekly and a further 25% monthly. This means they need a quick and smooth process to culturalize their product and keep the players.
• 23-spoken EU languages multiply the cultural barriers when exporting to another EU country.
• Cultural transfer of video games into the leading Asian markets is even more challenging.
• Whilst there are many localization (specialized translation) agencies, the video game industry lacks a unified solution to facilitate culturalization activities. Game companies need to reach out to independent and decentralized specialists to assign the required culturalization activities one by one.

Our ultimate objective is for AltaGram 4.0 to become a game changer in the video game culturalization market. We envision a situation where all game development companies and game publishers manage their entire culturalization needs on our platform no matter if they are using external culturalization services or ours. As the entire market moves on AltaGram 4.0 semantic/deep learning features will be able to automate the culturalization of an increasing amount of contents (voice, text/caption and visuals).
We conducted a technological and economic feasibility study to refine our understanding of our product-market fit and of key risks and their mitigation. We have studied the technological challenge of the ‘global game localization topics’ around which our platform is structured and evaluated our business model options. We conducted an in-depth analysis of the global video games market. Currently there is no comparable platform solution on the market, and our indirect competitors don't directly meet the multi-faceted needs of localization and culturalization. We had the assistance of IP experts to develop an IP-strategy and to confirm our freedom to operate. We made a reassessment of market needs and the regulatory pathways that best accommodates our development. Finally, we established a roadmap for further technological development and the commercial exploitation and have set up a workplan including work packages, deliverables, milestones, interdependencies, and Gantt chart for our Apolitical Phase2 project. We have summarised the results of our Feasibility study (Objectives 1-6) into a Business plan.
Experts from the Video Games sector from different EU countries were interviewed and have confirmed willingness to pay, and estimate that our AltaGram4.0 platform offers a new potential for the Video Game localization and culturalization sector. AltaGram4.0 was also successfully presented at renowned global events: February: Casual Connect, Berlin; March: GDC, San Franscisco; April: QuoVadis, Berlin; April: Nordic Game, Malmö; May: LocWorld, Barcelona; July: ChinaJoy, Shanghai.

AltaGram 4.0 will increase our profitability and growth because we will be able to add a culturalization management platform product on top of our culturalization services, reaching more developers and publishers who need an integrated and automatized system. The platform itself is also localized in French, German, Spanish, Italian and Chinese Simplified, which will allow us to reach more developers.
During the execution of the Ph1 project we received several requests from various players of the Gaming Industry to use our AltaGram4.0 technology.