I was looking for a subject to write a column about this week when a topic was created in the game forum. It’s a topic which has been created multiple times before, so I decided to investigate this matter further. I’m talking about the possibility of choosing a Dutch language package in order to play Bootleggers in Dutch. Thus far there are only two languages available, and the staff isn’t considering releasing any other language packs.
The topic I came across was about a bug in the feature. The problem there being that when a player uses the Dutch language package, and sends out an invite for an organized crime or an escrow, the game sends out a message translated into Dutch. I’ve had a talk with some of the staff members regarding this issue where Aldarion first said: "It appears that they are very hard to fix which is the reason why that has not happened yet. The idea was to keep the packages updated regularly but I don't think it is up to date at this moment."
This conversation happend in the Buzz forum and so Mika added: “Not at all. When BSF2000 approached us with the idea he wanted the entire game to be translated as soon as possible and he started sending me the translation packages which I then forwarded to Aldarion and we translated them as soon as possible and sent them back so they could be incorporated into the game. Currently, everything that we have received has been translated (which is what is currently available in the game). Since then we have brought the subject of translating the game up several times and BSF2000 has expressed the desire to get the entire game translated and to start sending the files he needed to be translated, but so far that has not happened yet.”
Aldarion added after that: "It actually is a bug in the coding as English players should not receive Dutch invites, but the matter is very hard to resolve and as such it was not fixed yet. Next to this, there is unfinished work too. (Even if all translations were ready the bug would still be there)."
Is this yet another feature which has hastily been implanted in order to make the game more appealing to players? It seems that way because this feature is not only bugged, but also unfinished. It has been there since the beginning of this round, and I can honestly say that it has only happened to me once before. This makes me wonder about how many people actually use this feature. First we need to know how many players are Dutch so we took a look at the statistics on the login page, but when we talked to Aldarion about this, he said: “the statistics on the front page are based on a relatively small population so I'm not sure if they are fully representative. Having said that, I'm sure the Dutch are in the top-3 of most active players.”
It may however not be as accurate as I’d hoped, but let’s just focus on it anyway. Let’s say that 25% of the players alive are Dutch, this means at the time of writing this article, that would be 3,403 players (1/4th of 13,612). So, how many of the total alive users actually use the language package? Again, Aldarion provided us with the answer being 235.When turning this into a percentage, it would mean that only 1,7% of the users online in the past 24 hours would use it. 1,7% of 683 is between the 11 and 12 players. This is a ridiculous low amount and could possibly be the reason why the entire game hasn’t been translated yet. As a result of this we sometimes receive a Dutch invite to an organized crime, or an invite to escrow.
When knowing this, I think it’s fair to say that we won’t see another language pack available for us mobsters. Also I think it’ll take a long time for this ‘bug’ to be fixed. Aldarion told us there were multiple reasons why there wouldn’t be any other languages in the nearby future, but I do believe this to be the main reason. It’s just isn’t used as much (anymore). Yes, I say anymore. Because when looking back several years ago when there were much more players this could’ve been a much used feature which could’ve lead to more users. I think it’s fair to say it has been implanted too late already, with the amount of users on Bootleggers running low, the administrators should be focusing on the core gameplay and changing that for the better, as well as advertising the game in order to get those player statistics up again.