Sunday, June 04, 2006

Campaign - FreeTrain Localization

[UPDATE 2009] FreeTrain was translated quite sometime ago, thanks to people who saw this campaign and helped out! It still only runs on Windows but there is hope of a port to Linux - contact the team via the mailing list if you think you can help. There is a project, website, forum. [/UPDATE 2009]

FreeTrain is a clone of A-Train. I can't find much information right now (please comment if you know where to look) but it's a long-running series developed by ArtDink and is primarily marketed to the Japanese. I remember playing A-Train 3 about 10-12 years ago and quite liking it.

The problem with FreeTrain is that it's only availabe in Japanese. The game needs localizing and translating. I have spoken to the author before and he's open to contributors. From the website:

I wanted to do a proper localization of FreeTrain to English at some point, but the game just doesn't have enough interest outside Japan to justify the effort to myself.

The lack of interest probably stems from the fact all the game material is in Japanese!

There is a mailing list linked on the game page. However, if you are really serious, I suggest contacting the author Kohsuke Kawaguchi directly - email also on the FreeTrain website.

So the first Free Gamer campaign is to get FreeTrain properly localized and translated into English. I don't even know if it runs on Linux. Not the most organised of campaigns but hopefully somebody will check it out anyway!

Update: Ok, I can confirm this is currently a Windows-only game. So the campaign is extended to porting it to Linux as well.


Darien Foster said...

Ooo, this looks fun. Unfortunetly, can't help on the localization, but I hope it does get finished.

Evil Mr Henry said...

First impressions:
Game requires Windows. Looking at the screenshots, it would be a rather difficult project to port to Linux.

Source exists, but only through CVS:

A substantial portion of strings seem embedded in the source. Locolization would be difficult.

Albert said...

It looks like FreeTrain is written for the .NET platform (probably done in C#), which simplifies the porting process because Mono can be used for the .NET stuff.
From looking at the website, it looks like it uses DirectX to draw the graphics and do the audio, which would need to be replaced with something like SDL.NET...

Anonymous said...

I've tried loading free train - but only get a blank window andfolders at the top in Japanese...

Has anyone got this game running in XP?

Charlie said...

I have created a sourceforge project for FreeTrain:

I'm going to upload the latest version soon and then start looking at how to make it run on an english system without it crashing.

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