3 minute read


I’m Alex and this is my blog.

I take care of localization at Coffee Stain Publishing, mixing the roles of a loc lead and a loc engineer. I joined over 2 years ago, and it was quite a journey. I had to learn a lot about Unreal and Unity along the way. Before Coffee Stain, I used to be a freelance translator, then a localization PM at a loc agency. I also did a bit of sales, and eventually led a team of loc PMs before switching to the product side of things. Now, it’s been like 16 years since I started translating games… and I’m happy that it led me to this role at Coffee Stain.

I’m intereseted in localization and loc-related workflows, automations, and integrations. Currently, I work with games using Unreal Engine and Unity. As our loc hub and CAT tool, we use Crowdin. Plus Google Sheets for collaborative spreadsheet stuff. I mostly code in Python, but also a bit in Javascript (in Google Apps Script). I’m okay with Unreal Blueprints and I can read C++ and C#.

So you can expect me writing about all of that here, with more focus on Unreal than Unity, at least for now.

I have a bunch of reasons to start this blog:

  • Surfacing localization-related information. It was pretty hard for me to find information on a lot of things related to localization and Unreal Engine when I joined Coffee Stain. Some of it I found in other people’s blogs. Now I want to give back and share what I know and learn, and maybe it’ll help someone.
  • Sharing what I do as a loc lead here. I am myself inspired by things that other people do in the gaming and software industry, and now I feel like I’m ready to share something fun myself, and maybe inspire someone to go for the same mix of a loc and tech roles that I have.
  • Finding other people who are interesetd in the same stuff. I have plans and ideas, and I’d love to team up with other people who want to improve localization-related workflows in Unreal and maybe Unity.

I have developed some stuff already, came up with some ideas that I’d love to share and discuss. I aim for the most of the stuff I do or come up with to be public or open-source. Most of it lives on github: https://github.com/xabk.

Right now, I have the following stuff to share, and I will post about it all in detail later. All of it is work in progress but here it is nevertheless:

  • Loc Tools: a bunch of scripts to automate and improve loc workflows in Unreal Engine, and also integrate it with Crowdin. The goal is to make it easy to deploy and configure them for new projects.
  • Issues Exporter (Crowdin → Google Sheets): a simple Google Apps Script that exports all comments and issues into a neat-looking spreadsheet. Works even if you only have translator permissions.
  • Loc Checklist that I use when I check out a new project. It’s a living thing that I try to improve every time I go in. I dig into the project in the engine early on, and try to find as many issues as possible—and praise as many good practices and decisions as I can :)
  • Unreal PO Format Spec: Unreal uses PO files in its own way and here I tried to describe the differences from the standard PO format.
  • Swap PO: a small script that can swap msgid and msgstr in a PO file, and then restore it back after you’re done with it.

That’s about it for the professional intro.

Bio: I’m 37, I moved to Stockholm almost a year ago and I love the place. I’m into running, hiking, and just walking a lot. I swim, and I love cycling as well. Naturally, I’m crazy enough to do triathlons sometimes. I also love reading, mostly sci-fi and fantasy books. I’m curious about typography and design, UI and UX, programming and science in general.