Chinese localization team: Jianxia localization company was responsible for the localization for Total War: Three Kingdoms (including Eight Princes DLC) and Total War: Warhammer II in China. As one of the oldest gaming localization company, they're renowned for accurate translation and flavoured text that adapts game atmosphere beautifully.
However, it was rumoured by one of the formal team members, that another company bought Jianxia. In order to transform the localization business into a more profit-oriented model, old localization team was kicked out before the DLC "Mandate of Heaven".
During the "Mandate of Heaven" beta, Chinese players found out the quality of Simplified Chinese translation has gotten significantly worse, particularly comparing to Traditional Chinese version. Many basic grammar errors were found, and the trace of machine translation was obvious and infuriating.
CA is picky
The outrage broke out when one of the alleged team members from Jianxia company posted on the message board of Total War: Three Kingdoms Chinese community. He/She claimed that "You guys didn't buy the Mandate of Heaven, you guys have no right to complain the translation work". He/She further instated that "If you guys report this to CA, the release of DLC is going to be interrupted" as the localization team will purposely delay the future work.
One of the internal group messages from Jianxia company confirmed such a claim. One team member, whose name is censored in the screenshot, states: "CA gave us all the scripts and they demanded us to focus on every little detail. They are picky. We are translation company not [historical] academics, we don't have time for details
The leaked screenshot further enraged the Chinese Total War community, and many of the community members started to send complaints to members of CA. However, currently, none of the CA members that is active in the Chinese community has responded to the complaints.
Jianxia started damage control by making the "reasonable" argument online. Since Total War: Warhammer is also localized by them, one of the team members made a post on the Chinese Warhammer forum, titled: "Jianxia is responsible for [localization] quality control, but the biggest beneficiary is Warhammer players."
In the post, the Jianxia member states that: "Warhammer players hate 3K, so when the quality of 3K localization is poor, they rushed into 3K forum and mocked them. He also claimed that Jianxia member never said the player has no right to complain, and that was done by the hands of Warhammer fans because "they wanted to sabotage historical titles." He then added: "We shouldn't make the translation incident a big deal, because we [Warhammer players] are benefiting from this drama."
Of course, no one in the comment section believed his claims or legitimacy that the poster is a real Warhammer player. Since Chinese Total War community is significantly smaller than that of Reddit, there isn't much of a divide between historical and fantasy titles. And Chinese TW players mostly play both.
One user responded in the comment section: "Stop lying and dividing the community". Other user replied: "Somehow everything was done by the WH fans? We're to the blame?", "Paid [damage control] account, Chinese Total War players don't have much of a [fantasy vs. historical] divide. And somehow we wanted to sabotage the game we love to play?"
The gloomy future
One of the community administrators of Chinese Warhammer forum went to investigate the recent quality issue of Jianxia. He concluded the investigation: "Previous localization with amazing quality was due to the fact that Mr.Jianxia is a die-hard fan of Total War series." After the company got bought, Mr.Jianxia left Jianxia localization company. The current company is nothing but an empty shell full of unqualified translators.
"Game translation requires specific skills, and we could see the quality has gone down quite a bit recently. And don't think you could just play the traditional Chinese version, the localization company for traditional Chinese was bought by Jianxia not too long ago. I believe we won't see any good translation of Total War in the future anymore.
"Please SAGA, stop using Jianxia. They're not qualified for the job on Warhammer III or Three Kingdoms.
The controversy of Chinese localization is still underway. With the poor localization effort made by Jianxia, the future of the Total War franchise in China is in uncertainty.