The Witcher 3 Getting Slammed Over Korean Language Screw Up

The Witcher 3 Getting Slammed Over Korean Language Screw Up

The Witcher 3 supports numerous languages at launch, such as Korean, for instance. At least, it is supposed to. Hence the problem and all the angry people in South Korea.

This was supposed to be the first Witcher game with proper Korean localisation. On May 14 (you know, LAST WEEK), CD Projekt RED appeared in a YouTube video, thanking all the country’s Witcher fans:

Fast forward to today, when the game was released in South Korea. Gamers bought The Witcher 3 with the expectation that it would be in their language. Finally! For the console versions, it was. For the PC version, it’s not. This is a big problem in a country where the PC dominates.

Website Game Meca (via tipster Sang) reports the game’s Korean publisher Bandai Namco Entertainment Asia said, “It is true that there was a delay in applying the Korean localisation due to development time.” That might’ve been good to announced, you know, before people bought the game, no?

This afternoon in Asia, Bandai Namco issued a formal release, apologizing and stating that the Korean language was not included on the PC version. At all. How’s that for an omission? The language will be added in a patch on May 21.

Online, things are a bit of a clusterfuck. While has updated its page to say the Korean and Japanese language versions will be delayed (it seems they are in the same pack). The Steam Store, however, still shows language support for both Korean and Japanese.

The Witcher 3 Getting Slammed Over Korean Language Screw Up

The Korean Steam Store page is currently getting bombarded with negative review after negative review. People aren’t knocking the game. They’re raging. Many stayed up late to download the game. Some even took time off so they could play. They feel tricked and cheated by localisation that wasn’t promised, but is now delayed after they have already made their purchase.

As this article on Naver (via Sang) notes, folks who pre-ordered physical copies of the PC version paid the equivalent of US$65 — plus, and it is shipping today. But if you apparently walk down to your local game shop in South Korea, you can pick up a physical copy of The Witcher 3 on PC for around $US59, which is slightly cheaper. And you can always put off that in-store purchase until the patch is released.

Below, as translated by Sang, you can read a handful of Steam reviews from Korean gamers. Note that the new Korean reviews for The Witcher 3, including the most helpful ones, are negative:

“Why can’t I change to Korean?”

“It says Korean is supported but there is Korean upon running the game.”

“Why is there no Korean?”

“I’ve waited all night long, and there is no Korean. Shitty arse game.”

“The developers are back stabbing bastards. They have mentioned Korea as a special region in their interviews and omit it on the release lol. And now they say they are sorry and it was omitted. They are not solving the issue today but tomorrow lol. You bastards, does Korea look funny to you?”

“Hey hey, why is there no Korean?”

“I bought it because it was being localised into Korean, but there is no Korean. Got fucking backstabbed. I just wasted my money. Why did I buy this? I bought it because there was supposed to be Korean. What are you going to do when there is no Korean and graphics are downgraded too. They have no basics. Fuck..fuck…”

“Why is there no Korean? I’ve been scammed. It said Korean is supported but it’s not there.”

“Why did you fuck us up by group together Korean and Japanese language pack so we can’t even play when it is released? Do you know? It’s like saying the game is out in Poland on 19th but you can play it few days later since it is grouped with German language pack”

“There is no Korean. I’ve pre-ordered it because of Korea but got backstabbed. I am looking for a way to get a refund. How do I do that?”

“I’ve waited all night long and there is no Korean. Are you kidding me? It says Korean is supported on the interface and subtitles which is why I bought it. I thought my eyes were fucked up so I looked everywhere on the language setting and can’t see it. Bait and switch.”

“It was official Korean localisation but there is no Korean on the language setting. Backstabbed.”

“I’ve been scammed.”

“Why isn’t this localised? You said it was localised. Why is there no option to change the language to Korean? If you were going to be like this, why did you even bother giving us the thank you message?”

“What’s the reason for not supporting Korean when you said it does?”

“There is no Korean on the language setting. I feel like I’ve been backstabbed.”

“Scammers not supporting Korean. Is there a way to sue them? I am furious.”

In case you missed it, be sure to check out Kotaku’s Witcher 3 review.

To contact the author of this post, write to or find him on Twitter@Brian_Ashcraft.

Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.


  • all I read was whaa whaa whaa, and I say that as person who couldnt even install my collectors edition today due to disc problem (thankfully I could redeem code and just wait forever for download). Look i get people are disappointed by obviously there was a screw up, these things happen. its like people complaining cos their train is delayed and somewhere a few k’s ahead someone is being shoveled off the tracks.

    sometimes crap happens. no need to act like its the end of the world. I laughed my ass off while screaming a bit when my $200 purchase was nothing but a drinks coaster for a while there, after waiting two years.

    • Gamers seem to be the worst when it comes to things like this. It’s like they’re entitled to have everything served to them on a silver platter, while they sit a their desk twiddling there thumbs.

      God forbid if they don’t get that silver platter.

      • Dammit, that’d explain why I’ve been sitting here at my desk twiddling my thumbs for the better part of an hour and nobody has brought me my God-damn Kim Chi flavoured copy of the Witcher 3.

      • Dude, they’re not exactly rioting in the streets over this. They paid for a game which was promoted as being released in Korean, a game that isn’t exactly cheap and is more or less unplayable without an understandable language option, and then upon installation of the game they’ve discovered that the Korean language compatibility clearly advertised on the box isn’t an option.
        Given that they’re dealing with a company that does speak Korean relaying messages from a separate company that doesn’t speak Korean it’s a little tricky to track down why this happened this close to the problem being discovered (which is how ‘we’ll fix it right away’ turned into ‘we’re still working on localisation,’ two very different messages). Once you factor in that this is a weird mistake to make, it’s understandable that some of them think they were outright lied to. Whether you guys are above being upset that you were sold a faulty product or not it’s not unreasonable for these guys to be frustrated, especially if communication problems from the distributor make it seem like they were aware the product was faulty when they sold it.

        You guys are complaining gamers are bratty but you’re here cracking the shits and getting super judgmental at a ridiculously broad group of people whose circumstances don’t interest you simply because they have the nerve to leave negative feedback when they didn’t recieve what they paid for. That seems like a way bigger character flaw to me.

        • And you believe a proper response to that is to rate the game 1 out of 10 without taking some time to give the developer that have bend over backwards for gamers some benefit of the doubt?

          Now that we know what the mistake was and CDPR have apologised for it, it should be a two way street and those who behaved rudely should apologies as well. Or are we holding each other to double standard here?

          • I dunno. You pay for a game localised to your country, it’s not localised but the console versions is? And you can’t play it due to that? I’d say that’s worth rating it 1/10, if only because, come on, what the hell? What the PR side said doesn’t even ring true. Localisation clearly was done, it’s on the console versions after all. They could have even released it as a Day 1 patch. Hell, they could have even said something before it was launched. There’s little to no excuse for that screw up

          • lets fly over there and rock the devs roof they are obviously horrible people and obvious they deserved to be made to suffer, one petty 1 star review at a time. In fact what we need is big lynching, Hammer Horror style with pitchforks and flame. A global launch of a massive game featuring a large amount of globalisations across multiplatforms, I dont know what your work place is like but mine can barely function with 30 odd people, let alone something so huge. Some one dropped the ball, that doesnt mean the other 200 odd who spent three years building this deserved 1 star reviews. Keep reviews for talking about the game, unhappy go to a forum or two

          • I think giving a game 1/10 when it’s fundamentally broken is pretty reasonable.

            If it were a shmup or something I might feel differently. But it’s a deeply complex RPG, pretty much unplayable without a valid translation.

            I wouldn’t give a game like that 1/10 myself; I would wait and see. But I really understand why people have been giving it such a low review mark. How long since those discs were pressed? The console versions, which I gather are fine, were presumably pressed at the same time. Why is the patch not already available?

          • I don’t see how giving a company 1 star is the equivalent to making devs suffer or lynching them

          • I was going to say it was an over-reaction… but I thought more about it…

            If you bought any other product which was gimped in anyway that you could not completely functionally use you would be giving it a 1/10 as well.. like say you bought a vacuum cleaner and the whole production line had the wrong hose. Sure the company will replace yours for free and will most likely be recalling everyone else’s as well as ensuring the next production runs are fixed but at the end of the day you wouldn’t be a happy chappy and neither would you give it any higher than “1” until its been rectified

            Yes it will be patched and fixed and yes some of the harsh language is definitely uncalled for. But rating something 1/10 for a launch title you couldn’t play Day 1? Yeah that’s perfectly understandable in my books!

          • By the same token, Steam reviews are a way of judging whether it is appropriate for you to buy a product.

            If the game doesn’t work as intended or has major issues which render it unplayable (unless you speak another fucking language), then maybe that’s something prospective buyers should be warned about in a user review.

            I have absolutely no problem with Steam users review-bombing a broken product on launch or for as long as it’s broken if it serves as a way of warning buyers to not trust what they’ve been told on the store and to actually see if it’s working yet.

            Granted, many may forget to go back and update their review, but that’s why it’s probably a good idea to make sure that you sell things which work.

          • It’s about the only thing Steam reviews are actually useful for. I mean lets face it even if the game was terrible 1/10 Steam reviews aren’t going to kill it. Even with smaller games that spead via word of mouth they don’t hold much sway.
            Plus at the end of the day CD Projekt Red don’t treat their fans well just so they can buy their silence in situations like this. Their loyalty and hopefully their understanding and trust? Sure, but they don’t expect to be able to dodge accountability when they screw over their users. I’d go as far as to say that’s probably the opposite of what they want.

          • Yeah, reading Steam reviews is always an exercise in filtering out the complaints about obscure show-stopping bugs which only affect 0.01% of users, promises that weren’t fulfilled to kickstarter backers or beta testers, jaded reviews from users who’ve sunk three-thousand hours into the pre-Steam version, and inarticulate drivel that communicates that they think the game sucks, but not why.

            But if you can find the criticisms who actually clearly outline the negatives, that’s usually my favourite determining factor in whether to buy a game or not.

        • they arent reviewing the game they are voicing there discontentment in juvenile, unhelpful, and petty way. This isnt the foirst only game that is being hit by this sort vote down bollocks. More than likely I bet a lot of them arent even affective they have just jumped on the hate train. It got old the last million times the sheep have tried to derail game launches.

          Look at all the messages they are almost the same, scammed this scammed that. An unfortunate mistake/oversight at launch does not warrant petty 1 star reviews. Got a problem jump on a forum or a few, there is no reason for petty reviews

          • I agree to an extent. Yes the language in the harsher “reviews” are definitely uncalled for. A simple stay away until Korean patch is applied is more than enough

            But the 1/10 for being unplayable is quite understandable in my books.

          • A mistake that makes the game unplayable, while the store page continues to incorrectly advertise it after a week. Of course it’ll get slammed.

          • Get real. How else do you expect people to warn others not to buy it yet because it’s unplayable unless you speak another language? A huge part of the benefit of user reviews is that they can serve as a warning that what the store page is telling you isn’t true, and to investigate more closely.

        • People like to say the most astounding things at times… when it’s not happening to them. Imagine getting a game you have been waiting half a year for and you have organized with your wife to take care of the kids and taken a day off work. You sit down ready to play, only to find your game is in Russian, Polish, Chinese, or any other language other than your own. See how you like it now. Ain’t nothing getting that annual leave back. lol.

        • It is unreasonable to resort to rage when logic gives you a far more productive path. Racism is understandable to a degree but it’s still wrong, just like unchecked and uncontrolled rage based upon a lack of perspective. Thinking you are lied to is not being lied to, being disappointed in something shouldn’t always set in motion an ignorant cycle of thought.

          • But is this rage or just a bunch of short bursts of frustration in the form of totally harmless* Steam thumbs up/thumbs down reviews? Sure if you imagine these people as screaming this stuff at their screens it’s rage, but that’s generally not how this goes. I mean you and I aren’t posting transcripts of what we say to our screens, blinded by emotion, and we’re nothing special. I’d wager the bulk of them just went on with their daily lives after posting. Maybe a little grumpier than they were before but that’s not unreasonable. Probably less grump than they were before they made their review because venting is actually good for you.
            You’re just looking at them in that brief moment where they were pissed off. Cut someone off in traffic and they’ll yell. Watch someone throw their arms up after just missing their train. Watch them realise they left their wallet at home. If all you ever see of those people is a photo of that moment it’s going to look like they’re bursting with rage, just waiting for a chance to strangle someone. Even stupid, angry, psychotic maniacs are more complex than that.
            Venting in a moment of frustration isn’t the same as pure, sustained rage. It just looks like it when you’re dealing with this many people because you take literally thousands of comments, lump them together and read them with one voice (and in this case you’re reading the words of a translator with no cultural explanations). If 10,000 people stub their toes at the same time there’s going to be a combined yell of ‘FUCK!’ that will shatter your ear drums and echo for days, but that’s far from a riot. As an observer the stream of frustration seems like infinite rage in the moment but the individuals tend to just yell once, rub their foot for a minute and then keep going.

            *Seriously, it’s yelling in the wind, worst case scenario is that a kid reads a swear word.

      • I’m sorry but I agree with them they paid for an advertised product and something different was delivered to them. That’s grounds to be shitty.

  • There are two kinds of problematic expectations where Witcher 3 is concerned.

    One is that it is a nVidia tech demo that while devoid of any game play and story does run at steady 60fps and looks awesome on your PC and hence forth meeting someone’s expectations.
    Two is that something is either an hour late or not supported just yet, because that totally is not a double standard where expectations from other, much larger distributors is concerned.

    In both cases people seem to think that rating the game 1/10 is a proper response to the above.
    Sounds like Witcher 3 burned their house and got them fired or something.

    Yep, let’s be all entitled and rude about what we want from our developers, after all there is no way in the world we could erode their good will by being that way.

    • You’re mistaking ‘entitled’ with ‘unjustifiably self-entitled’.

      Because when you buy a game that advertises itself to be in your language… then yes, actually. You ARE entitled to have it be in your language. That is a VERY REASONABLE expectation, not a whiny nit-pick.

      And you are entitled to a refund, and to warn your friends-list who see your reviews on their Steam activity list about the problem by making the game ‘not recommended’.

      1/10 is horse-shit. There is no ‘out of ten’ rating. Would you call a broken product 10/10? Because those are your two choices.
      “Can’t understand what’s going on because it’s not in my language, but other than that minor problem, it’s a 10/10 game! Thumbs up!”

      Get real.

      • Saying something reasonable because people like to be able to rage doesn’t make it so. Anger is a choice and when you grow up your learn how to control it. Saying it’s reasonable when it’s not doesn’t make it so and just because one gives you more comfort doesn’t mean it’s reasonable. Try your excuses for your own unchecked rage elsewhere, get real.

        • Where did I say that a ‘1/10’ (ie: ‘Do not recommend’) review is equated to anger and rage? I wasn’t excusing flaming, I was arguing for the right to complaint as a ‘proper’ response. The right to expect a working product – a right that’s actually enshrined in Australian consumer law.

          Disappointment and frustration are normal, healthy adult responses and the desire to warn others by writing a negative review is a socially responsible one, a healthy outlet for frustration, AND a vital part of the consumer feedback process that keeps businesses in line and accountable for their miss-steps.

          If you can’t distinguish the difference between complaining and rage, then you’re the one projecting your development issues on others. If you don’t think frustration over a broken product is a healthy adult’s emotional response, then you really need to seek some counselling.

          I wish I could say that adults grow out of making baseless and ignorant assumptions like you’ve just made about me, but we both know that’s not true.

  • Well if it’s ready to be patched in it was obviously done as promised, someone clearly made a mistake in not adding it, it happens.

  • Some people take minor omissions and mistakes waaaay out of proportion and make it out like the developers have run over their pet dog and litter of newly born kittens all at once

    • *cough*
      Not having language support on a product which relies on a LOT of text and reading isn’t something I would call a “minor” omission

      How would you feel if you’re copy of WItcher 3 only had German/Polish at release after being advertised for english support? You wouldn’t be able to play it properly unless you think alt-tabing to GameFaqs every few seconds you picked up an item or wanted a quest is “fun”

      • i wouldnt jump onto Steam and given it a 1 star review, I would be pissed and go to the forum and speak my mind. I certainly wouldnt act like some of those people above. Its a computer game, chill out and do something else. Then vent your anger at the company try to get some free stuff for your trouble. Anyone who thinks posting 1 star reviews is somehow important or powerful really doesnt know much.

        And i say that as person who couldn’t install my collectors edition from the discs due to packing error.

        • Steam doesn’t have 1-star reviews. It has thumbs up or thumbs down.

          And if shit doesn’t work, it’s a thumbs down. If it later works and is good? You can change it to a thumbs up.

          If enough people get uppity and rate ‘thumbs down’, that means you have a good reason to look more closely at what the problem is.

          These reviews are MEANT to influence purchasing decisions. And if the game is broken and you can’t play it, then why the fuck would you buy it?

        • Here’s the thing though…

          A packing error isn’t the same as a full production run problem. And yes I sympathise w/ the situation you were in. I nearly quit PC gaming a few years back when it took me almost half a day to install Dawn of War II because of all the goddamned DRM + updates it required…

          But as I said there is a difference between a small derp that makes a few people an inconvenience to get it started. As opposed to a production mistake literally making it unplayable for a whole market.

          At the end of the day you were still able to install and play your game. Sure it was a goddamned pain in the ass to do so but you got to play and enjoy it .We are talking about a whole market literally unable to play because a feature advertised/support is simply not there. Are you saying all of Korea should just “suck it in” and deal with being unable to play a game they paid full price for?

          As I said some of the harsh language is definitely uncalled for. That being said as a consumer you’re also entitled to a reasonably working product when you purchase something.

          Honestly gaming is the *only* commercial product in the world where companies can get away w/ releasing substandard products and be *defended* for it and this is not to say CD Project is a terrible company. I appreciate their approach and their great pubs and devs. And look I get that it was a mistake and easily fixed. But any other industry out there? A “mistake” would lead to a recall for fix or refund and people wouldn’t be up in arms at people who complain about the short-comings that led to such recalls.

          Yes the overuse of really pathetic and petty nitpicks as complaints have made it look like every “complaint” is a sign of entitlement. It’s not. Complaints still have merits in context and has some uses. “Putting up with it” isn’t always the best solution otherwise you are asking for bad production practices to continue.

    • You buy a game and said game arrives and is in another language you have no chance of understanding. The biggest drive for such a game is the conversations and dialogue options you make through the world that alter game play. Seems like a pretty big omission when they would’ve known a head of time seeing as the console version had said language. A single PR release saying hey if you speak “X” language, wait a week until we have a patch to put your fabulous language in.

    • Yeah it’s simple, learn English…
      Wait hasnt kim Jong conquered the south yet? man Koei Tecmo should make a game Glorious Leader Warriors… would play the shit out of that..

    • Indeed! “Oh no, I can’t the video game I want to to play for 24 hours! The world is ending!”

      Yes, it’s annoying, I get it. I’d be annoyed too, but would I be raging on the internet and giving the game 1/10? No, I’m a sensible adult that would just wait 24 hours while being a little annoyed about the delay, play the game and see what I think.

      Unless of course it’s a game I actually want to play, then I’ll be straight onto Twitter giving the devs hell! 😉

      • Ermmm…. it’s more than just “unable to play for 24 hours”

        Anybody who cannot understand english in Korea has practically bought a copy w/ all moonspeak as text and won’t understand diddly squat until Korean is patched in on the 21st…

        • I understand that, but it’s the 21st today. So they fixed the issue in 24 hours, which in the scheme of things is pretty quick imo.

  • If this is the only problem with the Witcher 3 at the moment then it’s doing a lot better than many titles at release.

  • There’d be cries to burn CDPR to the fucking ground if the game was released in ANY popular english speaking region without the english language pack… Even if it was a mistake they could fix within minutes.

    So it is beyond hilarious to me all those babbling like the south korean customers acting like they are would be any different to what would happen if the situation was applied to say US customers instead.

  • Ah yes of course – because no English speaking gamer anywhere in the world is an entitled brat or a giant man-baby. It’s as though some English-speakers think they would be cool with it if they took The Witcher 4 home and found it was only in Russian, and English wouldn’t be patched in for 3 weeks. You wouldn’t be able to move anywhere on the net for all the 1/10s.

  • Now a few words from TISM

    Forget Generation X
    Here’s Generation Me
    Spit the dummy
    If you’re looking for the breaks
    But you ain’t got what it takes
    Just come down with the shakes, and
    Spit the dummy

    Spit the dummy
    Chuck a wobbly
    Have a paddy
    Spit the dummy

    The only way to get the perks
    And climb above the other jerks
    Turn on the waterworks
    Spit the dummy
    The world is a great big melting pot
    There’s those who do, and those who do their block
    Why shoulder the weight of society
    When a tantrum or two will get you what you need
    Babies have got it right
    Wake up crying in the night
    Every time you get a fright
    Spit the dummy

    Jesus stuck up for the meek
    Said “turn the other cheek”
    But that’ll put you up shit creek
    Just spit the dummy

    3 days after official release and they will have what was expected.

    • So your saying if you buy a car or a book or any product at all…

      It is perfectly fine for such a product to be unusable on day of purchase unless you wait X days for a fix?

      • It is if you can still use it. The way I read it, all that was missing was the voiced language pack, it still had the subtitles and interface. **After a check on external links, it seems that there is no language pack at all for Korean or Japanese customers, not even subtitles, now that’s a different matter and an issue.

        • *cough*

          Yeah that was the point =P

          It was completely unplayable because there was no KR language pack at all. Maybe next time try and read the whole drama before committing to very snide put downs? =P

          EDIT: Yes I am also aware of the irony of this self satisfied snide put-down! XD

          • Tism are still around?
            Not being mean to tism, Greg the stop sign was the greatest song ever. Just surprised their still a thing.

          • Unfortunately they are no longer together, one member passed away a few years back. But still a good band to listen to.

  • Ok. So they bought a product that didn’t match the advertised functionality and they are complaining and people are calling them entitled? Wtf?

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