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Norwegian

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  • A detailed article describing the Norwegian gaming language
  • Games market share
  • General demographics
  • Internet demographics
  • Gaming demographics

The Norwegian Gaming Language

The Norwegian Gaming Language is closely connected to the fact that the gaming market is regulated by a state monopoly. The state gaming monopoly is officially referred to as ‘Norsk Tipping’ which loosely translate to ‘Norwegian Betting’, and you don’t have to look further to start the highly relevant linguistic discussion of Anglicism in gaming.

Translation of odds is key

‘Tipping’ is traditionally referred to as betting on sports, originally used to describe a form of sports betting where you chose the outcome (1X2) on one betting slip of 12 football games played during a weekend. You are given the (costly) option to ‘halvgardere’ and/or ‘helgardere’ which are literally translated as to fully (1X2) or partially (X2) protect one’s retreat.

This traditional betting variant is still being offered, but as Norwegian Betting expanded its games portfolio to include options for everyday action in order to compete with online gaming companies like Centrebet and NordicBet, betting on fewer games per betting slip became increasingly popular. The state gaming monopoly chose to brand this betting type as “Oddsen”, which translates from Norwegian into English as ‘The Odds’.

Ideal target for online gaming companies?

Norway are among the richest countries in the world, so naturally the population there was an ideal target for online gaming companies that generally offer higher odds than the state monopoly. More and more online gaming sites choosing to translate and localize their betting, poker, bingo and slot machine platforms from English to Norwegian, but there is still a great deal of discussion regarding best practice of Norwegian gaming translation.

As we have shown, a key term for discussion is ‘betting’, as in the activity of predicting sports results and placing a wager on the outcome. There are three translations of the word that are all correct in a strict sense, but we have a strong preference towards using the Norwegian translation “odds”.

“Tipping” connotes both to the state gaming monopoly and to the traditional 12-pick betting slip, whereas “vedding”’ connotes a closer connection to gambling. Gambling is a word frowned upon per definition as it is the opposite of gaming which typically refers to instances in which this activity has been specifically permitted by law.

The Norwegian translation of ‘betting’ as “odds” has two further advantages. First of all it translates identically in singular and plural, offering a rare simplification in a language with rather complicated grammar. The second advantage is also about simplification. “Odds” in Norwegian must be considered Anglicism, as it descends identically from ‘odds’ in English, which is defined as the ratio of the probability that an event will happen to the probability that it will not happen.

What about poker translation?

The term “odds” is also used as a Norwegian poker term, usually put together as pot odds which refers to the ratio of the current size of the pot vs. the cost of a call. So if you find yourself playing poker against a Norwegian player in a live casino (not in Norway as casinos are banned) and you hear him say the words “implisert odds”, he is talking about implied odds – the possible future size of the pot, and you should tread carefully as he probably knows what he is talking about.

At All-In Translations we are firm believers that Anglicism should be avoided when equally good translations are at hand, but not at the cost of an awkward sounding translation that is less understandable. As you can see the Norwegian syntax and wording is very similar to English, which gives few problems when gaming language is localized. It is one of the most expensive languages, but then again few if any population in the world has a higher gaming gross revenue budget per capita.

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