Dubtitles is a term used by fans of multiple language screen media for subtitles that are a direct transcription of a foreign language dub created to replace the original voice track. These therefore are not accurate translations of the voice track, rather they are a localization based on the choices the studio producing the dub have made. They are often a consequence of the inclusion of subtitles to complement the dub track, and consequently they are not timed for the original audio track.
When one watches a film or plays a game with the original language track and has the dubtitle track selected a number of problems can occur:
- The subtitles (as mentioned earlier) are not timed to the original audio, therefore there may be timing issues (sometimes quite severe)
- The subtitles are from a localisation, therefore may have name changes, added/removed jokes, added/removed cultural references and so on
- Timing issues as a result of the localization needing to lip-sync the visuals to the new voices
- Extra/no subtitles displayed due to lines being added or removed to scenes
- The subtitles may also include sound effects if the media in question only has a language track for hearing impaired individuals
- Far longer/shorter subtitles than the audio appears to be due to different languages (this is often seen in English subtitles for Japanese tracks, due to casual Japanese speech omitting many words, having shorter nouns and verbs and sometimes having more meaning in far shorter sentences than English allows)