Languages you should, and should not, know

User avatar
xorena
Posts: 76
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2017 12:33 pm

Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby xorena Sat Sep 02, 2017 2:17 pm

When making a character I usually look up the region she is from. There are paragraphs upon paragraphs that describe these regions and their inhabitants: the color of their hair and eyes, how tall they are, their build. It also says what languages people in the region know.

I realize a lot of people want to speak drow here because of the significant factions involved, but it is really immersion-breaking when people can understand what we say. You need to have more than a flimsy excuse in your backstory for why your young, 20-something human/hin/gnome/etc speaks drow fluently.

"But this is a video game and I can do what I want, who cares what makes sense."

Ok sure. This means drow will likely come up with some other way to communicate outside of the view of others. I think that would be a shame.
Jentorei
Posts: 4
Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:45 am

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby Jentorei Sat Sep 02, 2017 3:18 pm

Pretty much. Rule of thumb is, first :

Your regional tongue ( Undercommon for Skullport native, or where you come from )
Then your interests ( Elven - draconic for an explorer searching magical artifacts, or your neighbor's tongues, like halfling or gnoll if those were your neighboring towns, or a tiefling learning abyssal as it seeks it's roots, etc )

First of all, I believe this tongue thing assumes that a PW would be on the surface. To counter this, I'd suggest granting undercommon for free to all PC's. Second, since drow qualify as neighbors to other characters, I think it's plausible for a non drow to pick the drow race. But still, that justifies a good reason for it. An elf hunting drow can learn it in some way, a yuan ti expecting to deal with drow can learn it as well ; but the standard adventurer would certainly focus on discovering old magics, which means elven, draconic, dwarven, and to some extend, drow.

A guy from the surface has almost zero business learning drow, and I do feel there's more people understanding drow than there should be.
BlackmoreKnight
Posts: 12
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2017 6:56 pm

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby BlackmoreKnight Sat Sep 02, 2017 7:28 pm

"If you took a language that no one else took, did you really take it?"

Anyone that's done PWs for a length of time will know that there are only a small subset of languages that ever come up in RP. Elven, Drow, Dwarfish, Halfling (maybe), Sylvan (Maybe), Abyssal/Infernal/Celestial (Sometimes). And since the point of languages is to communicate, people are going to take the languages that people use even if it means they have to get really flimsy about their backstory to do it.

No one uses regional languages because common suits it just as well and regional lore isn't something that most players are well versed in. I've seen a regional language used once or twice between characters this whole server.

Now that said if you and a friend conspire to take an obscure language together then you have the ultimate in whisper. ;)
Herald of Talos
Contributor
Posts: 74
Joined: Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:36 pm

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby Herald of Talos Sat Sep 02, 2017 11:52 pm

On a note for those 20-something drow-speakers, I think much of the solution lies in what you mentioned yourself; fluency. As for any language you just recently learned, you should consider your character's vocabulary to be limited, or poorly translated in a way that it exposes it's not your native tongue. That's just my two cents though; otherwise, I wouldn't go about limiting what languages people may or may not be learning when migrating to a region where the most common languages used seem to be common, undercommon, and drow.

P.S Undercommon, rationally, would be prioritized before drow as a language in the upper/underdark. It's simply more commonly used.
User avatar
Max Hatchet
Posts: 93
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2017 1:45 pm

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby Max Hatchet Sun Sep 03, 2017 11:46 am

We do have the slight complication in that Drow is supposed to be a dialect of Elven (Underdark Sourcebook) and the question being that anyone who understands Elven can make some sense of Drow and vice versa.

From Underdark Sourcebook:
"Languages: Drow speak Undercommon and a dialect of Elven that features many words and constructions borrowed from their Underdark neighbours. They also have a unique sign language..."

Obviously the language widget does not allow for this subtlety.

The idea that Drow still speak the original elven tongue is overidden by the UD sourcebook and makes much more sense that they are two separated dialects and drow do not speak Elven dialect normally.
User avatar
Trinital
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:31 pm

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby Trinital Sun Sep 03, 2017 4:17 pm

We plan on overhauling languages soon. How they are chosen and what they offer.

The goal is to solve a few large issues mentioned in this thread:

- There are too many languages that no players pick and thus become irrelevant pitfalls with zero RP capital.
- There are too many people picking languages purely for meta-game reasons.
- Because everyone has picked X language, everyone coming in feels they should pick it too.

I think if we scale down the amount of languages and grant them based on Racial / Class / Background choices. Not only can we par down on how many useless ones that we have but we can also make your languages feel more meaningful.

Intelligence will still play a role here, we will give some flexibility but if your character truely studied a language not native to them, then that should require more investment then "Ya I picked up some drow once" and should probably come at the cost benefit of something else.

This will also help with "Drow-Syndrome" Where a new player coming in, feels stupid for not picking drow because every single person including humans and elves are speaking casually in it. (It's really a self-feeding issue, the more people who picked it, the more people who feel they have to pick it)

(This will likely be a part of our Background overhaul patch, or very close to it)
User avatar
Max Hatchet
Posts: 93
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2017 1:45 pm

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby Max Hatchet Sun Sep 03, 2017 5:13 pm

Well, i would continue to argue the opposite regarding Drow - Drow is not a secret language

a) its a dialect of elven so anybody knowing elven could understand much of it and/or could learn the dialect quickly if they already spoke elven

b) anybody born in Skullport or having lived here for some time is very likely to have picked it up particularly if they are a trader

c) 1% to 2% of the populations of all the major Drow cities (Menzo, Sshamath, Undrek'thoz) are composed of free human traders who would ALL speak the drow dialect - many of these would be returning to the surface from time time
User avatar
rapsam2003
Posts: 59
Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:50 am

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby rapsam2003 Sun Sep 03, 2017 10:27 pm

Ok sure. This means drow will likely come up with some other way to communicate outside of the view of others. I think that would be a shame.
And how is it a shame? Drow sit there in full view of the entire city and jabber away with their secret plans, because "well, only Drow and Half-Drow understand Drow". You don't think immersion breaking to everyone else, to have a bunch of Drow jabbering away in a non-Drow city, in the middle of the Tradeway?
A guy from the surface has almost zero business learning drow, and I do feel there's more people understanding drow than there should be.
Bullcrap. A guy from the surface could easily understand most Drow, if he knew Elven OR - get this - spent any time with someone who traded in the Underdark.
TheSpaniard
Posts: 65
Joined: Thu Aug 17, 2017 3:30 am

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby TheSpaniard Mon Sep 04, 2017 3:48 am

Ok sure. This means drow will likely come up with some other way to communicate outside of the view of others. I think that would be a shame.
And how is it a shame? Drow sit there in full view of the entire city and jabber away with their secret plans, because "well, only Drow and Half-Drow understand Drow". You don't think immersion breaking to everyone else, to have a bunch of Drow jabbering away in a non-Drow city, in the middle of the Tradeway?
A guy from the surface has almost zero business learning drow, and I do feel there's more people understanding drow than there should be.
Bullcrap. A guy from the surface could easily understand most Drow, if he knew Elven OR - get this - spent any time with someone who traded in the Underdark.
Sorry, what's immersion breaking is that you have to worry about some guy eavesdropping from over two hundred feet away with a person you're having a conversation at your table. You're in the trade way. A crowded area with merchants, skulkers, and adventurers. It makes sense that you can talk about something in a crowded area, and not worry about people knowing every word you say, of every sentence. It's an unfortunate reality that the game engine only allows you to whisper, or talk aloud.

Also, "no one plans murders or seedy deals at a crowded cafe or restaurant," said no mobster ever.
User avatar
Max Hatchet
Posts: 93
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2017 1:45 pm

Re: Languages you should, and should not, know

Postby Max Hatchet Mon Sep 04, 2017 9:01 am

Sorry, what's immersion breaking is that you have to worry about some guy eavesdropping from over two hundred feet away with a person you're having a conversation at your table. You're in the trade way. A crowded area with merchants, skulkers, and adventurers. It makes sense that you can talk about something in a crowded area, and not worry about people knowing every word you say, of every sentence. It's an unfortunate reality that the game engine only allows you to whisper, or talk aloud.

Also, "no one plans murders or seedy deals at a crowded cafe or restaurant," said no mobster ever.
This is a diversion. By FR lore Drow is NOT a language. If the server DMs/Admins wish to rule it a separate language by server lore then fair enough but otherwise its just a dialect.

Return to “General Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests