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Article - 'Language Guide (Final)' by Guest

An item about Miscellanious posted on Aug 8, 2003

Blurb

Well, I've been through creating basic languages, making them more complex and now - in my final installment - I'll be showing you where to use your magnificent model languages. This tutorial may be a little shorter than the others, but it may just prove to be the most useful. Lets explore the ways we can use our languages then! ;]

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Way I: Foreshadowing



Now I'm taking it you all know what foreshadowing is? You know, giving the player/reader/participater a clue about something that will happen further along the story? Your language could easily do this! I remember on my old game, there was a Wolven phrase on a tombstone at the very beginning of the game saying "Death comes to all who are able to read these words." And in fact, the main character's race, including himself (the Wolvens) became extinct at the very end. Of course, nobody knew the language at the start, but there was a feature that allowed you to learn different bits of it, and by the time you beat the game, the cutscene showing Zephyrre's tombstone beside the one with the Wolven glyphs - his friend reads it and you'll finally know what it means. Of course, you don't have to put it all in the beginning!

You could put the same clue repeatedly throughout the game! Just make sure the player is clueless until the actual happening of what the clue is trying to tell them. I'm going to use another example from Delta Triad (because I can give away any spoilers i want, since it was never released to the community), and it was the Wolven symbol for wind, that just faded out of the screen at the beginning of every chapter. Zephyr has something to do with wind, and it was the only symbol I could think of to describe the main character who's name is Zephyrre. At the very last chapter, after the last battle and the death of the Wolvens, the symbol didnt appear at all.

There are many ways you could use your language to foreshadow, you just need to think them up!





Way II: Minigame/Sidequest



You could make a sidequest or minigame about actually learning the language. Remember how in FFX, you needed to collect all 26 Al Bhed Primers to learn the language completely? You could do something like that in your game. My current project has a total of 5 languages, each which you can learn by doing courses in the 'Foreign Tongue', a little language school. Give a few other ways a go, it could really add to the gameplay of your RPG! If you do decide to do this however, make sure there is some reward or something. Like if you learn the language, you can solve passwords located throughout your game's world and gain rare items or something. Like all Sidequests and Minigames, there should be a prize for completing it.





Way III: World Development - Races & Countries



One of the best ways to develop a world is to create your own races, countries etc. On Earth, the only race capable of language are humans, and they have come up with hundreds upon hundreds of languages, model or official. However, animals also have their means of communication through sound and expression. In RPGs, there are normally more than one species of intelligent life. There might be demons, angelics, faeries and others, each with their own form of language. All of these languages don't have to be complex, in fact they could be only slightly different from English. Like shoes could be 'footboxes' and swords could be 'piercesticks'. This sort of speech is perfect for creatures such as goblins or gnomes. I don't know why, it just seems to suit them in my opinion.





Way IV: Magical Spells



Hokus Pokus! Abra Kadabra - Alakazam! Magical tricks have always used such words. Why can't your game's spells have them as well? They could be done in your model language of course. This would greatly add to the uniqueness of your game ;]



Well, thats all the ways I can come up with really. I'm sure you guys could come up with a lot more anyway. :P

Until next time I write, cya!



- Arcon