Several hundred years ago, men first observed the twinkle in the stars. In recent years, scientists have come to learn that this is not merely atmospheric fluctuations producing the twinkle; rather, their light is briefly cut off entirely. While optical observation has been unfruitful, magical observation has revealed something interesting: Those shapes have massive mana concentrations.
Just outside the Havens' sphere of influence, incidentally...
While Darkwatck01 and Lumiere are currently the only players using one, I may choose to dabble in it at some point too. For both my own sake and others, I'd like to gauge player preferences on the subject. Should we...
Write just the foreign language, and let the players translate? Pros: It preserves the mystery of the foreign language. If the whole point of using that language in the story is to avoid being understood, translating it would ruin the story beat. Using foreign languages also lends an authentic atmosphere to the writing, which can be lost if translated. Players should not be pulled out of the experience; they should be immersed into it. Cons: The players may miss out on crucial interactions, and it can be frustrating to players who would rather not waste effort translating or don't have the resources to. Additionally, it could be taken as an expression of distrust- as if the other players aren't capable of roleplaying characters who don't grasp a foreign language.
Write both the foreign language and its translation together? Pros: This gets to keep part of the mystery of the foreign language, while also giving players a ready means of interpreting it. Consider putting the translation in a footnote. Cons: Whether it's translated on the spot or in a footnote, the reader must break from immersion to read the translation. If it's translated on the spot, it makes using the foreign language redundant. If it's translated in a footnote, the player will either have to break their train of thought to go read it, or check it out long after the context is lost.
Write only the translation? Pros: This allows players to see the full text of the foreign language speakers, and lets them share in whatever story beats the text has to offer. Cons: There is a higher risk of godmoding- from other players. Where a foreign language might would leave us personally clueless as to its meaning and we write accordingly, a translated language can convey the usual array of thoughts and feelings, which can bleed into our responses when they shouldn't. Additionally, secrets cannot be hidden behind a translated foreign language. The characters might not know them, but the players will, and sometimes keeping the secrets from the players is more important.
Compromise! Use foreign languages when no other characters know it, and translate when one or more characters do know it? Pros: This gets to keep all the perks of a foreign language, while also maintaining a degree of plausibility when other characters can understand it. Cons: Judging who knows it and who doesn't can be tricky. Make a mistake, and a firestorm starts. Sticking to one or the other, translate or no translate, reduces conflict potential by introducing consistency.
To be honest everything I'm writing as far as in German is being run through Google translate so that way when it is converted to English it sound better at least. Then again an accurate translations are never 100%.
I have no personal objection as a roleplayer with the use of foreign languages to substitute for actual foreign languages in the world we are inhabiting. As a roleplayer it lets me consciously keep myself in the dark about things I have no business knowing for my character.
As a reader I think it detracts from the joint story that we are writing and enjoying together as some of the nuance of the interactions require the use of a translator to attain.
Trying to balance between my enjoyment and the choices as a roleplayer and the choices I would make as a reader is sometimes hard.
I think they way I would encourage resolving this, is if only the characters who know the language or should know the language indulge in translation, (this requires the honor system). Or all language be handled in our accepted common dialect for writing, in this case english, and that writer discretion be used to limit meta gaming, (this also requires the honor system, but lets everyone enjoy the writing to the fullest in the process.)
Still working on it. I've been mulling over ways to get us past the Council. * Dragon attack? Like, should Abraxas suddenly attack the castle and force an evacuation? * Spy for the dragon is suddenly revealed? What does he do, detonate? * Do a timeskip? One minute, we're in council, next minute, THIS IS SPARTA!! * Wait it out and just nudge it to go faster?
Once I figure out how this is going to happen, I'll have the next post up in a hearbeat. Until then...I may need a couple more days. :3
I feel like the meeting should happen in course, we are worrying about speed before the thread has managed to develop a natural rhythm. The council is mostly in agreement already, take that agreement parlay it into a course of action and trigger the first arc of the story. Things will move quickly enough now that we have settled on a path, and once we settle on a way to pursue that. Then you can directed story at events or introduce a character to participate with which you can use to help guide us and interject relevant information.
In any case I think too much focus is on getting this going, and not enough on developing the story and getting a natural rhythm for posting for the thread going.