Language Learning System

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What do you think about language learning?

It's perfect as it is
28
38%
Learning languages should be harder and take longer
1
1%
Learning languages should be harder and have limitations and challenges to learning a language (e.g. Finding a 100% fluent tutor, tutor must agree to teach you, not just eavesdropping)
8
11%
Learning a language should be easier and faster
6
8%
Learning should be easier, but there should be more limitations and challenges to learning a language (e.g. Finding a 100% fluent tutor, tutor must agree to teach you, not just eavesdropping)
10
14%
I don't like language learning. Let me just have languages from my background / character creation, or spend points like with crafting
21
28%
 
Total votes: 74

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DangerDolphin
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Language Learning System

Post by DangerDolphin » Sat Nov 14, 2020 11:48 pm

No plans to change it right now, just curious.
Last edited by DangerDolphin on Sun Nov 15, 2020 2:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Emotionaloverload
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Emotionaloverload » Sun Nov 15, 2020 2:26 am

I think it is perfect as it is. You can in RL learn languages from listening to others speak. It doesn't have to be a formal lesson. Listening to conversation is actually a vital part to learning a language effectively.

That said, I do think it would be nice if you could use an minor/normal award to add a language to your character at creation to help round out concepts.


-S
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Xerah » Sun Nov 15, 2020 3:09 am

The language system is awful.

The type of RP that language learning lessons generate is hardly the kind that should be encouraged. I don't know how hearing the same line 5 times in different languages is really an enjoyable (IC or OOC) experience for anyone. The result tends to be afking in a class and checking in every 6 minutes. It is an okay system for casual learning if say you're out doing something else, but the kind of "teaching" classes are quite meh.

I'd personally prefer it to be instant. When you start, you get new languages = INT bonus. Maybe learning would be an option if someone invested in something like you can do in pnp (obviously more than 2 skill points in the concept of Arelith).

The other option I would choose is to make it much harder to learn and having someone know something other than common languages (i.e. get 1 language from a background and make learning 10x harder) though I feel that would still create (more) language classes so an incentive to do it another way would be necessary.

I know those are two very different sides of things, but one or the other would be better.
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CorsicanDoge
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by CorsicanDoge » Sun Nov 15, 2020 10:30 am

I've seen the Arcanum specifically do some really good language classes but usually it is some guy speaking in a language while you absorb knwoledge. Personally I like it as it is because if some gnome learned giant then I know that guy actually buckled down and learned it over the course of a couple of days. I know there's dedication there, somewhere, and making it instant would take away the luster loremaster has. Not all of it, but their instant languages is part of the package.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by The GrumpyCat » Sun Nov 15, 2020 1:55 pm

That said, I do think it would be nice if you could use an minor/normal award to add a language to your character at creation to help round out concepts.
I entirely agree. I'd love to see this.
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Archnon » Sun Nov 15, 2020 5:24 pm

I feel like learning a language irl is not a linear function but more like a log function. Early action produces big returns but progress slows and mastery takes a massive amount of time and effort. I think language learning in game should better reflect this. I would suggest:
- make people choose languages at startup based on int score and gifts. Grant an automatic 50 percent then. This represents childhood education in the language.
- make the remaining 50 percent towards mastery be based on both hearing the language and practicing speaking the language. This forces active RP. Make this curve extremely steep and the last ten percent require speaking to native speakers or perfect lore masters.
- create tiers of phrasebooks in the loot matrix with a master book being required for high levels.
- create literature books that when consumed can add 5 percent. But only when the character is below 75 percent. Cannot be copied.

This can appeal to everyone. Easier to enter the language game. Harder to master and forces rp and interaction. Finally who doesn't love the rp around people trying to speak a language. I find it to be super fun and always a good laugh.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by sarithia » Wed Nov 18, 2020 2:51 am

Emotionaloverload wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 2:26 am


That said, I do think it would be nice if you could use an minor/normal award to add a language to your character at creation to help round out concepts.


-S
As someone that isn't really bothered by the awards system, this would actually be something that would interest me.
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Bunnysmack
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Bunnysmack » Wed Nov 18, 2020 8:11 pm

I like the current system in terms of learning function, but I wish it had less of a absolute hardcap on number of languages. Like, maybe your int (and gift) determines the amount of languages you can get to full fluency, but after that you can get any number of languages to half fluency.

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Kalgoon
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Kalgoon » Thu Nov 19, 2020 7:34 pm

Currently, my main character is set to learn all 15 learnable languages, so he can teach them all to others. I get 7 through race/class (by level 30) so that's helpful but that means I have to learn 8 others with the current system. It is extremely tedious.

As it is now, I believe language learning relies on the number of lines "heard", not how many words/characters are in a particular line of text. It would help if it counted characters in a line, because not every person willing to spend any amount of time teaching you will suspect this or know of it. I spent half an hour conversing with someone and I only gained 2% progress. That is extremely disheartening to think of how much effort needs to be put in, even with the gift of tongues, high Lore, and Bard levels.

Then, not everybody wants to or can help you learn, because you're infringing on their own play time and IG business. I've had characters say "Let's get together some time and I can teach you." but it doesn't happen, because a plot drags someone away, they move on, or simply forget. Sure, there are scheduled language lessons, but the schedule isn't 24/7. Language Tinkers then? Haven't seen one yet, so I can't give an opinion on those specifically.

It'd be nice to have some kind of tweak to the system, like accelerating language learning at lower levels, to coincide with still gaining experience. It might also make sense to accelerate language learning as you get higher % fluency, since you start to grasp the language better, like adding a % of your fluency to the roll to learn a language. Heck, the consumable book for language fluency above sounds good, too. Perhaps being able to teach yourself by trying to speak in the language, but up to a daily cap of some kind.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Emotionaloverload » Thu Nov 19, 2020 8:43 pm

I do like the idea of a consumable book to teach yourself. Perhaps the book only has a small number of charges and you can only use up one charge every 24hours which will raise your language by 1%.

As it stands right now, language learning is a grind. The fastest I have ever gotten a language from scratch is 3 RL days with 5-7 hours every day of straight language learning, non-stop. Of course you can spread this out over time but even then people find the progress slow and disheartening (I love to grind and I am not easily dissuaded)

It might be nice to have some flavor stuff to move the learning along for casual players or those that just don't like the monotony of the language rp. Maybe you could even encourage adventuring by having genie merchant spawn that randomly spawns on you and have some special magic rock that you can use on the character to boost learning speed for an hour.

The UD has tinkerers and the surface has that one special language NPC place but maybe we could add some NPCs in libraries across the island. An elven mage in the new elven district that gives you a one time 1% boost or a Tower mage that gives sporadic draconic help.

Anything to add a bit more of a dynamic, if people are unhappy with it.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by WanderingPoet » Fri Nov 20, 2020 12:39 am

Language learning is the woooorst grind. Taking class levels that give languages instantly makes languages actually fun to use. Otherwise I've never had it in me to get to 100% (except once, which took me a year on Oscar).

The best classes are those that tell a story, or read books (I've hosted such myself and they were fun); but they would have been as fun without the language learning part. After spending 16 hours in lessons and only getting to 60% over the course of RL months, with an int 30+ was very disheartening.

I just want to RP, not sit there having people repeat themselves eight times until I understand it; and being useless at a language until I've spent 20 hours listening to words I don't understand.
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by -XXX- » Fri Nov 20, 2020 12:56 am

It's yet another wizard thing.

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The GrumpyCat
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by The GrumpyCat » Fri Nov 20, 2020 1:07 am

I'll be honest, I love the system just as is.

I find though, it's really only as grindy as you make it, just like a lot of systems.

Yes, if I silent-run-grind a place, eventually I'll get board silly. But if I join up with a crew, mix in some rp, do some chatting and character development it can be a lot of fun!

Yeah, if I sit there in a language lesson where someone is 'this is how you say cake' twenty times - I can get board silly.

But I've had some fantastic roleplay situations from learning a language. My personal favorite is saying the language once, then saying the sentence again in common. And holding a conversation with repeittion that way.

That way you get a bit of interesting rp as well as teaching.

'But Grumpy, It's not FAST! It's slooowwww!'

Yeah I guess it isn't the quickest way of doing it but... so what? In my opinion it's the journey that makes it worth it.

If you genuinly oocly hate language learning and you cannot even concieve of a slight way of making it fun? Then uh... don't... do it?

With Language Learning, as with Leveling, a swith Goal Setting - the best way to approach this is to make the journey enjoyable. Because that's what this game is about. Having Fun. If your entire game is focused on the destination, of sacrificing your own enjoyment entirely for some sort of promised award? Well... I hope you're very sure that award will be good.

(TL;DR: A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. Have fun with the journey, in whatever you do, and if you get to a good place at the end then that's a bonus. Also if you're having fun it goes quicker!)
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by ReverentBlade » Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:09 am

My wizard, who is Mulhorandi, a nation extremely familiar with the Celestial language in lore, is at roughly 50% understanding of Celestial after five real life years of dedicated handmaiden service to a good Cleric, and attending Celestial performances periodically.

It makes very little IC sense why she wouldn't be fluent in a language she should have started with, let alone after -five years- of real world time trying to learn it. And this is a high lore/INT PC.

The system is too slow. The system does not factor in character background at all. The system would greatly benefit from being able to choose a few freebies (I would suggest that fully half of the languages your INT mod would allow could be freebies) to represent your character's life before Arelith.

The system is literally designed to require a grindy approach to learning instead of a natural one from my experiences. I would honestly prefer -no- language system so I can just emote the languages my characters would know, half of which aren't even represented in the code anyway. I feel the system is an RP hindrance instead of a boon in its current incarnation.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by andthenthatwasthat » Fri Nov 20, 2020 9:54 pm

Xerah wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 3:09 am
The language system is awful.
That's a bit harsh. :)
Xerah wrote:
Sun Nov 15, 2020 3:09 am
The type of RP that language learning lessons generate is hardly the kind that should be encouraged.
Not all language lessons. I've had some good ones and some bad ones. I've given some ok ones and hopefully not so bad ones.

This is no different from any other aspect of the mechanics on NWN. Some players are grinding language percentage just like they are grinding XP. This is where DM's can step in (or not) and it certainly reflects on players RPR.

A good mechanism is the one that promotes good RP, true. But I think it is players' responsibility to go beyond the mechanics and actually RP language learning.

EDIT: I guess I just regurgitated what Grumpy already said... well, sorry. :|

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Ork » Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:39 am

100% agree with Xerah. Language lessons are right above managing shops with spreadsheets and the word "drowess" on the bad scale.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Kuma » Tue Nov 24, 2020 6:24 am

Please view my "its perfect as it is" vote as "it's good as it is but also i'd like to be able to choose languages at chargen, perhaps from cultural/location based backgrounds like in P&P".

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Seven Sons of Sin » Tue Nov 24, 2020 5:29 pm

There's a dream somewhere, where Arelith has Ethnic/Cultural Background part of character creation, and in selecting your region, you get the option of adding languages that arise from that region.

But yes, these "language events" which are functionally spam is terrible.

Language should be more closely tied to a Linguistics skill, rather than Intelligence. Comprehend Languages could be a scroll. "Languagebooks" could be found that give +5% advancement to a particular language.

Characters who learn a language (human learning elven) should not be able to increase the fluency of other non-elven speakers (other humans). "Primary" language-users should be the only ones who can pass on language.

I often ponder what would happen if everyone was given a "set" number of bonus languages, and it was not tied to Intelligence or anything else.

I also don't think tying classes to languages was a good idea.

What exactly are the role of languages in Arelith? It's communication, right? Private communication? Espionage? Obfuscation? Flavour?

It's a weird mechanic that straddles narrative/mechanics, and idk how I've ever felt about it. It's cool when the elvish warparty all speaks elven to one another when they stumble upon a wayward human knight on a forest patrol -

it's less cool when a party of epics start blabbering off in Jotun because they're so cool.
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Gouge Away » Thu Nov 26, 2020 1:26 am

It's probably too late for this to be a factor but I think it's a real shame languages are so easy to learn. Languages just exist as flavor now and they could have been so much more if it was rarer to know something that should be foreign to you. There's no point ever trying to switch to a language to have an insular conversation in public as chances are extremely high someone of a different race in the vicinity is still going to understand you. This works both ways, as there's also no amazement that (for example) a human actually knows elven-- which could be a good bonding moment to make friends from a different culture if it actually took effort, but now it's just a shrug because in epics it's almost rarer to find a human who doesn't speak elven.

I wish the language classes were discouraged at least, maybe even mechanically.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by AstralUniverse » Thu Nov 26, 2020 2:32 am

I've had some good language related RP, where it felt like a teacher-student(s) and there was progression to the lesson and not just progression in my language knowledge percentage. Then there are also those times where people just try to gain percentages asap and just do language lessons of several languages at the same time (As in you'll speak -dr I'll speak -un, the other guy will speak whatever they want and we'll all get %s in whatever we got a phrasebook for) and that's a catastrophe of text I've seen a lot and if the system incentivizes this mess because it's more efficient then we need a change.
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Re: Language Learning System

Post by JoeKickAss » Sun Nov 29, 2020 4:55 pm

I like the language system. I'd prefer if common was a language that had to be learnt, so only intelligent underdarkers/surfacers could speak with each other.

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Re: Language Learning System

Post by Ninjimmy » Fri Dec 04, 2020 4:30 pm

My only issue with the current system is it feels backwards - once you crest 50% it feels like you learn a hell of a lot faster than you do at the start and I feel like basics is easier to grasp than complicated concepts IRL.

Having said that, IRL you can learn basic phrases first rather than have a 3% chance of speaking a whole paragraph correctly so that might be just a limit of the mechanics.
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