Monday, 17 September 2012

Dungeon Frost Hell World Part Fourteen: Languages

There are seven groups of languages; if you are fluent in one of the languages within a group, and hear or read something in another of the languages within that language group, you may make a roll of 2D6-2 + Int in order to be able to understand it according to the following chart:


  • 6- You have no idea what it says.
  • 7-9 You can just about get the gist of it, you think. Your GM may, at his or her discretion, keep some information from you or mislead you slightly.
  • 10+ You can fully understand what is being said / written. 

Each character starts with a number of languages equal to 2 + Int mod. If you have a -1 Int mod, that means you start with your native language and maybe a few words in Trader. Your first and second languages must be your native tongue and Trader respectively.

Anari Language Family

Anari: The language spoken in the Magocracy and Alantaris Isle, and spoken by many of Anari background throughout the lands.

Aspirian: The language used in Aspiria, a remnant of the Anari Empire, and closely associated with Anari and Classical Anari, but with several dialectical changes.

Chalcian: The language used in Chalcis, another remnant of the Anari Empire, again descended from Classical Anari and with borrowed elements from Anari and Aspirian. 

Classical Anari: The ancient language of the Anari Empire, though even there towards the end of the empire's days, Anari, Aspirian and Chalcian were more in common use except amongst the nobles and scholars. Effectively a dead language, though often used by Anari priests, wizards and scholars. Many noble documents are still written in Classical Anari.

Trader: A pidgin language based partly in Anari and partly in Saxa. It was originally used by Anari slavers to their Saxa slaves, but for centuries has been used more by merchants of both races in order to conduct deals. The non-human races have often picked up the language not through trading, but because it is an easy language to learn, and thus they can communicate with humans of all varieties.

Saxa Language Family

Auld Saxa: The ancient form of Saxa, mostly oral, with few written forms of it. A more poetic sounding language, but one more difficult to master.

Saxa: The modern form of the Saxa language has several loan words from Anari and other languages, simpler rhythms and grammar, and a more extensive written form.

Trader: A pidgin language based partly in Anari and partly in Saxa. It was originally used by Anari slavers to their Saxa slaves, but for centuries has been used more by merchants of both races in order to conduct deals. The non-human races have often picked up the language not through trading, but because it is an easy language to learn, and thus they can communicate with humans of all varieties.

Vindari: The language of a related group to the Saxa, the Vindari, who inhabited the lands now covered by the Cairn Lands, Trond and Heldalund. The Vindari as an individual culture gradually died out, as they intermixed with the larger Saxa culture, and the language is all but dead now.

Northern Language Family 

Finnari: The language spoken by the nomadic Finnar peoples who wander the northern Winterlands. It is mostly oral, but a rudimentary written version does exist.

Tuomi: Tuomi is the language spoken by the northern Tuomi tribes. It is mostly oral, but a rudimentary written version does exist.

Vendahl: The language spoken by the savage Dargar-worshipping barbarians of the Winterlands. It exists only in an oral form, the Vendahl being well-known for their destruction of any sign of civilization, such as books and writings.

Dead Language Family

Heligi: The Heligi were a culture that thrived in what is now known as Heligioland. Little is known of their culture, and few can read what few texts remain of their language.

Selari: The Selari kingdom was found in the north, partly in the unclaimed lands below the Hellfrost but mostly within that icy realm. When the Hellfrost hordes appeared, their realm was utterly destroyed, and there are few remnants of their culture. It appears that they were a sun-based culture, Sigel being their patron, and their magic being solar-based. 

Vindari:The language of a related group to the Saxa, the Vindari, who inhabited the lands now covered by the Cairn Lands, Trond and Heldalund. The Vindari as an individual culture gradually died out, as they intermixed with the larger Saxa culture, and the language is all but dead now.

Elven Language Family

Fey: The language spoken by the intelligent denizens of the forests, the fey folk, those strange multitudes of myriad creatures that inhabit the elven woods, the treefolk and the like.

Halfling: The language of the Halflings, a lilting tongue that has borrowed from the Trader language, but which has a non-spoken element that can affect the meaning of the words used. 

Hearth Elven: The language of the Hearth Elves, based on the Fey language but with a wider vocabulary and an elaborate written form.

Taiga Elven: The language of the Taiga Elves, very similar to Hearth Elven, but with elements similar to those used by the Frost Dwarves and even some of the northern human races. Simpler than Hearth Elven in many respects, but more easily understandable and quicker to speak.

Dwarven Language Family

Dwarven: The language spoken by the Frost Dwarves, accompanied by a Runic alphabet thought to be descended from the Old Runic language family but still quite different. Despite being spread over a large part of the world, Dwarves from various Holds can easily understand each other, regional and dialectical changes being few.

Orcish: The language of the Orcs and the goblins, also spoken by many trolls, ogres and giants. Thought to be descended from Dwarven, and sharing much in the way of common terms, though with a debased grammar, and a more violent and simplistic pictographic written form. 

Old Runic Language Family

Black-tongue: The language used by demons and by the sentient undead, an archaic language that hesitates on the cusp of comprehension, even to those who do not know the language - as if there were something primal to it.

Drake-tongue: The language of dragons. Seldom heard, sibilant, and often accompanied by untold devastation of the surrounding area. 

Frost-tongue: The language used by the hordes of Hellfrost creatures that descended into the world to do the unholy bidding of their icy god, Thrym. Often used by the Frost Giant lieutenants of the Thrym, the Hellfrost dragons, and even by some of the evil god's minions (frequently in ritual worship, for example).

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