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ArenaNet Content Designer talks lore and languages in Guild Wars 2

Rubi Bayer, @@rubi_

The languages used in the world of Tyria have always been a subject of great interest to much of the Guild Wars community. Players have been studying and translating the various languages and dialects spoken throughout the world for several years now, coming up with a full translated alphabet of Old Ascalonian runes, a chart of Canthan ideograms, and much more.

Content Designer Matthew Medina is the mind behind those languages that so fascinated players,and has plenty to say in the newest ArenaNet blog entry. In the game's early days, the community's enthusiasm for the Old Ascalonian runes both delighted and inspired him: "I was incredibly flattered that a number of players had taken such an interest in something that I was also passionate about. Inspired by this, I created other alphabets and writing systems for subsequent campaigns. Sure enough, groups of eager individuals fervently turned their attention to deciphering the new written languages."

So does that interest still hold? Follow along after the jump to see what Matthew has planned for Guild Wars 2.

"When we started development on Guild Wars 2 (thanks in part to the incredible enthusiasm of our lore aficionados) I knew from the beginning that I wanted to have a fully integrated set of writing systems that would include all the written languages we already have, plus a couple of new ones." His enthusiasm is carrying over easily to Guild Wars 2, and the promise of brand-new languages to discover and decipher is an exciting one.

Wait, discover? That's right, Matthew seems to have something even more elaborate in mind than we've previously experienced. He's been collecting the alphabets that we know now as well as creating new ones, and we've already seen hints of that in a few GW2 screenshots.

Not everyone is a big lore fan, so participation is completely optional, but he's got big plans for those who are interested: "In addition to the Ascalonian runes from Guild Wars: Prophecies, select Canthan logograms from Guild Wars: Factions, and asuran script from Guild Wars: Eye of the North, players will have the opportunity to read and translate examples of two new writing systems in Guild Wars 2. New Krytan is the alphabet most prevalent in the time of Guild Wars 2; it's the alphabet we used to create the signs seen in recent screenshots. The other language will remain our secret for now, but rest assured that if you see writing in Guild Wars 2, you'll almost certainly be capable of reading it."

This latest blog post is a fascinating look into an important part of Tyrian lore. Matthew's enthusiasm and love for the game is something that he shares with the community, and it makes what he's doing that much more interesting to read about. Take a look at the full post on the blog -- don't overlook Villem Caraga's words at the end -- and we'll keep our eyes peeled for the next bit of news from ArenaNet.

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