Simlish and many other game languages.
Simlish – The Sims
Perhaps the most famous language in our medium sprang from the limitless mind of gaming luminary Will Wright. Simlish originally came to life in 1996 with SimCopter, though a majority of us were most likely introduced to Simlish during our time spent with The Sims. As we played God with our tiny digital avatars, they would chirp at one another in a strange, seemingly indecipherable language. Though we couldn’t understand the words, their inflection and tone conveyed their current emotions quite well. Players could easily determine whether a Sim was panicked, calm, or in love depending on how they enunciated their phrases. Will Wright’s wise decision to create a fictional language was partly inspired by a fear that players would grow tired to hearing the same phrases repeated over and over again. If you invest dozens of hours into a game like The Sims, and your digital family begins sounding like a broken record, the illusion of immersion would be broken. In such, having them speak in fiction circumvents this problem altogether. Also, by not having a direct word-for-word translation, Simlish allows for the player to insert their own meaning into what is spoken, helping to create a more personal experience. Over the past decade, the language has blossomed into the tongue de jour for a bulk of the Sim-universe, and with 2013’s arrival of the new SimCity, it looks as if the language won’t be going the way of Latin any time soon.