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alien languages

wilsonstone's Avatar


wilsonstone
12.30.2014 , 11:57 PM | #1
I'm just curious....in the game and even in the movies there are races that don't speak "basic" either because they can't or choose not to. But yet the player characters (and movie characters) understand them. Even droids like R2D2 or T701 can be understood.

I was wondering if there is any lore that explains it. Like "universal translators" or "translator microbes" or "babelfish" or anything. It doesn't make a difference, really, most sci-fi shows and movies just handwave the language thing, but I wanted to know I SW had any explanation for it.
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XantosCledwin's Avatar


XantosCledwin
12.31.2014 , 01:58 AM | #2
Quote: Originally Posted by wilsonstone View Post
I'm just curious....in the game and even in the movies there are races that don't speak "basic" either because they can't or choose not to. But yet the player characters (and movie characters) understand them. Even droids like R2D2 or T701 can be understood.

I was wondering if there is any lore that explains it. Like "universal translators" or "translator microbes" or "babelfish" or anything. It doesn't make a difference, really, most sci-fi shows and movies just handwave the language thing, but I wanted to know I SW had any explanation for it.
Most people in the Star Wars Universe are taught how to understand Astromech Droids while they are still children for the simple fact that that type of Droid is in such high usage throughout the galaxy due to them being mobile Astrogation Computers.

As for characters such as the Jedi, Sith, Bounty Hunters Troopers, Smugglers, and Imperial Agents knowing Alien Languages...

Bounty Hunters earn their living hunting down rogue elements in the galaxy. Smugglers on the other hand ARE the rogue element. So knowing the languages used by said rogue elements is a significant boon to their profession. The most commonly used Alien Dialect in the Galaxy is Huttesse which is also the one that you will hear the most in Star Wars the Old Republic. It is the language that the Hutts speak natively. It is also the language of the Criminal Element.

Imperial Agents are actually trained specifically to know as many languages as possible and to neutralize their accent whenever necessary. There is a significant element of acting that goes into their training as well. So them knowing just about any Alien Language they are likely to come across should be no surprise. Troopers probably receive similar linguistic training as Imperial Agents, just without as much training in acting.

As for the Jedi and Sith, that is easier to explain than all the others. There are two Force Powers relating to Language. The first is Comprehend Speech, which is a sub-branch of the Telepathy Powers. It allows the Jedi or Sith employing it to understand the spoken language of any sentient that they may encounter. The other is known as Theran Force-Listening, this allows the Force User to actually understand the words spoken by another being without having to skim the meaning of the words off of their surface thoughts by using telepathy. The latter ability receives its most notable use when Ahsoka Tano is forced to use it to search for clues as to the location of Aurra Sing in the Coruscant Underworld where Galactic Basic isn't something that is normally spoken.
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wilsonstone's Avatar


wilsonstone
01.02.2015 , 11:55 AM | #3
That makes sense and its not really an important thing. (language is never an issue unless its a plot device in science fiction anyway). I was just wondering if there is any canon lore about it. But then you'd have to assume that in a civilization like the republic and the empire people would be multi-lingual.
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