Chants of Sennaar is a super creative indie game in which you’re tasked with learning strange languages and using them to solve puzzles. The game launched on Switch last year, along with a free demo. In terms of Sennaar’s design, developing entirely new languages was no easy task.

In a new interview with, the game’s designers, Julien Moya and Thomas Panuel, elaborate on exactly how they tackled the project. They emphasize that the languages were created first and foremost to serve the gameplay and story, rather than to function grammatically in reality.

The game’s languages are inspired by existing ones only in terms of form. As with the architecture of the sets, we generally proceeded by mixing two or three different sources to create something new. For example, for the language of The Devotees, whose culture evokes Mediterranean antiquity, we drew inspiration from Latin and Phoenician alphabets, with a touch of cuneiform. For the Bards, the script was created by mixing Arabic Kuffic and Indian Devanagari.

We were looking to create fantasy languages designed for the needs of the game. There was no scientific intent. The languages in Chants of Sennaar are puzzle elements like any others. They were created as part of a game design process, not a linguistic one.

[Julien Moya,]

Some of the fictional languages were inspired by real ones, as indicated above. However, those of the Anchorites, Alchemists, and Warriors, were apparently entirely made up.

Moya and Panuel also give insight into how the final language of the game is learned, as well as the struggles of getting their game recognized by critics and players. Click here to read the full interview.

Add Comment

Comments (0)

No comments yet. Be the first!