According to this Wikipedia page
, French is supposed to be a language raising problems when you try to speak in a gender-neutral way. However, I am confident that I can always find a way to translate a text into French in a gender-neutral fashion (I can completely transform the text while maintaining the same meaning). I don't know if it is the same with the other languages.
I don't know if gender should be removed from the dialog system. Removing it has the advantage of simplification. But keeping it improves the expression power. For instance, without it, an NPC can not display a sexist behavior toward the player.
In my opinion, the right thing to do (keeping or removing gender specific speech) depends on the amount of workforce we have :
- if there is not enough people working on tmw, go for simplicity and remove gender speech
- if there is enough people working on tmw, go for features and create three types of dialogs (gender-neutral for non-binary players, female, and male)
We could also go for flexibility, by allowing the "lg" function to take either one or three arguments. If only one argument is given, it's a gender-neutral dialog. If three arguments are given, the first is the gender-neutral dialog, the second is the female dialog, the third is the male dialog. With this system, the first step of development is to write a working code with only one version of dialog. Then, when it works, if someone wants to improve the dialogs, they can do it by adding female and male specific dialogs.
Another thing I would like to point out : in the translation system (Transifex), the identifier of a sentence is the English sentence itself. This means that if the same sentence appears two times in NPC dialogs, it has to be translated the same way in both cases. This is not good, because the same sentence can have several meanings, depending on context. So we should be able to translate every sentence as we wish, even if that exact English sentence is already used in another dialog. This is not entirely off-topic, because translation "freedom" makes it more easy to rephrase sentences in a gender-neutral manner while keeping the same meaning.