Guide of Modos
My language-actually-mattered games also require no more than five fingers. To me, it's less about making the gathering of information difficult, or presenting puzzles that must be solved non-verbally.For me, I think I can count on one hand the number of times language really mattered in a D&D game I was in. Occasionally a DM will ask what languages people speak and generally somebody speaks the right language. If not, if the info is hidden behind a language gate, we get the info some other way if it matters. It's rare for a DM to introduce an NPC and not have us able to talk to them.
Language has a pretty solid role in my games as defining who's an insider and who's an outsider. It's not about communication problems - using multiple languages (and dialects) is about defining classes of people, or the other D-word: discrimination.