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It sounds silly, but for me chat bubbles is one of the most important features regarding players interaction.
Without it i feel muted. It hinders player interaction and takes away the cities life. When you are out in the world its even worse, people don't usually mind the chat box at all. It evens make swearing or boasting pointless after you kill an enemy. DF1 didn't have it, DF UW should have !!!!
Played DF1 for some good months and rarelly talked to anyone besides guildmates or alliance members. But even inside those "friendly grounds" communications was difficult.
Chat bubbles is a simple feature, i hope they implement it this time.