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Japanese language, again

Unread postPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2007 7:15 pm
by PriamNevhausten
So I'm sure at least some of you have seen those tiny advertisements that say something like "PLAY GAME LEARN JAPANESE" and thought nothing of it, because, well, it's a fucking banner ad, and we've all be acclimated to largely ignore that shit.

Well, it turns out the people (or person) who own(s) those banners seems to actually be on to something.

There's a downloadable free game thing there, that's kind of a take on the familiar CRPG shit going on, and it's pretty fun both as a language learning instrument and as a CRPG (however basic it may be). If you're at all interested in learning to read kana and a little bit of basic kanji, I highly recommend you check this shit out--firstly because reading katakana alone is unbelievably useful, and secondly because, well, this thing is fun.

The only thing that it lacks, and necessarily so, is a way to practice writing the characters in question. I'd love an in-game way to see the stroke order for some (well, okay, all) of these kanji. But I'm an obsessive motherfucker.


Unread postPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2007 8:12 pm
by pd Rydia
But I lack the bacon resources to follow these instructions.

Unread postPosted: Sat Sep 29, 2007 9:05 pm
by PriamNevhausten
That's okay. The bacon is patient, the benevolent ruler that it is.

Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2007 2:25 am
by Molokidan
Wow, this program is still getting updated? That's awesome!!

I remember using this back when it was in beta, in late 2003/early 2004 before I was about to head over to japan for the very first time. And it was AWESOME! Fun, and it helped me learn katakana/hiragana at an amazing pace.

Looking back on it now, though, it isn't so hot as far as kanji go. It teaches you individual symbols and how to read them (with their various readings) which is great and all, and can give one considerable ability over reading the language. What it doesn't do, at least in my experience, is work on compounds, or actual words that are created by the combination of the different kanji symbols. In that respect, it really gives the student no idea as to in which situations/words a kanji could be read a certain way, just that there are multiple readings for it. It's a good rote memorization tool, but has little real-life application, such as sentences, grammar, etc.

But it's still an amazing concoction, don't get me wrong. And it's cool to see that they've done quite a lot with it since I last played.

As far as kanji learning goes, though, I much prefer -- which, while it may not be as fun as an RPG, is a very useful flashcard system. Once you learn hiragana, you can use it easily, and be on your way to learning very commonly-used vocabulary words in Japanese. The great thing about this site is that it provides sentence examples, which helps out wonderfully, since Japanese itself is so dependent on context.

Sorry if I rambled a bit. Other than that, though, I'd say just read manga and use a dictionary (if you have a DS, you can buy a japan -> eng dictionary software that is AMAZING and sure beats buying a separate $300-400 mechanism) That's what worked for me. But I do talk like a thug on occasion.

Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2007 4:37 am
by PriamNevhausten
That speedanki site is not bad! I fear, though, that I am only able to make limited use of it, being as my comprehension of basic sentence structure in Japanese is, well, very basic indeed. So though I can read a few of the sentences on the flash cards (ironic--and somewhat counterproductive--that they should have a number of kanji on the flashcard reference-areas other than the ones being taught), I don't necessarily have any idea how things are put together using the structure being elucidated upon.

I guess if I were less of a jackass I'd do some stuff with the OCW Japanese course on the MIT site, but that feels too much like work, which is hard to compel myself into doing.

Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2007 10:14 am
by pd Rydia
Japan has a DS "game" for learning English, as I recall. I kinda wish we had something like that for learning Spanish. :[

Unread postPosted: Sun Sep 30, 2007 7:41 pm
by Molokidan
The DS has a CRAPLOAD of English-learning games. You can see them all on this page, there's like 3 pages. Even a Snoopy version!

They have a lot of kanji-learning games for kids and stuff too, though.

Unread postPosted: Mon Oct 01, 2007 11:32 am
by pd Rydia
It's the top two I remember seeing.

I don't think all of those are games for learning Japanese. I'm pretty sure I see Jam Sessions/Sing & Play DS Guitar M-06 on the second page there.