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Linguaholic
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A fun way I've found to learn new vocab


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Hey everyone, I thought I'd share a fun way I've discovered to learn new vocab words.

I started playing a Japanese role playing game. It's all about the story and dialogue so there is a lot of talking in it. It's fully voiced, so I can understand what is being said even if I can't read all the kanji yet. When I encounter a word I don't know, I look it up in my dictionary app and add it to a list. My dictionary app has a way of listing words by tags, so I can just pull up that list for study when I'm not playing the game. It's been really helpful!

Granted, I do learn some irrelevant words (when am I going to use 'kekkai' in everyday conversation, for example), but for the most part I'm learning things that seem very helpful. I just ignore most of the characters' rude/casual speech, and pick out the vocab.

I guess this would be less helpful if you didn't know enough to have a basic idea of what was going on, or a fairly large vocabulary, but it works great for me!

Have any of you done things like this? How did it work out for you?

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That is such a creative way of learning a language, although I think you would have to have a certain level of understanding already before you started playing a game like that so you could ignore the casual language. Because a beginner wouldn't have a clue.

I just wonder if I can find a portuguese version of this game. I don't play video games but this could be a fun way to learn.

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Ah, yeah, it really only works for me because I have a certain level of vocab and understanding already. I wouldn't recommend it for beginners. Although playing a simpler game, like Japanese Pokemon might be okay for someone who at least understood the difference between casual and formal speech. I use Pokemon as an example because it doesn't have any kanji! All kana, the entire game. :)

I don't know of any games in Portuguese since that's not a language I've studied, but there probably are a bunch! I just recommend role playing games because they have a lot of dialogue and so would probably be best for finding vocab.

And apexa you've got a point, maybe I'll need to tell someone something about a magical forcefield someday lmao! I guess I never know. :P

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  • 9 months later...
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  • 2 months later...

That's essentially what I've done. I've played so many Japanese betas (with no translation patches) that I have to puzzle out which katakana/hirogana in it in relation to what stats (Str, Dex, etc) and then when they fully voice it, and it's not subbed I feel I can understand the generals of the conversation. Don't ask me to respond, however. That's still a bit beyond me

But yeah, I've been touching up with some vocab words and pounding the Romaji into my head for how to spell certain ways.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's fully voiced, so I can understand what is being said even if I can't read all the kanji yet.

You figured something out from hearing it? That's awesome! One of my weaknesses when it comes to Japanese is listening because so many different words have the same reading (especially ON kanji, argh!) that even with the context, listening confuses me.

How do you understand it? Or it is a combination of context and having the script written in the game? Or maybe you've just mastered listening? Still really awesome though.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I've tried the same method as well and I can really vouch for it! One of my weaknesses is not being able to read kana quickly, and since there is so much dialogue in the game you're forced to read a ton and it's helped me out a lot.

I do recommend RPGs as OP says, but also be careful about the content in the game if you're starting out because otherwise the vocab you learn can be pretty irrelevant to start out with! I mean, I have Animal Crossing and by now I feel like I could work at a city hall in Japan!  :tongue: :tongue: :tongue:

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  • 1 month later...

Great idea! I've always wanted to play RPG games and watch Anime series in Japanese! But yeah I need to be at a certain level for your idea to work for me. I've already tried watching anime and tried to pick up the words that I've learned in Pimsleur tapes but I got frustrated  :speechless: I need a lot ore practice .

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  • 3 months later...

At my level, I couldn't learn Japanese that way. I just wouldn't be able to read the text as I barely know any kanji yet. It sounds like a great idea though. It must really immerse you in the language, which of course is always the easiest way to learn.

I watch anime in an attempt to immerse myself in the language, and I have picked up some phrases and vocabulary, but it's not easy to learn that way. If I didn't already have a basic knowledge of it from taking Japanese classes, I would be lost.

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