Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Zelda - Genmu no Sunadokei

Zelda - Genmu no Sunadokei

Lately I've been playing through Zelda: Phantom Hourglass in Japanese (Genmu no Sunadokei). It's such fun!! I definitely don't recognize every word, but I understand enough to know what the characters are talking about without looking things up in a dictionary. (Having played through the English version years ago helps, I'm sure!)

Knowing the kanji has been the biggest help, as you can usually guess the meaning of the word from the meaning of the kanji alone. This game has been recommended again & again online because the pronunciation pops up when you touch a kanji with your stylus ~ a feature I'm sure was added to help Japanese children who do not yet know all of their kanji, but very helpful for foreign learners as well.

I shouldn't say that I've put down the dictionary entirely while reading along, though. I'm not used to reading such small and stylized kanji, and you often loose a lot of the details in the compression. I frequently use the pop-up pronunciations in order to look up the word to figure out what kanji they are actually using. It's been great practice for reading small type, a refresher on kanji that is not currently in my vocabulary list, and a fun way to learn some new words along the way! It's such a tragedy that the newest DS games are starting to put in a region lock so that I won't be able to play them without buying a Japanese DS.

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