Boy, I'm glad there aren't streaks

I started my kanji learning journey with Learn Japanese to Survive. I got halfway through the game and it helped me to see the radicals in kanji and not just some weird meaningless blobs. I tried Duolingo, Memrise, and some other sites, but aside from them just kind of throwing kanji in with no foundation, I kept getting bogged down and the streaks didn’t help. Why are they out here shaming me for not coming every single day? Why do you need me to feel like an alcoholic having gone drinking for forgetting a day or having something come up? It just makes me want to come back the next day less since it’s like I’m starting over. I do agree that a daily routine is important for many areas of your life, but just having the reviews the build up over that time in addition works for me. I think part of the reason I got burnt out on the other stuff was because I would not have clean stopping points and it was in vocabulary that I wasn’t really using. I see a lot of kanji just hanging around and it’s a lot cooler to see the ones I know than to maybe vaguely hear a word that sounds familiar, but I can’t remember the meaning. I am way more hyped about gathering more kanji and getting a level up than keeping a streak. I would have broken my streak a couple times by now, but with the flexibility, I hardly even missed a beat getting back to it or got demotivated by it. There is still frustration, but I can take it a little slower at points when I need to.


While it is definitely more efficient to work with a new language every day and build a routine, I’m also very negative on the gameify elements, many apps build in. It’s often times clearly in there to bind users to the app and get them to pay or pay more. And it seems to work really well on the subconscious level with most people.
In the end: Do what you want and when you want and never let an app tell you, when you have to log in. :smiley:

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For gamification elements, I really enjoy “level up” systems. The arbitrary reward of seeing the number go up gives me an artificial feeling of gratification to keep up the motivation.


I agree, I really appreciate it that there are no streaks! I don’t want to feel bad about taking a day off. A day off is important for preventing burnout. Going through all the levels of Wanikani is at least a full year commitment, so I’m so glad that they’re not shaming people for taking breaks.


I also hate streaks as well. I study probably almost every day and sometimes miss days. It always makes me feel bad coming back to see a streak broken. There really should be an option to disable viewing streaks for people who don’t want to see them.

If you liked the Learn Japanese to Survive game I recommend wishlisting Koe, Shujinkou, and Nihongo Quest N5.

There is also a manga that teaches Japanese called Crystal Hunters.


if you do take a break don’t forget about vacation mode!

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I too dislike streaks. I find it causes people to feel they have to log in and do reviews rather than because they want to. It makes it seem more of a chore. And the demotivation when you lose a streak is terrible.

Regarding “level up” systems, I enjoy them. Sure, some people feel gated by the system from levelling up, but as long as you aren’t cheating then the SRS system is doing its work. The only problem here is that if you start WaniKani with any knowledge of kanji then you have to put in the work to get through the early levels.

I do like the fact that WaniKani levels here mean something. If you see someone in the WaniKani community forum who is level 60 then you know they put in the time and effort to get there. Over on BunPro you can just check things as “mastered” and gain a ton of XP instantly so the levels don’t really carry much value in my opinion.


I think that days studied is more motivating than streaks because it never decreases. Loosing a streak feels like starting all over again, but in reality, continuing after a break is just adding onto your existing progress.

Days studied is available on Bunpro’s homepage, but I wish that WaniKani reported this on the homepage natively without scripts.


This is a bit of a problem for me. I’m on level three right now, trying to decide if this is going to work for me, but so far I have not come across a Kanji I don’t already know. I’m pretty sure I’ll go ahead and join when the sale starts, but I have no idea whether or not it’s actually helping me remember the Kanji.

You can take a look at the next levels’ kanji (main page → menu → kanji) and see your prospects, whether levels 4 and 5 will introduce kanji that you don’t know yet.
I’m at level 4 and going from 3 to 4 was very satisfying, as I suddenly learned many things I hadn’t known before.

“You can take a look at the next levels’ kanji (main page → menu → kanji) and see your prospects, whether levels 4 and 5 will introduce kanji that you don’t know yet.”

Sure. I didn’t really mean that I don’t know if WK will eventually introduce Kanji I don’t know. I am absolutely sure they will. What I meant was that, because I already knew all of the Kanji in Levels 1-3, I wasn’t able to determine whether or not the combination of mnemonics and spaced repetition will be effective for me. There was nothing to remember.

What I was able to see, though, is that I am more likely to keep coming back just to keep up with the lessons and reviews. If I were using RTK or some other book, I’d put it down in a week and forget all about it for months on end.

3 Likes also has this natively on the homepage. It seems I’ve studied 996 days. Longer than I thought. has srs, mnemonics, and allows you to mark various kanji as known, all of which are free features, so it might be worth giving a try while waiting a week for the WK sale.

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I’ll check it out. Thanks.

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i would not have more than a 2 day streak lol

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Oh, but it’s my favorite thing to return from vacation and open up Wanikani to see 2000 reviews… It’s like being welcomed home with a warm hug or cat piss on a towel.

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Regarding streaks, I love the system MM implemented where they give you a free restore streak pass every… 15 or so consecutive days? I agree they can feel demotivating once a you break a huge one, so another great feature is something like BunPro where you can disable seeing them altogethether.

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I agree as well, I think it’s good that WK doesn’t have any streaks. Having streaks makes it feel more like a video game than a platform to learn Kanji, and if you have ever played video games a lot, you probably know that it is hard to lose, right? If you were about to lose that streak, you’d probably start to cheat to not lose the streak, which would result in you not actually learning the kanjis, radicals or vocabularys.

I’m sorry if someone else has already stated that, but in case he did, I just wanted to point it out again, because this is what makes streaks in everything that’s not a video game very dangerous.

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Apparently I have a very unpopular opinion on that topic, because for me it’s the exact opposite. I would have NEVER learned as much as I had if it wasn’t for the ingenious way in which Duolingo makes me come back every day (and now even motivates me to do more than the bare minimum to get badges). Sure, some days I just go through the motions and probably don’t learn much, but most days it’s just part of my routine now and that’s the whole point. I do agree that it would be very demotivating to ever lose my streak though, so I think the whole streak freeze system is an integral part of it.

On the other hand, seeing reviews pile up on Wanikani has been immensely demotivating for me to the point where I stopped using it for months several times already. And the level progression doesn’t really do much for me. I’ve basically made my own streak system now (via a habit tracker, but I put the goal at 4 times per week) and I’ve been keeping up with my reviews in the most consistent way ever since then.

Ingenious like this?