Easy Reviews: A Beginner's Guide

I’m a new user to Wanikani but I see so many posts that follow a similar theme to this and can’t help but think everyone is missing the point.

How best to do reviews, what userscripts to use, reorder your lessons/reviews and so on and so on. Whilst I know these tips come from a good place, it seems to me that most folks are overcomplicating things and focusing too much on how to learn rather than just getting on and learning.

It seems entirely pointless to me to race through all these reviews and lessons - how much of the content are you really, truly remembering? The idea is to learn kanji and vocab words not be the first to smash through level 60.

I think all you really need to do is make sure to review every day. The lessons can be done at a slower pace me thinks.


Totally! The point of WaniKani that it is your kanji journey and you can do it however you want. The point is to learn, not even to learn it WaniKani’s way, but to learn it your way. They’ve always been great about supporting subscriber made scripts.

And also yes. Racing though to 60 is absolutely not the best idea. I highly promote going at your best pace. For those who’s pace is 7 day levels, they could have prior knowledge of kanji for instance, then I wanted to let them know that this system works with their speed as well.

If you want to go slower then great. Do less reviews a day.

The main problem this guide is meant to solve is getting reviews at all hours of the day randomly. Many people get 5 reviews per hours at random hours of the day. It seen screen shots of their review schedule and it stress me out.

If you learn lessons in the morning, review them in four hours, and again eight hours after that, consistently for you’re whole WaniKani journey you will always have a nice chuck of reviews to complete in the evening.

If you do 20 Lessons a day you will complete in around 1 year and 3 months.
If you do 15 Lessons a day you will complete in around 1 years and 8 months.
If you do 10 Lessons a day you will complete in around 2.5 years.
If you do 5 Lessons a day you will complete in around 5 years.

If this guide isn’t useful to you, or at least not yet that’s fine. It’s for people that want to better understand how they can use WaniKani, and edit it to there needs.


I edited the guide again to highlight that consistency is the goal, and to hide parts of the guide that teach you about leveling up in 7 days.

Thanks for your considered reply - it was refreshing not to get flamed like I probably would elsewhere on the tinternets!

I’m also sorry if I came across too harsh - your post is actually really helpful and smartly thought out.
My reply was more a general observation as a newcomer to these here parts. I’ve also seen a lot of chat over on Learn Japanese reddit that delves into ever deeper mechanics of learning Japanese efficiently rather than just, you know, knuckling down and doing the hard work!

Thanks again for your thoughts mate :smiley:

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Not specifically talking about this guide, but most advice that people give are things that you’ll realize as you go. Not all needs to be applied right at the beginning, but most will be useful at one point in your journey. Wanikani is a year+ project. Reading a text in 30mins will condense advice for hundreds of days of learning :slight_smile:

I do agree that actually doing and building up consistency is key, don’t get me wrong. But I also think that this “overcomplicating” advice is not that overcomplicated and definitely useful. So many people were doing reviews every hour because they taught they’d make their progress go faster before people started recommending a schedule/explaining how reviews work.


This is the important lesson:

Any time you try to do huge chunk of reviews or lessons to get ahead (or to catch up!), expect that huge chunk to come back and hit you in the face again days or weeks later. Doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or if you’re someone with a pile of neglected reviews.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to get back to my 300 apprentice items. :sob:


Yes exactly. I have gotten to level 9 and failed off, I’ve experienced the overwhelm, and as I headed in to my second time, I wanted to make sure I didn’t make the same mistakes a second time. I saw myself last month wrapped up in the fastest WaniKani completion guides, and I had to say no. I partly wrote this to explain to myself how it needed to be.

I have definitely gotten way too complicated about this. That is in my nature. But as you also allude to, it isn’t complicated in reality, it’s just a lot of thinking and speculation, that’s harder to communicate than live.

I hear a lot of talk around the forums of people falling into the same traps that I did, but they are still in the early stages and don’t see the traps they are actually laying for themselves, will come back in another month, in four months.

I was just trying to spare people my over planning, over thinking. WaniKani is simple. If you did 10 lessons a day you’d be finish relatively easily, but there is so much freedom. When you give people the freedom to set their own pace, people are going to push their own limit unfortunately, given the nature of SRS when you push your limits now, you might not realize it at all. But in a week, month, and four months it will exponentially affect you negatively.

Hey, at least you managed to figure it out by level 9. :smiley:

I crashed and burned at level 20 and spent the next 6 months clawing my way back. :wink:



Just a note, since I saw you post a link to this, that the SRS intervals aren’t quite right:

It’s 23 hours from Apprentice 3 to Apprentice 4 and 47 hours from Apprentice 4 to Guru, not 24 and 48.


They revoked the hour off when they started overhauling the SRS. Think that was a few months ago.

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I don’t believe that’s correct, though there’s been plenty of discussion about it, because:

That was 11 days ago. I feel like I half remember somebody saying they revoked the hour off and people complained, so they put the hour off back.

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SRS systems according to the API

SRS Hours (normal) Hours (accelerated)
0 0 0
1 4 2
2 8 4
3 23 8
4 47 23
5 167 167
6 335 335
7 719 719
8 2879 2879
9 0 0

They were planning on doing so but reconsidered when users complained


Yes, I used to explain that but I’ve taken a lot out for brevity.

That why I say ~24 hours. It’s simple to just say basically one day. I’m trying to make it simpler. BUT also if you complete a review and X:55 then it is actually closer to 22 hours, so technically 23 isn’t the most complete correct answer either. It would be 4 paragraphs to explain this and it adds very little value.

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I’m probably being overly nit-picky, and I’m ashamed of myself for doing so, but my undergrad maths lecturer is in my head and so I’ll say:

If you want to show that it’s approximately a day, you’ll need to put ‘~1 day’ for example. Putting an approximately equal symbol in front of a whole number implies that there’s a decimal after it that you’re not expressing, so ~48 could mean 47.6 or 48.4, but it can’t mean 47.

I’m sorry for being a massive nerd, but it’s actually clearer to put the real numbers and I don’t personally think it confuses anyone ^-^

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I could change that I guess…

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Ugh. I just like the LOOK of Hours, Hours, Hours, but I think if I did 23 and 47 hours, silly people would get confused, where the hell did 23 and 47 come from.

Hehe, sorry, I don’t mean to come in and be all.

I agree it’s hard to express stuff in a way that won’t confuse people when it’s in complex intervals, I suspect that’s why WK put 1 day, 2 day, etc. on their SRS stages page (without an approx. symbol) because it saves confusing people.

I sort of explain this is the next paragraph. It really is useless knowledge and people who don’t go and find said knowledge themselves, (aka people reading this guide, aka love you, sorry), probably don’t care to get that technical anyway.

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To be even more pedantic we could use scientific rounding which would include 47.5 and 48.5 in rounding to 48. :wink:

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