I am new and (somewhat) helpless

Yearly WK subscription covers 12 months, but you only pay for 10. If you decide to continue with WK, would it be possible for you to set aside the cost of monthly for 10 months, and purchase a yearly then? If you are slow at WK, then a monthly subscription would end up being much more expensive than yearly.

I wouldn’t feel discouraged just because you’re slow at learning Japanese. Being slow still means you’re making progress and know more than you used to before, and if you keep up with studying regularly as best as your health allows, there’s no reason for you to not at least be functional (at your chosen goal) in a few years.

Pinging @CyrusS … Another user who has colour differentiation issue.


There’s actually something sneaky that goes on as you level. You tend to get better at WK itself. I think it was around level 5 where I realized that I was spending much less time per lesson item than I did before.

Like anything else, the more you do something, the more you get better at it. So even if the beginning is hard, you will start to get to a point where each piece isn’t as hard as the one before.


I understand what you mean!! I think you’ll naturally see the readings that are most important by reviewing the items. I’m really curious how you feel about everything when you are lever 3 or 5 maybe. If it’s not too much trouble, please update this thread with your views on wanikani as time passes :blush:

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Jourm isn’t a common name. I’d never heard of it before. That is kinda what I was saying about getting familiar with the mnemonics. Once I learned Jourm, he is familiar every time he shows up.

The thing about the radicals is that they aren’t necessarily connected with the meaning of the words. While there are radicals in the Japanese language, I don’t think the ones in WaniKani always related to the formal ones. If you try to associate a direct meaning between the word and the radical, you’ll drive yourself mad (just wait until you get to the wolverine radical). I see the radicals as ways to familiarize you with the intricate differences between various Kanji - once you start getting into the more complicated ones, the difference between ground and something like lid 亠 become super helpful for remembering the small differences. It isn’t so important in the earlier lessons because they’re pretty basic.

The colorblindness will be an issue though. Actually, that may be why you’re having such a significant problem with the reviews. There are lots of instances where the radical and/ the Kanji and/or the vocabulary are the same image but have different readings. The main way to tell them apart is that the radicals are blue, the kanji are pink and the vocabulary are purple. If you can’t see the difference between those colors, I’m not sure it will be possible to answer correctly. I have a hard time with it and I can see the colors! Like 他 - if it is pink it is asking for the kanji reading, which is ta. But if it is purple it is asking for the vocabulary reading, which is hoka. I’ve seen the vocabulary word 25 times and gotten it right about 70% of the time.

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Another difference is that the kanji are in a larger font than the vocab, but that’s pretty subtle.

Does anyone remember if it says “radical”, “kanji”, or “vocab” on the screen anywhere during the reviews?

I’m not a scripter myself, but I think this sounds like something that might be able to be addressed with a script. @Sheba if you have specific suggestions for how to improve the visual cues, you could ask if someone would make a script for you to change the appearance.

(also tagging some scripters: @rfindley, @Kumirei, @seanblue)


(I hijacked these from the WK Screenshots thread.) Yes it does say if it’s a radical, kanji, or vocab. And the kanji and vocab say if it wants meaning or reading.
image sugoi


Color is a quicker way to communicate intent.

@Sheba , I know nothing about (your) colorblindness. I can try creating custom stylesheets to make things more apparent for you but I would need to know what colors work for you.
Could you provide me the name/hex-code of 5 different colors that you can easily distinguish? Select one with a Positive (correct) association, one with Negative (incorrect) association, and 3 with Neutral (radical, kanji, vocab) association.


Maybe just a subtle background pattern like these?


If anyone just wants to change colors there’s this userstyle here

it has a lot of options


Thanks for the ping. :slightly_smiling_face:

@sheba One of the things we’re looking to improve is usability for colorblind users. There are a couple things on our radar already based on feedback (like extra visual indicators for right/wrong answers), so please let me know about any other issues or the like that you run into.

Speaking of which, I haven’t forgotten about that, it’s just that app development is priority no.1 right now (now that it’s in beta, we can actually talk about it, which is nice). UI changes to regular WK will probably wait until after the app launches, or until after we’ve hired more people.


Wow there are so many replies, thank you so much!
I also just hit level 2 a minute ago. However, with me being completely overwhelmed by the level 1 vocabulary already, I think I will wait with new lessons for now and just get everything there sorted first before tackling new Kanji, so level 2 can wait a few days.

Also sorry for not quoting and saying something to every reply; that would take too much time. Know that I read everything and that I am insanely grateful for all the help and encouragement I recieve from everyone here! :blush: I am making note of all tips given to me!

Well, I could do that, but that would take 5-6 months in which I could then do nothing else. I have around 20-30 bucks a month for not-necessary things, but often I just find myself suddenly needing some meds the insurance doesn’t pay in full or stuff like that and then money goes away. So if I subscribe, I fear it will have to be the expensive, monthly fee. :frowning:

I seriously do hope that. Right now I feel it gets only harder as it seems level 2 has a lot more lessons it wants to toss at me immediately compared to level one. I hope at least that number steadies out; I don’t really want to have more like 20-30 things to review at the same time. But thankfully I can control these things, so that’s a plus. I just need to find out how to keep myself from being overwhelmed I guess.

I definitely will! I will stick with my level 1 stuff even though I’m officially level 2 now apparently until my crititcal list stops being full of vocabulary but then will take a look at level 2. First glance says I already know a few of these radicals/kanji. That’s why I think that I won’t be really able to give a true “view” until I hit a level full of things I didn’t know before. Right now, I am failing at every vocabulary I had not heard before, so I expect that a level full of unknown stuff will be far, far worse than what level 1 and (hopefully) level 2 will toss at me.

Okay, this is pretty scary sounding. I mean, the backgrounds are different hues for me and if, in the middle of a review, I suddenly have a hue change, I know something different is now being asked, but…yeah. It’s not always easy to tell already.

It does, however, say what it wants. It says “Vocabulary Reading”, for example. I just need to learn how to read better. With so many things to review, though, I am always too tempted to blaze through things. Actually I accidentally type a reading instead of a meaning (and only catch it when it changes to Japanese) far, far more often than mixing up what I am looking at (so vocab/radical/kanji).

Now gonna group all the wonderful color feedback stuff into one reply. :slight_smile:

First, thank you so much for all the help with this!
I can only really recommend the Coblis Colorblindness Simulator for trying to see how different types of colorblindness work. You can upload your own images in there and see how they look in the different colorblindnesses.

I’m gonna try embedding pictures again, not sure why it didn’t work before for me. For example, the suggested pattern idea looks with my colorblindness (Protanopia, which is red-blind), like this:
Which is great and all, but sadly next to colorblind I also have a cataracts and that makes subtle things not very visual. I love the pattern idea, though; they just would have to be more prominent. I see only something slightly different on the middle image, tbh.

I will definitely look into @Kumirei’s link, though - I have no idea what a userstyle even is, but I will surely be able to figure that out. Thank you so much for the Iink! If this works out for me I won’t need anything extra done. Thank you so much @marcwilk for offering :hugs: I hope I can find something without having to ask others to do something just for me and this userstyle looks promising already!

@CyrusS Thank you for working on helping colorblind users! Let me say that I am actually really happy with how well WK works for me compared to other websites in general and also other Japanese language sources, which was one of the reasons I was attracted to it. As I also have cataracts (which means everything looks pretty blurry) I love how big you display the Kanji. A lot of other websites have everything written so small that it’s impossible to even figure out how the Kanji really looks until I look it up on google and check jisho.org. That’s not the case here and a huge help. The only thing that, aside from (for me) similiar colors, I have some issues with is the light grey text that’s often used. Especially things like where we can click to add our own notes in lessons (the “add synonym” button), where it’s slightly-darker-gray on light gray. Everything else actually is really great and I struggle on 90% of the websites I visit more than on WK. WK isn’t unuseable because of my disabilities - I just need to learn to read better (or, apparently, to figure out what a userstyle is. :smiley: )

Again, thank you so much, everyone! I hope I didn’t forget anything really important, this was a lot to answer!


I just noticed that in the reviews. In the 17,000 reviews that I’ve done I’ve never noticed that it said radical, kanji, and vocabulary. Heck, often I miss whether it is asking for reading or meaning. I’d say about a quarter of the ones I get wrong are because I type in the reading and press enter before I notice it is asking for meaning. I’d be sunk without the colors.


Hey guys, it’s me again! Both because I was asked to give updates and because I also have a question (which might not belong in here but this is my thread, sooooo…)

Anyway update: Started with the level 2 radicals and kanji. Going actually pretty great so far, but then again, radicals are easy since I don’t have to learn any reading for them. The fact that I’m still on some level 1 vocabs also means I’m getting all three kinds of them mixed together now and that actually really helped me to learn to differenciate between them even with colorblindness. I still often write the meaning instead of the reading and vice versa, though…:sweat_smile:

Vocabs seem to be my worst category by far. I still have some of the level 1 ones at really low percentages, though I do admit to typing dumbly by mistake. Still not used to the double-n, which causes me to mistype a lot… Also I didn’t get away with typing “rise” instead of “to rise”, but when I accidentally typed “Mr. Fuji” instead of “Mt. Fuji”, that was totally alright.:thinking::grinning:

And now, my maybe not-category-approved question: Because radicals are easy and I am motivated because of that, I went to check out the subscription-options again…and then I saw that WK apparently doesn’t accept PayPal? Or am I just blind? I only saw credit card options and unfortunately, because I’m disabled and don’t have enough income, I am not having one (as in, I’m not allowed to by German law, it’s not that I don’t want one). So, uh… is there a PayPal option? Because otherwise I have absolutely no way of actually subscribing.:frowning_face: I hope I’m just blind and didn’t see the correct option…

EDIT: Also I am sad that my avatar still says “level 1” when I am totally in level 2. What does it take to get it to show up correctly? Do I need to Guru all level 1 things or something?

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No, there’s just a bit of delay between WaniKani and Discourse. If it hasn’t updated in a few hours, try logging out of the forums and logging back in again.

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I think I read somewhere in another thread that while WK does not have PayPal as a standard option on the payment screen, they do accept PayPal.

If I remember correctly, you would need to contact staff by email, whereupon they provided you with a sort of ‘PayPal invoice’.

In any case, the staff is really friendly, so even if you just want to check out your options and aren’t sure whether you want to purchase, I wouldn’t hesitate to contact them! :slight_smile:

Edit: here’s a thread by someone who managed to subscribe by PayPal as evidenced by their 3> level. :+1:


Thank you very much @Belthazar and @Belerith!

I am now officially level 2 (needed to log out and back in; I had started the level 2 stuff more than 24 hours ago…) and, once I’m level 3 and hopefully still motivated, will then contact staff about PayPal payment!
The communit here is awesome, I really appreciate the quick help! :hugs:


Debit cards are also accepted, if that’s what you were worried about (I paid with my debit card with no problems for years). I’m not sure what the German laws are, but it seems weird to prevent someone from having a debit card.

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If you’re not a native speaker you might have missed that sites often say credit card even though you can still use a regular debit card.


Well, that’s where my language knowledge ends since I’m not completely sure what a debit card is. I am allowed to have a normal bank account that cannot dip below 0 bucks (so no lending money from the bank, ever) and which can be used for normal transactions, but I’ve never had the option online to pay anything international with it. We call it “giro account” here, which my dictionary translates to “check/cheque account”. Since I never had anything else I admit to having little to no knowledge about anything else. :confused:

With a debit card you only spend money you have (in your bank account).
With a credit card you spend money you don’t have (a temporary loan)

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