Kana-Only Vocabulary Additions

する works fine on Tsurukame for me, unless you type “do” instead of “to do,” in which case the app crashes (probably something related to the) “hey this is a verb and needs “to”” jiggle.

Nope, the problem is because “do” is not accepted (any other not accepted word will do too), and then Tsurukame will open the details view. The app crashes because when it opens the details view it removes the する of a verb to only get the base (like 否定 する) – but する doesn’t have any “base”. It was already fixed in the newest update, but Apple takes some time until the update is permitted to the AppStore. In the meantime install the TestFlight build which I linked above, or wait until it is available in the AppStore.


I’d say exactly for the reason you mentioned earlier: because these are the words everybody knows, phonetically at least. When you already have “ohayo” or “konnichiwa” in your mind, you can map the words easier onto their kana versions and thus learn kana symbols faster.

I hope that the WK team will find some solution for people who are frustrated by kana vocabulary.

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To use WK, you’re already expected to know hiragana and katakana.

Anyone learning Japanese in order to communicate will probably learn こんにちは as their first word.

How are you going to know that you need to know kana for Japanese unless you are interested in learning Japanese in general? I can’t imagine coming to WK and not already knowing at least こんにちは. But WK expects you to wait a weeks to learn basic greetings.


That’s what I have been using is Tsurukame TestFlight.

My feedback: this should be opt-in. Most WK users in the mid or high levels are already going to know most of the kana-only words that are being introduced, so it just serves as a distraction from what they’re actually learning at those levels. I’m on level 26 and was struggling to keep up already, and throwing a bunch of words I already know into the mix just side tracked me.

However, I love the addition in general. If WK incorporated the most common vocab words (maybe 2000?) in addition to vocab that’s meant to reinforce kanji, it would easily become the one-stop-shop for Japanese vocabulary learning and people wouldn’t need to use Anki to learn the basics.


I LOVE the new kana-only vocabulary. Especially since when I spend too much time focusing on WK, my grammar tends to fall to the wayside. The reverse also happens.

What I would like to see added is that when Wanikani says in the item “This is sometimes written in kanji” or “This has kanji but it’s usually written in hiragana” we have some context for that. Either linking us to the vocab page where we learned the kanji, or just showing us what it is.

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I’m confused, how does the new kana vocabulary help you with grammar?

I do agree that it would be a good idea to get “usually/often kana” indications systematically on vocabulary.

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Exactly! I am awful at Katakana! This is going to help immensely!

That’s a good idea. Like when it says there is Kanji for it, but it will almost always be written in Katakana, maybe showing what it might look like in Kanji briefly, even if it is ancient.

The elephant in the room is that if WK starts building the opt-out feature for kana-only vocabs, people are going to start requesting opt-out for kanji also.

For example, someone who has been studying Japanese for years would know most kanji in the first 10-20 levels. If they can opt out of those kanji, then they only have about 40 levels left to conquer, and thus they don’t have to buy the lifetime or even annual subscription.

With opt-out, you can potentially finish WK in several months, thus reducing WK’s income. In the extreme scenario, you can join today and just opt out of all kanji, and you immediately reach level 60 without doing any reviews at all.

So if WK is going to introduce opt-out for kanji at all, I think they are going to reduce the number of kanji you can opt out of, for example only 1 per long level, and probably none for the short levels. This guarantees that you still have to go about 1 week per long level or 3 days per short level.


Yeah, they shouldn’t allow it for that reason.

You may be right that this is the calculation behind it all, but I wouldn’t necessarily recommend a product to other people that is explicitly built on not giving users any control so you can extract the maximum amount of value out of them.


I would take exactly the same argument the other way. An opt out for kanji would increase revenue, because the people who already know a lot of kanji will never even start paying for wanikani in it’s current state. If you have to wade trough 10-20 levels of stuff you already know before you get to content you actually want to learn, they will find some other learning platform instead.

Also making wanikani an attractive option for non-absolute beginners will greatly increase the pool of potential customers.


A handful of katakana words is not going to help a lot, I recommend getting a katakana practice deck like this one for instance and drilling a bit every day, it helped me immensely (after finishing the deck I’d say that my katakana reading ability had caught up with the hiragana).

I really don’t think that’s correct, after all the vast majority of people who subscribe to WK never make it to level 60 currently, so making it easier to get to level 60 may not in fact result in loss of revenue, in fact it could be the exact opposite if it makes WK more useful to people who already have a decent kanji base and are looking to fill some gaps for instance.

Luckily for me I decided to start WK very early in my Japanese language learning journey, but for people who already have the basics not being able to at the very least auto-guru entries must be really frustrating (at least that’s what I feel when I get これ and する in my lesson pile right now…)


I don’t see opt-in / opt-out idea being difficult to do. Just put one checkbox in Settings.

Send to Guru isn’t a bad idea imo, but it’s a novelty idea that may affect how WaniKani works. (So, no wonder if they don’t accept it.) Personally I think it is OK not only for Kana-Only, but also for some Kanji-including ones.

Burn Immediately has even more potential for misuse. Perhaps giving for Kana-Only and people might ask for more.

About Katakana, I got better hang of them by crashing through Katakana word flashcards, but not much of SRS. (Memrise, actually.) Simply textbooks and reading don’t help enough.


And now WaniKani can include all Joyo and N1 Kanji, and more useful Jukugos.

By adding kana-only words WK becomes more attractive to those just starting Japanese. Granted it is onlt 10 words right now expending only to 60. Hopefully they will continue to add kana only words. Ultimately it will increase the revenue for WK. Yes they need to support existing customers. What they have done was not intended to harm existing customers. It was done to clean up the code that was pieced together over years. Doung so made it more streamlined and easier to maintain. Doing so did have consequences on some existing features. However, they can not be held fully accountable for issuses with 3rd party software. Some of that software (user scripts) has not been maintained for a long time. They did announce the changes before any of them happened. Yes, they could (and probably should) implement some of the functionality of the scripts natively. However it is their choice. What we are paying for as a customer is the vanilla version of WK. Nothing more, nothing less.


If it is introduced people will misuse it all he way ( same with redo feature ) and then complain that wanikani is not working and not worth the money. And for sure they search the fault at someone else and don’t understand that skipping, abuse a potential burn button is their own mistake . Sure there are exceptions and people with discipline, but it will not be the majority here.

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