Progress in a single week

Hi everyone of WaniKani, this is my first post on the forum yet, and i’m not sure if i am posting at the good place. But anyway.

I just wanted to say how amazing the progress i have made on kanji reading has been in a single week so far. I have been using duolingo for 5 months before this and learned some grammar with all the hiragana/katakana reading (my katakana was pretty bad tough), and yet i was barely able to retain anything from different categories, once i reached level 5, i would just skip to another category and barely return to it, and when i did, it was nearly like restarting from scratch.

I have been playing lot of JRPG and visual novel with japanese voice on recently ( read 2 years or so) and after finishing a game called Trails of cold steel 3 ( Sen no Kiseki 3) 2 weeks ago, i really wanted to know the ending of the saga, so i ordered my game from japan, trails of cold steel 4 (game is only out in japan yet), it was my first time playing a game totally in japanese. And what a shock it was. Even tough i was using a spreadsheet to follow the main story, I still had to navigate game menu for character management and combat, wich was full of Katagana and Kanji i didnt know about/couldnt remember. After a day or two, i was really wondering if it was worth to go trough the game like that and really questioning my own japanese knowledge, i tought i was decent enough in japanese at this point to get around. At this point, i made a decision, that duolingo was no longer suited for my need and i wanted something much better to learn ( i had heard of Pimsleur beforehand but i am more interested in reading japanese than talking it, for a short term goal).

That’s when i found WaniKani, exactly 8 days ago. I know i am in a very early stage of it as of right now, and that many hardship are still awating me, but i cant believe how much kanji and tidbits i can read by myself in the game already, and i am only level 3!.I know most of menu navigation and the Katakana that i can read much faster doesnt specifically come from Wani Kani itself, but it’s still really enjoyable to see it all coming together at the same time, because i could still tie the two together, like the na katakana being the same as the narwhal radical.

Either way, even tough some reviews are still stressful because i want to make the fewest mistake possible so i can progress as fast as possible, it’s still been an enormously enjoyable experience.And the fact that i can already see the fruit of my progress so early into the WaniKani route is priceless. The fact that there are so many exception being thrown away in the levels like the day counting makes me think that as we learn more and more vocabulary, there will be a bit less exception and it will be more consistent, building from a solid base of basic knowledge on the ground…I am even learning more about english itself with the lesson, for example, i never really realized the intransitive/transitive part of raise and rise, french being my main language.

To wrap this up, sorry for the long post, just wanted to share my experience so far and my content with the product itself, can’t wait to unlock my new kanji’s already :slight_smile:



Well you could put this in introductions if you really wanted to be technical, but don’t worry too much about it!

Honestly, I commend you for sticking with Duolingo for 5 whole months as your main resource! Especially with how the current system is. I used to use it all the time for other languages but it’s such a pain to use now, even just for getting some practice.

Just remember to monitor your workload. Striving for perfection is great and all (and the fact that you’re already level 8 is impressive) but you don’t want to bite off more than you can chew and suffer for it later on!



Yeah, i myself would have liked finding wanikani much earlier, but hey, it’s whatever. At least the earlier levels are much easiers because even tough i dont remember all the kanji, i still knew remembered some word that i could associate with the kanji, so i guess it was not for nothing. But theres a good month and a half i didnt touched duolingo at all, so it’s not like i kept with it five month straight.

Thanks for the encouragement,


Hey there! Welcome to WaniKani, I’m glad you’re enjoying it!

Yeah, Duolingo for Japanese is not . . . . ideal. Not the worst, but not the best either. If you want to find other materials to study from, I’d suggest taking a look around the Japanese resources section of the forums here as there’s some good recommendations. I personally have used Genki and am using Kanzen Master to study for the JLPT, but there’s lots of other ones that fit different learning styles.

Don’t worry about your speed if it’s causing you stress! Learning is the important thing here, and sometimes a bit slower is better. Find your optimal speed and I’m sure you’ll be fine :blush:

If you have any questions or problems or anything, don’t hesitate to hit up the forums! We’re all pretty nice here, and I’ve found it to be a super helpful and supportive community.

Best of luck on your kanji/Japanese adventure! がんばりましょう!

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I will try to read most of the tae kims book that is free on his website, as i’ve gathered it’s one of the best free sources. I will maybe dive in some more grammar content afterwards if the needs arise.

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Along with other glowing endorsements I am also a huge fan of the Tae Kim guide and highly recommend it. It helped me a lot in Japanese ability. I would read it part by part sort of leisurely, but if I encountered a grammar in the real world enough to recognize it, I would look it up on that site using the search function. It is an amazing resource. I primarily used that and when I first moved here to Japan. A++ do recommend.

It’s so commendable that you are diving in head first by playing a game entirely in Japanese. Using something you love is the best way to study, so you are already ahead of the pack. がんばってね :innocent:

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Thanks a lot! Yeah, it’s a really good motivation for learning when you can put to use what you learned every once in a while, it is definitely a different experience tough, even translating a single random npc dialogue wich is not translated in the spreadsheet i am using takes tons of times, so i end up skipping a lot, but it’s good practice/fun either way.

You’ll be amazed at what you’ll come to be able to read as you progress through the levels! Especially when you notice vocab learned from Wanikani peppered throughout your games. Good luck on your kanji adventure!

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Hi there! Welcome to the community!! :grinning: I’m glad you’re gaining some helpful knowledge on WaniKani (especially since French is your primary language)

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As someone who did both duolingo and pimsleur I can relate to what you said. And yes, I used to play with a lot of softwares like Lingodeer as well, thinking that I was making progress.

Then you start Genki and you realize that you suck haha. An SRS system(e.g. WaniKani) is the best way to learn how to read Kanji. If you stick to it for at least a couple of months, you will be surprised at how much Kanji you will know. Just don’t forget that you still need to practice reading, WaniKani only teaches you how to recognize Kanji.

I also find playing games a fun way to practice Japanese(I did that with Pokemon games), I might give Trails of cold steel a try in the future.

ça fait toujours plaisir de voir des français par ici :wink:

Merci! Français québécois par contre, mais ça revient au même hehehe. Je te conseille vivement d’essayer Sen no kiseki, c’est probablement ma série de jeux préféré!

Thanks a lot, i am already noticing a lot :slight_smile:

Thanks for the welcome! Also i think i recognize your name from the report i sent the other day hahaha.


Yes :grin: that was me!

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Hello there! welcome to wanikani community!

i’m interested in visual novels as well but i couldn’t find any easy resource for it.
can you please share how you got’em?


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I found all my visual novel on steam. My favorite one are the zero escapes series ( except the third one) and root double. They might be a bit cheesy at times but i dont mind that aspect hahaha, story is a masterpiece on both case, with full japanese voice over an english translation ( i’m not sure you can play the japanese text version tough on steam). I also played the Muv-Luv series wich is decent ( third one is one the best critically acclaimed VN, even tough it’s not my favorite series, the game is good enough, but be aware that there are hentai), what’s nice with this whole trilogy is that you can change the english text to japanese at any times during the game with a single press of a keyboard key, wich can makes it very valuable to learn japanese.

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You may want to move this to the #campfire:introductions category. Welcome to the co-meow-nity! :cat2:

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Welcome home! You are doing great! I joined a couple of months ago and I love WK. It’s becoming somewhat of an obsession for me as well. Take your time, don’t worry about making mistakes and enjoy the ride. If you have android maybe try Flaming Durtles in the Google play store, link your API key with that and you can WK on-the-go; it also has a self-study section so you can freshen up without having to only wait on your reviews. Anyways, welcome to our little cult… I…mean… welcome to the community. Did i say cult? Definitely not a cult! :wink: :crabigator:whispers: Praise the Crabigator! :crabigator:

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