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My Japanese Coach Review

I think all hardcore gamers and anime fans at some point become more than a little enamored by Japanese culture. Eventually, there comes a time when visiting Japan becomes a dream destination. Importing things is a costly habit, but one that must be done to obtain goods for your favorite video game or anime. My Japanese Coach will help you on your ultimate quest of understanding the language, so that you no longer have to be in the dark when waiting for your favorite game series to be translated into English. My Japanese Coach will teach you to speak, read, and write Japanese. It isn’t the be all and end all to learning the language, but it is a good starting point for anyone willing to stick with it long enough. Part game and part education, I guess this is categorized in the edutainment department, My Japanese Coach is a nice introduction to a new language.

My Japanese Coach first tests you to see how much knowledge of the language you have and then starts you off according to your level, so if your only previous knowledge of Japanese is what you read from a menu once in a Sushi bar then you’ll start at the very beginning. That was my level; Toddler. Hey, everyone has to start somewhere, right?

From there I learned a little pronunciation on Japanese words written in English such as anime, samurai, ninja, etc. Along the way you get to play different games that will help you in your mastery of the language, the further along you get into your lessons, the more games you will unlock. Games vary from multiple choice to a “Whack-a-mole” type game to trace the symbol type game that helps you practice your writing and many more. Each lesson will assist you with writing, pronunciation, and recognizing each word being taught to you. My only problem with this is that I was hoping more to learn some basic conversational skills in Japanese, but the difficulty ramped up when I was asked to write in the language. However, stick with it long enough and you should be able to pick up enough of the language to get by if and when you ever take a trip to Akibihara for that PlayStation Portable game that is never going to come to the United States.

Learning a new language is really hard especially if it’s not one even remotely similar to that of which you speak. It’s even more difficult when you really can’t ask questions of your teacher/tutor. Still, My Japanese Coach does a good job in presenting the language to you in a manner that is simple enough to pick via methods of repetition, visual, writing, and audio techniques. Like any type of learning My Japanese Coach requires discipline. You have to be willing to learn the language, you must have enough comprehension of your own to even begin to learn another. Give yourself enough time with your “Coach” and you could eventually pick up the Japanese language, though, like anything it also requires the occasional usage or else you could eventually forget it all. All you have to do is think back to high school French or Spanish class and then try and remember any of what you learned in those two years and you’ll understand what I’m referring to.

Learning Japanese (there are also other languages to pick up) isn’t something you’re going to do in a day, but with determination and a lot of practice you too could be bilingual in a matter of months, if not weeks.

Final Verdict

My Japanese Coach is far from being a game, so don’t think of this as such. Instead think of this as a portable version of a language course that you might buy for your PC. While there are some minigames involved, they get tough in a hurry if you’re not studious and giving your fullest attention. Still, it’s enjoyable and even more so if you’re someone who is really into the culture like any gamer or anime fan should. Those brave enough to endure the entire course will be rewarded when they make their first import and have no use for fan-subbing or subtitles.


8.0 out of 10

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My Japanese Coach Review

Related Information

Posted by: Redeema
Date: December 31, 2008
Publisher: Ubisoft
Developer: Sensory Sweep
Release Date: 10/14/2008
Genre: Other
Number of Players: 1
ESRB Rating: Everyone
System Reviewed: Nintendo DS

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Categories: Nintendo DS Reviews, Nintendo DS, Reviews

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