Wednesday, 9 November 2016

♡ 妖怪ウォッチ! ♡ Yokai Watch! ♡

Hi everyone! ♡

So in one of my travelling posts I talked about purchasing a Japanese 3DS with some games, including the popular Yokai Watch game! I'm going to talk about playing both the Japanese version and the English version! 

(I will just apologise for the quality of some of these pictures. As far as I'm aware, you can't take screenshots in this game like you can for say, ACNL. So I had to take a picture of the whole DS, sorry!!!! ;;A;;)

Yokai Watch!

So this game has finally come to the UK! It's really popular in Japan, in fact I think there are already 3 or 4 games in the series now? Basically you collect different types of Yokai (think of the susuwatari or soot sprites in Spirited Away!) to help fight against the mischevious Yokai in your town. 

I'm not that far into the game so I don't have that many Yokai yet.

To find the Yokai, you are given the Yokai Watch which will trigger whilst running around town. They could be near rubbish bins, underneath cars, up trees, and in other various places!

During battles, your Yokai will fight automatically. However you have to manually trigger Soultimates which are basically special moves. Once triggered you see a cute mini cutscene where the Yokai shows it's move! If your Yokai has had a negative effect cast on it by an enemy Yokai, you can purify it by means of a brief minigame on the bottom screen. Items are used for various reasons, like healing your Yokai or trying to befriend an enemy Yokai.

I'm really enjoying this game so far and I hope to complete it before I get Disney Magical World 2!! ;;

Next, I will talk about the Japanese version of this game!



Please bear in mind that I am in no way familiar with the Japanese language, I'm still a beginner! It is highly likely that I have made some mistakes in the following paragraphs!! (。-人-。)

So there was a moment towards the beginning of 2016 when I sensed that I was losing motivation to study. Combine that with the fact that I was going to Japan in March which meant that I needed a serious pick me up. I found it in the 3DS! Whilst I was in Japan I decided to take the plunge and buy a Japanese 3DS! It was secondhand and the 1st generation version. After playing on the XL version I could never go back to the smaller screen but I didn't mind paying the extra bit of money. It cost me about £55 but I'm sure that there are cheaper options available if you're willing to look.

Now one thing I need to say is that: I'm a beginner. Like, a total beginner. I've learnt my kana and now I'm on the long journey of learning kanji (ugh). This isn't my first attempt at learning the language, as I said before I hit a bump in the road. Well, more like several bumps haha! But thanks to Yokai Watch (and many other resources) I'm picking myself back up again. 

Now I've read threads about using gaming to help with learning vocabulary etc. and 9/10 of the people that I've seen in those threads say that there's no point doing this as a beginner (I'm talking about N5 levels) because you don't know enough to get through the game. Yes, that's true. As I started up Yokai Watch I realised that I didn't understand like 80% without the help of a dictionary.

But here's why I like it:

  • It's one of the few DS games that have furigana, so kana appears on top of all kanji. Makes my life so much easier when trying to learn new kanji!
  • It's a kids game so it has some simple vocabulary. This makes it a great example (for me) for general grammar and sentence structure. You can run around in between trying to achieve 目的.もくてき. mokuteki or "goal" and talk to townspeople who say the most generic things...but I love it!

So here's how I play it: I write down absolutely everything i.e dialogue. I see what words I recognise and any new words that come up. Then I use my dictionary to make a note of the new words and what level they're at. Eventually I start recognising words used over and over e.g 虫.むし. mushi "insect" 山.やま yama "mountain" or "hill" and 聞く.きく kiku which means "to hear".

My handwriting is sooo messy and I can't write kanji to save my life ;A; but you get the gist. I've circled the N4 vocabulary in green and the N5 vocabulary in pink so that I know which words are important for me to learn at the moment.

So for example in this incredibly blurry screenshot, it shows the もくてき or "goal" at the bottom of the screen. Now as the result of playing this game for even just a few hours, I can immediately recognise that 山 means "mountain/hill" and that 虫 means "insect". There's also some katakana in that statement: レア and sounding it out loud, it sounds like the word "rare". There's another kanji there that to be honest I can't quite remember, so I can either use the furigana to look it up in the dictionary or use my notebook! (Or you could use common sense which I obviously don't have and figure out that it must be a verb XD) 探す. さがす. sagasu which means to "look/search for". Finally, looking up おおもりgives me "large forest". Already I have a lot of information to help me to figure out the goal! I can now assume that I have to go into the forest and search for rare insects!

Here's the goal in English for clarity's sake: "Look for bugs on Mount Wild Wood!" Close enough haha (*´∀`*)

Now I admit that looking for insects isn't something that I would really do in real life. However taking the steps to look the unknown words up, practice writing down the kanji and memorising it whilst playing the game is a great way for me to take in some learning! Eventually I hope to not be able to use a dictionary as much during the later stages of the game! I know it seems like a tedious way to learn a language, having to stop over and over again to check words in the dictionary, but I do the exact same thing when reading a graded reader or trying to translate lyrics or a tweet by my favourite band member (lol). I don't know, it's working for me ok? Slowly but surely! Playing this game has definitely gotten me back on my feet again, which I am very grateful for!

Games to look out for:

These are the games that I am currently interested in. The first three are out already but FFXV will be out at the end of this month, Super Mario Maker will be out in December and the rest will be next year! Except Kingdom Hearts 3...who knows when that will be out :/

  • Disney Magical World 2 
  • Dragon Quest Builders 
  • World of Final Fantasy 
  • Final Fantasy XV 
  • Super Mario Maker (3DS)
  • Kingdom Hearts 2.8 
  • Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 (PS4)
  • Kingdom Hearts 3 

I will finish this post by sharing this piece of good advice from Whisper the Yokai:

It's so true! (≧∇≦)

Thanks for reading!

___φ(・ω・` )

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