Japanese Learners – Which RPG Class do you Belong to?
The adventurers that inhabit RPG worlds are broken up into classes. It defines how you battle and make your way through game. The five major ones are:
What does any of this have to do with learning Japanese? Surprisingly, Japanese learners seem to fall into each of the above. Let’s take a look at them and see which one you are, and whether you might consider changing your class.
The fighter is strong with an abundance of strength, stamina and hit points.
He can take long Japanese studying sessions with brute force. He’ll break through 50 new learned cards in a day, and will hack and slash away at hundreds of reviews that are due. He usually has one favorite weapon of choice, and repeats the same tactic over and over again to success. For example, he’ll only use flashcards, or one specific app, but will grind his way through it, making the most of it, at all costs.
While he may lack variety in fighting style, his fierce energy to just study is unparalleled.
The mage has a wide range of attack spells and knowledge at his disposal.
He knows all of the various learning methods out there, and combines them skillfully into a well thought out plan. He separates all the different elements of Japanese (vocabulary, kanji, sentences, listening, speaking, etc.) and has very specific ways to approach each one.
Since everything he does requires magic points, when he runs out of them, he tends to need short breaks from studying to recharge. He can’t handle long sessions, and would rather break up his studying into short, powerful and efficient bursts.
The cleric focuses on healing and balance.
He makes sure that his life is in alignment with his studying. He knows what time of day he works best, and will usually get up and begin early in the morning when his mind is most ready. He’ll incorporate exercise, proper sleep and and a balanced diet to gain the right amount of study energy and boosted memory to help him succeed.
He doesn’t overdo things, or have ups and downs in study time. No 30 new cards one day and zero the next. At a steady pace, he tries to move forward stress-free.
The ranger is a tactician who analyzes his environment and situation.
He strongly researches the different methods and tools that are available to him, testing them all out and deciding which ones works and which ones don’t for the current situation. He’s not afraid to drop or change tactics quickly and completely.
He creates detailed study plans, with short and long term goals, and a map of where he is and wants to be. He has a keen sense of what effect his current studying now will have on his short term future. He wouldn’t touch 50 new cards daily because of the unstable environment it would create a few weeks later.
The rogue is stealthy and sly, and has an unpredictable nature to him.
He is not concerned with the “right” or “best” way to study Japanese. He wants to try the new and untested methods that he believes may achieve amazing results. He’ll use the tools and ideas that either are used by few, or he came up completely by himself. Because of this, he has a tendency to surprise people with his skills.
He keeps private, and is not concerned with what other people are doing. He’ll probably stay away from forums and learner groups, and prefers to do things on his own.
Which class are you?
Leave it in the comments and we’ll see what group of adventurers we currently have on Jalup.
Founder of Jalup. iOS Software Engineer. Former attorney, translator, and interpreter. Still watching 月曜から夜ふかし weekly since 2013.
Fun post. I think I started Japanese as a fighter class. I didn’t really know what my methodology was. I just saw the first few steps and plowed through it (kana, kanji). I enjoyed it and I really fed on the enjoyment and brute forced cards quickly. I would hit 200-300 reviews a day at my peak. It was crazy looking back.
After Kanji I started slowly moving into Cleric and I would say I am fully there now. I am confident in my strengths and weaknesses, I know what study materials I will likely need for the next year or so. I also realize the important of pacing myself. Immersion is also a critical piece for me now. If I cram too much on anki I lose out on immersion and just hurt myself.
I think a lot of people tend to start as fighters, because it’s the simplest in the beginning. Some never the leave the fighter class, but others realize that it’s not where their true strengths lie.
Can I dual-class? Rogue-Cleric!
Of course! Learning Japanese is a fairly open RPG, so dual-class is common :)
Started as Ranger, dual-classed to Cleric. Now it will be 90% Cleric, 10% ranger.
I have a feeling that a lot of classes would dual-class with cleric, as in the end, he means stability. Something that many might not have in 1st or 2nd year of learning :)
I would even say, that cleric is the ultimate class here :D
It’s always good to be able to have healing spells, especially when you are soloing.
I’d say I try to combine the strengths of most of these. Before I started studying I did a lot of research about how to study and experimented a little to see what worked for me like the ranger and thief, ultimately doing what I think is best irrespective of others opinions. Once I decided what methods I thought were best I started powering through them at a speed that really pushes myself to my limit like the warrior, I couldn’t muster the motivation to do that unless I put in the research first. I can only put so much effort into something if I am reasonably certain its a good use of my time. However, I don’t power through just one method, I chose multiple and power through all of them but I also try to keep on top of my exercise and sleep and so on and have very specific plans for my study and focus a lot on consistency like the Cleric and Mage so yeah. Maybe once I get closer to my goals I will ease up on the warrior part.
Multi-class power. I like it.
Hahaha, I guess I’m a Battlemage. I’m a real grinder and tank, and tend to stick everything in Anki. But I spend a lot of time crafting Anki cards into specialised spells for the particular piece of knowledge I’m trying to obtain.
Sounds like a good combo to me.
Hmm. I don’t fit into any class. I only do reviews, a few a day, and sometimes I skip days. Maybe I’m just a jester?
I’m curious, Adam, what class are you? Has it changed over your years of study?
I’d say your way of studying is closest to a light cleric.
I think I started out as a Fighter, then worked towards Mage, and eventually ended up as a Ranger-Cleric.
Hmmmm …… I feel like I have elements of all of them (except the cleric – lol ) which probably makes me a Rogue – It is true that I don’t really care what anyone thinks and will just find the way that works best for me and I do also prefer going solo and stay away from forums and things like that. I tend to use a mixture of methods, mix and matching how I see fit, use separation of ‘disciplines’, fall into research holes, which is how I found this website in the first place, oh and I’ve been reading through your various blog posts for about 4 hours now because it’s friday night and I don’t have to get up tomorrow XD
very cool XD that’s so interesting, I never considered the different types of “players”
Welcome to the site. I’m glad it could be a source of a “falling into a research hole” binge haha :) I hope you found some useful things along the way.
Definitely a cleric. It’s funny I’m this way in real life, as in any MMO I always choose the healer class. The description of cleric 100% fits with how I approach the Jalup decks. A steady pace, day after day.
i would the fusion of the fighter and roge