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The KanKen Chronicles

Cool! I am planning to get a Japanese Nintendo 3DS soon. (In Japan while I'm there in May/June if the price is good, otherwise I'll order one online after I get back.)

I was just looking into the Japanese eShop. Am I right in assuming that a title downloaded from the Japanese eShop would not work if downloaded to a US Nintendo 3DS? I know it's region locked for cartridges, but I never thought about eShop titles before. Also, seeing that the Switch is not region locked and can use titles from the Japanese eShop makes me want a Switch more. :-)
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(2017-05-04, 8:32 am)tanaquil Wrote: I was just looking into the Japanese eShop. Am I right in assuming that a title downloaded from the Japanese eShop would not work if downloaded to a US Nintendo 3DS?\
As far as I'm aware there's not even the option to access a different region's eShop on the 3DS. Short of maybe doing 3DS hacking/homebrew it wouldn't be possible. I'm totally out of the loop on that stuff though.
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(2017-05-03, 11:53 am)fkb9g Wrote: 漢検トレーニング2 (Kanken Training 2) for Nintendo 3DS comes out on July 20, 2017.

It looks like Japanese eShop only—no physical cartridge option.

EDIT: The physical cartridge version is on amazon.co.jp.

For those who got both Kanken Training 1 and 2, are there major differences between those versions? Thank you!
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JapanesePod101
Also available on play-asia: http://www.play-asia.com/koueki-zaidan-h.../13/70b8ep
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Just found this thread while seeking a... less yen-intensive source for 漢検トレーニング2 for 3ds. It was only just released here two days ago, but should probably become available very soon.

For those who are asking how this compares to the previous versions, I'll report back as soon as I have some first-hand experience with it.

However, if it's similar to the previous versions -- and I have logged quite a few hours on the others, mostly 漢検トレーニング1 for 3DS -- it will be reasonably good up to 2級 and good for little else from then on: there are no dictionary entries for kanji outside jouyou, and the amount of material and questions for 準一級 and above very lacking.

It will probably be useful to get if you're going for 2 or below, but if you're like me and looking for a good, easily-searchable electronic supplement to your dead-tree references, it probably won't be worth the money. I used it when I was going for 準一級 and even then it was more of a relaxing break between pencil-and-paper study sessions. I'm doing 一級 in a few months, and I don't expect this newest edition to be any better for that purpose.

By the by, for anyone who's interested, I recently learned that the format of 一級 has changed slightly from 平成27年度 in that the 国字 section has been absorbed into (二), the general writing comprehension segment, in which it has been reduced from five questions to only two. Bastards, that was my best part. Second, the second part of the 四字熟語 section has been changed from multiple-choice style to the read-the-description-select-the-idiom-from-a-list-write-the-reading-of-two-of-its-characters style, same as in 準一級.
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(2017-07-21, 11:11 pm)aagrajag Wrote: … looking for a good, easily-searchable electronic supplement to your dead-tree references … for … 一級 in a few months …

Do you use 漢検 漢字辞典 第二版 as one of your references? Send me your email address by PM.
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(2017-07-22, 2:23 pm)fkb9g Wrote:
(2017-07-21, 11:11 pm)aagrajag Wrote: … looking for a good, easily-searchable electronic supplement to your dead-tree references … for … 一級 in a few months …

Do you use 漢検 漢字辞典 第二版 as one of your references? Send me your email address by PM.

Yeah, absolutely. I just wish there existed an electronic version of it.

On that topic, I got my hands on Kanken Training 2 for 3DS, and it's pretty much the same as the previous one, but of course with newer and different questions. There is an addition of a cutesy "guide" character that some people might like.

The handwriting recognition is excellent, as before, but still very occasionally infuriating. It took me approximately twenty tries writing 欠 for the answer 欠航 in the mini-test before it finally acknowledged it as such and not 々. Now it seems to recognise it without a problem, so perhaps it was calibrating itself to my handwriting style.

Lastly, and most disappointingly, the built-in 字典 and 四字熟語 reference are only good up to 二級-level stuff; anything above that does not appear.

So, I'd say it's exactly what I speculated it was before: a good tool for those studying up to 二級, but after that, mostly just a nice break from pencil-and-paper study sessions.

If it's a choice between buying 漢検 漢字辞典 第二版 and this software, go for the former.
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(2017-07-21, 11:11 pm)aagrajag Wrote: I used it when I was going for 準一級

You passed the 準一級 then...

I stopped after level 2 as it looked like the remaining levels would take too much time. I estimated the 準一級 would require something like 4 times the hours I'd put into level 2. What did you find in practice?
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(2017-07-24, 9:51 am)Katsuo Wrote:
(2017-07-21, 11:11 pm)aagrajag Wrote: I used it when I was going for 準一級

You passed the 準一級 then...

I stopped after level 2 as it looked like the remaining levels would take too much time. I estimated the 準一級 would require something like 4 times the hours I'd put into level 2. What did you find in practice?


I guess that would depend immensely on what kind of study methods you've used thus far, but I can say that the jump to 準一級 requires about 500% as much knowledge as 二級. It isn't just learning more characters; it also opens up all the 常用漢字 to all their 表外読み -- of which there are very many -- and just generally requires much closer familiarity with the characters. Attempting to simply brute-force the readings and such will fail; it becomes necessary to understand a great deal more about how their meanings evolved over time, the less-common readings, the pronunciation patterns that appear in words of Buddhist origins, and so on.

Then there's the fact that 準一級 and especially 一級 couches its questions in a great deal of literary Japanese, 文語. If you aren't already comfortable with classical grammar and vocabulary, you'll have to factor that into your study time as well. But if you don't know classical, many questions -- especially in the longer reading sections -- will be impossible; if you cannot understand the sentence and its context, determining the right character in a writing query would be blind guesswork, so even with an eidetic memory, you could still fail. The readings seem to centre around the late Edo period to early modern.

Speaking very generally, I found the experiences of studying for 二級 and 準一級 to be very, very different.
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Hey thanks for the comparison between the two games (and the rest of the discussion is very interesting as well)! 

Since I'm studying for level 2 and I already have the first game, I'll probably buy this one to have more questions. 

Speaking of the highest level tests, do you have to live in Japan to take them (I don't know, maybe you must register with a Japanese address or something like that)? Outside of Japan you can only take tests up to level 2. I'll probably stop at level 2 but I still want to know.
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(2017-07-24, 10:51 am)aagrajag Wrote: Then there's the fact that 準一級 and especially 一級 couches its questions in a great deal of literary Japanese, 文語. If you aren't already comfortable with classical grammar and vocabulary, you'll have to factor that into your study time as well. But if you don't know classical, many questions -- especially in the longer reading sections -- will be impossible; if you cannot understand the sentence and its context, determining the right character in a writing query would be blind guesswork, so even with an eidetic memory, you could still fail. The readings seem to centre around the late Edo period to early modern.

How do you go about studying classical Japanese? Are there any good resources available?
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(4 hours ago)kusogaijin Wrote: How do you go about studying classical Japanese? Are there any good resources available?

Imabi has a bit on classical Japanese grammar, but I'm not sure how much is there or how well it correlates to what you'd find on the exam.
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(2017-07-24, 12:35 pm)Kanken Wrote: Hey thanks for the comparison between the two games (and the rest of the discussion is very interesting as well)! 

Since I'm studying for level 2 and I already have the first game, I'll probably buy this one to have more questions. 

Speaking of the highest level tests, do you have to live in Japan to take them (I don't know, maybe you must register with a Japanese address or something like that)? Outside of Japan you can only take tests up to level 2. I'll probably stop at level 2 but I still want to know.

I think that group tests can be arranged anywhere for anything up to level 2, but beyond that, a very small number of international test venues handle all levels. The latest info should be on the official website.
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