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Thread: Why are Unown based on English characters & not Japanese?

  1. #1
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    Post Why are Unown based on English characters & not Japanese?

    Seriously, why are the unown based on English characters & not Japanese??? Is pokemon only based for english gamers or what? Please state your views
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    Wow that's a good question, i'm unsure.

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    I assume they decided having 28 different Unowns was better than having several thousand.
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    The Japanese alphabet is far more complex than the English one.
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    The Unown in Hiranga, katakana or kanji, would be just crap. Not to mention that there are around 46 characters of each from what I gather. Also, the fact of the matter is that the Roman Script and English language is the most dominant language ( it's coz of them Brits, those colonizers ! ) and people from most countries have at least seen the script. So, it has a global reach. In Asia ( I am an Asian, so I know ), you do see English quite a bit. Also, I'm sure the Japanese would be at least somewhat familiar with English, why else would they name their games Pocket Monsters ( an English name ) and their Companies Game Freak ( an English name again ).
    Also, it's much easier to convert 26+2 Latin characters into pokes.
    And, the Latin script is not used for English only you know ( I think even Malay is written in the Latin Script, not sure though ).
    Not to mention that its much easier to spell Kyogre in my sig with English Unown
    Last edited by carboncopy; 22nd February 2013 at 3:14 PM.

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    Mm, pretty much all the reasons I could think right off the bat already mentioned: English as lingua franca, the more complex shape of Japanese alphabet, and the amount of Japanese alphabets. The last one pretty much already assumes this, but: the inconsistency of the Japanese alphabet and the stability of the Latin one.

    Way more people just can accustom to the stable Latin alphabet than to Japanese ones whose shapes are also alien. People wouldn't know what are they supposed to represent, and representation has always been important in Pokémon. They pretty much always resemble something that is real, whether a mouse, a garbage bag, or (a distinguishable) letter.

    Good question though; never thought about that before. On the other hand it would've made sense if they nodded to their own culture like that, instead of western.
    Last edited by Golemite; 22nd February 2013 at 3:46 PM.

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    Well, for Non-japanese people, there Katakana characters of シShi and ツTsu are hard to tell the difference. The pair of lines in the top left are near Horizontal in Shi, and near Vertical in Tsu. The curved Lines also drawn differently in Shi (up, straight) and Tsu (down, curved.) You'd know the difference if you Japanese, but not the Average 10 year old American.

    Also, from a Programmers Perspective, 26 is actually easier to work out over 48. Also, you have to have all 48 taking up a Pokémon slot, and in the GBC hardware I doubt that could be possible. Also 48 formes could require an extra bit of data to cover numbers over 32 per Pokémon slot, and that could result in a smaller boxes or less boxes.

    Many stuff in the Japanese market has English text on it, including the Japanese made titles. In some cases, the Japanese boxes are just a ESRB/Pegi Logo short to their American/European counterparts. (Take a look at Final Fantasy 7 though to 12, Japanese and European boxes, the only difference on the front is the Rating system and the lack of Katakana.)
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    As people have said, it was mainly due to:

    -ease of telling them apart
    -laziness in not doing almost double the number
    -not enough storage space in the older games

    About that last point, as we know, it is pretty much nonexistent now. So i actually wouldnt mind seeing a new set of unown in japaneese in gen VI.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ansem the wise View Post
    As people have said, it was mainly due to:

    -ease of telling them apart
    -laziness in not doing almost double the number
    -not enough storage space in the older games
    And:

    - The popularity of English
    - The fact that the unown script was supposed to be a puzzle (like the Braille in Emerald)
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    Well English characters are more recognized than Japanese ones. A lot more languages use them instead of Japanese.
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    The Unown are based on English characters instead Japanase probably because of the ammount and the difficulty on drawing/identifying them.

    Disregarding the Kanjis, we have more Katakana and Hiragana than the 28 characters used in English.

    Also, the characters in English are more known around the world than the Katakana and Hiraganas. Plus, some Unown would look weird in Katakana/Hiragana forms.
    Last edited by Pogaymon; 22nd February 2013 at 9:52 PM.

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    Probably do to limitations and English is better known, but did you notice in the 3rd pokémon movie (or 4th I forgot wich one entei was in), there was a scenr where Unown were in the Russian alphabet
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    In Japan, most people have a basic understanding of English as a second language you'd learn in Elementary School. Having the Unown as English letters prevents them from being too familiar with the Japanese people, while still being legible. A few other reasons may exist, but to people in Japan I'd say it'd be kind of cool to encounter Pokemon in a foreign alphabet you can understand.

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    I think becuase if unown would be the kanji or hiragana of katakana those would be some really weird pokemons plus everybody has done basic English knowledge right??? Ok no -.-
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    It is like why most aliens can speak English and yet we don't understand their language.
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    the amount of unknowns there would be.......and most of them would be difficult to add eyes into.......English versions were probably the next best thing since quite a few japanese people have some english background.

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    Both because there are tons and tons of Japanese ideograms and because the Latin alphabet (not "English characters") is much, much more widespread.

    Most of the languages use the Latin alphabet — even the Japanese use it sometimes. By the time of Gen II, GF already knew Pokémon was going to be sold worldwide, so they chose the "universal" option.
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    english? wow.

    maybe that's the problem- if you figured how widely the latin alphabet is used in the world the question would be redundant :B

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    Romaji and questions thread.

    (Romaji is how Japanese is portrayed using Roman letters.)

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    They're not 'English' Characters, it's Latin Script.
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    well like everyone said it's universal...on that note, think they'll make unown numbers in gen 6?
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    Quote Originally Posted by sizida View Post
    It is like why most aliens can speak English and yet we don't understand their language.
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    I'm still waiting on Greek, Cyrillic and Unown based on runes to be honest...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ver-mont View Post
    Both because there are tons and tons of Japanese ideograms and because the Latin alphabet (not "English characters") is much, much more widespread.

    Most of the languages use the Latin alphabet — even the Japanese use it sometimes. By the time of Gen II, GF already knew Pokémon was going to be sold worldwide, so they chose the "universal" option.
    This, definitely.
    Finally, someone has mentioned this. It's doesn't exist a "English Characters"...using such a term is so...Egh.

    And everyone said it'all. But it would be a good addition if they created New Unowns, with Hiragana Katakana, for example. I would like it.
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    Woah, this is actually pretty interesting. I guess it's just an example of how not all Pokémon are based of Japanese mythology.
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