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What is Shogi (将棋)?


にほんごのれんしゅう(日本語の練習) 第6週 Japanese Practice Week 6

Hello everyone! Kyuusei here. And happy new year. With that being said, let’s continue with a couple of things about Japan.


Life is like playing a game of chess… but I play shogi.

Shogi 将棋

Sho 将 -> General’s

Gi 棋-> Board Game

Shogi is Japanese chess. A 9×9 grid with 20 pieces each for both players. With chess, once your pieces are gone, they are out of the game for good. However, with shogi, the pieces you capture can be dropped back on to the board as your allies. That is also the main reason why I think shogi is harder than chess.

Shogi even have ranks. For amateur players, they start out with 15th kyu and work their way up to 1st kyu. After that promotion you are ranked in the dan territory which starts from 1st dan to 8th dan. With professionals however, have their own ranking scale, from 6th kyu to 3rd dan then 4th dan to 9th dan. Supposedly, amateur and professional ranks are only a few ranks away from each other. For instance, if you are an amateur player ranked at 1 dan that is the equivalent of being a 4th kyu in the professional shogi world.

Today I joined, a site where you can play shogi online with other people. I must say that I’m a total beginner compared to majority of the people on there. However, that will not deter me from improvement. Instead it only puts fire on the coals. I got into shogi because of an anime called March Comes in Like a Lion or 3-gatsu no lion (Kind of weird how they translate that to English. The literal translation is something akin to “March’s Lion”). From there I bought a shogi game app from Microsoft Store and a Shogi Puzzle Book by T. Gene Davis. I started watching shogi tutorial videos on YouTube by HIDETCHI.

This website starts you off at 9th kyu. That’s a beginner for this website. So hopefully I can get past this rank before the year is over. Funny thing is the site is made by HIDETCHI. Go figure!

On another note, here is a grammar note and examples.

I’ve had that experience ➔た-form + ことがある

This grammar is usually used when saying that you have had an experience doing something. So of course, we must use the past tense for this. But wait how can we conjugated with “to have an experience doing ___”?

Ladies and gentlemen, the て-form is back again. Except this time, you must change it to past tense た-form. So, in the past post, you used the て-form just simply switch the てout with た.







(I have had the experience of cutting my hair myself.)

(I haven’t had the experience going to Japan but, I have had the experience of going to Germany.)

(I have had the experience of buying a wrist watch)

(I have had the experience of writing a diary)

(I have had the experience of sketching an anime character)

(I haven’t had the experience of breaking my bones. Thank goodness!)


Previously: A young boy named Takeshi has gotten into trouble. His mother told him to sit at the kitchen table until she returns. His friend comes over and wants to play. After Takeshi is convinced to go play by his friend, the phone rings. It’s his mother. Now how did she know he got off his seat and was about to leave.

Now, we start back to where we left off last week. Sounds like Takeshi and his friend are in trouble.






たけしの友達: じゃ、あまたね。

たけし: おい!お前!行かないでよ!

お母さん: あなたはもトラブルに巻き込まれるよ。

たけしの友達とたけし: きゃ~!来た!

Takeshi: Mom?! Where are you?!

Mom: I’m on the roof. And, I can see both of you.

Takeshi: Our roof?!

Takeshi’s friend: What?! Wow that’s amazing. Is she a ninja?

Takeshi: Shut up!

Mom: My orders are absolute. My orders have been and will always be.

Takeshi’s friend: Well, see ya.

Takeshi: Hey! You! Don’t you leave!

Mom: You are also in trouble.

Takeshi’s friend and Takeshi: Ahh! She’s here!


レイ: ね、ヒビキ。今晩、パーティーがあるよ。一緒に行こうか?

ヒビキ: ううん。ちょっと疲れた。

レイ: ハルはパーティーに行きますよ。

ヒビキ: え?!ハ。。。ハルさん?!

レイ: うん。ハルの親友の誕生日のパーティーだよ。彼女の名前はエマだ。エマはイギリス人だよ。

ヒビキ: 何人来るのか?

レイ: 10人ぐらいだ。

ヒビキ: どこか?

レイ: エマのアパトだ。それに、僕たち四人だけはカラオケばーに行く。

ヒビキ: じゃ、行くと思う。

レイ: え、セカンドウインドか?

ヒビキ: ほとけよ。行こうよ。

レイ: はい、はい。

ヒビき: そして、レイ。

レイ: なんだ?

ヒビキ: ありがとう。

レイ: ノー問題。


Hibiki and Rei Part II

Rei: Hey, Hibiki. There’s going to be a party tonight. Shall we go together?

Hibiki: Nah. I’m a bit tired.    

Rei: Haru is going the party.

Hibiki: Huh?! M-Ms. Haru?!

Rei: Yeah, it’s her best friend’s birthday party. Her name is Emma. She’s British.

Hibiki: How many people are coming?

Rei: About 10 people.

Hibiki: Where is it?

Rei: At Emma’s apartment. Then just the four of us we’ll go to a karaoke bar.

Hibiki: Well then, I guess I’ll go.

Rei: Eh, getting your second wind?

Hibiki: Leave it be. Let’s go.

Rei: Yeah Yeah.

Hibiki: And Rei.

Rei: Yeah.

Hibiki: Thank you.

Rei: No problem.

In conclusion, I hope that this series is helpful with your journey to learning Japanese and/or taking an interest in the country’s culture. Until then… また来週。


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