Language is power in Idiom Girl.

Last month, Japan’s anthropomorphization trend rolled on with a video game that turned the hiragana writing system into handsome anime-style men. This month, DMM Games is taking the opposite approach by unveiling a new game that draws inspiration not from the phonetic hiragana, but from kanji idioms incarnated as cute anime-style women.

Idiom Girl was announced during this year’s Tokyo Game Show, and DMM Games has swiftly released a preview video. Billed as an RPG, Idiom Girl also looks to have tile-matching puzzle elements, but more so than the gameplay it’s the inspiration for the characters that’s the big draw.

The Japanese language is filled with yoji jukugo, proverbs and terminology composed of four kanji (the characters which represent concepts and were originally imported from China). Each of Idiom Girl’s fighting females, who’re battling against an oppressive government, was born from the spiritual energy of her associated yoji jukugo, and their designs take cues from the individual or collective meanings of the kanji.

Furou fushi, “immortal and unaging,” has the nubile physique of a young woman and the silver hair of a senior.

Ichigo ichie, “a one-in-a-lifetime encounter,” is dressed for a life-changing event.

Kouinryuuten, literally “light and shadow continually cycle,” essentially means “time flies like an arrow,” hence the boy of light.

Inga ouhou, “what goes around comes around,” has a costume with swapped dark and light colorings.

Chimi mouryou, “a collection of devils/unsavory types,” is pretty literal in its visual interpretation.

Idiom Girl is set for a winter 2017 release in web browser and Android formats, so you’ll be able to multi-task gaming and learning new vocabulary to impress you Japanese instructor during the spring semester.

Related: Idiom Girl official website
Source: IT Media
Images: YouTube/DMM GAMES公式チャンネル