[Image: Blizzard]

Last year, a short Overwatch animation featured some iffy kanji choices. It seems the latest Hanzo skin does, too.

Japanese has a rather complex writing system that features kanji characters from China. There are also native writing systems called hiragana and katakana that are used along with kanji in written Japanese.

Advertisement

The latest Hanzo skin features the characters 矢印 (yajirushi) on the strip of his quiver. When Japanese people see this, it stands out like so:

Why? Because yajirushi literally means “arrow mark,” as in the arrow symbol you’d see on a signpost or a map. It doesn’t mean “arrow” as in the thing you shoot from a bow—that would simply be “ya” (矢).

Advertisement

So seeing the word for “arrow sign” on Hanzo’s strap looks so weird to those who know Japanese.

If you are wondering how this happened, Google Translate could be the culprit. If you put “ya” (矢), you get “arrow” in English.

But, if you put “arrow” in English, you get “yajirushi” (矢印), the word for “arrow sign.”

If you put in “yajirushi” (矢印) in Japanese, you do get “arrow,” but the more accurate, though somewhat awkward sounding “directing arrow” below.

The inclusion of this kanji is miffing Overwatch fans in Japan.

“Hanzo’s arrow sign is even on the weapon...”

“What’s up with Hanzo’s arrow sign”

“While Genji is a god of military arts, Hanzo’s ‘arrow sign’ is totally not cool, don’t cha think?”

“Why is ‘arrow sign’ written on Hanzo’s new skin...”

“Why the heck is ‘arrow sign’ written on Hanzo’s strap”

“Hanzo, the arrow sign, you’re making me laugh, stop it lol”

“Even though I thought why has Hanzo been turned into those odd [kanji] t-shirts foreigners wear... Is it that “ya” (矢) is “arrow” and “arrow” is “yajirushi” (矢印)? lol”


Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.