I'm trying to understand Animalese, the language that the villagers audibly speak in. No, I'm not talking about their written dialogue, but the voice during said dialogue. Is it English? Is it Japanese?

For instance, when talking to Blathers in the museum and he says "Jolly Good", you can almost hear him actually say "Jolly Good" in Animalese. Of course, this doesn't apply to all conversations, where sometimes what sound comes out doesn't exactly seem to match up with what they're saying.

The keyboard you use when filling in passport forms and chatting also seems to assign audible syllables to each letter, although there are cases where they just don't match up.

In any case, what language is Animalese based on? And why does it sound so close to some languages moreso than others?


It's based on the phonemes of the language. In English, per Nookipedia:

Each letter spoken is stated to synthesize the basic sound of a letter, leading to mispronounciation of some words. (i.e. "Animal Crossing" would be pronounced "Ah-n-ih-m-ah-l c-r-o-s-s-ih-n-g"). When villagers say numbers, they will talk rather clearly, like when the player is typing a letter. The name of the player and the name of the town can be clearly discerned as well, although they may also be mispronounced depending on the way each letter of the word is said in Animalese. Laughing and similar sounds are also discernible. However, much of Animalese is mostly unintelligible, but some phrases can be heard.

In Japanese:

In Japanese, Animalese is more clear and easy to understand as Japanese kana characters each represent one syllable from Japanese speech. For each symbol, the corresponding syllable sound is played, whereas in English Animalese consists of spellings of each letter as each letter can be pronounced differently in the English language.

Polygon has a video article about this as well:

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