Fair Warning: this post is about 4 years old, so some of the information might be a bit dated. On the other hand, this post was last modified about 4 years ago, so maybe it's up-to-date after all. In any case, please keep all this in mind while reading. Thanks for understanding!
A Quick Diversion:  

The Actual News:

Ok so its been a while since I’ve talked about the Galarian language… however most of what I want to say is being saved for the upcoming video about it. Y’know, the video I’ve been saying that I’ve been working on for the last five months… …

….ANYways, recently two savvy members of the Galarian Language Institute—Lugiadri1 and Scott—left a couple of comments about their observations of Galarian. But in writing my reply to them, my ideas just kept pouring out, and it got way too long to be a mere comment, so I decided to turn it into a proper post. So here it is!

As mentioned, Lugiadri1 and Scott both noticed that the Galarian language was both consistent and inconsistent, which was the conclusion I reached as well. Like, its clear that a lot is just random gibberish, but there are examples of actual syntax. Some of this syntax include:

  • use of the same latters within the same word (ie the R in YARROW is represented by the same Galarian letter)
  • how the Galarian words for every Pokémon type have the same number of characters as their Romaji forms (Electric = JEMXL = Denki = 5 characters)
  • the appearance of Galarian words in situations which make sense (such as the Galarian words for “Electric” and “Water”, as well as Chairman Rose’s name, all appearing in his presentation about using water to produce electricity for the region)
    • This is also considering that random junk text DOES exist and is used frequently, but weren’t used in those situations.

So yeah, there is definitely some consistency in the text. As for why it’s not ALL consistent, or why it’s not all INconsistent… I have a few theories.

  • If I recall correctly, there were other scripts used in previous games, but they were all deciphered quickly, revealing them to be just Japanese words. So perhaps the developers wanted to make the script slightly undecipherable (apart from things they wanted people to make a connection with) in order to keep a sense of mystery with the Galarian language.
    • This is considering that the Galarian alphabet takes elements from a lot of dissimilar language scripts… I’ve seen letters which came from scripts like Latin, Cyrillic, Greek, Katakana, Hangul, Runic… I think they wanted Galarian to be more “international”. But in doing so, maybe they didn’t think they could make up actual WORDS that came from different languages, so they threw in only a few Japanese and English words which could be recognized, and then turned the rest into indecipherable gibberish; the gibberish would be to ensure they didn’t accidentally make the Galarian language TOO much like Japanese again, if that makes sense.
  • A similar idea to that is that the devs wanted to keep things recognizable enough but ultimately indecipherable… not because they wanted to avoid it being recognized as Japanese-y, but just for its own sake of being “recognizable but indecipherable”.
    • One example of this is how the Galarian name for Motostoke is CQKMQ8, which looks like the word ENGINE based on its Japanese name (エンジン Enjin)… if it weren’t for the fact that the Galarian word ends in 8 instead of C. But given that both characters look similar, maybe it WAS supposed to be “ENGINE”, but they changed it slightly just to throw off anyone trying to decipher the language. So who knows what other Galarian words are actual legit words, but have one or two letters changed just to make it less recognizable?
  • There wasn’t a single “head of Galarian words” within the development team, so each artist just made up words to suit their own needs. Or if they couldn’t even do that, they would instead copy-and-paste Galarian text that someone else wrote in their own graphic element.
    • This would explain why some Galarian text seems to make sense in a certain context, while use of that very same text in another graphic seems awkward or out of place… or even cut up. Like, I’ve seen text which is written in full in a few places—perhaps say the words 3+QD7S and WAELBRSKTY—only for that text to appear somewhere else looking like 3+QD7WAELBR… as if someone copied-and-pasted words from a list of junk text just to have something in it.
    • In other words, it’s almost as if it’s the Galarian version of Lorem Ipsum! :D :P
  • Maybe there WAS a “head of Galarian words” and the plan was to actually make it a consistent language, and they started work on a small list of words… but then maybe someone else didn’t get the memo and started work on their own set of Galarian words. Or maybe there was a lazy CG modeller who just used the same graphic element all over the place, even though they were intended to be different for each town. Either way, because they were stuck with Galarian text which don’t match up properly, they both just gave up and decided to keep things indecipherable.
    • Although I feel this is the least likely scenario, I do feel like there is some examples of this… namely in the use of Gym and Stadium signs, which all seem to use the same text, or those green “town” signs (such as the one by the Day Care Center) are all exactly the same, even though they are supposed to be different. Then there’s also the Hotel Ionia in Chirchester, which has its hotel name (E6!^2) written properly on the building on the left, but if flipped on the building on the right.
    • Basically, they started to write proper Galarian words, but they couldn’t get any of it to gel properly, so they gave up.

There are maybe other reasons for this “consistently inconsistent” form of Galarian, or maybe it’s just some mix of the above. Either way, I think these make the most sense.

Ok, that’s all I got for now… hopefully it gives you a few new things to think about!



Side note: I’ve been busy with a bunch of other stuff lately, so I’ve been a little behind on my Galarian language research… but the one last thing I want to test is see if there is SOME commonality between words using the same letters. Like of all the Galarian words which use a certain character to represent the English/Romaji character “R”… do THOSE share a common set of letters? It probably doesn’t, but I’d like to know for sure.