An Aero-Gamer’s Guide to Using ATLAS

(Unlike what the title might suggest, this guide covers a lot more than just ATLAS. You can see exactly what is covered in this guide by having a look at the table of contents below)

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Installing and Configuring Eroge
  3. The Bare Essentials
  4. Mecab and Jparser
  5. The Replacement Script and Other Add Ons
  6. Other Tools
  7. Playing eroge WITHOUT Machine Translators
  8. When Things Go Wrong

Current Status: DEAD. What I mean by this is that this guide will no longer be updated. This probably isn’t a surprise to most people because let’s face it, my last update was like on March 2013 or something. I pretty much lost all motivation to update this guide after I moved on from using ATLAS to using the Machine Assisted methodI will still try to answer any questions, but I am somewhat behind the times when it comes to using a lot of this stuff. 

So you’re interested in untranslated eroge, but you don’t understand (much) Japanese. What can you do? Fortunately there’s a translation program which can translate the Japanese in real time called ATLAS. As a user of it myself, I know that setting up everything can be quite frustrating. So I’ve written a guide on setting up the stuff you’ll need in order to play eroge in English using translators.

If this introduction looks too long for you, and you KNOW you want to use ATLAS already, feel free to move on =>> =>>

The idea is simple enough, but using ATLAS isn’t as easy as it sounds. It’s a machine translation, so it can be hard to interpret. You could probably say that only 1 out of 100 people will be able to STAND using translators to play eroge.

Taking into account various factors, I would recommend ATLAS to people who:

  • Have developed an amateur level of Japanese  (or higher) from watching anime
  • Have played a few translated eroge, and have a thirst for lots more
  • Are patient and aren’t overly critical of faults

ATLAS is by no means perfect. If it WAS, you wouldn’t see groups out there fan translating games. The main thing that you should know is: you won’t understand everything in a game.

So what’s the point?

ATLAS translations give you decent information about the target sentence.  Using this information, and some common sense, you should be able to piece together an understanding on what the sentence means. I would say that in general, at this stage you would probably understand around 50%. The degree you understand a sentence will improve depending on the following factors:

  1. The complexity of the game
  2. How well you make use of other tools
  3. Experience
  4. Your Japanese ability

1) Games that are generally ATLAS friendly are charage and nukige. Charage are games more focused on character development, and nukige are games that just focus on H-scenes.

Types of eroge to avoid (at least at first):

  • Eroge which have a complicated story
  • Eroge with a lot of important focus on the supernatural, history etc.
  • RPG type, action type and any other type of eroge which requires more than just simple mouse clicking

Frankly, some of these game types are probably impossible to play using ATLAS. Others may just require more experience.

2) Aside from ATLAS, this guide also covers:

  • TA (translation aggregator)
  • ITH (interactive text hooker)
  • Mecab & Jparser
  • TAHplugin, TAHelper, and the replacement script
  • Other translators

Don’t settle for JUST ATLAS. Utilize all the available tools to increase your understanding of an eroge.

3) As you play more eroge using ATLAS, you’ll start to get used to errors that it makes. By taking these errors into account, your understanding should improve.

4) I know what you’re thinking, “If I HAD Japanese ability, I wouldn’t be using ATLAS in the first place!!! Stop messy with me you bastard!!”, etc. The thing is, like or not, as you play more eroge, your Japanese ability will probably improve. If you’re not learning Japanese, at the very least your listening skills should improve.

Taking these factors into account, your understanding of a game should reach the level where you can enjoy it. Back in the day, I played eroge using JUST ATLAS, with basically no Japanese knowledge, and I was still somehow able to enjoy it. So you never know, you might get lucky.


To conclude this overly long intro, nothing beats learning Japanese if you wanna play eroge.


Do you really wanna wait years until you can enjoy untranslated eroge? If you’re DESPERATE (like me), and you can’t be stuffed waiting to play the latest eroge, ATLAS might just be for you. I would still suggest learning Japanese on the side though. A little Japanese goes a long way when it comes to understanding. As you play, and as your Japanese grows, you may find that one day you don’t need to use ATLAS any more . A dream we probably all share =3

If I somehow managed to convince you to use ATLAS, feel free to move on.

Installing and Configuring Eroge =>>


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