Level up

Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Fri Apr 19 05:15:45 UTC 2013

On two games, recently, I've run into "level up" when I move up a level. I've always considered that to be a Japanese expression (reberu appu), so this usage surprised me.

In Japanese, appu is in common use, such as CPU appu suru (get a better CPU for your computer) and boryuumu appu (< volume up, meaning more volume such as a bigger meal).

I wonder if this is a re-import from Japanese, borrowed from "English" found on Japanese video games.

It has the advantage of being pithy; if "level up" were not around, what would have been used? Level X!, or perhaps spelling it out....

Benjamin Barrett
Seattle, WA

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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