How to tell Traditional Chinese from Simplified Chinese

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cataclysm80
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How to tell Traditional Chinese from Simplified Chinese

Post by cataclysm80 » Sun May 04, 2014 3:18 am

Like a lot of people, I've sometimes had difficulty identifying whether a card is Traditional or Simplified Chinese.

I started with this website, which can be quite useful...
http://www.snazzorama.com/magic/lang/
Unfortunately, it hasn't been updated in a while and the Traditional vs. Simplified portion is a bit open ended as to when things became similar.
(UPDATE: That website has now been updated and includes a link back to this article. What an honor! Thanks.)

That combined with changes in font between sets can make identification a pretty daunting task. You could probably take a pretty good guess which was which IF you had both versions in front of you, but if you only have the one card, it's just really tough.

I've decided that the best thing to do would be to compile a picture gallery of examples of each language from each set to help myself and others. Using this gallery, you'll be able to compare your card even if you don't have both versions in front of you.
Just compare your card with these pictures to have a better idea which language you have.

Here we go...

4th Edition
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Visions
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Weatherlight
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Portal
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Simplified has expansion symbols that are color coded for rarity. (In this picture, Simplified is on the right and has a silver expansion symbol because the card is an uncommon.)
Simplified has a darker (almost bold) flavor text.
Image

5th Edition
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional has 1997 copyright, Simplified has 1998 & expansion symbol
Image

Tempest
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Stronghold
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Exodus
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Urza's Saga
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional has a 1998 copyright and darker (almost bold) rules text.
Simplified has a 1999 copyright and darker (almost bold) flavor text.
Image

Urza's Legacy
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

6th Edition
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional has 1999 copyright, Simplified has 2000 copyright
Image

Urza's Destiny
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Portal Three Kingdoms
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional has a darker (almost bold) rules text.
Simplified has a darker (almost bold) flavor text.
Image

Mercadian Masques
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Nemesis
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Prophecy
Only Traditional Chinese was available
Image

Invasion
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width.
Image

Planeshift
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Chinese cards.
Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) has been moved down to the base of the text like on Japanese cards. (Hopefully you can tell Japanese apart from Chinese.)
Image

7th Edition
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width.
Image
Image

Apocalypse
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width. The card name appears to be more bold on Simplified.
Image

Odyssey
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width. The card name appears to be more bold on Simplified.

Image

Torment
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width. Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width. The card name and rules text appears to be more bold on Simplified. Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) is at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

Judgement
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width. Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width. The card name and rules text appears to be more bold on Simplified. Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) is at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

Onslaught
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width. Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width. The card name and rules text appears to be more bold on Simplified. Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) is at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

Legions
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Unfortunately, I only have a picture of Traditional. If you have a Simplified Chinese card from Legions that you can scan, please let me know and we'll put it here.
Image

Scourge
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Unfortunately, I only have a picture of Traditional. If you have a Simplified Chinese card from Scourge that you can scan, please let me know and we'll put it here.
Image

8th Edition
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width. Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width. The card name and rules text appears to be more bold on Simplified. Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) is at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

Mirrodin
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
The rules text font on Traditional is more square and blocky with uniform line width. Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
The rules text font on Simplified appears to have been painted with a brush with the strokes having a varying width. The card name and rules text appears to be more bold on Simplified. Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) is at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

Darksteel
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Fifth Dawn
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Champions of Kamigawa
Only Simplified Chinese was available.

Betrayers of Kamigawa
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Saviors of Kamigawa
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

9th Edition
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Ravnica: City of Guilds
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Guildpact
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Dissension
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Coldsnap
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
(Basic land isn't the best example because there is no rules text. If you have a Simplified Chinese card from Coldsnap that you can scan, please let me know and we'll put it here.)
Image

Time Spiral
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Planar Chaos
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Future Sight
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

10th Edition
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Lorwyn
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Morningtide
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Shadowmoor
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Eventide
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Shards of Alara
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
(Basic land isn't the best example because there is no rules text. If you have a Simplified Chinese card from Shards of Alara that you can scan, please let me know and we'll put it here.)
Image

Conflux
Only Simplified Chinese was available.

Alara Reborn
Only Simplified Chinese was available.

M10
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Zendikar
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

Worldwake
Only Simplified Chinese was available.

Rise of the Eldrazi
Only Simplified Chinese was available.
Image

M11
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

Scars of Mirrodin
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Mirrodin Beseiged
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

New Phyrexia
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

M12
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Traditional end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains centered vertically like on all previous Traditional Chinese cards.
Simplified end of phrase punctuation (little circle) remains at the base of the text like on Japanese cards.
Image

Innistrad
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Dark Ascension
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Avacyn Restored
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

M13
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Return to Ravnica
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
Unfortunately, I only have a picture of Traditional. If you have a Simplified Chinese card from Return to Ravnica that you can scan, please let me know and we'll put it here.
Image

Gatecrash
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Dragon's Maze
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

M14
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Theros
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Born of the Gods
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Journey into Nyx
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

M15
Traditional and Simplified both exist.


If anyone can provide a scan of something that's missing, please let me know and we'll add it in the appropriate place.
For sets where both languages were available, a scan of the same card in each language would be ideal.
Thanks!

Tav
Last edited by cataclysm80 on Tue Aug 12, 2014 11:57 pm, edited 34 times in total.

Neuron
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Post by Neuron » Mon May 05, 2014 5:05 pm

Very good guide, something like this should have been done for a long time!

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mystical_tutor
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Post by mystical_tutor » Wed May 07, 2014 9:42 am

For Portal three kingdoms my rule of thumb is one has dark rules and light flavor the other the opposite. No Idea which is which.

Solved the problem for myself though. My god daughter-in-law Xiao Wen is from mainland China and can always tell me which card is which....

Gary
Gary Adkison
Father of a former Wizards of the Coast janitor.

Knowledge is proud because it thinks it knows so much; wisdom is humble because it realizes it knows so little.

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mmgun
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Post by mmgun » Thu Jun 12, 2014 10:30 am

This might fit well to this topic. Since S-Chinese 5th only has 350 instead of 449 cards, this is the spoilerlist:


Artifact (52 cards)
Aladdin's Ring
Ankh of Mishra
Ashnod's Altar
Barl's Cage
Bottle of Suleiman
Clockwork Beast
Clockwork Steed
Coral Helm
Crown of the Ages
Crystal Rod
Dancing Scimitar
Diabolic Machine
Dingus Egg
Disrupting Scepter
Dragon Engine
Elkin Bottle
Feldon's Cane
Fellwar Stone
Feroz's Ban
Flying Carpet
Fountain of Youth
Gauntlets of Chaos
Glasses of Urza
Grapeshot Catapult
Howling Mine
Infinite Hourglass
Iron Star
Ivory Cup
Jade Monolith
Jalum Tome
Jandor's Saddlebags
Jayemdae Tome
Jester's Cap
Joven's Tools
Library of Leng
Mana Vault
Meekstone
Millstone
Nevinyrral's Disk
Obelisk of Undoing
Ornithopter
Pentagram of the Ages
Primal Clay
Rod of Ruin
Shapeshifter
Soul Net
Tawnos's Weaponry
The Hive
Throne of Bone
Wall of Spears
Winter Orb
Wooden Sphere
White (52 cards)
Abbey Gargoyles
Akron Legionnaire
Alabaster Potion
Armageddon
Aysen Bureaucrats
Blinking Spirit
Caribou Range
Castle
Circle of Protection: Artifacts
Circle of Protection: Black
Circle of Protection: Blue
Circle of Protection: Green
Circle of Protection: Red
Circle of Protection: White
Crusade
Death Speakers
Death Ward
Disenchant
Divine Offering
Divine Transformation
Dust to Dust
Greater Realm of Preservation
Healing Salve
Hipparion
Holy Strength
Icatian Scout
Icatian Town
Island Sanctuary
Ivory Guardians
Justice
Karma
Kismet
Mesa Falcon
Order of the Sacred Torch
Order of the White Shield
Pearled Unicorn
Personal Incarnation
Repentant Blacksmith
Reverse Damage
Righteousness
Sacred Boon
Samite Healer
Seraph
Serra Bestiary
Serra Paladin
Shield Wall
Spirit Link
Truce
Tundra Wolves
Wall of Swords
White Knight
Wrath of God
Blue(54 cards)
Air Elemental
Azure Drake
Binding Grasp
Boomerang - Alternate artwork from Mirage
Brainstorm
Counterspell
Dance of Many
Dandan
Dark Maze
Deflection
Drain Power
Energy Flux
Feedback
Flight
Flood
Forget
Gaseous Form
Glacial Wall
Hydroblast
Juxtapose
Krovikan Sorcerer
Labyrinth Minotaur
Lifetap
Lord of Atlantis
Magical Hack
Magus of the Unseen
Memory Lapse
Merfolk of the Pearl Trident
Mind Bomb
Phantom Monster
Pirate Ship
Power Sink
Prodigal Sorcerer
Psychic Venom
Ray of Command
Recall
Reef Pirates
Remove Soul
Sea Serpent
Sea Spirit
Seasinger
Segovian Leviathan
Sibilant Spirit
Sleight of Mind
Spell Blast
Stasis
Steal Artifact
Time Elemental
Unsummon
Vodalian Soldiers
Wall of Air
Wind Spirit
Zephyr Falcon
Zur's Weirding
Black (47 cards)
Abyssal Specter
Ashes to Ashes - Alternate artwork from The Dark
Bad Moon
Black Knight
Blight
Bog Imp
Bog Rats
Bog Wraith - Alternate artwork from Portal
Broken Visage
Carrion Ants
Cursed Land
Dark Ritual
Deathgrip
Drain Life
Erg Raiders
Evil Eye of Orms-by-Gore
Evil Presence
Fear
Frozen Shade
Funeral March
Gloom
Greater Werewolf
Howl from Beyond
Initiates of the Ebon Hand - Alternate artwork from Fallen Empires
Knight of Stromgald
Leshrac's Rite
Mindstab Thrull - Alternate artwork from Fallen Empires
Mole Worms
Murk Dwellers
Necrite - Alternate artwork from Fallen Empires
Nether Shadow
Nightmare
Paralyze
Pestilence
Plague Rats
Pox
Rag Man
Raise Dead
Sengir Autocrat
Sorceress Queen
Stromgald Cabal
Terror
Thrull
Vampire Bats
Warp Artifact
Weakness
Xenic Poltergeist
Red (51 cards)
Ambush Party
Atog
Bird Maiden
Brassclaw Orcs
Brothers of Fire
Cave People
Conquer
Crimson Manticore
Detonate
Dwarven Catapult
Dwarven Warriors
Earthquake
Errantry
Fireball
Firebreathing
Fire Drake
Flashfires
Giant Strength
Goblin Digging Team
Goblin Hero
Goblin King
Goblin Warrens
Hill Giant
Hurloon Minotaur
Incinerate
Inferno
Jokulhaups
Keldon Warlord
Manabarbs
Mana Flare
Mons's Goblin Raiders
Mountain Goat
Orcish Artillery
Orcish Conscripts
Orcish Farmer
Orcish Squatters
Primordial Ooze
Pyroblast
Pyrotechnics
Sabretooth Tiger
Shatter
Shatterstorm
Shivan Dragon
Smoke
Stone Giant
Stone Rain
Stone Spirit
Wall of Fire
Wall of Stone
Winds of Change
Word of Blasting
Green (54 cards)
An-Havva Constable
Birds of Paradise
Cat Warriors
Chub Toad
Cockatrice
Craw Wurm
Crumble
Desert Twister
Durkwood Boars
Elder Druid
Elven Raiders
Elvish Archers
Fog
Fungusaur
Fyndhorn Elder
Ghazban Ogre
Giant Growth
Giant Spider
Grizzly Bears
Hurricane
Instill Energy
Ironroot Treefolk
Johtull Wurm
Killer Bees
Ley Druid
Lhurgoyf
Lifeforce
Living Artifact
Living Lands
Llanowar Elves
Lure
Nature's Lore
Pradesh Gypsies
Primal Order
Rabid Wombat
Radjan Spirit
Scaled Wurm
Scavenger Folk
Shanodin Dryads
Shrink
Stream of Live
Sylvan Library
Thicket Basilisk
Titania's Song
Tranquility
Tsunami
Untamed Wilds
Verduran Enchantress
Wall of Brambles
Wanderlust
Whirling Dervish
Wild Growth
Winter Blast
Wyluli Wolf
Land (20 cards)
Adarkar Wastes
Bottomless Vault
Brushland
City of Brass
Dwarven Hold
Dwarven Ruins
Ebon Stronghold
Havenwood Battleground
Hollow Trees
Icatian Store
Ice Floe
Karplusan Forest
Ruins of Trokair
Sand Silos
Sulfurous Springs
Svyelunite Temple
Urza's Mine
Urza's Power Plant
Urza's Tower
Underground River
Basic Land (20 cards)
4 Forest
4 Island
4 Mountain
4 Plains
4 Swamp

cataclysm80
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Post by cataclysm80 » Thu Jun 12, 2014 3:31 pm

Thanks, that's very helpful!
I was looking for several cards that don't exist.

Tav

anselan
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thanks for this

Post by anselan » Mon Jul 14, 2014 6:59 pm

Thanks for this scholarship in the finest traditions of Magiclibrarities! :D

Please can you finish it off?

As a resident of Hong Kong, at the interface between Traditional & Simplified versions, I really ought to take more interest. Historically, I have just tracked whether a card in my collection is Chinese or not, and not worried about the precise language. But really I should start to look at this.

If I do, I will report my results.

What is surprising is the erratic way that T & S printing has stopped and started. Is there any known logic to it?

All the best,
Andrew

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berkumps
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Re: How to tell Traditional Chinese from Simplified Chinese

Post by berkumps » Mon Jul 14, 2014 7:21 pm

cataclysm80 wrote: Lorwyn
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Morningtide
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Shadowmoor
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
After ending with 8th Edition (July 2003) and Mirrodin (September 2003), Traditional Chinese made it's return to core sets with M2011 in July 2010, and for expansions with Scars of Mirrodin in September 2010. So I don't think it was printed in 2007-08 with Lorwyn-Shadowmoor. Perhaps the punctuation changed slightly for S-Chinese within those sets?

cataclysm80
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Re: How to tell Traditional Chinese from Simplified Chinese

Post by cataclysm80 » Mon Jul 14, 2014 11:34 pm

berkumps wrote:
cataclysm80 wrote: Lorwyn
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Morningtide
Traditional and Simplified both exist.

Shadowmoor
Traditional and Simplified both exist.
After ending with 8th Edition (July 2003) and Mirrodin (September 2003), Traditional Chinese made it's return to core sets with M2011 in July 2010, and for expansions with Scars of Mirrodin in September 2010. So I don't think it was printed in 2007-08 with Lorwyn-Shadowmoor. Perhaps the punctuation changed slightly for S-Chinese within those sets?
That might explain why I can't seem to find any 10th edition Traditional Chinese for my global sets.

My info regarding that came from the WotC website http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Default.aspx
because Librarities (my preferred source of info) doesn't go that new.

That WotC website shows that Traditional was available for 10th edition, Lorwyn, Morningtide, and Shadowmoor.

That website could be wrong. I've seen errors on it in other places, particularly regarding the older cards.

Tav


UPDATE: Fixed. Thanks Mark!

cataclysm80
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Post by cataclysm80 » Sun Jul 20, 2014 10:07 pm

Now Updated with more card scans. BIG THANKS to Clay for his help!!!



mystical_tutor wrote:For Portal three kingdoms my rule of thumb is one has dark rules and light flavor the other the opposite. No Idea which is which.
Gary
Thanks for the tip Gary, that was helpful. I've added it to a few sets on this list where it was relevant. Now you should be able to tell which set is which by yourself if you want to.

Tav

cataclysm80
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Re: thanks for this

Post by cataclysm80 » Sun Jul 20, 2014 10:13 pm

anselan wrote:Thanks for this scholarship in the finest traditions of Magiclibrarities! :D

Please can you finish it off?

As a resident of Hong Kong, at the interface between Traditional & Simplified versions, I really ought to take more interest. Historically, I have just tracked whether a card in my collection is Chinese or not, and not worried about the precise language. But really I should start to look at this.

If I do, I will report my results.

What is surprising is the erratic way that T & S printing has stopped and started. Is there any known logic to it?

All the best,
Andrew

Thanks for the compliments Andrew! I'm glad you found this useful. I've updated it now to include the newer sets.

There are still some blank spaces to fill in, so any help you could provide with card scans would be greatly appreciated!

Tav

Neuron
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Post by Neuron » Mon Jul 21, 2014 8:09 pm

I may be able to post some scans, I just don't know when exactly. By the way, thank you for your work on the Scryb Sprites.

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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:13 am

Hi Tav

Great job, I can't help with scans, as the cards that I own are already there. Of course, this topic is a Sticky now. Thanks for your hard work.
Want/Have Lists.
viewtopic.php?f=8&t=8903
viewtopic.php?f=7&t=1515
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cataclysm80
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Post by cataclysm80 » Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:53 pm

Thanks Alexis, It's always an honor to have one of my topics promoted to Sticky!

Tav

anselan
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Tips & Tokens

Post by anselan » Tue Jul 22, 2014 6:53 pm

Most of my chinese cards are traditional, but i am told that Tips & Tokens these days appear in both. I suppose that's logical, but argh, argh, argh! :)

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dragsamou
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Post by dragsamou » Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:15 pm

Tav

I double checked, I can at least provide scans for Invasion in both languages, will do tomorrow.
Want/Have Lists.
viewtopic.php?f=8&t=8903
viewtopic.php?f=7&t=1515
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