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So, I was playing the Japanese version of Akinator (cf. English version), which basically entails playing a sort of 20 Questions-like game - the basic idea is that you pick a real or fictional person/character, and then the genie asks you questions about the person you've picked so as to figure out who the person you've picked is.

One of the questions asked about my character was this one:

タイプを分けるとパッション?

I guess that タイプ is English "type" as in "variety"; 分ける is "to separate / divide / partition"; and パッション is English "passion" (not sure what sense). I have no idea how this fits together to form a coherent sentence, though. What does this question mean?

It strikes me as possible that this might be the result of machine translation from one of the other languages in which Akinator is available - some of the other questions I've seen appear to be of dubious grammaticality, too.

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My guess is that this means "(If you had to choose), would you say that [your character] is the passionate type?". I wouldn't myself use パッション in this spot, I would prefer a 形容詞 or 形容動詞, like 情熱的. However, it's not uncommon that I see loanwords unexpectedly used as 形容動詞. –  dainichi Feb 12 '14 at 1:15
    
@dainichi Could you point out some constructions in which 分ける is used in the same way as in "タイプを分ける"? I'm having a bit of trouble wrapping my head around this. –  senshin Feb 12 '14 at 4:31
    
身分を分ける or 種類分け are similar uses, I guess. Definition 2 here: dictionary.goo.ne.jp/leaf/jn2/238010/m0u –  dainichi Feb 12 '14 at 5:21
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The weirdest part of 「タイプを分けるとパッション?」 by the native standards would definitely be the particle choice 「を」, not anything else. It would need to be either 「で」 or 「に」 if this phrase were indeed asking the addressee's character type. –  l'électeur Feb 12 '14 at 6:21
    
@TokyoNagoya, I thought so too, but googling for "タイプを分ける", I see lots of cases where it's used similarly. I guess there can be some confusion between "defining the taxonomy" and "applying the taxonomy". –  dainichi Feb 12 '14 at 9:36

1 Answer 1

up vote 8 down vote accepted

This question based on a video game called アイドルマスターシンデレラガールズ. In that game, there are 3 types("タイプ") of idols, which are cute, cool, and passion("パッション"). As dainichi mentioned above, 分ける in this sentence means 分類する. So, it translates as "If you categorize her into 'type', is she passion? (Do you categorize her as a passion-type-idol?)" or something along the line.

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That's probably what the question intends to ask, you're right. Still, it should be タイプで分けると (or ) and it lacks anyway the context for anyone (including people unfamiliar with the game) to understand the question. Maybe it surmises that the reader is familiar with the game already (i.e. Akinator already came to the conclusion that it's a character from this game), and パッションタイプ? might even be just enough a question... –  desseim Feb 17 '14 at 9:14

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