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Trapped in debt, a salaryman says

僕はハードモードが向いてるんだ

I am not sure what 向いてる might mean. I might be overthinking but I initially thought it meant "to be suitable" but the usage of が is tripping me. I expected に instead of が.

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You can use 向く to express something/someone is suitable for something/someone, like so:

  • 彼女は教師の仕事に向いている。
    She is suited to being a teacher.
  • 彼女(に)は教師の仕事が向いている。
    Being a teacher suits her.
  • 教師の仕事は彼女に向いている。
    The job of teaching suits her.
  • 教師の仕事(に)は彼女が向いている。
    It's she who is suited to the job of teaching.

So, when you use 向く, both the person and the job/task can be either the subject or the に-marked argument. The four sentences above basically describe the same fact, although they have different nuances and "focuses". Your sentence can be understood as "Hard mode suits me" or "Hard mode is suitable for me" with "hard mode" as the subject.

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向く is an intransitive verb. It's subject is marked by が. The subject here is ハードモード.

向く can mean to *be suited to, fit for", but it also means to face.

In this context, it's a bit challenging to give a direct translation.

僕はハードモードが向いてるんだ

As for me, hard times are facing [me].

If I'm not going to be faithful to the grammatical categories of the Japanese, I would just say,

I'm facing hard times.

However, there is no "I" in the Japanese who is the subject of the verb and in the Japanese hard times is not the object, but the subject of the verb.

This is a fairly common way of expressing something in Japanese. It may seem a bit indirect, but it states exactly what's going on. It marks 僕 as the topic, which makes clear for whom the hard times are an issue.

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