Musings – Rat vs Mouse


Something interesting occurred in the previous LDM chapter. It might not seem as such, but to me it was. So far, I assumed that the things Keima used to take down the red minotaur and scout Haku’s [White Trial] way back when were rats. Now, those of you with a bit of skill in Japanese will know that rats, ネズミ, share the word for mouse. Which of the two it means depends on context, usually defaulting on mouse. Even so, I went with rat as the way Keima was using them was in a swarm strategy and it seemed to fit the theme.


In the most recent chapter, a very small thing appeared: Elekimouse.

So I thought: are these actually mice? I went with it.

… but now we’re missing out on the legendary ‘Rat Race’!

What are everyone’s thoughts on the matter? Perhaps someone more familiar with the usage(s) of ネズミ could chime in with some insight on it?

If you just want to vote on it and not leave a comment (by all means, leave a comment explaining your thoughts if you have the time!):

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36 thoughts on “Musings – Rat vs Mouse

  1. Maybe a stupid explanation, but I google the ネズミ word, see image section, then search rat or mouse, compare them, and got mouse as the result…

  2. Elekimouse?! Does it have a zig zag tail and has a yellow body color?
    *photograph with a pokedex* is it pichu? Please let it be pichu~!
    *readies pokeball*

  3. It’s another world. It could be some unique cross between a mouse and a rat or general monster.

    They’re pikas.

  4. i feel like rats were more appropriate for the dungeon battle, but i like the feeling of mice for the race (plus, Elekimouse). so i guess i’ll vote mice.

  5. Hm… Given that they were originally summoned for their cheapness, smaller mice would have an advantage there and in getting inside the minotaur’s throat… But would be at a disadvantage climbing rought terrain (including said minotaur), which would impede their ability to scout. Perhaps the real question is if mice would have been big enough to swallow those tiny drone golems…

    Honestly, I could see it either way. The use of the english word in a name itself probably doesn’t mean much, but overall I’m leaning towards calling them ‘mice’. (Perhaps because it sounds cuter).

  6. Theydon’t really make distiction. It’s like with “usagi”, which can be either “rabbit” or “hare”. There are instance when going with “engrish”, they call what clearly is a rabbit “hare” and what clearly is a hare “rabbit/bunny”.

    In this case, the fact that they were capable to act in swarms points to them being rats, but however, the ones used in races are mainly mice. I still believe that they are rats.

  7. This happens when you translate from one language to another. For the reverse, take rice. In English it can mean the plant, the uncooked product, or the cooked product, while in some eastern languages they have different names for all if those. Translating them to English is easy. Translating them from English takes more work.

    1. We might never really know unless we asked the author.
      Objectively rats and mouse looks similar and both are considered pests. Maybe most Japanese considered them the same. The case with me with crocodiles and alligators. I know they’re different, but to me the most important thing is that they are dangerous and look similar.

      1. They don’t look similar at all, one has… what was the term.. teeth that curve outwards, the other has lips that cover the teeth; not to mention the snout, crocs are usually more elongated — Anyways, they are only dangerous cuz you don’t know how to handle them, there are farms out there that specialize in racing them for meat, and they’re even kept as pets. IMO, they’re as dangerous as snap turtles XD

        1. The things people keep as pets… I swear if we could clone dinosaurs, there would be people keeping T-rexes and velociraptors as pets.

          1. I read somewhere they actually did something like this, where you genetically altered a chicken to be more raptor-like, but killed it in the end, due to some law or something. — Also, lol, do you want a real-like Jurassic Park? Learn from movies a little :p

  8. Is there an actual difference between a rat and a mouse?
    I’ve always assumed “mouse” is used for the smaller/cuter ones and “rat” for the larger/wild ones.
    Basically, you keep the mouse as a pet and you run screaming from the rat.

    1. You make me wonder, this is another world so it is entirely possible that there is only one species that exists or it could be a cross-breed of mouse and rat or could even be some other creature that just happens, by pure coincidence, to look similiar but is actually neither.

      Also, it may not actually be a question of mouse or rat, it could actually be called something completely different and Kehma’s automatic translation is putting it in a term that is easy for him (and us) to understand.

      By this (twisted) logic, penguin may actually be accurate.

  9. Thinking it over I’m leaning toward them being mice. Mostly as a size perspective.

    To avoid the traps smaller would be better. Attacking the Mino he used 50 of them to swarm it, both types could be used like this but 50 rats take up a fair amount of space and it would not take much to block its throat while it might take a dozen or more using mice. You then need to think of the next person that was worried about having the creatures swarm it, Hakus succubus butler. A typical rat would not fit in the throat of a human sized creature, could barely fit in its mouth, while one mouse would fit rather snugly.

    One person brought up the small size of a mouse would make it hard for it to navigate things like the stairs of a dungeon, however mice can jump over a foot into the air so such thing would not be much of an obstacle. The stairs were also all going down, going down stairs is fairly easy, you can just fall. The creatures were packed in crates, a crate might hold around 50 rats but could hold hundreds of mice. Their small size would probably lower their cost per unit as well, something Kehma looks for alot.

    You can also consider the amount of size a race track for rats would take up. While a mouse track might fit on top of a good sized table a rat track would need a great deal more space and would probably end up on the floor, with people in the room as well it would have to be a large room to not feel crowded.

  10. I think its rats.. since the way they move…
    Also its kehma we’re talking about!! I mean.. he saw something similar to pika-pi.. and named it elekimouse.. (remember he even named the 3 summoned as A B C…) his lame naming sense must not be forgotten!!

    1. Rats are quicker and quite intelligent and it was boosted when they were named so I say 100,000 votes for rats!!

  11. Heh!*flip hair* Of course it has to be rat !
    Just think about it ,the realistic side is a given since rat are more physically and intellectually adept at the task they were given (scouting in harsh terrain ,climbing harsh terain minotor included,having drone in their tummy…)

    But that’s not the importante part!! In case like these you have to leave it to your heart !… So which sound more brutal A minotor killed by a bunch of rat in his throat or mouse IHT of course it’s rat! And which of these would you find more acceptable ,drone getting out of a mouse corps or a rat corps? Ofcourse it’s rat corps ! With a mouse you will be all like’ poor thing” since they’re more cute

    and then what ? Rat can’t Race ? That’s Ra(cis)t !
    They’re fantasy creature ? Most probably not ! 95% khema used the same principe as melon roll to summon them same go for the larva in the water with stupidmander .since theu were not originally in the list ….or so i think

    Geez writing all this with a phone is such a pain*ahem* let’s go rat team we shall win this RACE to supremasy!!( as of now we are winning but only by one digit vote difference but ho care!)

  12. Go with mouse.
    Keima is the sort of guy who, if presented with the option of a mouse and a rat, would choose the mouse because they’re less gross to look at. And what the hay, they have less combat power so they should be cheaper by the bundle. Less threatening, and thus more surprising when they kill a boss monster.

  13. You do realize author might now even know the difference between rat and mouse and just used whatever without giving a shit, not expecting that later at some foreign translation website there’ll be heated discussion wether it’s mouse or rat.

  14. Since they have to swallow the golems, I think of them as rats. Mice are really tiny after all. But to have run into the Minotaurs throat it should be mice. Also, maybe 2 of them will try to take over the dungeon.

  15. IMO, that name was just a reference, like most/all the other names; and the general term should be Rats — Most dungeon games don’t have mouses as a spawn, do they? Also, like you said, it’s Rat Racing, not Mice/Mouse Racing; then there is the whole mouse/rat fitting inside the mouth portion, would it take 1 or more to fit in Chloe’s?

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