My coworker Ted is like, "Dude, you do localization for Namco, of course you could pass Level 1 of the JLPT [Japanese Language Proficiency Test]," and I'm like, "Um, no, that's the one with the extra thousand kanji and the esoteric grammar and the crazy technical reading passages, the one that pounds even the most heroic linguists into sobbing wrecks. I can barely follow a business meeting or read a newspaper. 無理無理無理。 Not a chance."
So, just to demonstrate, I took a practice test this evening (the actual 2006 exam), stone-cold without any preparation.
327/400! (Passing is 70%, or 280 points.)
Wait, what? Since when? It looks like my weakest spot was the grammar; I'm gonna need to drop by Kinokuniya and grab one of the study guides, and I hear they're messing with the test format starting this year, so I need to figure out what's up with that. But maybe this is doable after all.
All I can say is, I'm glad it's not a watch-a-movie-without-subtitles test.