20 Ways to use the Japanese Word: すごい (Sugoi)!

What is すごい (Sugoi)?

What is すごい (Sugoi)?

We might have heard of the word before, be it through a Japanese TV Show, Anime or even in Pop Culture. In fact, this Japanese word is used so frequently that if you haven’t heard of it before, you’re probably missing out! (笑) 😁

But that’s besides the point. Today, we’ll be taking a look at the word すごい (Sugoi) and how you can go about using it! すごい (Sugoi) is a word that’s typically used when you’re left awestruck out of excitement or feel overwhelmed. This can be for any situation be it good or bad. A similar English expression would go somewhere along the lines of “Oh… Wow”. However, it can also be used to express that something is terrible or dreadful.


1. To describe that something looks/taste nice. 

Sentence: すごいな~このラテ
Romaji: Sugoi na~ Kono rate
English Translation: Oh wow, this latte’s nice isn’t it?
ways to use the word "sugoi"

2. Being sarcastic about how someone smells.

Sentence: 足のにおい、すごいな~
Romaji: Ashi no Nioi sugoi na~
English Translation: Your feet sure does smell doesn’t it?

3. When you feel happy for someone.

Sentence: ええ、Xさんと付き合っている?すごいじゃん、おめでとう!
Romaji: Ee, X san to tsukiatteiru? Sugoi jan, omedetou!
English Translation: Whaat? You’re dating X? That’s great isn’t it? Congratulations!

4. When you’re amazed by someone’s performance.

Sentence: あの歌手の歌唱力すごいじゃん?
Romaji: Ano Kashu no kashouryoku Sugoi jan?
English Translation: That singer’s ability to sing was great, wasn’t it?

5. As an adverb to indicate something is very nice.

Sentence: ええ、これすごくおいしい!
Romaji: Ee, kore sugoku oishii!
English Translation: Ehh, this (dish) is very nice!

6. As an adverb to indicate that something bad is about to happen.

Sentence: このままじゃ、すごくまずいよね。
Romaji: Konomamaja sugoku mazui yone.
English Translation: If it goes on like that, it’s gonna be bad, ain’t it?

7. To feel excited or look forward to something.

Sentence: すごい!デートが楽しみ!
Romaji: Sugoi! Deeto ga tanoshimi!
English Translation: Yay! I’ll be sure to look forward to the date!
ways to use the word sugoi

8. As a Colloquial Slang or to sound like a Young Boy/Teen.

Sentence: すげえ!おもしろいじゃん?
Romaji: Sugee! Omoshiroi jan?
English Translation: Ehhh, that sounds interesting, doesn’t it?

9. To indicate that it was a “Good/Bad way of saying it”.

Sentence: あれはすごい言い方だと思います。
Romaji: Are wa sugoi iikata dato omoimasu
English Translation: Well, I think that can be a good/bad (depends on context) way to put it.

10. When you see something beautiful.

Sentence: ああ、すごいきれいじゃん!
Romaji: Aa, sugoi kirei jan!
English Translation: Ahhh, that’s beautiful isn’t it!

11. As an adverb to feel as though you had ALOT of fun.

Sentence: すごく楽しかったんでしょう?
Romaji: Sugoku tanoshikattan deshou?
English Translation: It was really fun, wasn’t it?

12. As an adverb to praise someone.

Sentence: 今日、すごくきれいじゃん
Romaji: Kyou, sugoku kirei jan
English Translation: You look really pretty today!

13. When you’d like to gather the opinion of another individual.

Sentence: あの人、めちゃめちゃすごいよね?
Romaji: Ano hito, mecha mecha sugoi yone?
English Translation: That person’s great, wouldn’t you agree?
ways to use the word sugoi

14. When you want to describe that someone is doing something creepy.

Sentence: 怖い、あの人がすごい目であの女をにらんでいる
Romaji: Kowai, ano hito ga sugoi me de ano onna o nirandeiru
English Translation: That guy is staring at the girl (with creepy eyes), how scary is that.

15. As an adverb to express the fact that you feel relieved.

Sentence: 本当?ああ、そうなの、すごくよかった
Romaji: Hontou? Aa, sou nano, sugoku yokatta
English Translation: Really? Ah, if that’s the case, I’m relieved.

16. When you are afraid of something.

Sentence: へへ、すごい高さなんだよね
Romaji: Hehe, sugoi takasa nanda yone
English Translation: Heh, that looks kinda high doesn’t it?

17. When you want to bring up the fact that someone looks down.

Sentence: ええ、何があったの?どうしてそんなすごい顔で?
Romaji: Ee, nani ga atta no? Doushite sonna sugoikao de?
English Translation: Ehhh, what’s wrong? What’s with that sad face of yours?

18. When there seems to impending trouble that is forthcoming.

Sentence: まずい、こんなままでつづければ、すごい問題になるかもしれん
Romaji: Mazui, konna mama de tsudzukereba, sugoi mondai ni naru kamoshiren
English Translation: That’s bad, if this goes on, it might become a huge problem.
ways to use the word sugoi

19. Indicating that something had sparked your interest.

Sentence: すごい!おもしろそう、一緒に行っていいの?
Romaji: Sugoi! Omoshirosou, isshoni itte ii no?
English Translation: Wow! That seems interesting, mind if I join in on it?

20. When you’re finally a pro and someone uses the word すごい (Sugoi) wrong. 😁 

Sentence: なにがすごいの?

Romaji: Nani ga sugoi no?
English Translation: What’s great about (your conversation subject)?


With these in mind, let’s not forget that the word “すごい (Sugoi)” is mostly used in a casual conversation. This makes it less of a common sight in formal conversations, especially ones between two businessmen negotiating for a deal.
Nevertheless, this can still prove to be a very useful phrase that you can use in your daily conversations with your Japanese friends. Hopefully by the end of this blog, your ability to speak Japanese would have finally gotten a lot more すごいですよね!
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What is the meaning of sugoi?

すごい (Sugoi) is a word that means terrible, dreadful, amazing or great. It can mean both a positive or negative thing depending on context.

How do you use sugoi in Japanese?

すごい (Sugoi) is a word that’s typically used when you’re left awestruck out of excitement or feel overwhelmed. This can be for any situation be it good or bad. A similar English expression would go somewhere along the lines of “Oh… Wow”. However, it can also be used to express that something is terrible or dreadful.

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