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On the clock: Let's Play Touhou Luna Nights!

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
title.jpg


Hey everyone!

Let's play Touhou Luna Nights!

This game is one of many, many, MANY fangames paying homage to the Touhou Project line of games, developed by Team Ladybug. They first got on the radar for their development of a short spinoff Metroidvania "search action" game called SMT: Synchronicity, as a nearly-fake promo for the remake of SMT: Strange Journey. Said promo game turned out to be WAY better than the remake, featuring both snappy gameplay and excellent spritework. Touhou Luna Nights is another search action title, this one centering around Sakuya Izayoi, maid with literally Dio the Jojo's powerset, and it's honestly even better than SMT: Synchronicity, and an excellent game in its own right, even if you've never heard of the dang ol' Touhou.

I'm going into this assuming most of you have no idea what Touhou is, although on this forum that's not actually that likely. Still, it is likely for my co-commentators! jenkitchen will be joining me whenever possible, and I'll have BEAT and fanboymaster on fairly regularly as well. Maybe some other people, I dunno. In addition to the videos and summaries I'll be posting, I'll also provide short write-ups about the characters we meet in the game, built to familiarize people who aren't familiar with the Touhou Project with its characters. I will also be providing entirely accurate images of these characters, so you really get an idea of who they are.


PART 01


ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER POCKET DIMENSION

STAGE 1 - MANSION GROUNDS


TIMEKEEPERS

jenkitchen - fanboymaster
Sakuya has a new job.

NOTES
  • INTRO IS NICE AND STRAGHTFORWARD. Our premise is given pretty straight-up: Remilia a mysterious figure creates a challenge for Sakuya to go through, and also disables her signature time-stopping ability.
  • LADYBUG IS INDEED WORKING ON A RECORD OF LODOSS WAR GAME. I don't know the first thing about Record of Lodoss War, but presumably someone out there is jazzed about this. It's in early access here if you want to check it out.
  • SNAIL TIME. It's a nice ability to start the game with, and slowing enemies is great for racking up graze points, but honestly Snail Time doesn't see a lot of use in this game, outside of very specific puzzles. It should go without saying that we'll get more temporal garbage as we go.
  • SOME CHARACTERS APPEAR. The mech is simple foreshadowing, but Hieda no Akyuu is relevant since she lets us save the dang ol' game at the phone booth! This isn't the real Akyuu though, but rather a pocket dimension simulacrum or something. Good enough for us, I guess!
  • FAST DOOR. There's a decent amount of obstacles in the game expecting you to use time nonsense to get past it. The fast door here is a pretty simple example with no real penalty for failure, but later areas will have very deadly traps.
  • ARE YOU A BOSS FIGHT? YOU LOOK LIKE A BOSS FIGHT. Nitori shows up and gives us a gift that's not a boss fight! With the Eternal Clock, Sakuya's timestopping power is mostly restored. We have a limit on how long we can stop time for, but during that time, we can queue up knives without spending MP, move around and avoid enemies, navigate traps, you name it. The game is balanced around you being able to stop time more or less at will, and it rocks out loud.
  • ALWAYS RECYCLE AFTER USING THE VENDING MACHINE. If there is a trick to getting the can in exactly every time, I don't know it. The can seems to have some randomness on where it goes. Regardless, using a vending machine fully heals all of your meters! Wheeeee!
  • WATER IS SOLID WHEN TIME IS STOPPED. Hell yeah you can just walk on water this game rules.
  • NITORI RUNS A STORE. Every enemy in the game drops gems, which you can sell to Nitori in exchange for money which then buys items from her. The stock is useful (healing items, permanent upgrades to your stats) but by no means required to beat the game.
  • WARP ZONE SCARY DOOR. Y'all know the drill, we can use a Scary Door to revisit any other Scary Doors we've seen.
  • SLIDING KNIFE. It could just be a slide kick, but no, that wouldn't be Sakuya enough.

TOUHOUDEX:

dio.png


Sakuya Izayoi
Perfect and Elegant Maid


Our protagonist is the head maid at the Scarlet Devil Mansion, home to the vampire Remilia Scarlet. Although she is supposedly human, her incredible power to stop time, not to mention her ruthless demeanor and unbreakable devotion to her job and mistress, makes her more intimidating than many actual youkai encountered in Gensokyo. Sure doesn't help that she seems to carry an inexhaustible number of knives on her at all times, and is deadly proficient at throwing them en masse. She occasionally ventures outside of the mansion to rectify the latest disaster that inevitably befalls Gensokyo every so often, but since her priority is Remilia and the mansion, she's more than content to let one of the other main protagonists handle things instead.



Hieda no Akyuu
Memory of Gensokyo


Akyuu here isn't actually a conventional bullet hell game character like everyone else. She's a side character that mostly appears in print works and music CDs. As a "Child of Miare", Akyuu has an eidetic and encyclopedic memory of anything she sees, as well as reincarnation powers. As such, she serves as a chronicler for the assorted shenanigans and agents of chaos that make up Gensokyo's history. Likewise, she makes a common appearance in fanworks as a save-point character, but rarely does anything beyond that. Honestly not a whole lot else to say here.

engineerblu.jpg


Nitori Kawashiro
Aquatic Engineer


Most people in Gensokyo use magic or supernatural powers to fight their battles, but Nitori primarily makes use of homemade devices! She is a kappa that makes her home on Youkai Mountain, which is exactly what it sounds like. Although she's on the shy side and doesn't like direct conflict, she's more than willing to lend her services as an engineer to basically anyone, and has a healthy amount of confidence in her work. In particular, she's aided Marisa Kirisame on her adventure to the underworld, and is responsible for a great many technological innovations in Gensokyo. Like, say, phone booths LOOK THEY WERE CUTTING EDGE AT ONE TIME OKAY
 
Last edited:

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 02
KNOCK KNOCK OPEN UP THE DOOR IT'S ME
STAGE 1 BOSS - MEILING

KUNG FU CHAMPIONS
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya fights the gatekeeper.

NOTES
  • SLIDING KNIFE ISN'T BAD AS AN ATTACK, BUT IT ISN'T GOOD. When you hit an enemy with it, you bounce back slightly, and the damage is on par with a single thrown knife, so it's very possible to spam it as a close range attack if you have no MP or time. But when is that likely to happen, honestly?
  • I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT AGATHA CHRISTIE NOVELS ARE LIKE. Chainsaws are cool though.
  • BEAT ARRIVES. Hello a friend!
  • RED KEY. Yeah, they just deadass give you ordinary keys in this game. I don't mind it since they're clearly trying to stick to the stage format of Touhou titles here, but it's still a bit of a misstep for a search action game in my book.
  • TOUHOU IS A SURPRISINGLY NON-HORNY SERIES. Sure, any setting which is an all-female cast will attract a wide variety of unsavory characters, but the actual Touhou games are refreshingly free of horniness. I'm personally always in favor of that, but that might just be me, the ace, talking. Not like people hoping for that sort of thing will be stopped by a medium not explicitly catering to them.
  • SHOP MECHANICS. I say the wares are lame, but that's kind of unfair honestly. Having immediate healing or permanent stat boosts are absolutely solid, and the stat boosts that the gems give you for carrying them are VERY small. It's honestly up to personal preference, but at the end of the day, having on-demand healing in a Castlevania sort of game is very welcome. I will not be using the shop despite this.
  • ON-DEMAND MATH IS HARD. Especially finance math, my least favorite of all kinds of math.
  • STOP RIGHT THERE! I WON'T LET YOU TAKE ONE STEP FURTHER! Meiling shows up to challenge us as the first boss, and while she's got flashy moves for a normal platformer boss, she's not exactly able to keep up with timestopping. Still, you do need to really abuse that against her, since she will effortlessly deflect a frontal attack. The tells for her moves are easy too, based on how she moves before attacking, so you shouldn't have any trouble racking up major graze points. This fight still feels neat on your first try, though, and she hits hard enough that I wouldn't call her a pushover. Heck, I even died once!
  • I'M NOT YOUR ONLY ENEMY. Meiling leaves after being defeated, giving us a warning about the future. Yeah of course we'll fight more Touhou characters, this is a Touhou game, I would expect no less.

TOUHOUDEX:

krillin.png


Hong Meiling
Colorful Rainbow Gatekeeper


Meiling is a youkai of indeterminate nature that serves as the gatekeeper for the Scarlet Devil Mansion. Although she is an exceptionally skilled martial artist, has no natural weaknesses like, say, a vampire might, and has a mastery of chi-based techniques, that all doesn't really stack up when her supervisor can stop time, and the most common threat to the security of the mansion is armed with the magical equivalent of a killsat on demand. As such, Meiling tends to rank squarely among the weaker members of the cast. But hey, when the leader of the mansion forgets that you need essentials like "sleep"? Meiling is doing her best with what she's been given, and I respect that.
 
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Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 03


I DON'T KNOW WHY WE'RE YELLING

STAGE 2 - MAIN HALL


HR'S PROBLEM EMPLOYEES

jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT
Sakuya reconsiders giving her underlings heavy ordnance.

NOTES
  • MANDRAGORA SUCK. They're not possible to hit before they emerge, and their attack is very powerful. You need to be ready to stop time as soon as they pop out to stand any real chance at fighting them.
  • TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES, PLEASE STAND BY. For whatever reason, Discord and this game simply do not get along. I can't record Discord audio and game audio at the same time no matter what I do, which means I have to have the Discord call on my actual phone, which may explain why fanboymaster and BEAT sound off. Or, as is the case for roughly the entire first part of this video, completely absent.
  • PREVIEW OF STAGE 3. Those familiar with the Scarlet Devil Mansion already know exactly who the boss of that place is, but we can't go there yet.
  • THIS IS THE PRICE OF JOINING A LETS PLAY I MAKE. Sakuya, as head maid of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, is the boss of all the fairies in the area. Or, rather, she would be if they weren't pocket dimension simulacra. We've lost our timestop and our authority!
  • RED MIST. It's not common, but red mist will drain your time as long as you're in it, eventually inflicting Time Paralyze and preventing you from stopping time altogether. Don't stand in it!
  • LOLDEAD. That may just be my most embarrassing death in the entire LP.
  • HAAAAAA GET WREKT. Skeletons are powerful and dangerous.
  • OBLIGATORY SCARY DOOR TO VENDING MACHINE COMBO. This is the fastest way to get to a vending machine if you have access to a Scary Door. And then I find where the actual vending machine in this area is because I am a good player.
  • FALLING CHANDELIERS! They give you very little time to react. Good thing you can stop time whenever you want and then just leisurely saunter out of the way!
  • DOUBLE JUMP KNIFE. It's not enough to just give Sakuya a double jump and call it good. No, she has to double jump by setting two knives under her feet as platforms and jumping off of those, sending them down as an attack in the process. Because Sakuya, that's why.
  • EVERYTHING ABOUT DR. MCNINJA IS THE BEST. If you want the specific parts we're discussing, you've got Knife Eye Attack and some ninja tricks, but honestly you can read the whole thing and it'll be fun.

TOUHOUDEX:

thunderdome.png


Gensokyo
Land of Fantasy


The Touhou Project takes place entirely in the fictional Japanese region of Gensokyo. This region was sealed off from the modern world by the Great Hakurei Barrier, with conflicting sources claiming that Yukari Yakumo, the Hakurei shrine maidens of the past, or some other greater power being responsible. It preserves much of the feudal style that would've been common to the era at the time of its sealing, and is chock-full of youkai and fantastic creatures of all sorts. The most common activity in Gensokyo is spell card duels, which are represented in the games by bullet hell fights. Gensokyo is frequently beset by assorted incidents that range in severity from "there's a weird red mist covering the land and blotting out the sun" to "people are partying WAY too hard". When these incidents occur, it falls to some of the more powerful human denizens to step in and keep things in check. This usually means Reimu Hakurei, Marisa Kirisame, and whatever other people feel like putting up with this (which occasionally means Sakuya).
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 04


RAMMING SPEED

STAGE 2 BOSS - MARISA


THE COUNCIL OF MAID DELIBERATION

jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT
Sakuya deals with an ersatz intruder.

NOTES
  • HAHA I DIED RIGHT OUTSIDE THE VENDING MACHINE. Don't you just hate when that happens?
  • YES THERE IS A TOUHOU RANSOMWARE. Mostly created as an inside joke, Rensenware requests the user to play a Lunatic difficulty run of Unidentified Fantastic Object, the 12th Touhou title, and achieve a certain score. The dev has also made tools to bypass the ransomware, because they have a good sense of humor.
  • SUB TO MY PATREON DOT COOOOOM! You know the drill by now, chuck me a money or two if you like what I'm doing here!
  • JEN AND I DID A CAVE STORY LP. You know, Cave Story? It wasn't that long ago, go check it out.
  • PURPLE OBJECTS CANNOT BE TIMESTOPPED. We get a nice easy intro to them now, but this can get very tricky later, both in terms of platforming AND boss fights!
  • CHAINSAAAAWWWWW. Something of a mix of Castlevania's axe and cross subweapons, the chainsaw is my weapon of choice for most boss fights, traveling in an overhead arc and dealing multiple hits. Speaking of boss fights...
  • HEY, YOU, THE MAID! FREEZE OR I'LL SHOOT! Marisa isn't that much harder than Meiling if you're used to the time mechanics of the game, but she definitely FEELS a lot more powerful. She's also playing against those mechanics more directly, between her alchemical bombs that drain time, and her signature Master Spark that you need to use Snail Time to evade.
  • I HAVE ONLY BAREBONES KNOWLEDGE OF DRAGONBALL Z. I only watched one segment, it was a DVD with the entirety of Raditz's existence on it. Figure that's good enough for understanding the basics anyway, right? Anyway Master Spark isn't a Kamehameha, it's the Special Beam Cannon or whatever.
  • REALLY? I DON'T REMEMBER SAYING ANYTHING LIKE THAT. Yeah Remilia just said "hey you break into my mansion all the time to harrass my staff, want to be a boss in my pocket dimension game?" and Marisa was like "yeah that sounds fun".
  • NITORI HANDS US A VOUCHER. Yeah, you can summon the shop even during boss fights if you want. Still not gonna, but if you're at critical health and just need a little more to work with, you can tag Nitori in, sell off a bunch of gems, grab some healing items, and be back in it, all while the boss is just like "hey uhhh do you mind we're kinda busy here."

TOUHOUDEX:

dante.png


Marisa Kirisame
Ordinary Witch


One of the two most consistent protagonists of the series, as well as one of the few legit-just-a-human characters, Marisa is a witch of exceptional skill and power, and one of the most common responders to the incidents that occur around Gensokyo. Unlike Reimu Hakurei, who handles incidents out of a mix of duty and annoyance, Marisa goes into them mostly for the hell of it. Such a cavalier attitude would get most other people killed, but Marisa's raw magical talent and flashy, reckless style of fighting is usually enough to carry her to victory. In her spare time, she operates a magic shop within the Forest of Magic, and dives into books on magic, usually "borrowed" from the Scarlet Devil Mansion's library. This has made her both unwelcome to most of the mansion's inhabitants (especially Sakuya) and one of the most consistently popular characters in the series.
 
Last edited:

Mogri

Round and round I go
(he)
Staff member
Moderator
I don't know if you're really pushing the McNinja angle or if you forgot to update the end of your post, but I'm here for it.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 05
THE BOOK-SUCKERS
STAGE 3 - LIBRARY

COOL SKELETON APPRECIATIORS
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya has trouble remembering where all the skills are hidden.

NOTES
  • STILL GOT CHAINSAWS. I should maybe not use them quite so much during normal travel, but I want to, so I will.
  • THERE'S A WATCH BEHIND THE MAIN FOYER CHANDELIER. We need a lot more jump power to get to it, but at least it's easy enough to discover.
  • BACKTRACKING FOR THE HP UP WE ALREADY GOT IN THE FIRST STAGE. I'm pretty sure there's another skill I've missed in there somewhere, but hell if I can remember where it is.
  • INACTIVE SCARY DOOR. It doesn't work right now, but it will activate once we finish the main game. We'll tackle that area later, with its two new bosses!
  • TOUHOU GAMES ARE VERY MUCH FREEFORM AND EPISODIC. It's very much to ZUN's credit that the Touhou Project setting is as freeform as it is, not to mention how willing it is to let other people take their own spins on it. Sakuya adventuring through a pocket dimension Remilia made when she got bored is absolutely something that could happen during the main games, perhaps even offstage while a main game is going, depending on the game in question.
  • GREEN OBJECTS ONLY MOVE WHILE TIME IS STOPPED. This one gets to be real creative, even factoring in to some boss attacks. It also raises the question of how such a thing would function in reality, to which the short answer is "it wouldn't, which is why it doesn't".
  • GRIP KNIFE! With this upgrade, we can stand on knives that are timestopped, letting us ascend to any height provided our TIME holds out. At this point, virtually any upgrades you've seen before can be accessed now.
  • I'M THE BEST AT RECYCLING. So good.

TOUHOUDEX:

castlevania.jpg


Scarlet Devil Mansion
Vampire's Estate


Touhou Luna Nights takes places in a simulacrum of the home of the Scarlet sisters, Remilia and Flandre. The mansion itself oversees the Misty Lake, and has very few windows on it to accommodate its inhabitants, with the few windows that do exist having a sharp red tint. It was once the site of a phenomenon created by Remilia, shrouding the land in a thick red fog that blotted out natural light, allowing Remilia to move about freely. Probably its most notable feature is its interior size, appearing much larger on the inside than the outside due to Sakuya's powers. It also houses a massive library, where Remilia's friend, Patchouli Knowledge, makes her home. While the library stores tons of valuable works, it's one of the areas of the mansion that's forbidden for visitors to access, not that that stops Marisa from trying.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 06
THE MOST ANIME THING I'VE EVER HEARD
STAGE 3 BOSS - PATCHOULI

BOOKWORMS
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya meets the main architect of the pocket dimension.

NOTES
  • JEN LIKES CHASM. Maybe we were just looking for something that wasn't there, and she was willing to appreciate it for what it was. But as a search action game, Chasm was very underwhelming.
  • HAUNTED ARMORS ARE JERKS. They're not nearly as audacious as mandragora from the previous area, but they're still very rude. Be careful to bait them out before you just walk on ahead.
  • NITORI KILLS SOME FRANKENSTEIN'S MONSTERS FOR US. She also reveals that the gems we've been gathering do, in fact, boost our stats, but only to a small degree. I'm still gonna hoard them because going back to sell gems is an extra step in buying items that I just don't care for, and that's as someone who made this image.
  • THOUSAND DAGGERS. As much a Castlevania classic move as a Sakuya one, Thousand Daggers puts out a ton of projectiles over a short period of time, at the cost of locking Sakuya right where she is for the duration. It's pretty strong here since I'm fairly certain you get some nice iframes during it, but the MP cost is a lot, and if you use it during timestop, it'll almost immediately devour your knife supply.
  • THE SIMULATION IS BREAKING DOWN. Akyuu isn't quite functioning as intended as we approach the next boss, with erratic speech and repeating dialogue from the start of the game. Not, uh, not a good sign, that!
  • HELLO, DR. WILY. The Patchouli fight establishes a trend that continues for most of the remaining boss fights: the actual character/hurtbox doesn't serve as the origin for most of her attacks. Instead, her two tomes (or four at lower health) are where she attacks from for the most part. None of the attacks is especially drastic, the only one that's worth highlighting is her leaves, which are green and therefore move only when time is stopped, letting her counter our usual playstyle to a degree.
  • PATCHOULI HAS A BAD FEELING ABOUT NITORI. The plot, it thickens. Oh well, let's just go defeat Remilia so she lets us out.
  • GREEN KEY. Defeat boss to get key, it is the established convention here.

TOUHOUDEX:

urag.png


Patchouli Knowledge
The Great, Unmoving Library


Patchouli is Remilia's roommate at the Scarlet Devil Mansion, and a powerful enough magician to be classified as a kind of youkai. Her personality is as straightforward as you can expect: her idea of a good time is to read as many books as she can get her hands on, ideally without anyone pestering her about it. Likewise, her powerset is literally just "magic", with a special affinity for the five Chinese elements. While she is occasionally willing to assist Marisa on her escapades, this aid is usually highly reluctant, and that support does not extend to leaving the mansion library. When pressed, Patchouli's raw magical power and expertise is easily enough to put her on par with some of the strongest combatants of Gensokyo, but her incredibly poor health prevents her from having much staying power, with her most onerous incantations often being interrupted by an asthma attack. That said, even if she was in good health, I doubt she'd leave the mansion's library for much time anyway.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 07


IT AIN'T A CASTLEVANIA WITHOUT

STAGE 4 - CLOCK TOWER


MEDUSA HEADS

jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT
Sakuya meets some competition.

NOTES
  • BUT IT'S A BUNNY. The pocketwatch rabbits have a timestop power all on their own, and I hate them a lot. Make sure you take them down before they stop you in your tracks and leave you to die to the other enemies or traps in the area.
  • YELLOW STUFF REVERSES DIRECTION WHEN TIME IS STOPPED. Remilia and Patchouli sure accounted for a lot of different obstacles that revolve around our timestop, considering that they appear to be surprised that we have that power at all.
  • I DO NOT HAVE A PROBLEM WITH MOST CLOWNS. I do draw the line at clowns attempting to assassinate me with shuriken, however. Those ones are proper jerks.
  • AND NOW WE JUST WAIT HERE. Forever. We're never moving again. This is our home now.
  • BEAT ACTUALLY LOOKS UP TOUHOU INFORMATION ON HIS OWN. It's on record now and until YouTube eventually dies, as all things do.
  • I BELIEVE IN YOU. And then I not only die, I die to a timestopped ghost, which ends up being beneficial, as I was only going to backtrack to a save point anyway. That would be another instance of "I really wish I did that intentionally".
  • I DON'T KNOW IF BEAT IS TRYING TO SAY METROID OR NOT. They're not though, Metroids have three nuclei, and fangs. These things just respawn indefinitely, serving as both an active hazard and a decent way to rebuild time and MP in a pinch.
  • USE YOUR TIMESAUCE TO PASS THE COLLAPSING BRIDGE. By stopping time, you can rewind the bridge collapse, allowing you to pass over it for a brief moment. Do this in a pro enough way to get...
  • SCREW KNIFE. The dud of the non-key upgrades, the Screw Knife just lets you destroy boxes. Wheeeee.
  • SHIELD DAGGER. This one's pretty neat, though. The Shield Dagger is your obligatory barrier weapon, dealing heavy damage to nearby enemies, and it even attacks while time is stopped! Do not use it against unpredictably-moving enemies, or enemies that have powerful melee attacks. Like clowns. Anyway I died

TOUHOUDEX:

crow.jpg


Lillian Corvus
The Harpy


Meredith Stinson's young goth cousin. She discovered a powerful magical mask in an antique shop, which gave her the power to control all manner of birds, particularly corvids, and then proceeded to use this power to lash out and make people take her seriously, as teenagers are wont to do. The mask had much more of a hold on her power than she liked to admit, however, and shortly after her defeat, she was more fighting her own mask than any particular heroes. Thanks to the tutelage and intervention of Faye Diamond, Lillian eventually developed her terrifying magical power in her own way and became more able to control it, joining up with the hero team known as Dark Watch.

Lillian Corvus has, to my knowledge, never been to Gensokyo, and has no affiliation with the Touhou Project whatsoever. But hey, April Fool's, y'know?
 
Last edited:

Mogri

Round and round I go
(he)
Staff member
Moderator
There has never been a "now you can destroy boxes" upgrade that wasn't disappointing. Looking at you here, Zelda 2.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 08
WHAT IS A FRILLY DRESS
STAGE 4 BOSS - REMILIA

NOT FANS OF VAMPIRES
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya cleans too well to leave miserable piles of anything around.

NOTES
  • CALLING IT HERE, RAVING RABBIDS MARKS THE START OF THE TIMELINE DIVERGENCE. Or, y'know, there are multiple elements to the world that can't be controlled by a single thing's existence, but THAT RUINS THE BIT.
  • THAT MP UP IN THE CEILING IS A MEAN TRICK. It could be a lot meaner, save for one of the skills we haven't found yet. I'm pretty sure I'm missing at least two by now, but the ones we have are plenty anyway.
  • BACKTRACKING AFTER FINDING THE SCARY DOOR, AS EXPECTED. We find a few stat pickups, but nothing super amazing. Unfortunately, the pathway above Marisa's room requires a teal key, which we lack.
  • THIS WILL BE FASTER. I'm taking damage to save time!
  • THE VENDING MACHINE OUTSIDE THE BOSS ROOM IS JUST SILLY. Stop time, loop around and slide under the pillars, just to recycle? WHATEVER HAPPENED TO ACCESSIBILITY?!
  • IF YOU'RE GOING TO BOTHER ME, AT LEAST DO IT WHEN I HAVE FREE TIME. Remilia is hanging out on the clock, displaying the computer's internal clock time and how long it takes us to defeat her as a boss fight, because yeah of course she is. She has two major moves that play with the timestop mechanic: her bigshot hail has yellow shots that reverse direction when they fall, and her spears are purple and don't care whether time is stopped or not, dodge them the normal way, nerd.
  • BUT THIS IS WHERE THE REAL FUN BEGINS! Remilia that is very poor timing for a taunt. Her supermove is a laser lattice! The safe thing to do when she starts this one up is to stay beneath her, where the lasers won't intersect nearly as often.
  • BUT THERE'S NO WAY I'LL LOSE! And then we cross-counter on Remilia's second supermove, a slightly different laser lattice. I think the play on this one is to dodge the first part as early in the sequence as you can, so you don't have to deal with the second part until after you're safe.
  • DOC LOUIS IS ALWAYS A COMFORT TO HAVE AROUND. BEAT is, of course, a Little Mac main.
  • I ONLY MADE THE CHARACTER THAT SAVES DATA. After defeating Remilia, she informs us that Nitori giving us the timestop was not, in fact, an intended element of the pocket dimension, and she must therefore be the real one. Don't really know why Nitori would invade the pocket dimension to help Sakuya, but eeehhhhh.
  • SNAPS FINGERS, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING HAPPENS. Oh no, someone mysterious has invaded the pocket dimension and is trapping us here and claiming to be the true master of this space! Whoever could it be? ...Y'know, aside from Nitori, the only person who's actually been completely unaccounted for by everyone.

TOUHOUDEX:

kiddracula.png


Remilia Scarlet
The Eternally Young Scarlet Moon


The master of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, and the primary antagonist of the 6th Touhou game, Embodiment of Scarlet Devil. Remilia is straight up a classic Eastern European vampire, with all the classic powers: turning into bats, draining blood, enhanced physical speed and power, immortality, magic, you get the idea. She had the misfortune to be turned into a vampire at a young age, and she has maintained her childish outlook for all the years she's been around. As such, she's generally vain, capricious, short-tempered, and so on. She created the red mist that first provoked Reimu and Marisa into tracking her down, even though she's perfectly capable of going outside provided she carries her parasol (or has a servant, like Sakuya, hold it).
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 09
A POORLY TIMED BREAK
STAGE 5 - THRONE ROOM

POTENTIALLY LAUGHING WITH ME
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya stops time for an extended break and her abilities suffer as a result.

NOTES
  • WE CAN OPEN A SHORTCUT TO STAGE 2. This is of limited usefulness, given that A: scary doors exist, and B: we probably wasted as much time getting there from the wrong side in the first place looking for secrets.
  • IT'S BEEN A WHILE SINCE I LAST PLAYED. My skills have dulled considerably. I will get to the end, but it will be less impressive when I do.
  • WE DON'T TALK ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED IN THE SPIKES. Some wounds never heal.
  • ENEMIES IN THIS GAME HAVE A LOT OF HEALTH ON AVERAGE. Granted, your skills are all very strong and do a lot of damage, but even with that factored in, there's rarely, if ever, enemies you don't have to think about in a fight. Every single enemy on screen has to factor into your plans somehow, which can be exhausting when just trying to get from point A to point B.
  • I THINK I FIGURED IT OUT. This marks the point where I really start abusing Thousand Daggers. I don't entirely understand why you get full invincibility while doing the move, but I'll take it, that's for sure.
  • CHANDELIER'D! Ow, my time!
  • MINIGUN FAIRIES ARE ANNOYING. They're a big enough threat when you're in their line of sight that you have to drop everything you're doing to deal with them, and they have enough health that you still have to expend significant resources to destroy them even when they're not going to hit you. Not a fan.
  • THE GOLEM ENEMIES I AM REFERRING TO FROM FIRE EMBLEM: FATES ARE CALLED STONEBORN. They look like this. Too similar not to mention, and it makes me wonder if that's a specific Japanese culture reference, or if this game is referencing Fates.

TOUHOUDEX:



Spell Card Duels
Invocations of Power and Beauty


The bulk of conflict between people in Gensokyo takes place in spell card duels. In the shooting games, these typically are used by stage bosses as specific patterns of bullet hell (for example, Sakuya stopping time to set up a grid of throwing knives), or by the protagonist as a screen-clearing bomb. This system was purportedly set up by Reimu Hakurei, both to allow weaker youkai and humans a chance to survive at the hands of Gensokyo's most powerful denizens, as well as to allow youkai a chance at taking on the Hakurei Shrine. In practice, while this serves as a form of regulation during duels, the actual nature of what constitutes a "spell card" is left deliberately vague, with characters employing assorted non-magical modes of attack in their spell cards (for example, Nitori just using whatever weapon she's designed).
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 10
FEELS LONGER THAN IT IS
STAGE 5 - PART 2

KNIVES
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya goes the wrong way first.

NOTES
  • TIMING IS HARD. At least your time recharges when it's not in use, but I kinda wish it came back a little faster in platforming-only rooms like this.
  • CHANDELIERS THAT COLLAPSE ON YOU ARE HIGHLIGHTED WHEN TIME IS STOPPED. I didn't notice except in post-editing, but it looks like Jen did! Thanks, Jen!
  • MAYBE THE METROIDS ARE BASED ON WATER FLEAS? They kinda look similar, sort of.
  • LOST HOLY SWORD. In addition to being a reasonably-strong auto-attacking tool, the Lost Holy Sword will also home in on and destroy secret walls. This makes it a really handy tool for backtracking and finding secrets you may have missed. I won't be doing that, but if you're having trouble finding stuff in your game, consider waiting until you get the Lost Holy Sword.
  • GOT THE SCARY DOOR, WE'RE SAFE... FOR NOW. I keep going back to stage 1, but honestly the safer play is to go back to stage 3, where there's a save point AND vending machine right by each other. I do not remember this for the remainder of the playthrough.
  • IN THIS HOUSE WE APPRECIATE JON BOIS. Normal football games are awesome. Unfortunately, 20021 isn't out yet.
  • I COULDN'T TRACK DOWN THE MANGA BEAT WAS TALKING ABOUT. Feel free to link it here if you want.
  • YOU GOT PUPLE KEY. Too bad we found the puple door first, artificially inflating gameplay time.
  • A VERY SILLY RECYCLING PUZZLE. Not especially difficult, but due to the can physics it's annoying when it fails and you have to redo it.

TOUHOUDEX:

halloween.gif


Youkai
Creatures of Folklore


The vast bulk of major characters in the Touhou series are youkai/yokai, which is a broadly-documented category in Japanese folklore consisting of all manner of ghosts, demons, monsters, and what ever else you can think of. As in IRL folklore, Touhou youkai range widely in power set and capabilities, with some, such as Yukari Yakumo, having near-absolute control over reality due to her manipulation of spatial boundaries, while others, such as Rumia, merely surround themselves with an aura of darkness and then wonder why flying around is so difficult all of a sudden. Part of Reimu Hakurei's duties as shrine maiden involve hunting down youkai that threaten humans, but many youkai don't really care about what humans do, and a rare few are even comfortable in dealing with them or just living alongside them.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 11
I WASN'T KIDDING WHEN I SAID PAY
STAGE 5 BOSS - NITORI

ACCOMPLICES
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya wonders if it's become cliché yet for the goofy side character in a video game to be the final boss.

NOTES
  • JUST GETTING RIGHT TO IT. Nitori gets right in her mech and we fight it out. Her mines emit time-draining gas, you need to do a knife-jump to get over her initial strafing attack, and she has both purple and green projectiles available, so the fight is pretty difficult if you don't account for that. So, naturally, I beat the fight on my first try.
  • WELL, NOW! AREN'T WE FEISTY? Nitori unleashes the power of THE THIRD DIMENSION for her last attack, which, as in all games where this happens, is easy to avoid provided you keep moving, especially with timestop on your side.
  • IMPOSSIBLE! Yeah, we beat Nitori! Now we can go home and make tea for Remilia, right?
  • MACHINES BREAK SO EASILY... WHAT A BORE! The big reveal, which makes perfect sense if you aggressively follow Touhou lore and is completely meaningless if you don't: Nitori was actually a disguised Flandre the whole time! And it was her gems that Remilia stole to create the pocket dimension, and which Flandre in turn uses to amp up her powers!
  • YOU BARELY SOLD ME ANY GEMS, SO I COULDN'T SUMMON MUCH STRENGTH. Which is part of why I tried to play without buying from the shop. Honestly? No idea what, if anything, this changes. I just know it would mean our base stats become slightly less powerful, and that it would require menu futzing, so I declined.
  • OKAY, SO WE DON'T GET A HEAL. THAT SUCKS. Flandre uses the kind of power she's infamous for in our fight, opening with massive fireballs and escalating from there. The nice thing about this fight is that with how indiscriminate her attacks are, you have ample opportunity to pick up loads of graze to self-heal and replenish your meters.
  • CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHT WINGS. It's as true now as it ever was.
  • LET'S PLAY UNTIL WE'VE DESTROYED EVERYTHING IN SIGHT! This is where Flandre starts getting REALLY apocalyptic with her attacks, bringing out loads of deadly laser attacks that require foreknowledge and planning to get away from alive.
  • ISN'T THAT HOW YOU PLAY THIS GAME? Eventually, we defeat Flandre, coming to the final part, where Remilia shows up, goes "my bad", and agrees to involve Flandre more directly in her games from here on out. She then puts Sakuya on the hook for the next pocket dimension and we all go have some tea.
  • THEN CASTLEVANIA TURNS INTO A MIMIC! Everything dissolves into gems, and we all go back home, and Flandre puts all her infinite amounts of gems back in her treasure chest, because having a treasure chest overflowing with treasure is a great decor option.
  • THANK YOU FOR PLAYING! THE END. But is it really?

TOUHOUDEX:

ronaldmcdonald.png


Flandre Scarlet
Diabolic Wave


Remilia Scarlet is the more famous Scarlet sister in-setting, but more people are familiar with the younger sister Flandre, or more specifically, her theme song, U.N. Owen Was Her? Flandre is even more of a recluse than her sister, partially by house law due to her power of, and I quote, "destroying absolutely anything". She's not exactly malicious, but she doesn't really have much concept of consequences for her actions, and even among the denizens of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, she doesn't have many friends. In fact, she's only rarely been seen in any lore since her in-game appearance, despite being a fan favorite who makes frequent appearances in fan works. This leaves her personality up to the fans to interpret for the most part, with Touhou Luna Nights being probably one of her most sympathetic depictions.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 12
THE SCARIEST DOOR
STAGE EX PRE-BOSS - CIRNO

THE STRONGEST
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya encounters the stage 1 boss.

NOTES
  • AIGHT COOL. After defeating Flandre, the game plays the end credits and then just dumps you back at the most recent save point, with the only change being that the white scary door is now unlocked.
  • A DRACULA CAN HAVE ANY JOB. Trust no one.
  • HEY, HEY, HUMAN, HOW'S IT GOING? The actual Nitori shows up right outside the white scary door and gives us the breakdown: pocket dimension's collapsing, this goes to the Chaotic Space above it, go fix it or something.
  • CHAOTIC SPACE HAS REALLY MEAN ENEMY SETS. Starting off with timestop-immune nekomata and escalating from there, every single enemy in Chaotic Space is difficult as hell, and it honestly gets kind of draining after a while.
  • THERE'S NO TRASHCANS IN THE EXTRA STAGE. This is how you know Chaotic Space is truly a lawless wasteland.
  • DOOR SWITCHES. They're a neat puzzle element, and I wish the game was more about those than the enemy set here. Some neat tricks you can do by timestopping while hitting the switches, too.
  • YOU KILLED THEM! I'll never stop infuriating BEAT by destroying enemies he takes a liking to. I will also never stop feeling bad about it.
  • IT WASN'T A VENDING MACHINE AT ALL! Yeah, there's clues to see it beforehand. You probably won't on your first playthrough. I sure didn't. Don't care for that.
  • SOMEONE IN THE CHAOTIC SPACE IS HERE TO DO THE MURDER DEED ON REMILIA. The pocket dimension is causing instability in Gensokyo proper, and whoever's in here hopes to resolve it by taking down Remilia. It's not hard to guess who if you know Touhou, but we have no context for any of this because most people here have never a Touhou!
  • YOU'RE LATE, MAID! Oh hey Cirno how's it going. She's not the final boss, funny as that would be. Instead, she's a not-too-difficult midboss for the extra stage. As per usual, she's got plenty of power but uses it unwisely, so once you know her patterns you should never be at any risk of dying to her.
  • I PLAYED MEGA MARI AGES AGO. Haven't played it since. Most recent indie Mega Man game I played was Mega Man Rock N Roll, which is very hard but highly recommended. Features a freely playable Roll, who trades the charge shot for a double jump!
  • YOU'RE NOT WEAK AT ALL! And there's the joke. I hope you enjoyed it. Now we have the Ice Magatama, so we can go play the rest of the extra stage.

TOUHOUDEX:

dan.png


Cirno
Ice Fairy of the Lake


In Gensokyo, fairies are long-lived but fairly simple beings, who usually respond to an incident (and the approach of whatever protagonist is here to resolve it) with the following train of thought: "Hey that looks like fun, let's get in th-- BARF!" It's entirely common for a full crowd of fairies to get instantly exploded by the stray shots of any given bullet hell attack, and the only reason they still do it is because they tend to reconstitute a short time afterwards, learning nothing in the process. Cirno is the strongest of all fairies in Gensokyo, if not the world, which tends to rank her at the bottom of the usual main character pecking order. This never stops her from boasting of her own capabilities, despite her especially poor grasp of tactics. Perhaps due to this, she's perhaps one of the most popular Touhou characters there is, to the tune of being recognizable even if you've only hung out on the Internet for a while without having played or interacted with Touhou at all.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 13


THE HOMELAND OF THE SPONGES

STAGE EX - CHAOTIC SPACE


GEM CONSTRUCTS

jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT
Sakuya decides to employ brute force.

NOTES
  • IT'S THE THING THEY USE IN PHOENIX WRIGHT TO SEE PEOPLE'S PSYCHE-LOCKS. The Ice Magatama lets us ward off the fire barriers throughout this early part of the area, which means it is another key.
  • I CAN SPRINT NOW. In true search action fashion, the move that lets you move at a speed faster than your default walk is in the postgame area. Dash Spike is nice, but since the entire game is designed around your default move speed and everything here is way too dangerous to sprint past, it's kind of too little too late, y'know?
  • BEAT HAS DONE MANY, MANY SONIC LPS. We got this one of Sonic 3 Complete, this one of Sonic Classic Heroes, this one of Sonic Mania, this one of Sonic 3D Blast, and uhhhhhh I guess this one of Sonic Dreams Collection but maybe be careful with that one.
  • THEY ALSO OUT THE BOUND KNIFE SKILL DOWN HERE. Really frontloading the powerups in postgame, even though most of them just... aren't especially interesting or powerful? I dunno man.
  • DODGE THIS. By all rights I should have died at 6:55.
  • WOOOO SCARY DOOR LET'S GO! Do you notice how I forgot to save at the scary door? I didn't.
  • WE'RE ALMOST THERE! Yeah the last room is just a big-ass corridor of all the meanest enemies in the game. I died at the end, surprising no one.
  • I DON'T WANNA TALK ABOUT IT. This is where everyone in the call takes a break, and I don't blame a single one of them! Fortunately, I get back without issue some time later, parking us right at the end of the stage.

TOUHOUDEX:

narnia.jpg


Hakurei Shrine
Sealed Gate Between Dimensions


Serving as a sort of "lock" on Gensokyo from the outside world, the Hakurei Shrine is a pivotal location in Touhou lore. Staffed almost exclusively by Reimu, the Hakurei Shrine is the sole gateway between Gensokyo as it is known and the outside world, and is visible in the real world as a run-down wreck of a shrine that nobody visits due to rumors of haunting. This is a feature, as far as anyone is concerned, since it lets beings that thrive on belief continue to exist without being discovered by skeptics, while at the same time keeping the most aggressive youkai from entering the real world anywhere that normal people would see. As an actual religious location, it's not very useful, however. The frequent attacks by youkai tends to scare off most human visitors, leaving the donation box usually empty.
 

Kalir

Do you require aid.
(whatevs)
PART 14
NUKE IT FROM ORBIT
STAGE EX BOSS - REIMU

SHRINE MAIDENS
jenkitchen - fanboymaster - BEAT​
Sakuya is opposed to destroying pocket dimensions with people in them.

NOTES
  • MY BARRIER IS COMPLETELY USELESS NOW, THANKS TO YOU! We meet Reimu at last, and learn that Remilia's pocket dimension is causing enough mayhem to disrupt even the Hakurei Barrier. Which, as my previous Touhoudex entry indicated, is really bad! As such, Reimu is aiming to destroy the entire space in order to preserve Gensokyo at large. Course, Sakuya's fine with that, but would prefer that happening, uh, after she's out, so it's time to buy some time by fighting Reimu.
  • SOME PEOPLE WANT REIMU IN SMASH. I'm cool with that.
  • IT'S A GOOD THING THOUSAND DAGGERS IS ABSOLUTELY CHEATING. Reimu's first phase is closest to the Meiling fight, in that she's actually moving around on the ground and doing close-combat moves rather than being a floating laser lattice. The talismans she scatters will immobilize you on contact, leaving you open to a punishing hit... except that the float and iframes from Thousand Daggers just keep you alive forever.
  • YOU REALLY THINK YOU CAN STOP ME, HUH... And then she goes to the floating laser lattice style of fight. The trickiest attacks are the ones that utilize portals to redirect her shots, but stay calm and watch how the shots travel through the portals and you'll be okay. Easier said than done, though: those portals also draw you in!
  • SHRINE MAIDENS ARE NOT ESPECIALLY POWERFUL IN REAL LIFE. At least no more so than any other high schooler.
  • I'M SEEING DOUBLE! FOUR NITORIS! And then everyone shows up and we have a big conversation about how you need to communicate with the people you care about or something.
  • UH, GUYS? The pocket dimension nearly collapses on everyone, and the people who aren't Sakuya fly on out easily. Sakuya has to hijack Flandre's abandoned mech to get out without being annihilated. THANKS, EVERYONE.
  • BOSS RUSH HAS BEEN ADDED TO THE SHOP. Could be fun for some people, but for this LP, that's the end! Okay bye!!!

TOUHOUDEX:



Reimu Hakurei
Eternal Shrine Maiden


The main protagonist of the Touhou series since the very first PC-98 game! Reimu is the current shrine maiden in charge of maintaining the Hakurei Shrine, and with it, the Hakurei Barrier that seals Gensokyo from the outside world. She's also the primary peacekeeper within Gensokyo itself, resolving the incidents that arise on what feels like a weekly basis, or defeating especially dangerous threats to either Gensokyo or the outside world. This heavy workload tends to leave Reimu acting like she is perpetually done with everyone around her, especially since she would really rather just relax and take it easy on any given day. The low donations to the shrine don't help matters either. That aside, she does have moments of good cheer, particularly after resolving the incident of the day, and is more than happy to get along with whoever she's just completely beaten the hell out of if they promise to behave.
 

Mogri

Round and round I go
(he)
Staff member
Moderator
I grabbed the Luna Nights + Deedlit bundle on Steam today. Beat Remilia, enjoying game.
 

Torzelbaum

????? LV 13 HP 292/ 292
(he, him, his)
After watching all these videos I have realized that Team Ladybug reused mechanics, sound effects and enemy behavior from this game in the Deedlit game (I would have to go back and check but I think those might have originally been in Synchronicity).

I'm still not sure if I like how the skill switching works in these games. But I know I certainly don't like that consumables are accessed the same way - I have wasted far too many items in WL when I tried to spam a spell after using an item.
 
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