hoːd͡ʑɯː nɯe (♫)
More Character Titles
Making objects unidentifiable
More than 800 Years old
- "Nue" redirects here. For the species, see Nue (Species).
Nue Houjuu (封獣 ぬえ Houjuu Nue) is said to be one of the most mysterious and feared youkai in many years, yet has been defeated by humans many times. There are many differing legends according to her appearance because she hides her "true form". At some point, she was sealed underground, and because of the events of Subterranean Animism, she resurfaced back in Gensokyo.
Nue Houjuu first appeared in Undefined Fantastic Object as the midboss of Stages 4 and 6 hidden in a ball of light, where she later was shown in her true form as the Extra stage boss. She also later appeared as the Extra stage midboss of Ten Desires. Based on one of Reimu Hakurei's quotes in Touhou Hisoutensoku, as well as chapter 12 of Oriental Sacred Place, she is currently living with Byakuren Hijiri in the Myouren Temple.
Nue is a very mischievous girl who reacts badly to anyone finding her true form and enjoys some rather malicious pranks. Despite this, when she found out about how Byakuren Hijiri's followers were friendly to youkai, she did feel a bit of guilt over her actions. For her, all the other persons are young, and usually refers to them in this terms due to her nature of Ancient Youkai. After the events of the Extra Stage in Undefined Fantastic Object, she does go to her temple to train. She isn't well-acquainted with the other youkai at the Myouren Temple, and can apparently be frequently seen near the edges of the property, looking bored.
- Making objects unidentifiable
Nue is able to conceal the true nature of other objects, an ability she displayed in Undefined Fantastic Object to conceal the nature of the fragments of the Flying Vault. An object that has lost its "identity" will appear to be a different thing depending on who observes it. The observer's brain will then attempt to fill in the blanks itself.
Nue has made said to Reimu Hakurei "it was terrible when my true form was revealed," which indicates that her human-shaped form is her true form.
Her full name is Nue Houjuu (封獣 ぬえ). Like Satori, her first name is also the name of her species, nue. Nue's family name, Houjuu (封獣), literally means "sealed beast" as written. "封" may reference Nue been trapped underground before the events of Undefined Fantastic Object, with "獣" references her species to being a beast.
Nue has short black hair and dark red eyes, three red metallic-looking wings on the right side of her back, and three blue arrow-shaped tails coming out from her left side. She carries a trident, has a snake on her right arm (which might be the Seed of Unknown Form), and also wears a black wristband on her left wrist. Her dress is all black with blue and white trim in the middle, a red bow on the front, and a small, yin-yang-like tomoe design at the bottom corner of the skirt of her dress. She wears black thigh-high stockings and red shoes with bows on them.
- Undefined Fantastic Object
During the events of Undefined Fantastic Object, she found out that Minamitsu Murasa and the other youkai who were also sealed underground made it above ground and were planning something. Not knowing exactly what, she decided to have some "fun" by putting Seed of Unknown Form in the fragments of Tobikura, one of the elements needed to revive Byakuren Hijiri. The snakes contained in the seeds caused the fragments to scatter into the air; the characters initially believe that the geyser from Subterranean Animism was the cause. These become the iconic UFOs that the player encounters during the game.
During stages 4 and 6, she was hiding her true form as a ball of light and sees the heroine collecting the fragments and decides to secretly follow her, either helping or getting in her way. She eventually realizes what the plan of the other youkai is, and figures that it would benefit her, so she settles on helping the heroine achieve that goal. She appears in the Extra Stage as her true form during the heroine's investigation of the Seed of Unknown Form.
- Ten Desires
Nue Houjuu calls out her trumpcard Mamizou Futatsuiwa from the outside world to defeat Toyosatomimi no Miko, but she was already defeated by the heroine. She eventually encountered the heroine and was thus defeated.
- Double Spoiler
- Hopeless Masquerade
Nue appears to have known Minamitsu Murasa and Ichirin Kumoi before the events of Undefined Fantastic Object.
She is also currently living at Byakuren Hijiri's temple near the Human Village, because Byakuren was too nice to ostracize her.
Illustration of Nue in Symposium of Post-mysticism
- Similar to Kogasa Tatara, she tends to scare off people by using the fear of the unknown, or the fear of her true form.
- Nue is the first(?) character ZUN himself has drawn with thigh-highs, and she seems to appeal to "zettai ryouiki" fans, referring to the area of bare skin between a skirt and thigh-highs. There is a slight shadow of doubt over this since Suwako's sprite in Mountain of Faith clearly shows her wearing thigh-highs while her drawn portrait shows her wearing socks long enough to be thigh-highs but are slightly folded down to where her knees should be. Mystia Lorelei also seems to be wearing stockings reaching above her knees in her drawn portrait in Imperishable Night.
- A number of Nue's danmaku have various references:
- They're heavily reminiscent of other characters', such as Flandre, Yukari, Rumia, and Hina. Specifically, they tend to act as combinations of spell cards, often using one element from one, and one from another.
- The spell card "Danmaku X from a Wandering Star" in Double Spoiler has danmaku in shapes resembling that of the PlayStation's button logos (×, ○, ∆ and □).
- In Kyoto, the streets are laid out in grid-like pattern. Her spell card "Nightmare of Heiankyou" refers to this.
- Nue's first non-spell card attack resembles Vivit's (Erich's daughter) first attack in her second form in Shuusou Gyoku.
- Nue is the only Extra Stage boss to appear as a midboss in multiple stages. Ran Yakumo has been a midboss in one stage.
- Nue's appearance as a ball of light midboss on stages 4 and 6 is similar to the stage 2 midboss of Mystic Square. Yuuka also turned into a ball of light during her battle in Lotus Land Story. However, she bears the most similarity to the Mysterious Orb in Lotus Land Story. Their appearances are identical, and both drop items when leaving the screen, each ending with an extra life.
- Nue has the tag "Heian" on her song and a couple of her spell cards. Heian may be referring to the Heian period (794 AD–1185 AD) of Japanese history (traditionally depicted as a Golden Age in Japanese History) and/or to a former capital city of Japan (794 AD–1868 AD), "Heian-Kyo" (平安京), which is now the city of Kyoto. Her age of approximately 800 years also places her origins at the end of or during the Heian period.
- Nue is the first Extra stage boss in the Windows series to have not met the final boss prior to the start of the game in which she first appears.
- Nue is the first character to appear as a boss in the Extra stage of two different Touhou Project games.
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