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Meiji University talkshow "Dawn of Touhou"

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ZUN had a small talkshow at Meiji-University on Oct. 30th, 2004.


Q: How do you set your time schedule while making games?

ZUN: "I set a loose schedule for a year and follow it in order. One year is quite long for that. I spend 1 month per stage, so if I start in January I can finish Extra stage in July. Well, later stages take far more time so it doesn't go this way though."

Q: What's your motivation for making games?

ZUN: "Because I like it. Otherwise I couldn't make anything."

Q: Why do many of your songs use electric guitar?

ZUN: "The atmosphere and story of PCB was kinda laid-back, so I wrote music based on that story. For IN, the characters are in a hurry to make it in time, so the music follows that too. I like the sound of cheap, high-pitched (that you hear in game) trumpets. A real trumpet never sounds like that though."

Q: What do you imagine while writing music?

ZUN: "I didn't learn the proper ways to write music, so these are based on my images of characters and danmaku [games]."

Q: What do you like about Gensokyo?

ZUN: "The beautiful source code. There are some hidden messages that might interest you in there."

Q: When did you write the story and plot of Gensokyo?

ZUN: "When I was in highschool. At first, I was thinking of making 2D fighting games, not Shmups, because it was the trend of that time."

Q: What do you like about the Touhou Project?

ZUN: "I like Japanese atmosphere, so I named it Touhou, now it has many things that aren't Japan-ish though. I like to put western things in there because it's "Eastern", hehe."

Q: Why do all of the phantoms/ghosts in the series have physical bodies?

ZUN: "It's just that all the ingame characters 'happened' to be in that way. They are more suited for shmups anyway. There are many non-humanoid phantoms, ordinary humans, humans that don't use danmaku, in Gensokyo too. The reason you don't see these characters in game is because they don't do danmaku-play. It's not as if Rinnosuke will use spell cards though... er, or he will, perhaps."

Q: Can you see ghosts or anything "unusual"?

ZUN: "Nope, but it would be funny if they exist."

Q: What kinds of food and drink do you like?

ZUN: "Beer, comparing Beer A and Beer B and finding the difference between them, or things like that. I like meat, but I don't like to eat it too much. I also like seafood where I can imagine what they looked like before being cooked. Prepare beer A and B claim the only difference between them is water. Now I drink both, so it's obvious that water isn't the only difference *laugh*. Fish is good, because I can imagine how they looked like before. Shrimp is also good. Crab too. It's hard to imagine what they looked like from a piece of meat."

Non-serious Q&A

Q: What's the appeal of a shrine maiden?

ZUN: "The red/white coloring is auspicious, isn't it?"

Q: How do they have multiple "lives" in the game?

ZUN: "It's guts. So if you earn more points, they have more guts (life) *laughter*"

Q: Can I marry Marisa?

ZUN: "Japanese in general can't say no, but NO."

Q: What was the trigger for your miko-loving?

ZUN: "The red/white coloring is auspicious. But I don't like something that 'really has power', or is slow."

Q: Aren't throwing-knives lethal?

ZUN: "Not if it doesn't hit a critical body part... or maybe it is. Unless it hits a critical body part, humans don't die... or maybe they do, but dying a bit doesn't matter in there."

Q: Where's Genjii now?

ZUN: "Probably living in the lake at the back of the shrine... at least he's not consumed."

Q: Who's the strongest in Gensokyo?

ZUN: "Absolutely, ...isn't it Reimu? Although it seems obvious."

Q: Where's the entrance to Gensokyo?

ZUN: "An old shrine in the heart of a mountain perhaps."

Q: How much do you weigh?

ZUN: "Less than 50kg."

Q: Has China's name become dark history?

ZUN: "Er, who was that?"

Q: Will you name your child "Reimu" when you get one?

ZUN: "Reimu is not an unusual word, but for my child... I'd rather name it "****ko"

Q: Don't they feel ashamed for flying with skirts?

ZUN: "No one is looking at that, anyway. Trousers needs a professional dressmaker, so it's no wonder that skirts are more popular in there."

Q: What's your favorite Umai-bou?

ZUN: "Sweet ones are bad. Also, the cheese one smells bad."

Q: Why was Highly Responsive to Prayers an Arkanoid-clone, not a shmup?

ZUN: "Because it was a study product."

Q: What do you think about maids?

ZUN: "An occupation... or should I say, a 'fantasy being' that all of you have heard about, but have never seen."

Q: Sakuya is freakin difficult in IN! Is it a bug!?

ZUN: "Oh, is she? ...hmm, it's a feature."

Q: Do you want to live in Gensokyo if you get the chance?

ZUN: "That place isn't convenient... no internet there. I'll die if I live there."

Q: How can I be a great person like you?

ZUN: "Ehh, I'm not that great."

Q: What's the reason behind so many frills in the character's clothes?

ZUN: "Because I can't draw straight lines... No, I like clothes with unnecessary details."

Q: Who has the largest bosom in the series? Do you like large bosoms?

ZUN: "Er... in general, maybe..."

Q: Is Patchouli's clothing pajamas? Or casual wear?

ZUN: "It's like how foreigners sleep in their jeans, and go shopping with them too."

Q: Please talk about moe. Forget about danmaku, moe about Marisa.

ZUN: "Marisa... she has a dirty mouth, are you fond of...?"

Q: What's your favorite/least favorite word, or motto?

ZUN: "Effort, hustle... these are what I don't like."

Q: What's your favorite character/music in the series?

ZUN: "See my votes at the popularity poll."

Q: What's your hang-up with your clothing?

ZUN: "It's casual clothes, not pajamas."

Q: I've met Reimu in my dreams.

ZUN: "Describe the details of that dream, and ask for medical help."

Q: What games do you play, other than doujin games?

ZUN: "Shmups or RPGs. I didn't play DQ or FF that much."

Q: I want to make Doujin games. where should I start?

ZUN: "I won't tell you what I did. Learn by yourself."

Additional Information

  • ZUN proclaimed to sell Arranged Music CDs at Comiket 67.

External Links