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This article covers the gameplay of Violet Detector
- The Arrow Keys will move Sumireko Usami around the screen, the only playable character
- Shift slows the character's movement
- Tapping and holding Shift will activate teleportation, after which the Arrow Keys must be pressed to teleport
- Z causes a short barrage of shots to be fired; it may be held down for rapid fire
- Use X to take a picture
- Ctrl fast-forwards through any replay or dialogue
- Esc pauses the game and brings you to the in-game menu
- Q returns you to the title screen when the game is paused
- R returns you to the beginning of the mission when the game is paused
- Due to a bug, this action won't work, and instead it will continue the current scene while an afterimage of the pause menu lingers on screen
- Home or P produces a .bmp screenshot in the /snapshot directory. (Only works in 32-bit color mode.)
- Alt plus Enter toggles fullscreen gameplay.
Like Aya in previous photography games, Sumireko can move at three different speeds. In order of decreasing speed:
- Normal (not holding either focus or take photo)
- Focus (hold focus)
- Charge (hold both focus and take photo). Sumireko's speed is similar to the one of a fast character in a main installment.ele
Later on, she can also use Teleportation (by tapping and holding focus, then pressing the arrow key to the direction desired). A single teleportation action will move Sumireko about one third of the horizontal screen. This will skip anything between Sumireko's starting point and her destination.
Violet Detector plays almost like a normal Touhou Project shoot 'em up game; the objective is to clear Spell Cards by defeating the boss. A major difference is that the player has to choose spells from a list of "scenes", similar to Shoot the Bullet and Double Spoiler. Although the player can shoot bullets like in Impossible Spell Card, they also have a camera, like in previous photography games, at their disposal. The player must take at least one photo for the scene to count as cleared.
In order to take a picture, Sumireko's cellphone needs to be charged to 100%. You'll be notified of that happening by a sound, as well as the text "100%" and "Enabled" around the crosshairs near her. Every scene begins with Sumireko's cellphone at somewhere around 0-40% charge (with the word "Disable" underneath it in grey). The cellphone charges itself, albeit slowly. You can increase the speed of the charge by holding down the focus and take photo buttons simultaneously, which also has the effect of reducing your movement speed to a crawl. However, note that switching back and forth between charge mode and normal/focus modes slows the camera charging process a bit, making it charge even slower than simply remaining in normal or focus mode if done too frequently. For comparison, it takes roughly 4 1/2 seconds or so to fully charge the camera from 0% when staying in charge mode, almost 10 seconds to do the same when staying in non-charge modes (switching between normal and focus has no effect on charging speed), or as many as 20 seconds when rapidly and continuously switching back and forth between charge and non-charge modes. The cellphone also charges slightly faster if you're shooting the boss.
Note that you cannot take a picture while focusing, as pressing the take photo button while focused simply causes the game to put you in Charge mode. Like in Shoot the Bullet, you can take a picture while charging (Shift + X) just by releasing Shift, instead of having to release both buttons then press Z to take a picture, as it would be in Double Spoiler.
The crosshairs dictate the center of the (potential) picture. Normally, the crosshairs will stay near to Sumireko, slightly leading in the direction of the boss. While Sumireko is focused, the crosshairs will move a little more towards the boss - or, if you're close enough, stick on top of said boss. If there are two bosses on screen, the crosshairs will point towards the closest boss, and if there are multiple normal enemies on screen, the crosshairs will ignore them and point towards a boss.
You may move the crosshairs by holding down the take photo button and pressing directional buttons (only when fully-charged and ready to shoot) - this enables you to take pictures at other locations, but at the expense of picture size (think of it as a zoom). In this mode, time slows down to 1/4th speed. Note that time does not stop; thus, Sumireko can still get killed while this is in progress if you're not careful. Furthermore, you can only hold the picture button for so long before Sumireko is forced to discard the shot (frame becomes too small due to overexposure). This will drain the camera to 50%. The range it can go to will increase after getting Tele-Photographer.
Any picture taken drains the camera entirely, setting it back to 0%/Disable. However, bullets and other objects caught in the picture not only disappear, but also restore a tiny amount of charge each. A well-taken picture can reduce the amount of charge time towards the next frame significantly. A maximum of 55% can be restored.
If a picture includes the boss, it is deemed a Success, and tacked to the side. You will also regain charge for any bullets caught in it. (Scoring considerations are below.) If a purposefully taken picture does not include the boss, the picture will still count as a Success, but the amount of charge you gain from bullets is doubled.
You can tack up to 10 photos in one scene, and after the limit is filled you can still take photos, but they will not replace prior photos or be considered for score.
A photo including the boss or another enemy will deal damage to it. Damage will increase the more centered the picture is, and a well taken picture will deal far more damage than the normal shot.
To perform a Death Cancel, Sumireko's cellphone must be charged to 100%. When Sumireko is hit, instead of losing the scene, she will take a photo directly in front of her, directed towards the closest boss. In order for this to work, the hit must be dealt by a deletable bullet; otherwise Sumireko will be hit again. This photo will be deemed a Failure and be discarded, so it will not be considered applicable to clear a scene or be counted as a Best Shot; for a scene to count as cleared, a photo must be taken by pressing the take photo button.
- Unlocking Next Day: Clear 1 scene from previous day.
- Unlocking Wednesday Danmaku Dream 2-4: Clear Wednesday Danmaku Dream 1.
- Unlocking Thursday: Clear a second scene from the previous day.
- Unlocking Wrong Sunday Danmaku Dream 2-7: Clear Sunday Danmaku Dream 1.
- Unlocking Wrong Monday: Clear a second scene from the previous day.
- Unlocking Wrong Wednesday Danmaku Dream 2-6: Clear Wrong Wednesday Danmaku Dream 1.
- Unlocking Wrong Thursday: Clear a second scene from the previous day.
- Unlocking Wrong Saturday Danmaku Dream 6: Clear 1 scene from the same day.
- Unlocking Nightmare Diary Danmaku Dream 2: Clear Nightmare Diary Danmaku Dream 1 & clear over 50 scenes total.
- Unlocking Nightmare Diary Danmaku Dream 3: Clear Nightmare Diary Danmaku Dream 2 & clear over 60 scenes total.
- Unlocking Nightmare Diary Danmaku Dream 4: Clear Nightmare Diary Danmaku Dream 3 & clear over 70 scenes total.
- Unlocking Lv1 Bullet Cancel: Clear Sunday Scene 1 with just the main shot.
- Unlocking Lv2 Teleportation: Clear Wednesday Scene 1.
- Unlocking Lv3 Tele-Photographer: Clear Saturday Scene 1.
- Unlocking Lv4 Pyrokinesis: Clear Wrong Wednesday Scene 1
- Unlocking Lv5 Death Cancel: Clear Wrong Saturday Scene 6.
Full unlock code
To unlock all unlockable content at once, navigate to number 13 on the Nickname screen and type out mastersdream. If done correctly, the 1up sound effect will play and all of the days as well as ESP skills will be unlocked.
Unlike in previous photography games, your score in a scene will rely entirely on your Best Shot, instead of taking in account all of the pictures. The score in a photo will depend on a number of factors, comprising the Base Point, and the Hashtag bonuses you may acquire.
The photos also divide the score between Photo Views, Liked! and Faved!, but it's unknown if it affects score in some way.
This seems to come from a multiplication of (Bullet Score x Bullet Amount x Bullet Speed). The score given for a singular common bullet appears to depend on the bullet type. Hashtags will then be applied on this value to calculate the score of a shot.
It is unknown how Hastags affect Score, but it's believed it works by multiplicative and additive bonuses applied on the Base Point.
- <color> Shot (#LotsaRed, #BunchaPurple, #GottaHaveBlue, #LottaAqua, #ALotOfGreen, #MassOfYellow, #OrangeSlice): Awarded when there's a significant amount of a particular color of bullets in your shot. Possible colors are red, yellow, green, blue, aqua, and purple. It is possible to get more than one color bonus with a single shot. Bullets that are not one of the standard colors appear to count towards whichever color they are closest to. The number of bullets of the same color required to count as a Color Shot seems to be one between 46 and 48.
- #HyperColorfullol: Awarded when many different colors of bullets appear in the shot.
- #RainbowOfBullets: Awarded when sufficient quantities of each of 7 different colors of bullets appear in the shot.
- #ZigZag: Awarded when there's a significant amount of crossing and overlapping bullets or lasers in your shot.
- #BulletStormLOL, #ROFLInTotalBulletHell (#WhoaHighMysticLvLMAO ?): Awarded when there's a large amount of bullets or lasers in your shot in varying degrees.
- Bullet Type Shots (#SuppositoryLMAO, #MothLikeButterfly, #OwTheBurn, #DontThrowBlades!(ง｀ω´)6): Awarded when there's a significant amount of a particular type of bullets in your shot. In order, these would be "bullet" shaped bullets, butterflies, fireballs and knife bullets. The number of bullets of the same color required to count as a Bullet Type Shot seems to be one between 46 and 48.
- Character Bullet Shots (#GiantBulletslel, #SuperMoon!, #StoneDanmakuROFL, #DanmakuDestroyingRod?, #LovelyHeart!, #MyPhoneGotZapped, #BanginDrum, #TheyrePissed...): Awarded when there's 1 or more bullets that only one or two bosses use in the game. In order, these would be Narumi Yatadera's golem bullet, Clownpiece's and Hecatia Lapislazuli's moons, Tenshi Hinanawi's keystones, Eiki Shiki's rods, Koishi and Satori Komeiji's hearts, Iku Nagae's lightnings, Raiko Horikawa's drums and Reimu Hakurei's "Don't take pictures without permission!" notices.
- #InPlainSightlol: Awarded when there are no bullets overlapping the boss.
- #DodgedEm, #GotEm, #EnemyFullCenter: Awarded when the crosshairs match closely with the boss' hitbox, and the name of the bonus changes and the bonus increases as the shot gets closer to the boss.
- #GotBothOfThem!: Awarded when two bosses appear in the same shot.
- #TwoRightOnTopROFL, #GetARoomYouTwoLOL: Awarded when two bosses appear close to each other in a shot in varying degrees.
- #NoScratchesOnEm: Awarded when the shot is taken with the boss' full health bar. It appears to give more score on bosses with higher max health. This seems to give less points than other hashtags related to boss health.
- #TheyStillStand: Awarded when the shot is taken while the boss has more than half of their health bar full.
- #WeakeningEm: Awarded when the shot is taken while the boss has less than half of their health bar full.
- #About2KillEm: Awarded when the shot is taken while the boss' health bar is almost empty.
- #FinishedEm: Awarded when the shot is taken as the finishing blow to a boss. This seems to give the second most points compared to other hashtags related to boss health.
- #DoubleFinish!: Awarded when the shot is taken as the finishing blow to two bosses at the same time. This seems to give the most points compared to other hashtags related to boss health
- #OwTheGlare, #WowSoDazzling, #MYEYESSSSS: Awarded when there's a significant amount of shiny bullets and lasers in your shot.
- #Stopping2CTheLite: Awarded when there's a significant amount of lasers in your shot.
- #ThatWasClose, #SuperCloseOne, #ThoughtIDied: Awarded when the player is close to bullets, akin to a graze bonus of older Touhou titles. The amount varies with respect to the numbers (or the lengths when lasers), sizes and types of the bullets close to Sumireko.
- #AnimalShot: Awarded for a picture that contains Seiran, Ringo or Okuu.
- #InTheZoo: Awarded for a picture that contains both Okuu and Ran Yakumo.
- #FluffyFluff: Awarded for a picture that contains Ran Yakumo or Mamizou Futatsuiwa.
- #DoggiePhoto: Awarded for a picture that contains Aunn Komano.
- #BodyOfMist!?: Awarded for a picture that contains Suika Ibuki in her mist form.
- #SceneryShot (+10):An ultimate failure. This means that your shot managed to not capture the boss, not capture any bullets, not even capture yourself. All it captures is the background. Something clearly went wrong if you took an empty shot (more specifically, you somehow aimed in such a way that the shot captured nothing but the stage background). This will not be overwritten by #ThatWasClose, #SuperCloseOne or #ThoughtIDied.
- #CloseUp, #PrettyCloseUp, #EXTREMECloseUp: Awarded by taking the photo close to the boss in varying degrees.
- #ChasedEm!: Awarded by taking a picture of the boss after their health is depleted.
- #WithPeaceSign: Awarded by taking a shot with Sumireko in as she and the boss are aligned either horizontally or vertically, at a close distance (between 45 and 90 pixels).
- #BoringPhoto (+0): Awarded if there is no bonuses added to a photo that only contains bullets. These photos will not give Likes or Faves [relevance unknown]. This will be overwritten by any other hashtag.
- #Selfie! (+0 to the total, then +1 for each bullet in the picture),(+12 when there are no bullets in the picture): Awarded when the player is in the picture.
- #DuoShot!: Awarded when both the player and the boss are in the picture. This overrides the #Selfie! bonus.
- #TrioShot!: Awarded when the player and two bosses are in the picture. This overrides both the #Selfie! and #DuoShot! bonuses.
- #ImTheRealSumirekoUsami! (Estimated score of +100,000): Awarded when the final scene is cleared.
- #Sike!JustDreaming (x0.0): This Hashtag means the Death Cancel has been used and the photo will be discarded.
Other Notes on Scoring
- The Base Point of the picture presumably comes from the number and velocities of bullets and other objects in it.
- Common sense suggests a larger picture would be best for getting points - and if one doesn't relocate the center, the #Selfie! bonus is automatic. However, there can exist situations where moving the picture center may actually score higher than simply settling for what is immediately in front - though those situations may require exemplary skill and awareness for a noticeable improvement.
- Understanding the timing of bullet generation is also critical for high scores in some scenes. While such things as lasers are self-evident (where the more of it you catch, the more points you get), there is a difference in optimal timing between something that spits out bullets with a constant velocity, and one with an acceleration on it, for example. Further, things that appear to generate bullets in circular patterns or in a "fog" may be caught right after a moment of bullet generation for maximal impact. Also, keep in mind that, in some cases, all the bullets of a particular pattern are generated at once.
- There are certainly other strategies and points not mentioned above. See what you can discover yourself!
This is a list of known glitches, bugs, or other capabilities that aren't supposed to be part of the original gameplay.