Bakebake

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化け化け
Bakebake
ba̠ke̞βa̠ke̞
Bakebake
A Bakebake in Lotus Land Story
Species

Phantom(?) (Demon?)

Appearances
Official Games
Print Works
Miscellaneous Works
Other

Note: These appearances don't have ZUN's involvement.

The Bakebake (化け化け) are a spirit or phantom of some kind, where they are a common stage enemy in the PC-98 canon, appearing in Story of Eastern Wonderland, Phantasmagoria of Dim.Dream, Lotus Land Story and Mystic Square. They were revealed to have been artificially created by Rika.

The Bakebake have not reappeared in the Windows games, having been replaced by other generic stage enemies like fairies.

Background Information

Origin

Bakebake are heavenly influenced from the game KiKi KaiKai, along with Reimu Hakurei. The game had a similar ghost and a similar Shrine Maiden.[1]

Name

This enemy was only referred to as "Bakebake" (化け化け) once by Reimu Hakurei in Story of Eastern Wonderland, but it doesn't mean it's their real name and may just be an identifier. The term "bakebake" is not an actual word, and it may likely to have been derived from "obake". They were also referred to as "monsters" (お化け obake, also "youkai") in Story of Eastern Wonderland's omake text file.

Design

Throughout the PC-98 from Story of Eastern Wonderland to Mystic Square, the Bakebake appears to have two eyes, a mouth with a big tongue sticking out and a Hitaikakushi on its head. In the official Circle Cut, there seems to be the kanji symbol ki (, lit. strange or odd) on its Hitaikakushi.

The Bakebake's Appearances

Sprite of a Bakebake in Mystic Square

PC-98

First appearing on Stage 1 of Story of Eastern Wonderland, they were a general enemy in the PC-98 canon, mostly appearing in the earlier stages of the games. They are automatically defeated by only one shot by the player, but often show up in great numbers in each game, making them non-trivial to deal with. On Easy, Normal and Hard difficulties, they don't shoot any bullets whatsoever, but in Lunatic, they fired bullets as return fire when defeated. This characteristic appears in all the PC-98 games, except for Phantasmagoria of Dim.Dream.

They weren't related to any story within these games apart from their involvement in destroying the Hakurei Shrine in SoEW and Lotus Land Story. It's unknown however whether they were part of the story of Mystic Square, where demons from Makai were taking trips to Gensokyo. The sprite of the Bakebake didn't alter throughout the games, except for some minor changes in PoDD.

Phantasmagoria of Dim.Dream

They're an enemy during Phantasmagoria of Dim.Dream on Reimu Hakurei's, Mima's and Rikako Asakura's stage with a unique feature compared to their counterparts. They come scrolling in lines and that they do not shoot danmaku whatsoever, but if defeated, they'll put a small bullet on the opponent's screen. They come in four different colours, each requiring a number of different hits: red (1 hit), green (2 hits), blue (3 hits) and purple (4 hits). There are also 4 different sizes: tiny, small, medium and large (they're also pixellated).

Literature

Possible appearance of a Bakebake in Oriental Sacred Place Chapter 3
Oriental Sacred Place

In Oriental Sacred Place Chapter 3, a ghost drawn on Sunny Milk's map appears to be similar to the Bakebake. It isn't confirmed that this is a Bakebake due to the differences in anatomical features and the issues surrounding the characters from the PC-98 era. If it was meant to be a Bakebake, then a question of why Sunny Milk even knew what a Bakebake looked like or of their existence comes into play. This is, of course, debatable as it appears to have only one eye, arms, and no kanji on its Hitaikakushi.

Seihou Games

Sprites of Bakebake-like ghosts in Banshiryuu
Note: This section is part of the Seihou Project by the Doujin circle "Shunsatsu sare do?".
Banshiryuu

A ghost similar to the Bakebake made an appearance on Stage 4A of Banshiryuu. However, this appearance is unofficial since ZUN had no involvement with the game and that their appearance was by "Shunsatsu sare do?". Furthermore, they may not be the same creatures, but they do have some similarities in resemblance, it being at Hirano's shrine and the fact that Hirano Sakurasaki bears a resemblance to Reimu. Also, the stage they appear in makes a direct reference to the stage 4 of Lotus Land Story, therefore making it likely that these are bakebake.

They can come in four different colours: either light-blue, purple, red, or yellow. They appear to have two extra tails, googly eyes, and a smiley face without a tongue. Unlike their PC-98 counterparts, they'll shoot danmaku as soon as they've appeared on the screen.

Project Blank Games

Sprites of Bakebake in Samidare
Note: This section is part of Project Blank by the Doujin circle RebRank.
Samidare

The Bakebake appears once again in Samidare as stage enemies in the third area of the Extra Stage, and in the background. However, this appearance is unofficial since ZUN had no involvement with the game since their appearance was by Yoko (blankvision), one of the members of "Shunsatsu sare do?" and RebRank, who stated that the game pays an homage to the PC-98 era.

They're likely to be the same Bakebake from the Touhou Project since the area of the stage clearly shows a reference to Touhou. They appear similar to their PC-98 games counterparts, but have arms and a Hitaikakushi with a ghost insignia, somewhat similar to Yuyuko Saigyouji's. The ghost can also come in light-green, light-red and black. Being an Extra stage, the danmaku they shoot really is bullet hell like other Extra stages in Touhou games, so this requires C23 to use her shields to simplify dodging the bullets.

Gallerey

Additional Information

  • It is possibly the only PC-98 character to have appeared in an official manga, but has yet to appear in a Windows game.
  • Rika said in Story of Eastern Wonderland that she created the Bakebake that's shown on Stage 1 of Story of Eastern Wonderland, but it is not known if she created all of them within the game, and if she created any others seen in the rest of the games.
  • The Duplighost from the Mario series has the name "bakebake" (バケバケ) in its Japanese version. Any connexions are likely to be a coincidence, however.

Fandom

Official Sources

References