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t͡ɕiɽɯno (♫)
Chiruno, Chillno

Tanned (HSiFS)

Fairy of the Ice
More Character Titles

Ice Fairy


Manipulating cold


Implied to be over 77,[1], immortal


Cold areas, Misty Lake near Scarlet Devil Mansion

Music Themes
Official Games
Print Works
Miscellaneous Works

"Like I care! I'm the fairy who shall soon lord over Gensokyo! I can go anywhere and do anything I want!"

Cirno (Hidden Star in Four Seasons Stage 2.)

Cirno (チルノ Chiruno) is an ice fairy who first appeared on the second stage of Embodiment of Scarlet Devil. As a fairy, she is exceptionally strong for her kind, matching the power of some weak youkai. However, compared to most of Gensokyo's residents, she's quite weak. Her personality is childish and she is sometimes considered idiotic by other characters. She stars as the main protagonist of Great Fairy Wars, and one of several protagonists in Touhou Hisoutensoku and Hidden Star in Four Seasons.

General Information[edit]

Cirno first appeared as Stage 2 Boss in Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, then again as the Stage 1 midboss in Perfect Cherry Blossom. She then again later appears as one of the many playable characters in Phantasmagoria of Flower View and again in Touhou Hisoutensoku. She made an appearance as a background character in Hopeless Masquerade and then appeared as the Stage 1 midboss in Double Dealing Character. She also was a Day 1 Boss in Impossible Spell Card and later became a playable character in Hidden Star in Four Seasons.

While her age is unknown, she is one of the only characters in Phantasmagoria of Flower View that realized what was going on had happened sixty years prior as well. This implies that she has been around for at least sixty years.


Cirno is a childish, confident fairy who appears to have a superiority complex in regards to others. She proclaims herself to be "the strongest" on three separate occasions in Phantasmagoria of Flower View. In the game's manual, she is labeled as "9. baka" (⑨. バカ, lit. "9. Idiot") in an explanation of the game screen's layout. She was again labeled as such in the manual for Touhou Hisoutensoku. This implies that Cirno may be some kind of idiot, which does seem to be the case on some occasions - in Oriental Sacred Place, she is quite confused as to why nobody wants to buy her water-flavored shaved ice.

Despite this, she is smart enough to know when she is in deep trouble, such as her battle against Yuuka in Phantasmagoria of Flower View's story mode. She can also read, unlike some of her peers, such as Mystia Lorelei. She can also count (she shows knowledge of rounding and fractions in Great Fairy Wars).

Among other things, she enjoys using her abilities to freeze frogs, then watch them revive while thawing out in the water. However, about one in every three attempts fails, shattering the frog to pieces.[2]


Manipulating cold
Cirno's freezing ability in Strange and Bright Nature Deity.

Cirno has the ability to manipulate cold to the point of being able to freeze water. However, even while saying "manipulate", when coldness is in an omitted state, it seems like her surroundings are chilly even in summer. In battle, she uses this ability to attack others with icicles, huge ice cubes, or wieldable weapons like swords, but also to freeze her opponents or their danmaku.[3][4] However, despite being able to freeze something hot like flaming danmaku, she is unable to freeze lasers.

How she exactly manipulates cold is unclear, but Reisen Udongein Inaba, in one of her quotes in Touhou Hisoutensoku, speculates that when Cirno does it, she warms up inside as a result. This would mean that she just absorbs the heat in the surroundings instead of "creating" cold from nothing.


Cirno isn't that strong. In particular, fairies have an existence below that of humans.[5][6] However, among fairies she possesses unusually strong power.[7] In Great Fairy Wars, even though she wins when she battled Marisa, the one whose illustration showed to be "defeated" was Cirno; Marisa was actually both drunk and using the flashlight mode of her Mini-Hakkero to fight Cirno.

In Perfect Memento in Strict Sense, while Akyuu says that a grown human should win easily against other fairies[8] and feel free to vent their anger on them, against Cirno she instead cautions readers to seek an opportunity to flee.[9] Eiki also remarks on her power compared to that of other fairies.[10]

Character Design[edit]

Cirno in Perfect Memento of Strict Sense


Her known name is "Cirno"/"Chiruno" (チルノ), which has a currently unknown origin. It's likely based on the Japanese pronunciation of the English word "chill", chiru (チル) . Her name appearing as "Chilno" in Eastern and Little Nature Deity supports this possible origin. The earliest known official romanization of "チルノ" is in her Phantasmagoria of Flower View profile as "Cirno".


Her design in Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, Perfect Cherry Blossom and Double Dealing Character shows that Cirno has aqua-colored eyes and hair. She wears a blue ribbon, light pink blouse, blue jumper dress and seems to be wearing white socks. She also has icicle-shaped wings. In Phantasmagoria of Flower View and Touhou Hisoutensoku's official art, her ribbon is green instead of blue and her sprite in Phantasmagoria of Flower View still keeps the blue ribbon. In Great Fairy Wars, her bow is once again blue. Her blouse has been changed to white and she seems to have bigger eyebrows (because she was drawn by Makoto Hirasaka). It's been said that Cirno is one of the easiest designs ZUN has done.[11]

Her alternative outfit in Phantasmagoria of Flower View is same as her normal outfit, except her bow is a darker shade of green, her blouse appears light purple, and her dress is purple as well.

Her appearance in Hidden Star in Four Seasons gives her tanned skin, a flowery vine wrapped around her body, and a sunflower ribbon around her neck. This design is a reference to the character "Tanned Sakura" from the Marvel vs. Capcom series, who in turn is a reference to the character Evil Ryu, a corrupted version of Ryu.[12] The sunflower on her chest may be a visual reference to Evil Ryu's hole in his chest.

In the Trial+ version of Perfect Cherry Blossom, she appears with a white sash bow around her waist. This only applies to her portrait, her boss sprites lacks the extra detail. Notably, this has been the only time Cirno had this extra accessory, it has since been gone and never appeared in any other future games or print works.[13]



the Embodiment of the Scarlet Devil
Cirno's sprite in EoSD

Cirno's first ever appearance in the Touhou Project was in Embodiment of Scarlet Devil as the second stage boss. During the events, she attacked Reimu Hakurei and Marisa Kirisame who were just passing by, out of instinctive aggression. She was helplessly shot down. Her spell card Ice Sign "Icicle Fall" on Easy mode is considered one of the easiest spell cards in all of Touhou, as there is an obvious gap right in front of Cirno that'll get the spell card cleared quickly and simply.

Perfect Cherry Blossom
Cirno's sprite in PCB

Cirno unusually re-appeared as the first stage midboss of Perfect Cherry Blossom, and can be easily defeated. Cirno did not have any good reason to attack the heroines other than that they were there, as stated in her official profile. On Easy and Normal difficulty, she does not have a spell card to use, and thus uses a simple danmaku pattern. However, on Hard and Lunatic difficulties, she makes use of the spell card Frost Sign "Frost Columns", which has danmaku going in different directions and causing explosions of projectiles.

Phantasmagoria of Flower View
Cirno's back sprite in PoFV
Cirno's sprite in PoFV and HBM

In Phantasmagoria of Flower View, Cirno aimlessly wanders about, apparently unconcerned by the flower incident and seeing the flowers as just something else for her to freeze and play with. Through her dialog, her true childish nature is revealed, leaving no doubt that she really isn't smart at all. She really wasn't meaning to do anything but play games.

Double Dealing Character
Cirno's sprite in DDC

Much like in Perfect Cherry Blossom, Cirno is the stage 1 midboss of Double Dealing Character, and still did not have any good reason to attack the heroines other than that they were there. On Easy and Normal difficulty, she does not have a spell card to use, and thus uses a simple danmaku pattern. However, on Hard and Lunatic difficulties, she makes use of the spell card Ice Sign "Ultimate Blizzard", which is basically a harder version of her non-spell attack. In this game, she was given a completely new sprite design, re-used later on in Impossible Spell Card, to keep up with the current Touhou Project art style.

Hidden Star in Four Seasons

Cirno is one of the protagonists of this game, and is most notably wearing a tan. Okina Matara gives random people in Gensokyo power without their knowledge with the purpose of bringing out their best to see if they are worthy of being Okina's servant, or alternatively, to merely cause a show of power. Due to this, Cirno remained strong even in the midsummer heat, which caused Cirno to fall into delusions of grandeur and attempt to "Conquer" Gensokyo and become its new "Supreme Overlord". She fights her way through various inhabitations of Gensokyo, until she eventually ventures into the Land of the Backdoor and encounters Okina Matara, where she reveals to Cirno that her tan is merely a result of her overflowing with magic energy due to her supercharged rampage beginning to spread to her appearance, and that she won't be able to hold herself together for much longer if she countinues on, advising her to stop before her sense of self completely breaks down.


Shoot the Bullet

In Shoot the Bullet, Aya Shameimaru encountered Cirno on stage 2 and took photos of her danmaku.

Touhou Hisoutensoku

Cirno heads out, thinking that she's seen a daidarabotchi. She gets ready to leave when Sanae Kochiya asks her if she has seen a giant human-shaped object. Cirno denies seeing a daidarabotchi, which causes Sanae to be suspicious and fight Cirno. Later, Cirno passes by the Scarlet Devil Mansion when she overhears Hong Meiling mumbling about the Taisui Xingjun. Cirno becomes interested in finding the Taisui Xingjun, but focuses back on the daidarabotchi after beating Meiling. At the entrance of the Underground Geyser Center, Cirno meets Marisa Kirisame, who tells her that the daidarabotchi is inside the Underground Geyser Center (which was a complete lie). Once inside, Cirno is intercepted by Utsuho Reiuji. Utsuho attempts to eradicate the "foreign substance", but Cirno manages to escape being incinerated to death. After escaping, Cirno runs into Marisa, who tells her about a giant youkai in the Forest of Magic. Cirno then runs into Alice Margatroid. When Cirno tells her about a daidarabotchi, Alice realizes that Cirno is talking about her Goliath Doll, and lets Cirno fight with it.

Great Fairy Wars

Cirno is the protagonist and the only playable character of Great Fairy Wars, who only has one "shot type". Unlike other games, Cirno is able to freeze danmaku. Almost any bullet will freeze if it comes in contact with the ice resulting in long, elaborate chains of ice. The bomb is not that regular. It is named the "perfect freeze" which will also freeze all the bullets that are on the screen.

Following Strange and Bright Nature Deity volume 2 special "Great Fairy Wars", after the Three Fairies of Light destroyed her home, she charges off for vengeance on them. After battling trough the various fairies, and two of the three fairies, she finally meets the Three Fairies of Light. Cirno is not afraid even though they are with three. Cirno eventually wins and they become friends.

On the Extra stage, Cirno decides to fight a youkai to prove she's the strongest. After passing through strong fairies, she instead encounters a human: Marisa Kirisame. Not taking things easy, Marisa decides to play with her using her "non-deadly lasers". After a harsh battle, it appeared that Cirno was defeated, but surprised Marisa that she was able to put up a good fight. However, Marisa states that she let her guard down a bit. They both went home to settle.

Hopeless Masquerade
Cirno in HM

Cirno made a background cameo appearance in Hopeless Masquerade on the Hall of Dreams' Great Mausoleum and Youkai Tanuki Forest stage. She is seen floating and occasionally making a shock expression.

Impossible Spell Card

Presumably from hearing or seeing a wanted sign about the mischief-making amanojaku Seija Kijin, Cirno appears to be one of the many youkai that tries to capture her. She uses spell cards that are considered impossible to dodge.


Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red

Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red writes about a certain incident where Cirno got eaten by a giant toad. When interviewed by Aya Shameimaru about it, she tries to convince her to spin the story a different way, and is turned down.

Strange and Bright Nature Deity, Oriental Sacred Place

Cirno appears every now and again to join the Three Fairies of Light on their pranking adventures. One of the extra chapters leads directly into the events of Great Fairy Wars, as well.

Visionary Fairies in Shrine
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Three Fairies of Light[edit]

All of the members of Three Fairies of LightSunny Milk, Luna Child and Star Sapphire – are both a friend and an enemy of Cirno. With Luna, she is later seen with Cirno in Wild and Horned Hermit watching Moriya Shrine's cold fusion experiment.

Eternity Larva[edit]

Eternity and Cirno are implied to have known each other before the events of Hidden Star in Four Seasons. Eternity notices Cirno's tan before they fight to see who the summer belongs to. Eternity also appears in Cirno's ending.

Minor Relationships[edit]


Daiyousei is first seen (presumably) associated with Cirno in Strange and Bright Nature Deity Chapter 13 when both of them were playing hide and seek. After meeting and talking with the Three Fairies of Light, Cirno appears to have completely forgotten about Daiyousei. She was later seen attacking Cirno in Fairy Wars.

Letty Whiterock

Nothing is known about Cirno's relationship with Letty Whiterock. She appears to dislike being grouped up with her as she explains her superiority when interviewed by Aya Shameimaru in Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red. She is also briefly seen talking to Letty during Silent Sinner in Blue.

Rumia, Wriggle Nightbug and Mystia Lorelei

Rumia, along with Wriggle Nightbug and Mystia Lorelei, seem to get along and appear together to help during various events prepared by the Three Fairies of Light, although Rumia appears to be of no help. It is unknown whether they are friends or just happened to be in the same place at the same time (Twice).

Reimu Hakurei

Reimu Hakurei is one of Cirno's targets for her pranks in Oriental Sacred Place. She later helped the Three Fairies of Light in supporting the Hakurei Shrine against Myouren Temple.

Giant Toad

The Giant Toad is a toad that once ate Cirno because she was freezing all the other toads.









Spell Cards[edit]

Additional Information[edit]

  • Even though Cirno isn't the final boss of Touhou Hisoutensoku and Great Fairy Wars, she appears as the silhouette on both jewel cases. Along with Sumireko Usami, she's the only character to appear as the silhouette for two games' jewel cases in the Windows games.
  • Cirno's alternate color palette in Touhou Hisoutensoku resembles that of Alice Margatroid's and Reimu Hakurei's color palette from PC-98 era.
  • Shibata Masahiro's manga series "Sarai" seems to be a big inspiration for many of the characters from EoSD . Sarai is a manga about superpowered maids fighting youkai and monsters in a dystopian future. The series was published from 1997 to 2007 in Japan only.
    • Cirno shares the same name with Cirno from Sarai.


Official Profiles[edit]

Official Sources[edit]

See Also[edit]


  1. As shown in Phantasmagoria of Flower View she was aware of the last 60 year cycle, which implies she was alive at the time it happened. As a note, Phantasmagoria of Flower View was released in 2005
  2. Embodiment of Scarlet Devil - Cirno's profile
  3. Touhou Hisoutensoku - Cirno's Spell Cards
  4. Great Fairy Wars - Cirno's Perfect Freeze spell card and Ice Barrier skill
  5. "ZUN's blog" January 12, 2004 - Wayback Machine (Archived April 4, 2004)
  6. "Gensou Bulletin Board" posted December 15, 2003 (Archived by まよひがねっと) - Wayback Machine (Archived April 8, 2005)
  7. "Hakurei Jinja Kannushi/ZUN Interview Kannushi's Tale" "Sangetsusei Part 1" Special Book pp. 110-113.
  8. Perfect Memento in Strict Sense: Fairy
  9. Perfect Memento in Strict Sense: Cirno
  10. Phantasmagoria of Flower View: Cirno's Scenario
  11. Notes on ZUN's Genyou Denshou Lecture - Wayback Machine (Archived September 17, 2019)
  12. Who's Who of Humans and Youkai in Gensokyo - Tanned Cirno
  13. Portraits used in the Trial+ version of Perfect Cherry Blossom