Dream Logical World/Gameplay

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Title screen of the game

This is a detailed description of the gameplay and scoring mechanics in Dream Logical World. For a more basic introduction, see the in-game manual, accessed from the title screen in "Library". Please note that this article may contain mild spoilers. The text of this article is taken from the included HTML manual for version 1.02a.



The game can be played with either a keyboard or gamepad, and the controls can be customized to the player's liking in config.exe. The default keyboard controls are as follows:

  • The Arrow Keys move the character around.
  • Z causes the character to shoot; it may be held down for rapid-fire.
  •  Shift focuses your character when held down; this slows your movement and switches characters, changing the nature of your shot. The area around the character where items will be picked up is also slightly widened.
  • X activates a bomb, known in this game as an Aspect Shift (provided you have sufficient power).
  • Esc pauses the game.
  • Ctrl skips dialogue and fast-forwards replays.
  • Q returns you to the main menu when you are on the pause menu.
  • R retries the current game when you are on the pause menu.
  • Alt+Enter switches the game between windowed and fullscreen modes.

Basic Gameplay

Dream Logical World plays like a usual Touhou game; your character always faces toward the top of the screen, shooting down enemies, dodging their bullets, collecting items, and defeating bosses at the end of each stage.

There are six teams of two characters to play as, and five difficulty levels to choose: Easy, Normal, Hard, Lunatic, and Overdrive. Enemy attacks become progressively more intense as the difficulty level increases.


The character's shot is your method of attacking enemies. The shot's properties, such as range and power, are different for all 12 characters. Thus, your shot will change depending on whether you are focused or unfocused.

Collecting power items will increase the power of your shot. Small power items add 0.05 power points, large power items add 1.00, and full power items bring you to max power. The power gauge starts at 0.00 and can increase up to 5.00 for all teams except the Aesthetic Team, whose power can reach 6.00. For most characters, each integer increase in your power level will add an option—a small satellite that follows your character and provides extra firepower—up to a maximum of four options.

Point of Collection

At the beginning of the game, a line labeled "Item Get Border Line!" is displayed close to the top of the screen. This is the point of collection. If at any point you move your character up to or above this line, all items onscreen will be automatically drawn to you.

Aspect Shifts (Bombs)

As usual, the characters' "bombs" are the player's limited-use method of getting out of difficult situations. However, unique to Dream Logical World is that the bombs are special spell cards called Aspect Shifts. These spell cards do not directly damage enemies; rather, they alter particular aspects of the gameplay to your advantage.

Much like the bomb system in Mountain of Faith and Subterranean Animism, using an Aspect Shift costs 1.00 power. Thus, if you are at 5.00 power or higher, you can use one without losing an option. When an Aspect Shift is first activated, all enemy bullets will be cleared and turned into green point value items, all items will be automatically collected (same effect as the point of collection), and your character will become invincible for 2.5 seconds (150 frames), during which you can still graze (unlike the invincibility after recovering from losing a life). A purple background will cover the playing field, indicating that the Aspect Shift is active. By default, the Aspect Shift will last 6 seconds (360 frames). The purple background will recede toward the bottom of the screen, and when it disappears entirely the Aspect Shift has ended.

While an Aspect Shift is active, the following effects apply:

  • A main gameplay-altering effect that depends on which character activated the Aspect Shift.
  • All point items are worth their maximum value regardless of where onscreen they're collected.
  • Each item collected will extend the Aspect Shift's duration by 0.1 seconds (6 frames) and every bullet grazed will extend it by a variable amount depending on the current difficulty:
Easy 0.101 seconds (6.08 frames)
Normal 0.059 seconds (3.52 frames)
Hard 0.037 seconds (2.24 frames)
Lunatic 0.027 seconds (1.6 frames)
Overdrive 0.021 seconds (1.28 frames)
Easy Extra 0.019 seconds (1.12 frames)
Extra 0.017 seconds (1.04 frames)
Elite Extra 0.0167 seconds (1 frame)

Being hit or finishing a boss battle will automatically cancel an active Aspect Shift, while encountering in-game dialogue will pause it. You can use an Aspect Shift while another is already active; however, you can't stack the effects of multiple Aspect Shifts. The second one will simply cancel the first.

Deathbombing works with Aspect Shifts as it did with standard bombs in other Touhou games. If the player activates an Aspect Shift within 0.133 seconds (8 frames) of being hit by a bullet, the Aspect Shift will activate and the death will be negated. If an Aspect Shift is already active, the deathbomb window increases to 0.5 seconds (30 frames).

Note that the Aspect Shifts that are automatically activated during the stage 6 boss's final spell card do not count against a no-bomb clear as recorded by the game, but the auto-bombs that can be activated in certain portions of the spell do. If you wish to avoid this, turning off "AS Activation" in the Options menu will disable all player-activated Aspect Shifts.


The player character's hitbox is quite small compared to your on-screen sprite. When you are focused, the hitbox will be displayed as a colored dot. If your character's hitbox hits an enemy bullet or an enemy itself, you have been hit and will lose a life.

Your life stock is represented by a health bar with hearts. You start the game with 3 lives (that is, 2 extra lives). Extra lives are obtained by reaching certain score totals or by collecting 1-up items. The score at which the first extra life is awarded depends on the difficulty:

Easy 5 million
Normal 10 million
Hard 20 million
Lunatic 40 million
Overdrive 80 million
Easy Extra 10 million
Extra 20 million
Elite Extra 40 million

The score requirement doubles for every subsequent life. The next score total at which you will receive a life is displayed underneath the health bar. A 1-up item is dropped after defeating the midbosses of Stages 3, 5, and Extra.

Unlike the official Touhou games, there is no limit to how many lives you can store at once.

When you lose a life, any Aspect Shift currently active will cancel, all bullets onscreen will be cleared, and you will become invincible for 5 seconds (300 frames), during which you cannot graze. You also lose all power, but a certain combination of small and large power items will be scattered for you to collect. The number of large power items is equal to integer part of the power you had before dying, minus 1. This is modified based on how many extra lives you have remaining: if you have 3 or more extra lives, there will always be at least 2 large items; if you have 1 or 2 extra lives, there will be at least 3 large items; if you are on your last life, there will be enough large items to bring you to max power.

If all lives are lost, the player will receive a Game Over. You may continue from right where you left off, with your stock of extra lives reset to the default of 2, and a full power item will appear. If you use a continue, however, your score will be reset to 0 + the number of times you have continued (up to 9) and you cannot save a replay of your game. You may continue an unlimited number of times in the regular game, but you cannot continue on the Stage 6 boss's final spell card or in practice mode, the Extra Stage, or Lucid Mode.


Dream Logical World includes 6 stages plus an Extra Stage:

  • Stage 1: Friendly and Troubled Bird of Loyalty ~ Good Karma
  • Stage 2: Stand for Nothing, Fall for Nothing ~ Unremarkable Flower
  • Stage 3: An Upper Hand in the Intrinsic Conflict ~ Aspect Interaction
  • Stage 4: Quest for Reality ~ Meeting Ground
  • Stage 5: The Complexity of Existence ~ Fractal Aspects
  • Stage 6: If Aimi Can't Hear Gensokyo's Choice, What Can She Call Love in a Dream-Logical Reality? ~ Dream Logical World
  • Extra Stage: A Blank Canvas On Which to Draw the Future ~ Winter's First Snow

In stage 4, the characters from one of the other playable teams appear as bosses. The Descent and Aesthetic Teams face each other; the Theory and Value Teams face each other; and the Principle and Language Teams face each other.

Boss Battles

Boss battles occur at the end of every stage, and all stages except 4 and 6 have a midboss fight around the midpoint of the stage. The bosses (and the Extra Stage midbosses) have multiple lives, which are indicated by the green stars in the top-left corner as well as the color of the boss's health bar. In order from 1 to 7 lives remaining, the healthbar colors are red, orange, yellow, green, cyan, blue, and purple. For the Extra Stage boss, who has more than 7 lives, the color cycles back to red after purple.

Bosses typically alternate between normal attacks and spell cards, switching once with each life. A marker on the boss's health bar indicates where the boss switches to a spell card. If the player manages to capture a spell card, that is, empty its healthbar completely without dying or activating an Aspect Shift, a substantial spell card bonus will be added to your score.

All boss attacks have a timer that is visible near the top of the screen. If the timer reaches 0 before the current attack's health is depleted, the attack will end regardless of how much health is remaining. Waiting for a boss's attacks to expire is enough to beat them, although you won't receive a bonus for timing out a spell card, unless it is a survival spell.

While fighting a boss, a position marker appears at the bottom of the screen, indicating the boss's horizontal position. You can use this marker to help aim your shots.

After all enemy spell cards (and nonspells if the fight ends on one), regardless of whether it was captured, the boss will drop a large number of point and small power items. The number of items depends on the stage number according to the following formulas:

Point items: 10 + (5 × stage number)
Power items: 14 + stage number

Screen Layout

Screen layout
  1. Your character
  2. Player Score
    • Hi-Score: your highest score for the current game mode, character team and difficulty. In Practice Mode, this is your highest score for the current game mode, character team, difficulty, and stage; in Scene Practice, it is your highest score for the current scene.
    • Score: your current score.
  3. The number of remaining lives and the approximate height of the point of collection
    • "Next" number: the score you need to reach the next extra life.
  4. Player Status
    • Power: your current shot power level and the maximum level.
    • Value: the current maximum value of point items.
    • Graze: the number of enemy shots you have grazed during the game.
  5. The boss enemy
    • Circular healthbar represents one life, and each color on the healthbar indicates how much of the boss's health remains in the current life. Green stars in the top-left corner indicate how many lives the boss has left.
    • Top-middle number: the number of seconds remaining until the boss's attack times out (self-destructs).
  6. Spell Card Status
    • Title: the name of the spell card the boss is currently using.
    • Bonus: the current value of the spell card bonus, which will be added to your score if you capture the spell card.
    • History: the number of times you have captured the current spell card and the number of times you have faced it.


Dream Logical World gives the player a choice of six teams, each consisting of two characters. The character listed first is controlled when unfocused, and the character listed second is controlled when focused.

Hitbox sizes, character speeds, and shot damages are given in the following format: hitbox diameter/grazebox radius (in pixels); unfocused speed/focused speed (in pixels per frame); unfocused/focused damage per second assuming the player is at max power and the maximum possible number of shots hit. At less than 1.00 power, all characters have a DPS of 60.

Descent with Modification Team

Reimu Hakurei

  • Shot: Homing Amulet
Automatically homes in on enemies.
  • Aspect Shift: "Border of Conditional Invincibility"
While Reimu and Kasen are within the region of space distorted by the Aspect Shift (the purple background), they're invincible, but can't graze. Their hitbox also becomes even smaller (0 pixels; you will only be hit if your exact position is within a bullet's hitbox).

Kasen Ibaraki

  • Shot: Light Orb
A barrage of orbs that fly straight forward.
  • Aspect Shift: "At One With Nature"
Expands the grazebox to 40 pixels.

Team characteristics

  • Hitbox: 2/20
  • Speed: 4/1.9
  • DPS: 100/116
  • Ability: Small hitbox.

Aesthetic Relativism Team

Marisa Kirisame

  • Shot: Illusion Laser
Attacks head-on, piercing through enemies.
  • Aspect Shift: "Dodge This!"
Extends Marisa and Yuuka's horizontal shot range.

Yuuka Kazami

  • Shot: Flower Shooting
Wide-spread flowers that are extremely powerful at close range.
  • Aspect Shift: "Seasonal Harvest"
Creates a flower barrier that circles your position and clears enemy bullets, turning them into green point value items. The field is only active when the player is shooting.

Team characteristics

  • Hitbox: 3/30
  • Speed: 5/1.8
  • DPS: 122/142
  • Ability: Power maxes out at 6.00, allowing an extra Aspect Shift to be stored.

Theory of Everything Team

Sakuya Izayoi

  • Shot: Misreflection
Throwing knives that angle in the direction of Sakuya's movement and reflect off the sides of the screen.
  • Aspect Shift: "Relative Velocity"
Compresses time, allowing Sakuya and Reisen to fire more quickly and greatly increasing their attack power.

Reisen Udongein Inaba

  • Shot: Electromagnetic Propagation
Not exceptionally powerful, but both homing and piercing.
  • Aspect Shift: "Level 11 Miniature Black Hole"
While active, all items are automatically collected and worth double their usual point value.

Team characteristics

  • Hitbox: 3/30
  • Speed: 4/2.2
  • DPS: 114/113
  • Ability: Easier to extend Aspect Shifts by collecting items (each item adds 0.133 seconds, or 8 frames).

Intrinsic and Instrumental Value Team

Sanae Kochiya

  • Shot: Mighty Wind
Powerful gusts of wind with some range.
  • Aspect Shift: "Quantitative Invocation"
Has no immediate effect, but when the Aspect Shift ends, the player will receive a prize (but not if the Aspect Shift ended because the player died). The longer you kept it active, the better the prize. The possible prizes are:
  • <7 seconds: nothing
  • 7-8 seconds: 5 power items
  • 8-9 seconds: 5 power items + 15 point items
  • 9-10 seconds: all of above + 200 green point value items (+500 PIV)
  • 10-12 seconds: all of above + all enemy shots are again cleared and turned into green point value items
  • 12-14 seconds: all of above + 5 additional power items
  • 14-16 seconds: all of above + 15 additional point items
  • 16-18 seconds: all of above + 200 additional green point value items (+1,000 PIV total)
  • >18 seconds: all of above + all onscreen enemies are instantly defeated (if facing a boss, their current attack's healthbar is instantly depleted)

Seija Kijin

  • Shot: Inverted Arrow
Fires either down from the top of the screen if you are in the bottom half, or up from the bottom if you are in the top half. Shots fired up from the bottom are slightly more powerful.
  • Aspect Shift: "Cheating Out of Bounds"
Has no immediate effect, but when the Aspect Shift ends, Sanae and Seija will be granted additional invincibility (during which they can graze). The longer the Aspect Shift was kept active, the longer the invincibility, according to this formula:
Invincibility time in frames = (AS extension time in frames / 60) ^ 0.7 x 60

Team characteristics

  • Hitbox: 3/30
  • Speed: 4.5/2
  • DPS: 130/128
  • Ability: The point of collection is slightly lower.

Principle of Non-Contradiction Team

Youmu Konpaku

  • Shot: Phantom Slash
Youmu's phantom half hovers in front of her delivering sword slashes within a narrow range.
  • Aspect Shift: "Supernaturally Efficient Swordplay"
Youmu and Koishi's standard shots become omnidirectional.

Koishi Komeiji

  • Shot: Brambly Rose Thorn
A shot that stays in a fixed location as long as you remain focused.
  • Aspect Shift: "Subconscious Vigilance"
When active, another Aspect Shift will automatically counter any hits you receive, provided you have at least 1.00 power. The Aspect Shift activated can be either Youmu's or Koishi's, depending on whether or not you are focused.

Team characteristics

  • Hitbox: 3/30
  • Speed: 5/2.1
  • DPS: 145/116
  • Ability: Easier to extend Aspect Shifts by grazing (the values shown in the table in "Aspect Shifts (Bombs)" are multiplied by 1.25).

Written Language Team

Aya Shameimaru

  • Shot: Crazy Fall Wind
Features both spread-out and forward-focus shots.
  • Aspect Shift: "Inescapable Megapixel"
Aya snaps large photos that turn bullets into green point value items. The photo frame snaps onto the nearest enemy; if no enemies are onscreen, it stays in front of the player's position. As long as the Aspect Shift is active, Aya is able to take one picture every 3 seconds (180 frames).

Kosuzu Motoori

  • Shot: Dreaded Forbidden Scrollery
A field of...book energy?...that automatically locks on to the nearest enemy.
  • Aspect Shift: "Learning Curve"
While active, various gameplay statistics will gradually increase. The accumulation is retained even if the player dies during the Aspect Shift and lasts for the remainder of the current game. In intervals of one second (60 frames), they increase by these amounts:
  • Attack strength: 0.025% of its original value
  • Shot power: 0.01
  • Score: 10,000
  • Point item value: 10
  • Point of collection's distance from top of screen: 0.191 pixels
  • Graze counter: 1

Team characteristics

  • Hitbox: 3/30
  • Speed: 5.5/1.8
  • DPS: 112/99
  • Ability: Wider field of item collection when focused.



Any damage dealt to a stage enemy or boss will cause your score to increase very slightly. Defeating stage enemies will earn you varying amounts of points typically from the hundreds to the thousands. This is a rather small amount, but defeated enemies release items to collect, which are very important for scoring as covered below.


Enemy bullets can be grazed by letting them pass close to your character's hitbox. Grazing is accompanied by a soft sound effect and a few dust particles flying away from your character.

Standard bullets can only be grazed once. Lasers and the saw blades in the stage 5 boss fight may be continually grazed as long as they are onscreen; they will add 15 graze points per second (one every 4 frames).

Point Items

Point items are worth their maximum value when auto-collected (using the point of collection, an Aspect Shift activation, or stage dialogue) or when collected during an Aspect Shift. Otherwise, they are worth more points the higher onscreen you collect them, according to the following formula:

value = PIV × ((-4 / 1,715) × player's current height in pixels + (61 / 49))

This is rounded down to the nearest 10. For the Value Team, because of their lower point of collection, the formula is:

value = PIV × ((-1 / 385) × player's current height in pixels + (15 / 11))

Thus, point items collected at the bottom of the screen will be worth about 1/5 of their maximum value.

The point of collection's height is the same height where point items reach their maximum value. You can easily tell when point items are collected at their maximum value because the point value will be displayed in yellow text. If collected at double their standard maximum value during Reisen's Aspect Shift, the text will be purple.

The starting value of point items is 10,000. This can be increased by collecting point value items (green and purple) and by grazing. Green items appear when enemy bullets are canceled, and add 2.5 to the PIV. Purple items appear when Aspect Shift bonuses are awarded, and add a varying amount depending on their size. Both enemy spell cards and nonspells will only produce green items if you successfully cleared them without dying or activating an Aspect Shift. Point value items also add 4 points directly to your score for every 1 they add to the PIV; for example, normal green items are worth 10 points, and an Aspect Shift PIV bonus that adds 2,390 to the PIV will also award you 9,560 points. For every 10 grazes performed, 10 will be added to the PIV.

The total added point item value is rounded down to the nearest 10. Unlike the official Touhou games, the PIV has no maximum limit.

When you increase the PIV to a multiple of its initial value of 10,000, such as 20,000 or 100,000, a sound effect will play and a small indicator reading "点×2" or "点×10", respectively, will appear.

Power Items

As well as increasing your power, both small and large power items are worth 100 points if you are not at full power, and 10,000 points if you are.

Spell Card Bonus

Bosses and midbosses sometimes attack with spell cards. When this happens, the background changes and the spell's name appears in the top-right corner of the playing field. If you successfully empty the spell's health bar within the time limit without getting hit or activating an Aspect Shift (remaining time on an Aspect Shift activated earlier does not count against this rule), the spell card bonus will be added to your score.

The bonus starts at a value equal to:

((1 million × stage number) + (1 million × difficulty value)) × (PIV / 10,000)

with the difficulty value being:

Easy 0
Normal 1
Hard 2
Lunatic 3
Overdrive 4
Easy Extra 5
Extra 6
Elite Extra 7

The Stage 6 boss's final spell card and the Extra Stage are both considered Stage 7 in the formula.

Except for survival cards, the bonus decreases linearly the longer the enemy spell card has been active, according to the following formula:

current value = (starting value / time limit in seconds) × current timer value in seconds

In survival cards, the boss does not have a health bar and cannot be damaged, and the spell card bonus does not decrease. You will receive the spell card bonus if you survive until time runs out without being hit or using an Aspect Shift.

For every graze during a spell card, the bonus increases by PIV/10.

Aspect Shift Bonus

When an Aspect Shift either runs out or is canceled by another Aspect Shift or defeating a boss (but not if it is canceled because you died), a score bonus will be awarded and a certain number of purple point value items will appear, depending on how long you kept it active. The score bonus is equal to the PIV, times 6.25, times the number of seconds (0.083 times the number of frames) the Aspect Shift was extended beyond the default of six. The PIV bonus is equal to the number of frames it was extended times 1.25 and raised to the power of 1.3, then multiplied again by a difficulty-specific value:

Easy 0.5
Normal 0.75
Hard 1
Lunatic 1.25
Overdrive 1.5
Easy Extra 1
Extra 1
Elite Extra 1

Both of these values are rounded down to the nearest 10.

If the player is hit during an Aspect Shift and deathbombs within the standard 8-frame window, the bonuses will be awarded as if the previous Aspect Shift had simply been canceled by the new one. Starting at 9 frames after being hit, the bonuses will decrease in value linearly until the extended deathbomb window is over, at which point they will be zeroed out. Bonuses awarded at a reduced value due to a deathbomb will be displayed in red text. If the Aspect Shift ended because of defeating a boss, the bonuses will be awarded as if it had been allowed to run out.

Here are two examples of Aspect Shift bonuses, assuming the difficulty is Normal and the PIV is 37,490.

Aspect Shift extended by 252 frames (4.2 seconds):
Aspect Shift Bonus = (252 / 60) × 37,490 × 6.25 = 984,112.5 → 984,110
PIV bonus = ((252 × 1.25) ^ 1.3) × 0.75 = 1,326.98 → 1,320

Aspect Shift extended by 1,962 frames (32.7 seconds):
Aspect Shift Bonus = (1,962 / 60) × 37,490 × 6.25 = 7,662,018.75 → 7,662,010
PIV bonus = ((1,962 × 1.25) ^ 1.3) × 0.75 = 19,122.87 → 19,120

Clear Bonus

Upon clearing a stage, the player is awarded a score bonus:

5 million × stage number

Upon clearing the game or the Extra stage, an additional bonus is awarded:

((1 million × remaining lives) + (1 million × remaining power)) × (PIV / 10,000)

PIV/10,000 is rounded down to the nearest whole number.

Unlockable Features

Stage Practice

In this mode, you can use a character team to practice any stage they have already beaten. You can choose to start the stage from a number of points and can also set your starting lives (including an option for infinite lives) and power. If you clear a stage from the beginning, the game will record your high score for the specific game mode, character, difficulty, and stage, in addition to whether you cleared it without any deaths and/or using any Aspect Shifts. Note that no-Aspect Shift clears are only recorded if you did not play on the infinite lives setting, though Perfect (both no-miss and no-Aspect Shift) clears will still be recorded.

Scene Practice

In this mode, you can use any character team to practice a nonspell or spell card that any team has already seen. You start with full power, but there are no extra lives and you cannot use Aspect Shifts.

After the game has been cleared once without using continues, Last Word spell cards will become available. These special spells are only available in Scene Practice and are unlocked by completing various achievements detailed on the scene selection menu.

Character Profiles

This screen, accessed via the Library, shows information about the characters in the game. You can view the player characters' profiles at the start. Enemy characters' profiles are unlocked after you clear the stage they first appear in, except for the stage 5 boss (profile unlocks after defeating the stage 6 boss). The bosses of stages 1, 2, and 3 also have additional information added to their profiles after you defeat the stage 6 boss.


If you clear the game without using any continues, you can view the ending and credits. There are six endings, one for each player team. After you have seen an ending once, you can view it any time in the Library.

Extra Stage

Clearing the game without using any continues will also unlock the Extra Stage. There are three difficulties for this stage; Easy Extra, Extra, and Elite Extra. Easy and standard Extra will be available upon clearing the game regardless of difficulty, while unlocking Elite Extra requires clearing on Lunatic or Overdrive.

The Extra stage can also be played in practice mode, but your score and no-miss/no-Aspect Shift status will not be recorded. Beating the Extra stage on any difficulty will unlock that difficulty in practice mode for all character teams.

Lucid Mode

Clearing the Extra Stage (any difficulty) will unlock Lucid Mode. In this mode, you'll play through the main game and the Extra stage in one shot with no continues offered. You can't use the SPECIAL key to bomb, but both your characters' Aspect Shifts are permanently active.

The version of the Extra stage that appears depends on the difficulty selected. Easy has Easy Extra; Normal and Hard have Extra; and Lunatic and Overdrive have Elite Extra. Clearing Lunatic or Overdrive in Lucid Mode will also automatically unlock Elite Extra if it was not already unlocked.

Any stage cleared in either mode will become available in Practice Mode for both modes.


Clearing Lucid Mode will unlock the Afterword, viewable in Library.