Former Hell (旧地獄 kyuu-jigoku) is a region in the Underworld that was inhabited by many souls long ago that once used to be Hell itself, hence the name. The region itself formed by the bridge guarded by Parsee Mizuhashi at the Deep Road to Hell, the Former Capital of Hell, and the Palace of the Earth Spirits.
Many oni used to work here. Eventually, because of overpopulation, the Yamas decided to move Hell to another place, so everyone moved out; thus the place became known as Former Hell. It has become a forgotten prison for vengeful spirit, left over from before the move. Other oni that had been living above-ground then moved into Former Hell, and other subterranean youkai are also known to lurk around here, making it their paradise. The oni were given permission by the yama to live here. It's also a place where the youkai from above can't interfere with. It's said that the Palace of the Earth Spirits was constructed here after the Underworld was separated from Hell.
It is not revealed as to when Hell moved from this location to make this place "Former Hell". The event in question seems to have took place before Embodiment of Scarlet Devil in 2003, the starting point of the current Touhou Project, since Suika Ibuki was the first oni to appear in Gensokyo for a long while in Immaterial and Missing Power. It's also unknown whether this place is connected to the Hell of Highly Responsive to Prayers as there is confusion with the canonicity of the PC-98.
Former Hell's Appearances
- Subterranean Animism
Former Hell first appears on Stage 3 and 4 of Subterranean Animism. After Reimu Hakurei or Marisa Kirisame passed Parsee Mizuhashi at the Deep Road to Hell on Stage 2, they'll travel through Former Hell, going through the streets of the Former Capital. They'll fight fairies and flying yin-yangs will emerge from the distance at the start of the stage. Yuugi Hoshiguma will come and fight the heroines as a midboss, and after a spell card, she'll wander in front of the heroine down the street. She was surprised when she found out that vengeful spirits were leaking out to the above from the Underworld. After she was defeated, she'll point the heroine towards the Palace of the Earth Spirits. They'll roam through the palace on stage 4, where they'll encounter Rin Kaenbyou in her cat form twice as a midboss. After more roaming, the heroine, will encounter Satori Komeiji. After they've had a battle, Satori will point the heroines towards the courtyard that leads to the Remains of Blazing Hell for the cause of geysers and vengeful spirits in Gensokyo.
- Touhou Gouyoku Ibun
The taotie Yuuma Toutetsu discovers the Sea of Petroleum within Former Hell and attempts to seize control of it for herself. The Sea of Petroleum is, in truth, the Abandoned Hell of Blood Pools, a gigantic sea of blood made up of condemned souls overflowing with avarice. As souls were condemned to the sea of blood, its size and avarice grew, and eventually even the oni became so horrified by it that they stopped sending the condemned into it. When Hell was relocated, the oni were pleased to leave the sea of blood behind and forget about its existence.
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- Wild and Horned Hermit
- Alternative Facts in Eastern Utopia