Ran Yakumo

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八雲 (やくも)   (らん)
Ran Yakumo
jakɯmo ɽaɴ (♫)
Ran Yakumo
Shikigami of the Gap Youkai
More Character Titles
Species

Youkai Fox (Shikigami)

Abilities

Using Shikigami

Age

Unknown

Occupation

Yukari's servant

Location

Boundary of Gensokyo

Music Themes
Appearances
Official Games
Print Works

Ran Yakumo (八雲 藍 Yakumo Ran) is a shikigami possessing a youkai fox, who attacks the heroine when her shikigami Chen loses to them and to avoid waking her master, Yukari Yakumo.

General Information

Ran first appeared as the extra stage boss of Perfect Cherry Blossom, where she also appeared as the Phantasm stage midboss of that game, so she has the strong image of being a midboss, but even as an extra boss, she also had abilities not to be ashamed of, as she is also a long difficult battle.

She frequently appears as an attack option in the fighting games for Yukari Yakumo and has appeared in Imperishable Night as Yukari's attack.

Ability

Using Shikigami

While being a shikigami, she has the privilege of strong youkai of being able to use shikigami. However, perhaps because she does not have the level of power that Yukari Yakumo has, or perhaps because the power of the youkai turned into a medium wasn't enough, different from herself, Chen has only the level of wisdom of a child. Also, although she's not able to turn against what Yukari says, this doesn't mean that Chen perfectly listens to what Ran says. Because of this, she sometimes has to lure Chen with catnip to make her listen.

Clear intellect

Matching up with Yukari, she has super-human intellect, and excels at mathematics. According to Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red, she was somehow able to formulate and prove an equation for figuring out the width of the Sanzu River. Nonetheless, more than inventing new things through her intellect, it seems to be her speciality to process formulated calculations; even on this point, the shikigami of Gensokyo have been often likened to the PCs of the outside world.

Miscellaneous

As for her other abilities, one of her spellcards shows that she is capable of quickly increasing her physical capabilities, but other than this, nothing more have especially come to light. As a strong youkai, she is probably able to use various other kinds of sorcery, but since she pretty much never performs actions alone it's still unclear.

All along, she usually makes appearances as a means for Yukari to attack, so when she flies around, she often spins around. Perhaps the way Chen spins around and around may be also be related, or due to her influence.

Occupation

As Yukari Yakumo's shikigami, Ran must do whatever Yukari commands her to do, such as doing Yukari's chores or checking the Great Hakurei Barrier around Gensokyo for problems. Apparently, Ran's own shikigami, Chen, is too unreliable to be entrusted with doing chores.

In her spare time, Ran often calculates various things such as the width of the Sanzu River. She may also be seen in the Human Village shopping for tofu.

Species

Shikigami

Ran's true identity is that of a shikigami that is possessing a youkai fox, or youko (妖狐, "mystic fox"). The fox she is possessing is an entirely separate being, but since it never comes to surface, there is no problem in thinking of Ran as a nine-tailed fox herself.[1] Because she is a shikigami herself, it's highly unusual that Ran has a shikigami of her own.

Youkai fox

Ran's body is that of a youkai fox with nine large tails, which is a clear sign of great power and intelligence, as described by Akyuu[2].

Character Basis

Name

Ran Yakumo (八雲 藍) is her name. The characters for Yakumo (八雲) literally mean "eight clouds", and Ran () literally means "indigo". All of the Yakumo family are named after colors.

Ran Yakumo is apparently not her real name; according to Perfect Memento in Strict Sense, her name was given to by Yukari Yakumo. Her real name is unknown.

Design

In Perfect Cherry Blossom, Ran has yellow eyes, short blonde hair, and nine fox tails. She wears a white dress with purple cuffs and collar, a blue tabard with a white print, white and blue footwear, and a light pink two-tailed hat with many amulets that hide her fox ears. According to ZUN, she is fairly tall.[3]

Story

Perfect Cherry Blossom
Ran sprite in PCB

During Perfect Cherry Blossom, Ran is busy preparing for a banquet for her master Yukari Yakumo, who was still asleep as usual, when Ran was suddenly interrupted by the heroine.

Imperishable Night
Ran in IN

Ran makes a return in Imperishable Night, somewhat as a playable character. Instead, she appears as a familiar of Yukari, where if the player chooses to focus, then Ran will appear in front of Yukari at a distance. She'll search for enemies and spin around on them until they're defeated. She'll act the same way if Yukari is unfocussed while playing solo.

Spin-offs

Fighters
Ran in SWR
Ran in HM
Ran in the fighters and HM

Ran appeared in Immaterial and Missing Power, Scarlet Weather Rhapsody, and Touhou Hisoutensoku as a projectile in Yukari's spell card Shikigami "Ran Yakumo". In Antinomy of Common Flowers she gets used in the same way, this time in a combined move with her servant Chen.

Shoot the Bullet

In Shoot the Bullet, Aya Shameimaru encountered Ran on stage 8 and took photos of her danmaku.

Hopeless Masquerade

Ran made a background cameo appearance in Hopeless Masquerade on the Hakurei Shrine stage. She is seen standing with Chen watching the fights.

Literature

Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red

Ran gets interviewed by Aya Shameimaru after she managed to determine the actual width of the Sanzu River. Ran also explains how equations and shikigami are related, and how Yukari's equations, that she uses to increase Ran's power indefinitely, are too much even for her to understand.

In Yukari's article, Aya confronts Yukari after the latter smacked Ran with an umbrella as a punishment for having fought humans without Yukari's permission. Although Aya is outraged by an animal being abused like that, Yukari insists that Ran is not an animal, but a shikigami that sometimes forgets that she is a servant.

Alternative Facts in Eastern Utopia

Ran was one of the visitors of the geyser hot springs right above Former Hell. When Aya asked her why she was keeping her hat in the bath, Ran said that it was because Aya was taking a picture of her.

Relationships

Yukari Yakumo (Master)

Yukari is Ran's Master. As a shikigami, Ran must do whatever Yukari commands, but since Yukari is asleep most of the time, Ran has a lot of free time. When Ran follows Yukari's will, she can obtain power equal to Yukari's level, becoming much stronger than she usually is. However, Ran sometimes forget that she is a shikigami, and Yukari scolds her.

Chen (Shikigami)

Ran's shikigami. Since their relation is the same that there is between Yukari and Ran, one would expect Chen following anything Ran commands, but is known that Chen is unreliable and it is difficult for Ran to depend upon her.

Gallery

Spell Cards

Additional Information

  • The name of one of her Spell Cards, "Princess Tenko," is likely a reference to a famous Japanese illusionist of the same name, considering how foxes are known for their tricks and illusions in folklore.
  • Ran is the only stage mid-boss in any Touhou Project game that is immune to bombs.
  • Since her master is the only Phantasm boss, Ran is also the only Phantasm stage mid-boss.

Fandom

Official Profiles

Official Sources