ZUN's reply to messages on the former Gensou Bulletin Board 3

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This article contains select questions and answers in ZUN's former Gensou Bulletin Board (幻想掲示板)

2003/07 2003/07
 Q.「東方シリーズ」各ボスの弾幕パターン Q. "Touhou series" Danmaku Patterns of each bosses.


A. This game is designed to have a great deal of figures of danmaku for both the game concept and story. (I made expressions for a world in which the danmaku-art is to have meaning )

Because of this, the more you proceed in the game, the more danmaku get gross, so I beg your kindness for looking towards the release version(^^;.

 Q.「妖々夢」体験版ver0.10の弾速 Q. "Perfect Cherry Blossom" Bullet speed in the trail version.


A. The bullet speed in the trail version is sped up by 120% to the release version.

The reason why I had done this, is for getting a clear image on the guidelines of the final adjustment

2003/08 2003/08
 Q.「幻想郷」新シリーズ(紅魔郷以降)で全体の設定を一掃したそうですが Q: "Gensokyo" Has it been that from the new series (Embodiment of Scarlet Devil onwards) the whole setting has been swept clean?


A: Regarding the setting, consider that the newest work is basically the most detailed and correct.[1]

Basically, I think that someone would be able to enjoy the further works by considering the idea that the setting before EoSD has never existed - even if the worldviews were the same.

 Q.「幻想郷」旧作の設定は生きているのですか? Q: "Gensokyo" Do the setting of the PC-98 games still live?


A: Of course, nothing particular has changed.

There is no need to say that the setting that wasn't mentioned in the game doesn't exist. Instead, think of it as only the portion of it becomes an issue in the games.

 Q.「蓬莱人形」正直村の人間が成す術無く喰われていくのは何故? Q. "Dolls in Pseudo Paradise" Why do people in honest village get eaten uselessly?


A. They are the (forced) lost people. When it says people were lost in numbers, it includes the meaning of people going back to their home world, so they weren't there in the first place.

They had lived nearby for about two years though...

 Q.「幻想郷」人間世界の文明レベルはどのくらいでしょうか? Q. "Gensokyo" What is the level of civilization at the human world?


A. A level which humans see fantasy relating creatures as perfect fantasy.

In this time, how many humans are there, and who truly fears youkai hidden in the darkness of night?
We cannot be perfectly sure if people who are seriously superstitious or fearful to be damned still exists.
That is why this game takes place only in the recent past, the present, or the near future.
After Gensokyo was halfway sealed off, the entry of human civilization stopped, leaving only just a few items to drift in.
By the way, Gensokyo is not in a different dimension nor an another world or anything of that nature, but rather a remote place in a deep mountain connected by land.
It's just that you can't approach or even recognize Gensokyo because of the barrier.
In this case, barrier is a deferential of sophisticated modern sense and a sense of culture that has been cut off.
(Is this why we have danmaku? (laugh) )

2003/09 2003/09
 Q.「システム」MIDIの理由 Q. "System" Why MIDI?


A. Don't care about the MIDIs^^;

Whether the MIDIs are better or not, they are just a bonus.
I only have one reason why I have them in my game.
Because of the trial versions. If I didn't have them, I couldn't prepare the trial versions to have up to stage 3.
It's quite a pain to do extra hard work for this reason though...
(For WAVs it'll take 100M, still 30M even compressed.)
Furthermore, MIDI musics won't stop when paused.
(A full pause is impossible due to technical reasons, so it's a specification.)

2003/10 2003/10
 Q.「東方シリーズ」季節による演出が気になります Q. "Touhou series" I want to know about the directions by the seasons.


A. Of course I limit the season. A live world is what makes Touhou.

Touhou is a type of game that I could only show a progress of half a day to a whole day in time sequence,
so I feel disappointing that I could only do one season at a time in the game^^; (PCB was special).

 Q.「その他」百萬感謝絵、幻想郷にも標識はあるのでしょうか? Q. "Miscellaneous" The 1,000,000 hits illustration, are there traffic signs in Gensokyo too?


A. What you are seeing through the rent, is the image from our world.

Looking from Gensokyo, our world might be made of selfish greedy hands, with the habit of the anxious thought of another's eyes and useless artifacts.
Nobody follows the speed limits, I believe^^;

2003/11 2003/11
 Q.「東方シリーズ」どのように考えて弾道や使用ボス等を決めているのでしょうか? Q. "Touhou series" What do you consider in deciding what the bullet trajectory are and which boss uses them?


A. They are the very core part of my work.

I create the bullet trajectory by the characteristic of the boss. Characteristics are born from their figures certainly, and also musics, backgrounds and settings.
And I guess I wouldn't need to tell you what they are born from.
Then, guides to the players, how I make them play and how I show the bullet trajectory are the final dressing.
While the influence of the dressing is the strongest on the salad, I don't think a dressing is a salad.
That is why users enjoy that tip of the work. But for creators, creating only the tip is not a option.

 Q.「霊夢」彼女の服は通常の巫女服とは1味違う感じですが、あれには何か特別な思いが? Q. "Reimu" I see her dress has a quite distinctive taste compared to the usual shrine maiden outfit. Do you have strong feelings about it?


A.The harder you watch her, the less shrine maiden-like she gets.

But, I think the first time you see her, she looks like a shrine maiden, doesn't she?
Maybe that's the answer.

 Q.「幻想郷」少女達の日常 Q: "Gensokyo" The daily life of the girls


A: Touhou is a fragment of the daily life of a part of the group that live in Gensokyo.

It is something I have always said, but even when the circumstances are different for sure, the girls are assuredly ordinary.

 Q.「東方シリーズ」東方の曲で目指しているものって何かありますか? Q. "Touhou series" Do you have any objectives in your work for the Touhou music?


A. A peaceful and fantastic closed circle that was abandoned from history. With inhuman taste.

A score that is neither spectacular nor modern, and has an atmosphere of a field and not a human mind.
I guess that is it.

 Q.「妖々夢」PhantasmExtraHard版ですか? Q: "Perfect Cherry Blossom" Is Phantasm the Hard version of Extra?
  A.反対ですよ。ExtraEasy版なのです。藍は紫の攻撃の真似をしているわけですから^^; It is the opposite. As you can see by Ran imitating Yukari's attacks, Extra is the Easy version of it, ^^;
2003/12 2003/12
Q: "Marisa" and Mima have what sort of relation? I cannot believe her attitude against Mima...


A: Please don't care about the past.

However, it can be said that her attitude is easy to understand, since Marisa's personality is the most familiar (human-like) to us.

 Q.「幻想郷」紅魔郷で妖霧が人里に下りていくのは一大事なのでは? Q: "Gensokyo" In "Embodiment of Scarlet Devil," wasn't it a serious affair for the strange mist to go down to the human village?



A: Ahh, that it is a little misunderstanding.

The motive of the turmoil, so to speak, is the motive of the youkai side who caused the turmoil.
Since it can't be helped, even when Reimu and the gang are defeated, they challenge again however many times they want; but on the youkai, side they do not challenge again after being defeated, and are not attached to the results of winning or losing..., to say it clearly it is assuredly an inconsequential thing^^;

Mr.anonymous's post was precise so I shall cite it:
Sorry for butting in. However, in my thinking, as for what shall happen when the mist given out by Remilia goes to the human village, in the first place, I have not conceived that the mist would go to the human village. So in other words, there was no bad intention. The reason for giving out the mist is also, "that" (haha so Reimu is also went towards the extent of giving a warning, "it can't be helped" (although it is violent, eh?

 Q.「幻想郷」東方の戦闘は禅問答? Q: "Gensokyo" Are the battles in Touhou Zen dialogue?


A: They are not Zen dialogue, but the place where that was asked is between the creator (me) and the user.

(Due to that, I have various judgments and cynicisms prepared behind the scenes)
Nonetheless, between the girls, such dialogue is definitely not there.
To the extent that it is unimaginable to us, the girls simply live in a straightforward kind of life.

 Q.「幻想郷」やっぱり妖怪よりも人間が一番数が多いのかな? Q: "Gensokyo" Are the number of humans, more than youkai, the greatest in number?


A: Humans are few. There are humans living in the village, but in small-scale.

Although few among the humans, there are also those who live separated from the village.

 Q.「幻想郷」一部のキャラは本気なのではないかと思うのですが・・・ Q: "Gensokyo" But I did think a portion of the characters were serious...


A. Seriousness is just another part of the game.

What's important is that there wasn't anything special about the motive for the strife, I would say.
So, it doesn't matter whether it was failure or not.
For things like if this were related to the destruction of Gensokyo, causing something with great effect on the humans of the outside, or the destruction of youkai, if it were like that, then it wouldn't have been play, and it wouldn't have been a transient matter either.

 Q.「幻想郷」1対1で闘うのは、生と死のギリギリの境目の恐怖を直で楽しむため? Q: "Gensokyo" Are the 1 vs. 1 battles in order to closely enjoy the terrors of the border just barely between life and death?


A: That kind of brutality for Touhou is a little unpleasant^^;

In actuality, can humans enjoy the abyss of death, I wonder? In the manga and such, it was conventional though...
Instead, Touhou is something like pro wrestling. Spell cards are pro wrestling moves.
However many times pro wrestlers are shouted to "beat to death!", they do not perform unpopular abuses in attacking.
Therefore, the brutality in the jeers that they hurl at each other in matches can be seen as enjoyment.

 Q.「幻想郷」レミリアと霊夢も遊び(本気ではない)だったんですか? Q: "Gensokyo" Were Remilia and Reimu also playing (not serious)?



A. As for whether the battles are fights for survival, a mission of a super-large organization, or things inevitably out of despair or things like that, as stated I think that I know that those are not what the battles are about.

In Gensokyo, humans proliferate and diminish, but the vast majority of living things do not change in their numbers.
Those who live there all live in prosperity and peace, and this is because there is a culture that humans and the long-living youkai have constructed.
Because of that, in performing reckless killing of life, and showing desire for rule and control, the balance of Gensokyo itself is lost and destroys itself.
Since the youkai know this, like humans they do not have unsightly disputes at all, and are able to have coexistence.
The humans in Gensokyo are set as a group that are powerless, but they are also an essential cog-wheel.

Naturally, between humans and youkai, or between alike youkai (alike humans), there are battles.
But the results of the battle are not important, and performing battles themselves is not important either.
They do perform battles with all their effort, but winning with all their effort, or losing, is not so much a serious thing.
So, even after the end of battle, the battle does not leave a bad aftertaste. (Magnificent)
(Incidentally, fairies, spirits, etc. are even weaker than humans, but they grow excited one after another, so they are defeated in an unconcerned manner ^^;)

 Q.「幻想郷」今まで頑なに少女しか登場しなかったのには何か重要な意図が? Q. "Gensokyo" Is there an important intention that until now, there has not been any who showed up other than stubborn girls?


A. There is definitely.

If they fought with all their effort, then it would not be possible for the girls to have 1 vs. 1 battles. (More the story gets serious, less the chances to be happening.)
So, that is assuredly the girls' game. In the case it is seen as play, for males and females both young and old showed up jumbled together would be unnatural. So, that is the reason why, in the game, it is not easy for any other than girls to show up. Until now, and also from now.

 Q.「香霖堂」玄爺以来の男性キャラが普通に登場する事が何気に一番衝撃なのですが Q. "Curiosities of Lotus Asia" Inadvertently speaking, appearance of a male character ever since Genjii was my biggest shock.


A. If I wanted to show everyday life and not the battles, lacking of men and adults would rather be very unnatural.

Curiosities of Lotus Asia is a story of those living a pleased life with no battles, so I can't just deal with having only girls.
By the way he (Haven't I announced his name yet?) is not good in a combat.
He can't fight with Reimu and her folks in danmaku battles, but instead he is a shrewd man. I hope.

 Q.「香霖堂」主人をデザインしたのは誰ですか? Q. "Curiosities of Lotus Asia" Who did the designing of the (Kourindou) owner?


A. The rough sketches were made by my orders and image. After confirming that, I made orders to correct the details.

That work was repeatedly done a few times.
Same goes for Reimu and Marisa. First their designs were similar to the ones in the game, which I thought was meaningless making a new drawing,
So I made detailed requests for the parts, the expressions, and the body proportions, turning the three into what they are now.
Getting to answer your detailed and indulging requests is very pleasant^^.


  1. Note that he's not talking Touhou series in general, the "newest work" specifically indicates PCB (remember the date when this post has been done).

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