Touhou - Prepare for Bullet Hell!

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Blitzzo

It's Mr. Computer!
What is it? Touhou is a series of bullet hell shooters for the PC. Like other games in its style, it places more emphasis on dodging hundreds of bullets rather than just shooting things. To clear the stages, you much have good dexterity, strategy, and persistence, as the bullets come out in large numbers and complex patterns.

Why should you play Touhou?

  • Challenge. The sheer difficulty of the enemy patterns is one of the most attractive aspects of the game. Trying to weave through all the bullets is very thrilling indeed. There are four difficulties ranging from Easy to Lunatic, so you can pick the one that suits your playing skill.
  • Technicality. Each game has complex systems used for scoring, item occurances, and other things. For example, in Touhou 8, there is a meter that balances between Human and Youkai (Ghost), and you get special bonuses depending on which side of the meter you're on. You can use these systems as part of your strategy.
  • Spellcards and Replays. Each boss is structured and segmented in a way that each attack is identifiable as a spellcard. These attacks are distinct and even have their own names. You can create a replay of an entire playthrough, a single stage, or in the case of Touhou 8, a single spell from any boss. Watching these replays can be quite entertaining.
  • Characters. The Touhou universe has host to some very likable characters, such as Marisa, Reimu, and Mokou. They all have back-stories, but in a way that is actually interesting and relevant to the series' plot.
  • Soundtrack. The series has some very nice upbeat, energetic tracks that are sure to get stuck in your head (this has happened to me on multiple occasions).

Touhou08Reisen.png

In Touhou 8: an experienced player fights the Stage 5 Boss (Reisen) on Lunatic difficulty.

If you're going to get any Touhou games, I recommend that you at least get numbers 7 through 9:

Touhou 7: Perfect Cherry Blossom - Perhaps the most well-known of the Touhou games.
Touhou 8: Imperishable Night - Has advanced scoring and spellcard practice mode.
Touhou 9: Phantasmagoria of Flower View - A versus-style game where you go head-to-head.

For those that are interested, you can look at the Touhou Wiki or watch some YouTube videos.

Discuss.
 

StarBlazer

For the lulz
Awesome. You know already I played this. lol. This game really rocks though.

I love how you can dodge the bullets and stuff.

9/10
 
I'd consider myself a fairly large fan of traditional shmups (Under Defeat, Ikaruga, etc.); would I find these to be enjoyable at all? How similar are they in playstyle?
 

Blitzzo

It's Mr. Computer!
Well, there's obviously a larger number of bullets, but shooting enemies is still part of the game. If you neglect to shoot enemies as they come on the screen, there will be more bullets for you to dodge. This also applies to bosses, where the faster you defeat them, the less you have to dodge (it is helpful to look at the Enemy beacon at the bottom to get the boss' position without taking your eyes off your character). However, if you stay on one spell and try to survive as long as possible by grazing bullets, you can usually get a much bigger score bonus.

On the subject of player attacks, these are more simplistic. You have the basic shot, and bombs which you can use to get out of tricky situations. By collecting red Power icons, you can increase the damage of your basic shot. You can't really switch your main weapon during gameplay, though each character has their own shots (unless you're playing Touhou 8, where you play as two characters and can switch between them by toggling Focus mode).

If you're into dodging enemy attacks, then you'll definitely enjoy this game. Otherwise, its appeal may be a tad limited, as these kinds of games bring more focus to challenging bullet patterns.
 

StarBlazer

For the lulz
FoxBlitzz said:
Well, there's obviously a larger number of bullets, but shooting enemies is still part of the game. If you neglect to shoot enemies as they come on the screen, there will be more bullets for you to dodge. This also applies to bosses, where the faster you defeat them, the less you have to dodge (it is helpful to look at the Enemy beacon at the bottom to get the boss' position without taking your eyes off your character). However, if you stay on one spell and try to survive as long as possible by grazing bullets, you can usually get a much bigger score bonus.

On the subject of player attacks, these are more simplistic. You have the basic shot, and bombs which you can use to get out of tricky situations. By collecting red Power icons, you can increase the damage of your basic shot. You can't really switch your main weapon during gameplay, though each character has their own shots (unless you're playing Touhou 8, where you play as two characters and can switch between them by toggling Focus mode).

If you're into dodging enemy attacks, then you'll definitely enjoy this game. Otherwise, its appeal may be a tad limited, as these kinds of games bring more focus to challenging bullet patterns.
Yeah... what he said. That pretty much sums it all up. Foxblitzz is awesome. =) This is not a butt-licking comment.
 

Shadow Hog

Member
All things considered, wouldn't many, many parts of Ikaruga count as bullet-hell as well? I mean, seriously, you only get pelted with a bazillion black and white bullets every other second.
 

Ritz

Subhedgehog
Sonic Team Junior
I wouldn't really call Ikaruga a bullet hell. It's a standard shooter- though it's a bit hard to define exactly what makes a shooter a 'standard' one, Touhou focuses less on shooting and more on concentration and pattern memorization, which sort of lends it more to the puzzle genre. Really, you could remove the shooting aspect and 83% of the games would play the same.

So yeah, the style isn't too similar, and it certainly isn't a game for anyone but the most absolutely hardcore shooter fan. You probably wouldn't enjoy it much, Omega, but I've wasted plenty of time with 8 since Foxblitzz mentioned it in the boss topic; I'm almost at a point where I can clear the game without losing a continue (With stage 6B- 6A isn't much of a problem), and I've cleared a good handful of the Extra and Last Word spellcards. Doesn't beat Radiant Silvergun, but it's worth a try.

Also Eirin is awesome and Reisen is superhot
 

Shadow Hog

Member
Answers.com takes everything from Wikipedia.

Anyway, it can't be THAT hard to surmise the genre from, you know, reading the thread? They're shooters. Shooters with elaborate and exceedingly over-the-top patterns of enemy fire. That's all you need to know.
 

Ritz

Subhedgehog
Sonic Team Junior
Shadow Hog said:
Answers.com takes everything from Wikipedia.
Yeah, but Wikipedia doesn't have a search engine built into Firefox, and when something's so easily accessible, there really is no reason for anyone not to acquaint themselves with it.

And according to that page, I guess Ikaruga is a bullet hell. Still isn't too similar to Touhou, though.
 

Ritz

Subhedgehog
Sonic Team Junior
Logan_GBA said:
Don't you mean "Firefox doesn't have a search box that goes to Wikipedia"
Don't sully my sentences with your superfluous technicalities you tremendous shrub rocketeer

Also, nifty.
 

on Edge

Member
Your whole "I am better than you" theme (lasting from april fools till quite a bit later) means that you should expect less of me than of yourself.

Botom line: You understood; I didn't.
 

Ritz

Subhedgehog
Sonic Team Junior
Doesn't mean he wasn't being specific, and it certainly doesn't mean that Shuffle isn't better than you.

Of course, we could still expect less from you, but would you really want that?
 

Ultimate

a scar in time...
You left out Touhou 6, which I consider to be the best Touhou, because of its music, beautiful attack patterns and gameplay. Touhou 8's attack patterns seemed more random, not like the Flower Sign "Gorgeous Sweet Flower" from stage 3. Also, for some reason, I found Imperishable Night (Touhou 8) to be less difficult than Embodiment of Scarlet Devil (Touhou 6)
 
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