I just now found out today just how hard these games really are. I downloaded Perfect Cherry Blossom and couldn’t even complete easy mode. I got really close though. Yuyuko ended up killing me but Youmu took off all but one of my lives. Freaking Youmu… Fun games though. I’ll have to try again tomorrow. Also, the Prismriver Sister are really really hard.
But anyway, today is Touhou 9: Phantasmagoria of Flower View. And I noticed a strange thing about the title theme for all of the danmaku games. They all share the same title theme, just slightly remixed. And all the music is much better when in game as it embodies the mood of the game itself.
Phantasmagoria of Flower View is really annoying to type out so I’ll be abbreviating it from here in. PoFV is different than the other Touhou games in that it is a VS style game where two equally matched opponents try to shoot each other to death. It resembles Phantasmagoria of Dim. Dream the most of the other Touhou games.
The plot behind this game reminds me of Perfect Cherry Blossom, mostly because it’s the exact opposite of it. This spring there are an unusually large number of flowers and fairies roaming about. The player can choose from 16 characters and must battle their way through 9 very difficult stages. I say this from first hand experience. These games are HARD!
Reimu Hakurei was alarmed when she noticed the flowers everywhere and quickly went out looking for answers, thinking that not only was it her duty but that if she didn’t people might think she was neglectful. Marisa Kirisame on the other hand noticed the oddness of the out of season flowers, but didn’t seem to think too deeply into it at first. Instead she sets out to find who’s behind it all simply because she wants to and, more importantly, so she can be the first to find out what’s happening. Sakuya Izayoi also began searching for answers, but again more out of curiosity than from any sense of danger. Youmu Konpaku looked for answers while admiring the scenery, but without any clue where to start all she could do was wander as well. What she did notice were the ghosts hanging around the flowers, which most of the other heroines paid no attention to. Reisen Udongein Inaba didn’t sense any need to be worried about the flowers, but checked them out anyways. While she was at it she also looked for Tewi Inaba who had left without saying anything. Tewi was so excited about the flowers everywhere that she just forgot to say where she was going. Cirno at first appeared to be, basically, an idiot, but at closer look she actually realized not only that there was something strange about the flowers early on but also that a similar event happened 60 years ago before anyone else figured that part out (even characters that had been around 60 years ago). Maybe that has something to do with being a fairy, since all the fairies were becoming more active because of the flowers. She just doesn’t seem to care about why it’s happening, and instead chose to enjoy herself while she can between bumping into the other heroines. The only thing Lyrica Prismriver is interested in is finding a good place for a solo performance and to find new sounds to use. Poor Lyrica just keeps bumping into weird people while looking for a place to play until she gets more and more lost. Like Lyrica, Mystia Lorelei just wants to make music during the whole event, literally singing her way into every encounter. This time even Cirno makes Mystia look a bit “slow” in their encounter. Aya Shameimaru knows a big scoop when she sees one. With all the flowers blooming at once she was sure there’d be something newsworthy around, but what was even more interesting were all the ghosts showing up. Everyone was so focused on the flowers that hardly anyone even noticed those ghosts at first. Yuka Kazami, being a Youkai that’s been around for a long time, knew exactly what was happening when this incident started. Of course being the youkai of flowers helped too, but unfortunately that also put her straight at the top of everyone’s suspect list when they found her enjoying the flowers. Meanwhile Medicine Melancholy had no interest in finding out what was happening, but rather used this opportunity to defeat whoever she came across with poisonous flowers.
It didn’t take long before the heroines ran into each other one after another. Each of them demanded answers from the others about what was going on, but few had any real information. Finally we got to Komachi Onozuka who, as it turned out, is the primary cause for the event. Of course it’s not like any of the heroines knew it, they just wandered anywhere they saw flowers blooming until they reached the Higanbana field where Komachi was. It seemed that Komachi was such a slacker that everyone in Gensokyo noticed the flowers except her. The flowers were being possessed by ghosts which were waiting to cross over to Higan and it was Komachi’s job to get them there, a job she had neglected. 60 years ago (1945, the end of World War II) there had been another flower incident like this because of the sudden large number of ghosts needing to be ferried across to Higan. It can be assumed Komachi was slacking back then too.
After a brief battle with her, Sikieiki Yamaxanadu (the judge of the dead and Komachi’s boss) showed up to give Komachi a scolding for slacking so much. However, before the heroine could leave, Sikieiki saw a perfect opportunity to lecture her on whatever various faults each heroine has, which somehow turned into a danmaku battle to prove the point.
Long post is loooong. Tomorrow will be Touhou 9.5: Shoot the Bullet, which features some of my most absolute favorite music. And hopefully I’ll be able to beat Perfect Cherry Blossom. Marisa Kirisame for the win.