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Overview

Touhou Rei'iden ~ Highly Responsive to Prayers is the first game in the Touhou Project, released for the Japanese PC-98 series in 1996. The game shares some similarities with Arkanoid.

Plot

Something has wrecked the Hakurei Shrine, and Reimu Hakurei, the resident Shrine Maiden, isn't about to let it fly. As the Hakurei Shrine is a gateway to the land of Youkai, Gensokyo, Reimu rushes through the gate, intent on finding the person (or Youkai) who perpetrated the crime. Unable to harm any enemies she finds in her path directly, she brings along the Hakurei Yin-Yang Orb, a powerful weapon that will allow her to defeat anyone or anything that stands before her, although there is one problem: she hasn't mastered how to use it yet.

Gameplay

Highly Responsive to Prayers is unique within the Touhou Project as it is not a Danmaku shooter, instead it plays out like Arkanoid, however, it offers many more abilities, such as the multiple ways to influence the movement of the Yin-Yang Orb.

The game revolves around using the Yin-Yang Orb to overturn cards and defeat bosses. However, Reimu is not able to fully control the Orb, meaning she must avoid contact with it at all times, and instead manipulate it with her various tools and abilities. If the Orb hits Reimu, she will lose a life.

The game has 20 stages, each one more difficult than the last. Boss encounters happen every 5 stages. After Stage 5, the player is offered two different paths to travel: the Demon World (Makai) route, or the Hell (Jigoku) route. Each route has different stages and boss encounters, as well as alternate ending sequences.

The game has 4 difficulties: Easy, Normal, Hard and Lunatic. The different difficulties will affect how many bullets the enemies will fire, the rate of fire, the patterns of these bullets, and the difficulty of the boss encounters. For example, on easy mode, stage enemies will not fire bullets, however, on Lunatic mode, each overturned card will fire a single bullet at where Reimu is positioned.

Manipulating the Yin-Yang Orb

There are various ways to manipulate the Yin-Yang Orb, from shooting at it, to slide kicking it.

- Method 1: The Shot


Reimu can fire a single Ofuda (a talisman used by Shinto Shrines) skyward. These can be used to slightly manipulate the movement of the Orb, although they can also be used to cancel out small white bullets shot by enemies. They will not damage bosses.

- Method 2: The Wand


Reimu can also use her Gohei (a wand used by Shinto Priests during rituals) back and forth to control the movement of the Orb. If the wand comes in contact with the Orb, then the Orb will be repelled in the direction the wand is swung. If the wand comes into contact with the Orb on Reimu's first swing, it will be repelled at a fast speed, however, if it comes into contact with the Orb on Reimu's second swing, it will only be repelled lightly. The wand can also deflect small white bullets, however, it will not damage a boss.

- Method 3: Slide Kick


Reimu can also use a slide kick to control the movement of the Orb. This slide kick can also be used to move across the stage quickly and to escape harrowing situations, as it decreases the size of her hit box.

- Method 4: Flip Kick


While performing a slide kick, Reimu can also perform a flip kick. These flip kicks repel the Yin-Yang Orb with great force. Up to three of them can be used consecutively.

- Method 5: Rapid-fire Multishot


While performing a slide kick, Reimu is also able to rapidly fire 8 Ofuda skywards. These shots will not damage a boss.

Bombs

Bombs, Reimu's Spirit Attack, can be used to get out of desperate situations, although their use is limited. When used, a bomb will cancel out all onstage bullets, and will hit every onstage card one time. During the bomb's effect, Reimu will be invincible, and if the Yin-Yang Orb hits her during this time, it will be repelled at a moderate speed. Bombs will only damage bosses when Reimu has 0 lives remaining in reserve.

At the beginning of the game, and every time Reimu respawns, you will recieve 1 bomb. You can recieve more bombs through collecting Bomb Extend items, and your bomb count will not be reset whenever Reimu is hit. The maximum number of bombs you can carry is 5, and if you collect a bomb while you are at the limit, that bomb will be lost.

Items

After hitting a card, there is a chance that an item will appear from it.

Point Items


As the name implies, point items reward points. The first point item will reward 1,000 points, and then each additional point item will be worth more than the last, however, if you fail to reach a point item before it disappears, the point count will be reset, and the next point item will be worth 1,000 points.

Bomb Extend Items


Bomb extend items will increase your bomb stock by one.

Field Objects

These objects can either aid or prevent the Yin-Yang Ball from reaching the onscreen cards.

Bumpers

Much like bumpers in pinball games, these repel the Yin-Yang Orb whenever it comes into contact with them. They cannot be destroyed.

Bumper Bars


The same as bumpers, but they are in a horizontal or vertical bar form.

Portals


Whenever the Yin-Yang Orb enters one of these, it will exit from another one onstage. On some occasions, it will be fired out at a high speed in a random direction, at either a card (whenever there is a small number of cards left) or Reimu; on others, it will simply drop out of the exit portal.

Turrets


These objects will fire small white bullets in pre-set patterns at certain time intervals. Most of the time, they will be fired at Reimu. However, on easy mode, these will not fire at all. Turrets cannot be destroyed.

Normal Stages

Typical layout for a normal stage
During normal stages, you must overturn all the onscreen cards using the Yin-Yang Orb to complete the level. When the Orb passes through a card, it is considered hit, and it will overturn. At the beginning stages of the game, one hit is enough to overturn a card, however, in later stages, it may take up to five hits to overturn a card. The Orb can also be used to deflect small, white bullets.

Each normal stage comes with a timer. After this timer runs out, a message saying "HARRY UP" appears onscreen, and then a flurry of white bullets appear onscreen. This continues until you clear the stage, get hit and more time is added, or you run out of lives.

Boss Battles

Typical layout for a boss battle
Each boss has a health bar that displays their current status. Most of the time, the Yin-Yang Orb is the only thing that can damage a boss, providing it hits them in their weak spots, which are not visually indicated.

Like the normal stages, there is also a timer in boss battles. When the timer runs out, the "HARRY UP" message will appear onscreen, and the flurray of white bullets will appear. This will continue until you beat the boss, get hit and more time is added, or you run out of lives.

Scoring

Another main focus of the game is points. These are earned in many different ways.

Cards

Whenever the Yin-Yang Orb hits a card, you will be awarded with points. The first card is worth 100 points, and each additional card that is hit while the Orb is still in the air will be worth more than the last. A maximum amount of 25,600 points can be gained at a time, however, if the Orb touches the ground, the point count will be reset, and you will have to start over.

Point Items

As the name implies, point items reward points. The first point item will reward 1,000 points, and then each additional point item will be worth more than the last, however, if you fail to reach a point item before it disappears, the point count will be reset, and the next point item will be worth 1,000 points.

Normal Stage Clear Bonus

At the end of each stage, you will be provided with bonus points based on how well you performed. The bonus is calculated like this:

Time remaining x 30
Continuous (Highest Combo) x 1,000
Bomb & Player (Players remaining x 2,000 Bombs remaning x 1,000)

After the bonus is calculated, it is then added onto a set Stage Bonus dependant on which stage was cleared. The end result is then added to your score.

Boss Stage Clear Battle

Like the normal stages, after clearing boss stages, the player is awarded bonus points depending on how well they performed. The bonus is calculated like this:

Time remaining x 50 (This will vary between stages)
Continuous (Highest Combo) x 1000
Bomb & Player (Players remaining x 5000 Bombs remaining x 2000) (This will vary between stages)

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