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The New Touhou Character Alternate Interpretation Compendium!:

[up]It gets neglected, like a middle child.

edited 16th May '13 5:43:51 AM by jordantigers

 23202 Bocaj, Wed, 15th May '13 8:08:19 AM from Here Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Chaotic Lulzy
Did somebody already speculate that the dude represents humans and the girl represents youkai and the yin yang is balance between them because blah blah Hakurei shrine maiden?
The Internet is often fast and horrible.
 23203 Otherarrow, Wed, 15th May '13 8:13:08 AM from the Moon Cell Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Hakunon's Strange Quest
No, no one guessed that yet.

Well, the girl does have horns...

 23204 Antimatter 625, Wed, 15th May '13 3:30:21 PM from my secret place
Baring hearts for years
And of course, the youkai we've seen have been almost exclusively female.

Honestly, though, I hadn't considered a possible human/youkai duality there, but it would certainly make a great deal of sense. The Yin yang orb perhaps works against the likes of Miko (not a youkai) because anything that disturbs the delicate balance is a valid target for it.

I write some fanfiction. Satori's Tale is done... but I'm not.
 23205 shiroimahotsukai, Thu, 16th May '13 8:43:49 AM from I'm certainly Somewhere
White Mage with a Twist
I like this idea of human/youkai balance. Shingyoku only shows up in the first game, when Reimu's all alone at the shrine and thus imbalanced. She must therefore pass a test to see if she is even capable of making use of such presicion equipment. Why does it never appear again? Because after that she had Genji, clearly not human and likely a youkai. Balance is restored and the keeper is no longer needed. After Eo SD she starts getting youkai visitors along with her few human friends so there's always equilibrium.
The eyes are the windows that let us gaze upon the soul.
I also like the idea of Shingyoku being the god of the Hakurei Shrine and the first boss fight was a test to see if Reimu was capable of handling the threats to come. Both the Hakurei and Moriya shrines follow Shinto right? And while my knowledge of any religion is worth dirt, would a being of balance fit into that? I mean, no impurities or whatever.

And maybe the reason he/she/it stopped showing up is because the shrine gets lousy reception so Shingyoku has been down in the dumps somewhere. Or hey! Maybe that orb turning into a fairy/orbwithlegs in the ending of H Rt P was Shingy powered down since there's been no praise for the shirine, so Reimu watches over it like a pet now.

edited 17th May '13 3:27:35 AM by jordantigers

Both the Hakurei and Moriya shrines follow Shinto right? And while my knowledge of any religion is worth dirt, would a being of balance fit into that?

Yin-yang is Tao. Very Tao. Not something that other religions have stolen much. That said, pretty much all of Reimu's extermination techniques are Taoist arts despite Reimu's claim of being divinely powered, so you could make a case that Shingyoku is a Shintou god of Taoist extermination methods

edited 17th May '13 3:37:56 AM by Hylarn

Nothing exists but you. And you are but a thought
 23208 Durazno, Fri, 17th May '13 3:35:53 AM from Academia Relationship Status: Robosexual
All business!
Or the god of the orbs themselves.

 23209 Tacitus, Fri, 17th May '13 9:16:41 PM from now and then and maybe Relationship Status: Crazy Cat Lady
And what does the orb itself get? You know, it's actual form?

I say "there's not a lot a fanartist can do with a faceless ball" not as a statement of fact, but as a challenge.

Did somebody already speculate that the dude represents humans and the girl represents youkai and the yin yang is balance between them because blah blah Hakurei shrine maiden?

No, no one guessed that yet. Well, the girl does have horns...

It's almost enough to make one wonder about some sort of misogynistic undercurrent when the male gets the respectable priestly form and the female is a horned demon. Except this is Touhou so the overwhelming majority of characters of any alignment are female.

Honestly, though, I hadn't considered a possible human/youkai duality there, but it would certainly make a great deal of sense. The Yin yang orb perhaps works against the likes of Miko (not a youkai) because anything that disturbs the delicate balance is a valid target for it.

So either every single one of Reimu's opponents has been an unbalanced individual, or else a big block of whatever the yin-yang is made of is effective regardless of karma.

I like this idea of human/youkai balance. Shingyoku only shows up in the first game, when Reimu's all alone at the shrine and thus imbalanced. She must therefore pass a test to see if she is even capable of making use of such precision equipment. Why does it never appear again? Because after that she had Genji, clearly not human and likely a youkai. Balance is restored and the keeper is no longer needed.

A better explanation than "she broke it, " certainly.

I also like the idea of Shingyoku being the god of the Hakurei Shrine and the first boss fight was a test to see if Reimu was capable of handling the threats to come. Both the Hakurei and Moriya shrines follow Shinto right? And while my knowledge of any religion is worth dirt, would a being of balance fit into that? I mean, no impurities or whatever.

Wait, a being of pure balance would be by definition uniform, and therefore composed of entirely one material rather than an equal amount of two or more materials, but if said material was balance then my brain.

Anyway, I dunno. Reimu seems a well-balanced individual, in her own way, but I'm not sure that would be the theme of her shrine, since the Hakurei bloodline seems to be more about border patrol than balance. I guess you could make the case that for a border to exist you need a balance between whatever's on either side of it. Or maybe the orb is an artifact possessed by the Hakurei bloodline without being necessarily a relic of the Hakurei Shrine. So the shrine and the clan's main focus is borders, but they happen to have the balance to use the Orb as well?

[...] you could make a case that Shingyoku is a Shintou god of Taoist extermination methods

Kinda like how Shou's a what-the-Japanese-consider-a-tiger youkai?

Or the god of the orbs themselves.

Or that. An ally of the still nameless Hakurei Shrine deity? Bound servitor?

Makes me wonder how Meira - ah, that will be later.

At any rate, it looks like the "entity of the Orb" theory is making more headway than the "guardian of the Hakurei Shrine" theory. Which is good, because the latter raises the question of why Shingyoku failed to prevent the attack that kicked off HRtP and where heandshe was during attacks.
Current earworm: "Eclipse of the Moon"
 23210 Antimatter 625, Sat, 18th May '13 8:59:58 PM from my secret place
Baring hearts for years
At any rate, it looks like the "entity of the Orb" theory is making more headway than the "guardian of the Hakurei Shrine" theory. Which is good, because the latter raises the question of why Shingyoku failed to prevent the attack that kicked off H Rt P and where heandshe was during attacks.

Well, as for the attack that kicked off HRTP, it may simply not have had enough power, or been resting, or what have you.

In all subsequent attacks on the shrine, Shingyoku was still blown up from Reimu's silly rampage in HRTP. She has no one to blame but herself for all the attacks on the shrine.tongue
I write some fanfiction. Satori's Tale is done... but I'm not.
 23211 Bocaj, Sun, 19th May '13 8:36:32 AM from Here Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Chaotic Lulzy
"Greetings Maiden of the Hakurei Shrine, I am the guardian of your family line. Now that you have awakened me, I will guard you and this location with all of my-"
-Reimu'd-
-later, after SWR-
"Why does stuff keep happening to meeeeeee?"

edited 19th May '13 8:39:42 AM by Bocaj

The Internet is often fast and horrible.
 23212 Otherarrow, Sun, 19th May '13 8:38:44 AM from the Moon Cell Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Hakunon's Strange Quest
So everything bad that happens to Reimu is her own fault?

Fine with me.

 23213 Tacitus, Sun, 19th May '13 8:05:32 PM from now and then and maybe Relationship Status: Crazy Cat Lady
Orbs are so last week. Now discs, those are what's hip right now.






Hellish Moon
Kikuri

Appearance:

Themes: "Magic Mirror"*, "Blade of Banishment"* (stage theme)

Signature Attack:
...Being a disc?

Write-up:
Sort of like Shingyoku, but without the implied connection to the Yin-Yang Orb.

Kikuri looks to be a bronze disc graven in the image of a girl, crackling with purple power and spitting danmaku at any shrine maidens who happen to be about. That's really all we know, but just looking at her raises at least one obvious question: what is she? Since Kikuri's encountered in Hell, or a hell, is she being punished for something? What does being a "Hellish Moon" entail?

And what's on the other side of the disc?

Relationships:
  • Konngara (neighbor, fellow prisoner?)
  • The residents of the Former Hell (neighbors?)

edited 19th May '13 8:06:03 PM by Tacitus

Current earworm: "Eclipse of the Moon"
Insane theory time: Kikuri was originally supposed to be simply a metal sculpture. However, by using metal extracted from sinful spirits, the myriad desires contained in the metal coalesced and formed something resembling a heart, turning what should have have simply been a sculpture into a youkai
Nothing exists but you. And you are but a thought
 23215 Horselesshorseman, Sun, 19th May '13 9:04:43 PM from Everywhere and Nowhere
#MiiMonth (Patchouli)
Of Note

Kikuri is probably a reference to Kikurihime, who mediated the dispute between the two Shinto creator Gods Izanagi and Izanami.

Kikuri is capable of changing her position in the disc.

Music and Overview

See, now I've already commented on her theme because we did Elis. What more can I say about it now: It's in a lower pitch when you fight her. It sounds worse in a lower pitch, and it still will become Maiden's Capriccio. Anyway, I suppose it should be said that she might not be a disc, but a moon, thus her title "Hellish Moon." When you're a miko, armed with a bouncing yin-yang orb, fighting in hell, what reason do you have to believe that a moon has no earthly reason to be there. There's not that much to say here, there's too many unknowns. All I got left is trivia: According to google, Kikurihime established the duty of miko's when communicating with the Shinto Netherworld. The grammar there is kind of unclear, does it mean how miko's should preform ceremonies where they communicate with the Netherworld, or all duties were established while she was communicating with Izanami in the Netherworld?

edited 19th May '13 9:05:40 PM by Horselesshorseman

I have no horse, and I must ride. I accomplish unlockments.
 23216 Bocaj, Sun, 19th May '13 9:05:48 PM from Here Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
Chaotic Lulzy
Theory: She got thrown into the Phantom Zone by Byakuren when they fought in Hokkai.
The Internet is often fast and horrible.
 23217 Otherarrow, Mon, 20th May '13 6:04:45 AM from the Moon Cell Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Hakunon's Strange Quest
Kikuri the giant disc-moon thing.

Going by her namesake, I want to say that she isn't so much a prisoner as part of the system. She works for the Yama, probably because of her mediation skills. And then while in the middle of some paperwork, she got attacked by some girl with a yin yang orb. How rude.

Why is she a moon-coin? Man I dunno. Maybe she doubles as Hell's Moon? Gods are weird.

edited 20th May '13 6:05:42 AM by Otherarrow

My theory is that Kikuri was Hell's Defense System for keeping out peeps who shouldn't be there, which Reimu then toppled over during her rampage. I guess that would kinda make her something like a robot or doll in that sense. If she were alive, maybe her soul is channeled through this large disc that special features include firing danmaku.

edited 20th May '13 7:25:37 AM by jordantigers

 23219 Otherarrow, Mon, 20th May '13 7:28:44 AM from the Moon Cell Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Hakunon's Strange Quest
Isn't Mima the first Hell boss though?

 23220 Tacitus, Mon, 20th May '13 10:07:58 PM from now and then and maybe Relationship Status: Crazy Cat Lady
Maybe Reimu bumped into Mima on her way out, and then bludgeoned her way through the same security system Mima bypassed.

Insane theory time: Kikuri was originally supposed to be simply a metal sculpture. However, by using metal extracted from sinful spirits, the myriad desires contained in the metal coalesced and formed something resembling a heart, turning what should have have simply been a sculpture into a youkai

Not that insane. The tricky part would be merging it with the Kikurihime angle and figuring out how the spirit of a legendary godly mediator ended up as metal impurity.

Kikuri is probably a reference to Kikurihime, who mediated the dispute between the two Shinto creator Gods Izanagi and Izanami. [...] According to google, Kikurihime established the duty of miko's when communicating with the Shinto Netherworld. The grammar there is kind of unclear, does it mean how miko's should preform ceremonies where they communicate with the Netherworld, or all duties were established while she was communicating with Izanami in the Netherworld?

Interesting. So Shingyoku may have a connection to Reimu's weapon, while Kikuri may have a connection to Reimu's vocation? Is HRtP the story of how she became a youkai-busting shrine maiden?

My follow-up question is how similar this game's hell is to traditional Shinto notions of the Netherworld. If there's some overlap, then Kikuri's presence makes more sense. Otherwise, well, maybe she was communicating with someone in Hell in hopes of getting more insights? Maybe next year she'll go to Heaven and see what she comes up with?

Theory: She got thrown into the Phantom Zone by Byakuren when they fought in Hokkai.

Stop making me imagine Byakuren's "imprisonment" as her wandering around beating up random encounters and tossing them into adjacent dimensions.

...She doesn't have an attack reminiscent of Kikuri's, does she?

Going by her namesake, I want to say that she isn't so much a prisoner as part of the system. She works for the Yama, probably because of her mediation skills. And then while in the middle of some paperwork, she got attacked by some girl with a yin yang orb. How rude.

Likely the case, though I wonder what she's doing in Mima and Konngara's corner of Hell as opposed to wherever Shiki is... hey, isn't it kinda weird for the judge to be working from the same place she sends condemned criminals to? You don't see courthouses attached to prisons too often.

Maybe Shiki sent her over to see what the fuss was about, because someone had broken into jail to beat up the prisoners, but Shiki was busy and Komachi was very deliberately not. Or it was a full-blown jailbreak combined with a shrine maiden's rampage, and all available personnel got called in to handle it.

Hey, maybe Kikuri's pals with Komachi!

edited 20th May '13 10:08:46 PM by Tacitus

Current earworm: "Eclipse of the Moon"
The tricky part would be merging it with the Kikurihime angle and figuring out how the spirit of a legendary godly mediator ended up as metal impurity.

That's the wrong way of going about it. Instead of 'is', I'd use 'inspired by'. So, being composed of bits millions of people made her incredibly empathetic, and she ended up settling a dispute between some highly ranked bureaucrats. The name was given to her in recognition of her skills

edited 20th May '13 10:17:22 PM by Hylarn

Nothing exists but you. And you are but a thought
 23222 Otherarrow, Tue, 21st May '13 6:04:24 AM from the Moon Cell Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Hakunon's Strange Quest
[up][up]Hmm...Good point. Kikuri could be the warden?

Though I do like the "Reimu caused a big enough ruckus that it caused a crisis and they sent everyone on hand to deal with it."

 23223 Antimatter 625, Tue, 21st May '13 5:40:31 PM from my secret place
Baring hearts for years
Kikuri is really interesting, if only because of her visual design being so alien from all the other characters (Yuugen Magan excepted, of course).

Personally, I had the idea of making her a goddess of money... though the whole 'goddess of mediation/diplomacy' is more fitting for her namesake, I suppose. In either case, Reimu assaulting her explains so many of her problems.

HRTP: Wherein Reimu beats up and angers a lot of people/things she really ought not have.
I write some fanfiction. Satori's Tale is done... but I'm not.
 23224 Otherarrow, Tue, 21st May '13 5:52:40 PM from the Moon Cell Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Hakunon's Strange Quest
Beating up Kikuri not only made sure she'd be perceptually poor, but also made sure that all her diplomacy checks would fail and she'd have to resort to violence, as punishment for the violence of her youth.

That's what you get for slinging yin yangs at giant coin-moon goddesses there Reimu.

(I bet all her other problems can be traced back to the first game as well)

edited 22nd May '13 6:53:00 AM by Otherarrow

[up] I can totally wrap my mind around that. Beating up Kikuri left her dirt poor for life, Mima probably wouldn't have been around for the second game if it weren't for Reimu, and who knows what repercussions beating up the angel of death holds?
One day, when Reimu is being sailed across the Sanzu River, Sariel will suddenly show up and push her off the boat. *

edited 22nd May '13 2:58:11 AM by jordantigers

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