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Touhou:

Brickman, I'd like to challenge your notion that it's not really discussible. Go to the Iji thread.
It Just Bugs Me! - a place to discuss media, real life, and other topics.
Argh, it always confuses me trying to figure out whether they switched them around or not D:
 
 103 Clarste, Tue, 22nd Sep '09 2:36:50 PM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
All names are also westernized (aka given name first, family name last) in English fandom, though in other fandoms (or at least, the ones I frequent) Japanese naming is the norm until the English dub has caught on. That suprised me once I got properly introduced.

I always say them in my head family name first. Izayoi Sakuya. Yakumo Yukari. Konpaku Youmu. There's something sort of lyrical about it.

Bond James. Bond.

Bond. Bond James.

?...doesn't work as well.
It Just Bugs Me! - a place to discuss media, real life, and other topics.
Bibliophiliac
The difference is that when I say "Carpet Bomb", I mean that I can defeat the entire boss battle relying entirely on bombing through the enemy spellcards. If you get through the first three stages without using bombs or dying, and conserve bombs down to just one or two on stage four, and don't need to bomb more than once or twice on the stages themselves on stage 5 and 6, then with the six or seven lives you have each restoring you to three bombs, you can bluntly Master Spark Sakuya and Remilia into submission.

The difference is that when I'm using Marisa-Patchouli, I have to actually get up to point-blank to properly use a bomb. It only lasts a few small seconds, it deals no damage from range, and drops her already somewhat low attack power even further. If you want the opportunity to bomb freely, you pretty much have to go for Marisa-Alice (or maybe Marisa-Nitori if you are just too twitch on that bomb and really can dodge it). Yes, bombing is generally preferable to dying, but bombing out early will only ensure you die more later on in a fight. I find it much easier to pick the one spellcard I have the most trouble with (say, Parsee's last spellcard), and bomb that one spellcard pre-emptively at point-blank range while shooting wood sign, and then finishing off Parsee with earth sign before she can get her first attack off. Then, all I have to do is worry about surviving the cards I'm well-practiced against, and can almost always survive.

 106 Clarste, Tue, 22nd Sep '09 9:53:41 PM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
The difference is that when I say "Carpet Bomb", I mean that I can defeat the entire boss battle relying entirely on bombing through the enemy spellcards. If you get through the first three stages without using bombs or dying, and conserve bombs down to just one or two on stage four, and don't need to bomb more than once or twice on the stages themselves on stage 5 and 6, then with the six or seven lives you have each restoring you to three bombs, you can bluntly Master Spark Sakuya and Remilia into submission.

That's pretty much what I meant too. That's exactly what I did in Eo SD, and SA. However, I didn't need to save them up in SA for reasons I've mentioned.

The difference is that when I'm using Marisa-Patchouli, I have to actually get up to point-blank to properly use a bomb. It only lasts a few small seconds, it deals no damage from range, and drops her already somewhat low attack power even further. If you want the opportunity to bomb freely, you pretty much have to go for Marisa-Alice (or maybe Marisa-Nitori if you are just too twitch on that bomb and really can dodge it). Yes, bombing is generally preferable to dying, but bombing out early will only ensure you die more later on in a fight. I find it much easier to pick the one spellcard I have the most trouble with (say, Parsee's last spellcard), and bomb that one spellcard pre-emptively at point-blank range while shooting wood sign, and then finishing off Parsee with earth sign before she can get her first attack off. Then, all I have to do is worry about surviving the cards I'm well-practiced against, and can almost always survive.

Er... it sounds to me like you're just talking about playing as Marisa. I wouldn't call that a general experience. I'm more comfortable with Reimu in SA, mostly Reimu-Yukari. I can't quite remember what the property of that bomb was, but it did the job. Marisa-Nitori is pretty interesting actually. You can death bomb with it to save your life twice. Unfortunately it doesn't do any damage (or negligible damage) and is therefore pretty useless for my general strategy.

lol i just try not to get shot
 
 108 Lemurian, Tue, 22nd Sep '09 11:06:44 PM from Touhou fanboy attic Relationship Status: Sinking with my ship
In Shining Armour
Yeah, I prefer saying them Japanese-style too. Except the Scarlets, Patchouli and Alice. They have Western names, so they have to be kept in western.
lol i just try not to get shot

A sound plan, and a valuable life lesson--from Touhou!
 
 110 Clarste, Tue, 22nd Sep '09 11:54:38 PM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
Meh, I got "good luck, have fun, don't die" from Starcraft ages ago and its served me well.

Bibliophiliac
Well, I don't see much of any reason to play any Reimu combination but Reimu-Yukari. And Reimu-Yukari is a specialty-built boss killer, and is overpowered as anything Yukari always is. It's got much better save bombing than Marisa-Patchouli does, but it still isn't catered to bombers the way that Marisa-Alice or Marisa-Nitori are.

 112 Clarste, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 12:45:25 AM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
Marisa-Alice and Marisa-Nitori have horrible bombs... Alice doesn't clear the screen and gives little to no invincibility time while Nitori doesn't do any damage and simply delays the inevitable (further emphasizing the issue of losing shot power by bombing). Both have theoretical advantages in terms of power cost (Alice's costs half as much relatively and Nitori's gives you some back if you don't get hit), but at the cost of eliminating the very nature of what bombs are for.

As for Reimu, I find Suika decent too. She's got a combo of homing and piercing, but at the cost of attack power that both of those traditionally hold.

Edit: Also her ability to gather points from the bottom of the screen is godly, making bombs much easier to earn back during the stage parts. Unfortunately, I find her reflected spellcards from Satori to be much more annoying.

edited 23rd Sep '09 12:48:10 AM by Clarste

Bibliophiliac
But Marisa-Alice and Marisa-Nitori aren't meant to be "powerful" bombs, they're meant to be cheap bombs, bombs you use to get out of danger, the way that you've been discussing them. Marisa-Alice also regains power faster (getting a full bomb per spellcard for most cases), and is very powerful if you are in unfocused, behind only Yukari, Earth Sign Patchouli, and Wood Sign Patchouli from point-blank.

Marisa-Patchouli has a powerful bomb, but it has to be used from up close, when you aren't in danger.

 114 Clarste, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 1:38:18 AM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
I considering blowing up the enemy a significant part of "getting out of danger". Also, as I said, Alice doesn't clear very much of the screen at all, nor does it leave you invincible very long. In that sense, it's not too likely to actually get you out of danger in the long term, since you might still be cornered or whatever. I used to think optimistically like you, but in practice it didn't pay off too well.

In terms of the shots, I tend to have one basic policy that affects all my decisions: no distractions. The more things I have to think about, the more likely I am to run headfirst into a bullet. That's why I really cannot play Patchouli at all, and Aya is my second least comfortable. Choosing which shot I'm using or aiming Aya's shots is a distraction that I just can't handle. The minor advantages of being able to shoot sideways or backwards when necessary just don't cut it for me. Staying unfocused is another thing. I'm in focus mode 90% of the time on bosses because it helps me dodge. Doing my best damage while unfocused requires me to either achieve superhuman dodging skills or constantly find temporary safe spots to stay still in and unload from. Neither of those are ideal, so I don't find unfocused damage to be a meaningful perk.

Furthermore, the "no distractions" policy even applies to aiming. Homing is essentially my first choice in a shot simply because being forced underneath the boss at all times puts me at risk when I have to go out my way to get there. Better to do decent damage all of the time than great damage some of the time. The value of this varies by spellcard though, and I found that Yukari seemed to be the best choice overall for me in SA (plus the awesome teleporting thing).

Incidentally, I hate the ufos in UFO.

Edit: This topic inspired me to go and replay SA (after having not played it in a while). I chose Marisa-Alice on normal mode, and died halfway through stage 4 (not too bad for no practice with a character I'm not comfortable with, I hope). Her bomb was not quite as bad as I had remembered, although still pretty bad, and her shot was significantly worse than I had remembered. So much uncontrollable spread, even when unfocused... I lost two lives on that spellcard of Parsee's that splits her into two and punishes you for shooting the wrong one. So many extra bullets on the screen, and I failed to re-establish a good rhythm because her bomb wasn't good enough. Well, that's just one spellcard. I guess she could be decent, but controlling the shot effectively is a bit annoying. Incidentally, I'm somewhat fond of the Portmanteau Couple Name "Malice".

edited 23rd Sep '09 2:07:15 AM by Clarste

Bibliophiliac
Marisa-Patchouli is hardly very distracting once you have it down. The advantage of killing the mooks before they can fire upon you more than makes up for any inconvenience. Especially since you only need to switch between spellcards most of the time, anyway. Actually, one of Parsee's early cards in her actual boss mode (I think "Jealousy of Kind and Fair" or something like that?) is one of the few where switching is a good idea, since I just go clockwise around her, and I can do it with extreme ease without very much practice. It's not much more difficult than Remilia from IN.

Yukari has a worse spread problem than Alice does, really. The trick to using Alice is just to let go of the focus button when you aren't moving. If you need to move focused, then focus, and forget about aiming, that much should be obvious. And when you are in spreadshot, you're more likely to hit without having to worry so much about being directly under the boss the way that Yukari forces you to worry.

Alice and Patchouli have a learning curve, yes, but they reward you for learning. Throwing them out without giving them a real chance doesn't prove inferiority.

 116 Clarste, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 2:31:17 AM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
I never said they were inferior. You were the one who implied that Reimu's options were inferior. I was just giving my reasons for preferring Reimu. I figure it's just personal taste and playstyle. They don't suit my playstyle, therefore I don't use them.

Edit: Just as a sidenote, my all-time favorite gameplay character from any of the main series is Sakuya A from PCB. Decent power, homing while focused, and a fairly powerful spellcard (while focused). Sanae A from UFO kind of reminds me of her though.

edited 23rd Sep '09 2:37:16 AM by Clarste

Bibliophiliac
I already said Reimu-Yukari was overpowered. I don't really like Nitori that much, either, but Aya is definitely more distracting than Patchouli is, so I draw a line there. Suika... I just don't see anything Suika really does better than Patchouli.

Plus, maybe it was all my practice against it in EOSD, but Patchouli is a definite breeze, comparably, when fighting Satori. It just makes me go, "What? Just more spirals? I can do these in my sleep at this point."

... Damn, weren't we talking about music before? We should go back to talking about music again, I think we've run this topic out of steam, and nobody else is participating in the thread, anymore.

 118 Clarste, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 2:49:52 AM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
Hey, we were challenged to talk about gameplay, so we did. They brought it upon themselves. Anyway, I agree that Patchouli's stuff is easier to dodge on Satori and I'll leave it at that.

Edit: I won't leave it quite at that. Aya is clearly more annoying than Patchouli. I don't know what I was thinking.

edited 23rd Sep '09 3:25:00 AM by Clarste

Bibliophiliac
Also, don't look down on Wood Sign. It looks annoying at first, but it's really the best option around. Especially for charging the POC. Metal can be good in the earlier stages, as well, just because the enemies are weak enough that the low power output isn't a problem, and you can just sit at the POC, collecting everything while enemies pop before they can do a thing.

Patchouli is best switched when you don't have anything else to concentrate on between waves. If you are really going to be desperate and stuck at the bottom, it's time for Water Sign, the "I don't have time to bother aiming" sign. Usually only good when hugging the bottom of the screen against normal enemies, I actually use it against Rin an awful lot just because it's so freakin' hard to keep her in my sights when she's prancing about the top of the screen like that. Against bosses, you can just glue it in Fire Sign most of the time, but some bosses, particularly Parsee, give you good reason to change around. Earth Sign is much more powerful than Fire sign, so whenever it makes no difference being on the top or bottom of the screen, you can actually enjoy a major power boost even over Yukari by staying at the top of the screen. "Knockout in Three Blows" or however it's translated is a good example of this, since there is little difference in effective manuever room on that one, since you would get squished if you stayed too far below her on that spellcard, anyway.

Oh crap, I'm still not talking about music anymore, am I?

 120 Clarste, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 3:51:37 AM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
Er... I kinda like Kanako's theme.

Edit: Looking back over my posts in this thread, I've realized that I omit words or use the wrong word an awful lot. I'd like to apologize for all my nonsensical sentences. I really do know English, despite how it may appear.

Edit Edit: UFO's stage 6 theme is also awesome. And I'm actually supposed to be writing a short paper about Kant right now, so if you see me posting again tonight please smack me through the internet.

edited 23rd Sep '09 4:04:31 AM by Clarste

 121 Ace Of Scarabs, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 4:49:18 AM from Singapore Relationship Status: Drift compatible
I am now a shiny stone~
On the upside, playing Touhou has made me much better at shmups than my cousins and friends (except maybe Dave, who has a Saturn and plays Radiant Silvergun from time to time).

I've been playing 12.3 for a bit, and it made me realize I haven't been playing much besides rpgs, Spelunky, Ace Online, and X-Com these days.

Mostly, the main attractions of Touhou to me are the girls, the realm of Gensokyo, the music, and the memes.

One think that strikes me is that the themes I especially like all belong to girls who can be perceived as lonely. Doll Judgement, Dark Side of Fate, Vanishing Dream, Locked Girl, 3rd Eye, Beware the Umbrella... I wonder if I just like (potential) woobies who need hugs.

edited 23rd Sep '09 4:51:09 AM by AceOfScarabs

Bibliophiliac
Well, there are alot of those kinds of fans, they're all pretty popular characters. Alice is one of the most popular of all, and Kogasa appears to be the Ensamble Darkhorse of UFO.

Also, Patchouli is just sheer awesome no matter how much Alternate Character Interpretation she seems to get.

 123 Clarste, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 5:27:50 AM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
Haven't heard much buzz about Shou, which is kind of odd for a 5th stage boss. Then again, I haven't been hanging around the Touhou fora that I used to.

Oh wait, get back to work, me! *smack*

Bibliophiliac
Anyone else find it odd how much Patchouli gets Alternate Character Interpretation?

If you listen to her dialogue in the games, she's basically The Daria. She sometimes gets portrayed as a NEET who rivals Kaguya in various online games when they're making full use of Schizo Tech, but often times, she's given a "woobiefication", making her positively gushing over Marisa, and a generally cute and cheerful girl who is just weak and shy.

Meanwhile, again in the games, she does things like talk about Sakuya as "That cat in the mansion... or maybe it's a human? Well, it's within the margin of error."

 125 Clarste, Wed, 23rd Sep '09 6:16:19 AM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
I don't think I've seen much of that, other than a generic desire the fandom has to ship Marisa with everyone she's ever met.

Edit: I wouldn't say she's The Daria exactly, but I'm sure we have a trope for her lying around somewhere.

Edit Edit: That trope needs a visit to the trope repair forum. Seems like the description is far too focused on the details of the trope namer. And the name itself violates one of the new standards.

Triple Edit: The cat thing's actually a running gag. In Ia MP she called Marisa a rat that snuck into her library, and then later blamed Sakuya for not being "cat" enough to prevent it. Incidentally, Sakuya is apparently only 24/96 on the cat scale.

edited 23rd Sep '09 6:26:18 AM by Clarste

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