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Video Game / Gensou Shoujo Taisen

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Gensou Shoujo Taisen ("Fantasy Maiden Wars") is a Touhou doujin game series in the spirit of the popular Super Robot Wars games, created by Sanbondo. The game is divided into four parts and loosely retells the story of every Touhou game from the 6th through the 12th, while attempting to create a more unified story between all of them.

The first part, Kou (Scarlet) or E, retells the story of Embodiment of Scarlet Devil and has been translated into English by Deranged. The patch can be found here. The second part, You (Mystic) or P, combines Mountain of Faith and Perfect Cherry Blossom, the third part, Ei (Eternal) or I, combines Imperishable Night with Subterranean Animism, and the final part, Yume (Dream), combines Undefined Fantastic Object, Mystic Square, and an original arc.

Recently, the game got an Updated Re-release in the form of Fantasy Maiden Wars Complete Box, which condenses the four games into one package, and polishes various aspects of the game (such as giving characters more facial expressions, to give an example).


This series contains examples of:

  • Adaptational Backstory Change: One of the big questions in Touhou is, "What exactly is Alice?" In the PC-98 games she was implied to be a creation of Shinki's, while the Windows games have her as a magician youkai. Yume splits the difference by having her born as a human, adopted by Shinki, and then becoming a youkai at some point after moving out of Makai.
  • Adaptational Personality Change: Tenshi is way less of a jerk in this game than in canon Touhou.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: From You onwards, having allied units shot down no longer penalizes your acquired funds, after all, you're going to need every Point you can get.
  • Background Music Override: Like in SRW, bosses will always have their theme play during battle and certain stages play special music that continues over the regular battles. Also, certain attacks such as Reimu's Fantasy Seal or Marisa's Master Spark have their own themes that play over even boss themes.
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  • Big Damn Heroes: Prevalent all throughout the games. In particular, the Scarlet Devil Mansion's inhabitants tend to show up as reinforcements during climactic battles. In Kou, Sakuya appears to assist you on Remila's orders when fighting Flan. In You, Patchouli and Koakuma show up to lend their aid against Sanae, in Ei, Remilia flies in to save Sakuya when fighting Eirin, and in Yume, Byakuren saves Shou from Yumeko and Shinki.
  • Bittersweet Ending: How Ei ends. The heroines barely manage to stop a berserk Utsuho from razing the surface. However, the one responsible for the crisis in the first place is still unknown (Yuuka knows, but she's not willing to share aside from hints). In addition, Koishi's memory appears to be getting worse, to the point that she doesn't know how to get home anymore.
  • Blessed with Suck: Two of Eirin's personal skills invoke this, offering one turn of a great benefit in exchange for such a horrid penalty that it's not even remotely worth it outside of rare edge cases. One of Reisen's personal skills, implied to be another drug that Eirin gives her, will boost her stats three times and then make her explode.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Beating Yorihime in stage 49 gives you a "Lunar Magatama", which does nothing except say that you beat Yorihime in stage 49. Complete Box suberts this in two ways. First, the Lunar Magatama is altered to instead give the equipped girl an extra 100 SP, meaning it has a use now. The second is that Yorihime has one when she joins the team, meaning you don't have to defeat Yorihime in Chapter 49 to get one.
  • Broad Strokes: In general, the games stick to the general story of the source material, but with some liberties taken. From the start, characters that don't appear in the game the story arc is based on appear and team up with the heroines (which is a divergence in itself).
    • Kou retells the story of Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, but there's a running sideplot of Youkai Mountain dealing with the Moriya Shrine and its residents arriving, with Sanae showing up during the incident to judge Reimu for herself. Youmu also shows up looking for ways to make cherry trees bloom, foreshadowing Yuyuko's plan to revive Saigyou Ayakashi in Perfect Cherry Blossom.
    • The first half of You is a retelling of Mountain of Faith, a level right afterward is based on Immaterial and Missing Power, and the second half retells Perfect Cherry Blossom. Shou and Nazrin appear in the second half and join the heroines and Marisa ends up accidentally getting sidetracked to the Former Hell. The two plot points converge in The Stinger when Marisa leads Shou and Nazrin to the Palanquin Ship and they free it.
    • Though the divergences get broader in Ei, the first half is based on Imperishable Night, the second half is based on Subterranean Animism, and in between is a small story arc based on Silent Sinner in Blue. Most significantly, the Palanquin Ship is used in this game as a battleship unit with the Buddhist group operating it. The heroines are well aware of their goal to free Byakuren. Nue shows up, bitter that she was left behind by Murasa and shows up from time to time to cause trouble. And the Silent Sinner in Blue arc doesn't have the Gambit Pileup that was in the original story and instead, the heroines are asked to deliver a letter to the Watatsuki sisters by Eirin, though things are complicated by the letter being misplaced.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Not to put too fine a point on it, the catfish in Yume is essentially every stereotypical JRPG villain rolled into one.
  • The Cavalry: Mima appears to save Marisa in the Underground. In Yume, Yorihime, Toyohime and Reisen II show up to protect Eirin (the Watatsukis) and Lily White (Reisen II) from Meeko's familiars.
  • The Chessmaster: Kanako and Suwako appear only in cutscenes in Kou, seemingly planning their move for You. They plan to do this again in Ei by manipulating Utsuho, but things go horribly wrong.
  • Combination Attack:
    • Marisa and Alice's Proto Malice Cannon, later upgraded into the true Malice Cannon.
    • Reimu and Sanae's Shrine Maiden Extension.
    • Patchouli and Koakuma's Silent Selene.
    • Ran and Chen's Shikigami (Chen).
    • Kanako and Suwako's Suwa War.
    • Murasa's Phantom Ship Harbor, if she's not captaining the Palanquin Ship.
    • Kurumi and Elly's Reflector Tile.
    • Aya and Hatate's Double Spoiler.
    • Kisume and Yamame's Cannon Bucket Attack.
    • Satori and Koishi's Komeiji Heartbreaker.
    • Shou's Radiant Treasure Gun and Nazrin's Greatest Treasure, depending on who has the Pagoda.
    • Reimu and Marisa's Trichromatic Butterfly, and later True Trichromatic Butterfly.
    • Cirno and Daiyousei's Twin Fairy Strike.
    • Cirno, Mystia, Rumia, and Wriggle's Bakatet Special. Adding Daiyousei makes it the Final Bakatet Special.
    • The Three Fairies of Light have the S-Formation Attack and the Prismriver Sisters have Prism Concerto, both basic attacks in their combined forms.
    • The Aki sisters are queens of this trope, having three GunBuster-themed combination attacks: Super Aki Sisters Kick, Double Autumn Busters, and Super Aki Sisters Kick Kai.
  • Combining Mecha: After being defeated individually, the Prismriver Sisters huddle together to become a single unit, which is treated mechanically like an SRW Combining Mecha. This results in the Three Fairies of Light deciding to "combine" as well... in a scene which parodies Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann.
  • Continuity Porn: The game blends the story of the official Touhou games, including the PC-98 continuity, into one.
  • Cooldown Hug: Happens twice in Ei, first with Remilia hugging a berserk Flandre in a special attack-animation cutscene, and later with Rin and Utsuho, although the latter only partially succeeded because Utsuho's power was no longer under her control even after she regained awareness.
  • Cultural Translation: The subtitles "Kou", "You", and "Ei" come from "Koumakyou", "Youyoumu", and "Eiyashou", the Japanese parts of the first three Windows Touhou games' names (which are relatively obscure in the English fanbase). The Fan Translation renders them as "E" and "P", from their English portions, "Embodiment of Scarlet Devil" and "Perfect Cherry Blossom", which more closely fits the naming scheme of the Super Robot Wars games.
    • One of the quit game skits has a Kedama giving the player a tip about being careful around spell card effects after a long string of ellipses, referencing how Heero does the same in one of the quit game skits of Super Robot Wars Alpha 2. Since Alpha 2 never got an English translation, the English patch of the game adds "it can hurt like hell" at the end to make the reference more obvious.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: A majority of your units are recruited only after you defeat them in battle.
  • Diabolus ex Machina: After taking down Utsuho and talking her out of her plans of world domination Shiro shows up with a swarm of Kedama, and attack Utsuho in order to get rid of the Yatagarasu. This causes Utsuho to lose control of her powers, threatening to cause a nuclear meltdown.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Remilia in Kou. Kanako and Suwako in You. Eirin and Kaguya in Ei. Shinki in Yume.
  • The Dreaded: Yuuka. And if you attack her, you'll see just why everyone is afraid of her. If you're feeling gutsy, have Marisa attack her with Master Spark.
    • In Ei, the party has a similar reaction to Yorihime.
  • Dual Boss: Minoriko and Shizuha, Kanako and Suwako, Dream Mima and Dream Byakuren.
  • 11th-Hour Ranger: Sakuya in Kou. Youmu in You. Both Rin and Nue in Ei, one of whom has a special ability specifically designed to counter the final boss. Yuuka in Yume.
  • 11th-Hour Superpower: Reimu and Marisa's Combination Attack in You is acquired two scenes before the last boss.
    • In Ei, Reimu acquires the new spellcard "Fantasy Nature" just in time to stop Yorihime from defeating the party.
    • In Yume, Reimu and Marisa's Combination Attack gets upgraded to defeat Meeko.
  • Felony Misdemeanor: Sanae interrupts a party at the Hakurei Shrine to reveal a "shocking secret" about Reimu which will break everyone's trust in her forever. The reaction was not what she was expecting.
  • Final Boss: Flandre in Kou. Yukari in You. Utsuho in Ei. Makura in Yume.
    • Final Boss Preview: Marisa's stage 13 features Flandre as an NPC competitor. She turns into a Bonus Boss if the Gensokyo Chronicle has been completed. You also meet a pre-powered up version of Utsuho as one of the weakest bosses in the game, to foreshadow her character development.
  • Friendly Enemy: Shinki and Byakuren like each other quite well. However, Byakuren cannot be released from Hokkai without releasing the Sealed Evil in a Can and Shinki won't allow that.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: In Chapter 6 of E, where you're trying to clear up a misunderstanding with Cirno, she will never attack Daiyousei, even if she ends up in range, because they're established as friends. It helps since one of the win conditionsnote  is to bring the two fairies together to talk.
  • Leitmotif: Everyone has at least one. Sakuya, Nitori, Youmu, Aya and Sanae have different ones both as an enemy and as an ally. The three fairies gain one for their Combination Attack and another one in Combining Mecha form.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight:
    • If you fill out all of the Encyclopedia Exposita in the first game; when Marisa competes with Flandre to kill the most bats; Flandre will decide to focus on "playing" with Marisa. One can theoretically beat Flandre, but she'll keep reviving.
    • Stage 49 of Ei is a race to the goal line while being chased by a full-power Yorihime, who drops a Bragging Rights Reward item if the party can defeat her at least once.
    • Yuuka will watch the party fight Medicine in Yume, leaving them alone if they avoid her. Like Flandre and Yorihime, she'll constantly revive if you somehow beat her. The Giant Catfish on stage 74 follows similar rules, but fully restores itself after every attack instead of just on defeat.
  • Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels: Easy, Normal, Hard, and Lunatic. Yume adds an additional slider for each difficulty except Lunatic between Basic, Normal, and Challenging, which can be changed between stages, making a total of ten difficulty settings.
  • Last Episode Theme Reprise: The main theme gets an orchestrated reprise at Makura's final spell card.
  • Lord British Postulate: In Kou, it's possible to defeat Sakuya in chapter 5, Sanae in chapter 7, and Yuuka in chapter 10 if you can reduce their HP to zero in one hit without going below a certain threshold beforehand. They'll still escape as per the story, but you'll get items and EXP and such for a boss kill. Doing this with Yuuka is the only way to acquire the extremely useful Sunflower equipment part until partway through Ei.
    • In Ei, when you fight the protagonist you didn't choose, your objective is only to shoot down Reimu/Marisa; however, the more powerful characters such as Yukari and Yuyuko/Yuuka and Mima will sit in the back and not engage your units unless you pursue them. The same thing happens in Yume when fighting the Nightmares.
  • Lord Error-Prone: Sanae, to a hilarious extent.
  • Medley: The last stage track in Kou contains fragments of every single stage theme from Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, plus the title screen theme.
    • The last stage of You does the same thing with songs from Perfect Cherry Blossom.
    • Similarly, the stage theme for the final battle of Eientei in Ei the stage themes of Imperishable Night. Though it's not the final stage this time.
  • Magikarp Power:
    • When Lily White joins your team she has only a single attack, low stats, and is practically an Emotionless Girl; she powers up (and brightens up) significantly once you get closer to where all the Spring was taken.
    • The Three Fairies of Light increase in power by learning how to group together into a single unit with the sum of their stats.
    • Utsuho's entire character arc is about this trope, and what happens when it goes too far.
    • Byakuren's debut has her go through this in the course of a single stage, starting out as a weak unit and gradually unlocking her full movepool throughout the fight with Shinki.
    • Daiyousei's final personal skill is only unlocked at level 99, and boosts all of her stats by 40.
  • Mauve Shirt: Tengu A, Tengu B and Kappa C in You, three recurring enemies who are identical to standard Mooks of their species but have a few lines of dialogue and slightly higher stats. Kappa C stands out for also being red rather than blue like the other kappa, and claiming to be three times faster.
  • Mercy Rewarded:
    • Talking to Alice with Marisa in Chapter 2, rather than shooting her down, will increase Alice and Marisa's friendship ranking permanently.
    • If you talk down Cirno with Daiyousei in Chapter 6, when she joins the party, she comes in with two upgrades to her attributes already, saving you from spending 38,000 points of doing it yourself, and making her more viable as a unit for future battles.
    • Talking down Nitori in You will cause her to rejoin the party sooner.
    • The WP Bonus on Chapter 72 of Yume has the characters refer to the Mercy spirit by name, the only viable way to achieve it.
  • Midseason Upgrade: Nitori upgrades to Full Armor Nitori in You, which gives her More Dakka and a BFG Wave-Motion Gun. The upgrades can be removed if you want Nitori to take up less space in your team.
    • Both Reimu and Marisa change sprites and movesets (and theme music) partway through Ei, just in time to use them against each other in the obligatory Let's You and Him Fight from Imperishable Night stage 4.
  • My Rules Are Not Your Rules: Makura breaks out a spellcard after she runs out of spellcards in the final battle.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: In You, the heroes are gathering allies to help them against the forces of Yokai mountain, Reimu and Keine asking Mokou, and Marisa and Alice asking the Scarlet Devil Mansion. They intially refuse, but the tengu tailing them decide to attack and make the respective people change their minds, resulting in Remilia making Sakuya and Meiling go with them, and Mokou joining up despite her initial refusal.
  • Nintendo Hard: When its harder difficulty levels boast to have the same level of difficulty as the classic SRW games, you know you're going to catch hell. Also a partial case of Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels. In contrast, Easy and Normal compare themselves to more modern games, Alpha and Alpha Gaiden.
  • Original Generation: Meeko and Makura.
  • Readings Are Off the Scale: Any enemy unit whose current HP is exceeds 10,000 will have both their current and max HP values replaced with question marks. Their health bar still shows the percentage of their health, though.
    • Some of the older Super Robot Wars game did that too so it might have been done on purpose.
    • This happens in the plot as well when Keine measures Yorihime's spiritual energy after letting her use all her power.
  • Recycled In Space: Lampshaded in Ei, chapter 48, which is titled "Gensou IN SPACE". Naturally this chapter is when the party visits the moon.
  • Sealed Good in a Can: Hijiri Byakuren. The problem is, the Can she's in, the Hokkai, has Sealed Evil in a Can as well. Breaking the seal would release everybody.
  • Secret Character: There are two in Complete Box, one for Reimu's Route and one for Marisa's route. Reimu's route has Akyuu, who can become a standalone unit instead of piloting the Palanquin Ship, starting in Chapter 50, as long as you managed to get her to reach the patch of flowers in Reimu's Chapter 4 (Kosuzu replaces Akyuu as one of the pilots of the Palanquin Ship if this option is chosen). Marisa's route has Lily Black, who is unlocked by defeating all three Fairies of Light in Marisa's Chapter 12.
  • Secret Level: Completing Kou with both Reimu and Marisa's routes unlocks Sakuya's route, which consists of four levels; one takes place before the story, and the other three take place after the main story. At the end of Yume, if you're not on a New Game+, you can access a set of gaiden chapters which are a recreation of the events on the moon, except this time with access to every character, including the Watatsukis. This also contains Yume's two superbosses: a refight against Yorihime as she appeared in Ei, with massively beefed up stats, and a fight against Toyohime, who didn't appear on the original stage 50, and since the stage is in space she doesn't have to worry about limiting the power output on her Wave-Motion Gun like she does as a player unit.
  • Shout-Out: So many it has its own page.
  • The Stinger: You has one where Marisa helps Nazrin and Shou find the Palanquin Ship.
  • Sudden Soundtrack Stop: Fittingly for her powers, this occurs when Sakuya stops time for her ultimate attack.
  • To Hell and Back: Yume does this at least twice. Once with Satori harmonizing with the leftover remnants of Koishi to go into oblivion to bring her back; and then a literal trip to Makai to rescue Byakuren; made complicated by Shinki opposing them.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: In Ei, Reisen II (named Rabbit right now) meets up with Reisen first instead of Reimu like in S Si B, and attempts to get on her good side by claiming she's a fellow fugitive with lunar emissaries pursuing her. Instead, this freaks Reisen out, causing her to flee to Eirin and Kaguya to report to them, which leads into the IN part of the story.
  • Violation of Common Sense: In Lunatic difficulty of the last Extra Chapter in E, even if Flandre's And Then There Were None lasts 7 turns, you have to actually let it hit at least one of your units (and she definitely will thanks to casting Strike). This is because you need to make sure she doesn't start Ripples of 495 Years with enough SP to cast Strike, because if she does, the final spell turns into a meatgrinder.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: If Marisa is your protagonist and you shoot down Daiyousei first in Chapter 39 (Showdown! Reimu vs Marisa in Ei), Reimu's entire team will not only call you out; but the entire team will get a Spirit buff. This also happens if you're playing Reimu's version of events and shoot down Lily White first. This can be avoided if you shoot down Cirno and Rumia first if you're facing Reimu's team, or the Three Fairies and Prismrivers first if you're facing Marisa's team.
  • You Kill It, You Bought It: Nearly every party member is recruited immediately or near-immediately after defeating them as a boss.

Alternative Title(s): Fantasy Maiden Wars


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