The Embodiment of Scarlet Devil

Creator: Team Shanghai Alice
(Home Page)
Genre: Shooter

It's unrelenting shoot 'em up time, as we take a quick look at The Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, the first game released by the popular doujin game maker Team Shanghai Alice. This is actually the sixth in a series of shooters, but we saw marked changes with this installment. Firstly, the series switched from being developed under the Touhou Project banner to the Team Shanghai Alice label. Essentially they're still all done by the same person, known as Zun, it's just a change in development names. Also, Scarlet Devil saw the series shift firmly to a Windows platform, whereas all of the previous games in Touhou Project were made for the PC-98.

In the game, a red mist has spread over the region, and two heroines (the playable characters in the game) set out to see why this is and do something about it, each for their own reasons. One is the shrine maiden Reimu Hakurei who feels it's her duty to get to the bottom of this, and the other is a magician named Marisa Kirisama, who wonders if whoever did this may have some interesting magical goodies she can use. In the end it turns out that it was a vampire who did it in order to block the sun so that she could walk the earth in the daytime.

Scarlet Devil's action is intense bullet-saturation, with players dodging unyielding onslaughts of incoming fire. Depending on whether on chooses to play as Reimu or Marisa, their attack styles will be quite different. Reimu has a wide shot, allowing her to take out the cannon fodder a little more quickly, while Marisa is swifter, and more powerful, but doesn't have a wide shot. There are also a number of different features associated with bomb usage in the game. Firstly each heroine has their own unique bomb attack, as well these bombs can cancel out certain enemy attacks if timed correctly. One other interesting feature in the game is that players get special bonuses for not dying or using bombs during certain phases of enemy attacks.

Zun has created a mountain of amazing shooters over the years both under Touhou Project and Team Shanghai Alice, and The Embodiment of Scarlet Devil is no exception. If you want to try this game out, you can find it on his download page (as well as a a number of his other games).

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