The Story of Touhou 1: The Highly Responsive to Prayers NES Demake’s Development

When the main game of Chuhou Joutai was nearing completion, I decided to take a break after completing the beta and work on a gaiden game. This gaiden game is an NES-styled remake of Touhou 1: The Highly Responsive to Prayers. The decision to do this was to increase views on after the other game was not getting enough to meet market demands. So, I decided to take a game from my youth from the Japanese PC-98 and rework it into a fully playable Windows port. So you might think, why do this?

While my team was in the dorm lounge before the fall 2019 semester concluded, we were discussing ideas for a new game, and it was I who recalled my childhood, playing the original Touhou Project games, and felt our next game after Chuhou Joutai would be a complete remake of the very first Touhou game. Second of all, I decided to use the same graphical style and sound chip, as one person suggested I do this remake in the style of an NES game.

I had this envisioned way back in 2016, but I lacked the Game Maker programming knowledge to do so. Chuhou Joutai was a way to study the Game Maker programming language GML, and some tutorials helped me make the menu UI and other features. The reason why Chuhou Joutai took a year and a half to develop was because the cutscenes slowed me down and I apparently did it as I went along. Not a good idea. I later found it was much easier to just do everything in batches, as for the Highly Responsive to Prayers demake, I did it all in three steps: arrange the soundtrack, draw all the graphical assets, and program it all. If I manage to get to Chuhou Joutai 2, I’ll do the same thing, and development won’t probably start until Chuhou Joutai releases on Steam.

If Chuhou Joutai succeeds with the help of big-name YouTubers to help spread the word (did this with SquirrelMonkey and will later go on with Lazy Game Reviews), I’ll insist that I remake the original games from the source franchise so that players can play the original games without having to configure an emulator or deal with the language barrier, as all fonts in Chuhou Joutai utilize Unicode and UTF-8 to display Japanese text, which was something Game Maker in the past could not do and was not implemented until the release of Game Maker Studio 1.

I was originally going to submit this to the official Touhou Project fangame jam on, but complicated circumstances with the game’s backgrounds prevented me from doing so, so I had to go without, and it still succeeded. ZUN’s game content usage rules state game assets other than screenshots can’t typically go in Touhou Project-related derivative works, unless you use them in memes and such. I hope you enjoyed reading this, and have fun playing the remake and sharing the original games with a new generation of players.

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