New Touhou mobile game: Touhou Arcadia Record – but is it good news?

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And we have another entry in the series of officially authorized Touhou mobile games. A reminder that “officially authorized” doesn’t mean “official”, games that aim at commercial fields such as mobile games and gacha need an “okay you can make this” from ZUN, he is usually not closely involved in the development. Before introducing you to the obligatory BUTAOTOME content, I wanna warn you about this game.

Touhou Arcadia Record is developed by DAMO GAMES and published by KLabGames. KLab does sound familiar, doesn’t it? Well, you might be aware of the whole controversy they made last year. Here is a Twitter thread that goes into detail about it. In short, when they first announced their own Touhou game (developed by Dobala Games), people quickly discovered that Dobala Games made a bootleg game with stolen assets and plagiarized Touhou characters. Now, this same game was getting a proper release with official approval from ZUN’s team. This pissed off a lot of fans all around the world. But it didn’t stop KLab and co., the game still got the okay. It’s unclear if DAMO GAMES is a whole different company or Dobala under a different name. But even now they are still copying stuff (the “about Touhou Project” section is copypasted from Unknown X’s website)

On another note, KLab’s financial situation is not amazing. In their most recent financial report, among various other things, they announced that they lost 3.5 billion yen and that they will enter the world of NFTs. And considering the current low profit of Touhou mobile games (both Danmaku Kagura and Lost Word JP barely reach their monthly billion yen outside of anniversaries/big holidays), I’m not sure if Arcadia Record is a good investment.

Now, what’s the gameplay? It’s not shown because they think the cool PV with the theme song by SOUND HOLIC is much more important. But it should be a horizontal shooter. And of course, it will have gacha elements.

Finally, to the BUTAOTOME content. The game will feature at least a new instrumental song. At the bottom of the official website, there is a player where we can listen to some songs, including 30 seconds of the new Pig track: Seijaku na Yume (静寂な夢, silent dream), a History of the Moon arrangement with traditional instruments reminiscent of Katana Fubuki from Cannonball. Maybe it’s a menu theme…

While I’m not particularly happy about this game overall, at least the new Buta song features a Ranko no Ane artwork (as opposed to DanKagu’s “random illustration from random artist who probably was just asked to draw Joon art”). And the theme song doesn’t feature any random super expensive VIP outside of the Touhou sphere.