Touhou 3: Phantasmagoria of Dim.Dream

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Stage Mechanics[edit | edit source]

Enemy Formations[edit | edit source]


Bullets[edit | edit source]


Fireballs[edit | edit source]

Fireballs are balls of fire which appear alongside bullets. Once you chained enough, you'll make orbs travel to the opponent's screen. What exactly determines an orb to go to the other player and what the requirements are, are currently unknown. Once an orb is sent to the other player, it will spawn as a fireball on the opponent's screen from the top of the screen and travels straight down. It usually travels faster than bullets do. Once a fireball is created, it will always appear in blue. Blue fireballs either take 3 normal shots to be sent back to the other player or can be pretty much instantly sent back with most Charge Attacks or when it's hit by an explosion from an enemy. If a fireball does not get sent back to the other player, it will simply travel to the bottom of the screen until it disappears. When a fireball is sent back to the other player, the fireball will turn into a red fireball once it appears at the opposing screen. Red fireballs take 4 normal shots to be sent back. Once a fireball has become red from being sent back, it will always stay that color, no matter how many times it gets sent to the opposing screen.

The horizontal position the fireballs take before moving downwards, is actually not completely random. During gameplay, you'll notice that sometimes fireballs seem to spawn at random positions while other times they aim at wherever your character is. However, how the game determines which of these two behaviours the fireballs take, is based on the amount of time that has passed during a match. Every 5 seconds, the game shifts between what will be dubbed as the 'scatter phase' and the 'focus phase'. During the scatter phase, the small red and blue orbs (soon-to-be fireballs) select a random destination at the top of the other player's screen and fly straight toward it from the place where they were created. When they reach that destination, they become fireballs and fall straight down. During focus phase, the orbs choose a destination directly above the other player's current position (that is, the player's position at the moment the orb was created), fly straight to it, become fireballs, and fall straight down. Every round starts out in scatter phase. This system of how these phases change every 5 seconds is not completely correct, as the phases don't seem to always change every 5 seconds exactly. Whatever causes this 5-second timing to be influenced or altered, is currently unknown. One thing that's sure is that these timings are not influenced by the summoning of spells or Boss Attacks. The timer does not freeze alongside the spell and boss summons.

Boss Attacks[edit | edit source]

Boss Behavior[edit | edit source]

Bosses always follow the same movement path after appearing. When a Boss Attack is triggered, it will spawn in the upper center of the field, and start moving left at a slightly downward angle. Once they get close enough to the left wall, they bounce to the right and vice versa. When they get low enough on the screen they bounce upward, and so on. That takes them on exactly the same path across the field every time. Some patterns cause the bosses to stop moving, but they simply start up again in whatever direction they were going. Chiyuri is the only boss to be different in that she teleports randomly after every pattern. Chiyuri's boss does not move around.

If bosses are not destroyed, they will eventually leave of their own volition by moving downward off the bottom of the screen. Bosses do have a physical hitbox, so be wary to not run into them if they start moving downwards. The amount of time they will spend on the screen before deciding to leave appears to be random. They may sometimes leave even after using just one pattern. They will always use at least one pattern though. (Note that the act of leaving the screen occurs in the place of using a pattern. i.e. they will move around a bit, or in Chiyuri's case teleport, after using their last pattern, then begin descending at the moment when they would have otherwise attacked again.) Also worth noting is that they don't actually reach the walls before changing direction, meaning that if a boss is heading straight toward you, hugging the wall will guarantee that it doesn't collide with you.

Boss Health[edit | edit source]

Not every boss in this game has the same amount of health. Each character's boss has a specific amount of health.

Character Reimu Mima Marisa Ellen Kotohime Kana Rikako Chiyuri Yumemi
HP 110 110 110 100 110 100 110 140 130

To give an idea of how much damage shots and bombs do as opposed to what the boss' health is, a single shot does 2 damage, and a bomb does 89 or 90.

Chaining[edit | edit source]

Core Mechanics[edit | edit source]

Chaining is done by killing an enemy that produces an explosion. The explosion itself is able to damage and kill regular enemies, reflecting bullets and reflecting fireballs. The combo display in the top-left corner displays the hit combo and the Spell Points. The hit combo shows the current singular chain that is in effect. It only visually keeps track of one chain reaction at a time. This number does not go up from outright killing an enemy with your own shots. Instead, only that which the enemy explosion chain-reacts with, is counted towards the hit combo. As soon as the hit combo increases, it can only be increased from bullets for the first 48 frames, as these do not create an explosion if they get cancelled. If more enemies or fireballs get cancelled, the 48-frame period resets. The Spell Points go up so long as chains happen at all. The Spell Points go up more the bigger a singular chain reaction is. Whenever the Spell Points increase, it will take 80 frames (of which the last 32 frames the Spell Points start flashing) before the hit combo and Spell Points display disappears and adds the Spell Points to your score. A quick note regarding frames, this game runs at 56.4 frames per second and not 60.

Basic Values[edit | edit source]


Spell Points[edit | edit source]

Triggering Boss Attacks[edit | edit source]

Normal Boss Attacks can be triggered in two ways. The more straightforward method is simply casting a level 4 spell. This consumes three gauge levels and instantly triggers a boss attack, no strings attached. Note that if you try to cast a level 4 spell while your own boss is already active, you'll cast a level 3 spell instead, consuming only 2 gauge levels, as usual. The second method is to get 51,200 Spell Points through chaining.

Spell Point Requirement (SPR)[edit | edit source]

Now with the second method of triggering Boss Attacks mentioned, the exact workings of this particular system are quite complex. And this subject will go in more detail in the "Miscellaneous" section.

The amount of Spell Points needed to trigger a Boss Attack at a given moment will be referred to as the "Spell Point Requirement", or "SPR" for short. Initially, the SPR is 51,200. As soon as a player meets or exceeds that number, their Boss Attack is triggered. When that happens, the SPR is increased by 51,200, bringing it to 102,400. That means that in order for the other player to trigger a Boss Reversal (triggering a Boss Attack while that player has a boss on their own screen), they'll need 102,400 Spell Points. Should they reach that amount, they trigger a Boss Reversal, and the SPR is increased by another 51,200 points, and so on. With each successive Boss Reversal, the SPR increases by 51,200. If at any point one of the bosses either leaves the screen on it's own or is directly destroyed, the SPR resets to its original value of 51,200.

Handling the Spell Points well is an important skill in both survival and scoring. In scoring you always want to be getting high Spell Points all the time. In survival it's always good to keep your Spell Point chain up to be able to activate Boss Reversals without having to charge a Level 4. This video from FSX demonstrates how to effectively pressure your opponent using the Spell Point mechanic.

Boss Panic[edit | edit source]

To explain Boss Panics themselves. These are Boss Attacks which are accompanied by a Level 3 Spell (cast at the same instant as the Boss Attack). They are triggered at 300,000 Spell Points. This amount never changes. The triggering works in more or less the same ways as it does for regular Boss Attacks, though there are some slight differences. A Boss Panic can be triggered while you already have a boss active. This simply casts a Level 3 Spell, as already mentioned. Also, once you have triggered a Boss Panic, you cannot trigger another one until your Spell Points have reset. It's also worth noting that if you trigger a Boss Panic, that will increase the SPR by 51,200 as well.

AI Behaviour[edit | edit source]

Intentional Hits[edit | edit source]

The AI is supposed to last a certain time in each stage. The later the stage, the longer it lasts, and individual stage’s times are reduced when you lose lives to them. (i.e. dying in stage 6 shortens the time for the next round in stage 6, but stage 7 is unaffected, etc.) The way the AI actually carries this out is by taking “intentional” hits at certain times in the match. For example, in Stage 1 (Lunatic) the AI takes intentional hits at 1:00, 1:20, and 1:40 (meaning minutes:seconds elapsed since the start of the round). Also note that it's not always exact with its timing for these hits, but in general it’s pretty close.

Hit Timers[edit | edit source]

Below several tables will be displayed, showing the timer for each opponent (only the first round for now) from the start of the match. It should be noted that these timers are based on difficulty and the stage number, not based on characters and such. (Writer's note: Due to this info having to be analysed through trial-and-error, this will likely take a long time to be filled in and I might not even fill all of these tables)


Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4 Round 5
Stage Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3
1 0:25 0:40 0:50 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
2 0:30 0:45 0:55 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
3 0:35 0:50 1:00 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
4 0:40 0:55 1:05 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
5 0:45 1:00 1:10 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
6 0:50 1:05 1:15 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
7 0:55 1:10 1:20 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
8 1:00 1:15 1:25 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
9 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx


Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4 Round 5
Stage Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3
1 0:40 0:50 1:00 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
2 0:45 0:55 1:05 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
3 0:50 1:00 1:10 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
4 0:55 1:05 1:15 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
5 1:00 1:10 1:20 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
6 1:05 1:15 1:25 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
7 1:05 1:25 1:45 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
8 1:10 1:45 2:20 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
9 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx


Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4 Round 5
Stage Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3
1 0:40 0:50 1:00 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
2 0:50 1:00 1:10 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
3 0:50 1:05 1:20 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
4 0:55 1:15 1:35 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
5 1:00 1:25 1:50 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
6 1:05 1:35 2:05 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
7 1:20 1:50 2:20 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
8 1:40 2:40 3:40 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
9 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx


Round 1 Round 2 Round 3 Round 4 Round 5
Stage Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3 Hit 1 Hit 2 Hit 3
1 1:00 1:20 1:40 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
2 1:10 1:30 1:50 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
3 1:10 1:40 2:10 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
4 1:20 1:55 2:30 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
5 1:20 2:05 2:50 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
6 1:30 2:20 3:10 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
7 2:00 3:10 4:20 x:xx x:xx 3:30 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
8 2:20 4:10 6:00 1:40 2:50 4:00 x:xx x:xx 3:30 x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx x:xx
9 2:20 3:50 5:20 x:xx x:xx 4:00 x:xx x:xx 3:30 x:xx x:xx x:xx

It's possible that with the intentional hits, the CPU takes less damage to the point that it may have to take a fourth hit. In this situation there is a timer for a fourth hit that matches with the time intervals of the other hits (i.e. in Stage 7 Round 1 on Normal the fourth hit will be planned at 2:05). The reduced damage with intentional hits is most common on Easy and Normal mode as the timers are the shortest on these difficulties.

Note about the nonexistant timers on Yumemi Round 1, these timers for Round 1 do actually exist if the player used a continue. What the timers are in this situation is currently unknown.

Unintentional Hits[edit | edit source]

It's possible for the AI to become trapped from time to time. Usually this involves big enemies moving sideways into it, groups of fireballs bunched together smothering it, or some characters' EX attacks (those being Reimu's, Rikako's and Yumemi's attacks) exploiting its lack of foresight. If the AI has no way to avoid the unintentional hit, then it just takes it, possibly causing it to die early. Furthermore, It does not make up for the unintentional hit by skipping the next intentional one, so for instance if the AI has already taken it's planned first hit, and you manage to get a second hit on the AI before it takes the planned second hit, it will simply kill itself by taking a third hit when the time for what should have been the second hit arrives.

Damage[edit | edit source]

The AI takes intentional hits as already mentioned. In practice, whenever the AI takes these intentional hits, the first one will usually be 3 hearts of damage and the second one 1½. It's worth noting that both your and the AI's character will always survive one lethal hit and be left at ½ heart and so the third hit will kill them. It is however possible that an unintentional hit will do less damage to the AI, thus it will be able to take 4 hits in total instead of the usual 3. This also applies to your own character. Generally if you take the first hit early on in the match, or you take two hits in quick succession, the second hit will cause less damage.

The way the game decides how much damage you or the CPU will take is based on time. The way damage is calculated is that your own character will take ½ heart of damage at the start of a round if you end up getting hit immediately. This damage will increase by an additional ½ heart every 1,024 frames (18.09 seconds), meaning you'll take the maximum 3 hearts of damage if roughly 1:30 has passed without getting hit. The moment you get hit, this damage calculation resets to some degree, but this is not yet understood. For example, if you get hit and take 2 hearts of damage, if you take the next hit almost immediately, you will take 1½ hearts of damage. It's possible the game adds +1 heart of damage to the damage calculation after you get hit the first time. This calculation is being kept track of for both players individually. However, for the CPU there's an extra component added to the calculation. When you take the calculation of your own character in mind, the CPU will add 1½ hearts of damage to itself in Stage 1 and 2, 1 heart in Stage 3 and 4 and ½ heart in Stage 5 and 6. This means that if you purposely stall on the first two stages, the CPU will take 4½ hearts of damage from the first hit, while opponents in the last 3 stages will stay capped at 3 hearts of damage regardless of how long you stall. The table below summarizes the information from this paragraph.

Stage Base damage Increased damage per 18.09 seconds Increased damage cap Extra damage (CPU-only) Total damage cap (Player) Total damage cap (CPU)
1 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) 1.5♥ 3♥ 4.5♥
2 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) 1.5♥ 3♥ 4.5♥
3 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) 1♥ 3♥ 4♥
4 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) 1♥ 3♥ 4♥
5 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) 0.5♥ 3♥ 3.5♥
6 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) 0.5♥ 3♥ 3.5♥
7 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) - 3♥ 3♥
8 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) - 3♥ 3♥
9 0.5♥ 0.5♥ 2.5♥ (90.45s) - 3♥ 3♥

Now when you consider the damage calculation with the hit timers, it's possible on lower difficulties that the CPU will be able to take 4 hits instead of the typical 3. An example of this is that on Easy Mode, starting from Stage 5, even though it takes intentional hits only, it might take less damage so it can survive 3 hits before the 4th one kills it. This is simply because in addition to the calculation, the time between two hit timers is simply too little time for the damage to build up enough. This can also happen on Normal and Hard if you have to fight a late-game opponent in a later round, since the timers will be reduced from the first round.

Resource / Spell Gauge Management[edit | edit source]

If the CPU has a way to avoid an unintentional hit, the CPU bombs right before it would take damage otherwise, and this is the only situation in which the CPU ever bombs. If it’s out of bombs but has a full gauge, it uses a hyper instead. To note, if the CPU is charging right before it gets hit, it instantly releases the charge, potentially saving itself with the tenth of a second invincibility from the Charge attack. If this is sufficient to avoid the hit, it doesn’t waste a bomb. When the CPU is out of bombs and has less than two hearts of life, the CPU stops using spells and just saves the energy for hypers.

A bit more about the CPU's use of spell energy. In practice, it's random when the CPU will decide to charge it's gauge. The exception to this is when the gauge is completely filled. In this situation the CPU will charge up it's gauge no matter what and release the charge the instant it's filled up. In every situation in which the CPU will charge the gauge, it will always try to charge it to it's current maximum, unless as stated above, it has to let go of the charge to safe itself from getting hit. The CPU may also charge it's gauge once or several times at the beginning of a round. While the charging behaviour is otherwise random, what the game is actually doing in the background is that it has 64 invisible gauge level positions (between Level 1 and 4). From this point it would be assumed that it picks one of these positions at random, but this has yet to be confirmed.

Yumemi Round 1[edit | edit source]

The first round (and only the first round) against Yumemi is unlike every other match in the game. She does not have any planned hits. She just survives as best she can for as long as she can. This basically means that the only way Yumemi can get hit, is through unintentional hits. One important thing to note is that Yumemi will charge up for Level 4 Spells unless she's out of bombs and has less than two hearts of life. When she has 1-2 bombs or 2-5 hearts of life, as soon as Yumemi has a full gauge, she will immediately start charging up for a Level 4 Spell. If Yumemi's health is reduced to 1.5 hearts or less and she's out of bombs, she will always start saving her spell energy for defensive hypers. As long as her gauge is full, you can be sure that she will not be killed, and that she will not use the energy to cast spells or Boss Attacks. It's also worth noting that Yumemi cannot possibly take damage when she has bombs. As long as she has bombs, she is certain to use them whenever she would take a hit otherwise. Though supposedly if you enter the first round of Yumemi while having already used one or more continues, this rule seems to be ignored and she can take a hit before using all of her bombs.

Now because Yumemi Round 1 has no intentional hits, it means that she gives infinite scoring potential. You try to survive her while she has a hyper available, then when she uses her hyper, you stop shooting. Not shooting will cause no bullets or fireballs to appear on Yumemi's screen. This gives Yumemi the opportunity to build up her gauge to full again. Now this usually gives her no chance to die, but on occasion, she can unintentionally get hit from an enemy from the side, which was mentioned in the "Unintentional Hits" section. There is one enemy formation that is known to cause this, this being the one with 3 vertical lines moving straight down and down with a curve. Assuming the AI doesn't get trapped by this enemy formation, you can keep yourself in this loop of getting score and play passively when she has no hyper. If you want your massive score to kick in from the clear bonus, you need to stop playing passively and hope she'll die while she doesn't have a full gauge. Doing this is very difficult as Yumemi's attacks in general are quite treacherous. Whenever you die on Round 1 during Yumemi's fight, she will revert back to the usual rules of taking intentional hits. At that stage, this strategy will no longer work.

Miscellaneous[edit | edit source]

Gauge Charging[edit | edit source]

The difference in charge speeds between Rikako and Ellen (may need to click on the image to see the animation)

In the character select screen Rikako and Ellen are both shown to have one star for their Charge Speed. However, the actual speeds differ. Rikako charges her gauge slightly faster over Ellen, taking about 275 frames to charge up to a Level 4. Ellen on the other hand takes 310 frames to fully charge her gauge (frame amount may be off slightly but it's the comparisons that matter). The only other known instances where there's a difference with two identical stats are with the movement speeds of Ellen and Kotohime, which are slightly slower than Kana's and Mima's/Rikako's, respectively (see Arcorann's character speeds page).

When you fill up your gauge completely, to whatever it's current max charge is, it takes 128 frames (2.26 seconds) until the charge is released automatically and casts whatever level of a spell you charged up to.

Getting Hit[edit | edit source]

When you get hit by anything that does damage to you, you get 110 frames (1.94 seconds) of invincibility, of which the first 64 frames includes a getting hit animation in which you lose control of your character. You also get 50 invincibility frames when a round starts, which in practice does nothing.

Rank[edit | edit source]

Depending on the difficulty you're playing and what stage you're on, will determine what the initial Spell and Boss Rank will be when the stage starts. The initial Spell and Boss Ranks are as follows:

Easy Normal Hard Lunatic
Stage Spell Boss Spell Boss Spell Boss Spell Boss
Stage 1 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 9
Stage 2 2 1 2 2 2 4 2 10
Stage 3 3 2 3 3 3 5 3 11
Stage 4 4 2 4 4 4 6 4 12
Stage 5 5 3 5 5 5 7 5 13
Stage 6 6 3 6 6 6 8 6 14
Stage 7 7 4 7 7 7 9 7 15
Stage 8 8 4 8 8 8 10 8 16
Stage 9 9 5 9 9 9 11 9 16

Ordinarily, Spell and Boss Rank increase by 1 when a spell or boss is triggered, as you'd expect. However, they are also increased in some less obvious ways. When a player triggers a Boss Panic, that player's Spell Rank goes up by 3, in addition to the normal increase to Boss Rank. Also (and this is very strange), whenever either player destroys a Boss Attack by depleting its health, the next time a spell or boss is triggered (by either player) the boss rank will increase by 1, in addition to whatever would normally have been increased.

It should also be mentioned that increasing the Boss Rank will increase it for both players, regardless of whoever raised the Boss Rank. This means the Boss Rank will be the same for either player no matter what.

When you die, you and your opponent's Spell Rank stay at whichever value they were when the round ended. Boss Rank however drops to it's value when you started the stage +1 on Easy and it's original value +2 on Normal, Hard and Lunatic. This is assuming you've raised the Boss Rank by at least 1 or 2 depending on the difficulty. It is yet unknown what happens if you haven't raised the Boss Rank enough, but presumably it lowers the Boss Rank to it's original value.

Boss Cancelling[edit | edit source]

If you trigger a Boss Attack, but cast a spell before it physically appears, the boss will fail to appear, though the SPR is still increased, and you will still be rewarded for the Boss Attack in the stage's clear bonus. If you can get your spell points up to the new SPR, you'll trigger another Boss Attack. If your Spell Points are already above that amount, (for instance if you gained over 102,400 at once, then cancelled the resulting Boss Attack) you just have to increase them by a small amount and you'll trigger the next Boss Attack. It's also possible to cancel a Boss Attack by casting a spell immediately before the boss is triggered, though the timing window is very small. (Also note that all of this applies only to your own Boss Attacks. You can't cancel the opponent's Boss Attacks like this.) This phenomenon has some utility so it will be referred to as "Boss Cancelling". Likewise, the AI opponent can do this technique by chance and thus the SPR will increase while you may not immediately realize it until you reach what you assumed was the current SPR.

Triggering Level 2/3 Spells[edit | edit source]

If you cast a spell while you already have a spell active on the opponent's screen, the pre-existing spell will stop as soon as the new one starts. Essentially this means you can't have two spells firing at the same time. Summoning a Boss Attack while you have a spell active will also cancel the spell. Kotohime's spell can only be cancelled before the mine actually spawns. Once it's appeared nothing she does will impede it, and so Kotohime alone can effectively attack with two spells at once.

Spell Point Requirement (SPR)[edit | edit source]

If you destroy the opponent's Boss Attack or it leaves on its own while your Spell Points are over 51,200, you do not get an instant Boss Attack. However, any small increase to your spell points which occurs after the boss left but before your spell points reset will trigger a Boss Attack. Likewise, if the opponent sends a boss over, and your spell points are already above the new SPR, all you need to do to reverse the Boss Attack is increase your Spell Points by a small amount before they reset, and a Boss Reversal is triggered instantly.

Now the highest possible amount of Spell Points you're able to get from chaining, is 655,350. Whenever this number is reached, the Spell Points will cancel out and counted towards your score. With that taken into consideration, it is possible for the SPR to exceed 655,350, if enough Boss Reversals and Boss Panics took place without the SPR ever resetting. When this happens, the SPR actually wraps around to 10,250 from the initial 614,400 Spell Points, since the maximum Spell Points is 655,350 (so 614,400 + 51,200 = 655,350 + 10,250). This phenomenon was discovered through this example. Another reference to this can be found here.

If you destroy a Boss Attack, the SPR resets to 51,200. However, if you destroy a Boss Attack right after casting a Level 4 Spell (which also triggers the stronger attack from the Level 1), the SPR for that Boss Attack to be reversed will be 51,200. An example of this can be seen here. What basically happens is that the SPR got raised by the Level 4 Spell, but the stronger attack dealt enough damage to the boss that it got directly destroyed before it could be destroyed from the Level 4 (which acts as a Boss Reversal). When a Boss Reversal is triggered, the boss doesn't get destroyed from that immediately. It takes around a second before the boss goes away, and in that time the boss got "directly" destroyed, as seen through the example above. This same thing can also occur if the SPR is hit for the Boss Reversal, but the boss dies from your shots before the boss would die from the Boss Reversal.

Boss Panic[edit | edit source]

If you suddenly jump to 300,000 Spell Points, a normal Boss Attack is triggered, not a Boss Panic. If you then increase the spell points by a small amount more (and perhaps, after a certain amount of time has passed) you'll trigger the Boss Panic. Essentially, it seems that when you meet the requirements for a normal Boss Attack and a Boss Panic at the same time, the normal Boss Attack takes priority. However if the SPR is above 300,000 which is needed to do a Boss Reversal, then the Boss Panic will take priority, assuming you hit the SPR and the requirement for the Boss Panic at the same time.

Clear Bonus[edit | edit source]

When you die, all of your bonuses you got from the round you died on go back down to x0. However the MAX Combo value does not reset, as proven in this video. Whatever your highest single chain combo was from all rounds of one fight combined, is what you'll get that gets contributed towards the clear bonus. Furthermore, the highest MAX Combo you can get is 255. Even if you get a higher combo than that, it will be 255. You can see your combo count in the top-left corner of your screen, but it doesn't go higher than 99 since it's meant to display 2 values at most. You can't tell how high your combo will be if it exceeds 99.

Shortened Hypers[edit | edit source]

The duration of the effects of a hyper can be shortened. This is possible by already charging for a Level 2 spell or higher, but then pressing X to activate a hyper mid-charge. This will result into a spell and a hyper being activated simultanously, as shown in this video. The duration of the hyper in this situation is cut by the cost of the spell you summoned. However, if you have the gauge charged up to a Level 4 and then activate a hyper before releasing the charge, only the effects of the Level 4 will activate and the hyper will not activate, since your spell gauge has essentially lowered to the lowest possible amount. For whatever reason if you do this with Rikako, she doesn't fire out a Level 1 alongside the boss and only causes a screen-clear which hypers normally do upon activating.

Charge Attack Invincibility[edit | edit source]

In some of the info above, invincibility from triggering any kind of spell was mentioned. There are 6 frames (or 0.106 seconds) of invincibility when using a Charge Attack. This applies to any level of Charge Attack, not just Level 1. You can see the character sprite's outline flash for the duration of this invincibility. When the Charge Attack is released however, there is a very short delay before the invincibility actually activates.

Charge Attack Limitation[edit | edit source]

Marisa and Chiyuri cannot shoot, bomb, or activate hypers during their Charge Attacks. The AI also can't shoot during a Charge Attack as either of those characters, though it has been once reported that the AI was seen somehow bombing during a Charge Attack as Marisa.

Score Counterstop[edit | edit source]

This game is visually able to keep track of 9 digits in your score, including a last 0 that never changes unless you use continues. With that in mind the counterstop is 999,999,990. Whether it keeps track of the score in any way after that is unknown. The game is however able to store score up to 24,699,999,990 before it rolls back to 0.

Bullet Cap[edit | edit source]

There is a limit to the number of bullets that can be on the screen at once. What the maximum amount of bullets is that can be on screen at once is not yet known. You see this most commonly with Yumemi and Kotohime. Strangely, bullets never seemed to be missing from a boss's attack in this game, though it happens with spells. For instance, the rings in Yumemi's spell may appear as quarter circles rather than complete rings if fired at the same time as her boss's cloud of death. Kotohime's mines can be missing some or all of their bullets if two of them explode at the same time. Though in this example it's just one mine missing all bullets due to Yumemi's boss shooting the death cloud pattern.

EX Attack Cap[edit | edit source]

It seems that a player can have at most 8 EX attacks on the opponent's screen at once. Marisa seems to be somewhat exempt from this rule. Supposedly in her case, for whatever reason, as soon as the blue glyphs become lasers, they no longer count towards the total.

Glitches[edit | edit source]

Enemy Formations[edit | edit source]

Sometimes it's possible for enemy formations to miss enemies. This pretty much always becomes apparent when you see the last few enemies never appearing and the next enemy formation shows up. The cause of this is unknown, but often times this happens at the start of a match or if the opposing player bombs.

What can also sometimes happen is that two enemies can overlap with each other. This is possibly a result of the enemy speed increasing while an enemy formation is already in the process of spawning, as it never seems to occur on the Lunatic difficulty. Though even when enemies spawn as their movement speed goes up, it still happens very rarely, so why this happens is unknown.

Misplaced Fireballs[edit | edit source]

It is possible for the orbs representing fireballs to appear from the bottom of the screen at seemingly random, as seen here. Furthermore, when the fireballs are supposed to form, they do so at the very side of your screen, which supposedly makes them fail to appear.

Level 2/3 Transforming (Kotohime)[edit | edit source]

A Level 2 followed by a Level 3 right before the mine explodes results in this bullet composition

Kotohime's spell can end up shooting both bullets from a Level 2 and a Level 3 from the same mine. This is caused by her first summoning a Level 2 or Level 3 spell; then summoning the other level of the spell around half a second before the first summoned mine explodes (i.e. first summoning a Level 2 and then a Level 3 or vice versa). Depending on the order of the summoned spells determines the order of which bullet type comes out per wave. Kotohime's spell consists of 2 waves. If her Level 2 was summoned first, the pellet bullets will be fired from the first wave, followed by Level 3 bullets from the second wave. If a Level 3 was summoned first, then the bullet type reverses order. In addition to this glitch, the mine that would've appeared from the second spell summon will still appear like normal. An instance of this happening can be seen in this video.

Now when this phenomenon is applied, doesn't mean the first summoned spell will always be a mixture of a Level 2 and a Level 3 spell. The timing of the two spells matters. As mentioned: when a spell is summoned around half a second before the spell of the other bullet type is firing it's bullets, the first mine will shoot a mixture of Level 2 and 3 bullets. However, there are two more things that can happen. Say a Level 3 was summoned from a Boss Panic, then a Level 2 is summoned almost immediately after. This scenario will cause the first mine (Level 3) to transform into a Level 2 completely, however the second spell will fail to appear. To avoid the second spell from failing to spawn in, you have to wait roughly half a second (without the game being frozen). When done successfully, you'll have two mines appear in relative quick succession and they will "both" shoot Level 2 bullets, meaning you've effectively triggered one extra Level 2 without actually having spent any of your spell gauge for it. This video demonstrates this. The first spell will be unaffected if the second spell is summoned around less than half a second before the first mine is about to explode.

Rikako Hyper Glitch[edit | edit source]

If you lose a match to Rikako while her hyper is active, the gears will still be spinning around her at the start of the next round. In this state, she can't use any charge attacks. If Rikako attempts to use a Charge Attack, the gauge will remain filled a couple of pixels and as a result she stops shooting entirely. This happens because she will not release the charge until the gauge is completely filled, which as stated is not possible. This Hyper Glitch state remains like this until Rikako uses another hyper. Once that hyper ends, the gears will vanish and she'll be able to charge and shoot again.

Examples of this can be found here and here. In the main game, it's impossible to trigger this glitch on yourself. You can however still do it in Versus Mode, as demonstrated here. If triggered on yourself, you will naturally be able to shoot, unlike the CPU whose AI gets exploited. If Rikako decides to not use a hyper to cancel this glitch, her gears will continue spinning even while she's dead.

Glitched Texture[edit | edit source]

Marisa's EX Attack has a certain animation for when the laser disappears. However this animation can become glitched and replaced with other things, usually bullets. An example of this can be seen here. A reasonable theory for Marisa's laser texture glitching out is because her EX attack is the only one in the game that does not follow the rule of the EX Attack Cap of 8, so perhaps when it goes beyond that number of EX attacks, it causes them to glitch out when you die. When this happens, it will apply to every one of Marisa's lasers as long as the match with your opponent is still going. To add to this, the glitched sprite that shows up seems to usually be the bullet sprite that's unique from the opponent's bullets, so against Yumemi, it will create the purple pentagram bullets. It was also found out that Marisa's boss sprite on rare occasions also gets glitched animation frames which also adds the unique bullet type from the opponent.

Mima's bomb uses the same laser textures for the start of her bomb animation in the background. Therefore these glitch out in the exact same way if you lose a match as Mima. Whether this also happens even if you didn't use any bombs before losing the round is currently unknown, but likely it doesn't matter. It should however be noted that this would counter the theory mentioned above because Mima does not have to be in a match against Marisa for this to occur, so perhaps there's some other factor that causes this texture to glitch out.

Glitchy Artifacts after pausing[edit | edit source]

Glitchy artifacts after using the PC-98 pause function

There is a pause button that presumably is usable on every PC-98 game. When pressed, it makes the screen go black and pauses gameplay. In PoDD, if it's being pressed during a match and then unpaused, the middle part of the screen shows a mash of bullet textures and such. This has no in-game effect, though when background objects or bullets move into this area, the textures of those will occupy this glitchy space. This video shows how it is done.

Charge Attack Sprite Overlap[edit | edit source]

It's possible your Charge Attack can be overlapped with another sprite if you lose a round, similar to the laser texture bug, as can be seen here. Unlike the laser texture bug, this bug is very rare and it's unknown how this bug occurs. Furthermore what sprite gets overlapped is also not quite understood, but it's been theroized that at the very least the sprite in Ellen's charge attack in this video, puts a part of Chiyuri's bullet (either player shot or her ring bullets) on top of it. This would mean the sprite that overlaps the Level 1 shots is dependant on your opponent.

Double K.O.[edit | edit source]

It is possible for both the AI and your character to run out of health and die at the same time. What the frame window for this to happen isn't confirmed. When this happens, the game gets confused as to what player actually won, and there's more than one outcome of this glitch. Proof of that can be seen here and here. Whichever of the two outcomes you get seems to be based on whoever died first (this can only be a few frames of difference between the two characters' deaths at most).

In the first example, the human player got hit right before the AI did. So what happens then is that the game shows you that you win and that the AI lost, but the game will still advance this match to Round 2, so in that sense it really counted as a loss. If this is what ends up happening while you were on your last life, it will be considered a Game Over.

In the second example, the AI died right before the human player did. So what happens then is that the game shows that the AI won and displays a clear bonus on the AI's screen. And this is the interesting part. Normally you don't see the clear bonus screen on the AI's screen unless you lost all of your lives upon this happening and only in the Versus Mode, which in this example is not the case at all. Despite not playing in Versus Mode, this clear bonus screen can still pop up. Furthermore, the game ultimately counts this as a win, as the match ends and you'll advance to the next stage. This also means that if you win in this way, you will be awarded with absolutely no points from clearing the stage.

Score Reduction Glitch[edit | edit source]

There is an extremely tiny chance that for no apparent reason, you lose score, as seen in this video. In this instance the current score was 29,949,040 which then turned into 20,949,540, which may as well mean that as soon as 500 points were added to the score, the second value somehow changed from a 9 to a 0. The cause of this is unknown, as there is nothing indicating that this should happen. It doesn't seem to be caused by Yumemi's boss appearing nor because the score had to go from 29.XX million to 30.XX million or anything else. It could be said that if this isn't some kind of hardware error or emulator glitch, it would require some extremely specific conditions for this score-decrease to occur.

Lives/Extend Glitch[edit | edit source]

On extremely rare occasions you may randomly gain two extends at once. The cause of this glitch is unknown. However it does not appear to be caused directly by score as the glitch is not triggered on the exact frame that score would've been added, unlike the glitch in the paragraph above. The clip below shows the glitch being triggered:

Glitch Demonstration

Sources[edit | edit source]

Related/External Links[edit | edit source]