Just “acquired” it and finished it in Normal mode B-1 route. Maybe it’s because I’m a secondary (best achievement is Hard Mode 1cc in IN) or I haven’t grasped the control because I find it just frustrating. Although I expect it will become more bearable after two or three another play-throughs.
The control is a little different from your dad’s Touhou. Shift is still your old friendly focus mode, Z is now the button to freeze bullets, X returns in its role as da bomb, while mankind’s best friend AKA the shoot button is moved to C. I find many new players thinking that you need to tap button in order to fire normal bullets due to the change of shoot buttons. It’s a good thing I did a little exploring through message boards before playing the game.
In this battle, aside from shooting down enemies you can also freeze bullets. If you push Z button, Cirno will shoot normal bullets for a short time before went into semi-focus mode. If you release the button, Cirno will unleash an ice shield that freeze every bullets it touches. If the bullet you freeze is near another bullet, it will also freeze the other bullet thus creating a chain reaction. If your chain is strongest enough, you can freeze the enemy dealing massive damage. Keep in mind there are several fireball bullets that can’t be frozen unless you use a bomb. Of course, just as ZUN said, an idiot can also get tired. Therefore you need to charge Cirno’s power before once again unleashing another epic freeze. You charge up by either shooting enemies, graze bullets, or just let the gauge recharge itself slooooowly. By freezing more enemies and bullets, you can gain “experience points” that acts as power up in this game. Also by freezing every bullets and enemies in the screen will earn you ‘perfect freeze’ which I still don’t understand what it does.
Capturing a spell card now earns you medal. If you capture a spell card without bomb, death, and freeze then a gold medal receiver is you! Freezing bullets but no bombs and deaths earn you silver medal and using bombs and deaths will earn you red medal. The continue system returns to the old games where by continuing you will resume your game and don’t restart the stage. Although I still don’t understand how to count the remaining life and credit you have but I think it has something to do with the percent number on top right of the screen. The story is divided into 3 routes and each route is divided into two sub-routes. Finishing all routes without continue will unlock Extra route where you can fight somebody you know very well.
Fairy Wars is truly quite an oddball just like the protagonist herself. At one point it’s quite different from the Touhou we all know and love but at another point it offers a new fun that is long forgotten. I can’t really recommend it to new STG players although I think STG veterans will probably either find this game new and fun. Of course every Touhou fans must at least play this game once.
PS: Cirno’s eyebrows are the strongest!