The latest guidelines on what the Touhou Project “officially” considers acceptable includes a ban on the creation of ero-doujinshi, anime, sexy dakimakura, works which are “inappropriate” and even an explicit admonition not to sell Touhou products to foreigners.

The new guidelines, which in summary “restrict” creation of works featuring highly sexual content and provide even more draconian limitations on how Touhou-related works can be distributed and sold – no doubt with an eye to preventing any more Touhou anime, killing off any non danmaku games and stopping foreign barbarians from getting anything else banned:

These are the 2011 revisions to the Touhou Project guidelines.


Additionally, we will basically not permit the commercial circulation of doujin works.


Permission must be sought for the commercial sale of Touhou-related goods.


Also, please refrain from producing any commercial goods of a sexual nature (erotic dakimakura, etc.).

Restrictions on derivative works.

Please ensure you restrain yourself from producing any of the following:

Any work mainly constituting animation and produced on a non-volunteer basis, excluding 3D animation.

Selling Xbox 360 indie games.

Selling anything by way of AppStore or Android Marketplace (companies please enquire).

Anything not distributed in the same manner as the original works (general doujin sales channels [i.e. Reitaisai and Akihabara doujin shops]) – for example, selling downloads aimed at overseas buyers.

Anything else which is overly sexual, defamatory towards people, groups or races, or would generally be considered as socially unacceptable.

With this, the rather bizarre copyright situation surrounding Touhou seems to have become even more murky.

Despite the vast majority of the creative work in the Touhou universe being produced independently of the original creators, they nonetheless still try to control derivative works whilst desperately trying to prevent “commercialisation” for reasons nobody seems to understand.

Simultaneously, they attempt to squeeze royalties out of creators for the use of characters whose popularity is almost entirely based on derivative works – ethically and legally speaking, somewhat precarious behaviour at best.

Now it seems they are intent on taking a leaf out of Ishihara’s book by banning material not to their tastes, whilst clamping down on any games or anime which look likely to eclipse the (rather limited) popularity of the original games, attitudes unlikely to endear them to the wider Touhou community to say the least.

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    Avatar of Peter Barton
    Comment by Peter Barton
    20:02 14/02/2011 # ! Quality (+0.9)

    Guess I'll just make a western based style Touhou game, except the entire cast is middle aged men shooting guns over things like parking tickets.

    Avatar of Shuubi
    Comment by Shuubi
    20:24 14/02/2011 # ! Quality (+0.9)

    I'd actually...really like to see that.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:35 14/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.9)

    "Guess I'll just make a western based style Touhou game, except the entire cast is middle aged men shooting guns over things like parking tickets."


    *begins pondering*

    Reimu = Ramos Hernandez

    * Car Salesman, moved from Mexico, crap cars, Single

    Marisa = Martin Kirkland

    * Con-artist, Ladies-man, FBI Most Wanted, divorced...Thrice...

    Sakuya = Sam Isenberg

    * Hitman, Impotent, albino, currently single

    Sanae = Simon Kennedy

    * Priest, sex-offender, wears a wig, hates immigrants

    Yes...Yes...That would be bloody awesome~

    -Azure Xuchilbara
    (account suspended)

    Avatar of Yoshii-kun
    Comment by Yoshii-kun
    23:28 14/02/2011 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Some fantasy you got there.

    Avatar of Lannando
    Comment by Lannando
    06:51 15/02/2011 # ! Quality (+0.8)


    Avatar of brek_kreb
    Comment by brek_kreb
    21:47 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    I see what you did there..

    Avatar of FlyingCake
    Comment by FlyingCake
    11:25 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Did they drink a little too much booze? The popularity of Touhou relies heavily on fan contributions.

    Comment by Anonymous
    18:59 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Reminds me of NCIS

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:24 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Remilia Scarlet is so cooooool!!!! XD

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:08 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    a hulk touhou? no thanks

    Comment by Dark Mage
    04:13 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Wait I already own that game it's called GTA 3 and 4.

    Avatar of Revolver Koala
    Comment by Revolver Koala
    03:52 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    If it's true that ZUN issued a statement to correct it, the original might just be badly-written--it's not like I can't scroll down the comments right here and come up with a dozen examples of otherwise functional people failing much more spectacularly to express themselves in their own native language. Of course, the fact that the statement as written seems to very specifically ban doujin sales outside of traditional venues makes that seem unlikely, so...

    ...As long as I'm making up hypotheses that don't assume that either ZUN in particular, Japanese in general, or Artefact are Fun Nazis who hate everything that they love, it's also possible that ZUN is just plain conflicted about his success. I'm not an international IP lawyer, in part because IP law is exceedingly complicated; it could be that ZUN simply doesn't want to have to go to the trouble and expense of defending his IP rights overseas and has opted for an ass-covering clause instead. If he chose to allow Touhou to become an international commercial phenomenon, he'd likely have to spend less time developing and relinquish at least some creative control to spend more time as a manager; read Bill Watterson if you want to know how some artists feel about that.

    Of course, this is all shit I just made up that may not have a thing to do with reality. It also doesn't excuse him for his behavior regarding the fanime (quality issues aside) and generally having a bit too much sympathy with that segment of his fanbase that thinks popularity is inversely related to quality. Just saying if he's not interested in promoting his stuff overseas doesn't mean it's because he's a reprehensible dick god.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:03 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    I agree with some parts of your comment.

    I'd just hate it if he thinks that popularity ALWAYS have an inverse relationship with quality. That would put him right alongside those pretentious emo and scene kids who only listen to obscure bands no one else ever heard of just because, and ditch those bands immediately if they go mainstream. That would severely tempt me to put him in the same place as a douche God.

    I can try to understand though if he fears that people will go out of control with his creations. If I were him, I wouldn't like some people making guro art out of my creations.

    I can't argue on ZUN possibly being conflicted though. With all he can and he want to do, and also what he can't do, his brain is probably reaching overload now, not including the problems he has to solve in his coding, and shit he has to deal with in real life.

    Avatar of Revolver Koala
    Comment by Revolver Koala
    04:13 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sorry, longtime reader, first time poster, my phone evidently felt that belonged here and not in in the main thread

    Avatar of Chiaki H
    Comment by Chiaki H
    09:04 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Make it. I will buy it.

    Avatar of Lamberto
    Comment by Lamberto
    23:58 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Recipe for success there, I'd say do it.

    Avatar of OTIKA
    Comment by OTIKA
    Avatar of loli in a box
    Comment by loli in a box
    23:09 14/02/2011 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    Are you guys retarded?

    This only affects COMMERCIAL goods.
    It doesn't change a thing about the situation we are in now.
    You can still buy your figurines and plushies.

    It only restricts assholes who try to stealthily take over Touhou in a commercial manner.
    And that's how it should be. I would never accept an anime who is not supervised by Zun himself, but he already dismissed that idea years ago.

    If some people who never were real Touhou fans to begin with make a scene that's fine, too, I guess.

    He said it himself. Even if he loses all his fans, he will still continue with his games until he dies of alcohol poisoning.

    Avatar of yuriphoria
    Comment by yuriphoria
    03:40 15/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.4)

    > Are you guys retarded?

    Retarded, no. Inflammatory yes.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:44 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    It feels to me like you guys are looking at Zun like some cult leader or something...

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:26 17/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Pretty much we just need to send him more beer so he can make the next game already now. Besides it's just a simple revision that got blown out of proportion here.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:26 14/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.8)

    This seems a bit too much...
    What impact will this have in doujins...
    No more guro doujins of how kaguya rapes mokou with a nonstopping growing dick that ends up killing mokou piercing her from side to side? =(

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:43 14/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.8)

    No impact on doujins at all. Ero was only banned for commercial products(made by registered companies). Real doujin/indie stuff can still be given away or sold at events or doujin stores regardless of the content.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:08 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    @Anonymous 20:43 14/02/2011

    We all have nothing to worry about then...

    This whole article is basically just for banning use by (some greedy) corporate entities and the like...Oh, and that goes for foreign corporate entities too~

    -Azure Xuchilbara
    (account suspended)

    Avatar of BlaqCat
    Comment by BlaqCat
    21:26 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    So then it would be safe to say that this entire list is mostly aimed at keeping Touhou and all works made using the characters stay as "domestic noncommercial" works. Permanently. Well, I guess they're making so much off royalties, they don't feel the need to go commercial.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:22 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    "Touhou and all works made using the characters stay as "domestic noncommercial""

    Exactly. You are allowed to import I believe or buy in Japan even if you are a foreigner. I think ZUN just doens't want anyone making money and getting rich on other people works by using the doujin excuse.

    Avatar of Knets
    Comment by Knets
    02:49 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    He basically doesn't want stores selling downloadable copies. All bought TH games must have a physical container. Downloadable copies get out of hand, and a lot of stores would want to try and make money off the much larger population across-borders.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:43 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yeah, it's much more productive to only sell physical copies that are harder to get ahold of so that more people resort to piracy.

    Avatar of Trollkastel
    Comment by Trollkastel
    21:09 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    so doujins sold on Comiket dont qualify as commercial use? i thought it'd ban literally anything that isn't gicen for free

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:48 17/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    I think it's more along the line of making it for profit and not for the heck of it, or even forthe fans.

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    Except this isn't true at all:


    Both doujin and companies, please refrain from making derivative works with the following content.



    And other highly sexual depictions...

    Avatar of loli in a box
    Comment by loli in a box
    23:40 14/02/2011 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    No, he updated that.
    He said he only meant commercial products.
    Maybe you should update it too before the shitposters arrive.

    Avatar of Ben
    Comment by Ben
    03:16 15/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.4)

    Hey now, you should probably try to be nicer to your users even if you do think they're being unreasonable.

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    Perhaps you should learn to read. It still says exactly what I just posted on the post outlining the guidelines, and a large number of Japanese fans are fairly unenthusiastic about it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:22 16/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Uh, loli in a box? The fact is that most Touhou hentai doujins ARE commercial in some way, though they usually have a warning on them saying that they are 'not condoned by the original creator' or something similar to that.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:34 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    his twitter.
    you are missed.

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:17 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Bam, right in the kisser!

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    Except there all he says is that commercial erotic works are already not permitted and that he hasn't seen any doujinshi he has a problem with.

    It does not contradict the wording of the guidelines as you seem to think.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:40 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    "No more guro doujins of how kaguya rapes mokou with a nonstopping growing dick that ends up killing mokou piercing her from side to side? =("

    HEY!!! I REMEMBER THAT!!! ~_~

    I commissioned it 2 years ago in desudesu's blog~

    It was the reason I became a Kaguya x Mokou fan~

    *composes himself*

    Yeah, it would be very sad to see doujins like that ceasing to be...

    Oh, and you also forgot to add that Kaguya turns Mokou into her wife and impregnates her with her seed as an experiment conduced by her and Eirin to see if the child born would be immortal...

    Yes...I'm getting 'Mai-chan's Daily Life' vibes if that doujin circle ever makes a sequel to that~

    Avatar of Final
    Comment by Final
    22:35 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    To me, the weirdest thing about the Daily Life was that its story was written by a teacher for middle-schoolers (I think).
    That Touhou doujin was funny, though.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:47 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)


    Ah, that was you?

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:31 14/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.6)

    If we're seeing such news from ZUN, that means he's active, that means he'd better make TOUHOU 13!

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:22 14/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.5)

    ZUN should realize that Touhou's popularity is totally dependent on the fanbase, and you do shit like that you're bringing Touhou down

    Avatar of PirosThe3rd
    Comment by PirosThe3rd
    20:32 14/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.3)

    and fanbase are not just belong to japanese.
    There is A LOT of touhou fans outside japan.

    This is why I hate Japanese people,they are retard.

    Avatar of Tex_Arcana
    Comment by Tex_Arcana
    20:40 14/02/2011 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    The majority certainly aren't, which is why they have such a healthy Doujinshi industry in the first place.

    But I'm worried about ZUN influencing other creators.

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:39 14/02/2011 # ! Good (+0.7)

    If you go to Japan you still can buy it. He didn't ban sales to foreigners. He banned sales through means he doesn't use and could be considered "commercial" (i.e. by a company or corporation). If he doesn't do this soon big game companies will start making touhou games and calling it "doujin".

    Avatar of PirosThe3rd
    Comment by PirosThe3rd
    21:11 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    "if there is a will,there is a way."

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    He banned all the services non-Japanese are likely to be able to use (bear in mind there are no widely used online "doujin" distribution services outside Japan, and even in Japan these are all commercial entities) and expressly forbade marketing such products specifically to them. They don't have any shops or events overseas, and buying from Japan is extremely inconvenient.

    It does not sound like he has a great deal of interest in overseas fans.

    Comment by Anonymous

    This ANON has THE ONLY DECENT comment so far.


    Comment by Anonymous
    20:54 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    change retarded to xenophobic, and you've got the gist of it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:07 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    You are Tsun-dere!! even if you hate japanese people,I love you(*^_^*) from japan.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:19 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    If they don't skew the translation, then the sheep won't revel in it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:47 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)


    "Those works which picture excessive expressions of erotism or discrimination against special people, groups, races etc., or those which we see as extremely inappropiate for the society"

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:27 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    Agreed, I don't see anything about sex. The part from prohibiting commerical animation up to the overseas downloads was roughly correct, but the rest is a bit off.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:40 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    ZUN creates the game. The fans spread the game. ZUN goes drinking and comes back in a few hours to see that his shooter just became some awesome shit overnight. He should thank us for it, and yet now this...

    Comment by Anonymous

    No. He should thank you maybe after you suck his cock.

    When you buy his game, you got what you paid for.

    He owes you nothing. The vast majority of foreigners don't even play his games let alone buy them.

    Avatar of dootsy
    Comment by dootsy
    02:31 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    >dressing up in sloppy cosplay
    What fantasy world do you live in? Unsightly Japanese men dressed as Touhou characters are an important staple of the fandom.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:17 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    And the difference is that they don't go around demanding to be thanked for acting like retards, dressing up in sloppy cosplay, buying chinese bootlegs, and whining on internet forums.

    Holy shit, you know what might be novel? Actually expressing thanks to the creator for sharing his imaginary world.

    Regardless the changes are a non issue unless you were holding out for a Naruto vs. TowHoe ero anime.

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    The vast majority of Japanese fans don't play his games either. They have some nice music and that is about it, taken as actual games rather than a tiny niche genre which is effectively beyond criticism due to its specificity. It seems MADs and artwork are the main routes of exposure...

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:13 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    it's sankaku, what do you expect.

    Comment by Anonymous

    @Anonymous 20:22 and PirosThe3rd

    Such a shame too because Touhou had the potential to become a multi-million dollar franchise, seeing as how it evolved from an underground indie game all the way to mainstream popular culture in Japan. Looks like its up to the rest of the world(yes Japan, there is a world outside of yours) to keep the Touhou series afloat. Otherwise, its officially dead.

    Is it me or is Japan regressing or what? First they don't give a shit about the demands of the Western/Eastern otaku, than they shit on their own pop-culture(Anime/Manga/Videogames) with A certain little ban(yes, I'm looking at you Shitaro Ishihara) and now this. *Explodes*

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:43 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.3)

    @Anonymous 21:20

    It is just you. Why would anyone want a multi-million dollar franchise? Everybody knows that the dollar isn't worth anything these days.

    You show your lack of understanding and blatant stupidity in your claim that Touhou is dead. But that is fine by me, I would prefer if all you worthless secondaries moved onto the next EPIC hype. Without you Touhou and doujin works will continue, besides that foreigner contributions are one to every hundred thousand at most.

    You wont be missed.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:50 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    If it becomes comercial mainstream it will also became utter shit - look at FFXIII or other SE works. They suck, they dont know how to make something good anymore. And that is what ZUN dont wants happen. So support him or die horribly!

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    This is apparently the chief mentality amongst overseas Touhou fans - "the fewer people like something, the better it must be and the better I am for liking it." Elitism for those with no sense of taste of their own.

    Avatar of loli in a box
    Comment by loli in a box
    23:25 14/02/2011 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Zun never made Touhou in order to make money. It's just that he didn't find a game he likes, so he made one himself. That's why he is making games.

    Avatar of TehBoringOne
    Comment by TehBoringOne
    19:17 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    How in fuck's name is Square Enix a monopoly? There are a good quantity of companies that made quality RPGs and still do, now that SE is deflating.
    The Sega/Nintendo thing has nothing in common. Sega just switched to being a software company that hardly has any manner of exclusivity relationship with Nintendo.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:59 15/02/2011 # ! Neutral (0)

    I am the one Artefact responded to.

    Problem is game market. The more money someone puts into a game the more he wants to earn. And he can earn enough only if it will sell well. So they must target casual gamers who have enough money and are willing to spent them. The problem is that these gamers are mostly retarded idiots who cant hadle difficulty levels established by Touhou. Not to say that they would have to whore graphics to the extreme. This or release it for some idiotic handheld. Either way it would mean end of Touhou that most people like.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Or hey, shit, it could just be because those fans are sick of the overwhelming amount of retards screaming me too! me too! me too! The same who then throw tantrums and cry like grown man-babies when they mistakenly think the sky is falling.

    That shit gets old fast.

    Avatar of Blue Slime
    Comment by Blue Slime

    SE is a testament to the crap monopolies produce. as opposed to rival companies that drive each other to continually increase quality.

    Maybe back in the day it would have seemed that Square and Enix working together would have been the ultimate RPG company, but now that we HAVE it we should realize they were only good BECAUSE they had each other to outdo.

    The Sega/Nintendo co-op didn't have the same problem as much because Nintendo had become underdog about the same time Sega dropped out of consoles.

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