ZUN (太田順也, romanized Jun'ya Ota) is the sole known member of Team Shanghai Alice, and is the designer, programmer, script writer, and composer of the extremely popular Touhou Project series. He is seen to be rather reclusive, and thus very little is known about him, except that he's very fond of beer. He was employed by Taito Corporation, and had been involved in the production of various Taito titles.
- 東方靈異伝 ～ The Highly Responsive to Prayers (Amusement Makers 1996)
- 東方封魔録 ～ The Story of Eastern Wonderland (Amusement Makers 1997)
- 東方夢時空 ～ The Phantasmagoria of Dim.Dream (Amusement Makers 1997)
- 東方幻想郷 ～ Lotus Land Story (Amusement Makers 1998)
- 東方怪綺談 ～ Mystic Square (Amusement Makers 1998)
- 東方紅魔郷 ～ the Embodiment of Scarlet Devil (Team Shanghai Alice 2002)
- 東方妖々夢 ～ Perfect Cherry Blossom (Team Shanghai Alice 2003)
- 東方萃夢想 ～ Immaterial and Missing Power (Collaboration with Tasogare Frontier 2004)
- 東方永夜抄 ～ Imperishable Night (Team Shanghai Alice 2004)
- 東方花映塚 ～ The Phantasmagoria of Flower View (Team Shanghai Alice 2005)
- 東方文花帖 ～ Shoot the Bullet (Team Shanghai Alice 2005)
- 東方風神録 ～ Mountain of Faith (Team Shanghai Alice 2007)
- 東方緋想天 ～ Scarlet Weather Rhapsody (Collaboration with Tasogare Frontier 2007)
- 東方地霊殿 ～ Subterranean Animism (Team Shanghai Alice 2008)
- 東方星蓮船 ～ Undefined Fantastic Object (Team Shanghai Alice 2009)
- 東方非想天則 ～ Hisoutensoku (Collaboration with Tasogare Frontier 2009)
- ダブルスポイラー ～ Double Spoiler (Team Shanghai Alice 2010)
- 妖精大戦争 ～ Fairy Wars (Team Shanghai Alice 2010)
- 東方神霊廟 ～ Ten Desires (Team Shanghai Alice 2011)
- 蓬莱人形 ～ Dolls in Pseudo Paradise (Team Shanghai Alice 2002)
- 蓮台野夜行 ～ Ghostly Field Club (Team Shanghai Alice 2003)
- 夢違科学世紀 ～ Changeability of Strange Dream (Team Shanghai Alice 2004)
- 幻想曲抜萃 東方萃夢想 ORIGINAL SOUND TRACK (Collaboration with Tasogare Frontier 2005)
- 卯酉東海道 ～ Retrospective 53 minutes (Team Shanghai Alice 2006)
- 幺樂団の歴史１ ～ Akyu's Untouched Score vol.1 (Team Shanghai Alice 2006)
- 大空魔術 ～ Magical Astronomy (Team Shanghai Alice 2006)
- 幺樂団の歴史２ ～ Akyu's Untouched Score vol.2 (Team Shanghai Alice 2006)
- 幺樂団の歴史３ ～ Akyu's Untouched Score vol.3 (Team Shanghai Alice 2006)
- 幺樂団の歴史４ ～ Akyu's Untouched Score vol.4 (Team Shanghai Alice 2007)
- 幺樂団の歴史５ ～ Akyu's Untouched Score vol.5 (Team Shanghai Alice 2007)
- 全人類ノ天楽録 東方緋想天 ORIGINAL SOUND TRACK (Collaboration with Tasogare Frontier 2008)
- 核熱造神ヒソウテンソク 東方非想天則 ORIGINAL SOUND TRACK (Collaboration with Tasogare Frontier 2009)
- 未知の花 魅知の旅 ～ Unknown Flower, Mesmerizing Journey (Team Shanghai Alice 2011)
- 鳥船遺跡 ～ Trojan Green Asteroid (Team Shanghai Alice 2012)
- 伊弉諾物質 ～Neo-traditionalism of Japan (Team Shanghai Alice 2012)
- 東方香霖堂 ～ Curiosities of Lotus Asia (Colorful PUREGIRL 2003 - 2004; Magazine ELFICS 2004 - 2005; Elnavi 2005 - 2006; Dengeki MOE-OH 2006 - 2007)
- 東方三月精 ～ Eastern and Little Nature Deity (CompAce 2005 - 2006)
- 東方文花帖 ～ Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red (Ichijinsha August 2005)
- 東方紫香花 ～ Seasonal Dream Vision (Tora no Ana October 2005)
- 東方求聞史紀 ～ Perfect Memento in Strict Sense (Ichijinsha December 2006)
- 東方求聞史紀 記憶する幻想郷 (Memorizable Gensokyo) (Comic REX December 2006)
- 東方儚月抄 ～ Silent Sinner in Blue (Comic REX 2007 - 2009)
- 東方儚月抄 ～ Cage in Lunatic Runagate (Chara Mel 2007 - Present)
- The Grimoire of Marisa (Ichijinsha July 2009)
- 東方茨歌仙 ～ Wild and Horned Hermit (Chara Mel Febri 2010)
- 東方求聞口授 ～ Symposium of Post-mysticism (Ichijinsha January 2012)
With Amusement Makers
With Taito Corporation
A limited biography of ZUN could be written based upon the lengthy texts included within his games (letters to the player) and interviews for various publications. Unfortunately, a large majority of these remain untranslated. Despite the current massive lack of information known or comprehensible, some tidbits of information are known about the man.
According to Japanese Wikipedia, Jun'ya Ota was born on March 18, 1977Hakuba, Nagano, and graduated from Tokyo Denki University, the home of Amusement Makers. The MAG-Net episode shows that he currently lives in Ebina, Kanagawa. ZUN has stated in an interview that he weighs only 50kg (roughly 110lbs). Whether this is really accurate is impossible to truly confirm, but it is clear that he is very thin, almost ridiculously so., in
He has confirmed in an interview that he had started composing his own pieces of music since junior high school, and had learned how to play the Electone (which his parents had bought) and the trumpet (as part of a wind instruments ensemble) since elementary school. He has also mentioned that the company he worked for didn't like his work on the Touhou Project very much, although the reasons for that remain somewhat unclear.
He jokingly states in an email that he has been working on, and will continue to work on, the Touhou Project games because a part of him lacks common sense. However, he has stated that the actual reason why he originally made the game series and Team Shanghai Alice is because he couldn't find any games he liked himself, so he decided to make games he liked entirely by himself. In the Swedish Magazine Interview, he replies to the last question with, "I'm going to keep making games that stand out, so if all my fans disappear I'm still happy I can keep doing the games I want."
ZUN got his name from the sound team Zuntata at Taito Corp., the same company that he worked with (coincidentally, the word 'zun' is a Chinese bronze vessel used to store alcohol). Taito made Darius Gaiden, one of ZUN's favorite shooter games. That's one of the known reasons for him to start the Touhou Project.
It is known that ZUN is a fan of music that uses FM (Frequency Modulation) Synthesis, as most of the non-MIDI music in the PC-98 games were created using FM Synthesis. He also states in a note in the Akyu's Untouched Score albums that he resents the gradual phasing out of FM Synthesis that is occurring today.
According to a post made on ZUN's Twitter around September 2009, he now has a job other than making the Touhou games (what type of job he has wasn't stated, only that on the first day of work he was an hour early.) He said in his interview with MAG-Net that his fondest ambition in life is to open a brewpub.
During a radio interview in February, 2012 ZUN mentioned that he had married. On May 27th, 2012 (the day of Reitaisai 9) an formal ceremony was held. All that is known about his wife is that she too is a programmer and they originally met in 2004.
- Interview in Swedish Player1 Magazine
- Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red/Introduction to "Touhou" Game Design
- ZUN's E-mails
- ZUN's contributions
- ZUN talks about Silent Sinner in Blue
- ZUN’s Genyou Denshou Lecture
- ZUN talks about Undefined Fantastic Object (YouTube)
- Interview on Nae Radio (September 2009)
- Touhou MAG-Net Documentary/Interview Part 1 (YouTube)
- Touhou MAG-Net Documentary/Interview Part 2 (YouTube)
- Touhou MAG-Net Documentary/Interview Part 3 (YouTube)
- Touhou MAG-Net Documentary/Interview Part 4 (YouTube)
- Touhou MAG-Net Documentary/Interview Part 5 (Youtube)
- Lecture at Meiji University (Summarized and selectively translated)
- Shanghai Alice Correspondence
- Invisible Games and Japanese, ZUN's blog
- ZUN's reply to messages on the former Gensou Bulletin Board 1
- ZUN's reply to messages on the former Gensou Bulletin Board 2
- ZUN's reply to messages on the former Gensou Bulletin Board 4
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 1
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 2
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 3
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 4
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 5
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 6
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 7
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 8
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 9
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 10
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 11
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 12
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 13
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 14
- ZUN's former blog "Touhou Shofu" 15
- Interview at 4gamer.net
- ZUN talks about The Highly Responsive to Prayer at 4gamer.net
- Introduction to Touhou and brief interview with ZUN on "The Net Star" TV show (YouTube)
- ZUN talks about Subterranean Animism, part 1 (Niconico)
- ZUN gets drunk and rambles about stuff (Niconico)
- ZUN talks about Subterranean Animism, part 2 (Niconico)
- ZUN at the after-party of Hakurei Jinjya Reitaisai 7 on March 14, 2010 (Niconico)
- Zun was live on cam! (YouTube)
- ZUN at the after-party of Hakurei Jinjya Reitaisai 7 on March 8, 2011 (Niconico)
- Zun talk about smartphone platforms (appget.com)
- In the game Touhou Soccer Moushuuden, He makes an appearance (but not in real looks) in the ending, announcing the second tournament.
- In his interview on Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red, ZUN said that he develops his games with Visual Studio, Adobe Photoshop and Cubase SX.
- The theme song "| Kid's Festival ~ Innocent Treasures" in Changeability of Strange Dream is ZUN's official theme. He has stated in Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red that writing this song was somewhat embarrassing and that "It's like the theme song that plays when you make your entrance on a talk show". This has happened twice or more when ZUN entered a talk show.
- This theme seems to be the only theme where ZUN has wrote lyrics for, but he either couldn't or didn't get anyone to be sing the vocal, so the theme was left as a non-vocal.
- ↑ He is currently not employed by Taito. It was stated in Nico Nico Live (Association of Victims of Takeshi's Challenge -Come Out, Developers! Special-) broadcast on 3/31/2009.
- ↑ http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/interest/2012-02-29/touhou-project-creator-zun-gets-married