Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou
|Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou
|JP: 21 May 1994 (Mac)
21 October 1995 (Windows)
NA: December 1995
Tong-Nou (東脳, Ton'nō lit. East Mind), localized in the west as Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou, is a point-and-click adventure game developed by OutSide Directors Company and published by Sony Music Entertainment for Microsoft Windows and Macintosh.
Its sequel, Chu-Teng, was released in Japan only in 1995.
The story begins with Rin getting their soul stolen by Tong-Nou, a living "island" with a long history of devouring human souls. Tong-Nou is a giant green head, with his ears, cheeks, and the back of his head leading into a different "land". Each land is themed after one of the five elements of wuxing.
Rin embarks on a journey to Tong-Nou to retrieve his soul. Before doing so, he decides to visit the Yashiro shrine. On the way he meets a white snake who gifts him with the Furoshiki, in which Rin can carry items, and an Amulet, a one-use item that will protect him from death. At the Yashiro shrine, Rin receives a temporary soul from an old man. This temporary soul will last him 49 days.
Upon arriving at Tong-Nou, a strange island in the shape of a human head, Rin dies after the player finds some way to kill him. However, once he does so, he is told that from now he will acquire nine lives, and that his soul exists as five Magatamas scattered across the five lands of Tong-Nou. Only when he has them all may he retrieve his soul. He is given a Mirror, as well as a Nameplate bearing his name.
Then, he is directed to the roots of Mingke-shu, the Tree of Life. Here, he can select one each from a set of two eyes, two noses, and two mouths, to be reborn as a creature bearing those parts. He is given a mission to complete, and instructions on how to complete it. Half of these missions are simple and require little input from the player besides clicks, while the other half involve fulfilling some menial task for one of the four Kings.
When each creature's mission is completed, that creature will also die. Again, Rin is given a Nameplate bearing the creature's name and directed back to the roots of Mingke-shu to be reborn once more as a different creature.
Once each of the creatures' missions has been accomplished, and all eight Nameplates acquired, Rin is reborn as himself once more, and instructed to go to the Central Mountain Tong-nou and break the seal on the mountain. This is done by placing all nine Nameplates into the seal.
Having broken the seal, Rin heads up the steps to the top of the mountain. Partway up, he encounters an image of Tou-gyou. This image tells him where to acquire four of the Magatamas that make up Rin's soul. Once he speaks to the image while in possession of the four Magatamas, it tells him that he still lacks the power to retrieve his soul. It then gifts him with a Katana Gem containing the force of Earth (Source). Rin must then fill this Gem with four other forces from the other four lands of Tong-Nou. To do so, he must visit the images of Tou-gyou that exist in these lands. Firstly, he must visit Yui-wang, the Land of Desire, to acquire the force of Metal (Eternity), then Mon-chien, the Land of Dreaming, for the force of Water (Change), then Ming-ken, the Land of Life, for the force of Wood (Life), and finally Shi-chieng, the Land of Time, for the force of Fire (Confrontation).
Once the Gem has been filled with all five forces, Rin goes back to the Central Mountain Tong-nou. Tou-gyou's image creates the Katana of Five Forces from the Gem, and tells Rin that the time to recover his soul has come. Rin climbs to the Octagonal Shrine Par-fang at the top of the mountain and enters. Here, statues of the four kings of Tong-Nou have entrapped the fifth and final Magatama of Rin's soul, the Earth Magatama. Rin uses the Katana of Five Forces to set the Magatama free. Then, the empty shell of Rin's soul appears. He places the five Magatamas into the shell and his soul is restored.
Tou-gyou, the king of the Central Mountain, who had also been set free by the Katana, appears in the flesh. He explains to Rin that Tong-Nou is not an island that devours human souls. It is an island that purifies troubled souls. The four kings of the four lands had discovered that they could use the souls' Magatamas for their own selfish needs. They had trapped Tou-gyou in the Octagonal Shrine to prevent him from interfering with their plans, and tore him into eight pieces and scattered them all over the Tong-Nou world. He explains that he had been calling out for a soul to save him, but none had been strong enough to withstand the powers of the four kings and were devoured. Rin's soul, however, was strong enough, and he was able to travel the Tong-Nou world and restore Tou-gyou to health. In doing so, his soul became more powerful than ever before. Rin's soul returns to him once more, and the game ends.
The game was originally released for Macintosh in Japan on May 21, 1994. This release came with a double-sided insert containing a map of Tong-Nou and a message written in the Tong-Nou Alphabet. On October 21, 1995, the game was re-released to coincide with the launch of Chu-Teng, alongside a Windows port.
The US version was published by Sony Imagesoft and released on both platforms in December 1995, after several delays. This version includes 3 tracks from Transmigration and the contents of the Transcript CD that was packaged with limited copies of the album. To commemorate its release, a launch party was held in San Francisco, California, where a selection of Sato's work was flown in from Japan to be displayed. Signed copies from the event have occasionally surfaced on auction sites in the years since.
|Eastern Mind Characters
|Rin • Byou • Tou • Sha • Kai • Jin • Retsu • Zen • Gyou
|Land of Life
|Moku-gyou & Moku-gyou's partner • Zoh-gaeru Family • Tabelinai
|Land of Desire
|King-gyou • Chi-fang • Pu-ryao • Show-mi • Nai-nai • Take-yacco • Twei-twei • Long-ri & Long-yui • Rotating Boulder
|Land of Time
|Ka-gyou • Ying & Yang • Ga-show • T.B.C.
|Land of Dreaming
|Sui-gyou • Ah & Ung • Mong-i • Mong-aru • Zuo-mong • Pang-xie
|Tou-gyou • Twins from Tong-Nou (Bibo & Pipo • Babebu & Babebo • Jido & Jizo • Dadezu & Zazezu)
|A-mong Family (Ichi-a-mong • Ni-a-mong • San-a-mong • Yo-a-mong • Goh-a-mong) • Fang-shing
|Eastern Mind Items
|Nameplates • Metal Magatama • Water Magatama • Wood Magatama • Fire Magatama • Earth Magatama • Tong-Nou Illustrated Book • Amulet • Hitogata • Peach • Eyeball-Stone • Ant • Wind Chime • Morning Glory • Koma • Compass • Eye-Glasses • Gold Ingot • Small Mallet • Panacea • Bottle Gourd • Sun Water • Sheep Intestine • Chopsticks • Golden Flower • Key of Gold • Little Box of Sound • Bell of Gold • Flute of Water • Koto of Wood • Drum of Fire • Wrench • Eyeball of Dreaming • Leaf Sack • Disc of Wood • Registration Card • Mirror • Katana Gem • Katana
|Furoshiki • Moon Water • Food of Desire • Rotating Boulder