Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou

From Osamu Sato Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

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 video game developed by OutSide Directors for Microsoft Windows and Macintosh.

It was released in Japan in 1994, with the English version being released overseas one year later in early August 1995.

Its sequel, Chu-Teng, was released in Japan only in 1995.


(Spoiler Warning Ahead)

The game begins with Rin having lost his soul. This is revealed to have been the work of the island Tong-Nou, which devours human souls.

Rin decides to head 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 (not immediately, the player must find 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.

In total, there are eight creatures to be reborn as, and so eight more Nameplates to acquire (Byou, Tou, Sha, Kai, Jin, Retsu, Zen and Gyou).

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.