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Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou

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Title Screen

Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou

Also known as: Tong Nou (JP)
Developer: OutSide Directors Company
Publishers: Sony Music Entertainment (JP), Sony Imagesoft (US)
Platforms: Windows, Mac OS Classic
Released in JP: October 21, 1994
Released in US: 1995


DevTextIcon.png This game has hidden development-related text.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
TextIcon.png This game has unused text.
BonusIcon.png This game has hidden bonus content.


NotesIcon.png This game has a notes page

This cactus is UNDER CONSTRUCTION
This article is a work in progress.
...Well, all the articles here are, in a way. But this one moreso, and the article may contain incomplete information and editor's notes.

Eastern Mind: The Lost Souls of Tong-Nou is a very... strange and surreal point-and-click adventure game. But when it's made by the creator of LSD: Dream Emulator, that's to be expected.

Hmmm...
To do:
Seriously, look at the WIP. This has author-comments up the ass.

Hoo, boy... With one editor, this is gonna take forever...

  • Snag an animation of how the poisoned graphics for the room of immortality is SUPPOSED to look. Not sure if it's a bad dump (I used the DOSBox + Windows 3.1 emulation commonly used to run the game) but in-game the poisoned animation displays an error box, a black/white effect, and then the actual death plays as normal, when this is not how it's meant to play out.
  • Most of the stuff here is from SHARED.DIR and the TRANSCRI folder. See if any unused content is beyond just these pages.
  • As for extras, document TRNSCRPT.EXE. Specifics for TRNSCRPT.EXE todos are found in the Bonus Content section.
  • Are the oddities with the cutscene for immortality (the images for locations using early screenshots, as well as its internal name) worth documenting?
  • Should there be a Notes page that lists what all the .DXR files are for?
  • There's a seemingly unused graphic "circle" in the Tong-Nou Book's DXR. See if we can verify it's unused.

To anyone who's reading this, go ahead and tell me on my talk profile. I really need advice.

P.S. The Room of Immortality having dummied-out stuff seems to be frequent...

Unused Graphics

Hmmm...
To do:
Apparently the graphics are stored differently in location in the Japanese version. Confirm this.

Unused Cursor

This looks like Candle Jack. "Hey, Candle Jack, I weally like yowe coated in black ink costume."

An unused mouse cursor is in the SHARED.DIR file, occupying slots 936 and 937 in the English version.

Unused Alternate Epilogue

Hmmm...
To do:
Since the ending is the same in the English version, add it, as well as a mockup of what the ending's alternative would be like if this was in the English version.

A slightly different epilogue for the ending is in the game's code, though only in the Japanese version.

Used Unused
Into the infinite and eternal future. Into... Nothing, I guess.

They are nearly identical, save that the alternative version is missing the final line ("Into the infinite and eternal future.").

Unused Dialogue

Hmmm...
To do:
Is msg_NoTou actually used, and is the fact msg_SuiGyou is unused because of a bad dump causing glitches?
Wha, Wha, What are you doing?
It's, It's no time for games.

In the data for Moku-Gyou from the exterior of the Tree of Life is this string of text, named "msg_NoTou". Purpose unknown, but it's obviously meant for Tou.

I am the king of Mon-chien (Land of Dreaming), Sui-gyou.

Stored with the Computer in the Computer in the Land of Time, and named "msg_SuiGyou". Probably meant for typing in Sui-gyou, but the game glitches and doesn't display it.

Non-Fai?

Out of all the rooms in the Helix Palace, one room stands out among the rest like a sore thumb--the Pillar room. Nowhere in the game itself does it actually say what this room's name is; most rooms have characters that tell you what they are, and the Tong-Nou Book names the Room of Greed, but this room with pillars seemingly goes unnamed...

However, in the game's data, the graphics for the room are labelled "G_NONFAI". This may seem minor at first, but the other rooms of the Helix Palace are named by their Tong-Nou name internally as well--for example, The Room of Appetite, Chi-Fang, is called "G_CHIFA" in the game's data. Thusly, it's not unlikely that the Tong-Nou name of the Pillar Room is Non-Fai.

While it still doesn't answer the question what its name is in regards to the "Room of <thing>" format, at least we know some name for it... as to why it wasn't included in the game itself is a mystery for the ages.

Developer Reference Lists

Present in the SHARED.DIR file are a handful of files that list many items.

gGoodsList

A list of all the items in the game.

Card_LIN,Card_BYOU,Card_TOH,Card_SHA,Card_KAI,Card_JIN,Card_LETS,Card_ZEN,Card_GYOU,Maga_METAL,Maga_WATER,Maga_WOOD,Maga_FIRE,
Maga_EARTH,Book,Amulet,Hitogata,Peach,EyeBall,Ant,Chime,MorningGlory,Koma,Compass,Glasses,GoldIngot,SmallMallet,Panacea,Hyotan,
SunWater,SheepIntestine,Chopsticks,GoldenFlower,key,SoundBox,Kane,Hue,Koto,Taiko,Wrench,DreamingEye,LeafSack_empty,LeafSack_full,
WoodDisk,Registration,Mirror,Force_EARTH,Force_METAL,Force_WATER,Force_WOOD,Force_FIRE,Sword

Of note is that all the items use their internal graphics name. As a result, there are a few oddities:

  • Retsu is called "Lets", Tou is called "Toh", and Rin is called "Lin".
  • The Katana is referred to as a Sword.
  • Three of the instruments are referred to with their romanized Japanese: the Flute of Water is called "Hue", the Drum of Fire is "Taiko", and the Bell of Gold is "Kane". The Koto of Wood is an exception to this, as there is no difference in the Japanese and English names.
  • A handful of items are missing a word of their actual name.

gNameList

Lin,Byou,Toh,Sha,Kai,Jin,Lets,Zen,Gyou

A list of the reincarnations. The internal graphics naming rule is followed here.

Partially-Unused Animation

Hmmm...
To do:
  • Get a better video showcasing the animation.
  • Figure out if the corruption was caused by something on the developer's end or as a result of a bad dump of the game.

In the Helix Palace, there is a room which displays a special animation before you die from drinking poison (shown at 3:57). However, in English dumps of the game, the file for the animation is corrupt and will not play, simply showing an error message instead.

Bonus Content

Hmmm...
To do:
Oh, boy...
  • Fix TRNSCRPT.EXE, pronto. That file is currently rather bugged, and requires some fixing if we want to document it.
  • Make an entire sub-page documenting TRNSCRPT.EXE. Keep non-TRNSCRPT.EXE extras out of the sub-page, like the incomplete walkthrough.
  • Find if TRNSCRPT.EXE uses PROMO or PROM000, and on that topic, why PROM000 is only slightly smaller.
  • Anything else about TRNSCRPT.EXE that isn't mentioned here.
  • Should any of these (aside from TRNSCRPT.EXE) be moved to a sub-page?

Present in the game's files is a bunch of bonus content for more clever gamers to find, most rooting from a file called TRNSCRPT.EXE. The majority of these are in the TRANSCRI folder and are meant to be loaded with TRNSCRPT.EXE, but this doesn't actually appear on most computers, has to be loaded manually, and even then it seems to be bugged. Which is unfortunate, as it's really interesting.

Videos

In the data for the regular in-game used videos are a bunch of extra ones. All of these are included in the TRANSCRI folder.

Internal Name Video Description
PROMO, PROM000 The promotional video is left in the game's data. Oddly, PROM000 has a smaller file size but no noticeable difference otherwise. This is able to be seen in TRNSCRPT.EXE under the name of "TONG-NOU COMPU MOVIE" in the "TONG-NOU EXTRACTION" section.
SATO The 1st of the six Sato videos! These don't fit anywhere in-game, but are all a bunch of odd clips just featuring Sato. This is noticeably longer than the other SATO videos, clocking in at about 7 seconds. The SATO videos are used, but very hidden in TRNSCRPT.EXE, only appearing during the included autobiography of Osamu Sato accessible from the top bar of all places.
SATO02 The 2nd of the six Sato videos: Sato thinking on a static background.
SATO03 The 3rd of the six Sato videos: Sato playing with his face.
SATO04 The 4th of the six Sato videos. This video does actually have something interesting, as it shows that the island of Tong-Nou is Osamu Sato's head.
SATO05 The 5th of the six Sato videos: Sato's face shifting to an odd robotic moai head with a red glare repeatedly.
SATO06 The 6th and final Sato video: a simple morph of Sato's facial expressions.

Incomplete Walkthrough

A text file named "HINTS" is in the main folder with the executable. It seems to go from the start of the game to part of Sha's life. This is not in the TRANSCRI folder, instead rooted in the same area for save data, oddly enough.

HINTS FOR EASTERN MIND

The following steps will help you begin your journey:
1. In the prologue, click on the right-pointing hand at the bottom of the screen
to move through the prologue. To return to the previous page, click the
left-pointing hand.
2. Pick up the red amulet (a charm to protect its bearer from harm) and the large
green kerchief (called a furoshiki).
3. When you come to the prologue's final page (the right-side arrow will no
longer appear), click the center section and the main adventure begins.
4. Click the ocean section (the point where the cursor changes) and a red disk
which looks like the sun appears.
5. Click the red disk and it turns into a green face.
6. Click the green face and the image zooms up.
7. Click the green face's left side. An eyeball contained in grating appears.
8. Click the eye in the grating and go inside.
9. Click the reddish-brown trunk. The lid opens.
10. Click the inside of the trunk. A book called the Tong-Nou Illustrated Book in
inside. 
11. Pick up the book.
12. When double-clicking to open the kerchief, the book becomes the Tong-Nou map
illustration. 
13. Double-click the cover and the book opens. 
14. Click "Contents" and the table of contents appears. Click the name of the
part to be read to access that page. To mark pages, double-click the bookmark
with the book opened to the desired page. 
15. To turn the page, click the folded portion at the lower left or lower right
corner. 
16. To return to the main adventure, click any area other than the book. 
17. Click the lower right side of the screen and a wooden passageway appears on
the right.
18. Click the wooden part and enter the passageway. Proceed down the passageway
by clicking at the part where the cursor changes. 
19. You will see a row of five fires. Click the fire in the middleÐit turns into
a pair of eyeglasses. Click the fire on the right and it flames up very large.
The message that "The Amulet has protected you" appears. When you open the
kerchief, the amulet will have disappeared.
20. Click the fire once again. The screen fades out and you die.
21. A message appears. Click the center of the screen and more messages appear.
When you see the mirror, pick it up. 
22. Next, a nameplate bearing the character for "Rin" appears. Pick it up. 
23. Click to turn the screen into a scene with a tree featuring two eyes, two
noses and two mouths hanging down by roots. This is the incarnation system. 
24. Follow the instructions and select an eye, a nose, and a mouth. Select the
eye on the left, the nose on the right, and the mouth on the left, and Sha
appears.
25. Click the center of the screen and a message will emerge. When a musical
instrument appears on the upper right, double-click to pick it up. Click the
center of the screen and you then emerge at the Tree of Life.
26. At the Tree of Life, clicking the screen causes the player to be
automatically carried to the Land of Gold. 
27. Move forward through a gold-colored dome. At the dead end is a character
lying down and a wall mural, both which seem to possess some meaning. 
28. Click the wall mural and the mural image zooms in with a message hint
appearing.
29. Click again and return to the original picture. 
30. Adjust the arrow to point to the right and click. When the direction changes,
click again. (You will make a 180¡ change in direction.) 
31. Take one step forward, turn left and the music changes.
32. Open the kerchief, use the gold bell and the pillar slides right. 
33. Click the interior and enter Sha's room. 
34. Clicking center screen makes a message appear. Continue clicking to read the
entire message, then click the screen's right edge twice. This causes a 180¡
change in direction. 
35. Move forward and enter a corridor. Place the cursor over the pillar on the
far side, and it turns into the shape of a hand. 
36. Pushing the mouse button, slide the mouse to the right to move the column,
then click the mouse to enter the secret room. 
37. In the deepest part of that room, there are two jewels. Click the two jewels
and they will emit fire and turn into dragons.
38. Continue to click each of the dragons and the flames collide and turn into a
flower-like image. 
39. Pick up the gold-colored flower, then click the screen's right edge twice for
a 180¡ change in direction.
40. Take one step forward and turn left. Two images will appear. 
41. Click the left image. It will collapse and a secret passageway will appear. 
42. Click the passageway entrance and enter a flaming corridor that you have
already passed through. 
43. Click the second flame from the left and you'll be in the Land of Time. 
44. Continue clicking as the cursor moves forward and changes. You emerge where
something resembling a picture has been drawn on the ground. 
45. Click it and the scene zooms in with a hint message flowing across the
screen. 
46. Click again and return to the original scene. 
47. Click twice on the right side for a 180¡ change in direction.
48. Click forward three times while maintaining the changing cursor as it moves
forward. You will see Tong-Tah, a burning lighthouse. Click until you see
Tong-Tah's name. 
49. Click the tower stairway and ascend the tower. 
50. Continue to move forward. Ignore any strange characters which appear along
the way and continue on. Pay close attention to the background music. 
51. Upon traveling a certain distance, you will hear a hand drum mixed faintly
into the background music. 
52. Open the furoshiki and use the gold bell. A flaming hand drum appears. 
53. Pick up the flaming hand drum and move further forward. You will be at the
entrance to a red-decorated room.
54. Go inside to find twin characters and a keyboard-like object in the
foreground.