As LostWord is a story that follows multiple characters over multiple different universes (Multiverse Theory, you know, easy stuff), it is only natural for many of the Friends you meet to come from various timelines and diverging events. Or at the very least, most of the Festival and Ultra Festival Friends come from these unique universes compared to the rest of the cast. All of this information can be seen through the Universe indicator, located on a Friend’s menu screen. More information regarding the universes can be found here, but what if you don’t have that Friend nearby to check? Fortunately for you, here is a basic overview of all of the current LostWord universes revealed!
Two notes before we continue: the Friends we gather in-game are different from their story appearances. This is mentioned quite early on in the story itself, as it is seen that the main character (MC) summons the Friends as a type of shikigami to fight for them. This means that the Friends summoned cannot truly reflect the twists discovered in the story, so don’t expect B2 Junko to reveal all of her plans for your ears. At the very least, we are able to look over their universe of origin.
Additionally, as this is a universe indicator and not a story overview, story spoilers will be mostly avoided for this summary. Unfortunately, the characters included in each universe cannot be side-stepped, but this article will do its best to not spoil the entire plot of the universe’s relevant chapter. Still, remember to read ahead by your own digression.
L1: The Fluctuating Hub
Includes: All General and many Festival Friends
The most common universe of where most Friends are from, L1 is described as one of the most complex universes that both converges and diverges the most from other universes. These rapid diverges can be explained by the in-game events (both Main Story and seasonal events), as it can be assumed that this universe is where these events occur. The Fantasy Rebirths and all current in-game costumes are targeted toward a Friend’s L1 variant, ironically allowing the player’s actions to have your Friends diverge even more from their original timeline.
The meaning of the “L” of the universe is currently unknown (although in a meta-sense can refer to “Lost” or “LostWord” due to relating to every ordinary unit), and the “1” is connected to this universe’s relative stability, as all of the characters have still gone through all of the events of the canonical Touhou mainline games and print works.
A-Type: A Blast to the Past
Includes: Scarlet Variants (A6), Cherry Blossom Variants (A7), Eternal Variants (A8), Flower Variants (A9), Faith Variants (A10), Fantastic Variants (A12)
Friends from the A-Type of multiverse share the same common theme: being based off of the number of their corresponding mainline Touhou game. All of the Friends’ skills, attacks, and even personalities call back to the incident they first appeared or resolved (with the exception of Scarlet Reimu and Marisa, who are based off Embodiment of Scarlet Devil rather than their first PC-98 appearances). Their points of divergence are, as stated before, linked to their incident of origin, likewise meaning that these universes rarely converge due to being pulled from their initial incident. This means that they did not have the time to develop or reflect upon that first incident.
The meaning of the “A” of this universe is likewise unknown (meta-wise…”Alternative”? Seems too easy.), and each number is directly related to the game the character first appeared in. Embodiment of Scarlet Devil (Scarlet) being 6, Perfect Cherry Blossom (Cherry Blossom) being 7, and so on. This numbering system is unlike its function in any other universe, as it merely states the time the Friend is from rather than the universe of origin’s stability.
Z-Type: Scarlet Devil Tower
Includes: Marisa Kirisame (Witch of Scarlet Dreams)
The Z-Type Multiverse is the first major alternative universe that the MC finds themselves in outside of L1 and the first chapter of the Main Story. The primary divergence of note of this universe is rather easy to point out, as it is the impressively gigantic tower that is in the place of the normal Scarlet Devil Mansion. This tower, aptly named the Scarlet Devil Tower, is a structure built by the Scarlet Devil Mansion’s residents in response to the events that occurred in their universe. What events, exactly? You’ll just have to find out for yourself…
“Z” stands for “Zodiac Signs,” reflecting on the powers that the current only Friend from this world, Marisa Kirisame (Witch of Scarlet Dreams), utilizes. As for the scaling, “1” represents the very little divergence this universe takes in comparison to A6, almost mirroring the events related to the Scarlet Devil Mansion. Likewise, this means that this universe barely converges.
After the events of Chapter 2, the Z universe has been revisited for notably 2 occasions: one time to visit the Witch of Scarlet Dreams once more, and another during the challenge game mode of Scarlet Devil Tower.
R-Type: Hakugyoku Arena
Inclues: Yuyuko Saigyouji (Tiny Ghost Mistress) (R2), Youmu Konpaku (Mysterious Sword Master) (R8)
The R-Type Multiverse is one of the much more complex universes of LostWord, already seen by the variations the Friends here take from their L1 forms. In this universe, the Saigyou Ayakashi appears to be in full bloom and appears to have a strange connection with the new Hakugyoku Arena. It appears that the Netherworld is also the mainly populated area, or it is hard to tell due to the inability to leave. How does this relate to the…darker nature of Youmu Konpaku’s appearance and the newfound youth in Yuyuko Saigyouji?
“R” stands for Recursive Acronym, described as an acronym that refers to itself. The scaling differs based on the Friend: Yuyuko has a scaling of “2,” meaning her universe diverges less than Youmu, who has a scaling of “8.” Why do these two still appear to be very close, then…? R2 also appears to converge with many other universes and diverge from A7 the same way Z1 diverges from A6, while R8’s convergence and divergence is unknown.
Similar to the Scarlet Devil Tower, the Hakugyoku Arena can be visited again through the Daily Hakugyoku Arena mode. However, unlike the Scarlet Devil Tower mode, there are currently no additional cutscenes to explain the reasoning for revisiting this universe.
Code B: A Binary World
Includes: Junko (Nameless Space Terror) (B2), Lunar War Combatants (B3), Peace Temples (B3)
Perhaps the most confusing parallel universe of all, the B-Type Multiverse sees a lot of Friends in much different apparel and situations. Not much can be said for certain of these multiverses, although some conflict with the Moon (and by extension, the Lunar Capital) can be assumed by the nature of the Lunar War Combatants as well as the conflict the Peace Temples appear to be locked in. B3 is the “code” of the first set of Hifuu LostWord content, which appears to even have a slightly different MC than the Main Story. As a very mysterious set piece, it is up to the MC, Renko, and Maribel to uncover the secrets of this universe.
“B” stands for “Binary Data,” made up of 0s and 1s. This is perhaps a reference to the mechanical upgrades and changes both the Lunar War and Peace Temple Friends see themselves with in these universes. For a currently unexplained reason, Junko has a lower divergence scale of "2" while both Lunar War Combatants and Peace Temples have a divergence scale of “3.” The Lunatic Space Youkai is unique in having the currently highest divergence scale of "5." The B-Type Multiverse appears to converge with a very large number of universes and its point of divergence is unknown, but assumed to be before the events of A8.
Code E: Pseudo Paradise
Includes: Remilia Scarlet (Tiny Devil Mistress) (E9), Flandre Scarlet (Vampire Pursuing the Hunter) (E1), Sakuya Izayoi (Legendary Vampire Hunter) (E1)
As the second universe that is explored through the Hifuu LostWord storyline, the E-Type multiverse trades the confusion of B3 (though still having many mysteries behind it!) with more chaos. From a quick glimpse, it is clear that every Friend involved in this multiverse is vastly different from their original iterations. The divergence scale is a tool meant to estimate how far a world, both its timeline and Friend itself, diverges from its canonical events. Remilia Scarlet has the largest divergence scale we have seen so far, at 9. However, for some reason, it appears that Remilia's other servants and even her sister are less divergent than her. What could be the reason...?
"E" stands for "Englisc," which is another word for Old English. While unclear (and avoiding spoilers), this may refer to the residence that Remilia and the other E-Type Friends find themselves in, appearing in a mansion similar but still vastly different from the Scarlet Devil Mansion we are used to. Remilia is our only candidiate from E9, with her shedding no light on where this universe converges or diverges. Meanwhile, Flandre (and the other members of this timeline) are from E1, which confirms that the point of divergence is theorized to be before A6, or the events of the Embodiment of Scarlet Devil.
Includes: Reimu Hakurei (God-Summoning Shaman (F1)
By far the most mysterious multiverses shown to us in LostWord (at the moment) is the home universe of the shrine maiden clad in blue. Even the game itself reveals very little about this universe, making it hard to say anything concrete about the world. Reimu herself seems to act a little more...rash than the L1 Reimu, but are they really all that different? Reimu mentions having other friends that relate to her power, so it is very possible for other F1 world-travelers to be out there...
"F" stands for "Formula," which the game relates to mathematical formulas. Reimu's divergence scale is low at "1," potentially relating to the way this Reimu's growth in terms of learning to summon gods for the Second Lunar War (described by the events of Silent Sinner in Blue). This is also reflected by F1's divergence being very similar to A10.3. The game lacks any information to make confirmation regarding convergence.