Cirno (Japanese: Chiruno) is an ice fairy who first appeared in the second stage of Embodiment of Scarlet Devil. As a fairy, she is exceptionally strong for her kind, matching the power of some weak youkai. However, compared to most of Gensokyo's residents, she's quite weak. Her personality is childish and she is sometimes considered idiotic by other characters. She stars as the main protagonist of Fairy Wars, and one of several protagonists in Touhou Hisoutensoku and Hidden Star in Four Seasons.
Her known name is "Cirno"/"Chiruno", which has a currently unknown origin. It's likely based on the Japanese pronunciation of the English word "chill", (Japanese: chiru). Her name appearing as "Chilno" in Eastern and Little Nature Deity supports this possible origin. The earliest known official use of the name "Cirno" is in her Phantasmagoria of Flower View profile.
Her design in Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, Perfect Cherry Blossom and Double Dealing Character shows that Cirno has aqua-colored eyes and hair. She wears a blue ribbon, light pink blouse, blue jumper dress and seems to be wearing white socks. She also has icicle-shaped wings. In Phantasmagoria of Flower View and Touhou Hisoutensoku's official art, her ribbon is green instead of blue altho, her sprite in Phantasmagoria of Flower View still keeps the blue ribbon. In Fairy Wars, her bow is once again blue, her blouse has been changed to white and she seems to have bigger eyebrows.
Her alternative outfit in Phantasmagoria of Flower View is the same as her normal outfit, except her bow is a darker shade of green while her blouse appears to be light purple, and her dress is purple as well.
Her appearance in Hidden Star in Four Seasons gives her tanned skin, a flowery vine wrapped around her body, and a sunflower ribbon around her neck. The sunflower on her chest may be a visual reference to Evil Ryu's hole in his chest.
In the Trial+ version of Perfect Cherry Blossom, she appears with a white sash bow around her waist. This only applies to her portrait, her boss sprite lacks the extra detail. Notably, this has been the only time Cirno has had this extra accessory, it has since been gone and never appeared in any other future games or print.
Cirno is a childish, confident fairy who appears to have a superiority complex in regards to others. She proclaims herself to be "the strongest" on three separate occasions in Phantasmagoria of Flower View. In the game's manual, she is labeled as "9. baka" (literally "9. Idiot"). She was again labeled as such in the manual for Touhou Hisoutensoku. This implies that Cirno may be some kind of idiot, which does seem to be the case on some occasions - in Oriental Sacred Place, she is quite confused as to why nobody wants to buy her water-flavored shaved ice. Poor Cirno.
Despite this, she is smart enough to know when she is in deep trouble, such as her battle against Yuuka in Phantasmagoria of Flower View's story mode. She can also read, unlike some of her peers. She can also count (she shows knowledge of rounding and fractions in Fairy Wars).
Among other things, she enjoys using her abilities to freeze frogs, then watch them revive while thawing out in the water. However, about one in every three attempts fails, shattering the frog to pieces.
Cirno has the ability to manipulate cold to the point of being able to freeze water.
In battle, she uses this ability to attack others with icicles, huge ice cubes, or wieldable weapons like swords, but also to freeze her opponents or their danmaku. However, despite being able to freeze something hot like a flaming danmaku, she is still unable to freeze lasers.
How she exactly manipulates cold is unclear, but Reisen Udongein Inaba speculated in one of her quotes in Touhou Hisoutensoku, that when Cirno does it, she warms up inside as a result. This would mean that she just absorbs the heat in the surroundings instead of "creating" cold from nothing. Despite that, it seems like her surroundings are chilly even in the summer.
In the games, she generally only shows up as a stage 1-2 boss, as she isn't that strong. It is said that fairies in particular, have an existence below that of humans. However, among fairies Cirno possesses unusually strong power. In fact, She was playable in Phantasmagoria of Flower View and was able to defeat Reimu Hakurei, Marisa Kirisame, Sakuya Izayoi, and others. Technically, when she "defeats" Aya Shameimaru and Yuuka Kazami, she didn't really defeat them as they still appeared unhurt after battle, implying that it was Cirno who ran away. In Fairy Wars, even though she wins when she battled Marisa, the one whose illustration showed to be "defeated" was Cirno; it was a simple case of Marisa letting her guard down.
In Perfect Memento in Strict Sense, according to the other fairies; "if she schemes, she is caught, so it is good even to refresh oneself of one's habitual anger," among it, there does exist the warning of "if you meet her, you should flee." Furthermore, Eiki Shiki, Yamaxanadu commented on her saying "although you are a fairy, you possess great power". Since she goes beyond the limits of other fairies, there may be the possibility of Cirno dying.
Tom © 2021