OP here. Kind of forgot about this thread but I’ll try and put this feeling into something a bit more cohesive, sorry if I sound a little autistic.
Touhou and Gensokyo are the perfect refuge from the outside world. I’m so tired of all the unnecessary fighting, greed and damage that people cause for absolutely no reason. Not only that, but most people are NPC’s solely concerned with themselves, living their lives consuming pointless media designed to exploit. Of course, not everyone is like this, but it’s such an overwhelming majority that it swallows out honest people who want no harm. Gensokyo is, as other anon’s have said, a place of peace, and full of people who truly are individuals. Individuals in their goals, personalities, even their looks, not struggling to fit into what everyone else is doing. There may be an incident or two, but most of the time, the culprit isn’t ‘evil’, but just someone who thinks differently, and someone who the heroines, and the audience, can come to understand and love for who they are.
Even down to the landscape itself, Gensokyo itself feels so familiar, yet full of wonder. I’m English (unfortunately), so I grew up around a lot of old buildings, and historic sites like castles and cathedrals. Touhou has this familiarity with religious areas and old buildings, but all of them are based around Japanese mythology, taking something nostalgic for me and warping it into something unknown. Yet, despite this, Gensokyo feels like home. It’s the ‘fantasy land’ I dreamed of as a kid, filled with magic and mystery, yet fleshed out, wonderfully written, and with that hint of unfamiliarity that just makes me want to explore it even more, and stay there forever.