• Amir-Hamza

World Fighting Game Characters Asia Part 4: Japan diaspora and minorities

Updated: Nov 3, 2021

They say that the fighting game community (FGC) is one of the most diverse fan communities within the videogame industry. But not only is the community diverse. So are the characters in each game as many intend to represent a country and usually the martial art of said country. So we wanna list how diverse the Characters of fighting games are. To be clear the games that we will include feature characters who debut from these games. So no Injustice or Marvel vs Capcom or Smash Brothers characters. Just characters created for fighting games.

Fighting Games Included are 3 Count Bout, Aggressors of Dark Kombat, ARMS, Art of Fighting, Battle Arena Toshinden, Battle of the Beast Gods/Savage Reign, Breakers, Buriki One, Darkstalkers, Dead or Alive, Dual Blades, Ehrgeiz, Eternal Champions, Fatal Fury, Fight Fever, Fighter's History, Fighter's Impact, Fighting Layer, Fighting EX Layer, Final Fight: Revenge, Guilty Gear, Kakuto Chojin, Kaiser Knuckle/Global Champion, Killer Instinct, King of Fighters, King of Monsters, Knuckle Heads Mace; The Dark Age, Martial Champion, Mortal Kombat, Omen of Sorrow, Power Instinct, Power/Deadly Moves/Athlete, Power Stone, Punch Out, Rage of the Dragons, Samurai Shodown, Saturday Night Slam Masters, Skullgirls, Soul Calibur, Street Fighter, Tekken, Tuff E Nuff, Virtua Fighter, War Gods and World Heroes.

Japanese American Ken Masters watches Afro-Japanese Brazilian Sean Matsuda fight Hong-Konger Japanese Dan Hibiki

As Japan is a heavily over represented country in the martial arts industry, Fighting Games are no exception, we have an entire article dedicated to the characters from Japan. We have done the same for USA and China. The Japanese were excluded from the Far East article due to their Surplus of characters. This article will cover Japanese diaspora characters (like Japanese Americans or Japanese Brazillians) or Ethnic minority characters in Japan (like Japanese Nigerians for example) the reason mainland Japan is currently excluded is due to the sheer number of Japanese characters in fighting games means this article could not be posted in full so the second half of Japan will be posted as separate.

.No Social, Political or otherwise unnecessary offensive comments please as this article is to share and celebrate culture and diversity

Diaspora Japanese Citizens

Hitomi from Dead or Alive

(She is German Eurasian. Specifically half German half Japanese)

Claire Andrews from Ehrgiez

(She is specifically Japanese American. Other sources states she is British. Possibly part British part Japanese American)

Blue Mary Ryan from Fatal Fury

(She is one quarter Japanese American on her grandfather's side)

Kevin Rian from Fatal Fury

(Bit of a stretch but he is a relative of Blue Mary, possibly sharing the same one quarter Japanese American heritage if he is her Brother or cousin)

Guy from Final Fight: Revenge

(He is Japanese American. Some sources claim he was born in Japan raised in America or Born and Raised in America lived in Japan to train in Bushinryu Ninjutsu, most likely possesses dual nationality of both countries)

Zappa from Guilty Gear

(Most likely Asian-Australian judging by his Japanese styled motif)

Rena from Kakuto Chojin

(Japanese born Brazilian. Brazil has the largest Japanese diaspora)

Krizalid from King of Fighters

(He is a clone of K who has DNA from Kyo Kusanagi. It is unknown what K's ethnicity or nationality is but he is brown skinned whilst Japanese Kyo is pale. Krizalid is brown skinned much like K but is unknown why Krizlid and K are brown skinned. He can be counted as Irish Asian if going by the Kyo's DNA being used for both and making them partially Japanese. If Krizalid is brown skinned in Ireland he would most likely pass off as Irish South Asian or if he has visible oriental features Irish Filipino)

Alice Garnet Nakata from King of Fighters

(She is stated to be half Japanese American)

Moe Habana from King of Fighters

(Stated to be Japanese American)

Bandeiras Hattori from King of Fighters

(Likely Japanese and Afro-Brazilian judging be surname and appearance)

Dan Hibiki from Street Fighter

(He is at least partially Japanese by his Father Go Hibiki as their name suggests)

Oro from Street Fighter

(He is Japanese Brazilian)

Sean Matsuda from Street Fighter

(Pardo Brazilian of Japanese and Afro-Brazilian descent)

Laura Matsuda from Street Fighter

(Same as her Brother Sean. She is Pardo Brazilian of Japanese and Afro-Brazilian Descent)

Ethnic Minority/Ambiguously Japanese Citizens

Ellis from Battle Arena Toshinden

(Ellis is Japanese born raised in Turkey, likely of Turkish descent)

Kokoro from Dead or Alive

(She is Helena's illegitimate half sister. She is Japanese of half Japanese half French origin. She was raised in Japan, not France unlike German Japanese Hitomi)

Athena Asamiya from King of Fighters

(She is a distant descendant of Athena from the video game Athena. The Kingdom of Victory appears to be Greek inspired along with the name Athena, so a Japanese woman with Greek ancestry)

Benimaru Nikaido from King of Fighters

(Is Japanese but supposedly has "American Heritage" most likely white American)

Hinako Shijou from King of Fighters

(Is ethnically half Russian but consider herself Japanese)

Nagase from King of Fighters

(Ethnicity is quite clear, likely Japanese with dyed hair or could be of European or eurasian heritage but unconfirmed at the moment)

Kenshi Takahashi from Mortal Kombat

(half Japanese half white but not specified what his European heritage is, most assume he is part White American but it is unconfirmed)

Takeda Takahashi from Mortal Kombat

(He was born in Thailand, raised by Hanzo Hasashi, most likely in Japan but works with the mostly American Special Forces whilst being voiced with an American accent. He is ethnically half Thai by his mum Suchin quarter Japanese quarter White by his Dad Kenshi Takahashi who is a Eurasian Japanese swordsman)

Clara Hannanokoji from Power Instinct

(Not clear where a Japanese girl got the name Clara)

Bobby Strong from Power Instinct

(Voiced by Nigerian born Japanese based MMA fighter and comedian Bobby Olugun. Likely Bobby Strong is Japanese Nigerian. Notice he has a Japanese and Nigerian flag on his shorts, indicating dual nationality in his case)

Oni from Rage of the Dragons

(he is an orphan, real background is not clear believed to have lived in Japan)

Cassandra from Rage of the Dragons

(same as her foster brother Oni. She is an orphan presumably from Japan. Her first name is a greek name but it is unkown what her true ethnicity is)

Annie Murakami from Rage of the Dragons

(Blonde hair could be dyed or she is could be Eurasian, her tag partner Radel is European possibly Norwegian if thats anything to go by)

Nakoruru from Samurai Shodown

(Japanese of indigenous Ainu origins)

Rimururu from Samurai Shodown

(Also of Ainu origin like her sister)

Setsuka from Soul Calibur

(Born in Europe, raised in Japan. Her original name was apparently Neve. New Timeline states she is half Portuguese)

Ken Masters from Street Fighter

(Originally 3/4 Japanese American, most modern sources state partially Japanese on his mums side. Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist states his mum's name is Yuki. He has lived in Japan since the age of 12 before returning to the USA in his 20s)

Edmond Honda from Street Fighter

(Presumably a full blooded Japanese man but the first name Edmond is never really explained. The 1994 film state he is Japanese Hawaiian but portrayed by Peter Tuiasosopo who is Samoan American if that's anything to go off)

Vega from Street Fighter

(Spent a long time in Japan to learn Ninjutsu. Unlikely to be a citizen though)

Rainbow Mika from Street Fighter

(most likely fully Japanese, her blonde hair and blue eyes are believed to be due to hair dyeing and contect lenses. Notably some of alternate colours and costume changes her eye colour to match her clothes further cementing that idea)

Karin Kanzuki from Street Fighter

(Her father is 100% Japanese. Karin first name is used in European and Asian cultures. Her Blonde hair, hazel eyes and her European aristocrat motif of her fashion and stage may indicate her mother is wealthy European woman. She is considered the Ken to Sakura's Ryu. As Ken is mixed too this could be what they're hinting at)

Elena from Street Fighter

(Her SF4 ending shows she is an exchange student in Japan. So this would be a qualifier for an Ethnic Minority. Though she likely does not have citizenship)

Lee Chaolan/Violet from Tekken

(Chinese born Japanese raised. Adopted son of Heihachi)

Ling Xiaoyu from Tekken

(is officially Chinese, but studies in Japan as an Exchange student and is even voiced in Japanese instead of Mandarin or Cantonese)

Panda from Tekken

(She is from China but lives in her friend Xiaoyu in Japan. Trained with Kuma II)

Lars Alexandersson from Tekken

(He is Swedish Eurasian as he is half Japanese through his father Heihachi. By the time he is introduced in Tekken 6 as a member of the Teken force in Japan. He even speaks fluent Japanese despite not being raised by Heihachi who didn't know him)

Lucky Chloe from Tekken

(she is apparently not American or Japanese. But she appears to speak English with heavy Japanese accent and apparently works for Kazuya's company. She could be counted as a expatriate to Japan of unknown European ethnicity)

Check out our other world fighting game character articles the links below

World Fighting Game Characters Africa

World Fighting Game Characters Oceania

World Fighting Game Characters The Americas Part 1

World Fighting Game Characters Europe Part 1

World Fighting Game Characters Asia Part 1

World Fighting Game Characters The Americas Part 2

World Fighting Game Characters Europe Part 2

World Fighting Game Characters Europe Part 3

World Fighting Game Characters Asia Part 2

World Fighting Game Characters Europe Part 4

World Fighting Game Characters The Americas Part 3

World Fighting Game Characters Asia Part 3

World Fighting Game Characters Asia Part 5

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