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->''In a time when the minds of youth should be happy and free, a war is about to explode! High school students have become the victims of random attacks and kidnappings. With police proving to be no match for the villains, '''the students themselves now rise to take matters into their own hands!'''''
-->--The opening quotes from the arcade intro of ''Rival Schools: United by Fate''

''Rival Schools'', known as ''Justice Gakuen'' (lit. "Justice Academy") in Japan, was one of Creator/{{Capcom}}'s attempts to make a [=3D=] FightingGame. It was notable for having a continuous plotline, in a genre where [[ExcusePlot the plot was often secondary to the fighting.]] Students from all around Japan have mysteriously been disappearing, and teams of students from various high schools wind up fighting to figure out the person(s) behind it all. Players formed teams of two (which could be switched between rounds), and could call their partners in to assist them with an extra hit or energy boost (a feature borrowed from VideoGame/MarvelVsCapcom that would also later make its way into a few of ''TheKingOfFighters'' games). The PlayStation port added many {{Mini Game}}s alongside the main fighting game, as well as a character creation mode based off of DatingSim games. The latter, however, [[NoExportForYou never made it outside Japan]] thanks to how much of an undertaking it would be to translate to other languages, but all the other home version extras made it. [[NoExportForYou In Japan]], the game later got re-released with two new characters, as well as a revamped character creation mode.

It was later followed by a sequel on the Dreamcast, ''Project Justice'', which introduced new characters, expanded the team size to three, and brought on even more school fighting mayhem. In this go around, there aren't as many kidnappings, but students start acting completely wacky, so the same students and teachers (as well as new ones) set out to find out what's going on. The Japanese version again had a character creation mode, this time in the form of the digitized board games (in the vein of VideoGame/MarioParty) that were all the rage at the time.

The games are rather obscure, so there is not likely to be a sequel any time soon. Despite that though Capcom doesn't seem to have forgotten about it though as characters can be seen in the CapcomVSWhatever games (namely ''[[VideoGame/CapcomVsSNK2MarkOfTheMillennium Capcom vs. SNK 2]]'', ''VideoGame/NamcoXCapcom'', ''VideoGame/TatsunokoVsCapcom'' and ''VideoGame/ProjectXZone''). However, in 2012, the PlayStation version of ''United By Fate'' [[http://andriasang.com/con02g/rival_schools_psn/ was re-released as part of Sony's PSN Classics]] program in Japan, leaving hope that the series might not be finished just yet...

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!!This series provides examples of:
* AllThereInTheManual: Zig zagged; the games clearly explain the story and most characters' motivations, but if you want to know more about the characters, you have play through the character creation modes only available in the Japanese versions.
* AmazingTechnicolorBattlefield: "Illusional Space" (Hyo's stage) in the first game.
* AmazonBrigade: The Seijyun High team of [[BikerBabe Akira]], [[ElegantClassicalMusician Yurika]] and [[{{Delinquents}} Zaki]] in ''Project Justice''. Zaki's all-female gang, the Ladies Team, also might count, but not all of them fit the trope's requirement of being attractive
* AnimatedActors: One of the animated endings in the [=PlayStation=] version has the characters portrayed as actors filming a movie, with Raizo as the director of the production. Rivalries aside, their actor personas are still surprisingly in-character.
* AnimeThemeSong: "Atsuki Kodou", the intro theme for the PlayStation version of ''United By Fate''.
* BattleAmongstTheFlames: The climax of ''Project Justice''. The heroes reunite on the steps of Justice High, which Demon Hyo has set aflame.
* BattleAura: Hyo gets a permanent BattleAura when he gets possessed by his dead father Mugen at the end of the second game and becomes "Demon Hyo."
* BattleInTheRain: The penultimate fight in ''Project Justice'' takes place in a rain-soaked quarry.
* BeautyBrainsAndBrawn ''and'' BlondeBrunetteRedhead: The Seijyun High team, with Yurika, Akira and Zaki fulfilling each role in both tropes in that order.
* BootstrappedTheme: Long after the games' releases, the themes for "Classroom of Taiyo High" became the Leitmotif of the games themselves. Batsu tends to use "On the Rooftop of Taiyo High" when he appears in crossover games.
* BrainwashedAndCrazy: Daigo (twice) and Raizo. Also in terms of the in-game story Kyoko, Hideo, Roy, Boman, Tiffany and Shoma also fall victim to this. However...
** It's not just them. Ultimately it's the whole basis of the plot (especially for the first game) and depending on who you do NOT choose to be your partner from the three characters from each school ALL the major characters can theoretically fall victim to this trope just before the end of the game. After the other two characters fight said character they snap out of the brainwashing by ThePowerOfFriendship.
* CharacterCustomization: Both games have this feature but neither of them [[NoExportForYou made it outside of Japan]], due to the sheer volume of text that would have to be translated from the simulation mode. The US versions of the games simply omitted this mode altogether, but Project Justice made up for it by including over a dozen pre-made custom characters to unlock.
* CombinationAttack: Each character has a specific attack you can use when calling them for a Team-Up. Most deal damage, and some restore health or fill up your Burning Vigor gauge. In the sequel, it's possible to get all ''three'' characters in for a Party-Up attack to pile on even more damage. Team-Ups depend on who you call in, but Party-Ups depend on who you're playing as.
* {{Crossover}}: There are numerous references to ''Street Fighter'' in ''Rival Schools'', most notably Sakura's inclusion in the first game. However there are also a few inconsistencies (like Sakura's blood type) that prevents ''Rival Schools'' from fitting neatly into the ''Street Fighter'' continuity.
* DeathCryEcho
* {{Delinquents}}: Daigo, Edge and Gan. Hell, Gedo High is nothing ''but'' a school of delinquents. Zaki and her gang in ''Project Justice'' throw female delinquents into the mix.
* {{Eagleland}}: Whatever version of America the Pacific High kids hail from. Tiffany even has [[WearingAFlagOnYourHead the stars-and-stripes motif]] on her P1 costume (think Stars and Stripes meets gratuitous {{Fanservice}}).
* EmbarrassingMiddleName: Edge hates being called by his real name, Eiji Yamada. Likewise, the masked gang leader Zaki does not answer to Aoi Himezaki (due to the "Hime" part of her name, which translates to "Princess").
* EmpathicEnvironment: It's {{always night}} at Justice High, with a perpetual thunderstorm over the building.
* [[EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep Everyone Calls Her Iincho/Chairperson]]: The ClassRepresentative of Taiyo High is never given a name, and prefers to be called Iincho (Chairperson in the English translations).
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin
* FastballSpecial: Raizo does this to his partner in his team-up move, and Gedo High's Party-Up in ''Project Justice'' has the attacker and his victim thrown into each other by the attacker's partners.
* FlawlessVictory: Acknowledged during the characters' win pose, with a "VICTORY!" from the announcer instead of the typical "WINNER!"
* ForeignExchangeStudent: Roy, Tiffany, and Boman are a team of foreign exchange students from America.
* [[MobWar Gang War]]: A war is brewing amongst Gedo and Seijyun High Schools' respective gangs. The whole mess turns out to have been orchestrated by Kurow.
* GangOfHats: Seijyun High's students wear surgical masks, a cliché of all-female gangs in anime.
* GrappleMove: in addition to normal grabs, crouch, and back grabs. there's {{Combination Attack}}s, which are initiated by a telegraphed, blockable attack and then cuts into a sequence of attack (just like a normal grab move) unique to your partner character. some of these can heal or increase your ManaMeter.
* GratuitousEnglish: Roy (as noted above) and Tiffany both exhibit this at times. Their fellow countryman Boman avoids it by speaking Japanese all the time.
* GrievousHarmWithABody: Some of the team-up attacks: Raizo throws his partner at the enemy. Zaki grabs her partner and swing-slams them into her opponent after her initial stomping. Wild Daigo punches and throws his opponent right at ''his own partner'' them beats the both of them down. Kurow's party-up involves his two partners whaling on the opponent on both sides, then Kurow impales both his own partners and repeatedly hammers them on the opponent. HARSH.
* GuestFighter: Sakura Kasugano from ''StreetFighter'' shows up in the first game. She doesn't figure into the main storyline very much, but she is said to be good friends with Hinata and Natsu.
* HeelFaceTurn: [[spoiler:Kyosuke]], [[spoiler:Raizo]] and [[spoiler:Hyo]] in ''United By Fate''.
** HighHeelFaceTurn: [[spoiler:Yurika]] and (arguably) [[spoiler:Momo]] in ''Project Justice''.
* HeyItsThatVoice: If Batsu's voice and personality seem familiar, then you've probably watched or played one of the many shows or games [[NobuyukiHiyama his seiyuu]] provides voices for.
* HilariousOuttakes: For the Playstation version of the first game, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y22wxouciGk here]].
* HopelessBossFight: Can be subverted -- most of the Stage 3 battles in ''Rival Schools'' are designed to be impossible to win (due to AI damage and health increases), but if you can manage to win, you get to skip straight ahead to the final boss.
* HotBlooded: Batsu...all the way. So much that he turns into Burning Batsu.
** Don't forget Hayato. He's the model of HotBlooded PE teacher that ''{{Naruto}}'''s Might Guy could have been molded after him. That's even his ''surname'' for God's sake! ("Nekketsu" means literally "hot blood".)
* HugeGuyTinyGirl: Inverted with the tall, awkward Natsu and short, angry Shoma.
* IKnowMaddenKombat: Pretty much the shtick of the Gorin High characters. At least the ball sports (baseball - Shoma, volleyball - Natsu, football - Roberto, tennis - Momo) make sense; but taken to very ridiculous levels with a character (Nagare) who fights with ''swimming'' moves!
* IKnowYouAreInThereSomewhereFight: If you play as Kyoko and Hideo in the Arcade version of the first game, you get brainwashed after losing the Hopeless Stage 3 battle. After awhile, one of the two snaps out of it and tries to convince the other to do so by fighting him/her.
* {{Jerkass}}: Roy is very condescending of the Japanese and has a huge superiority complex when it comes to the respective countries. This was toned down a LOT in the western translation which makes it rather odd for gamers who can understand Japanese since only the translation is different. The dialogue is still the same as the original making it somewhat strange to read one thing and listen to something completely different. It should be noted that towards the end of the game Roy has changed his outlook on Japan considerably and seems to view the country with a [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold lot more respect]].
* JokeCharacter: Chairperson, with the [[LethalJokeCharacter glaring exception of her assist]].
** This is probably because she uses Dan Hibiki's own Saikyo style... and learned it from weekend correspondence courses, meaning she isn't as skillful at it as him...
* KiAttacks: Every single character in the game, thanks to Batsu's and Hayato's assists.
* LeftHanging: The end of ''Project Justice''. Yes, Kurow's plan has been foiled but he's escaped custody and Kyosuke disappeared from school [[spoiler:after the death of Hyo]] as well. And what of the Darkside Society that both Kurow and Yurika defected from?
* LetsYouAndHimFight: ''EVERYBODY'' from the different high schools, without exception. It isn't until the last stage of the game that the characters find the real culprits.
* LookWhatICanDoNow: In the Taiyo storyline in ''Project Justice'', if Batsu loses in the second battle, he leaves the party for a while, but returns a few battles later as "Burning Batsu", complete with powered-up attacks and a BattleAura.
* LoveTriangle: Hideo, Kyoko and Hayato are a [[TriangRelations Type 4]] - Hideo and Kyoko are engaged; Hayato, who once had a crush on Kyoko, is simply content to step back [[IWantMyBelovedToBeHappy for Kyoko's happiness]] and play a slight ShipperOnDeck to the couple.
* LukeIAmYourFather: Raizo is Batsu's father, and by extension, Hyo and Kyosuke's uncle (the latter two are twins).
* TheManBehindTheMan: The summary of the first ''Rival Schools''' plot.
* TheMasochismTango: Natsu and Shoma's relationship in a nutshell.
* MindControlEyes: [[RedEyesTakeWarning Red eyes]] indicate in ''United By Fate'' who's under the sway of the villain.
* MultipleEndings: One "bad" ending in ''United By Fate'', and two in ''Project Justice''.
* NoExportForYou: The UpdatedRerelease of the first game, and the character creation modes in all the games.
** Also, the legal trouble with the VAs and music that's kept the games from being re-released sooner. Specifically, Capcom is required to pay them all for every release version of the game, however Capcom has lost contact with a good number of them (and some have stopped working in the industry altogether). The PSOne Classics re-release necessitated Capcom having to [[http://andriasang.com/con02g/rival_schools_psn/ contact a number of companies]] to renegotiate those rights - some of them not even being the original owners of those sounds and voices.
* OddlyNamedSequel: One usually would not have guessed ''Project Justice'' is the real sequel to ''United By Fate'' unless they lived in Japan or a PAL territory. ''[[UpdatedRerelease Nekketsu Seisyun Nikki 2]]'' didn't help matters.
* OneGenderSchool: Gedo High is all-male, while Seijyun High is all-female.
* OneSteveLimit: Sound-alike variant, with Ran Hibiki and Gan Isurugi.
* PantyShot: Hinata, Kyoko, Sakura, Natsu and Tiffany's alternate costumes in the first ''Rival Schools'', Momo and Yurika (although hers is more of a Panty''hose'' Shot).
* ThePowerOfFriendship: The {{Aesop}} of most of the games' stories; almost always the characters triumph over loner villains through their friendship with others.
* PowerTrio: Every school had one. Seijyun Girls School had an [[AmazonBrigade all-female]] PowerTrio in Akira, Zaki, and Yurika.
** This point is hammered home with ''Project Justice'' 's very fighting system, which consists of 3-on-3 battles.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot[=/=]TheCharacterDiedWithHim: The [[Creator/KanetoShiozawa voice actor]] for Hyo Imawano died several months before the release of ''Project Justice'', and so Hyo winds up getting KilledOffForReal.
* RelationshipVoiceActor: Batsu, Hinata and Tiffany's voice actors all take roles similar to the roles they voice in ''GaoGaiGar'' - [[NobuyukiHiyama Batsu]] as TheHero, [[TomoeHanba Hinata]] as the LoveInterest and [[MikiNarahashi Tiffany]] as the {{Eagleland}} ForeignFanservice.
* TheRival: Roy and Batsu. Initially this is very aggressive on Roy's part but towards the end of the game it does shift towards a more friendly rivalry.
* RomanticTwoGirlFriendship: The Seijyun High ending in ''Project Justice'' indicates that the Akira-Yurika relationship is at least this, if not outright SchoolgirlLesbians.
* SchoolOfHardKnocks: Students and faculty from five high schools [[LetsYouAndHimFight fight each other]] to find out who's behind the kidnappings and attacks.
* [[ScrewedByTheNetwork Screwed By The Company]]: Like ''VideoGame/{{Darkstalkers}}'', it has yet to see a another release.
* {{Shotoclone}}: Batsu, Kyosuke and Hideo, with Hideo being the most blatant. Also, Sakura from ''Street Fighter'' in the first game.
* SavvyGuyEnergeticGirl: Roy and Tiffany. Depending on how you look at it, Batsu and Hinata either play this trope straight or invert it.
* ShoutOut: Helmetless Akira's team-up attack in the original game is copied from ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'''s infamous episode "Both of You, Dance Like You Want to Win!"
** Natsu's surname, Ayuhara, may be one to Kozue Ayuhara, the protagonist of ''Attack No. 1'', a volleyball manga from the late [=60s=] (conversely, volleyball being the sport Natsu practices).
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: Shoma was spelled as 'Syoma' in the arcade version of the first ''Rival Schools''.
** The "B"/"V" confusion is apparently lampshaded with [[spoiler:Kurow's identity as]] Batsu's doppelganger being named "Vatsu".
* SuperMovePortraitAttack: In ''Project Justice'', connecting with a Party-Up flashes close-ups of the faces of the attacking team's members before showing the three-person beatdown.
* TakeOverTheWorld: He who controls the school board, controls the universe!
* TitleScream: ''United By Fate'' does this for both the English and Japanese titles. ''Project Justice'' does this with only the Japanese title.
* TomboyAndGirlyGirl: Natsu and Hinata; disregarding the fact that they are from different schools, they've been friends since childhood. Akira and Yurika is another example, though they've only known each other for a short time prior to the events of ''Project Justice''.
* TrainingFromHell: Hayato's aforementioned push-up super.
* TranslationConvention: Despite all being Americans, Roy, Tiffany and Boman speak Japanese almost to the exclusion of their native language. Never mind that Roy's Japanophobic (at first) and Tiffany's grasp of the language is broken to the point of near-total incomprehensibility.
* TwoTeacherSchool: Most of the schools in the series. In the case of Gedo, Pacific and Seijyun, they're all ''No'' Teacher Schools as far as the players are aware.
* UpdatedRerelease: ''Shiritsu Justice Gakuen: Nekketsu Seisyun Nikki 2'', a update of the first ''Rival Schools'', for the [=PlayStation=]. Unfortunately, a lot of people mistake it for a sequel.
* WoundedGazelleGambit: Momo is an ''expert''.
* WrestlerInAllOfUs: Boman actually does a [[{{Kinnikuman}} Kinniku Buster]] in his Team-Up Attack. That aside, most grapples are wrestling-inspired; even little Momo can bust out a piledriver!
* YamatoNadeshiko: Seijyun Girls Academy trains its students to become this. However it's also home to an all-female [[{{Delinquents}} gang]] led by Aoi "Zaki" Himezaki. Ironically, the girl who suits the archetype the most [[spoiler:is Yurika, TheMole from the Darkside Student Council]].
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