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Characters: Killer Instinct

Introduced in Killer Instinct

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    Black Orchid 
"One step closer to flushing out UltraTech."

Voiced by: Anzu Lawson (KI 2013)

An agent of a mysterious origin who's tasked with infiltrating UltraTech's tournament and shutting down their operations. Her actions at the end of KI1 caused a rip in the timestream and thrust UltraTech back in time by 2000 years.

Back in the present, she continues her crusade to defeat UltraTech, despite her superiors' insistence that it is gone. Her insistence leads to her being disavowed by the organization, while she begins forming a new network to destroy the corporation.

  • Action Girl
  • Animal Motif: The jaguar, which she turns into in one special. KI 2013 even makes it materialize as a separate entity, as well as use it in several attacks, supers, and even her Instinct Mode.
  • Ambiguously Brown/But Not Too Black. It's unclear whether or not Orchid is Caucasian, Latina, or Black. Her appearance in KI 2013 leans towards Caucasian.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Her Frog Stomp finisher
  • Biker Babe: Takes on the appearance of one in KI 2013.
  • Boobs of Steel: One of the most up-front offensive characters in the game, as well as being one of the easier ones to master.
  • Brother-Sister Team: One of her endings in KI 2013 has Jago coming to her aid to help ease her very troubled mind.
  • Brown Note/Death by Sex/Sexy Spandex-Top Flashing/You Can Leave Your Hat On: Her Breast Flash finisher (unless her opponent is another Orchid. If done, then the other Orchid just stomps the ground and pouts).
  • Calling Your Attacks: The biggest offender in KI 2013, it seems. She shouts "Buster!" when using her Buster Knee (both normal and Shadow), calls out "Ichi Ni San" on every hit of the move, her Instinct Mode has her sometimes call out "Firecat!" and she calls out "Finish!" whenever she activates her Ultra Combo.
  • Combat Stilettos
  • Dual Tonfas: In the second game.
  • Dual Wielding: Whatever weapon she has, she'll always have it in both hands.
  • Fashionable Asymmetry: She's wearing a kneepad on only her right knee in KI 2013.
  • Face-Heel Turn: One of her KI 2013 endings has her paranoia consume her, thinking only of taking UltraTech down. Her mercenary group grows in numbers, but with less and less control or order.
  • Genre Motif: Hers is electronic pop in KI 2013; it sounds like something you might hear on Top 40 radio stations.
  • Goggles Do Nothing: She wears goggles in her KI 2013 design, but they're just there for show.
  • Grenade Spam: Season 2 of the 2013 release gives Orchid the ability to throw grenades at will now, which detonate only on a timer.
  • The Hero: The closest there is to one, considering she beat Eyedol.
  • It's Personal/You Killed My Father: All There in the Manual states that she, as a grown-up, saw the murder of her (and Jago's) parents during the events of 2, something which made her hatred of the Fulgore cyborgs to be extremely intense.
  • Jiggle Physics: Probably the greatest victim of this, considering how her costumes tend to lack any support. The new game has toned it down with one exception.
  • La Résistance: Her character in the 2013 game centers around her singular crusade to take down UltraTech at all costs.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: She's Jago's older sister.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Between her Orgasmic Combat and her Leotard of Power that looks practically painted-on, you bet that this trope is in force.
  • Mythology Gag: Before doing an Ultra in Killer Instinct (2013), she does her Killer Instinct 1 victory pose, complete with Jiggle Physics.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: After she destroyed UltraTech, the surviving characters from the first game are thrown into a time vortex in the second.
    • Oh, and she also got rid of Gargos's competition by killing Eyedol.
  • Not as You Know Them: The first two games portrayed her as a sexy, flirtatious secret agent with 90's pop as her theme. The 2013 game turns her into some kind of GRRL power killer bounty hunter, with the lyrics emphasizing this. "Touch me and I'll break your face!" Turns out her plot for the third game's story mode is that her former agency has cut ties and disavowed her for unknown reasons. Even though UltraTech was allegedly destroyed (2013 takes place some years after KI2), Orchid still feels like they're operating, and thus forms a rebel group to take down whatever's left of them, leaving her paranoid and vengeful, thus justifying her taking a level in...assness.
    • Further justified with the revelation that ARIA is now leading a new Ultratech whose motives and goals have yet to be determined.
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: "This should be quick" in KI 2013.
    • When activating Instinct, she shouts, "Take 'em down!"
    • Before doing her Ultra, she yells out "FINISH!"
  • Simple Staff: Her kali sticks in the first game. They even double as Laser Blades when it comes to some of her moves. They became Dual Tonfas in KI2 and stun batons similar to her original Weapon of Choice in KI 2013.
  • The Smurfette Principle: The only female fighter in the first game. Averted in 2, which added more female characters, and in 2013, as she's the second female fighter to be revealed as playable, the first being newcomer Sadira.
  • Super Mode: Her Instinct Mode summons her Firecat familiar, which can be summoned with the Instinct Mode command to help deal damage in combos.
  • Theres No Kill Like Overkill: Despite the already lofty standards of overkill established in the third game, Orchid is capable of stringing together FIVE ULTRAS together to make a 200-hit combo.
  • Thigh-High Boots: A key part of her earlier costumes, though her new look is a lot more realistic with this.
  • Thong of Shielding: Shown in the second game.
  • Took a Level in Badass/Took a Level in Jerkass: The 2013 game has her go from her flirtatious and secretive persona in previous versions to bitter, vengeful and paranoid. Just listen to the lyrics and remember that she went from pulling off killer combos with ease to upwards of two hundred hits.

    Chief Thunder (a.k.a Hinmatoom) 
"Now I go along with the law."

Voiced by: Ken Lobb

During the previous Killer Instinct tournament, Chief Thunder's brother, Eagle, was one of the combatants. When Eagle did not return, Thunder entered the next tournament hoping to either return or avenge Eagle. The only real certainty about his involvement in the tournament is that he did defeat Spinal, but little else.

The third game continues this thread by having the newest UltraTech boss promise to help the Chief find Eagle's remains and give them a proper burial.

  • Animal Motif: His 2013 redesign places a heavy influence on Creepy Crows, to the point that his Instinct Mode surrounds him in a flock of crows.
  • Badass Native: Though he didn't look to much like it before, he does look the part in force for 2013.
  • Braids, Beads and Buckskins: Not so obvious from the first game, but his new look definitely embraces this aspect.
  • Darker and Edgier: His story and appearance in KI 2013 are much darker than his initial appearance.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: The explanation for what he has been doing since the first game.
  • Due to the Dead: His story in KI 2013 involves him looking for his brother Eagle's body, likely so that it might get a proper burial.
  • Genre Motif: Much like Jago, his stage has rock music as this, only his includes some Native American instruments befitting his origin.
  • Ground Pound: A new move of his in KI 2013 allows him to stomp the ground right below him from midair after performing his Sammamish attack.
  • Home Run Hitter: His Axe Uppercut No Mercy.
  • Immune to Flinching: His Shadow Moves in KI 2013 have a point of super armor on them.
  • Powerful Pick: His DLC costume lets him replace his tomahawks with pickaxes in one of the accessory sets.
  • Put on a Bus: After the first game.
  • Shock and Awe: His Rain Dance No Mercy. There's a greater emphasis on lightning in his KI 2013 moveset, to the point of giving him a new move in 2013 Season 2 where he summons lightning to strike the opponent.
  • Super Mode: In the 2013 game, when he triggers Instinct Mode, his dash becomes invulnerable and he can dash much further, allowing him to rush in without fear of retaliation as well as quickly cross-up his opponents when they're caught unawares.
  • Take It To The Bridge: His stage in the original game was a long wooden bridge (though oddly it didn't include a stage finisher in spite of it). His stage in the 2013 game is likewise inspired by that setting (now taking place in a northwest corner of the US on a natural stone walkway).
  • Tribal Facepaint: Both versions of Thunder include this. His DLC costume, though, does not.
  • An Axe to Grind: His trademark weapons are Two tomahawks.
  • Use Your Head: In the first game, he had his mohawk light up for one special, Sammamish. In the 2013 release, the mohawk's gone, but he's still got the move.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene
  • Wrench Whack: One of the accessory sets for his DLC Costume replaces his tomahawks with wrenches.

    Cinder 
UltraTech promised they would release Cinder from prison early if he would allow them to experiment on him. When their chemical weapons experiment failed, it mutated him into living flame. If he wants to become normal once more, he must defeat Glacius.

    Fulgore 
A prototype cybernetic soldier created by UltraTech. He was put into the Killer Instinct to test his abilities. If he proves effective, mass production will begin. He was killed by Jago in the tournament, but robots don't die that easily.

After the original's death, UltraTech builds a new, deadlier Fulgore. When UltraTech HQ is sent into the past, he is released with one order: kill Jago.

He is made again in the third game, but this time, Fulgore begins developing a mind, an awareness that begins making it feel almost human...

  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot/ Turned Against Their Masters: If Fulgore wins KI2 after killing Jago, humanity becomes enslaved by Fulgore as he leads machines to war against their creators.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Laser Blades below the shoulder, in fact.
  • Death Is Cheap: Death doesn't stop this robot from returning in the sequels.
  • Downloadable Content: Fulgore was released for Killer Instinct 2013 in April 8, 2014.
  • The Dragon: In the first two games, he is always the second-to-last opponent. The third game promotes him to end-boss.
  • Expy: Pretty much a robot version of the Predator, right down to how the blades are shaped. Less so in the 2013 game (although he still arrives using optic camo, something Predator was fond of).
  • Eye Beams: A special move of his as well as a No Mercy. In KI2, his Ultra Combo consists of jumping into the air and unleashing a barrage of Beam Spam. The Eye Laser spam makes a return as a Shadow Move for his 2013 redesign.
  • Final Boss: In Season 1 of the 2013 game (as of March 2014), you fight Fulgore at the end of the game instead of one stage before (as in the last two entries). However, if you perform the necessary steps to get to Shadow Jago, Fulgore's battle will be skipped entirely.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: Besides his eye lasers, his 2013 design also gives him a chest-mounted one. And he gets to use it as an actual attack.
  • Genre Motif: His stage theme is industrial metal, which is combined with his KI2 theme. For the record, the only other character who even references the second game's soundtrack so far is Glacius.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: They glow even more when his Instinct Meter is full
  • Invisibility: Starting in the second game. The 2013 version combines this with his teleport.
  • Mechanically Unusual Fighter: In the 2013 release, Fulgore does not get a Shadow Meter. Instead, he gets a charge meter that determines how much energy he can spend on attack cancels and shadow moves. The rate at which the charge meter can be charge faster via attacking or unique auto-doubles, while it slows down if Fulgore gets hit or stays idle.
  • Power Glows: An aura of red energy glows around him when he activates Instinct Mode.
  • Kill Sat: His No Mercy in the second game.
  • Laser Blade: His claws.
  • Ludicrous Gibs and More Dakka: His Gun 'em Down No Mercy.
  • More Dakka: End a match with an Ultimate in KI2 and Fulgore will turn into a giant robot (or replace his head with a turret in the first game) to ventilate his enemy.
  • Rocket Punch: His 2013 iteration not only uses rockets to boost his Shoryuken, but he also uses this to boost himself along for the Cyber Dash move.
  • Robot Hair: Fulgore has a red/brown, ponytail-like protrusion coming from the back of his head. This can be replaced with accessories.
  • Shock and Awe: Mainly for show, but he can do it as a projectile. He could also use this to counter enemy attacks and reflect projectiles in the second game.
  • Shoryuken: While he has always had this move, his 2013 version combines this with Rocket Punch.
  • Sliding Scale of Robot Intelligence: His story in the third game focuses upon the possibility that he might actually have a human intelligence. Normally, though, he is around a Level 2.
  • Super Mode: Fulgore's Instinct Mode automatically charges his battery, speeding him up considerably.
  • Teleport Spam: He was guilty of this in the first game, and one of his combo enders uses it.
  • Villain Teleportation: Starting in the second game.
  • Was Once a Man: It's heavily implied that the newest version of Fulgore has Eagle's soul programmed in it. The comics brought this point as well, but 18 years earlier.
  • Wave Motion Gun: Whatever the heck is erupting out of his chest in the 2013 game's teaser for him. It can only be used by getting full shadow meter.
  • Younger Than They Look: Justified in that he's a robot.

    Glacius 

Voiced by: Jean-Edouard "Jedsound" Miclot (KI 2013)

An alien from who-knows-where captured by Ultratech and forced to fight in Killer Instinct, supposedly to prove aliens' inferiority. He eventually defeated Cinder and escaped to his homeworld.

But 2000 years in the past, the remaining combatants have been thrust back in time, and Glacius' ancestors are all trapped on Earth. One of them, also named Glacius, seeks to free them and return home.

  • Alien Blood: Purple.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Among the color palettes available in every game, Glacius tends to have some of the most varied among them. His DLC costume in the 2013 release even gives him a transparent costume!
  • Damage Control: His story in the third game involves fixing whatever mayhem that may ensue from the misuse of his technology. As it turns out, Sadira's after this technology as well.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Possibly one of his KI 1 finishers: he turns into a puddle and engulfs the doomed opponent while in this form.
  • An Ice Person: Though he sadly lacks any kind of stunning move.
  • Genre Motif: Glacius gets an electronic one of these for his stage, Crash Site, in KI 2013.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: One of his endings in KI 2013 has him activating the self-destruct mechanism on his stolen technology to keep those damn, dirty Earthlings from ruining the universe with it. Said mechanism ends up destroying Earth and it's implied that he's not happy about it.
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: His Ice Pick No Mercy. Made into a spear in the second game.
  • Large And In Charge: In KI 2013, the guy towers over most of the cast so far.
  • Legacy Character: The one in the second is not the same as the one in the first. The third game brings back the first Glacius, though visibly different.
  • Literally Shattered Lives: His No Mercy in the second game.
  • Metronomic Man Mashing: For the first two games at least, he had more throws involved.
  • Mighty Glacier: Well, he is made of ice, after all, but ultimately this is subverted-he's actually one of the faster characters in either game, absorbs a decent amount of damage before depleting his bars, and can pummel opponents to a pulp in a heartbeat.
    • Compared to the later versions (especially the 2013 version), the first Glacius could also be a Lightning Bruiser, depending on how he was played.
    • Likewise, Glacius in KI 2013 actually fits the trope as the roster's first zone/keepaway character, with a floaty jump, slow walking speed, and long range attacks not unlike Dhalsim.
  • Power Armor: In KI 2013, Glacius is wearing a transparent form of this. Circuitry patterns can occasionally be seen flashing on it.
  • Shapeshifting: The first two games had more fun with this, with his hands turning into various sharp blades or spikes for special moves. The third game toned this down considerably to only melting into a puddle.
  • Super Mode: The 2013 release's Instinct Mode temporarily gives Glacius 5 hits worth of super armor, making him Immune to Flinching.

    Jago 
"I'm afraid your path ends here."

Voiced by: Kevin Bayliss (KI, KI2), Mike Willette (KI 2013)

A Tibetian monk mentored by the Tiger Spirit who believes it is his destiny to destroy Ultratech.

Tropes pertaining to Shadow Jago:

  • Finishing Move: Boss Shadow Jago is the first character in KI 2013 to be given a No Mercy/Ultimate Combo. He cuts through you twice before sending you skyward. Then he jumps and cuts through you again before landing. This is the only known Ultimate Combo in 'the game as of Season 1.
  • Mana Drain: Boss Shadow Jago's Instinct Mode allows him to sap your Shadow Meter just by approaching you.
  • Perfect-Play A.I.: Fighting Shadow Jago ignores the difficulty level you set and he will always fight as if he's at "Kyle" difficulty.
  • Shown Their Work: Shadow Jago in KI 2013 may seem like a Palette Swap with a new voicepack, but the developers snuck in a little reference in a few split second things you'd only notice if you were looking for them (or purchased the art book). Shadow Jago's symbol when he is selected in the character select screen is tough to make out, but it seems to be a reinterpretation of Gargos. The same goes for his Instinct Mode, whereas Regular Jago gets a glowing golden tiger behind him when he activates it, Shadow Jago gets a very demonic symbol that resembles the big gargoyle baddie himself, most likely hinting at Shadow Jago's allegiance, or perhaps simply showing what Jago would've been like if he had continued worshiping the so-called "Tiger Spirit". As a Boss, he gets more moves, a unique intro and victory animation, a new Instinct Mode, and a unique Finishing Move.
  • Super Mode: As the boss, Shadow Jago's Instinct Mode will drain your Shadow Meter insanely quick.
  • True Final Boss: You must first have seen every ending the character you're sending to do battle with Shadow Jago then complete the game without losing on at least Medium and and finishing the fifth and sixth opponents with an Ultra. Complete these steps and the stage 7 battle with Fulgore at the end of Arcade Mode will be ignored and instead you'll be jumped ahead to an invisible 8th stage to take on Shadow Jago. Good luck...note 

    Riptor 
One of Ultratech's little "projects", crossing human and reptile DNA to create a creature with the viciousness of a raptor and the mind of a person. A dangerous creature due to its unstable and indecisive mind, trapped between the predatory tendencies of its reptile half and its humanity, Ultratech is eager to see how vicious it performs in the tournament.

    Count von Sabrewulf 

A poor soul cursed with the disease "Lycanthropy", causing him to unwillingly transform into a hideous creature of the night. Rejected by society and forced to live in solitude, his sanity is deteriorating but prays someday for a release from his burden. As unlikely as it sounds, Ultratech has extended their hand in aid should he be victorious in their tournament and thus he finds himself unable to refuse the opportunity.

  • Alchemy Is Magic: Sabrewulf's new arms in KI 2013 were made through alchemical processes. His stage is even called "Alchemical Lab."
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: Until his transformation.
  • Beast Man: Being a Wolf Man, this automatically applies. However, the third game plays with his mentality, as he tries to reclaim his human mind.
  • Body Horror: Not only is he forced to transform into a werewolf due to Lycanthropy, he lost both arms to another champion (possibly Orchid or Glacius), in his first tournament. After that, Ultratech figured he could be a powerful pawn for them and built him a new pair of robotic arms and some internal machinery. Once he embraced his inner beast, however, he forcibly rips out his arms and artificial organs with his teeth, and is forced to use agonizing alchemical surgery to regrow them, becoming addicted to his supernatural painkillers in the process.
  • Butt Monkey: He got the crap beaten out of him in the tournament and was then experimented upon for his failure. He even gets possessed by Gargos, as he tries to kill Orchid.
    • Looks like he's finally lashing out: in KI 2013, he's become more monster than man, and got rid of his mechanical arms through some alchemical processes.
  • Button Mashing: A unique mechanic Saberwulf has in the 2013 game is Rapid Doubles, which allows the player to mash the same button repeatedly as an autodouble as a means to extend his combo.
  • The Cameo: He's loosely based on a character of the same name, invented by Rare for a puzzle-platformer they had released for computers (and remade for the Game Boy Advance) known as Sabre Wulf.
  • Cyborg: Similar to Pre-retcon Jax, Sabrewulf got cybernetic arms in the second game, thanks to unwilling implantation by Ultratech. The new game does away with them aside from an accessory set for his DLC costume.
  • Extremity Extremist: A majority of his attacks tend to only focus on his arms or his bite, with only a small number of moves actually involving kicking.
  • Genre Motif: Sabrewulf's stage in KI 2013 features classical-styled music.
  • Heel-Face Turn: One of his KI 2013 endings has him, in the rush of victory, finally reclaiming a good deal of his humanity. His first thought is wondering if he should put on a shirt or not.
  • Jack of All Stats: He has a decent mix of strength and speed.
  • Magic Pants: Subverted with his ending in the first game. He's only shown from the waist up after returning to human form. One guess as to why.
    • Exaggerated with in ending in the SNES port of the first game. When he turns human, a pair of tattered shorts appears out of nowhere.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: Unless the ability to throw flaming bats has become standard.
    • He loses that ability in KI 2013 in order to become a pure rushdown character.
  • Painting the Medium: He has a finisher in the first game which smacks his opponents into the screen.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: In KI 2013.
  • Shout-Out: One of his color palettes in KI 2013 is inspired by Gmork.
  • Super Mode: 2013's Instinct Mode temporarily gives him extra speed and strength, including the ability to inflict chip damage, and a new Lag Cancel command that allows him to stop any command he wants.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Starting in KI 2. (In the first game he was a Walking Pantsless Scene instead.)

    Spinal 
Voiced by: Chris Seavor (KI, KI2),David Robert Donatucci (KI 2013)

Another ghastly product of Ultratech's science, this time in the field of cell regeneration. A warrior from over two millennia ago, Spinal finds it difficult to exist in the modern world but strives to prove his worth to his "creators" regardless.

Later games give him a more arcane origin, stating his resurrection being because of a certain mystical artifact that controls his destiny. He is searching for this item so that he may destroy it and finally live free.

  • Attack Backfire: He has a move where if his shield gets hit by a projectile, he'll get a skull from it. His 2013 form ups this so he can gain a skull from using this move against normal specials too.
  • Anvil on Head: The second game gives him a finisher that drops a giant skull on someone...and THAT skull laughs at you, too.
  • Captain Ersatz: Spinal's KI 2013 design seems to take several cues from Captain Jack Sparrow. His trailer also shows that his head catches green fire when his Instinct Meter is full, taking from Ghost Rider, and his Skull projectiles look a lot like Quan Chi's.
  • Dem Bones: He's a sword-and-shield-bearing skeleton who effectively broke Nintendo's longstanding taboo against undead protagonists. He's rather unique with his magical attacks, some of which require the expenditure of a floating skull; up to five can orbit him at any given time and they must be cast summoned of time. No other character has a mechanic like this.
    • His 2013 redesign gives him the ability to summon ghost hands a la Shinnok.
  • Difficult but Awesome: Easily the most complex character in KI 2013 to date, requiring good spacing as well as resource management due to his skulls. A decent Spinal is a manageable nuisance. A good Spinal can invariably be a Stone Wall that can drain both Shadow and Instinct meter from his opponents while countering any tactic they might use to break his defense.
  • Diving Kick: A move that nobody else has besides Shadow Jago.
  • Downloadable Content: Spinal has been announced as the first DLC character for Killer Instinct 2013, releasing January 31, 2014.
  • Everything's Squishier with Cephalopods: Not only does his 2013 stage display a monstrous Kraken crushing a ship, but also his 2013 design straps on an octopus to his shield. It's mostly a cosmetic design though, as it can get replaced with accessories alongside his sword.
  • Evil Laugh: The freak's infamous for it. Ugh...
  • Eye Pop: A totally ridiculous one if Orchid uses her Breast Flash No Mercy finisher on him.
  • Genre Motif: Very drum-driven music for his stage, with some industrial metal/orchestral vibes thrown in alongside Ominous Swedish Chanting.
  • Mana Drain: His Flaming Skull Fireballs in KI 2013 can leech off his enemy's Shadow and Instinct gauges when powered by a skull. Normal Skull Fireballs drain Shadow meter, Shadow Skull Fireballs drain Instinct meter. The rate of drainage can be stacked up with subsequent uses of the fireballs in combos, but the effect stops the moment Spinal is hit.
  • Mechanically Unusual Fighter: His floating skull mechanic requires replenishment in order to gain certain perks for his special moves. These skulls are only gained via certain specials, throws, and his special manuals that summon skeletal hands to strike.
  • Ominous Latin Chanting: In his KI 2013 Leitmotif, although it's Swedish rather than Latin.
  • Pirate: He was one 2000 years ago. He even had a ship and a huge crew of fellow skeletons! He definitely looks the part of one in KI 2013.
  • Power Copying: He could include copies of his current opponent's moves in his combo finishers in earlier titles. The first game even allowed him to temporarily imitate his enemy.
  • Shield Bash: Taken to ridiculous extremes in classic Killer Instinct games. He can stab, levitate, and electrocute people with his shield there. In KI 2013, he just bashes you with it.
  • Shout-Out: Along with Eyedol, to The 7th Voyage of Sinbad.
  • Sinister Scimitar: His Weapon of Choice.
  • Sub Boss: He is always third-to-last on the ladder in the first game.
  • Super Mode: His Instinct Mode gives him infinite skulls. Not only does activating it instantly summon every skull he can, but he can actually regenerate skulls over time as well. Considering that he can drain an opponent's Instinct Meter, this can lead to him staying with infinite skulls for, at most, ten seconds longer.
  • Teleport Spam: His Skeleport. Downplayed in the second game, where the move is much slower and less practical for spamming. The third then ups it a bunch, with an invulnerable shadow teleport and letting skulls make his heavy teleport (which puts him behind his enemy) special-cancelable.
  • War God: The Swedish lyrics to his theme have the chanters refer to Spinal as a god multiple times. He probably isn't actually a deity, but might be worshipped as one.
    Vakna, vakna, mäktiga gud! (Awaken, awaken, Mighty God!)
    Kallar på Spinal, krigarguden! (Calling for Spinal, the Warrior God!)
    Fräls oss, fräls oss, mäktiga gud! (Deliver us, deliver us, Mighty God!)
    Med guden Spinals krafter och mod (With the powers and courage of Spinal the God)
  • Win Your Freedom: His story in the second and third games involve him breaking out of servitude. The main pull is that he is being resurrected and controlled by a mystic artifact, the Mask of the Ancients, and that by breaking it, he may finally be free.

    T.J. "Combo" Garrett 
Voiced by: Patrick Seitz (KI 2013)

"I took the easy route, once. It got me fame, fortune and glory. But it was all hollow. When I fell, I fell hard. I lost everything. But I'm back now, and this time, I'm doing it right. And don't think for a moment that I'll let anything get in my way. 'Cause if you give me that moment...I win!"

A championship boxer who was eventually banned from the sport after it was discovered he used cybernetic implants to improve his punching power. Now without fame or wealth, he turns to Ultratech's tournament and their promise to restore his honor and title if he can best the competition.

  • Bald of Awesome: One of his accessories makes Combo lose his hair, but instead he gets a Badass Beard.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: Even though Jago is an actual monk, TJ fits this particular trope better as a heavyweight boxer and the only fighter without an obvious weapon or superpower. His arms contain cybernetic enhancements, but he's often overlooked in favor of the flashier characters despite his strengths.
  • Character Development: He went from a cheater who used augmentations to better his boxing (who then fought for Ultra Tech to regain his former glory) to The Atoner who desires to go straight in KI 2013.
  • Combat Pragmatist: His backstory shows that he uses cybernetic implants and was banned from boxing because of it. He is also known for fighting dirty: one of his finishers in the first game involve breaking the opponent's neck; in the second game, his No Mercy was shooting the opponent with a machine gun. His 2013 redesign plays up this pragmatism more with more noticeable grabbing. Then again, he is shifting his fighting style from Boxing to MMA.
  • Downloadable Content: He is the first Downloadable Character to be announced for Season 2 of Killer Instinct 2013, with people able to get him in advance by pre-ordering Season 2 and by buying the boxed release of Season 1.
  • Expy: Of Balrog, Jerkass and everything. His movesets are also an expy of Guile taken Up to Eleven, as EVERY move requires the player Charge back or forward (except the Super moves).
    • His redesign for the Xbox One reboot strays from his boxing roots and turns him into a mixed martial artist instead. This is most noticeable with his gloves, which are the thinner kind used by MMA fighters as opposed to the traditional boxing globes. And he even has a Kimbo Slice-styled costumization option.
  • Extremity Extremist: He's a boxer, after all. However, he does have a flying knee move. His redesign is looking to stray from this route even further.
  • Eyepatch of Power: His second appearance does have him sport an eyepatch for dubious reasons. It's off for the third game, making one wonder what it actually was needed for.
  • Fallen Hero: He fights in the first and third tournaments to get his heavyweight title back.
  • Genre Motif: A hard-hitting rap number befitting the more urban atmosphere of his stage and his roots. The lyrics reflect on TJ's pride and his desire to show everyone who doubts him that He's Back.
  • Heroic Second Wind: If he loses both health bars while having full Instinct in 2013, he will get back on his feet, using up his Instinct Meter to restore a tiny bit of health (almost like Jago's Spirit ability in 2), and uses a Ground Pound to emit a powerful shockwave. After that, he'll have the rest of the meter to use as if he triggered his normal Instinct Mode.
  • Jack of All Stats: He has a decent mix of strength and speed.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Like Jago, he too is quite ripped in both muscle and clothing.
  • Neck Snap: One of his finishers in the first game.
  • Painting the Medium: He has a finisher in the first game which smacks his opponents into the screen.
  • Power Glows: His Instinct Mode starts making blue light glow from inside his veins. No doubt this is because of his illegal implants.
  • Recursive Reality: Score an any sort of finisher with him in 2 and the cinematic that plays after the match shows him tossing a Killer Instinct 2 machine.
  • Sociopathic Hero: In the comic book, he's not above quite brutally maiming foes, threatening non-fighters to get what he wants and cheating in tournaments. He also reacts with confusion when he sees Jago choosing not to kill an opponent. He's one of the protagonists.
  • Shout-Out: One of his customization's in the 2013 game make's him wear Kick's outfit, fitting since Iron Galaxy made Divekick before getting moved to KI Season 2.
    • His premium costume makes him look like Blade.
  • Super Mode: His Instinct Mode for 2013 grants Combo a small speed boost, cutting the recovery of all his moves. Additionally, he gets a Heroic Second Wind if he gets K Od with Full Instinct Meter.
  • Time Passage Beard: In contrast to his clean-shaven earlier designs, his new design gives him a short beard. Some have been saying that this makes him look like former NBA star Patrick Ewing. Some of his accessories remove the beard.
  • A Twinkle in the Sky: One of his finishers.
  • Wearing a Flag on Your Head: His boxing shorts in the first and third games are patterned after the American Flag. The second game makes his tank top flag-patterned, while his pants become camo.

    Eyedol 
Voiced by: Henry Sterchi, Isaac Marshall

Ultratech's champion, a warlord that was freed from his dimensional confinement to challenge the winner of the tournament. A two-headed monstrosity who carries a gigantic club, Eyedol is a fearsome foe who Ultratech banks everything on.

  • The Dragon: Ultratech likely sees him this way, since they freed him to fight in their tournament.
  • Evil Versus Evil: :In his backstory, we find he was imprisoned while fighting another warlord. This is revealed to be Gargos in KI2.
  • Final Boss: For the first game, at least.
  • Humanoid Abomination: Besides his two-headed cyclopean appearance, he is also described as a mystical warlord from ancient times.
  • I Am Legion: Well, maybe. When he speaks in his ending he first uses "I" and "My", but then at the end switches to "we".
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Ultratech breaks him out.
  • Secret Character: Only available through a secret code.
  • Shout-Out: In the first part of his ending, a woman in purple approaches him claiming that he's her long lost son Billy, lost in a car incident. This is almost the same scene which mirrors the ending of Blanka. (Also note that Blanka's real name is Jimmy... Billy? Jimmy? Anyone?)
  • SNK Boss: A pretty merciless bastard between his healing taunt and his insane attack priority.

Introduced in Killer Instinct II/Gold

    Kim Wu 
Descendant of the heroes who once banished Eyedol and Gargos, Kim is elected as the guardian of her people. With the return of Gargos, she must fulfill her duty to her homeland and destroy him forever.

    Maya 
"You're not worthy prey."

Maya was made Queen of Amazonia after finishing her part in banishing the Dark Lord Gargos. Banished by her people as Gargos returns, Maya must vanquish him to regain her throne.

  • Anvil on Head: Her Elephant Drop finisher.
  • Badass: Explicitly stated to be one by beating the demon Gargos.
  • Does Not Like Shoes: Justified, since the jungle would have them ruined in an instant. Averted in KI 2013, which apparently added golden or metallic boots to her attire.
  • Downloadable Content: Maya has been announced as the second downloadable character for Season 2's launch.
  • Dual Wielding: Her knives Temperance and Vengeance have unique properties that trap enemies when thrown. They have the powers of light and darkness in them and both gain unique properties.
    • Super Mode: Her Instinct Mode seems to involve having these daggers always return to her whenever they're thrown instead of having to collect them off the ground.
  • Fur Bikini: For her original look. Her newer look is more conservative with more leather armor.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: In the reboot she has a huge scar on her left leg, possibly left by some creature she has slain before.
  • The Hunter: Stated to be a monster hunter extraordinaire, and also refers to her opponents as a prey. Maya's order of monster hunters is Incan in origin, but she herself is not Incan.
  • Jungle Princess: She's the Dark-Skinned Blonde queen of the Amazons in 2. Only time will tell how this will change with the new design.
  • Kick Chick: While she normally has plenty of focus on both her feet and knives, if she doesn't have the knives she'll have her movelist changed to add more kicks.
  • Knife Nut: Het trusty daggers are always at her side.
  • Official Couple: With Tusk in 2. They get married!
  • Reverse Grip: She's never been seen using her knives in any other fashion.
  • She-Fu: Her style focuses a lot on her leaping around and flipping and spinning. Even more in the Season 2 release.
  • Shrink Ray: Her No Mercy. No, they give no explanation as to how she does it.
  • Spicy Latina: In her KI 2013 appearance. Her parents were Brazilian, and her lineage is from South and Central American cultures.
  • Statuesque Stunner: At 6'2 height, she definitely qualifies.
  • Throwing Your Daggers Always Works: Maya's daggers have a unique property that they level up when her oppenent blocks the dagger strikes.

    Tusk 
With the return of the Demon Lord Gargos to the land, Tusk leaves the arena to issue his challenge. Only by defeating all of his adversaries can a hero earn the right to challenge Gargos.

    Gargos 
  • Big Bad: Of KI2.
  • Demonic Possession: To Saberwulf's corpse in some of Orchid's endings, and arguably to Jago in KI1, though Jago didn't realize it as such
  • Evil Versus Evil: Eyedol's rival from before their imprisonment. And then Orchid killed Eyedol, letting him win by default.
  • Guide Dang It: The only way to defeat him is to trigger the Stage Fatality. Otherwise, he'll just keep fighting at zero health and will even win if the timer runs out. While anyone can finish him off with an Ultra Combo, if you manage to forget, you're practically screwed unless you remember or you figure out how to knock him off.
  • Humanoid Abomination: Again, mystical warlord from ancient times, like Eyedol.
  • Lethal Joke Weapon: His taunt has a hidden property. That is, he reflects your projectiles by laughing.
    • As the boss, Gargos trades the reflector property with an even worse one: Healing by laughing. He will spam this without mercy while you're unable to hit him.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Thanks for letting him out, Jago!
  • Secret Character: Can only be unlocked by a secret code or modding the arcade machine.
  • SNK Boss: Maybe not as terrible as the other examples, but his combos are brutal and he has a terrible habit of laughing while you're down, healing him a substantial amount.
  • Treacherous Advisor: He's the Tiger Spirit who sends Jago on his quest, then uses Jago to escape his imprisonment. And if said monk doesn't purge what's left of his influence soon...SHADOW JAGO.
  • Winged Humanoid: He's a gargoyle.

Introduced in Killer Instinct 2013

    Sadira 
"Welcome to my web."

Voiced by: Erika Harlacher

The leader of a secret clan of female assassins called the Red Eyes of Rylai. She enters into the Killer Instinct tournament for bloodsport and begins hunting down the other competitors by the orders of a certain employer.

  • Animal Motifs: Spiders. Just like another recently-made female antagonist who focuses on kicks.
  • All Webbed Up: Considering her spider motif, it would be more shocking if she didn't have this.
    • Her Instinct Mode ability is to set sticky traps across the arena whenever she performs a double-jump or the Instinct Mode command, allowing her to web up her foes to halt their advance or hold them in place to deal damage.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Her skin tone is almost grayish in appearance.
  • Arabian Nights Days: There's a definite middle-eastern vibe about her in terms of her own design and her stage's propping (albeit a very dark variation). Her name means "dreamer" in Persian.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Quite a few of them, and she puts them to good use.
  • Dark Action Girl: She's the first outwardly evil female character in the series.
  • Difficult but Awesome: She's an aerial fighter in a game full of ground fighters, and she's a bit unwieldy & hard to control. That said, she's generally considered top tier.
  • The Dragon: Plot-wise at least, to ARIA.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: She has a flip kick special, a pirouette-like special that uses her many blades, and has a backflip for a backdash. Seems Sadira agrees with this notion.
  • Eyes of Gold: Her irises, pupils, and even her sclerae are gold.
  • Genre Motif: Her stage's music has a pronounced heavy metal vibe to it; it's far heavier than what you hear in Jago's and Thunder's stages.
  • Giant Spider: One will come out of her stage if you perform an Ultra. Shame it can't eat anyone, though...
  • In the Hood: Wears a hooded Qipao, or something close to it.
  • Kick Chick: Most of her physical attacks are kicks.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Girl is showing a good amount of skin with her outfit.
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: Her intro quote, as seen above.
  • She-Fu: Her fighting style is almost entirely based on spinning and leaping around like a spider.
  • She's Got Legs: Her design seems to accentuate her legs. Fitting that she's a Kick Chick, then.

    Kan-Ra 
"You'll make a fine specimen..."

A 2500-year-old Babylonian sorcerer. After attempting to steal the Babylonian throne, he was exiled and cursed with a withering rot that causes his flesh and organs to disintegrate. To offset this, he places more curses upon himself, along with covering himself in talismans and artifacts to ease the pain they bring.

  • Badass Bookworm: Besides being the Vizier, he also read up tons on ancient sorcery. It's this sorcery that's keeping him alive, after all. He's going up against killer cyborgs, aliens, werewolves, and demonically-powered monks.
  • Collector of the Strange: Kan-Ra seeks out artifacts that would help him resist rotting. During 2500 years he has collected so much that his stage, the Forbidden Archive, is littered with them.
  • Dishing Out Dirt: His fighting style alternates between either bandages or summoning sand pits as both an offensive tool or an aid for mobility.
  • Downloadable Content: The third character to be released for Season 2 by November 2014.
  • Evil Chancellor: His backstory to a T. Thought himself smart enough to overthrow assassinate the king using magic. Problem is that he botched it at the last second.
  • Evil Sorcerer: His other part of the backstory, considering he's learned up almost everything about magic.
  • Mad Scientist: Despite being a sorcerer, he shows traits of this.
  • Make Them Rot: Is a victim of this. The king he served cursed Kan-Ra to rot forever. Kan-Ra has used several other hexes to slow the process down, but he is still rotting.
  • Metronomic Man Mashing: His Shadow Wrap will slam them around while bandaged up.
  • Mummy Wrap: His other specialty, he can use his bandages as whips or to tie up people and throw them around, and it's a lot meaner than how Anakaris did it.
  • Room Full of Crazy: Kan-Ra's stage, the Forbidden Archive, is full of various artifacts, mummified bodies and magical symbols he has collected during his search for a cure that would help his condition. A black hole even appears when performing an Ultra.
  • Slasher Smile: His default expression.
  • Surprisingly Good English: Kan-Ra's English is flawless and up to date. Justified, as he had plenty of time to learn various languages.
  • Teleport Spam: He can teleport using sand pits he places on the floor.
  • The Undead: While not technically dead, he's severely rotted away, and only survives due to the aid of dark magic. Before his story was revealed, his codename was #NotAMummy.
  • Your Soul Is Mine: After winning a match, he steals his opponent's soul or life energy.

     "Broccoli" 
Revealed in the Season 2 Launch Trailer, this new guy seems to be a massive golem of stone and moss.

  • Downloadable Content: Is a new Downloadable Character to be released presumably by February 2015
  • Mighty Glacier: Looks to be even bigger than Thunder.

     "Avenging Ghost" 
Revealed in the Season 2 Launch Trailer, this new character seems to be a blade-wielding spectre.

    ARIA 
The secretive new head of Ultratech. Is responsible for contracting Sadira and is promising to return Eagle's remains to Thunder.

  • Big Bad: For this venture, as Ultratech steps back into the spotlight.
  • The Faceless: You actually get to see right into their face during the extra, hidden ending but all the features except for the Glowing Eyes of Doom are obscured in shadow.
  • Omniscient Council of Vagueness: Being the head of Ultratech, this applies.
  • The Unfought: The only time you even see her is in a bonus cutscene after beating Shadow Jago in Arcade Mode Though there is a face present in the Season 2 launch trailer that seems to exactly mirror this face, meaning she might be coming soon...

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