"Kitsune" (pronounced "kee-tsoo-neh", sometimes Woolseyized to "keaton") is the Japanese word for fox, but it can also refer to a type of Youkai in Japanese Mythology note , an intelligent fox creature with magical powers, including Shapeshifting (particularly to human form), enchantment, illusions, Faux Flame, and supernatural wisdom. In fox form, they tend to grow additional tails as they get older, up to nine in total (known as Kyūbi no Kitsune.) While their mythological origins have them as divine servants and even gods of a sort, they're also classic Tricksters who mess with mortals for giggles. They usually play their pranks on men, while they have a tendency to possess women (which shows up as an actual psychological disorder in Japan, similar to clinical lycanthropy elsewhere). This is probably because, for some reason, they're usually female (or at least bishonen), and often end up falling in love with and marrying human men (in fact, female Kitsune are considered to make devoted wives and doting mothers). The resulting children are usually not kitsune themselves, but have magical powers. Modern fiction tends to use these prominently; anime as a familiar staple whenever mythology is in the picture, while Western writers often note the similarity between them and The Fair Folk and use them for similar purposes. Either way, they're likely to be seen a lot in human form, but with fox ears, tail(s) and other foxy traits, for some reason. Alternately, they'll spend most or all time in fox form, though their shapeshifting usually gets at least a nod. Additional fun fact: Kitsune are common Animal Motifs for Japanese character types, often existing in a Slobs Vs Snobs relationship with Tanuki (with tanuki as the slobs and kitsune as the snobs). In fact, in Japan women are considered to be "tanuki-faced" (square/round) or "kitsune-faced" (inverted triangle / heart-shaped), the latter being considered sexier, so to call a Japanese woman fox-faced is looked upon as paying them a very sultry compliment. China and Korea also have variations on the Kitsune myth, which they call Hu Li Jing ('Fox Spirit') and Gumiho ('Nine-tailed Fox'), though of course they see them a little differently — for example, the Korean Gumiho are (generally) murderously evil and carnivorous. Make sure you know the difference! See Fantastic Foxes for details. Fortunately, all three fox types can be cowed by the presence of dogs. See also Youkai, Little Bit Beastly, Petting Zoo People, and The Fair Folk. Compare Tanuki. Fantastic Foxes is the supertrope.
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Anime & Manga
- Naruto is the living can in which an evil nine-tailed kitsune is sealed. The Nine-Tailed Fox isn't a traditional kitsune; it's essentially a sapient physical mass of malice, hatred, and evil chakra that has taken the form of a (gigantic) nine-tailed kitsune. Then it turns out evil isn't quite the right term, just very, very mad and with a grudge against humans. Naruto changes his mind, at least in regard to him. In a shout out to the character mentioned directly below, the fox's name is eventually revealed to be Kurama.
- In YuYu Hakusho, Kurama is a kitsune who was gravely injured, and inhabited his spirit into a female human's womb, where she would eventually give birth to him in human form while he recovered. Possibly Koto (seems fox-like but meows occasionally in the manga; could just be that the translators didn't know either).
- Hell Teacher Nube: Nube gained a rival who was a kitsune in human guise; later, Nube went to confront the ninetails kitsune.
- Inuyasha has Shippou, an orphaned child who tags along with Inuyasha and Kagome (and she herself was momentarily accused of being one at the beginning of the story). The group don't entirely take Shippou's abilities seriously because he is a child, although they do take his heart and will to help seriously. Much later in the story, a small arc focuses entirely on the group's stay at an inn that turns out to be a testing ground for a group of youthful Kitsune who are going through examinations (in field testing, as it were). Due to the accidental encounter with the testing grounds, Shippou is forced to sit the exams as well. Despite having made no preparation (and not even known his kind had to take exams on a regular basis) and being one of the youngest examinees, Shippou quickly proves to everyone that when he's compared to his own kind, his abilities are leagues ahead of a child his age, and even far in advance of most of the older students as well.
- Kuon of Triangle Heart 3: Sweet Songs Forever.
- The Kyuubi Fox, in a reference to the legend of Tamamo-no-Mae, plays a major role in Ga-Rei: It's actually a giant singularity of hatred, which destroyed an entire dynasty in ancient Japan the last time it was released. The fragments of its soul formed the Sesshouseki, which the cast spend most of the plot recovering to ensure the Kyuubi doesn't come back. Kagura uses its power to revive Kensuke after he's killed (and, subconsciously, Yomi too) at the cost of most of Tokyo, nearly killing her in the process. Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!.
- Sakura the kyuubi in Hyper Police — who has eight-and-one-fifth tails.
- Renamon, Kyuubimon, and Kudamon from Digimon.
- Kuugen Tenkou and Gyokuyou from Wagaya No Oinari Sama.
- Meirin (three tails) and Tamamonomae (full nine tails) in Yami to Boushi to Hon no Tabibito. May be the same person.
- In Kanokon, Chizuru Minamoto is a 400-year-old kitsune who tries to seduce the protagonist.
- Her adoptive mother is stated to be the Kitsune of ancient Japanese folklore, nine tails and all.
- Kudakitsune, the pipe fox from XXX Holic in her transformed shape. Watanuki also runs into a kitsune family who runs a oden stand in the spirit world.
- Akari from Aria encounters a kitsune wedding procession in a recreation of the Fushimi Inari Shrine on Mars.
- Youko in Tactics is a kitsune whom the protagonist has bound to his service. She doesn't seem too upset about this.
- In Love Hina, while she's not a true kitsune, Mitsune Konno is called Kitsune partly as a pun on her name, partly because she looks sort of like a fox, and mostly because she's a gossip and trickster who loves being a tease to Keitaro.
- Natsume's Book of Friends features a small kitsune child who follows Natume home from his class trip.
- Kekkaishi features an ailing kitsune as the leader of the Kokuboro that serve as the antagonists for much of the anime adaptation.
- Nurarihyon no Mago's Big Bad is Haguromo Gitsune, a nine-tailed fox, who is about to give birth to a monster. She wasn't always quite so evil, since she was willing to reabsorb and rebirth her grown son so he'd be immortal... and then she was killed and her son (Abe no Seimei below) vowed revenge.
- Tomoe from Kamisama Kiss is one.
- The heroines of Otome Youkai Zakuro are artificially-created half-kitsune hybrids created from female fetuses being magically mutated with the blood of natural kitsune.
- The Ninja-themed Gundam manga Hidden Shadow of G features the Bound Fox, a Kitsune-themed variant of Zeta Gundam's Bound Dog Transforming Mecha with a conveniently placed array of rear-mounted drop tanks.
- Otogi Matsuri: Yomogi's fox-like spiritual companions, who can be seen and heard only by her (and later, Yousuke.) They mainly serve to assist her with menial tasks such as cleaning, and to warn her of impending danger.
- Urusei Yatsura features a kitsune-like fox with a crush on Shinobu as a Recurring Character.
- The foxes who chose to live among humans from Studio Ghibli's Pom Poko.
- Omamori Himari has the budding Big Bad as a Nine-Tailed Kitsune, and her Shuten-doji spokesman.
- Shiro Amakusa in Yaiba. Even when he's in human form, he sports whiskers, ears and sometimes the tail.
- The protagonist in Kitsune no Yomeiri is married to a kitsune, who is both a devoted wife and a prankster.
- In Rosario + Vampire, this is Kuyou's true form. As the main villain of his own arc he has four tails, while when he returns in the Fairy Tale arc he's gained a fifth tail to demonstrate that he did not forget to level grind.
- Sengoku Youko features two kitsunes, the main character Tama and her mother Kuzunoha.
- Soushi Miketsukami is a Half-Human Hybrid variant in Inu × Boku SS.
- Ayaka Shindou from Beyond the Boundary is revealed to be a very powerful kitsune in disguise.
- Gintaro and Haru of Gingitsune (Silver Fox). As Heralds, they are the spirits of dead foxes given new names after death. Haru, being relatively young, doesn't have as much skill or power as Gintaro does.
- In Gugure! Kokkuri-san, the titular Kokkuri is a kitsune.
- In Ushio and Tora, the legendary monster Hakumen no Mono takes the form of a colossal nine-tailed fox with a shark-like face. Compared to most other examples, it's more akin to an Omnicidal Maniac Eldritch Abomination, as it's entirely made of Yin, and took the combined strength of all the youkai and humans of Japan to drive it away and, even when sealed away, is still as powerful as ever. Furthermore it originally lived in China and India but later moved to Japan to escape the only thing it fears: the Beast Spear.
- In Neko Musume Michikusa Nikki, Kokkuri-san is a lesbian kitsune who works as one of The Seven Mysteries of the elementary school and takes a liking to Chika, one of the students.
- GARO: The Crimson Moon has the fox deity Inari, depicted as a trio of black-haired women wearing fox-themed uniforms, giving orders to Raikou (the wearer of the Garo armor) and a female Makai Alchemist named Seimei; occasionally using kitsune to deliver orders.
- Japan of Axis Powers Hetalia dresses in a kitsune costume, complete with ears and tail, for one Halloween.◊
- The protagonist of High School Inari Tamamo-chan is a fox spirit from Kyoto's famous Fushimi Inari shrine who poses as a high school girl out of curiosity about human life. While her human disguise has almost all the adults perfectly fooled, all her classmates can see right through it, though they don't let on so she doesn't get in trouble.
- Usagi Yojimbo has Kitsune the gentlewomanly thief who is a wily fox but not a magical one, a fake kitsune in the background of "The Inn on Moonshadow Hill" and two real kitsune who teach Gen a lesson. While in "Fox Fire" Usagi saves what looks like a mundane fox from hunters, then is bewitched by a fox woman, only for the fox he rescued to come to his aid.
- The Fables spin-off Fairest shows Bi the Way Rapunzel once had a relationship with a female kitsune named Tomoko, (who mostly looks like a human woman with three foxtails, but would gain various other vulpine attributes while having sex and drinking the blood she drew from bites), and they still mean a great deal to each other.
- Kitsune from the IDW Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comics appears to be one, although she might be a bit odder than that, having recently been implied to be from a whole family of ancient, powerful Chess Master animal spirits.
- The Kitsune Fox tribe of Kamigawa in Magic: The Gathering is patterned off of this. Their leader is known as "Eight-and-a-half-Tails". Per Word of God, it was originally intended for the sets to have a wide variety of Kitsune types. Such as blue to represent tricksters, and white for shrine foxes. However the plans were scrapped and they became the purely white-aligned clan seen in the final version.
- Akira Kurosawa's Ran is an adaptation of King Lear for Japanese audiences. One of the three sons of the elderly Great Lord has a wife who is clearly manipulating him to his downfall. She has her husband send his right hand man off to kill a rival woman and return with her head encased in salt. The would-be assassin takes a page from Zhuge Liang and returns telling a tall tale about how he beheaded a kitsune. He opens his satchel and reveals the head of a kitsune statue, then curses the "demon" who got away, likes to disguise itself as a beautiful woman, and seeks to corrupt and ruin men. The wife reacts with fury. Sadly, the son does nothing. It doesn't end well.
- The 2008 Chinese film Painted Skin stars a malicious nine-tailed huli jing named Xiao Wei, who maintains her youthful human form by eating men's hearts, but who falls in love with a human general who saves her life. She conspires to take the place of his wife, and nearly succeeds, but ultimately sacrifices her power in order to undo the damage she caused. In the sequel, set 500 years later, she escapes the glacier she was imprisoned in and conspires to become a human by getting a human to willfully give her their heart during a solar eclipse, initiating a love triangle between herself, a Rebellious Princess with a scarred visage, and the princess' Bodyguard Crush to accomplish this.
- Witch from the 2013 47 Ronin film is a malevolent kitsune with heterochromia who serves as The Dragon to the main antagonist.
- One of the most famous kitsune in Japanese folklore is Kuzunoha, the mother of the astrologer/onmyouji Abe no Seimei. According to legend, a noble named Abe no Yasuna was travelling to Shinoda shrine when he came across a hunter who had trapped a white fox, intending to harvest its liver for medicine. Yasuna fought off the hunter and freed the fox, but was wounded in the process. A beautiful young woman named Kuzunoha appeared and helped him to his home, and they eventually married and had a son, Seimei. Eventually, Kuzunoha is revealed to be the fox that Yasuna saved, but due to her true nature having been revealed she must return to the forest. She leaves a poem asking Yasuna and Seimei to come find her, and it is revealed she is the kami of Shinoda shrine, bestowing Seimei with the power to understand animals.
- The gender-ambiguous and occasionally tripartite kami Inari has white kitsune as servants, and is often depicted as being one - though this is discouraged by Shinto and Buddhist priests. Due to Inari's close association with kitsune, shrines and temples dedicated to them have statues of foxes wearing red votive bibs.
- Warring States period warlord Shingen Takeda is said to have caused the downfall of his clan by forcibly marrying a kitsune in human form. Their son, Katsuyori, was defeated at the Battle of Nagashino by Nobunaga Oda and Ieyasu Tokugawa, leading to the effective end of the Takeda clan.
- During the Edo period, Japanese artist and printmaker Katsushika Hokusai syncretized several famous legends featuring malevolent fox spirits from Japan, China, and India to form a single narrative:
- In Chinese folklore, Daji was a woman possessed by a sadistic nine-tailed fox who became the favorite consort of King Zhou of Shang, and brought about the downfall of his dynasty to the point that fox cults were outlawed in China. Hokusai expanded the narrative by drawing from the Hindu legend of Kalmashapada and stating that after her plot was uncovered, Daji fled China for India, where she resumed her activities under the name Lady Kayō, concubine of Prince Banzoku - who she corrupted into a cannibalistic tyrant. She later returned to China as Bao Si, becoming the concubine of King You of Zhou before fleeing to Japan as Tamamo-no-Mae.
- Tamamo-no-Mae is a commonly referenced kitsune myth. It tells of a beautiful fortune teller named Tamamo-no-Mae who could answer any question, and whose beauty was never tarnished. The Emperor Konoe fell in love with her and made her one of his courtesans, but after several years the Emperor fell seriously ill. Eventually, Abe no Yasuchika, an onmyoji, told him that Tamamo was a kitsune that had been poisoning him on the orders of an evil daimyo hoping to usurp the throne - though whether she was doing so willingly depends on the version being told. Her identity exposed, Tamamo fled, and the Emperor sent Kazusa-no-suke and Miura-no-suke, the two most powerful warriors in Japan, to kill her. Kazusa-no-suke and Miura-no-suke tracked Tamamo to the Nara plains, where she appeared to Miura-no-suke in a dream, prophesying he would kill her and pleading for her life, but the following day Miura-no-suke shot and killed her. Tamamo's body became a cursed stone called the Sessho-seki (Killing Stone), and Tamamo's spirit an onryo called Hoji. In an addendum to the tale written in 1653, Hoji was eventually exorcized by a monk named Genno, allowing her to pass on in peace.
- From Wikipedia:
One of the oldest surviving kitsune tales provides a widely known folk etymology of the word kitsune. Unlike most tales of kitsune who become human and marry human males, this one does not end tragically:'Ono, an inhabitant of Mino (says an ancient Japanese legend of A.D. 545), spent the seasons longing for his ideal of female beauty. He met her one evening on a vast moor and married her. Simultaneously with the birth of their son, Ono's dog was delivered of a pup which as it grew up became more and more hostile to the lady of the moors. She begged her husband to kill it, but he refused. At last one day the dog attacked her so furiously that she lost courage, resumed vulpine shape, leaped over a fence and fled."You may be a fox," Ono called after her, "but you are the mother of my son and I love you. Come back when you please; you will always be welcome."So every evening she stole back and slept in his arms.Because the fox returns to her husband each night as a woman but leaves each morning as a fox, she is called Kitsune. In classical Japanese, kitsu-ne means come and sleep, and ki-tsune means always comes.
- Another story from Wikipedia:
Kitsune keep their promises and strive to repay any favor. Occasionally a kitsune attaches itself to a person or household, where they can cause all sorts of mischief. In one story from the 12th century, only the homeowner's threat to exterminate the foxes convinces them to behave. The kitsune patriarch appears in the man's dreams:"My father lived here before me, sir, and by now I have many children and grandchildren. They get into a lot of mischief, I'm afraid, and I'm always after them to stop, but they never listen. And now, sir, you're understandably fed up with us. I gather that you're going to kill us all. But I just want you to know, sir, how sorry I am that this is our last night of life. Won't you pardon us, one more time? If we ever make trouble again, then of course you must act as you think best. But the young ones, sir — I'm sure they'll understand when I explain to them why you're so upset. We'll do everything we can to protect you from now on, if only you'll forgive us, and we'll be sure to let you know when anything good is going to happen!"
- Toyotomi Hideyoshi once even wrote a personal letter, directly addressed to the Japanese deity, Inari, regarding Kitsune.
To Inari Daimyojin,My lord, I have the honor to inform you that one of the foxes under your jurisdiction has bewitched one of my servants, causing her and others a great deal of trouble. I have to request that you make minute inquiries into the matter, and endeavor to find out the reason of your subject misbehaving in this way, and let me know the result.If it turns out that the fox has no adequate reason to give for his behavior, you are to arrest and punish him at once. If you hesitate to take action in this matter I shall issue orders for the destruction of every fox in the land. Any other particulars that you may wish to be informed of in reference to what has occurred, you can learn from the high priest of Yoshida.
- A Kitsune appears in Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire.
- The Doctor Who Expanded Universe short story "Ode To Joy" is a conversation between a kitsune and the Fourth Doctor about the changing face of Japan.
- Mercedes Lackey's works:
- Foxtrot X-Ray and Lady Ako in Chrome Circle. FX has three tails and is pretty weak (though he eventually earns a two-tail upgrade for extreme valor). Ako has nine tails. She's also "the bearer of some of the most noble blood Under- or Above- Hill." Her half-kitsune/half-dragon daughter also has nine tails in her kitsune form.
- One makes a brief (yet important) appearance in the Tales of the Five Hundred Kingdoms series in Fortune's Fool, giving the female lead a magic paper crane that comes in handy.
- Kij Johnson wrote a short story about a Japanese fox spirit and it was so popular that she later expanded it into a full novel, Fox Woman, after doing extensive research to make it historically accurate.
- In Fudoki, another novel by Johnson, a male kistune plays an important role as part of a warband that the main character joins. Despite actually being named Kitsune, no one except the main character seems to realize his true nature.
- Andre Norton used fox spirits in both Imperial Lady (co-written with Susan Shwartz) and The White Jade Fox. In the former, Silver Snow's maid is a kitsune, while in the latter it's left ambiguous as to whether any of the characters are literally kitsune, but the trope is at least toyed with.
- Neil Gaiman's novella collaboration with Yoshitaka Amano, The Sandman: The Dream Hunters, centers around a kitsune who falls in love with a monk.
- In American Gods, also by Neil Gaiman, some background characters are implied to be kitsune; during the battle between the old gods and the American Gods, two Asian women are killed and upon dying they turn into foxes.
- In Journey to the West there are two notable fox demons, and one of them is even a nine-tailed vixen. They're the uncle and mother of the two demon kings Kinkaku and Ginkaku, making them half-kitsune demons.
- In Wen Spencer's Tinker series, one of the oni's Servant Races.
- Winkle, from Gene Wolfe's The Sorcerer's House.
- In Erin Morgenstern's The Night Circus, one of the figures on the carousel. Celia persuades Poppet to ride it, rather than the gryphon, by telling its story.
- In Paul Kidd's series Spirit Hunters Sura is a kitsune. However she has only one tail, nine-tailed fox-spirits are mythological in that world though at one point she casts a shadow that seems to have multiple tails, and can only assume three specific forms: a Talking Animal fox, a "fur" form halfway between fox and human, and a third that looks almost human save for her pointed ears and tail. Other animal spirits seen can assume similar forms.
- In The Machineries of Empire, a nine-tailed fox - called a ninefox or an eyefoxnote - is the symbol of the Shuos faction, comprised of assassins, spies and saboteurs with love of games.
Live Action TV
- The Korean tv dramas My Girlfriend Is a Nine-Tailed Fox, Forbidden Love, and Gumiho: Tales Of A Fox Child feature the Korean variant, Gumiho.
- The Supernatural episode "The Girl Next Door" features a kitsune named Amy Pond. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the portrayal of the creature is almost wholly inaccurate. Here, the kitsune is presented as a being of human appearance with the ability to transform its hands into deadly claws. Amy and others like her must feed on human brains in order to survive and can only be killed with a stab to the heart. About the only thing the show's kitsune have in common with the mythical creature is their foxlike eyes.
- On Teen Wolf, the second half of the third season deals with kitsune mythology. Kira Yukimura is revealed to be a kitsune and possesses a golden spiritual aura in the shape of a fox. In keeping with the idea that the kitsune can create fire or lightning by rubbing its tails together, Kira has the ability to manipulate electrical currents. Her mother has these powers as well. There are said to be 13 different types of kitsune, including the nogitsune—a trickster spirit that feeds on chaos, strife and pain. The latter seems to currently be in possession of Stiles' body.
- Several kitsune show up among the various fae in Lost Girl, though it's constantly mispronounced as "kit-soon".
- The Fuchsbau Wesen in Grimm are very similar to Kitsunes. There is also a type of Wesen known as Kitsune, and according to legend, are one of the very few Wesens to have a tail-nine in fact.
- Kyuemon Izayoi from Shuriken Sentai Ninninger, who fits the trickster archetype because he's extremely secretive, manipulative, and you never really know where his loyalties lie until late in the series, where it turns out he's Big Bad Gengetsu Kibaoni's firstborn son.
- The kitsune is a recurring motif for Japanese band Babymetal, and is the main theme for the song "Megitsune".
- During the Old World of Darkness's 1998 "Year of the Lotus" releases, Werewolf: The Apocalypse received an Asian-themed expansion called Hengeyokai which introduced the Kitsune werefoxes.note They are described as the youngest of the Changing Breeds, and are the most spiritually inclined. While physically weakest, they are skilled in elemental sorcery as well as paper-themed origami sorcery. As a character goes up in rank, their vulpine forms grow additional tails, generally up to five (the games' level cap), but the legendary Bai Mianxi got up to nine tails.
- In the New World of Darkness, the kitsune are a type of fox-spirit. It's possible to play a human who's bonded with one, sharing in their powers in return for acting as spiritual shelter for the kitsune.
- The Tabletop RPG Dungeons & Dragons 1st edition supplement Oriental Adventures had a fox spirit creature called a "hu hsien".
- Kitsunemori, a 3rd edition supplement for D&D, was a campaign setting with kitsune as a playable race.
- The Shapeshifters supplement for GURPS includes a detailed template for kitsune characters.
- Seven Devils Clever, a young Lunar Exalt of the Changing Moon caste and with a fox as her totem in Exalted, a tabletop RPG from White Wolf.
- The Pathfinder
- The Pathfinder Campaign Setting Dragon Empires Gazetteer introduced kitsune as a playable race. They can shift between their true humanoid fox form and a specific human one, can gain the abilities to outright change into foxes or humans they have met, have some degree of innate magical ability, and tend to be neutrally-aligned tricksters. However, only nogitsune (kitsune women who have been possessed by spirit oni and corrupted into murderous vamps) have been confirmed to have multiple tails.
- The Pathfinder Advanced Race Guide includes a new Kitsune-Only Feat called Magical Tail that gives the Kitsune a new tail each time it's taken and a new magical ability to go along with it.
- The card game Kitsune: Of Foxes and Fools has the players taking the roles of kitsune inflicting karma on sinful humans (fools) by way of "tricks" in order to gain tails. Or they could scheme against one another instead.
- In Pokémon
- Vulpix and Ninetales are quite explicitly based on kitsune, complete with the supernatural powers and tendency to curse people who tick them off.
- The Generation V Pokémon Zorua and Zoroark are based on the darker side of kitsune legends, and are even capable of shapeshifting.
- Fennekin and its line from Generation VI are based on fennec foxes rather than red foxes, but their typing and abilities are very similar to Vulpix and Ninetales. Especially in its evolved forms Braixen and Delphox who represent the kistunes humanoid form.
- Onmyōji: Set in the Heian period and has many elements of Japanese mythology, fox demons are bound to appear in this game, the most prominent examples being Kohaku, Yōko, Sanbi-no-kitsune and Kudagitsune.
- Sonic the Hedgehog: Miles 'Tails' Prower has mechanical abilities rather than magical ones, but his two tails are a clear reference.
- In The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, a complicated sidequest earns you the "Keaton Mask", which is the face of a kitsune; wearing it at the right time and place means you can meet a kitsune who quizzes you about the world in which you live. The same mask also played a minor role in Ocarina of Time, though no actual kitsune appeared in that game.
- Ran Yakumo from Touhou, who is of the nine-tailed variety, making her very old and powerful. The fact that she's the shikigami of Yukari Yakumo demonstrates how powerful Yukari is, while the fact that Ran has her own shikigami, Chen, demonstrates how powerful she is. She's also incredibly good at math, being able to calculate the width of the Sanzu River...which is quite a feat, considering the Sanzu's width changes depending on how sinful one isnote .
- The official manga Touhou Ibarakasen ~ Wild and Horned Hermit has a chapter where Reimu catches a kudagitsune (pipe fox spirit) attending one of her parties while disguised as Marisa. The spirit offers to pay Reimu back and does so by encouraging the villagers to visit the shrine, making her prosper...and also running her ragged with how busy she's become. Kasen catches it and explains that kudagitsune eventually eat their owners' health and prosperity. In a later chapter Reimu thinks she's found a kitsune artifact called a foxball, and the Marisa-Fox returns to give some exposition...as well as to reveal that whatever the object is, it's not a foxball.
- Another official manga Touhou Suzunaan ~ Forbidden Scrollery has a two-part story where a kitsune is writing on the doors of the local school, which worries the parents. After Reimu makes some failed attempts at repelling it, Kosuzu uses her Omniglot skills to figure out what's going on: it's repeating the day's lessons, meaning that the kitsune is a child that's trying to learn. She ends up resolving the situation by giving Reimu some special Paper Talismans...that are actually advertisements for Suzunaan. When the kitsune-child comes to the store, Kosuzu gives it a blank book to write in and offers to give new blank books in exchange for trading in the old ones when they fill up, meaning she gets a steady supply of youma books.
- Forest Shadow from Jade Empire is a semi-Chinese fox spirit of this type.
- Demon Lord Nine-Tails in Ōkami, who is based on Tamamo-no-Mae and is the ruler of Oni Island.
- Xiaomu in Namco × Capcom and Endless Frontier is a 765 Chinese year old werefox, while her nemesis Saya is a Japanese werefox.
- The "Mage Fox" boss in Wild ARMs 1.
- The various platypus enemies in Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime are obvious parodies of this, as the more powerful they are, the more tails they have.
- Kongiku and Yuzuruha from Muramasa: The Demon Blade.
- A series of optional bosses at the end of Mega Man X: Command Mission are themed around the Kitsune. A group of thieves who were locked away because of their powers. You start off fighting 1-Tail, then 2, 3, and so on.
- Cubit Foxtar in Mega Man Zero 3 is themed around the Kitsune. He can materialize nine purple-flaming discs that trace you and can turn into fire o move around the battle arena.
- The Fox Noise, Most notably, the Progfox.
- Crazy Redd from the Animal Crossing series.
- Tamamo no Mae appears as a Caster-class Servant in Fate/EXTRA, Fate/Grand Order, and Fate/Nuovo Guerra. It turns out in the former she is an aspect of Amaterasu.
- Tales of Symphonia has Corrine, a small, rainbow man-made summon spirit.
- Verius, the summon spirit of heart. It is rainbow like Corrine, but much larger.
- The appropriately-named Kitsune in the SNES version of Shadowrun.
- The fourth lord of Chaos in AdventureQuest Worlds is the Chaos Shogun appropriately named Kitsune, who can shapeshift into a giant purple seven-tailed kitsune.
- Riki and the Lummox race from SaGa Frontier are pretty clearly based on them. With vulpine appearances in their true form, shape shifting, multiple tails seeming to designate age or senority, and even a trademark attack, "Elfshot", resembling Kitsune-bi.
- The protagonist of Psycho Fox, who can use shinto sticks to shapeshift into three different animals and has to save the world from the evil Madfox Daimyojin.
- League of Legends' champion Ahri the Nine-Tailed fox is based on the Korean Gumiho, with all the guile and trickery this brings. Of course, being female, she includes sex appeal in her trickery. Her dance animations and alternate-skins reflect this. Unlike other Gumiho, however, Ahri isn't overly malicious but a bit more conflicted.
- Played with in Shin Megami Tensei if.... The boss of the World of Greed is one of these, but whose power is directly tied to the traveler's own greed - Suspicious Videogame Generosity will provide a massive trove of treasure just before you reach him. Ignore the treasure and go straight to him, and he will be nothing but a pathetic fox that can be easily kicked into oblivion. Take all of the treasure and you will be facing a titanic Eldritch Abomination of fog.
- If Luigi grabs the leaf in Super Mario 3D Land, he now turns into a kitsune, instead of a tanooki.
- In Super Mario Fusion Revival, Peach can acquire a Kitsune Suit as an equivalent to Mario's Tanooki Suit.
- A nine-tailed kitsune is featured as the Big Bad of Otogi 2: Immortal Warriors. What's notable about this is that one of the main characters is based on Abe no Seimei (see above), and it seems like the two switched genders: The Kyūbi is now a male, while Seimei is a female, and they're not related.
- In The Night of the Rabbit Kitsune is one of the characters that you encounter during your travels. You meet her in several forms: a fox, a statue, a woman and a girl.
- Da Ji and Mae Tamamo in Warriors Orochi. Although not physically obvious, one may note that Da Ji has fox-like features, such as furry and pointy ears and feet-paws, and both are based on folklore kitsune. A costume for Da Ji reinforced her fox-like aspect a little more.
- The Kitsune in Fire Emblem Fates are fox folk (obviously) loyal to the kingdom of Hoshido who are capable of transforming into full-fledged giant foxes, bearing one tail initially, and nine once they've promoted. They can shapeshift into human forms (and Kaden's human form is rather pretty to boot). Apart from the shapeshifting, enemy kitsune can create illusions that prevent the player's army from attacking them, and they're at least said to be an intelligent species. Both classes of them have multiple tails as well, with the promoted versions outright being called "Nine-Tails."
- Toukiden has Mitama based on the legendary Tamamo-no-mae and Kuzunoha that the player can equip to gain special powers. Interestingly, they are Healing type instead of Deceit.
- "Kyubi" is a yokai in Yo-kai Watch. His human form is a slightly androgynous, bishonen looking boy. There's also an ice-based variant, Frostail.
- Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns features a Kitsune named Inari (named after the god that commands Kitsune) that can be married. Their gender is always opposite of the player character, similar to how they could take any form in the original mythology. (S)he is a keeper of a shrine and loves keeping her shrine clean.
- Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengeance introduces Nine-tailed Foxes into the series. Party member Izuna is one of these, and recruiting her unlocks the class for regular use.
- Smite features the aforementioned Da Ji as a playable deity, and even sharing Ahri's title The Nine-Tailed Fox and possessing similar sex-appeal. Except true to her origins, Da Ji here isn't even conflicted, she's an evil Torture Technician dedicated to make the enemies burn and bleed.
- Wario Land 3 has Wolfenboss/Kezune, the boss of the Pool of Rain, a flying Kitsune wearing a sorcerer's robe. He creates and fires wisps/magical energy balls that bounce off the floors and walls and levitate you out of the arena if they hit, and giant spiked balls that turn you into Puffy Wario (Causing you to fly out of the arena) if they hit and provide the enemies needed to attack him. He is usually considered That One Boss. Wario Land II also has the Flames/Flame Kitsunes, small red foxes in pirate outfits wielding torches, but unlike Wolfenboss above they don't fly and use magic, instead walking around and trying to light Wario on fire with their torch.
- In World of Final Fantasy, Tama is a diminutive white fox who accompanies your party, but her true form, Tamamohimé, is this. She has nine lives and one point sacrifices all remaining lives to rewind time for the party, though a loophole allows you to bring her back and doing so is part of the requirements for the game's true ending. Her name is a reference to the hoshi no tama, a magical ball that the kitsune keeps in its mouth or carries it on its tail, and the legendary kitsune Tamamo-no-Mae.
- Love Nikki - Dress Up Queen has the Moon Vixen of Heart outfit from the Star Secret event. She has nine tails, and the item descriptions describe her as a shapeshifter. Poppy Fox is also a fox spirit.
- Makoto Sawatari in Kanon turns out to be a fox that Yuuichi cared for when he was young, but he set her free when he had to leave town. Her wish to see him again lets her become human, but despite being able to meet him again years later she has no memories of being a fox, or really anything about her former life at all.
- Yuuichi Komura from Hiiro no Kakera is descended from one and can partially transform into one.
- Miyabi in Enchanted in the Moonlight is a kitsune, with the usual shapeshifting powers, ghostly blue fox-fire, and trickster attitude. He appears variously as a handsome young human man, a longer-haired version of his human form with fox ears and tail, and an actual fox with supernatural markings.
- The Nine-tailed Fox who, according to legend, opposed the tengu Tenma Taro in Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Dual Destinies. He even inspired a Masked Luchador, the Amazing Nine-Tails.
- Kit from Fey Winds was once a normal fox transformed into (mostly) human form after mistaking a magical entity named Sylphe for an egg and eating her (It Makes Sense in Context). As a result, in addition to her new body she possesses strong magical powers via her connection to the Song, though their full extent has not been explored. Her nickname is a double pun, both short for Kitsune and because a kit is a young fox.
- In The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob! Lari the ninja mistakes Molly the Monster for one of these, and becomes infatuated with her. He's a little squicked out when he realizes that she can't actually change into a regular human.
- The cast of Karin-dou 4koma are primarily youkai, so of course this type is included. Shizuki grows her second tail early on in the series, while Sachi (a kuuko) doesn't show off hers.
- Firefox-ko, an unofficial mascot for Mozilla Firefox.
- And of course Foxkeh, the official one.
- David Kintobor has the ability to morph into one in David Gonterman's American Kitsune.
- From SCP Foundation:
- Mystery the dog is strongly implied to be one in the first video of Mystery Skulls Animated. The second video confirms it, showing a clearer look at his huge, six-tailed form.
- In Hellboy Animated: Sword of Storms, a kitsune is pretty much the only youkai on Hellboy's side when he is transported to a Japanese folklore-inspired Magical Land.
- In Miraculous Ladybug, Volpina is a fox-themed supervillain who has illusionary abilities and is known for lying, much like a kitsune.
- It turns out that there is a real fox Miraculous; the real holder calls herself Rena Rouge, and she shares her impersonator's gift for creating illusions.