Follow TV Tropes


Characters / Kaiji

Go To

This is the character page for Nobuyuki Fukumoto's Kaiji. Currently under construction, but feel free to contribute.

Characters in Kaiji:

    open/close all folders 

    Main characters 

Itou Kaiji

  • Action Survivor: There's a reason why the series is called Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor. Kaiji ends up often getting put in life or death scenarios and his ability to survive through them and keep pressing forward is often what allows him to last in the cutthroat world of underground gambling.
  • Adorkable
  • Awesome by Analysis: Kaiji's ability to read the room and come up with new strategies on the fly is one of his greatest strengths along with sheer stubbornness.
  • Badass Normal: Sort of. Kaiji grows from a shrimp into a pretty competent gambler who acknowledges his weaknesses.
  • Being Good Sucks: Moral to a fault and always helps people at the detriment of himself.
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: Kaiji is initially presented as a down-on-his luck petty criminal whose compulsive gambling has left him penniless. But whenever he's thrust into one of Hyoudou's games, he demonstrates remarkable intelligence and skill at whatever game he's faced with — largely because failure usually ends up risking him his life.
  • Butt-Monkey: The series opens with Kaiji as a down on his luck gambler who hasn't worked since the new year and ends up in crippling debt with the Yakuza because of a loan he cooped. Suffice it to say things go From Bad to Worse.
  • Character Development
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Often gets him into trouble. ESPECIALLY at the end of the first season.
  • Cry Cute: The series has him break out in tears over the many stressful situations he's been put under, so much that some fans nickname him "Cryji". Tears of Fear and Manly Tears are among the most common variants that he breaks into, though some high-stakes victories also have him shed Tears of Joy.
  • Determinator: Even after losing over 60 million to the Bog, he continues going.
  • '80s Hair: A mullet.
  • Fatal Flaw: In another series, his Chronic Hero Syndrome might've been admirable. In a series crawling with dishonest backstabbers, it's one of the worst qualities you can have, and nearly all it does is screw Kaiji over.
  • The Gambler
  • Honor Before Reason: Always splits his winnings how he feels is fair, typically to the detriment of himself.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold
  • NEET: By season 3 he's just leeching off of Sakazaki.
  • Nominal Hero: He's got morals and standards like anybody else, but in the end he constantly finds himself stuck in ridiculously high-staked gambles solely because he needs the money.
  • Rousing Speech: He has moments like these.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!
  • Suffering Builds Character: He starts off as a nobody who barely does anything with the life he's been given except indulge in petty gambling which has ended up locking him in severe debt. But put him in a situation where his life is literally on the line, and he turns dangerous.
  • Trapped by Gambling Debts: It's not uncommon to see him break out of his latest predicament only to fall into another one because he spent all his money on gambling.
  • True Companions: Mario and Chang.
  • Tsundere: Type A.

Yuuji Endou

Kazutaka Hyoudou


    Part 1 

Takeshi Furuhata

  • Easily Forgiven: Despite having scammed Kaiji in the past, he gets off the hook pretty quickly.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Unlike Andou, who was planning to betray Kaiji from the start, Furuhata seemed like he genuinely wanted to buy Kaiji's freedom. Unfortunately once Andou gets into his head by telling him about the debt they will still be in if they help Kaiji, Furuhata betrays Kaiji for a 10 million Yen profit.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: He accepts Andou's offer to betray Kaiji at the end of the Espoir arc. This is pretty horrible when you think about it, since Furuhata was responsible for Kaiji's debt in the first place.
  • Weak-Willed: Furuhata only ever does what someone else tells him to which is why it doesn't take much prompting from Andou to turn on Kaiji.

Mamoru Andou


  • Break the Haughty: Kaiji does a masterful job in the final round of restricted Janken of first revealing his cheating to the remaining players so nobody would want to play with him, then forcing him into a final confrontation that Kaiji can't possibly lose in order to squeeze Funai of five out of his remaining nine chips, preventing him from making the profit he wanted from the game's losers.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder
  • Gonk
  • The Heavy: For the Restricted Rock Paper Scissors arc. He singles out Kaiji early on, putting him in a desperate situation in the first 20 minutes, then comes back near the end to screw him over some more, and is ultimately Kaiji's final opponent.
  • Jerkass
  • Obvious Trap: He offers to help Kaiji early on, and then stabs the guy in the back. In the manga, he's acting somewhat less shady, but the fact that the chapter's name is "Scam" is a tip-off.
  • Smug Snake


  • Jerkass
  • Never My Fault: Blames his two subordinates for his loss against Kaiji, claiming that if they didn't rush him, he would have known that Kaiji knew which card he would use for their match. One of them is quick to point out that it was because of Kitami's words that Kaiji found out in the first place.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Gets one from Kaiji for trying to back out of the gamble that he and Kanji set up after Kanji convinced Furuhata and Andou to wager their stars on the match.
  • Worthy Opponent: He calls Kaiji this, because they originally thought up the same strategy.

Yukio Tonegawa

  • Awesome by Analysis: Deconstructed. His confidence as to how (questionably) good he is at studying his opposition is what Kaiji ultimately uses to turn the tables on him for the last time.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit: As well-dressed as most employees of the Teiai Corporation, and very skilled at E-Card (or so he'd have you think).
  • Benevolent Boss: Tries his utmost to be one to his subordinates when planning out something to entertain Hyoudou.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: The epitome of this, right down to his Read the Fine Print moment after the Brave Men Road.
  • Defeat By Irony: His own analyses of Kaiji's tricks also lead to him second-guessing at the last moment, costing him the final round at E-Card.
  • The Dragon: To Hyoudou.
  • Dramatic Irony: In Chuukan Kanriroku Tonegawa, while on a company vacation with his employees, he discovers the giant iron plate used for "Roasting Kneeling", and not knowing what it is at that point, uses it for a barbecue. One of his employees does know what it is, though, but can't bring himself to tell anyone because they're enjoying themselves.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: At one point in the E-Card game, he is horrified when Kaiji bets the full length of 4.5 cm and tries to talk him out of it.
  • Graceful Loser: While begrudgingly, he still accepts going through the "Roasting Kneeling" punishment all by himself, and holds on with his forehead on a red hot plate for 12 seconds (2 seconds more than he actually had to) before finally passing out.
  • Hero of Another Story: Chuukan Kanriroku Tonegawa, naturally, focuses on him and his life as middle management in the Teiai Corporation.
  • I Know You Know I Know: When Tonegawa faces off against Kaiji, the layers of outwitting pile on.
  • Large Ham: Oh yes. Tonegawa can be just as hammy as the Narrator, and he doesn't even raise his voice that often. Doesn't hurt that his voice actor is a singer, too.
  • No Poker Face: When the chips are down, so does his stoicism, and he becomes relatively easy to read and manipulate.
  • Precision F-Strike: Roars out a "F**k You!" in perfect English when the participants of the Espior cruise start demanding answers when he doesn't explain what would happen if they lose all their stars. This even made it into the live action film.
  • Pose of Supplication: After losing to Kaiji, Tonegawa is forced to do one of these to beg forgiveness from Hyoudou for failing him... on a red-hot iron plate.
  • Professional Butt-Kisser: Part of his resentment of gamblers is how he got to his current station via decades of hard work and brown-nosing, taking care to follow instructions to the letter and to not take many real risks himself.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: The master. Whenever any of the participants of his games start getting uppity, he will throw it right back in their faces that they pretty much brought their predicaments on themselves because they were too lazy to get anywhere in life and squandered it by gambling, falling into debt and now trying to find an easy way out just to return to those lifestyles.
  • Sincerity Mode: He applauds bravery and legitimately complimented Kaiji when he volunteered to do the Electric Steel Beam Crossing with no complaints. His speech also during the Espior cruise likewise seems to legit tell the men that he's more or less giving them a way out and if they truly want to clear their debts, then stop being babies and man up already.
  • Smug Snake: The one real game he actually plays reveals that for all his preening over his vast experience and his ability to read people, he shamelessly cheats with gadgets that would give anyone a humongous edge over their opponent. With that advantage lost to him, he fails to win even a single round against Kaiji.
  • Starter Villain: He winds up being almost pitiably awful when he has to gamble for real and the end of his duel with Kaiji is considerably lengthened by him constantly questioning his own decisions.
  • Too Clever by Half
  • Villain Has a Point: His speeches on society are disturbingly thought-provoking.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: After passing out from his punishment, his fate is unclear.

Mitsuzi Ishida


    Part 2 

Yoshihiro Kurosaki

The 45'ers

  • Cry Cute: Especially Miyoshi.
  • Determinator
  • Face–Heel Turn: In a particularly depressing turn of events, Miyoshi and Maeda betray Kaiji in series 3. It takes a long while for him to realize that they never really were on his side too.
  • The Power of Friendship
  • Secret Test of Character: In the manga, they offered more of Otsuki's money to Kaiji than anyone else; this was actually a test to see what a guy he really was. If he had accepted it, he wouldn't have gotten any at all. In the anime, they never mention this.
  • True Companions

Hiromitsu Ishida

Taro Otsuki

Kotaro Sakazaki


The young host of an illegal casino famous for its pachinko machine the Man-Eating Bog, which promises a really big payout, but is in fact impossible to win at. Without tricks, that is. He also works under Teiai and is voiced by Daisuke Namikawa.

    Parts 3 and 4 

Mikoko Sakazaki

Takashi Muraoka

Kazuya Hyoudou

  • Author Tract: In-universe example. Kazuya's book is one long story about betrayal and how you can't trust anyone.
  • Cool Shades: Wears shades at night and inside.
  • Evil Redhead: Sort of. His hair is somewhere between red and brown.
  • Giggling Villain
  • Kavorka Man: He frequently has at least two women hanging on him, in spite of, er, inheriting his father's looks. The money probably helps.
  • Lonely Rich Kid: Kazuya bemoans the fact that people only like him for his family's money.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Takes Kaiji first to a graveyard (complete with acting out a strangulation) and then to a torture/BDSM club. Nice.
  • Overlord Jr.
  • Yakuza Prince


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: