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Art of Fighting Team: Mexico

    Ryo Sakazaki - Japan
  • MODE OF COMBAT: Kyokugen-style Karate
  • BIRTHDAY: August 2
  • HEIGHT: 179cm
  • WEIGHT: 75kg
  • BLOOD TYPE: Type O
  • HOBBY: Japanese-style carpentry
  • PERSONAL TREASURES: Motorcycle that he fixed up on his own. Horse he received.
  • FAVORITE FOOD: Rice cakes. Fermented soybeans
  • DISLIKES: Bugs with a lot of legs

"Absolute karate, that's Kyokugen. And don't you forget it, dweebenheimer!"
Voiced by: Masaki Usui ('94-XI, XIII), Masayoshi Kozaki (XII), Daiki Takakura (XIV), Curt Gebhart (Maximum Impact series, Enlgish), Akira Kamiya ('94 Dengeki Bunko drama CD), Subaru Kimura (King of Fighters for Girls)

The heir of the Kyokugen School of Karate. Ryo is Takuma's son and Yuri's brother, and is best friends with Robert Garcia. He rescued Yuri with Robert, who was kidnapped by Mr. Big and Geese Howard to get Takuma to do their bidding, thus freeing his father from said bidding as well. Now he promotes the fighting style by competing in the tournaments. He later takes up his father's title of "Mr. Karate."

In XIV, he and his teammates heard about rumors about a fake Kyokugenryu school. To clear the legitimacy of the Kyokugenryu school, Ryo entered the King of Fighters tournament.

  • Shotoclone: A straight example.
    • Kamehame Hadoken: His Kou'ou Ken (Tiger Sparkle Fist) specialnote  and Haou Shoukouken (Supreme King Soaring Howl Fist) DM.
    • Hurricane Kick: His Hien Shippuu Kyaku (Flying Swallow Hurricane Leg) special.
    • Shoryuken: His Kohou (Tiger Roar).
  • Signature Move: The Hao Shokoh Ken is Kyokuugen's trademark. However, Ryo is widely considered to be synonymous with it, as it's usually his primary DM/HDM special. In certain games, such as KOF 2000 and2002 Unlimited Match, he and Robert can use the much deadlier Shikoh Ken, which is the full-powered version.
  • Spam Attack/Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs: His Zanretsuken (Momentary Fury Fist). It's also his Signature Move.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": His first name can be spelt as "Ryo", "Ryō" or "Ryou".
    • Even then, his name is written in western order due to him being born American; other sources in Japanese may flip his name around with it being written in kanji instead.
  • Tiger Versus Dragon: see Robert's entry below.

    Robert Garcia - Italy
  • MODE OF COMBAT: Kyokugen-style Karate
  • BIRTHDAY: December 25
  • HEIGHT: 180cm
  • WEIGHT: 85kg
  • HOBBY: Producing futuristic concept cars
  • PERSONAL TREASURES: His car collection
  • FAVORITE FOOD: Sushi. Chow mein.
  • DISLIKES: Pickled scallions
  • FORTE IN SPORTS: Motor sports

"Underestimate my strength, huh? You're dumber than you look!"
Voiced by: Kay Inage (94-'95, XI onward), Mantarō Koichi ('96-2003), Go Shinomiya (XIV), Greg Irwin (XII, English), Hideo Ishikawa ('94 Dengeki Bunko drama CD), Kazuhiro Okamoto (King of Fighters for Girls)

Italian playboy who is also the heir to the Garcia Foundation, one of the largest companies in the world. He was sent to train with the Sakazakis by his father, who wanted him to appreciate the value of hard work. He became good friends with Ryo and when Yuri was kidnapped by Mr. Big, he and Ryo hit the streets of Southtown to get her back. While Ryo's style of Kyokugen is more balanced, Robert's focuses mostly on kicks. He and Yuri have a relationship, but they have yet to make any serious commitment.

  • Action Fashionista: So much that he's the one providing the picture in the page. He gets decked in different clothes in all of his appearances.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: If his ending with the Unrequited Love Team (him, Kensou, and Ramon) in XI is any indication. Oddly enough, his relationship with Yuri was never one-sided and seems to be downplayed in KOF. Back in the Art of Fighting series, hints of Robert/Yuri were dropped in 2 and they even (technically) became an Official Couple in Robert and Ryo's endings in Art of Fighting 3. Huh.
    • Heck, in his team's XIII ending, he planned on proposing to Yuri in the middle of a post-tournament interview. Too bad Takuma kept him from doing so.
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: To Ken Masters of Street Fighter. Both are rich-out-their-ass playboys who are friendly rivals to their respective best friends, although Robert dresses like he's rich.
    • And both of their styles emphasize stylish kicking. Of note is that Robert was introduced that way whereas Ken had developed this after Art of Fighting came out.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Subverted. In NGBC (and by proxy, XI), Robert appears to be a bit darker than he usually is, although it's not uncommon for an Italian to have a skin tone like that.
  • Animal Motifs: The tiger. His nickname is "The Raging/Mightiest Tiger" and the last hit of his EX version's HSDM in 2002: Unlimited Match is shaped in the form of one. Oddly enough, Robert uses the Ryugeki ("Dragon Strike") principle of Kyokugen-ryuu Karate.
  • Badass Beard: His Neo Geo Battle Coliseum incarnation sports one, although his depiction in artwork from XI omits it due to KOF!Robert's younger age.
    • Returns in XIV, giving Robert a sweet goatee.
  • Big Brother Mentor: To Ryo and Yuri (more so the former).
  • Blue Oni to Ryo's Red. Frequently this puts him in the position of playing the peacemaker when things start to go south between Ryo and Yuri (though he tries to side with Yuri where he can).
  • Brilliant, but Lazy: Loves to party and live a carefree life, but has been described as a "natural genius" when it comes to martial arts.
  • Bring It: His taunt, complete with "Donai shitaiya?" ("What's the matter?")
  • Cultured Badass: He's a wealthy playboy who dresses fancy and drives around in a Ferrari F40, but can and will hand you your ass on a silver platter if you fight him.
  • Dance Battler: Borderline example; while he doesn't use dance as a part of his style, he sure does like to groove in his combat stance.
  • Depending on the Game: Robert's moveset varies by game, ranging from simple tweaks to complete overhauls. As a result, there are games where he plays loosely similar to Ryo, or like an entirely different character; including having charge motion inputs for his attacks. And for certain installments, he becomes an Extremity Extremist of the kicking variety, during which he and King play near identical to each other.
  • The Dandy: Has nice fashion style in addition to his nice looks.
  • Diving Kick: His Hien Ryuujin Kyaku (Flying Swallow Dragon God Leg) special.
  • Everyone Has Standards: In his pre-fight dialog with Mai (KoF XIII), he asks her not to influence Yuri, since he'd be embarrassed if Yuri ever dressed the way Mai does.
  • Fingerless Gloves
  • Grapple Move: a few games give him this as a special move, its exact form vary from game to game.
  • Hero of Another Story: Of AoF 3. In the first two games, he filled the deuteragonist role, but AoF 3 cast him as the main character.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Ryo.
  • Informed Flaw: The Ryugeki principle of Kyokugen-ryuu is said to have severe imbalances as it relies mainly on kicks (a drawback Robert himself notes in XIII), placing it between the Raiou and Kou'ou principles (Raiou is the lowest principle and is used by Yuri; it revolves around user instinct and creativity), but closer to the former. It doesn't seem to slow Robert down in the midst of a battle.
  • Kansai Regional Accent: According to Word of God, his Kansai accent is supposed to substitute for the fact that in English, Robert would be speaking in English with an Italian accent, despite him being Italian.
  • Ki Manipulation
  • Latin Lover: Seems to fit this pretty well, with him being Italian and all.
  • Memento MacGuffin: The coin he flips in a few of his win poses was a gift from his father Alberto. It was meant to remind Robert of his roots so that he could one day come back to it. Its significance is much greater in the Art of Fighting series, specifically in the third game.
  • Millionaire Playboy: See directly below.
    • Rich Idiot with No Day Job: He may not be a superhero, but is still a formidable opponent. The Sakazakis find this attribute of his personality to be off-putting sometimes, as they work their hands to the bone to support their dojo and keep it afloat.
    • He lampshades this in his and Kyo's pre-fight talk in XIII: Kyo makes sarcastic comments about how Robert is fighting when he should be taking care of the Garcia conglomerate, but he handwaves it saying that he knows clearly about his responsibilities, but he just doesn't want to take them now when he can still join KOF.
  • Multiethnic Name: While his first name gets a pass (Robert is a common given name in English and is likely shortened from the Italian Roberto), Garcia is a Spanish surname. Partially justified if only because SNK might've taken the name from one of Robert's visual inspirations, Andy García.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: The Ryuuko Ranbu DM, shared between him, Ryo and Takuma.
  • Sharp-Dressed Man: Both in and outside of battle.
  • Shipper on Deck: In regards to Ryo/King. Lampshaded when, in XIII, King directly asks him what's up with him, Takuma and Yuri in regards to her and Ryo, and Robert is almost terrified at the question.
    • He also kinda ships Kensou/Athena, as in 2001 his win quote against Kensou says that he wants to know about any possible Relationship Upgrade.
  • Ship Tease: Though it's downplayed in the KoF series, he and Yuri occasionally have special pre-fight dialogue and victory quotes reserved for each other. In KoF XIII, he tries asking her out, but she pretends to turn him down.
    Yuri: "Ohh... I'm sorry, Robert, but I already have plans for a victory party tonight."
    Yuri: (smiling) "And tomorrow I'll have to go the hospital... to visit YOU, of course!"
  • Shotoclone: Depending of the game, though.
    • Kamehame Hadoken: His Ryuugeki Ken (Dragon Strike Fist) special and Haou Shoukouken (Supreme King Soaring Howl Fist) DM.
    • Hurricane Kick: His Hien Shippuu Kyaku (Flying Swallow Hurricane Leg), though he has a variation of it in some games instead known as the Hien Senpuu Kyaku (Flying Swallow Whirlwind Leg).
    • Shoryuken: His Ryuuga (Dragon Fang) special. Some games give him a somersault kick version known as Ryuuzanshou (Dragon Slash Soar).
  • Signature Move: his Gen'ei Kyaku and Hien Ryuujin Kyaku.
  • Spam Attack: Gen'ei Kyaku (Phantom Leg), his kick-based counterpart to Ryo's Zanretsuken. He originally had it called Zanretsukyaku in past games however.
  • Tall, Dark, and Handsome: At 5'11", you can't deny the rest.
  • Tiger Versus Dragon: He's the Dragon to Ryo's Tiger (this is more evident in Art of Fighting, where its Japanese name is Ryuuko no Ken, or "Fist of the Dragon and Tiger"). Their stances occasionally reflect their animal motifs and their disciplines are named for their respective animals (even though they appear reversed in the movesets, as Ryo uses moves with ko/"tiger" in the name, while Robert uses ryuu/"dragon" moves), but they share a DM, the Ryuuko Ranbu (another reference to this rivalry). Much like Ryu and Ken, however, theirs is a friendly rivalry.
  • Waistcoat of Style: He sometimes wears this as part of his attire; it never fails to be stylish.

    Takuma Sakazaki/Mr. Karate - Japan
  • MODE OF COMBAT: Kyokugen-style Karate
  • BIRTHDAY: February 4
  • HEIGHT: 180cm
  • WEIGHT: 88kg
  • BLOOD TYPE: Type O
  • HOBBY: Making soba nodles
  • PERSONAL TREASURES: His 2 children, his disciples, Kyokugen Karate
  • FAVORITE FOOD: White rice, miso soup, kale pellets, vinegar-cured soybeans
  • DISLIKES: Snakes
  • FORTE IN SPORTS: All types of fighting

"Wow, you're a disgrace! You'd better hang it up, kid."
Voiced by: Eiji Tsuda, Hochu Otsuka ('94 Dengeki Bunko drama CD)

The current master of the Kyokugen Karate style. He is sometimes seen as a doddering old man, but he can be very serious when he wants to be. He was forced into serving Mr. Big when his daughter Yuri was kidnapped. To conceal his identity, he wore a tengu mask and dubbed himself "Mr. Karate." After he was defeated by a very pissed off Ryo, he was almost killed by him until Yuri revealed the truth. Nowadays he enters the tournaments to promote his school. He sometimes likes to put the old mask back on just for kicks and giggles.

  • Animal Motifs: If his EX version's HSDM in 2002: Unlimited Match is anything to go by, the lion. He can also be compared to the Tengu via his Paper-Thin Disguise counterpart.
  • Badass Boast: "Mijuku mono mega." ("A beginner before me.")
  • Bring It: His taunt, accompanied by the words "Kakatte konu ka?" ("You gonna fight me?")
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Very much, as Mr. Karate.
  • Cool Mask: As Mr. Karate. Nowadays it's Played for Laughs.
  • Counter-Attack: One is a punch that sends his foe flying. Another is his particularly nasty HSDM in 2002 and in 2002: Unlimited Match, known as the Kosatsu Jin (Tiger Killing Array), where he chops his target's neck full force.
  • Demonic Possession: Implied throughout XIII's beginning-of-fight dialogues when using the Mr. Karate DLC character: several characters, including Athena, remark that Mr. Karate's aura feels completely different from Takuma's, and Kensou (who is a very powerful psychic) even outright claims he feels like a demon and attempts an exorcism. Moreover, Saiki claims he's not unlike himself. It all seems to suggest that the Tengu mask is cursed or possessed, and donning it causes Takuma to become possessed as well. It could explain a few things, like his changes in personality at times and the fact he's outright bloodthirsty in some games...
  • Expy: He seems to be based on the Player 1 "Karate Man" character from Street Smart, an obscure SNK title from the late 80's.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Honki ni Natta Mr. Karate ("Now Serious Mr. Karate") in SvC Chaos has 'em. Of course, he's a SNK Boss.
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars: Has a X-shaped scar on his right pectoral, gained from a sparring match with Lee Gakusuo, the adoptive father of Lee Pai Long.
  • Grapple Move: He has one named Kyokugen Hougeki where he switches his side with the opponent's while dealing damage and leaving them open to further attacks.
  • Ground Pound: As Mr. Karate, his Kishin Sanga Geki Neo MAX.
  • Hunk: Very much so.
  • Insistent Terminology: "Who is this "Takuma" of which you speak? My name is Mr. Karate!"
    • Everybody Knew Already: Pulls the above during '96 and '97, as well as his intro pose with his students in '98. By this time, Ryo, Robert, and Yuri are fed up with the fact that Takuma won't drop the "Mr. Karate" act because his grand reveal isn't so grand anymore. Mr. Karate, in fact, is listed as one of Yuri's "dislikes" in '98. By the time of XIII, Takuma = Mr. Karate is treated as an in-universe It Was His Sled for the rest of the cast.
  • It's a Small World After All: According to '95, Takuma has some undisclosed history with Saisyu, apparently to the point that in XIII he elects himself Saisyu's substitute for disciplining Kyo in Saisyu's absence. (And if it's NESTS!Kyo, Saisyu apparently asked him to do so.) He was also an acquaintance of Jeff Bogard and Lee Pai Long.
  • Ki Manipulation
  • Knuckle Cracking: One of his intros (although it's more so his neck and shoulders).
  • Large Ham: Particularly as Mr. Karate, although Takuma also has his moments.
  • Lethal Chef: One of his hobbies is making soba noodles; sadly, most of the time they're quite horrible and are said to be one of the few reasons why he doesn't get many students around.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: Takuma is rather formidable beneath all of his eccentricities; he's not the founder and master of Kyokugen Karate for nothing.
  • Living Legend: Among those who recognize Mr. Karate as "The Legendary Karateka" in XIII and meet the man in person, some are eager for the challenge, others are curious about how Takuma and Mr. Karate can come across as two completely different people, and many are in awe... if not overwhelmed completely.
  • Martial Arts Uniform: wears a traditional white karate gi. As Mr. Karate he wears a black one.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Again, the Ryuuko Ranbu.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Highly implied. And prepare for a world of pain when he does decide to get serious...
  • Old Master: Not that old, but still. Alluding to this, in The King of Fighters '98 (and the associated '98: Ultimate Match), he is placed on a team with Heidern and Saisyu Kusanagi as the "Masters" team (as all three of them are the father-figures of other KOF characters).
  • Pec Flex: One of his other opening poses.
  • Pint Size Power House: Downplayed; He's obviously not Choi Chin or Bao levels of short but he is a bit shorter than a good amount of the cast, male and female . He will still murder you with a flick of the wrist in the blink of an eye regardless.
  • Red Baron: Is known as the "Demon" of Kyokugen Karate.
  • Secret Identity: His alter-ego is Mr. Karate. Subverted as everyone knows it already.
  • Shipper with an Agenda: For his son and King, mainly due to his desire to see a new heir for the Kyokugen dojo. On the other hand, he absolutely does NOT approve of Robert's interest in Yuri, mainly because he's convinced that Robert will try to woo her with material gifts and take advantage of her.
  • Shirtless Scene: One of his winposes has him removing his dogi, complete with a yell of "YAH!"
  • Shotoclone: Off and on again, like Robert.
    • Kamehame Hadoken: His Kou'ou Ken (Tiger Sparkle Fist; when it isn't a short invisible fireball) special and Haou Shikouken (Supreme King Champion Fist) DM. Also there's Kyokugen Kou'ou in XIII, a short-ranged version. His 2002UM HSDM takes it Up to Eleven.
    • Hurricane Kick: His Hien Shippuu Kyaku (Flying Swallow Hurricane Leg). Unlike his son's, though, Takuma's version is more of a flying leg thrust than a flying spinning roundhouse.
    • Shoryuken: His Kohou (Tiger Roar) special and (as Mr. Karate) Kyokugen Kohou (Extreme Limit Tiger Cannon) DM. His Built Upper Neo MAX also starts with one, and ends with the Misogi.
  • SNK Boss: In SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos.
  • Spam Attack/Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs: Same as his son's Zanretsuken. Not always part of his moveset, though.
    • He also sometimes possesses an attack named Shouran Kyaku (Soaring Riot Legs) where he runs to grab the opponent and then barrages their face with his knees while mounted on their shoulders.
  • Stern Teacher: To a degree, considering that most of the Art of Fighting Team's endings involve him dragging Ryo and Robert into grueling training (almost to the extent of Training from Hell) immediately after the close of a tourney. Still, he garners a great deal of love and respect from his children and students. Well, the ones who can endure his training...
  • Tall, Dark, and Handsome: For a man with a son in his early-to-mid 20s and a daughter in her late teens (Comic-Book Time be damned), he looks damn fine.
  • Team Dad: Literally and figuratively.

Ikari Warriors Team: Brazil

    Heidern - Unknown
  • MODE OF COMBAT: Self-taught assassination arts
  • BIRTHDAY: September 1
  • HEIGHT: 192cm
  • WEIGHT: 90kg
  • BLOOD TYPE: Type B
  • BIRTHPLACE: Unknown
  • HOBBY: Collecting Metal Figures, Fishing Nushi
  • PERSONAL TREASURES: Family picture
  • FAVORITE FOOD: Black Beer, Stuffed Wiener
  • DISLIKES: None (used to be Rugal)
  • FORTE IN SPORTS: Hunting

"You say you let your guard down? I think you're just a weenie!"
Voiced by: Toshimitsu Arai ('94-2002UM), Haruo Yamagishi (XIV)

Founder and leader of the Ikari Warriors mercenary squad, and Leona's adoptive father. A stoic man who fights using his own brutally efficient style of martial arts, he also has a massively tragic backstory: his daughter Clara and his wife Sandra were kidnapped and later killed by his Arch-Enemy Rugal in front of him, as he was investigating Rugal's operations too much for Rugal's own tastes. Heidern's own squad of fifty men were also killed in the same attack. He has dedicated himself to Rugal's defeat, and eventually his efforts paid off. After the Rugal saga he alternates between fighting and handling the Ikari deals from outside the battlefield, and in the Tales of Ash saga he led an investigation team on the heels of both Ash and Those of the Past. His eyepatch was stolen by Mukai's group following Magaki's defeat, and it's current status is unknown.

After his last playable appearance in The King of Fighters 2002: Unlimited Match, Heidern made his return as DLC for The King of Fighters XIV.

  • Badass in Distress: In 2000, where "Ling"/Clone Zero holds him at gunpoint, but Heidern manages to turn the tides (depending on the ending) and kick some serious ass. He even pulls a Big Damn Heroes moment!
  • Badass Normal: There is no magical justification for his abilities: a fact that even the devs found baffling (they even thought he has supernatural powers or is an alien). He just uses a few gadgets and some crazy fighting style that he devised himself. Imagine the badass lovechild of Batman and Guile and the end result isn't too far from Heidern.
  • Colonel Badass
  • Counter-Attack: His Killing Bringer special.
  • Eyepatch of Power
  • Flung Clothing: An odd inversion. In one of Heidern's win poses, a longcoat falls from the sky. In a quick change, Heidern drapes himself in the cloak and somehow loses his hat in the process.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Has this in his '98-and-onward intro pose as well as his Striker pose.
  • Grapple Move: There's his Stormbringer special, a conventional close-ranged one that can drain the opponent's health. Then there's Neck Rolling where leaps onto his opponent's head and then gyrates around their neck. Finally, Final Bringer combines Neck Rolling's initial leap and Stormbringer's health drain.
  • Guile Hero: On top of being a Colonel Badass and Action Hero, Heidern gets to show that he can play this role pretty well when it's needed. He gets his first try in KOF '99 and 2000, when he and the Ikari Warriors are tasked with investigating NESTS through the KOF tournament, and he does this again in XIII via organizing and leading an Investigation Team (with Seth, Blue Mary, Ramon and Vanessa as its members), to check on the mysterious circumstances surrounding Those From the Past — and this is alongside always sending out the Ikari Warriors into the battlefield itself as well. Too bad Ash is just as guile-ful and manages to perform his plan even with Heidern & co. around.
  • Handicapped Badass: The loss of his eye should mean that he lacks peripheral version and depth perception. Much like Sagat, he still manages to kick so much ass.
  • Her Heart Will Go On: A rare male version. With Rugal dead, Heidern finds no more reason to lament the loss of Sandra and Clara, his wife and daughter. In his '94 ending, he chooses to rip up their family photo, finally able to move on with his life.
  • Hired Guns: Commands an elite squadron of 'em. It's unknown if they're Private Military Contractors or a more independent breed of mercs, although the latter is more strongly implied.
  • It's Personal: Read the excerpt above and then put yourself in his shoes. How could you not want revenge? Fortunately, the hostility does not carry over to Adel and Rose.
  • Last-Name Basis: His title of "Commander" aside, Heidern (which is his surname; Leona's full name via adoption is Leona Heidern) is only referred to as... you guessed it.
  • Life Drain: His Stormbringer and Killing Bringer specials, as well as his Final Bringer DM, all drains the opponent's health and add it to his.
  • Mangst: Go ahead and click that link. The description is basically Heidern's backstory word for word.
  • Mentor: To the Ikari team (most obviously Leona). Might overlap with A Father to His Men.
  • Precision F-Strike: "Go... to... HELL!"

    Ralf Jones - USA
  • MODE OF COMBAT: Martial arts + Heidern style of assassination arts
  • BIRTHDAY: August 25
  • HEIGHT: 188cm
  • WEIGHT: 110kg
  • BLOOD TYPE: Type A
  • BIRTHPLACE: Unknown
  • HOBBY: Collecting knives
  • PERSONAL TREASURES: Medal awarded from the President of the United States.
  • DISLIKES: Snakes
  • FORTE IN SPORTS: Baseball

"That's enough for now. I can only be forgiving so much."
Voiced by: Atsushi "Monster" Maezuka ('94-XI), Bunsyu Shinoya (XII onward), Scott Casey (Maximum Impact series, English), Jeff Manning (XII, English)

One half of the Ikari Warriors team, originally from the game TNK III, skilled in heavy hits and survival techniques. He's also known to associate with the Peregrine Falcon team from Metal Slug, assisting them at Heidern's behest several times (starting with Metal Slug 6). His knife collection is partly responsible for Clark's sunglasses; he was fooling around and sliced Clark in the forehead, leading to the sunglasses to cover the injury.

In XIV, he's tasked along with Clark and Leona to investigate several space-time dimensional cracks that happened surrounding the most recent King of Fighters tournament.

  • Ambiguously Brown: From XII onward. All of those missions must have given him and Clark one hell of a tan.
  • Awesome, but Impractical/Death-or-Glory Attack: The Galactica Phantom. An unblockable Megaton Punch with an absurd damage output. It does even more damage if it's used as a counter (in fact, in this case, it can sometimes be a OHKO). Even better, it's lethal on bosses, too! However, it has an ungodly long charge period; a fully-powered one requires lots of charging. And even if your opponent gives you ample time to store up your energy, the attack is easily telegraphed; with good timing, a player can just jump over it or roll behind you. Should you be able to pull this off (especially on a human opponent), give yourself a pat on the back. You deserve it.
    • A good example of how this attack can be extremely impractical can be found here. The combos only work in KOF '98, as in that game the move doesn't really have true autoguard, only stun immunity to most attacks, which still deal damage to Ralf.
    • The only times Galactica Phantom really managed to avoid this were in EX2, 2001, and 2002, where it became a normal special with reduced charge time. The damage it dished out took a bit of a dive, but it didn't matter since you could actually hit someone with it, particularly in EX2.
    • The King of Fighters XIV removed the requirement to charge Galactica Phantom, making it a far more practical attack.
  • Badasses Wear Bandanas: He sometimes wears a headband under it.
  • Badass Boast: His victory quote in '99.
    Ralf: I can survive anything—Even nukes!
  • Badass Normal: He has no magical powers of any kind, barring maybe his explosive fists that burn his enemies. But even that has nothing supernatural behind it. To really put it into perspective, In XIII Terry Genuinely compliments his strength as opposed to his usual trolling and shit talk to get a guy riled up before the fight, and is excited there's someone who'll give him a real challenge. Considering it's all but stated Terry is the strongest character in the KOF universe, being one of the few people Terry finds to be a Worthy Opponent worthy of pure respect (Not even Andy gets that) says a lot!
  • Bash Brothers: Again, with Clark.
  • Big Brother Mentor: To Leona.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: He is the more agressive and confident of his team, and he actually hits like hell!
  • Call-Back: In the Classic Characters Team formation for 97' (Ralf, Clark, Athena), the ending shows them as their classic original selves, Ralf and Clark looking the exact same Rambo clone, the only difference being their bandanas; Ralf has a red bandana, Clark has a blue bandana.
  • Captain Smooth and Sergeant Rough: His dynamic with Clark reverses the typical relationship; Ralf (Colonel) prefers the rough-and-tumble approach, whereas Clark (Lieutenant) is more laid-back and mellow. The same goes for Ralf interacting with Leona and Whip, although the latter occasionally gets miffed that Ralf acts befitting of neither his age nor rank. Of all the Ikari Warriors, the only person Ralf plays this straight with is his CO, Commander Heidern.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower: There's no supernatural power behind his exploding punches. His Metal Slug incarnation takes it up even further by having him as the only character who must be hit twice to die (this being the series where everyone else is a One-Hit Point Wonder). Most of all, he is the only one who can destroy tanks with his bare fists.
  • Colonel Badass: Even if only by a technicality.
  • Death from Above: Dive Bombing Punch.
  • Divergent Character Evolution: originally he and Clark are practically headswaps to each other, and shared a lot of moves; then they slowly differentiate until the NESTS saga where they only share 2 moves (Super Argentine Backbreaker and Gatling Attack, and the latter even plays differently for each), with Ralf becoming more of a brawler and Clark a grappler. However, XII and XIII saw the two becoming almost headswaps again with Clark gaining moves he used to have from Ralf. Though XIV does give Clark many of his old grabs again, as well as his new clothes.
  • Dub Name Change: You might remember him as Paul.
  • Elemental Punch: for one reason or another, his punches are special in that they can release mini explosions.
  • Fingerless Gloves: He wears them since '99. Before, he had the unique fashion of wearing a single military glove on his left hand.
  • Foe-Tossing Charge: Ralf Tackle.
  • Grapple Move: One he shared with Clark, Super Argentine Backbreaker. He loses it in XII, though.
  • Ground Pound: XII gives him one named Dynamite Ralf Punch, which causes a small explosion near him.
  • Hero of Another Story : He and Clark made their debuts in Ikari Warriors.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Clark. Also Red Oni, Blue Oni (where Ralf, pretty obviously, is Red).
  • Hot-Blooded: About as much as Joe, if not more.
  • Hunk: With bulging muscles and ruggedly good looks.
  • Knife Nut: Only being All There in the Manual, Ralf's hobby is collecting knives.
  • Large Ham: Unsurprisingly, given his Hot-Blooded and Boisterous Bruiser nature.
  • Made of Iron: Ralf is beyond any human standard of strenght, while the Metal Slug series likes to portray how much of a monster he really is more often(where he gets to punch out tanks), the KOF series doesn't lag behind in showing it as well; Ralf is capable of holding Orochi Leona back during her outbursts, he comes out of it with many bruises but it is noted he doesn't try to hurt Leona in the process, the fact he comes out alive against a servant of Orochi is a feat itself but the fact he keeps doing whenever Leona loses control is a life-time achievement; XIV has Ralf reassuring Leona he will take on her curse everytime she fears losing control.
  • Meaningful Name: Despite the Dub Name Change, there may be good reason for it; there was a British officer called Ralph Clark who existed in the 1700s, who was a Royal Marine and fought in the American & French Revolution. He also served in Australia via picket duty, guarded convicts, and served on the Criminal Court, which could refer to Ikari team's black op nature.
  • Megaton Punch: The Galactica Phantom.
  • Older Than They Look: Ralf is supposedly about 40 years old. Many assume Clark is older due to his looks but he's actually younger than Ralf, at only 34.
  • One-Man Army: As of Maximum Impact 2 and XII, this is literally his official nickname.
  • Ornamental Weapon: he carries grenades in XII, but he mentions that they're actually duds, so he doesn't have to worry to have it catch fire in a fight.
  • Out of the Inferno: Ralf's Climax Desperation attack in XIV- Ralf unleashes a barrage of punches so quickly that they end up setting the screen on fire, which he then calmly strolls out of.
  • Punch Them While They Are Down: Bareback Vulcan Punch. Jeez, is it painful to watch.
  • Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs: Vulcan Punch special, as well as (in some games) Super Vulcan Punch and his Neo MAX (see Turns Red below). Ralf is one of the best at doing this kind of attack.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red to Clark's blue. Visually identified by his red bandanna.

    Clark Still - USA
  • MODE OF COMBAT: Martial arts + Heidern style of assassination arts
  • BIRTHDAY: May 7
  • HEIGHT: 187cm
  • WEIGHT: 105kg
  • BLOOD TYPE: Type A
  • BIRTHPLACE: Unknown
  • HOBBY: Collecting guns
  • PERSONAL TREASURES: His sunglasses
  • FAVORITE FOOD: Oatmeal
  • DISLIKES: Slugs
  • FORTE IN SPORTS: Wrestling

"Losers have no rights. That's what history's all about."
Voiced by: Yoshinori Shima ('94 - XIII), Tomo Kasaya (XIV), Sean Michaels (Maximum Impact series, English), Eric Kelso (XII, English)

The other half of the Ikari Warriors. He is Ralf's best friend and specializes in grappling.

  • Signature Move: his Super Argentine Backbreaker, as well as its DM version. Also his Mount Tackle, although it doesn't always appear in his repertoire.
  • Spam Attack/Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs: He sometimes shares the Vulcan Punch move with Ralf, minus the mini explosions.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": His surname (スティル) has been misromanized by fans as "Steel" (which is actually スティール).
  • The Stoic: Like everyone else in the Ikari Warriors (except for Ralf), he is focused and straight-laced. Still not as much as Leona or Heidern.
  • Three Strike Combo: It's easy to assume that his Running Three DM works how its name implies, but that's not always true. Most games in the NEST saga and onward have this grab three power bombs after a full screen sprint. But in the Orochi saga this move would have to be EX'd in order to do all three attacks. The normal Running Three would only do a single attack after grabbing the opponent that couldn't be followed up afterwards. That said most of Clark's supers (most notably his Ultra Argentine Backbreaker) play this trope straight.
  • Tragic Keepsake: He wears two dogtags; one belongs to him, the other to a dead friend.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: He's even one who actually is notable for tons of followups on his signature throws. His HSDM/MAX2DM in 2002 UM is by far one of the most variable grapples he's had in his kit.
  • You Don't Look Like You: Same as Ralf. Many fans have not taken well to the roided-up Ralf and Clark that came from the Art Shift introduced in XII.
    • The dev team has clearly acknowledged this as his reveal for XIV jokes that he's lost a lot of weight and is a lot slimmer, but still buff.


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