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Fighting LayerReleased exlusively in Japanese arcades (and without seeing a single home console port) the 1998 title Fighting Layer is noteworthy for containing two characters from the Street Fighter EX series, namely, Allen Snider and Blair Dame. As per EX, The game was developed by Arika, founded in 1995 by Akira Nishitani (aka, Nin-Nin, co-creator of Street Fighter II) and shares similar mechanics to the EX series (such as super-cancels and guard-break attacks). The game's other fourteen characters are all unique to Fighting Layer. Within the world of the EX spin-offs, Allen Snider was considered the supreme karateka in the U.S.A. until defeated by a young Ken Masters. Blair Dame was raised in Europe amidst affluent society but took up martial arts, despite her exclusive education, to ensure she could defend herself and her family should the need arise. Cracker Jack is her bodyguard and Sharon is her sister; two other characters from the EX series.

Zangief's Alpha 3 profileIn the Japanese version of Alpha 3, Zangief's profile art is subtly different in that he has an anger-induced spurt of blood jetting out from the top of his head! In all international ports this was edited out in aquiescence, signalling a general trend away from gore in Street Fighter games, to the extent that rose petals serve as a metaphor during Vega's Bloody High Claw in Street Fighter IV.... The aforementioned profile picture recalls a World Warrior era drawing by Akiman (and featured in the Complete File CD) where Zangief displays this exact same detail. It is also seen on Zangief's splash screen portrait in Marvel Super Heroes Vs. Street Fighter.

NorimaroJapanese comedian Noritake Kinashi voiced and created the otaku Norimaro character exclusive to Japanese versions of Marvel Super Heroes Vs. Street Fighter (1997). The character was officially removed from all international versions but data belonging to him can still be accessed in the ROM, including translations of his win-quotes and dialogue, suggesting that the decision to remove him was made fairly late. Whilst this is interesting in its own right, hacking the various ROM sets revealed a number of graphics unused even in the Japanese original. Bizarrely, in what appears to be an unused Hyper Combo, Norimaro fantasises about a Capcom character and has an explosive nosebleed—replete with hitbox. The object of his desire varies; the associated thought-cloud can contain either Chun Li, Sakura, Cammy or Zangief (!) from Street Fighter or Morrigan, Felicia or Anita (who is a child, which is disturbing) from the Darkstalkers series.

KanchoIn addition to the above, the Norimaro character was originally designed with a kancho attack, as revealed in a video portraying a beta version of the game (where the attack is introduced by Noritake Kinashi himself). For the uninitiated, kancho is a Japanese prank whereby an individual clasps his hands together, leaving his two index fingers pointing outwards, then attempts to insert said fingers into another's back passage. In the video, Norimaro can be seen performing this move on Spider-Man! Understandably Marvel Comics were not keen on having their properties denigrated in this manner and, suffice to say, it did not make it into the final version. Speculation also surrounds an unused win pose where Norimaro drops to his knees with a lecherous expression on his face. It is assumed that this was intended for victories over Sakura: the reason should be obvious, considering her uniform.

Mary and ElizaThe substitution of Poison and Roxy for Billy and Sid in international ports of Final Fight is an infamous piece of early '90s censorship but far less well known are the similar changes made in sequel, Final Fight 2 (1993, SNES exclusive). When ported from Japan internationally, the female characters Eliza and Mary were recast as males; Leon and Robert, respectively. Robert and Eliza share a similar colour palette but Leon and Mary are entirely dissimilar. Perversely, (considering that tonfa, lumber and knives are all retrievable in Final Fight 2) the first-round boss character Won Won also had his meat cleaver censored in overseas territories. The lesson here seems to be that punching and kicking someone to death is OK but, in the West, we have to draw the line somewhere, and that line is most definitely cleavers.

Damnd and Cody on FF2 cover artDamnd and Cody's appearance on the cover art for international versions of Final Fight 2 is erroneous as neither character ever appears in the game itself. In addition, the character obscured by the game's logo bears a marked similarity to G. Andore, albeit in his Final Fight costume and not as he appears in Final Fight 2. Damnd's larger-than-life characterisation and his memorably sinister role in the intro to Final Fight earned him a good deal of popularity and he was later included in the fighting game Final Fight Revenge in 1999, alongside fellow gang members Abigail, El Gado, Edi. E., Sodom, Rolento, (Hugo) Andore and Poison.

City HunterThe 1993 film City Hunter, (Hong Kong, dir. Wong Jing) based on the manga of the same name and featuring Jackie Chan contains an homage to Street Fighter so absurd it has to be seen to be believed! In the scene in question, Chan's character Ryo is thrown into a World Warrior arcade machine where he suffers an electric shock and consequently (inexplicably) hallucinates that the henchman Kim is actually Ken from the game! After dressing up as E. Honda, (here edited to E. Honde as Chan's contract with Mitsubishi prevented their rivals Honda being named) Guile, Dhalsim and finally Chun-Li, Ryo succeeds in defeating Kim/Ken. The accompanying music is from the SNES version of World Warrior, and the official artwork on the set walls is that drawn by Shoei Okano.

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"it's a natural instinct for you to fear my size and strength!"

NAME: Hugo

NATION: Germany

HEIGHT: 240 cm

WEIGHT: 200 kg

B/W/H: --- --- ---


"you may call me poison."

NAME: Poison


HEIGHT: 175 cm

WEIGHT: 52 kg

B/W/H: 91 60 89