Fist of the North Star

Fist of the North Star


Originally, Tetsuo Hara was contracted to do "Fist of the North Star" for a three-year run, but due to its popularity and the publisher's demand, it was extended to a five-year run.

equels and spinoffs

After the manga ended its run, Tetsuo Hara and Buronson wrote a novel based on the manga titled style.Like Hokuto, the term Nanto is usually localized in English translations as "South Star" (or "Southern Cross" in the Viz edition, the name of Shin's city). Nanto actually refers to the South Dipper, a Chinese asterism that forms part of Sagittarius. The "Fighting Mania" arcade game actually alternates between "South Star" and the literal "South Dipper" in translations. The asterism has no relation to the Southern Cross.] After the Shin arc, the manga began focusing around one-off arc-based villains such as the Golan, Jackal and the Fang Clan, although the story gradually shifts to Ken's search for his three adopted brothers, who were trained in the Hokuto Shinken style under the same master but were not chosen to be successors. The eldest of the brothers, Raoh, becomes the primary antagonist and Ken's primary nemesis at this point, a conqueror who uses Hokuto Shinken to rule with tyranny. A major sub-plot is also introduced in the form of an internal conflict within the Nanto school between its six grand masters, the , a war-torn nation now ruled by the three formed alongside with Hokuto Shinken.

After Kaioh's defeat, Raoh's son Ryu is introduced as Kenshiro's apprentice and possible successor to the Hokuto Shinken style. After Kenshiro restores order to the two neighbouring kingdoms of Sava and Blanca, the final chapter centers around the love triangle between Ken, Lin and Bat.


"Fist of the North Star" has a large ensemble of characters that has changed constantly during the series' original five-year run. Among the inhabitants of the post-apocalyptic world of "Fist of the North Star" includes martial artists, royal families, rebels, bandits and villagers that are merely attempting to survive a cruel, harsh world.

Although protagonist Kenshiro is the only truly permanent character from the series' inception up until the final chapter, his two sidekicks, Bat and Lin have served as series' mainstays as well, introduced as a pair of orphaned children whom Kenshiro meets during the first chapter of the series and then growing up into rebel leaders and heroes in their own right.

Kenshiro encounters several rivals and allies throughout the course of the series, many of whom are affiliated with the martial arts schools featured in the series (see fighting styles section). The series initially focuses on two rival factions, the Hokuto Shinken school and the Nanto Seiken school. Shin, a representative of Nanto Seiken, serves as Kenshiro's first major nemesis, being the man responsible for engraving the seven stab wounds on Kenshiro's chest and kidnapping his fiancee Yuria. After Shin's death, the authors would expand the storyline by introducing other Hokuto and Nanto disciples, namely the Nanto Roku Seiken and the four Hokuto brothers. A major recurring antagonist is introduced in the form of Raoh, the eldest of the four Hokuto brothers, who would become the series' most prominent villain.

After Raoh's death, the Gento Kōken fighters and their leader Falco would serve as reluctant adversaries of Kenshiro. Another group of antagonists are introduced with the fighters from the Land of Asura. Their ruler of Asura, Kaioh of the Hokuto Ryuken school, is the last major nemesis Kenshiro confronts in the series, although other villains appear after him in the manga.

Many of the characters in the series have since become stars of their own spinoff manga (see later works section).

Fighting styles

The primary fighting style depicted in "Fist of the North Star" is "Hokuto Shinken", the style used by Kenshiro and his three adopted brothers. "Hokuto Shinken" relies primarily on 708 secret accupressure points on the human's body that forms part of a fictional system known as the .


Japanese editions

The original collected volumes or "tankōbon" of "Hokuto no Ken" were originally published under Shueisha's "Jump Comics" imprint and spans 27 volumes.] and in 26 individually released discs containing 5-6 episodes per volume.] Chris Beveridge of was "very pleased with" the first episode, - Theatrical film released on March 11, 2006. A retelling of Kenshiro's battle against Souther, the strongest of the "Nanto Roku Seiken" masters, with a sub-plot involving Raoh and Reina.
#nihongo|The Legend of Yuria|ユリア伝|Yuria Den - OVA released on February 23, 2007. The story of this OVA centers around Yuria and how she became the Last Nanto General.
#nihongo|The Legend of Raoh: Fierce Fighting Arc|ラオウ伝 激闘の章|Raō Den Gekitō no Shō - Theatrical film released on April 28, 2007. A retelling of Kenshiro's final battle with Raoh. The theatrical release of the movie was promoted by a mock funeral for Raoh.
#nihongo|The Legend of Toki|トキ伝|Toki Den - OVA released on March 26, 2008. Centers around the character Toki.
#nihongo|Zero: The Legend of Kenshirō|ケンシロウ伝|Kenshirō Den - Theatrical film scheduled to be released nationwide in Japan on October 11, 2008. A prequel set between Kenshiro's defeat at the hands of Shin and the beginning of the manga.

Raoh Gaiden: Ten no Haoh

A 26-episode TV anime based on the manga by Youkow Osada.

Video games

Several licensed "Hokuto no Ken" video games have been released in Japan thorought the years. The earliest "Hokuto no Ken" video game was a 1986 adventure game simply titled "Hokuto no Ken", released by Enix for the NEC PC-8801. Toei Animation published many of the early "Hokuto no Ken" games for Nintendo consoles (Famicom, Game Boy and Super Famicom). In addition, Sega also published their own "Hokuto no Ken" action game for the Sega SG-1000 Mark III (which was later remade for the Sony PlayStation 2 under the Sega Ages lineup), along with a sequel, "Hokuto no Ken: Shin Seikimatsu Kyūseishu Densetsu" for the Sega Mega Drive. Two of Toei's "Hokuto no Ken" games, "Fist of the North Star" ("Hokuto no Ken 2" in Japan) for the Nintendo Entertainment System and "Fist of the North Star: 10 Big Brawls for the King of Universe" for the Game Boy, were published in North America with the license retained. Both of Sega's "Hokuto no Ken" games were published outside Japan as "Black Belt" and "Last Battle" respectively, with the "North Star" license and character likenesses removed.

In 1995, Banpresto published an original "Hokuto no Ken" adventure game for the Sega Saturn featuring an original storyline set sometime after the conclusion of the manga. It was ported to the Sony PlayStation the following year. In 2000, Bandai published a 3D action game for the PlayStation titled "Hokuto no Ken: Seikimatsu Kyūseishu Densetsu".

In addition to original console games, there has also been "Hokuto no Ken" arcade games such as Konami's "Punch Mania" boxing game, a competitive fighting game by Arc System Works (later released for the PlayStation 2 in Japan) and licensed "Hokuto no Ken" "pachislot" machines (hybrid pachinko and slot machines) and pachinko machines by Sammy (which have inspired video game versions for the PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, Nintendo DS and Wii). A series of "Hokuto no Ken" typing games were also made for Microsoft Windows. A "Hokuto no Ken Online" game is in the works.

The characters of "Hokuto no Ken" also appeared in two crossover games involving "Shōnen Jump" characters, 1989's "" for the Famicom and 2006's "Jump Ultimate Stars" for Nintendo DS.

Notes and references

ee also

* "Fist of the Blue Sky"

External links

*Official sites
** [ "Shin Kyuseishu Densetsu - Hokuto no Ken" official website] ja icon
** [ Toei Animation's official "Seikimatsu Kyūseishu Densetsu: Hokuto no Ken" website] ja icon
** [ Animax's official "Seikimatsu Kyūseishu Densetsu: Hokuto no Ken" website] ja icon
** [ "Hokuto no Ken Raoh Gaiden: Ten no Haoh" (anime) official website] ja icon
** [ Official English subtitled episodes @ Direct2Drive]

*Unofficial sites
**ann anime|id=204
** [ Hokuto no Ken @ Wikia]
** [ Kenshiro Soundtracks] - Hokuto No Ken 90s game project (fby Fabio Barzagli)

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