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Meet the cast of Tatsunoko vs Capcom

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Gold Lightan

First appeared: Golden Warrior Gold Lightan

Giant robots are a dime a dozen in anime, even if they can transform. But what about a giant robot who somehow shrinks down to the size of a cigarette lighter? That’s how Gold Lightan normally gets around as he hides in the pocket of school boy Hiro, though once danger strikes he leaps out and becomes over 30 meters tall. He and his team of Lightan warriors fight the monster of the week, and Gold Lightan usually finishes them off by stabbing their chests with his freaking hand and crushing their heart. In the below opening theme, watch as he jabs his hand through some robot’s head. That is one hardcore gold motherf***er.


Hakushon Daimaou

First appeared: Hakushon Daimaou

Thanks to legal issues, this is the only character from the original that US and European players won’t enjoy. But seriously, who’ll miss him? Hakushon Daimaou is one of the silliest of the joke characters. An ancient genie, or jinn, he grants wishes in some comical way to whoever is nearby that sneezes. The big goofball pops out, some situational comedy ensues, we laugh and he moves on to the next lucky chump. This is the equivalent of Garfield or Yogi Bear being in the game, and if we have to lose him to get the game in foreign markets with amazing new content, we won’t be crying (or sneezing).


Ippatsuman

First appeared: Gyakuten! Ippatsuman

Taking place in the futuristic 1990s, the Ippatsuman series is about two rival leasing companies, Time Lease and Skull Lease (guess which one is the bad guy), fighting over the sales of many goods and services, including robots. However, Skull Lease secretly plans to control the world and is led by a trio of baddies who look remarkably similar to Doronjo, Boyacky and Tonzru. Ippatsuman works for Time Lease and is out to stop them, and does, no matter what their wacky plan. Your standard costumed fighter for justice, Ippatsuman sometimes employs a giant robot with a transforming, multi-use weapon whenever the need arises for a giant ass kicking.


Joe The Condor

First appeared: Gatchaman (aka G-Force, aka Battle of the Planets, aka Eagle Riders)

The quiet loner of the Gatchaman Team, Joe plays a similar role to Wolverine of the X-Men or Raphael of the Ninja Turtles. He’s more violent and hardcore than his teammates when dealing with opponents, and often butts heads with authority, including team leader Ken. A fan favorite, Joe has died, come back as a cyborg, and is sometimes sullen and brooding, mostly because of his tragic past involving the death of his parents. In fact, tragedy seems to follow Joe around, with many Gatchaman episodes heaping more sadness on the unfortunate defender of justice – but that doesn’t stop him from trying his best to help others and support his team.


Above: The first Gatchaman ending theme


Jun the Swan

First appeared: Gatchaman (aka G-Force, aka Battle of the Planets, aka Eagle Riders)

As part of the Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, Jun is one of the few Tatsunoko fighters recognizable to international fans – but thanks to many overlapping and contrasting license agreements, she’s also known by several names and characterizations. But this isn’t Agatha or Princess or Kelly we have, this is Jun as she was intended. The electronics and demolition expert of the Gatchman squad, she fights to protect people, though she is often left on the sidelines while the boys (mostly Joe and Ken) have all the fun. Still, she’s a stronger and more able character than most women in ‘70s anime. Also, she has a not-so-secret crush on her teammate Ken the Eagle.


Kaijin no Soki

First appeared: Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams

Loosely based on Japanese historical figure Hideyasu Yuki, Soki has other nicknames: Oni of the Ash, Blue Demon and God of Darkness. The dual-sword wielding, Oni-powered badass is out to stop Japan's secretly evil leader of the late 1500s, Hideyoshi. He has several allies in his travels and is helped continually by Minokichi, a small creature who teleports him around and gives information and witty insight along the way. Dawn of Dreams was the most recent entry in the dormant series, so here's hoping Soki's involvement here means Capcom hasn't forgotten about the once-blockbuster franchise.


Karas

First appeared: Karas

The most recent Tatsunoko creation in the game, Karas is part of the company’s pantheon of transforming super-dudes, only much hipper, and with way less comic relief. Operating out of a slightly altered version of Tokyo's Shinjuku area, Karas protects people from the demons and other frights that lurk beneath the gaze of the mundane world. At the same time, he needs to stop his now-evil predecessor Eko's plan for world domination. Despite his darker, emo looks, Karas shares many traits with his Tatsunoko brothers, such as transforming into a car or a plane and being a great swordsman. This is one of the very few Tatsunoko series readily available in the US, so those with Netflix Watch Now on their 360s should check it out.


Ken the Eagle

First appeared: Gatchaman (aka G-Force, aka Battle of the Planets, aka Eagle Riders)

As head of the Gatchman team, Ken Washio is your usual boy scout of a team leader. He’s skilled in hand-to-hand combat and can throw a mean, eagle-shaped boomerang named Bird Run. Also he’s an awesome pilot, spy, and all-around great guy, fulfilling his part of the standard team dynamic flawlessly. When not saving the world from evil, he’s out searching for answers about his missing father’s whereabouts, and is out to save his dad/trainer from possible doom. He’s also is very bad at picking up the obvious signals teammate Jun puts out that she’s into him.


Above: The second Gatchaman opening theme

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19 comments

  • gojiguyar - January 17, 2011 3:37 p.m.

    Man, this guy didn't give Tatsunoko a break. Karas, Casshern, Gatchaman, and Tekkaman Blade all enjoyed a thorough popularity here in the states. Karas was one of the best selling anime OAV DVDs ever iirc.
  • thochaos - February 7, 2010 4:26 a.m.

    I used to watch both Teknoman and Bob in the Bottle but most of the rest are unknown to me.
  • micahnell - February 4, 2010 4:41 a.m.

    This game is just way 2 awesome!
  • kaaos - February 2, 2010 3:59 p.m.

    this game is 1 of the flyest vs fightin' games i ever played besides MK vs DC.playing as meagaman volnut makes me wanna get the game he waz from,but they could have had more unlockabble characters like axl or megaman zx
  • linkganon - February 2, 2010 1:22 a.m.

    Henshin a-go-go baby, viewtiful joe's catchphrase he says to transform, technically if he just said henshin, he'd still transform, as that's a japanese word for transformation (or something like that) and he just varied it to create a catchphrase. seriously, the japanese version of his catchphrase is not good. hahaha, played the game and frank west has an attack called real mega buster, he even wears the mega man suit when he does it. also, didn't i hear that yatterman is starting to get popular in north america?
  • robotechandnarutosucks - January 29, 2010 1:09 a.m.

    @Vagrant Pheonix was never in the game. He was removed because he had a special objection attack that would've been way too cheap.
  • GR_HenryGilbert - January 27, 2010 5:33 p.m.

    @Ravenborn True he was playable for a limited time in X3, but not I write "fully-playable" meaning you can play as him for the entire game. So that's what I meant.
  • Conman93 - January 27, 2010 4:47 p.m.

    Struggling to decide between this and no more heroes 2. Will get one of the 2 soon I agree GR, WHY THE HELL IS THERE NO AMMY!!!!!
  • Ravenbom - January 27, 2010 10:54 a.m.

    Love the article Hank as well as the game! I played a Japanese import last year and I'm glad (and surprised) that the American version improved upon the original. But as to the article, I'm pretty sure that Zero was first playable in Mega Man X3, not X4.
  • Vagrant - January 27, 2010 7:49 a.m.

    Only really care about Frank West (and maybe Viewtiful Joe). Sucks that they took Phoenix Wright out. And that they didn't use a cool Onimusha character. Is it just me or do all of the weird masked superhero-y guys we've never heard of have a white and red colour scheme?
  • Kenzo - January 27, 2010 2:44 a.m.

    Hakushon Daimaou has an eerie "tingle-like" quality to him, definitely not going to miss him also I love paperback versions of things
  • AyJay - January 27, 2010 12:43 a.m.

    Just bought this game super cheap online and am awaiting it in the mail. My friend has the Japanese version, which is awesome, can't wait. :)
  • NeoKef - January 27, 2010 12:24 a.m.

    Thank you for going back and adding Zero in this. I was sorted ticked off when I saw Zero in the in the Hyper Moves video and realize he wasn't mention in the 28 characters of TvC. Again, thanks.
  • Cyberninja - January 27, 2010 12:24 a.m.

    cant wait to play it still need 20 dollars tho
  • GR_HenryGilbert - January 26, 2010 11:41 p.m.

    Ok then, the new guys exclusive to All-Stars are Zero, Frank West, Joe the Condor, Tekkaman Blade, and Yatterman 2. The only character Japan got that we didn't was Hakushan. Hope that clears things up for you
  • dante1924 - January 26, 2010 11:14 p.m.

    Now I finally know what the tatsunoko characters are! Now I will get even more enjoyment! Although the article's really good, I would have liked it if you said what the state exclusive characters are. 'Cause I'm not sure exactly who's new.
  • robotechandnarutosucks - January 26, 2010 11:07 p.m.

    First, and these almost all the new characters suck!

Showing 1-19 of 19 comments

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