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Alpha 3 Dan

Dan in Street Fighter Alpha 3, drawn by Bengus.

Dan Hibiki, more commonly known simply as Dan, is a character from Capcom's Street Fighter series of fighting games. Dan is consistently portrayed as an arrogant, overconfident, yet utterly weak character in many of the games in which he is featured. He is widely considered to be the comic relief of the series because of his over-the-top poses and battle cries.

Concept and creationEdit

Shortly after the release of Street Fighter II, rival video game company SNK finished development on, and subsequently released, their own fighting game, Art of Fighting. The principal character of this series, Ryo Sakazaki, bore a resemblance in appearance and name to Ryu, as well as other aesthetic similarities to Ken, wearing an orange gi and sporting blonde hair.[1]

In retaliation, Street Fighter II co-designer Akiman drew an artwork of Sagat holding a defeated opponent by the head during the release of Street Fighter II': Champion Edition. The defeated opponent wore an attire similar to Ryo's: an orange karate gi with a torn black shirt underneath and geta sandals; but had long dark hair tied to a ponytail like Robert Garcia, another character from the Art of Fighting series. This character design would become the basis of Dan, who was introduced as a secret character in Street Fighter Alpha until finally becoming a selectable character on the game's sequel, Street Fighter Alpha 2. His fireball is telling: instead of using both hands to unleash his Gadouken (as Ryu and Ken do for the Hadouken), he propels it with one hand, like Ryo, Robert and Yuri do for the Kooh-ken. Dan can also taunt infinitely like the Art of Fighting games, unlike his fellow Street Fighter Alpha characters.[1]

Prior to Dan's debut in Street Fighter Alpha in 1995, one of SNK's fighting games released during the previous year (The King of Fighters '94) featured a villain named Rugal Bernstein, who turned all of his defeated opponents into stone statues. Some of Rugal's victims resembled Street Fighter characters such as Guile and Ryu. Dan's inclusion in Alpha was also done in retaliation to SNK's jab at Capcom.Template:Fact Dan is widely regarded as a joke character, not to be used for any serious competition. In the games he appears in, Dan is distinguished from Ryu and Ken by his ineffective special moves.Template:Fact

StoryEdit

Dan's father, Go Hibiki, was a rival of Sagat. Go gouged out Sagat's eye and Sagat beat him to death in retaliation. Because of this, Dan sought revenge on Sagat, training to become a fighter, but was expelled from Gouken's dojo when his motivations were learned. Dan thus developed his own fighting style called Saikyō-ryū, "The Strongest Style," despite the considerable lack of power in his techniques.

After the events of Street Fighter Alpha and Street Fighter Alpha 2, Dan believed he had achieved his revenge by defeating Sagat (who had actually thrown the fight), and his motivation switched to promoting and expanding his Saikyo-style school, even to the point of offering exercise videos and correspondence courses. He has seemingly had some limited success promoting Saikyo-style.

In SFA3, he was Sakura Kasugano's supposed sensei, who followed him around in order to meet Ryu. He's also good friends with Blanka too, since Blanka saved Dan during the events of Sakura Ganbaru! manga.

Dan appears in the console versions of Street Fighter IV, entering the tournament in an effort to make his Saikyo-style more popular. He mentions offhand he was not allowed in the last tournament, (Street Fighter II) although Blanka mentions he tried to call him about the tournament, only to find that Dan hadn't paid his phone bill. He also appears as Sakura's mentor and fights her as a rival in the penultimate fight of his Arcade mode. Dan is used as the dummy opponent for the Challenge Mode in the home versions.

Other appearancesEdit

In the parody game Pocket Fighter, Dan's story begins with himself looking to expand his Saikyo-ryuu school, and subsequently chooses Sakura as his student. Upon meeting Sakura, he offers to teach her his style, and she accepts after Dan defeats her in a fight. Sakura masters the entire Saikyo-ryuu style, and chooses to forget the entire style three days after mastering it, humiliating Dan.

Despite being the weakest of all the main characters, Dan is still an above-average martial artist when compared to typical fighters. In the first volume of the manga Sakura Ganbaru!, Dan enters a street fighting competition and is shown doing rather well, only losing to Ken, who later went on to win the entire competition.

He also appears in several cameos in Capcom games. In addition, Dan appeared in Street Fighter Alpha: The Animation OVA, in which he is easily defeated by Vega and later by Birdie.

As a parodyEdit

In Street Fighter Alpha 2, Dan is Ken's secret challenger (reached by finishing several fights in a row with super combos) and they exchange dialog, one line of which is Ken asking Dan if he knows the "art of fighting." This is a reference to the Art of Fighting series by SNK.

In Dan's ending in Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter, Dan's sister appears to prevent him finishing off Cyber-Akuma saying "Don't you know who he is? He's our...", parodying the ending of the original Art of Fighting where Ryo was about to kill Mr. Karate before being told he is their father by Yuri (Dan's sister even looks like her).[1]. Also, Dan is the only character in the game to have a super taunt as one of his super combos.

One of Dan's win quotes in Street Fighter Alpha 3 is "I hate the art of fighting, but I wanna be the king of fighters!" This was a direct reference to Art of Fighting and The King of Fighters series by SNK.

Also Dan's fighting style, the Saikyō-ryū, is a parody of Kyokugen-ryuu, the fighting style used by Ryo and Robert. To further the parody, Saikyō-ryū means "Strongest style" while Kyokugen-ryū means "Extreme Style."

In the SNK vs. Capcom series (more specifically in SVC Chaos: SNK vs. Capcom), there is a running gag where Dan is often mistaken for Ryo or Robert, even by himself in a mirror match (Kasumi Todoh is one example: even after Dan tells her he is not Robert, she still does not believe him). In these games, Dan parodies even more of Ryo's attacks. He also mistook Mr. Karate for his father's ghost (though, in his ending in Neo Geo Pocket's SNK vs. Capcom: The Match of the Millennium, he seems to acknowledge that Takuma and Go are different people). In Ryo's ending for Capcom vs. SNK 2, it is hinted that Dan came to the Sakazaki's Kyokugen-ryū Karate school to sign up. In Pocket Fighter, Dan can call on the ghost of his father, whose face resembles the same tengu mask as Mr. Karate. This is mirrored in Capcom's official artwork for Street Fighter Alpha; earlier works featured Dan's father as wearing a tengu mask while later ones show that the long nose was indeed a feature of Go Hibiki. All other instances of Go Hibiki's face are obscured, such as the image of young Sagat clutching Go's face.

AppearanceEdit

Dan has a similar outfit to Ryu and Ken, wearing a traditional Karategi. Dan also wears a black undershirt like Ryo. His head and face closely resembles Robert from Art of Fighting, while his outfit is bright pink, reminiscent of Ryo's orange outfit in Art of Fighting.

Though his fighting stance is similar to Ken and Ryu's, it is more "loose" and animated. Many of his mannerisms directly mirror those of Yuri Sakazaki.

Although his comical mannerisms remain intact in Street Fighter IV, Dan appears to be more serious and his moves have been slightly upgraded in order to be balanced with other characters.

Connections with other gamesEdit

  • Chairperson from the fighting game series Rival Schools learned to fight from a Saikyou-Ryuu correspondence course.
  • Sean from the Street Fighter III series, a student of Ken who has a very limited mastery of the fighting style, has the win quotes, "Don't call me Dan!" and ""Rule #1: Never give up! Rule #2: Don't fight me! Rule #3: Don't be like Dan!"
  • He appears in Blanka's ending in Street Fighter IV helping Samantha (Blanka's mother) search for him. Only his back is shown and the character identified by the game as a "passerby". However, the kanji for his name is written on the back of his gi.

Promotion and receptionEdit

IGN ranked Dan at number twelve in their "Top 25 Street Fighter Characters" article, noting his role as a "fan favorite" despite his status as a joke character.[1] GameDaily listed Dan at number eighteen in their "Top 20 Street Fighter Characters of All Time" article and at number two in their "Top 25 Most Bizarre Fighting Characters" article, stating that despite the character's handicaps "...Dan is fun".[2][3]

External linksEdit


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