Tekken 6 Character Countdown Part 31: Asuka Kazama

Asuka’s ready to save the world… via knockout!

As a way of counting down the time to the release of Tekken 6 for the PS3 and Xbox360, I’ve decided to begin this weekly series of lengthy, character-specific articles, each one featuring one of the 40 or so competing warriors in the latest and greatest King of Iron Fist Tournament. Hopefully, by the time we finish and reach character number 40, we’ll have the console version of Tekken in our hands already.

Part 31 brings us to a relative newcomer to the Tekken roster. This young combatant has been given quite a burden on her slender shoulders- the responsibility of taking over the slot of a very popular fighter. But despite some overly-attached fans being pretty vocal against her, this scrappy young lady has so far proven incredibly popular and is a unique and formidable fighter in her own right. We’re talking about the current representative of Kazama-Ryu Style Martial Arts, Asuka Kazama.

Just as an aside- her name’s correct pronunciation is As-kah (silent ‘u’), not Ah-sue-Kah…

Asuka Kazama
Distinguishing Features: Gorgeous Japanese teenager, although too athletic to be an Idol. Wardrobe that alternates between trendy Tokyo street fashion and traditional Japanese costumes and martial arts gear. Heavy Kansai accent (Western drawl in Japan?).

Strengths: Master of the very strong Kazama-style Martial Arts that consists of fast high-low attacks and highly-effective and easy-to-use counters. Extremely strong inner force. Often underestimated for her good looks.

Weaknesses: Her style is one of the most familiar in the series, so expert opponents can often predict her more common attack combos and strings. Abusing counters can lead to total disaster. So far unaware of her true role and potential.

Affiliation: None, although her goal is clearly anti-Zaibatsu, focusing solely on taking out her now-evil cousin, Jin Kazama.

Background: Ever since she was a child, Asuka had been taught the Kazama Style of Martial Arts by her father. She grew up with a strong sense of justice, and eventually came to be known as a ‘nosy kid’ who likes to meddle in other people’s problems. Asuka became something of a vigilante in her neigborhood, often taking care of things usually ‘by knockout’.
One day, she came home to find her father’s dojo in a shambles, and the many students distraught. Her father had been taken to the hospital with severe injuries. From Hong Kong INTERPOL detective Lei Wulong she learned that the Kenpo fighter Feng Wei had done the damage. Finding out that Feng would be competing in the King of Iron Fist Tournament 5, she set out to join the fight to avenge her father.

Unfortunately while Asuka fought and won several matches (including a victory over Lili Rochefort), her main quarry was nowhere to be found. Disappointed, she returned home to resume her normal everyday life. But her carefree days were not meant to last.

Some time later the Mishima Zaibatsu declared war on the rest of the world. As chaos spread throughout the globe, Asuka learned that the cause of all this trouble- Jin Kazama- was her relative. When she found out about the upcoming Tekken 6 tournament, she immediately joined, intending to bring her now-evil cousin to justice.

Character Analysis: ASUKA!!! Well, what can I say? A lot, actually, since Asuka is my Main Fighter in Tekken 6.
Kazama-style Martial Arts has always been a very powerful force in Tekken, ever since Jun Kazama in Tekken 2. Asuka not only has Jun’s attacks but has greatly increased the repertoire with tons more moves including a lot of much-needed offense. Furthermore, Asuka’s counters are perhaps the easiest to use (and easiest to abuse) in the game and can often turn the tide in a pinch. Asuka isn’t among the strongest fighters in the roster, but she can kick ass pretty handily with her new bread-and-butter moves and combos. Among the female fighters her style is very direct and efficient as opposed to being graceful and quick, but she still looks great in action.

Asuka as a character is pretty awesome- she represents the Martial Arts Tomboy archetype (Hitomi in DOA, Makoto and even Ibuki from SF3) and is a girl born in a boy’s role. It is refreshing to note that while she’s still very feminine, her intros and win poses are never girly. Some, particularly Jun fans, note that her brash and confident personality is a negative, which I highly disagree with. I love that Asuka is a very independent, strong-willed and proud fighter, and having sex appeal certainly does not hurt at all. Aside from all that, she has her funny and comedic sides, making her a very entertaining and whole heroine to follow.

Of course she hasn’t reached her true potential yet- her humorous (and non-canon, I assume) ending in Tekken 5 was testament to this. However with her more serious goal and storyline in Tekken 6, I am hoping that she figures a lot more into the series’ canon and has a role in taking down the evil that has apparently taken hold of Jin Kazama- as the current descendant of the pure ‘female’ side of Kazama-Ryu, we can expect no less of Asuka.

What lies in the future for Asuka? She’s still got a lot to learn- truly, we still do not know if she’s fully aware of her powers, or if she sees her role to defend the world against the Devil Gene. But then, she’s still quite young, and her present hot-headed enthusiasm and battle-lust may eventually grow into true strength and a clear sense of duty. Asuka can only grow a lot stronger, and a lot more beautiful, in future Tekken games… and that is surely what I mean to watch out for with great anticipation.

OH, and by the way… Asuka is in this week’s Character Matchup Competition at Gametrailers, against Steve Fox. Vote for Asuka (she’s got the cooler trailer in every way) and give her a nice, well-deserved win!

Stay tuned next week as we delve into another fighter’s story!

Tekken 6 is set for release on PS3, Xbox360 and PSP this October 27, 2009.


2 Responses to “Tekken 6 Character Countdown Part 31: Asuka Kazama”

  1. Nice one! I love Asuka….I don’t care about the Jun fans. I’m really happy with Asuka being put into the cast.

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