Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Ryoko (Fighter's History)

Fighting games rock. I just can't way that enough. We owe the original Streetfighter 2 a lot for introducing a pretty important aspect of the genre that sets it apart from your run-of-the-mill boxing and MMA fighters- BABES. Freakin' babes. SF2 gave us a game where hot and beautiful ladies can compete with big, ugly and sweaty blokes, dishing out as well as taking punishment just like everyone else. But as much as I love Capcom for this, I have to say their designs (at least until SF3) left a LOT to be desired. That's where other companies beat them out on. And back early in the day it was all about Fighter's History, the first fighting game to give us a barefoot babe to enjoy.

Fighter's History was widely seen before as the first 'copycat' in the fighting genre, aping the more popular SF with it's own archetypes- it had it's own versions of Ryu, Ken and Chun Li, Zangief and Guile. However, there was one character in FH that I loved above all else, and she was the one really unique fighter in the lineup... cute little judo master and the first barefoot martial arts tomboy in fighting games, Ryoko.

Perhaps born a girl in a man's world, Ryoko took it upon herself to win fame for her dojo and fighting style (your usual schtick, but she was the first).  With speed and agility came cool looking judo slams, and for the finale this spunky fighter could hit with her most feared technique- the Super Mountain throw which rivaled any Spinning Piledriver the competition could dish out. I sneaked out as often as I could, plunked in countless coins so I could watch my adorable judoka kick, punch and throw her way to victory.  

I have to say, this was years ago and my personal fetish was still unfocused. But when I saw Ryoko for the first time, I found her far more beautiful and appealing than the other girls in the roster- even with her baggy, frumpy gi and boyish cuteness, I wanted Ryoko more than sexy Chinese actress Feilin with all her makeup and perky boobs, or even the leggy (but not barefoot) Taekwondo fighter Yungmie. No, it was Ryoko I kept playing with. Soon, I found myself thinking about giving her foot massages after her tiring bouts. Perhaps then, it clicked and from there on I knew what I wanted and my hunt for barefoot babes in games began.

It's pretty hard to find Fighter's History these days- unless there's an arcade with very old cabinets still around, you can do best by getting a Sega Saturn for a version of Fighter's History Dynamite (port of the Neo Geo/arcade upgrade) or have the SuperNES port (which was also cool). I'll try to have more vids (from Dynamite) up, but for now reminisce a classic fighter (and a classic barefoot babe) with the attached video.


  1. This fighter is completely new to me but she's very hot. Barefoot female fighters are really great. I'll have to check this game out.

    Thanks very much for posting her Sole Keeper.

  2. No prob, King. Fighter's History is pretty obscure now, but back then it was an alternative to SF, and actually pretty good... though conceivably not as balanced as SF eventually, and eventually fell out of the picture like most of the wannabees. It's a great part of any game collection though... ^_^

  3. Always good to see ol' FH get some love. Ryoko was definitely very appealing to me back in the day, especially since she was A) barefoot, which at that time was very rare for a fighting game female, and B) a female grappler, which was even more rare. Fighter's History really gets a bad rap, but it hit a lot of firsts in the genre, as it not only featured the first female grappler, but what I do believe is the first rekka-ken command (Mizoguchi's air kicks, later popularized by Street Fighter's Fei Long), and there's a definite weird charm to it all. If you're interested, there's a slim chance that the franchise might not be dead just yet- since I heard rumors of a Fighter's History vs Fatal Fury mobile game a while back, and FH's alleged Ryu copycat and world's ugliest schoolboy Mizoguchi recently guest starred in King of Fighters Maximum Impact 2: Regulation A. Here's hoping that Ryoko makes a modern-day return to glory, along with all those other goofballs in the cast.

  4. Yeah, I saw that thing about Mizoguchi in MI2. First thing in my mind was, Why not Ryoko??!! ^__^

  5. Ryoko can join the KOF Girl Team with Mai and King.