Daigo Kazama (風間 醍醐 Kazama Daigo) is a fighting game character from the Rival Schools series of 3D fighting games.
Daigo may seem strict and harsh, but he is tender at heart. He is the undisputed leader of all the gangs in Gedo High who possesses a magnetic charisma and has a strong sense of duty. Most of the time, his thoughts are with his younger sister, Akira. He is a man of honor who never fights dirty.
Throughout the School Life Mode in Nekketsu Seisyun Nikki 2, Daigo is frequently shown to be outgoing and he always participates in every single contest such as cheerleading during the School Fair Day. He also shows his excitement as well when the player wins during their participation from within the National Sports Day.
In his playable appearance in Street Fighter V serving as part of Akira's V-Trigger and her Critical Art, Daigo is shown to support more of his younger sister, Akira whenever she needs his help in her battles as well as he enjoys sparring with her as seen from her default win animation.
Like Batsu, Daigo has short-spiked black hair (dark brown in the opening, ending, some CGI artworks, Street Fighter V and in-game, he had purple highlights at the edge) with an upper spike fringe on his head, fair skin and black eyes. He has a scar on his right eye which was inflicted on him by Hyo during a past fight that the two had against each other. His primary outfit is a black long school jacket under a white short sleeve shirt, black school pants and black shoes. The interior of his school jacket is purple (dark teal in some artworks and in-game). In Street Fighter V, his school uniform is navy blue while the gold buttons on his jacket are visibly seen and his school shoes being dark purple. His skin is now light tan to contrast his younger sister's skin tone being white.
In the School Life Mode, Daigo is usually seen in his primary outfit with or without his black long school jacket. During New Years Day, Daigo wears a brown leather jacket with a white short sleeve shirt, jeans and his black shoes from his primary outfit.
As Wild Daigo in Project Justice, his black long school jacket is open, showing white bandages to his stomach, and he also has bandages on both of his hands as well. His eyes emit an eerily glow of red due to his brainwashing from either Kurow or Yurika.
Daigo first appeared in the arcade version of United By Fate, seen in his younger sister Akira's ending, but he made his playable debut in the PlayStation port of the game.
Daigo is a student of Gedo High who also doubles as both the honorable and respectable leader of the school's gang. Daigo has no set story in the single player mode, although it is explained that he had set out alone to find the people responsible for the recent school kidnappings. His ending shows how he briefly defeats Hyo after the latter had scarred Daigo's right eye with his katana. Without any warning, Hyo unexpectedly awakens from his unconsciousness and quickly assaults Daigo from behind, defeating him with much ease and that Hyo himself soon brainwashes Daigo in due time. Afterwards from within one week later, Akira decides to pose as a boy in order to enter Gedo High so that she can investigate and figure out on what had happened to her missing older brother. Eventually, Daigo would later be rescued and saved by both his younger sister Akira and two of his loyal subordinates, Edge and Gan.
In Project Justice, Daigo is the central character in the Gedo High story. After returning from a personal training journey that takes place between Rival Schools and Project Justice, Daigo begins ordering his gang to attack random schools for little to no reason whatsoever, much to the reluctance of both Edge and Gan, who slowly begin to suspect that something isn't quite right with Daigo. Edge later discovers that Daigo was ordered around by Momo. When Daigo silently leaves to "take care of" the Gorin students, Edge begins to suspect and question his boss' own disturbing actions. When both Gedo High and Seijyun High begin to have a school gang war against each other, both Edge and Gan soon realize that Daigo is not the same gang leader that they truly respect and that something unexpected had happened to him from within his personal training journey.
They eventually come to realize that Daigo was brainwashed by Kurow as a part of Kurow's evil plan to cause tension and distrust among the schools themselves. Edge and Gan wastes no time in coming to Akira's aid as she tries to wake her brother up from his brainwashed state, but to no avail. She is then forced to fight against him with their assistance. While that's happening, Zaki hears an unexpected whistle noise and soon realizes that Yurika is playing Kurow's flute in order to control Daigo from within his brainwashed state. As Daigo is eventually freed from his brainwashed state, he reunites with both his younger sister and his friends, stating to them that the unified strength of their own combined punches had truly freed him from his brainwashing.
After Kurow reveals his true identity to the group at the mountain area near Justice High, he attempts to brainwash Daigo once again by playing his flute, with Edge attempting to attack Kurow in order to stop him, only to be blocked by Momo. Luckily, Zaki manages to get Kurow's flute with her chains and that Daigo himself soon returns back to normal in due time.
After both Kurow's defeat and Hyo's death, Daigo, who recovers from his brainwashing and realizes that he needs to improve himself both physically and mentally in order to make sure and see to it that something like this doesn't happen again in the future, leaves Edge and Gan in charge of watching over Gedo High until he returns while also giving his school jacket to Akira, saying his good-byes to them as he leaves to train once more from within another personal training journey.
Daigo appears as part of Akira's first V-Trigger Otoko no Senaka, her Critical Art and her win animation.
Arsenal, combat style and fighting strategy
Rival Schools moveset
Daigo's fighting style is street fighting, although it looks more refined than other characters with the same fighting methods. Being proficient at combos, Daigo's techniques are relatively fast as well as hard-hitting. Like his younger sister Akira, Daigo utilizes a projectile but in mid-air as his unique projectile has him to knock back on his opponent while being engulfed in a fire vortex. All of his moves are named after the Phoenix.
As Wild Daigo, he maintains his moves but has a more brutal style of fighting when utilizing his projectiles and he is slower when executing hits.
All special moves listed here are used by both versions of Daigo.
Phoenix Fist (Japanese: 無双突き Musou Zuki, "Peerless Thrust") - Daigo does a straight punch that may either knock the opponent backwards, or can be chained up to five hits, depending on the punch button pressed for this move's button combination. The glowing aura emanate from his punches are light blue. In Project Justice, this ability is chained up to three hits and the glowing aura is replaced by flames during execution of the move.
Phoenix Reverse (Japanese: 無双裏拳 Musou Riken, "Peerless Backfist") - Daigo does a back-fist strike. Recommended as an anti-air attack.
Phoenix Fire (Japanese: 無双裏拳 Otoko no Senaka, "Manly Back") - Daigo turns back on his opponent and creates a brief fiery vortex within him to knock his opponents with a single damage. In Project Justice this ability was later removed and was replaced by his new ability Earth Stab.
Skull Aura (Japanese: 気功塊 Kikou Kai, "Qigong Cluster") - Although this move has the very same Kanji writing as Akira's, this can only be used in the air, where Daigo unleashes a powerful, beamlike energy blast. Depending on the punch button pressed for this move's button combination, the attack may either be directed 45 degrees downward, or straight ahead. The former is best used against opponents on the ground; the latter is an excellent Air Combo finisher. Normal Daigo's version of this move hits once; Wild Daigo's three times.
Phoenix Kick (Japanese: 無双蹴り Musou Geri, "Peerless Kick") - Daigo does a spin-kick. Depending on the kick button pressed for this move's button combination, Daigo may end the attack after the second spin-kick, or may add a powerful forward kick that knocks the opponent into a random obstacle in the field, scoring a bonus hit. Using both versions alternatively is a very good way to confuse the opponent, making the latter's chances of connecting a combo after a Tardy Counter very slim.
Earth Stab (Japanese: 大地突き Daichi Zuki) - Daigo punches the ground, generating a quake that knocks the opponent down, even from a distance. This ability was a replacement to his Phoenix Fire from the original game. In Street Fighter V, this move serves as the first stage of Akira's second V-Trigger, Otoko no Senaka.
Burning Vigor Attacks
As Normal Daigo
Phoenix Fury (Japanese: 真・無双正拳突き Shin Musou Seiken Zuki, "True Peerless Straight Thrust") - Daigo starts with a straight punch, stunning the opponent. He then follows with a series of punches and kicks, and finishes the move with a powerful straight punch with knockback effect. This move's startup is fast, but if blocked, the opponent can deliver a swift counterattack. This move later became a homage to Akira's Critical Art in Street Fighter V as she stuns her opponent with both a palm strike and a punch then both her and Daigo cracking their knuckles and damages the opponent with a barrage of punches and a straight kick and both heavily knocks the opponent with their respective Kikou Kai.
Super Phoenix Fire (Japanese: 真・漢の背中 Shin Otoko no Senaka, "True Manly Back") - It is a powerful version of Phoenix Fire. Daigo turns his back on his opponent, and is then surrounded by a fiery vortex ascending from the ground. More hits can be scored by repeatedly tapping the kick button. Startup is slow, and is best reserved as an anti-air attack against jump-in opponents. In Street Fighter V, Daigo uses this move during the activation of Akira's second V-Trigger .
Super Skull Aura (Japanese: 気功塊 Kou Kikou Kai, "Hard Qigong Cluster") - A more powerful version of Daigo's Skull Aura. Like the Skull Aura, this may be fired either straight ahead or 45 degrees downwards, depending on the punch button pressed for this move's button combination.
As Wild Daigo
Wild Phoenix Fury (Japanese: 暴走・無双正拳突き Bousou Musou Seiken Zuki) - A little different from Phoenix Fury. Has a faster recovery delay.
Wild Phoenix Fire (Japanese: 暴走・漢の背中 Bousou Kan no Senaka) - Daigo unleashes a very powerful burst of energy exploding from the ground. He has super armor throughout this move. The major downside of this move is its horrible startup time and recovery delay when blocked.
Wild Air Rebel Aura (Japanese: 暴走・硬気功塊 Bousou Kou Kikou Kai) - Compared to the Super Skull Aura, this move hits only once, but more powerful. Similar to Powered Akira's variant. May be fired either straight ahead or 45 degrees downwards, depending on the punch button pressed for this move's button combination.
Indestructible Wall (Japanese: 漢の中の漢 Otoko no Naka no Otoko, "Man Among Men") - Team-Up assist by the normal Daigo. The active character punches the opponent away from him/herself, and Daigo stands in the space between them. The opponent vainly makes a punching bag out of Daigo, who then Tardy Counters the last blow, and retaliates with a massive uppercut. He then leaves the field, with the active character bowing to him. If blocked, however, this has poor recovery time. In Street Fighter V, this team-up technique is part of Akira's second V-Trigger, Otoko no Senaka as Akira summons Daigo to deal against the opponent. Instead of standing in the space between them and retaliate with a massive uppercut, Daigo executes his Earth Stab first to knock his/her opponent followed by his Burning Vigor, Super Phoenix Fire to heavily knock back his/her opponent, dealing damage.
Man in the Middle of Insanity (Japanese: 男の中の狂気 Otoko no Naka no Kyouki) - Team-Up assist by Wild Daigo. The active character punches the opponent into an awaiting Wild Daigo, who then pummels the opponent a few times, throws the opponent to the active character, and delivers a massive uppercut before 'staggering' away from the field. The final blow inflicts damage on the active character as well, and is not recommended if the player's character is low on health.
Street Fighter moveset
Daigo's moves are also in Japanese terms as his Earth Stab is now Daichi Zuki, and his Super Phoenix Fire became Shin Otoko no Senaka where Akira executes her first V-Trigger, Otoko no Senaka. Akira's Critical Art is also the homage to his Burning Vigor ,Shin Musou Seiken Zuki where Daigo assists his sister into beating the opponent with a barrage of punches and a straight kick, finishing off with a Kikou Kai on both siblings.
- Both versions of Daigo do the Gedo Top.
Daigo has appeared as a card in SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters Clash.
- The following details on Daigo's life is as described:
- Little is known about Daigo's academic performance, other than the fact that he excels in Japanese language, both in reading and writing. To this day, school subjects where he performs poorly remain undisclosed.
- He and Akira are orphans. They had lived together in his home right before Akira had moved to the Seijyun dorms. Their parents had a friend who owns their garage.
- He was the breadwinner of the family after their parents died.
- He likes his sister's cooking when she prepares meals for him.
- He was a 3rd year student in United by Fate and by the time of Project Justice, he had became a 4th year student of Gedo High.
- He is shown to be outgoing in the School Life Mode of Nekketsu Seisyun Nikki 2, where he usually stays either in parks or the rooftop of the school.
- He was not seen during the times of Physical Education Day, Beach Overnight and the Night Festival due to conflict schedules.
- His given name is sometimes misspelled as "Diago".
- His official epithet is "Boss of Gedo High", but in the opening intro of Nekketsu Seisyun Nikki 2, the title was changed to "Man of Men".
- He is the only Rival Schools character to be voiced by two different people. Kōichi Yamadera voiced him in United by Fate; and in Project Justice, the role went to Akio Ōtsuka.
- As of Akira's debut in Street Fighter V, she and Daigo are the only Rival Schools characters so far to have English voice actors.
For more of this character, see their gallery.