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.
Like Batsu, Daigo has short-spiked black hair (dark brown in the opening, ending, some CGI artworks and in-game, he had purple highlights at the edge) with an upper spike fringe on his head 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, which is a common design among Japanese male school gangs, 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 (blue green in some artworks and in-game).
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 Imawano 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 Karuizawa. 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.
Arsenal, combat style and fighting strategyEdit
All special moves listed here are used by both versions of Daigo.
- Unique Thrust (Japanese: 無双突き Musou Zuki) - 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. In Project Justice, this ability is chained up to three hits.
- Unique Reverse Fist (Japanese: 無双裏拳 Musou Riken) - Daigo does a back-fist strike. Recommended as an anti-air attack.
- Unique Massive 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.
- Energy Focus Cluster (Japanese: 気功塊 Kikou Kai) - 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.
- Unique Kick (Japanese: 無双蹴り Musou Geri) - 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 Unique Massive Back from the original game.
Burning Vigor AttacksEdit
As Normal DaigoEdit
- True Unique Superior Fist Thrust (Japanese: 真・無双正拳突き Shin Musou Seiken Zuki) - 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.
- True Massive Back (Japanese: 真・漢の背中 Shin Kan no Senaka) - It is a powerful version of Unique Massive Back. 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.
- Hard Energy Focus Cluster (Japanese: 硬気功塊 Kou Kikou Kai) - A more powerful version of Daigo's Energy Focus Cluster. Like the Energy Focus Cluster, 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 DaigoEdit
- Wild Unique Superior Fist Thrust (Japanese: 暴走・無双正拳突き Bousou Musou Seiken Zuki) - A little different from the True Incomparable Superior Fist Thrust. Has a faster recovery delay than the Phoenix Fury, though.
- Wild Massive Back (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 Hard Energy Focus Cluster (Japanese: 暴走・硬気功塊 Bousou Kou Kikou Kai) - Compared to the Hard Energy Focus Cluster, this move hits only once, but more powerful. Similar to Powered Akira's Energy Focus Cluster. Like the Energy Focus Cluster and Hard Energy Focus Cluster, this may be fired either straight ahead or 45 degrees downwards, depending on the punch button pressed for this move's button combination.
- Size Within Size (Japanese: 漢の中の漢 Kan no Naka no Kan) - 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.
- 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.
- 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.
For more of this character, see their gallery.