Guile (ガイル) is a character from the Street Fighter series of fighting games.
Although his role in the Street Fighter story is minimal, Guile is considered the third leading male character in the series, after Ryu and Ken Masters, largely due to his effectiveness as a character and his popularity. Guile is married to Eliza's sister, Julia. Together, they have a daughter, Amy.
Early Street Fighter II sketches and notes suggest that Guile was developed specifically to appeal to American fans. His physical appearance is strikingly different from the many Asian characters in the Street Fighter series, with light blue eyes (green in Street Fighter V), a chiseled jaw, and a particularly tall flattop haircut. The length of Guile's hair varies greatly from appearance to appearance. It is relatively realistic in Street Fighter II, and impossibly tall in SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos. Capcom source books suggest that Guile's famous hairdo is styled with a special-order army hair spray to keep it up.
Another way Guile's image differs from the Asian combatants in the series is his flag of the United States flag tattoos on each arm, which is a retcon from the initial one he had in Street Fighter II artwork.
Finally, Guile's military fatigues complete his all-American look. The image of the uniformed American soldier is well-known in Japan due to the number of United States Armed Forces bases present in that country.
In Street Fighter V he wears a new suit, which is more representative of the Air Force. He wears aviator glasses, a rolled-up white shirt, dark blue tie and pants, a black belt and black boots.
In an interview with producer Noritaka Funamizu, he reveals that Guile's overall appearance was modeled after  Guile's page in Street Fighter X Tekken Artworks goes into detail, explaining that early designs included Polnareff's vertical, yet modest hairstyle, but at the time the sprites were being made for Street Fighter II, the pixel artist jokingly stretched Guile's hair out to the sides. The team found it amusing and decided to give him "the always distinctive look" instead. Noritaka also explains that Guile's name was derived from Polnareff's archenemy, , though this was apparently the result of a mix up from the development staff at the time., a character from the manga series .
When Guile was a lieutenant in the United States Air Force, he befriended his superior officer, Charlie, and asked Charlie to teach him in his unique form of fighting, which Charlie agreed to do. Guile learned the style, but his hot temper caused him to not be as proficient in the moves as Charlie was.
According to the Street Fighter timeline, Guile was not introduced to the series until the events of Street Fighter Alpha 3, when he was sent by the United States Air Force to look for Charlie, who had gone missing during a secret investigation. Guile's search eventually led him to Interpol investigator Chun-Li, who warned him not to follow Charlie due to the danger involved. Guile demonstrated his fighting ability, and assured Chun-Li that he would not let their friend come to harm. He eventually found the Shadaloo base in Thailand, along with the missing Charlie. The sinister and powerful M. Bison appeared and attacked the two soldiers, daring them to follow him inside his Shadaloo base. As Chun-Li investigated another area, Charlie and Guile began to set explosives around their mission objective: Bison's source of power, the Psycho Drive. However, Bison surprised them, and a fight ensued. Charlie convinced Guile to leave while he held Bison off, so Guile took Chun-Li and escaped, right before the base exploded, with Charlie and Bison caught in the blast. Standing on the top of a mountain, Guile says he will always believe in Charlie's memory.
Holding Bison responsible for the death of his best friend, he was eager to take revenge on Bison, who had by then somehow survived the explosion. A court case against the Shadaloo dictator failed when Bison bribed all the judges to let him go free. By this time, Bison wanted revenge on Guile, Chun-Li, and many other people who had hindered his syndicate's efforts. To this end, he set up the second World Warrior tournament to trap them.
Although the circumstances of how Guile approached Bison remains unclear and debatable, he managed to corner Bison and asked him if he remembered him or his friend Charlie. When Guile threatened the defeated Bison with the intent to kill him, he is stopped by his wife and daughter. Understanding that what he was doing was wrong, he returns with them to their home, feeling that he had woken up from a long nightmare.
In Street Fighter IV, though his vendetta is concluded, Guile still believes it possible that Charlie may be alive, and demands that his superiors allow him to continue the search. His commanding officer refuses, and Guile tenders his resignation. Guile is surprised when his superior ignores the resignation, assigning Guile to the investigation of S.I.N., an organization with alleged ties to Shadaloo. Guile is at first incredulous that Shadaloo lives on without Bison, but soon takes to his new assignment with zeal. Recruiting Chun-Li to the investigation, the two enter a new tournament organized by S.I.N., in the hopes of infiltrating its headquarters. Over the course of the tournament he encounters a mysterious French fighter named Abel, who seems to recognize Guile's Sonic Boom attack. Since only he and Charlie know this attack, Guile comes to the conclusion that Abel has information on Charlie's ultimate fate, and immediately starts pressing him for answers on where he saw the Sonic Boom before. Abel is completely unwilling to share such sensitive information with a stranger who could easily be a spy, and they exchange blows. It is currently unknown who won the fight.
Later, in the S.I.N. headquarters, Guile recovers important data while Chun-Li is trapped by Vega, with the base's self-destruction imminent. En route to rescuing Chun-Li, Guile is ambushed by one of Bison's cyborgs (in the same mold as Seth). Abel arrives and takes on the cyborg instead, telling Guile where Chun-Li is and telling him to hurry. Exactly how Chun-Li is then rescued is unclear - Gen seems to have protected her from a collapse and then broken free from the rubble, but is nowhere to be seen later as Guile and Abel watch the base explode, with an unconscious Chun-Li in Guile's arms.
On the early video of Super Street Fighter IV, there is a rivalry clip showing Guile and M.Bison, stating that Guile will send him straight to hell this time.
In Street Fighter V, after a tireless search, Guile finally finds Charlie (or rather Charlie is the one who finds him), and despite noticing the physical alterations in his body and being eager to know what happened to him, he has little interaction with him during A Shadow Falls, because he handled the situation professionally (he was in a work context). Because Charlie is no longer the person he had met, he understands that his ways have already separated, and he lets him go, but not before returning his dog tags to remind him that they will always be friends. In addition to that he is already a friend of Abel, the two work together and Guile advises and guides him on how to act. He respects Karin a lot and collaborates with her in the operation to stop the Black Moons, and meets a mysterious woman (Kolin) who feels for him immediate antipathy, leaving him intrigued by her attitude and fighting style. Unbeknownst to him, she was responsible for the resurrection of Charlie Nash.
Guile is generally considered a top tier character in the Street Fighter II series. He is considered by most players as the best character after Ken and Ryu. Guile is the first of many characters to introduce the "charge" gameplay style, in that a player must hold in a direction for a few seconds and press in the other afterwards to pull off a special move. This type of gameplay can make Guile a defensive character. Because of the short lag after his Sonic Boom, though, he can follow it and use his various forward-moving attacks to pressure the enemy, which makes him offensively very powerful as well.
Guile's two primary Special moves are the Sonic Boom (Projectile based attack) and Flash Kick (an anti-air attack). Both moves require a charge motion. Throughout the series, these have been Guile's main special attacks and has been known to have more Super Attacks than special moves. The "Sonic Hurricane" is not a projectile but if it connects, it traps the opponents in and does multiple hits. Double Flash is basically his Flash Kick with two more kicks added in. It acts like Ken's ShoryuuReppa in that it performs three Somersaults. It is also considered one of Guile's most difficult moves to perform. In Capcom vs. SNK he gained another Super Move called "Total Wipeout" which allows him to do consecutive punches that end with a final Backhand punch that knocks the opponent away. This move is similar to a super move he had in the EX series called "Opening Gambit", which also features consecutive punches but ends with a modified side Somersault kick instead of a backhand.
- Guile has a cameo in Final Fight 2 during the boss fight with Freddie in France. He can be seen in the background, cheering him on.
- He also has a cameo in Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law.
- Guile's likeness appears in the game We Love Golf! as an unlockable cosplay outfit for Brian.
- In 2008, Sackboy skins for Guile, Ryu, Chun-Li and Zangief were released as downloadable content in LittleBigPlanet.
- Portrayed by Jean-Claude Van Damme in the 1994 Street Fighter: The Movie.
- Guile's theme has been the subject of internet memes where it goes with everything.
- Zero's theme in Mega Man X3 bears a little resemblance to Guile's theme in Street Fighter II.
For more images of this character, see their Gallery.
- Interview with Noritaka Funamizu - Weekly Famitsu Issue 1998/9/25