Kurow Kirishima (霧嶋 九郎 Kirishima Kurō) is a fighting game character from the Rival Schools series.
Kurow has short platinum blonde hair with three curly half long fringes and black eyes.
His primary appearance is an altered version of the Justice High school uniform. He wears a black short jacket with red outlines, brown mesh short sleeves which is connected to the sleeves of his jacket, black pants and matching black shoes with a single red lining. He wears red fingerless gloves similar to Batsu's and has sharp claws on both of his hands which he can elongate when some of his moves are used.
As Vatsu, he appears identical to Batsu's appearance and his outfit but has platinum blonde hair streaks in each sides of his hair as well as the sharp claws.
In the Justice High story, he wears at one point the standard male Justice High school uniform (only colored blue instead of red) and his hair is dyed dark blue to conceal his identity infront of the school's teachers.
Serving as the main antagonist of Project Justice, he makes various appearances throughout different stories early on in the game's Story Mode, either as himself or as "Vatsu", an evil doppelganger of the main protagonist Batsu. His main actions include attacking various groups of students while also sowing the seeds of tension and distrust among the schools themselves, being aided and assisted by his obedient subordinates, which consists of his older sister Yurika, his loyal admirer Momo, and a brainwashed Daigo. Kurow was sent by the "Reverse Society" (in which the Imawano family was a part of) to assassinate Batsu, Raizo, Kyosuke and Hyo after Hyo himself had failed in his mission from within last year. To make matters worse, not only does he manage to seriously attack and injure Raizo to the point that Raizo himself is sent straight to the hospital (with Kurow personally deciding to hold back in killing Raizo via his own reprieve in that Raizo would still be of use to him from within the near future) while later on brainwashing both Daigo and Hyo using his flute and disguising himself as Batsu's evil doppelganger Vatsu as a part of his evil plan, but he also has a different agenda from that of the organization who "had been using him all along", which is to reform and take over Japan and the entire world by force. In short, he's an assassin gone mad.
At a certain point, Kurow unveils himself as the true mastermind behind the recent upheaval among the schools. After being defeated by the group of students selected by the player, he attempts to send a supposedly brainwashed Hyo after the group of students, only for Hyo to reveal that Kurow's brainwashing attempt towards him early on in the game didn't truly affect him upon sight and that he had only pretended to be brainwashed just so he could get closer to Kurow and learn all that he needed to know about his evil plan, effectively insulting Kurow. The two engage in a swift and quick battle, leading to Kurow suffering a bloody defeat from Hyo, who soon transforms into his evil alter-ego Demon Hyo and that the battle against Demon Hyo himself would soon lead to Hyo's own death in due time. The initial sequence following the final battle in Story Mode reveals that Kurow was hospitalized after his bloody defeat, but he doesn't stay for too long as he unexpectedly escapes after a few days. His whereabouts after escaping the hospital remain unknown to this day.
Arsenal, fighting style, and combat strategyEdit
Kurow's fighting style involves using his sharp claws which are similar to Raizo's but unlike him, Kurow can elongate his claws. Kurow utilizes claw attacks and can stab his opponent with one hand. He can also engulf in a black orb to make vacuum claws on his opponent and he can utilize a projectile cna make one or two dark tornado storm as part of his burning vigor attacks.
As Batsu's fake version, Vatsu, he basically combines his own fighting techniques with some of Batsu's.
Both as Himself and "Vatsu"Edit
- Dark Ancient Dance (Japanese: 闇神楽 Yamikagura) - Kurow does a scratch-like swipe that can be done up to three times. As himself, the swipes become claw slashes, and this move can be made to aim high or low, depending on the punch button pressed for this move's button combination.
- Six Organ Stab (Japanese: 六腑突き Roppu Zuki) - Kurow does a dashing semi-uppercut aimed towards the opponent's midsection. It can be charged to deal more hits. As himself, this can be chained into a Burning Vigor Attack that will be explained later in this section of the article.
- Demon's Vehicle (Japanese: 夜叉車 Yasha Guruma) - Kurow encases himself in a black orb and flies towards the opponent, dealing damage by means of vacuum-like slashes. This is also usable in the air, and can be made to go up or down while going forward.
- Guts Bullet (Japanese: 気合弾 Kiaidan -- Energy Focus Blast) - Exactly the same as Batsu's Guts Bullet. See Batsu's article for more details.
- Space Splitter (Japanese: 空間裂き Kuukan Saki) - Kurow slashes the air, leaving a trail of clawmarks for a few seconds that can damage the opponent on contact. It can slash high or low, depending on the punch button pressed for this move's button combination. The low version is good for stopping dash-in opponents; while the high version is a good anti-air counter.
- Dark Run (Japanese: 闇駆け Yamikake) - Kurow stands on one leg. If attacked while in this stance, he will teleport behind the opponent, and is effective even against Party-Up techniques from the opponent. It, however, is not effective against crouching attacks and multiple-hit attacks.
Burning Vigor AttacksEdit
- Pitch-Black Guts Bullet (Japanese: 暗黒気合弾 Ankoku Kiaidan -- Pitch-black Energy Focus Blast) - Exactly the same as Batsu's Super Guts Bullet.
- Pitch-Black Dark Ancient Dance (Japanese: 暗黒闇神楽 Ankoku Yamikagura) - Powered version of the Dark Ancient Dance. Kurow does five swipes and finishes with a reverse flip-kick. This attack's range is deceptively long, and only the last hit can be successfully Tardy Countered.
- Forbidden Power Drain (Japanese: 禁忌 力吸い Kinki Chirasui) - This can be done only if chained from the Six Organ Stab. Kurow saps his impaled opponent of health to restore some of his own.
- Kirishima-Style Vacuum Dark Storm (霧嶋流 真空闇嵐 Kirishima-ryuu Shinkuu Anran) - A vortex of wind arises a step in front of Kurow. If the player has another level of Guts, he can make Kurow summon another while the first one is still active. Good against jump-in opponents. Used once, this also makes a good launcher.
- Kirishima-Style Berserker's Cleaving Ripper (Japanese: 霧嶋流 狂獣裂破 Kirishima-ryuu Kyoujuu Reppa) - Kurow dashes across the screen, leaving a trail of spinning clawmarks. Landing opponents will have a very hard time blocking this attack, and if all hits of this attack connect, this attack does massive damage. If blocked, however, the opponent will end up directly behind Kurow. If the player is not fast enough, the opponent can take advantage of the recovery to counterattack.
- Pitch-Black Double Guts Bullet (Japanese: 暗黒Ｗ気合弾 Ankoku Double Kiaidan -- Pitch-Black Double Energy Focus Blast) - Used by Kurow as Vatsu. Exactly the same as Batsu's Double Guts Bullet Team-Up assist.
- Kirishima-Style Cruciform Killer (Japanese: 霧嶋流 十文字殺法 Kirishima-ryuu Juumonji Sappou) - Used by Kurow as himself. The active character sends the opponent high into the air, where Kurow does a barrage of blows to the latter. From the ground, Kurow and the active character then slash the still airborne opponent, leaving a pair of clawmarks that intersect where the opponent is.
- As Vatsu, he does the Final Symphony; but as himself, he does the Kirishima-style Linear Consecutive Killer, which is exclusive to him.
- The following details of Kurow's life is as described:
- Other than the fact that Kurow has an older sister, the existence and whereabouts of their parents remain unknown up to this day.
- Kurow's home life is also unknown, other than the fact that he lives alone in the school's dormitory.
- Aside from brainwashing people and disguising as somebody else, he also feigns innocence.
- He does not have a part-time job; in the first place, he's too preoccupied in scheming. Second, he has the same thought as Hyo--part-time jobs to both of them are "poor, mundane things".
- The Kanji for his last name is written in an uncommon way (霧嶋), compared to Yurika's (霧島), which is the standard way of writing Kirishima, which literally means "foggy island".
- Kurow's alias "Vatsu" does not have a Japanese name, instead being rendered as "???".
- His official epithet is "Assassin of Darkness". His "Vatsu" form's official epithet is "Fist of Falsehood".
- He is one of two characters to have two Party-Up techniques; one of which is exclusive to him. The other one is Akira.
- Kurow's bladed glove fighting style seems to be based on horror icon Freddy Krueger from the A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise.
- He is voiced by Bin Shimada.