Hokuto No Ken

STORYSet in a post apocalyptic world where the Earth is barren and the strong survive by preying on the weak, the series follows the journey of Kenshiro, the successor of Hokuto Shinken, "Divine Fist of the North Star", a secret martial arts style that allows its practitioner to destroy an opponent's body from within by striking into their secret channeling points, often resulting in a violent and gruesome death. Kenshiro uses his skills to protect the weak and innocent against the numerous villains that threaten their survival.

Hokuto No Ken character selection screen.

Based on the iconic manga and anime series, Hokuto No Ken (known as Fist of the North Star in the West) is a 2D fighter made by Arc System Works, perhaps best known for their amazing work on the Guilty Gear series. The game is based on the first half of the original manga (vol. 1-16), using the characters as they were depicted in the 1980's anime series. The voices of the playable characters are all performed by the original voice actors from the anime, with the exception of Kenshiro and Rei, whom are both played by new actors.


High-res 2D sprites from the team that brought you Guilty Gear.


Every player has a Seven Stars Gauge. By performing attacks, the gauge can be lowered and once empty, a final "death star" will light up and the enemy player can perform a "Fatal KO technique" that finishes of the opponent similar to the "Instant Kill" moves from Guilty Gear. Unlike in Guilty Gear, where you could boost any number of times, Hokuto no Ken has a gauge that limits the number of boosts a player can perform, however, the boost is much more powerful than the one in Guilty Gear.


Click Here for all character artwork!


Page Updated: March 22nd, 2022
Developer(s): Arc System Works
Publisher(s): Sega
Platform(s): Arcade
PlayStation 2
Release Date(s): Dec. 2005                          Arcade
Mar. 29th, 2000
Characters Kenshiro, Raoh, Toki, Jagi, Rei, Shin, Juda, Souther, Mr. Heart, Mamiya

Featured Video:

Related Games: Hokuto No Ken: Raoh Gaiden ~ Ten no Haoh, Sengoku Basara X, JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Heritage For The Future, JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle, Battle Fantasia, Guilty Gear X, BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger, AquaPazza, Saturday Night Slam Masters, Dragon Ball FighterZ

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Final Words:

First off, I do think a lot of Fist of the North Star character designs are cool and the artwork is great. However, I never followed the series too closely. Hokuto No Ken the fighting game seems like a dream come true for any fan of the series and 2D fighting games alike. The artwork and animation has that Arc System Works aesthetic (who can complain), and the gameplay mechanics in this one are pretty flashy for its time.

However (and a big however)... this game is notoriously BROKEN. It's broken worse than X-Men Vs. Street Fighter broken. Hokuto No Ken has some of the most hilarious and ridiculous infinite combos and glitches. A better name for this game? HOKUTO NO BROKEN.

I still haven't gotten around to playing this one for any considerable length of time... but I have played a few rounds and watched some high-level gameplay. Yeah, it's definitely one of the most broken fighting games I've ever seen. I guess that's why I'm not in a particular rush to play it. On the bright side, the 2D character sprites are charismatic as hell! I'm really surprised this game never got a localized English release.
~TFG Webmaster | @Fighters_Gen  

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