Hokuto no Ken

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An arcade game developed by Arc System Works and published by SEGA/Sammy. The characters are based on the hit anime/manga series "Hokuto no Ken" (also known as "Fist of the North Star"). Similar to the Guilty Gear games in both look, feel and play style this game currently runs on the Atomiswave hardware.


  • Controls

A = Light Punch
B = Light Kick
C = Heavy Punch
D = Heavy Kick
E = Boost

The control format is as follows:

  • Recovering Life Gauge

The orange color on the life guage indicate current life energy. The blue bar underneath the orange represents the amount that can be recovered. Recovery only occurs when your character is not being attacked or high-jumping.

  • Seven Stars of the Hokuto

Underneath every life bar is the 7-Star guage. Special moves and other attacks can deplete stars at any given moment of the match. A final star will be brightly displayed on the 7-Star guage when there is only ONE star left. The player who has the "Death Star" on their guage will now be vulnerable to an "Instant Kill" otherwise known as a "FATAL KO." When this occurs, the words "Death Fist Blow" will appear on the side of the player opponent's Aura bar. If the opponent is able to land his/her FATAL KO move, the round (not match) ends immediately. However, if he/she misses the move, the victim is rewarded with an extra star, therefore eliminating the threat of another FATAL KO for the moment. Both players also recover a missing star at the beginning of each round.

  • Guard Gauge and Weight System

Depending on the characters being played, a Guard gauge will sometimes appear. Similar to SF Alpha 3, constant blocking and defending will decrease the meter. When it reaches zero, a "Guard Crush" will occur and the player will not be able to block and becomes temporarily vulnerable to attacks. This guage will only appear when characters of the same weight class have a match, with the *exception of middle-weights*.
For instance, 2 heavy-weights fighting each other will have a Guard guage, as will 2 light-weight fighters. On the other hand, 2 middle-weights will not. When there is a mis-match in terms of weight, only the lighter fighter will have a Guard guage. So basically in a match where Heart (a heavy-weight) is fighting Mamiya (a light-weight) only Mamiya will have a Guard gauge, since she is lighter and more vulnerable to being guard crushed.

The game's weight classes are as follows:

Heavy-weight: Mr. Heart, Shin
Middle-weight: Jagi, Juda, Kenshiro, Raoh, Rei, Toki
Light-weight: Mamiya, Thouther

  • Boost Gauge

When a player performs attacks and special moves the Boost Guage will raise gradually. This guage is divided into 3 levels, similarly, Boosts can be performed a maximum of three times. However, there are exceptions to this, such as when the Boost is performed during the middle of a combo. The benefits of Boosting allow a player to dash towards opponents and perform quick, combo chains. The boost button is designated as the E button.

  • Aura Gauge

Located beneath the Boost Guage is the 2-level Aura Guage, which is the meter that enables the ability to perform Super moves. When 1 level of Aura is full, the bar changes color from blue to gold. In either case the words "GOD FIST BLOW" will appear.


Mr. Heart

Tier List


Toki, Rei, Juda, Raoh


Kenshiro, Shin, Heart


Souther, Mamiya, Jagi


Official Hokuto no Ken site (JP)