Iori YagamiHearth of Eight Gods

Birthplace: Japan
Birthdate: March 25, 1976 (23 years old)
Height: 1.82 m (6′)
Weight: 76 kg (165 lbs)
Blood type: O and Orochi
Hobbies: Band
Favorite food: Meat
Favorite sport: All
Most valuable: Bass guitar of Rickenbacher
Hates the most: Violence
Fighting style: Yagami style Ancient Martial Arts and Instinct

Iori is the latest in the line of the doomed and ill-fated Yagami clansmen. Their Orochi-infused blood fates them to live short and bloody lives due to their ancient blood-pact 660 years ago. Iori is the last remaning descendant of their clan and because of this, was trained from a very young age in the ancient Yagami/Hasshaku style martial arts. This deadly style was derived with their rival clan, the Kusanagi. It called upon them to wield flames and scorch their enemy. Being of the Yagami, Iori wields the purple flames, a sign of the blood-pact with the Orochi. Being of the two rival clans, the both have similar styles in their fighting. Many years ago (see history) the clans fought together and developed a style of martial arts. Both wielded flames and used them a lot.

Iori is a strange person, a reserved and almost anti-social person. He lives alone, in a dark and dreary little apartment in Japan. He plays in a very popular band and is their lead singer. Although he has a hobby, he is usually very much reserved and very misunderstood person. He is quiet and only lives for one purpose. To kill Kyo Kusanagi. Since a child, he has been ‘programmed’ by clan elders into a killing machine, with only one goal and ambition in life. Because he knows only too well his short life span (since his revelation in King of Fighters 97) Iori has moved quickly to kill Kyo. Many people love Iori’s dark and sinister history, this darkness is very appealing to the players of King of Fighters.

Many hold a hatred and vendetta against Iori. And it is not suprising. During his arrival in King of Fighters 96, he teamed up with revenge-filled fighters, Billy Kane and Eiji Kisaragi. Billy, the right-hand man of mob boss, Geese Howard, had immense hatred for Terry Bogard, a fighter from Southtown that bashed Billy and his boss, Geese. Eiji, however like Iori, had an ancient vendetta against a clan. Eiji sought to kill the heirs of Kyokugen Karate, Ryo Sakazaki and Yuri Sakazaki. During their King of Fighters 96 campaign, they had all agreed that each had their own targets and they will not get in each others way. Despite this, Eiji and Billy inadvertantly got in Iori’s path and endded up in horribly wounded and in hospital. So now, Billy Kane and Eiji hold a deep vendetta against Iori. See the game facts section for more on this.

The latest vendetta against Iori occurs in King of Fighters 97. Yashiro Nanakase, the leader of a rival band, holds a violent grudge against Iori. Since Iori’s band ousted Yashiro’s as a headline act in a national Japanese band concert, Yashiro was enraged and vowed to destroy Iori. Yashiro and his band members, Shermie and Chris then entered the tournament, Yashiro wishing to beat down on Iori. For more on Yashiro’s hatred and realtionship with Iori, see the game facts section for more on this.

Well Iori is full of paradox isn’t he? Considered the most violent and gruesome of the game, many of his moves are violent and depicting death (see his heavy punch move, more like a “slash or rip” if yuo ask me) and most cause blood to pour from the opponent. His moves are gruesome, especially his trademark Kin Sen Ni Hyaku Juu Ichi Shiki: Ya Otome (translated as Forbidden Style #1201: Eight Maidens) is tremendously violent. Now, how can we seriously say that Iori hates violence? Hmm…very strange I think.