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Introduced in Killer Instinct

Chief Thunder

  During the previous Killer Instinct tournament, Chief Thunder's brother, Eagle, was one of the combatants. When Eagle did not return, Thunder entered the next tournament hoping to either return or avenge Eagle.


Cinder

  Ultratech promised they would release Cinder from prison early if he would allow them to experiment on him. When their chemical weapons experiment failed, it mutated him into living flame. If he wants to become normal once more, he must defeat Glacius.


Fulgore

 A prototype cybernetic soldier created by Ultratech. He was put into the Killer Instinct to test his abilities. If he proves effective, mass production will begin. He was killed by Jago in the tournament, but robots don't die that easily.

 After the original's death, Ultratech builds a new, deadlier Fulgore. When Ultratech HQ is sent into the past, he is released with one order: kill Jago.


Glacius

  An alien from who-knows-where captured by Ultratech and forced to fight in Killer Instinct, supposedly to prove aliens' inferiority. He eventually defeated Cinder and escaped to his homeworld.

  But 2000 years in the past, the remaining combatants have been thrust back in time, and Glacius's ancestors are all trapped on Earth. One of them, also named Glacius, seeks to free them and return home.


Jago

  A Tibetian monk mentored by the Tiger Spirit who believes it his destiny to destroy Ultratech.

Black Orchid

Riptor

Sabrewulf

Spinal

  • Dem Bones: He's a sword-and-shield-bearing skeleton who effectively broke Nintendo's longstanding taboo against undead protagonists. He's rather unique with his magical attacks, some of which require the expenditure of a flaming skull; three encircle his body and they must be cast ahead of time. No other character has a mechanic like this.
  • Eye Pop: A totally ridiculous one if Orchid uses her flash No Mercy finisher on him.
  • Mega Manning: He could include copies of his current opponent's moves in his combo finishers.
  • Pirate: He was one 200 years ago. He even had a ship and a huge crew of fellow skeletons!
  • Shield-Bash: Taken to ridiculous extremes. He can stab, levitate, and electrocute people with his shield.
  • Shout-Out: Along with Eyedol, to The 7th Voyage of Sinbad
  • Sub Boss: He is always third-to-last on the ladder in the first game.
  • Teleport Spam: His Skeleport.

T.J. Combo

  • A Twinkle in the Sky: One of his finishers.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: Even though Jago is an actual monk, TJ fits this particular trope better as a heavyweight boxer and the only fighter without an obvious weapon or superpower. His arms contain cybernetic enhancements, but he's often overlooked in favor of the flashier characters despite his strengths.
  • Combat Pragmatist: His backstory shows that he uses cybernetic implants. He also has a Machine Gun!
  • Estrogen Brigade Bait: Like Jago, he too is quite ripped in both muscle and clothing.
  • Expy: Of Balrog, Jerkass and everything. His movesets are also an expy of Guile taken up to eleven, as EVERY move requires the player Charge back or forward (except the Super moves).
  • Extremity Extremist: He's a boxer, after all.
  • Fallen Hero: He fights in the first tournament to get his heavyweight title back.
  • Jack of All Stats: He has a decent mix of strength and speed.
  • More Dakka: See Combat Pragmatist.
  • Neck Snap: One of his finishers.
  • Painting the Fourth Wall: He has a finisher which smack his opponents into the screen.
  • Sociopathic Hero: In the comic book, he's not above quite brutally maiming foes, threatening non-fighters to get what he wants and cheating in tournaments. He also reacts with confusion when he sees Jago choosing not to kill an opponent. He's one of the protagonists.

Eyedol

  • The Dragon: Ultratech likely sees him this way, since they freed him to fight in their tournament.
  • Evil Versus Evil: In his backstory, we find he was imprisoned while fighting another warlord. This is revealed to be Gargos in KI2.
  • Final Boss
  • Humanoid Abomination: Besides his two-headed appearance, he is also described as a mystical warlord from ancient times.
  • I Am Legion: Well, maybe. When he speaks in his ending he first uses "I" and "My", but then at the end switches to "we".
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Ultratech breaks him out.
  • Secret Character
  • Shout-Out: In the first part of his ending, a woman in purple approaches him claiming that he's her long lost son Billy, lost in a car incident. This is almost the same scene which mirrors the ending of Blanka. (Also note that Blanka's real name is Jimmy... Billy? Jimmy? Anyone?)
  • SNK Boss

Introduced in Killer Instinct II/Gold

Kim Wu

Maya

Tusk

Gargos

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