13 min read


Context

K Dash (usually rendered as K’, SOMEHOW) is one of the major characters in the King of Fighters brawling video games series.

He first appeared in the 1999 edition, and was thrust into the spotlight as the new main character.

He and his teammates had late 1990s aesthetics. They were more akin to gritty, edgy anti-heroes than previous protagonist Kyo.

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Background

  • Real Name: Unrevealed.
  • Other Aliases: Beast of Fire, He Who Surpasses K.
  • Known Relatives: Kyo Kusanagi (K’ was partially cloned from Kyo’s DNA), Whip (sister), Kula Diamond (cloned twin sister).
  • Group Affiliation: Hero Team.
  • Base Of Operations: Mobile.
  • Height: 6’0″ (1.82m). Weight: 143 lbs. (65 Kg.).
  • Eyes: Gray. Hair: White.

Powers and Abilities

K’ supposedly fight without form, as “pure violence”. But many of his techniques are reminiscent of Jeet Kune Do. He even uses some of its famous moves, such as the One Inch Punch and flying kicks.

As to his powers, K’ can:

  • Create fire our of nowhere.
  • Throw fireballs.
  • Add damage to his normal attacks using fire.
  • Create an explosion by touching his enemy.
  • Translocate himself (that is, teleport).

His gameplay is cut from the same cloth as Ken and Ryu, but with twists. For example, his basic projectile is a short burst of flame that can be followed up with a projectile or an anti air move. Which means that at close range he can cancel and counter someone else’s projectile or air attack.

The rest of his move set is fairly standard for this type of character – though his teleportations are useful for cross ups and such.

K' (K-Dash) (King of FIghters) with a thumb in his pocket

History

K’ was actually born into a normal family and likely would’ve led a normal life.

However, when he was still a baby the NEST Cartels kidnapped him. He and other children received DNA harvested from fighting champion Kyo Kusanagi. The process was deemed to be a success.

The next stage was to turn the kid into Krizalid, NEST’s ultimate living weapon. But K’s body could not contain the awesome flames of the Kusanagi, and his hands were always on fire. And thus, the experiment didn’t reach completion. He was dubbed K’, short for an incomplete Krizalid.

Even though he wasn’t perfect, the youth could use the red Kusanagi flames.

Most of K’s youth was as a NEST agent, and he grew to be angry and bitter. For him there was no joy in life. Only constant missions and orders, and most of them were unsavory.

King of Fighters ’99

K’ was partnered with Maxima, a mercenary cyborg. They were assigned to join the tournament both to test the limits of K’s combat abilities, and to gather data on the other fighters. NEST was considering kidnapping and cloning more fighters, to use their DNA in the same way as Kyo’s.

The NEST Cartels agents team up with the best – Kyo’s former teammates Benimaru Nikaido and Shingo Yabuki. Initially neither pair trusted the other, and the team was formed under suspicious circumstances. But once the tournament started the competitive nature in each of the fighters came out. They won match after match, largely due to K’s brutal style. And they eventually won the right to challenge the tournament’s host.

They were summoned to the sewers for this final match. The sewage drained, revealing an elevator. Once all the way down, they were greeted by Krizalid, NEST’s most powerful clone.

He congratulated Maxima and K’ on a job well done. Then informed Benimaru and Shingo that their combat data had been gathered and that they were no longer needed.

K' (K-Dash) (King of FIghters) with a fire sphere in hand

Facing K

Krizalid then easily swept the two aside, as K’ looked on disinterested. Although Beni and Shingo were top notch fighters, they were clearly no match for the clone’s might.

However just before Krizalid could finish them off something snapped inside of K’.

He suddenly realized that all the hate, rage, and bitterness that he’d experienced in his life had been due to NESTs constant orders to commit heinous crimes. And while fighting on the same team didn’t necessarily make them friends, K’ had grown to respect his two compatriots in their short time together.

He therefore stepped in.

This amused Krizalid, who taunted K’ with the fact that he was merely an imperfect version of himself. But to everyone’s surprise Maxima stepped in to help K’ as well. He too had grown fond of his teammates – and didn’t fully trust the Cartel either.

On the run

With their combined strength K’ and Maxima were eventually able to defeat Krizalid. However, in striking the final blow the force ripped K’s gloves off. His power raged out of control as he still wasn’t able to stop his hands from burning.

To make matters worse:

  1. Krizalid’s defeat triggered the base’s self-destruct mechanism.
  2. An Ikari Warriors hit squad that had been tracking them came in to eliminated the pair.

K’ had been badly wounded and was unable to continue fighting. But Maxima took several bullets for him. K’ called his partner a fool and told him to save himself. But after dealing with the hit squad the cyborg carried K’ to safety.

The pair would go into hiding together and watch each other’s back for the next year or so…

King of Fighters 2000

The sudden announcement of a new KoF Tournament piqued the pair’s interest. They needed this shot to get back at NEST and to prove their innocence. But the main entries were four-person teams.

They were unexpectedly approached by the mysterious Vanessa and her partner Ramon, a Mexican wrestler. Neither K’ nor Maxima trusted them, but they were their only option if they wanted to participate. So they grudgingly agreed to team up.

K’ and team brutally fought their way to the finals, and got their chance to face the big boss. The tournament had taken place in South Town, like the very first tournament organized by Geese Howard and won by Terry Bogard in the early Fatal Fury days.

Kula

The final fight was to take place in a seemingly abandoned factory. As the group explored the area they were suddenly hit by an icy wind. K’ angrily demanded that whoever it was show themselves.

A petite teenage girl with pale blue hair and a leather jumpsuit similar to K’s stepped forward. As he prepared to fight, K’ couldn’t shake the feeling that he had some sort of connection with the girl. She stated that she was Kula Diamond, the Anti-K, and the two duelled.

The two were evenly matched. In frustration, K’ put everything in his flame to break through her ice shield, but that didn’t work. He was exhausted and Kula was badly burned, but the fight was inconclusive.

K' (K-Dash) (King of Fighters)

Fire and ice

Kula explained that she was a clone of K’. NEST Cartels higher-ups had sent her after Zero, another NEST leader, to consolidate their own power. Kula’s taskmaster would then use a powerful satellite laser, the Zero Cannon, to eliminate all threats. That included the contenders in the King of Fighters tournament.

K’ and Kula allied, with the latter focusing on freezing the Zero Cannon. To K’s surprise, Benimaru and Shingo had also joined the fray along with their two new teammates Seth and Lin. But even with the combined might of all six fighters they couldn’t stand against Zero.

K’ fought with all his might. But even though the previous fighters had managed to wound the villain, K’ just didn’t have enough fire left in him take him down. However, that bought enough time for Kula to take the laser out.

The confused Zero was taken out by NEST agents Diana and Foxy. Kula then directed the Canon at Zero himself – and K’ helped his allies flee.

Whiplash

On the way out, K’ ran into his long-lost sister. Now known as Whip, she had joined the Ikari Warriors. She was part of the hunt for K’ and Maxima, but Whip’s goal was to reunite with her brother.

While other Ikari Warriors were busy fighting NEST agents, Whip helped K’ and his companions get out. In their haste to escape K’ and Maxima got separated from Vanessa and Ramon, though all four made it.

The Zero Canon struck. That eliminated the factory and the surrounding area destroying a large swath of South Town. But by then both K’s and Benimaru’s teams had safely escaped.

K' (K-Dash) (King of Fighters) with glasses on fighting stance

King of Fighters 2001

K’ and company raided NEST bases around the world. But their efforts were mostly for naught. Those sites had either been abandoned, or held such small potatoes that it was hardly worth their effort.

After nearly a year of this they were reunited with Lin. He was searching NEST bases in hopes of finding Ron, who had betrayed his clan. With the next tournament sponsored by NEST looming, they decided that their interests aligned enough to team up. And hopefully get another shot at the NEST leadership.

Just like in the previous two tournaments K’ and his team proved to be an unstoppable force.

This time the final fight was to take place on a blimp. And they were greeted by a familiar face – Zero, from the previous tournament. Their opponent revealed that he was actually the original and the one that they had fought in the previous tournament was merely a clone. He also brought some friends:

  • Another clone of Krizalid.
  • Ron the betrayer of Lin’s ninja clan.
  • Genetically modified black lion Glugan.

Not quite the showdown

The battle quickly turned into a one on one. We can assume that:

  • Lin went after Ron.
  • Maxima and Whip fought Krizalid and Glugan.
  • K’ took on Original Zero.

This time the bad guys were at a huge disadvantage as most of K’s crew had experience fighting their clones. The anti-heroes quickly overwhelmed the bad guys. But Zero merely laughed. Then stated that it was time for them to meet their ultimate destiny by facing the leader of NESTs.

With that the blimp began to break apart. It turned into a spaceship which took them to a satellite orbiting Earth.

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The actual showdown

Once aboard the satellite they proceeded to the throne room. An old man sitting atop the throne calmly watched them while a large imposing figure stood by his side.

The elder introduced himself as the leader of NESTs. But before he could explain more the man beside him casually vaporized him. Named Igniz, the large man had been plotting to take over the Cartels for a while, and now was the time.

Igniz had received DNA from all of the other clones. He was the apex of the experiment, and K’s crew was no match for him. But when all seemed lost the other heroic teams burst into the room. They were able to finally bring down Igniz.

As per tradition for defeated KoF villains Igniz triggered the self-destruct mechanism for the ship. But the heroes were narrowly able to flee in escape pods.

Kula breaks free

K’s group ended up on an island, which turned out to be a NESTs team base. Kula Diamond was there, and wanted out. But K9999, yet another agent with Kyo’s DNA grafted in, objected. He seemingly murdered Kula’s retainer Foxy from behind, then he and Angel tried to kill Kula.

K’ and his team, while still battered from their previous fight, jumped into to help Kula. As K9999 started losing control of his powers and spotted approaching helicopters, he fled after vowing revenge.

And with that the NEST Cartel’s saga ended. Tune in later for the next exciting installment of KoF.

King of Fighters 2002

This game was a non-canon dream match that reverted back to the three-person team system.

K9999 was taken out of the game as SNK almost got sued because he was a blatant Tetsuo-from-Akira rip off. He was replaced with the mid- boss Nameless, who had a very similar move set – but looked completely different.

King of Fighters 2003 and onwards…

From here K’ and company very much take a backseat. After all, his story of revenge and redemption had been concluded in 2001.

In fact, they seem to be the actual lowest tiered team in the game. They were even beaten out by the High School Girls Team.

K’ is stated to be as surly and rude as ever. But he is only participating to blow off some steam, without a real interest or drive in taking his team all the way as he did before.

Nothing about this new chapter seems to follow the flow of the previous games. The new “Hero Team” was led by new center stage spotlight character Ash Crimson – but he turned out to be a villain.

K' (K-Dash) (King of Fighters) concept drawing

Description

K’ is a tall skinny Japanese man who wears leather cyberpunk clothes, silver jewelry, and red sparring gloves.

His hair is stark white and his gray eyes have an intense wild look in them. When they’re not hidden behind his sunglasses.

Quotes

“Now, the finish. Get up, fool !”

“If you can’t win, buzz off !”

“You’re no match for me. Really. You make me cry.”

“You’ve had enough ! Realize you’re beaten !”

“You just bleed there and think about what you’ve done !”

“Team Japan !? Talk about dredging up the past !”

“A killing machine ? I’m not a machine. A machine has no heart.”

“My arm’s flames still rage… that must mean you need more cookin’ !”

K' (K-Dash) (King of Fighters) manga cover burning hand

DC Heroes RPG

K’

Dex: 07 Str: 04 Bod: 05
Int: 06 Wil: 05 Min: 06
Inf: 06 Aur: 05 Spi: 07
Init: 021 HP: 090

Powers:

Adrenaline Surge: 05, Flame Projection: 05, Gliding: 01, Jumping: 02, Teleport: 06

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • Adrenaline Surge can only add to Flame Projection, Teleport, Martial Artist, and Weaponry (Missile).
  • Flame Projection is Diminishing.
  • Teleport uses normal Range instead of the +7 bonus.

Skills:

Acrobatics (Athletics, dodging): 03, Martial Artist: 12, Weaponry (Missile): 10

Advantages:

Iron Nerves, Languages (Japanese).

Connections:

Maxima (High), Benimaru Naikido (Low), Shingo Yabiki (Low), Vanessa (Low), Ramon (Low), Whip (High), Ikari Warriors (Low).

Drawbacks:

MIA (proving he’s more than just a Kyo clone and rude behavior), SIH (NESTS cartel), Serious Rage, MPI (amnesia), Socially Inept.

Motivation:

Anti-heroic Seeking Justice.

Occupation:

Warrior.

Wealth:

002

Equipment:

  • Gloves [BODY 05].
  • Sunglasses [BODY 03, Shade: 02, EV 04 (Area of effect 1 AP), Thief (Concealment): 08, Grenade drawback, R#03, Bonuses & Limitations: Thief (Concealment) can only be used to make them look like an ordinary sunglasses.] These are special sunglasses that look perfectly normal until they are thrown. The sunglasses aren’t all that powerful themselves, but K‘ usually uses them to stun the target and then follows up by teleporting in and beating the crap out of the target usually burning a lot of HPs making this a pretty effective assault.

Previous Stats

Prior to the finale of 2000 K’ couldn’t control his Flame Projection Power. It was Always On at Range of Touch, but his special gloves kept that Drawback in check. He still wears the same gloves, but only out a sort of nostalgia.

Until his story arc is concluded he would’ve had a Powerful Enemy (NEST Cartels) and Enemy (Ikari Warriors). There still are a few NEST operatives out there that want payback, such as K9999 and Angel. But the storyline seems to have largely been dropped as K9999 is a walking Akira infringement.

Writeups.org writer avatar Tom Eilers

By Tom Eilers.

Source of Character: King of Fighters video games.

Helper(s): SNK wiki  , Darci.