Superman (New 52) Vs Kenshirō (Hokuto No Ken)
The Man of Steel against the God of Death!
I kept the original way to read the scans from the manga Hokuto No Ken, so each page must be read from right to the left.
Introduction to the characters.
A) Chi, Kryptonian Physiology, Pressure-Points & Hokuto Shinken:
B) THE FIGHT.
I) Movement (Travel Speed).
V) Attack & Defense (hand-to-hand).
VI) Combat skills/Technique.
VIII) Stealth, Senses & Awareness.
IX) Solar Powers (Electromagnetic Charge Manipulation) Vs Divine Martial Arts (Hokuto Shinken).
XI) Combat analysis.
Superman’s real name is Kal-El. He was born in Krypton and he is the son of Jor-El, a scientist, and Lara, the mothermatician. Witnessing the destruction of Krypton, his parents put their baby in an experimental model of rocket with a superluminal thrust able to fly through space and to find a hospitable world.
The Brainiac AI driving the rocket found the Earth, a world with a fiercest sun and a lower gravity than Krypton. The rocket crashed on a field and Jon and Martha Kent, two farmers, saw the scene and checked what happened. They quickly saw the child on board and decided to adopt him. They named him Clark and raised him as their own son. They educated him with good values and Clark became a good guy. He discovered that the yellow Sun of Earth had the ability to empower him. Superman is a Kryptonian whom differs from human at a cellular level as they are able to store the electromagnetic energy from our sun and release it or use it for various effects.
Kenshiro was originally an orphan from Taiseiden, Shura and a descendent of the Hokuto Sōke bloodline which is said to have an unlimited potential. He was sent to the mainland by Jukei as a baby to be adopted by Ryuken, master of Hokuto Shinken. Ryuken named him after his older brother Kenshirō Kasumi, since they shared the same Big Dipper-shaped birthmark on their heads.
Kenshiro watched his adoptive brothers training in the art of Hokuto Shinken and decided to join them in the fight to become Ryuken’s successor. Despite being younger and more naive than his older brothers, Kenshiro was a promising student who ultimately earned the title of successor.
Kenshiro is the 64th Master of the Hokuto Shinken.
Superman’s Solar Powers:
Superman gets his powers via drawing energy from the Sun. He directs the electromagnetic energy psionically to empower his physicals or release it in different ways. He possess super-strength, super-speed, superhuman durability, invulnerability, enhanced reflexes ,the ability to emit electromagnetic energy through his eyes (X-ray & Heat Vision), enhanced senses (super-hearing, telescopic & microscopic vision, ability to see the entire electromagnetic spectrum). He can cool down the temperatures and freeze people with his cold breath.
Superman has flaws in the fact that he didn’t receive a proper training in fighting and, as a farm boy; he operates in combat speed below the likes of skilled fighter from the DC Universe like Wonder Woman, Batman, and Lady Shiva… He brawls like a beginner but with enhanced striking power due to the nature of his powers. He has a few weaknesses that deserve him too. He has a weakness to and can be poisoned by the Green Kryptonite’s radiations that will fatigue him and drop his strength. He can lose the access to his powers when he is exposed to Red Sun’s radiations as the wavelength “freezes” the yellow Sun radiations in his cells, locking them in place so his body can’t use them, it shut off his powers as long as he is exposed to them. The Magic is a sure way to take Superman down as it bypasses his invulnerability & durability. The Chi, called Ki or life force, is another sure way to beat Superman as it combines the advantages of a Red Sun as it’s an opposing force to Superman’s power and is an natural energy able to bypasses Superman’s defenses like the Magic does.
Kenshiro’s Hokuto Shinken:
Kenshiro trained at the ultimate 1800 years old assassination art since his childhood. The Hokuto Shinken is a mystical & divine art of fighting that allows his users to use 100% of their body capacities. This translate for the practitioner to acquire superhuman abilities as superhuman strength, striking power, durability, agility, equilibrium, combat speed, precision and reflexes, superhuman acute senses, the ability to detect the life force of other beings, the ability to manipulate the Chi (Ki or life force) for various uses like killing or healing via injecting it in the pressure points, marksmanship, supernatural stealth, absorb the combat abilities of others and counter their techniques too. As the last heir of the Hokuto Shinken, Kenshiro mastered all of his techniques including the ultimate Musō Tensei and all the techniques of the man he defeated. The Hokuto Shinken is known as having an unlimited potential as it can evolve and allow his user to create new techniques on the fly and adapt to his opponent fighting style in one fight. It is important to note that Kenshiro’s techniques ignore the durability as injecting Chi in the pressure points doesn’t need to damage the skin.
Kenshiro’s base stats and ranking:
From Hokuto no Ken: Kyūkyoku Kaisetsusho: Seikimatsu Haō Retsuden.
• Level: AAA
• Power: 4
• Speed: 5
• Skills: 5
• Looks: 5
• Charisma: 5
Top 50 Secrets
Translated from the 1986 magazine Hokuto no Ken Special: All About the Man.
1. Head Volume = 59cm
2. Hearing Ability = Can hear a whisper from 2km away
3. Height = 185cm (6’1″)
4. Eyesight = Can see the aura of a living creature in pitch black darkness
5. Kinetic Vision = Can intercept a quick arrow the moment it is shot
6. Sense of Smell = About as good as a hound
7. Neck Thickness = 45cm
8. Bust = 132cm
9. Arm Thickness = 48cm
10. Waist = 90cm
11. Weight = 100kg
12. Hip = 105cm
13. Reach = 187cm
14. Leg Thickness = 63cm
15. Leg Length = 92cm inseam
16. Shoe Size = 29cm
17. Body Characteristics = Index and middle fingers are forged by doing two finger handstands in order to better pierce vital points
18. Sense of Taste = Sensitive enough to detect poisonous food and such.
19. Voice = Can mimic many sounds, including animal cries.
20. Breathing Capacity = 8700 c.c.
21. Grip = Unmeasurable
22. Arm Strength = Unmeasurable
23. Walking Ability = Unmeasurable
24. Strength of His Back = Unmeasurable
25. Muscle Strength = Can repel the bullet of a small caliber gun when its strained
26. Leg Speed = Can move 100m in 9 seconds in steps
27. Fist Speed = Throws 50 punches in three seconds while performing the Hundred Crack Fist
28. Jump Strength = 9m a step
29. Punching Strength = Can split a rock that has 5m of thickness
30. Kick Strength = Can send a 200kg man flying 25m into the air
31. Diving Time = 53 minutes
32. Resistance to Poison = Can endure five times the dose of Potassium Cyanide required to kill an ordinary man
33. Fasting Resistance = Body can remain strong for three months without eating
34. Sleep Resistance = Can spend an entire week without sleeping
35. Memory Capacity = Can memorize up to 50,000 words after reading them once.
36. Birthdate = 1970s (20 or so years before the Nuclear War)
37. Blood Type = Unknown
38. Favorite Techniques = Can use techniques from the 108 sects of Nanto Sei Ken in addition to Hokuto Shin Ken
39. Favorite Weapons = Nunchaku, six-sectioned staffs, throwing knives and such
40. Special Skills = Has an internal biological clock with a margin of error of more than three seconds in a month
41. License = Initiated into the secrets of Hokuto Shin Ken passed between a single line of successors
42. Habit = Cracks his fingers before a fight
43. Talking Habit = Unknown, because he is too taciturn
44. Hobby = Developing new secret techniques
45. Favorite Food = There’s not much of a room for likes and dislikes at the end of the century (or the post-apocalyptic world)
46. Esteemed Acquaintance = Ryuken, Raoh, Toki, and Shu
47. Ideal Woman = Yuria
48. Favorite Clothes = Strong leather jeans that allows him to move easily
49. Clinical History = None
50. Academic Background = Well-versed in the super specialized education received from Ryuken. His specialty is in the field of Chinese medicine
It is obvious that those physical statistics are heavily boosted by Kenshiro’s Hokuto Shinken; we just have to look at his prowess in the manga Hokuto No Ken.
Advantage (Background): Kenshiro.
The Chi, or Ki, or Qi, is the life force or energy flow and an active principle forming part in every living things.
The ancient Chinese described it as “life force”. They believed qi permeated everything and linked their surroundings together. They likened it to the flow of energy around and through the body, forming a cohesive and functioning unit.
When the Ki is consciously controlled and used in combat by martial artists, it is referred as Neijing. It is said to be invisible.
In the DC Universe:
The Chi is the same thing: the life-force, a natural energy, a wavelength so low in the spectrum that it is impossible to see via normal means.
In “The Flash V1 Annual #1 (1987)”, the Chi is said to be an internal energy/power called the Life Force.
In “Captain Atom #1 (1986)”, they said that the aura of Captain Atom is what “ancient Chinese masters called Ch’I, the invisible, intangible form of matter which is present, throughout the cosmos. Modern physics concurs but we call it the Quantum Field. It is the underlying essence of all matter and all energy. You, Nathaniel Adam, have experienced what science was only able to observe on the subatomic level. You have passed through the Ch’I, the field, from one place in space-time to another without traveling in between!”
Nekron explained that the Life Energy of the natural plane is called the Quantum Field by science.
In “The Question” Volumes #1 to #6, the Chi is shown as the vital, life force, which is thought to be part of all things. In this series, Lex Luthor planned to exploit the Chi below Metropolis, as the city is part of an immense Chi Network, to build a Science Spire using the Chi as a weapon against Superman.
On top of that Superman can’t see the Chi:
To quote Rick Veitch, the author of the series:
“With issue #5 we reveal that all the other cities in the DCU are on the Chi network, too, so there’s a lot that can be done with it,” said Veitch. “If someone really wanted to follow through they could make a case that the Chi is the basis for all earth magic in the DCU which might be fun. Superman’s a solar battery, so the earth/sun conflict would explain his vulnerability to magic.”
To summarize the Chi in the DC Universe:
The Chi is the essence of all matter and energy. He is both the Quantum Field and the fundamental energy source of magic in the DC Universe.
About Superman against the Chi:
It is said that the Chi is an opposing force to his solar powers and that’s exactly what a Red Sun is to him.
It is said that the Chi is the basis for all Earth magic and therefore will bypass his invulnerability & durability as he is vulnerable to it.
Superman is vulnerable to Chi that will bypass his invulnerability and durability and depowers him like a Red Sun.
In the Hokuto No Ken / Souten No Ken Universe:
HNK & SNK are Eastern Comics and the description of the Chi/Ki/Qi/life force is exactly what is meant in the Eastern Philosophies. It’s what I quoted at the beginning of this paragraph.
The Chi is the life force that permeates everything and links the surroundings together.
The definitions from both universes are similar.
Kenshiro has the ability to manipulate his Chi and the Chi of others for various purposes that I will show later.
That’s a pretty good advantage that Kenshiro, and most manga characters like Son Goku from Dragon Ball, shares against Superman.
That’s pretty much an argument in itself to see a manga character beating Superman.
Kryptonian Physiology is similar to human & pressure points:
The main difference between the Kryptonian & the human physiology comes from their ability to store the solar energy in their cells and use this charge to manipulate the electromagnetic wavelengths for different purposes.
Kryptonians have always been affected by pressure points.
Kryptonians have pressure-points and nerve strikes like every human being.
There are even some spots that can lead them to an instant death.
On top of that Bronze / Silver Age Superman recognize his lack of combat skills that would lead him to lose against Faora.
In the following issue, Lois whom mastered the Kryptonian Martial Art Klurkor analyzed the combat scene between Superman and Faora:
Faora is physically weaker than Superman but she manages to hurt him badly.
Faora doesn’t use her sheer strength at all but her awesome pressure-point technique to defeat Superman in a few well-placed blows.
She uses a Nihon Nukite to the Floating Ribs and that briefly incapacitate Superman even Faora used not much striking power.
Lois shows that she knows pressure-points too and she learned them from Karate and Klurkor and both are effective against Kryptonians and Humans, proving once more than they have similar pressure-points.
The Klurkor being a Kandorian improvement on Karate.
Above she just pinched his friend’s nerve without using any Karate or Klurkor techniques which would be far more effective.
Lois Lane performing the Klurkor on a Kandorian :
Later Faora state that she could kill Superman with a pressure-point attack…
…but Superman is saved by the plot:
Superman and all Kryptonians were teleported by the dimensional-phaser in the Phantom Zone thus saving him from Faora’s death-blow.
World of Krypton:
In this story, Superman (pre-flashpoint) uses Karate chops on the Kryptonian pressure-points. Kryptonians pressure-points are showed on-panel to be exactly the same than the ones of the humans.
Superman implies that he knows how to attack pressure-points (weak points).
Batman taught him human martial arts which mean that Clark is using techniques created to beat human-beings.
That’s literally a confirmation that humans and Kryptonians have similar pressure-points which is proven on panel later.
SHUTO / KNIFEHAND targeting the SIDE OF THE NECK.
SPEARHAND or NIHON NUKITE targeting the FRONT OF SHOULDER MUSCLE.
Panel 4: SPEARHAND or NIHON NUKITE targeting the ARMPIT.
NIHON KUNITE on all pressure-points: SIDE OF NECK, FRONT OF SHOULDER MUSCLE, FLOATING RIBS, HEART and MEDIAN NERVE.
All of those pressure-points are human’s vitals & nerve points targeted by Superman via human Karate technique so the Kryptonian physiology is EXACTLY like the human physiology regarding to this.
Kenshiro will affect Superman with his pressure-points attacks exactly like he does on other beings.
A bit more information about Kryptonian physiology.
They are EXACTLY like the humans but store solar energy in their cells.
We can add that as Kryptonians can breed with humans, they aren’t a species so far away from the mankind.
They need to breathe and have respiratory system similar to ours:
The emplacement of his heart and his circulatory system are similar too:
The difference between Kryptonians and Humans is definitely at cellular level. The Kryptonian DNA being more complex but there is no other major difference between both species.
In Action Comics #787 and #788, the Post-Crisis Superman faced Sakki.
Sakki has the ability to imbue his attacks with Ki:
After a single attack, Superman is wrecked and can’t fight anymonre:
Superman is messed-up to the point that the Ki-attack completely destroys him from the inside and he has no ways to counter it thus the attack will kill him in moments:
Sakki gave to Byakko and Gunshin the choice to fight him or to save Superman:
They knew that Superman will die so Byakko decided to save him. Sakki can imbue his attacks with Ki and the Ki-attack completely destroyed Superman, disrupting the flow of Chi throughout his body perverting it against itself:
This proves that Kryptonians are vulnerable and weak to Ki-attacks and that they will die to something disrupting the flow of their Chi.
This is a confirmation that the Kryptonians and the humans have exactly the same pressure-points.
Hokuto Shinken – The Ultimate Martial Art:
Kenshiro is the Master of the Hokuto Shinken, a divine assassination art passed on from generation to generation. It is so dangerous that it has only one heir. It allows his user to use 100 % of his body potential and to manipulate his Ki – Chi –Life Force energies. His ability to manipulate the pressure points is unequaled as a simple touch can make somebody explode among various other effects. It can heal people too.
Those attacks to the pressure-points manipulate the energies of the body and make it self-destruct from the inside once the flow of the Life Force has been disturbed by an injection of Ki. That means that the durability of the opponent doesn’t matter as the Hokuto Shinken Master just has to disrupt the Ki flow without damaging the body at all. On top of that, having a healing factor is useless as it would turn against his owner.
On top of that, Hokuto Shinken Masters are prepared to face someone whom is able to change his Ki and the flow of his blood which then reposition all of his pressure-points.
The Hokuto Shinken Masters can use that technique to avoid being affected by pressure-point attacks too but I will show that later. Kenshiro from HNK knows even more powerful techniques and is used to kill mutants with pressure-points techniques.
Now, we know that Kenshiro’s pressure-points techniques will work in the same way that they affect other characters.
Of course, Hokuto No Ken uses the definition of Qi given by the Eastern philosophies because it’s an Eastern comic book.
It is important to note that only certain specific techniques can help countering the effect of the Hokuto Shinken. The acupuncture is completely useless. Most of the time a way to counter an Hokuto Shinken attack doesn’t exist.
Advantage (Power Source & Pressure Points): Kenshiro.
This fight has many factors involved. I will try to quote them all and demonstrate the abilities of each character in the most genuine way possible.
It’s the ability to make use of the speed over long distances.
Why mentioning the travel speed when both characters will end fighting in hand to hand?
I mention it because it’s a tool. It can allow one character to have some mobility and speed outside a direct confrontation in close-quarter combat.
The use of the travel speed in combat is very limited.
Superman (Travel Speed):
Superman has an advantage in raw speed in that fight. The problem is that it’s not really usable on a short distance or in close-quarter combat because Superman has to accelerate. I invite you to read the parts “Explanations” and “Logical fallacies” on this website to understand the limits of the use of the travel speed. I will provide factual examples of Superman making use of it against other characters. In short I will not show examples of space travel that are irrelevant to that fight.
Superman has the ability to fly and run at super-speed. This movement bonus allows him to cover vast distances in a short amount of time but he needs to have time to accelerate to use it properly. He uses his flying speed most of the time to engage his opponents. Most of the time, he uses this to keep being in hand-to-hand distance with his opponents.
Clark has some options at his disposal:
*Rush & Engage*: This maneuver consists in charging his opponent after he accelerated in a straight line and accumulated some speed. His purpose is to enhance the shock of the initial impact to increase the damages done to his enemy. Clark uses it very often with more or less success. It allows him to engage his opponent in hand-to-hand. It’s similar to a cavalry charge.
Deathstroke blocked that attack easily.
*Hit & Run*: Same as the rush except that Superman don’t stop his action. He goes through his enemy and hit his enemy with his limbs or his body, exactly like a cavalry charge, and moves away.
Clark had more momentum when he rushed Deathstroke so he had more speed.
Same utility against Shazam.
*Grab & Move*: Clark catches his opponent and moves him around.
*Long range attacks*: Superman can keep some distance thanks to his ability to fly and shoot his opponent with his heat vision. He doesn’t use that tactic often as the heat vision consumes a lot of energy. That’s what Superman uses in space battle. He literally acts like a plane or a spaceship. This has nothing to do with an actual combat speed in hand-to-hand combat.
Superman can move across vast distances at high speeds. This can give an advantage in long or mid-range situation as Superman can maneuver like a plane and harass his opponent however it is not that much reliable so the use of his speed is more a mean to go in hand-to-hand where he can expect to do some damages with his punches.
Kenshiro (Travel Speed):
There is not much to say about Kenshiro’s travel speed. He can travel across 100 meters in 9 seconds as a basis. His advantages are in other areas.
Advantage (Travel speed): Superman.
Lifting /grappling strength:
The lifting & grappling strength are related to each other. However the technique can trump the strength when it comes to grapple someone. A perfect example of this is the fight between Bob Sapp and Minotauro.
Superman (Lifting/ grappling strength):
Superman has a clear edge here but that’s rarely a main factor in a fight. 5.972 sextillion metric tons. Impressive.
Kenshiro (Lifting/ grappling strength):
Kenshiro lifts a 300 tons rock effortlessly without amping himself with the Tenryu Kyokuho. I will speak about it later in the striking power section.
Advantage (Lifting/ grappling strength): Superman. We don’t know the upper-limit of both characters but Superman is literally a super-powered body-builder when Kenshiro is a master martial artist. Superman can lift billions of tons while Kenshiro never showed better than 300 tons. Superman has arguably the best grip of both however. It helped him greatly against Doomsday.
Durability/Resistance to pain/Resistance against physical damages:
Here is one of the big differences between both, however I previously showed that the very nature of the Hokuto Shinken itself allows Kenshiro to bypass the defenses of his opponents.
I will nevertheless show how incredibly hard to takedown Superman & Kenshiro are.
Superman (Durability/Resistance to pain/ Resistance against physical damages):
It’s one of Superman’s main attributes.
Superman is extremely durable and most attacks do little damages to him.
His cells are supercharged by solar energies and create a force-field that greatly reduces the damage that Clark can withstand.
His upper-limit has been shown during his fights against Helspont, Wraith and H’el.
H’el and Wraith don’t hit as hard as Helspont so I will show them fist.
Clark has been thrown through a mountain and destroyed a good part of it. He has been through the rock like a giant bullet. Clark’s body is more durable than the rocks.
H’el has hit Clark hard enough to throw him in orbit. That’s an impressive knockback.
Helspont can use a very powerful telekinesis and is very powerful physically.
Clark tanked the initial shock very well even it was painful.
Helspont’s blue flame is more damaging to Clark than using the rocks around. He even briefly KO Clark.
Their second encounter has the same result. Helspont throws Clark away from the upper atmosphere to the Moon with backhand.
Superman can have the same physiological defects than any human beings like a concussion.
We can see that even if his body doesn’t look much damaged, Superman can be knocked-out. He can die of a concussion too.
We saw earlier that several blows with less power than Helspont, H’el or Wraith can knock him out too.
For example, Anguish showed to have enough power to destroy vehicles and walls with her bare-hands and she knocked-out Superman several times. It’s a very bad situation for Superman; fortunately Anguish’s goal wasn’t to really destroy him:
Or Wonder Woman made him bleed easily in one punch:
Wonder Woman usually relies on her gear to deal with her foes.
Or Batman with physicals enhanced via Venom making him as strong as Bane:
Superman can survive a lot of punishment. He has even survived to a direct attack to his heart even he was badly damaged. His healing factor allows him to heal fast.
Clark couldn’t really defend against this and was badly hurt but he survived it.
Ghost Soldier did the trick a second time two issues later and Superman is in a bad shape. Fortunately his friend Lana saved him when she blasted Ghost Soldier.
So Superman could recover.
Superman has an excellent durability and the ability to recover fast from almost any wounds. However he can’t regenerate like Wolverine or the Hulk.
He can’t survive if his body sustains too much damage as well. Ghost Soldier could have killed him if he phased the knife into his head.
Kenshiro (Durability/Resistance to pain/ Resistance against physical damages):
Kenshiro’s hard training at Hokuto Shinken made him very durable. His muscles can repel a 9 mm caliber bullet when it is strained.
Kenshiro’s durability is improved by his mastery in Ki-control as it allows him to harden his body even more.
Most of his opponents effortlessly can cut or destroy steel with their bare hands but they do little damage to Kenshiro.
A large majority of the time, Kenshiro avoids attacks instead of taking them.
Hokuto No Ken is a Martial Arts manga so there are little collateral damages contrary to Western Comics.
Even the weakest well trained Hokuto Shinken student, as there is only one heir and those whom fails have their memories erased or their fists destroyed, like Jagi have super-human durability and strength and is able to effortlessly bend steed with his bare hands.
Kenshiro faced one of his older brothers Jagi.
From Hokuto no Ken: Kyūkyoku Kaisetsusho: Seikimatsu Haō Retsuden.
• Level: C
• Power: 3
• Speed: 3
• Skills: 3
• Looks: 0
• Charisma: 2
Even Jagi can bend steel on a casual strike he literally do just some cosmetic damages to Kenshiro. Later they meet again…
Fight (Final encounter):
“Our rage transforms the body into a steel armor!”
The Hokuto Shinken allows Kenshiro to shrug off a lot of damages and Jagi is far from being the strongest character in the series.
It’s important to notice that Kenshiro’s abilities improve with his Ki-mastery along the series.
He can shrug off the attacks of far more powerful beings in the end of the series.
When Kenshiro faces his opponent a second time, the attacks he is tanking does far less damages.
Souther can cut through stone & steel even as a child:
Of course his power shines later as an adult as he becomes the master of the Nanto Hōo Ken.
He was able to badly hurt Kenshiro as he let a giant cross on Kenshiro’s chest and this one get one of the rare knock-out in his existence.
However Kenshiro came back, stronger than ever.
Here is Kenshiro closing the wounds of his first confrontation against Souther:
Kenshiro faced Souther again and even the attack that almost killed him the first time do little to no damage the second time:
Souther can cut through steel but he can’t do any serious damages to Kenshiro.
We can see how Kenshiro performs against Raoh, by far the best antagonist in the series.
A young Raoh is already very powerful before his raise as Ken’oh, the King of Fist. Raoh learned countless techniques that made him even more powerful.
Here is Raoh at the very beginning of his career:
Raoh made a big hole in the giant mook’s body with a casual punch and cut the high building a few hundred meters away.
Kenshiro faces Raoh years after that and a long time before he faces Souther.
Raoh’s aura (Ki) has improved and Kenshiro is able to block it without damages.
In their second encounter, several issues after, BOTH have improved and Kenshiro literally shrug off Raoh’s most powerful attack the Tensho Honretsu just to show how manly he is:
That shows already how powerful Kenshiro is at only half of the manga.
The third encounter shows Raoh, whom has powered-up, and Kenshiro fighting as equals and Kenshiro tank everything that Raoh throws at him but I will show it later in details.
The last strongest opponent that Kenshiro faced two times is Kaioh and is the second strongest character in the series, equal with Raoh but with a different fighting style.
Kenshiro lost his first fight against Kaioh because this one had the ability to put Kenshiro into a spatial distortion that made him lost his ability to locate himself so he was disoriented, he lost his balance and direction/orientation, and on top of that Kaioh’s Hokuto Ryuken allowed him to directly manipulate Kenshiro’s Ki like absorbing it before Kenshiro can punch him weakening his powers.
Those two techniques were totally ineffective against Kenshiro later to the point he just passively countered them before beating Kaioh.
Kenshiro tanked all of Kaioh’s attacks even this one became stronger too.
Kaioh and Kenshiro powered-up and both attacked each other to the heart and they literally ignored the effects of the wound.
Kenshiro completely no-sold a direct attack from Kaioh.
Kenshiro tanked all direct attacks from Kaioh including the ones targeting his pressure-points with no damages. His technique prevented the attacks on the pressure-points to be effective.
Advantage (Durability/Resistance to pain/ Resistance against physical damages): Kenshiro against focused attacks. He literally no-sells attacks that knock-out or gravely wounds Superman. However Superman’s body is greatly protected from general trauma. The fight is between two individuals and not against environment so the advantage goes to Kenshiro.
Here lies a subtle difference between the two characters. I will go in the details.
That’s due to their technical differences, mostly.
I will add the explanation from the Manga Gunnm as they perfectly illustrate this comparison too.
I will compare on panel the difference between their strikes.
Superman (striking power):
Superman striking power is truly impressive when he goes all out and performs some ground & pound on H’el.
That’s how hard Superman hit someone when he is not holding back but a lot of the energy of the blows is dispersed as the shockwaves of the punches literally goes through his opponent. However that’s true that his opponent was on the ground so I will show another example.
Superman uses some sort of EXPLOSIVE punching.
Most of the time, when Superman hit an opponent, he suffers a big knockback but not necessarily receives a lot of damages.
Let’s see what he did against Mongul:
Mongul is sent 200 miles away but…
The damages are close to zero for a Superman hitting him barely below what he did to H’el.
Kenshiro (striking power):
Kenshiro uses the advanced techniques of the Hokuto Shinken to strike his opponent down. He doesn’t always target the pressure-points but can deal awesome damages too.
Kenshiro can amp himself too. That’s what he does when he cracks his t-shirt but I will show a Kenshiro attacking a Frankenstein-like monster while holding back.
The context is simple, a monster attacks Kenshiro while the big boss seals Kenshiro’s nephew in a bunker able to shrug off the damages of bombs.
Then Ken throws the monster through the bunker. That shows the durability of the monster too. Then Kenshiro destroys the wall of the bunker in one blow effortlessly.
Then Kenshiro enters and one-shot the monster easily.
I said above that we are in the case of a true strike here. Kenshiro’s attacks are 100% efficient and no energy is wasted like Superman’s punches.
Kenshiro’s striking power is all concentrated in one point and all the energy literally destroys his opponent.
On top of that, Kenshiro can use the Tenryu Kyokuho to hit harder:
I will show what it means to use the Tenryu Kyokuho in synergy with the pressure-points techniques later.
Kenshiro has clearly the advantage in striking power.
Advantage (Striking Power): Kenshiro. Superman is said able to topple mountains with his attacks but he struggles to knock-out his opponents and that wouldn’t happen even if he is holding back.
Attack & Defense speeds & hand-to-hand skills:
The abilities to attack and defend are often linked.
The point here is to show how both characters manages a hand-to-hand situation.
Of course the skills are involved in close-quarters.
That’s the favorite way of fighting for both characters but there are a lot of differences.
Superman (Attack & Defense speeds & hand-to-hand skills):
Superman was raised in a farm. It doesn’t really acquiring combat skills. On top of that Superman’s super-speed only touches his brain processing and his ability to move at high speed from A to B after taking some time to accelerate so that’s not applicable to his positioning in a hand-to-hand situation. Let me illustrate:
Those six panels show that Superman doesn’t have some sort of super-combat skills, nor speed. He is easily surrounded by a crowd of Angels.
Superman (teen) Vs Lobo:
Superman faced Lobo, the Main Man, when he was a teen and the fight looked like a drunken brawl in a bar.
Lobo fighting skills have literally no finesse and Superman didn’t progress much since:
When we compare that fight to the ones of the likes of Batman we can see that the difference lies in the lack of fighting skills and combat speed for Lobo and Superman when Batman will actually block easily multiples hits and deal the same but Lobo and Superman have a superior striking power and durability.
The whole fight is showed this way and it ends with Lobo being launched in orbit and Superman going to the hospital.
Clark was younger but it shows that he is constantly portrayed with human combat speed and little combat skills.
Clark learned a few moves but overall he doesn’t have much combat skills, nether less that helped him fighting Wraith whom had no real hand-to-hand combat skills:
Clark beat Wraith thanks to some judo throwing and a few strikes. They fight in the range of the human speed.
That’s one of the rare times where Superman is able to avoid a blow but Wraith lacks of hand to hand skills as he never trained in this area.
Superman isn’t really used to fight characters well trained.
Superman doesn’t have much combat reflexes contrary to Wonder Woman whom is in the same range than Batman.
Superman came from behind but can’t anticipate or react to Wonder Woman’s kick.
If he had some combat training he could at least protect himself or avoid the attack but no, he got a clean hit in the face.
Superman isn’t super-fast but she is well trained.
Clark faced Orion, one of the New Gods, which primary abilities are strength and durability. Orion isn’t a fighter using some finesse but rather a berserker.
Orion’s attacks are obvious but Superman can’t defend against them. He never blocked or avoided a single punch.
That shows that Superman is quite a slow fighter overall. His burst of speed doesn’t apply to combat at all.
Superman’s best feat in term of number of blow is the one I will post below.
It’s important to understand that Superman doesn’t hit faster than usual.
Orion isn’t defending himself at all and let Superman hitting all the way long and literally no sell each blow.
Superman is exhausted by the number of blows that he landed on Orion and is sweating.
Orion is literally unaffected by Superman’s blows even he hit him hard enough to create sonic booms.
He punched back Clark and this one was unable to block or avoid a single attack, once more.
That’s consistent with Superman’s appearances in the comics. I can pick a random comic book featuring Superman with the same kind of combat feats.
Anguish is in hand-to-hand distance and he is unable to see a simple punch coming. He can’t avoid or block it.
In the third scan, she did a flying kick from more than 3 meters away and he was incapable to avoid it.
We can notice that he is KO during several seconds after the second attack.
In the 4th scan we can see that her striking power is good but far below Kenshiro’s. I will compare that feat later with the one of a guy whom attacked Kenshiro did.
The other fights against her in the same comic end the same way.
We can compare against other beings too.
However, even if Superman can’t keep-up with someone doing swift movements like the Flash, as he was unable to catch him once when they sparred a bit.
Superman has a fast brain processing that can allow him to anticipate his opponent next movement.
There is little chance that helps him here because it doesn’t make Clark faster or more skilled.
First scan: Superman tried to catch the Flash but he is too slow against Flash because he has swifter movements than him. On the last panel, the duration of the action is slightly longer as we can see that the speech bubbles rhythm the entirety of the fight but Superman is trying to change his tactic via guessing where Flash will move to anticipate his attack.
Second scan: Superman guessed well and prepared his attack via moving his arm where Flash will be. Flash don’t have much combat skills and didn’t see Superman coming.
So again, Superman is still as slow as an untrained human in combat. However his fast brain can allow him to “see” more.
On top of that, the Flash is slow in close-combat. Barry Allen needs some room to build-up his speed and make use of his travel speed efficiently.
Otherwise he is easily surrounded and outnumbered by simple well trained human beings:
A crowd of 30 guys is enough to surround Barry; he is not fast in combat at all and Superman is even slower.
I will directly compare this with Mark Millar’s Nemesis and Batman too.
Nemesis is the only super-villain in his world and he is comparable to an anti-Batman with comparable abilities in hand-to-hand.
He faced 97 guards on his own so three times the size of the crowd that Flash faced.
Nemesis engaged them and destroyed them all easily without being surrounded like the Flash in roughly the same time like around 4 pages:
That proves that Barry Allen is slower in combat than a street-leveler like Grayson or Nemesis.
Flash’s combat speed is bad and therefore Superman is even slower.
Batman at the beginning of his career and exhausted after fighting during 28 hours did better than Flash too:
In the end, Bruce fought a crowd of those men and even if they were like one third of the group that Flash faced, Bruce destroyed them all even he was in a weakened state. The beating was so intense that they were scared and didn’t want to send more men after him.
In term of combat speed, Batman is better than Flash whom is better than Superman.
Bruce has superior skills than Flash and Superman so he manages his fights better and his strikes are more effective.
Superman is a slow fighter. He definitely fights at speed similar to an untrained human.
Example bonus against the Queen:
The Queen made an illusion of copy of herself in the mind of Superman and he was unable to tag any of them.
Superman is surrounded by the Queen and illusions that she created in Superman’s mind. Superman is too slow to tag all of the images of the Queen so he relied on his mind.
Superman couldn’t avoid the attack or tag the copies. That’s a second showing, similar to his fight against the Flash, which proves that Superman is as fast as any untrained human in combat.
Kenshiro (Attack & Defense speeds & hand-to-hand skills):
Kenshiro’s attack speed is literally his trademark. His signature move the Hokuto Hyakuretsuken is famous because of that.
It’s the second move that we see Kenshiro using on ZEED after he killed some mooks effortlessly and it’s not even his top attack speed.
On top of that the Hokuto Shinken allows his masters to anticipate the actions of a fighter, with super-combat speed, based on subconcious reflex.
Explanations from Kasumi Kenshiro, 62th Master of the Hokuto Shinken.
Do you remember how Superman performed against the Angels?
I will show Kenshiro using a pair of nunchucks against Jaco’s soldiers.
His stance is perfect and even if they massively outnumber him they can’t come close to him.
He can remain at the same place without moving a bit and destroy them all.
We saw that in a similar situation Superman is totally outnumbered and can barely land one hit, Flash is totally outnumbered and can land like 6 hits before running away through the crowd, Nemesis can kill one hundred people with some time and Batman can knock-out the same amount than Nemesis while being cautious too.
Kenshiro’s combat speed completely make humble the ones aforementioned as Superman, Flash, Nemesis and Batman can’t hold a candle to Kenshiro in that area.
The amount of opponents destroyed is massive. There is clearly more than one hundred here.
Those warriors live on the land of Shura:
“A terrifying country where as soon as a boy reaches his first birthday, he battles a hundred men to the death! The survival rate of men there is 1%!”
Even the weakest and nameless Asuras have supernatural martial-arts and can slaughter easily one hundred veteran pirates.
Even this guy improved over the years he remained a nameless Demon :
Here is how Kenshiro perform against a large group of Elite Asuras.
Those guys are ultra-skilled and dangerous individuals able to slaughter large groups of people easily.
Kenshiro destroys them all on his first attack.
Now I will scale Kenshiro’s fist speed via comparing with other characters, even from the manga Jojo’s bizarre adventure.
Just for the fun we will compare the speed of the main brawlers of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Josuke Higashikata and Jotaro Cujo as they are two of the fastest brawlers in the JJBA Universe.
First thing very important to know, they both have a fist speed around 300 km/h.
Josuke (Crazy Diamond) and Jotaro (Star Platinum) had a fight and Jotaro had to use his Time Stop because he couldn’t avoid the second blow after having his guard broken.
That’s a proof in itself that the characters of this series don’t fight at FTL speeds.
Jotaro just admit that he is not sure to beat another being with a fist speed of 300 km/h WITHOUT making use of his Time Stop!
Now let’s compare with Amiba, a character from the HNK series whom isn’t even in the top tiers.
Amiba is an evil character whom is usurping Toki’s identity (Kenshiro’s brother) in order to experiment pressure-points on other human beings.
For example he captured a powerful boxer whom fist speed is at 200 km/h, that means that JJBA characters are only 30% faster than him. This guy packed enough power to one-shot one of Amiba’s henchmen and then attacked him.
Amiba calmly handled the situation :
Amiba easily avoided the first blow while passing behind the boxer and then deflected his second attack while touching his pressure-point and paralyzing him.
Kenshiro met him a few times after this and got serious once he understood that he was facing an evil man and not his brother:
Kenshiro hit him so fast that Amiba was incapable to see the blows coming.
Kenshiro’s fight against Rei is a good showing of Kenshiro’s combat speed.
The speed of Rei’s attacks is absolutely crazy.
Kenshiro manages to avoid the initial rush without having to move much. He avoids all following attacks without breaking a sweat while being blocked by a wall. There are a lot of them and Ken avoids them all at the last moment that shows that he can see all of them coming, that he has the speed & the skill to avoid them all.
The massive amount of attacks that Rei delivered in a few seconds is enough to completely shatter the rock behind Kenshiro.
There are around 24 attacks and it goes up to 26 with the two last blows that Ken is blocking. That’s impressive when you look at Rei’s skills & speed.
When Kenshiro faced Alf, one of those Demons with a name, he displayed an incredible speed.
Alf was a Demon in charge to stop Kenshiro. He had many victories and always chosen his opponents as he only faced good fighters and beat them all before two minutes.
His stats are quite good too:
From Hokuto no Ken: Kyūkyoku Kaisetsusho: Seikimatsu Haō Retsuden.
• Level: B
• Power: 3
• Speed: 4
• Skills: 3
• Looks: 3
• Charisma: 2
His physical power is above average and his speed and skills are good. He strikes fast and hard.
However even his great combat speed is far above anyone in the DC Universe just with a speed and skills of 3, Kenshiro easily avoided & blocked his attacks.
Ash tricked him via poisoning his cape so Kenshiro’s perception was altered when he hit it and he saw afterimages of Ash literally everywhere, far more than the Flash or the Queen did to Superman.
Kenshiro saw attacks coming from all directions at the same time and was able to block them all, blocking the true attack behind this trick.
I can count around 19 afterimages and 24 hits on Ash’s body if you calculate: 19*24= 456 hits.
Kenshiro successfully attacked and touched him at least 456 times without missing once in just a few seconds (the duration of the fight is two minutes).
That’s far beyond anything anybody showed in the DC Universe.
Kenshiro can easily block, deflect or avoid what Superman can throw at him.
Superman has literally no chances at all to touch Kenshiro.
Kenshiro does better later when he face Han.
I can quote the Rasho Hokuto Ryuken Han whom is ultra fast in combat too and give to Kenshiro one of his most epic fight but I will just show the combat speed here.
Han is so fast that his fists are invisible however Kenshiro is able to match his combat speed.
Kenshiro and Han trade blows at an uncanny speed and are able to block & deflect attacks coming from each other.
It’s literally impossible to have an idea about their combat speed at that point.
It’s totally fair to say that Kenshiro completely outclasses Superman in combat speed.
I don’t see Superman being able to lay a hand on Kenshiro at all.
Kenshiro hit people so fast that it looks like he didn’t even move at all.
He has a massive advantage here in term of striking speed and skills.
Just to show a bit more, Kenshiro is able to block the attacks of someone at least as powerful as Anguish, whom gave Superman a lot of trouble, with one finger.
The guy is called Burō:
He tried to crush Kenshiro with his massive striking power but Ken stopped the attack with a single finger:
Kenshiro used his pressure-points techniques in order to reduce Buro’s physical strength via removing his muscular mass so he had to work like everybody.
This shows a massive difference between Kenshiro and Superman against “super mooks”.
Superman tends to take damage when Kenshiro avoid it easily.
Advantage (Attack & Defense speeds & hand-to-hand skills): Kenshiro. He totally outclasses Superman here. Superman fights like an untrained human fighter with similar combat speed. Kenshiro is a Master Martial Artist with super fast combat speed. His advantage in combat speed is so massive that he let no chance to Superman to touch him in a hand-to-hand fight.
Combat skills/combat stance/positioning:
This is a very important point in a fight. The fighter with the best skills and the correct stances will have the most Power & Defense, Range & Balance, Flexibility & Security, and Stability & Mobility.
I advise you, readers, to take a look again at this marvelous site about boxing which gives precious tips and very good explanations:
I already showed what Superman & Kenshiro can do about with their ability to Attack & Defend in hand-to-hand the two chapters above this one.
Here we will focus mostly about their inner knowledge of fighting rules and get an insight of their fighting habits.
Superman (combat skills/combat stance/positioning):
Superman isn’t renowned for his fighting skills. We already saw two chapters above that Superman fight at human speeds and that he is very rarely able to block or dodge a single attack in a fight.
We will see more fight to gauge of his fighting skills, combat stance and of course that will emphasize the chapter about the combat speed.
Superman faced the Phantom King, a Kryptonian scientist.
On the first picture, Superman ran on the Phantom King and put himself off-balance that made him open to an easy counter attack.
The second picture shown Superman punched in the face by his opponent as he is off-balance with no guard at all. The two punches of Superman largely expose his body too.
That’s typical about Superman.
Here he largely exposed his upper body while attacking. A skilled opponent could simply avoid or block the incoming punches and counter-attack without problems.
Both scans show the same flaws in his attack and defense.
When Superman faced Apollo, the fight was very short because the God supercharged Superman’s cells with a sunlight-based attack but that showed Superman’s lack of defense too.
Nice pimp smack.
Deathstroke is a metahuman on par with Batman physically.
He got a sword called the God Killer from Hephaestus. It takes the form of a two handed sword and is very hard to keep hold of it, even for him as attacking put him off-balance, slowing his ability to fight fast.
However Deathstroke is more skilled and faster than Superman in close-combat and managed to hit him several times with the sword.
Superman rushed Deathstroke from a few meters.
He easily blocked Superman’s rush and countered with a swift swing of the sword before preparing a second attack… And hit Superman in the face and made him bleed.
Superman changed his tactic against Deathstroke because he couldn’t keep up with Slade’s skills and combat speed but I will speak about this later.
Doomsday is one of Superman well known nemesis and besides his ability to run fast (or teleport) he is a slow and unskilled brawler only relying on brute force.
Let’s have a closer look at their fight.
Part 1: Superman rushed Doomsday to Venus while tanking his attack. He had no way to avoid or block Doomsday’s attacks so he had to rely on his Heat Vision to quickly end the fight.
Doomsday is a mindless brute and only performed an obvious jumped attack. Superman punched him in orbit and caught him thanks to flying speed to Venus. Doomsday managed to hit him many times during the transport.
Doomsday was burned by Superman’s heat vision.
Part 2: Doomsday regenerated and teleported at Superman’s location in Smallville.
Doomsday jumped on Superman and landed literally seven attacks on the Man of Steel before he could do anything. Superman has truly bad combat reflexes, speed and skills. However Supes won via ripping Doomsday’s body in half.
Superman was controlled by Circe and attacked Wonder Woman.
That was just another of Superman’s typical fight.
He attacked head on and guard off, blocked nothing, avoided nothing.
Superman has poor combat skills & speed.
Circe just took away a part of Superman’s strength so he has no excuses for being slow and unskilled in combat.
It’s both consistent and obvious that Superman is a slow fighter as it’s the way he is shown in every of his appearances.
That’s another classical fight.
Superman’s combat stances are horrible and prove that he is a totally amateurish fighter.
He is a farm boy and never learnt to fight.
Superman was, once more, off balance and had no guard… The position of his feet didn’t allow him to hit at full power even he was holding back at this point.
The Robot immediately exploited the flaw in Superman’s absence of guard and hit him in the face.
Clark last action against the Robot was bad too. Superman’s body weight was on his heels and his whole body completely unprotected, that’s a big flaw that a skilled character could use to badly hurt Supes.
Superman fought Ulysses whom had no training in combat.
They are roughly equals.
Superman managed to block two punches at two different times. That’s literally the best he did.
That was a fight between two unskilled brawlers.
The first fight: Superman’s stance is bad as his upper body is too low but at least he is moving his head out of the trajectory and protecting his jaw with his left arm. Well, that’s slow, one attack on one panel, and Ulysses has a big hole in his defense.
Superman’s position is bad too but Ulysses was too close and off balance so Superman could block his second attack and grab him.
The second fight: Ulysses’ eyes showed his intention to attack and Superman blocked the single punch easily.
Superman faced far more skilled fighter.
Superman, with the help of Wonder Woman, faced Zod and Faora, two highly trained in combat military Kryptonians.
They had no super-speed in combat but their skills were enough to put Wonder Woman and Superman in a very bad situation.
Superman was doing his best even he was alone but even Zod knew about his lack of skills. Clark took and gave some hits until Wonder Woman came and help him.
Superman was totally outclassed by Zod’s combat skill even he was supposed to be stronger physically.
The fight turned bad to the point Superman and Wonder Woman had to yield and retreat to avoid Superman being killed.
The two Justice Leaguers had to rely on Hephaestus’ help later to have a chance against Zod and Faora but they won thanks to Apollo supercharging Zod and Faora
That fight showed that Superman is unable to defend and attack properly.
He doesn’t know how to avoid or block simple attacks, nor has the reflexes to avoid his enemies’ energy-based attacks.
The second fight was very similar even Superman and Wonder Woman had a supplemental gear.
Superman is once more totally unable to use basic boxing techniques to avoid being punched like a punching bag and this continue…
Zod and Faora are so disappointed by Superman and Wonder Woman combat skills that Zod ask Kal-El to “leave or die” and Faora use the hyperbolic statement that they took “one hundred blows”, even we saw on panel that they took far less than that like eight attacks for Superman, and that if the fight continues they will break.
A large majority of Superman’s fights have been exposed and it can only allow us to understand that Superman is an untrained fighter. He was raised in a farm and his occasional fights against super-villains just allowed him to have a very basic knowledge of the rules inherent to a fight. Superman is unable to block or avoid obvious attacks 99% of the time and he succeeds at beating his opponents when they are physically weaker than him or when he has some help.
I honestly put Superman’s combat skills & combat speed at the same level than the punks or mutants that Kenshiro is facing.
He regularly fight but had no training and don’t really know what to do.
Last and probably one of the most demonstrative examples:
Superman fought against Mammoth, a slow brute.
He charged, while in the air, the massive barbarian but once in close-quarter combat, Superman was unable to hold his own despite his opponent massive lack in agility, attack rate and finesse (combat skills):
You can see that he easily engage Mammoth as he is massive, easy to spot and to tag.
Once in hand-to-hand we can look at how Superman handle the fight.
Superman has the support of his teammates Batman, Aquaman and Wonder Woman and despite that help, even he is focused on a single opponent, he is unable to manage the fight.
Mammoth has no finesse, agility and speed.
However the giant brute easily hit and catches Superman whom is slower and more unskilled than him in combat.
Superman is slow and unskilled in combat and that’s clearly one of his weakest spot.
Kenshiro (combat skills/combat stance/positioning):
Kenshiro is the last heir of 1800 years old martial art called Hokuto Shinken. He was trained since his childhood into those deadly arts and can kill or heal with a single touch.
He already knows the 108 styles of Nanto Seiken at the beginning of the manga too according to the datebooks.
Kenshiro is a natural born killer and he isn’t impressed by the Colonel whom had around 20 to 30 years of training. The Colonel is one of the first worthy opponent that Kenshiro faced and he is skilled.
He managed to avoid most of Kenshiro’s fast attacks because he is fast himself and had the ability to anticipate his attacks; however Kenshiro managed to erased his presence and beat him with his eyes closed.
Kenshiro was able to feel the Colonel’s killing intent and to avoid his attack even he didn’t do any noise.
Here are the Colonel’s stats:
From Hokuto no Ken: Kyūkyoku Kaisetsusho: Seikimatsu Haō Retsuden.
• Level: B
• Power: 2
• Speed: 3
• Skills: 3
• Looks: 3
• Charisma: 3
When Kenshiro is fighting he is focused a lot and always has a perfect combat stance:
They hit so fast that their attacks are literally impossible to catch.
Kenshiro is always ready to attack or defend.
Kenshiro already displayed his crazy skills against Shin during their rematch.
This fight is the second of the series against one of the top characters.
Kenshiro has the ability to understand and assimilate the techniques of his opponents.
His opponents quickly becomes no match for him as he can foresee what they will do and counter their techniques.
This is one technique of the Hokuto Shinken’s techniques called Suieishin. Kenshiro can assimilate and counter every technique that he witnesses.
Kenshiro lost to Shin in their first encounter but then he beat him effortlessly. At the end of the series, Kenshiro is the most skilled character. He has a really small loss record as he lost only 3 fights since he became the heir of the Hokuto Shinken.
I will now show some examples of the Suieishin.
That powerful technique is one of the main attributes of the Hokuto Shinken that allows it to become more and more powerful as it evolves infinitely.
We discover it when Kenshiro faces Shin for the second time and then Rei, and it is implied that Kenshiro use it in all of his fights after this…
Kenshiro really name that technique when he is facing Shuu. A few seconds are enough for Kenshiro to figure out his opponents techniques.
When he faced Souther he used techniques that he witnessed before too and understood Souther’s fist.
Kenshiro confronted his older brother Raoh and as they are both Hokuto Shinken masters, they assimilated each other fists.
Later Ken studied Falco’s technique and held back to the point that he literally paralyzed one of his legs to fight him as equal.
Ken faced Han and Lin noticed that each time Ken fight a powerful opponent he becomes even stronger.
After Kenshiro faced Kaioh for the first time he understood the most powerful form of Hokuto Ryūken and therefore these techniques weren’t a match for him anymore.
When Ken fought his brother Hyoh, he knew that he would win.
“Hokuto Shinken is able to completely master an opponent’s style after just one encounter.”
In short, every time that Kenshiro fight someone he becomes a master of his opponent’s style.
That’s an extremely powerful ability because Kenshiro literally masters new supernatural techniques every time he fights someone.
Kenshiro is already leagues above anybody in the DC Universe in term of fighting technique and this leaves literally no chances for Superman to land a single blow on Ken.
Ken will instantly know Superman’s basic attack pattern and answer accordingly.
That remembers me the fight between Saitama and Garou.
The point is that Saitama’s miraculous vision and combat reflexes allowed him to avoid Garou’s attacks besides being far inferior to him technically.
The difference here is that Kenshiro is far faster and has far better combat reflexes than Superman can dream of but on top of that he can even anticipate the attacks from being extremely good technically.
Saitama Vs Garou:
Saitama is the faster character in OPM with the better reflexes but Garou managed to anticipate his moves and avoid his attacks in the right timing or land attacks on Saitama.
The technique trumps the speed because the moves are more efficient and a high-level martial artist can anticipate what his opponent will do.
That’s far better than reacting.
What I want to show is that Kenshiro is already superior to Superman in striking power, speed & precision.
His combat awareness put him leagues above Superman too because he can anticipate an opponent whom is able to fight using the kiken technique & super-speed in combat along with a mastery of his fighting style.
Superman is totally outclassed in those areas. Clark brawls without technique, quickness or finesse.
Kenshiro do that on a daily basis as I showed upside. The difference is that he is already faster than Superman.
That’s my mind exactly.
This fight can’t be determined by physical power only.
We already saw Superman being put in a very bad position by a lot of characters with abilities far below those of Kenshiro that I already showed.
Kenshiro easily humiliates good brawlers with powerful punches like Ein.
Ein is far below the likes of Rei, Raoh, Han, etc… But he is clearly above Superman in brawling technique as he a practitioner of the Kenka Kenpō (ケンカ拳法 Brawling Martial Arts).
In short he is a boxer.
From Hokuto no Ken: Kyūkyoku Kaisetsusho: Seikimatsu Haō Retsuden.
• Level: C
• Power: 4
• Speed: 3
• Skills: 1
• Looks: 4
• Charisma: 3
Ein would probably be rated high in skill in DC comics but here he is at 1/5.
His physical power is similar to Kenshiro’s except that Kenshiro’s Hokuto Shinken allows him to amp himself to insane levels.
Ein is quite good. He is similar to the Colonel in speed and even if his skills are at 1 he is far better than Superman in combat.
His striking power is good considering that he can destroy the face of a giant mutant in one-punch and a solid rock the same way.
And later when fighting Bart:
That’s the kind of striking power that is already a big annoyance to Superman as shown above.
However, Kenshiro easily stops or deflect all of his attacks:
In short there is an abyssal difference in their combat speed and techniques and Ein is way faster and more skilled than Superman in combat as seen with his quick attacks. Kenshiro blocked them all without effort.
Combat skills/technique: Advantage Kenshiro. Superman can’t hold a candle to Kenshiro in that domain. His attacks will be easily avoided, blocked or deflected and Kenshiro can hit him easily.
Superman is used to underestimate his opponent and go head-on into the danger too.
Sometimes he tends to scan his opponents with X-ray vision to find some weaknesses too but that’s not in every fight.
Kenshiro is a master in martial arts and is used to analyze his opponent before and during the fight. He is very cautious.
His combat experience is superior to Superman by a lot especially when we take in account that he was facing men stronger than him since the beginning of Hokuto No Ken and that he finally beat them all.
Both are prone to continue to fight whatever the situation at hand is.
Psychology: Advantage Kenshiro. He risked his life too many times to count.
Here is another very important point. It’s literally one of the reasons for one of them to take the initiative in that fight.
Both have enhanced senses.
Superman is stated to be bad at making a discrete approach.
Hokuto Shinken is an assassin’s fist and becoming stealthy is part of the training.
Before Kenshiro met Club, Bart noticed that Kenshiro is a real pro in the domain of the discretion:
When Kenshiro came at the Land of Shura, he was able to easily stealth the extremely well trained nameless demons:
Those guys are trained since birth like ninjas with a Spartan ideal. The selection is so rough than literally 1% of the males survive.
Here Kenshiro toyed with them and was able to move without being noticed.
They were unable to detect his Ki before he was too close but that’s because Kenshiro knows how to hide it.
Even the top tiers of the FOTNS Universe can’t detect Kenshiro if he doesn’t want it.
Kenshiro has gone through Han’s Castle like it was a walk in the park without being noticed and killed the extremely well trained guards whom only saw a shadow.
Of course Kenshiro literally ran through them and hit their pressure points.
Hokuto practitioners are trained at stealth and have enhanced senses and even with that Kenshiro can hide from them:
Hokuto masters have their five senses enhanced and they can see the auras of the living beings AKA the Ki in perfect pitch black darkness (or sense it).
Stealth: Advantage Kenshiro. The 64th Hokuto Shinken master is leagues above a lot of characters from the DC Universe in term of stealth.
Senses & Awareness:
Both of them have highly heightened senses and abilities that regular humans doesn’t possess.
The awareness relies on more than just the ability to use their senses.
Superman (Senses & Awareness):
Superman’s super-senses are one of his trademarks. His senses can cover an incredible range and allows him to see or hear things that mere mortals cannot.
He has a telescopic vision, micro-vision, super-hearing.
His super-hearing allowed him to locate a MASSIVE dragon. His microscopic-vision makes him able to see at a cellular or molecular level.
He can see and emit all kind of wavelength of the whole mundane electromagnetic spectrum. He can see through walls or check people’s biology with his X-ray vision.
However the super-senses aren’t equal to the awareness. We will see how Superman’s act and react when he is ambushed in different cases.
When it comes to Superman’s awareness it’s a different topic.
In his first showings he was attacked by a creature when his senses were off against that specific creature. He had to rely on the images relayed on the TV screens in order to locate and beat the monster.
His senses didn’t catch the creature. He couldn’t see or hear it. He said that he couldn’t smell it but Superman never relied on his sense of smell in a fight so that’s a figure of speech.
Superman relied on all of his senses and couldn’t even defend against the monster.
Finally the use of the images displayed on the TV screen gave him the win.
He had no meanings to spot the creature otherwise.
Let’s see how Superman manages surprise attacks & ambushes as that’s a perfect way to understand his level of awareness.
Superman was rushed by Titan Super Gladiator. He noticed his enemy only once this one stomped him on the ground even he was looking in his direction and he was too slow to react and block the assault.
That’s not the first time that Superman is unable to anticipate a surprise attack and react accordingly once it’s done.
Superman was rushed from behind and incapable to spot his opponent with his senses. He is too slow and lacks the technique to counter the rush.
The Atomic Skull easily followed and beat Superman with a ground and pound. In all cases Superman has no combat reflexes and is incapable to defend himself.
It happened against Aquaman too.
Aquaman was literally in front of Superman and he was unable to anticipate or react to his attack.
The Atlantean rushed Superman and landed a blow easily.
Showing once more that Superman has a poor awareness and no combat reflexes.
Superman is incapable to have an adequate answer even when his opponent is in front of him…
Another example of surprise attack is when Superman was ambushed by Cheetah.
The JLA was in the jungle and observed their immediate environment. Superman was all hears but Batman was the first one to notice that they are attacked, showing a better awareness than the other JLA members.
Cheetah immediately ambushed the JLA and rushed Batman & Flash at first.
Batman showed a great awareness but couldn’t react even he is arguably the best fighter in terms of skills in that group and trained in stealth.
Flash lacked the ability to spot his opponent in time and counter her attack, showing bad combat reflexes and awareness.
Superman was the next and didn’t do anything better. Cyborg was the only one able to attempt a counter attack that Cheetah avoided easily via jumping and followed-up her rush on Superman.
One more instance where Superman was too slow to do something. Cheetah literally jumped at his throat like a tiger and bit him.
There is other time Superman is surprised. Let’s see when Superman faced an alien whom looks like the Predator from the movies. Let’s call him DC Predator.
Superman was asked to investigate a town. It’s what happened:
Superman has extended senses compared to human and even with their crazy range he is incapable to detect a human-sized creature sneaking on him.
The alien used that opening to sneak on him and attack him. The weapon directly attacked Superman’s nervous system, dazzling him.
Superman couldn’t figure-out where his opponent was, nor respond to his attacks and contrary to what he said on-panel he was already sneaked-up by the Flash.
It’s how it is.
I previously showed that Superman’s overconfidence is a big weakness in combat. You don’t underestimate your opponent, especially when you know nothing about him.
Superman was incapable to detect the creature and tried a lucky shot which didn’t work. Then the DC Predator blocked his sight with some smoke screen.
Superman was immediately rushed and incapable to defend himself, showing once more poor awareness, combat reflexes and speed in that fight (alike the others).
Superman couldn’t defend against two successive direct punches at his face, even the creature didn’t display more speed than a heavyweight boxer in hand to hand.
The Kryptonian tried to charge-up a heat-vision attack but the creature easily avoided the blast and beat Superman.
That shows that it’s easy to sneak-up on Superman, that he is a slow fighter and that his heat vision is easy to avoid.
The most recent fight of Superman involved Chinese creatures called the Four Pillars and they surprised him too.
First surprise attack:
Second surprise attack:
Superman is constantly and consistently in that kind of situation in every comic book.
I will not mention the fights that I already showed in that website.
Superman has no ability in stealth, a vast array of enhanced senses with a long range and a very poor awareness in general and in combat.
Now we will see how it looks on Kenshiro’s side.
Kenshiro (senses & awareness):
Kenshiro, like all of Hokuto Shinken masters, has incredible senses. Kenshiro’s showings about his senses and awareness are linked so I will post both at the same time.
According to the databooks:
1. Hearing Ability = Can hear a whisper from 2km away
2. Eyesight = Can see the aura of a living creature in pitch black darkness
3. Kinetic Vision = Can intercept a quick arrow the moment it is shot
4. Sense of Smell = About as good as a hound
His senses go beyond that as you will see.
When Kenshiro faced Shin, he was attacked by a noiseless enemy from behind.
Kenshiro can sense his opponent coming from behind, avoid his attacks and counter him without looking at him.
It’s consistent with the character.
It happens many times in the manga.
Kenshiro faced highly trained military in the beginning of the manga.
He always knows where his opponents are.
The whole fight is this way, even when he is facing one opponent with one attacking him from behind.
Prior to the fight against the Colonel, Kenshiro was able to spot a guard hidden behind a statue.
Kenshiro directly hit the good spot.
I already posted the fight against the Colonel so please look at it again.
Kenshiro avoid his attack from behind even the Colonel is making no noise and Kenshiro closed his eyes.
Kenshiro faced Fox and was able to sense and catch him through a wall.
We can look at other instances like in the jail of Cassandra.
Kenshiro faced some of Kenoh’s bodyguards.
He easily caught projectiles coming from a dark area with a sneaky opponent and sent them back…
…with extreme precision.
He was attacked from behind a few moments later too and easily touched his enemy’s pressure point.
Hokuto Shinken masters can sense attacks coming from 360° around them.
Kenshiro faced the Kiba clan and he was able to sense an arrow coming. He instantly woke up and caught it.
That pretty much shows the difference in awareness between Kenshiro and Superman. That’s just a warm up.
Kenshiro can easily sense the traps.
Kenshiro is an assassin and he detects instantly the hidden menaces.
Here he instantly sensed the menace in the ceiling and placed the hat stand under the henchman he detected.
The enemy’s fate was already sealed by the placement as the hat stand impaled him like a spear.
Nameless Shura on the pirate’s boat:
Kenshiro was targeted through the deck of the boat and easily avoided and countered the attack.
It’s consistent with the character and I see no reason for Superman to have chance to surprise attack Kenshiro.
Ein is targeted by a surprise attack and Kenshiro made him avoid it and caught the aggressor easily.
Kenshiro has never been surprised when Superman is caught by surprise in every comic book.
Now we will see a few examples of Kenshiro’s accuracy.
Kenshiro has a crazy eyesight and accuracy that allows him to target his opponents very far away. The objects that he throws are arguably enhanced by the Ki.
Sheeno is very far away but Kenshiro calmly spot him and aim at him.
Despite the distance he easily nailed him to the wall.
That’s not the only instance showing Kenshiro’s crazy precision of course.
Kenshiro easily killed a sniper very far away via a perfect shot from above his position.
Kenshiro is leagues above Superman in terms of using his senses and awareness even Superman’s senses have probably more range and variety. Kenshiro has the ability to sense the life force of living beings when Superman can see the electromagnetic spectrum.
Advantage (Stealth & Senses & Awareness): Kenshiro.
Kenshiro has a big advantage here. He can approach Superman without being noticed and destroy him.
We have seen a lot of parameters important for that fight.
Now let’s see more about the abilities and powers of each character.
Superman and Kenshiro have powers coming from different power sources.
Superman is alike any human being with the only differences being his genetic code and the ability of his cells to store the Solar Energy from a Yellow Sun, and sometimes other types of radiations, and manipulate his electromagnetic charge to obtain super-abilities.
Kenshiro comes from a bloodline of assassins in charge of the protection of the Celestial Emperor (Tentei). He inherited the knowledge of an ancient and divine martial art called Hokuto Shinken. He has the ability to manipulate his own Life Force to achieve super-human feats.
I will just show the abilities that I already didn’t show and elaborate on the points that are needed to be improved.
Superman (Solar Powers):
Superman ability to manipulate the Solar Energy in his cells allows him to fly, shoot his enemies with his Heat Vision or stop them with his Freeze Breath. His ultimate move is to release all the energy contained in his cells in a big Solar Flare but there is a drawback to that.
In addition, Superman suffers several weaknesses, like being exposed to Kryptonite or Red Sun radiations, and vulnerabilities like the Magic.
I showed above that the Ki or Chi or Life Force is both a weakness & a vulnerability to Superman as it is an opposing force to his solar powers and to the aliens in the DC Universe and the power source of Magic and it’s called Quantum Field too.
I will go in the details later.
Superman’s powers come from the ability of his cells to store the Solar Energy and his ability to manipulate the electromagnetic charge psionically:
Flight in combat:
I already showed Superman’s ability to fly at high speed when he can accelerate thus called travel speed.
Let’s see how he uses it in close range.
When he fought Deathstroke whom had issues wielding his sword, he used it to anticipate DS throwing himself off balance and used his momentum to engage him in hand-to-hand.
As a refresher, Deathstroke had issues to keep hold of the Godkiller sword.
Superman faked a frontal attack and moved, thanks to his maneuverability, to the right side of Slade so he was off-balance. Slade tried to swing his sword at Superman but he flew upside it and caught Deathstroke’s throat, ending the fight.
While Superman didn’t display an exceptional speed, using his flight in short distances greatly improves his maneuverability and agility thus allowing him more fluid movements and a different approach of his opponents.
Another good example is against Anguish.
Superman needed to come closer and used his flight the same way.
Anguish didn’t displayed any special agility or speed but she is quite proficient in hand-to-hand for the DC Universe.
She lacked the ability to anticipate Superman’s moves in that configuration.
It’s not very effective against slow and large brutes like Mammoth:
Superman is easily tagged despite his opponent massively lacks in attack rate and agility.
The main issue with that kind of movement is that it let literally no defense for Superman and his body is totally uncovered and open to attacks of some sorts.
That’s a really bad idea against Kenshiro.
That’s Superman main way to attack from a distance.
It consumes the energy stored in his cells to create a laser and has various uses like blasting people or performing surgery.
Superman needs to charge his Heat Vision; it makes his eyes glows and makes the blast predictable.
It can be effective if you opponent is a mindless brute.
Doomsday never dodges attacks and is probably too slow to do it.
Here it takes a full blast at point blank even Superman’s eyes were glowing during one panel.
The Heat Vision is powerful but predictable and leaves Superman open to a counter-attack.
He can use it in rapid-fire too but he used it only against a giant target.
The main flaw of that move is the need to blink at super-speed.
Superman can use his breath to freeze his opponents in place.
That’s another of Superman’s signature move.
He can quickly freeze an opponent if the cloud reaches.
It’s an efficient technique and it can work against characters able to vibrate their molecules at super-speeds like the Flash in order to go through attacks as Ghost Soldier did.
Ghost Soldier was pushed back by Superman’s Heat Vision because his phasing wasn’t a perfect one.
“His molecules have to be moving at an insane speed to phase like that…”
Ghost Soldier’s molecules vibrate so he can pass through things like the Flash.
However the Freeze Breath has a big flaw:
Grayson: “Superman’s super breath. 4.2 seconds from when it hits to when it takes you down. Plenty of time.”
That’s a big time span and Kenshiro can do a lot of things to counter it or easily avoid it.
Last Resort Power – Solar Flare:
That’s the last resort option of Superman in terms of abilities.
If Superman releases all the solar energy stored in his cells, he will create a powerful Solar Flare.
The energy engulfs a large area of effect and Superman ends powerless like any human beings.
After the Solar Flare:
• Superman is depowered during 24 hours.
• He has to live like any human being as his physiology is the same.
If you have paid attention to the first chapters of that fight, you already know that the few differences between Kryptonians and humans are:
• The Kryptonian DNA is more complex than the one of humans.
• The Kryptonians can store Solar Energy (electromagnetic charge) in their cells.
• This Solar Energy can be psionically manipulated to achieve different effects (powers).
• The Kryptonian physiology and their pressure points are similar to humans.
Let’s see how Superman summons his Solar Flare:
When Superman releases all of his energy, the outburst engulfs a large area. Superman detonates and everything near him is burned.
The explosion covers the quarter of a mile, around 400 meters².
Some key points are provided by Batman:
• “You unleashed the energy stored in every one of your cells.”
• “Not only did that “super flare” incinerate everything within a quarter of a mile around you—it also left your cells depleted.”
• “Until your cells recharge, which will theoretically take a day or so, your powers are gone.”
• “For the next twenty-four hours… You’ll be as human as I am.”
That’s a very annoying point because once Superman use it he has nothing to fuel his powers and that makes him very vulnerable in every context.
Same thing here :
“I’ll be completely depowered for the next twenty-four hours.”
I guess that’s enough examples.
Now we will take a look at Superman’s weaknesses inherent to his Kryptonian condition.
Superman has several weaknesses and this can put him quickly in trouble.
We can mention Kryptonite, Psionic, Magic, Red Sun and Chi.
I already mentioned the effects of Chi on Kryptonians as it combines the effect of Magic (ignores Superman invulnerability) and Red Sun (opposing force to solar powers = suppress them during the exposition).
The Kryptonite poisons and fatigue Superman extremely quickly. He literally lies on the ground after two pages.
Superman has nothing to defend himself against psionic whom have no flaws in their powers.
Magic is another famous weakness of Superman.
He reacts badly to it.
Superman’s encounter with the Enchantress:
Superman is cut to ribbons by a few flying teeth and is finally defeated.
Let’s see how Superman deals with magical damages.
Superman is easily stun and out-of-combat with a single magical lightning.
A similar instance against Lapetus, Superman is hit so hard that he decides to focus on the Volcano instead of the fight.
I could quote more examples but I think that’s enough.
Let’s see his weakness against Red Sun radiations.
Red Sun radiations:
The Red Sun radiations are a very reliable way to beat Superman easily.
Batman used it against Superman when had to face the entire Justice League thus allowing him to easily wound Superman. The Red Sun radiations cancel his Kryptonian Powers.
Superman loses his healing factor under a red sun too.
This is confirmed one more time by Batman.
Batman: “A Red Sun generator. After the Doomsday war I got J’onn to get me a drop from the core of Krypton’s own Sun. On our planet, it works as a Kryptonian superpower suppressor.”
Superman is wounded very easily when the Red Sun radiation is combined with other weapons.
Now let’s take a look at the Chi again.
Chi (Qi – Ki – Life Force):
The Chi is the Life Force which exists everywhere in the Universe.
Superman is specifically vulnerable to the Chi of Earth which exists inside every being on Earth.
“We call it Chi and it is running through each of us, right now.”
Only some masters, even in the DC Universe, have the ability to manipulate the Chi as I showed in the beginning of that fight.
“Feng Shui is the art of integrating structures to the invisible life energy that flows through us.”
It is said that it’s an “extremely low frequency wavelength” and that the “Chi is even farther down the spectrum than elf, which is why scientific instruments haven’t picked it up until now.”
Superman can’t see the Chi.
Only a few martial arts masters, some shamans like the Question and a few others can see it.
The Question: “And you’re a Solar being. So, of course, you don’t like Earth Energy. Luthor knows it. His Science Spire is designed to collect and channel this opposing force against you.”
To quote Rick Veitch, the author of the series:
“With issue #5 we reveal that all the other cities in the DCU are on the Chi network, too, so there’s a lot that can be done with it,” said Veitch. “If someone really wanted to follow through they could make a case that the Chi is the basis for all earth magic in the DCU which might be fun. Superman’s a solar battery, so the earth/sun conflict would explain his vulnerability to magic.”
The Wizard, in “The power of Shazam #20”, said that Magick draws his power from Nature in the DC Universe.
That just shows that the Chi is the basics of everything, the Quantum Field and the Magic which comes from Nature.
In Countdown Arena, Christopher Kent from Earth-16 was a Superman risen in a monastery and adept at Eastern philosophy and able to attune his chakras to the Quantum Energy coming from Monarch.
“I’ve finally managed to attune my chakras to the same frequency as this quantum radiation.”
“It’s thicker, more bitter than sunlight—much like drinking motor oil—but it does the trick.”
It’s important to notice that the Supermen were dying of the constant Quantum Radiation poisoning.
However it ends in this Superman burning all of his energy on Monarch and destroying his body:
It shows how bad the Quantum Energy is to the Solar beings.
In some Indian religions, a chakra (Sanskrit cakra, “wheel”) is thought to be an energy point or node in the subtle body. Chakras are believed to be part of the subtle body, not the physical body, and as such, are the meeting points of the subtle (non-physical) energy channels called nadi. Nadi are believed to be channels in the subtle body through which the life force (prana) (non-physical) or vital energy (non-physical) moves. Various scriptural texts and teachings present a different number of chakras
The Chakras are the energy points through the vital energy (life force – chi – ki) moves.
Here are the effects of a casual Quantum Blast on a Superman:
The Superman is literally disabled in one shot.
Chi/Ki/Life Force/Quantum Field abilities are proven extremely effective against Supermen.
Let’s see the short term effects of an exposure to Chi/Quantum Radiation for Superman.
Quantum Radiation / Chi poisoning against Supermen:
During the events of “Countdown: Arena”, Monarch teleported many characters from the DC Multiverse inside the Quantum Dimension to make them fight.
One of the side-effect was the exposure to lethal Quantum Radiation which only Monarch and two of his alternate versions were immune to.
The Quantum Dimension is full of Quantum Radiation and Monarch’s powers and his two alternate versions are Quantum Radiation-based.
The two Supermen fought and destroyed the barrier which made them absorb more Quantum Radiations and pass out.
Hopefully Christopher Kent used his knowledge about Chi and drained the Quantum radiation poisoning their bodies.
The two Supermen admitted that they would have died of the radiation poisoning.
Ki-based abilities will suppress/cancel Superman’s Kryptonian powers like Red Sun Radiations and ignore his invulnerability like Magic.
Now that we saw an exhaustive list of Superman’s abilities and weaknesses let’s see how Kenshiro’s abilities works.
Kenshiro (Hokuto Shinken – Big Dipper God Fist):
Kenshiro is the 64th heir of an 1800 years old Chinese assassination art called Hokuto Shinken.
It was created by Shuken, the prodigy heir of the Hokuto Soke No Ken in order to bring peace back in China.
Shuken blended the knowledge of the Yuezhi people martial’s art Seito Gekken about the pressure points (Keiraku Hiko) with his Hokuto Soke No Ken to create Hokuto Shinken.
Let’s quote Ryuken, 63th Grand Master of Hokuto Shinken:
The Hokuto Shinken is so powerful that it’s only transmitted to one successor.
Let’s quote Kenshiro Kasumi, 62th Grand Master of Hokuto Shinken:
A single touch of a Hokuto Shinken Grand Master sends energy inside the tsubos and destroys the opponent’s body from the inside without leaving any external wounds.
The Hokuto Shinken is a very powerful healing technique too but that’s not one of the aspects that will be showed in here.
It has a quite strong reputation even to old and wise men.
What made the Hokuto Shinken so powerful is his ability to incorporate all supernatural techniques of other martial arts and counter them too.
As said by the 62th and the 64th Grand Masters:
Hokuto Shinken Masters can absorb opponent’s techniques, even the supernatural ones, and create new techniques on the fly. That’s why it’s an ultimate martial art; the Hokuto Shinken is adaptable to every situation
There is an initiation ritual and when the Hokuto Shinken is too weak, the successor of the HSK is chosen among the heirs of the Hokuto Ryūken.
The point of this initiation ritual is that the HSK’s heir absorbs the knowledge of all the previous HSK’s successors.
However the Hokuto Shinken has never been defeated by the Ryuuken in 1800 years of history.
The Hokuto Ryūken was at his most powerful during Hokuto No Ken with Kaioh able to defeat Kenshiro once, but Ken’s soul was able to repel Kaioh making him suffocate and end on his knees.
The Ryuuken was finally sealed by Kenshiro in their last fight and he didn’t even use his more powerful techniques and simply toyed with Kaioh.
The Initiation Ritual is witnessed by the Five-Clawed Dragon whom is a messenger of the Gods thus showing Hokuto Shinken’s Divine Origins.
He is the incarnation (Avatar) of Hokuto Shinken.
Once the successor of the Hokuto Shinken has won the Initiation Ritual, he is allowed to commune with the souls of the Hokuto Successor contained in the Tower of the soul’s repose and acquire the Hokuto Shinken in his fullest form.
That means that he technically absorbs 4000 years of techniques as the Hokuto Shinken comes from the Hokuto Soke No Ken which is a 4000 years old technique.
Shuken, prodigy and last heir of the Hokuto Soke No Ken, learnt all of Seito Gekken techniques and merged them with the Hokuto Soke No Ken to create the Hokuto Shinken, the Ultimate Assassination Fist.
Kenshiro Kasumi learnt the History and Techniques of all of the Hokuto Shinken Grand Masters before him.
He literally communed with the souls of the successors of Hokuto.
Sayaka destroyed the Tower which was hiding a sacred relic called the Magatama Jewel containing the souls of the successors of Hokuto.
Kenshiro Kasumi kicked his ass with a new technique that he learnt from the Souls of the former Grand Masters.
Here is the Magatama Jewel:
We have now established that the Initiation Ritual is meant to complete the Hokuto Shinken Successor’s technical knowledge and history and that the God of Hokuto and the all-powerful God are one and the same.
In Hokuto No Ken, Kenshiro met the Tower of soul’s repose in the Taiseiden after he lost his first fight against Kaioh; even the Hokuto Ryūken wasn’t a rival to him anymore as he absorbed the technique (I showed it above).
Kenshiro originally learnt the history of Shuken but Souten No Ken retroactively introduced in the continuity that the Tower transmitted the techniques of ALL previous successors to Kenshiro.
The statue and the sacred pillar are exactly the same thing than in Souten No Ken however the intent of the author was to show the origins of the Hokuto Shinken and the Hokuto Ryūken so Kenshiro can understand the nature of the Ryuuken and seal it for good.
So Kenshiro learnt the knowledge, technique and history of all the former successors of Hokuto Shinken and absorbed the spiritual fighting Ki coming from the statue learning the complete form of Hokuto Shinken like Kenshiro Kasumi.
We will see what benefits are given to a Hokuto Shinken Grand Master and the abilities that Kenshiro perfectly masters.
Kenshiro’s mastery at striking his enemies pressure-points is an incredible and sure way to destroy an opponent without wasting any energy.
They complete the arsenal of stealth of those Legendary Assassins and allow them to kill without being noticed.
A simple touch to the pressure-points leads Kenshiro’s enemies to a certain death and it’s impossible to counter them if you don’t know the technique to do it.
Goshi Retsu Dan:
This technique destroys all the fingers.
I think that the speech bubbles are explicit enough with the art.
Kenshiro can combine his pressure-points attacks with the Tenryu Kyokuho. This technique allows Kenshiro to use 100% of his body capacity including his Ki.
The Tenryu enables to concentrate the strength at his sharpest!
This kind of damage would be lethal to Superman.
Amnesia Fist of Nothingness:
Thousand smashing punch !
Rei sliced the Kiba but he exploded at the end.
Kenshiro faced a Werewolf-like mutant and easily destroyed him with multiple pressure-points techniques, proving that the Hokuto Shinken is effective against human-like physiologies even if they are far from the typical human-being.
Madara is physically like a werewolf and his dad states that he is a beast, literally.
Madara tried to rush Kenshiro but Ken easily blocked the assault and hit the pressure-point in the beast’s jaw.
Kenshiro removed Madara’s ability to bite and frigthened him to death by his mere presence.
Madara tried to kill Ken with his claws but he destroyed his fists with a Goshiretsudan.
Kenshiro ended the fight easily, avoiding Madara’s attack and killing him in a single that completely destroyed his upper body.
Vs Kiba Daio:
Kiba Daio used Kazan techniques to harden his body like steel. Do you know the armament haki in “One Piece”? It’s inspired from this technique in Hokuto No Ken.
Kenshiro tested Kiba Daio’s body with a steel beam which proved that his body was too hard to be harmed this way.
Ken changed his tactic.
Instead he hit Kiba Daio’s Daikyokin and changed his muscle mass into fat.
The second effect was Kiba’s muscles hardening while his body was dying that’s why he didn’t felt the effect of the grenade exploding his arm.
Kenshiro finished Kiba with a Ganzan Ryozanha even he was close to implode.
That proves that hardening your body doesn’t matter against Hokuto Shinken techniques.
Vs Nameless Asura on the pirat’s ship:
Kenshiro was attacked by a very well trained fighter. He quickly destroyed him.
You can notice the extreme attack speed once more and the massive damages resulting from the pressure-points being hit.
In order to show more cases and the effectiveness of simple touches on the pressure-points let’s show a list of random victims of this way of attacking.
Random Victimes of Pressure-Points Attacks (RVPPA):
You can notice how light the attacks are.
The bodies literally implodes.
Kenshiro simply touched the top of the head and it splitted it in two.
Vs Koketsu’s henchmens:
A single serie of punches literally disintegrates the first man’s body.
An unnoticed touch to the pressure-points literally disintegrates 100% of the body of the enemy except his limbs.
Giant mutant in the snow:
Or Kenshiro facing a giant mutant and killing him with a slight touch regardless to his durability when the guy completely no sells a gun throwing arrows at him.
The guy is around 4 or 5 meters tall and stop arrows with his palm. There Kenshiro’s touches a points on his forehead and the guys head implodes totally destroying his brain, creating a giant hole in his face.
Kenshiro fought some fanatics whom tended to attack him in their last breath even with their bodies greatly destroyed.
Here is the massive amount of damages that Kenshiro dealt to them with light attacks:
Even with the massive trauma they suffered, those fanatics came back at Kenshiro for a second round but he quickly fixed the problem.
You can notice Kenshiro’s incredible speed, precision and reflexes when he stoped cold the needles coming at Ryu and made the fanatic implode.
Later he faced more soldiers and destroyed them easily with precise attacks.
He had no problem avoiding their attacks as they fought at human speed and their numbers weren’t helpful.
Here is more:
I spoke about Kenshiro’s abilities to absorb and invent new techniques.
I will show a few examples and talk about Kenshiro’s techniques of Ki / Chi / Life Force Manipulation.
Ki / Chi / Life Force Manipulation & New Techniques:
I showed the Hokuto Shinken limitless potential at creating new techniques on the fly and a few examples of Ki manipulation like the ability to amp himself that Kenshiro uses in the form of the Tenryu Kyokuho.
Now, I will show you what it means to be a Master in Hokuto No Ken, it is shown that true Martial Arts Masters are protected by a Ki Aura, called Tōki.
1) Kenshiro faced an assassin and used a combination of Nanto Suichoken and Gento Koken techniques to slice him in six. You can notice that Ken charged his hand with some Ki before using the technique, enhancing the cutting power of the air pressure with his Ki Aura.
2) The second assassin was easily killed by a simple injection in his pressure-points from up to down. This made his whole body implode with an insignificant amount of energy used. When you get that the Hokuto Shinken works regardless of the oponent’s durability you get how overpowered it is.
Kenshiro consistently one-shot his opponents in the manga once a pressure-point is reached, whatever the mean used, except if the opponent have a way to counteract it.
This needs a very specific and rare knowledge to be done and Kenshiro, who’s probably the humblest character in the franchise, is the only one to let his opponent use a technique hitting his pressure-points and completely no sell the attack as he can counter it. Look at his fight against Kaioh that I posted in the durability section.
Tōki (Fighting Spirit – Battle Aura) and his applications:
The Battle Aura is the quintessence of the training and only those whom have mastered the Martial Arts can see and use it.
The Tōki surrounds the user and can be throwed at opponents.
We were very early in the manga and Kenshiro proved that had already some mastery of Hokuto Shinken by breaking Raoh’s aura with his own.
This allowed him to fight Raoh in close-quarters.
Kenshiro has a very aggressive Battle Aura that will destroy Superman in close-combat.
The Tōki is invisible to non-masters.They only see some perturbations in the air flow.
Hokuto Shinken Masters trained their Ki.
I will show more examples of Kenshiro’s powerful Tōki and some applications.
When Kenshiro fought Han, they both released a very violent Fighting Spirit in the form of telekinesis.
The intensity of the Auras rises through the fight.
We can notice that they move and even bigger rocks than Helspont did with his telekinesis against Superman.
That powerful aura will prevent Superman to come in close-combat.
His aura improved after his unique defeat against Kaioh and he gained a Godlike Aura and this happened before Kenshiro left the seals and completed his knowledge of the Hokuto Shinken.
Godlike Aura or Tōshin (闘神 war god) aura:
This Fighting Ki is the mark of the heirs of the Hokuto bloodline and shows their unlimited potential.
His aura has the shape of Vaiśravaṇa, one of the Four Kings in Buddhism and guardian of the northern direction.
Bishamonten (毘沙門天) or just Bishamon (毘沙門) is thought of as an armor-clad god of war or warriors and a punisher of evildoers. Bishamon is portrayed holding a spear in one hand and a small pagoda in the other hand, the latter symbolizing the divine treasure house, whose contents he both guards and gives away. In Japanese folklore, he is one of the Seven Lucky Gods.
Bishamon is also called Tamonten “listening to many teachings” because he is seen as the guardian of the places where the Buddha preaches. He is believed to live halfway down Mount Sumeru. He is also associated with Hachiman.
Kenshiro’s Godlike Aura was so powerful it repeled Kaioh’s Evil Ki inside his armor, making him suffocate.
This confirms Kenshiro infinite potential while he is the heir of a Martial Art with an infinite potential.
I would come back to that point later.
His Ki-aura powered-up in the series so he can literally reverse the flow of a waterfall even he was seriously wounded before.
Kenshiro used his Ki Aura in other moments:
His opponents are instantly paralyzed and implodes thanks to the Ki directly delivered through their pressure-points.
Now we will see more applications of the Chi used to reach opponents from a distance:
This is Raoh’s signature move. The powerful Tensho Honretsu is delivered close to the target.
Han is, of course, protected by his own Battle Aura and Hokuto Ryūken techniques at Ki manipulation which prevents him from instantly being disintegrated.
Let’s see other techniques.
Another of Raoh’s signature moves that Kenshiro absorbed.
It’s a very powerful Ki-blast.
It allows Kenshiro to hit the pressure-points from a distance like all Ki-based techniques.
And like all other Ki-based attacks it’s invisible to non-Masters.
This is the original Goshoha used by Raoh against some non-Master:
The Goshoha injects the Ki in the pressure-points and the body is disintegrated.
There is one last technique used by Kenshiro which is better than this one…
The Tenha Kassatsu was invented by Kenshiro Kasumi when he faced Fei Yan, this technique was inspired by Mang Kuang-Yun’s Hokuto Sonkaken.
Kenshiro assimilated Hokuto Sonkaken’s Ki manipulation techniques and added them to his Hokuto Shinken, then he created the Tenha Kassatsu.
It’s a technique allowing his user to strike the opponent’s pressure-points directly with the Ki without touching them.
Kenshiro (HNK) used this technique to counter Souther’s Situs Inversus Totalis and revealed all of his pressure-points and counter his Nanto Hoo Ken Tensho Jujiho.
Kenshiro hit the 7 pressure-points in the shape of the Hokuto.
The Tenha Kassatsu destroyed the Emperor’s armor AKA the emplacement of his pressure-points through the Situs Inversus Totalis and the second effect was to remove the force in his legs disabling his ability to jump and canceling his ability to fly thanks to the Tensho Jujiho.
Kenshiro could sense the pressure-points locations when he pierced Souther’s chest and felts his heartbeat and his blood flow.
Souther throwed a bravado at Kenshiro but his pressure-points were revealed and his ability to jump and fly removed.
The Tenha Kassatsu has an obvious utility against Superman by removing his ability to move like running, jumpin, flying and revealing his pressure-points even they are exactly the same than any human-being.
Now we will see one more ranged attack used by Kenshiro in the series.
Kenshiro assimilated the Nanto Kōkaku Ken’s Denshō Reppa when he boserved Yuda using it against Rei.
He later used it against Shu.
This technique allows Kenshiro to release powerful waves able to slice his ennemies.
Kenshiro observed Yuda’s attack and he used it later against Shu.
Kenshiro used the Denshō Reppo another time and it’s a powerful technique.
The two Asuras are sliced in two by the technique.
I covered almost every ability that Kenshiro possess without showing all of his fights but it’s already enough to have a good understanding of his abilities.
He mastered the martial arts of the countless opponents he faced in Hokuto No Ken and absorbed the knowledge of all the Hokuto Shinken Grand Masters before him so he can use the abilities his uncle Kenshiro Kasumi or his adoptive father Ryuuken used.
I could show his fight against Falco but that’s not necessary.
Now we will see Hokuto Shinken’s Ultimate Technique Musō Tensei .
Musō Tensei :
Kenshiro reached the highest Martial-level in Hokuto No Ken when he mastered the Musō Tensei .
It allows him to achieve a state of Nothingness and counter-attack.
Thanks to this technique and embracing the true nature of sorrow, Ken communed with the souls of his fallen rivals.
The Musō Tensei (Nil-Thought Rebirth) allows Kenshiro to be impossible to touch by any attacks coming at him as he is one with “nothing” and to relocate his body like he is teleporting, as in Buddhism being one with “nothing” equal with being one with “everything”. Any attacks done by Kenshiro in this state are impossible to avoid.
If we summarize, Kenshiro:
• Can relocate his body (teleport).
• Is impossible to be reach by any attack.
• His attacks are impossible to avoid.
His uncle, Kenshiro Kasumi achieved a brief state of nothingness while he was unconcious during his fight against Liu Zong-wu but never mastered it.
When he was unconcious, his body became a void and his opponent felt that if he attacked Kenshiro he would be instantly attacked by his Nil-Thought Fis, impossible to avoid because throwed with a blank mind, and die.
Kenshiro Kasumi (Musō Tensei – Souten No Ken):
Kenshiro Kasumi fought the heir of the Hokuto Ryukaken for the first time and he knocked-out Kenshiro.
While he was unconcious, Kenshiro Kasumi became one with nothingness like a mass of darkness, a living void.
This state of being made him impossible to touch.
• “Had he been concious I would have seen his fist coming but there is no way to defend against a fist thrown with a blank mind.”
• “Is this Hokuto Shinken Kyuukyoku Ougi… Musou Tensei !?”
• “T… To make me retreat in fear of death… So that Dark Phantom I saw in Kenshiro… Was the Darkness of Death…”
• “Had I thrust my fist in that Darknes, I surely would have…” He is impliying that he could have died.
• “His Nil-thought Fist…” He is implying a second time that the attack would have been impossible to avoid.
During his second fight against Kenshiro, Zongwu denied his fear of death and the fact that he would have died if he had tgrust his fist in the Musō Tensei but we all know what really happened.
Kenshiro (Musō Tensei – Hokuto No Ken):
Kenshiro is the first man in the Hokuto Shinken 2000 years of history to master the Musō Tensei , his most powerful technique.
This technique offers a perfect defense as it’s impossible to touch his user and a perfect offense as it is impossible to avoid his attacks and a perfect repositioning as the user can relocate his body in combat like a teleportation.
The Musō Tensei instantly counters the techniques throwed at his user and of course it allows the one whom mastered it to commune with the souls of his fallen rivals.
Kenshiro Vs Raoh (2nd fight):
The first time we see and learn something about the Musō Tensei is when Kenshiro fought his brother Raoh for the second time.
Kenshiro began the fight as normal and then activated his Musō Tensei .
We can see that Raoh can’t touch Kenshiro whatever he does because Kenshiro vanishes and relocate himself.
Kenshiro toyed with Raoh the whole fight showing him techniques of Rei that he killed and Toki whom was his greatest rival.
Kenshiro wounded Raoh with a Nanto Suicho Ken technique in a tribute for Rei whom gave his life against Raoh.
It’s exactly like when he faced Souther and wounded him with one of Shuu’s technique because Shuu gave his life against Souther.
Then Raoh understood that Kenshiro mastered “the ultimate succession technique of Hokuto Shinken, Musō Tensei !!!”.
Raoh believed that he had broken Kenshiro’s body twice but it was like his body disappeared in thin air.
Raoh remembered the words of Ryuuken, 63th Hokuto Shinken Grand Master about the Musō Tensei :
Ryuuken: “What is the strongest in this world is nothingness… It is from nothingness that life springs forth…”
Kenshiro faced Raoh a third time after this.
Kenshiro Vs Raoh (3rd fight)
Raoh mastered the Musō Tensei too and we see how far this ultimate technique goes.
Raoh couldn’t touch Kenshiro in the beginning of the fight because becoming one with nothingness made Ken impossible to touch.
Raoh attacked and hit nothing then Kenshiro relocated his body and attacked again without using his Musō Tensei .
Raoh mastered the Musō Tensei too so Kenshiro’s attacks were canceled when he wasn’t using the Musō Tensei.
Both finally used Musō Tensei on each other so it made all techniques used by each other useless.
The Musō Tensei allows to go through attacks and people as the user becomes nothing.
Raoh perfectly summaryze what the Musō Tensei is:
“Since we have both assimilated Musō Tensei, Hokuto Shinken techniques are no longer weapons we can use. This is nothingness! Returning to square one !! And this fight is like two newborns going at it!”
The Hokuto Shinken includes techniques of attack & defense.
That’s why you can’t attack someone using Musō Tensei nor defend against him.
The only way to beat someone using Musō Tensei is to master Musō Tensei too.
Bart said “It’s like they are fighting without any technique!”
It’s important to notice that even they both mastered the Musō Tensei , they didn’t have a deep understanding of this technique at this moment.
That’s why Raoh made a barrier of fighting Ki against Kenshiro even this was useless because the Musō Tensei allowed him to go through it.
Raoh: “You broke through my fighting Ki?!”
Raoh was surprised but Kenshiro had already anticipated the outcome of the fight and even the possibility for Raoh to have mastered Musō Tensei .
Kenshiro knew that Raoh and him were on equal ground technically:
Ken: “We have both observed each other’s fists. If I look at Raoh I might not be able to win.”
He meant that they both assimilated each other techniques.
Raoh just needed to understand sadness in order to be able to use the Musō Tensei .
Bart: “Look Raoh’s Ki is escaping from him! Ki struggling is the result of a lack of concentration! In the face of the perfection of Ken’s Musō Tensei , Raoh is helpless!”
Kenshiro finally beat Raoh but you will have to read the story in order to see the end of the first part of Hokuto No Ken. I don’t want to spoil you that very iconic moment !!! 😀
Now I will clarify the first fight between Kaioh and Kenshiro because it seems that often people are missing a lot of context about it.
Kenshiro Vs Kaioh:
Kaioh was the most powerful heir of the Hokuto Ryūken.
He mastered the Matoki No Aura, a negative Ki aura allowing him to perform supernatural feats
I will show some parts of both fights against Kaioh to explain why Kenshiro lost their first encounter.
The first time Kaioh and Kenshiro met, the first one directly used his ultimate technique called Anryu Tenha on Kenshiro.
He noticed that Kenshiro had his seals not lifted.
The point of this technique is to put your opponent on a weightless space where he is disoriented.
Kenshiro never experienced zero-g conditions before and was disoriented, incapable to locate himself.
Here are two articles, one from Wikipedia and the other from space.com which describes the effect on a weightlessness space.
We can note that being in a weightlessness space gives a space adaptation syndrome or SAS, related to motion sickness, including the symptoms of nausea and vomiting, vertigo headaches, lethargy and overall malaise.
Martial Artists needs to concentrate to focus their techniques and their KI.
For example, we saw that Raoh was losing his focus and the control of his KI during his final fight against Kenshiro because he realized that the Muso Tensei allowed Ken to go through his KI force-field unharmed.
The Anryu Tenha disrupted Kenshiro’s perception of his proprioceptive system, which tells where arms, legs and other parts of the body are oriented relative to each other. It can cause some queasiness too.
That’s one of the two factors that prevented Kenshiro to use properly any technique. He lost concentration and was unable to focus his KI and therefore couldn’t perform his techniques normally.
There again, Kenshiro performed the Muso Tensei but Kaioh used his Matoki No Aura to create a weightlessness space so Kenshiro was disoriented again and lost control of his KI.
Kaioh: “I see that you can’t contain your Fighting Ki anymore!”
The base of all ability in Hokuto No Ken (and Souten No Ken) is to manipulate the KI to perform supernatural prowess and other esoteric powers.
In short, the Anryu Tenha made Kenshiro lost his focus and therefore he lost control of his Muso Tensei and the ability to conceal his Fighting Ki from Kaioh and his other techniques too.
That’s very specific and the only time that Kenshiro was unable to perform the Muso Tensei correctly but things change.
There is a second reason why Kenshiro lost control of his techniques.
Kaioh’s Hokuto Ryuken techniques are based on the art of KI manipulation.
Kaioh’s Matoki No Aura absorbed Kenshiro’s Toki No Aura during the fight, greatly diminishing the effectiveness of his abilities and techniques.
Kaioh:”When it comes to manipulating Fighting KI, Hokuto Shinken can’t hold a candle to Hokuto Ryuuken! My Evil KI absorbs your Fighting KI before your fists even touches me.”
Kenshiro lost his first encounter against Kaioh for two main reasons:
• Kaioh’s Anryu Tenha disoriented Kenshiro, making him unable to locate his body and preventing him to use his techniques.
• Kaioh’s Matoki No Aura absorbed Kenshiro’s fighting KI, diminishing his abilities to the point that he couldn’t uses them properly.
Both techniques have similar results but Kenshiro countered them later when he faced his brother Hyoh.
Kenshiro saved Kuroyasha when he was caught in Hyoh’s Anryu Tenha. He blocked literally 1109 attacks in a weightlessness space.
That’s why the Hokuto Shinken is the most powerful Martial Art.
Kenshiro was able absorb Hokuto Ryuken’s techniques and to counter them.
Kuroyasha:”You were able to locate Hyoh’s arm in the dimension of Anryu Tenha!”
Kenshiro:”Hokuto Ryuken is no longer a match for me.”
Kenshiro showed his understanding of the Anryu Tenha technique and how to counter it.
Kenshiro:”Anryu Tenha consists of throwing off your enemy’s equilibrium by projecting a weightless space around them using the current created by Evil KI.”
Shachi:”Of course… By spinning around in that weightless space, Kenshiro can position himself by using centrifugal force!”
Shachi:”He beat it! Ken was able to locate himself!”
I already showed that Hokuto Shinken allows Kenshiro to masters the style of his opponent in a single fight.
That’s how Kenshiro can assimilate, use and counter new techniques and create new techniques on the fly.
Now let’s see how the second encounter between Kaioh and Kenshiro with his seals removed was.
This final fight between them is the total opposite of the first one.
Kenshiro had already assimilated Kaioh’s Hokuto Ryuken in their previous encounter and acquired a Godlike KI Aura.
He later removed his seals which made him assimilate the techniques of all Hokuto Shinken masters in addition to the Hokuto Soke No Ken to complete the Hokuto Shinken and have a perfect technique.
Kenshiro fought Kaioh the same way that he fought Falco, just using his abilities with the minimum required to make the fight look interesting but here his goal was to make Kaioh admit his mistakes and seal the Hokuto Ryuken once and for all.
Kenshiro let Kaioh trap him in his Anryu Tenha, with no effects besides the weightlessness as Kenshiro wasn’t disoriented at all, and literally no sold Kaioh’s Hokuto Soke No Ken’s pressure-points techniques even he let him hit all of his pressure-points.
Kenshiro:”Don’t you get it? That’s the limit of the original Hokuto Fist. Kaioh, the Fist that you just used was none other than that of original Hokuto but mastering those passive techniques doesn’t give you the strength to fight on a battlefield! That’s why 2000 years ago, they desired an invincible fist so badly, a new killing art. And if that woman statue was meant to allow me to defeat you, it served first and foremost to pass on that passive technique.”
That’s pretty much what I said. Hokuto Shinken evolves with each combat and allows his user to assimilates, use and counters the techniques he witnesses.
Kenshiro:”Hokuto Ryuken consists of destroying the enemy’s passive techniques by blinding them with Evil KI.”
That’s what I said above.
Kaioh’s Evil KI canceled Kenshiro’s techniques by absorbing his KI and disorienting him.
Kenshiro:”But Hokuto Shinken is the Fist of the battlefield. Its secrets lie in its infinite fighting variations!”
I already talked about this.
Kenshiro can combine every technique he already learned on the battlefield and create new ones if needed with limitless variations.
There is no way to beat Kenshiro with the same technique again as its proven ineffective since this last fight against Kaioh.
Kenshiro can no longer be disoriented, blinded by Evil KI or having his KI absorbed by an enemy.
The Muso Tensei can be used by Kenshiro to counter everything that Superman can throw at him, even the Solar Flare.
Now we will see in a short chapter the potential of each character and their possible evolutions.
Superman is a Kryptonian and his potential lies in the ability of his cells to store different kind of energies, which leads him to develop different powers, and his ability to manipulate the said stored energy.
Superman’s meetings with Wraith and H’el are significant.
Kryptonians can store different kind of energy in their cells depending on the source of exposition.
The nature of the source of exposion can give different kind of powers:
• Temporal displacement
• Chronal manipulation
H’el displayed all of those powers among telepathy and invisibility (probably due to his telepathy).
Superman is limited to the energy of our yellow Sun at the moment and could use it like Wraith does with enough training but it needs years to be mastered.
Wraith was on Earth during 75 years and he learned how to absorb and control the energy he absorbed from the Sun.
Wraith:”Superman. Our bodies, yours and mine, they’re solar charged—But the key is learning how to use that charge to absorb and control the electromagnetic energy all around us. Heh. It takes years to master.”
Superman and Wraith are powered by the Sun.
Superman’s energy = 140 GW.
Wraith’s energy = 160 GW.
Wraith displayed several powers like :
• Super-speed (running and flying)
• Heat vision
• Hyperspectral vision
Those are similar to Superman’s powers.
Through training, Wraith acquired the ability to manipulate the electromagnetic energy in his cells to:
• Become Invisible
• Make rapid-fire burst of Heat Vision
• Use a Sonic Scream.
• Simulate the radioactivity of Kryptonite
However both Superman and Wraith ability to channel the Solar Energy / Manipulate the EM-energy is canceled by strong magnetic forces, letting them only with their strength and travel speed.
Superman didn’t display the abilities showed by Wraith and H’el because:
• Wraith had a bigger power output because his ability to store more power exponentially increased after 75 years of exposition to the yellow Sun. He trained during those 75 years to master the use of the Solar charge in his cells.
• H’el was exposed to several kind of radiations during his trip through space with minimal protection which gave him new powers.
Until those two conditions change, Superman is condemned to continue with the same power and power-set.
Now let’s see Kenshiro’s potential.
Kenshiro is the most powerful Hokuto Shinken Grand Master in 2000 years of history.
He is the first to have mastered the Muso Tensei, Raoh being the second and he beat Raoh.
He was tested by his brothers in contest against ten Nanto disciples in order to evaluate his potential.
Kenshiro was a kid at this moment and did it pretty well.
Kenshiro had to face 10 Nanto disciples and if he lost he wouldn’t have left the contest alive.
Raoh, Souther and Shu are impressed by Kenshiro’s abilities and they are already masters of their arts.
Shu send glimpse of his KI to Kenshiro in order to see if Ken can perceive it and he did.
Shu:”He reacted to my KI!”
That showed Ken’s great potential even at a very young age.
Shu was so impressed that he decided to test Kenshiro in the last round whatever it could cost him.
Of course Shu won the last fight; he is one of the Nanto Rokuseiken Grandmasters after all.
Souther:”A defeated foe from another school must never leaver here alive!”
The tradition is part of the Martial Arts and Shu deliberately broke a rule even he is himself a Grand Master.
That tells a lot about how much he is concerned about Kenshiro.
Shu:”Don’t kill this boy! This child hides within him a light with great potential.”
In exchange of Kenshiro’s live, Shu sacrificed his eyes.
Raoh:”Kenshiro, could you be more than I imagined?”
This was shown in Jagi Gaiden.
Jagi was surprised that they forced Kenshiro to fight in an inter-school battle.
Toki:”Back there; I caught a glimpse of an incredible power that lay dormant within him…”
Shu:”This boy has a hidden potential within him that can outshine any other star!”
Their master Ryuken trusted a lot in Kenshiro’s abilities too.
Ryuken:”I made the right choice, Raoh… Kenshiro had the right qualities to become the savior of our times… However… he’s still too young.
If you confront him with those powerful fists of yours you can awaken the limitless potential within him!”
The master of the Hokuto Ryuken, the Grand Master Jukei said something about Kenshiro’s origins.
Jukei:”Listen carefully Hyoh! Kenshiro and you are both brothers by relation! And in you flows the blood of original Hokuto! That original Hokuto is none other than the very source of Shinken and Ryuken!
That’s it. And through its descendants will be born one who will be blessed with the gift of the secret fist that will seal Ryuken! And that man is Kenshiro!”
Kaioh, the most powerful Rasho of the Hokuto Ryuken was afraid by Kenshiro’s potential.
Shachi:”Th… That’s the blood of Original Hokuto!”
Kaioh:”Ah… So that was the blood of Hokuto Shinken, the Original Hokuto that hides such infinite potential…”
Lin:”Hokuto Shinken is able to completely master an opponent’s style just after one encounter. Since Ken already fought against you. Hyoh doesn’t stand a chance. This fight doesn’t make any sense.”
That’s important because Hyoh is Kenshiro’s brother, like I showed above, and even knowing this Kaioh believed in Hyoh’s chance because of his link with the original blood of Hokuto.
Kaioh:”The blood of Original Hokuto flows through Hyoh’s veins. The blood of Original Hokuto that contains that Infinite Potential! That’s why I arranged this battle. If Hyoh is backed to the wall, the seals of Original Hokuto will be forced open.”
Shachi:”Wh… His Evil KI disappeared! Aah! That! C… Coming from Hyoh’s body, the Aura of the God of War! Im… Impossible! Has the blood of Original Hokuto within Hyoh awakened as well?”
Kuroyasha:”They’ve both become Gods of War. The real fight is beginning!”
Shachi:”However…The confrontation between these two Fists of Infinite Power has only one outcome! A draw after they kill each other!”
About the Hokuto Shinken:
The Hokuto Shinken is an ultimate and invincible technique able to incorporate all of the enemy’s techniques in a single combat allowing the one whom mastered it to use infinite fighting variations.
Kenshiro’s potential is qualified as limitless and infinite.
That means that Kenshiro can create any technique required in a given situation.
Potential (advantage): Kenshiro. The 64th Grand Master of Hokuto can literally adapt to any situation. Superman has a limited versatility and rarely shows new uses of his powers.
The point of that article is to understand the options that each characters can use to succeed at beating their opponent.
Superman has very few options in his arsenal.
He can try to bulrush Kenshiro with his travel speed but this can be blocked, avoided via sheer speed or Muso Tensei and Ken can strike back at Superman ending the fight in the process.
He can make use of his Heat Vision but we saw this can be easily avoided and the damage gap isn’t big too.
He can try his Freezing Breath on Kenshiro but according to Nightwing, Superman’s freeze breath take 4.2 seconds to be effective and Ken can evade it via agility or speed or simply send it back at Superman with a punch.
Superman can use his Solar Flare but Kenshiro has a high resistance to heat (he was unaffected by two giants flame-throwers). He can deflect the energy with his punches or totally avoid the attack with his Muso Tensei. The drawback would let Superman totally depowered.
Superman can go in hand-to-hand but Kenshiro can avoid Superman’s slow attacks without breaking a sweat or simply block or deflect them.
I can’t see a single valuable option for Superman to beat Kenshiro as proven on panel, Superman already struggle against agile characters whom are extremely slow and unskilled compared to Kenshiro.
Kenshiro has many options in his arsenal to beat Superman.
Mundane karate strikes to the pressure-points can beat Kryptonians easily.
Hokuto Shinken works on mutants, werewolves, humans with situs inversus totalis and humans able to move their pressure-points via Hikoheni.
Kenshiro’s techniques will work on Superman’s body.
He can use his stealth to approach Superman and take him down with his Ki-blasts, or touch slightly his pressure-points or just deliver a flurry of punches on Superman before this one notices him.
He can surround himself with his invisible Ki-aura that will destroy Superman if he comes in close-combat.
He can go in hand-to-hand, rush Superman and touch one of his pressure-points to instantly end the fight.
He can approach slowly in close-combat quarters and give a beating to Superman whom will be unable to touch Ken just because he is totally outclassed in skills and speed by light-years.
He can directly go Muso Tensei and Superman would be doomed as he has nothing to counter and this technique can counter everything that Superman can try.
He can create new techniques on the fly or use any techniques from his predecessors or from the masters he fought in Hokuto No Ken.
Kenshiro’s Hokuto Shinken is Divine and as a supernatural force and according to Superman’s weakness and vulnerability to the Chi that turns this match into a walk in the park for Kenshiro.
It’s a one-sided fight in Kenshiro’s favor.
Kenshiro destroys Superman effortlessly.