Vega (Street Fighter)

Vega (Street Fighter)

General CVG character

caption=Vega in "Super Street Fighter II", as drawn by Bengus.
series="Street Fighter" series
firstgame=Street Fighter II
voiceactor=Richard Cansino ("" and "Street Fighter II V")
Paul Dobson (TV series)
japanactor=Shō Hayami (Drama CD)
Kaneto Shiozawa ("Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie", "Street Fighter II V", "Street Fighter EX" series)
Yūji Ueda ("Street Fighter Alpha 3", "Capcom vs. SNK" series)
Kiyotomi Goshima ("Gunspike", "SVC Chaos: Capcom vs. SNK")
Junichi Suwabe (("Street Fighter IV"))
Kazuyuki Ishikawa ("Street Fighter Alpha: The Animation")
liveactor=Jay Tavare, Taboo
inuniverse=Street Fighter character
fightingstyle = Ninjutsu mixed with bullfighting
specialskill = Climbing walls, being vain
likes = Beautiful things, himself
dislikes = Ugly things, getting his opponent's blood on himself

Vega, known as nihongo|Balrog|バルログ|Barurogu in Japan, is one of the bosses of the "Street Fighter" fighting game series.

The style Vega uses to fight is loosely based on Zipota and Savate, both used as a means of self-discipline and defense by unarmed Spanish noblemen, sailors, and honor guards of established families, as well as ninjutsu.

Conception and creation

In the original Japanese version of "Street Fighter II", the single-player mode concludes with a series of matches against four computer-controlled opponents: M. Bison, a former pro boxer; Balrog, a masked Spaniard with a clawed gauntlet; Sagat, a returning character from the original "Street Fighter"; and Vega, a dictator dressed in red military uniform, the game's very last opponent. As "Street Fighter II" was being localized for the United States, concerns arose over M. Bison, who resembled an analogue of Mike Tyson to the point of likeness infringement. [ Balrog Biography] . [ IGN] . Retrieved on 2008-4-10.] Believing the character to be a legal liability, Capcom chose to reshuffle the names of its characters. [ [ "Street Fighter" Week - The Evolution of Ken and Ryu] . [] . Retrieved on 2008-4-2.] [ [ "Street Fighter" Terminology] . [] . Retrieved on 2008-3-29.] The Spaniard was renamed Vega, the boxer became Balrog, and Vega inherited the name M. Bison.


Vega was born to a privileged noble Spanish family. For reasons undisclosed, their status dwindled, causing Vega's mother to remarry for financial security. As he matured, Vega studied bullfighting, a cultural tradition. Afterward, he went to Japan and learned ninjutsu, a style he believed meshed well with his natural grace and agility. Combining bullfighting with ninjutsu, Vega went into an underground cage fighting circuit, and quickly became one of the best. His stepfather murdered his mother because he felt she did not respect him, and Vega killed him in return. The incident warped his mind, and he developed a dual personality: honorable nobleman by day, sadistic murderer by night.

Due to Vega's superb fighting ability and remorseless nature, the criminal leader known as M. Bison instated Vega as one of the Grand Masters as well as his top assassin in the Shadaloo organization. Although undeniably flamboyant and egotistical, Vega may be the most ruthless and savage fighter in the series. He is a barbarous psychopath who holds little regard for life and even dabbles in hematolagniaFact|date=July 2008. Vega oversaw assassination operations for Shadaloo as well, and was associated with Cammy and the Shadaloo assassins known as The Dolls. Despite his savage and brutal fighting ability, Vega failed to protect Bison's secret Psycho Drive project.


Early sketches suggest that Vega was going to resemble a medieval knight wearing a full suit of armor. This idea was scrapped because "Street Fighter" was about fighters from all over the world, not time. Remnants of this concept are apparent in Vega's final design including a mask and a sharp metal claw.

Vega is one of the few "Street Fighter" characters to constantly carry a weapon, and the only character to do so in "Street Fighter II". This claw is useful for both stabbing and slashing attacks, and gives him a very long range compared to most characters. It is the same type of weapon worn by Geki in the original "Street Fighter".

Vega does not wear his expressionless mask to conceal his identity; he removes it after fights, during his win poses, as well as in certain character-select images in various games he appears in. The mask is purely to protect his face from scarring or bruising during battle, since he believes himself to be impossibly beautiful and is obsessively narcissistic. This mask is not particularly sturdy; it is smashed in during Vega's lose portrait in "Street Fighter II", and Vega himself will crush it to dust with one hand if he loses due to a time over in "Street Fighter Alpha 3".

Vega wears purple and yellow ceremonial trousers, a red sash, loafers, and white leggings of a matador, suggesting his involvement with bullfighting. This decorative garb also offers matadors ease of movement, and is ideal for Vega's acrobatic maneuvers.

Vega has brown or blond hair depending on the game and context. In the various games in the "Street Fighter II" series, Vega's game sprite and character select profile shot depicts him with brown hair, while his ending in "Street Fighter II Dash: Champion Edition" and "Super Street Fighter II" depicts him with blond hair. In "Street Fighter EX2" and "Street Fighter Alpha 3", Vega is depicted with blond hair.

Vega has a purple snake tattoo on his chest, which also circles his arm. In "Capcom vs. SNK 2", as a victory pose, Vega will hold his arm out, with the tattoo coming to life and hissing at the opponent.


Vega is one of the fastest characters in the "Street Fighter" series, but also one of the most delicate; his defensive rating is unusually low compared to other characters, to balance his incredible speed.Vega's swiftness and flying special techniques make him well-suited for multi-hitting combination attacks, confusing cross-ups, or long range poking attacks with the reach-advantage provided by his claw.It takes exactly fourteen blocked hits for Vega to lose his claw. This reduces his attack range significantly, and prevents him from doing certain super attacks. Since "Super Street Fighter II Turbo", Vega can pick up the claw. In "Street Fighter Alpha 3", he can lose his mask as well, which causes him to take more damage. In "", Vega cannot lose his claw. In the "Street Fighter EX" series, Vega may reinforce or recover his claw with a super move.


Vega possesses a unique technique in the "back flip", making him leap away from an attacker, instead of countering them with an anti-air attack, as well as avoiding fireballs and a few other moves. In certain games, Vega does have the anti-air attack known as "Scarlet Terror", making his playing style even more based on offense than before. Vega's "Rolling Crystal Flash/Tumbling Claw" has him roll forward on the ground and end with a fierce claw strike, a move integral to Vega's offensive posturing, as the move allows him to move forward after he has pushed himself away from the opponent with other attacks.

Vega's "Flying Barcelona Attack" and "Izuna Drop" were originally performed by the computer-controlled Vega by climbing on the chain fence that only exists in Vega's stage. For other stages, Vega must leap off the side of the screen. Later games removed Vega's ability to climb the wall altogether, thus making the character react the same way in every stage (except in "SFA3" where players had to input a different special move to climb the cage in his stage).

In other media

* In the Japanese animated film "", Vega was voiced by Kaneto Shiozawa in Japanese and Richard Cansino in the English dub. In the film, he works for Shadowlaw under Bison, and is sent to New York to kill Chun-Li, but is himself defeated in the ensuing fight.

* In the 1994 live-action film version of "Street Fighter", Vega was played by Jay Tavare, where he is depicted as a member of the Shadaloo Tong working for Sagat. Along with his trademark mask and claw, he has only three lines during the whole movie and utters them while his face is obscured or when he is off-camera. He also appears in the arcade and home versions of the "" game.

* In the 1995 Japanese animated series "Street Fighter II V", Vega appears as a bullfighter who tries to seduce Chun-Li. Envious over Ken's friendship with Chun-Li, Vega invites the two to a party in his castle, which is actually a trap to lure Ken to a caged death match with him. He is given the surname of Fabio La Cerda in the series. Once again, he was voiced by Kaneto Shiozawa in Japanese and Richard Cansino in English.

* Vega appears in two episodes of the 1995 American "Street Fighter" animated series, "Eye of the Beholder" and "Face of Fury", where he is a former henchman of Bison who develops a rivalry against Blanka. He was voiced by Mark Hildreth in the series.

* Vega makes a non-speaking cameo appearance in 1999 Japanese OVA "", where he ends up pulverising, though not outright killing his opponent Dan Hibiki during an underground fight.

* Taboo from the Black Eyed Peas has been cast as Vega in the upcoming movie, "".

Promotion and reception

IGN ranked Vega at number ten in their "Top 25 Street Fighter Characters" article, stating "he deserves all the credit in the world for originality. There's never been a Street Fighter character quite like him since." [ [ Top 25 Street Fighter Characters - Day IV] . IGN. Retrieved on 2008-08-15] Additionally, he ranked 46th in GamePro's "47 Most Diabolical Video-Game Villains of All Time" article. [GamePro staff (2008-02-04). [;338891934;pp;1;secid;772455 The 47 Most Diabolical Video-Game Villains of All Time] . PC World. Retrieved on 2008-09-16]


External links

* Vega's [ Street Fighter II] , [ Street Fighter Alpha] , and [ Street Fighter EX] entries at []

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