The Oboro Ninja Clan (朧流忍者 Obororyu Ninja) Or simply the Oboro is a legendary ninja clan in the Shinobi franchise.
The clan was once led by legendary Ninja Master Joe Musashi in the classic Shinobi series, and by Hotsuma and minor protagonists in the 2002 remake videogame Shinobi. Hailed as Ninja of justice, they fought against conflicts and the evils that exploited them. The famed ninja clan is said to have organized all the active Ninja in Japan.
HistoryEditThe Oboro ryu Ninja are a centuries-old group of ninja warriors who draw their lineage from the famed Iga Ninja. Skilled in the art of stealth, combat skills, mystical arts and tactics, the Oboro have protected the Japanese Empire from within the shadows for many centuries against its enemies and they fought many battles against the evils that exploited them. Praised as the Shinobi of Justice, the clan's heroic yet notorious reputation has earned them renown throughout the shinobi world. This clan has produced many a legendary ninja warrior, such as the famed Shinobi of Legend, Joe Musashi.
Oboro vs ZEED (1900s)EditIn the 20th Century a terrorist group called ZEED had begun kidnapping the children of the world leaders (children of the Oboro clan in the Japanese version), planning to use them to reinitiate the Warring States Era of Japan. Joe Musashi of the Oboro Ninja Clan was sent by the clan's chief to ferret them out and destroy the perpetrators of the crime and rescue the children. Using his superior ninja skill, Joe defeated many foes, including his traitorous senior Nakahara the Masked Ninja. With his victory the foul organization was reduced to rubble. After that the world would know peace. But that peace was short-lived.
While Musashi was coming back from training overseas, ZEED had returned, more powerful than before. NEO ZEED became the mightiest crime empire to ever exist. Seeking revenge, the Oboro was attacked and its chief was killed. The dying chief told his student Joe Musashi that Naoko, his fiancée was taken prisoner to be used as bait. To avenge his comrades, honor his teacher and reclaim his future wife, Musashi set out for NEO ZEED. Through the battles and life or death situations he faced, Joe would eventually find his beloved Naoko trapped in a death chamber as he faced off against the Masked Ninja in combat once more. After defeating him, he saves Naoko from the death trap and the two lovers are reunited and able to wed.
Joe is now the new leader of the Oboro clan, and has headed to the mountains to train. But NEO ZEED would not accept defeat gracefully. This time they were lead by the notorious Shadow Master ; a monstrous cyborg that had skill and power mirroring Musashi's own and cloned from Musashi's own bloodline. To stop them, Joe Musashi, now more powerful after completing his training, comes out to end them. After a long and valiant struggle, Musashi struck NEO ZEED down once again, and returned to settle down.
The Oboro and the Cursed BladeEdit
- The story of the Oboro Clan is different in the 2002 remake of Shinobi.
- The Oboro clan have defended the nation of Japan from within the darkness of history for generations. Hailed as Shinobi of Justice, they fought against conflicts and the evil forces seeking to exploit them. But within this prestigious clan, a dark secret was kept.
- In the Oboro Clan's head family, there was a legendary artifact. A katana handed down from generation to generation within the Oboro bloodline to each clan leader. This blade was called "Akujiki "; the Evil Eater.
- This sword was kept under watch by the Oboro family. Akujiki was not truly a sword however, but an ancient demon parasite that the Oboro had kept sealed for decades. Known for its incredible destructive power, the Akujiki is characterized by its horrid hunger for Yin energy; the negative spiritual energies left by those it slays, such as fear, hatred, vengeance and rage. Each death allowed the blade to grow more powerful without limit, but if left unfed of blood and denied fresh Yin, the parasite would slowly consume the lifeforce of its host. This meant that whosoever wields Akujiki would be burdened with the fate of constant slaughter until their death.
- To counter this, the Oboro developed a cruel ritual between the eldest sons of the Oboro main household; a ceremonial duel to the death between siblings. The winner would lead the Oboro ninja while their Yang, their pure spirit, would be sacrificed to Akujiki, sealing its properties. But if the blade was exposed to an enormous amount of Yin, the seal would come undone, and Akujiki would rampage once more.
Two boys, Moritsune and Hotsuma are adopted into the Oboro Household. Raised by famed veteran Jonin Kobushi, the two became close as true siblings, and were seldom apart. Moritsune was a prodigy of the Shinobi Arts, and Hotsuma trained diligently to be just like him. Somewhere along the way the two would meet and befriend the tomboyish Kunoichi (くノ一; female Ninja) student Ageha, another child in Kobushi's care. And would often play together.
One day, the trio discovered the Oboro Clan shrine, and within it rested a crimson sword. No sooner did Ageha attempt to claim it did the sword react to her greed and began to leech away her life force. Moritsune sent Hotsuma to fetch Master Kobushi, but by the time they got there, Ageha was safe, but Moritsune was left forever scarred across his face.
It would soon be told to the brothers that the sword, Akujiki, is what would be given to the next leader. However, the brothers would need to battle to the death. To their shock and horror, this meant that they'd be forced to fight each other and kill each other for the katana and the right to lead. And so over the next decade into their adolescent years, the brothers would train for their fated battle.In the summer on a full moon in the cherry blossom grove, Hotsuma and Moritsune commenced the savage ritual. Ageha tried to stop them, but Kobushi wouldn't let her interfere under Oboro Clan law. Ageha scoffed at the Oboro tradition, seeing this as pure madness, but relented as Kobushi commanded. The two fought with the intent to kill. Though stronger and faster than Hotsuma, Moritsune decided to hold back on the final strike, refusing to let him be taken by Akujiki. Hotsuma attempted to care for his injured brother, but Moritsune told him that he was the new leader of the Oboro, and he must persevere. Moritsune told Hotsuma to take the sword. Hotsuma hesitated, as he didn't want his brother to die. Moritsune threw the sword to him, and knelt down ready to die. Telling his grieving brother that they'd always be together, Hotsuma tearfully delivered the killing slash to Moritsune with the demon blade.
The ceremony was complete and Hotsuma became the new Master of the Oboro Household. Ageha, in her grief of losing Moritsune, abandoned the Oboro and went rogue. As for Hotsuma himself, his broken heart from losing the two people he loved most would lead to him closing himself off emotionally.He would take up the mask of stoicism and kill his emotions, hiding his anguish and suffering. As the young Chief Ninja began taking more and more missions for the government on a regular basis, he gradually distanced himself from the village.Four years later since that ritual, while Hotsuma was away on another mission for the Shinobi Agency, a huge earthquake struck Tokyo and a mysterious fortress called the Golden Palace appeared in the center of the capital city. In the midst of the chaos were legions of demons known as the Hellspawn rampaging through the city streets and killing people. Lead by the demonic masked ninja Aomizuchi , they soon attacked the village of the Oboro Clan, as part of the plan of a self-proclaimed sorcerer who revealed himself to the Oboro's long thought dead sworn enemy Hiruko. Hiruko would soon manipulate the dead Oboro's soulless bodies as puppets and made them turn against their leader, Hotsuma. Hotsuma flew into the destroyed land that was once Tokyo, and he would be forced to fight against his undead Oboro clansmen and the Hellspawn until he faced the tragic love struck traitor Ageha, and defeated the Oboro's killer Aomizuchi who manipulated the body of Hotsuma's deceased older brother. After defeating the vile mastermind, the heretic sorcerer Hiruko Ubusuna at the keep of the Golden Palace, Hotsuma decides to close the book on Akujiki's bloody legacy. With no clan to lead, his friends and family dead, and Akujiki now free to run rampant, Hotsuma willingly perishes in collapse of the Golden Palace, and the Oboro clan has ended.
Hotsuma's LegacyEditKagari Ubusuna of the Ubusuna family of Onmyouji (陰陽師 sorcerers) performs a ceremony called the "Ariake Seal" and breaks the cursed blade Akujiki and thus scattered its pieces to create a Yang powered barrier to ward off the Hellspawn menace.
However, the pieces would be sought after by the Nakatomi Conglomerate, a Japanese hi-tech company who were manipulated by Hiruko into rebuilding Yatsurao. Desiring Akujiki for themselves, the Nakatomi Group send out Mercenary Ninja to acquire the sword. The theft of an Akujiki shard ruins the seal, and sends Akujiki's shards spiraling out of control, creating Hellspawn from each shard.
To reclaim Akujiki, the Shinobi Agency sends Hibana; the daughter of the Oboro bloodline and sole surviving heiress of the Oboro family, to retrieve the shards before Nakatomi can acquire it. After a long struggle against her former mentor Jimushi, and defeating the Akujiki powered Kurohagane, Hibana steals Akujiki back from the Japanese Government, and becomes the blade's new master.
A Paradox in Time; the Shinobi who Traversed ErasEdit
In the Eight year of Kencho (1256 AD) in Kamakura Period Japan, Jiro Musashi; the young prodigious leader of the Oboro clan would battle the ancient ZEED Ninja Forces for defying his emperor. But when his village and clan are attacked, Jiro is suddenly hurled through time and space, 800 years into the future, where ZEED's evil has become law. After battling the villainous organization on ZEED Island, their base of operations, Jiro, assisted by Col. Sarah Krieger, topples ZEED, and comes face to face with the ancient alien lifeform Orn, who planned to use the ninja of the Oboro as his template for the ultimate Ninja Space Army.
After defeating Orn and returning to Earth, Jiro proceeds to walk alone, contemplating the revival of the Oboro clan in this new world he must now call home.
As with all traditional ninja clans, the Oboro Clan is divided into three ranks, which follow under the Chief Ninja (Clan Leader). The three ranks are Genin, Chunin, and Jonin.
When a ninja becomes a Chief Shinobi (忍頭 Shinobigashira; Head Ninja) or the Master of the head household (当主 Toushu; Master of the household), they are the ones who give orders, assign missions, host rituals, and even organize clan traditions for the other ranks to follow. Clan leaders also often recruit and mentor other ninja. The
Jōnin (上忍 Master Ninja) is the highest rank of ninja, serving under the Chief Ninja. Those given this rank are the ones who represent the clan by often providing assistance to the leaders, instructing the lower ranks, and carrying out missions.
The second rank is the Chūnin (中忍; Sub-commanders). The rank of the chunin is to provide close assistance to the jōnin, act as field agents and spies, carry out missions, and relay messages to the lower rank.
At the bottom of the ranks are the Genin (下忍 Operatives). This is the beginning rank given to those who join the clan. The role of the genin mainly consists of being field agents, spies, carrying out actual missions, and enduring harsh training assigned by the Jonin and Chunin.
- Ageha (formerly; went rogue)
- Aragane Twins
- Kobushi (also called Kobushi-sama)
- Hibana (Originally of the Oboro Main Household; Put up for adoption at an early age)
- Joe Musashi
- Jiro Musashi (Chief of the Oboro clan from the Kamakura Era; sent through time to start the clan anew)
- Joe Musashi belonged to the Oboro School of Ninjutsu which belonged to the Oboro Clan.
- Jiro Musashi is the clan leader of the Oboro Ninja during the Kencho period before he's thrown through time.
- In the official Japanese version of the first Shinobi and Shadow Dancer, Joe Musashi is called an Iga Ninja, meaning the Oboro are descended from the Iga Ninja.
- Hotsuma , Moritsune , and Hibana are members of the founding Oboro Family.
- In the original Shinobi games from Revenge of Shinobi/The Super Shinobi onward, the Japanese version of the clan is called 朧流忍者Oboro-ryu Ninja; 流 'Ryu' is a referencing to the traditional ninja clan structures, while in the PS2 remakes it is called 朧一族 (Oboro Household), referring to the actual Oboro bloodline.
- According to the original Japanese version of the first Shadow Dancer, Joe Musashi went rogue to give his son Hayate a more peaceful life.
- The crest of the Oboro in Shinobi (2002) designed by Makoto Tsuchibayashi is an eclipsed crescent moon with the kanji for Oboro (朧;Haze), but the crest in Shinobi 3DS is a gold and black Hidari Mitsudomoe (左三つ巴 Left Tri-Tomoe)