Devil mark branded onto Jin when he was possessed at age 15.

The Devil Gene (デビルの血 Debiru no Chi?, Devil's Blood) also referred to as the Devil Factor (デビルの因子 Debiru no Inshi?) or Devil's Power (デビルの力 Debiru no Chikara?) in Tekken 6 Scenario Campaign, is a supernatural genetic abnormality found in people of the Hachijo bloodline. Characters revealed so far to posses the Devil Gene are Kazuya (Devil Kazuya), Jin (Devil Jin), and Kazumi (Devil Kazumi).

Background

While the exact specifications of this gene are never truly explained, it is generally assumed that the gene allows for a person to have a parasite/host type relationship with a malignant spirit referred to as a "devil". This spirit appears to take over the host, altering their appearance and personality, and granting them supernatural abilities, such as flight and a third eye on their forehead that can shoot beams of light. The spirit is also known to afflict the mind of the untransformed host, apparently preying on their thoughts and influencing them towards more evil choices. Under normal circumstances, the host seems to have limited control over their devil form, and is neither fully in control of when they transform, how they act when transformed, or when they change back.

The exact requirements for these transformations are never fully revealed. The spirit can possess the person at any given time during the person's lifespan, even while still in their mother's womb. It seems that in order to have a devil a person must first, have devil blood, second, be possessed by a devil or come into contact with it, and third, a life threatening event or similar trigger must allow the devil to manifest. There seems to be a link between negative emotion and trauma and subsequent manifestations of someone's devil form. While it has been shown that, in early transformations, users may have no memory or limited control over their devil side, it has been shown that subsequently, it is possible to control or unite oneself to one's devil, allowing the user to retain consciousness, rather than have a split personality.

It is possible that there is only one 'devil' who possesses members of the Hachijo bloodline. Kazumi and her devil form were killed before Kazuya's Devil Gene activated, and it is known that the devil Kazuya and Jin have are two parts of one single Devil. If so, then it may be that the Hachijo Clan are custodians of a single malignant entity that they have learned to control or have formed a pact with. Alternatively, the Devil Gene itself may cause a power to arise within the host, and manifest as an entity that gives them a devilish appearance and afflicts them psychologically, as may be implied in the Journalist's interpretation of the Hachijo Nursery Rhyme.

Devil Gene Carriers

The people currently carrying the Devil Gene are, in order of reveal: 

Heihachi Mishima does not possess the Devil Gene, and neither does his son Lars Alexandersson, who Heihachi had in order to confirm that the gene is not from him. This would seem to be an odd choice for Heihachi, given that he had already seen his wife turn into a devil, making her more likely to be the origin of this ability. Furthermore, a genetic aspect to the power had not been fully confirmed, as, whilst having evidence that Kazuya had supernatural abilities (since he survived the cliff fall), Heihachi did not yet have conclusive evidence this son could turn into a devil (assuming that Kazuya first fully transformed in the finals of the first King of Iron Fist Tournament). However, this could be explained as Heihachi not yet knowing the specifics of the devil power - how it was transmitted, whether it was genetic, and who could attain it, etc. Even may years later, during Tekken 3 and Tekken 4, Heihachi managed to isolate facts connecting the devil power to blood, but only gradually found out that normal humans like himself could not gain devil powers.[1]

It was previously believed for a long time that Jinpachi Mishima possessed the Devil Gene due to his appearance, dialogues and his ending in Tekken 5, but it was revealed by Tekken director, Katsuhiro Harada, that Jinpachi did not have the Devil Gene, but was instead possessed by a vengeful ghost.[2] Interestingly though, in both console versions of Tekken 5, Jinpachi's ending states that he's possessed by the Devil. Also, in Jinpachi's interlude with Heihachi, the latter theorizes that his father has the Devil's Blood and finally, in the character history section of the Tekken 6 CG art book, it states that Jinpachi has the Devil Gene. It says that he is a unique link within the Mishima bloodline, in which the Devil Gene appears after him. When questioned about this Harada explained that the Tekken project team dares to mislead fans (sometimes),[3] and only they and Heihachi know the truth,[4] suggesting that Kazumi's story was intended at this time, despite this confusion. Harada also explained that Kazuya and Jin initially believed Jinpachi was the source of their power,[5]and that Jinpachi himself is confused about what is possessing him.[6]

Tekken 7 finally explained the further origin of Devil Gene as lying with the Hachijos, and not with the Mishimas.

The Devil "Possession" Timeline

See Hachijo Clan for the relationship between the Hachijo and the Devil Gene

The Hachijo Clan has possessed the Devil Gene since ancient times, and has harmonized their powers with their clans ambitions. They use their devil carrying members as sleeper agents, monitoring those they believe to be potential threats to the world and assassinating them should the need arise.

Kazumi's target was Heihachi, though she appears to have intially tried to fend off transforming into her devil, as she keeps fallingto a series of illnesses before her devil finally took over. She was possessed by her devil when Kazuya was 5-years-old, but failed to kill Heihachi, and was instead killed by him.

Kazuya had his encounter with his devil, an entity that later calls itself "Devil", when he was 5 years old. Heihachi, concerned that Kazumi's powers may somehow also be in his son (he may also have been sickened by his weak and emotionally soft son), threw Kazuya off a cliff in order to see if he was strong enough to climb back up. If Kazuya survived, if meant he probably had inherited Kazumi's devil power. Although the injuries nearly killed Kazuya, the Devil Gene within him activated and he was able to climb back up the cliff.

After the events of Tekken 2, Heihachi defeated Kazuya and threw his body into a volcano. This inadvertently caused Devil's soul to be split into two parts: one that stayed with Kazuya and the other that went in search of Kazuya's yet unborn son, Jin Kazama. When it finally found the unborn Jin, it was warded off by his mother, Jun Kazama, and was unsuccessful in taking over Jin. However, 15 years later, it returned after Jun vanished, and branded Jin's left arm with a mark.[7]

The Common Denominator

Interestingly enough, while Heihachi himself does not have the Devil Gene, he has been the catalyst whose actions have resulted in the devil possession of all the Devil Gene carriers.

Heihachi staged a coup d'etat against Jinpachi and locked him away under Hon-Maru, which resulted in Jinpachi being possessed by the "monster" (though this demonic possession is unrelated to the Devil Gene), as well as it activating in his wife Kazumi Mishima as she sensed that he was a threat to the world. It was also Heihachi who threw Kazuya off the cliff when Kazuya was a child, almost killing him, causing the Devil Gene to surface within Kazuya.

Several years later, after the events of the second tournament, Heihachi threw Kazuya into a volcano, thus releasing part of Devil, which then searched for and tried to possess Jin Kazama, though initially unsuccessful. Heihachi and his Tekken Force soldiers fatally shot Jin Kazama after the conclusion of Tekken 3, causing the Devil Gene to awaken within him and partially transform Jin into his Devil self. 

In a Tekken 7 trailer, Kazumi implies that all the destruction to come, including that attributed to Kazuya and Jin, will be set in motion by Heihachi, hence why it is most important to stop him.

Activation of the Devil Gene

It is not explained how the Devil Gene is activated, but evidence within the games seems to suggest that it can be activated consciously, subconsciously, or based on external stimuli. Regardless of which, the effects seem rather clear; the devil side of the person becomes more dominant, to the point of changing the physical appearance of their host, who in turn becomes much stronger.

  • First time activation: It seems that the first time the Devil Gene is activated, the host must be in mortal danger/to have already died or received extensive fatal injuries. This at least is a common factor for both Kazuya and Jin the first time their Devil Gene activates.
  • Conscious activation: Kazuya performs a conscious activation of his Devil Gene between the events of Tekken 4, and Tekken 5, during the attack of Hon-Maru by the Jack robots. He states that he has found a way of unifying their power, and hereafter seems to be able to activate his devil power at will. Jin Kazama seems to have become able to activate his Devil Gene consciously by the time of the events in Tekken 6 without becoming a devil, like that of his father, though this may just be because of Jin's proximity to Azazel at this time, who is known to activate the gene in devil users.
  • Subconscious activation: Jin's first transformation into Devil Jin at the end of the events of the third tournament was arguably a subconscious activation of his Devil Gene, likely in part because the hatred he felt for Heihachi's betrayal and evil, and in part because he had been mortally wounded.
  • Activation by external stimuli: Jin partially transforms at the end of the events of the fourth tournament, due to Devil's attempts at forcing him to (as seen in Jin's Tekken 4 ending). Perhaps no more than half an hour later, when Jinpachi and his dark energy is freed from under Hon-Maru, Jin completely transforms because of his reaction to Jinpachi's evil energy, meaning that the Devil Gene can come out whenever and wherever there is negative energy around. Devil Gene users seem to be affected by the presence of one another, the presence of Ogre[8] and Azazel.

Suppression of the Devil Gene

Aside from the suppression of the Devil Gene through sheer force of will, as is implied by the method of conscious, and to some extent subconscious, activation, there are also several external factors that can suppress the Devil Gene as well. The exact nature of these things are however not well explained, often not at all. So, it remains unknown how they suppress the Devil Gene; it is only known that they are able to do so.

Angel

Before the concept of the Devil Gene, Angel was portrayed as the good side of Kazuya, able to suppress his Devil persona and causing an internal struggle. Her profile described her as one of the appearances that Kazuya takes depending on the person that gazes upon him. However, since the creation of the Devil Gene concept, Angel has all but vanished from the Tekken storyline and it is unknown whether or not she is still able to do suppress Devil or if she even still exists.

Kazama Bloodline

See also Kazama Clan

Before the concept of a Devil Gene was created, and the concept was instead strictly spiritual, Jun Kazama seemed able to suppress the Devil inside Kazuya. It was explained as having been because of Jun's serene and pure being. However, when the Devil history was reconnected and the Devil Gene concept created, the influence of the Kazama family seems to have become genetic as well; their bloodline, rather than Jun specifically having been a special case.

At the conclusion of Tekken 4, the effect of the bloodline is shown as Devil tries to transform Jin into his devil form by using the anger he has for his Mishima family, but fails and theorizes that it is due to the Kazama blood running in Jin's veins.

Asuka Kazama, in her Tekken 5 ending, was also able to suppress the Devil Gene of Jin, however, the ending was non-canon and it is thus unknown how strong an effect she has on the Devil Gene. When Devil Jin approaches Asuka in his (non-canon) Scenario Campaign dialogues, he does seemed to be pained however, suggesting that there may be some canonicity to Asuka's abilities.

Exhaustion

It has been shown that, when pushed to extremes in their devil form, devil users will be forced to revert back to their human form. Their devil form can effectively be defeated, or exhausted, to the point where their bodies are forced to turn back into humans. This was shown in Tekken 7, firsly when Devil Kazumi was defeated by Heihachi, forcing her to revert back to her human form when he uppercuted her; and secondly when Heihachi fought Devil Kazuya. Heihachi was able to exhaust Devil Kazuya enough to force him back into his human form. Defeating the devil part of a devil user in this way does seem to weaken them, though it does not incapacitate them. Kazumi was able to activate her Devil Gene again almost immediately, though was almost instantly defeated by Heihachi afterwards, whilst Kazuya went on to defeat Heihachi in his human form.

Materials

While it isn't known how, the Mishima Zaibatsu were successfully able to create or acquire chains of an unknown material that could specifically suppress the Devil Gene. These chains were used by Heihachi to subdue Jin at the end of Tekken 4 and (non-canonically) also to subdue Kazuya's Devil Gene too. Jin was, however, after some struggling, able to break free of these chains. According to Heihachi, the chains have the ability to neutralise a devil's powers, so that an individual saturated with the Devil Gene will lose consciousness in a matter of minutes.[9]

GENOCELL

In Tekken 4, when the Mishima Zaibatsu failed to create a hybrid of human cells and Ogre's DNA, it was speculated that they instead needed a subject with 'devil cells'. When it was discovered that G-Corporation were conducting tests on Kazuya's body, the Mishima Zaibatsu raided it to take this data. Julia Chang's GENOCELL Program, a reforestation project funded by G Corporation, was also stolen by the Mishima Zaibatsu and discovered to have the ability to suppress the devil cell, allowing the human cells to combine with the devil cells. Dr. Abel, the lead researcher in the Mishima Zaibatsu working on this, called it the 'Devil-Human Integration Program'.[10] With this knowledge, they intended to use the cells of a Devil Gene user to further their research. They commenced a project and attempted to combine devil and human cells, to produce a half-human, half-devil organism using human test subjects.

In other (non-canon) media such as the Online Tekken Comic, the GENOCELL is also similar or can be referred to as the 'Anti-Devil Factor'. It is also revealed in the comic that Kazuya and Jin use the 'Anti-Devil Factor' to suppress the influence of the 'Devil' (however, in Kazuya's case, it allows him to also control the power of the 'Devil'/Gene without the conscious influence of it consuming his mind).

Sirius-Style Exorcism Sorcery

The supernatural fighting-style, Sirius-Style Exorcism Sorcery, used by Claudio Serafino and his Archers of Sirius, has the power to exorcise demons and devils. In Tekken 7, Heihachi Mishima demands that the Archers of Sirius aid the Mishima Zaibatsu, and reveals to Claudio the devil nature that Kazuya has. Claudio agrees that their agendas align, since he also wishes to destroy devils with his exorcism power. The exact effect of this exorcism sorcery on Devil Gene users is unknown, since the Archers of Sirius were dismissed by Heihachi before they could confront Kazuya. In a scene that is not yet confirmed to be canon in Tekken Pachislot 4, Claudio uses this power to exorcise Devil Jin. He seems to be able to do this successfully, though the result on Jin is unknown since the scene cuts away. The scene continues on from Claudio and Xiaoyu's canonical Tekken 7 endings, meaning that Claudio certainly believes that his sorcery has the power to exorcise Jin's devil from him.

Powers

Whilst devil powers manifest differently in each person, they all have wings, horns, and can shoot a laser from a third eye on their forehead.

Devil / Devil Kazuya

Devil Kazuya's fighting style was initially exactly the same as Kazuya Mishima's fighting style, since Devil Kazuya was merely a P3 costume for Kazuya in Tekken 1. In Tekken 2, Devil Kazuya gained wings and with them, the power of flight (though this is sparingly used in his moveset). In the same game, Devil Kazuya also gained a third eye on his forehead, from which he could fire a beam. These moves were the first to separate Devil Kazuya, and Kazuya in terms of gameplay, along with the back throw Atomic Drop. In Tekken Tag Tournament, Devil Kazuya had several moves that Kazuya did not have (such as "Devil Fist" (F, F+2), a move where Devil Kazuya punches his opponent and goes right through them so that he is behind his opponent), and even the moves they did share would sometimes have different properties or ranges, still, the majority of Devil Kazuya's moves are shared with Kazuya, and he has a very limited moveset, with less than 30 moves in Tekken Tag Tournament, making him the most basic character in the series, until he becomes one with Kazuya as his transformation mode as of the end part of Tekken 4, starting from this form's return in Tekken Tag Tournament 2. Devil Kazuya can also use telekinesis (this is not one of his moves, and it was only seen in Kazuya's Tekken 4 epilogue), despite losing some of his power to his son, he is still very powerful. Devil Kazuya can also speak within Jin's mind, as seen in Kazuya's Tekken 4 ending, though this is likely because Jin possesses Devil's other half.

Kazuya has shown to be capable of manifesting the power of the Devil Gene on four different levels. On the first level, he retains his human appearance with the exception of the third eye appearing in his forehead. On the second level, his skin changes color to purplish-gray and he grows horns and wings, though he still retains most of his human features, including his clothing. On the third level, his form becomes more grotesque, he grows a tail and he also loses his clothes. On the fourth level, he grows an additional eye on his chest and three more on each of his wings, each capable of firing a beam. Beams fired in this form also seem to be more powerful than ones fired in any other form.

Devil Jin

Devil Jin, like Devil Kazuya, can also fly and fire beams from the third eye on his forehead, however, their fighting styles are rather different. Devil Jin's fighting style is the mixture of Mishima Fighting Style Karate, and Kazama Style Self Defense that Jin used in Tekken 3 and Tekken Tag Tournament before he renounced the Mishima Style and his Mishima legacy. Devil Jin also uses some of the unique moves used by Devil Kazuya, and Angel (such as "Heaven's Door" (f,N,d,d/f+1,u/f), a move that involves performing a strong uppercut, followed by flying high into the air with the opponent, and finally, slamming the opponent's body into the ground). Devil Jin can also use telekinesis, which was first demonstrated in Hwoarang's Tekken 5 epilogue, where Devil Jin uses telekinesis to make Hwoarang's motorcycle explode. This ability is also seen in one of Devil Jin's Dark Resurrection win animations, where Devil Jin holds the opponent up in the air.

Devil Jin is shown to have amazing feats: he has the power to destroy an entire forest just by force alone. He also has the power to take powers just like that of other Devil Gene users to make it their own. Jin feels pain whenever he transforms, despite the fact that the Devil Gene has healing attributes, possibly reflecting his internal struggle between his better half and his devil self. He also feels pain when close to Jin's allies, like Xiaoyu and Hwoarang.

Azazel

Azazel appears to have the abilities to summon boulders (in original Tekken 6 arcade before it was removed) and/or spikes (in Bloodline Rebellion and the console version) in from the ground to attack the opponent, as well as to keep them away from it, and summoning numerous scarabs made of ice to attack the opponent. Azazel also has some moves that are similar to other bosses in the Tekken series, such as a stun (similar to Jinpachi Mishima's stun attack) and the ability to fire lasers (similar to Devil, Angel and Devil Jin's laser attacks).

Azazel has the ability to curl up into a ball and roll towards the opponent to attack. He also possesses a tail sweep attack resembling Roger Jr.'s; however, he whips it twice in a row. His power source is an orb, which comes from inside his body. This orb has the ability to turn any fighter who touches it into another host of the devil and it may kill any fighter who destroys it while inside Azazel's body instantly as seen in the endings of Hwoarang, Baek, Wang, Yoshimitsu, Ganryu, Dragunov, and Raven.

Devil Kazumi

Devil Kazumi can also fly using her flaming wings on her back and is able to levitate a large flaming rock as seen in mid-way through the second round while facing the player who defeated her human form in the first round. Devil Kazumi's fighting style is her human form's fighting style known as Hachijo-Style Karate mixed with Mishima-Style Fighting Karate. Unlike both Devil, and Devil Jin, she can instantly shoot lasers at her opponent. Her normal form's pet tiger is changed into a white tiger with glowing blue eyes and, like her human form, she can summon her white tiger as she pleases by taking down her opponent or individually.

Trivia

  • Interestingly, while Jin chose to unlearn his fighting style that he learned from Heihachi, desiring to eliminate all links to the Mishimas after Heihachi had betrayed him, his devil still fights using his old fighting style. This seems to highlight the personality disconnect between Jin and his devil, and the hold Jin's devil has over his subconscious.
  • Kazumi Mishima is the first and only known confirmed female who carries the Devil Gene.
    • While Unknown, the final boss of the non-canonical Tekken Tag Tournament and its sequel has the "Devil Gene" mark on her upper right arm (resembling Jin Kazama's mark on his upper left arm), it's currently unconfirmed if she is actually a Devil Gene user.
    • While obviously not belonging from the same series, the DLC character Tekken in Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory and its remake, was implied to also possess the Devil Gene as she states the name in one of her quotes when she levels up. Another evidence is that one of her support attacks is firing a laser to the enemy offscreen.
  • Jin Kazama, and Kazuya Mishima are the only fighters in the Tekken series to control the Devil's power, though Kazuya after he and Devil became one, seems to have become more and more evil from then on.
  • Heihachi attempted to synthesise a synthetic Devil Gene during his supersoldier program.[11] The experiment was a failure and Heihachi was unable to create a synthetic gene,[12] although Steve Fox survived the program. It is unknown what if any abilities Steve has, and if so whether these can be attributed to a synthetic Devil Gene.
  • Heihachi attempted to gain the Devil Gene for himself and create devil-human hybrids in Tekken 4, when he had Doctor Abel launch the Devil-Human Integration Program.
  • It is possible that Tekken 7 newcomer Claudio has some Devil Gene related powers, as when his Sirius-Style Exorcism Sorcery activates, his tattoos bear some superifical similarity to those that Jin gains in his devil form.
  • The Devil Gene and associated devil forms of their users were not widely known about, and were kept a secret by their users.
    • Prior to the global broadcast Heihachi made of Kazuya's devil form in Tekken 7, the only people who certainly knew of Kazuya's devil were Heihachi, Lee Chaolan,[13] likely Jun Kazama, who sensed Devil within him, Jin, Claudio Serafino and Nina Williams, who were informed about Kazuya's devil privately by Heihachi during Tekken 7.[14] Even after the global broadcast, it seems unclear how seriously the footage was taken, although some characters, such as Julia Chang and Lars Alexandersson, act on the broadcast and believe it to be true.
    • Jin has been less secretive with his devil form, and was widely seen by Tekken Force, as well as fighting Hwoarang in this form a number of times, and transforming in front of Lars, Nina, Raven, and Alisa. He has fought Heihachi twice in his devil form and Kazuya immediately sensed it within him when they met.
  • In Tekken: Blood Vengeance, The Devil Gene's compound is said to be 10 times greater than a normal human.
  • In the Titan Comics, it is revealed that Devil Gene users have telepathic abilities.
  • In Street Fighter X Tekken, if Ryu (although having nothing to do with the Mishimas) defeats Kazuya, his win quote has him wonder if the Devil Gene and Satsui no Hado are related. It should be noted, however, that the Satsui no Hado from the ‘’Street Fighter’’ Series and UDON Comics, is more energy-based and greatly changes an individual into a demonic version of themselves the potential cost of his or her humanity, as shown with Kage. In the UDON comic book of the ‘’ Street Fighter X Tekken’’ continuity, it is hinted that Ingrid’s power is related the Devil Gene (as showed with Dark Ingrid), it is revealed in ‘’Tekken 7’’ that the Mishima clan is unaware of the Satsui no Hado, Though Jane has been studying upon Ryu in the shadows as Kazuya or Jin are not aware of this.
  • According to the UDON Comic book of Street Fighter X Tekken it is revealed by Capcom and UDON that Ryu had gained the Devil’s power after getting involved with heated conflict with the G Corporation and the Mishima Zaibatsu.

References

  1. ^ See Mishima Zaibatsu Supersoldier Program and Devil-Human Integration Program.
  2. ^ [1], [2], [3], [4], [5] (tweet predates Kazumi's introduction to the series).
  3. ^ https://twitter.com/Harada_TEKKEN/status/105693869743677441
  4. ^ https://twitter.com/Harada_TEKKEN/status/105704216483475457
  5. ^ https://twitter.com/Harada_TEKKEN/status/105687928088432640
  6. ^ https://twitter.com/Harada_TEKKEN/status/105685709653934080
  7. ^ see the Tekken 3 opening.
  8. ^ E.g. See Devil Within (Mode)
  9. ^ See Heihachi's Tekken 4 ending.
  10. ^ Julia's Tekken 4 ending.
  11. ^ See Leo Kliesen's Tekken tag Tournament 2 ending.
  12. ^ See Nina Williams' Tekken 7 ending.
  13. ^ As confirmed in Tekken 7.
  14. ^ Other possible people who knew were Doctor Abel, who headed the Devil-Human Integration Program, which, in a non-canon ending, was seen using data from Devil Kazuya, and Wang Jinrei, who lived close to the Mishima family and has always been susipcious of Kazuya and hostile towards him.
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