Captain Falcon (キャプテン・ファルコン Kyaputen Farukon?) is a character in Nintendo's F-Zero series of video games, co-created by Takaya Imamura and Shigeru Miyamoto. The character first appeared in the instruction manual of F-Zero, published in 1990. It was not until F-Zero X that he actually appeared in-game. Though the character's vehicle can be used in the F-Zero series, Captain Falcon himself was never actually playable until Smash Bros. series. The character's only appearance outside of Nintendo games was on the anime F-Zero GP Legend. A leading but now defunct F-Zero X website says that Captain Falcon's real name is Douglas Jay Falcon.
Captain Falcon is a mysterious, futuristic racer from the city of Port Town. In later F-Zero games, he is also portrayed as a legendary bounty hunter whose past is shrouded in mystery. In both guises, he consistently thwarts the plans of Black Shadow and other evil forces, both on and off the Grand Prix circuits.
In the instruction manual for F-Zero, Captain Falcon is described as an accomplished F-Zero pilot and renowned bounty hunter who is "rumored to be in his early 30s". In F-Zero X, it is rumored that he is called "Captain" because he was once an officer on the Internova Police Force. Even though little is known of his past, F-Zero Climax gave his date of birth and even his blood type. However, those characteristics should only be considered applicable to the Game Boy Advance F-Zero games. These games are considered reboot continuities due to the many differences in storyline between them and their home console counterparts.
Brash and flashy in appearance, Captain Falcon stands tall and firm. His outfit is a combination of a flight suit and body armor. It consists of blue pants, blue form-fitting armor and a red helmet as well as a single pauldron on his right shoulder. He always carries a sidearm in a holster on his right hip (although he has only been shown to use it once). When Captain Falcon removes his helmet, it is obvious that he has a scar above his left eye. His hair color is usually dark brown, but was depicted as a lighter brown in the anime cartoon F-Zero GP Legend. He has brown eyes in the anime, but it is not obvious what color his eyes are in the video games.
When he is not taking part in races, he works as a bounty hunter. By the age of 36, Captain Falcon had built a reputation as one of the best bounty hunters in the galaxy, one that has earned him many enemies. This constant danger forces him to live in a sanctuary on a chain of islands off the coast of Port Town, where he spends most of his time. His desire for solitude is such that even after winning a race, he takes his award and quickly dashes home. In fact, only the chance to compete in the F-Zero Grand Prix or the lure of high bounty will lure Captain Falcon away from his archipelago fortress. Each of his home islands contains a different racetrack, allowing him to keep his racing skills at their peak while remaining relatively safe.
Captain Falcon has appeared in some form in most of the F-Zero games so far. He has also been featured in the Smash Bros. series of games and the F-Zero anime. There have also been cameo appearances in other games by Captain Falcon or some of his props.
Captain Falcon made his debut appearance in F-Zero, released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System on November 21, 1990. An eight-page comic was included in the manual of the game, containing the original character designs of Captain Falcon , the three other original pilots, and the F-Zero announcer, Mr. Zero. Taking place in the year 2560, the comic depicted one of Captain Falcon's bounty missions. The comic contained the only scenes of Captain Falcon ever using his sidearm, and piloting the Falcon Flyer.
F-Zero: Maximum Velocity, set twenty-five years after F-Zero, is the only story-driven game in the series not to feature this character. However, Kent Akechi claims to be the son of Captain Falcon.
In F-Zero GX, Captain Falcon is 37 years old and the sitting champion of the F-Zero Grand Prix, boosting his already high popularity even higher. In the games' story mode, F-Zero GX's story mode begins with Falcon training for the Grand Prix, followed by racing his rival, Samurai Goroh, in a desert canyon and being forced to enter the bet race under the disguise of 'Famicom' (a reference to Nintendo's first home console). After winning said bet race, Falcon notices Black Shadow attacking the Lightning area on the news. Falcon makes his way to stop him, but is delayed by a group of thugs lead by Michael Chain. After dealing with Chain's gang, Falcon enters a facility to save Jody Summers. His escape is a close one as the core was set to overload and detonate, with said facility going into lock-down procedures. With Jody out of harm's way, he confronts Black Shadow. The evil overlord, with the help of Blood Falcon, binds Falcon and traps him inside his vehicle, strapping a bomb to the Blue Falcon that will detonate if the Blue Falcon goes too slowly. Falcon managed to survive, by driving the vehicle straight off an unfinished road and right under a crane, knocking the bomb off.
Falcon later attended the Grand Prix, where he emerged victorious. After receiving the champion's belt, he witnessed Black Shadow being punished by his master, Deathborn, for his incompetence. Deathborn challenges Falcon to a one-on-one race for ownership of both belts. Before said race occurs, Deathborn reveals his plan to take over the universe, revealing the energies of light and dark are condensed in each belt, and that when combined, provide ultimate power that will turn him into a god-like being, able to lay waste Falcon's galaxy in an instant. Falcon swears to take him down. Falcon stays true to his word, and Deathborn apparently dies. Both belts unite into one, and Falcon vows to keep winning so he can protect the belt from the forces of evil.
At his garage, Falcon is greeted by the creators. Falcon figures out the creators were behind everything, though they do not elaborate their motives. They challenge Falcon to a race, where, if they win, will rip out Falcon's soul and turn it into their creation, implying that he would replace Deathborn. Falcon defeats even them. Screaming, the creators disappear, though whether they actually die or decide to let Falcon go, honoring (but no less angered by) his victory, is unclear.
Other video games
Captain Falcon is one of four unlockable characters in Nintendo’s 1999 fighting game Super Smash Bros. He is a fast close combat fighter whose combat techniques mix Kung Fu and street brawling. His signature move is the Falcon Punch, a slow but powerful punch in which a flaming falcon surrounds the character's fist. Unlike most other characters, Captain Falcon shouts as he executes most of his special moves.  Captain Falcon does not sport his traditional blue outfit; his armor is violet in this game only.
Captain Falcon is also one of the first available characters in Super Smash Bros. Melee, the 2001 sequel to Super Smash Bros. He keeps the same moves from the previous game, and is given a variety of close-combat attacks. The Legend of Zelda character Ganondorf is a clone of Captain Falcon. Ganondorf's attacks are very similar to those of Captain Falcon, although the character is stronger and less agile. It is possible to wear Blood Falcon's attire by changing the costume colors to red and purple.
Captain Falcon's material possessions and props have had cameo appearances in three different games.
- The Blue Falcon appears in Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars. At the back of Hinopio' Inn deep within Barrel Vocano, there are three small models of spaceships sitting on top of boxes. Two of them are the Blue Falcon and Samurai Goroh's Fire Stingray.
- The Blue Falcon also appears in Animal Crossing: Wild World as a furniture item.
- One of the treasures in Kirby Super Star's "Great Cave Offensive" is called "Falcon's Helmet". This is a replica of Captain Falcon's helmet.
- Main article: F-Zero: GP Legend
F-Zero: GP Legend was an anime television series based on the F-Zero video games. The series, which ran for 51 episodes, aired on Japan's TV Tokyo from 2003 - 2004. Captain Falcon, voiced by David Wills in the English version and Hideyuki Tanaka in the Japanese version, was featured in most episodes. Fifteen English-language episodes were produced before the show's cancellation in America. The series told the story of Captain Falcon and his best friend and rival, Rick Wheeler.
Unlike in the video games, "Captain Falcon" is a title given to a person. Throughout most of the anime Bart Lemming held this title until he died, then it was passed onto Ryu Suzaku (Rick Wheeler) during the last episode. The character of Captain Falcon is generally seen as the reluctant hero. Regardless of whether he is still an active bounty hunter, he is still feared by many criminals, especially in Port Town. Rumor has it that he has retired since the last racing season and has opened a small shop in Mute City. Although he does not appear in every episode, he plays a significant role in the series: his main goal is to stop the efforts of the Dark Million Organization.
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- ↑ F-Zero Press Conference. IGN.com (2003-07-08). Retrieved on 2007-06-21.
- ↑ Interview: F-Zero AC/GC. IGN.com (2002-03-28). Retrieved on 2007-06-21.
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Fran and Peer; Craig. Smash Profile: Captain Falcon. IGN. Retrieved on 2007-06-05.
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 [1991-08-13] in Nintendo EAD: F-Zero instruction manual (in English). Nintendo, pp. 14, 21-28.
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Sackenheim, Shawn. Captain Falcon's Biography. All Game Guide. Retrieved on 2007-01-16.
- ↑ 6.0 6.1 6.2 Captain Falcon profile (Japanese). Nintendo Company, Limited. Retrieved on 2006-09-12.
- ↑ Casamassina, Matt (2003-08-22). F-Zero GX. IGN. Retrieved on 2007-08-02.
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 (2004). F-Zero: Legend of Falcon [Television production]. Suginami, Tokyo, Japan: Ashi Production.
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 F-Zero X Driver Bio. fzerox.com. Nintendo. Archived from the original on 2001-10-25. Retrieved on 2007-08-05. “Some men are good. Some men are evil. Captain Falcon qualifies as a little bit of both. No one is sure why he is called “Captain” although it is rumored that he was once an officer in the Internova Police Force. There is no evidence to back up this story and Captain Falcon is a private man who will disclose nothing about his past. He is almost as elusive as his present day life, as he is a fierce bounty hunter who must protect himself from his dangerous enemies at all times. Captain Falcon makes his home on a string of islands off Port Town. Guarded by high security, each island has a practice racecourse for his F-Zero machine, the Blue Falcon. There are only 2 things that will lure Captain Falcon away from his archipelago fortress: the lure of high bounty, or the chance to compete in the F-Zero GP.”
- ↑ 10.0 10.1 Pilot & Machine. F-Zero.com (2003). Retrieved on 2006-12-16.
- ↑ (2003-08-25) in Amusement Vision: F-Zero GX instruction manual (in English). Nintendo, pp. 32, 41.
- ↑ (2001) in NDCUBE: F-Zero: Maximum Velocity instruction manual (in English). Nintendo. “Captain Falcon, Dr. Stewart... It's been a quarter of a century since they piloted their way to fame as F-Zero racers, and as time has passed, their days of glory have faded into something resembling legend.”
- ↑ "Advance Strategies: F-Zero Maximum Velocity", Nintendo Power 145, June 2001
- ↑ Pelland, Scott (ed.) (2003). F-Zero GX Player's Guide. Redmond, Washington: Nintendo of America, Inc, pp. 9, 76 - 94. ISBN 1930206-35-6.
- ↑ Schneider, Peer. F-Zero GX story guide. IGN.com. Retrieved on 2006-11-24.
- ↑ Thomas, Lucas (2007-06-29). Smash it Up!. IGN. Retrieved on 2007-07-02.
- ↑ Fryguy64. Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars. Nintendo Database. Retrieved on February 18, 2007.
- ↑ Fryguy64. Kirby Super Star. Nintendo Database. Retrieved on 2007-02-18.
- ↑ "F-Zero: Falcon Densetsu", 1UP, November 2003, <http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_zd1up/is_200311/ai_ziff112044/pg_1>. Retrieved on 2007-07-23
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