Eddy Gordo

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Eddy Gordo
Tekken character
Eddy Gordo TTT2.png
First game Tekken 3 (1997)
Voiced by (English) Marcus Lawrence (Tekken 5, Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection, Tekken 6, Tekken 6: Bloodline Rebellion, Tekken Tag Tournament 2 (grunts), Tekken 3D: Prime Edition)
Roger Craig Smith (Tekken 6 (Scenario Campaign Cinematics))[1]
D.C. Douglas (Street Fighter X Tekken)[2]
Voiced by (Japanese) Kenta Miyake (Street Fighter X Tekken)[2]
Motion capture Marcelo "Caverinha" Pereira[3][4]
Portrayed by Lateef Crowder[5]
Fictional profile
Birthplace Brazil[6]
Fighting style Capoeira[6]
Occupation Capoeira master
Tekken Force member (Tekken 6)

Eddy Gordo (Japanese: エディ・ゴルド Hepburn: Edi Gorudo?) is an Afro-Latino video game character of Brazilian nationality from the Tekken series by Namco Bandai Games . He along with his female counterpart Christie Monteiro were the first and most popular Latino game characters of African ancestry in gaming history. Eddy made his debut in the arcade version of Tekken 3 in 1997 and his first console appearance was in the 1998 PlayStation port of the title. Eddy has since appeared in every game thereafter (albeit he is not a participant in the King of Iron Fist Tournament 4 story-wise), although he shares the same character slot as Christie Monteiro in Tekken 4 and Tekken 5, but regained his own slot in subsequent games beginning with Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection. His style is the Afro-Brazilian martial art of capoeira.

Eddy's storyline from his debut through Tekken 5 revolved around his quest for revenge for the murder of his parents, culminating in the defeat of Kazuya Mishima during the events of Tekken 5. From Tekken 5 onward, Eddy's plot focused on his and Christie Monteiro's search for a cure to an unknown illness that Christie's grandfather, Eddy's Capoeira master, was suffering from. Eddy was the first Capoeira practitioner to appear in the Tekken franchise, followed by Tiger Jackson, a palette swap of Eddy in Tekken 3 and Tekken Tag Tournament, and Christie Monteiro, Eddy's replacement in Tekken 4. Eddy has received heavy criticism in the fighting video game community for the simplicity associated with Eddy's play style; however, the character, along with Christie, has been credited with popularizing the art of capoeira to a new audience within the larger gamer and martial arts community and has influenced popular culture.

Character development[edit]

The Tekken 3 development team wanted to include a Capoeira practitioner for Tekken 3 and turned to the development artists to create the character. It was desired by Masahiro Kimoto, one of the game designers of Tekken 3, that the Capoeira character be female but the artist that was tasked with the character's design deemed the female character too difficult to create and instead created Eddy. Kimoto later stated that his favorite character from Tekken 3 was Eddy, because of the challenges in his development.[7]

Mestre Marcelo Pereira, a Capoeira master from Brazil, was the motion capture artist for Eddy Gordo in Tekken 3.[7] Pereira stated that Namco had heard of him as a result of his 1995 International Capoeira Seminar held in San Francisco, and that he felt honored in being chosen by Namco to represent Capoeira in Tekken 3. Marcelo Pereira reported that during the development of Tekken 3 he had been injured, as a result the acrobatic movements he performed were restricted. He also claimed that he performed "about 20%" of what he was capable of performing because it was necessary to have "another skillful capoeirista" to perform some movements in Capoeira. Additionally, Pereira criticized Namco's naming choices for Eddy Gordo and his moves, noting that Eddy is not a Brazilian name and that "Gordo" in Portuguese meant "fat" and the movements' names were not "traditional" like the names he had called them during development.[3]

In video games[edit]

Eddy Gordo first appeared in Tekken 3 and appeared in the following title, Tekken Tag Tournament. In Tekken 4, Eddy Gordo was omitted from the roster and was replaced with Christie Monteiro, another Capoeira practitioner, but appeared as an alternate costume for Christie and without serving any purpose in the storyline.[8] Masahiro Kimoto stated that Eddy was replaced because initially they had intended to create a female Capoeira character in Tekken 3 but instead changed to a male character due to artistic limitations. In Tekken 4, the team was able to successfully create "an attractive female character" who practiced Capoeira, so they chose to replace Eddy with her.[9] Eddy Gordo later served as a character costume swap for Christie in Tekken 5,[10] and became a separate character once again in the Tekken 5 update, Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection; however, while he did have his own character customizations, his moveset remained identical to Christie's.[11][12] Eddy Gordo appeared again in Tekken 6, and its update, Tekken 6: Bloodline Rebellion, but his moveset has remained similar to Christie's, only differing in move properties such as speed and distance.[13] Additionally, in Bloodline Rebellion, Eddy serves as the boss for the 28th level of the Scenario Campaign Mode, the "Tekken Force 4th Special Forces Operational Group Compound".[14]

Eddy was born into one of the richest families in Brazil. When Eddy was 19 years old, his father was killed while trying to destroy a Brazilian drug cartel known as the "Organization". In his last breaths, Eddy's father asked his son to take responsibility for his death. Eddy went along with his father's last wish and served eight years in prison, during which he met an old man who taught him Capoeira. For his eight years of prison, Eddy practiced until he became a master. Upon his release, Eddy heard about the King of Iron Fist Tournament 3 and the Mishima Financial Empire (MFE), the sponsor of the tournament and a conglomerate compared to a "large slice of the world" which is owned by Heihachi Mishima.[15] He decided to enter the tournament, believing he could either convince the MFE or take control of it and force it to help him get revenge on his father's killers.[16][17][18][19][20]

In Tekken 4, it is learned that while Eddy was in prison he learned of his master's granddaughter, Christie Monteiro, and made a promise to his master to teach her Capoeira when Eddy got out of prison. After the King of Iron Fist Tournament 3, Eddy found and taught Christie Capoeira, who became impressive at the martial art after two years of training. Soon after Christie's training, Eddy left, saying, "Those responsible for my father's death will pay."[21] Christie Monteiro entered The King of Iron Fist Tournament 4 to find Eddy, as this was the only clue that could lead her to him.[22]

Prior to Tekken 5, Eddy learns that the master who taught him Capoeira in prison is about to be freed. Eddy goes to his release but discovers that his master has become a weak and frail old man, not the great Capoeira master he had studied under. After he takes his master to a hospital, Eddy learns that he is dying from an incurable disease that will give him less than six months to live. There is hope, however, if the Mishima Zaibatsu's technology and resources could be put to use. Knowing this and hearing the announcement of the fifth King of Iron Fist tournament, Eddy and Christie enter with the hopes of saving Christie's grandfather.[23]

At the conclusion of The King of Iron Fist Tournament 5, Eddy spoke alone with Jin Kazama. Jin offered to lend him his money and resources to save his master's life in exchange for his allegiance with the Mishima Zaibatsu. Knowing that this could be the opportunity he had been looking for to save his master's life, Eddy complies. As the King of Iron Fist Tournament 6 approaches, Eddy himself has become involved in a number of criminal activities in the name of the Mishima Zaibatsu.[24] In his ending however, Jin does not do what he had promised earlier and Eddy's master dies. Eddy then angrily throw his Mishima Zaibatsu badge to the ground, signifying his end of service to the company.

Eddy appears in the non-canon sequel of Tekken Tag Tournament, Tekken Tag Tournament 2 where he speaks his native language Portuguese, alongside Christie.

Eddy makes a series of brief cameos in Street Fighter X Tekken and its associated "Episode" trailers, as Christie, accompanied by Lei Wulong, seeks out Pandora in the hopes it will lead her to Eddy.

Tiger Jackson[edit]

Tiger Jackson in Tekken Tag Tournament 2

Tiger Jackson (Japanese: タイガー・ジャクソン Hepburn: Taigā Jyakuson?) is a palette swap of Eddy Gordo, first appearing in Tekken 3 and returned in the non-canonical Tekken Tag Tournament and in the console version of its sequel, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, now with his own character slot. Tiger Jackson was initially one of the unused names and concepts of Eddy Gordo from during the development of Tekken 3.[25] The character's identity is unknown, although many originally interpreted him as an alter ego of Eddy. Eddy's own ending in Tekken Tag Tournament implies that they are different persons,[26] while the Wii U version of Tekken Tag Tournament 2, which comes with a biography for each character, confirms that they are different individuals citing the two are "...not at all related".

He also appears in the background of the Pool Party stage of Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection.[27] Tiger is also a character in the game Pac-Man Fever.

In other media and merchandise[edit]

In the 1997 original video animation Tekken: The Motion Picture, Eddy is seen during the opening introduction.

In the 2010 live-action film Tekken, Eddy is portrayed by Brazilian capoeira fighter Lateef Crowder. He participates in the Iron Fist tournament and is pitted against Raven and is defeated by Raven. Critics praised the accurate portrayal of Eddy toward the games,[28][29] but criticized the brevity of Eddy's role in the film.[30] Unlike the games, he has no relation to Christie Monteiro.[31]

In the 2011 GCI film Tekken: Blood Vengeance, Eddy's dossier is briefly seen when Anna Williams opens a file containing dossiers on various persons of interest.

In 2003, Epoch Co. released an Eddy Gordo action figure as part of their Tekken Tag Tournament toyline; the toy featured interchangeable hands and a display stand.[32]

Reception[edit]

Eddy has been often criticized for his too easy playability. In one article from MTV.com, they nicknamed him "Eddy 'Button-Masher's Savior' Gordo."[33] BradyGames attributes his "masher" stigma to the character's "constantly shifting stances and unpredictable nature", but says that it only applies to casual play. It continues to say that at competitive levels, the random actions of button mashing" lead to heavy punishment more often than not."[13] GameSpy included him as one of "The World's Worst Warriors", calling him such things as being a "cheating scumbag" and stating that "Eddy Gordo is the worst thing to happen to fighting gamers since repetitive strain injury."[34] Eddy was listed by Now Gamer among the top 10 "most hated gamer characters ever", which called him and Ken "overly-powered and cheap", citing that for Eddy's command list it should only contain "pictures of both kick buttons" because mashing the kick buttons could give automatic wins to the player, and ended by calling Eddy, "a skilless-husk of a character."[35]

In contrast, WeDoTech.net ranked him the second best fighting video game character of all time, stating that he was the best character in Tekken 3 and noting his break-dance styled moves as one of his best aspects.[36] Gaming Target rated Eddy second on the list of top 11 Tekken fighters, citing his moveset as one of his best aspects, as "his moves are more alluring to watch than anyone in Tekken"[37] and calling him the most stunning character in Tekken 3 for his "break-dancing-like attacks."[38] GamesRadar listed a match-up between Eddy and Dee Jay among the 12 match-ups they would like want to see in Street Fighter X Tekken.[39] Complex ranked Eddy as the ninth "Most Acrobatic Character in Video Games".[40] Complex also ranked Eddy as "The 17th Most Dominant Fighting Game Character", commenting "You either think this dancing brawler is the greatest thing to happen to Tekken or you think he's the cheesiest character in the entire series".[41] In the official poll by Namco Bandai Games, Eddy is currently ranked as the ninth most requested Tekken character to be playable in Tekken X Street Fighter, at 10.05% of votes.[42] In 2014, What Culture ranked him as the 14th greatest character in fighting games, calling him "the easiest, most intuitive character to get to grips with in any fighting game."[43]

Cultural impact[edit]

Professional wrestler Kofi Kingston stated, "...guys like Eddy Gordo are very unique characters. When he was introduced into the Tekken series he was the guy everybody was talking about. People knew about Capoeira but they didn't really know what it was all about as far as moves and stuff."[44] He also stated, "I watch a character like Eddy Gordo in 'Tekken' and his capoeira style, and it's characters like that that I like to take from because of how they stand out."[45] Professional wrestler MVP attributed one of his moves called "Malicious Intent" to Eddy Gordo, calling it "a variation of one of [Eddy's] spinning kicks." MVP also considers Eddy Gordo as one of his favorite video game characters.[46] Dane Cook referred to Eddy Gordo in the track "Struck by a Vehicle" from his second album Retaliation, joking that when someone gets struck by a car it "sends you flipping through the air like Eddy Gordo from Tekken when someone doesn't know how to do combos and they're just hitting the buttons randomly."[47]

References[edit]

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