Captain Falcon as he appears in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
|First appearance||F-Zero (1990)|
|Created by||Shigeru Miyamoto and Takaya Imamura|
|Occupation||Bounty hunter, professional racer|
Captain Falcon (キャプテン・ファルコン Kyaputen Farukon), also known as Falcon or C. Falcon, is a fictional character in the racing video game series F-Zero. He first appeared in the series' first installment, and is the de facto mascot of the F-Zero series. Within the series, he is a mysterious racer who is among the best on the circuit, as well as a renowned bounty hunter. Falcon also represents the F-Zero series in each entry of the Super Smash Bros. series.
In the GP Legend continuity, writers portrayed Falcon differently from previous games; here, "Captain Falcon" is a title passed down and held by the best racer in the world. The incumbent Captain Falcon throughout the series is known by the alias Bart Lemming and owns and operates a small bar in Mute City. While under his Captain Falcon disguise, Lemming aids fellow protagonist Rick Wheeler.
Creation and characteristics
Nintendo originally meant Captain Falcon to be the flagship character of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. However, this never panned out, and Falcon was rarely seen in Nintendo media. He is described as an accomplished F-Zero pilot and renowned bounty hunter. In F-Zero X, it is rumored that his title of Captain came about because he was once an officer on the Internova Police Force. 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 to his home. 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 is the de facto mascot of the F-Zero series, appearing in most material alongside his signature vehicle, the Blue Falcon. Captain Falcon first appeared in the titular game in the series, F-Zero, and in its sequel F-Zero X. After these appearances, Falcon does not appear again until F-Zero GX.
The character drives the Blue Falcon in his races, and uses a sidearm and a midsize spacecraft called the Falcon Flyer for bounty missions. In F-Zero X, Captain Falcon's DNA is stolen while he is hospitalized following an accident in the F-Zero Grand Prix. The thieves use the DNA to create a clone of Captain Falcon known as Blood Falcon.
Falcon is the hero of F-Zero GX, the fifth game in the series. 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, after winning a number of races and saving Jody Summer, he goes on to defeat Black Shadow and Deathborn. In F-Zero: Maximum Velocity, which is set twenty-five years after the first game, Kent Akechi claims to be the son of Captain Falcon.
In the F-Zero GP Legend media continuity, Captain Falcon is a title given to a person instead of an individual's actual name. The character is voiced by David Wills and Hideyuki Tanaka in the English and Japanese versions, respectively.
Captain Falcon was originally Andy Summer, the brother of Jody Summer, who apparently died in a vicious attack revolving around Zoda. Andy took the false identity of Bart Lemming and eventually became Captain Falcon to participate in the F-Zero races. In the anime Falcon is rather quiet and speaks very rarely, though he often shows compassion and courtesy towards the protagonist and common citizens. When he takes the name of Bart, he usually gives advice to the other characters at his cafe. Although he is not featured in every episode, Falcon plays a significant role in the series, often stopping the Dark Million Organization's illegal plans. During the end of the series, Falcon is thrown into an explosion alongside his sworn enemy, Black Shadow, and displays his powers in the form of an electrical "Falcon Punch" to ensure that Black Shadow does not escape, though at the cost of his own life. He quickly gives Rick Wheeler the title of Falcon before dying, having implied that the title of "Captain Falcon" is now meant to be passed on, transferred along the generations.
Super Smash Bros.
Captain Falcon has appeared in all five games of the Super Smash Bros. series, beginning with the first game, Super Smash Bros. He has been voiced by Ryō Horikawa throughout the series, whose somewhat extravagantly broken English has assisted in the character's popularity. In the first game and in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Captain Falcon is an unlockable character. Conversely, he is immediately playable in Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U. He was confirmed as a playable character for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate during Nintendo's E3 2018 conference, shown off along with a plethora of other characters.  In reference to his home series of racing games, Captain Falcon was the fastest character in the series, a trait that lasted until the release of Brawl, at which point he was surpassed by Sonic the Hedgehog following Sonic's inclusion in the series. Throughout the series, Captain Falcon's fighting style has consisted of a blend between martial arts and street fighting. The "Falcon Punch", his signature attack, involves a forceful punch accompanied by a large flame in the shape of a falcon surrounding his fist; the attack's exaggerated execution and extreme power has resulted in it becoming a popular Internet meme, which in turn saw it implemented in the F-Zero: GP Legend anime series.
Captain Falcon is one of Nintendo's most popular characters in the Super Smash Bros. series. Nintendo Power listed Captain Falcon as their 20th favorite hero, jokingly commenting that he is kind of a jerk, citing his massacre of Pikmin in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. They added that this is what makes them like him. GamePro claims that Captain Falcon demonstrates "clear superiority" over other F-Zero characters. Seth Walker, Game Boy Advance editor for Kombo, has stated that he would like to see storylines with greater focus on Captain Falcon in the F-Zero series.
GameDaily named Captain Falcon as the 25th top Nintendo character of all time. NerdMentality referred to Captain Falcon as "the only known last legitimate use of the word 'extreme'". UGO Networks remarked that Captain Falcon is "cool" for his speed and for driving "a freakin' hovercar." However, they criticized his habit of shouting out the name of his Falcon Punch before he actually hits it. Wired.com's Chris Kohler claimed he greatly enjoyed playing with Captain Falcon in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. IGN has called Captain Falcon an experienced fighter, and "one of the most important and recognizable characters" from the F-Zero and Super Smash Bros. franchises. They went on to say that Falcon appears always ready to give a "butt-kicking to anyone that comes his way."
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Captain Falcon's speedy midsize star cruiser boasts an on-board computer that allows Falcon to control it remotely... perhaps that's why it's never appeared on-screen in an F-Zero game. Without this ship, Falcon couldn't prowl the galaxy like a lone wolf: the Blue Falcon is a state-of-the-art machine, but it's only used for F-Zero races.
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