SNK revealed a new KOF XV character named Krohnen. Longtime King of Fighters fans have pointed out that Krohnen doesn’t look new at all. He looks like a fighter that had vanished mysteriously years ago.
This “newcomer” does resemble K9999, a character that SNK removed from the KOF rooster, allegedly over legal concerns. Debuting in The King of Fighters 2001, K9999 appeared to be based on Tetsuo from Akira. K9999's move names and lines were from the Akira anime. If that wasn’t enough, SNK even brought in Nozomu Sasaki, who voiced Tetsuo in Akira, to also voice K9999.
Was K9999 an homage or a potential lawsuit? For whatever reason, the character vanished from the KOF roster and replaced by the character called Nameless.
It apparently wasn’t until 2016, when Yasuyuki Oda was asked about the character at Gamescom, that an SNK employee even uttered the character’s name in public when Oda replied, “Maybe one day we’ll find out what happened to Angel’s partner, K9999.”
But are Krohnen and K9999 the same character? The new fighter certainly resembles his AWOL predessor, blue hair, polymorphic arm, and all. Below is a comparison between the two fighters:
The moves are certainly similar, if not the same. Could Krohnen be a clone or a relative?
If Krohnen is K9999—or a later iteration or a clone of the character—players will, no doubt, be happy. This would be a cool way to resurrect a fan favorite after all these years of being missing in action.