Shinnosuke Kagami was modeled after the characters Hiko Seijuro from Rurouni Kenshin, and Shinobu Sensui from Yu Yu Hakusho. The visual design was inspired by the former, and the overall character was based on the latter.
Contributed by DrakeVagabond
Both Zanetsu and Shikyoh are based on the character, Udo Jin-e from Rurouni Kenshin. Zanetsu was inspired by the design, while Shikyoh was inspired by the character and personality.
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Lee Rekka is based on Jet-Li and his portrayal of real-life Qing Dynasty martial artist, Wong Fei Hung, from the 1991 film Once Upon a Time in China. His real name, Lee Cheng Long, is a reference to one of Jackie Chan's former stage names.
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Hyo Amano is modeled after the character Kumo, the protagonist from the 1973 manga series Haguregumo.
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The design of the game was created as a homage to Nobuhiro Watsuki's Rurouni Kenshin/Samurai X series, featuring characters and techniques based on the manga series. This choice was done out of appreciation for much for Watsuki taking inspiration from SNK's Samurai Shodown series.
Contributed by DrakeVagabond