Vega, known as Balrog (バルログ Barurogu?) in Japan, is a fictional character from the Street Fighter fighting game series. Vega is a masked talon-wielding warrior from Spain who uses a personal fighting style combining Japanese Ninjutsu and Spanish bullfighting, earning him the nickname the "Spanish Ninja". Vega was born the son of a wealthy, but physically unattractive father, and a beautiful mother from a lower-class family. As he matured, Vega studied bullfighting, a cultural tradition. Afterward, he went to Japan and learned ninjutsu, a style he believed meshed well with his natural grace and agility. Combining bullfighting with ninjutsu, Vega went into an underground cage fighting circuit, and quickly became one of the best. One day, Vega witnessed his mother's murder at the hands of his own stepfather, who felt that she did not respect him, and Vega killed him out of vengeance. The incident traumatized him, and he developed a dual personality: honorable nobleman by day, sadistic murderer by night.
Vega is one of the fastest characters in the Street Fighter series, but also one of the most delicate; his defensive rating is unusually low compared to other characters, to balance his incredible speed. Vega's swiftness and flying special techniques make him well-suited for multi-hitting combination attacks, confusing cross-ups, or long range poking attacks with the reach-advantage provided by his claw.
It takes exactly fourteen blocked hits for Vega to lose his claw. This reduces his attack range significantly, and prevents him from doing certain super attacks. Since Super Street Fighter II Turbo, Vega can pick up the claw. In Street Fighter Alpha 3, he can lose his mask as well, which causes him to take more damage. In SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos, Vega cannot lose his claw. In Street Fighter EX series, Vega may reinforce or recover his claw with a super move. In Street Fighter IV Vega can take his claw and mask off manually in order to insult or taunt the opponent.