Ryu (リュウ Ryū?, written as 隆 Ryū in the original Street Fighter) is a video game character created by Capcom, from the Street Fighter series. Premiering in the first Street Fighter, Ryu appears as the lead character from the game along with his best friend Ken participating in the Street Fighter tournament. Further games from the series show Ryu to be highly focused on his training, aiming to become the strongest he can. Both Ryu and Ken are practitioners of a nameless martial art rooted as an assassination style. Both Ryu and Ken learned their art from Gouken, who refined the style as a purely combative non-killing style. Since the SNES version of Street Fighter II, Ryu's fighting style has been referred as "Shotokan" in the English localization of the games' instruction manuals and related literature.
While Ryu and Ken follow the same martial arts discipline, as the Street Fighter series evolved, the differences between the two characters was portrayed by their attacks: Ryu focused on technique while Ken opted for stylish unpredictability. His Shōryū-ken (昇龍拳?, "Rising Dragon Fist") does only one hit, so Ryu can effectively use this move at full power against airborne opponents. Ryu focuses more on the Hadou principle of his style, which translates to him being very skilled with his usage of ki - Ryu has the most concentrated Hadōken (波動拳?, "Surge Fist") amongst all users. In addition, Ryu has mastered the Tatsumaki-Senpū kyaku (竜巻旋風脚?, "Tornado Whirlwind Kick"), a powerful kick performed in mid-air. Ryu has been given special moves in various games, among those, Jōdan Sokutō Geri (上段足刀蹴り?, "High Side Kick"), a fast side kick only available to him in the iterations of Street Fighter III.