Jubei Yagyu (柳生 十兵衛, Yagyū Jūbē) is a reccuring character in the Samurai Showdown franchise, first introduced in original game. He is a fictionalized interpretation of the real-life samurai and folk hero, Yagyū Jūbei Mitsuyoshi. A seasoned warrior, he is the one-eyed master of Yagyū Shinkage-ryū, and a close friend of Hanzo Hattori.
Jubei was dropped from the series following Samurai Shodown II, but returned (alongside the likes of Tam Tam and Charlotte) in Samurai Shodown IV. According to a Gamest Mook, he was intended to have appeared in Samurai Shodown 64, but was removed due to time constraints. Prior to the release of Samurai Shodown: Warriors Rage, he was the only true samurai in the series.
In the RPG, Jubei was an occasional guest member controlled by the computer, and thus was unplayable.
In Samurai Shodown V, he teaches swordsmanship to the Tokugawa clan, with Yoshitora Tokugawa as his last disciple. He goes to retrieve the delinquent heir after Yoshitora's father (implied to be Tokugawa Ieharu) passes away. He decides to become a ronin (a lordless samurai) by the time Samurai Shodown takes place, abandoning the strict and regulated life of the dojo and Japanese nobility, to pursue personal enlightenment. Throughout the series, Jubei is hired by the shogunate to kill the demons and other possible threats that wander Japan.
His role in Shinsetsu Samurai Spirits: Bushidou Retsuden doubles as a sensei to his own dojo and an agent to the bakufu (the then Japanese government). He asks the party to further his investigation for him since he has to teach the lord's sons swordsmanship. In the second chapter, he suffers a mortal blow from one of Mizuki Rashojin's minions, Agon, and his spirit gets sucked into one of the Evil Bells.
Jubei is also the protagonist in Yagyu Kachou, an official side story set in an alternate reality where Samurai Shodown characters are placed in the modern world. In this story, he is a struggling salary man (standard Japanese business man) who has fallen on hard times. He's often picked on by various characters from the series, though Hanzo and Tam Tam are his closest friends.
Jubei is an experienced, battle-hardened warrior who is loyal to the Tokugawa shogunate, even as a ronin. He enjoys seeing potential in younger warriors and encourages them to one day surpass him. Unlike his comrade in arms, Hanzo, Jubei is a more care-free man when off-duty, and he enjoys times of peace with a hearty laugh.
- Multiple Attacks: Jubei can deliver several slashes at once.
- Rising Sword Charge: Jubei charges at an opponent, ramming with his shoulder for multiple hits, then finishes by leaping into the air and striking with his katana for weapon damage.
- Moonlight Projectile: By reflecting the moonlight off his blade, Jubei can send a small wave of light along the ground toward his opponent. If he gathers more energy, he can release it as a large pillar of light.
- Yagyu Mind Eye (Yagyū Shingan): A special technique allowing Jubei to instantly counterattack his opponents.
Yagyū Shinkage-ryū is an actual form of Japanese swordsmanship, of which the historical Jubei was a prominent practitioner. In-game, Jubei employs the nitō (two-sword) form of the art. He wields his katana and wakizashi simultaneously, making use of slow, powerful strikes.
Early in the series, he became well known by players for his armed parrying move, a command that could counter certain strikes from his foes if timed correctly. He has three other special commands that follow him in later appearances: Nikkaku Ratō (二ッ角羅刀 lit. Double-Edged Silk Blade) – a rushing uppercut, Kattotsu Suigetsutō (喝咄水月刀 lit. Scolding Speech Water Moon Blade) – a ground projectile used from the energy gathered from the moon's reflection, and Hassō Happa (八相発破 lit. Eight Aspects Explosive Blast) – a consecutive-thrusting technique. In Samurai Shodown IV, his "Shura/Slash" form retains most of his old moveset. His "Rasetsu/Bust" form's moveset, however, centers around parrying his opponents' attacks and breaking their guard, via his signature Yagyū Shingan Tō (Yagyū Mind Eye Blade) techniques. Due to the down-to-earth principles in most of his attacks, Jubei is best used by players who can easily predict their challenger's attacks.
In later games, Jubei gains new forms of the Suigetsutō such as the Retsu Suigetsutō (烈水月刀 lit. Violent Water Moon Blade) – where Jubei slashes out a stationary energy wave, then slashes another one into it to form a large projectile, and the Zetsu Suigetsutō (絶水月刀 lit. Suppressing Water Moon Blade) – same as the Retsu version but a large tower of energy is released instead. These attacks, along with his three-way reversals make it a running gag in that he is often compared to Geese Howard due to the layout of his moveset, something Jubei himself is rarely pleased about.
- Chikurin (Bamboo Thicket) - Samurai Shodown
- Seijaku (Silence) - Samurai Shodown II
- The Remote Yagyu Village (Bamboo Thicket) - Samurai Shodown Sen
- Bamboo Grove Village - Samurai Shodown (2019)
- Takayuki Sakai - Samurai Shodown I
- Kiyoshi Kobayashi - Samurai Shodown II~V Special; Dengeki drama CDs
- Tōru Ōkawa - Samurai Shodown VI
- Hiroshi Naka - Samurai Shodown (2019)
- Takeo Chii - Samurai Shodown: The Motion Picture
- Brian Matthews - Samurai Shodown: The Motion Picture (English dub)
Live Action Actor
- Takeo Chii - Samurai Shodown II commercial
- Samurai Shodown
- Samurai Shodown II
- Samurai Shodown III - GameBoy port only
- Samurai Shodown IV
- Samurai Shodown! 2
- Shinsetsu Samurai Spirits: Bushidou Retsuden - NPC character
- SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters Clash - as Kacho version
- SNK vs. Capcom: The Match of the Millennium - Olympic mode only
- Samurai Shodown V
- Samurai Shodown V Special
- Samurai Shodown V Perfect
- Samurai Shodown VI
- Samurai Shodown Sen
- Samurai Spirits ~Kengou Hachi-ban Shoubu~
- Samurai Shodown (2019)
- Samurai Spirits - Makai Rineki
- Samurai Shodown Tenkadaiichi Kenkakuden
- Samurai Shodown: Oborozuki Densetsu
- SNK Fighting Age
- Puzzle & Dragons
- Samurai Shodown III - in the staff roll; cosplays as Shizumaru
- Samurai Shodown 64 - in the San Francisco stage
- The King of Fighters '99 Evolution - as Kacho version, background cameo in the Alley stage
- Capcom vs. SNK - as Kacho version; background appearance
- SNK Gals' Fighters - cameo in background of hot springs arena, together with Haohmaru
- Days of Memories (third title) - in-text cameo
- Samurai Spirits (pachinko)
- Samurai Spirits - Shimensouka
- KOF: Maximum Impact 2 - Alba Meira's Normal Outfit-Variation G
- Samurai Spirits Oni
- Samurai Spirits Gaiden: Cham Cham
- His nickname with the Samurai Shodown II development staff is "Dad" (親父, oyaji).
- His eye patch is a tsuba, a trait common amongst many fictional depictions of Jubei.
- The food he eats during his win poses and taunts is dango, a nod to his favorite foods being Japanese sweets.
- When asked "The path of the sword is?", Jubei's response is "Its meaning is found in mastering the Shadow Style of Yagyu."
- His favourite type of mate is "younger wenches".
- Official character profile from Samurai Shodown anniversary website.