The rise and fall of famous Tekken character Eddy Gordo

Eddy Gordo wins, or at least he used to. 

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First appearing in 1997's Tekken 3 as the series first Brazilian capoeira fighter, Eddy Gordo would go on to become the most popular and paradoxically hated fighting game character of all time.

A new breed of fighter 

Bandai Namco made a bold statement with their Tekken 3 promo art, showcasing a new generation of young martial artists with flair standing side by side, though the character who stood out most was the tall dude with dreads wearing a vibrant crop top.

Eddy Gordo looked all business yet highly fashionable in the bright yellow and green capoeira uniform which paid homage to his country origin of Brazil. At the same time his pulled back dreads not only made a strong fashion statement but established his rebellious nature.

Wearing a hairstyle often associated with Jamaicans and Rastafarians while dancing wickedly on an island surrounded by palm trees, it's no surprise that some people initially thought he was Jamaican, however this brother was from Brazil.

Unlike other Tekken 3 characters who were connected to the older cast in some way, with some being direct successors who were basically identical in all but name, Eddy was a new concept, which made his inclusion feel fresh, original and different. 

Although possessing an upbeat and high tempo dancing fighting style, Eddy was introduced as a serious character with a respectable storyline, that revolved around him seeking vengeance on the organization responsible for the death of his father. 

eddy gordo tekken

Legendary capoeira fighting style

It's no secret that Eddy Gordo became the most memorable character in the Tekken franchise due to his trademark capoeira fighting style, notable for it's button mashing accessibility and unpredictable acrobatic movements and kicks. 

Eddy was by no means the first capoeira fighter to appear in a fighting game as several other characters predated him including Street Fighter's own Elena by a month, however he was the first one to debut in a 3D fighter.

All the previous fighting games which showcased the fighting style were 2D, however Namco Bandai was able to translate the Brazilian martial arts to 3D like nothing seen before.

The way Eddy moved was authentically poised and this was due to Namco acquiring Brazilian capoeira master Marcelo Pereira, the man behind all of Eddy's moves in Tekken 3.

Using motion capture, the real life Eddy Gordo performed all of the moves seen in the game. However Pereira admitted he was injured during the performance and was only able to perform 20 percent of what capoeira had to offer.

What's more, he also couldn't execute other great movements due to not having a skilful capoeirista to spar with. In spite of all this, Eddy's movements were executed to perfection and the big guy moved majestically. 

More impressive is the fact that Eddy Gordo's smooth moves in Tekken helped popularize the art of capoeira, ultimately introducing it to a new audience within the martial arts and gaming community. This was parroted by Pereira who said that Capoeira was becoming better known thanks to the game.

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Haters gonna hate 

Incorporating elements of dance and acrobatics, Eddy was introduced as a fast, agile, and easy to pick up character with an unconventional gimmick. As such he became a hit with new players who button mashed their way to a win.

With a press of few buttons, anyone could become a Tekken God with Eddy and give even the most experienced players a run for their money, as they released a devastating tornado of spinning kicks varying in height. 

Eddy was indeed a fun character to play as, especially when you won a perfect round from spamming his breakdancing like moves, frustrating your opponents. The fact that Eddy was always looking cool, made those victories that much sweeter.

However for players on the receiving end it was trauma inducing, and to this day his fighting style is met with massive disapproval from the fanbase.

To put it in better perspective, Eddy had a lot of tricky mix-up tools which were hard to deal with if you weren't accustomed to the character. His playstyle demanded that you play HIS game if you wanted to win.

The funny thing is despite all the flack he receives, Eddy isn't isn't a much of a threat in high level of play. In fact he's a low tier character because once you figure his game out he's predictable. 

Despite this, Eddy is hated by scrubs who can't figure out his moves and veterans who feel he's too noob friendly, and still hold a grudge for the day they too were destroyed by the infamous capos.

While there have been several broken characters in Tekken's history, no character has infuriated the fanbase more then Eddy and he is one of the most hated fighting game characters of all time.

Of course Eddy doesn't deserve all the hate he gets, as there far more obnoxious characters in the game who fall under the radar. However when it all's said and done he will always be the character that people love to hate most.

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Eddy Gordo was the breakout character of Tekken 3, however did you know he was originally supposed to be a female character? Meaning the Eddy we know would've never existed.

The Tekken 3 development team initially wanted to add a capoeira girl fighter, however their artist claimed a female capoeirista was too difficult to create and the rest is history.

Later, Christie Monteiro was introduced in Tekken 4 and their original plans to have a female capoeira fighter came to fruition, although at the same time this was the beginning of the end for Eddy, who was demoted to a bonus costume.

Although Eddy was playable, he wasn't canonically apart of the tournament and instead made a cameo appearance in Christie's ending.

From this point forward Eddy would take a backseat to Christie for the majority of his game appearances, often sharing a slot with his female counterpart. Tekken 6 however, the pair would gain individual slots and in Tekken 7 Eddy would be the lone capo. 

However the damage was done and his popularity began to wane while sharing the spotlight with Christie who was more popular with fans.

It goes without saying that Christie is the one of the best Tekken female characters introduced, however her legacy doesn't compare to Eddy who was the face of Tekken 3, the most successful and culturally significant game in the series.

From champ to chump

As previous stated Eddy was a beast in Tekken 3 which made players gravitate to him. Everybody and their mother could up pick up and play the character which allowed him to surge in popularity.

Although in Tekken 7 a lot of his moves got nerfed and he is extremely difficult to play WELL. Basically, Eddy players have to work ten times harder for the same reward compared to using other characters.

For years the Tekken fanbase have complained about Eddy's gameplay, resulting in the developers nerfing him to Timbuktu. The result? A character you have to work harder with and whose mix-ups can be heavily punished, a far cry from his beginner-friendly days.

In turn this has led to players abandoning the character in groves, ultimately affecting his popularity and usage rate in Tekken 7. Simply put, if any other legacy character had being nerfed so harshly then they too would have fell victim to low usage and took a dive in popularity.

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That Tekken 7 ending 

Loved for his design and representation of his martial art , Eddy has always been a serious character since his debut, with no comical quirks and a moving storyline, however in Tekken 7 that all changed.

In earlier games, Eddy went to prison under his father's advice, sought vengeance for his father's death, taught Christie how to fight, searched for a cure for his Capoeira master and fought in the Tekken Army for said cure. 

However in Tekken 7 he either became Lucky Chloe's back up dancer or is bamboozled by her and made as an absolute fool, a far cry from his serious tone. Eddy goes from being an important Mishima Zaibatsu sub-boss to this.

To be quite frank, it felt like a slap in the face to go from Eddy's emotional, beautifully drawn ending in Tekken Tag Tournament 2 to him being utterly disrespected by Lucky Chloe in Tekken 7. Eddy's endings were always among the best with each instalment, however the ball was dropped in Tekken 7.

Left off Tekken 8 base roster

Although Eddy was side-lined in Tekken 4/5 and relegated to a bonus costume for Christie, he was still playable and hasn't missed a mainline title since his debut. Which is why his exclusion from the base Tekken 8 roster is the single most shocking omission.

The Capoeira fighting style is iconic to Tekken, Eddy is one of the series most well known characters and Christie Monteiro is a fan favourite. Normally if not Eddy then its Christie that snags a spot, though this is the first time in Tekken history that they're both missing from the base roster.

Obviously it appears that Eddy or Christie will end up as DLC characters in Tekken 8, however it doesn't feel right.

Tekken is not Tekken without Eddy Gordo. He added a cool factor to Tekken that has been difficult to emulate, mainly due to the Capoeira fighting style but also the character itself. Making it the most glaring omission in the base Tekken 8 roster.

It doesn't matter what their usage rates are because Eddy Gordo, Christie and the Capoeira fighting are extremely iconic to Tekken. 

Everyone knows Eddy Gordo, and characters such as Leo, Shaheen, the bears, etc had very low usage rates in Tekken 7 yet they still made the cut. You wanna know why? Because they offer something totally unique. Much like Eddy and Christie always have and always will.

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