As a child, Setsuka (pronounced "Set-ska") was a non-native girl living in Japan. Because of her appearance of pale white skin, brown hair and hazel eyes many other children shunned her when she was growing up. Due to her emotional distress she ran away from home as a child but was taken in by a man working as a bodyguard in a Japanese city who named her Setsuka. The man taught Setsuka the same fighting techniques he used in his profession and Setsuka became devoted to her training, revelling in the praise she received from her master. As Setsuka grew into a young woman the training she received significantly increased her confidence and she disregarded the opinions of those who looked down on her.
One day Setsuka's master gave her the task of delivering a letter to a destination months away and so she made the long journey to deliver her master's message. Setsuka delivered the letter to its recipient, a martial arts teacher living in a small town, who urged Setsuka to stay with him and train but she declined, wishing to return home to her master. When she returned to her home she found her master laying on the floor, badly wounded but refusing to reveal how he had received such injuries, despite this Setsuka remained sure his injuries were the result of being defeated in a fight.
The injuries that he received prevented him from ever wielding a sword again. However, Setsuka's master continued acting as if he had not received his injuries but he also began to show Setsuka a great love that he had not before and made her lessons more strict and demanding. Even though her master could not afford luxuries, he bought Setsuka a luxurious kimono and her feelings for him began to grow stronger. On his deathbed, Setsuka's master told her that the man who had defeated him in combat when Setsuka was away was Heishiro Mitsurugi. It was only after her master had died that Setsuka realized she had loved him and she became intent on getting revenge for what Mitsurugi had done to him.
Soul Calibur III
Setsuka was first introduced in Soul Calibur III along with Tira and Zasalamel in which she was referred to as The Resolute Avenger. Setsuka decided to track down the reputed swordsman Nightmare in the hope that doing so she could find where she could find Mitsurugi. At the end of the game Setsuka rejects possession of the evil blade Soul Edge and sees a woman about to kill a man from behind with a knife. Setsuka questions the woman's motives and depending on whether the player gives controller input or not Setsuka will either kick the knife out of the woman's hand, tell her revenge is pointless and walk away with her or tell the woman if it makes her happy to kill the man she won't stop her and let her carry out her revenge.
Soul Calibur IV
With Mitsurugi having passed through so many towns it becomes easy for Setsuka to track him down but she is warned that Mitsurugi is an extremely powerful opponent. Setsuka finds Mitsurugi and despite doubting herself at the last moment she is able to defeat him, but even after taking her revenge she becomes determined to grow even stronger. At the end of the game Setsuka defeats the evil king Algol but does not kill him, believing she has put an end to his tyranny and that it is his choice what he does with his life from then on. The epilogue says that somewhere in Japan an umbrella has been placed on a grave, presumably Setsuka's umbrella being placed on the grave of her master.
Setsuka's only goal is to deliver revenge. She seems to hold hate and disdain towards her opponents due to her experiences as a child and the death of her master. Even though she is fully aware that revenge does not bring happiness to anyone, including herself she is determined to bring justice to her master and even goes against his wishes. She shows no care towards her opponents but she is not evil as she shows some degree of kindness as shown when she let Algol live and tells her opponents to fight with honour.
Setsuka's original design was as she appears in Soulcalibur IV, with blonde hair and blue eyes, the designers of Soul Calibur III changed her appearance to dark hair and green eyes. Her costume is based on the Japanese oirans or courtesans who dressed much like geishas; this is hinted in her move-set which makes several references with moves such as 'oiran kIck'. Setsuka's character, however, is not a courtesan and is not related in any way to the oirans.
Weapons and Fighting Style
During the 2005 Tokyo Game Show, Setsuka was considered to be one of the fans favourite characters due to her very fast attacks and her unusual appearance. Her attacks in the game are based on very quick combo that overwhelm the opponent and enable her to move at a fast pace and access ranges that she would not be able to with her weapon alone. Although her attacks alone are quite weak, Setsuka can deal quite large amounts of damage if her abilities are maxed out.
Setsuka's main weapon of choice is a laito lai sword that is hidden in the handle of a paper parasol that is similar to the shirasaya styles. It is named Ugetsu Kageuchi which when translated means, "cormorant moon, darkness inside". Setsuka's fighting style is a mix of Battōjutsu and Iaido which involves cutting and re-sheathing a sword at a fast pace.
- Setsuka is voiced by Kari Wahlgren.
- Setsuka's name means 'snow flower'.
- Setsuka's character in both games deals with the theme of vengeance and its morality.
- Setsuka seems somewhat similar to Lady Snowblood, a Japanese manga and movie heroine who hides a sword in her umbrella and seeks revenge for her mother's death.
- Setsuka is described by creators as one of the fastest characters in the game. She uses quick single strikes to attack in between the opponents strikes.
- Her critical finish has her disappearing then reappearing in front of the opponent and then sheathing her sword while the opponent falls in pain
- During the development of Soul Calibur III, Setsuka's render had to be retouched numerous time with the help of a Tekken artist due to her eyes looking awkward in the original render.
- Due to her not being raised in Japan, some fans suggest that Setsuka is of English origin due to her alternative costume in SC4 of which they dubbed 'Mary Poppins'.