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Ils Nineta making an illusion of an Otoroshi behind Kimihito Kurusu and Miia.

Yōkai (妖怪) are a class of supernatural monsters, spirits, and demons found in Japanese culture and folklore.

Varying in appearance and physical nature, with their only uniting factor seemingly being their land of origin (Japan), Yōkai can range from being beings of malevolent disposition to being mischievous or occasionally good natured and providers of good fortune depending on the nature of those who encounter them.

Species[]

Bake-danuki[]

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Bake-danuki (化け狸) are a demihuman race that appear in Japanese folklore. Reputed to be mischievous, jolly, and masters of disguise and shapeshifting, they are also reputed to be somewhat gullible and absent-minded.

Originally deified as governors of all things in nature until the arrival of Buddhism, where animals other than envoys of the gods (foxes, snakes, etc.) lost their divinity, Bake-danuki are reputed to have the ability to shapeshift into objects and people as well being able to possess human beings. Additionally, they were seen as symbols of luck in some areas.

Tatake is a Bake-danuki.

Baku[]

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Bakus (獏) are a humanoid liminal species known for their ability to consume nightmares in Japanese folklore, and are often attributed with tapir-like features.

Baku in mythology are chimeric holy creatures, possessing the body of a bear, the head of an elephant, the eyes of a rhinoceros, the tail of an ox, and the legs of a tiger. Their ability to eat nightmares also makes evil spirits and demons flee, promoting good health in the area they dwell.

Bahkurin is a Baku.

Hasshaku-sama[]

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Hasshaku-sama (八尺様, lit. Ms. Eight-shaku-tall) (also known as Hachishaku-sama in the West) are a humanoid liminal species known and named after their considerable height (about 242.4cm or 7’11” in Imperial), as well as a distinctive laugh ("Po, po, po, po"), and a love for white clothing and sun hats. A shaku is an ancient Japanese measurement term, which translates to roughly 30.3 cm in the modern Metric.

According to Japanese urban legend, Hasshaku-sama are spiritual entities that are quite fond of male children between the ages of ages 9 and 17 and will stalk and abduct, or otherwise possess, them within the span of several days. One theory to this may be due to the Hasshaku-sama being a neglected child fertility deity that were invited by parents, who would take the potent life energy that the children's bodies emit during sex as tribute, using her body to help them grow to become used to their new bodies and urges. She was later shunned and considered taboo along with many other sexual connotations with the onset of Christianity taking hold, demonizing her into a lonely, malevolent spirit who now preys on boys who are on the cusp of their sexual development; hunting, abducting, seducing and eventually killing them over a few days.

Another theory states that Hasshaku-sama is the ghost of a mother who lost her child, which is why she now kidnaps children in a bid to find or at least replace her missing child.

Paula is a Hasshaku-sama.

Inaba Hare[]

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Inaba Hare (因幡の白兎, Inaba no Shiro Usagi) are a demihuman race of Usagimimi (Rabbitgirls) that are connected to the Hare of Inaba myth in Japan, as told in the Kojiki.

The myth goes that a hare god tricks some crocodiles into being used as a land bridge in order to travel from the Island of Oki to the mainland by challenging the reptiles to let him see if their clan was larger than his. Having the crocodiles lie in a row across the sea, the hare hopped across them, counting them as he went. Nearing the end but not yet on dry land, the hare began bragging that he had deceived the crocodiles in order to use them as a bridge and in retribution the last crocodile attacks him, ripping his fur from him.

Hakuto is a Inaba Hare.

Jorōgumo[]

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Main article: Arachne

Jorōgumo (絡新婦? lit. "binding bride") are a demi-human species of "spider-woman" originating from Japanese mythology. According to folklore, the species are said to be spiders that can change their appearances into that of beautiful women due to gaining magical powers after turning 400 years old.

Depicted as being skilled at entrapping their prey, Jorōgumo possess many of the same traits as an Arachne; such as possessing six eyes, a light exoskeleton and the ability to produced webs, however, while an Arachne has the upper body of a human and the full lower body of a spider, a Jorōgumo possesses a fully humanoid body with a spider abdomen extending from the base of their spine but no spider prosoma. Also, in addition to their humanoid arms being covered in an exoskeleton, they have six fully dexterous "spider legs" attached to their upper back which they can hide beneath their clothing should they choose.

Kuruwa and Komachi are Jorōgumo.

Kamaitachi[]

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Kamaitachi (鎌鼬? lit. Sickle Weasel) are a demihuman species with weasel-like attributes and two large sickle blades protruding from their forearms.

Prevalent in Japanese mythology, the species inhabits the inland mountain ranges of Japan (most notably Yamanashi, Nagano and Niigata) and are said to be able to "ride the mountain winds" in small tornadoes at such a speed that they are invisible to the human eye.
While within these tornadoes, Kamaitachi are said to attack humans by rushing them and slashing them with their sickle blades as they fly past.

Mai is a Kamaitachi.

Kasa-obake[]

Koro-pok-guru[]

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Koro-pok-guru (コロポックル Koropokkuru?) are a race of small people in folklore of the Ainu people of the northern Japanese islands. The Ainu believe that the koro-pok-guru were the people who lived in the Ainu's land before the Ainu themselves lived there. They were short of stature, agile, and skilled at fishing. They lived in pits in the ground with roofs made from butterbur leaves.

Long ago, the koro-pok-guru were on good terms with the Ainu, and would send them deer, fish, and other game and exchange goods with them. The little people hated to be seen, however, so they would stealthily make their deliveries under cover of night.
Unfortunately, one day, a young Ainu man decided he wanted to see a koro-pok-guru for himself, so he waited in ambush by the window where their gifts were usually left. When a koro-pok-guru came to place something there, the young man grabbed it by the hand and dragged it inside. It turned out to be a beautiful koro-pok-guru woman, who was so enraged at the young man's rudeness that her people have not been seen since.

Shinotcha is a Koro-pok-guru.

Kyuubi no Kitsune[]

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Kyuubi no Kitsune (九尾の狐, Kyūbi no Kitsune, lit. Nine-tailed Foxes) are a pseudohuman race that appear in Japanese folklore as intelligent beings that possess magical abilities to shape shift. A variation of the Werefox species, while some folktales speak of kitsune of wildly different moralities employing this ability to trick others, other stories portray them as faithful guardians, friends, lovers, and wives. It is unknown if male Kitsune exist (as Kitsune can use both genders in their shapeshifting abilities) or if they are a single gendered race.

It is said that the more tails a kitsune has (they may have as many as nine) the older, wiser, and more powerful they are. Because of their potential power and influence, some people make offerings to them as deities.

Many Shinto Shrines posses statues of foxes as homages to Kitsune and the fox god Inari Ōkami. One kitsune, Ils Nineta, works at a Shinto shrine as a shrine maiden. Another kitsune, Youko, is an exchange student in the cultural exchange program.

Oni[]

Main article: Ogre
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Oni (鬼) are a humanoid subspecies of Ogre that appear in Japanese folklore as a type of devil or ogre.

Aside from their colorful skin ranging from red to blue, Oni are no different from standard Ogres. Standing only two meters tall, they are slightly smaller than Ogres, making them the smallest of the Ogre subspecies. Though they are still larger than humans. Red Oni are thought to be crybabies and Blue Oni are considered self-sacrificing, but it is unclear whether or not there is any truth to these claims and not merely a reference to the Classical Japanese story Naita Aka Oni.

It is customary for Oni to dress in tiger-striped clothes, which in conjunction with their horns, form a visual pun off of the direction north-northwest in relation to Chinese astrology (牛虎, Ushi-tora), which is according to Japanese superstition, this direction was considered to be ominous, and was sometimes referred to as "oni's gate" (鬼門, Kimon).

Kinu is an Oni working as an agent in the Talio private security firm.

Otter[]

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Otters (獺, Kawauso) are a pseudeo-human liminal species from Japan that resemble river otters. Jovial and friendly shapeshifting beings, Otters mostly take on human form to play tricks and buy booze. Like their animal cousins, Otters prefer to stay near brooks, streams, the seaside, and rivers.

Araya is a Otter.

Paper Dancer[]

Main article: Fairy
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The Paper Dancer is a fairy-type liminal that has a thin/light body constructed out of a paper-like material and the ability to telekinetically control any items made out of paper. Despite not having wings they posses the ability to float/glide. They do not seem to posses the power of flight, although legend claims they can use wind drafts to glide through the air in a manner similar to flight.
Users of Onmyōdō Charms are known to form partnerships with Paper Dancers, although Paper Dancers are known as "Shikigami" in Onmyōdō culture.

Maika is a Paper Dancer.

Rokurokubi[]

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The Rokurokubi (ろくろ首, 轆轤首) is a type of Japanese yōkai (apparition). They look almost completely like humans, with one major difference. There are two types of Rokurokubi: one whose necks stretch, and the older existing variety of those whose heads come off and fly around freely, that being the Nukekubi (抜け首). The Rokurokubi appear in classical kaidan (spirit tales) and in yōkai works. It has been suggested, however, that the idea of rokurokubi may have been created purely for entertainment purposes rather than originating from any folk beliefs or legends.

Nana is a Rokurokubi.

Tengu[]

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Tengu (天狗Tengu? Heavenly Dog) are a demihuman liminal species with black bird-like wings, elfin ears and the avian characteristics of crows.

Considered a mythical creature in Japan, they were historically thought to be troublesome bird-like demons that were thought as harbingers of war by the Buddhists but are now (if still feared due to their wild and proud natures) respected as highly skilled swordsmen and protectors of sacred forests and mountains. Much of their early depictions featured them with heavy bird motifs, retaining bird heads, wings, or beaks. The mythical proud nose of the Tengu, which often attributed to Daitengu, is often believed to be the result of humanizing the Tengu. These noses are also the source of the Japanese idiom “snapping a tengu’s nose”, which is to soundly humiliate a prideful person.

Shizuka is a Tengu.

Werefox[]

Main article: Werewolf
WereFox

Werefoxes are a pseudohuman species of beings who are spoken in myth of possessing the ability to shapeshift between the form of a human and the form of a fox.

Also known in Japan as belonging to the Yokai subspecies group, for some reason, many werefoxes take up positions as miko shrine maidens. A variation of this subspecies possess nine tails and are called Kitsune; these individuals are said to possess rudimentary transformation powers.

Yatagarasu[]

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A Yatagarasu (八咫烏) is a demihuman liminal species very similar in appearance to Harpies. Possessing crow-like traits, Yatagarasu appear prominently in Japanese mythology as supernatural guides and symbols of divine rebirth and rejuvenation. Known to be the guide of the 1st Japanese Emperor Jimmu when he conquered all of Japan, where they were a giant three legged crow.

Omnivorous, Yatagarasu prefer habitats that have sunlight and demonstrate the same "air-headed" behavior as Harpies, despite how crows are among the smartest of all birds. As such, not much is known at precisely how closely related the Harpy race are to the Yatagarasu.

Misaki is a Yatagarasu.

Yuki-onna[]

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A Yuki-onna (雪女) is a pseudohuman that appears in Japanese folklore as a snow spirit of inhuman beauty that appears before travelers trapped in snowstorms with the purpose of killing them.

While the Yuki-onna race is not inherently malevolent, their stoic demeanor and their natural environment being hazardous to humans, may have given rise to myths that they intentionally cause deaths.

While possessing elemental control over ice and snow, Yuki-onna can not live in high temperate environments without assistance.

Yuki and Yukio are Yuki-onna.

Zashiki Warashi[]

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Zashiki Warashi (座敷童 or 座敷童子) are spiritual beings that reside in a house or settlement. Old folktales believe that Zashiki Warashi brought good luck to the abode they are residing in currently, and commonly materialize themselves as a little girl in a kimono and bobbed black hair. They have the ability to either bring good luck or misfortune upon a person or a household, depending entirely on how they are treated.

Sasami is a Zashiki Warashi.

Members[]

In the manga[]

In the game[]

Gallery[]


Trivia[]

  • Although typically referred to as Dragons, Yamata no Orochi are sometimes referred to as Yōkai due to their association in Japanese mythology.
  • Yōkai play a role in attracting tourism to revitalize local regions, like Tono, Iwate, Iwate Prefecture and the Tottori Prefecture.
  • In Kyoto, there is a store called Yōkaido, which is a renovated machiya (traditional Kyoto-style house), and the owner gives a guided yōkai tour of Kyoto.
  • Within the Monster Musume franchise, it is often the case that many Yokai species are given inaccurate names, as Bakus are referred to as "tapirs", while Araya's species species is referred to as "otter", although "Kawauso" is the correct name for the otter-like Yokai. This is partly due to translation errors as many Japanese character/words for Yokais are often the same as the animals they are based on or resemble.



Items and Terminology
Races ArachneCentaurDevilDragonDragonewtDryadDullahanFairyGhostGrim ReaperHarpyHumanInsectoidKaijuKoboldLamiaLizardfolkMermaidMinotaurMonoeyeOgreOrcSlimeTentacle MonsterU.M.A.VampireVanishing HitchhikerWerewolfYokaiZombieOther Races (Manga)Monster Musume Online Species ListMonster Musume Fantastic Life Species List
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