- See also: Mai's costumes
She has fair skin with long brown hair tied into a tight high topknot style ponytail with parted bangs and amber eyes. Like the other girls, she has a voluptuous figure, having a relatively large bust, although her most notable trait would be her long, shapely legs as well as her ample wide hips and somewhat large thighs.
In her default outfit, she also wears black two-toed shoes with red linings. Similar to Kasumi, she wears a kunoichi dress as her default, although her dress was primarily red in color and was sleeveless, as well as two red and white tassels at the back containing orbs of the opposite colors, and circular ropes around her shoulders. She also wears another dress that was similar in overall appearance, but was blue instead of red. She also carries a Japanese war fan.
The only thing in common with her various outfits are her twin tassels at her back (which are always colored in a similar manner to her current attire) and her paper fan (of which the edges have a similar color to the attire she's currently wearing).
Mai is a very cheerful and temperamental girl. She can tend to also be somewhat of an airhead and admires any kind beauty or attractiveness, which sometimes comes across as being vain. She also at times compares attractive boys who flirt with her or acknowledge her beauty to Andy, acknowledging their attractiveness but ending with a comment saying they're 'not as cute as Andy'.
Like many girls, she dreams to get married with her prince charming. She found that same Prince Charming in Andy and self-proclaimed herself his fiancé, which at times, have creeped out Andy himself. A notable example of this is her intro with Andy in KOF '97, proposing to Andy outright in a wedding dress, or scaring Andy with a mock child doll in KOF '99 and 2001. Despite this, Andy mutually acknowledges her love, but prefers to keep quiet about it.
Although her peppy fighting persona suggests otherwise, Mai is actually a traditional and ideal Japanese beauty. However, her pride as a Shiranui shinobi and infatuation with Andy usually keeps her from fitting the mold 100% of the time.
In Last Round, her personality is still the same: She's confident and very eager to fight, with her intros involving her announcing her entrance in third person(One of her signature intros from King Of Fighters) as well as telling her opponent to come fight her with a confident calm composure. Unlike the other fighters, she will frequently say the name of her attacks and special moves as well as throws in combat. After a match, she will sometimes confidently exclaim that's she's the "best in Japan" whilst catching her fan or fan herself while saying she got sweaty, further showing her confidence and easygoing attitude. She doesn't hold any hard feelings towards her opponent as seen in her last win pose where she sweetly apologizes to her opponent before suggesting they "have fun".
"Mai" (舞), is the Japanese word for "dance", and her surname (不知火) is the title of a Japanese optical phenomenon similar to will-o'-the-wisp.
It is unknown if the two kunoichi have met, however, Mai does call out Ayane's name during a tag battle likely because she too is a kunoichi.
Although the relationship between the two girls is unknown, Mai calls Kasumi during a tag battle. It is likely a reference to their guest appearance in Queen's Blade and also likely because she too is a kunoichi.
Despite being a guest character, with an unknown relationship to Momiji, Mai does call out her name during a tag battle likely because she too is a kunoichi.
- See also: Mai's Command List
Mai uses the Shiranui style of ninjutsu combined with her fire powers to fight. Her style resembles normal ninjutsu with more graceful and majestic moves, somewhat in reference to traditional Japanese dance. She also tends to strike with her buttocks, whether as her butt-first charge Genei-Shiranui (lit. "Phantom Fire"), or to crush enemies under her butt with her Yusura-Ume (桜桃, lit. "Wild Cherry").
She also uses paper fans as weapons, integrating them into her combat technique and using them to perform several combinations and moves, such as her Banka ("Elegy"), Kiri-Zakura ("Mist Cherry Blossom"), Kogarashi ("Wintry Wind"), Hototogisu ("Lesser Cuckoo"), Haimen-Hiji-Uchi ("Rear Elbow Strike"), Kazaguruma ("Windmill"), Kachousen ("Butterfly Fan"), Hana-Arashi ("Storm of Flowers"), Hakuro no Mai ("Dance of the Snow Heron"),Raicho no Mai ("Dance of the Thunder Bird"), Chidori-Gaeshi ("Plover Counter"), and her Chou Hissatsu Shinobi-Bachi ("Super Deadly Swarm of the Unseen Assassains") Power Blow. Her clothing, specifically, the tassel on her ninja garb, is also used to attack the opponent. When about to deal a heavy blow against her opponent, she proceeds to place her paper fan in her mouth to free up all her limbs.
Like in her past games, Mai has the ability to manifest flames into many ways. For example, both her Ryu-Enbu ("Waltz of the Fire Dragon") and her Ryubitenmai ("Beautiful Dragon Dance") has her create a ring of fire by spinning, both her Koshu no Mai (2) ("Dance of the Drummer") and her Hisho-Ryu-Enjin ("Dragon Ring of Summer") involve her performing a flaming backflip kick, her Kagerou no Mai ("Dance of the Heat Haze") has her summon a spiralling column of fire around her, and her Gekka-Midare-Botan ("Moon Flower Wild Peony") has her create a fiery explosion from her buttocks. Also, her Cliffhanger attack ends with her striking her opponent while "imbuing" them in what appears to be electricity, causing them to explode.
Originating from a 2D fighting game, Mai retains most of the mechanics, such as special cancels and jump attacks, such as her Shosen-Da ("The Aftermath"), Sho-Kyaku ("Soaring Kick"), and her Musasabi no Mai ("Dance of the Flying Squirrel"). She is also recommended for beginners.
Dead or Alive seriesEdit
- Dead or Alive 5 Last Round (playable DLC, only for arcade; PS4; XONE and Steam/Windows, 2016)
- "Sacred Flower" - Dead or Alive 5 Last Round (default theme), Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate Arcade
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- Mai was rated #4 in GameSpy.com's "Top Ten Babes in Games" feature and number 5 in Game Informer's "Top Ten Hottest Girls of the 16-Bit era."
- In the character popularity poll on Neo Geo Freak's website, she was voted as the fifth favorite character with a total of 2,380 votes.
- Mai is the only female character with a cheerleader DLC costume to wear heels with it; The other girls wear sneakers with socks.
- Mai's birthday (January 1) is on New Year's Day. She also shares her birthday with Bankotsubo, the final boss in Dead or Alive 2.
- Coincidentally, both characters had fighting styles that revolved around fans of some sort (Paper fans in Mai's case, and ha-uchiwa's in Bankotsubo's case).
- In the teaser for Mai at Dead or Alive Festival 2016, she was shown to have a face and build similar to Momiji. However, she was given a slight redesign in the August 2016 Famitsu coverage for the character's gameplay that made her closer to her appearance in the King of Fighters series, marking her the second character to have a different design from the first "final design", the only other being Hitomi when Dead or Alive 5 was first announced.
- Mai is the second guest character in the overall series to only speak in her native language (Japanese) regardless of language options while not having recycled voice clips (despite having had English voices in some previous SNK games), the only other being SPARTAN-458 from Dead or Alive 4.
- Mai is the third character that holds an object when fighting, after Gohyakumine Bankotsubo and Nyotengu. Similar to those two, she holds a fan, but the difference is the design and that she can attack with it. She is also the only human character to hold an object while fighting.
- Unlike Nyotengu, Mai utilizes the same object (in her case, a paper fan) regardless of her current outfit.
- Also, Mai is the second character that uses fire in her attacks. The first was Momiji.
- Technically, this is the second time Mai and Kasumi have "interacted" to some degree, as they had both previously been in the crossover video game Queen's Blade.
- They also "interacted" in a special wallpaper that was released in collaboration by SNK and Team Ninja celebrating the Steam release for King of Fighter XIV and 8 million downloads of Dead or Alive 5 Last Round.
- Mai is the only character to be absent from the Halloween 2016 costume set. This was most likely because she debuted long after the 2016 Designer's Contest ended yet before the actual release of the Halloween DLC. However, Team Ninja recently announced a Designer's Contest for 2017, but for unknown reasons, Mai is one of the only two characters absent for a costume design for said year (the other being Christie).
- All of Mai's costumes appear to have their own tassels, much like her original outfit does.
- Some of her moves, such as her Yoshikiri-Gaeshi ("Reed-Cutter Counter") and Oraku-To ("Falling Crash"), have her open her fan, but without using it for attacking.
- Mai has not been recieving any more DLC costumes since her Debut ones. This may be possibly due to the fact that Koei Tecmo does not own her and needs the permission of SNK, the owner of the rights to "Fatal Fury" and "King of Fighters", the two franchises that Mai is from, to give the character DLC outfits.
- If Mai performs her fire summon attacks in the Azuchi stage, the lighting in the arena will briefly dim during the attack's duration. It's unknown whether or not this is intentional.
- It's unknown whether or not her appearance in the series is canon, as her bio makes no outright mention on whether she is participating in the tournament or how she even got into the DOA universe unlike Naotora Ii. It's possible like the Virtua Fighters that she and the other characters from the SNK series exist in the DOA universe while not actually participating in the Dead or Alive 5 tournament.