Kinu's combat style and abilities are notably distinct from those of her fellow Asuka, and this reflects in gameplay.
Kinu was presumably born in Asuka Village and trained all her life in the arts of ninjutsu.
One day she reluctantly accompained Goh to look inside the sacred shrine in the village. She continually protested against opening the shrine but Goh paid no attention to her warnings and out of curiosity removed the sacred sword, which freed Gamuran from his seal who the tried to possess Kinu, engulfing her arm. Before she could be possessed by the evil power, she begged Goh to cut off her arm, which he did, saving Kinu and resealing the shrine, but Gamuran had already been liberated.
Kinu was present in the village when Gamuran and the Taraba attacked, and she's shown to have been inside the ruined mansion when the necromancy scroll was destroyed and Goh encountered Gamuran. It's not known how exactly she survived, but either way she became one of the only three survivors, along with Zaji and the now-missing Goh.
Way of the NinjaEdit
She makes a minor appearance during the intro scene, when Goh picks up the soul fragment and sees his past memories Kinu is shown screaming at him to escape before an explosion separates them, throwing Goh into the rivel below.
Kinu makes a full appearance during the fourth story mission. As Goh journeys into the ruins of the Asuka Village looking for one of the soul fragments, he meets the kunoichi near the shrine. He readies for battle, bur as she doesn't move to attack he drops his stance. Kinu then questions him and his memories, surprised at his amnesia, and revealing the moment of the village destruction and the name of the evil priest in Goh's memories, but before she can reveal more she's interrupted by Kabuto. Both Asuka fight Kabuto, defeating him, and forcing him to flee, leaving a soul fragment behind. When Goh takes the fragment, he remembers his previous life as an Asuka Ninja, and the identities of the kunoichi and the one-eyed ninja. Goh tries to convince Kinu to rebuild the village, but she leaves, saying there's still too much he needs to remember.
Her next appearance has her foiling a kidnapping mission from the Kenobi Ninja, but as soon as she's discovered Hebitonbo decides to take her hostage to demand ransom. They send a ransom letter to Goh demanding him to take all his money to the instructed point in Ryonin Market, by the side of the watermill. He arrives and finds Uzumushi and Hebitonbo torturing Kinu with the watermill. The leaders order Goh to leave his money and belongings in a nearby boat and stay at distance, but he stands in the boat himself, challenging them. The ninja battle, with Goh victorious against both. He demands the Kenobi leaders to release Kinu, and they do so. Hebitonbo goes to the watermill and tells his friend to escape meanwhile but after struggling to reach Kinu tries to pull the watermill with his full body weight, turning it but trapping himself underneath and drowning to death while his friend watches helplessly. Distraught, Uzumushi blames both Asuka for Hebitonbo's death and swears to take revenge before leaving. The Kenobi leave behind one of the Soul Fragments, Goh takes it before Kinu can stop him, regaining the lost memories of his own betrayal. He once again asks for Kinu's help to atone for his misdeeds, this time she accepts.
At this point, Kinu becomes a playable character.
Tales of the Ninja Edit
Revenge of ZenEdit
Goh and Kinu get a mention during the intro scene of Revenge of Zen. Zaji explains to Zen that he's the only Asuka currently at the village, as the others are on a mission in foreign lands (possibly Sekishu).
She also makes a cameo appearance during a cutscene, seen only after doing an obscure series of missions. To see this cutscene one has to accept and complete the "Thanks to a Shinobi" mission and inmediately after accept and complete "Further thanks to a Shinobi" and "Further, further thanks to a Shinobi" (must be done in a row, if one is skipped the mission permanently dissapears from the menu). This also unlocks her as a skin.
She possesses the same skills as her fellow Asuka shinobi. This includes their knowledge of guerrilla tactics, unarmed combat and Alchemy. Added to this is her advanced knowledge of herbology and medicine; as demonstrated during one of the mission texts in Tales of the Ninja, Usuba asks for her help in finding a cure for an unknown poison that afflicts her clan members, and Kinu manages to identify both the herb used to make the poison and the antidote by the symptoms description alone.
Unlike other members of her clan she favors an unusual bladed flail with a retractile chain as her weapon of choice. This weapon allows her to attack enemies from a distance and fling them in the air, but also costs her some delay in her attacks and cannot assassinate enemies as fast as she could with a ninjato. Some stealth kill animations suggests that not only the sides of the flail are sharp but also the chain itself.
She can run faster and jump higher than Goh, but she's not as physically strong as him and sometimes depends on using momentum or all her body weight to execute stealth kills on enemies. This translates as better mobility and agility at the cost of less HP, less attack and longer animations for some (but not all) stealth kills.
As an ally NPC, she keeps her distance from enemies and throws Spheres of Weakening and Spheres of Confusion before moving in to attack.
For her combat moveset, see Combat.
Kinu is a quiet and gentle person, which makes her profession as a ninja all the more jarring. Nevertheless, she has accepted to live in shadows, with some resignation.
Kinu is also one of the few people who are not hostile or manipulative of Goh, and is willing to give him a second chance to atone for his role in the destruction of the Asuka clan, unlike her fellow ninja Zaji. For this reason she acts as the mediator between both for most of the first game.
However, her kind nature does not compromise with her duty, as she has shown herself to be stern or aggresive if the situation requires it.
It seems that under Taiga's tutelage she used to be a close friend of Goh, but after the destruction of the Asuka Village and Goh's role in Gamuran's liberation, she becomes understandably wary of him. Nevertheless, she is willing to give him a second chance at redemption, unlike Zaji. She's visibly joyful when Zaji makes peace with Goh before the final battle against Gamuran.
Their relationship remains mostly the same during Tales of the Ninja, working as partners in many missions. When Goh dissapears after murdering Miroku and her allies, she sorrowfully exclaims that "he has left (them) again".
In general, Goh's and Kinu's relationship can be described as one of mutual allies, fellow shinobi, and as much as friends as their lifestyle will allow them, as they both have shown to value each other's presence.
After the destruction of the Asuka Village, Kinu remained by Zaji's side. During the game, Kinu serves as the mediator between Zaji and Goh, given the former's perception of the latter as a traitor, and is also the one who brings them together for the final battle against Gamuran. For these reasons we can guess there is a deep trust between them.
Some cutscenes seem to suggests she might feel some affection for Zaji, but whenether he is aware or not is never adressed.
Usuba and AgehaEdit
Despite the Mosu and Asuka clans being enemies, neither one of the sisters seems to have particular hostility towards her, and even the confusion in their final battle resulted in Ageha's death by mistake, Usuba doesn't seem to hold it against Kinu. During a mission in Tales of the Ninja, Usuba even asks for Kinu's help and secrecy.
The Mosu sisters once tried to bait Goh by having Ageha disguise herself as Kinu. It's notable that the moment Ageha shows off her disguise, both sisters compliment Kinu's beauty, particularly her breast size. Whenether this is admiration or attraction is not explained.
Hebitonbo and UzumushiEdit
During the first game, both Kenobi leaders managed to capture Kinu and used her to demand ransom from Goh. Other than that, the Kenobi masters didn't seem to be that interested in her.
However, after the events that led to Hebitonbo's death, Uzumushi develops a deep grudge towards both Asuka, particularly Kinu. He aims to murder her when the Mosu and the Asuka encounter in Utakata Castle, but gets Ageha by mistake. After his failed attempt and his return to Oshu, Uzumushi seems to have given up on his revenge.
Kinu and Onji's relationship is ambiguous, if there is even one. It's not clear how she came to know Onji's identity, presumably she heard him talk at some point, or more unlikely, spoke to him directly. If anything, she does know Onji is not a normal cat.
It was Onji who saved her from certain death during the final battle, attacking the fully-revived Gamuran and taking damage when the sorcerer retaliated. After the battle is over and Goh asks her to tell him if Onji is alright, she expresses sadness over his "death".
- Besides being a playable character, Kinu is also available as an alternate skin for Goh. As a skin, she loses her unique values (speed and jumping height, lower resistance and power) and uses Goh's instead.
- She also has an alternate costume, unlocked after finishing the game with any ending in Hard difficulty. The clothes she wears in this model are the same she wears under her dress, as shown when she's being tortured in the watermill.
- She playable as an alternate model for Kaede in Revenge of Zen, after seeing her's and Goh's only cutscene in the game.