Strictly speaking, Budo is but a normal human, as are the vast majority of his fellow GI Joes. He's a highly trained samurai warrior of all things, however, an expertise he brings to his military service in a unique capacity. He also occasionally uses the Joes' high tech gear.
Hindrances / Augmentations:
Armor (s): Budo wears a suit of medieval samurai armor while he's in action with the Joes; it's not the most efficient protection, but it gets the job done. This ornate armor gives him intensity 8, or his Strength +2, in protection from physical attack, from head to toe.
Sai (s): a supplement to his primary weapons, Budo also carries a sai with him on missions. He may use his Manji-design sai to inflict his Strength +2 in slashing damage in melee, mainly using thrusting attacks, though it's mostly useful for blocking swords or other edged weapons.
Swords (s): Budo always carries two blades with him into battle: his katana and his wakizashi. With either of these blades, he may inflict his Strength +4 in slashing damage, and can often do so very rapidly when circumstances demand it (thanks to his mastery of Iaido).
Boxing (s): one facet of Budo's melee combat training comes in his ability to strike rapidly - even without his swords. When attempting unarmed melee attacks, he may divide his pre-card play action score between two attacks, the last of which occurs as a contingent action.
Guns (a): though he does not use them with the Joes, Budo has nonetheless been trained in the use of most firearms. He can wield a standard, semi-automatic, or fully automatic rifle or pistol at one difficulty level lower than is normally required.
Languages / English and Japanese (i): to uphold the family legacy, Budo has learned how to use Japanese as fluently as he does English. He can read, write, and speak both languages, which comes in handy now that he seems to have made Tokyo his home.
Martial Arts (a): in addition to his prowess in Iaido, Budo can fight unarmed quite well. He may reduce the difficulty on actions to attempt unarmed melee attacks, dodge incoming assaults, or catch weaponry thrown at either himself or another.
Military / United States (w): though not the source of most of his skills, the US Army has been good to Budo; it gives him a reliable paycheck after all. Thanks to his time in the Army, Budo knows the SOP like the back of his hand, and can easily function in a military unit.
Repair / Tinkering (a): in addition to his considerable fighting skills, Budo has learned through trial and error how to fix mechanical things - mainly his Harley but not exclusively. Whenever he's trying to fix something mechanical, Budo may attempt to do so at a reduced difficulty.
Swords 2 (s): a fifth-level black belt in Iaido, Budo is naturally extremely adept in the use of swords. Whether wielding a katana or a wakizashi, Budo may resolve sword attacks with either his Strength or Agility, doing so at one difficulty level lower than is normally necessary.
Budo is a member of the GI Joe team in good standing, as such he can easily rely upon them for assistance should he but ask. Furthermore, he is in something of a romantic relationship with Jinx in some continuites, and can depend on her for any aid he should need (and vice versa).
Exemplar, with a secondary calling of Mentor: Budo strives to live up to the legacy that has been handed down to him, that of the samurai. He tries to live by that code as best as he can, and encourages others under his charge to aspire to a higher level of conduct.
Budo's first GI Joe uniform is a suit of samurai armor! It includes brown trousers and a gray shirt beneath brown armored segments on his chest, upper arms, and wrists, chromed knee guards, brown leather boots, a gray belt that holds a sword sheath, and a distinctive samurai helmet.
Budo likes it loud. He's a heavy metal fan, and tinkers with his motorcycle as a hobby. While he has a deep respect for his family's history and its ancient traditions, he doesn't let them rule his life, and pursues his own interests while paying his dues to his legacy.
Real Name: Kyle A. Jesso, Grade E-5
Occupation: infantryman, hand-to-hand combat instructor
Legal Status: citizen of the United States with no known criminal record
Marital Status: single
Alias(es), if any: none
Group Affiliation: GI Joe
Height: 5' 9"
Weight: 165 lbs
Other Distinguishing Characteristics: none.
Budo has always been his own man. Despite being told repeatedly that he has a duty to uphold the traditions of his great-great-grandfather, a fencing master in one of the last samurai warrior families in Japan, he has pursued his own interests and hobbies with great effort.
Not that he's discarded his family history and legacy, oh no; he's just intent on doing things his way. The man is an ardent metal-head, and is always tinkering with his chopped, pan-head Harley. This may be why the man is 'only' a fifth level black belt in Iaido.
One could say he is a master of that art, and he holds black belts in three other fighting forms as well. Like his father, grandfather and great-grandfather before him, he lives by the code of the samurai, but he has not made being a samurai the be-all and end-all of his existence.
No, Budo has instead joined the Army. He has served with distinction, both as an infantryman and as a hand-to-hand combat trainer - he can fight unarmed as well as with the blade. This got him noticed by the GI Joe team, who eventually recruited Budo into their ranks.
Of course, Budo had to prove he had what it takes to be a Joe first. This involved a grueling entrance exam that only he, Lightfoot, and Repeater lasted through (out of a class of about twenty-five would-be Joes). Though they made it, Budo and his new teammates weren't done yet.
No, the 'final test' of a brand new Joe is to drop them into a live, actual mission to see how they fare. With their handler, Grand Slam, Budo and company managed to rout a raid of the Piccatinny weapons arsenal by Cobra forces - who turned out to actually be Iron Grenadiers.
Successful in this, Budo and his new cohorts were welcomed onto the GI Joe team, where they had more than their fair share of bizarre encounters with the likes of Cobra and other costumed terrorists across the world. They had these, of course, until GI Joe was shut down.
Moving on when the Joes disbanded for a time, Budo made his way to Japan, where he worked as a bounty hunter with Jinx, with whom he'd begun a serious relationship. Despite a few bumps in the road along the way, these two remained a couple to this very day.
Even when Cobra's goons have caused them considerable stress, and almost managed to take over Japan on one occasion. Luckily the threat that those terrorists pose seems to have been defused, leaving Budo to his work against the criminal elements in his second home.
Budo's second GI Joe uniform is a suit of samurai armor! It includes black trousers and a gray shirt beneath blue and orange armored segments on his chest, upper arms, wrists, and knees, black leather boots, a red belt that holds a sword sheath, and a distinctive samurai helmet.
GI Joe directories featuring a version of Budo:
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