A nukenin (抜け忍, lit. "missing shinobi" or "escaped shinobi") is a shinobi that has abandoned the clan from which they originated.
As each clan has secrets that are vital to their independence and prosperity, those who possess sensitive information about the clan and are deemed a security risk, having slipped from under the supervision of the clan leaders, are very serious threats to the clan’s survival.
These threats must be eliminated at all costs and a band of shinobi are often dispatched to kill the nukenin. It is thus a suicidal fate to become a runaway unless the runaway is confident that they can defeat the clan’s best assassins.
Known nukenin in the series
- Kasumi – left the Mugen Tenshin clan to do a right-thing to stop her evil uncle's madness quickly, after putting Hayate in coma and she thought her brother was presumed deceased, and now she is currently being pursued by the clan's assassins.
- Raidou - left the Mugen Tenshin clan after feeling betrayed by his father, Burai, when the latter chose his younger son over Raidou to become the next leader.
- In the international versions of the series, the word "nukenin" is translated as "runaway shinobi/ninja".
- In the international versions of Dead or Alive 4 however, it was mistakenly written as "exiled ninja", instead of "runaway ninja".
- Kasumi's status as a Nukenin as well as her having to evade being put to death was given an indirect reference in Dead or Alive Xtreme Venus Vacation when Ayane, when initially refusing to participate in a Kimodameshi event with Kasumi, cited that it was perfect for the latter because she was "good at hiding."
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