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Shizumaru Hisame (緋雨 閑丸, Hisame Shizumaru) is the main protagonist and one of the new characters in Samurai Shodown III. He continues to appear in other titles of the series. Although he was initially believed to be based on Himura Kenshin, creators state that his visual model was Kurama from Yu Yu Hakusho.
According to Gamest Mook, he was one of the potential candidates for the Samurai Shodown 64 lineup but was taken out due to time and modeling constraints concerning the low polygon count and difficulty of recreating his umbrella. In their 1997 Hero's Collection, Gamest staff voted him as their thirteenth favorite character (tied with King of Fighters character, Benimaru Nikaido, for the same spot).
He is voiced by Miho Kaneta and Motoki Takagi.
He is a young amnesic boy who doesn't remember his real name (he named himself after his sword). Because he was deemed a "demon's child" since childhood, he lives and survives alone. He travels to find a "demon", hoping to figure out for himself what it means to be one.
During the events of Samurai Shodown V, he was taken in as a servant by a noble young couple. The husband leaves to fight in the war at Hinowa, leaving his wife, Hakana, under Shizumaru's protection. Pregnant, Hakana wants to return to her father (who Shizumaru doesn't know is Youkai Kusaregedo) for shelter. Shizumaru, assured she is safe, feels obligated to help in the war. When the battles are over, he is rewarded a hefty sum of gold for his efforts. He leaves for home but is stopped by a man who calls him Yaiba (刃, Yaiba). Despite Shizumaru's denial, the man insists that he is Yaiba and that "his family" misses him. Shizumaru chooses to stay with his master and flees. Unfortunately, his master dies in the war and Hakana is eaten by her father. Due to the trauma he has suffered, he labels anything malicious, be it person or mannerisms, as a "demon".
He respects Haohmaru, who inspires him and teaches him the philosophy of the sword at an early age. Shizumaru seeks to defeat Zankuro and supposedly avenge his family's death. He and Haohmaru slay Zankuro. After the events of Samurai Shodown IV, he confuses the remaining blood lust within him as a "rampaging demon". However, he comes to accept his "demon" as a natural part of himself and makes peace with his past.
In the NeoGeo CD version of Shinsetsu Samurai Spirits: Bushidou Retsuden, he stars in the bonus portion of the game with his own story. It is essentially a choose-your-own-adventure on how he should find Zankuro.
Although there is speculation that he is related to Zankuro, this claim is also dubious. Developers from Samurai Shodown III state that they are not related. By contrast, the staff in Samurai Shodown V state that Shizumaru's real name is Jin Minazuki (水無 月, Minazuki Jin). It's still unconfirmed if Yaiba and Jin are really Shizumaru.