The Black Marketer (闇商人) is a character introduced in Strider (2014) as a non-playable, story-only character.
The man only known as the "Black Marketer" is a mysterious inhabitant of the Underground who is rumored to have a past connection with the technology used by Meio's Army. Though believed to be a simple merchant who lives and works in the Underground's refugee camps, in truth this is a front for the leader of the Resistance opposing Grandmaster Meio.
Originally one of the members in the Gravitron's development team, he was a researcher with full confidence in the project, and probably believed its apparent goal of creating a clean and limitless power source. But once he discovered the true intentions behind its creation, he was incapable of dealing with such reality and drifted into the Underground. Now he remains in hiding, awaiting the right time to put an end to Meio's evil plans.
The Black Marketer was originally a member of the Gravitron Research Team's chief staff. Having total faith in his personal theories, he was fully engaged into its development, and was probably among the staff members who ignored the warnings of the one team member who realized the truth. Once the project was finished, however, he finally discovered Meio's true intent for the Gravitron, to be used as a mass-murdering weapon. He was one of several researchers who attempted to escape Meio's grasp once they discovered this truth, and was one of the very few who managed to survive. Escaping from the reality at hand, he drifted into Kazakh City's Underground.
As time passed, he unknowingly gained the trust of the refugees who escaped Kazakh City's opressive rule, eventually becoming the leader of the Resistance movement against Meio. From then on he became the Black Marketer, making a living out of fixing the scrapped material dumped into the Underground from the surface and selling the recycled products back to the citizens, a lifestyle that has also seen him a regular visitor of the surface world. But this is simply a front, as he patiently awaits for an opportunity to strike back at Meio's Army.
The Black Marketer resides in an abandoned train station, from where he protects the Black Market and refugee camp through a surveilance system, and encourages the inhabitants through a broadcast system. When Hiryu first appears, he considers him an intruder and a threat to their safety, but soon he's informed that he seeks Meio's destruction. Citing that "the enemy of my enemy is a friend", he decides to help him in his mission, though not without asking him first to free the refugees from the Millipede who terrorizes them in exchange of the "key" he seeks. Soon after Hiryu slays the creature, he's forced to confront a sudden raid of Insect Troopers in order to protect the refugees, and the Black Marketer provides remote assistance by redirecting nearby turrets into attacking the zombie-like troopers.
Once the crisis is averted, the Marketer makes good his word and shows Hiryu the key to open Meio's Tower, the Gravitron. Though the Marketer offers to provide the codes to shut it down, Hiryu turns him down as he plans on simply destroying it. Some time afterward, the Black Marketer meets with Hiryu again when he returns to the Underground following Professor Schlange's death. Hiryu tells him that he's destroyed both Gravitron units, but he still needs "another key", and the Marketer sends him to find the shaman Juroung, who possesses the power he needs to continue.
The Black Marketer is not seen again afterwards, but it can be presumed that, once he heard word of Meio's demise, he led the Resistance in recovering Kazakh City from the remains of his army, as he has promised the inhabitants of the refugee camp.
- Capcom (2013). "Character: Black Marketer". Capcom's official Strider site (Japanese). Retrieved December 20, 2013.
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider Hiryu (Japanese). Character Intel #20: Black Marketer
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider Hiryu (Japanese). Character Intel #23: Gravitron
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider Hiryu (Japanese). Character Intel #15: Prisoner
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider (English). Black Marketer: "True citizens, be vigilant and you will be rewarded. The time of our return to Kazakh is at hand."