General Mikiel (the origin of the name is currently unknown), known in Japan as either the Kazakh High Officer (カザフ高官) or (collectively with the other officers) the Holy Marquis (侯王, lit. Marquis King), is a character from the original Arcade Strider and all its ports. He returns as one of the characters in the 2014 Strider, under the name Military Officer Mikiel (軍政官ミキエル) in Japan.
Mikiel is one of Grandmaster Meio's followers and his direct representative in the Kazakh Federation, holding total control of both political and military power in his behalf. As a veteran military officer, he's also Meio's appointed overseer of his army on Earth. Mikiel's body is his main weapon, having willingly subjected it to mechanical modifications, which leaves whether he's still a living being or not a mystery.
Mikiel is a corrupt and despot leader, governing over his subjects through fear and opression, demanding total obedience and efficience and punishing any insurrection against his or his master's rule with incarceration or even death. Constantly scheming and power-hungry, he greatly enjoys displaying his authority over others and gloating over the military might under his control. Also an opportunist, Mikiel will gladly convert to whoever is in charge at the moment for a chance to maintain a high-ranking position.
Mikiel is the head of the ruling party that governs the entirety of Eurasia from within the Russian capital city of St. Petersburg in Kazakh, known as the city with the closest ties to Grandmaster Meio. Since Kazakh was Meio's first target upon appearing on Earth, it's likely Mikiel surrendered to him and became a loyal subordinate, converting the city into one of Meio's bases. By unknown means (though likely related to Meio), Mikiel and the other 23 officers in the council possess the ability to merge into a mechanical monster known as Ouroboros, the Iron Ruler.
Mikiel's opressive and reckless driving of Kazakh's political power has led Eastern Europe into a time of turmoil, and incited the creation of a Rebel Army in constant armed conflict with government troops. This in turn led to Meio's eventual fall when they sought the Striders to contract an assassin, Hiryu, to eliminate him.
After infiltrating St. Petersburg and slashing his way past defense machines and soldiers alike, Hiryu finally reaches the Grand Mosque's council chamber. Mikiel greets Hiryu on his arrival and then signals the entire council to merge with him and form Ouroboros. Unfazed, Hiryu easily brings Ouroboros down. Apparently having survived the ordeal and back in his human form, Mikiel taunts Hiryu, saying he'll never defeat Grandmaster Meio, and that he has control over everything in the world.
A decorated war general, Mikiel turned to Grandmaster Meio's service upon his appearance on Earth. As a military officer in Meio's Army, he seized control of Kazakh City's military, government and law enforcements in the name of Meio. Known for his very particular hobby of collecting weapons, most of which he installed throughout the Military Ring to serve as traps. Having lost half of his body during a previous war, he had his body rebuilt as a weapon, effectively becoming "part of his collection". His hobby also led to the creation of the heavily-armed "Tornado", which he calls the "culmination of his collection". Its schizophrenic internal structure which only he can handle and its exhorbitant production costs, however, meant he owns the only one in existence.
Mikiel maintains an opressive rule over Kazakh City, constantly broadcasting commands all over the city for its citizens to be obedient and perform their assigned duties to the empire, as well as reminding them of the punishment for disobedience, law infringment or rebellion and encouraging them to observe and report any strange activities from their neighbors. Once Hiryu breaks into the city's historical district, he places the area under martial law while Meio's bounty hunters deal with him.
He's first seen in a meeting with Solo in his chambers, discussing Hiryu's progress on an holographic representation of the city. While he displays confidence in the Winds, Solo believes they will not be enough, expecting their defeat to be "inevitable". Mikiel later contacts Solo again, communicating Grandmaster Meio's desire to contract the bounty hunter to hunt down Hiryu. Both Solo and the Winds are defeated in battle, however, and Hiryu eventually faces Mikiel inside the Military Headquarters.
Mikiel first sends his troops at him, but this proves futile. Facing the Strider, Mikiel notes his training as impressive, but remains confident in his superior speed. A pursuit ensues as Mikiel lures Hiryu across several hangars while shooting at him and claiming he governs over Eurasia and that, as long as he's alive, his death is inevitable. Finally reaching his prized Tornado, Mikiel boards it in an attempt to defeat Hiryu. His tank destroyed in battle, Mikiel takes out his gun, thinking that he still has the upper hand. Unfazed, Hiryu's Cypher reflects the projectile back at Mikiel, ending the corrupt general's life.
Skills and Abilities
- Main article: Ouroboros
Original Mikiel shows no fighting skills of note, its only ability being the capacity to merge with the Kazakh council to form the powerful Ouroboros.
- Main article: Tornado
Thanks to his body modifications, General Mikiel has enhanced strength and speed. His self-called "cat-like speeds and reflexes" allows him to keep a decent lead against Hiryu, and the strength of his mechanical legs lets him perform quick long-distance backward leaps or jumps to further elude his enemies. In battle, Mikiel has no qualms over fighting dirty, prefering to engage enemies at a distance and lure them into traps, or to directly order his Troopers to fight in his stead. Thanks to his mechanical body, he avoids direct confrontation by quickly escaping as the enemy approaches him and attacking from afar. He actually refers to this strategy as a "repositioning" technique.
Mikiel wields a custom long-barreled decorated gun with the Army's logo emblazoned on its side. The weapon rapid-fires small fiery projectiles which bounce off surfaces on contact, making dodging them difficult. His weapon also counts with a long bayonet knife for use if his enemies catch up to him.
Strider: Mikiel's original design bears a close resemblance to Mikhail Gorbachev, who was at the time of the game's relese the head of the state in the Soviet Union. While he's only referred to by generic titles in Japanese, his English name appears to be an altered version of Gorbachev's first name, Mikhail. The actual source of this name, however, remains unclear as it is not featured in any known official English source or manual for the original game and instead became popular through its use in fan websites. His name has been written "Michiel" sometimes as well.
When first revealed, Mikiel was called the "Russian governor" (ロシア統政官).
Strider (2014): General Mikiel was first confirmed in the January 2014 issue of gaming magazine Famitsu, a few days before he was added to the official website. Mikiel was designed by illustrator Manami Yoshino. His design combines his original appearance (albeit now as a younger adult instead of an old, graying man) with a full cyborg body, possibly a nod to his Ouroboros transformation. His long-barreled weapon appears to be loosely inspired on the Shadow Tag Bullets as well, and his encounter with Hiryu could be interpreted as a game of tag, furthering the reference.
Although known as "Military Officer Mikiel" in-game and in the official site, a few select sources instead use a name which literally translates to "General Mikiel" (ミキエル将軍). Due to the original character's lack of name in Japan, most Japanese sites covering his inclusion described him as a brand new character.
The character obstructing the path to Grandmaster Meio in the Strider board may represent either General Mikiel or a council officer. The character is called a "shōnin" (possibly translated as "saint", in reference to the council's moniker of "Holy Marquis") and his sprite, while small and mostly lacking details, appears to be wearing the council's uniform and star-marked hat. This resemblance is lost in the manual's official art, however, where he's drawn as a bearded man with a furhat and a red long coat.
The council officer representing General Mikiel, simply called "Holy Marquis #1", appears in two of the three mini-stories in Gesen Owarae. In the first story the head of the council tricks the other members into forming Ouroboros, but teleports away using the ninja's log substitution technique before finishing, leaving Ouroboros with a log instead of his head. In the second story he's impatiently awaiting for Hiryu to show up, but instead witness Strobaya attacking the council after Hiryu skipped his boss battle. In this comic the head council is drawn as a young adult man reflecting the officer's sprite design instead of the cutscene mugshot.
RYU-TMR no Retro Game Kaitai Gekijō
The whole Kazakh council makes a cameo appearance in this video game-centric manga, in the chapter where its two protagonists (Iria and Risetto) join Hiryu in his quest. The council discuss Strobaya's defeat against Hiryu, agreeing he was just a mid boss anyway and claiming the Striders are child's play when in front of the 24 officers. The head council then gives the signal and the officers merge into Ouroboros, only for Hiryu to quickly destroy him with no effort.
As in Gesen Owarae, the head officer is drawn based on the younger-looking in-game sprite instead of his old man appearance.
- Sega (September 1990, Mega Drive). Strider Hiryû (Japanese). Instruction manual, Pg. 20
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider Hiryu (Japanese). Character Intel #22: Military Officer Mikiel
- Strider Development Staff (March 1989). "Strider Hiryu Characters Original Image Collection". Gamest (30). Pg. 98-99.
- Capcom (October 2006, PlayStation). Gamebook: Strider Hiryu (Japanese). Pg. 18. ISBN 4-86233-076-2.
- Sega (September 1990, Mega Drive). Strider Hiryû (Japanese). Instruction manual, Pg. 4
- Capcom (2013). "Character: General Mikiel". Capcom's official Strider site (Japanese). Retrieved January 23, 2014.
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider Hiryu (Japanese). Character Intel #26: Tornado
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider (English). General Mikiel: "I'm not running away... I'm only repositioning."
- Zuru (October 1, 1988). "Preview: Strider Hiryû". Gamest (25). Pg. 5
- Capcom (February 2014, multi). Strider Hiryu (Japanese). Online Game Manual: Character Introduction. Accessed August 07, 2017