|Affiliation||Lord Mei-Oh (former)|
Lord Toda (former)
Burning Dawn (former)
Cave Bandits (former)
Manji Cult (former)
|Weapon||Chinese Jian (former)|
|Status||Unknown, possibly possessing Ayame|
|First Appearance||Tenchu: Stealth Assassins|
Onikage (鬼陰?) is a demonic ninja and a seemingly immoral nemesis of Rikimaru. He was once a mortal shinobi that worshiped Lord Mei-Oh, the Demon King. Onikage served the demonic overlord for years as his representative and spy in the mortal realm.
Onikage has been involved in a personal feud with the House of Gohda for generations, and archenemy of Lord Gohda's retainers, the Azuma Ninja Clan. Onikage now exists only to torment Lord Gohda and the Azuma Grandmaster, Rikimaru.
Onikage was once a ninja that went by the name of Suzaku (朱雀), the Red Sparrow. He pretended to be blind by wearing a black blindfold and provided counsel and advice to Lord Toda and Lady Kagami as one of the Four Lords of the Burning Dawn. He murdered his lover, Yukihotaru, after she was defeated by Rikimaru at the Buddhist Temple, stating that he had "no love for weakness, only power."
Later, Rikimaru defeated him in a large ship during the final battle, before he fought against Lady Kagami. Both were slain by Rikimaru with Izayoi, who had recently come to be head of the Azuma Ninja Clan, instead of the traitorous Tatsumaru, who had also been seduced by the Red Sparrow and Lady Kagami. In the Red Sparrow's death scene, he mocks Rikimaru, saying that it is his destiny to become just like him. Rikimaru rebukes this, saying that he won't, since he serves a worthy master. After dying, the Red Sparrow rose dead amid the surrounding corpses and flames. Removing his disguise, revealing his new chalk white skin and red eyes, reborn as Onikage for the first time.
After abandoning the guise of the Red Sparrow, Onikage reappeared many years later to create chaos and prepare for Lord Mei-Oh in coming to Earth. Onikage arranged with some bandits for the capture of one of the Azuma Ninja, was behind the Manji Cult; decimated one of Lord Godha's castles and kidnapped Princess Kiku. Rikimaru fought him numerous times, unaware that Onikage and Suzaku were the same person. Onikage never revealed his former identity to him for unknown reasons. Rikimaru killed both Onikage and Lord Mei-Oh, sent back to their own realm by Izayoi.
Onikage was brought back to life by a sorcerer named Tenrai. He then served him while secretly making plans to bring back his true master, Lord Mei-Oh. Shortly upon revival, Onikage kills Tokubei Echigoya to silence him. In the Limestone Caverns, he uses a shadow of his former self to decoy Rikimaru's shadow, while attempting to use the Shichishito sword to resurrect Lord Mei-Oh, but Rikimaru emerged from the portal and made him flee.
Onikage would confront Rikimaru once again at Tenrai's fortress. Should Izayoi is fixed by using the metal from Shichishito, he would comment parts of Shichishito fused with Izayoi would drain it of its power in exchange. In either way however, Onikage still lost to Rikimaru and threw himself from the fort, blowing himself up. After Rikimaru killed Tenrai, Onikage informed the spirit of Lord Mei-Oh, that his time to return was at hand.
Three years later, Onikage returns and assumes the identity of Naotada Sekiya, Lord Gohda's longtime advisor. Assisted by a woman named Rinshi, they begin an elaborate plot to lead the clan into thinking a war is brewing. This eventually leads to Rikimaru being marked as traitor. He seized the castle and burned it while Rikimaru and Ayame were led to different places. In the extended ending to the game, Onikage is apparently victorious having possessed Ayame.
Onikage calls upon the forces of darkness, granting him many arcane abilities. He usually fights bare-handed, using fast and powerful Tae Kwon Do-like kicks. As the Red Sparrow in his humble shinobi beginnings he wielded a Jian sword with great skill. It is Lord Mei-Oh (or in one case, Tenrai) who has frequently resurrected Onikage from the dead and with Onikage becoming less human and more demonic in appearance each time. Onikage shows sadomasochistic tendencies, delighting in the torment and death of others, but also in his own deaths. This is why he eventually gives up using weaponry altogether, relying mostly on leg-based melee combat, since he has a strength far beyond of ordinary human.
- His name means Demon Shadow: "Oni" (Demon) and "Kage" (Shadow), which makes sense considering he served under Lord Mei-Oh.
- In the original Tenchu game, the player can make Onikage a playable character by entering the debug mode, spawning Onikage and changing the player's POV to that of Onikage. Although only his roundhouse and flying kicks are initially available to attack with, Onikage can still use any items picked up.
- Onikage is one of the playable characters featured in the two player versus mode of Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven. In Tenchu: Time of the Assassins he has his own story mode.
- Onikage has on occasionally displayed a strange attraction to Ayame, once saying that she is exemplary mortal and that a death by her is a - beautiful death. The last we see of them so far (in the extended ending to Tenchu 4), Onikage is apparently possessing Ayame.