- "Ichikawa, I won't be giving up after all. I've gotta get moving if I want to stand by her side!"
— Kafka to Leno Ichikawa
Kafka Hibino (
He is a Defense Force officer and a former worker for the Professional Kaiju Cleaning Company Monster Sweeper Inc. After a kaiju managed to enter his body, he obtained the ability to turn himself into a humanoid kaiju. He was formerly a member of the Third Division, but was recently transferred to the First Division.
Kafka Hibino is a tall man with dark brown spiky hair. He has large eyes with small irises, thin eyebrows, and a mild goatee on his chin. He sports a rather muscular frame, except for his slightly pudgy belly. He usually has a jovial expression on his face.
Working for Monster Sweeper Inc., Kafka once regularly wore the company's uniform; it is a grey coverall with a red Monster Sweeper logo on the right side of the chest (similar to a nametag).
Kafka's Kaiju Form is mostly covered with coal-black scales and plates, cyan energy sometimes glowing from between the cracks (most notably when he is charging a powerful attack). However, his head, spine, and clavicles appear to be made from exposed bone, resulting in these features being a contrasting white. Large plates with dorsal spines cover the back of his head and neck (above his shoulders) the very top one being white. As for his head, it has been described as a 'demonic skull-face' with two short, thick horns, a hole for a nose, and sharp, exposed teeth. His eyes are black sclera with a cyan iris. Seemingly originating from them are several cracks, the left eye having several chunks of the 'mask' missing on the lower left part.
When out of control, some of the Kaiju Form's features become more pronounced. Such as; general size relative to people, elongated horns, more predominate dorsal plates, mouth opening beyond the skull-like mask, and eyes turning entirely cyan (without pupils or a definable beginning or end to his sclera).
Kafka has a comically childish personality in most situations, (resulting in him being an easy target for teasing by other characters) while he is a determined and dedicated individual in serious situations (he tries his best to do everything to succeed, whether individually or for the betterment of the group). Hibino is also a genuinely caring and kind person long before he joins the Defense Force, resulting in the older man going out of his way to help and care for others, regardless if they want it or not. Some examples of this behavior are when Kafka offers solutions to inconveniences, saves people from imminent danger, and sometimes scolds them for not taking better care of themselves (a bit hypocritical of someone who puts the needs of others before themselves).
It's for these reasons Hibino does everything he can to not disappoint or sadden those who have put their trust and belief in him. Having to break that connection in times of need causes him to become insecure and unsure of what he will be able to achieve in the future.
Thus, when Kafka experiences losing control of his transformed body, the horror of seeing himself become the thing he's hated since childhood concludes with him taking drastic action to end the situation. Later on, the fear of losing control and hurting those he cares about prevents him from being able to use the Kaiju Form. Up until his friend, Kikoru Shinomiya, encourages him to trust and have faith in his comrades and the Defense Force.
Kafka seems to get annoyed when he is labeled as an "old man" and always reminds younger people of his condition of seniority when called names.
Power & Abilities
Overall Abilities: Kafka eventually learned to use this power on a more advanced level, allowing him to change specific parts of his body without a full transformation; conversely, this allows him to outwardly appear completely human if he so chooses. Unfortunately, his kaiju nature still remains, making it nearly impossible for Kafka to presently draw out beyond 1% of released power from the Defense Force combat suit he wears. Kafka's kaiju form has a fortitude level of 9.8, the highest fortitude level seen so far in the entire series, making him one of the most powerful kaiju to ever exist, also known as a Daikaiju. He is able to overpower other kaiju rather easily, even those as powerful as Kaiju No. 9 who has a fortitude level of 8.5, without even tiring out. Kafka has shown so much dexterity with his new form that he could resist an onslaught from Vice-Captain Soshiro Hoshina and disarm him without injuring him.
Kafka's transformation appears to get the better of him sometimes, resulting in a raging Kaiju No. 8. Kafka retains his individuality and sense of self when this occurs, leaving him to helplessly watch his body rampage without his consent. Furthermore, Kafka's body, due to his age, can't take the full strength of his blows and will eventually be damaged whenever Kafka abuses his powers.
- Release Force: Kafka is the only Defense Force troop member to ever release 0% of their combat suit's power, which later increases to 1%.
- Kaiju Knowledge: Kafka's time as a member of the kaiju disposal team gives him immense knowledge on kaiju anatomy, using it to identify weaknesses and the type of kaiju he's facing. Even when working with his Defense Force suit, from which Kafka can only draw 1% of its power, he is able to easily pierce through a kaiju's corpse and dig into it to further study it and localize the core.
- Kaiju Transformation: After his body was invaded by a kaiju, Kafka gained the ability to transform into an incredibly powerful humanoid kaiju himself.
- Immense Strength: In kaiju form, Kafka gains immense physical strength to the point where he can even annihilate a Honju with just a single punch. Kafka is also able to use this strength to cover great distances in a few leaps. Even with only part of his body transformed, Kafka could easily lift the company's car, making Kikoru Shinomiya believe that he had his own Defense Force suit. His strength in his Kaiju form is said to be on par to Isao Shinomiya.
- Immense Durability: In his kaiju form, due to his exceptionally thick skin, Kafka is extremely resilient to the point of tanking shots and coming out unscathed. He was able to survive and to defeat the combined power of Isao Shinomiya and Kaiju No.2. His pain resistance is so strong, he barely felt any pain when Soshiro slashed him multiple times.
- Immense Speed and Reflexes: In his kaiju form, Kafka possesses immense speed and reflexes. He is able to evade Soshiro's extremely fast sword attacks with relative ease. Even when not fully transformed, Kafka has shown to be able to run at tremendous speeds, impressing even Soshiro himself.
- Energy Emission: Kafka is able to power up his body with electrical-like energy that flows through his body and spine. Usually, the energy is used to make some of his attacks more powerful.
- Energy Beam: By concentrating the energy in his spine and opening his mouth, Kafka is able to release a powerful energy beam that can easily neutralize attacks from individuals as powerful as Kaiju No. 9.
- Energy Boost: Working in tandem with his shapeshifting powers, his energy manipulation can take the form of energy flowing out of his body's pores like thrusters, enhancing strength and speed of his attacks.
- Shapeshifting: Kafka can manipulate parts of his body, manifesting tentacles and even smaller heads and limbs on his body, and can turn his tongue into a long-range capturing weapon. He can also use this power, in conjunction with his energy and super strength, to shapeshift his elbows into thrusters, for more powerful blows or to morph his legs for better stability. Having more fine control over it, he’s able to block weapons by changing any area of his body into a jaw to grab hold onto bladed attacks.
- Gigantification: When out of control, Kaiju No. 8 can grow in size.
- Regeneration: Kafka is able to regenerate from attacks and regrow back limbs, but doing so consumes his stamina. When going out of control, Kafka's body can instantly regrow from his core after detaching it from his body.
- Kaiju Localization Sense: Kafka is able to sense when a kaiju is going to appear near him or already within the vicinity of his present whereabouts. He is also able to determine what type the kaiju is if he has encountered it before. More powerful kaiju can trigger this ability even when Kafka is not transformed.
- Kafka's favorite things are the Defense Force, curry, hamburgers, alcohol, and cigarettes (he has refrained himself from that before joining the Defense Force).
- Kafka's kaiju has the strange feature of making him pee from his nipples.
- Ever since being transformed into a kaiju, Kafka's heart has been replaced with a core (the weak point present in the body of every kaiju).
- Kafka's namesake is very likely Franz Kafka, the author of The Metamorphosis. Like Kafka Hibino, the protagonist of the book, Gregor Samsa is suddenly turned into a giant insect and struggles to live in his new form.
- It's worth noting that both Kafka Hibino and Gregor Samsa found out about their new forms when trying to get up from a bed.
- Kafka's surname contains the kanji for "day" (日), "ratio" (比), and "field" (野).