Like all other lords in the game, Ichijo can put up a difficult fight when directly confronted.
He was born the heir of the House of Ichijo, a samurai clan that has ruled over Utakata for generations, and inherited the position of head of the clan from his father. This has shaped his personality and views of rulership, as he believes it is his birthright as the heir of the Ichijo clan to govern Utakata without question.
The House of Ichijo and the Asuka Ninja clan have long formed an allegiance to protect the peace of the land, however, when an strange incident causes the obliteration of the ninja village, neighbouring rulers and ambitious social figures see this as the perfect opportunity to seize Utakata from the Ichijo clan.
Way of the Ninja Edit
Unaware of Goh's survival, he attempts to sway Sadame to his side, to no avail, and is deeply confused when Goh storms the castle claiming to be looking for his father. While at first startled by this attitude, he becomes more understanding of Goh's amnesia and tries to guide him to his side to continue the Ichijo-Asuka allegiance and fend of the enemy factions. Because of this allegiance, Ichijo expects Goh's full cooperation, and will become increasingly distressed if he believes the ninja is conspiring with the enemy.
Tales of the Ninja Edit
During Shinobido: Tales of the Ninja he gets married to Princess Azami, a noblewoman from a neighbour province. Enemy factions will attempt to stop this wedding, and thus avoid Ichijo gaining new allies, by assassinating the princess, but Ichijo contracts the services of the Asuka to protect them and the ceremony goes without further complications.
Revenge of Zen Edit
"How could this be...? It's happening again!"By Shinobido 2: Revenge of Zen he remains the ruler of Utakata. However, the Kazama Clan, once part of the Ichijo clan, rebels against him while the Amurita Faith gains new strenght. It is certain for Ichijo that another war is about to break out.
He demonstrates basic knowledge of political warfare and tactics expected from someone of his position. He undestands well the need of funding and allegiances in war and will attempt to precure them as quick and safely as possible. Because of his privileged position and belief of noble birthright he does not seem to understand the need of charisma and public reputation, but some missions suggest he still holds a degree of popularity amongs the peasantry, and his station grants him popularity amongst nobility and support from the central provinces of Japan.
As the heir of a samurai family, he is skilled in traditional kenjutsu. Out of all the daimyo he can be considered the strongest by virtue of his attack speed, resilence and safe swordmanship which allows little window for counterattacks, but his strict stances also make him predictable. He seems to favor the "Overhead" (Men) stance while in combat, an aggresive stance.
He seems to be somewhat well intentioned and caring of his citizens, specially in comparison to other daimyo, but this could be influenced by his strong belief in noblesse obligue and birthright, typical of old samurai classes. This belief in his entitlement influences his relationships, notably in the case of the Asuka Ninja, as the clan held a generations-long allegiance with the Ichijo family he expects their full cooperation, despite the ninja clan's neutral stance on politics and factions.
Depending on the situations he can be a confident or cowardly person. He becomes relaxed and somewhat braggart when things go his way but cowardly and quick to despair if this is not the case. This is also the case when directly confronted, he tries to remain cool and introduces himself in a teatric fashion before combat, but will yell out of fear if the ninja get an advantage.
Overall, it is shown that despite all his noble posturing and false airs of bravery he is a deeply insecure person. This insecurity is what makes him so quick to upset and needy of allegiances. It seems that Ichijo himself undestands this deep weakness of character, as his ending in Way of the Ninja has him giving up his position as daimyo to walk the land on his own, and instruct some of his followers to seek Goh for a more fitting leader.
- Ichijo seems to be inspired by Tenchu's Lord Gohda. While both characters are caring rulers to their subjects, Ichijo lacks Gohda's courage, strong will, and absolute loyalty of the Asuka clan (Unlike Gohda, who has the remaining Azuma's loyalty).
- Ichijo is an admirer of poetry, a common hobby amongst noble classes of his time period. He claims to write his own poems from time to time and usually reacts well to gifted books and stories, in particular the "Tales of the Samurai" series.
- He is playable as an alternate skin for Goh and Zen in Way of the Ninja and Revenge of Zen respectively.