One of the major characters in Final Fantasy VII (SquareSoft, 1998). Hojo can be thought of as the indirect cause of all the evil in the FF7 world. Here is a sketch of his appearances in the game:
  • Cloud and party see Hojo wandering through the Shinra building. Not much of his identity is revealed.
  • The party meets him face to face in attempting to rescue Aeris. A new party member, Red 13 is discovered. Red 13 was subjected to many experiments at the hands of Hojo.
  • Hojo can be found next at Junon beach, but it is not a necessary finding. He talks to Cloud somewhat here.
  • After this point, Hojo is mostly a character remembered from the past. There are several FMV sequences at Niebelheim, and some at Vincent's waterfall.
  • The last time the party meets Hojo is to fight him. He is attempting to fire a shot from the Sister Ray at Sephiroth. At this point, the party learns how deeply Hojo is connected to Sephiroth and the Genova project. The energy for a shot from the Sister Ray is at about 83% when the party finally fights him. This is the last necessary boss fight for the party before they attempt to go for Sephiroth directly.
Source: over 300 hours of playing the game on my PC.


In Japanese history, Hojo was the family name of two powerful warrior clans.

The first Hojo clan was a distant branch line of the Taira, and thus descended from the Imperial house. Lords of backwater Izu domain, the Hojo seemed destined for obscurity until a young Minamoto Yoritomo was exiled to their domain by Taira Kiyomori following the Heiji Incident in 1159. Yoritomo found favor with the Hojo lord, Tokimasa, and married his daughter Masako. Tokimasa and the Hojo then wisely sided with Yoritomo and the Minamoto during the Gempei War, initiating their rise to national prominence. Following Yoritomo's death in 1199, Masako and Tokimasa engineered a system whereby the Minamoto shoguns remained figureheads while the Hojo actually ruled Japan via a perpetual regency. The hegemony of the Hojo bakufu lasted from Tokimasa's appointment as regent in 1203 until its overthrow by Imperial loyalists in 1336.

The second Hojo clan was founded by Hojo Soun (1432-1519) during the Sengoku Era. Although of no relation to the original Hojo, Soun took on the name in honor of the original clan, because his original name of Ise Shinkuro did not sound as grand. Soun rose from obscure origins to become master of Izu at age 60 by taking advantage of internal disorder. Allying himself with the Imagawa and Takeda clans, he extended his power across the Kanto, battling the Uesugi and capturing Sagami and Musashi provinces, establishing his headquarters at Odawara Castle. Upon Soun's death in 1519, his heirs remained a force to be reckoned with until the clan's elimination in the Seige of Odawara Castle in 1590. Because of his independence from the shogunal power structure, Soun is considered by historians to be the first true daimyo.

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