"Topknot. He's the current clan boss. I get the impression there was no love lost between him and Broken Tusk...But he's given me time to prove myself. He tells me it's time to do it again."
Machiko Noguchi regarding Top-Knot (from Aliens vs. Predator: War)

Top-Knot was a Yautja Leader and Clan Leader. Initially subservient to Dachande, Top-Knot would become the leader of his own clan, after the latter was killed during a Xenomorph infestation on the planet of Ryushi.

Top-Knot would also recruit Machiko Noguchi and enrol her into Predator culture. However, once she realized that he and his clan had attacked humans on the planet of Bunda, she betrayed him and sided with her own kind.


Duel with Dachande[]


Top-Knot stares down Dachande.

"A guy would have to be a real hero -- or a real fool to butt heads with the chief."
Scott Conover to Tom Strandberg (from Aliens vs. Predator (1989 short story))

Within the Mother Ship Ne'dtesei, a hunting party of Un-blooded were preparing for their initiation - a Xenomorph hunt. Top-Knot had defeated a fellow Predator in a fight for the right to choose their hunting grounds. However, upon the current leader Dachande hearing of this, he immediately left his quarters to step up and challenge Top-Knot. The two stared each other down, Top-Knot towering over Dachande, before the latter initiated the fight with a headbutt. The two Yautja engaged in a brawl, though it did not last, as the greater-skilled Dachande overpowered Top-Knot and threw him out of the arena, earning him the right to choose the planet of Ryushi to engage in the hunt. Instead, Top-Knot begrudgingly went on to lead a pack in another hunt on a marsh-covered planet that the party had seeded with Xenomorphs.

Assuming the mantle and recruiting Machiko[]

"Hi, mind if I tag along?"
Machiko Noguchi to Top-Knot (from Aliens vs. Predator (1991 short story))
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Top-Knot notices Machiko's mark.

Following the death of Dachande after a Xenomorph infestation on Ryushi, Top-Knot would go on to assume the role of Clan Leader within his own Mother Ship, Shell. He would eventually arrive at Ryushi two years later with a fresh pack of youngsters to train, also curious about the ultimate fate of Dachande. Machiko would go on to save an Un-blooded from an attacking Xenomorph and presented herself to Top-Knot. The latter examined her closely, and after noticing Dachande's mark on her forehead, welcomed her into his clan, letting her join them in their forthcoming Xenomorph hunt.

Initiation hunt[]

"Top-Knot is the Leader. A veteran of many hunts. His word is law."
Aliens vs. Predator: Blood Time

Top-Knot, alongside Two-Stripes.

At some point, he would lead an initiation hunt with several Un-blooded on an exotic planet infested with Xenomorphs. Two planet days passed, with Top-Knot attempting to track any traces of a Xenomorph presence. Suddenly, the young hunter Light-Stepper discovered a carcass with a ruptured chest within some foliage, but fellow Un-blooded Two-Stripes claimed it was he who found it. Top-Knot came between them, and after giving some thought, credited Two-Stripes with the discovery.


Top-Knot is unimpressed with Two-Stripes' treachery.

As the Un-blooded began searching for their prey, Light-Stepper was suddenly attacked by a Xenomorph, and despite managing to kill it, was gravely wounded. Two-Stripes treacherously stole Light-Stepper's kill and left him for dead. However, two Yautja managed to rescue Light-Stepper and bring him to Top-Knot. With Two-Stripes' disgraceful act exposed, he was punished by being stripped and marooned on the planet by Top-Knot, left at the mercy of the Xenomorphs.

Hunting a Queen[]


Top-Knot leads his clan in capturing a Queen.

Roughly a year since her enrolment, Top-Knot would bring Machiko along on a raid on a Xenomorph-infested planet with the goal of capturing a Queen. The hunting party landed on the planet, and would fight tenaciously through endless swarms of Xenomorphs, eventually reaching a hive and their target Queen. The pack restrained her, but she partially broke free after killing the hunter Three-Spot. Machiko acted quickly and grabbed the loose coil, controlling the situation. However, Top-Knot was outraged at her breaking rank and disobeying orders; he subsequently relegated her to the advanced guard, a mediocre position.

The pack finally managed to bring the Queen aboard their ship, and Top-Knot sealed the outside hatch, sacrificing a couple of hunters for the sake of their mission. The pack retreated from the Queen, and with Top-Knot looking on, Un-blooded Shorty sealed the bulkhead, with Machiko subsequently trapped inside with the creature. However, she managed to escape and sever several of the Queen's fingers. Despite this triumphant act, Machiko received no praise from Top-Knot or his peers, the group silently turning her back on her, much to her frustration.

Bunda hunt[]


Top-Knot consults Noguchi.

At some period, Light-Stepper, now a Leader, returned as the sole-survivor of a hunt on Ryushi. Noticing a USCM bandanna over his arm, a shocked Machiko overstepped her boundaries and touched the bandanna, only for her to be struck away by the insulted Leader. Whilst recomposing herself, Top-Knot approached her and informed her to redeem herself by duelling with Shorty, which would determine if she was to join their next hunt over the planet Bunda.

Machiko ultimately lost the fight, though only due to Shorty and his peers cheating, losing her place in the hunt and forcing her to stay behind in the ship.

Top-Knot and his pack would land on Bunda and engage in a Xenomorph hunt. Top-Knot would witness a subordinate kill a Xeno in a close battle, and subsequently blooded him him, before the pack noticed a human ship fly past them. Top-Knot's clan would begin attacking the humans. With their distress signal caught on Machiko's radio, she opted to betray Top-Knot, leaving his clan for good after killing two Predators and unleashing the Queen within the ship, before taking a ship to the planet's surface to assist Brian Ellis, Katherine Lara, and Martin Jess.

Upon assisting the humans, Top-Knot and his clan encountered Machiko and the group, who were also cornered by the Queen. Top-Knot condemned Machiko as a nemesis, but they were subsequently attacked by Ellis in a Berserker suit, causing them to retreat. Eventually, Machiko, Ellis, Lara and Jess were able to escape after hijacking Top-Knot's shuttle, leaving a Facehugged Lucas Briggs behind in the Berserker suit to slaughter Xenos and Predator alike.

The Bunda hunt was ultimately a disaster for Top-Knot, and his subsequent whereabouts are unknown.

Personality and Traits[]

An experienced warrior and veteran of several hunts, Top-Knot was only second to Dachande in terms of his status and prowess aboard the Ne'dtesei, a feat that would cause moments of tension between the two.

Unlike Dachande, who was more forgiving and patient of insolence, Top-Knot was a firm leader who tolerated no acts of defiance or treachery, harshly punishing the young Two-Stripes to a grisly demise, as well as leaving Machiko for dead at the hands of a Queen after she had broken rank and disrespected him.

In spite of this, he did treat Machiko with a modicum of fairness, providing her with her own 'luxury' quarters within the ship and serving as something of a mentor to the human. According to her, he could speak and understand English, though he deliberately chose not, communicating with her instead with a basic sign-language known as 'Silent Hand'. Regardless, after she betrayed him, Top-Knot disowned Machiko and considered her a sworn enemy to his clan.



  • The name Top-Knot refers to the dreadlocks that are knotted on the top of this particular Predator's head. Historically, many Samurai warriors wore their hair in the famous "top knot" style, emblematic of their status in society.
  • Top-Knot notably does not appear in the novelization of the original series; Dachande's duel aboard the Ne'dtesei was instead with Tichinde in the book, and the character of Vk'leita recruited Machiko.
  • Top-Knot became a Clan Leader after Dachande's death, though it is unknown if this was due to a power vacuum left in his absence, nor if Top-Knot's Clan was itself the same one led by Dachande.
  • Top-Knot is one of few Yautja to appear in more than one Predator-related story. Other examples include the Devil, Light-Stepper and Ahab.
    • Top-Knot himself ties with Ahab for the mantle of the most recurring appearances - appearing in six stories.