Even if you play KoF mostly for the competitive side of things and don’t really care about the game’s story, you must have at least spent some time in XIII’s Arcade mode to unlock Billy and Saiki. In the process, you may have read or skipped all the pre-match exchanges between every pair of characters that meets in the game’s Arcade mode.
Some of those conversations reference story elements from previous games, and not just from the KoF series, so new players might not be familiar with some of the referenced names and events. Since the stories and characters SNK has developed over the years are among the strongest aspects of their body of work, it’s worth trying to clarify some of them.
She doesn’t have a major role in KoF XIII’s primary story, but as a famous character she was heavily requested during XII’s release. Mai was therefore given considerable focus in XIII’s promotional materials, so she seems like an interesting character to start with.
In her match with Takuma, he mentions someone called Hanzo: