- Not to be confused with Li Yuen.
Li Yan (リャン Ryan?) is a minor character in the anime series Sonic X and its comic series published by Archie Comics. He was once a fierce street thug and leader of a gang called the "Bruiser Boys" from Oriental City, who were seeking the red Chaos Emerald to sell in on the market for large sums of money, but he and his gang were thwarted by Knuckles the Echidna and his human ally Hawk. Humiliated, Yan found his chance for revenge once he was called by the S.O.N.I.C.X. organization to defeat Sonic the Hedgehog and his allies, to punish Knuckles for humiliating him.
Chaos Emerald Saga
After Knuckles meets the Bruiser Boys in a bar while looking for Hawk, he nearly initiates a fight until Yan enters the place and tells Knuckles that he knows where Hawk is. Knuckles follows him, only to fall into a jail cell where Hawk is also trapped. However, they find out that Yan is eavesdropping on their conversation with a hidden microphone inside the cell. The two quickly start up a general conversation which eventually leads to Knuckles yelling at the microphone, causing Yan to fall off his chair. Irritated, he goes to their cell, only to discover that Knuckles dug a way out for him and Hawk to escape. Yan isn't seen again afterwards.
Yan appears as a S.O.N.I.C.X. member, after the group captures Sonic and takes him to their hideout in Prison Island. He reveals to Sonic that he wants revenge against Knuckles for humiliating him, but Sonic dismisses them and escapes. Yan's gang tries to stop Sonic, but he outruns them easily and manages to escape.
Yan's greatest characteristic is his intimidation factor, which relies on his size and strength. He is known to be a short-tempered thug who is really proud of his position, but this all changed after Knuckles and Hawk came in. His pride was hurt and his "honor" shattered, causing him to create a revenge against the duo. When he is not angry, Yan is usually a serious, but still fearsome individual, keeping a straight face wherever he goes.
- Li Yan holds many unique traits among the other members of S.O.N.I.C.X.
- He is the only member whose revenge is not towards Sonic, but Knuckles. His aggression towards Sonic is a way to indirectly hurt Knuckles, or so he claims.
- He is the only member without any relations with the government, police, or G.U.N.
- He is the only group member who can truly be considered a criminal even before he lost his credibility.
- He is the only group member from another part of the world. In the anime, Yan comes from a small Chinese suburb, and he speaks with a Chinese accent.