Sun is a tan-skinned boy with short spiky light-blonde hair and dark-gray eyes in Volume 1–3, but as of Volume 4, his eyes are blue. He wears two red wrist bracers over black fingerless gloves and an open loose-collared white jacket with no shirt underneath, displaying his muscular physique. He also wears blue cargo pants tied up with a white belt. He wears white bandages on his legs and has a chain hanging from the belt loop on the right side of his pants.
He sports black and yellow sneakers and wears a twisted golden necklace around his neck, replaced by a black cord in Volume 2, with a round pendant bearing his monkey emblem. As a result of his Faunus lineage, he has a long prehensile monkey tail the same color as his hair. Sun hides his weapon under the back of his shirt.
In "Of Runaways and Stowaways", Sun wears a brown-hooded cloak while following Blake home to Menagerie. He abandons the cloak while fighting the Sea Feilong with Blake and the ship. In the concept art, this outfit is called "Stealth Sun".
In his first appearance, Sun is shown to be fun-loving and mischievous, with little regard for the law - stowing away on a ship, thanking the crew for the ride during his escape, throwing a banana peel in a detective's face and stealing apples. He has a lot of self-confidence, referring to himself as a "great stowaway". He also has a strong crush on Blake Belladonna.
In conversation, Sun is very laid-back and casual. This translates to his choice of clothing - he heavily dislikes wearing formal attire. He is also kind and patient. When first meeting Blake, he is willing to listen to her story and waiting for her to open up for nearly two days, bearing with her "small talk and weird looks". He is not afraid to give his opinion and has a dislike for those who regard themselves as "holier than thou" or "use force to get whatever they want", such as the White Fang.
Sun also seems to be willing to help others, regardless of whether he is asked or not, even if he barely knows them. In his second appearance, he goes out of his way to help Blake, whom he had just met and barely knew. This quality is further demonstrated when he readily volunteers to help Team RWBY with their investigation, despite both Blake and Ruby Rose stating their opposition to his involvement.
He also does not like it when people dear to him have to risk their lives; he shows great opposition to Ruby and Weiss Schnee endangering themselves to search for Jaune Arc and Pyrrha Nikos during the Grimm attack on Beacon Academy. However, Sun is willing to put himself in harm's way for those he cares for.
In Volumes 4 and 5, Sun persistently remains at Blake's side and continues to try to help her in any way he can. He expresses wisdom in pointing out that Blake's friends want to fight for her, and that she should not try to distance her friends because she feels responsible for bringing harm to them. He begins to personally take Blake's campaign against the White Fang to heart, believing it's the right thing to do and wholeheartedly pursuing the same ends. In that respect, Blake believes Sun to be the embodiment of the word "earnest".
Powers and Abilities
Sun has been shown to be quite athletic, relying on parkour for mobility. He is capable of jumping large distances and can utilize his tail as an extra appendage. He was able to leap off a building, land on Roman Torchwick, and then perform a front handspring and a front-flip before coming to a stop.
Sun is capable of jumping large distances between cars and still being able to move without losing his balance. Sun may also possess night vision, which is a common trait amongst Faunus. In "Painting the Town..." he manages to find and escape out a window with Blake after she cut the power at a White Fang meeting. In the battle against the Sea Feilong, Sun uses three of the clones from his Semblance to launch Blake hundreds of feet into the air, yet seemingly made the same distance himself with one jump.
Sun is also a very skilled climber, claiming to climb trees all the time and having done so to reach Team RWBY's dorm room, which is implied to be several stories above the ground.
Sun seems to be highly adept in martial arts, able to fend off many members of the White Fang single-handedly without taking a hit and using his tail as an extra appendage during combat. He also seems to be exceptionally skilled with his weapon, which has two forms. In its staff form, every hit triggers a small explosion and it is able to deflect projectiles and blasts while spun quickly in a defensive stance. Sun is also able to emit a shockwave by slamming his staff to the ground. Sun's use of his staff is similar to the Japanese martial art Bōjutsu, which is a form of martial arts that uses a bō staff.
While his staff is in its secondary "gun-chucks" form, he is able to fire shots at his enemies from both weapons simultaneously, with bullets similar to those found in Ember Celica. This lets him keep a steady barrage on his opponent with at least one weapon at any given time without losing the ability to defend himself. He appears to have above-average strength, being able to send multiple White Fang members flying with a sweep of his staff. This may be attributed to his Faunus heritage. He also has above-average speed and endurance, such as being able to run constantly without showing signs of fatigue, as was the same in is fight with Roman. Sun's use of his "gun-chucks" is similar to the martial arts Eskrima.
Sun's Semblance, known as Via Sun, is first seen in "Painting the Town...", where he emits spectral clones of himself. The spectral clones can explode on contact with an opponent. While his Semblance is activated, his hair and tail glow yellow. He needs to remain still and concentrate while using his Semblance. In "Of Runaways and Stowaways", his clones have proven to be solid or tangible enough for Blake to use as stepping stones or swings. While manifesting, they also help provide extra force to pull the Sea Feilong's head away from facing the ship when it lets out an electric breath attack. It is shown that he can comfortably manifest three clones for a short amount of time. In "Two Steps Forward, Two Steps Back", he creates four clones, which hold down Ilia Amitola. This proves to be very taxing on his Aura, and he is injured by her after overusing it.
- Sun alludes to Sun Wukong from the novel Journey to the West. For more information on this allusion, as well as other choices the creators made for this character, see Sun Wukong/Behind the Scenes.
- The character Sun Wukong is most commonly associated with the color gold. Incidentally, "Sun" is also the English word of the star of our solar system, which is associated with the color yellow.
- Sūn Wùkōng (Simplified: 孙悟空; Traditional: 孫悟空) is normally pronounced as "Suen Woo-cong", though as with many foreign names, this is not the case in RWBY.
- Michael Jones and Kerry Shawcross, the voice actors of Sun and Neptune Vasilias respectively, have made it official that the ship name for their characters is "Sea Monkeys".
- In the teaser trailer for Camp Camp, another animated series produced by Rooster Teeth, a figurine of Sun was briefly seen in the cubicle belonging to "Yssa".
- At the Death Battle Panel (RTX 2017) it was announced that Sun Wukong will be featured in a Death Battle X against Kim Wu of the Killer Instinct Series and be animated by Torrian Crawford. A work in progress portion of the fight was shown on Rooster Teeth's 2017 ExtraLife livestream.
- In Episode 4 for Gen:Lock, another animated series produced by Rooster Teeth, one of the main characters, Kazu Iida, can be seen dressed as Sun in the Ether.