The Shijin (or Shishin) were 4 or 5 (depending on the country) beast gods that protected the four corners of the world, according to Japanese and Chinese mythology. The Shijin were a Blue Dragon (Seiryu/Qinglong), a Red Phoenix (Suzaku/Zhuque), a White Tiger (Byakko/Baihu) and a Black Tortoise (Genbu/Xuanwu). They represented the 4 elements, the 4 seasons, and the 4 points on a compass. Seiryu was East, Wind, and Spring, Suzaku was South, Fire, and Summer, Byakko was West, Metal, and Autumn, and Genbu was North, Winter, and Earth/Water,The Chinese myth also had a Yellow Beast (Ouryu/Huang Long) which was the Center of the Compass, and Aether (or Void). These legendary beasts have made a big impression on cartoons and video games. Here are some notable examples
The video game Monster Hunter featured many dragons and 5 of them resembled the Shijin. The tortoise-like Apceros (Genbu), the white tiger-like Barioth (Byakko), the red bird-like Hypnocatrice (Suzaku), the blue dragon Lagiacrus (Seiryu), and the silver unicorn-like Kirin (Qilin).