From a Samurai who wields a legendary katana to a knight who holds a heavy broad sword, there are so many kinds of swordsmen that you can find in anime. As a matter of fact, it’s not even an exaggeration to say that swordsman is one of the most commonly used archetypes in anime.
One thing worth noting, however, is the fact that more often than not, it is actually the sword that is special and not the swordsman. Think about the poisonous katana Murasame from Akame Ga Kill or the cloning sword Lostvayne from The Seven Deadly Sins, just to name a few. Not saying that the wielders are powerless, but it is clear that the sword also has a big impact on their overall power.
So if the topic is powerful swords, why not talk about the most powerful category of them all, which is a sword that has multiple abilities? So here’s a list of 5 swords that can produce different abilities.
5. Laevatein (Signum, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A’s)
Let’s start with a modest one first. Laevatein is the main weapon of Signum, a magical knight from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A. Just like other weapons in the series, Laevatein is actually a hybrid of magic and technology. It can talk and it also has a personality. But what makes Laevatein stand out from the rest is its ability to change shape and wield multiple powers at the same time.
In standby mode, Laevatein takes the form of a pendant. During combat, its standard mode is a single edge sword with reloadable cartridges that can be filled with compressed magical energy. It can also change into a chain blade and a large bow for a long-range attack.
Laevatein’s main attribute is fire. In its standard sword form, the blade is engulfed in wild flame and will explode on contact. Other than that, it can also produce fiery tornadoes and exploding arrows, and it can even protect Signum by creating a thin protective barrier around her.
4. Tessaiga (Inuyasha, InuYasha)
If there’s a list of the most iconic anime swords, then Tessaiga from InuYasha would certainly be high up on that list. After all, this sword not only has tremendous powers, but it also has a great origin story. Tessaiga, along with Inuyasha’s brother's (Sesshomaru) sword Tenseiga, are made out of their father’s fangs. Since their father is one of the strongest Yokai of his time, these two swords also ended up being a pair of incredibly powerful swords.
However, between the two swords, Tessaiga is the one that possesses the bigger power. The reason is simply because of the nature of Tessaiga as the Sword of Destruction, as opposed to Tenseiga, the Sword of Life. In its normal state, Tessaiga could unleash a powerful force that can destroy a horde of demons in one slash.
That being said, what makes Tessaiga interesting is its ability to absorb the ability/power of other Yokai/objects. So apart from the regular Tessaiga who possess the wind attribute, there’s also the red Tessaiga with its Barrier Breaking ability, the diamond Tessaiga that can fire ultra sharp diamond shards, and the dragon Tessaiga that can directly cut the essence of a Yokai. There are other temporary powers that Tessaiga has absorbed throughout the series, but these four are the main ones.
3. Raijin Sword (Yaiba Kurogane, Kenyuu Densetsu Yaiba)
Apart from its star-like hilt with a hole in the middle, Raijin Sword looks like any other katana. The sword is indeed sharper and much more durable than regular swords, but what makes it special is the aforementioned hole in the hilt of the sword. This hole allowed Yaiba to insert different kinds of orbs that can produce different kinds of powers for the swords.
As a default, the Raijin Sword has the Raijin Orbs attached to its hilt. This orb gives the sword a thunder attribute that can be used for both offense and defense. Throughout his journey, Yaiba finds other elemental orbs that allow him to manipulate certain elements at wills, such as the Water Orb, the Fire Orb, and the Ice Orb.
Other than that, there are also other obscured powers such as the Gold Orb that allowed Yaiba to transform into anything and anyone, the Darkness Orb that can absorb anyone with a strong dream inside it, the Great Buddha Orb that can turn Yaiba into a giant, a Victory Orb that turns the sword into a talking sword, and finally the Ryuujin Orb that can produce the power of the six offensive orbs.
2. Ten Commandments (Haru Glory, Rave)
Ten Commandments actually follows a similar principle as the Raijin Sword, because it is also a shapeshifting sword with different powers that requires an item to be put into a slot on the surface of the sword. However, unlike the Raijin Sword, all the Ten Commandment needs is just one Rave Stone in order to imbue the Rave power into the sword. This power is what allowed The Rave Master, Haru Glory, to change the forms of the sword at will.
As the name suggests, the Ten Commandments have 10 different forms, and each of them varies in shape, size, and power. There’s Explosion, the second form of the Ten Commandments that has a blunt edge but can produce powerful explosions upon contact. There’s Silfarion, the third form that has little offensive power but it can greatly enhance the speed of its user. There’s also Blue Crimson, the fifth form, which is a twin sword that has both the power of fire and ice. And then there’s the eighth form, which is called Million Suns and it is a blade made out of holy light, and there are six more where that comes from.
Those are some of the forms and powers of the Ten Commandments. So as you can see, it is an extremely versatile sword. Not only that, every power has its own pros and cons which makes it powerful against certain enemies but completely useless against other types of enemies.
Another thing that makes the Ten Commandments way superior to the other swords in this list is the names of the swords. Ten Commandments is already an absolutely badass name for a sword, but then there’s also Silfarion, Blue Crimson, Runesave, and Million Suns, those are such cool names for a sword, don’t you agree?
1. Ashisogi Jizo (Mayuri Kurotsuchi, Bleach)
And now we finally come to the pinnacle of the ever-changing swords category, which is none other than the sword wielded by the Captain of the 12th Division of the Gotei 13, Mayuri Kurotsuchi. The name of his Zanpakuto is Ashisogi Jizo, and it is by far the most versatile sword not only in Bleach but also in the entire anime history.
That may sound like an extremely bold claim, but there is a good reason for that. It is due to the simple fact that Mayuri actively modified his sword so that he can add more functions to it whenever he feels like it. After all, the original ability of the released form of Ashisogi Jizo is to produce neural toxins that can paralyze its target. However, more functions have been added throughout the year.
In the last arc of Bleach, we see that that function has been greatly enhanced to the point that it can now paralyze every biological being other than its user with a loud scream from its baby-like hilt. As if that’s not enough, Mayuri also added a tranquilizer function that is strong enough to incapacitate Kenpachi Zaraki. Another interesting feature is the ability to automatically block sword attacks that come within a certain distance of its user.
By the way, those are just the abilities of Ashisogi Jizo’s Shikai form. Its Bankai is on a whole nother level. Because while the original Bankai is a greatly enhanced version of the sword’s poisonous ability, its modified version is much more fearsome than that. Because the new and modified Bankai allowed Mayuri to modify the ability of his Bankai in real time based on the data at hand. This means no matter what kind of enemy that stands before Mayuri, he can instantly transform the ability of his sword in order to gain the upper hand during the battle. It won’t get any more versatile and dangerous than that.
Among a group of powerful swords, these five stand apart from the rest by showcasing multiple powers within a single sword. After all, be it a talking sword that uses magic cartridges or a heavily modified sword that changes its functions based on real-time data, there’s no denying that these swords are extremely versatile and dangerous. And needless to say, they are also incredibly entertaining to watch.
Do you know any other swords that deserve to be on this list? If so, don’t hesitate to talk about it in the comment section below.