Forget ninjutsu, haki, Quirks, devil fruits, and all of the other different special powers we see in anime. Let's look at swords.
These great blades are the weapons of choice for most melee fighters, if only because swords are so darn cool. But when you dig deeper into a sword's details, you'll often find some interesting lore and backstory that makes the weapon even cooler in context.
Like anime powers, swords can possess abilities and characteristics that make them stand out as special. They could also have cool names, creators, owners, and relationships with wielders.
Here are some of the coolest anime swords we've ever seen, and the interesting things worth knowing about them.
12. Enma (One Piece)
Unlike the other swords wielded by Zoro, it looks like Enma has an appetite for tremendous amounts of haki, as seen when Zoro's arm thinned quite a bit after a single slash.
The sword drains its wielder's haki, which is the price paid for the help it provides on the battlefield once Enma is tamed and utilized with haki-imbued techniques. Enma's roots run even deeper with Zoro's past as its creator has ties with Kuina and her family.
Enma is noted to be the only sword that managed to scar the invincible skin of Kaido. Formerly owned by Kozuki Oden, Oden's daughter Hiyori inherited Enma and traded it for Zoro's Shusui.
11. Sandai Kitetsu (One Piece)
Sandai Kitetsu is said to be a cursed sword—one so cursed that its shop owner refused to sell it to Zoro.
But when the swordsman bet his luck against the curse of this blade, he left the shop with a free Yubashiri sword, along with the Sandai Kitetsu, and his arm which he used to test the curse.
10. Wado Ichimonji (One Piece)
Here we have another sword of Zoro, which was noted as being his longest-living blade. The Wado Ichimonji is the sword of Kuina's family and was crafted by her grandfather, who also crafted the Great Sword Enma of Oden.
This sword possesses extreme durability as seen when it managed to stay intact and in one piece after being hit by the Supreme Grade Sword Yoru of Dracule Mihawk.
The Wado Ichimonji was supposed to be inherited by Kuina, but she died at a very young age. Zoro asked her father for the sword, who in turn willingly gave the swordsman the Great Grade sword.
9. Lostvayne (Seven Deadly Sins)
Lostvayne is a short one-handed sword and one of the seven Sacred Treasures of Liones Kingdom (along with the Gideon and Rhitta) given to the Seven Deadly Sins.
The sword Lostvayne was given to Meliodas, which he sold to fund his pub business after the group was tagged as traitors of the kingdom.
Lostvayne gives Meliodas the ability to create clones of himself by dividing his power equally between them. Although his power is distributed to the clones, he can still use his Full Counter ability to full potential with each of his clones. Very powerful!
8. Murasame (Akame ga Kill!)
Murasame is an Imperial Arm, a long katana owned by Akame. It's also called the One-Cut Killer because of its ability to kill its victim instantly with its cursed poison. One can only prevent death if he/she removes the affected part immediately and stops the curse from spreading.
Its Trump Card ability, the Little War Horn, gives the wielder enhanced battle abilities if they can cut themself with the sword and resist the curse. Once the ability is unlocked, the curse will strain the wielder's body with unbearable pain—even if the sword is destroyed.
Akame also said that the Murasame remembers all of its victims, and she will accept responsibility for their deaths as she resists the curse of the blade upon activating the Trump Card.
7. Nozarashi (Bleach)
In Bleach, Nozarashi was the name of Kenpachi's Zanpakuto—a name that even Kenpachi himself didn't know until later in the series.
It was one of the many mysteries of the series, given that knowing the name of one's sword is an important step in unlocking its full potential. Because Kenpachi never had that bond with his weapon, the sword appeared chipped and worn from many tiring battles.
When Ichigo ends up fighting Kenpachi, he can actually hear Nozarashi screaming. Ichigo's own Zanpakuto tells him that when a sword and its wielder don't trust each other, they will overpower each other's strengths rather than synergizing harmoniously.
6. Zangetsu (Bleach)
Zangetsu is the name of Ichigo's own Zanpakuto in Bleach. In its initial form, it looks like a large chef's knife with the same height as Ichigo. Later on, in Bankai form, Zangetsu appears as a long black sword with its crossguards forming a manji.
The spirit of the sword made Ichigo fight many battles just to prove he's truly worthy of wielding him—all the way until he was able to unleash the Final Getsuga Tensho against Aizen.
Final Getsuga Tensho allows its wielder to become Getsuga itself. As its name implies, it can only be used once, draining Ichigo's Shinigami powers and making him a normal human.
5. Shusui (One Piece)
Shusui was the sword Zoro acquired in the Thriller Bark arc, meant to be a replacement for the destroyed Yubashiri. But before he got his hands on the Great Grade blade, he had to fight its wielder, Shimotsuki Ryuma, who was now a zombie of Gecko Moria.
After being defeated by Zoro, the zombie swordsman entrusted his sword to him, marking the day of his destiny with the Wano Kingdom.
4. Demon Slayer Sword (Black Clover)
The Demon Slayer Sword is the first to appear in Asta's grimoire and resembles a large black sword with dust and dirt all over the blade.
It has the Anti-Magic ability, which cuts and repels any magic attack. Because Asta has no mana or magic in him, he can hold the sword without suffering its effect: to be drained of magic.
His grimoire was originally owned by the Elf named Licht, who had Sword Magic and was later possessed by a demon. That demon, Liebe, who's also magicless like Asta, enhanced his being and is the source of the Anti-Magic ability in Asta's swords.
3. Nichirin Blade (Demon Slayer)
Nichirin Blades are the weapons of the Demon Slayer Corps in the Demon Slayer anime series. They're made out of a special ore and sand, which are able to absorb the sunlight—the only thing that can kill a demon.
The Corps candidates choose their own ore after passing the Final Selection process, with the chosen ore turned over to the blacksmiths for forging. The finished blades are then delivered to their owners.
The blade changes color the first time the wielder draws it out, and its change in color indicates how powerful the wielder is. Tanjiro's Black Nichirin blade is said to be a bad omen because no wielder ever lived long enough to see or describe the powers of a black blade.
Other Nichirin Blades have different designs and colors, like Kyojuro Rengoku's sword with its flame-like design in the tsuba and a red blade that resembles his flame abilities.
2. Intetsu (Chivalry of a Failed Knight)
In the Chivalry of a Failed Knight anime series, no Blazer is seen to carry their devices—instead, they call them out of thin air with their chants and spells. Kurogane can call out Intetsu with the command: "Come Forth, Intetsu!"
Intetsu is Ikki Kurogane's device, a black katana with a rectangular handguard. Ikki was the lowest of the Blazers and ranked F because of his low magic level, which is unusual for his bloodline.
But Intetsu enhances Ikki's low magic level with the Blade Steal and Itto Shura abilities, the latter of which can make him reach his full power capabilities. He's proof that hard work beats talent, giving him the strength to face a world that pulls him down.
1. Yukine (Noragami)
Yukine is the name of the teen Regalia of Yato, who turns into a sword when the name Sekki is called. He's a stubborn and cold-hearted lad who's always hiding his true feelings from everyone.
Sekki, the sword, is a long blade with a handle wrapped loosely in bandages. When he was first called out by Yato, the god saw everything in the boy's past life and felt a burden that made him cry.