5. Okada Nizou’s “Benizakura” from Gintama
What it Can Do – Beginning as a normal-looking, if distinctly pink katana, the Benizakura is actually a parasitic blade that gradually takes hold of it’s user’s mind and body. It grotesquely attaches to and infiltrates their bodies with vein-like tubes that make the wielder as well as the weapon grow in size and ferocity as time wears on.
(it is damn near impossible to find images of this sword, because the arc it comes from shares it’s name and isnt particularly know for the blade being in it. You can see it some in this AMV… plus it’s an ANDREW WK AND GINTAMA AMV OMGWTG. Does a great job of making Gintama look WAY more violent than it is, hehehe.)
Why it’s Badass – Benizakura is definite proof that something pink can still look totally badass, and the sword’s constantly changing form keeps it fresh and cool at all times. The sword even has it’s own pulse, which adds to it’s creepiness, and the grotesque attachment it has to foolhardy wielder Okada Nizou just serves to make it that much more memorably unsettling. Besides, the blade is strong enough to break the Lake Toya in half, even though it can supposedly cut trough anything!
4. Otonashi Saya’s 2 Unnamed Katana from Blood+
What it Can Do – Saya’s blade would look like your average katana, except it’s base has an odd shape, and there is a big red jewel embedded in it, as well as an indented line that travels from the hilt down the blade. It so happens that the jutted part of the blade is for Saya to cut her hand on, and for the blood to travel down the indented track. Saya’s blood is the only thing that can kill chiropterans, so the specialized blade makes her job much easier.
Why it’s Badass – Although Saya’s blood essentially supercharges the blade, it is mostly used as a normal katana, so the really cool part rests with the design. Both versions of the sword are excellent examples of how a small change on a classic look can make all the difference. The original blade (pictured up top) has a cool zig-zag shape, with the smaller blade on the top part for Saya to cut her hand with. The later version’s blade isn’t quite as cool, but it’s an interesting second take on the design, and the gleaming red jewel looks great, especially in combination with the simple but cool red and black sheathe. I’d say Saya’s blade is the best combination of ‘practical’ and ‘badass’ in anime sword design.
3. Mikoto Minagi’s “Miroku” from Mai-HiME
What it Can Do – Miroku is an enormous black claymore with the strength and sharpness to make quick mincemeat of things like, oh, fucking boats. Because the sword is so large and Mikoto is not, it is usually dragged along the ground behind her as she walks, causing sparks to fly everywhere, but she also uses it’s weight and size to gain momentum as she swings it around, allowing her to make quicker and more powerful attacks. The black color and the fact that the ‘child’ version of Miroku is also known as Obsidian Lord leads me to believe that the sword is made of none other than (herp derp) obsidian.
Why it’s Badass – Did I mention the whole cutting boats in half thing? Strength aside, though, what really makes Miroku great is it’s design. Claymores are always cool-looking swords thanks to their very elegant appearance, and Miroku’s sleek black shine adds to the sexyness of the blade. The simple hilt and the red cloth wrapped around the handle add to the elegant but instantly recognizable effect. Topping it all off with a bow is the red ornaments decorating the blade that perfectly counteract with the color of the handle. The result is a sleek but powerful-looking claymore that I am very glad to know is actually being manufactured by some online sword shops~
2. Chrona’s “Ragnarok” from Soul Eater
What it Can Do – In the world of Soul Eater, ‘weapons’ are actually human beings who can transform their bodies into weaponry to be used by a seperate ‘meister.’ However, Ragnarok is less a human and more a demonic torso thing that sprouts from Chrona’s back and antagonizes her when it’s not working as a sword. The blade is apparently composed of Chrona’s own black blood, which is unbelievably strong, thought by many to be impenetrable. What’s more, the sword can vibrate at hyper-sonic speed to increase it’s carving power, and the mouth attached to it can emit high-frequency wails that basically fuck with the opponent’s head. Ragnarok is also an evolving weapon, and was most recently seen split into a total of 4 separate blades (in the manga.)
Why it’s Badass – Unlike most transforming weapons, Ragnarok’s ‘human’ form has nothing to do with it’s awesomeness, seeing as it is actually pretty damn annoying. Ragnarok is a great-looking blade, shaped I believe as a bastard sword and devilishly black and white, with gray straps and spikes attached that give it a flashy and unique appearance without going too overboard with it. The pair of lips may look ridiculous at first, but they quickly become highly unsettling when used in action, as they add to the vibrant insanity of both the sword and it’s wielder, and can be used to make creepy-as-fuck attacks.
1. Signum’s “Laevatein” from Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha A’s
What it Can Do – Aside from being a generally great sword and, like all of the weapons in Nanoha, sort-of alive, Laevetein’s powers come from it’s ability to transform and use special attacks with the supplement of various ‘cartiges’ being loaded into it. Some of it’s other forms include ‘Schlangenform’, which transforms it into a chain-link blade, and ‘Bogenform’, which combines the sword and scabbard to form a longbow. It’s attacks include the ‘Rising Phoenix Flash’ (Hiryuu Issen) which forms a fiery tornado to be launched at enemies, ‘Fire Phoenix Flash’ (Karyuu Issen) which forms a shaft of flames to be thrown at enemies, ‘Violet Lightning Flash’ (Shiden Issen) which is used in regular sword-form to coat the blade in flames, ‘Storm Falcon’, which is the attack used in Bogenform, and finally, the defensive force-field maneuver ‘Panzergeist’ (Tank Spirit).
Why it’s Badass – The damn thing is so powerful and badass that it apparently needs a damn exhaust pipe, man! Laevatein is a pretty cool-looking sword, being well-decorated and stopping just short of crossing over into ridiculousness, with the fact that it can transform into different forms and use so many different powers being a definite plus. I didn’t really think about this while organizing the list, but this sword probably has the greatest destructive power out of the whole bunch. However, while the cool powers and great design might have put this blade on the list, there is one clear reason that this sword came out at number one: it’s voice. Tetsuya Kakihara, an apparently German-born seiyuu, voices the blade, calling out it’s attacks and commands with such fervor and awesomeness that it even puts Kamen Rider Decade’s utility belt to shame. I can safely say that just hearing this thing yell ‘PANZERGEIST!’ is enough to make it one of my favorite vocal performances and also my favorite anime blade of all time.
Inu-Yasha’s “Tetsusaiga” – Back when I was a kid, Tetsusaiga was always my favorite blade. It transformed from a rusty katana into an enormous ass-kicker with some cool design aspects, however I literally could not bring myself to put it on the list because it’s attacks are so lame. ‘Wind Scar’ and ‘Backlash Wave’ are both completely boring, and make the sword less interesting as a result.
Roronoa Zoro’s “Wadou Ichimonji,” “Sandai Kitetsu,” “Yubashiri,” and “Shuusui” from One Piece – all of Zoro’s swords are pretty badass and have their own unique traits, however, in the end they all look like regular katana, and the real badassery is less in the individual powers of the swords, but in the fact that Zoro can use three of them at once!
Well, that’s all I’ve got. One of your favorite swords go unmentioned? Talk about it in the comments, and be sure to let us know what makes it badass!