10 most iconic weapons in anime

Alex LaFreniere


The weapons used in anime are as varied and unique as the worlds they inhabit. Whether being used by a hero to save the world or wielded by a villain to cause untold destruction, the weapons of anime have left an indelible mark on their audiences. Check out our definitive list of anime’s most powerful and stylish armaments.

10 most iconic weapons in anime

10. Fueguchi Quinque- “Tokyo Ghoul”

tokyo ghoul fueguchi quinque
Image courtesy Pierrot

Quinques are the rather macabre weapons used by the anti-ghoul CCG unit. As part of their zombie-like abilities, all ghouls develop an additional organ called a kakuhou, which is essentially an extra limb that can be used as a deadly weapon. When a ghoul is killed, the CCG removes the dead ghoul’s kakuhou and turns it into a weapon that can be wielded by their agents. Essentially, each quinque is a severed limb. The Fueguchi Quinque is a particularly macabre example wielded by sadistic CCG agent Kureo Mado. It takes the form of a massive, bony whip that Mado uses to devastating effect, and is later wielded by his daughter Akira.

9. Crescent Rose- “RWBY”

rwby crescent rose ruby rose
Image courtesy Rooster Teeth

In an anime full of stylish and unique weapons, Crescent Rose stands out from the crowd. Wielded by protagonist Ruby Rose, the Crescent Rose is a massive mechanical scythe. To top it off, the Crescent Rose can also switch forms and become a giant high-caliber sniper rifle. RWBY can use the scythe’s blade as a bipod for the rifle, or use the rifle’s recoil while in blade form to propel her rapidly across the battlefield. The result is some flashy and impressive scythe-and-gun combat that makes for very unique takedowns.

8. Kunai- “Naruto”

naruto kunai
Image courtesy Pierrot

Kunai are a staple in every ninja’s arsenal, and that remains true for the characters of Naruto. Utilized by a range of characters, kunai are basically pointy metal darts designed as throwing weapons. Unique kunai include explosive-tipped kunai, triple-bladed kunai, and kunai that can be concealed on a spring mechanism hidden in a wielder’s sleeves. These stealthy and stylish weapons have as many unique variants as they have users, and each shinobi puts their own spin and technique on this ubiquitous weapon.

7. Hellsing Arms .454 Casull- “Hellsing”

hellsing 454 casull alucard
Image courtesy Geneon Entertainment

This absolutely massive firearm comes closer to a cannon than a pistol. The gun was custom-built for Alucard, a ruthless vampire and assassin working for the Hellsing Organization. Known as the “Joshua,” Alucard’s handgun is chambered for the rare and powerful .454 Casull cartridge, which is usually intended for hunting large game such as bears. As if that weren’t enough, the silver bullets used in the handgun are made from melted holy relics in order to pack an extra punch against the undead hordes. It’s a weapon befitting of its vicious wielder.

6. Wrath’s Saber- Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood

full metal alchemist brotherhood wrath saber
Image courtesy Bones

As a literal embodiment of the cardinal sin of Wrath, it stands to reason that Fuhrer King Bradley can work wonders with weaponry. His go-to, however, isn’t anything powerful or particularly flashy. Instead, he usually goes into battle armed with nothing more than an unadorned, standard-issue military saber. Despite being a relatively simple weapon, Wrath puts his blade to use with devastating effect. In one noteworthy example, Wrath uses nothing but his sword and a single grenade to take down an entire fully-armed infantry division… and an actual tank.

5. Excalibur- “Fate/Zero”

arturia fate zero excalibur
Image courtesy Aniplex

Everybody’s heard of Excalibur, the blade of the legendary King Arthur. What many people don’t know is that King Arthur was actually a young woman named Arturia (or at least she is in the world of Fate). As part of the secretive Holy Grail Wars, Arturia can be summoned as a champion to fight for the Grail… and her sword comes with her. Excalibur is normally kept invisible to hide Arturia’s true identity, but when revealed, Excalibur can reach its true power. By amplifying Arturia’s own power, the sword can essentially become a laser-type weapon, emitting a powerful beam of energy that can destroy fortresses and even entire armies.

4. Zangetsu- “Bleach”

bleach zanpakuto zangetsu
Image courtesy TV Tokyo

Imagine owning a sword that you could literally talk to. Like, literally speak to a sword in the form of a person. In the world of Bleach, you can do exactly that. Shinigami each wield a zanpakuto, which is essentially a sentient sword. In the case of protagonist Ichigo, his zanpakuto is known as Zangetsu, an intimidating looking blade that can take multiple forms. As a result of being able to communicate, Ichigo and Zangetsu are able to work in total harmony as a formidable fighting force.

3. Dominator- “Psycho-Pass”

psycho pass dominator pistol
Image courtesy Dentsu

The Dominator is a weapon worthy of its name. This futuristic handgun is made exclusive to law enforcement officers in the world of Psycho-Pass. The Dominator uses a Wi-Fi connection to operate, interfacing with a massive law-enforcement database to ensure it can’t be used by anyone except an authorized user. In addition, it can verify a potential criminal’s threat level simply by aiming at them. After determining the threat, it will transform into a lethal or less-than-lethal elimination mode. Lethal eliminations are particularly gruesome; the Dominator uses specialized rounds that cause flesh to swell and explode when hit, and is capable of blowing off entire limbs with a single shot.

2. Sword Cutlass Pistols- “Black Lagoon”

sword cutlass black lagoon
Image courtesy Geneon Entertainment

Used by gunslinger and outlaw Revy, this pair of custom-built Sword Cutlass handguns is befitting of a modern-day pirate. The Sword Cutlasses are a pair of stainless-steel Beretta M9 handguns, equipped with custom ivory grips and extended slides. To add to the piratical flair, the grips even include an engraved inlay of swashbuckler Calico Jack’s famed skull-and-crossbones insignia. Revy dual wields the pistols with deadly efficiency, and her gunplay could probably even rival that of John Wick.

1. Scissor Blade- “Kill la Kill”

kill la kill scissor blade
Image courtesy Aniplex

Kill la Kill protagonist Ryuko Matoi doesn’t have much to remember her dead father by. After his mysterious assassination, Ryuko finds Senketsu, a sentient school uniform, and the giant red scissor blade he created. The scissor blade functions as Ryuko’s main weapon and also forms half of the weapon used to kill her dad; when Ryuko finds the owner of the other half of the blade, she’ll have found her father’s killer. The Scissor Blade boasts the impressive ability to change size, going from a keychain-sized trinket to a massive two-handed greatsword when entering the appropriately named Decapitation Mode. Together with the powers of Senketsu and Ryuko’s own tenacity, the Scissor Blade is an iconic weapon that turns Ryuko from a 17-year-old girl into a formidable fighting force.

Were we missing anything? Let us know in the comments below!

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