From supernatural swordsmen, and samurais, to hybrid sword warrior heroes, we list the 12 most skilled sword fighters in anime. The below characters mastered the art of wielding the sword. The character’s experiences, as well as other factors such as their powers, were also taken into consideration.
1. Attack On Titan
At number ten we have Levi Ackerman. His swordsmanship might be rough, but we can’t deny that Levi’s skills with blades are epic. His speed is mind-blowing, as Levi launches into battle with a superhero flash-like speed.
He is fearless and always maintains his composure not letting anything deviate him. Levi’s a great tactician during a battle, adapting his actions accordingly.
He’s probably among the fastest thinkers of all the sword fighters on this list. He uses an unconventional reverse grip on his blades which he started to use as a child when practicing using a knife.
2. Kirito (Sword Art Online)
Kirito is the most skilled sword fighter in Sword Art Online. How good is he in terms of sword skills? Kirito spent about a year in a death game fighting against an empire of overpowered villains.
He survived, and that’s how he became one of the world’s best swordsmen. Kirito uses swords that are too heavy for perfect swordsmanship because he has to slay monsters.
He also uses intel gathering to give him an advantage on top of his opponents. He is a swordsman who uses the information by applying it with fast thinking on the battlefield. It’s safe to say he’s a badass swordsman.
3. Kenpachi Zaraki (Bleach)
Next on our list is Kenpachi Zaraki. He is among the most, if not the most, proficient swordsmen in all of Soul Society. The title “Kenpachi” is only given to the strongest Shinigami. His immense strength together with his sword skills, allows Zaraki to fight with only one hand.
He is the captain of the 11th Division, which specializes in sword fighting. His physical strength and capabilities, as well as his fighting skills, are the reason why Kenpachi Zaraki was chosen as one of the Five Special War Powers by the Wandenreich.
4. Artoria Pendragon Saber (Fate/Stay Night)
At number eight we have one of the best anime swordswomen. Raised as a king and fulfilled her obligations as the king. As a child Artoria wielded the Caliburn sword from the stone. With that, she became something not human. Later on, Artoria secured her strength and was crowned King of Britain. When the magic sword was destroyed, she was given the Excalibur sword.
Saber wields a mighty Excalibur sword. It converts Saber’s magical power into light that is then released as a destructive wave of energy on the level of Divine Thaumaturgy. Astoria’s sword skills manifested when she fought other master sword fighters from history and myth to be the last standing.
5. Teresa, Claymore
Coming at number seven is one of the best anime swordswomen. Teresa starts off as a regular human and becomes a superhuman, or “Claymore”. What is Claymore? Also known as “Silver-Eyed witches”. They are a group of hybrid warriors who are half-human and half yoma created to exterminate yomas monsters.
Claymores are young female orphans who went through surgery to give them the power of Yoma. Being a human-yoma hybrid is a double edge sword, that comes with added powers and drawbacks. Due to their martial arts training, Claymores have superhuman speed, strength, durability, and healing. They also carry highly durable double-edged swords.
Claymores are able to jump enormous heights and move so fast that humans are unable to see them. Their powers are channeled by strange energy called Yoki. It’s a hypersexual experience, and only females can control it! When the Claymores are injured, they have to use part of their Yoki aura power to heal and regenerate missing body parts. When they use too much Yoki, they turn into awakened beings, dangerous man-eating beasts.
What makes” Teresa Of The Faint Smile” so special is that she is the most powerful Claymore of all time. And this anime girl is the former number one in the organization. Teresa won every battle, whether monsters or other Claymores, while using only a fraction of Yoki. She has super strength and speed, incredible healing and regeneration powers, and extraordinary Yoki-sensing abilities.
6. Ezra Scarlet, Fairy Tail
If we take into consideration magic with swordfight skills, Ezra Scarlet is on our top list. This anime girl has shown many weapons skills, but her usual weapon is the sword. Her sword skills are insanely strong. On top of her sword skills, Ezra is also a master tactician.
She analyses her opponent from top to bottom. Ezra is extremely ambitious and hungry to win. Regardless of how difficult the challenge may be, she always comes up with a way to defeat her opponents. She is also known as Titania. Titania is the Queen of the fairies, which is probably why Erza is called Titania.
Erza has many magic powers and abilities, one magic goes by the name of Requip. She can basically equip herself with whatever armor/weaponry she pleases. (usually swords). There are 28 outfits she can equip herself into. She has over 100 different armor.
She uses the Demon Blade Crimson Sakura sword wherein she focuses all her magic power on the blade for maximum offense. She uses a magical form of Requip known as The Knight to swap weapons and armor while fighting.
7. Killer Bee, One Piece
Just missing the top five most skilled sword fighters in anime is Killer Bee. He’s a truly destructive force. Killer Bee practiced the art of acrobats from a young age. Thanks to his training, he can use seven swords at once to attack.
Bee’s fighting style destroys his enemies with a hip-hop-like sword swing. Killer Bee is extremely durable, smart, and experienced. He has Hachibi on his side and he can incorporate lightning into his swords. When he finds an opening, he can quickly impale his opponent with several blades.
His ability to impale his opponents is extremely pinpoint accurate, often hitting vital spots. In terms of swordsmanship, Killer Bee is a true master swordsman.
8. Guts (Berserk)
Our number three most skilled sword fighter in anime is Guts from ‘Berserk.’ He is easily the most badass swordsman. The scary thing about Guts is that he is a master swordsman with additional mastery over a deadly arsenal of Weapons. From childhood, Guts has been in constant mortal danger. He has fought his way to survival from birth.
The sword has been his weapon of choice which he used since he was a child mercenary. He also shows a great number of sword skills with near-inhuman strength and speed using a large blade to come up on top of his opponents.
Gut’s sword weighs approximately 250kg and stands 6ft tall, yet he can swing it with ease and speed. He spends his everyday life violently killing armies with large weapons, demonic forces, and beasts from the underworld, literally and figuratively. He handled them quite easily with efficiency and speed. Gut’s Dragonslayer (The name of his giant black sword) can kill anything or anyone, including ghosts, spirits, undead, and monsters.See also: 25 Medieval Anime With Iconic Sword Battles
9. Kenshin Himura, Rurouni Kenshin
Kenshin is a samurai who is a highly skilled and renowned swordsman. He is also known as Samurai X, an iconic swordsman of the Meiji era. His character is based on an actual Samurai swordsman known as Kawakami Gensai.
His Hiten Mitsurrugi style of Ryuu Kenjutsu led to his nickane of the Battousai. He is called Battousai for nothing. The Four Hitokiri of the Bakumatsu (幕末四大人斬り, Bakumatsu Yondai Hitokiri) was a term given to four samurai during the Bakumatsu era in Japanese history. Kenshin, a former hitman for the Meiji rebellion in Japan during the Boshin War, uses a sword named Akabatou (reversed blade).
The sword was created for defense style. He has mastered many styles of swordsmanship. He even invented his own style. After he took the name Ruroni (wandering swordsman) he vowed to never spill blood again. Much like the real samurai, who was true to his beliefs and conventions, Kenshin’s swordsmanship as well as his fast thinking makes him one of the most skilled swordsmen to ever live. Nuff said!!See also: 25 Best Sword Fighting Anime Series Of All Time!
10. Tanjiro Kamado, Demon Slayer (Kimetsu no Yaiba)
Demon Slayer’s main character specializes in instances and sword style of Water (“Kage no Mizu”) or the “Shadow of Water” sword style that perfectly pairs with his “Black” Nichirin blade. He has two sword styles, a see-through world, a demon slayer mark, and lots more. Tanjiro is best at slaying (somewhat) human-sized Demons. He has gained enhanced strength and speed.
He has extremely sharp reflexes, and amazing stamina and endurance. Tanjiro can throw his sword with enough strength and accuracy to stab his opponents to death. He’s the youngest as well as the most inexperienced sword wielder on this list.
11. Roronoa Zoro, One Piece
Zoro is a beast, a cool beast. The founder of the Santoryu (3 sword style )technique. Famous for the “Flying Sword Attacks”, a sword fighting style that he developed on his own, Zoro also uses katana in each hand and a 3rd in the mouth. He can turn himself into a battering ram and run through his opponent.
The Santoryu comprises many different techniques, including high-speed attacks (“Shishi Sonson”), direct hit attacks (“Oni Giri”), and compressed air projectile attacks (“Hyaku Hachi Pound Ho”). He fights to the brink of death with every battle he’s been in, which only made him stronger. Zoro has also used the Busoshoku Haki technique to harden his blades during combat. Haki allows the warriors to use their spirit to create invisible armor around themselves.
Zoro is also the best swordsman in terms of skills, stubbornness, pride, and dedication. Making him our number two most skilled sword fighter in anime.
12. Dracule Mihawk (One Piece)
Who else could rank so high on this list than someone literally called the Greatest Swordsmen in the World? Mihawk is one of the strongest One Piece characters. He is featured prominently in One Piece as Zoro’s ultimate rival. He is easily one of the top swordsmen in terms of skills with any kind of sword, but especially when using his main sword, Yoru.
It is one of the strongest swords in the world. He has a strong moral code when it comes to sword fighting. There is plenty of power that is put behind his swordsmanship as he was capable of cutting a giant frozen tsunami with a casual slash. True to his nick, “Hawk Eyes”, Mihawk’s superb eyesight, enables him to easily track high-speed movements, and strike with extreme precision.
Mihawk is an expert Busoshoku Haki user. He possesses the ability to use Kenbunshoku Haki. Mihawk and Shanks are some of the best swordsmen in anime, both are beloved and respected characters. Mihawk’s abilities on top of his track record prove him to be the most skillful and formidable sword fighter on this list.
13. Byakuya Kuchiki (Bleach)
Byakuya is exceptionally skilled with a sword. If his opponent is too powerful, he can manipulate his sword in so many unique ways. When he holds his sword in front of him and says ‘scatter’, his sword turns into thousands of petal-like blades, that move at his command, each slashing as sharp as a sword. All descending on one target.
He can control all of this with the simple movement of his hands. That makes him the most “flexible” swordsman in a fight. He is very calm on the battlefield, and that is a serious advantage. Byakuya has a pretty strong Zanpakuto, Soul-Cutter Sword; “Soul Slayer”.
Byakuya may not be part of an expert swordsman, but he is the 28th head of the Kuchiki family and is the captain of the 6th division.
14. Mugen (Samurai Champloo)
Mugen was originally a pirate, among other things who enjoyed fighting with an unorthodox self-taught style. He is a great unconventional swordsman with amazing skills. He is capable of reading his opponent’s movements and using that to his advantage. Mugen doesn’t really have a lot of exploitable flaws in terms of psychological state. At least; not in terms of combat.