Akatsuki was an organization that consisted mostly of rogue ninjas from hidden villages in Naruto. They worked together towards acquiring all the Tailed Beasts as part of their plan for world domination. Initially, Yahiko, Nagato, and Konan were in control of the organization whose objectives were to achieve peace, which got trampled by Obito’s goal of using these individuals for his Eye of the Moon Plan.
The Akatsuki members were undoubtedly powerful, but they also possessed intelligence that allowed them to subdue most of the strongest shinobis in the world.
Ranking members of Akatsuki on the basis of intelligence in Naruto
Hidan was an S-rank rogue ninja from Yugakure, who left his village because he believed violence was the only way for a shinobi, while his village was deeply inclined towards pacifism. Hidan even killed his neighbors before leaving the village. He was immortal with the powers that Jashin gave him.
Kakuzu disliked him for his recklessness as he tended to quickly engage in combat without devising any strategies.
9) Kisame Hoshigaki
Kisame was one of the Seven Ninja Swordsmen of the Mist, who was also known for his moniker The Monster of the Hidden Mist. He was one of the most powerful members of Akatsuki tagged alongside Itachi Uchiha.
With his Sentinel sword, Kisame was quite unstoppable, where he was capable of subduing a Jinchuriki all on his own. He was indeed a stronger shinobi, however, he was all about brawn than brains.
Deidara was an S-rank rogue ninja from Iwagakure and a member of the Explosion Corps of the village. He abandoned his village and stole the powerful Kinjutsu, which was considered to be forbidden. Deidara was also regarded as one of the most intelligent shinobi that hailed from Iwagakure.
During his battle with Sasuke Uchiha, he demonstrated his intelligence by trapping himself between his C2 dragon on top and the clay landmines beneath the ground.
Kakuzu was a shinobi who went against the First Hokage, Hashirama Senju, and made it alive. He was chosen by his village to assassinate Hashirama because of his exceptional ninjutsu prowess. Kakuzu was a pragmatic individual who was the polar opposite of his partner Hidan in terms of brilliance.
Showing his keen intellect when Shikamaru trapped him and Hidan under his Shadow Imitation Shuriken Technique, he eventually broke free as he hid his right arm underneath the ground before the attack.
Konan was one of the orphans of Amegakure alongside Yahiko and Nagato. She was one of the brains behind Akatsuki, who consistently put her efforts behind the organization rather than engaging in combat. Konan was the only Akatsuki member who was sharp enough to decipher Tobi’s evil intentions and knew from before that someday she would have to fight him.
She studied Tobi’s Space-Time Technique and performed countless simulations to come up with the perfect counter that would kill him.
Sasori was hailed as one of the most powerful puppet ninjas in Hidden Sand that ever lived. He assassinated the Third Kazekage with ease and turned his body into a puppet which granted him the Magnetic Release Kekkei Genkai. Sasori was an analytical individual who had a counter for each and everything in battle.
He was very knowledgeable about the human body and invented many deadly poisons whose antidote would be near to impossible.
4) Nagato Uzumaki
Nagato was initially the acting leader of Akatsuki as the real leader was Obito, who was working in the shadows. Nagato was an indomitable force with his Six Paths of Pain in Naruto. He was a genius as he was capable of using all the paths quite efficiently and wreaked havoc upon Konoha all on his own.
With his Naraka path, he interrogated the Shinobis of Konoha as well as gathered a lifetime of crucial intel about the village by ripping the soul out of certain shinobis with his Human path.
3) Itachi Uchiha
Itachi was a prodigy among the Uchiha clan and one of the smartest shinobis, known for his genius. He was the rarest individual in Konoha who tended to think like Hokage at a very young age. He has the second-highest score in the history of the Chunin Exams written test behind Minato.
In combat, he used to properly analyze the outcomes and remained calm, which helped him devise the best strategy possible to defeat his opponents.
2) Obito Uchiha
Obito started as a late bloomer and eventually became one of the deadliest forces. He took over the Akatsuki and manipulated every member for his goal of the Eye of the Moon Plan.
He learned everything from Madara Uchiha and gained a thorough knowledge of the Shinobi world. Obito was also very observant as he tended to come up with a better approach before neutralizing his targets.
Basically, there were two Zetsu, the White Zetsu, who was a victim of Kaguya Otsutsuki’s Eye of the Moon Plan, and the Black Zetsu, who was a physical manifestation of the will of Kaguya Otsutsuki.
Zetsu was behind all the wars that ever took place in Naruto. He possessed knowledge of millennia, which helped him devise the wickedest acts possible.
Note: This article reflects the writer's own views.