Anime has gunfights, hand-to-hand combat, as well as unique magical abilities, but nothing comes close to an enthralling battle between characters fighting with swords. These long, sharp blades, in conjunction with their users' swordsmaship prowess, can knock out the living daylights of their opponents.
Moreover, it’s not about who wields a better sword, it totally depends on the character’s mastery over this weapon. A swordsman who can win a fight even with a broken katana is said to be a proficient swordsman. Here is a list of characters who are acknowledged as the strongest swordsmen in anime.
Note: This article is subjective and reflects the author's opinions.
Anime characters with their proficiency in swordsmanship
10) Kisuke Urahara – Bleach
It is no surprise that the former captain of the 12th Division of 13 Court Guard Squads of Soul Society would have prowess in swordsmanship. Urahara is one of the exceptional swordsmen with impressive power and speed. He can attack his opponent with powerful strikes, and that too, with amazing precision.
,In combat, Urahara likes to strike various angles to baffle his opponents by making his movements hard to perceive. Urahara can even pin down his opponent by simply suspending the tip of his cane just millimeters from their face after he strikes them down.
9) Mugen – Samurai Champloo
Mugen’s swordsmanship is quite bizarre - while fighting his enemies, it seems like he is dancing. His sword-fighting technique is based on a breakdancing style called Champloo Kendo.
Mugen has a knack for incorporating his enemy’s fighting style with his own. His movements and attacks are unpredictable, and enemies have a hard time figuring out whether to defend themselves or flee from the spot.
8) Tengen Uzui – Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Tengen is the Sound Pillar of the Demon Slayer Corps. Taking the position of a Hashira, Tengen is one of the most highly skilled swordsmen in the corps. Unlike other Demon Slayers, Tengen wields two huge Nichirin Cleavers.
With both hilts joined by a single chain, he uses his swords like Nunchucks. Tengen comes from a Shinobi family and has prowess in Ninja techniques. He can couple his swordsmanship by detonating multiple bombs.
7) Roronoa Zoro – One Piece
Zoro is widely acknowledged for his mastery over his personally devised swordsmanship style, which he created in his childhood, called the Three Sword Style. Zoro wields two swords in both of his hands and the third one by gripping its hilt with his jaw.
Zoro’s swordsmanship incorporates his tremendous physical strength in conjunction with utmost precision that often overwhelms even the strongest opponents. Zoro’s finishing move, One Sword Style, involves only one sword that releases a powerful strike.
6) Saber – Fate/Zero, Fate/Stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works
King Arthur/ Saber is one of the main characters of the Fate/Stay series. With her majestic holy sword Laser Excalibur, she becomes an unstoppable force of nature. Although her sword is regarded as one of the most powerful blades, it was her own powers that made it the Strongest Holy Sword.
She is also a well adept tactician in combat who tends to come up with strategies to eliminate her enemies quickly and efficiently.
5) Guts – Berserk
Since the age of six, Guts has culminated his strength by wielding swords larger and heavier than him. He wields a gigantic sword named the Dragon Slayer after surviving the Eclipse. Along with his immense overwhelming strength and brawny physique, he is also agile in fights and can endure lethal attacks.
Despite looking like a herculean monster, he is capable of countering and dodging fast-paced attacks with quite a bit of ease.
4) Gintoki – Gintama
Gintoki may seem like an easy-going person, but when he becomes frustrated, he can pin down his opponents who are ten times stronger than him. With his overwhelming swordplay, he earned the nickname White Demon.
His swordsmanship style was not taught by anyone, but he developed it on his own. Even the powerful race of Yato is nothing in front of Gintoki’s indomitable will and his cherished wooden sword.
3) Nanashi - Sword of the Stranger
Nanashi possesses inhuman skills in swordsmanship, undermining other swordsmen who couple their swordplay with magical abilities. No matter how heavily wounded he is, Nanashi is able to fight his enemy with immense agility.
He is a gifted swordsman who took on several trained Ming Warriors quite efficiently. Although he promised to keep his sword sheathed to seek redemption, he had to break his oath over the course of the period.
2) Killer Bee – Naruto
In Naruto, the term used for swordsmanship is Kenjutsu. A plethora of Shinobis have been praised for their proficiency in swordsmanship, but none of them have come close to Killer Bee.
His personally devised swordsmanship technique, called the Acrobat, is a unique style that can hold up to seven swords in physically impossible locations on his body. In this state, Bee’s movements become so unpredictable that even a powerful Dojutsu like Sharingan couldn’t keep up.
1) Himura Kenshin - Rurouni Kenshin
Renowned as the legendary Hitokiri Battosai, Himura Kenshin is a powerful warrior widely acclaimed for his surreal mastery over swordsmanship. Kenshin is one of the few recent masters of Meji, who has mastered Modoshigiri. It is a technique where the swordsman wields the best blade to cut so neatly that it can be reattached as if it was never cut.
Kenshin is also acknowledged for the immense strength that he incorporates with his swordsmanship, where he can even cut through pure steel.