10 iconic weapons in anime

Kamehameha is an iconic anime weapon (Image via Toei Animation)
Kamehameha is an iconic anime weapon (Image via Toei Animation)

Anime is full of iconic weapons. From Kamehamehas to Stands to various magical weaponry, it's clear a lot of work and dedication went into crafting and making these weapons unique.

Iconic is defined as something widely recognized and well-established. The anime weapons listed here are certainly all that, due to being staples of the leading characters' arsenals and seen through pivotal moments. It also helps, in some cases, that they can be sold alongside official merchandise to truly capitalize and make them iconic.

Here are just 10 unique and iconic anime weapons.

Note: This article is the opinion of the author.

10 iconic and unique anime weapons

1) Kamehameha


Hearing the word alone should evoke the pose and blue ki blast that is the Kamehameha from Dragon Ball. It’s the most iconic attack from Dragon Ball and is the signature attack in Goku’s arsenal. A blue wave of energy is fired from the hands after concentrating ki energy into releasing it at a single point, with one arm or even the feet being optional.

As for why it's an iconic anime weapon? Multiple characters have used it more than once, including Goku, his son Gohan, friend Krillin, villains like Cell and Maijin Buu, and the original was used by Master Roshi. It has many variants in multiple colors and has been referenced by other anime, including Gintama and Jujutsu Kaisen.

It’s also seen in big moments throughout Dragon Ball, from the introduction where Master Roshi puts out a raging inferno to many Goku-involved fights after. The most famous is the first Goku vs. Vegeta beam struggle in Z, or otherwise Gohan vs. Cell where two giant versions clashed.

2) Rasengan


The titular Naruto’s jutsu of choice after the shadow clone jutsu, the Rasengan, is iconic to Naruto. It’s a swirling ball of wind energy that can grow from the size of a softball to the size of one of Dragon Ball’s planet-destroying energy orbs. It requires an extreme amount of control of one’s chakra to manifest, as it involves spinning the chakra into a sphere, maintaining that density, and then containing it.

Its iconic status is similar to the Kamehameha, they’re both staples of the lead protagonist’s arsenals, and they have both been used by more than one character. They’ve also both been seen in many iconic battles: all of Naruto’s against Sasuke, the Fourth Hokage Minato against Obito, etc.

3) Power Systems

You’re born with one anime power system inside your body.Which one is it?

It’s one thing to talk about the weapons themselves, how do they work?

Ki is an energy inside every living being in Dragon Ball that requires control of the body and mind to control and gather. It’s very versatile, creating beams, orbs, transformation states, and defenses.

Chakra from Naruto works in much the same way, except that chakra requires greater concentration and can be sealed. Chakra also isn’t innate to every being, and it was introduced to the ninja world when Hamura and Hagoromo Otsutsuki were born with it. Chakra is a form of life energy that people need, or else they’ll die, a departure from ki.

Quirks in My Hero Academia are like metahuman abilities. Quirks are abilities that fit into multiple categories, everything from radiating light to controlling fire. They can also be inherited genetically.

4) Giant robots

Which Gainax Mecha anime is your favourite?

As Megas XLR once revealed, everyone digs giant robots! Anime is no exception. Giant robots, whether autonomous like the Transformers or piloted like Gundams or Eva, have become iconic in their own right.

Gundams from the titular series are usually large, sleek, and human-looking. Whether the iconic cyclops like Zaku or the Unicorn Gundam, they are all usually uniquely designed. Their arsenals are likewise, with arms ranging from beam rifles to large energy swords. Of course, a mech is only as good as the pilot, which Gundam has in spades.

Eva Units of Neon Genesis Evangelion/Rebuild are iconic for having their own specialties and innate abilities. Given that they are technically giant cyborgs that can function independent of their rider, have rage modes (Unit 01 and Unit 02 especially), and possess their own AT fields that can shield them from harm, and a host of mounted weapons to fight godlike beings? They pack a punch.

Gurren Lagann from Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann as a robot is special in that, like Eva units, it has its own unique ability to respond to the rider. It syncs with them and can continue fighting even if an arm is ripped off. Its most iconic weapon is, of course, the massive drill it uses to shatter enemy armor, but it can also open wormholes, has energy shields, and can fuse with mechs bigger than itself.

5) Spirits

All stands from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure : Stardust Crusaders #fanart #jojosbizarreadventure #jojo #JJBA #jjbafanart #stardustcrusaders

Spiritual energy and power are also iconic and unique because they wield the supernatural in their favor, usually in the form of a manifested being from one's own consciousness (Stands), a historical figure summoned for the Holy Grail War (Fate’s Servants), and even inner spirit energy (spirit energy).

Stands of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure are created from someone’s psyche, not only humans but living creatures (Dogs, birds, and even orangutans, for example). Users and Stand share an intimate psychic bond, and damage and wounds are reflected in both.

Fanmade Fate/Zero collage (Image via Reddit/BadassKiritsuguGil
Fanmade Fate/Zero collage (Image via Reddit/BadassKiritsuguGil

Servants of the Fate series are literally historical figures made manifest. From King Arthur to Gilgamesh among others, they are summoned to fight in the Holy Grail war and are bound by their masters. They have every affiliation from Lawful Good to Chaotic Evil and can be used by anyone possessing enough wit and will to perform command spells.

Spirit Energy from Yu Yu Hakusho is something everyone possesses but needs focus to weaponize. The most iconic weapon is the spirit gun and its variants, shooting beams of light at enemies from small shots to a giant one.

6) Guns


"Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side.” - Han Solo, Star Wars: A New Hope.

Guns in anime tend to be different than the standard. From shooting vastly different ammunition types to summoning spirits, these weapons are as iconic as they are weird.

The Dominator from Psycho-Pass is one such gun. It’s ID locked, so it won’t work for everyone, and since it is Psycho-Pass-locked, it won’t fire at everyone. It literally reads intent and decides on the course of action depending on the situational context and can fire a small knockout bolt or an incinerating blast.

Evokers from Persona 3: Spring of Birth is likewise unique and iconic. These grim Persona summoning devices require the act of shooting oneself in the head to summon a Persona during the Dark Hour. It fits with being a symbol of death and mortality.

Vash the Stampede’s AGL .45 Long Colt revolver from Trigun is another unique and iconic weapon. It has two modes: regular revolver and Angel mode. Angel mode activation fuses the gun to the user's arm and makes it capable of mass destruction (think a ki blast like the Kamehameha in a gun).

7) Duel Disks

KING OF GAMESS4 Judai has the best Duel Disk and nothing will change my mind.

In Yu-Gi-Oh!’s Battle City Tournament arc, Seto Kaiba comes up with a brilliant idea: portable dueling technology. The Duel Disk contains miniaturized versions of the gaming tech that manifests the cards as holograms. It’s a forearm attached disk with five slotted areas for the magic and trap cards.

From that arc, however, the Duel Disk was considered so iconic it became a staple of the franchise. From the original all the way up to the latest spin-off, Sevens, this piece of dueling tech has seen multiple variants and is still used by everyone in their respective series. It also sold well in merchandise alongside the actual trading card game.

8) Wands/mirrors/staffs

Happy New Year! I ended up compiling all of Sailor Moon's main weapons yesterday! I might do more weapons from the series later on, but I am not sure yet which ones. This was definitely a fun little project to wrap up the year with! #sailormoon

If someone needs to transform or otherwise needs a magical weapon, wand, or mirror, a staff usually does the trick. Considered a staple of the magical girl genre, these weapons aid in focusing a user's magic and directing it.

Sailor Moon came with a plethora of magical items, from transformation pens to scepters, that can also transform into physical weapons. These ranged from spears to swords to chains to glaives to aid in physical combat and helped focus their respective elements into an attack. The crescent moon design for most of Sailor Moon’s arsenal made them instantly recognizable, as well as a symbol for each planet.

Sakura's wand keys. What's your most favourite? I like sealing wand key the best ✨💖 #cardcaptorsakura #ccsakura #sakuracardcaptor

Sakura Kinomoto from Cardcaptor Sakura also used a wand/staff, mostly to aid in summoning and capturing magic cards that gave her control over the elements. Her staff is also iconic for the wings on it, and star designs that get more ornate the more powerful she gets.

9) Animal capture/containment (Poké Balls, Digivices)

9. #PokeBallA Poké Ball (sometimes spelled as Pokéball) is a round device used in the #Pokemon series to catch and contain Pokémon. The Poké Ball also serves as a symbol for the series. There are many types of the Poké Ball, such as the Great Ball or Ultra Ball.

Animal companions usually require some kind of aid going from place to place. What does one do when one cannot fit them in a crate or carrier?

Poké Balls from Pokemon fit the bill as transport. Not every Pokémon get in a ball, as Ash Ketchum finds out with his Pikachu and Lillie with her Cosmog named Nebby. But usually they do, and it aids with transport, healing, and the multiple hazardous environments trainers get into.

As for Digivices, they’re more helpful in boosting or empowering DigiDestined and Digimon. It features radar and data storage that can fuse Digimon. Both of these items are iconic as they have been featured in every series and have been core to their respective series.

10) Swords

Anime Swords!!,Do you want some EPIC Ichigo themed Swords? if yes then inbox us the order details HERE!!… . #CMX16

There are well over 20 iconic anime swords. From ones that transform to ones that contain power, unique swords are shown in anime a lot.

Beam sabers from the Gundam franchise are akin to the iconic lightsabers from Star Wars, being giant plasma blades capable of slicing through capital ships. One doesn’t take those out unless it’s up close and personal.

Zoro’s tri blade from One Piece combination is already iconic for his fighting style, two in each hand and one in his mouth. The iconic ones are Wado Ichimonji (his oldest blade), Sandai Kitesu (a cursed blade), and Enma (cut one of the Four Emperors).

Zangetsu is Ichigo Kurosaki’s Zanpakuto in Bleach. It’s not a true version, but formed from his Shinigami and Hollow powers. The larger blade splits into a larger sword and a trench knife. It can help him access Shinigami's abilities and is his signature weapon.

Tetsusaiga is Inuyasha's signature weapon. Said to be a sword of destruction, it possesses the ability to transform and has a technique called Wind Scar. Wind Scar was supposedly able to slay 100 yokai in a single strike.


These are just 10 iconic anime weapons. There are countless more that are not listed here, and they range from the amazing to the bizarre. Here's to hoping that more continue to arrive.

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Edited by R. Elahi
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