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Top 10 BFSs in Fiction

Updated on May 17, 2016
Guts' Dragon Slayer from Berserk: a big effin' sword.
Guts' Dragon Slayer from Berserk: a big effin' sword. | Source

Not too long ago, I wrote a piece about the Top 10 BFGs in Fiction, my opinion of course. You can read it here on Hubpages. Now here comes the companion piece, the top ten big effin’ swords in fiction: because nothing means business more than being threatened by a blade as large as you are or even bigger. Heck, it doesn’t matter how impractical it would be to wield such ridiculously huge swords in real life—guys are swinging tese things around with ease often with just one hand. So, let’s see which ten I’ve got for my list.

Sanosuke with his zanbatō.
Sanosuke with his zanbatō. | Source

10. Zanbatō (Rurouni Kenshin)

Let’s start with a sword that may or may not have existed in real life. According to historical lore of the Japanese Sengoku era, a “zanbatō” (斬馬刀; literally meaning “horse-cutting-sword”) was a sword so improbably large that it could slash a horse and its rider with a single swing. This particular zanbatō in question is wielded by Sagara Sanosuke in Rurouni Kenshin for his duel against Himura Kenshin. Even though it’s larger than a number of other BFSs on this list, it gets the number one spot for a simple reason: it’s one of the few times in fiction where it’s actually pointed out that this BFS is highly impractical and ineffective in actual use, especially against a speed character like Kenshin.

Zabuza with Kubikiribōchō.
Zabuza with Kubikiribōchō. | Source

9. Kubikiribōchō (Naruto)

Kubikiribōchō (首斬り包丁; literally meaning "Decapitating Carving Knife") is the sword of Momochi Zabuza, the first major antagonist encountered in Naruto. In fact, each of the Seven Ninja Swordsmen of the Mist wield powerful hereditary swords and Zabuza as a former member of the group is no exception. In the case of Kubikiribōchō, it initially belonged to Hōzuki Mangetsu before being passed onto Zabuza who continued using it even after defecting from Kirigakure. After Zabuza’s death, the sword was used to mark his grave for about three years until it was taken by Mangetsu’s brother, Hōzuki Suigetsu. It is later broken in half by Raikage before returning to the hand of a reincarnated Zabuza who restores it by having it absorb Hatake Kakashi’s blood. The design of the blade, with the circle and semi-circle cut-outs is specifically for decapitation.

Haru Glory with Ten Commandments Eisenmeteor.
Haru Glory with Ten Commandments Eisenmeteor. | Source

8. Ten Commandments (RAVE)

From RAVE, the Ten Commandments is the sword of the Rave master Shiba, before it is inherited by the second Rave Master Haru Glory. Forged by the great blacksmith Gaelin Musica for the Rave Master, the Ten Commandments derives its power from the Holy Bring Rave and has the ability to transform into ten different forms depending on situation. Those ten forms are Eisenmeteor, Explosion, Silfarion, Rune Save, Blue Crimson, Mel Force, Gravity Core, Million Suns, Sacrifar, and Ravelt—the last one being specifically forged for Haru by his friend Hamrio Musica. The Ten Commandments is only number eight on the list because of the ten forms it has only Eisenmeteor and Gravity Core actually count as BFSs: the remaining are regular sized swords. Regardless of that, the ease at which Haru is able to wield Eisenmeteor still undeniably cements it as a bona fide big effin’ sword.

Cloud with his Buster Sword.
Cloud with his Buster Sword. | Source

7. Buster Sword (Final Fantasy VII)

When people think of BFSs, this is probably sword they first think of: the signature weapon of Final Fantasy VII’s Cloud Strife. Cloud inherited this sword from his late friend, 1st Class SOLDIER Zack Fair who in turn had inherited it from Angeal Hewley, himself a 1st Class SOLDIER. The Buster Sword is a massive broadsword, its blade the size of a human body. There are two holes near its hand guard where Materia can be inserted, giving the wielder certain magical powers. Both Zack and Cloud are able to wield this massive sword single handedly and can effectively use it to counter Sephiroth’s Masamune, itself a ridiculously long sword. In the sequel film Advent Children, Cloud uses a new version called the Fusion Sword while the original Buster Sword serves as Zack’s grave marker. The Buster Sword is the signature BFS for many. So why is it only number seven? Because in a nutshell, the remaining swords are, well, bigger.

Saix with his Claymore.
Saix with his Claymore. | Source

6. Lunatic Claymore (Kingdom Hearts II)

In Kingdom Hearts Chain of Memories and Kingdom Hearts II we are introduced to Organization XIII, a group of thirteen powerful Nobodies who seek to reclaim their hearts and become whole again. For those ends they will manipulate others, such as protagonist Sora, no matter how unethical or evil to forge Kingdom Hearts and claim it for themselves. Within Kingdom Hearts II, none of the Organization is more persistent in the manipulation of Sora then Number VII Saix. Now, each of the Organization members have their signature weapons, and Saix’s weapon is his Claymore called Lunatic. When in combat, Saix goes into a berserk state where he slams Lunatic onto the ground, creating devastating shockwaves. During their battle in Kingdom Hearts II however, Sora however can steal Lunatic and use reaction commands to in turn multiple debilitating blows on Saix which in turn will leave him stunned. This is the same way that Sora can take out the Berserker Nobodies Saix commands who wield giant hammers.

Blade of Olympus
Blade of Olympus | Source

5. Blade of Olympus (God of War)

In the God of War series, the Blade of Olympus is a sword forged by Zeus specifically for destroying the Titans. In God of War II, the sword was given to Kratos by Zeus so that the Colossus of Rhodes could be slain. That turned out to be a trap however as the blade ended up absorbing all of his godly powers instead and Zeus uses it to mortally wound Kratos and send him to the Underworld. Afterward when Kratos travelled back in time he nearly killed Zeus with the blade only to end up killing Athena instead when the latter interfered. By the time of God of War III, Kratos retrieves the sword from the statue of Pandora within the depths of Hades after he and Gaia are thrown off of Olympus. It is the single most powerful weapon in Kratos’s arsenal capable of slaying both gods and Titans.

Bustermarm Sword
Bustermarm Sword | Source

4. Bustermarm Sword (Fairy Tail)

In Fairy Tail, the sword of Pantherlily back when he was the Magic Militia's First Division Commander of the Royal Army of Edolas. The Bustermarm Sword is an exceedingly large sword being four times larger than its wielder (or as Happy describes it, “four ‘panthers’ long”). And even then it is able to grow larger if Lily wills it to do so. The sword’s hand-guard is in the form of a large, monstrous feline head with round eyes (which in the anime is shown to be the Lacrima crystals that power the sword), long ears which act like added protection, and a line of large teeth on the lower end in the direction of the hilt. The hilt is considerably thin in comparison but is quite long to match and the pommel compliments the hand-guard by being in the shape of a lower feline jaw. Patherlily used the Bustermarm Sword fight Gajeel Redfox while protecting the Giant Lacrima that was Fairy Tail Guild and the citizens of Magnolia, Earthland, only for the sword to be destroyed by the Iron Dragon Slayer. Later, Lily gets the similar Musica Sword during the Tenrou Island Arc.

Fate with Bardiche in Zanber Form
Fate with Bardiche in Zanber Form | Source

3. Bardiche Assault Zanber Form (Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha)

In my list for the Top 10 BFGs in Fiction, I stated in the entry for Raising Heart Excellion that Fate Testarossa’s Bardiche Assault Zanber Form would be on my list for Top 10 BFSs. Well, here’s that entry. In Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, FateTestarossa’s “intelligent device” is Bardiche. Where Nanoha is a ranged fighter, using Raising Heart as various cannons and BFGs, Fate is more of a melee fighter. Bardiche’s standard form is just as its name would suggest: a bardiche axe. But it is also capable of transforming into a “glaive form” and “scythe form”, the latter being the form Fate most commonly uses. Once Bardiche gets upgraded to Bardiche Assault however, the device gets a new “Zanber form”. In this form, Bardiche takes on the shape of a massive energy sword, with the length of the blade being however long Fate wills it to be. By the time of Strikers, Fate further gets Baardiche’s Zanber form upgraded to the point where it become dual-wielding twin swords.

Gundam 00 Raiser with Trans-Am Raiser Sword
Gundam 00 Raiser with Trans-Am Raiser Sword | Source

2. Trans-Am Raiser Sword (Mobile Suit Gundam 00)

I was generally avoiding including the swords of giant mechas for this list because the mechas themselves are already so large but it just felt wrong not to include this one on the list. During the second suit of Mobile Suit Gundam 00 we are introduced to the Trans-Am raiser system, a conjunction of the Trans-Am system introduced toward the end of season one with the 00 Gundam’s Twin Drive system while it is in its 00 Raiser form. In this case, by using the Trans-Am the 00 Gundam can combine the GN Binders from the 0 Raiser and GN Swords to create a the Raiser Sword, a massive beam saber that extends great distances to cut down large objects such as battle cruisers or satellite weapons. If you end up mistaking it for some kind of beam cannon, well, you’re screwed.

Ichimaru Gin with... huh?  That's number one?
Ichimaru Gin with... huh? That's number one? | Source

1. Shinsō (Bleach)

A good many of the Zanpakutō featured in Bleach would certainly qualify as a BFS. However, Ichimaru Gin’s Shinsō takes the cake by far. A quick explanation: the Zanpakutō or Soul-Cutter Swords are the signature weapons of the Shinigami. It is a sword capable of cutting spiritual bodies and each one is unique to each Shinigami. In the case of Shinsō, most of the time it just looks like an ordinary wakizashi. However, when Gin activates its Shikai form with the phrase "Shoot to kill" (射殺せ, Ikorose), the blade can grow to an incredible size, impaling enemies a considerable distance away with tremendous force. What really lands this sword in the top spot is its Bankai form, Kamishini no Yari (神殺鎗, God-Killing Spear). It’s basically a larger form of Shinsō’s Shikai form except that it’s capable of extending to an even greater distance? How far a distance? 13km (8.1 miles). Yes, you read that right: Shinsō in its Kamishini no Yari form is capable of becoming a sword 13 kilometers long! That’s an eight mile long sword. And it can achieve that size at 500 times the speed of sound or exactly 171,500 meters per second in order to arrive at its full length in under 0.08 seconds. That’s why Shinsō achieves the top spot on this list of BFSs.

Your favorite BFS

Which is your favorite BFS?

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So any other kind of big effin’ sword you might be interested in? Didn’t see your favorite sword on the list? Let me know. Hope I’ve got some you interested in the ideas of what large swords can do.

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