|Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto|
|Alias(es)||"The Old Man" "Captain-Commander"|
|Affiliation||Gotei 13, Soul Society|
|Headquarters||Seireitei, Soul Society|
|Bankai||Zanka no Tachi|
|Height||168 cm (5'6")|
|Weight||52 kg (115 lbs)|
Yamamoto is the oldest captain in the Gotei 13. He has the appearance of an old man with red eyes, a very long white beard, and long eyebrows. There are many scars on his torso and head, the two most prominent being a pair of long, perpendicular scars above his right eye, left by his battle with his lieutenant. After his brief confrontation with Sōsuke Aizen, Yamamoto lost his left arm. He wears the standard Shinigami uniform, but its size is greatly exaggerated. He drapes his haori over his back instead of actually wearing it. Despite his old and frail appearance, he has a very muscular body which he only reveals when he goes to battle, something which Shunsui Kyōraku claims is not seen too often.
When he was much younger, Yamamoto had black hair on the sides of his head, and was bald on top. He had a tuft of hair sticking up at the back of his head in a topknot. He had thick black eyebrows and a long, thick black mustache. He had a single large scar on his forehead, which earned him the nickname "Eijisai" due to its shape. He had prominent wrinkles on his forehead and beneath his eyes, and shallow cheeks. He wore the typical black outfit of a Shinigami.
As the Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13, Yamamoto is highly respected by most of the Shinigami, most notably Sajin Komamura, who views Yamamoto as a benefactor who saved his life. The embodiment of conviction, Yamamoto follows the laws and regulations of Soul Society to the letter, and expects the same of others. He is not a man to tolerate insubordination, and is vocal with those who attempt to act in such a manner. He is quick to anger in the face of possible betrayal and can be quite aggressive in combat. He has a habit of referring to those he faces in battle as "youngster", and he refers to a battle as a "beating" or "punishment". When in a state of peace, he carries himself with an air of frailty, to the point where he fell asleep standing while awaiting Shunsui Kyōraku's arrival for a meeting. Due to years of experience, Yamamoto very rarely shows any sign of distress or surprise, usually responding by opening one or both of his eyes, which are partially closed slits for the majority of the time.
Yamamoto is very loyal to Soul Society, and takes his duties very seriously, expecting the same from the rest of the Gotei 13. His loyalty is so great, he is willing to sacrifice himself and the Gotei 13 in order to defeat Aizen, believing it to be their duty to lay down their lives for the sake of the Soul Society if necessary. Yamamoto becomes visibly angry when Shunsui, Byakuya Kuchiki, and Kenpachi Zaraki lose their haori and show little regret: to him, the haori represents their status as captains. Inversely, he prefers not to involve allies who are not part of the Gotei 13 (particularly humans), as he requested Ichigo Kurosaki to move to safety, and did not request for Orihime Inoue to repair the left arm he sacrificed for Ittō Kasō.
Despite his stern and steadfast personality, it is not to say he has no compassion and admiration, even for his enemies, as he was reluctant to strike down Wonderweiss Margela for his childish form and personality (only managing to get through this when Wonderweiss' Resurrección makes him no longer look like a child), and felt pity for him that Sōsuke Aizen stripped him of all his higher mental capacities except emotions (mainly fear of death). He commended the Tres Bestias for their bravery of attacking him with only one arm each, and struck them down without killing them. Yamamoto felt particularly furious when Driscoll Berci utilized his lieutenant Chōjirō Sasakibe's stolen Bankai, considering the inferior power to that of the original wielder as an insult to Chōjiro's memories and hard work; Yamamoto brutally burned Driscoll to cinders, showing his immense respect for a longtime friend and subordinate.
Yamamoto appreciates Eastern cultures, and is a master at the Japanese tea ceremony. He dislikes the Western traditions preferred by his lieutenant Chōjirō Sasakibe. Yamamoto holds a tea session every month in the 1st Division quarters for every member of his division. He plaits his own beard and arranges its ends once a month, and likes to be rubbed down with a dry towel while exposed to the sun on his balcony.
Yamamoto was apparently shameful of his past actions. He once referred to a painting of his past self as a monster that brought the Soul Society further turmoil when it was in a period of instability. Yhwach noted 1000 years ago, Yamamoto was a demon himself, using any necessary means to defeat his enemies, and treated Humans and his own subordinates alike as expendable pawns; it was only after defeating the Quincy and attaining peace did Yamamoto live with honor and justice that led him to hesitate in sacrificing people heedlessly.
Powers & Abilities
Master Swordsman: As the founder of the Shinō Academy and a warrior with over two millennia of combat experience, Yamamoto is the most powerful combatant in Soul Society. Few would hope to come out alive from a fight with him. He can fight two captain-level Shinigami simultaneously with a single hand. His skill in swordsmanship is great enough to take down his opponent with a single precise strike.
Hitotsume: Nadegiri (一つ目・撫で斬り, The First: Killing Stroke): A precision cut of extreme force and speed which can slice through large, multi-story high opponents. The opponent is killed with one swift slash so precise, they are not even aware of it until after it has taken place. Onibi (鬼火, Oni Fire): Yamamoto takes his Zanpakutō in its sealed cane form and thrusts it at his opponent, creating a large hole in their body. This technique was effective against a multiple story-high opponent like Ayon. Sokotsu Yamamoto uses Sōkotsu on Wonderweiss. Hakuda Master: While it is unknown how much his ability has declined from old age, Yamamoto remains a highly skilled and dangerous combatant even without his Zanpakutō. In addition to his skill in swordsmanship, he is a master in hand-to-hand combat. He effortlessly caught a strike from the deceptively fast Ayon. Yamamoto can deliver powerful blows which can smash through Espada-level Hierro, and block the majority of multiple punches from a multi-armed opponent.
Ikkotsu (一骨, Single Bone): A powerful punch used by Yamamoto against Wonderweiss. Using this technique, Yamamoto destroyed much of Wonderweiss' abdomen and sent him flying along a city street and into a building, destroying it. Sōkotsu (双骨, Double Bone): Stronger than Ikkotsu, it is a powerful two-fisted punch used by Yamamoto against Wonderweiss. The attack can completely destroy an opponent with a single blow. Kidō Master: Yamamoto's knowledge of Kidō is so great, he can perform them without calling out their names while retaining their great potential power, whereas most users require a name to do so, if not a full incantation. He can produce immensely powerful barriers to protect him from all but the strongest of attacks. He cast a level 96 Hadō without incantation, and still used it to great effect.
Shunpo Master: Yamamoto is highly skilled and experienced in the art of Shunpo, outracing Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake during a chase across the Seireitei. He overtook both captains, and arrived at their destination first without even being noticed by them.
Master Strategist & Tactician: With his years of experience as a teacher and warrior, along with being the commander of the entire Gotei 13, Yamamoto is a very intelligent man. He can quickly adjust to new developments and make quick decisions accordingly. He has great tactical acumen, proven by his preparations for the battle in the Fake Karakura Town. As noted by Aizen, Yamamoto is very cunning, setting up a trap to kill him while Aizen was focused on the Visored and the rest of the Gotei 13. He is a very perceptive man, easily deducing Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi was hiding knowledge on the Bounts. His skill at battle tactics is undeniable: as captain-commander, he commonly sends the captains and divisions out to engage in battle, be it to relatively small or large threats, and has done so for a number of centuries.
Immense Spiritual Power: Being the oldest and therefore the most experienced Shinigami, Yamamoto possesses an extremely massive and powerful Reiryoku. Its sheer strength is powerful enough to effortlessly break free from four overlapping and high-level Bakudō spells restraining him. Even Aizen openly acknowledges Yamamoto's power (via his Zanpakutō) as being so superior that if he were to fight directly against it, it would overpower even him. Yamamoto has served as the Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13 for over 1,000 years because there has not been a Shinigami stronger than him born in all this time.
Masterful Reiatsu Control: Yamamoto can exert his Reiatsu to induce fear in captain-level combatants, and can physically paralyze and possibly even choke combatants of lieutenant-level and lower simply by gazing in their direction. Yamamoto's spiritual pressure has the same effect as his Zanpakutō, for it is the elemental representative of fire. He tends to glow with a fiery aura, which has the potential to burn and set his surroundings on fire without the use of his Zanpakutō. It is the formidable pressure of his Reiatsu which makes the Reiatsu itself look like flames. When Yamamoto is enraged, his Reiatsu is powerful enough to be felt all around Seireitei with tremendous force. Immense Strength: In addition to his surprisingly muscular physique for his age, Yamamoto possesses tremendous physical strength. He easily and swiftly put a large hole into the chest of the monster Ayon without much effort at all, using only the blunt end of his cane. With a single hand, he stopped one of Ayon's strikes and overpowered it, despite it having enlarged its arm and increased its strength several folds. With one punch, he put a large hole through the chest of Wonderweiss Margela while he was in Resurrección and sent him flying back several city blocks. He tore off Wonderweiss' arms, with his bare hands, with little to no effort. With a single double-fisted strike, he shattered Wonderweiss' entire body into pieces.
Immense Durability: In addition to his resilience, Yamamoto possesses remarkable durability. He fought against two of Soul Society's strongest captains, Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake, and emerged without any sign of injury. He took an onslaught of punches from Wonderweiss' multiple arms twice, and came out completely unfazed by the assault, with no more than simple scratches. He sustained an explosion of flames which had the power to incinerate all of Karakura Town and a great area around it. In his younger years, he challenged Chōjirō to defeat him with his newly achieved Bankai, and in the end only suffered a light scar on his forehead. 2000 years later, he would take on a barrage of powerful lightning strikes from Chōjirō's fully mastered Bankai and only be singed by its power, though he stated it had become weaker. He can easily deflect a giant Heilig Pfeil from a Sternritter with one hand without any noticeable damage done to his being.
Immense Endurance: Despite his old age, Yamamoto can fight for extended periods of time, even when outnumbered, with no visible signs of exhaustion. He can take direct attacks from others unfazed. He can endure being impaled on a sword without so much as flinching from the perceived damage, even when the blow is dealt by the likes of Aizen, a powerful opponent. Even after being bifurcated by Yhwach, Yamamoto survived and managed to grab onto his cloak.
Ryūjin Jakka (流刃若火, Flowing Blade-like Flame; Viz "Flowing Blade Young Flame"): Yamamoto's Zanpakutō is the oldest and most powerful fire-type Zanpakutō, and has greater offensive power than all other Zanpakutō in Soul Society. In its sealed form, Ryūjin Jakka usually takes the appearance of a harmless wooden staff, which can be used like a spear. At any time, Yamamoto can remove this disguise by peeling off the wood, revealing its true form of a standard katana, with a dark purple handle and a circular hand guard. Its power is so great, even the strongest of Shinigami are afraid of it, even in its sealed form. After Yamamoto was killed, Ryūjin Jakka, now scorched and shattered, was returned to the 1st Division barracks.
Shikai: Its Shikai command is "Reduce All Creation to Ash" (万象一切灰燼と為せ, banshō issai kaijin to nase; Viz "All Things of this World, Turn to Ashes"). The release of his Zanpakutō comes with an extreme release of spiritual pressure, affecting all in the area, and can be felt for miles upon miles across all of the Seireitei. Shikai Special Ability: When released, the blade of Ryūjin Jakka is engulfed in fire. The aura of this weapon disintegrates everything and anything which Yamamoto waves the sword at, changing it into nothing more than ash, and engulfs the surrounding landscape in a blazing firestorm, the heat of which is intense enough to scorch the sky and consume the clouds. Only powerful fighters such as Shunsui and Ukitake can resist it, but even then only indirectly. Even in its Shikai, Ryūjin Jakka is powerful enough to fight against the Shikai of two other captains simultaneously, both of whom had the reputation of being the strongest captains in Soul Society while together. Unlike most other Zanpakutō, resealing Ryūjin Jakka does not deactivate any ability already used against an opponent, proven when Yamamoto imprisons Sōsuke Aizen, Gin Ichimaru, and Kaname Tōsen.
Jōkaku Enjō (城郭炎上, Fortress Blaze): This technique creates an immense wall of flame, which surrounds the target and forms a huge contained sphere of flame in which to imprison enemies. It is immensely powerful, imprisoning three captain-level Shinigami (namely Aizen, Gin, and Tōsen) for a significant amount of time.
Taimatsu (松明, Torch): This technique allows Yamamoto to create a great inferno with a simple wave of Ryūjin Jakka. The fire generated by the attack completely consumes whatever is caught within it until only ashes remain. The flames created by Ryūjin Jakka can be controlled, with great precision, by Yamamoto to attack only the targets he chooses, and he has power over the intensity of the flames.
Ennetsu Jigoku (炎熱地獄, Flames of Hell): Creates seven or more immense pillars of flame which surround an area. The intent of this technique is to trap the opponent in the caged inferno and destroy them. The power of this technique can destroy everyone caught in its vicinity, including Yamamoto himself. These flames can incinerate an area much greater than Karakura Town's.
Zanka no Tachi (残火の太刀, Longsword of the Remnant Flame; Viz "Blade of Ember"): In its Bankai, the blade takes the form of an ancient and worn katana, severely scorched by fire. Bankai Special Ability: Upon activation, any flames previously produced by Ryūjin Jakka are absorbed into the blade. Zanka no Tachi incorporates the full power of Yamamoto's flames into the blade: the flames within the blade burn anything it cuts out of existence. Zanka no Tachi has the side-effect of depleting the moisture in an entire area (at least the size of the Seireitei), causing the air and the water to dry up. Even Tōshirō Hitsugaya's Bankai, Daiguren Hyōrinmaru, cannot be used, for its ice melts due to the intense heat of Zanka no Tachi. No flames are visible as it cuts. Yamamoto claims releasing his Bankai clads both his blade and his body in the flames of the Sun.
Zanka no Tachi, Higashi: Kyokujitsujin (残火の太刀 "東": 旭日刃, Longsword of the Remnant Flame, East: Rising Sun Edge): Automatically activated at release, this ability concentrates the intense flames of the sword along the edge of the blade. It neither burns nor erupts, but anything it touches is eradicated to nothingness. Even the defensive power of the Wandenreich's Blut Vene cannot stand up against this technique.
Zanka no Tachi, Nishi: Zanjitsu Gokui (残火の太刀 "西": 残日獄衣, Longsword of the Remnant Flame, West: Remnant Sun Prison Garb): Automatically activated at release, this ability is unseen by the eyes of anyone else unless Yamamoto wills it to be seen. It engulfs his body in heat which reaches a temperature upwards of 15,000,000 degrees. Therefore, it becomes impossible to even touch him while he is using his Bankai. The level of heat produced by this technique is so high, it would not actually appear in the form of flames.
Zanka no Tachi, Minami: Kaka Jūmanokushi Daisōjin (残火の太刀 "南": 火火十万億死大葬陣, Longsword of the Remnant Flame, South: Great Burial Ranks of the Ten Trillion Fire Dead): Impaling the tip of his sword into the ground, Yamamoto calls upon the corpses and ashes of the dead who were killed by his flames to come forth and fight on his behalf. They emerge from a rupture in the ground which comes with enough force to decimate
Kirchenlied: Sankt Zwinger. Using the heat of his sword on their ashes, he can rouse all the people he has killed, allowing the corpses to become his limbs and attack whomever he deems as his enemy until they become dust. He can bring forth any specific corpse which he wishes, allowing him to inflict psychological damage upon those with connections to those he has slain.
Zanka no Tachi, Kita: Tenchi Kaijin (残火の太刀 "北": 天地灰尽, Longsword of the Remnant Flame, North: Heaven and Earth End in Ashes): A slash of concentrated fire and heat which incinerates whatever it touches out of existence.