Meet Zoro’s Favorite Sword, the Black Sword of Shusui
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One Piece may be a show about pirates in search of devil fruit, but its Japanese feudal influences mean the anime is packed with katana swords and a certain Roronoa Zoro to revolutionize the world of fighting sword styles. The swordsman is known for his three katana method in both the show and manga in which he uses a sword in his mouth and two hands to fight.
This unique way of fighting has made the Straw Hat pirate arguably the strongest swordsman in Wano country. That said, his favorite sword is said to not even be one of his three main swords, but the Black Sword of Shusui, a blade known for its black blade that made it supernaturally durable to the point that its previous owner claimed it could withstand being stepped on by a dinosaur.
Shusui Is One of the 21 Great Grade Swords
Shusui is a meito sword which in the world of One Piece, makes it a blade with legendary powers. These meito swords are further divided into grade classes, each one more powerful than the last. As one of the 21 Great Grade swords or O Wazamono, the Black Sword of Shusui is just a step down from the strongest possible swords you can get in One Piece which are the Supreme Grade Swords or Saijo O Wazamono.
Shusui Is Renowned for Its Black Blade
Among the meito swords, black bladed swords are especially prized due to their higher durability. The color of the blade indicates a higher carbon content which in turn means that the sword is harder and able to keep its edge longer, even after extended rough usage.
The special carbon-receptive method of bladesmithing used for samurai swords are part of what gives them their legendary sword status, making Shusui even more powerful and special in its world. Yoru, the sword of Dracule Mihawk, is another such sword with a black blade.
It Was Given to Zoro by Ryuma
The Black Sword of Shusui once belonged to the so-called “God of the Blade”, Ryuma Shimotsuki who was the original wielder of the sword. He was said to have a strong moral code centered on justice and honor, though this would sometimes get him in trouble because he believed that if two swords touched scabbards, it was an invitation to a duel.
Ryuma believed strongly in the idea of a warrior’s spirit, so when he was bested by Zoro in a duel, he considered this a sign that his sword has to transfer owners because it would be happier serving under a stronger master.
The Black Sword of Shusui Is Still Weaker Than Enma
Shusui may be Zoro’s favorite sword, but it’s still weaker than his other sword Enma, this is due to Enma being a Great Grade Blade, putting it a class above Shusui. That said, it can keep up with Zoro’s other swords, Sandai Kitetsu, Yubashiri, and Wado Ichimonji.
Getting a Black Sword of Shusui Replica
You don’t have to join Luffy on an adventure through the high seas just to get a cosplay-ready replica of the Black Sword of Shusui, but having a keen eye for treasure wouldn’t hurt. While most replica swords can be counted on for longevity and accuracy, some swords are more detailed and realistic than others because of its higher price point and therefore, manufacturing budget.
Generally, you can expect to choose between swords of three different materials: plastic, wood, and stainless steel. Plastic swords are divided between ABS and PBS. While ABS plastic holds its color best, the surface tends to rub faster and develop an oily sheen versus PBS which doesn’t, though you trade this perk for fainter colors. Wood has equally good color retention and is cheaper, though paint chipping can occur during drastic temperature changes.
Of course, the best option overall is stainless steel, though it is the most expensive of the three and is generally unnecessary if you’re just cosplaying, not collecting.
The Black Sword of Shusui was once Zoro’s dream sword because he believed he needed to obtain it to become the best swordsman. After a long journey to Wano country, he realized it’s the skill, not the sword of the swordsman that makes them the best. You can hold a piece of Zoro’s aspirations with a replica of the Shusui sword which is available online, be it made of wood, plastic, or stainless steel depending on your budget.