After the death of Yukishiro Tomoe, Himura Kenshin became a free wielding swordsman to protect members of the Ishin Shishi. Shishio Makoto became his successor as the shadow hitokiri (assassin) and was responsible for the assassination of Izuka, the man who had betrayed the shishi.
The future Meiji government was more secretive about Shishio than Kenshin; many members of the Chōshū and Satsuma clans (the members of the future Meiji government) would have very little information on him.
Later, the new Meiji government believed it would be in their best interests to eliminate Shishio before he became too powerful since Shishio was a man who desired power. Thus during the Boshin War, Shishio was rendered unconscious by several gunshots, doused in oil and burned alive by the new government formed by the Ishin Shishi. He survived, sustaining severe damage to his entire body. Afterwards, he assembled a group of the best fighters in Japan, called the Juppongatana (Ten Swords), to overthrow the Meiji government.
Shishio envisioned a Japan ruled by him, enforcing the principles of natural selection, or what he called "the strong eat the weak". Using this belief he ran a campaign against the Meiji government, as he felt it was too weak to effectively lead the country. Using his motto, he molded an ideological disciple out of Seta Sōjirō, who served as his right-hand man, and the strongest of the Juppongatana. He planned to strengthen the economy with petroleum once he took over the country.
Powers and Stats
Tier: At least 8-C
Name: Makoto Shishio
Origin: Rurouni Kenshin
Classification: Human Swordsman, The Successor of Hitokiri Battōsai
Powers and Abilities: Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Minor ki sensing and usage abilities, Incredibly skilled swordsman and self-taught master
Lifting Strength: Superhuman
Striking Strength: At least Building Class
Durability: At least Building level (Shrugged off Kenshin's blows)
Stamina: Fairly high
Range: Extended melee range
Standard Equipment: Mugenjin sword
Intelligence: Shishio displays very high intelligence, in some ways giving him something of an evil genius persona. He is extremely crafty, being able to hide from the Meiji government despite their efforts to find him, and his plans nearly succeed in bringing them down. He also learns from his mistakes; after his brush with death from being knocked out with a bullet to the head, he takes to wearing a hachigane (iron headband) to keep that weakness from being exploited
Weaknesses: Can't battle for more than 25 minutes or he'll combust.
Shishio uses Mugenjin to execute techniques referred to by Hōji as "The Three Secret Swords":
- Secret Sword 1, Homuradama: This is the technique Shishio has used the most. Using friction to ignite the human fats that have soaked into his sword over time, this serves to distract the opponent from his swings. The result is being simultaneously burned and slashed, more than compensating for the weakness of his serrated sword not being able to cut as deep as a normal one.
- Secret Sword 2, Guren Kaina: He fills his gauntlets with gunpowder, and ignites them with the sparks caused by the Mugenjin. Thus it results in an explosion. Guren Kaina yields a lot of force and is usually performed while his opponent (such as Kenshin or Saitō Hajime) is at close range, preferably in his grip.
- Final Secret Sword Kaguzuchi: The Kaguzuchi is the ultimate technique in Shishio's arsenal. He activates it by scraping his blade from the base to the tip on the end of the scabbard, creating a miniature fire cyclone around the blade. The technique is not fully revealed, but it's believed that Shishio starts the fire and then slashes at the enemy, thus he can incinerate them entirely while still cutting them. Before Shishio could utilize the Kaguzuchi, he was countered by Kenshin's ultimate attack.