|“||Throwing away victory for the sake of manners is a rookie mistake. Captains don't have the time to waste on that kind of thing. Don't waste your time trying to play the good guy. No matter what debts you may owe, from the instant you find yourself on the battleground, both sides are evil.||„|
|~ Shunsui to Love Aikawa|
Shunsui Sōzōsuke Jirō Kyōraku (京楽 次郎 総蔵佐 春水, Kyōraku no Jirō Sōzōsuke Shunsui) is the captain of the 1st Division and Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13. His lieutenants are Nanao Ise and Genshirō Okikiba. He is the former captain of the 8th Division.
Powers and Stats
Tier: 7-B, Unknown with Bankai | 7-A, Unknown with Bankai
Name: Shunsui Sōzōsuke Jirō Kyōraku
Age: Unknown, at least 100+ years
Classification: Shinigami, Former Captain of the 8th Division, Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13
Powers and Abilities: Superhuman Physical Characteristics, Master Swordsman, Hakuda Combatant, Can sense beings with reiatsu, Shunpo Master, Master Strategist and Tactician, Immense Spiritual Power, Reality Playing, Duplication, Afterimage Projection, Pseudo Flight, Wind Manipulation, Energy Manipulation
Lifting Strength: At least Superhuman
Striking Strength: City Class | Mountain Class
Durability: City level | Mountain level
Stamina: Very High
Range: Hundreds of Kilometers
Standard Equipment: His Zanpakutō, Katen Kyototsu, a pair consisting of a tachi and a wakizashi.
Intelligence: Very High, Despite his laid-back attitude, Shunsui has repeatedly shown himself to be a perceptive and insightful man. According to Yamamoto, even when he was younger, Shunsui has always had an eye for seeing the true character of anyone he meets. He was also one of the few people to suspect that Aizen was hiding something. In battle, Shunsui has proven to be very adept at noticing and understanding details in an opponent's skills or attack patterns. During his battle against Chad, he quickly determined the basics behind Chad's Reiryoku blasts, warning him about those kinds of techniques, and even explaining that his energy blasts would eventually use up his life energy. Shunsui has also proven himself very persuasive. Shortly after becoming Captain-Commander, he was able to convince Central 46 to agree to all his new requests.
Weaknesses: Shunsui can be very lazy. The wide range of his Bankai means he has to wait until his allies get of range before he can use it, lest he accidentally hurts them as well.
Master Swordsman: While hating the concept of having to engage in a fight, Shunsui is one of the most proficient swordsmen in all of Soul Society. He is a highly adaptable combatant, as his two swords have allowed him to become ambidextrous, letting him switch them between his hands. Kyōraku usually swings with more strength in his left hand than his right, however, he can easily switch or balance the strength between his two hands, allowing him to surprise his opponent. Kyōraku states that he only uses his wakizashi in situations where his katana is too difficult to use. He claims that he does not use them together on a regular basis. The best example of Shunsui's prowess is his ability to fight on even grounds with an unreleased Starrk, the 1st Espada, with only his sealed Zanpakutō, while other captain-level Shinigami have required at least their Shikai to fight against an Espada. Shunsui's fighting style involves evasion and attacking an opponent either in the front or back, using the element of surprise to overwhelm them.
Hakuda Combatant: While rarely observed performing hand-to-hand combat, instead preferring to rely upon his skills in other areas, Shunsui has at least some proficiency in this area, which he briefly displayed during his confrontation with Yasutora Sado.
- Tsukiyubi (撞指, Thrust Fingers): A technique where the user simply extends the index and middle fingers of one hand in unison while they are in contact with an opponent. This gesture possesses enough physical force to effortlessly send someone of even Chad's stature flying several meters away.
Shunpo Master: As a captain, Shunsui is exceptional in the art of Shunpo. During his battle against Yamamoto, he notably makes a massive leap in Shunpo to remove Nanao from the battlefield and return almost instantly, a feat commended even by Yamamoto prior to battle. Shunsui's skill is high enough for him to effortlessly dodge Starrk's attacks without mussing his hat or kimono.
Immense Spiritual Power: As one of the oldest and strongest captains in the Gotei 13, Kyōraku has tremendous spiritual power. He, alongside his best friend Jūshirō Ukitake, are said to possess Reiatsu unmatched by their peers or predecessors. He is not overwhelmed by the Reiatsu of Captain-Commander Yamamoto, though most people would be in such a situation. His power is further displayed in his ability to defeat Coyote Starrk's released form with only his Shikai. His might was also later recognized by being promoted to the status of Captain-Commander.
Enhanced Strength: Shunsui possesses relatively high physical strength, calmly deflecting one of Sado's Reiryoku blasts with a single hand. Offensively, his blows are very powerful, demonstrated when he cracked a barrier, which Aizen had erected, with just a single attack from his Shikai.
Enhanced Durability: Shunsui has proven that he is very durable, even by Shinigami standards. He was able to endure the attacks of Captain-Commander Yamamoto, whose Zanpakutō is the most devastating in all of Soul Society in terms of destructive power. He was also able to withstand a Cero at point-blank range from Starrk in his released form without any noticeable injuries.
Enhanced Endurance: Shunsui possesses considerable stamina and endurance, remaining able to move around and fight as he usually does even after being shot multiple times by Lille Barro's Quincy: Vollständig.
Katen Kyōkotsu (花天狂骨, Flower Heaven, Crazy Bone; Viz "Flower-Heaven Bone of Madness"): His Zanpakutō is unique in that it exists as a daisho sword pair, consisting of a tachi and a wakizashi. Their cross guards are rectangles, with the corners cut off, decorated by a pattern of cherry petals and lines, and each sports a dark-blue handle. He usually keeps them sheathed through his waist tie at his left side; however, during battle, the swords have been shown to be placed on both sides of his sash. Like other Zanpakutō, Katen Kyōkotsu has a personality of her own. However, unlike other Zanpakutō, this personality shines through in battle and prevents Shunsui from fighting at full power until Katen Kyōkotsu is in the mood for it. Because of this, Shunsui does not like to "play" with "her".
- Shikai: Its Shikai command is "Flower Wind Rage and Flower God Roar, Heavenly Wind Rage and Heavenly Demon Sneers" (花風紊れて花神啼き天風紊れて天魔嗤う, hana kaze midarete, kashin naki, tenpū midarete, tenma warau; Viz "When the Flower Wind Rages, the Flower God Roars, When the Wind of Heaven Rages, the God of the Underworld Sneers"). Kyōraku sets the two blades against each other in a cross, and then pulls after uttering the poem-like command. When the flash clears, Katen Kyōkotsu has become a pair of huge, black, heavily curved Chinese scimitars with silver edges. The hilt and tsuba of each are still the same as they were in Katen Kyōkotsu's sealed-form, but they now sport long red tassels dangling from the end.
Shikai Special Ability: The power of Katen Kyōkotsu is to "make children's games real". The Zanpakutō makes the rules, and anyone who steps within the boundaries of its spiritual pressure is forced to play by those rules, including Shunsui himself. According to Shunsui, "You win, you live. You lose, you die. She's a fickle one, all right."
- Bushōgoma (不精独楽, Lazy Spinning Top): Shunsui rotates with both blades facing in opposite directions, creating large wind blades that fire toward an opponent from Katen Kyōkotsu. The wind blades join together, forming a spinning circle of wind that, upon contact with a target, envelopes the target with tornado-like intensity. The attack is not only dangerous, but can disorient an opponent trapped within it. The game this technique represents is a spinning top game.
- Takaoni (嶄鬼, Mountain Demon): This move was used in Shunsui's battle with Starrk, but Starrk's attack hid the nature of the technique. However, Shunsui later explains that in this "game", whoever is higher up "wins."
- Kageoni (影鬼, Shadow Demon): The rule of this game is that whoever gets their shadow stepped on "loses". The game itself allows competitors to manipulate shadows to their advantage. For example, Shunsui has demonstrated the ability to hide himself in shadows when using this technique, and he can also control the shadows, using them to attack an opponent by attacking the shadow they are currently standing upon. In addition, Shunsui can make multiple shadow clones of himself that can attack his opponent from multiple angles.
- Irooni (色鬼, Colorful Demon): In this color-based game, you say the name of the color you want to cut with your sword, and you cannot cut anything else. If the color that you call does not exist on your body, the damage is minimal, even if the attack would normally inflict a much more severe wound. However, the opposite is also true; by calling out a color you're wearing and attacking, the damage given is proportional to the amount of that color on you. To maximize damage, you have to use a color that maximizes the risks to yourself as well as your enemy. For example, by wearing black robes and calling "black," one would inflict massive damage on an enemy if struck even if the actual blow itself was minor, but the caller could potentially be at risk of suffering major damage in return depending on how much of the enemy's skin or clothing is covered in black.
- Duruma-san ga Koronda (だるまさん が ころんだ, The Dharma Doll Fell Down): After Shunsui or his opponent is marked as being "it", the other combatant travels toward them on a trail of Reiatsu left by their attack in order to catch them by surprise. However, if the combatant who is "it" sees their opponent while they are moving, that opponent loses and thus dies. The game this technique represents is Daruma-san ga Koronda, a children's game similar to red-light green-light.
- Kageokuri (影送り, Shadow Sending): By staring hard enough at their shadow, Shunsui or his opponent can project an afterimage in a different location; the higher their opponent's Reikaku, the more realistic the afterimage appears to be. The game this technique represents is Chiichan no Kageokuri, where children stare at their shadow on the ground for several seconds before looking at another surface, allowing them to see an "afterimage" of their shadow.
Bankai: Katen Kyōkotsu: Karamatsu Shinjū (花天狂骨枯松心中, Bones of Heavenly Blooming Madness: Withering Pine Lovers' Suicide): While holding his Shikai out in front of him with the blades pointing down, Shunsui activates his Bankai, causing black, root-like tendrils to spread out from him as his Zanpakutō Spirit, Katen Kyōkotsu, appears behind him. Shunsui considers this his last resort, and will only use it if his allies are far enough away from him so that they do not get caught in its effects.
Bankai Special Ability: Upon release, an aura covers a large area around Shunsui. This aura changes others' perception of the surrounding environment, making them perceive it as darkened, bleak and gloomy, and causes others to feel varying levels of melancholy and despair.
- Ichidanme: Tameraikizu no Wakachiai (一段目 躊躇疵分合, Act the First: Hesitance and Apportionment of Wounds): Any wounds that Shunsui or his opponent inflict on each other's body will emerge on their body as well, as if shared. Shunsui compares this to the story of a man who suffers from the same wounds as his partner, but cannot die from them.
- Nidanme: Zanki no Shitone (二段目 慚愧の褥, Act the Second: The Pillow of Shame): Black spots appear all over the body of Shunsui's opponent, causing them to bleed profusely. Continuing his story, Shunsui likens this to the man feeling shame after wounding his partner, causing him to collapse in shame and become incurably ill.
- Sandanme: Dangyo no Fuchi (三段目 断魚淵, Act the Third: The Severing Abyss): A massive amount of water engulfs both Shunsui and his opponent, who remain within it until one of them runs out of Reiatsu and drowns. Shunsui compares this to the two characters from his story, who both hurl themselves into gushing waters.
- Shime no Dan: Itokiribasami Chizome no Nodobue (〆の段 糸切鋏血染喉, Final Act: Thread-Cutting Scissors upon a Blood-Streaked Throat): After sheathing his swords, Shunsui winds a white thread around his opponent's throat multiple times before pulling it taut, leaving a deep cut in their throat that expands before blowing up their head. Completing his story, he likens this to the regretful man's partner ignoring his pleas and mercilessly shearing his throat.
Kidō Expert: Shunsui possesses great skill in Kidō, having used Hadō #78. Zangerin to considerable effect without reciting its incantation during his battle against Lille.
- Hadō #78: Zangerin (斬華輪, Cutting Flower Ring): Shunsui generates a large amount of energy from his Zanpakutō before blasting it outward with enough power to level a building.
Key: Pre-Timeskip | Thousand Year Blood War Arc