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15 Anime Characters Who Make Themselves Weak On Purpose

June 16, 2020 10.0k votes 2.2k voters 134.1k views15 items

It's always best to be as strong as possible...right? Not always. Actually, sometimes it's better to limit one's powers - which is exactly what the anime characters on this list did. 

Anime characters who make themselves weak have a wide range of reasons for making that choice. Some, like Fai D. Flowright from Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle and Saiki Kusuo from The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. are trying to suppress powers that could be dangerous if they got out of control. Others, like Kenpachi Zaraki from Bleach and Rock Lee from Naruto are giving themselves a handicap so that their fights are more challenging and they can get stronger through overcoming challenges. Still others have unique, personal reasons for doing so - Shoto Todoroki is better off when he embraces his fire powers, but he starts off the series refusing to do so out of resentment towards his father. 

Regardless of their reasons, all of these characters made major changes to their strength.

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  • Kenpachi Zaraki - 'Bleach'
    Photo: Toei Animation

    Few things are more important to Kenpachi Zaraki than the thrill of a challenging battle. That's why he uses multiple limiters to tamp down his strength. Some of the most notable limits include a parasitic eye-patch that chows down on his life force and bells on the ends of his hair that are audible only to those who are strong enough to defeat him. When he releases himself from these limits, he's an absolute beast. 

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  • As part of his training, Rock Lee wears weights on his legs. While most people who do this wear relatively light ones for basic conditioning, Lee's weights are so heavy that when they fall to the ground, the ground breaks. With the weights on he's already ridiculously strong and fast, but when he takes them off during his battle with Gaara he's buzzing around the stadium so fast that it's impossible to track him. This is how he manages to actually land a hit on Gaara, something no one else had been able to do, thusfar. 

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  • Hiei - 'Yu Yu Hakusho'
    Photo: Sunrise

    Hiei's Jagan Eye is the key to some of his strongest techniques, but he usually keeps it covered with a headband. Similarly, he wears bandages on his arm in order to suppress his Dragon of the Darkness Flame. He only unleashes these techniques when it's absolutely necessary. That's because without the limits, his powers are strong enough to wreck everything around him, even taking weaker beings' lives just from being in its presence. What's more, using these attacks causes him serious physical damage - his arm was not happy with him after he used Dragon of the Darkness Flame.

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  • Kurapika - 'Hunter x Hunter'
    Photo: Madhouse

    Kurapika's strongest Nen attack has a glaring weakness - and he purposely designed it that way. Judgment Chain wraps a chain made of Nen around a target's heart, then pierces it with a spike if the target does not obey Kurapika's commands. Kurapika has a similar chain wrapped around his own heart. If he uses this technique on anybody who isn't a member of the Phantom Troupe, his own heart will be pierced and his life will end. 

    Why create such a drastic limit? Creating conditions like this is part of what allows him to create such a strong move in the first place. But Kurapika didn't have to go this far just for power. He also wants to make sure that his rage at having his family eliminated doesn't turn him into a violent monster.

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