There are a lot of anime shows out there. But the ones that really stand out are those with a really unique or memorable Anime power systems.
Power systems are a narrative drive in anime to build off a universe with a unique set of powers. These specific powers can only be obtained through special methods but add diversity to the genre. This includes adding weaknesses and improvements outside of physical abilities, even appearing more supernatural at times.
From eating food to fighting the supernatural for power, here are the best of the best when it comes to unique anime power systems.
Devil Fruits From One PieceDevil Fruits are native to the long-running action-adventure anime, One Piece. These cursed fruits sprout randomly throughout the world and are extremely rare. When eaten, they grant the user a unique ability at the cost of being weak to water. That includes sinking!
This anime power system comes in three forms. There’s Zoan, which utilizes the powers of animals via man-beast or beast. The rarest to rare variants can use mythical to ancient creatures. The second is Paramecia, which are superhuman abilities that affect the user’s body, such as producing poison or becoming rubber.
Lastly, Logia-types utilize a unique element such as becoming sand or fire.
Each person can only have one Devil Fruit, consuming two will result in death. Despite these limitations, Devil Fruit can evolve and Awaken to grow more powerful. This varies from altering the environment with devil-fruit powers to achieving another transformation.
Devil fruits can pass on to other users, but the current owner of a devil fruit must die for their ability to pass on. From there, it’ll grow in a random part of the world to be discovered again. Fake variants known as Smile appear later on in the series.
They’re unstable Zoan-based animal fruits that mostly result in failure, and have a small success rate.
Gourmet Cells From TorikoGourmet Cells originate from a universal big bang which birthed a meteorite with a sort of cosmic virus. From the classic adventure anime about discovering the tastiest food, Toriko features a food-based power system. They’re simple to obtain, as the only requirements involve eating products infused with them.
These cells physically harness Appetite Energy, the desire for food, and the need to eat great foods to evolve. As they evolve, they manifest into physical and supernatural abilities.
These powers can vary from the protagonist using his hands as eating utensils or someone eating poison to produce later. These abilities later evolve throughout the series with characters eating unique foods to boost their power. This includes the awakening of Appetite Demons, sentient physical manifestations of the overwhelming hunter.
Of course, that can result in extreme power once physically manifested, but can only exist for a moment.
Cells are important to manage and require the user to eat tons of food. Millions of calories are burned from each attack used, and evolution is very necessary to survive. If the user chooses to starve, then the cells will ultimately eat one another and grow weaker over time.
Quirks From My Hero AcademiaThe Quirks power system first appeared during a worldwide phenomenon where people suddenly developed superpowers. This resulted in a lot of changes in the once normal world. This includes schools dedicated to teaching the next generation of heroes to be used to solve crimes.
The school, U.A. Highschool, is where most of the story takes place.
Quirks fall under three categories though some are more common than others. Emitters use superhuman abilities ranging from talking to animals, summoning lightning, and mind-control. The transformation uses their enhanced altered bodies from dividing themselves without harm to turning to steel.
Lastly, Heteromorphic or Mutant quirks involve abnormalities in the body, such as a tail or an altered shape of the limbs.
Most of the series features a lot of diverse quirks that vary with the user’s nature. A student from the U.A., Hitoshi Shinsho, has the power to control another’s mind if they answer a question. While this may seem like an evil power, the user himself is on the side of justice.
Quirks evolve throughout the series via training and adaptability. As they’re a part of the human body, they can adapt and be used in new ways. This includes enhancing it physically or evolving it in an unlikely way. This phenomenon is so unique that it’s considered as a sub-category for Quirks.
Stands From Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure
“A Stand” is the spiritual manifestation of one’s soul that possesses extraordinary abilities and forms. A Stand could take the form of a humanoid, a monster, or an inanimate object. Only Stand users can see other Stands, yet all living creatures can feel their effect around them due to the Stand’s supernatural abilities and the overall phenomena brought with them.
Stands often vary between users, some defying the rules applied to them. While some short-ranged Stands can be summoned immediately and share damage, remote Stands do the exact opposite. This includes having infinite range, complex conditions, and taking separate damage from the user.
There are Stat Charts to determine the strengths and weaknesses of this Anime power system but is considered inaccurate by fans.
While Stands themselves are powerful, how they’re used is up to the user. An extremely complicated Stand requires a very capable user, or it can never be fully utilized. Stands can also gain sentience and go against the user if their will isn’t strong enough.
Later conditions to becoming a Stand user are altered via the Arrow. The Arrow can awaken Stand’s dormant in other people if they’re wounded by it. It can also be absorbed into other Stands to achieve ultimate power called Requiem. Requiem is essentially an awakened Stand with overpowering abilities.
It can also awaken sentience within a Stand and the abilities gifted defy certain natural laws.
Spellbooks From Gash BellSpellbooks are abilities locked in ancient texts belonging to Mamodo, a race of magical creatures and demons. The Mamodo come to earth every thousand years to fight and determine their next ruler. If the book is destroyed, then they return to their home, Mamodo World.
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Only in the Mamodo World can these creatures freely use their powers. However, humans can draw out these powers for their own use. Their human partners can awaken each spell in the book once they are highlighted red. The partner then shouts out the said attack, and the Mamodo can summon it but draws stamina from both parties.
Different Books follow elemental nature to draw power from with a few exceptions. An electric-based Mamodo can use lightning to conjure attacks, barriers, and inflict magnetism. One can determine the overall power of these spells by the bonds between partners and Mamodo.
While there are basic-level spells, there’s a separate class of higher-tier spells. Each is categorized between raw power spells like Go, Ma, Teo, Dioga, and Shin. Yet they also cover wide areas like Dino, Raja, and Gigano.
Curse Energy From Jujitsu KaisenCurse Energy is a power system that originates from negative emotions such as grief and anger. It’s abundant within its universe as Cursed Spirits feed off of it. Curses are learned at curse schools, such as Sorcerers for Jujutsu High School. From there, students can apply what they’ve learned to fight Cursed Spirits.
Curse energy is the aura around the body and soul and requires immense focus to produce results. Sorcerers must control this flow of energy to amplify their powers. The Protagonist and Sorcerer Yuji Itadori are able to have curse energy flow through his fists for unarmed combat.
Sorcerers possess another ability called Black Flash, where curse energy is applied in less than a second for extra power.
Curse users, such as high school student Nobara Kugasaki, can hammer nails into straw dolls as an example of their techniques. If a piece of her opponent is stuck to the doll, then they’ll get impaled with a giant nail to assure death. As for negative aspects with techniques, using Curses can result in injury or possibly death.
The highest power someone can achieve is Domains, dimensions conjured from curse energy. While most spirits reside in them as nests, this is used as an all-out attack by Sorcerers called Domain Expansions. It requires intense training and immeasurable power to use Domain Expansion but has outstanding results.
Charyeok From God of High SchoolCharyeok, or Borrowed Power, is a contract between a spiritual being and a human. This results in said human obtaining a set of powers gifted from the contractor. Depending on the quality of the spirit and what life they live determine the borrower’s powers. Anime power systems don’t get much more unique than this!
Simple contracts such as Bastard Sword can manifest a sword from one’s soul but are essentially very weak. Contracts with more conditions from powerful spirits can be used to obtain more power. One can identify the quality of one’s power by using higher “God Points” or GP.
Contracts can also reward National Treasure which are powerful weapons preserved throughout history once used by the spirit. One Charyeok user obtained a sword that splits into seven blades used by the Hydra contracted with him.
Charyeok often passes down genetically which brings more results. Yet this is not a constant. One character harnessed the full power of Hercules after realizing he was his descendant. This also brought forth several National Treasures all belonging to Hercules.
Demon Weapons From Soul EaterDemon Weapons are people with the natural gift of becoming weapons to purge evil Witches. It passes down genetically but must happen naturally. Signs shown include changing one’s body into a weapon unique to that person’s soul.
Demon Weapons train at the Death Weapon Meister Academy, or DWMA, to hunt corrupt souls. In order to do so, they’re assigned a Meister, a partner able to wield Death Weapons. If the two manage to sync and bond perfectly both in and out of combat. they grow stronger over time. If one were to use a weapon incompatible with its user, then both parties would resist each other like opposite magnets.
Achieving full compatibility with a Meister results in Soul Resonance, where the souls of both parties harmonize. An example would be a guitarist plugging in an AMP for more output. This not only alters the shape of Demon Weapons but establishes the bonds between Meister and Weapon.
The goal of Demon Weapons is to eat 99 Kishin Eggs and 1 Witch soul. Kishin Eggs result from normal people eating souls and soon hatches into the Kishin, a powerful God of Madness. If these conditions are met, they’re promoted to more powerful versions called Death Weapons.
Death Weapons also have the special privilege to have the head of the DWMA, Death, as a meister.
Pyrokinesis From Fire ForcePyrokinesis is the physical and mental capability to control fire. Within the world of Fire Force, the members of the Force use pyrokinesis to battle against Infernals. These are fire demons that result from human combustion. As a member of the Fire Force, one must defend the world from these Infernals. Thus, pyrokinetic abilities are crucial to possess.
Different forms of the pyrokinesis power system range between generations. While first generations are Infernals, generations beyond are capable humans. Second-generations can control pre-existing flames while Third-Generation can summon them.
These powers can range from controlling the output of gunfire to altering your body with heat. So far, there is only one user of both generations, which results in absolute mastery over flames.
Pyrokinesis would later evolve to breaking natural laws involving heat. This happens to be the Fourth Generation user. This involves easy-to-find Pyro-generation sources. Think control of electricity or heat-based relative laws such as time-space manipulation.
Zanpakutō From BleachWhen you’re talking about unique anime power systems, you have to mention Bleach. Zanpakutō are weapons with individual souls. Each Soul Reaper has one, as they awaken in these people naturally. Also known as Shinigami, these spirits fight cursed supernatural entities called Hollow.
Zanpakutō manifests as swords used to slay and banish said spirits.
One can obtain these weapons through training academies in the spirit realm, Soul Society. From there, Shinigami can awaken their Zanpakutō through intense physical and spiritual training. This can result from learning the name and nature of the spirits within these weapons via spiritual bonding.
The spirit will reward the owner with its name and chant to summon it, resulting in Shikai. Shikai allows the Zanpakutō to change shape and enhance fighting capabilities. The true power of Zanpakutō resides within a secondary awakening called Bankai.
This requires years of intense training, but results in drastic changes of power few can achieve. That involves changing the laws of reality to cover wider areas with powerful attacks.
A higher class of Hollow called Arrancar would later adapt to using their own Zanpakutō. Their form of Bankai is Ressurrección, where one completely alters their appearance to power up. This results from the Hollows lacking spirits within their Zanpakutō, so it acts as an extension of their souls literally.