Naruto is a hit Shonen manga and anime series which has attained a massive fan following and multimedia presence, including television, film, and video game adaptations. It centers upon its titular protagonist, Naruto Uzumaki, as he strives to become the greatest ninja and leader of his village, all while he comes of age. The series features a strong cast of supporting characters and memorable villains with some pretty spectacular fights and shows of strength, giving cause for fans to debate which characters in Naruto are the strongest of the bunch. Read on for our list of the 10 Strongest Characters in Naruto, Ranked!
Strongest Characters in Naruto, Ranked
These characters are ranked on a basis of their approximate strength and their greatest feats according to how they appear in the canon. Some characters fulfilled their maximum potential and fell short of other characters still on their development paths, but this doesn’t make them any less interesting or worthy of mention. It should also be clarified that many of the best-written characters don’t feature on this list, in favor of the raw power demonstrated in the series. The list goes as follows:
10. Itachi Uchiha
One of the coolest characters in all the Naruto fandom, this character had a looming presence early on but quickly left his mark with his first appearance, posing a mortal threat to Naruto and practically taunting Sasuke with how much stronger he still was. Despite being weakened by illness near the end, he was able to put up a fight against Sasuke and put on an impressive show of force using his various techniques including taijutsu, genjutsu, and his particular brand of Susanoo, a summoned spirit with armaments that were effectively invincible. He was so skilled with genjutsu, or illusive jutsu, that he could manipulate the attacks from other genjutsu-users against themselves.
9. Minato Namikaze
As Kakashi and Obito’s team leader, and later Fourth Hokage, Minato deserves a position on this list. Minato was recognized as one of the most powerful shinobi in recent history, “The Yellow Flash,” capable of feats including defeating an army of 1,000 shinobi. His speed earned him a distinction as one of the fastest shinobi of all time, with particular abilities like the Flying Thunder God technique, essentially enabling him to warp to different areas, certainly contributing to this fame.
Minato is also credited with developing the Rasengan technique, essentially after seeing the Tailed Beast Ball and going “I can do one of those.” This last move would give him a distinct advantage, needing no hand signs to perform, and could be scaled up in size depending on how much power he had behind it.
8. Kakashi Hatake
The first true impression of some of the strongest elite ninja characters in Naruto, Kakashi was an immediate fan favorite for his characterization as a mild-mannered, but an elite mentor. He would tangle with many of the series’ most powerful foes, and had mastery over many different disciplines as a ninja. He was described as being smarter than Shikamaru, more skilled with the Sharingan than Sasuke, and better at taijutsu than Rock Lee, all of whom are most well-known as virtuosos in their own right. Kakashi would prove to be a mighty character through the end of the series, although his position as a mentor would particularly serve him best, and he was eventually named Konoha’s Sixth Hokage.
7. Hashirama Senju
Wielder of Wood Release, a combination of earth and water-natured chakra, and the conspicuous ability to control Tailed Beasts, of which he had successfully captured 8 of the 9, Hashirama is a formidable entry on this list. He was the first Hokage, leader of Konohagakure, and able to defeat one of the most prominent series antagonists, Madara Uchiha, in single combat. His self-healing abilities and Wood Release, along with mastery of senjutsu and the ability to reach Sage Mode, made him the envy of the ninja world, but his desire for peace meant he would never use them for ill gains. His genes would be sought out after his passing, to bring out these rare abilities he possessed.
6. Obito Uchiha
At first a quiet influence among the Akatsuki, Obito originally pretended to be clan founder Madara before revealing his true identity. He was initially a weak or average ninja, lurking in Hatake Kakashi’s shadow, but developed his skills after being given a second chance when rescued from death by Madara Uchiha, training and honing his abilities to their peaks. He was able to manipulate many of the events of the series, perhaps one of the most pivotal being his fight with Minato Namikaze, which led Kurama, the Nine-Tailed Beast, to go on a rampage, forcing Minato to sacrifice himself while sealing it within Naruto.
Obito uses his Sharingan to perform Kamui, space-time ninjutsu that would send objects to another dimension and becomes a formidable foe while using this ability. He also became the Ten-Tails Jinchuriki, being able to fight off the likes of Naruto and Sasuke at points in this form, although they eventually surpassed this might.
5. Madara Uchiha
The founder of the Uchiha clan, Madara was thought to have passed away after his fight with Hashirama, but he was able to cheat death using the Transcription Seal: Izanagi to convert his passing into a mere dream. This is one of the most tenacious antagonists in the entire Naruto series, influencing many of the events which transpired over the years behind the scenes. With later modifications by Kabuto Yakushi, he would take on many of the famed Hokage Hashirama Senju’s abilities, including Wood Release, self-healing techniques, senjutsu, and the Rinnegan eyes, among others. He was able to fend off the combined might of countless ninjas, the 5 Kage, and the 9 Tailed beasts, a fearsome feat for sure.
4. Hagoromo Ōtsutsuki
The Ōtsutsuki clan is a powerful, interdimensional one, and a group that has left its genetic imprint on many of Naruto’s most powerful ninja clans. Hagoromo was the legendary Sage of Six Paths, founder of the ninja world, carrier of the Rinnegan and later Sharingan eyes, and bearer of the Ten-Tailed Beast, becoming the first Jinchuriki. He was the master of the Yin-Yang Release, able to combine the natures of all physical and spiritual chakra, and created the other 9 Tailed Beasts from this power. As a sage, he was a practitioner of senjutsu as well, creating offensive weapons including the Truth-Seeking Ball and the Sword of Nunoboko, with which he shaped the world.
3. Sasuke Uchiha
Unsurprisingly, Sasuke would place high on this list, especially when considering he was always written as a character who was born and destined for greatness. As a child prodigy and survivor of the Uchiha clan massacre, Sasuke started as a taciturn, moody loner over whom the girls of Konoha couldn’t help but fawn. But as he felt his position as top dog of the village’s genin falling further into question, and while recognizing Naruto as a rival, he fell onto a dark path when he first left the village.
By the beginning of Shippuden, it was clear that Sasuke had a quantum leap of abilities, seemingly unhindered by any social constraints and free to pursue his lifelong grudge against Itachi Uchiha. But by the time of the Fourth Great Ninja War, Sasuke had no choice but to cooperate with Naruto, and at this point, their abilities were increasingly appearing to be on par with one another. However, even with Sasuke at his full might and the Rinnegan powers at his disposal, he only managed to put up a fight against Naruto with half of Kurama’s power, resulting in a close loss even then. But for the longest time, Sasuke had plenty of moments where he was genuinely the more competent, classically-trained ninja.
2. Naruto Uzumaki
The hero of the series, and one who goes through incredible hardship and loss all along the way, Naruto’s journey to his position on this list is a long one. If you were to see this when beginning to read the series, you’d not be entirely surprised, given that he is a Shonen protagonist, but his path to growth and mastering his abilities is interesting, and at some points, heartfelt one. When you first caught a glimpse at just how boundless his chakra reserves appeared to be, you might have found yourself to be won over by the gutsy ninja, who, along with increasingly impressive feats in combat, would also work to win the hearts and minds of his opponents and detractors as well.
Naruto is the Nine-Tails Jinchuriki, at various stages harnessing and eventually partnering with his inner spirit, Kurama, but would also master Sage techniques and take on abilities taught by his father, Minato Namikaze, his mentor, Jiraiya, and many others. By the end of Shippuden, you’d see the culmination of his training where Naruto is a competent, resourceful ninja with the full incorporation of his most signature abilities including the Shadow Clones and Rasengan while being further bolstered by the legendary might of Hagormo Ōtsutsuki, the Sage of Six Paths. Naruto’s moments where he proves himself as one of the strongest characters, but also as a hero to his village, are among the best moments of the series.
1. Kaguya Ōtsutsuki
As a member of the Ōtsutsuki clan, Kaguya was certainly meant to have a powerful presence in the Naruto universe, even if she has an extremely late entry. Kaguya possessed godlike powers including interstellar travel, achieving feats of telepathy, and more even before consuming fruit from the God Tree and boosting her abilities even further. She was able to command the army of Infinite Tsukuyomi-possessed individuals, from whom she could drain their chakra until they were husks known as the white Zetsus.
Kaguya’s son, Hagoromo, even noted her unparalleled abilities, and she was able to fend off attacks from Naruto and Sasuke, the two runners-up in this list. Wielder of 2 Byakugan eyes and 1 Rinne Sharingan on her forehead, she can attain unimaginable feats of strength and has a mastery of handling all forms of chakra, having no need for later developments of ninjutsu to use her power offensively. As essentially a god in the series, it’s no wonder Kaguya can easily be considered the strongest of the characters in Naruto and Naruto Shippuden.
This concludes our list of the 10 Strongest Characters in Naruto, Ranked! Did your favorite character make the cut? Also, be sure to check out our entertainment column for more coverage like this! And if you’re looking to watch through the series and want to know an easy filler guide to check for what you can skip over, check this out!