"Why, precisely, do you think I have served as Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13 for a thousand years? Because in all those thousand years, no Shinigami was born to rival me in strength."
Genryūsai Shigekuni Yamamoto (山本元柳斎 重國, Yamamoto Genryūsai Shigekuni) was the captain of the 1st Division in the Gotei 13 and also the Captain-Commander of the whole Gotei 13. His lieutenant was Chōjirō Sasakibe. After being cast into Hell, he has gained the epithet of "Founder of the Gotei" (護廷開祖, Gotei Kaiso; Viz "Court Guard Founder").
- 1 Appearance
- 2 Personality
- 3 History
- 4 Plot
- 4.1 Soul Society arc
- 4.2 Bount arc (anime only)
- 4.3 Arrancar arc
- 4.4 Hueco Mundo arc
- 4.5 The New Captain Shūsuke Amagai arc (anime only)
- 4.6 Fake Karakura Town arc
- 4.7 Zanpakutō Unknown Tales arc (anime only)
- 4.8 Gotei 13 Invading Army Arc (anime only)
- 4.9 The Lost Substitute Shinigami arc
- 4.10 The Thousand-Year Blood War arc
- 4.11 Echoing Jaws of Hell arc
- 5 Powers & Abilities
- 6 Weaknesses
- 7 Appearances in Other Media
- 8 Censorship
- 9 Trivia
- 10 Quotes
- 11 References
- 12 Titles
- 13 Navigation
Yamamoto is a fair-skinned man of average height. The oldest captain in the Gotei 13, he has aged into a elderly man with a bald head, visible wrinkles, hooked nose, and pronounced cheekbones. He has red eyes, long eyebrows, long mustache, and a hip-length white beard secured by a purple band crossing down it. He has many scars on about torso, with the two most prominent being a pair of long scars crossing above his right eye, one of which was left by his battle with his lieutenant. In addition to the standard Shinigami uniform, he wears a captain's long-sleeved haori draped over his back instead of actually wearing it, with its size being greatly exaggerated. Despite his old and frail demeanor, often standing in a hunch, he in fact has a very muscular and well-defined built, which he only reveals when serious for battle, something which Shunsui Kyōraku claims is not seen too often. After his brief confrontation with Sōsuke Aizen, Yamamoto lost his left arm.
When he was much younger, Yamamoto had black hair on the sides of his head, and was bald on top. He had a tuft of hair sticking up at the back of his head in a topknot. He had thick but more manageable eyebrows and mustache with no beard. He had a single large scar on his forehead, which earned him the nickname "Eijisai" due to its shape. He had prominent crease on his forehead and beneath his eyes, and shallow cheeks. He wore the typical black outfit of a Shinigami, with the addition of sleeveless captain's haori worn appropriately.
As the Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13, Yamamoto is highly respected by most of the Shinigami, most notably Sajin Komamura, who views Yamamoto as a benefactor who saved his life. The embodiment of conviction, Yamamoto follows the laws and regulations of Soul Society to the letter, and expects the same of others. He is not a man to tolerate insubordination, and is vocal with those who attempt to act in such a manner. He is quick to anger in the face of possible betrayal and can be quite aggressive in combat. He has a habit of referring to those he faces in battle as "youngster", and he refers to a battle as a "beating" or "punishment". When in a state of peace, he carries himself with an air of frailty, to the point where he fell asleep standing while awaiting Shunsui Kyōraku's arrival for a meeting. Due to years of experience, Yamamoto very rarely shows any sign of distress or surprise, usually responding by opening one or both of his eyes, which are partially closed slits for the majority of the time.
Yamamoto is very loyal to Soul Society, and takes his duties very seriously, expecting the same from the rest of the Gotei 13. His loyalty is so great, he is willing to sacrifice himself and the Gotei 13 in order to defeat Aizen, believing it to be their duty to lay down their lives for the sake of the Soul Society if necessary. Yamamoto becomes visibly angry when Shunsui, Byakuya Kuchiki, and Kenpachi Zaraki lose their haori and show little regret: to him, the haori represents their status as captains. Inversely, he prefers not to involve allies who are not part of the Gotei 13 (particularly humans), as he requested Ichigo Kurosaki to move to safety, and did not request for Orihime Inoue to repair the left arm he sacrificed for Ittō Kasō.
Despite his stern and steadfast personality, it is not to say he has no compassion and admiration, even for his enemies, as he was reluctant to strike down Wonderweiss Margela for his childish form and personality (only managing to get through this when Wonderweiss' Resurrección makes him no longer look like a child), and felt pity for him that Sōsuke Aizen stripped him of all his higher mental capacities except emotions (mainly fear of death). He commended the Tres Bestias for their bravery of attacking him with only one arm each, and struck them down without killing them. Yamamoto felt particularly furious when Driscoll Berci utilized his lieutenant Chōjirō Sasakibe's stolen Bankai, considering the inferior power to that of the original wielder as an insult to Chōjiro's memories and hard work; Yamamoto brutally burned Driscoll to cinders, showing his immense respect for a longtime friend and subordinate.
Yamamoto appreciates Eastern cultures, and is a master at the Japanese tea ceremony. He dislikes the Western traditions preferred by his lieutenant Chōjirō Sasakibe. Yamamoto holds a tea session every month in the 1st Division quarters for every member of his division. He plaits his own beard and arranges its ends once a month, and likes to be rubbed down with a dry towel while exposed to the sun on his balcony.
Yamamoto was apparently shameful of his past actions. He once referred to a painting of his past self as a monster that brought the Soul Society further turmoil when it was in a period of instability. Yhwach noted 1000 years ago, Yamamoto was a demon himself, using any necessary means to defeat his enemies, and treated Humans and his own subordinates alike as expendable pawns; it was only after defeating the Quincy and attaining peace did Yamamoto live with honor and justice that led him to hesitate in sacrificing people heedlessly.
Soul Society arc
Yamamoto is present during a meeting between captains over their fellow Captain Gin Ichimaru's failure to kill Ichigo Kurosaki. Upon arrival, Gin gets into an argument with 11th Division Captain Kenpachi Zaraki and 12th Division Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi. Telling them to stand down, Yamamoto, asking Gin if he has been told why he has been summoned, details how Gin acted without permission and failed to capture or kill the target, which he feels is unusual for a captain, and asks for an explanation.
Stating he has nothing to say, which confuses Yamamoto, Gin says he has no excuse - he made a mistake, and will not try to justify his carelessness. As Yamamoto decides Gin will have to be punished, an intruder alert goes off. Shortly after Kenpachi leaves, Yamamoto dismisses the meeting, stating Gin's punishment will be handled later, and orders the captains to return to their defense stations. Later, following Renji's defeat, Yamamoto drops Gin's punishment and authorizes all Shinigami up to the captain-level to carry their Zanpakutō and use Bankai if necessary.
At Rukia Kuchiki's execution, Yamamoto asks her if she has any last words. When Rukia requests Ichigo and his friends be allowed to return to the Human World unharmed, Yamamoto grants her request, though in truth, he has no intention of allowing them to live. Upon the activation of the Sōkyoku, Yamamoto explains the Phoenix produced by it, called Kikōō, is the true form of the spearhead of the Sōkyoku and the executioner of the grand penalty, and after it pierces through the criminal's body, the grand penalty ends.
Yamamoto watches as Ichigo Kurosaki, appearing, saves Rukia by deflecting the Kikōō. He sends his lieutenant, Chōjirō Sasakibe, to stop Ichigo while he confronts Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake after they destroy the Sōkyoku. Ordering them to not move, Yamamoto states while the person who made off with Rukia was a replaceable lieutenant and is a matter which can be easily dealt with, he cannot forgive them for what they have done. As he notes the severity of their crimes as captain-rank Shinigami, they escape down the side of the cliff. After they move a considerable distance away, they stop, but Yamamoto, who is already there waiting for them, states it is not often he has to chase after young children. When Yamamoto exerts his Reiatsu, Nanao Ise collapses, forcing Shunsui to take her far away from the battle.
Upon Shunsui's return, he notes Shunsui and Ukitake's history, for they are like sons to him, and how powerful they are. He tells them it is too late for words, and to take out their swords. Dodging his attack, Shunsui and Ukitake draw their Zanpakutō. When Yamamoto asks if they intend on fighting him without releasing their Zanpakutō, Shunsui asks if there is any other way than fighting. Silencing him, Yamamoto states he has taught them there is no mercy for those who obstruct justice. When Shunsui states Yamamoto also said to follow through with your own sense of justice, Ukitake proclaims they have to protect justice with everything they have. Yamamoto dismisses the notion of individual justice, for it cannot override global justice. Tired of talking, Yamamoto removes his haori and top, telling them to prepare themselves for battle, and releases his Shikai.
Standing prepared for battle, Yamamoto, asking them what they are waiting for, tells them they should release their Zanpakutō unless they plan on burning to ashes without any resistance. As Shunsui and Ukitake release their Zanpakutō, Yamamoto notes they are the only dual Zanpakutō in Soul Society. Charging at each other, they create a large explosion of Reiryoku. After a while, the battle is forced to stop with Isane Kotetsu's announcement about the true intentions of Sōsuke Aizen, who is responsible for all of the chaos in Soul Society.
When Aizen's scheme is revealed, most of the remaining captains, closing in on his position, completely surround him. When the Menos Grande come to his, Gin, and Kaname Tōsen's rescue, Yamamoto warns the other Shinigami about the Negación technique the Menos Grande perform to rescue their fellow Hollows.
Bount arc (anime only)
Note: Events occurring in this arc are only in the anime and do not constitute canon material.
Yamamoto calls all of the captains for an emergency. Later, Yamamoto has a short video conversation with Tōshirō Hitsugaya over the Arrancar invasion of Karakura Town, and allows Momo Hinamori to speak with Hitsugaya. Once the conversation begins to revolve around Aizen and how Momo believes he is innocent, Yamamoto, cutting their conversation short by knocking Momo unconscious with a Kidō, notes it is too soon to let her speak.
After Orihime Inoue is kidnapped, Yamamoto, ordering Hitsugaya's task force to retreat to Soul Society in preparation for the war against Aizen, firmly disapproves of the idea of Ichigo and the others going to her rescue, seeing it as a suicide mission and believing that Orihime willingly betrayed them.
Hueco Mundo arc
After Coyote Starrk recaptures Orihime and takes her back to Aizen, it is explained Yamamoto ordered the creation of a replacement Karakura Town so the captains can fight at full strength without damaging the city. Later, he, alongside several other captains and lieutenants, waits as Aizen and his forces arrive in the Fake Karakura Town.
The New Captain Shūsuke Amagai arc (anime only)
Note: Events occurring in this arc are only in the anime and do not constitute canon material.
Fake Karakura Town arc
Zanpakutō Unknown Tales arc (anime only)
Note: Events occurring in this arc are only in the anime and do not constitute canon material.
Gotei 13 Invading Army Arc (anime only)
Note: Events occurring in this arc are only in the anime and do not constitute canon material.
The Lost Substitute Shinigami arc
During a meeting with the captains in the 1st Division office, Urahara asks for help with restoring Ichigo's powers. Yamamoto tells Urahara to give him the special sword he would be using for this purpose, prompting Unohana to ask if he intends to help. He states they were saved by Ichigo, and it is now their turn to save him, regardless if the action is going against customs, for it would be shameful if they did not help somebody they owed so much to. He orders all the captains and lieutenants to place their Reiatsu into the sword.
Yamamoto orders Renji to bring back Kūgo Ginjō's body when he is dead. Later, a messenger reports to Yamamoto Ichigo has arrived in Soul Society. When Ichigo arrives at the First Division, he meets with Yamamoto and most of the other captains. Yamamoto starts to say Ichigo had fought an arduous battle, but Ichigo states he came to take back Kūgo's body so he can bury it. After Ichigo explains his reasons to Shinji, Yamamoto states he believes Ichigo thought carefully about it before making his request. He eventually approves his request, and Ichigo tells him to inform other Shinigami about his Substitute Shinigami license, for he will resume his former position.
The Thousand-Year Blood War arc
Echoing Jaws of Hell arc
Twelve years after Yamamoto's death, the Gotei 13 captains performed the Konsō Reisai ceremony before his grave in Soul Society to allow the Reishi formerly comprising his body to return to the soil; unbeknownst to them, this ritual instead cast Yamamoto into Hell, where he gained the epithet of "Founder of the Gotei" (護廷開祖, Gotei Kaiso).
Powers & Abilities
Master Swordsman: As the founder of the Shin'ō Academy and a warrior with over two millennia of combat experience, Yamamoto is the most powerful swordsman in Soul Society. Few would hope to come out alive from a fight with him. Yamamoto fought two of the strongest captain-level Shinigami in history, Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake, simultaneously and emerged without any sign of injury. His skill in swordsmanship is great enough to take down his opponent with a single precise strike.
- Hitotsume: Nadegiri (一ツ目・撫斬, The First: Killing Stroke): A precision cut of extreme force and speed which can slice through large, multi-story high opponents. The opponent is killed with one swift slash so precise, they are not even aware of it until after it has taken place.
- Onibi (鬼火, Oni Fire): Yamamoto takes his Zanpakutō in its sealed cane form and thrusts it at his opponent, punching a large hole in their body. This technique was effective against a multiple story-high opponent like Ayon.
Hakuda Master: Even without his Zanpakutō, Yamamoto remains a highly skilled and dangerous combatant and has proven himself to wield similar mastery of hand-to-hand-combat as with his swordsmanship. He effortlessly caught a strike from the deceptively fast Ayon. Yamamoto can deliver powerful blows which can smash through Espada-level Hierro, and block the majority of multiple punches from a multi-armed opponent.
- Ikkotsu (一骨, Single Bone): A powerful punch used by Yamamoto against Wonderweiss. Using this technique, Yamamoto destroyed much of Wonderweiss' abdomen and sent him flying along a city street and into a building, destroying it.
- Sōkotsu (双骨, Double Bone): Stronger than Ikkotsu, it is a powerful two-fisted punch used by Yamamoto against Wonderweiss. The attack can completely destroy an opponent with a single blow.
Kidō Master: Yamamoto's knowledge of Kidō is so great, he can perform them without calling out their names while retaining their great potential power, whereas most users require a name to do so, if not a full incantation. He can produce immensely powerful barriers to protect him from all but the strongest of attacks. He can cast a level 96 Hadō without incantation to great effect.
Shunpo Master: Yamamoto is highly skilled and experienced in the art of Shunpo, outracing Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake during a chase across the Seireitei. He overtook both captains, and arrived at their destination first without even being noticed by them.
Master Strategist & Tactician: With his millennia of experience as a teacher and warrior, along with being the commander of the entire Gotei 13, Yamamoto is a very intelligent man. He can quickly adjust to new developments and make quick decisions accordingly. He has great tactical acumen, proven by his preparations for the battle in the Fake Karakura Town. As noted by Aizen, Yamamoto is very cunning, setting up a trap to kill him while Aizen was focused on the Visored and the rest of the Gotei 13. He is a very perceptive man, easily deducing Captain Mayuri Kurotsuchi was hiding knowledge on the Bounts. His skill at battle tactics is undeniable: as captain-commander, he commonly sends the captains and divisions out to engage in battle, be it to relatively small or large threats, and has done so for a number of centuries.
Immeasurable Spiritual Power: Being the most experienced Shinigami, Yamamoto possesses an extremely massive and powerful Reiryoku. Its sheer strength is powerful enough to effortlessly break free from four overlapping and high-level Bakudō spells restraining him. Even Aizen openly acknowledges Yamamoto's power (via his Zanpakutō) as being so superior that if he were to fight directly against it, it would overpower him. Yamamoto has served as the Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13 for over 1,000 years because there has not been a Shinigami stronger than him in all this time.
- Masterful Reiatsu Control: Yamamoto can exert his Reiatsu to induce fear in captain-level combatants, and can physically paralyze and possibly even choke combatants of lieutenant-level and lower simply by gazing in their direction. Yamamoto's spiritual pressure has the same effect as his Zanpakutō, for it is the elemental representative of fire. He tends to glow with a fiery aura, which has the potential to burn and set his surroundings on fire without the use of his Zanpakutō. It is the formidable pressure of his Reiatsu which makes the Reiatsu itself look like flames. When Yamamoto is enraged, his Reiatsu is powerful enough to be felt all around Seireitei with tremendous force.
Immense Strength: In addition to his surprisingly muscular physique for his age, Yamamoto possesses tremendous physical strength. He easily and swiftly put a large hole into the chest of the monster Ayon without much effort at all, using only the blunt end of his cane. With a single hand, he stopped one of Ayon's strikes and overpowered it, despite it having enlarged its arm and increased its strength several folds. With one punch, he put a large hole through the chest of Wonderweiss Margela while he was in Resurrección and sent him flying back several city blocks. He tore off Wonderweiss' arms, with his bare hands, with little to no effort. With a single double-fisted strike, he shattered Wonderweiss' entire body into pieces.
Immense Durability: Yamamoto possesses remarkable durability. He took an onslaught of punches from Wonderweiss' multiple arms twice, and came out completely unfazed by the assault, with no more than simple scratches. He sustained an explosion of flames which had the power to incinerate all of Karakura Town and a great area around it. In his younger years, he challenged Chōjirō to defeat him with his newly achieved Bankai, and in the end only suffered a light scar on his forehead. 2000 years later, he would take on a barrage of powerful lightning strikes from Chōjirō's fully-mastered Bankai and only be singed by its power, though he stated it became weaker from Driscoll Berci's usage. He can easily deflect a giant Heilig Pfeil from a Sternritter with one hand without any noticeable damage done to his being.
Immense Endurance: Despite his old age, Yamamoto can fight for extended periods of time, even when outnumbered, with no visible signs of exhaustion. He can take direct attacks from others unfazed. He can endure being impaled on a sword without so much as flinching from the perceived damage, even when the blow is dealt by the likes of Aizen, a powerful opponent. Even after being bifurcated by Yhwach, Yamamoto survived and managed to grab onto his cloak.
For the manifested spirit that appears in the anime-only Zanpakutō Unknown Tales arc see Ryūjin Jakka (Zanpakutō spirit).
Ryūjin Jakka (流刃若火, Flowing Blade-like Flame; Viz "Flowing Blade Young Flame"): Yamamoto's Zanpakutō is the oldest and most powerful fire-type Zanpakutō, and has greater offensive power than all other Zanpakutō in Soul Society. In its sealed form, Ryūjin Jakka usually takes the appearance of a wooden staff, which can be used like a spear. At any time, Yamamoto can remove this disguise by peeling off the wood, revealing its true form of a standard katana, with a dark purple handle and a circular hand guard. After Yamamoto was killed, Ryūjin Jakka, now scorched and shattered, was returned to the 1st Division barracks.
- Shikai: Its Shikai command is "Reduce All Creation to Ash" (万象一切灰燼と為せ, banshō issai kaijin to nase; Viz "All Things in the Universe, Turn to Ashes"). The release of his Zanpakutō comes with an extreme release of Reiatsu, affecting all in the area, and can be felt for miles upon miles across all of the Seireitei.
- Shikai Special Ability: When released, the blade of Ryūjin Jakka is engulfed in fire. The aura of this weapon incinerates everything and anything which Yamamoto waves the sword at, changing it into nothing more than ash, and engulfs the surrounding landscape in a blazing firestorm, the heat of which is intense enough to scorch the sky and consume the clouds. Only powerful fighters such as Shunsui and Ukitake can resist it, but even then only indirectly. Even in its Shikai, Ryūjin Jakka is powerful enough to fight against the Shikai of two other captains simultaneously, both of whom had the reputation of being the strongest captains in Soul Society while together. Unlike most other Zanpakutō, resealing Ryūjin Jakka does not deactivate any ability already used against an opponent, proven when Yamamoto imprisons Sōsuke Aizen, Gin Ichimaru, and Kaname Tōsen.
- Jōkaku Enjō (城郭炎上, Fortress Blaze): This technique creates an immense wall of flame, which surrounds the target and forms a huge contained sphere of flame in which to imprison enemies. It is immensely powerful, imprisoning three captain-level Shinigami (namely Aizen, Gin, and Tōsen) for a significant amount of time.
- Taimatsu (松明, Torch): This technique allows Yamamoto to create a great inferno with a simple wave of Ryūjin Jakka. The fire generated by the attack completely consumes whatever is caught within it until only ashes remain. The flames created by Ryūjin Jakka can be controlled, with great precision, by Yamamoto to attack only the targets he chooses, and he has power over the intensity of the flames.
- Ennetsu Jigoku (炎熱地獄, Flames of Hell): Creates seven or more immense pillars of flame which surround an area. The intent of this technique is to trap the opponent in the caged inferno and destroy them. The power of this technique can destroy everyone caught in its vicinity, including Yamamoto himself. These flames can incinerate an area much greater than Karakura Town's.
- Bankai: Zanka no Tachi (残火の太刀, Longsword of the Remnant Flame; Viz "Blade of Ember"): In its Bankai, the blade takes the form of an ancient and worn katana, severely scorched by fire.
- Bankai Special Ability: Upon activation, any flames previously produced by Ryūjin Jakka are absorbed into the blade. Zanka no Tachi incorporates the full power of Yamamoto's flames into the blade: the flames within the blade burn anything it cuts out of existence. Zanka no Tachi has the side-effect of depleting the moisture in an entire area (at least the size of the Seireitei), causing the air and the water to dry up. Even Tōshirō Hitsugaya's Bankai, Daiguren Hyōrinmaru, cannot be used, for its ice melts due to the intense heat of Zanka no Tachi. No flames are visible as it cuts. Yamamoto claims releasing his Bankai clads both his blade and his body in the flames of the Sun. Even Retsu Unohana believes that Zanka no Tachi's flames could incinerate the entirety of Soul Society if left active for too long.
- Zanka no Tachi, Higashi: Kyokujitsujin (残火の太刀 "東": 旭日刃, Longsword of the Remnant Flame, East: Rising Sun Edge): Automatically activated at release, this ability concentrates the intense flames of the sword along the tip of the blade. It neither burns nor erupts, but anything it touches is eradicated to nothingness. Even the defensive power of the Wandenreich's Blut Vene cannot stand up against this technique.
- Zanka no Tachi, Nishi: Zanjitsu Gokui (残火の太刀 "西": 残日獄衣, Longsword of the Remnant Flame, West: Remnant Sun Prison Garb): Automatically activated at release, this ability is unseen by the eyes of anyone else unless Yamamoto wills it to be seen. It engulfs his body in heat which reaches a temperature upwards of 15,000,000 degrees. Therefore, it becomes impossible to even touch him while he is using his Bankai. The level of heat produced by this technique is so high, it would not actually appear in the form of flames.
- Zanka no Tachi, Minami: Kaka Jūmanokushi Daisōjin (残火の太刀 "南": 火火十万億死大葬陣, Longsword of the Remnant Flame, South: Great Burial Ranks of the Ten Trillion Fire Dead): Impaling the tip of his sword into the ground, Yamamoto calls upon the corpses and ashes of the dead who were killed by his flames to come forth and fight on his behalf. They emerge from a rupture in the ground which comes with enough force to decimate Kirchenlied: Sankt Zwinger. Using the heat of his sword on their ashes, he can rouse all the people he has killed, allowing the corpses to become his limbs and attack whomever he deems as his enemy until they become dust. He can bring forth any specific corpse that he wishes, allowing him to inflict psychological damage upon those with connections to those he has slain.
Wonderweiss Margela (Temporary): Wonderweiss is the only modified Arrancar in existence, having been designed for the sole purpose of nullifying the powers of Ryūjin Jakka. Upon his Resurrección, Wonderweiss prevents the blade from creating any new flames, while sealing the already created flames into is own body. Should Wonderweiss be killed, the flames would burst with explosive force.
Time Limit/Collateral Damage (Bankai): Because of the extremely intense heat which emanates from both Yamamoto's blade and body, he can only wield Zanka no Tachi for a short amount of time, and prolonged use of it will eventually destroy his opponent, Soul Society, and even himself.
Appearances in Other Media
|Video Game Appearances|
- Yamamoto is a playable character in most of the Bleach video games. He fights with his Shikai, and has a variety of attacks.
- He uses Jōkaku Enjō as a Special and Nadegiri in Soul Carnival 2.
- In Bleach: The Blade of Fate and Bleach: Dark Souls, Yamamoto can use various techniques:
- I-no-Kaburi Sōen (イ頭 操炎, I-rank Steering Flame): Summons fire that trails along the ground, damaging the enemy on contact.
- Ro-no-Kaburi Shōen (ロ頭 昇炎, Ro-rank Rising Flame): Summons rising flames in front of Yamamoto that damage the enemy on contact.
- Ha-no-Kaburi Kakuen (ハ頭 拡炎, Ha-rank Expanding Flame): Summons twirling flames that surround Yamamoto.
- Ni-no-Kaburi Yokuen (ニ頭 翼炎, Ni-rank Winged Flames): Summons flames that fire in an arc forward.
- Ho-no-Kaburi Bakuen (ホ頭 爆炎, Ho-rank Bursting/Explosive Flames): Yamamoto charges forward while covered in flames.
- Ama-no-Murakumo (天叢雲, Gathering Clouds-of-Heaven): Fires a large blast of flames forward. This is one of Yamamoto's two super moves. It is named after the Ama no Murakumo no Tsurugi, otherwise known as the "Kusanagi no Tsurugi", one of the Three Imperial Regalia of Japan.
- Yazuhomura-no-Orochi (八頭炎大蛇, Serpent-of-Eight Headed Flames): Emits a wad of fire that rises into the sky, which splits into flame balls that rain down around his vicinity. This is one of Yamamoto's two super moves, and the highest-costing one at 3 bars of Reiatsu.
- In the sound tests, he also has an unused attack by the name of Yamata-no-Kusanagi via voice clips still left in the games, another reference to the aforementioned Ama-no-Murakumo.
- In Bleach: The 3rd Phantom, Yamamoto's strongest attack is the aforementioned Yazuhomura no Orochi. He shoots a giant pillar of fire upwards, which falls on the foe and the surrounding area. It also creates a flaming area which burns the opponents. Additionally, he can use offensive spells, such as Shakkahō and Sōkatsui.
- He appears in all four movies, but plays very little role in them.
- Yamamoto is playable in both Shikai and Bankai forms in Bleach: Brave Souls. His Bankai form appears for the first time as an exclusive playable character for the Thousand-Years Blood War arc gacha tie-in; due to the passing of the previous VA, this Yamamoto is voiced by Binbin Takaoka. In this form, Yamamoto is a melee strong attack character with the "Speed" Attribute and the "Hollow Killer" ability who has a chance to inflict Burn with every attack. His unlockable skills are "Bruiser +20%", "Debilitator +2 secs.", "Devastation +40%", "Fire Duration -100%", "Freeze Duration -100%", "Frenzy +1", and "Sprinter +1", while his Soul Trait is "Strong Attack Recharge Time -12%"; meanwhile, his Arena Traits are "Strong Attack Damage +13%" and "Focus +30", while his Arena Abilities other than "All Stats +5%" are "Strong Attack Damage +10%" at level 5 and "Strong Attack Damage +20%" at level 10. Yamamoto's special is Kaka Jūmanokushi Daisōjin (火火十万億死大葬陣, Great Burial Ranks of the Ten Trillion Fire Dead), where he uses his sword's flames to control the undead, inflicting immense damage and Burn.
- Yamamoto is also playable in an alternate form of his Bankai where he primarily uses Zanka no Tachi, Nishi: Zanjitsu Gokui and Zanka no Tachi, Kita: Tenchi Kaijin rather than the South and East techniques of Zanka no Tachi. In this version, Yamamoto is a melee strong attack character with the "No Affiliation Killer" ability; he is also the first character to come with "Innate Abilities", similar to Awakening Skills but built-in to the 5* variant of the character, and his are "Immolator", "Read No Affiliation Dodges", and "Fire Immunity 100%". All of his attacks also have a chance to inflict Burn, and he can unlock "20% Berserker", "20% Havoc", a two-second "Debilitator", and "Damage to Burning Enemies +20%". His special is Tenchi Kaijin (天地灰尽, Heaven and Earth End in Ashes), where he focuses all his flames into the tip of his sword and attacks, inflicting immense damage and Burn.
- Additionally, Yamamoto is playable in a form drawing from his fight against Wonderweiss Margela, where his Zanpakutō was sealed and he opted to use Hakuda instead. In this form, Yamamoto is a melee character with the "Technique" Attribute and the "Arrancar Killer" ability whose second and third Strong Attacks have a chance to inflict Burn. His unlockable skills are "Adrenaline +15%", "Bruiser +30%", "Debilitator +5 secs.", "Frenzy", "Long Reach +20%", and "Sprinter +1", while his Soul Trait is "Fire Duration -65%"; when Resurrected, his unlockable skills are "Adrenaline +15%", "Bruiser +30%", "Debilitator +5 secs.", "Devastation +40%", "Frenzy", "Long Reach +20%", and "Sprinter +1",while his Soul Traits are "Fire Duration -65%" and "Weaken Duration -55%". Yamamoto's special is Sōkotsu (双骨, Twin Bone), where he performs a two-handed strike of incredible power that inflicts immense damage and Paralysis.
- Yamamoto is also playable as an alternate-universe version of himself introduced as part of the Bleach: Spirits Are Forever With You tie-in event who gained a power beyond Bankai, allowing him to produce the flames of Ryūjin Jakka from his own body and scorching his fists while causing his many scars to glow with internal fire. In this form, Yamamoto is a melee normal attack character with the "Heart" Attribute and the "Sternritter Killer" ability who has a chance to inflict both Burn and Weaken with every attack. He has three Innate Abilities built in at ★5: "Drain Duration -100%", "Weaken Duration -100%", and "Sprinter +1". His unlockable skills are "Berserker +50%", "Brave Battle Temporary Invincibility +10 secs.", "Bruiser +20%", "Debilitator +5 secs.", "Flurry", "Ignore Brave Battle Invincibility +1", "Last-Ditch Survival 100%", "Poise", and "Prevent Brave Battle Healing", while his Soul Trait is "Damage Taken -16%"; meanwhile, his Arena Traits are "Normal Attack Damage +13%" and "Attack +90", while his Arena Abilities other than "All Stats +5%" are "Damage To Burning Enemies +20%" at level 5 and "Normal Attack Damage +30%" at level 10. Yamamoto's special is Yōkō no Sōkotsu (溶劫の双骨, Twin/Double Bones of Melting Kalpa), where he unleashes a flaming, double-fisted strike of awesome power that inflicts immense damage, Burn, and Weaken.
- When Nanao Ise was affected by Yamamoto's Reiatsu, she teared up and was foaming from the mouth. In the anime however, the tears and foam were all omitted.
- "Imperturbable and like an unmovable pivot." - Tite Kubo
- The theme song that Kubo chose for Yamamoto is "Mars, the Bringer of War", the first movement of The Planets by composer Gustav Holst.
- In its first appearance, Ryūjin Jakka was approximately as long as Yamamoto was tall, resembling a nodachi.
- Yamamoto was voted the 24th most popular Shinigami character in the fifth character popularity poll after never reaching any position on the four previous polls.
- Ryūjin Jakka ranked 32nd in the first Zanpakutō poll and 13th in the second.
- In the second best bout poll, Yamamoto's fight with Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake ranked 19th, his fight with Yhwach ranked 29th, his fights with Sōsuke Aizen and Driscoll Berci both ranked 41st, his fight with Royd Lloyd ranked 47th, his fight with Ayon ranked 60th, and his fights with Wonderweiss Margela and Äs Nödt both ranked 77th.
- Though Shigekuni is his first name (meaning "heavy/important country"), Yamamoto is generally known by his title of "Genryūsai" (meaning something like "Original willow's purity"), which he adopted approximately 2000 years ago.
- He is author of Got a minute? in the Seireitei Communication.
- The Shinigami Women's Association published a Photo Collection of Captain Yamamoto named Skeleton, which was scrapped.
- (To Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake) "My quarry never escapes. Come, you rascals. But you won't get off without a thrashing this time..."
- (To Nanao Ise) "Listen well! Be gone from here! I don't have time nor the patience to teach a mere infant like you how to breathe."
- (To Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake) "I was proud of you as if you were my own sons. I believed that, even if the character is different, it is fine if they took the same paths."
- (To Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake) "As I taught you before, there is no mercy for he who obstructs justice."
- (To Shunsui Kyōraku and Jūshirō Ukitake) "There is no individual sense of justice that can overrule the justice of the world."
- (To the Gotei 13) "Place everything you have on the line, and crush them where they stand! Even if they should tear your flesh from your bones, make every last fragment of those bones an iron wall! They must not be permitted to set a single foot upon Soul Society's ground!"
- (To Izuru Kira) "Dear me. Forcing the Captain-Commander himself to come to their aid. What are today's officers coming to?"
- (To Sōsuke Aizen) "They give their lives to vanquish a great evil. That is the nature of the Gotei 13."
- (To Sōsuke Aizen) "Do you believe that simply by sealing Ryūjin Jakka, you have defeated me? You fool. Your foolishness is so great, it astounds me. Why, precisely, do you think I have served as Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13 for a thousand years? Because in all those thousand years, no Shinigami was born to rival me in strength.
- (To Wonderweiss Margela) "I am glad that you at least abandoned your childlike form. As a result, I can slaughter you without hesitation."
- (To Byakuya Kuchiki, Kenpachi Zaraki, and Shunsui Kyōraku) "Now listen! Victory is not the only thing that matters on the field of battle! What exactly do you fools take your Captain's robes for, anyway?!"
- (To the Gotei 13, about restoring Ichigo Kurosaki's powers) "Regardless of the circumstances, we were saved by Ichigo Kurosaki in our time of need. It is now time that we returned the favor. Even if that should require violating our own statutes, to allow such a debt to go unpaid would bring eternal shame upon the entire Gotei 13."
- (To a young Shunsui Kyōraku) "Ah, that picture... That is a monster that appeared in Soul Society long ago. It appeared when Soul Society was in great need and only brought further turmoil. It will not trouble us again. If, someday, that monster were to appear before us again... I fear that will be the last day I am ever seen in this place."
- Bleach Official Character Book of Souls, page 200
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, page 10
- Bleach manga; NO BREATHES FROM HELL, page 67
- Bleach manga; Volume 45 cover
- Bleach manga; Chapter 504, page 12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 423
- Bleach manga; Chapter 504, page 10
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, page 6
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393, pages 14-16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, pages 9-10
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, page 17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 395, pages 4-5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 339, pages 2-5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 504, pages 15-17
- Bleach Official Bootleg KaraBuri+
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, pages 3-4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, pages 10-11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, page 11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 523, page 17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, pages 10-11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 504, pages 7-12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, page 6
- Bleach manga; Chapter 489, pages 16-17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 509, pages 4 & 8
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, pages 2-4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 138, page 7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 311, page 15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 520, page 14
- Bleach manga; Chapter -108, page 13
- Bleach manga; Chapter -107, pages 1-9
- Bleach manga; Chapter -102, pages 1-7
- Bleach manga; Chapter -102, pages 7-13
- Bleach manga; Chapter 533, pages 14-15
- Bleach anime; Episode 250
- Bleach anime; Episode 251
- Bleach manga; Chapter 82, page 5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 82, pages 17-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 83, page 4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 99, page 19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 147, page 4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 149, pages 17-18
- Bleach manga; Chapter 150, page 15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 151, page 7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 152, page 11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 153, pages 11-13
- Bleach manga; Chapter 154, pages 18-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, pages 1-14
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, pages 20-24
- Bleach manga; Chapter 156, pages 6-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 172, page 12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 178, page 11
- Bleach anime; Episode 92
- Bleach manga; Chapter 188
- Bleach manga; Chapter 224, page 16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 238, page 11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 247, page 1
- Bleach manga; Chapter 313, page 16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 313, pages 16-17
- Bleach manga; Chapters 314-315
- Bleach anime; Episode 168
- Bleach anime; Episode 189
- Bleach anime; Episodes 187-189
- Bleach manga; Chapter 316, pages 8-11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 318, page 12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 329
- Bleach manga; Chapter 337
- Bleach manga; Chapter 338
- Bleach manga; Chapter 339, pages 2-7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 356 page 4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 364, page 8
- Bleach manga; Chapter 365, page 3
- Bleach manga; Chapter 365, pages 9-12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394
- Bleach manga; Chapter 395
- Bleach manga; Chapter 396, pages 2-4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 423, pages 4-6
- Bleach anime; Episode 230
- Bleach anime; Episode 245
- Bleach anime; Episode 246
- Bleach anime; Episode 247
- Bleach anime; Episode 248
- Bleach anime; Episode 317
- Bleach anime; Episode 320
- Bleach anime; Episode 323
- Bleach anime; Episode 324
- Bleach anime; Episode 325
- Bleach anime; Episode 326
- Bleach anime; Episode 327
- Bleach anime; Episode 330
- Bleach anime; Episode 331
- Bleach anime; Episode 332
- Bleach anime; Episode 333
- Bleach anime; Episode 334
- Bleach anime; Episode 335
- Bleach anime; Episode 341
- Bleach manga; Chapter 461, pages 12-15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 479, pages 6-15
- Bleach anime; Episode 366
- Bleach manga; Chapter 482, pages 15-17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 483, pages 2-4 & 17-18
- Bleach manga; Chapter 484, pages 2-7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 485, page 7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 486, pages 7-8
- Bleach manga; Chapter 488, pages 10-14
- Bleach manga; Chapter 489, pages 15-17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 494, pages 10-11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 503, pages 14-16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 504, pages 1-17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 505, pages 1-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 506, pages 7-18
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, page 2
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, pages 4-5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, pages 10-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 508, pages 9-16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 509, pages 1-16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 510, pages 3-16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, page 4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, pages 7-13
- Bleach manga, Chapter 515, pages 12 and 16
- Bleach manga; NO BREATHES FROM HELL, pages 64-67
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393, page 18
- Bleach manga; Chapter 156, pages 17-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 338, pages 11-15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, page 21
- Bleach Official Character Book UNMASKED, page 153
- Bleach manga; Chapter 337, page 18
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, pages 3-5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, page 12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, page 17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, pages 14-16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, pages 5-9
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, pages 18-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 395, pages 2-5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 395, page 17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393, page 14
- Bleach anime; Episode 87
- Bleach manga; Chapter -102, page 7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, pages 6-7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, pages 4-6
- Bleach anime; Episode 55
- Bleach manga; Chapter 508, page 4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 505, pages 6-12
- Bleach anime; Episode 226
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, page 13
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, pages 17-18
- Bleach manga; Chapter 394, pages 15-17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 395, pages 11-14
- Bleach manga; Chapter 504, pages 11-12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 504, pages 15-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 503, pages 14-15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393, pages 10-12
- Bleach manga; Chapter 511, page 7
- Bleach manga; Chapter 156, page 8
- Bleach - The Dagger 2
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, pages 23-24
- Bleach manga; Chapter 156, pages 1-4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 156, page 9
- Bleach manga; Chapter 156
- Bleach manga; Chapter 316, pages 12-14
- Bleach manga; Chapter 338, page 20
- Bleach manga; Chapter 339, pages 5-10
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393, pages 13-14
- Bleach manga; Chapter 395, page 14
- Bleach manga; Chapter 506, pages 16-17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 506, page 15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, pages 1-13
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, page 21
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, page 5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, pages 13-15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 507, pages 17-19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 508, page 1
- Bleach manga; Chapter 508, page 16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 508, pages 16-17
- Bleach manga; Chapter 509, page 5
- Bleach manga; Chapter 509, pages 7-8
- Bleach manga; Chapter 509, pages 15-16
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393, page 18
- Bleach manga; Chapter 395, pages 8-9
- Bleach manga; Chapter 508, page 3
- Bleach video game; Bleach: Soul Carnival 2
- Bleach video game; Bleach: Dark Souls
- Bleach video game; Bleach: Blade of Fate
- Bleach video game; Bleach: The 3rd Phantom
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, page 5
- Bleach anime; Episode 55
- Bleach manga; Chapter 81, pages 18-19
- 13 BLADEs., page 253
- 13 BLADEs., page 254
- 13 BLADEs., page 255
- Bleach Bootleg; page 46
- Bleach Bootleg; page 28
- Bleach manga; Chapter 154, page 19
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, page 21
- Bleach manga; Chapter 155, page 22
- Bleach manga; Chapter 329, pages 3-4
- Bleach manga; Chapter 338, page 2
- Bleach manga; Chapter 338, pages 10-11
- Bleach manga; Chapter 393, page 15
- Bleach manga; Chapter 423, page 6
- Bleach manga; Chapter 461, pages 13-15
|Captain-Commander of the Gotei 13
1002 A.D. - 2003 A.D.
|Captain of the 1st Division
1002 A.D. - 2003 A.D.