In Bleach, Ichigo's power manifested in the forms of Zangetsu, his Zanpakuto, and his Inner Hollow. In time, he comes to dominate both of them, learning how to use their power for himself. He also tends to take on aspects of their personality and appearance when using their power, such as the coat he acquires in Bankai mode and the mask and personality changes that accompany his Hollowfication. Recently, Zangetsu and the Inner Hollow merged themselves while Tensa Zangetsu was trying to teach Ichigo the Final Getsuga. The result seems to be Tensa Zangetsu wearing a white robe instead of a black one, and having the top part of the Inner Hollow's super evolved mask. However, his personality seems to remain as that of Zangetsu's. Ichigo then merges with THIS personality, and takes on its confidence and... moodiness.
Powers & Abilities
Master Swordsman: During his short battle against Ichigo and his inner hollow, Zangetsu demonstrated highly proficient skill in swordsmanship, enough to fight most of the battles with only a single hand. With well-timed maneuvers, Zangetsu was repeatedly able to land critical hits on Ichigo's inner Hollow.
Enhanced Strength: Zangetsu possesses a large degree of physical strength. During Ichigo's Bankai Training, he sent Ichigo flying away and into a boulder with a single strike to the face.
Enhanced Speed: During his battles, Zangetsu is very fast, able to outmaneuver a number of relentless assaults from Ichigo's inner Hollow. He is able to move faster than the eye can follow, such as when he successfully avoided Hollow Ichigo's Shunpo.
Blut Activation: As the manifestation of Ichigo's Quincy powers, Zangetsu can activate Ichigo's Blut in order to aid him in combat.
Blut Vene: During Ichigo's fight with Kenpachi Zaraki, Zangetsu forcibly sealed a wound which was previously gushing blood. Later, he saved Ichigo when he was fighting against Yhwach by stopping Yhwach's blade with Blut Vene.
Clones: In battle, Zangetsu is able to produce multiple solid clones of himself, allowing him to outnumber his enemy and attack from multiple directions simultaneously. However, doing so appears to reduce his sheer attack strength.
Shadow:Zangetsu can travel between dimensions through the shadows by extending his overcoat to obscure himself and whomever he wishes to teleport. During Ichigo's fight with Kenpachi Zaraki, Zangetsu transported Ichigo and himself into Ichigo's inner world.
Broadsword: Zangetsu can manifest a broadsword with a cross-guard shaped like wings. The sword is completely engulfed in Reishi flames.
Zangetsu has access to the Shinigami powers that inherently belong to Ichigo due to being one with Ichigo's true Zanpakutō spirit/Inner Hollow. As a result, he not only can access Ichigo's Shinigami powers and can even act as a substitute during his Bankai training.
Note: Zangetsu only displayed using Getsuga Tenshō in the Zanpakutō Unknown Tales arc. The other abilities, including manifesting the blades Zangetsu and Tensa Zangetsu he has displayed in the canon manga.
Shikai: Zangetsu can summon a sword that takes the form of his constant Shikai release state: an oversized, black khyber knife almost as tall as himself with a cloth-wrapped tang instead of a proper hilt and tsuba.
Shikai Special Ability: Getsuga Tenshō (月牙天衝, Moon Fang Heaven-Piercer; "Piercer of Heaven" in the English anime): Zangetsu fires concentrated energy blasts from the tip of his blade in the shape of a crescent moon or in a shape of a wave.
- Bankai: Tensa Zangetsu (天鎖斬月, Heaven Chain Slaying Moon): It is considered completely out of the ordinary for any Zanpakutō. Unlike most Bankai forms, which usually create some sort of massive creature or effect, The Bankai actually shrinks his sword down to a daitō with a black blade, hilt, and tsuba. The crossguard has four prongs bent out to form the shape of the manji. Instead of the cloth his Shikai form had, a short length of chain with a broken link at the end dangles from the base of the hilt.
- Bankai Special Ability: Zangetsu's special attack remains Getsuga Tenshō and can be used in the same manners, but can be used in an enhanced form. When used with Zangetsu's Bankai, these potent blasts can become black with a red outline and their path and shape can be controlled, in addition to their explosively augmented power and speed.
- Physical Enhancement: This Bankai is a compression of his remarkable power, rather than a vast expansion as other Bankai are. This vastly compressed power enables to reach levels of physical and spiritual prowess most Shinigami would have their bodies give out at and cannot handle. It allows Zangetsu to move at very high speeds exceeding those of flash steps, allowing him to be undetectable to unfocused eyes. This Bankai also allows Zangetsu to use his natural strength to its limits. His new speed is so great, that it also allows him to create dozens of tangible clones to confuse his opponent. In addition, his already immense spiritual energy has grandly and explosively increased, and now has a deep black spiritual energy with a crimson outline.
Because Ichigo developed his Zanpakutō as his inner Hollow (as a result from nearly becoming one while having his Shinigami powers restored), Both beings are considered the source of Ichigo's power and thus share the same spirit body in Ichigo's inner world, the stronger presence retaining more control (and overall appearance) of their body; in which case, the spirit of Zangetsu takes the form of an all-white (clothes and being), somewhat deranged version of Ichigo's Shinigami form with a strong desire to take control of Ichigo's body and power for himself. The two entities can also fuse themselves into one body, revealing a body with Zangetsu's hair along with some features of the Hollow's new form.
Hollow Fusion Form: After Tensa Zangetsu pulled Hollow Ichigo out of Ichigo during the latter's Dangai training, the two spirits proceeded to merge into one form, one that combined aspects from both spirit's appearances; Hollow Ichigo's white Bankai coat, black horn mask remnant, white-colored hair, and left Hollowfied eye, along Tensa Zangetsu's appearance, right blue eye, and black Bankai sword; though the sword's tsuba is white, like Hollow Ichigo's. In this form, Tensa Zangetsu explains that he and Hollow Ichigo were technically two parts of the same being with both of them together representing all of his spiritual powers. Ichigo claims that if the Hollowfied Tensa Zangetsu really wanted to, he could have defeated him from the start of their battle, further saying they were that far apart in power.
Enhanced Strength: While in this form, the Hollowfied Tensa Zangetsu is strong enough to break Ichigo's Bankai sword completely in two.