|This is the article on the actual war. For other uses, see Fourth Shinobi World War (disambiguation).|
The Fourth Shinobi World War (第四次忍界大戦, Daiyoji Ninkai Taisen, English TV: Fourth Great Ninja War) was a conflict between the Allied Shinobi Forces and Akatsuki. The battle began on the 8th of October and lasted until the 10th, with the complete victory of the Allied Shinobi Forces, the collapse of Akatsuki, and the sealing of the Ten-Tails.
Preparations for War
Its beginning was declared by Tobi when the five Kage and the leader of the Land of Iron unanimously refused to surrender the Eight and Nine-Tails for his Eye of the Moon Plan. He then stated that he would use the seven tailed beasts already captured by the Akatsuki in combating the ninja world. After this the Fifth Kazekage, the Fifth Mizukage, the Fourth Raikage, the Third Tsuchikage, and General Mifune agreed to form a Shinobi Alliance, pooling all their resources against Tobi. Later the daimyō of the Five Great Shinobi Countries approved the coalition and the Fifth Hokage joined the alliance while Kabuto Yakushi formed an alliance with Tobi.
Both factions began by gathering their strength and collecting intelligence about the other side in preparation for the upcoming hostilities. Kisame gathered intelligence on Kumogakure's military strength and on Killer B while travelling with him everywhere hidden inside Samehada. Anko Mitarashi and her team tracks Kabuto Yakushi, which led them to Tobi's headquarters. Other Shinobi Alliance teams have fanned out to collect other information about Akatsuki and their hideouts.
At the start, Kabuto had formed an alliance with Tobi, demonstrating his use of the Summoning: Impure World Reincarnation technique and increasing the forces of Akatsuki with the reincarnation of deceased members of the organisation. Most of the Five Kage had also decided to hide the two remaining jinchūriki, Naruto and Killer B on an island in the Land of Lightning. Hiding Killer B and Naruto had the unintended result of allowing Naruto to learn to control the Nine-Tails chakra, much like the way Killer B has of the Eight-Tails (in the anime, however, Tsunade had intended for Naruto to train with B from the beginning). Having been successful in his training, Naruto has exhibited increased speed and strength when utilising the controlled chakra of the Nine-Tails but lacks the same finesse that Killer B had exhibited in utilising the Eight-Tails', crashing into the wall and crushing rocks whenever he uses the Nine-Tails chakra.
Despite being captured in the end and committing suicide to keep the information he held secret, Kisame was able to finish Akatsuki's preparations for the War by sending a summon shark with a scroll to his comrades, divulging the proximate location of the Turtle Island. With the battle between the two forces seeming to be on the horizon, Tobi dispatched Kabuto to retrieve the Nine-Tails and Eight-Tails with the reincarnated Deidara, but was stopped by Ōnoki, Akatsuchi and Kurotsuchi who were going to reinforce the forces on the Island Turtle. Kabuto escaped with Yamato, further adding to the intelligence sources that Akatsuki has on the Shinobi Alliance and also strengthening the White Zetsu Army clones with Yamato's powers.
Both the Allied Shinobi Forces and Akatsuki have amassed considerable forces for this war; 80,000 shinobi and samurai total make up the Alliance versus 100,000 Zetsu clones and reincarnated shinobi supplied by Kabuto making up Tobi's army.
Allied Shinobi Forces
The Allied Shinobi Forces created by the Five Great Nations and the Samurai of the Land of Iron consists of five main divisions, with Gaara of the Sand as the Regimental Commander. The First Division consists of mid-range fighters and is led by Darui. The Second Division is made up of close-range fighters and is led by Kitsuchi. The Third Division is under the command of Kakashi Hatake, and features both close- and mid-range fighters. The Fourth Division contains only long-range fighters under the control of Gaara. Shikamaru is Gaara's right hand man and proxy commander of the Fourth Division as well. Finally, the Fifth division was created for the purpose of special operations, and features ninja with unique skills. Mifune is the leader of these special operatives. There are also four special divisions formed for the war. The Logistical Support and Medical Division led by Shizune comprises of medical ninja, the Surprise Attack Division led by Kankurō, has the task to ambush the enemy forces. The third is the Sensor Division with Ao as captain, and finally the Intelligence Division headed by Inoichi Yamanaka is intended to gather information and relay it to Gaara for strategy's sake.
|A||Supreme Leader of the Allied Shinobi Forces|
|Gaara||Regimental Commander of the Allied Shinobi Forces, Fourth Division Commander|
|Darui||First Division Commander|
|Kitsuchi||Second Division Commander|
|Kakashi Hatake||Third Division Commander|
|Shikamaru Nara||Fourth Division Proxy Commander|
|Mifune||Fifth Division Commander|
|Shizune||Logistical Support and Medical Division Captain|
|Kankurō||Surprise Attack Division Captain|
|Ao||Sensor Division Captain|
|Inoichi Yamanaka||Intelligence Division Captain|
|Mei Terumī||Daimyō Protection Squad Captain|
|Shikaku Nara||Chief Strategist|
Akatsuki is only composed of Tobi and Zetsu. Their primary military force is composed of 100,000 Zetsu clones created through a combination of the tailed beasts' chakra and Hashirama Senju's power. Tobi plans to use Sasuke Uchiha once he has recovered from his Mangekyō Sharingan transplant. Kabuto Yakushi has also formed an alliance with Akatsuki, reincarnating a large number of once-famous and powerful shinobi to supplement the White Zetsu Army, including several former members of Akatsuki.
Allied Shinobi Forces
Analysing their own and their enemy's location, the Allied Shinobi Forces have decided that Akatsuki will send a small fraction of their army by sea from the Mountains' Graveyard (Akatsuki's hideout) to Kumogakure, and that most of the army will travel by land. This would require the army to move through both the Land of Frost and the Land of Hot Water. An immediate evacuation notice was sent to both countries, and they will most likely evacuate to the south, in the Land of Fire. The First Division, which is the mid-range battle division, is stationed in the northern part of the Land of Lightning, in order to prevent the Akatsuki from using the small gulf to infiltrate the area from Mountains' Graveyard. The Second Division, or short-range battle division, is on the border of the Land of Lightning and the Land of Frost, sealing a northerly path into the Land of Lightning. The Third Division, or the short- to mid-range battle division, was advancing fast through the middle of the Land of Frost, but was called into the northern part of the Land of Hot Water to aid the Surprise Attack Division. The Fourth Division, the long-range battle division, is on the border of the Land of Lightning and the Land of Frost, sealing a southerly path into the Land of Lightning. Mifune's Fifth Division, the special battle division, is aligned in a large arc from the north part of the Land of Frost, through the middle of the border between the Land of Frost and the Land of Lightning, all the way to just south of the First Division, in order to aid any of the divisions that need immediate response, and to finish the seal on the Land of Frost and the Land of Lightning's border.
As the confrontation develops, resulting in both the First and Fourth Divisions opposing two separate yet equally significant contingents of the enemy's forces, Shikaku Nara devises a strategy to better reflect the conflict's current developments. Confronted with two distinct groups, the decision is made not to individualise the targets and instead concentrate entirely on those facing Darui's First Division, by connecting their forces with those stationed within the Easterly end of Mifune's Fifth Division. The majority of Kitsuchi's Second Division will move simultaneously to this, proceeding along the ocean and sandwiching the enemy force in a pincer-manoeuvre, while the remainder attends to the adversaries that they are already battling.
Consequently, this will severely thin out the Second Division but as the Fifth Division fills in the gaps left behind by the Second Division, it will match that of the Fifth Division's formation, which then provides a solitary yet solid line of defence. As this occurs, Gaara's Fourth Division will make a slow retreat while moving into a sideways chevron formation, luring the enemy into following them. Eventually the top portion of this 'line' will break away and join the First Division, giving them yet further support.
Once the first targeted group of enemies is defeated, the joint forces of the First and supporting Fourth Division will switch to the remaining opposition at Gaara's Fourth Division, approaching from behind and decimating them in a single decisive strike. However; this preliminary plan relies upon the swift mobilisation of the Second and Fifth Divisions, so as to best employ Kitsuchi's units experience in combating the current enemy, and the belief that the opposition will be unable to mount a full attack upon the retreating long-range battle division, due partially to the enemy's suspicion over why the Fourth Division would split and their inability to get in close.
As darkness falls and the remainder of the troops reallocate their forces in favour of observation, the Alliance takes the opportunity to centralise the Logistical Support and Medical Division behind their defences to attend to all the wounded shinobi. The compound is guarded by two Akimichi clan members at its only entrance and the chakra of anyone entering the compound is verified and cross referenced with the Alliance's headquarters, to prevent the infiltration of hostile intruders.
However, in spite of these various precautions, the Alliance's considerable defences fail to thwart the intrusion of a significant quantity of disguised White Zetsu Army clones and the resultant fatalities caused by the opposition's subsequent movements. As chaos ensues with individuals unable to ascertain friend from foe due to the chakra mimicking properties of the aforementioned clones, Shikaku Nara is tasked with the creation of a solution to counter this sudden perilous development. Despite much thought, he concludes that only Naruto's recently awakened capability to discern a person's "evil" intent, presents a viable resolution and due to his Shadow Clone Technique, many of the issues occurring within the dispersed divisions are solved simultaneously. This decision prompts the mobilisation of both jinchūriki in preparation for the following day.
Day One Deployment
Much less was initially known about the Akatsuki strategy, but it was made evident that their primary objective remained the acquisition of the surviving jinchūriki. From the small amount of information that had been divulged; Kabuto would maintain direct manipulation of the movements of the reincarnated individuals until they had reached their appointed destinations, with the intention of eradicating their personalities when the actual conflict began to turn them into mindless implements of death, while still manipulating any emotional response they could potentially illicit to full advantage, in the hopes of inflicting further damage. During the course of this approach, a small Surprise Attack and Diversion Platoon (comprised of Sasori, Deidara, Chūkichi and Shin) would attack from the air, utilising bombs and traps to disperse the enemy. However, realising that the movement of their entire army in such a large and apparent fashion would be far too conspicuous, the decision was instead undertaken to dislocate the 100,000 White Zetsu Army clones beneath the ground, in order to thoroughly conceal the approach of the main contingent of their forces. Though a large amount of these clones were eventually unearthed, thousands more were able to proceed unobstructed underground to their respective battlegrounds, due in part to the diversionary tactics made possible by the addition of Kabuto's reincarnated shinobi.
Concurrent to the developing conflict, Black Zetsu would utilise the resulting turmoil in order to infiltrate the daimyō's safe house as per Tobi's orders, with the sole intention of using these valued captives as bargaining chips to draw out the jinchūriki. However, with the jinchūriki's decision to expose themselves and take direct action before this assignments completion, it was deemed unnecessary and so Black Zetsu's role was altered to instead engage with the daimyō's guards, ensuring their continued separation from the remainder of the Allied Shinobi Forces.
As the confrontation progresses and night falls upon the first day, Tobi's true intentions and the reasons behind his confidence in his original strategy, which didn't account for Kabuto's inclusion or contributions, is revealed. The two opposing sides would effectively be forced into a staring contest as the Allied Shinobi Forces focus on tightening defences and tending to the wounded or resting. Tobi, aware that this would make the Allied Shinobi completely reliant upon their sensor shinobi in order to remain vigilant, then begins taking this advantage of this by utilising the Zetsu clones' Substitute Technique in conjunction with the chakra obtained from members of the Allied Shinobi Forces during the previous battles. By covertly placing these transformed Zetsu among the injured and scattered troops of the Allied Shinobi, they could then proceed to assassinate any isolated individuals while remaining undetected. This results in causing chaos and disagreement within the ranks of the Allied Shinobi who begin to suspect one another of committing these deeds without any definitive proof, but while also minimising the causalities suffered by the Akatsuki forces in the process. In addition, the attack of the transformed Zetsu also aimed to force the shinobi alliance to counter these insurgents, placing Naruto in the battlefield whose ability to recognise "evil" intent Tobi has learned from the intel gathered by Kisame.
Unbeknownst to the opposition, Tobi had also begun developing further contingencies in preparation for the second day of the conflict, creating his own Six Paths of Pain by utilising the former jinchūriki and customising them with both a Rinnegan and a Sharingan.
Battle at Mountains' Graveyard
- Location: Mountains' Graveyard
- Outcome: Infiltration and Reconnaissance Party are all captured. Muta Aburame manages to send intel back to HQ. Akatsuki tactical victory. Allied Shinobi Forces strategic victory.
When Akatsuki starts mobilising from the Mountains' Graveyard, Anko Mitarashi orders the rest of the Infiltration and Reconnaissance Party to inform the rest of the Allies while she continues to investigate. She is found and defeated by Kabuto Yakushi. Akatsuki's Surprise Attack and Diversion Platoon pursues and ultimately captures the remaining members of the Reconnaissance Party, but cannot stop them from getting word to the Alliance's HQ.
Battle of the Surprise Attack Divisions
- Location: Land of Hot Water
- Outcome: Muta Aburame is killed. Deidara is captured by Kankurō's team. Shin and Sasori return to the afterlife in peace. Chūkichi flees. Allied Shinobi Forces raised into victory.
The Alliance sends its Surprise Attack Division to ambush Akatsuki's forces in the Land of Hot Water. Akatsuki sends its Surprise Attack and Diversion Platoon to do the same. The two are drawn into conflict. The Allies eventually emerge victorious – Sasori and Shin are released from the Impure World Reincarnation and Deidara is captured – and they are even able to rescue some of the captured members of the Infiltration and Reconnaissance Party.
Allied Force's Ambush
- Location: Land of Hot Water
- Outcome: Tajiki and dozens of Allied Shinobi killed or wounded. All reincarnated shinobi sealed or released. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
Following the success of their first mission, part of the Surprise Attack Division is sent to ambush another Akatsuki cell. They encounter a group consisting of Zabuza Momochi, Haku, Pakura, Gari and, though outnumbered, attack. When the attack fails, the Third Division is called in to assist. Akatsuki's forces – reinforced with reincarnated members of the Seven Ninja Swordsmen of the Mist (and Chen in the anime) – cause heavy casualties amongst the Third Division. Zabuza and Haku are successfully sealed early on, but sealing of the others proves more challenging. By the second day of the war three reincarnated shinobi remain, now bolstered by White Zetsu. The assistance of one of Naruto Uzumaki's shadow clones enables the Third Division to deal with the remaining Akatsuki forces.
Battle in the Land of Frost
- Location: Border of the Land of Frost and the Land of Lightning
- Outcome: Tactical withdrawal of the Allied Shinobi Forces to aid the First Division. Eventual Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
When the war begins, the Second Division is deployed to the border of the Land of Frost and the Land of Lightning. Approximately 20,000 White Zetsu are detected moving into the Land of Lightning underground, prompting Kitsuchi and Kurotsuchi to use Earth Release: Opening Earth Rising Excavation to unearth them. In an opening salvo the Second Division is able to destroy scores of White Zetsu, but it quickly descends into one of attrition, tiring much of the Second Division and allowing many White Zetsu to escape. Most of the Second Division is sent in pursuit of these Zetsu by assisting the First Division, leaving their remaining forces to face a new threat: White Zetsu that have infiltrated the Alliance. Members of the Second Division are slowly eliminated by the Zetsu and left uncertain about who to trust until the second day when the arrival of one of Naruto Uzumaki's shadow clones allows them to root out all of the Zetsu.
First Battle on the Land of Lightning's Coast
- Location: North-western coast of the Land of Lightning
- Outcome: Atsui, Samui, and Ginkaku are sealed within the Benihisago. Kinkaku is sealed within the Kohaku no Jōhei. Asuma Sarutobi is sealed. All White Zetsu are killed. Several shinobi are killed. Dan Katō is trapped within the Four Violet Flames Formation. Kakuzu and Hizashi Hyūga are subdued by Chōji Akimichi. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
When the war begins, the First Division is stationed along the north-western coast of the Land of Lightning. They are soon confronted by the reincarnated shinobi and White Zetsu that escaped the Second Division's defence along the country's perimeter. The two sides engage each other, with Division Commander Darui facing off with the Gold and Silver Brothers. Darui initially struggles with the brothers and their Treasured Tools of the Sage of Six Paths, but eventually is able to turn the tools against the brothers to capture Ginkaku in their own Benihisago. This enrages Kinkaku to the point that he enters a version 2 form, which he uses to tear through the First Division. After reinforcements from the Second, Fourth, and Fifth arrive and the Alliance HQ sends the Kohaku no Jōhei to the battlefield, Kinaku is captured.
With the Gold and Silver Brothers dealt with, the Allies turn their attention to the remaining reincarnated ninja: Asuma Sarutobi is defeated by his former students; Kakuzu and Hizashi Hyūga are sealed with the help of Chōji Akimichi; Dan Katō is trapped within a Four Violet Flames Formation. The remaining White Zetsu are seemingly defeated, leaving the Allies victorious.
Battle in the Land of Hot Water
- Location: Land of Hot Water
- Outcome: Ibuse injured. Several samurai killed. All reincarnated shinobi released from Impure World Reincarnation. Kankurō's portion of the Surprise Attack Division paralysed, but later given antidote. Allied Shinobi's victory.
While part of the Surprise Attack Division is transporting the captured Deidara they are met by a restaffed Surprise Attack and Diversion Platoon. The Surprise Attack Division attempts to escape, but is paralysed by Hanzō's summoned Ibuse. They are rescued by samurai of the Fifth Division, with Mifune engaging and ultimately emerging victorious over Hanzō. Kimimaro and Chiyo prove more elusive, and it is not until the Impure World Resurrection is released on the second day that they are defeated.
Second Battle on the Land of Lightning's Coast
- Location: North-western coast of the Land of Lightning
- Outcome: Dan Katō is temporarily freed. Kakuzu is sealed. Hundreds of Allied Shinobi dead in Demonic Statue of the Outer Path's rampage. Tobi retrieves the Benihisago and Kohaku no Jōhei containing the Gold and Silver Brothers. Akatsuki victory.
Almost immediately after the First Division and its backup defeats the last of Akatsuki's forces, Tobi appears on the battlefield and summons the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path. Despite the efforts of Kitsuchi, Chōza, and Chōji, the Statue decimates the Allied forces. While taking shelter from the Statue's attacks, members of the First Division begin to realise the attack is just a distraction while Tobi acquires the captured Gold and Silver Brothers. They aren't able to stop him in time and he escapes with the Benihisago and Kohaku no Jōhei. His mission accomplished, Tobi de-summons the statue.
The Battle for the Daimyō's Protection
- Location: Unknown
- Outcome: Black Zetsu's upper half is incapacitated. Lower half escapes. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
In order to force the Allies' cooperation, Black Zetsu is sent to capture the daimyō of the Five Great Shinobi Countries. He is found and stopped by the Daimyō Protection Squad almost immediately after he arrives at the secret compound. Before he begins fighting he senses Naruto Uzumaki's appearance on the battlefield and informs Tobi of this development. The daimyō's capture ceases to matter, but Black Zetsu is instructed to keep the Daimyō Protection Squad busy. One of Naruto's shadow clones arrives on the second day to help capture Black Zetsu.
At the end of the first day of the battle, both the Alliance and Akatsuki received massive casualties, having effectively halved both their battle forces. The 80,000 strong Allied Shinobi Forces were brought down to 40,000 and the 100,000 strong White Zetsu Army was brought down to 50,000, on top of the several already sealed reincarnated shinobi.
During the day of fighting, members of the White Zetsu Army infiltrated the Alliance's ranks. Once night falls, the disguised Zetsu begin methodically eliminating key Allied personnel all across the battlefield. The Alliance is thrown into disarray until Sakura Haruno is able to determine what is happening. Despite this, there are no effective countermeasures against the Zetsu and vigilance is unable to prevent additional deaths. Suspicion reigns over the Allies.
Skirmishes in the Land of Lightning
- Location: Land of Lightning
- Outcome: All White Zetsu killed. Naruto uses his Shadow Clone Technique to disperse clones into the battlefield. Toroi is sealed. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
Early in the night, Naruto and Killer B escape their confinement in the Land of Lightning. Although the Fourth Raikage and Fifth Hokage are sent to intercept them and place them under guard again, Naruto, B and later Tsunade are able to convince the Raikage to allow him and B to fight.
Naruto and B's contributions immediately prove invaluable. They encounter a platoon of Allied shinobi heading towards HQ, which Naruto recognises as disguised Zetsu. Naruto and B defeat them all and Naruto sends his shadow clones to various battlefields to lend whatever assistance they can. As Naruto and B continue outbound from the Land of Lightning, they are able to save Musai and Nonota from a reincarnated Toroi.
First Southern Battle in the Land of Lightning
- Location: Land of Lightning
- Outcome: Dozens of Allied Forces shinobi are killed. The Third Raikage, Second Mizukage, Fourth Kazekage, and half of Mū are sealed. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
The Fourth Division encounters the reincarnated Mū on the first day of hostilities. Akatsuki responds by sending the Second Mizukage, the Third Raikage, and the Fourth Kazekage to reinforce Mū. The Alliance likewise sends Ōnoki to assist the Fourth Division. Despite this, the Fourth Division avoids conflict until the second day when other Divisions – their own battles won – can be called in to help.
Gaara launches the first attack – which in turn is countered by the Fourth Kazekage's gold dust – Ōnoki engages Mū, and elements of the First Division attack the Raikage and Mizukage from the rear. The Fourth Kazekage is captured and sealed while protecting the Raikage and Mizukage, but the remaining Kage are more elusive: the Raikage is largely impervious to damage, the Mizukage and his summoned clam cannot be located in their mirage, and Ōnoki is unable to overpower Mū.
When Naruto's shadow clone arrives it takes Mū by surprised and, in the ensuing confusion, Mū is sealed before he can respond. Naruto next focuses on the Third Raikage, whose defences are impenetrable and whose attacks are unstoppable. When his and the Alliance's combined efforts can do nothing against the Raikage, Naruto manoeuvres the Raikage against himself, using his own attacks to break his own defences and creating an opening to seal him. Meanwhile, Gaara and Ōnoki face-off with the Mizukage. They're able to destroy the Mizukage's clam, but struggle with his Steaming Danger Tyranny. Gaara is ultimately able to sneak some of the Fourth Kazekage's remaining gold dust into the Mizukage's technique, neutralising it and allowing the Mizukage to be sealed.
Battle Against the Dōjutsu Duo
- Location: Land of Lightning
- Outcome: Itachi is freed from Kabuto's control. Nagato is sealed. Allied Shinobi Forces victory
Kabuto Yakushi decides to temporarily kill Naruto and Killer B in order to deal with them in the short term and make it easier to use them against Tobi in the long term. To that end, he sends the reincarnated Nagato and Itachi Uchiha after them. While Nagato attacks them with different summons, Itachi activates the Kotoamatsukami he planted on Naruto before his death, releasing him from Kabuto's control and allowing him to assist with defeating Nagato. Though his body was frail, Nagato is able to regain his mobility by absorbing B's version 2 chakra. Although this revvitalised Nagato is nearly able to remove Naruto's soul, he is overpowered by the three and sealed by Itachi's Susanoo.
Battle Against the Sound Four
- Location: North-western coast of the Land of Lightning and Land of Frost
- Outcome: Reincarnated Sound Four souls released. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
On various battlefields, the reincarnated Sound Four tries to take revenge against the members of the Sasuke Recovery Team that killed them years earlier. Individually the Sound Four are defeated, but with the Space–Time Technique Formula: Underworld Turnover their defeated bodies ensnare the souls of their targets. The vengeance that fuels their technique is traceable by Naruto's shadow clone, who locates them, returns their souls to the afterlife, and frees their victims.
Hunt for Hayate
- Location: Logistical Support and Medical Division forest
- Outcome: Iō and Yokaze injured. Hayate Gekkō and two unidentified shinobi are sealed. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
The Logistical Support and Medical Division prioritises the protection of the corpses of those with kekkei genkai so that Akatsuki cannot use their bodies against the Alliance. A reincarnated Hayate Gekkō is sent to steal a scroll the bodies are stored in. He succeeds, but is pursued by Yūgao Uzuki, his former lover. Yūgao is initially unwilling to fight Hayate, forcing Sakura Haruno to deal with him. Yūgao does finally intervene when Hayate is about to kill Sakura and her presence stays his blade long enough for a Sealing Team to capture him.
Battle Against Tatewaki
- Location: Land of Lightning forest
- Outcome: Tatewaki able to break contract with Kabuto Yakushi and return to the afterlife. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
In the anime, part of the Second Division is attacked by a reincarnated Tatewaki, who they struggle to fight against. A short time later, one of Naruto's shadow clones arrives to help. Having met Tatewaki when he was alive, Naruto is able to speak of him and informs him of the fates of Shū and Chiyo. When he hears they are safe and happy, Tatewaki's soul is put at peace and he is released from the Impure World Reincarnation.
Battle Against Yota
- Location: North-western coast of Land of Lightning and Land of Frost and Logistical Support and Medical Division
- Outcome: Yota able to break contract with Kabuto Yakushi and return to the afterlife. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
A reincarnated person appears on three different battlefields and produces strange weather patterns. Members of Konoha's Rookie Nine recognise him as Yota, who they knew when they were in the Academy. However, only one of the three can be the real Yota, the other two being transformed Zetsu. One of Naruto's shadow clones locates the real Yota and reminisces with him about the fun they had when they were kids. Yota's soul is put at peace and he is released from the Impure World Reincarnation, but not before he destroys his corpse to prevent being revived again.
Battle Against the Lesser Reincarnated Shinobi
- Location: Land of Lightning
- Outcome: All reanimated shinobi sealed. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
The loss of so many valuable pawns forces Kabuto to use the ninja he mistakenly reincarnated in pursuit of other, stronger ninja. He places Torune in charge of a squad with the mission to release some of the shinobi sealed by the Allies, such as Toroi and the Third Raikage. All but Torune are caught in traps placed by the Fourth Division around the sealed ninja. Torune attempts to use a kinjutsu that would devastate the Allied shinobi, but is stopped and sealed by Shino Aburame and one of Naruto's shadow clones.
Battle Against Blue B
- Location: Land of Lightning
- Anime: Naruto: Shippuden #318
- Outcome: All White Zetsu Army clones defeated and Blue B able to break contract with Kabuto Yakushi and return to the afterlife. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
Kabuto decides to test Killer B's skills by reincarnating his predecessor as the Eight-Tails' jinchūriki: Blue B. B, with Motoi's help, engages Blue B, but they are soon put on the defensive. Motoi is nearly killed trying to buy time for B to escape, but B comes back to save him. B speaks with Blue B telepathically and vows to help him however he can. Glad that B has found the kind of purpose he lacked in his own life, Blue B's soul is put at peace and he is released from the Impure World Reincarnation.
Water Attack Raid Unit Rescue
- Location: Seventh Front
- Anime: Naruto: Shippuden #320
- Outcome: Portion of the Water Attack Raid Unit annihilated. All White Zetsu Army clones defeated. Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
In the anime, the Water Attack Raid Unit comes under attack near the Seventh Front by the White Zetsu Army. Allied Shinobi HQ sends the Thundercloud Unit as reinforcements, who soon find themselves getting overwhelmed as well. Omoi abandons his post to assist them, but by the time he arrives the Water Attack Raid Unit has already been defeated. Eventually, Omoi locates the Thundercloud Unit and with their help is able to eventually defeat the white Zetsu.
Second Southern Battle in the Land of Lightning
- Location: Land of Lightning
- Outcome: Heavy Allied Shinobi casualties. All Kage critically wounded. Mū released from the Impure World Reincarnation. Madara severed contract with technique and rendezvous with Tobi. Akatsuki victory.
When he was attacked by Naruto's shadow clone earlier, Mū's body instinctively split in two, of which only one was sealed. The second half cannot release the first half, so Kabuto uses the only option he has left: he uses Mū as a medium to summon a reincarnated Madara Uchiha. Kabuto encourages Madara to show what made him so legendary, which Madara obliges by attacking the nearby Fourth Division. Gaara, Ōnoki, Naruto's shadow clone, and the rest of the Allies present are already outmatched by Madara, which is only made worse when Madara drops two meteorites upon them, wiping out most of the Fourth Division. Madara attacks the survivors with Wood Release Secret Technique: Nativity of a World of Trees, which Naruto does his best to defend against.
Naruto's shadow clone is beginning to run low on chakra and cannot hold out against Madara for much longer. The three remaining Kage (A, Tsunade, and Mei Terumī) arrive on the battlefield to join Gaara and Ōnoki against Madara, instructing Naruto to trust the fight to them. Naruto's clone vanishes, remnants of the Fourth Division pursue Mū's half, and the Kage engage Madara. Although the Kage pull off some attacks that impress even Madara, they cannot hope to defeat him so long as he is an immortal reincarnation that recovers from all injuries. All they can hope to do is endure against Madara's various powers until Kabuto is defeated and the Impure World Reincarnation is broken.
As night starts to fall, the Kage cannot last much longer, Madara having multiple clones that are each using Susanoo to outnumber them five-to-one. Before he can wage a final attack, Madara is engulfed in light and his soul begins to ascend, Kabuto having elsewhere been defeated. Madara releases himself from the influence of the Impure World Reincarnation, granting him an immortal body. Free to do what he wants, Madara decides to go find Naruto. The Kage try to stop him, but each is brought to the verge of death in an unseen battle and Madara escapes.
First Battle Against the Eye of the Moon Plan
- Location: Land of Lightning, Kamui's dimension
- Outcome: The six tailed beasts are resealed in the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path. The six reincarnated jinchūriki are released from the Impure World Reincarnation. Ten-Tails is revived. Tactical Akatsuki victory.
Tobi uses the reincarnated bodies of the former jinchūriki to create his own Six Paths of Pain, each with their old tailed beasts sealed back into them. They converge on Killer B and the real Naruto and engage them in battle. After a brief exchange B is able to restrain and nearly seal all six, but they free themselves by entering version 2 forms. In the chaos created by these stronger opponents, Tobi almost captures Naruto, but he is stopped by the arrival of Kakashi Hatake and Might Guy.
Tobi begins to have some of the jinchūriki enter Tailed Beast Mode to overwhelm the Allied shinobi. The Four-Tails goes after and swallows Naruto, which gives its jinchūriki, Rōshi, a chance to communicate to Naruto how to release them from Tobi's control. Naruto escapes from the Four-Tails' mouth and locates the chakra receiver on its body. By removing it he frees Rōshi and the Four-Tails, to which Tobi responds by first reclaiming the Four-Tails and then by having all the other jinchūriki fully transform. The Nine-Tails is touched by Naruto's determination to help its fellow tailed beasts and thus gives its full cooperation to Naruto. Their new and improved Nine-Tails Chakra Mode allows them to defeat and free the other tailed beasts, but Tobi reclaims them into Demonic Statue of the Outer Path too.
Tobi fights Naruto, B, Kakashi, and Guy by himself until he is alerted to Kabuto's defeat. Running out of options, he initiates a premature revival of the Ten-Tails by depositing the sealed Gold and Silver Brothers (who contain remnants of the Nine-Tail' chakra) and one of the Eight-Tails' tentacles into the Statue. He places a barrier around it as it undergoes its transformation and engages his four opponents in the meantime. Their efforts to attack Tobi fail until they notice a connection between his ability to become intangible and Kakashi's Kamui. By taking advantage of this connection, they are able to land a successful attack and destroy his mask, finally revealing him as Obito Uchiha.
Moments after his identity is exposed, Obito is joined by Madara, having just finished up with the five Kage. Noticing that the Statue has not had the Eight or Nine-Tails sealed into it yet, Madara attempts to take the beasts from Naruto and B before the Ten-Tails is revived. Kakashi and Guy defend them while Naruto and B try to destroy the Statue, but they are too late and the Ten-Tails is revived.
Battle Against the Impure World Reincarnation Technique
- Location: Mountains' Graveyard
- Outcome: Kabuto is trapped in Izanami and unable to fight. All reincarnated shinobi (except Madara Uchiha) are released. Tactical Allied Shinobi Forces victory.
After freeing himself from Kabuto's control, Itachi tasks himself with breaking the Impure World Reincarnation. He traces Kabuto to the Mountains' Graveyard. Along the way Itachi is found and joined by his younger brother, Sasuke. They locate Kabuto, but know they cannot kill him if the Impure World Reincarnation is to be released. After taking precautions to protect himself from their genjutsu, Kabuto takes advantage of their unwillingness to kill him by bombarding them with all the abilities he's acquired for himself: the pilfered abilities of the late Sound Four, the research of Orochimaru, and a Sage Mode he's trained to perfection. The Uchiha brothers defend themselves, helped particularly by their Susanoo. Ultimately, Itachi traps Kabuto in the endless loop of Izanami. Defeated, Kabuto is compelled via genjutsu to release Impure World Reincarnation, sending Itachi and the other reincarnated shinobi back to the afterlife.
Battle Against the Ten-Tails
- Location: Land of Lightning, Kamui's dimension
- Outcome: Allied Shinobi Forces' Headquarters destroyed, resulting in the deaths of Shikaku Nara, Inoichi Yamanaka, Mabui and Kussaku. Allied Shinobi Forces suffer major casualties, among them Neji Hyūga. Obito becomes jinchūriki of Ten-Tails until it is released. Obito forced to resurrect Madara. Allied Shinobi Forces tactical victory. Akatsuki strategic victory.
Though the Ten-Tails is restored, it will still be some time before the moon is in a position to complete the Eye of the Moon Plan. Madara and Obito therefore opt to eliminate the opposition in the meantime. They take control of the Ten-Tails and use it to try and destroy Naruto, B, Kakashi, and Guy, but the remaining Allied Shinobi Forces arrive in time to stop the attack. They combine their efforts to restrain and bind the Ten-Tails, but the victory is brief; the Ten-Tails transforms and frees itself.
Madara and Obito recognise the coordination involved to bring such a huge force together so effectively and use the Ten-Tails to destroy the Allied HQ to prevent future coordinating. Almost all stationed there are killed, Ao being the only known survivor, but Shikaku Nara is able to communicate one final attack plan to the Allies. Many ninja die as they move into position – including Neji Hyūga – but they are able to pull off Shikaku's final plan and sever the connection between the Ten-Tails and the Uchihas. Freed, the Ten-Tails prepares to use Tenpenchii. Kakashi attempts to send the beast away, but Obito intercepts him and warps them both to the other dimension. Tenpenchii levels the area but none are killed due to the protective cloak Naruto coats everyone with.
Before the Ten-Tails can launch another attack it is stopped by the arrived Hokage, reincarnated by Orochimaru at the direction of Sasuke. Hashirama Senju restrains the Ten-Tails and he and the other Hokage trap it in a barrier. Though it can't move, the Ten-Tails spawns miniature clones of itself to protect it. The Allies fight its copies but it becomes apparent that the Ten-Tails is on the verge of a final transformation. Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura join forces against it, badly damaging it.
Meanwhile, in the other dimension, Kakashi and Obito spar. Being old comrades, Obito tries to convince Kakashi that his actions are right and that the world as it is must be eliminated. Kakashi refuses to agree and badly wounds Obito, forcing him to retreat back to the real world. When Madara senses Obito's return, Madara tries to take advantage of him in his weakened state to force Obito to restore him to life. Obito resists and instead seals the Ten-Tails into his body, becoming its jinchūriki. The Hokage, no longer preoccupied with restraining the Ten-Tails, attack it, only to discover Obito's new power cancels out the regenerative advantages of their reincarnated bodies. The Allies try various methods of damaging Obito, but only senjutsu has any kind of success.
With the moon nearly in position, Obito transforms into the Ten-Tails' final form: a giant tree capable of absorbing chakra from anyone it touches. With their numbers dwindling and time running out, the Allies prepare for one final assault. Naruto and Sasuke launch a a final attack while the remaining allies, rallied by their respective newly rejuvenated Kage, provide support. The tailed beasts the Ten-Tails is composed of are stripped from Obito and released, leaving him defeated and unable to move. Because Obito is no longer able to resist, Black Zetsu takes control of him and forces him to revive Madara.
Second Battle Against the Eye of the Moon Plan
- Location: Land of Lightning, Kamui's Dimension
- Outcome: The nine tailed beasts (except Kurama's Yin half) are resealed within the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path. Madara becomes the Ten-Tails' jinchūriki. Yin-Kurama and parts of Shukaku and Gyūki are sealed into Naruto. Madara activates the Infinite Tsukuyomi. Akatsuki victory.
Though living again, Madara is left unable to see, having forfeited his eyes shortly before his original death. Until he can reacquire them he immobilises Hashirama and absorbs his senjutsu chakra to allow him to sense things around him. His first order of business is capturing the tailed beasts again. He is initially no match for the nine beasts until a White Zetsu delivers one of his Rinnegan to him. He uses it to summon the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path from Obito's body and then quickly seals all the tailed beasts, including B's Eight-Tails and Naruto's Nine-Tails, into it, triggering another rebirth of the Ten-Tails. Sasuke tries to stop him, so Madara stabs him with his own sword.
Meanwhile, Tobi keeps the Allied Shinobi Forces occupied with Sage Art Wood Release: True Several Thousand Hands to battle them. Naruto, dying from the removal of the Nine-Tails, is delivered to the reincarnated Minato Namikaze by Gaara so that the half of the Nine-Tails' chakra that Minato has can be sealed into him. Black Zetsu intercepts the transfer and takes the Nine-Tails' chakra for itself, but this creates an opening for Obito to reclaim control of his body. Obito, having finally decided he was wrong, escapes to the other dimension with Naruto and Sakura (who is providing emergency life support), where he begins sealing the Nine-Tails' chakra from Black Zetsu to Naruto. Elsewhere, a dying Sasuke is approached by Kabuto, who also had a change of heart, and he begins healing Sasuke's wounds.
Madara, now the Ten-Tails' jinchūriki, is left to deal with the stragglers. With nobody else who can perform senjutsu around, taijutsu is the only means of combating him. Might Guy decides that this is a worthy cause for him and decides to give his life to defeat Madara. He opens all Eight Gates and assaults Madara with his Evening Elephant. This takes a heavy toll on his body but doesn't stop Madara, forcing him to resort to his final attack: Night Guy. This time Madara is badly injured, but still he survives. Spent, the life fades from Guy.
While on the border between life and death, Naruto and Sasuke each meet with the Sage of the Six Paths, who offers them a portion of his power to defeat the Ten-Tails at long last. Once each is restored to health, Naruto saves Guy from death and they engage Madara with their new powers: Sasuke's Rinnegan and Naruto's simultaneous access to all of the nine tailed beasts' abilities. No match for Naruto and Sasuke, Madara becomes determined to reacquire his remaining Rinnegan. He steals Kakashi's Sharingan and uses it follow Obito to the other dimension where he takes the Rinnegan Obito has been using. Restored to full power, Madara returns to the real world and initiates the Infinite Tsukuyomi.
Battle Against the Infinite Tsukuyomi
- Location: Land of Lightning, Kaguya's Dimensions
- Outcome: Black Zetsu uses itself and Madara as a medium to revive Kaguya. Obito is killed by Kaguya. Black Zetsu and Kaguya are sealed in a new moon within Kaguya's dimension. Madara dies as result of the Ten-Tails' extraction. The four reincarnated Hokage and all the spirits of the other deceased Kage return to the afterlife. Allied Shinobi Forces Victory. End of conflict.
The Infinite Tsukuyomi is cast upon the world. Sasuke shields himself, Naruto, Kakashi, and Sakura. All others except for the reanimated Hokage are trapped in a dream and wrapped into the God: Nativity of a World of Trees, their chakra acting as fuel for their own confinement. The four emerge from Sasuke's protection, the last resistance against Madara. Before they can have their final battle, Black Zetsu, once more in control of Obito's body, transfers to Madara and takes control of him instead, converting him to Kaguya Ōtsutsuki. Kaguya transports them all to one of her dimensions, wishing to eliminate the only remaining obstacles.
Like Madara before her, Kaguya has difficulty fighting Naruto and Sasuke at the same time. At Black Zetsu's suggestion, Kaguya sends Sasuke to a different dimension so that she can fight them individually, starting with Naruto. While Naruto keeps her busy, Sakura helps Obito – who is now back in control of his body – find the dimension where Sasuke is and reunite him with Naruto. Frustrated by Sasuke's return and her own failure to kill Naruto, Kaguya transports them to all to a dimension with powerful gravity. While Naruto and Sasuke are unable to move, she attacks them with All-Killing Ash Bones. Obito and Kakashi use themselves as human shields to block the attacks, with Obito also using Kamui to save Kakashi as well, though at the cost of his own life.
Even though he's dead, Obito is not done fighting. His spirit rises from his remains and inhabits Kakashi, temporarily granting him the power of dual Mangekyō Sharingan. Using Susanoo, Kakashi joins Naruto and Sasuke in their fight against Kaguya, creating an opening for Naruto and Sasuke to surround her and strike. When she tries to escape, Sakura punches her, forcing her to stay put long enough for Naruto and Sasuke to initiate the seal given to them by Hagoromo Ōtsutsuki, the Sage of Six Paths. The tailed beasts are removed from Kaguya's body, she is made to spit out Madara, and she and Black Zetsu are trapped in the Six Paths — Chibaku Tensei that is, itself, stuck in another dimension.
The battle won, Team 7 wonders how to escape Kaguya's dimension. Hagoromo anticipates their need, combining the efforts of the four reincarnated Hokage and all the spirits of the other deceased Kage to summon them, the tailed beasts, and Madara back to the real world. Hagoromo congratulates them on their victory and Madara, before dying from the Ten-Tails' extraction, acknowledges his own defeat. With the Fourth Shinobi World War finally over, Hagoromo returns the four reincarnated Hokage and all the spirits of the other deceased Kage to the Pure Land.
Following the dissolution of Akatsuki and the sealing of Kaguya, Hagoromo explains that Naruto and Sasuke need only join hands to end the Infinite Tsukuyomi, but Sasuke has other plans first. He imprisons the tailed beasts, intending to kill them and the current Kage so that he can become the sole authority, personally deciding good from bad so that the world never gets itself involved in another war. Naruto refused to go along with this and the two battled at the Valley of the End, fighting into the night. When the two regain consciousness the following morning, Sasuke admits defeat to Naruto besting him, and surrenders. Together they end the Infinite Tsukuyomi, Sasuke releases the tailed beasts, and the few remaining Zetsu fade away. The combined influences of Naruto and Kakashi, who had been named Konoha's Sixth Hokage, was enough to absolve Sasuke's status as an international criminal.
In the years following, the Allied Shinobi Forces would reorganise into the Shinobi Union, a body that is composed of any hidden village that wishes to join, with the purpose of preserving peace among the villages. By the time Naruto had become the Seventh Hokage, relations between the villages eased considerably, with all of Kage being on good terms, allowing them to discuss common interests and deal with mutual threats without prejudice. With no need for weapons or militarisation, technology had advanced in such a short amount of time that Konohagakure would sport a modern metropolis above the Hokage Monument.
- Itachi Uchiha was noted to have prevented an earlier potential outbreak of the Fourth Shinobi World War by his involvement in the Uchiha Clan Downfall.
- A Fourth Ninja War was also declared by Hiruko in the third Naruto: Shippūden movie, and would have pushed through if not for the efforts of the Konoha 11.
- In the story portion of Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, Tobi, Madara, and Kabuto retreat before the Ten-Tails is revived, leaving the Allied Shinobi Forces victorious. This is because the events after that point had not been covered in the manga when the game was created.
- The Fourth Shinobi World War stretched across the four last story arcs: Fourth Shinobi World War: Confrontation, Fourth Shinobi World War: Climax, Birth of the Ten-Tails' Jinchūriki, and Kaguya Ōtsutsuki Strikes, making the war the longest event in the series.
- In the anime, there are a larger number of reanimated shinobi, rather than just a small number. This was done to extend the war arcs and create a more realistic war with more fights.
- According to the Boruto: Naruto Next Generations anime, Iwagakure was one of the few villages to suffer a direct attack by Akatsuki during the War which took years to rebuild from. It is unknown when the battle took place, or if any reincarnated or White Zetsu were utilised in the battle, or whether Iwagakure was one of the many villages struck with the Ten-Tails' attack.
- Shikamaru Nara, Naruto Uzumaki, and Ikkyū Madoka prevented a potential Fifth Shinobi World War between Iwagakure with Kirigakure against the Land of Flowers with Kumogakure after persuading Land of Earth's daimyō to cancel their plan on taking over the Land of Flowers for its soil.