|This is the article on the character. For chapter 584, head to Kabuto Yakushi. For other uses, see Kabuto Yakushi (disambiguation).|
|薬師カブト Yakushi Kabuto|
|Manga||Volume #5, Naruto Chapter #39|
|Anime||Naruto Episode #23|
|Novel||Sasuke Shinden: Book of Sunrise (Mentioned)|
|Movie||Naruto Shippūden the Movie: Bonds|
|Game||Naruto: Ultimate Ninja|
|OVA||Hidden Leaf Village Grand Sports Festival!|
|Appears in||Anime, Manga, Novel, Game, Movie|
|Academy Grad. Age||10|
Kabuto Yakushi (薬師カブト, Yakushi Kabuto) grew up as a child orphaned by war. He was taken in by Konohagakure but, in exchange, he was pressured to start spying for the village by Root. The many identities he had to assume left him unsure of who he truly was. This left him susceptible to the influence of Orochimaru, leading him to become his right-hand-man. Years later, after Orochimaru is seemingly killed, Kabuto uses the many talents he has gained under the latter to forge out on his own, but later on is finally able to define his own place in the world.
- 1 Background
- 2 Personality
- 3 Appearance
- 4 Abilities
- 5 Part I
- 6 Part II
- 7 Epilogue
- 8 In Other Media
- 9 Trivia
- 10 Quotes
- 11 References
Kabuto's earliest childhood memory is being found by Nonō on the outskirts of a destroyed village. Suffering from a head wound and amnesia, he had no recollection of his parents or his own identity. The nun treated his wounds with medical ninjutsu and brought him to the orphanage. Shy and reserved, Kabuto did not speak to anyone or thank the nun for her kindness, which led a fellow orphan, Urushi, to question whether or not he had any manners, before slamming a helmet on Kabuto's head to protect his healing wound. When Urushi declared that his lack of a name was annoying, the nun decided to name him "Kabuto", after the helmet. Later that night, Kabuto felt guilty about not thanking the nun and got out of bed to find her, only to get in trouble with the other wards for being up past his curfew. When they took him to a clock to teach him the curfew time, it at first seemed that he was too young to tell time, but the nun recognised that he was squinting and lent him her glasses, allowing him to impress the other caretakers by correctly determining the time of the curfew despite his young age. Because the orphanage could not afford glasses for him, the woman let him keep hers, and Kabuto broke down in tears, repeatedly thanking her as she comforted him.
Over the years, Kabuto would be taught various medical skills by Nonō, such that he was eventually able to assist her in healing shinobi and thus, earn money for the orphanage. It was here that he first met Orochimaru who asked him if he wanted to become a shinobi, stating that the role would suit him, but Kabuto declined. However, after eavesdropping on a conversation Nonō had with Danzō Shimura and hearing the latter's demand for an orphan in exchange for funding, Kabuto instead accepted the offer.
From this point onwards, he was tasked with infiltrating various hidden villages, including those of the Five Great Shinobi Countries. During one such assignment in Iwagakure, he was forced to flee after his cover was blown and unwittingly attacked his "mother", Nonō, in the process. With her unable to recognise him even as he healed her injuries, Kabuto came to question his identity and purpose, when he was once again approached by Orochimaru.
Orochimaru explained to him that his unfortunate encounter with Nonō was engineered by Danzō himself: having become an accomplished spy, Kabuto has become an asset too dangerous to handle for Root (and thus to be eliminated). Orochimaru also pointed out that as a spy for Konoha, (and after travelling to many countries), Kabuto already is losing track of his own true self due to not knowing where he came from and the constant changing of his identity to fulfil his role. Nonō, in turn, was double-crossed by Danzō into believing that they released Kabuto from holding and was living a civilian life, in exchange for assassinating another person (who is no other than the real Kabuto himself). Distraught by this information, Kabuto attacked Orochimaru but was stayed by the latter's offer of a new identity, as well as becoming his right-hand man in the village he was about to found. In returning to Konohagakure, Orochimaru gives him a new cover: that he was found amongst the dead enemies after the Battle of Kikyō Pass by a captain of the Medic Corps, and that captain brought him to Konoha and raised him as a son.
He was later sent to serve as Orochimaru's spy to Sasori of Akatsuki, who in turn set him to spy on Orochimaru by using Memory-Concealing Manipulative Sand Technique to transform him into his own sleeper agent. Orochimaru discovered this and released Sasori's control over Kabuto. Kabuto has since used his expertise in spying for Orochimaru, playing the role of Sasori's servant to gain knowledge of Akatsuki's plans. Through his affiliation with Konoha, Kabuto was also able to acquire the rank of genin and enter the biannual Chūnin Exams, using the first two parts of the exam to gather information on his fellow participants for Orochimaru's use. Additionally, with the medical expertise taught to him by his adoptive parent and his high intelligence, Kabuto is able to carry out human experiments alongside Orochimaru, while at the same time increasing his own knowledge of the human body. Among other things, Kabuto also helped Orochimaru, in the anime, refine the Impure World Reincarnation and gather the necessary DNA from various famous deceased people.
In the anime after Naruto Uzumaki defeats Sabiru, Kabuto, hidden in some trees, kills him by throwing a presumably poisoned senbon to the back of his neck, so no information regarding who he works for would be leaked.
As a child, due to the amnesia he suffered, Kabuto was a rather shy, quiet and a polite individual who didn't know who he was or where he belonged in the world. Due to the nun who took him in and gave him her glasses to see with, he was very grateful for it, shedding tears of thanks for it, showing he was rather sensitive as a child. As a result of his upbringing by Danzō, serving as a deep cover agent in the other countries before being betrayed, Kabuto's loyalties are difficult to discern.
Though generally obeying Orochimaru's orders to the point of saving his life, Kabuto occasionally acts against him by helping his master's enemies. Even in those instances, admitting not truly knowing what he is thinking and commenting him to have a nasty personality, Orochimaru expressed great confidence in Kabuto's loyalty and often laughed at the prospect that Kabuto would betray him. Despite his unclear goals, Kabuto seemed to be content in following Orochimaru, using this allegiance to make requests for specific bodies with which to further his knowledge. However, Kabuto's true loyalties are more to himself and well hidden due to his many conflicting comments and actions.
Despite this, Kabuto shows a clear view of respect to those he sees with great status such as Tsunade and expresses excitement in testing his abilities. This makes him perceive shinobi who have not gained a high and famous reputation as weaklings, ridiculing Naruto Uzumaki before gaining a peculiar fixation towards him since his defeat by the boy. Kabuto also detests rudeness, indicated by his frequent admonishments of Sasuke Uchiha for not treating Orochimaru with respect. In a battle, Kabuto would use his opponent's weaknesses and phobias against them. This is reflected in the Fourth Shinobi World War as Kabuto freely reincarnated people for both combat and psychological warfare.
Despite his rather cool personality, sadistic and manipulative yet polite with a dry sense of humour, Kabuto was inwardly conflicted with major insecurities about his identity for most of his life. Kabuto had defined himself at best, to be shy as well as an introvert and preferring secluded places. But the moment he merged Orochimaru's cells into his body, inspired by Naruto's resolve, Kabuto now felt he can do whatever he wants now as he felt no loyalty to even the people or village that raised him, detesting the fact that he had been brought up by their enemies.
Because of his long history of having no "true" identity, Kabuto became lost, believing he had no place in the world, unaware his true home was the Konoha Orphanage and despite their rough start, his adoptive brother, Urushi, had been eagerly awaiting Kabuto's return. As such, Kabuto tried to find his way by mimicking someone he admired, Orochimaru, much like children do to the people they admire until they are capable of thinking on their own. However, Kabuto never became capable of thinking on his own and as a result, his mindset became a clone of Orochimaru's, such that he lost track of his original identity.
Kabuto has also shown interest in accomplishing Orochimaru's agenda in order to further his dream to establish his own identity. This act makes him very arrogant of his own power as he believes himself to be nearly an equal to the Sage of the Six Paths, perfect and unbeatable. However, like Orochimaru, Kabuto needed Sasuke's Sharingan to accomplish that goal. He is seemingly willing to go to great lengths to acquire him, blackmailing Obito Uchiha into an alliance while leaving a trail of corpses to allow Anko Mitarashi and her brigade to follow into Mountains' Graveyard. In addition, Kabuto was well aware of Obito's identity before the Uchiha was unmasked during the Fourth Shinobi World War, but kept his secret so long as he could use him for his own personal gain. These actions not only served to have the two opposing factions cripple each other during the war as Obito suspects, but also for Kabuto to increase his power by siphoning Anko's chakra. Kabuto also admitted an interest in Zetsu, being promised one of his clone brothers as compensation for his services.
Overall, Kabuto compares himself with Itachi Uchiha, both of whom served Konoha in the shadows but were ostracised by the village in return, and claims that because of this, he understands Sasuke more than anyone. However, after realising that he is imprisoned within his own mind in an endless loop and his machinations have fallen apart, he attempts to justify his actions by asserting that he wanted someone to affirm and recognise his existence. Ultimately, Kabuto's experience under Izanami's power made him abandon his lust for power and acknowledge his own mistake in trying to be who he is not. Kabuto claimed that him and Obito were lost in the world and now are desiring to correct those mistakes after finding where they belong to. Desiring now to simply return to his childhood home at the orphanage, Kabuto is determined on righting his wrongs and has inherited Itachi's desire to protect Sasuke.
Years later, Kabuto continued his path for redemption and has become much more gentle and mellow. He also grew to love helping people, especially children, to help them grow and mature to being good people.
Kabuto's trademark is a pair of black rimmed circular glasses, a gift from Nonō, and he is rarely seen without them. He has onyx eyes and ash-grey hair, which is normally kept in a ponytail that extends to his upper back, with his bangs framing either side of his forehead. In the majority of his earlier appearances, he wore a dark purple shirt with a high collar, a white under-shirt, dark purple fingerless gloves with armoured plates on the back of the hand, a white cloth waistband worn at an angle, dark purple pants, blue sandals, and a shuriken holster on his right leg. He typically wore a blue Otogakure forehead protector, but was first seen wearing a blue Konohagakure forehead protector as a part of his genin disguise. In Part II, he no longer wears his forehead protector or his gloves. He also occasionally wears a purple hooded mantle, particularly when trying to disguise his identity.
Shortly after Sasuke counter-absorbed Orochimaru, Kabuto took cells and tissue from the remains of Orochimaru's true form and implanted them in his body. Though he was resisting their influence, the cells and tissue slowly began to take over his body, first speading over the left half of his face and much of his left side, causing the affected areas to turn a pale white colour and become scaly, with his left eye developing Orochimaru's purple marking and serpentine pupil. During the anime-exclusive Power arc, he wore a black robe with red lining and no longer kept his hair in a ponytail, instead leaving it long and unkempt, with the bangs parted to cover the left side of his face and his right cheek, partially obscuring the physical effects of absorbing Orochimaru's cells. During this time, both of his eyes possessed yellow irides with serpentine pupils, although only his left eye was surrounded with Orochimaru's distinctive purple marking.
Upon reappearing shortly before the outbreak of the Fourth Shinobi World War, it's revealed that he's learned to fully control Orochimaru's genetic material, causing him to take on many of the physical traits of his former master. These included purple eye markings along with scaly patterns on his face and much of his body. Although he appeared to have lost these traits when Orochimaru's chakra was removed from his body, they would re-appear and remain with him for the rest of his life. He wears his hair in an unkempt bowl cut, allowing it to grow out. He wears a maroon-coloured cloak with a hood designed to resemble a serpent's head, with white, red, and yellow markings that resemble eyes; the hood can be closed like a snake's mouth to help protect his senses from the effects of genjutsu. A long, white snake was also fused with his abdomen, which he kept wrapped around his waist and was often seen slithering out from under his robes like a tail. He was also able to shed his human body, taking on the appearance of a monstrous snake with sharply distorted facial features and arms.
Years later, Kabuto returned to the orphanage he was raised in and began wearing his hair in a ponytail again. He also began wearing an outfit similar to that of Nonō, while still retaining some reptilian-like features from his infusion of Orochimaru's DNA.
As Orochimaru's right-hand man, Kabuto is a highly skilled ninja despite his young age, his skills being compared to Kakashi Hatake's in Part I. He proved able to kill several Anbu at once easily, pressure the likes of Tsunade, and by Part II, fight an entire team single-handedly. Upon adapting to his bodily modifications and mastering senjutsu during the Fourth Shinobi World War, Kabuto could fight Sasuke and the reincarnated Itachi, two Uchiha clan prodigies, simutaneously, even subduing the latter on two occasions.
Despite claiming to have a lesser skill in taijutsu, Kabuto has proven to be proficient enough to hold his own against Tsunade after consuming a Military Rations Pill. His main style of taijutsu incorporates the use of the chakra scalpel, which allows him to form his chakra into a blade to hit his target's muscles, pressure points, and other key points of their body. During his battle with Tsunade, she remarked that Kabuto's senses and sharpness may have surpassed hers in her prime. In battle, he first quickly assesses his opponent's strength and battle style to comprehend their movements, thereby allowing him to easily predict and dodge their attacks. He then uses his medical ninjutsu to systematically take down his opponent in order to subdue them.
From a young age, Kabuto demonstrated tremendous skill and ingenuity in medical ninjutsu. He developed the unique ability to reactivate dead cells and grow new ones; though it was designed to aid in research on test subjects, he has proven skillful enough to use it in battle by reading his opponent's moves and preparing the area which will require the cell reconstruction process. He is capable of using the chakra scalpel to cut through wood and flesh with ease, even without forming any hand seals, and can use the Mystical Palm Technique while being a distance away from his target. With his extensive knowledge of medical ninjutsu and the human body, he can quickly adjust to any damage done to his body and severely injure a person with a single chakra scalpel strike to the chest. He is also capable of cloning and genetically altering organisms, such as using Manda's DNA to create the larger and stronger Manda II.
Kabuto's prowess in medical ninjutsu has allowed him to develop a series of drugs and poisons with various effects. These drugs include those which were given to Sasuke, which aided in his training process and enhanced his physical attributes. He also invented a special drug capable of suppressing the power of a Wood Release user, as well as a truth serum that allows him to interrogate enemies with ease. In the anime, Kabuto developed a drug capable of rendering Anko Mitarashi unconscious, despite her having received treatment to be immune to poison while with Orochimaru.
Kabuto has a unique affinity for corpses, and has demonstrated the ability to reanimate and manipulate them. This is primarily convenient when he is experimenting with test subjects, though he has also used it in escape situations. Kabuto's expertise in medical ninjutsu is far-reaching enough for him to be able to create an almost perfect look-alike of a person from a corpse in very little time and under high pressure. He keeps a sealing scroll to summon the corpses for future usage.
Summoning: Impure World Reincarnation
Kabuto can perform the Impure World Reincarnation Technique, and boasts superior usage compared to the technique's previous users, Tobirama Senju and Orochimaru. This was shown that he could bring the reincarnated back at full power while the previous users could not. In preparation for the Fourth Shinobi World War, Kabuto reincarnated dozens of powerful and otherwise reputed individuals, including deceased jinchūriki and Kage, as well as Madara Uchiha. Chiyo, who witnessed Tobirama's usage, commented that Kabuto's usage was more refined. Kabuto inserted tags into the reincarnated which didn't rob them of their personalities, but still controlled their bodies against their will — different from the tags Orochimaru used. He is able to monitor the individuals he reincarnates and remotely rewrite the tags within them, allowing him to suppress their personalities as needed.
Kabuto can also modify these reincarnated bodies to increase their abilities to an unknown extent as shown with the enhancements done to Madara. In the anime, he also enhanced Blue B by infusing him with Gyūki's cultivated cells, allowing him to access most of his former jinchūriki abilities. Kabuto's skill with this technique enables him to bring a reincarnated individual back with the full power they had in life, a feat Orochimaru almost accomplished by using the information he gathered from Kabuto.
Kabuto is skilled in Earth, Water, and Wind Release nature transformations as well as Yin and Yang Release. With Earth Release, Kabuto is able to move underground and while in Sage Mode, use Jirōbō's Earth Release: Earth Shore Return against Itachi and Sasuke to rid himself of a wall of black flames. Kabuto has also demonstrated great skill with Water Release, capable of creating large torrents of water and using the Water Dragon Bullet Technique without extensive use of hand seals or an external water source.
Kabuto is highly adept in genjutsu, having the skill to put nearly an entire stadium of people to sleep using the Temple of Nirvana Technique. In Sage Mode, he can use Tayuya's sound-based genjutsu, with which he was able to bind both Itachi and Sasuke at the same time, forcing the brothers to use their Mangekyō Sharingan on each other to escape, despite their already considerable genjutsu prowess.
As a part of his "quest to find himself", Kabuto performed various experiments on himself, integrating the DNA of Orochimaru and several of his test subjects into his own body. As a result, he gained access to their unique abilities, techniques, and kekkei genkai.
By infusing himself with Orochimaru's DNA, Kabuto gained access to his master's snake techniques and the ability to greatly alter his body. Kabuto also integrated the DNA of three Taka members. He developed an altered version of Suigetsu Hōzuki's liquefaction ability which made use of his body fluids, obtained the ability to instantly heal any inflicted damage through studying Karin, and gained Jūgo's ability to passively absorb natural energy, allowing him to continuously use Sage Mode without assistance.
Due to integrating the Sound Five's DNA into his body, Kabuto can utilise and freely access each of their individual skills and talents, though only in Sage Mode. This allows him to make use of Jirōbō's Earth Release techniques, Tayuya's sound-based genjutsu, Kidōmaru's web techniques and third eye, and Kimimaro's unique kekkei genkai. Kabuto can also replicate Orochimaru's true form, with which he can capture opponents or perform a surprise attacks by emerging from the giant snake; should this attack be blocked, he can shed his skin again to continue his assault. Using these abilities, Kabuto has developed a versatile fighting style that instead makes use of Sakon's Attack of the Twin Demons in order to form mindless clones of them, respective to each shinobi, from the base of his navel snake. With the ability to freely manoeuvre while using a myriad of techniques, Kabuto can drastically change and manipulate the battlefield, as well as easily overwhelm his opponents.
Kabuto's chakra signature was altered due to him assimilating the chakra of many different individuals. Due to this assimilation, his chakra reserves increased tremendously. Testaments to his large chakra reserves include his usage of Sage Mode and his ability to summon and control dozens of reincarnated ninja for up to two days. After capturing Anko and absorbing Orochimaru's residual senjutsu chakra from her cursed seal, he became even more powerful, allowing him to increase the Impure World Reincarnation's binding power and remotely overwrite his control tags. However, after being revived, Orochimaru absorbed his own chakra from Kabuto's body, causing him to temporarily revert to his original appearance.
After integrating Orochimaru's DNA into his body, Kabuto began to make use of snake-oriented techniques. In the anime, he developed clone snakes using Orochimaru's DNA. Kabuto could form several of these snakes into a larger snake for offensive purposes or use them to recreate life, although the latter required an extensive amount of time if not used in the right place. He also developed a breed of snakes that could absorb chakra and utilised a technique to transform a snake into a clone of himself.
After gaining control of Orochimaru's genetic material, Kabuto tested his new power by killing several Takigakure ninja with ease using multiple snakes. He can use the Hidden Shadow Snake Hands and its variant for a quick ambush attack. Kabuto can also shed his skin to become a white snake with arms, similar to Orochimaru's true form. While in this form, he is capable of moving at high speeds and even swallowing a full-grown man whole. Upon leaving this form, he took on a form in which his entire lower body was a white snake with what appeared to be smaller snakes acting as makeshift legs.
After being fully transformed by Orochimaru's DNA, a white snake extended from Kabuto's navel, with which he can seemingly communicate with summoned snakes. Using this snake, he is able to merge his being with others to assimilate them or heal them. Through this method, Kabuto was able to resuscitate Sasuke, despite him being on the brink of death.
Kabuto is also capable of creating other white snakes of various sizes from his body, which can either separate from him or remain attached to serve as additional appendages. Kabuto can alter the size of these snakes and also hide within them to conceal himself. As the snakes share the same chakra as Kabuto himself, he is capable of using this method to hide from a user of the Sharingan, despite its ability to see chakra as colours. To counteract genjutsu that are dependent upon eye contact, Kabuto can rely solely upon his snakes' ability to perceive their surroundings through sensing the ambient temperatures and smells using their tongues, rather than his own sight. Additionally, Kabuto he can utilise the fangs of his snakes to inject drugs into others, including the snake extending from his navel in the anime. Both Kabuto's liquefaction ability and his regenerative qualities extend to the white snakes that are generated directly from his body.
After Orochimaru's sealing, Kabuto travelled across the world and discovered the location of the Ryūchi Cave, where he was taught senjutsu by the White Snake Sage and gained access to Sage Mode. Physically, Kabuto undergoes little alteration in this form, with the only visible changes being the markings around his eyes extending onto his back and the growth of four horns on the back of his head, as well as darkened sclerae. Due to his research and self-modifications based on Jūgo's clan's abilities, Kabuto's body can passively and continuously absorb natural energy without aid even when moving, allowing him to potentially maintain his Sage Mode indefinitely. According to Kabuto, this meant that he was no longer a snake, but had instead transcended into a dragon.
Sage Mode enhances Kabuto's speed, perception and reflexes, and also grants him the ability to sense chakra. Utilising these advantages, he was able to easily dodge a fast-moving arrow fired by Sasuke's Susanoo, evade and repel multiple attacks from Sasuke and Itachi despite having his vision impaired, and tear one of Itachi's arms off using nothing more than his bare teeth. Kabuto also gains access to further snake anatomy, such as their brille, which allows him to severely impair his opponents through the use of intense light while remaining completely unaffected. He is also capable of infusing life into inanimate objects, such as the surrounding terrain, and manipulating them. In Sage Mode, Kabuto's chakra scalpel becomes sharp enough to completely bisect a reincarnated shinobi's body and block strikes from Sasuke's Sword of Kusanagi.
From a young age, Kabuto showed a very sharp mind. Later, being trained as a spy by Root for espionage missions on all Great Ninja Villages, as well as being the right-hand man and spy for Orochimaru, and being a former Akatsuki sleeper agent, Kabuto is extremely skilled in matters of intelligence gathering and espionage, having gained access to large stores of knowledge which he uses to produce devastating effects. This includes him finding Tobi, as well as knowing that he was not the real Madara Uchiha and simply using his name to help him start the Fourth Shinobi World War, and his plan to revive the Ten-Tails, knowing about Zetsu, outwitting Kurotsuchi by knowing her abilities, and even the truth of the Uchiha Clan Downfall, the latter of which is so secretive that only a selective few ever knew.
Like his mentor, Orochimaru, Kabuto has shown himself as an extensive researcher, performing multiple experiments to increase or neutralise an individual's abilities, as shown by his creation of Manda II, his intricate knowledge of the Wood Release and subsequent empowering of the Zetsu army, his mastery of the Impure World Reincarnation, his enhancement of Madara's prime body and the enhancements done to his own body by studying, assimilating and reverse engineering the abilities of many others.
He has also shown himself to be a very skilled manipulator. For years, he was able to convince all of Konohagakure into believing he was a genuinely benign man with inept shinobi skill outside of medical skills (to which he made it appear he was only decent at) to make it easier in gathering information. He made Orochimaru doubt his true loyalties on at least one occasion, but since Orochimaru's sealing, he has expressed his true support of his former master's ideology. He has shown to be able to use his strong powers of deception to fool his targets into aiding him in several manners, even including a master manipulator such as Tobi, well known for his own ability to manipulate others. He also used such manipulative methods with the Summoning: Impure World Reincarnation, by allowing the reincarnated shinobi to retain their personalities, so they can be used for psychological warfare, as well as memories, emotions, and creativity to enhance combat efficiency. This shows that Kabuto understands the human mind very well, and takes advantage of that to help meet his own ends.
Kabuto has also displayed some skill with barrier ninjutsu, having erected one around his proximity during the Fourth Shinobi World War in order to hide his location. Kabuto appears to have passable skill in swordplay, as seen when he commandeered Sasuke's sword to attack Itachi. In the anime, he showed the ability to make himself invisible, and utilised a scroll technique which allowed for long-distance communication with another person.
Prior to the first phase of the Chūnin Exams, Kabuto befriended the members of the Rookie Nine with information on their fellow competitors. During the second phase of the exam, Kabuto joined forces with Team 7 in an attempt to finish the phase with little hassle. When the group encountered Team Oboro, Kabuto's glasses were knocked off of his face after saving Naruto Uzumaki from an attack. This caused Kabuto to momentarily lose his cool and reveal his Killing Intent, paralysing both Team Oboro and Naruto's team-mates as he took advantage to defeat the Ame genin. Upon completing the second test, Kabuto reunited with his team-mates and fellow agents, Yoroi Akadō and Misumi Tsurugi. Back with his team, Kabuto reported to Orochimaru what he had learned about Sasuke Uchiha.
With Orochimaru now in a position to observe Sasuke firsthand, Kabuto forfeited prior to the preliminary matches of the Chūnin Exams. While explaining to Naruto that he was fatigued, injured, and unwilling to risk his life further, Kabuto actually forfeited due to his fear that prolonged fighting would cause him to show his true abilities, blowing his cover. After Orochimaru gathered enough of his own intelligence about Sasuke, he instructed Kabuto to kidnap Sasuke. He was able to take out the eight Anbu members guarding Sasuke and almost succeeded in accomplishing this task, but Kakashi Hatake intervened before he could finish, forcing Kabuto to flee.
Later, he spoke with Baki and they discussed the upcoming Suna and Oto invasion of Konoha. While discussing the upcoming invasion, they realised that they were being overheard by Hayate Gekkō. Kabuto offered to eliminate Hayate, but Baki did so himself. In the anime, impressed by Hayate's skills, Kabuto obtained a hair sample of the Konoha-nin after he fell against Baki, convinced that the sample would prove useful in the future. During the final matches of the Chūnin Exam, Kabuto kills an Anbu member and poses as him to mingle with the audience. During Naruto and Neji Hyūga's battle, he approached Hinata who was still injured from her fight with Neji and began healing her as Kiba looked on.
When Sasuke injures Gaara, Kabuto uses a genjutsu to put the audience to sleep and signal the start of the invasion of Konoha. During the invasion, Kabuto has Oto ninja go after Naruto when he starts to pursue Sasuke, fearing what he will eventually become a problem if he is not dealt with soon. However, it appears he already knew it would fail as he wanted to test Naruto. He does not contribute in the battle, pointing out that Kakashi would only copy his abilities, and flees from the village when the invasion fails.
Search for Tsunade
With Orochimaru being heavily injured as a result of the failed invasion, Kabuto accompanies him in searching for Tsunade in the the hope that she can heal his master. Upon finding and in time seeming to persuade Tsunade, Kabuto notices that Tsunade's medical techniques are filled with killing intent, realising her true intentions and stopping her from killing Orochimaru. Knowing that Tsunade will not help willingly, Kabuto resolves to make her help with force. After taking a Military Rations Pill to boost his abilities, Kabuto is able to keep up with Tsunade and land a number of disabling attacks, though she eventually lands a crippling attack upon him. Realising that he is still completely outmatched by the Sannin member, Kabuto manages to turn the fight to his advantage by bleeding himself with a kunai to the hand and using Tsunade's hemophobia against her.
When reinforcements for Tsunade arrive, Kabuto quickly defeats Shizune before Naruto arrives. The latter is surprised that Kabuto is a spy for Orochimaru. While he doesn't view Naruto as much of a threat, warning him not to interfere and mocking his dream when beating the younger ninja to an inch of his life, Kabuto finds himself inflicted with injuries he can not fully heal from a hit by Naruto's Rasengan. While Kabuto has managed to strike a fatal blow to Naruto's heart before the Rasengan hit him, Tsunade heals Naruto before he can die, leaving Kabuto to lie on the ground, defeated. He later recovers to the point of helping Orochimaru summon Manda, and flees with his master once Orochimaru is defeated.
Sasuke Recovery Mission
As Orochimaru anxiously awaits Sasuke's arrival at their lair, Kabuto encourages him to transfer into a new body while he still can, even offering himself. Although Orochimaru rejects the offer, Kabuto finds a strong body for Orochimaru to switch to just in case. In time, due to the Sound Four being hindered by the Konoha ninja sent after them and Sasuke, Orochimaru finally grows tired of waiting and switches to the vessel. While discussing the Sound Four, Kabuto notes Sakon to be the strongest. Kabuto also manipulated Kimimaro to leave to retrieve Sasuke, despite the latter's terminal illness.
Tenchi Bridge Reconnaissance Mission
When Team Yamato comes to meet one of Sasori's agents, Kabuto is revealed to be that agent. Yamato, disguised as Sasori, is able to learn some things from Kabuto, though just as he is about to capture the latter Orochimaru shows up. Although it seems as though Orochimaru is about to kill Kabuto as a traitor, Kabuto cuts off the Sasori disguise's head, having intended to kill the actual Sasori under Orochimaru's orders. With his cover blown, Yamato calls to the rest of his team for assistance, and Naruto eventually starts to fight Orochimaru. At the start of the battle, Kabuto tries to attack Naruto who has slipped into his three-tailed form, though he is almost instantly repelled a good distance by one of Naruto's roars, knocking out Sakura in the process. He quickly returns to the bridge and heals Sakura, who had been attacked by Naruto, and hints that the Akatsuki is the greater enemy.
After the battle, Kabuto joins Orochimaru and Team Yamato member Sai in returning to their hideout, and Kabuto is tasked with leaving behind a dead body that looks like Sai to prevent anyone from following them. When Sai is later captured, Kabuto comes to his aid, only to be captured by Sai instead. Unable to escape, Kabuto is forthcoming with information, and discourages Naruto from trying to retrieve the traitorous Sasuke. Kabuto is left by himself as Team 7 searches the lair, though is at some point freed and joins Orochimaru and Sasuke when they depart.
Main article: Three-Tails' Appearance
In the anime, realising that the time was fast approaching for him to change bodies, Orochimaru sent Kabuto to fetch Guren. When Kabuto nears her location Guren attacks him to see if he is worthy of being Orochimaru's attendant. Satisfied, she accompanies him to Orochimaru's lair and is left in charge of testing the prisoners there and forming a team.
When Guren and her team fail to kill a group of Konoha ninja, Kabuto has them help in summoning the Three-Tails. Kabuto ordered Guren to restrain it with her Crystal Release. When she proves unable to do so, Kabuto retreats upon realising he needs to rethink their strategy.
Later, he begins preparations for a final attempt to capture the Three-Tails during which he secretly meets with Rinji, who is revealed to be a spy for Kabuto. After learning that Konoha has begun attempting to seal away the Three-Tails, Kabuto retrieves Guren and Yūkimaru to stop them.
While successfully stopping the Konoha shinobi from sealing the Three-Tails, they manage to obtain Yūkimaru, much to Kabuto's dismay. Deciding to take desperate measures, Kabuto tricked Kigiri, Kihō, and Nurari into thinking they were dying from the injuries they sustained from the Konoha-nin and convinced them to go through a gruelling operation of having cursed seals forcibly activated.
He then disguises himself as Rinji, tricks Yūkimaru to use his power to unleash the Three-Tails' full might despite knowing how weakened Yūkimaru was. After a failed attempt to have Yūkimaru make the Three-Tails go on a rampage, Kabuto, disguised as Rinji, reveals to Yūkimaru that it was Guren who killed his mother, but is shocked that Yūkimaru forgives her. He then attacks Guren and Yūkimaru with scalpels, but are deflected by Naruto. Naruto throws one of the scalpels cuts Rinji's face which turns out to be a mask and it falls off, revealing that he is Kabuto.
Since his meeting with Rinji, Kabuto has been posing as him. Kabuto and Naruto fight it out, with Naruto having improved enough to seemingly gain the upper hand over Kabuto. As Guren tries to escape with Yūkimaru, Kabuto then summons Rinji with his Dead Soul Technique to stop her. Guren fights him, only to be immobilised by his bats. Guren who made her promise to protect Yūkimaru at the cost of her life grabs Rinji from behind and sacrifice herself to kill him. Yūkimaru then screams in agony at what appears to be the loss of Guren. The screaming once again awakens Yūkimaru powers and causes the Three-Tails to breaks out of the seal and go on a rampage. Kabuto then leaves the scene satisfied with what was happening.
Itachi Pursuit Mission
Arriving after Orochimaru's defeat at the hands of Sasuke, Kabuto learns of the events from Sasuke using his genjutsu to reveal his master's defeat. With Orochimaru no more, Kabuto gathered the remnants of Orochimaru's body and assimilates them into his body. However, Kabuto finds himself struggling to keep control of his body. When he later confronts Naruto, revealing the boy's struggle with the Nine-Tails as his muse, Kabuto explains his reasons for placing himself in a dangerous position is to become strong enough to no longer be anyone's underling. Giving Naruto a book containing Orochimaru's intelligence on Akatsuki as gratitude, Kabuto departs before he can be apprehended while vowing to settle things with Naruto after he avenges Orochimaru by killing Sasuke. Since then, Kabuto went into hiding to obtain control over his enhanced body and the powers it would possess. During this time, he began travelling the world, gathering DNA samples of famous deceased people to make use of them later. During this time, he ultimately discovered the Ryūchi Cave. Under the sacred White Snake Sage's tutelage, Kabuto learned senjutsu and was able to activate Sage Mode — something which even Orochimaru himself couldn't accomplish.
Main article: Power (Arc)
In the anime, while still adapting to his new power during the aftermath of the Five Kage Summit, Kabuto somehow entered the Nara forest and scrounged the genetic material of Akatsuki's Hidan as well as his Triple-Bladed Scythe. He also raided the resting places of various other shinobi, including Asuma Sarutobi and Hayate Gekkō, and used their DNA to reincarnate them as his servants. He was then hired by Disonasu, an old associate of Orochimaru's, to aid him in a scheme to access the Ama no Hoko by invading Tonika Village and slaughtering most of its residents, including a guard who possessed two of the "sounds" required to activate the Saezuri, the Ama no Hoko's control mechanism. As an added bonus, Kabuto could use The Hole's special properties to increase his developing powers, using the water when confronted by Naruto and Sakura to create a clone of Hidan, which subsequently attacked Team Kakashi as Sai and Yamato joined the fray.
However, noting that he had not yet fully mastered Impure World Reincarnation when he was unable to force Asuma and several others to leave their caskets, Kabuto decided to fall back, with a reincarnated Deidara providing a distraction. Later, amongst the graves where Tonika Village's inhabitants had been buried, Kabuto communicated with Disonasu via a scroll while experimenting with talismans that would allow his reincarnated shinobi to maintain their original personalities.
Using Deidara and Hidan as distractions, Kabuto was able to sneak into Hachō Village undetected and controlled the newly-reincarnated head of Tonika Village, whose DNA he had acquired from the graveyard, in an attempt to uncover the location of the last two sounds from Dokku, but failed due to the village head's granddaughter seeing through his technique. During the subsequently ensuing battle, Kabuto attempted to gain control of a clone of Naruto, which was created by the snakes he had ingested during his previous battle with Kabuto. Despite the clone resisting the control of his talisman, Kabuto was ultimately able capture the clone, along with Naruto and Dokku, by swallowing them with giant snakes.
Kabuto and Disonasu later approached their captives in an underground area beneath the ruins of Tonika Village, at which point Kabuto saw the surviving children of Tonika Village approaching with the final two Sounds through the eyes of a clone. After the two took Dokku to the children above ground, Disonasu used the seven Sounds and the Saezuri to activate the Ama no Hoko. Kabuto then used his reincarnated shinobi, along with Hidan, to confront the Konohagakure shinobi who had arrived to assist Team Kakashi. After the Hidan clone suffered cellular breakdown, all of his reincarnated shinobi, save for Deidara, had turned to dust and Disonasu was attacked by the mutated clone of Naruto, Kabuto decided to depart during the enusing chaos that his accidental creation was causing after a brief confrontation with Kakashi. In the next day, Kabuto found Disonasu on the verge of death and complained about his failure on the mission, he summoned the Tonika Village Head again to allow him to take his revenge and then killed Disonasu with his sword before dispersing. Sometime later, Kabuto's begins to feel pain and sheds his body into a snake before transforming back into his humanoid self. After sending his reanimations away, he decides to go see him.
Fourth Shinobi World War: Countdown
After killing three Takigakure shinobi to test his control over his fully mastered powers, Kabuto traveled towards the Mountains' Graveyard while leaving a trail of bodies behind. Once there he confronts Tobi, who is operating as "Madara Uchiha". Remembering that Kabuto was once Akatsuki's spy, Tobi tries to kill him for his traitorous actions, leading him to summon five deceased Akatsuki members he reincarnated. Kabuto offers Tobi help in the approaching war on the condition that Tobi would hand over Sasuke in order to learn the truth about ninjutsu. To further pressure Tobi into a alliance, Kabuto summons the actual Madara Uchiha who he reanimated after Black Zetsu led him to his corpse to force Obito to cooperate. Greatly disturbed by the coffin's contents, Tobi was forced to agree on the alliance but on the condition he would hand Sasuke over after the war.
After Tobi receives intel on the location of the remaining jinchūriki, Kabuto offers to go capture them. Kabuto explains that he is interested in studying Yamato, the Nine-Tails' guardian. Tobi would prefer he does not go, Kabuto says he would settle for a chance to study Zetsu. Tobi replies that he can have his own Zetsu to study if he manages to catch the Nine-Tails. Kabuto reincarnates Deidara and together they fly to the Island Turtle upon one of Deidara's clay birds. As they get closer to the island Deidara creates clay clones of themselves, which the intercepting Third Tsuchikage attacks. The time this buys is short-lived, as the Tsuchikage himself was a rock clone; the Tsuchikage and his escorts confront the real Kabuto and Deidara.
While Deidara and the Tsuchikage exchange insults, Manda II seeks out and slows down the Island Turtle. To keep it from moving, Kabuto has Deidara hit it with an explosive squid. Kabuto goes ashore, leaving distracting the Tsuchikage to Deidara. Kurotsuchi pursues Kabuto and manages to catch him. Yamato then appears, creating a route for Aoba Yamashiro to get close to Kabuto and read his mind. Before Aoba is able to begin doing so, Kabuto sheds his captured body and kidnaps Yamato. He retreats into Manda II's nose and returns to Tobi, recalling Deidara in the process. When Tobi questions his failure, Kabuto explains that studying Yamato will allow him to make the White Zetsu Army stronger. Tobi accepts this explanation and tells Kabuto to get to work.
Fourth Shinobi World War: Confrontation
Proposing to keep the drugged Yamato alive so that he could further strengthen the White Zetsu Army, Kabuto assures Tobi that his truth serum and the latter's Sharingan are more than enough to extract the intel Yamato has, without needing to rely on Tobi's Human Path technique which kills the target. After their forces amassed and modifications completed, Kabuto mobilises his reincarnated army to the main battlefield, except those he assembled into his Surprise Attack and Diversion Platoon. After instructing the latter, Kabuto himself departs, capturing the surveying Anko after a brief battle. When Tobi later demands her death, Kabuto refuses on the grounds that the traces of Orochimaru's chakra in her could help improve his control over the reincarnated shinobi, which was in their best interests.
Complying with Tobi's request to gain his approval, Kabuto demonstrates his technique using Fū Yamanaka as a sacrifice to reincarnate Torune Aburame, accompanying it with a step-by-step explanation and a few methods able to halt the flawless technique before leaving an apparently satisfied Tobi. However, Kabuto was unconcerned by his recent admissions, due to the possession of another technique and the prospect of soon learning the secrets of the Sage of Six Paths. A now-isolated Kabuto then started to drain Orochimaru's chakra from Anko, acquiring an incredible increase in power, just as a number of the reincarnated shinobi encounter the Third Division and erases their conscious minds prior to the fight actually beginning.
After seeing how retaining their emotions could cause the reincarnated shinobi's defeat, Kabuto remotely subdues a multitude with the exception of those whose individualities may present an advantage. Directly interfering as the need arises, he later has Gari and Pakura summon the previous generation of the Seven Ninja Swordsmen of the Mist, to retain the Akatsuki's superiority. However, despite having Haku intercept Kakashi and much to his shock, Zabuza Momochi and his crucial technique are ultimately defeated.
Elsewhere with Mū's discovery on approach to the Fourth Division, Kabuto has him summon the Fourth Kazekage, Second Mizukage and Third Raikage, just as more of his forces engage the First Division. He then leaves them to their own devices, believing that taking their identities could hinder their fighting capabilities. This backfires in the case of Hanzō, who contradicts Kabuto's control before he can intervene, handing victory to the opposing Fifth Division. When Tobi goes out of the way to acquire the sealed Gold and Silver Brothers from the Allied Forces, Kabuto deduces that Tobi wants the Nine-Tails chakra within them yet his realisation that Tobi only has one of the Eight-Tails' tails confuses him on Tobi's intentions.
Later, during the second day of the War, he reacted in shock when Naruto Uzumaki uses his Nine-Tails Chakra Mode to instantly defeat Toroi with a Rasengan. Pleased at the prospect of finding Naruto and Killer B before Tobi, he decides to send Itachi and Nagato after them so he can use the two jinchūriki as further leverage on Tobi. However, to Kabuto's surprise, Itachi uses his Mangekyō Sharingan to summon the crow he had implanted within Naruto to free himself from Kabuto's control and attacks Nagato. After Nagato is sealed, a visibly angered Kabuto curses Nagato's lack of mobility due to his injured legs, and comments that he was unable to see the last attack due to Itachi blinding the Giant Snake-Tailed Chameleon and King of Hell with kunai. He then resigns himself to unleashing his "prized possession", the trump card he used to force Tobi into their alliance.
Using the Third Raikage as diversion to hold off a part of the Fourth Division to make the preparations, Kabuto eradicates the Raikage's personality before setting his sights on the acquisition of Naruto with the Raikage's "strongest spear" as a last resort. Soon after, though Kabuto is relieved that Mū partially escaped before being sealed but it would take more time before Kabuto could summon his ace reincarnation due to Mū's reduced strength. In the anime, to buy Mū more time, Kabuto began summoning various other prominent shinobi like the Sound Four and Blue B. To make use of the waiting time, Kabuto also attempted to acquire new military strength by obtaining the Allied Forces' KIA scroll through Hayate Gekkō. Later, Kabuto attempted to regain his sealed reincarnations by unleashing his hundreds of failure reincarnations as reserves.
Fourth Shinobi World War: Climax
Once the summoning was finally completed, revealing the real Madara Uchiha, Kabuto talked to the legendary shinobi through Mū. He revealed that he knew Madara survived his battle at the Valley of the End, and that he knows the general idea of Madara's plan with Tobi. Kabuto also informs Madara of the changes that occurred in his absence. Visibly pleased with having control over the battlefield, Kabuto has Mū help Madara in attacking remainder of the Fourth Division before the five Kage appear. Having Mū evade the Hokage Guard Platoon and Dodai, Kabuto reveals the enhancements he made on Madara using a genetic sample of Hashirama to make him a power near equal to the Sage of Six Paths.
With his location uncovered by Itachi, Kabuto commends him for doing so despite the barrier he had erected, before being told that the source of where his chakra came from could be vividly felt whilst under his control. Reminding Itachi that he couldn't be killed if he sought to stop the technique, Kabuto breaks into maniacal laughter upon sensing Sasuke and declares that his luck had finally changed. Excited that his reward for his part in the war had come to him by choice, he tells Itachi that he'd love to explain the Impure World Reincarnation technique at length, but that he didn't think Sasuke would stay quiet for that long. He then tries to use Sasuke's hatred to tempt him into assisting with Itachi's defeat, however, Sasuke instead chooses to side with his brother. With this, Kabuto prepares for battle stating that it'd be an interesting event.
Closing his hood, he states that he was an introverted person and as such, was unsettled by so many people staring at him, before sending his snakes towards Sasuke and Itachi. Although the brothers are able to fend off the attack, Kabuto uses this opportunity to hide in one of his snakes, where he then discloses the unique abilities that he gained from his experimentation on Sasuke's former team-mates: Karin's healing abilities, a similar ability to Suigetsu's ability to transform into water and Jūgo's ability to absorb natural energy. After revealing that he had both found and trained at the Ryūchi Cave, he narrowly evades Sasuke's attack, stating that his perception skills had been greatly enhanced as well. Emerging from the snake's mouth, he reveals that he had finally surpassed Orochimaru upon becoming a sage and declares that he was no longer an imperfect snake, but instead — a dragon.
Attacking the brothers using the Sage Art: White Rage Technique, Kabuto lowers the brille of his eyes and liquefies his insides, so as to move unimpaired despite the technique's effects. First intending to target Itachi and rewrite his tag, he changes his mind at the last minute and opens his mouth wide, seemingly intent on swallowing Sasuke whole. When Itachi interferes, Kabuto questions if he was able to sense him but Itachi denies this, stating that it was Nagato who had done so previously. Kabuto then remarks on Itachi's skills in understanding and deceiving others in an apparent attempt to lay doubt and mistrust amongst the brothers, before dodging an attack from Sasuke — by retreating to the roof of the cave — and declaring that such a makeshift duo could never defeat him.
Curiously observing the brothers from the cave's ceiling as they formulate a new strategy, Kabuto is soon enclosed by Itachi's assault, allowing Sasuke to pin his snake-tail to the rock. Seemingly moving to use Sasuke's sword to sever his own tail, he instead intercepts and impales Itachi with the blade, just as his liquefied tail begins to slip free. However, when Itachi suddenly disperses into a flock of crows, Kabuto's horn is severed in the ensuing counter after Itachi commandeers Sasuke's sword, but he simply remarks that he had yet to get used to possessing horns.
Amused that such previously hostile brothers could be so coordinated, Kabuto discerns from Sasuke's responses that he must have learned the truth surrounding Itachi after the latter's death. Noting the contradiction between the siblings aims, he again tries to tempt Sasuke into betraying Itachi, given their mutual desires for Konoha's destruction. When Sasuke rejects this, Kabuto recounts his past as a spy and how he was discarded once he began to lose track of his real identity amongst the fabricated ones, gaining nothing in exchange but shame and dishonour. He then reasons that no one understood Sasuke better than him and so, they should stand together as brothers, but Itachi warns of Kabuto's skill in deceit. Declaring the reasons for his own and his technique's invincibility, Kabuto activates his chakra scalpel and charges at the brothers, before clashing with and repelling Itachi.
Declaring that the pair were severely underestimating him, Kabuto uses his Sage Art: Inorganic Reincarnation technique to manipulate the surrounding cave formations in order to attack them. Incapacitating Itachi — who had instead protected Sasuke — Kabuto retrieves a talisman from his snake, intent on overwriting Itachi's mind. However, before he can do so, he is stopped by Sasuke who creates a ring of Amaterasu around himself and Itachi. Assessing Sasuke's choice of defence, Kabuto affirms that there was no way they could defeat him because he had come closest to the Sage of the Six Paths than anyone in the world.
When Itachi tells Kabuto that he was bound to fail as he did in the past because he didn't know who he truly was, Kabuto states that for his entire life he had been trying to find his real self, in his own way and that from the very beginning he had nothing. Reflecting upon his youth, Kabuto explains that he targeted the brothers in order to assimilate their abilities, as his pawns were his own power. Refusing Itachi's later claims that the Uchiha name was meaningless, he presses on with his attack.
As a manifestation of Sakon emerges from the base of his navel-snake, Kabuto uses the twins' kekkei genkai to access the other DNA within his body and transforms it into Jirōbō, who parts the flame-covered earth before him. Without pause, he creates a manifestation of Kidōmaru and has him ensnare the siblings — who incinerate part of the uncuttable web — before next transforming it into Kimimaro. Kabuto then blocks the area to the brother's rear, effectively caging them in between web and bone, whilst Kimimaro fashions a Demonic Flute from bone. Just as the pair manages to escape, Kabuto uses a manifestation of Tayuya to perform auditory genjutsu, incapacitating the siblings despite their Susanoo, intent on capturing them with a manifestation of Orochimaru in his true form. Confident in his beliefs and victory, he instead begins to shed tears when the brothers fend off the snake. However, after suddenly emerging from Orochimaru's mouth and bisecting Itachi, he tearfully declares that a genius with everything wouldn't understand his desire to find his true self and that no one would stand in his way.
Immediately moving to rewrite Itachi's mind, Kabuto was attacked by Sasuke but managed to catch the thrown sword with his navel-snake, before retreating to the cave's roof in order to evade Sasuke's Susanoo's grasp. Countering Sasuke's fireball using the Water Release: Great Waterfall Technique — which also swept Sasuke away — he was set upon by a regenerated Itachi, who Kabuto chastises for using the same tactic as he had done before to sever his horn. After refuting claims that his destiny was outside of his control, Kabuto noted a sense of déjà vu and so, decides to conclude the fight ahead of eluding the brothers' Susanoo. Eventually, Kabuto realised that he was trapped within the effect of Itachi's Izanami and that he was a prisoner within his own mind. Despite Kabuto's numerous techniques to escape the genjutsu, all of his attempts failed. In utter disbelief of being trapped in an endless time loop, and lamenting that his plan was now falling apart, Kabuto openly cursed Itachi as he charged towards him. Outside Kabuto's mind, after his glasses were removed, Itachi proceeded to cast Tsukuyomi onto Kabuto to force him to reveal the hand seals needed to cancel Impure World Reincarnation and then had him execute the release. As a result, the army Kabuto assembled for Tobi fades away with the exception of Madara, who severed his contract with the summoner to remain reincarnated.
After Sasuke resolves to revive Orochimaru using Anko's Cursed Seal of Heaven, Jūgo helps Sasuke by absorbing part of Kabuto's flesh in order for the technique to work. After being revived, Orochimaru reabsorbs his chakra from the still immobile Kabuto's body, thus cancelling his Sage Mode before he and Anko are left behind. When asked later by the reincarnated Hiruzen about his change of heart when he agrees to aid Sasuke against Madara, Orochimaru revealed that seeing his former protege's actions from the cursed seal convinced him that trying to emulate him was not something that should be done.
Birth of the Ten-Tails' Jinchūriki
Having finally accepted himself and where he truly belonged, Kabuto broke the Izanami genjutsu placed on him, and made his way to the battlefield. Approaching a mortally wounded Sasuke, he used his medical skills along with additional unorthodox methods and instructions from Tobirama Senju to heal the Uchiha. Orochimaru's group arrived to their location shortly after sensing that there was someone near Sasuke by Karin and were surprised to see Kabuto.
While everyone believed Kabuto still intended to take Sasuke for his own goals, Kabuto explained that his experience within Izanami's illusion allowed him to rediscover his true self and thought to correct his mistakes and to repay Itachi by saving Sasuke's life. Eventually, Kabuto succeeded in healing Sasuke, who quickly returned to his feet and was ready to resume the battle. Kabuto and the others present besides Tobirama were later caught in the effect of Madara's Infinite Tsukuyomi when he cast it.
Kaguya Ōtsutsuki Strikes
Ultimately, Kabuto and everyone else were freed from the genjutsu by Naruto and Sasuke after they ended the war. For his small, but critical role in winning the war for the Allied Shinobi Forces, Kabuto was pardoned for his crimes and was allowed to return to Konoha where he took over his mother's role as the head of the Konoha Orphanage.
Naruto Gaiden: The Seventh Hokage and the Scarlet Spring
Main article: Naruto Gaiden: The Seventh Hokage and the Scarlet Spring After convincing Shin Uchiha's clones, Naruto and Sasuke took them to the Konoha Orphanage, which was now led by Kabuto. He happily became their father and intended to name every single clone.
In Other Media
Naruto Shippūden the Movie: Bonds
Kabuto makes a small appearance along with Orochimaru. He tells Sasuke how Konoha had been attacked by the Land of the Sky, at which Sasuke told him he doesn't care. Orochimaru then ordered him to get a scroll and capture Shinnō. In the end, though Sasuke brought the scroll, he failed to bring in Shinnō, at which Kabuto was surprised.
Kabuto Yakushi is a playable character in the following video games:
- Kabuto plays a role in the Story Mode of Naruto: Clash of Ninja Revolution 2, set during the pre-Shippūden filler arcs. He first appears as a shaded figure talking to Bando about his and Kagura's plot to destroy Konoha. When Bando questions Kabuto's motives in the plan, Kabuto simply replies that he has been rather bored lately and is just in it for kicks. Kabuto witnesses Kagura's defeat at the hands of Tsunade and attempts to flee only to be pursued and attacked by Naruto. During the fight Naruto defeats Kabuto with his Rasengan. Accepting defeat, Kabuto escapes, assuring Naruto that their next encounter will end differently.
- In Naruto Shippūden: Ultimate Ninja Heroes 3, Kabuto and Kabuto with Orochimaru's remains are featured as two different playable characters. In Naruto Shippūden: Ultimate Ninja Storm Generations and Naruto Shippūden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3, Kabuto with Orochimaru's remains and a snake cloak is playable. Kabuto in his Sage Mode form appear in the Ultimate Ninja Storm as a separate character via downloadable content.
- In Ultimate Ninja Storm Revolution, Kabuto's three forms are all separate characters as they were in the previous game. The forms are Kabuto, Kabuto (Snake Cloak), and Kabuto (Sage Mode); however, his Sage Mode form is available from the start along with his other two forms.
Live Spectacle Naruto
Main article: Live Spectacle Naruto Tatsunari Kimura plays as Kabuto in this stage play adaption.
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- "Kabuto" is the last part of the Japanese name for Aconitum, a plant that can either alleviate pain or kill, which seems fitting as he is a medical-nin who uses his medicinal knowledge in battle.
- A kabuto is the name for a samurai's helmet or headplate. With his former team-mates, Yoroi ("armour") and Tsurugi ("sword"), they form an armour—helmet—sword trio.
- His surname, Yakushi (薬師), is the short form of the Japanese name of the Medicine/Healer Buddha (long form: Yakushi nyorai), Bhaisajyaguru, and means "medicine user".
- Studio Pierrot's Settei sheets of Kabuto show that he was 120 cm when he was found by Nono, and 150 cm when he left to join Root with Danzō.
- According to the databook(s):
- Kabuto's hobby is taking care of his scalpels.
- Kabuto wants to fight Naruto and Orochimaru.
- Kabuto in Konohagakure has completed 191 official missions in total: 163 D-rank, 28 C-rank, 0 B-rank, 0 A-rank, 0 S-rank.
- Kabuto's favourite phrase is "A thousand changes, ten thousand transformations" (千変万化, Senpen Banka). This proverb refers to innumerable changes or infinite variety.
- His favourite food is jack mackerel grilled with salt and sea bream grilled with salt while his least favourite food is raw meat.
- In the fourth databook, neither Hiden nor kekkei genkai is listed among Kabuto's special characteristics, despite his usage of both through Strange Transmission Distant Shadow. Summoning is also not listed, despite him summoning snakes.
- When chapter 521 was first published in Weekly Shōnen Jump, Kabuto was illustrated without his glasses after he left Tobi. This is later corrected in the tankōbon version of the manga.
- Dragons and snakes are interchangeable in various mythologies, such as in the case of Yamata-no-Orochi. In Korean mythology, dragons start out as giant serpents called Imugi before maturing into true dragons. Thus, Kabuto saw himself to have grown from a serpent into a dragon.
- Kabuto appears alongside Orochimaru in the anime Rock Lee's Springtime of Youth Full Power Ninja Chronicles. In the series, much like Tenten, Kabuto serves as both the comedic foil to Orochimaru and the voice of reason when his master's schemes border on comedic idiocy.
- In the anime, in Shippūden episode 255, Kabuto is inside a cave when controlling Zabuza and Haku. However, when he's seen again in Shippūden episode 256, he's outside.
- (After accidentally wounding Nonō) "Why didn't mother… …recognise me…? Why didn't she remember me…? Why? What was the purpose of my life then? What did I receive from her!? My name being one of her sons… …even these glasses. Who is… …this…? This isn't me… It's not the real me…"
- (To Naruto) "Little kids think life is so easy. That's why they go on and on about their dreams. That's why they never give up."
- (To Naruto) "You've just thrown it all away! Dreams don't come true when you're dead!"
- (To Naruto) "Hehehe…, you can't beat me. You have no skills, unlike Sasuke."
- (To Naruto) "After Orochimaru died, I found myself not knowing who I was, again… Without knowing parent or country, I was taken in by the enemy… Since a young age I've moved about countries and villages as a spy… To me, things like countries, villages… they hold no firm reality in my mind. That was, of course, until I found myself under the wing of Orochimaru… but that presence is gone again. What am I anyway… The pain of not having an identity… I'd think you should understand… Naruto."
- (To Naruto) "I decided I wished to be like you as well, Naruto, and for that reason… with Lord Orochimaru now integrated into this body, I plan on finding a new "me", one stronger than Lord Orochimaru himself! Finding a new me, that is the lesson you taught me."
- "Orochimaru is the symbol of reincarnation, and as a goal, a greatness meant to be exceeded by me. He'll continue to live inside me."
- "Lord Orochimaru immediately tried to acquire that power… but… he didn't yet possess a body that could tolerate it… That's why he couldn't become the sage that I have become!"
- "I am no longer a snake… sage power has allowed me to shed that skin… and I am a dragon now!!"
- (To Itachi) "My name is a code… My glasses are a tool… I've been no one… From the start. From the very start… I had nothing." (「名は記号…。眼鏡は道具…。最初からボクは何者でもなかった。ボクには…何も無い。」, "Na wa kigō… Megane wa dōgu… Saisho kara boku wa nanimono demo nakatta. Boku ni wa… nani mo nai.")
- (To Itachi) "A genius that had everything will never understand. …I just want to become myself."
- (To Suigetsu) "You're right that Obito and I were convinced that we didn't have a place in this world, and we ended up involving everyone else. But now I know who I am and what I have to do."
- First Databook, pages 128-129
- Second Databook, pages 157-159
- Third Databook, pages 171-172
- Fourth Databook, pages 192-193
- Chapter 582, pages 8-17
- Chapter 583, page 17
- Chapter 584, page 12
- Chapter 290, page 14
- Naruto: Shippūden episode 316
- Chapter 357, page 4
- Chapter 357, page 6
- Chapter 490, pages 2-3
- Chapter 490, page 9
- Chapter 516, pages 8-9
- Chapter 522, pages 9-10
- Chapter 356, pages 14, 16
- Chapter 356, page 14
- Chapter 587, page 15
- Chapter 512, page 7
- Chapter 587, pages 17-18
- Naruto: Shippūden episode 290
- Chapter 88, page 12
- Chapter 165, page 15
- Chapter 582, page 3
- Chapter 585, page 16-17
- Chapter 164, page 12
- Chapter 290, pages 9-11
- Chapter 296, pages 12-13
- Chapter 513, page 12
- Chapter 311, page 16
- Chapter 515, page 10
- Chapter 513, page 11
- Naruto: Shippūden episode 261
- Chapter 546, page 15
- Chapter 521, page 5
- Chapter 560, page 3
- Naruto: Shippūden episode 318
- Chapter 164, page 8
- Chapter 166, page 10
- Chapter 585, page 4
- Chapter 586, page 3
- Chapter 587, page 11
- Chapter 114, pages 15-17
- Chapter 585, pages 8-12
- Chapter 579, pages 9-15
- Chapter 585, pages 3-17
- Chapter 586, pages 8-10
- Chapter 667, pages 2-4
- Chapter 521, page 16
- Chapter 593, pages 13-15
- Chapter 487, pages 16-17
- Chapter 516, page 8
- Chapter 514, pages 11-12
- Chapter 514, page 17
- Chapter 514, page 4
- Chapter 579, pages 3-8
- Chapter 579, pages 18-19
- Chapter 579, page 19
- Chapter 579, page 16
- Chapter 579, page 14-15
- Chapter 580, page 8
- Chapter 586, page 11
- Chapter 580, pages 2-4
- Chapter 585, pages 16-17
- Chapter 581, page 12
- Chapter 586, pages 12 & 19
- Chapter 581, page 6
- Chapter 518, pages 9, 10, 14
- Chapter 561, pages 1-2
- Chapter 575, pages 1-12
- Chapter 579, pages 10-13
- Chapter 577, page 16
- Chapter 580, page 14
- Naruto episode 35
- Chapter 579, pages 11-12
- Chapter 487, page 17
- Chapter 681, page 15
- Chapter 490, page 8
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- Chapter 583, pages 15-17
- Chapter 356, pages 14-15
- Chapter 356, pages 18-19
- Chapter 579, pages 17-18
- Chapter 582, page 17
- Chapter 585, page 17
- Chapter 667, page 9