History Main / KatanasAreJustbetter

14th Jun '17 10:10:27 AM BeerBaron
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** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'' plays this trope straight, as the strongest non-unique sword sword type is Daedric Dai-katanas. There is also a magical artifact called Goldbrand, which, along with its [[GuideDangIt hard to find]] [[InfinityPlusOneSword upgraded version]], Eltonbrand, is a one-handed Katana.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'' also plays this straight. Akaviri katanas are lighter and do more damage than regular steel swords, making them the best lower tier swords. It does get outclassed quickly. But Goldbrand makes another appearance as one of the strongest one-handed weapons.

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** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'' plays this trope straight, as the strongest non-unique sword sword type is swords in the game are Daedric Dai-katanas. dai-katanas. There is also a magical enchanted artifact called sword Goldbrand, which, along with its [[GuideDangIt hard to find]] [[InfinityPlusOneSword upgraded version]], Eltonbrand, is a one-handed Katana.
katana.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'' also plays this straight. Akaviri katanas are lighter and do more damage than regular steel swords, making them the best lower tier swords. It does get outclassed quickly. But a great lower-tier option. Goldbrand makes another appearance as one of the strongest one-handed weapons.weapons in the game.
10th Jun '17 5:15:47 PM TheBigBopper
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The reality is that Japanese swordsmithing was a compromise, based around poor-quality iron ore and Japan's non-invention of the blast furnace. The famed "folded steel" (often held to be superior to modern steels for no adequately defined reason) is simply a method to remove impurities from the billet and replace them with useful carbon inclusions. The resulting weapon, distinctively curved by differential hardening of the alloys of steel that form it, is effectively a three foot razor blade with a similar tendency towards chipping or snapping if handled roughly: it does one thing, cut, and it does it very well. Real traditionally-made katanas, as well as being harrowingly expensive, are notoriously maintenance-intensive and require special mineral oils to prevent them from rusting, have difficulty holding an edge (they are traditionally displayed edge-up because they will blunt themselves if stored edge-down), require a dragging cutting motion which is tricky to master, since they are not well-shaped for stabbing or heavy enough for slashing, and are ineffective against all but the lightest armor.

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The reality is that Japanese swordsmithing was a compromise, based around poor-quality iron ore and Japan's non-invention of the blast furnace. The famed "folded steel" (often held to be superior to modern steels for no adequately defined reason) is simply a method to remove impurities from the billet and replace them with useful carbon inclusions. The resulting weapon, distinctively curved by differential hardening of the alloys of steel that form it, is effectively a three foot razor blade with a similar tendency towards chipping or snapping if handled roughly: it does one thing, cut, and thing--cut--and it does it very well. Real traditionally-made katanas, as well as being harrowingly expensive, are notoriously maintenance-intensive and require special mineral oils to prevent them from rusting, have difficulty holding an edge (they are traditionally displayed edge-up because they will blunt themselves if stored edge-down), require a dragging cutting motion which is tricky to master, since they are not well-shaped for stabbing or heavy enough for slashing, and are ineffective against all but the lightest armor.
10th Jun '17 5:13:30 PM TheBigBopper
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Of course, fiction being fiction, all of those realistic tradeoffs and even [[ArtisticLicensePhysics basic laws of physics]] can be thrown out in favor of RuleOfCool. Since the katana is well-known for being a cutting-focused sword, this property is exaggerated to make it an AbsurdlySharpBlade that can slice through any material as if it were butter. Every cut with a Katana is a CleanCut, passing through the object so effortlessly that you [[YouAreAlreadyDead might not even realize it's been cut]], before the two halves dramatically [[DiagonalCut fall apart a second later]]. Also, because it is perceived as an elite weapon that requires [[DifficultButAwesome higher-than-average skill to use well]], a character with a katana is going to be a MasterSwordsman nine times out of ten. They might demonstrate ImplausibleFencingPowers such as chopping off gun barrels or slicing swords that aren't as cool as the katana off at the hilt. In a setting where the katana is a [[ExoticWeaponSupremacy rare weapon]], it is especially likely to be proof that a character is special and formidable. On the good guy side it belongs to TheLancer or TheHero, who may be TheChosenOne, and on the enemy side a katana wielder is likely to at least be an {{Elite Mook|s}}, if not a BigBad or TheDragon.

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Of course, fiction being fiction, all of those realistic tradeoffs and even [[ArtisticLicensePhysics basic laws of physics]] can be thrown out in favor of RuleOfCool. Since the katana is well-known for being a cutting-focused sword, this property is exaggerated to make it an AbsurdlySharpBlade that can slice through any material as if it were butter. Every cut with a Katana is a CleanCut, passing through the object so effortlessly that you [[YouAreAlreadyDead might not even realize it's been cut]], before the two halves dramatically [[DiagonalCut fall apart a second later]]. Also, because it is perceived as an elite weapon that requires [[DifficultButAwesome higher-than-average skill to use well]], a character with distinguished by using a katana is going to be a MasterSwordsman nine times out of ten. They might demonstrate ImplausibleFencingPowers such as chopping off gun barrels or slicing swords that aren't as cool as the katana off at the hilt. In a setting where the katana is a [[ExoticWeaponSupremacy rare weapon]], it is especially likely to be proof that a character is special and formidable. On the good guy side it belongs to TheLancer or TheHero, who may be TheChosenOne, and on the enemy side a katana wielder is likely to at least be an {{Elite Mook|s}}, if not a BigBad or TheDragon.
10th Jun '17 5:10:33 PM TheBigBopper
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RuleOfCool says [[HeroesPreferSwords swords are cooler]] [[GunsAreWorthless than guns]], and tends to also hold the katana to be the coolest of all swords. This isn't surprising when you consider that Japan has produced a large number of games, movies, TV shows, myths, and legends which reflect national pride in this icon of Japanese culture. There are also a lot more media consumers outside of Japan who have learned through documentary television or pop culture that traditional Japanese swordmaking is a highly spiritual and artistic process--and that there is an elegant and deadly art for using the katana--compared to the smaller number of people who know that there are equally impressive traditions of swordsmithing and swordsmanship in other countries (most obviously the legendary Damascus Steel of India and the Middle East, to which similarly exaggerated qualities were ascribed). Because of this popular recognition, if you put a katana in the hands of a character, you're making a statement that they are cooler and more powerful than the others who don't have one.

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RuleOfCool says [[HeroesPreferSwords swords are cooler]] [[GunsAreWorthless than guns]], and tends to also hold the Japanese katana to be the coolest of all swords. This isn't surprising when you consider that Japan has produced a large number of games, movies, TV shows, myths, and legends which reflect national pride in this icon of Japanese culture. There are also a lot more media consumers outside of Japan who have learned through documentary television or pop culture that traditional Japanese swordmaking is a highly spiritual and artistic process--and that there is an elegant and deadly art for using the katana--compared to the smaller number of people who know that there are equally impressive traditions of swordsmithing and swordsmanship in other countries (most obviously the legendary Damascus Steel of India and the Middle East, to which similarly exaggerated qualities were ascribed). Because of this popular recognition, if you put a katana in the hands of a character, you're making a statement that they are cooler and more powerful than the others who don't have one.
2nd Jun '17 7:06:33 PM Someoneman
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Added DiffLines:

* Katanas are some of the best melee weapons in ''VideoGame/{{Cataclysm}}: Dark Days Ahead''. Unfortunately, as the game takes place in a [[TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture semi-futuristic]] New England, most of the ones you find are cheap replicas that break easily, but if you are lucky enough to find a real one, much carnage will ensue for the zombies.
14th May '17 9:51:09 PM KhymChanur
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* Parodied by [[http://scp-wiki.wikidot.com/scp-572 SCP-572]] of the ''Wiki/SCPFoundation'': it's a poor-quality katana intended exclusively for display, but anybody who holds it becomes convinced of its balance and cutting power, [[ImplausibleFencingPowers as well as their own invincibility]]. They then attempt the feats commonly seen of this trope (such as cutting a car in half) with [[RealityEnsues predictable results]].

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* Parodied by [[http://scp-wiki.wikidot.com/scp-572 SCP-572]] of the ''Wiki/SCPFoundation'': it's a poor-quality katana intended exclusively for display, but anybody who holds it becomes convinced of its amazing balance and cutting power, [[ImplausibleFencingPowers as well as their own invincibility]]. They then attempt the feats commonly seen of this trope (such as cutting a car in half) with [[RealityEnsues predictable results]].
14th May '17 10:05:13 AM nombretomado
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* As a fanboy of ancient cultures, Valerian Mengsk in the ''Franchise/StarCraft Dark Templar Saga'' novels has quite a collection of ancient weapons. In itself, perhaps not so strange. But he's also a master swordsman who regularly practices with his trusty katana.

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* As a fanboy of ancient cultures, Valerian Mengsk in the ''Franchise/StarCraft ''VideoGame/StarCraft Dark Templar Saga'' novels has quite a collection of ancient weapons. In itself, perhaps not so strange. But he's also a master swordsman who regularly practices with his trusty katana.
13th May '17 1:50:38 PM MarkLungo
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* Subverted in a Music/{{Vocaloid}} MikuMikuDance [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZx5QtxSbaU video]].

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* Subverted in a Music/{{Vocaloid}} MikuMikuDance UsefulNotes/MikuMikuDance [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZx5QtxSbaU video]].
4th May '17 4:58:22 AM TheHeroHartmut
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** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaBreathOfTheWild'' subverts this in terms of plot and gameplay. It is mentioned that Hylians could not become accustomed to the katanas wielded by the Sheikah, who had to learn new smithing techniques. The katanas that Link can use in the game, such as the Eightfold Blade, also have limitations. They are advertised in their descriptions as having the sharpest conventional blades and they are a step up from the initial weapons, but they can be outclassed by future ones.

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** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaBreathOfTheWild'' subverts this in terms of plot and gameplay. It is mentioned that Hylians could not become accustomed to the katanas wielded by the Sheikah, who had to learn new smithing techniques. The katanas that Link can use in the game, such as the Eightfold Blade, also have limitations. They are advertised in their descriptions as having the sharpest conventional blades and they are a step up from the initial weapons, but they can be outclassed by future ones. There is also the Windcleaver, a two-handed katana dropped by high-ranking members of the antagonistic [[{{Ninja}} Yiga Clan]]. Although it's fairly brittle compared to other weapons of similar strength, each swing unleashes a RazorWind, which can be handy for fighting foes from a distance.
26th Apr '17 11:29:05 AM BeerBaron
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* Katanas appear in ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' series. The trope appears in some versions:

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* Katanas appear ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''
** In the series' {{backstory}}, katanas were favored weapons of the [[{{Wutai}} Akaviri]] invaders who attacked Tamriel
in ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'' series. The trope appears in some versions:the last 1st Era. Though they were defeated, they influenced Tamriellic culture and the katana stayed as a prominent weapon, especially among the Blades.



** Played straight with Dragonbane, an Akaviri katana which is the best weapon against dragons (+40 damage), with a power that scales depending on the level you find it at, reaching Daedric stats at high levels. The Ebony Blade, a legendary Daedric artifact weapon, can be powered up and becomes one of the strongest weapons in the game. It is a two-handed katana.

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** Played straight in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' with Dragonbane, an Akaviri katana which is the best weapon against dragons (+40 damage), with a power that scales depending on the level you find it at, reaching Daedric stats at high levels. The Ebony Blade, a legendary Daedric artifact weapon, can be powered up and becomes one of the strongest weapons in the game. It is a two-handed katana.
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