Kekkei genkai (血継限界; Literally meaning "a technique limited to inheritance by blood" or "Bloodline Limit") are abilities passed down genetically within specific clans. It's possible for a ninja to have more than one of these abilities. Kekkei genkai abilities that work via the user's eye are called dōjutsu. Other kekkei genkai include mixing one type of elemental chakra with another, creating a new one unique to the users, which is usually impossible for normal ninja.
Kekkei genkai and their related techniques cannot be taught to or copied by others. However, kekkei genkai can be given to others. Dōjutsu, or other kekkei genkai isolated to a single organ, can be transplanted into the body of another, as was done with transferring Obito's Sharingan to Kakashi. Use of these organs requires much more chakra than someone born with the kekkei genkai. Chakra elements can also be passed down to people outside of the clan, such as Yamato being subjected to DNA re-modification by Orochimaru who wanted to acquire the Wood Release kekkei genkai. However, Yamato's skill in using it is not nearly as powerful as the originator: Hashirama Senju, and the risk of such process was that Yamato was the only one of the sixty test subjects to survive.
Although kekkei genkai are usually genetically shared within a specific clan, sometimes it is unique to one person alone, and that even family relatives do not share it, such as the Wood Release and Shikotsumyaku. Yet other kekkei genkai seem to appear in individuals with no known relation, such as the Lava Release, which has appeared in ninja from Kirigakure, Iwagakure, and Kumogakure, while Magnet Release, which has appeared in ninja from both Kumogakure and Sunagakure.
List of Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Blaze Release Blaze Release (炎遁, Enton; Viz "Inferno Style") is an advanced chakra nature kekkei genkai that produces black flames (黒炎, Kokuen). Known to have been employed by at least two members of the Uchiha clan, this chakra nature can be used in a variety of ways. Sasuke has gone as far as to add shape transformation to the black flames, fashioning them into various weapons and defences. Besides being cast by means of Amaterasu, Sasuke can create this chakra nature with his Susanoo as well and even in his own palm.It is the only known chakra nature that is used through a dōjutsu. C stated that Sasuke manipulates the flames with his right Mangekyō Sharingan whereas he casts Amaterasu with his left. It is unknown what other basic nature Blaze Release entails aside from Fire Release.
Main article: Boil ReleaseBoil Release (沸遁, Futton; Viz "Vapour Style") is one of the two advanced nature kekkei genkai of Mei Terumī and is made up of techniques that combine fire and water-based chakra to create a powerful corrosive vapour capable of dissolving anything. The user is also able to control the range and level of the vapour's acidity. Not only is it dangerous to be near, but as being gaseous, it can cover a considerable range shortly, and go through small spaces. It also stays in the air, so it can potentially deal continuous damage if the enemy is trapped or knocked back into its range.
Main article: Byakugan The Byakugan (白眼; Literally meaning "White Eye", Meaning (Viz) "All Seeing White Eye") is the dōjutsu kekkei genkai of the Hyūga clan. Its power first appeared, alongside the Rinnegan, in the oldest known ancestor of the Hyūga: Kaguya Ōtsutsuki. It has become known as one of the Three Great Dōjutsu (三大瞳術, San Daidōjutsu; Literally meaning "Three Great Eye Techniques"), along with the Sharingan, and the Rinnegan. This dōjutsu is manifested as very distinctive eyes, characterised by their enlarged and featureless white irises with no visible pupils. When the Byakugan is activated, the user's pupils become more distinct, and the veins near their temples bulge. It also appears that unlike the other two great dōjutsu, all members of the clan possess, and can use this kekkei genkai from birth, as opposed to needing to awaken, or else not inheriting it at all.The primary ability of the Byakugan gives the user a near 360º field of vision, except for one blind spot at the back of the neck above the first thoracic vertebra. Upon activation of the dōjutsu, the wielder is granted an automatic 50 metre field of vision around themselves which can be extended through training as Hinata Hyūga's range in Part II stretches to at least as far as 10 kilometres.The Byakugan is also able to see through solid objects and smokescreens, even through most barriers as only a particularly strong barrier such as the Four Black Fogs Formation is able to somewhat distort the Byakugan's perception. It can also differentiate between non-corporeal clones and see through techniques that would otherwise hide an opponent from normal sight. The dōjutsu also has the ability to follow high-speed movement.
Main article: Crystal ReleaseThe Crystal Release (晶遁, Shōton; English TV "Crystal Style") is a rare and specialised field of elemental ninjutsu that can create crystal as well as manipulate already-existing crystals and crystalline structures.
Main article: Dark ReleaseThe Dark Release (冥遁, Meiton; Viz "Shade Style") is an advanced nature kekkei genkai that can be used to absorb, manipulate, and release chakra taken from an opponent. Hiruko used techniques of this nature through a mark on his left hand. This mark resembles two diamonds, one overlapping the other. Chakra is absorbed through the upper square, while it is released and manipulated through the lower.
Main article: Dust ReleaseDust Release (塵遁, Jinton; Viz "Particle Style") is an advanced nature kekkei tōta, an advanced version of kekkei genkai, which is created through simultaneous use of the earth, wind, and fire natures. The techniques of this nature initially form as a small three-dimensional object (e.g. a cube, a cone, etc.) composed of chakra that forms between the user's hands. When the technique is released, the form expands and surrounds the target. This nature allows the user to manipulate molecules, giving them the ability to disintegrate anything on a molecular level within the boundaries of the three-dimensional form.
Main article: Explosion ReleaseExplosion Release (爆遁, Bakuton; Viz "Explosive Style") is an advanced chakra nature kekkei genkai. This chakra nature seems to give the wielder the ability to utilise explosive chakra in combat, allowing them to cause explosions in objects they come into contact with.
Iburi Clan's Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Iburi Clan's Kekkei GenkaiThis unique kekkei genkai is possessed by the members of the Iburi clan, which allows them to turn their bodies, either partially or fully, into smoke to serve various purposes. While in their smoke form the user becomes impervious to damage and can use this trait to gain an opportunity in battle, for example by allowing weapons to slip through them without any effects. However, if needed, they can still interact with physical objects.
Main article: Ice ReleaseIce Release (氷遁, Hyōton; Viz "Ice Style") is the advanced nature kekkei genkai of the Yuki clan, and allows the users to combine wind and water-based chakra to create and manipulate ice, forming it into various structures. When the user releases their chakra, the surrounding vicinity becomes cold enough to cause snow to fall. The ice Haku could create was extremely resistant to fire-based attacks, only melting slightly when coming into contact with Sasuke's flames.
Jūgo's Clan's Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Jūgo's Clan's Kekkei GenkaiMembers of Jūgo's clan have unique bodies, which allow them to passively absorb natural energy. However, due to the constant intake of natural energy, they are mentally unstable, sporadically feeling sudden, uncontrollable urges to kill, causing them to go on a rampage. Their bodies also secrete special fluids, which through means of Senjutsu chakra allow them to transform parts of their bodies for several purposes.
Kurama Clan's Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Kurama Clan's Kekkei GenkaiEvery few generations a member of the Kurama clan will be born with an incredible talent for genjutsu. The clan member's talent in that field is such that their genjutsu is overwhelming. Furthermore, the genjutsu is so powerful that it causes the brain to believe anything that happens to the victim within the genjutsu physically harm their body. This fearsome ability allows the clan member to potentially kill their opponents with genjutsu.
Main article: Lava ReleaseLava Release (熔遁; 溶遁, Yōton; Viz "Corrosion Style" or "Lava Style") is an advanced nature kekkei genkai that combines fire and earth-based chakra to create lava and related substances that can serve multi-faceted purposes.
Main article: Magnet ReleaseMagnet Release (磁遁, Jiton; Viz "Magnet Style") is an advanced chakra nature kekkei genkai which allows the user to convert chakra into magnetic forces and magnetise an object. It is unknown where it originates from but both Sunagakure and Kumogakure possessed users of this kekkei genkai in the past.
Main article: Mangekyō Sharingan The Mangekyō Sharingan is awakened by a Sharingan user when they suffer from trauma after witnessing the death of someone close to them. With the user normally having to witness or experience this first hand, Uchiha throughout history have killed those closest to them in order to expedite this process.It is distinguished from a normal Sharingan by its appearance, which changes the form of the tomoe seal. Unlike the Sharingan, the appearance of the Mangekyō Sharingan differs from user to user with all known wielders of the dōjutsu having eyes that resemble variations of pinwheels; one variation is a rare form known as the "Straight Tomoe" (直巴, Choku Tomoe), which seems to grant the user fluidity in their movements when fighting.
Ranmaru's Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Ranmaru's Kekkei Genkai Ranmaru possessed a dōjutsu kekkei genkai which, when activated, causes his eyes to glow red in colour. It grants him abilities such as penetrative vision as well as the ability to hinder other dōjutsu such as the Byakugan which his own dōjutsu has been likened to.This dōjutsu grants the wielder many abilities that include penetrating vision, disruption of other dōjutsu, and unique healing through life-force energy manipulation.With his kekkei genkai, Ranmaru has the ability to see and hear things from long distances. With this ability, Ranmaru was able penetrate the walls of his shack to view the outside world. Although the range of his kekkei genkai is similar to the range of the Byakugan, it actually has the ability to counter and negate that trait. His abilities also allow him to perform irresistible genjutsu, which can fool even the "all-seeing" Byakugan. Ranmaru's vision also lets him locate and track others by sensing chakra, picking up chakra from long distances, and noticing changes in an individual's chakra. It is also able to sense how many individuals are present.
Rinha Clan's Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Rinha Clan's Kekkei GenkaiThe kekkei genkai of the Rinha clan allows them to absorb a person's chakra and duplicate their appearance and memories.
Main article: RinneganThe Rinnegan (輪廻眼; Literally meaning "Saṃsāra Eye") is reputed as the most exalted eyes amongst the Three Great Dōjutsu (三大瞳術, San Daidōjutsu; Literally meaning "Three Great Eye Techniques"). It is characterised by a ripple-like pattern which spreads over the eyeball, with either light purple or red sclerae and irides, some also containing a pattern of several tomoe. It is said that in times when the world is in disorder, a person is sent down from the heavens to become either a "God of Creation" who will calm the world, or a "Destroyer" who will reduce everything to nothingness. This dōjutsu was first manifested by Kaguya Ōtsutsuki after eating the Shinju's fruit, and later by the Ten-Tails, the combined entity of Kaguya and the Shinju. Kaguya's son, Hagoromo, came to be revered as the Sage of the Six Paths by using his own Rinnegan to create the groundwork that brought forth all modern ninjutsu.
Ryūzetsu's Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Ryūzetsu's Kekkei GenkaiThis unnamed kekkei genkai apparently allows the user to perform Reincarnation Ninjutsu as it allowed Ryūzetsu to perform the Dragon Life Reincarnation technique. It was seen only in Naruto 5: Blood Prison and Ryūzetsu was the only known user. Other details, such as whether it was common or rare and whether any other technique could be performed using it, are unknown.
Sakon and Ukon's Kekkei Genkai
Main article: Sakon and Ukon's Kekkei GenkaiSakon and Ukon's unnamed kekkei genkai gives them the unique ability to break their bodies down to a molecular level. The two brothers usually use this ability to share the same body but can also use it to merge with the bodies of others and destroy the host's cells from the inside. When Sakon is in need of assistance, Ukon can bring out some of his body parts to aid Sakon in blocking or attacking. Ukon's arms and legs can emerge from those of Sakon's to increase the force and quantity to his physical attacks.
Main article: Scorch ReleaseScorch Release (灼遁, Shakuton; Viz "Scorch Style") is an advanced chakra nature kekkei genkai. This nature creates chakra that is capable of heating up an enemy to the point where all the liquid inside their body evaporates, killing the victim and leaving them a desiccated corpse.
Main article: SharinganThe Sharingan (写輪眼; Literally meaning "Copy Wheel Eye", Meaning (Viz) "Mirror Wheel Eye") is the dōjutsu kekkei genkai of the Uchiha clan that selectively appears in some of its members. While its powers were first seen in Kaguya Ōtsutsuki, its true form first manifested in Indra, the earliest ancestor of the Uchiha clan, and later became regarded as one of the Three Great Dōjutsu (三大瞳術, San Daidōjutsu; Literally meaning "Three Great Eye Techniques"), along with the Byakugan and the Rinnegan. The Sharingan is also called "Heaven's Eye" (天眼, Tengan), because of the many abilities it grants the user. The Sharingan's abilities consist of two parts: the "Eye of Insight" (洞察眼, Dōsatsugan) and the "Eye of Hypnotism" (催眠眼, Saimingan). The first of the Sharingan's powers is being able to see chakra flow. The Sharingan itself gives colour to chakra, allowing the wielder to differentiate them. They are also able to tell if a person is under a genjutsu because the person's chakra flow would be irregular. The Sharingan's second-most prominent ability grants the user an incredible clarity of perception, allowing them to easily recognise genjutsu and different forms of chakra, though not to the same extent as the Byakugan.
Main article: ShikotsumyakuShikotsumyaku (屍骨脈; Literally meaning "Dead Bone Pulse", Meaning (Viz) "Macabre Bone Pulse") is a kekkei genkai which gives its wielder the ability to manipulate their own skeletal structure (their osteoblasts and osteoclasts). By infusing their calcium with chakra, they could manipulate the growth and properties of their bones to their liking. The ability first manifested from Kaguya Ōtsutsuki which later inherited into a rare few amongst her descendants in the Kaguya clan, Kimimaro being the only other known inheritor of this power.
Main article: Steel ReleaseThe Steel Release (鋼遁, Kōton; Viz "Steel Style") is an advanced nature kekkei genkai that can be used to make one's body virtually indestructible by turning it into black steel.
Main article: Storm ReleaseStorm Release (嵐遁, Ranton; Viz "Gale Style" or "Storm Style") is an advanced nature kekkei genkai that combines lightning and water-based chakra to create energy beams that can be guided towards the enemy.
Main article: Swift ReleaseThe Swift Release (迅遁, Jinton; Viz "Quick Style") is an advanced nature kekkei genkai that can be used to move with instantaneous speed, granting the user an advantage over opponents with more strength than speed, such as users of Chakra Enhanced Strength. This nature therefore renders the user invulnerable against most taijutsu.
Main article: Wood ReleaseWood Release (木遁, Mokuton; Viz "Wood Style") is an advanced nature kekkei genkai formed through simultaneously combining earth-based chakra in one hand and water-based chakra in the other. The Wood Release can create wood as well as various plants, from simple seeds to even flowering trees. Wood and plants can be produced from any surface, including the user's own body, as the user's chakra is literally converted into a source of life. Wood Release Techniques (木遁の術, Mokuton no Jutsu) are commonly affiliated with the Snake seal.
The concept of special ninja techniques limited by bloodline inheritance may have been inspired in part by the works of Futaro Yamada, which strongly influenced later depictions of ninja in fiction. In particular, The Kōga Ninja Scrolls (甲賀忍法帖, Kōga Ninpōchō), published in 1959, featured a pair of warring ninja clans that, through selective breeding, had produced ninja with a variety of deformities, mutations, and special abilities, even dōjutsu.
- Kekkei genkai can be preserved through the creation of Human Puppets. This allows them to retain the special traits of the users when they were still alive.
- When a person is brought back to life via the Summoning: Impure World Reincarnation technique, they also retain any kekkei genkai they possessed before their death.
- A kekkei genkai should not be confused with hiden techniques. Hiden techniques are exclusive to a certain person or clan, but only because they have kept others from learning how to perform those techniques.