Wood Release (木遁, Mokuton; Viz "Wood Style") is an advanced nature kekkei genkai formed through the simultaneous use of earth and water-based chakra natures to create wood or complete trees. This ability can also be used to create other aspects of trees, such as seeds or even flowering plants. Wood Release techniques can be produced from anywhere, including the user's 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.
While being a kekkei genkai, the use of this nature transformation has only been done by Hashirama Senju and those who possess his exact DNA. His ability to use this technique was one of the reasons he was given the title of the First Hokage, and with Wood Release Secret Technique: Nativity of a World of Trees he created the foundation of Konohagakure. This technique also allowed him to completely reshape battlefields to his advantage. A highly coveted ability, several people have tried to replicate his power, with a few achieving weaker versions of it through experimentation with Hashirama's cells. As Obito Uchiha noted, Wood Release is very hard to control due to the sheer life force within Hashirama's cells, which can potentially overwhelm any who are infused with them. Danzō Shimura demonstrated this when, after his chakra levels were depleted, he almost turned into a tree as the cells overpowered him.
The first person to attempt to make Hashirama's power his own was his rival, Madara Uchiha. Having used their confrontation at the Valley of the End to acquire a portion of his DNA, Madara later applied it to the wounds he sustained. As a result, Madara was able to perform Wood Release techniques, which he demonstrated upon his reincarnation during the Fourth Shinobi World War. Madara also used Hashirama's cells, along with the Demonic Statue of the Outer Path, to create a living clone of Hashirama. From this clone, Madara was able to produce various artificial humans, each of which was capable of performing a weaker version of Hashirama's Wood Release. Madara later used Hashirama's artificial body to repair the otherwise fatal wounds sustained by Obito Uchiha during his mission at Kannabi Bridge, giving him the ability to use Wood Release as well.
In the anime, it was said that Konohagakure once attempted to replicate Wood Release through implanting Hashirama's cells into various shinobi, which consistently ended in failure and the subject's death. Ultimately, the research was ceased and deemed forbidden. Orochimaru, another who desired the First Hokage's abilities, injected Hashirama's DNA into sixty children, with the only survivor being Yamato, who gained the ability to use Wood Release as a result. Orochimaru also performed a similar procedure on Danzō Shimura by implanting the First's cells into his right arm. While Danzō was capable of using this power, his version appears cruder and causes a more significant drain of chakra with each usage, causing Danzō to avoid using it as much as possible. Orochimaru himself would later acquire this coveted ability after taking over the body of a parasite clone.
A derived technique of the Wood Release is the Hokage-Style Sixty-Year-Old Technique — Kakuan Entering Society with Bliss-Bringing Hands. This technique produces a seal "sit" (座) on the user's right hand that can suppress a tailed beast's influence over its jinchūriki. This is done by producing wooden dragons from the ground that attach to the host and force the tailed beast's chakra to recede. Hashirama's necklace aided in this technique's execution, but its exact purpose was unclear. After Naruto destroyed the necklace, however, Yamato implied that he could no longer suppress the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox's influence. Nevertheless, during Naruto's training to control the Nine-Tails at the Falls of Truth, when he was transforming, Yamato stated that he would try to suppress the beast. Whether or not this would have worked was never seen due to the transformation stopping through other means.
After reviving the Ten-Tails in an incomplete state, Madara and Obito were able to improve their control of the beast through the use of Hashirama's cells. Obito also demonstrated the ability to channel his Wood Release techniques through the Ten-Tails' body while attached to it.
- Wood Release parallels the real-life ninja art "mokuton-no-jutsu". One example of real-life mokuton-no-jutsu is Tanuki-gakure: the practice of climbing a tree and camouflaging oneself within the foliage.
- In the anime, the Moulding Mushroom appears to drain chakra from Wood Release users.
- A replica of Hashirama's face grew on Danzō Shimura's right shoulder after Hashirama's cells were integrated into his body. Madara also gained a replica of Hashirama's face on his chest after being reincarnated by Kabuto Yakushi.
- ↑ Naruto chapter 316, pages 6-7
- ↑ Naruto chapter 575, pages 4-5
- ↑ Second Databook, page 279
- ↑ Naruto chapter 297, page 9
- ↑ Naruto chapter 545, pages 2-4
- ↑ Naruto chapter 480, page 10
- ↑ Naruto chapter 606, page 12
- ↑ Naruto chapter 561, pages 11-12
- ↑ Naruto chapter 545, page 3
- ↑ Naruto chapter 602, page 13
- ↑ Naruto: Shippūden episode 351
- ↑ Naruto chapter 291, pages 15-16
- ↑ Naruto chapter 478, page 10
- ↑ Naruto chapter 618, page 14
- ↑ Naruto chapter 620, page 10
- ↑ Naruto chapter 455, page 12
- ↑ Naruto chapter 497, page 14
- ↑ Naruto chapter 613, pages 5-6
- ↑ Naruto chapter 614, page 7
- ↑ Naruto: Shippūden episode 229
- ↑ Naruto chapter 478, page 11
- ↑ Naruto chapter 575, page 14
- ↑ Naruto chapter 657, page 4