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From the spoilers thread this post got me thinking:
If that's true, should we assume that over time and as they battle, shinigami's bankai actually become weaker?
That would properly explain how some captains with 100~500 more years of training aren't uber powerful
Last edited by FFuuu; October 02, 2013 at 04:07 PM. Reason: image link failed :'(
Spoiler link seems to be broken
That is considering that an unbroken bankai is stronger than a well trained bankai.
Sure, Hihou Zambimaru, as an example, should be weaker than it was before - as it is missing sections of itself. However, if anything Renji is now stronger with it then before. This is due to him having longer to use and train with it, develop more techniques for it, etc.
Also, until we see the captains with 100~500 more years of training using their bankai (ignoring Unohana - as who knows what was up with all that...) then it is hard to say how uber powerful or not they may be. Yamamoto, as another example, was nigh on invulnerable after using his bankai...
It depends on whether bankai actually accumulates damage. It would be fatal for a shinigami to actually have his bankai damaged every time they fight, it would indeed result in it becoming weaker over time. I would argue the issue is that under the right circumstances a shinigami's bankai would not break though. Nimaiya did imply a shinigami relationship with its zampakuto did have an impact on how fragile it was. A decisive difference in power perhaps can result in a bankai breaking however perhaps the issue to consider here is that in most cases a bankai would not be easy to break at all. Take ichigo's bankai in the past. Ichigo fought a number of people, some stronger than him, and it never got even a dent. So perhaps once a shinigami does get sufficient mastery over his bankai the situation is that it would generally be almost impossible to break or damage.
It's also difficult to compare different Bankais since some of them are like Ikkaku's and Renji's that are actual objects of physical world and can be damaged and something like Yama's or Sasakibe's that seem to be masses of elemnts that can't be broken since you can't break fire or lightning, so such logic can't be applied to such Bankais.
Well, they did have abilities which they channeled through their standard swords so things are murkier but I would argue that if their swords were broken while it bankai it would have roughly the same effect as with what we saw with ichigo or ikkaku. We don't really have an example which would disprove or support the idea though....
i dont know if they become weaker. Maybe we just met somebody more powerful. Also did Komomura's bankai get stolen?
Think of the bankai as a real sword. A well forged sword can get through countless battles without breaking (not like it can't break, but it's pretty durable).
Well, real swords don't actually make it through that many battles... One hit from another sword and both of them end up dented and with dull edges in no time. In bleachverse the issue should be about what shinigami can do to prevent their bankai from taking damage altogether. Ichigo has fought opponents stronger than himself a number of times and not once his bankai took as much as a dent whatsoever. Seeing what nimaiya says about swords I am inclined to thinking that bankai can actually be unbreakable provided the difference of power between two people is not overwhelming and the relationship with the bankai itself is good. Ichigo has always had a sketchy relationship with his sword but in turn the difference in power with his enemies was never really huge. Renji in turn would be in a different scenario, he would be overwhemingly weaker than byakuya and to boot he has had way less time than byakuya to make a bond with his blade and specifically with his blade in bankai (not that it is a different blade but still). Ikkaku is the weird one here. His blade is inherently brittle for whatever reason although that could perhaps be because his mentality would prevent what a real relationship with his sword should be like. Then again perhaps if his bankai is inherently brittle it does have a way to repair itself but has not figured it out yet because of his unwillingness to actually use it and perhaps get to know it.