Why Naruto Is Still Strong Without Kurama – and What He May Do Next
With recent events in Boruto leaving Naruto without Kurama, the Hokage now must rely on his other abilities to stay on top.
Recently in Boruto: Naruto Next Generations, Naruto lost Kurama, the nine-tailed fox that had been sealed within him his whole life. While initially something of an antagonist during Naruto, by the end of Shippuden Kurama had become one of Naruto’s staunchest allies.
Since the war, Naruto has favored using Kurama’s power over his own, making the sudden death and loss of his friend all the more devastating. However, because Naruto was afraid of using Kurama’s power for the first half of his life, he ended up developing a lot of skills and abilities that were purely his own.
While he definitely took advantage of his powers as a jinchuriki, Naruto had many talents of his own too. Being an Uzumaki and reincarnate of Ashura, Naruto’s chakra reserves were already deeper than most shinobi, even without Kurama. His body also benefitted from this by being much stronger and more resilient. During the Chunin Exams, Kabuto claimed that Naruto’s power as a genin was already terrifying and could rival whole squads of shinobi if he were to master his chakra control.
The Shadow Clone Jutsu is among the first of his techniques that come to mind, and for no small reason. This is a highly advanced ability that normally only jonin can master, but Naruto did so as an academy student. This jutsu became a staple move, with Naruto advancing it further while also incorporating it into other techniques to make them more effective.
The Rasengan is another of Naruto’s jutsu, with it possibly being his most iconic. Considered as strong as the Chidori, the Rasengan is a jutsu capable of beating powerful opponents in a single hit. While invented by his father, the Fourth Hokage, Naruto developed it much further than anyone else was able to. He was the first to add different chakra natures to the jutsu, and created nearly all of its enhanced variations, like the Giant Rasengan and the devastating Rasenshuriken.
The Summoning Jutsu is also at Naruto’s disposal. With it, he was able to summon the mighty Gamabunta, a giant toad capable of holding his own against a Tailed Beast. It was through this technique that he was able to learn the Reverse-Summoning Jutsu that transported him to Mt. Myoboku, where he was able to learn Senjutsu and Sage Mode from the toads.
While the Rasengan is quite powerful, Naruto’s most dangerous technique is easily his ability to enter Sage Mode. Originally starting with the Toad Sage Mode, this ability increased Naruto’s physical abilities tremendously via Senjutsu chakra, allowing him to take down most of the Paths of Pain without assistance from Kurama. The only drawback was that there was a limit on how long he could maintain the form before running out of natural energy.
As strong as Sage Mode was, Naruto gained an even higher form of the power by the Sage of Six Paths. Known as Six Paths Sage Mode, this form takes all the benefits of Naruto’s Toad Sage Mode and increases them exponentially, as well as adding a few more abilities. One such ability is his upgraded senses. While before Naruto was able to sense the life forces of others in the area, with Six Paths Sage Mode he can sense beings that exist in their own dimensions (like Madara’s Limbo clone).
Not only does his body become much stronger than in the Toad Sage Mode, but Naruto also gains access to all five nature transformations and Yin-Yang Release. With the latter, Naruto can summon his own Truth-Seeking Orbs and heal individuals, such as how he regrew Kakashi’s left eye and kept Might Guy alive. He can use this special Senjutsu to fly as well, increasing his mobility greatly. This form also passively and actively gathers natural energy, practically eliminating the time limit that came with his normal Toad Sage Mode.
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With all these abilities, Naruto was already quite strong without Kurama, but he wasn’t the only Tailed Beast Naruto was connected to. During the war, when Naruto and Sasuke met the Sage of Six Paths, the Sage decided to have Naruto act as something of meeting place for all the Tailed Beasts. While this was meant to help keep peaceful relations, it also turned Naruto into conduit for their power, giving him access to all their jinchuriki’s abilities.
Now that he is without Kurama, Naruto has reason to further develop his Sage Modes, mastering an even higher level of Senjutsu than he originally thought possible. With Sage Mode granting him access to all five chakra natures, his ability to learn new types of jutsu is essentially infinite. He also has access to all of the different Tailed Beasts, and could probably become any of their jinchuriki without much convincing, especially if Kurama is gone for good.
But the most out-of-left-field option for him would be to become the jinchuriki for the Ten-Tails that is being guarded by Code. With Naruto already having access to all the Tailed Beasts’ chakras, he was practically a Ten-Tails jinchuriki anyway.
All-in-all, Naruto was a beast even without being a jinchuriki, and if anything, all of his time training to be strong without Kurama will finally be worthwhile.