Bleach has been keeping a low profile as of late, but the title is always waiting to surprise fans with one thing or another. Now, a new piece of artwork starring Ichigo Kurosaki has gone live, and the creator behind Bleach is using it to show off a new power-up.
And, if the transformation is as good as it sounds, then it might be Ichigo’s most powerful ever.
Recently, Tite Kubo shared a new piece of artwork he did for the mobile game Bleach Brave Souls. The piece, as seen below, shows a version of Ichigo where the fighter has managed to master all three of his dueling power forms: Soul Reaper, Hollow, and Quincy.
New original artwork of Ichigo as Quincy by Tite Kubo. This doesn't appear in anime or manga. Its from mobile game Bleach brave souls from r/bleach
“A special version of Ichigo to celebrate New Year 2019. This Ichigo features him releasing all of his latent powers, not just his Soul Reaper and Hollow powers, but also the Quincy powers that lie dormant inside him,” the game confirms.
The form itself looks very different from any Ichigo has rocked before. Again, the hero’s orange hair is given an extension, and his outfit is totally altered away from his Soul Reaper robes. The fabric is lined with glowing blue edges, and one hand can be seen holding a sort of Quincy bow similar to the one Uryu Ishida used. Ichigo’s other hand is clawed like that of a Hollow… and there is no Zanpakuto in sight. Ichigo’s mastered Soul Reaper power is manifesting itself likely through spiritual pressure, and fans of Bleach know he has tons of it to spare.
Unfortunately, this form was never seen in either Bleach's manga or anime. Kubo created this form just for Bleach Brave Souls, but that has not stopped fans from hoping Ichigo will power into the state one day. It has been years since Ichigo wrapped his story, but Kubo has been busy with Bleach's live-action adaptation and a recent art book. So, if the creator gets the notion, a final season reboot adapting the manga's final arc might not be out of the question down the line.
So, which of Ichigo's Shikai do you prefer...? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to talk all things comics and anime!
Bleach was first created by Tite Kubo for Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump, running from 2001 to 2016. The series follows the young delinquent Ichigo Kurosaki, who has the ability to see spirits. He soon obtains the power of a Soul Reaper - one meant to usher lost souls to the afterlife - and now has the duty to defend the living world from monstrous dark spirits known as Hollows.