Jujutsu Kaisen: Masamichi Yaga Abilities Explained

In Jujutsu Kaisen, Masamichi Yaga is the principal of Tokyo Jujutsu high at the time of the main storyline and was the teacher to 2 of the arguably most powerful Jujutsu Sorcerer, Satoru Gojo and Suguru Geto.

Yaga is the foremost expert on cursed corpses that we’ve seen so far in the series and utilises puppet jujutsu for combat and support. In this article we will go into the details of his abilities and fighting style.

What are cursed corpses?

Before we delve into Yaga’s puppet jujutsu we first have to explain what cursed corpses are as they are the foundation of puppet jujutsu. 

Cursed corpses are described as inanimate objects that have been endowed with curse energy allowing them to move and act on their own. They can form naturally or artificially where naturally formed cursed corpses are typically hostile to humans while artificially formed cursed corpses are those created by sorcerers for their own use such as combat or support.

An artificially formed cursed corpse is fundamentally different from naturally formed ones as they will each have a core that acts as a heart. The sorcerer will charge this core with curse energy to fuel it and the puppet will function until a time where it runs out of energy. This implies that naturally formed cursed corpses are self sufficient and can continue to function even without an external party supplying energy to it.

Puppets are artificially formed cursed corpses and can be designed to carry out specific functions on their own such as attacking or defending when certain criterias are met. 

How Does Masamichi Yaga Use Cursed Corpses in Jujutsu Kaisen

As mentioned previously, Masamichi Yaga uses artificial cursed corpses as his main combat ability and has several puppets at his disposal. In fact, the first time we are introduced to Yaga, he is seen surrounded by several puppets while actively working on one he eventually uses to combat Itadori Yuji. 

Throughout the series we are shown a total of 4 puppets that he himself has created. The first one is Cathy which is a green, short and round doll with a wide grin that somewhat resembles a traditional japanese Kappa albeit with slightly off dimensions. Cathy was quite durable and attacked by generating kinetic energy from rapidly bouncing off the environment. This would then be followed up by a quick dash attack directly hitting the target. The puppet was fast and durable but was easily caught by Itadori Yuji.

The second puppet that appears is Tsukamoto which looks like a typical bear but with boxing gloves. The puppet is designed to sleep when it receives a constant flow of cursed energy but will attack if this flow is disrupted or interrupted. It was used mainly to help train Itadori to maintain his cursed energy output and it wasn’t shown to have been used in combat. It could presumably still be used in combat as most sorcerers would typically need to constantly provide it energy otherwise it would attack them, likely useful for distraction

The third puppet is arguably his most complex and powerful, Panda. Panda is unique as most puppets tend to function on the restrictions set by the user upon their creation but Panda is completely sentient and autonomous as well as self sustaining meaning he does not need to be supplied a stream of cursed energy and will continuously function as long as he doesnt take excessive external damage or sustain damage to his cores.

Panda is also unique in the sense that unlike other cursed corpses, Panda actually was made or rather was born young and grew much like any other living being. He possesses his own personality and quirks and is for all intents and purposes indistinguishable from any other living being.

Panda is referred to as an “Abrupt-mutated cursed corpse” and possesses a total of 3 cores each granting him different abilities as well as function to regulate each other and generate its own cursed energy. The cores are made up of individually distinct souls all of which must be compatible with each other. These cores allow Panda to assume 3 different forms, the default panda form, the Gorilla Mode form and the unblockable drumming beat form. 

We won’t go too much into detail here as suffice to say these abilities each produce a different effect and is enough to fill an article all on their own. 

Yaga’s Prowess in Puppet Based Sorcery

Because of his ability to create completely autonomous puppets that are self-sustaining, he was considered a huge threat by the higher ups as they feared that he could create an army of puppets each at the level for a high grade sorcerer such as Panda. He was the only person who knew of its process and only revealed its secret as he was dying.

While others coveted this ability due to its potential of creating one’s own personal army, to Yaga, he felt that being able to create what is seemingly a really close approximation of life as a curse. He thought this because he is constantly torn between creating puppets for those who have passed and just letting them rest in peace. The idea that a sorcerer can bring a loved one back albeit in another form would weigh heavily on them as it is akin to playing god.

He only revealed the method of creating such puppets because he felt it was a curse passed from one person to another.

Puppet Sorcery Weaknesses

While the ability is not an exceptionally overpowered ability, puppet sorcery is very versatile this does not mean it is without fault however.

Each puppet requires cursed energy to function and most are charged by their users before a battle. In a long protracted battle the puppets can potentially run out of energy before being able to take down the opponents. While the user can somewhat charged them during the battle there is a clear limit to how much cursed energy each user will have at their disposal and makes the technique not suitable for long drawn out battles

Most puppets are also limited to the conditions in which they were built and have no growth capabilities during battle. This means that if they cannot defeat their opponent due to a strength difference its unlikely that prolonging the battle would make a difference. There are exceptions however such as with Panda who has this capability to become stronger and overcome their limitations mid battle but he is the only exception to this rule.

Finally, each puppet in constructed in the same way and each has a specific core that acts as their battery. Sorcerers who are familiar with this would immediately understand that each puppet would have a clear exploitable target that can attack to completely decommision the puppet

Despite these weaknesses, the technique has mostly been used for support and not straight up fighting.

Jujutsu Kaisen Masamichi Yaga Abilities Conclusion

As weve seen in Jujutsu Kaisen, Masamichi Yaga was undoubtedly the most proficient user of puppet jujutsu with the ability to seemingly create artificial life. The implications of his discovery would without a doubt cause a lot of problems in the future as now the methods have been revealed. I speculate that the jujutsu community in the manga may go so far as to create puppet armies to strengthen their positions but we would have to see if and when that happens.

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