Kurohagane (in Japanese: 黒鋼； Black Steel) was a cyborg ninja that was created by the Nakatomi conglomerate. Kurohagane was appointed to Jimushi's mercenary group and was ordered to retrieve the shards of Akujiki. He is one of the primary antagonists in Nightshade. Although a soulless robot, he had his own agenda.
Kurohagane initially appeared as a tall and armored ninja that was adorned in black, purple and red. His helm, which features two long horns that extend to the side and a single gray horn that protrudes upward, is his more defining feature. He wears a transparent mask that features the mu Kanji (in Japanese: 無； nothingness, emptiness) superimposed on it.
After he was upgraded, Kurohagane's appearance remained the same, but he wore heavy armor that contained a glowing propulsion device that was strapped to his back as well as a wrist-mounted and multi-purpose weapon on his left arm.
When he absorbed Akujiki, he transformed into a humanoid that wore a black scarf. This form distinctly resembled Hotsuma.
Kurohagane was a cybernetic ninja that was engineered by the brightest minds at Nakatomi laboratories. Equipped with hardware that allowed him to control Akujiki's immense power, he was created to wield the demonic sword in lieu of a human agent, who would likely be consumed by the monstrous blade.
Kurohagane was ordered to accompany Jimushi's mercenary unit as they sought the shards of Akujiki and was instructed to reconstruct the demonic blade. After the Ariake Seal was broken, the shards were released, and the Hellspawn assaulted Tokyo. When Hibana, a government agent who was also ordered to acquire the demon sword, attacked a Nakatomi convoy that was in the process of infiltrating the ruined city, Kurohagane assaulted the kunoichi but was vanquished.
After his defeat, Nakatomi agents retrieved Kurohagane and upgraded it in preparation for another confrontation with Hibana. As she escaped a recently destroyed Nakatomi facility, Kurohagane encountered the female ninja. Despite the improved performance and additional weaponry, he was still bested in battle. He tried to reach out to Hibana, but was then suddenly impaled by Jimushi. Still functional, Kurohagane attempted to fire one final projectile, that was augmented by a shard of Akujiki, at Jimushi but was then destroyed by his subordinate, Hisui. Jimushi fled the scene and, some time later, he and Hibana clashed in battle over the shards.
At the end of their duel, Jimushi attempted to explain his intentions to Hibana and give her his shards, but was shot down by Kurohagane. Thought to be destroyed, the cybernetic ninja reappeared for a third time. He tried to shoot down Hibana, but Jimushi jumped in the way and sacrificed himself to save her. Kurohagane then took the remaining shards of Akujiki and rocketed away.
Kurohagane located the last piece of Akujiki inside the ruins of the Golden Palace and raced to retrieve it, with Hibana close behind in pursuit. Inside the ruins, Hibana defeated a final Hellspawn, and as she reached out to acquire the final shard, Kurohagane appeared and absorbed it. With all the pieces in hand, Kurohagane restored the blade to its original form and was possessed by its demonic presence. The cyborg, a mere catalyst for Akujiki's consciousness, commanded Hibana to submit to Akujiki's will. When she refused, the cyborg transformed into a hellish monstrosity and the final battle began.
Despite Akujiki's overwhelming power, the possessed cyborg was felled yet again. As Kurohagane fell to its knees and laid motionless, Hibana delivered a final blow and took Akujiki from the cyborg's husk.
Powers and Abilities
A cyborg shinobi, Kurohagane possessed incredible speed, durability, and enhanced physical strength. His enhancements equipped him with a propulsion device that allowed him to quickly avert his target's defenses or travel vast distances at high speeds. His heavy armor augmentation gave him much greater defense, and his arm was fitted with a multi-purpose weapon that housed an energy sword and a machine gun that could fire spiked projectiles. The arm could also detach, and Kurohagane could fire it at opponents from afar.
After he absorbed Akujiki, Kurohagane's fighting style completely changed. As he was possessed by Akujiki, the cyborg discarded his technology and relied solely on the demon blade's dark power. In this new form, Kurohagane could throw projectiles that were similar to shuriken that could briefly paralyze the target. He could clad himself in a generated field of dark energy that would prevent foes from attacking directly, though this field could be dispersed by armor piercing attacks. He could also use the Gates of Hell, which is an area of effect attack that will summon a burst of dark energy to damage foes. When there was a great distance between he and his foe, Kurohagane used the Light of Purity attack, which is a series of shock waves that are composed of dark energy and that travel on the ground in a three-pronged pattern. When his armor was broken, he shifted from a defensive position to an offensive one and delivered an onslaught of sword slashes with Akujiki. Finally, was able to summon dark afterimages, send them out to cover a wide area, and execute a Light of Judgement attack, an immense energy field that engulfs the ground and that deals life threatening damage to any who are caught in its wake. In a similar fashion, he could use his dark afterimages to execute a Blade of the Eclipse attack, during which the afterimages surrounded him and he attempted to absorb their dark energy and unleash a devastating slash with Akujiki.
- Casey Robertson, the actor who portrayed Moritsune in Shinobi, is also the voice of Kurohagane.
- Kurohagane appears in Project X Zone 2 along with Hotsuma and Hibana. When Hotsuma encounters the cyborg, he is suddenly overcome with an uneasy feeling.
- The Nakatomi researchers who engineered Kurohagane acquired extensive information on the Oboro clan and programmed the cyborg to use their techniques.