Continuing with my character analysis series of the Zero Division, next up we have the confident and quirky OwatsuNimaiya, who holds the impressive title of the creator of the Zambakto and is also referred to as the God of the Sword. He is the third-seated officer of the legendary Zero Division, and his unpredictable behavior makes it difficult to completely feel like you know everything about him.
He has a goofy persona, and he loves being over the top as he compensates for the fact that he is a humble and grounded individual. His humility is seen through how he speaks lowly of his own Zambakto, though despite it being an incredible sword, he deems it to be unfinished because it doesn’t meet the definition of a sword.
No sheath can contain it because of how incredibly sharp it is. So without further delay, let’s begin my breakdown and analysis of OwatsuNimaiya as we go over all of his appearances within the manga in order to understand everything that we can about him.
Now let’s get back to the topic of the blog. Owatsu Nimaiya makes his debut appearance within Chapter 516 of the manga. He is a tall individual with thick black hair that is shaved off to the side, and strangely enough, he has dyed the sides of his head green. Another iconic feature of his appearance are his sunglasses that he is rarely seen without.
Out of all of these Zero Division members, his appearance is the most quirky and out of place as he wears a standard black Shinigami shihakusho but with a white sleeveless puffer jacket over it. This serves as his Captain’s coat as he has the Royal Guard insignia on the back of this jacket.
Like I had mentioned, Nimaiya is unpredictable as there are two sides to his character. One where he is goofy, humorous, and he is all in your face. But contrastingly, when he is taking part in battle, he is savage and ruthless. This is demonstrated when he kills off several members of the Shutzstaffel, all at once.
Even during his battle against Askin, he made a split-second decision that was very risky for his life when he had cut one of the main arteries in his throat in order to counter Askin’s death dealing ability.
Like a lot of the characters that Kubo designs, Nimaiya is very cool and mysterious, and if it wasn’t for him, then Ichigo wouldn’t know the truth about his Zambakto. He was present when Ichigo had to confront Old Man Zangetsu, and after Nimaiya had told Ichigo whether if Old Man Zangetsu reminds him of somebody that he had recently met, it was thanks to his invaluable help that Ichigo was able to activate the true form of Zangetsu.
I’ll talk more about the role that Nimaiya plays in helping Ichigo later on in the blog. As for his backstory, like a lot of the members of the Zero Division, very little is known about them aside from the notable achievement that they had accomplished, which had them recognized by the Soul King.
When it comes to Owetsu Nimaiya, he was credited with having created the Zumbuck doll after the Sulking had recognized this incredible feat. Nimaiya was promoted into the Zero Division during the Thousand Year Boudoir Arc after the first invasion of the Quincy. The Zero Division arrived within the Soul Society in order to help the Gote 13.
He doesn’t sound much while the other members of the Zero Division state that they are here to take Ichigo and the other Shinigami to the Soul King’s Palace in order to heal them and to help them train for the return of the Quincy. We are properly introduced to Nimaiya in chapter 522 after Ichigo and Ranji arrive in his domain.
The two of them are surprised when spotlights shine down on them, and a voice yells out to bow down their heads as they are hoarding them too high. He introduces himself as the creator of the Zambakto, along with a strange rhyming rap. As we learned that Nimaiya is clearly a wannabe urban rapper, his over-the-top greeting leaves Ichigo and Renji quite stunned.
He raises Ichigo’s hands up in the air and does a strange clapping greeting with him as Ichigo finds it difficult to keep up with his vibe. When Nehemiah realizes that Ichigo and Renji are insulting him, he asks whether they want to go home. They then bow and state that they’d like to stay. He then tells them to bow their head straight to the ground as he takes a picture of them in this hilarious face-planted position.
He, after their expense with the large group of females that he has in his Palace. After having enough of his antics, one of his assistants called Mira instructs Ichigo and Renji to follow her.
As they arrive in his real palace, which appears to be a battered wooden cabin placed in the middle of nowhere near the edge of a cliff, we learn that Nimaiya had built that extravagant area because he found it difficult to accept that this is why he lives. After Ichigo, Renji, and Khan arrive at Nimaiya’s true domain, Khan is pretty upset and says that he wants to return to the other place.
Nimaiya is glad that at least Khan understands where he was coming from. Ichigo and Renji then fall into a dark pit as Nimaiya asks them whether if it was strange that they had met no Shinigami on their way to his palace. All of the women that they had met in Nimaiya’s fake Palace were, in fact, all Zambakto.
He finds it odd that Ichigo and Renji cannot tell the difference between a Shinigami and a Zambakto. He questions what on earth is wrong with them. He then brings out their damaged Zambakto and refers to them as heartless jerks who don’t know how to look after them. He smashes both of their Zambaktoes into each other as he states that Zambaktoes that aren’t properly loved are very brittle.
Nimaiya challenges both Ichigo and Renji to get out of the pit that they have fallen into as they are surrounded by angered Zambakto. Nimaiya then introduces himself for the third time as he states his name and declares that he doesn’t make Zambakto for scrubs. With Ichigo and Renji in a pretty desperate situation, Nimaiya has no sympathy for them as we firsthand see how unpredictable he truly is as he shifts from this goofy individual into this very serious demeanor.
He tells them that they are surrounded by what is known as the ultimate Zambakto that can become anything. He refers to these beings as Asahuchi. Nimaiya reveals that he has created every single one of the Soji that are used by the Shinigami today, thus explaining why he is referred to as the Blade God.
Nimaiya states that the Asuchi are angry at both Ichigo and Renji, and it isn’t because of the way that they fight or the way that they swing their blades. He proposes whether if they have been using their blades as a tool or what if they have been interacting with it like a subordinate or even relying on it like a partner, or even treating it like a family member or a close friend.
Their treatment of their own Zambakto is reflected by the anger of the Asuchi as it reveals that this is how their Zambakto feel about them. He then challenges them to face off against the Asauchi as he wants to see who is stronger, the Shinigami or Zambakto. In chapter 527, we cut back to Nimaiya’s training of Ichigo and Renji as three days have just passed.
He is impressed that Renji was able to submit an Asuki to his will, but Ichigo, on the other hand, has failed. He has little sympathy for his plight as he deems him to be a failure. Ichigo wants to continue going on, but Nimaiya states that he wasn’t chosen by any of the Asuchi. No matter how hard he tries, it’s not going to change anything. He tells Ichigo to give it up as he declares Renji to be a Shinigami while Ichigo is far from one.
He tells him that it’s time for him to go home, telling him to never return to the Soul Society because it is a place for a Shinigami, and if Ichigo has no Zambakto, then he is no different from an ordinary human, and he has no right to be with the Soul Society. Nimaiya says that he isn’t going to fix Zangetsu as he sends Ichigo back to the real world. After Ichigo leaves, Nimaiya states that he isn’t there yet.
In a way, he is impressed with Ichigo as he states that he doesn’t know what it means for him to have come this far without having a proper Asuchi. It is for this reason that Ichigo needs to go back to his roots, and he has to learn about his past, even if knowing his roots means that he can never return to the Soul Society.
It is important for him to learn the truth about his life and the way that he was born. In chapter 529, Nimaiya speaks with Renji as he states that he is surprised that he did not object to his decision to send Ichigo back to the world of the living. He is certain that even Renji had noticed that no matter how hard Ichigo had tried, he would not have been able to submit an Asuji to his will in his current condition.
Nimaiya states that he knows the whereabouts of every Asuki that he has ever forged. Every Shinigami is given an Asuchi; they then shape it into their own Zambakto through continuous training.
This is the basics of the relationship that exists between a Shinigami. No Shinigami since the beginning of the Soul Society has had their Zambaktor awakened without an Asuchi being forged first. Nimaiya states that it was obvious that this method of training wasn’t going to work for Ichigo. Before he can return and have an Asuchi submit to his will, he needs to learn the whereabouts of his soul.
After Ichigo learns the truth about his mother, Nimaiya sends Mira to the real world in order to bring Ichigo back to his Palace. We learned that Nimaiya had every intention to bring Ichigo back into his Palace after the duration of one night, and if nothing had changed after one night, then it would be useless to continue with Ichigo’s training.
Nimaiya notices a change within Ichigo as he now tasks him to submit an usujitu as well. He then shockingly sees that every single asuji kneels before Ichigo and is willing to accept him as their Master. After picking an asuji, Nimaiya states that he will personally reforge his unbox for him.
He then takes Ichigo deeper into his Palace as he reveals to him the area where his zombac door will be reforged, telling Ichigo that this is why he will say goodbye to Zangetsu. He then summons his bodyguards as he begins forging Ichigo’s new Zanpakuto. He tells Ichigo that he had taken his shades off so that he could see the color of the flame while he is forging the blade.
He questions whether if Ichigo knows the reason why his asuji had turned white the moment that he had touched it, and why is it that he had started to resemble the hollow that is within Ichigo. Nimaiya then reveals to Ichigo that his asuji is, in fact, the hollow that is within him, as he states that Ichigo’s Zanpakuto is his inner hollow.
We learned that the hollow, White, had entered Ichigo’s body and had fused with his Shinigami powers, and it was at that moment that it had become his Zanpakuto. This means that Old Man Zangetsu has been masquerading as his Zanpakuto this entire time. He then tells Ichigo that Old Man Zangetsu is, in fact, Yuhobak from a thousand years ago.
He resembles the enemy because he is a manifestation of Ichigo’s inner Quincy power, which he had inherited from his mother. After Ichigo speaks with Old Man Zangetsu, Nimaiya finishes forging his Zanpakuto. After Ichigo grabs the handle of his own Zanpakuto and pours his soul into it, a huge explosion erupts as we see Ichigo with a new dual-bladed version of Zangetsu.
He then asks Ichigo what he thinks of his new Zanpakuto, thus concluding his involvement with assisting Ichigo in learning the truth about his past and helping him to reforge and acquire the true power of Zangetsu.
This was a pivotal role that Nimaiya played within the story, and it was through his character that we understood and learned more about Ichigo’s powers and abilities, as well as the real identity of Old Man Zangetsu and why he resembles Yuhobach from a thousand years ago. We then see Nimaiya again the following day after Yuhobach and Udyu arrive at the Soul King’s Palace.
After Kiryohikifune traps the Quincy within her cage of Life, Nimaiya confronts them as he draws out his Zanpakuto, Sayafushi. We learned that Sayofushi is kept in a sword tank, which is a large tank of jelly-like liquid. This is because his blade is too sharp, and its edge is too smooth for any sheath to contain it. Nimaiya was able to cut down Gerard Valkyrie with a single swing of his blade. He then deflects several attacks from Lilbarrow before also cutting him down with another swing of his blade.
He then quickly impales Pernider through the head with his sword, as he makes quick work of the Shootstaffle. After pulling his blade out, he then cuts down Asking, but he only ends up slashing Asking’s throat. He states that Sayaphushi is too much of a powerful blade to wield against normal opponents, so he is looking forward to using it against Yuhobach. But he is surprised to learn that Asking had survived his attack.
Then, using his ability, the Death Dealing, he explains that it allows him to control the lethal dose of substances. As Nimaiya ended up collapsing, he states that he has made the blood within Nimaiya’s body lethal to him. In response, within the matter of a split second, Nimaiya cuts his own throat in order to let his blood pour out.
Asking states that it is effortless because he will die in one of two ways: either through blood loss or through the lethal dosage of his own blood. But thankfully, Nimaiya has Karinji replace the blood within his body with his hot spring water. He then cuts down Skin as he tends his attention to Yuhobach.
Nimaiya reveals that the Royal God has very little information on Yuhobach’s abilities, so before anything, he needs to cut Yuhobach’s arms off and then go from there. But before he can do anything, he is surprised to see Yuhobach utilize his ability, Ashvalen, to revive his Shootstaffle.
While in a shocked state as he wonders how on Earth the elite soldiers of the Quincy are reviving, he learns that Ashwadin redistributes the power between the Quincy so that Yuhobach can revive those that he chooses. It is here when Nimaiya is eventually shot through the head by Lil Barrow’s bullets, thus concluding his involvement within the manga as it concludes his involvement within the Thousand-Year Blood War as somebody who is referred to as the Crater of the Zombuck.
Though it was pretty disappointing that we didn’t get to see more of him, I do feel like he got the respect that he deserved through how he had single-handedly taken out all of the Shootstaffle. It goes to show when given the opportunity, the Zero Division does live up to the hype. I mean, Nimaiya was able to do all of this without even revealing his Shikai or Bankai.
He wields the sharpest blade within the entire series. The only blade that does not have a sheath, Sayafushi, is one of my favorite Zombato within Bleach. It is a sword that cannot be cut by anything but can also cut through anything. Now, while we don’t know the status of Nimaiya by the end of the manga, we do learn that he has confirmed to be alive within the Can’t Fear Your Own World light novels.
If you want to learn more about the fates of the Zero Division and some shocking facts about their leader, then check out my character analysis on Ichibe. But as for Owetsu Nimaiya, let me know what you thought of the creator of the Zambakto. Aside from this strange and quirky personality, he is a ruthless fighter and one who is not to be taken lightly.
Being one of the strongest Shinigami, Nimaiya has left a lasting impression on all of us, and this is without him having revealed his Shikai or his Bankai. So, what did you think about this fascinating character? Definitely continue the discussion in the comments and let me know if he impressed you or left you wanting to see more of him.
Once again, thank you for making it to the end of this blog, and I can’t wait to see you in my next Bleach character analysis blog.
That’s me, Andreea Blaga, author of the blog anime-everything.com. I work as a content creator in the US. I am also passionate about Japanese Anime.