This sword is a symbol of my dreams... and my honor. No... it's more than that...
- —Zack Fair
The Buster Sword (バスターソード, Basutāsōdo?) is a weapon that first appeared in Final Fantasy VII and has since appeared in several other games in the series. It is Cloud Strife's trademark weapon, and was wielded before him by Zack Fair and Angeal Hewley. The Buster Sword serves as an iconic image for Cloud and Final Fantasy VII due to its massive size and is wielded by Cloud in most of his appearances.
The Buster Sword is classified as an enormous broadsword. From tip to handle, it is approximately five to six feet long, with a single-edged large blade approximately one foot wide. In Cloud's Final Fantasy VII artwork, the blade is a lighter color on the bladed edge, while the rest of the blade is dark gray, and the handguard appears to be bolted or riveted into place. There are two holes near the handguard, variably said to be Materia slots, or where Cloud clips the sword onto his back. This design of the Buster Sword is used in most spin-off appearances. In the Kingdom Hearts series, Cloud wields a Buster Sword of this design wrapped in bandages.
In Compilation of Final Fantasy VII releases, namely Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children and Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII-, the Buster Sword has a more detailed design. The handguard is colored gold and has swirl designs, the part of the blade bearing the two holes is raised slightly and sectioned off from the rest of the blade, and there are etchings engraved on the blade near the handguard. In Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, this design is used with additional gold coloring along the raised section around the slots.
The Buster Sword is Cloud's default weapon. It is unique in that it cannot be sold or thrown due to Cloud using it in cutscenes and minigames. The Buster Sword has a base power of 18 and a base accuracy of 96%. It has two linked Materia slots.
On the title screen, the Buster Sword appears suspended over the ground surrounded by a black background. Buster Sword also represents the Weapon is Broken handicap on the Battle Square handicap reels.
In the PlayStation 4 remake, the weapon looks to be an amalgam
Sometime after Final Fantasy VII, Cloud places the Buster Sword on the cliff where Zack had his last stand as a memorial. The sword rusts and becomes covered in dirt. In place of the Buster Sword Cloud wields the Fusion Swords, which take on the silhouette of the Buster Sword when connected.
When the Player Turk is infiltrating Icicle base with Zack, the latter wields the Buster Sword.
Use brings about wear, tear, and rust—and that's a real waste.
- —Angeal Hewley
The Buster Sword's origins are revealed with Angeal Hewley as its original owner, whose father had the blade forged when Angeal joined SOLDIER. His parents borrowed the money for the sword, and Angeal's father worked as much as he could to pay back the debt, eventually falling ill and passing away. Angeal cares for the sword in his father's memory, using it as little as possible to avoid it being damaged, instead fighting with a standard SOLDIER sword.
Angeal eventually entrusts the Buster Sword to Zack as a symbol of passing on his honor and dreams. Zack uses the blade more frequently than Angeal, but swings to hit with the blunt edge. When Zack is gunned down outside Midgar, he passes on the Buster Sword to Cloud, naming him his living legacy and proof of his life.
Cloud brandishes the Buster Sword in this remake of the motorcycle minigame from Final Fantasy VII. While riding the Hardy-Daytona, Cloud attacks enemies with his Buster Sword. It uses the design seen in the Compilation with the ornamental base.
The Buster Sword is a dummied out weapon for Tidus. It exists in the game's internal data, but can only be obtained by hacking. Behaving in a similar manner to Angeal and Zack, Tidus attacks with the sword's blunt edge.
Gilgamesh uses a fake Buster Sword, along with many other iconic swords from other Final Fantasy games. The kanji character on the sword means "replica", or "fake", and has four slots instead of two.
The fake Buster Sword can be used by player characters via hacking methods.
A sword far heavier than any sword has rights to be, yet a true 1st Class will wield it with ease.
Sword made for felling monsters.
- —In-game description
The Buster Sword is a sword-class weapon wielded by the Soldier, Warrior, and Dragoon classes. It has 35 power, 5 defense, and teaches the ability Mindbreak to Soldiers and Warriors, and Wyrmtamer to Dragoons.
If you're in the business of monster slaying, you need look no further than this sword.
The Buster Sword is also an equippable weapon usable by Cloud obtained in Destiny Odyssey VII-1. It is a Level 1 Greatsword that gives +4 ATK.
The Buster Sword is used by Cloud in both his default and "Steady Light" outfits. It also appears in Cloud's downloadable costume, his Kingdom Hearts look, where it takes on the wrapped appearance it has in Kingdom Hearts. Bartz still wields the blade in his mimicked moveset, but due to changes in his moveset he only uses it in one move as opposed to the original two. As in Dissidia, it is also an exclusive weapon for Cloud, and can found in his chapter of the 013 story. Its stats have been increased to Attack +22 and Defense -2.
Buster Sword appears as a weapon, requiring three Thunder CP to use, and one Thunder and one Shine CP to remove it from the equipped character and return it to the hand. When a Forward equipped with the Buster Sword is moved to the Break Zone from the field, Buster Sword allows the player to select a Forward on the field with a lower cost than the original Forward equipped with the Buster Sword, and equip the Buster Sword to the new Forward.
Cloud is set to appear in the upcoming game along with his Buster Sword.
Creation and developmentEdit
In the earliest concept sketches (see Gallery) Cloud's sword was smaller and thinner and had a single slot used to attach the weapon to a stud on Cloud's back. The handle had a hanging chain similar to Squall's Revolver in Final Fantasy VIII. A magnet on the suspender on Cloud's back was used to hold the sword in place. In The Reunion Files for Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, Tetsuya Nomura stated his original vision of the Buster Sword was unrefined steel, and he referred to it as "the Giant Kitchen Knife". Having stated that Cloud's imagery was based on the samurai martial artist luminary Musashi Miyamoto, the size and design of the Buster Sword is reminiscent of the oar carved suburito waster sword used by him in his only and final duel against rival Sasaki Kojiro, and in contrast to their rival's weapons, as Musashi believed that swords like nodachi were unwieldly and left one open due to its use.
In an early version of Cloud's official poster (the finalized version of this image was used as the cover art for Final Fantasy VII in North America) that was used in Square's (now deleted) original Final Fantasy VII website, and also used as a promo shot for early magazine articles on Final Fantasy VII, a "beta" version of the Buster Sword can be seen. Here the Buster Sword has only one slot instead of two, the proportions are different and the slot takes up a larger percentage of the sword's width, the sword's sharp edge is held to the opposite side, and in proportion to Cloud the early Buster Sword looks longer.
In early footage of Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, before the Fusion Swords were designed, Cloud was shown fighting Kadaj wielding the Buster Sword that had the swirl design on the handguard, but not the blade etchings. The fight is identical to a portion of their battle in the completed film, albeit slowed down considerably.
Since the Buster Sword is Cloud's default sword, he uses it as his weapon in almost all of his spin-off appearances, including Ehrgeiz: God Bless the Ring, the Itadaki Street series, and Chocobo Racing. In Theatrhythm Final Fantasy Curtain Call, Cloud and Zack both wield the Buster Sword, Cloud's based on its Final Fantasy VII design and Zack's on its Compilation design.
Non-Final Fantasy appearancesEdit
Kingdom Hearts seriesEdit
Cloud wields the Buster Sword wrapped in bandages in all of his appearances in the Kingdom Hearts series, except Kingdom Hearts II where he wields a wrapped Fusion Sword in its stead.
The Metal Chocobo Keyblade is based on the Buster Sword, and is a long, heavy, metal weapon based upon long reach and powerful attacks with two holes near the hilt. It is won by defeating Cloud in the Olympus Coliseum, and appears in Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, and Kingdom Hearts Re:coded.
Both Cloud and Zack can wield the Buster Sword during Arcade Mode, and it is obtainable as equipment for the character Koji Masuda during Quest Mode, appearing as a monster drop from Floors 10-12 of the Forsaken Dungeon.
Cloud wields his iconic Buster Sword in his appearance as a DLC character in Super Smash Bros. for the WiiU and Nintendo 3DS. It can also be equipped by the Nintendo character Kirby when copying Cloud, Kirby uses it to perform the move Blade Beam against opponents.
A weapon called the Buster Sword appears in the Monster Hunter game series. While it more greatly resembles a cleaver, it bears the same overall design.
The Buster Sword appears in the online game Fallen Sword.
There is a sword that appears in the sandbox game Terraria called the Breaker Blade that resembles the Buster Sword and its name serves as wordplay of that of the Buster Sword.
The Buster Sword can be unlocked and subsequently eaten in the mobile game Hungry Oni. The item description "A spiky haired guy carried something similar", reflects the reference in Final Fantasy IX.
The Buster Sword appears in Puzzle & Dragons as part of the Final Fantasy collaboration.
The Buster Sword can be found in Just Cause 3 as an Easter Egg, stuck to the side of a snowy mountain.
The Buster Sword is inside Finn and Jake's brother Jermaine's house in season 6 episode 33 of the Cartoon Network show Adventure Time. Jake tries to use the sword to fight invading demons, but he finds the sword too heavy to wield.
The Buster Sword has appeared as Cloud's weapon in numerous merchandise of him. In 1997 the first Final Fantasy VII action figures manufactured by Bandai were released, and Cloud's figure comes with two weapons: Buster Sword and Hardedge. The Buster Sword in this set is uniformly gray, without the lighter colored edge as seen in the game. Cloud also wields the Buster Sword in all cold cast resin statues crafted by Kotobukiya.
Buster Sword has also appeared in Final Fantasy Trading Arts figures with both Cloud and Zack. Cloud has the plain version while Zack's Buster Sword has cracks on the surface. The Zack figurine was released before Advent Children: Final Fantasy VII and Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII-, so the Buster Sword is still the original version without the more ornamental base. Cloud's Dissidia Final Fantasy Trading Arts figure also has the original Buster Sword, because that's the one he wields in that game.
Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- Limited Edition PSPEdit
A limited edition PSP Slim was released along with Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- in Japan: the console bundled with the game, as well as a Buster Sword wrist strap. 77,777 units were available and all sold in one day. A similar bundle was also released in Europe, but lacked the Buster Sword wrist strap.
In 2007 Square Enix released Final Fantasy VII Play Arts figures. Cloud's comes with the Buster Sword. Its design is that from the original artwork, rather than the updated design from the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII. The deluxe set that comes with Cloud and the Hardy-Daytona also includes the Buster Sword.
In 2009 Square Enix released Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- Play Arts figures, Zack's figure including the Buster Sword. Unlike the Buster Sword in the Final Fantasy VII Play Arts figures released two years earlier, the Buster Sword Zack carries is the updated design from the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII.
Also in 2009 Square Enix released Cloud and Sephiroth as Kingdom Hearts Play Arts figures, Cloud's including a bandaged version of the Buster Sword.
The word "buster" means a person who breaks up something, e.g. crime busters, or something big or unusual for its kind. It derives from the verb "bust". The term "buster sword" may also be a corruption of the term "bastard sword", used to describe two-handed large swords in 17th century Europe.
It may also be a reference to the supposed rain-making device "cloudbuster", created by Wilhelm Reich.
- A full-scale model of the Buster Sword was built to celebrate at the Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete press screening party in the Sony Building in Tokyo.
- When Zack has the Buster Sword on his back the blade's edge is facing down, while Cloud has the sword's blade facing out, possibly for quicker use of the blade itself.
- The chocolate parfait sold in Square Enix's Artnia cafe comes with a miniature replica of the Buster Sword.
- In Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII-, it is possible to battle Minerva before having obtained the Buster Sword in the story, especially in New Game+. The Minerva battle starts off with a cutscene showing Zack with the Buster Sword even if it hasn't been obtained yet, and because the cutscene transfers directly into the battle, the Buster Sword remains on Zack for the battle.
- An episode of the popular YouTube blacksmithing show "Man At Arms" made a real-life wieldable replica of the Buster Sword, but it weighed in at nearly 100 pounds and was impossible to properly wield. The episode can be found here.