Asuma Sarutobi (猿飛アスマ, Sarutobi Asuma) was a jōnin of Konohagakure’s Sarutobi clan and a former member of the Twelve Guardian Ninja. He was also the leader of Team 10 which consists of Shikamaru Nara, Ino Yamanaka, and Chōji Akimichi.
- Birthdate: October 18
- Sex: Male
- Age: Part I: 27–28 – Part II: 31
- Status: Deceased
- Height: Part I: 190.8 cm
- Weight: Part I: 81.6 kg
- Blood type: O
- Affiliation: Konohagakure
- Team: Twelve Guardian Ninja Team 10 – Twenty Platoons
Background Asuma Sarutobi
Asuma was born to Biwako and Hiruzen Sarutobi, the Third Hokage. During his Academy entrance ceremony, Asuma became friends with Kurenai Yūhi. In the anime, during the Chūnin Exams, Asuma was placed on a team with Kurenai and Raidō Namiashi. He later cheered on his classmates during the third round of the Chūnin Exams.
During the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox’s Attack, Asuma along with the other young ninja were barred from participating in the defence of the village by Shinku Yūhi and the other senior shinobi. A few years after the event, Asuma would become an uncle to Konohamaru. He later became a jōnin.
About seven years before the start of the series, he had a disagreement with his father and left Konoha to pursue his personal interests. During his absence, he became one of the Twelve Guardian Ninja, a group that protected the Land of Fire’s daimyō, indicated by the sash on his waist.
During this time he developed a strong friendship with the monk Chiriku, who would go on to become the head monk of the Fire Temple. Prior to returning to Konoha to resume active military duty, he accumulated a bounty of 35 million ryō on the black market, something he seemed to be particularly proud of since it was a testament of his skill, even bragging that his bounty was 5 million more than Chiriku.
After returning to the village, Asuma resumed his jōnin duties and became a teacher of Inomatsu and presumably some more students.
About twelve years after the Nine Tailed Demon Fox’s Attack, seeing his classmate fall into deeper self pity from losing Obito Uchiha and Rin Nohara, Asuma, along with Might Guy and Kurenai decided to speak with the Third Hokage, voicing their disapproval of Kakashi being in Anbu with such bitterness and suggested instead that he be re-assigned as a jōnin sensei in the hopes of restoring Kakashi’s kindness.
Asuma Sarutobi Personality
Asuma was typically a laid-back individual, and did not get himself involved in things unless absolutely necessary, as seen when he decided not to help save Hinata Hyūga during her fight in the Chūnin Exams.
He was a heavy smoker, but, despite this, he would abruptly break the habit under certain circumstances, such as when his father died or learned that Kurenai was pregnant.
Not always seeing eye to eye with his father, Asuma later came to respect his father’s role as Hokage: referring to him as a great father, and was proud to have been born into the Sarutobi clan.
Despite Asuma’s very blunt personality, often calling his students what they were unreservedly, a “glutton” (Chōji), a “loud mouth” (Ino), and a “slacker” (Shikamaru), he had a very good relationship with all three.
He often took them to Yakiniku Q for lunch and dinner where more often than not Chōji would eat too much and Asuma had to pay more and apologise emphatically to the owner.
To help them overcome their underachieving natures, he attempted to use bribery and outright trickery to manipulate them into doing what he wanted.
This was seen most with Chōji, who Asuma was frequently able to entice into action with the promise of food and even Shikamaru whom he had to use games like shōgi on to assess his skill level. Out of his students, Asuma spent the most time with and was closest to Shikamaru.
Asuma and Shikamaru often played shōgi or Go in their free time, though Asuma was never able to beat Shikamaru. It was Asuma who first discovered that the lazy Shikamaru was actually a genius, with an I.Q. over 200.
Throughout the series it had been heavily hinted that Asuma was romantically involved with fellow jōnin Kurenai Yūhi, having been close to her since childhood. The two appeared together in most of their scenes, and the other characters made it a point to note this fact on several occasions.
When Kakashi Hatake found the two together at a dumpling shop, Kakashi asked if they were on a date, to which Asuma responded by quickly changing the subject.
In a flashback, Asuma was shown buying flowers for a person he refused to name, though Ino asked that he say hello to Kurenai for her anyway, to which Asuma nervously asked how she knew about it.
During Asuma’s battle with Hidan and Kakuzu, Kurenai was often shown wondering about his progress, appearing anxious. When she heard of his death, she fell to her knees grief stricken.
She later laid flowers on his grave during his funeral. The truth of their relationship was then made clear when Kurenai revealed that she was pregnant with Asuma’s child.
Appearance Asuma Sarutobi
Asuma was a tall man, with brown eyes, olive skin, short black spiky hair, and a beard. His clothing consisted of the standard Konoha ninja uniform with the sleeves rolled up half way, flak jacket, regular shinobi sandals and forehead protector. He also wore a sash that had the kanji for “Fire” (火) marked on it around his waist, a pair of black bangles, and bandages wrapped around the arms of his sleeves.
As a genin, he wore a white short sleeved shirt with a blue and black collar over chain-mail armour, along with a simple white vest, a pair of black pants, and a white belt.
In the anime, it was shown that while he was a member of the Twelve Guardian Ninja, he wore a simple long sleeved shirt with bandages on the arms, pants, that sash denoting he was a guardian and a jacket with a fur collar. He also had his trench knives with him at that point.
Abilities Asuma Sarutobi
Asuma was a highly talented, well respected jōnin of village, gaining praise from Shikaku Nara of being a great shinobi who is not easy to take down. He established a great record in military prowess something many upcoming shinobi greatly admired.
His abilities earned him a position into the Twelve Guardian Ninja an elite hand-picked team which served to protect the Land of Fire’s daimyō a role which later earned him a bounty of 35,000,000 ryō.
He could effortlessly take down nine Oto-nin during the Konoha Crush, noted to have been chūnin-level or above, and was able to compete against Hidan, a powerful member of the Akatsuki, while also protecting his team.
Asuma was hailed as Konoha’s foremost skilled ninja in close ranged melee combat. His battle style revolved mainly around taijutsu, combined with his special trench knives to create a melee type fighting style. These knives are made of a special metal that is capable of easily being infused with chakra.
With his Flying Swallow, he could extend the blades with his chakra to injure an enemy several feet out of the blade’s physical range, as well as increase the cutting power of the blades to the point of easily slicing through trees, rocks, and even metal. He was also physically strong enough to block Kisame Hoshigaki’s Samehada using his trench knives.
In the anime, Asuma was taught how to use the ultimate technique of the Fire Temple, the Welcoming Approach: Thousand Armed Murder. While admitting to not be as skilled with it as Chiriku, he was able to effectively manifest the spirit to attack and defend to a certain extent.
Asuma possessed an affinity to Wind Release. He would mainly combine it with his trench knives to increase their lethality. As explained by Asuma to Naruto, due to having an affinity for the nature, the trench knives will gain enough striking power to pierce through rock.
He could also release a powerful stream of wind, and in the anime, use his wind-based chakra to levitate his trench knives and control them remotely.
Asuma was also able to use Fire Release. With it, he can use the Fire Release: Ash Pile Burning technique to breathe out a thick cloud of gunpowder infused ash that causes a devastating explosion when ignited, leaving the target with third degree burns.