Shikamaru: Tactical Genius or Overrated Combat Retard?

“…to secure ourselves against defeat lies in our own hands, but the opportunity of defeating the enemy comes from the enemy himself.”  -Sun Tzu, 6th century B.C.

“…for Patrick Swazye pimping is easy.” –Cpl Eva… er coolbeans1, 21st century A.D

The Pimp
The Pimp

Here on iareawesomeness, there has been an off and on debate as to whether or not Shikamaru is really the smartest thing since sliced bread or just an overrated blowhard that feels himself the next coming of Swazye. So I (coolbeans1) am here to combine a rudimentary view on real world USMC tactics with the anime style of writing.  As you do. Our man (ok your man, because I don’t like him) has been in several battles, but I’ll only be going into one in particular:  Shikamaru squad vs. the immortals.

First, there are only two methods of attacking an enemy:  direct and indirect. (That means you can throw paint in his eyes or go old school and jack him in the jaw.) However, in combination they give rise to endless maneuvers. The force recon view is summed up by their guiding principle:

“Attack with speed and extreme violence and you usually win.”

Extreme speed and violence isn’t really Shikamaru’s style.  He uses less of a tactical approach, instead opting for a strategic shoji-like approach.  (Tactical=what happens in a battle, strategic=a campaign or war; big surprise there, huh?)

Hmmm...did I lock the door when I left?

Hmmm...did I lock the door when I left?

Shiki starts off by reviewing the plan with his troops before the battle starts. This is fighting 101 stuff and he does a great job. He clearly assigns Kakashi, Chouji and Ino jobs and initial contact procedures. Whenever a fire team goes “outside the wire,” the fundamental procedures are to review the plan and check everyone’s equipment.

Kakashi didn't mind being put on the team, but he drew the line when Shikamaru wanted to check out his ninja tool sack.

Kakashi didn't mind being put on the team, but he drew the line when Shikamaru said he wanted to check out his ninja tool sack.

Shikamaru’s grade in initial planning is a resounding A+.
*grumbles in disappointment*

Ino gets a bird's eye view.  (I wish I was that bird...)

Ino gets a bird's eye view. (I wish I was that bird...)


Next he uses Ino’s mind transfer technique and a bird to scout for the enemy.

After finding them, he notes where they are and selects the battlefield he wants.


 Again, in his information and planning phase, Shiki gets an A+.
*mutters stupid smart people, damn average raisers*


"Suck it, coolbeans.  Just admit my awesomeness now."

"Suck it, coolbeans. Just admit my awesomeness now."

(Yeah, right…)  Can he keep it up for long? Is Shikamaru really that good? Is he the knight that Ass-uma thought he was?

Weeeell, no.

Can you hear it, Shikamaru?  "Ooooover-rated!  Ooooover-rated!"

Can you hear it, Shikamaru? "Ooooover-rated! Ooooover-rated!"

His initial contact goes well. He uses exploding tags to create a desired response from the enemy, then uses it against them by shadow binding them with his blades. Then, Shikamaru attacks Kakuzu using a shadow-possessed Hidan-puppet. Another good move.

(Man, its bothersome to check my ego and compliment this guy. I’d rather look at Gai….umm clouds, I meant clouds and you can’t prove otherwise!!!) *comment followed by rapid shifty eyes*

"I told you, it's YOUR turn to take the trash out!"

"I told you, it's YOUR turn to take the trash out!"

His team is hiding its numbers and force. Chouji’s attack fails, Kakashi has revealed himself from the “guardian angel” position, and they’ve only destroyed one heart. ONE. It was a great initial strategy, and they couldn’t have known that the enemy was a multi-hearted freak. However, now the entire team is exposed (f@cked!).

The speed and violence approach has failed, so…what now? Kakuzu, the tank of the Akatsuki, is still on track and delivering blows. Hidan, the ground pounder, is free of Kage Mane and ready to roll out on the opposition.

Shikamaru’s grade for initial contact B maybe B+.
*Ha! I knew this straight A’s business wouldn’t last.*

"Damn it, Kakashi, that cheese had MY name on it!"

"Damn it, Kakashi, that cheese had MY name on it!"

Kakashi comes under fire from both enemy units and dodges enemy attacks with great skill and poise. Ino stands by unused and un-useful. Choji waits awestruck and without orders. Shikamaru is still not communicating with his team throughout the battle. Come on, Shikamaru, do you need someone to hold your hand? Maybe a written invitation from the Hokage saying GET OFF YOUR A$$, KID!!!!

The situation has turned, the unit is on the defensive and their leader is impotent. Maybe Shiki had too many shots of whiskey last night, I dunno. I wonder how Temari takes this (or does she?!). His resources (team members) are disoriented, out of orders and not being directed. The squad does reform into a proper defensive position (that’s something, I guess).

The squad leader is centered in the back to give effective orders; Kakashi is the front of the diamond shape, called a wedge formation. They finally regroup and pass pertinent information. Maybe he can save this phase of battle yet. (Holy Captain Planet batman, the enemy punches back!)

Sometimes, wedgies are a good thing...

Sometimes, wedgies are a good thing...

Our intrepid squad leader correctly states that the immortals need to be split up. DER.  Normally a leader SHOULD TASK THIS OUT. However, in the anime world a little give and take is needed for the story writing aspects. Meaning, it’s not really a bad decision for him to be the odd man out and go all lone wolf on Hidan’s cocky a$$.  (Yeah!  Somebody needed to stomp that guy a new mudhole…) The recap of recollecting and adapting phase goes as suck, I mean such.

Is cheese supposed to be hairy?!  Damn it, bro, expiration dates.

Uh, coolbeans, is cheese supposed to be HAIRY?! Damn it, bro, expiration dates.

Shikamaru had no control over his squad, no one communicated with each other for way too long (they have headsets that can be used, such as in the save Garra arc, I mean, WTF?!). Shikamaru was paralyzed with indecision for what, in a battle, amounts to an eternity. His forces were scattered and the main body troops (Kakashi fills this role, too…what a guy…) were isolated and had to go above and beyond the others to keep themselves in the fight.

In the real world, I would grade a very low D range.
But as we all know this is the mysterious world of manga
(and we all want Kakashi to look really cool)
…so I’ll give his leadership a C-.
(yippy!!  bring that hate mail on)

Be quiet, Shikamaru.  You can complain in the comments just like everyone else.

Be quiet, Shikamaru. You can complain in the comments just like everyone else.

Going into a post adjustment phase, Shikamaru does use a lot of indirect fire methods to get the desired result. In a rudimentary way, he uses the “talking guns” method.

One fires, then during the pause, the other fires. The enemy is never at rest. Rounds are always incoming and the enemy is usually either battered or forced into an unfavorable position of some sort.

What this means in the manga world is that Shikamaru is using a combination of attacks (the kage mane and his shuriken shadow bind) to force the enemy to retreat and react until capture is achieved. Good move and quite strategic (…Hmm maybe he should read make out tactics… that would help more than he has so far…)

He leads Hidan to another battlefield of his choosing and proceeds to use delaying, misdirection, false information and unconventional warfare techniques.

The rest of his fight is one on one and doesn’t show his leadership abilities, which are the main focus of this longwinded article (I mean come on, tactical breakdown of a manga…Coolbeans you silly b***h). Although, he does an outstanding job in unconventional warfare.

A+ for sight selection and imposing his will on the enemy
to force the combat on his terms
(ack, I gave him another compliment, nooo…what is the world coming to)

For the last time, Shiki, wait your turn!  Don't make me sick Orochimaru on you...

For the last time, Shiki, wait your turn! Don't make me sick Orochimaru on you...

The final verdict, Shikamaru has strategic brilliance. He can formulate an articulate plan, ensure that the squad is prepared, and adjust once the situation becomes organic. BUT, he’s slow to act under fire. He doesn’t keep proper control of his assets and he doesn’t utilize his forces to their fullest in this particular battle (Ino plays no major part, not even as a distracting force to divide the fire).

Shikamaru’s final grade in the real world?  D+.
In the anime world? B+
In the coolbeans combo scale?  C-
*because I hate it when a leader can’t keep control of his men and/or is stricken with indecision.*
*(plus, Shiki sucks)*

Maring Maito Gai says, "when all else fails, make fun of the Army, coolbeans."  *ding*

Marine Maito Gai says, "when all else fails, make fun of the Army, coolbeans." *ding*

Five most dangerous things to hear in the army:
1. A Private saying, “I learned this in Basic…”
2. A Sergeant saying, “Trust me, sir…”
3. A Second Lieutenant saying, “Based upon my experience…
4. A Captain saying, “I was just thinking…
5. A Warrant Officer chuckling, “Watch this $#!+…


~ by coolbeans on February 16, 2009.

124 Responses to “Shikamaru: Tactical Genius or Overrated Combat Retard?”

  1. FIRSSSSSTTTTT!!!!!! ha ha ha ha…

    Great job coolbeans, thanks for a fun post…and thanks for being such a good egg. =)

  2. 2nd
    its nice to know there are other shikimaru haters out there!!

  3. Awesome analysis of the battle. Though I don’t necessarily agree with your grading system, I do like two things you pointed out:

    a) Ino: what purpose was she serving? Eye candy? I guess it all comes down to a comment in the anime that Kakuzu made “You little tart.” Useless – just as much as she was in the early manga.

    b) Shiki: failure to communicate between the squad members. I mean, Kakashi took on the equivalent of pitcher, first, second, third bases, catcher and the fielders of a baseball game. And, why did Kakashi merely placate to Shiki? To give him experience? Hmmmmm…not sure about that one. Though, Kakashi was his best “player” and his elite ninja status is very well-deserved. The other three, well, are only “partially baked.”

    Thanks for an awesome article.

  4. 4th and don’t hate on Shika he is my fav character actually

  5. 5th…shika!

  6. that it the most biased article ever written….i Demand a review by a higher authority, the thing been done here is that even though a person scored 95,95,80,60, in his tests, he’s given a the final percentage of 65,55,50

    and the creepy thing is don’t even like shikachu(thunderbolt!wait…no…BrainBOLT!!!) that much

  7. oops…the higher authority is me….
    i demand a review by an even higher authority…

  8. @penny and everyone to come.
    this was totally writen to be both fun and an argument starter. lol disclaimer this post represents the veiws of the writer and in no way represents the the veiws of…. and so on you get the point i dont know or want to look up the rest 😉 haha but this was all in good fun. the awsomeness crew was nice enough to work with me on this and id like to say both thanks and big props to them. haha now bring on the hate mail shiki lovers 😉

  9. …….sob……i want my article too….:'(

  10. oh…and nice work anyways coolbeans, if you made me lol, it’s classified good under all circumstances…

  11. @harshy
    lol i agree, 95,95,80,60, in his tests should be a higher score. but in a battle it goes by the lowest score and rounds up a bit……. hehe and it was mostly just written for good fun ps. shiki sucks. and even though i only sorta beleive that now i think ive gota defend it to the end of time now

  12. @ coolbeans – i dont think shiki “sucks” but i think he is EXTREMELY overrated. if he is so smart, how come and the so-called “intelligence” sector of konoha is so dumb right now about pein…

    its kinda like the situation with naruto being underrated… everyone says he’s dumb because he acts retarded around sakura and kakashi, but in battle he is pretty damn smart.

    – in response to that, people will try to say this: “naruto uses shadow clones too much”
    my response to them is: “shikamaru uses shadow possession too much… your point??”
    (just trying to get that argument out of the way before it starts)

  13. well, according to 3 A+=100, The B=85, and C- for anime world grade=70, final grade would precisely be 91, A-. Your points seem fairly solid, but he is only around Naruto’s age. Ino should have sat the fighting portion out, and Choji should have just stayed skinny from the Sasuke retrieval ark. Once Shika grows more with the battle experience, he will eliminate those mistakes (I would say they’re minor in a sense of how easy they are to fix, but i realize that they’re not so minor during fighting, huh?) Not bad in the grading until the final averages, but hey, it could be worse.(Ino trying to lead a fight, fight a fight, or try not to get in the way in a fight)

    Feels good to comment here again

  14. ajd: coolbeans just explained that when grading combat the lowest score is your overall. The weakest link is the overall strength of the chain. Get a D in any combat area and your overall performance will be D.

  15. @adj lets take this point by point
    -ino should have played a bigger role. a true leader utilizes all options
    -choji’s weight is a defencive measure for the ultimate justu of his family. or drug… i mean food pill 😉
    -shiki will get beter (one would hope 😉 ) and he has grown. i had to decide to do this on many battles the big 2 being sauske retrieval and this. i orginally wanted to show the growth he made… lol but im a fast decision maker and i went with it. he’s made progress i agree but is still totally over blown

    ne ways good to see you back adj glad i could raise your blood presure for a few minutes 😉

  16. I come from a military family on my dad’s side and they have told me this a thousand times. I clearly don’t agree from there stand points, but I am well aware that Shika did not under any circumstances deliver when it mattered most. I just think it’s horrible to take all the good he did and give a grade based on one area. It seems impossible to grade it into one scale. I would prefer a style like

    Striking effectiveness:B
    Individual tactics:A
    Overall Tactics:D

    Then give appropriate matching for his weak areas. I am also assuming that he is not YET cut out to lead a team in such important missions, hence my want to have him as a support adviser. Just like I don’t think he should be Hokage, but He defiantly needs should be in a strategy branch close to the hokage.

  17. wow, that smiley should say D for a grade.

  18. Ino is a medical ninja, if she entered the battle against Hidan and Kakuzu that would have been a problem. Even worse so if she was injured. Unlike Sakura she doesn’t use super strengh.

  19. @ kyouto – the thing about that is, i never saw her use any medical ninjutsu at all in that fight!!! if she’s not gonna fulfill her role as a medical ninja, then she should have entered the fight as a distraction or something!

  20. lol @adj this was ment to star fights (just wanted to say that again) but in a battle your weakest point is still… der your weakest point. nin lose their lives because of bad leadership. they say that clearly in the get sausgay back mission. but your right he steped way over his abuility level and did a great job taking on arguably one of the toughest akatski teams around. im not saying he cant be great but right now… oooooovvver rateeeed 😉

  21. I apologize for my biased view of Shika, and I’m bashing the others a little to much. I think you should add the fact that he knows Choji and Ino very very well, yet still can’t seem to use what he already knows to help. I have yet to see in battle say, “oh, you know Choji could do this because his style is good for blah” and so on. Defiantly a failure to use knowledge that he already knows about while he and they are doing nothing.

    Ok now that I think about it, after the initial execution, he didn’t truly do shit. He probably deserves near an F by what he should be capable of.

  22. @kyouto and reflex both good points but i have to side with reflex a corps man doesnt fight. then again the taliban offers a higher price for them than even a us or british marine why… THEY SAVE LIFES the most important role on the battlefield and its by no means to be overlooked. (lol disclaimer again not trying to get too serious this is all in good fun but i would do anything for the corps men who have influenced me they rock out with the best awsomeness, again dont take my comment with a wtf more of a ohh lol i get it) she should have used her med-jutsu then there were injuries to take care of. but then thats not shikis fualt when there was time to heal he was gone. i cant knock him on that one.

  23. Wow take one step out of biased, and I actually manage to finally see where they overhype him. Just ignore me and my rambling

  24. @ coolbeans – lol i completely forgot this post was about shikamaru when i posted that about ino. however i do think that shiki should have arranged some way for her to use her medical ninjutsu… some kind of temporary fall back plan. he could have even gone as far as not revealing her whereabouts so that if kakashi or choji had gotten injured, they could have gone to her for a quick fix (are those the wrong words to use?? 😀 )

  25. lol *coolbeans smile an evil smile* and says “one more convert” haha have your own opinion its what makes this place awsomeness hehe but i wont fight it if you want to come to the dark side *breaths heavy like darth vader* (but fails and just sounds creepy, hangs head and walks away)

  26. Great post coolbeans. When you were contemplating the communication issues, I kept thinking about “Cool Hand Luke.” That famous line, “What we Haaave Heaarre is a Fayaaaare to coooomunicate.”

  27. oh btw im down for doing a follow up fight break down of whatever the aswsomeness readers want. but again i defer to the awsomeness brain-trust on all of that *bows head to awwsomeness creators* if you liked this and it wasnt to much overthinking i was hoping to do a “how naruto has grown” with the pain fight (lol whenever it finnaly ends) but if theres something the awsomeness fan base wants a post on tell me how indepth and what battle and im more than happy to serve you all. i get more than my share of glee reading the great posts and theories that EVERYONE posts

  28. Ino was hidden initially and ran out to warn Shikumaru and Choji. Choji was also hidden and gave the first attack from Shikumaru’s command. Kakazu was able to harden his body to stop Choji’s physical techniques. Kakashi was hidden and excelled at ninjutsu, but was competing against Kakazu, Kakazu’s Hearts, and Hidan. After Shikamaru split the ground they were able to handle each separately. It wasn’t the best situation to begin with. Shikumari’s abbility is sometimes overpriased, but for this there should be a different grade.

  29. There is something I want to see analysed but at the same time I wanted to be the one analysing it.

  30. re: leadership; Or, after a tactical reversal they disengaged with Kakashi being the appropriate rear-guard, regrouped, and received updated orders that had already been prepared for (he dug the freakn’ hole already…), and carried out through the unavoidable tactical realities of:

    “If you bleed, you die.”


    “Try not to get your heart stolen!”

    The only guy other than the SL that could be expected to work with reality #1 was the ASL Kakashi, and he was needed to keep reality #2 in play until either victory or the reinforcements showing up. At that point, Ino and Chouji were combat ineffective- Ino had an all-or-nothing weapon and her skills as a medic were rendered irrelevant due to the aforementioned tactical realities, and Chouji was too vulnerable to getting nicked or making physical contact with tendrils. Although I’m loathe to make this point because while it might raise the grade as currently evaluated considerably, it also introduces something potentially disqualifying- withholding information from your commanding officer and from your unit. In the process of raising the D, you get an F.

    Shikamaru had a hard enough time getting into the field as it was without his psych-casualty of a commanding officer disqualifying him as a psych-casualty.

    “I am in fact, quite sane, fairly mellow right now, and really do, against all reasonable expectation, possess a workable plan for dismembering the guy who killed my mentor and burying him in my back yard while killing his partner once or twice over. Even though the plan calls for me doing the dismembering and the burying personally, I’m not doing this from my motivation to obtain revenge, I sincerely believe that I am just the man for bringing this force to battle and possess the vital intel from the previous engagement that will make this feasible. I am not at all an avenger, I am a knight in the service of the king and take actions as such. Now trust me with a squad.”

    Within the constraint of “We need to actively go out and bring these guys to battle”, Chouji and Ino were the only team he could get. The Twenty Squads were going to be sent to pre-determined locations later on- a Hokage provided unit would not have the ability to seek the enemy independently, (which was /the/ critical contribution here, Ino discovering and Team Shikamaru pinning the Immortals. Once that happened, with reinforcements streaming from a nearby Ninja village, it was just a matter of time and eventual bodycount. The Akatsuki were losing a team that day. In the Hokage’s provided engagement plan, /this would not have happened/.) Backup was welcome and solicited, Kakashi was an appreciated gift from God.

    Still, he fully intended (if the fight lasted that long, and it turned out it did) to split off Hidan personally and deal with him solo, and made preparations to do this before the mission even began. He didn’t tell Tsunade this, and he didn’t tell his Team this. One can only assume because it would have cast too much doubt on his fitness to go on the mission much less lead it, or he believed his unit would not have followed that order and instead chose to wait until the tactical situation was dire enough that they would accept it with minimal argument to spring it on them. Not good.

  31. Also, radio headsets while present may not be ubiquitous. Expense and availability could be factors. Wouldn’t be the first time.

  32. @ jackselectrichead
    lol id like to talk to you offline and as a millitary kin (totally obvious) you know what i mean by that. you sound like an officer or a coc rep. im way more than happy to argue my indepth after action report but this is a lighthearted community so ill totally put you in your place ;), lol just not here with long posts that lose everyones attention u want my email i will totally go toe to toe on the specifics 😉 haha i love a good arguement let me know if you want it (all in good fun of course)

  33. i was going for more of a ftl and aftl view jack

  34. Hey! wait One f*cked up minute!
    didn’t your username used to be coolbeans”1″???

  35. @coolbeans: Can’t wait for a “how naruto has grown” post. Sure, we can at least wait for the fight to be over (whenever that is) – but there is much to talk about, think about, and a lot to read too much into.

    Props to you on this post.

  36. sorry, got lost in all the military talk….who are we talking about again…?

  37. The battle with the immortals could have gone much better IMHO. You have Shiki with the ability to shadow bind control people and Ino who can do a similar thing with the mind. You would think the initial strategy would be to shadow bind Hidan then mind control Kakuzu and have Hidan take him out with his ritual. Instead, Shiki goes into loner mode and decides to do his one on one revenge crap. Shiki a true leader?… I think not.

    What’s with this Ino has only one shot with the mind control. Shiki doesn’t use it because she’s fucked if she misses? Then why did she become a ninja in the first place if she can’t control whether her jutsu hits the mark or not? Kishi needs to convert Ino to a geisha role and just relegate herself to providing ‘spiritual healing’ to the troops on the battlefield. At the very least, Choji would have to masturbate on his own during this lame battle.

    Speaking of Choji… what a complete waste. He’s great against brute strength opponents but none of the immortals were brute strength opponents so why even have him along? If Konoha sees fit to trade out Naruto at will, then why allow Choji to go along as dead weight in this scenario?… so he can have a hand in avenging his teacher?… he didn’t do anything!

  38. Shika’s pretty awesome.
    However what he can do is limited to what he knows.
    Unlike Naruto, he cant just simply blow Kazuku’s brains out with 1 attack regardless of what the foe can do.
    And it makes no difference with knowledge of that foe, Naruto could just beat down an enemy with 1 move. Shika cant and he needs his knowledge.
    But that is a strength and a weakness. Arguably a double edged sword.

  39. Chouji is like the fat friend in high school… he never ever brings any girls to the party or is any help in a fight but he’s the butt of many jokes, makes you laugh and is a loyal friend, so you bring him along for the ride anyway because ya gotta love the tubby bitch. He’s ur friend, no matter what.

    Here’s to you Choujis of the world… we salute you.

    *Nice Gai pose*

  40. so chouji’s just your lovable stuffed toy…and i can’t believe j-man that you haven’t till yet in this post completely LAMbast shika away…why the low profile??

  41. Why the hatin’? Where’s the love? Chouji and Ino are normal, they’re not super shinobi like Kakashi. What a guy.

    Shikamaru could have used them better, but he had his mind on vengeance and that clouds your judgment. But hey, he’s 16, I expect we’re going to see more growth from him. I like that they’re all flawed, it makes me love them more.

  42. @ Ibi – I thought I gave a pretty honest defense of why you bring Chouji along, I wasn’t crapping on Chouji at all. He is the way he is. Not everyone can be Naruto or Sasuke.

  43. @Jeremiah: I didn’t think *you* were crapping on him. (Although, with defense like that…) Out of all of them Chouji’s got to be the best friend, he deserves the girl. ^.^ (it’s early, but I went for puke anyway…)

  44. coolbeans: I loved your post. Made me laugh quite a lot, and I thought you were actually very unbiased in your analysis. (You know, until the final grade, LOL.)

    I personally love Shikamaru. He’s my man. That said, I have never understood why he’s seen as a great leader. Yes, he’s a tactical genius. That’s fine. But coming up with great strategy doesn’t always (or usually) equal the ability to guide or delegate in a real world situation. And I’ve always considered Shikamaru to be a very submissive character. Heck, the whole humor behind his character is how he lets his mother, Ino, and Temari order him around, and the fact that he’s destined to be even more hen-pecked than his father.

    Brains: not overrated.
    Leadership ability: WAAAAY overrated.

  45. Oh wait, now I see where you explained why the final score is so low.

  46. @ Ibi – deserves and gets are two different animals…

    And that defense is all one can muster without lying >_<

  47. @Jeremiah: Yeah, but f*^k that fat kid with no personality. (sarcasm folks)

  48. Ino should have mind swapped with swayze in that battle,
    kakuzu and hidan would have just fallen over 🙂

  49. “Ino should have mind swapped with swayze in that battle,
    kakuzu and hidan would have just fallen over ”


  50. Shikamaru…? Who the hell is Shikamaru? (jk…joke…sarcasm) No, Please not the face!!!

    Good job on the post coolbeans I found it unbiased, informational, and really funny. Everything that makes a post GREEEAAAAT!

    And for all those Chouji haters out there have we forgotten about this Yeah, look at that and tell me a tear doesn’t roll down your eye from the stinging of pure awesomeness! As for Ino…yeah get another day job. Poor girl, I tell you this though she is the NUMBER 1 most underrated ninja. Yes, even more underrated than Naruto and Shino (the bug guy) even though he’s probably even less shown than Ino. 🙂

  51. @supertrek
    shino is a bamf, thats right i said it. no under-rated-ness-astic-ism there. his whole family stood back and let him fight pain. all his dad said was “dont hold back” or some such thing… aburame clan is totally ran by shino 😉

  52. but remember supertrek, he had to eat something for that awesomeness… resulting in an epic fail. it’s always eating with him.. *aigh*

    and ino is an epic failure all-together. she has no use, and if her hair was black naruto would have a huge emo fan base

  53. proof that shino is the man

  54. @coolbeans: lol, it took me a while to figure out what “bamf” stood for. I agree! 😉

    @amongtheliving: I like to think Chouji is utilizing a…unique ninja weapon when he’s out popping pills. 🙂

  55. @coolbeans – yea, shino looks like a badass right there

    @supertrek – i still think crack woulda been a better use, he’d still have as much energy as he did when he popped pills, but he only would have tweaked out instead of almost dying

  56. @amongstheliving or speed would have done it ?
    imagine chouji it would be like a hamster in a ball on caffine ;D

  57. about choji
    hey ask the space marines theres nothing wrong with a stim pack…. or maybe he likes to throw morpheous for a loop and go with the green pill and see “just how deep the chakura hole goes”

    lol i could do this all night 😉 (what i only entertain myself with lame jokes like that??!??) *hangs head*

  58. LOL…or….or…maybe the pills are really DIET PILLS!!! ROFLMAO…*looks around and everyone is shaking their heads no* Dammit, I thought it was pretty funny! ;p

  59. Yeahhhh it was funny…

  60. yea, chouji is using alli, which is working /wonders/ for winona ryder… they’re FDA approved! *nice guy pose*

    i just think we all need to see another sceene like that in naruto, though. where everyone reveals their skills. hopefully team gai shows up soon and we can see that

  61. 2nd: Choji was the first to defeat Asura Pain. Though I guess thats kind of hard to judge considering the dude was moving afterward armless and all. Ino has skills as a medical ninja, however her move itself is one hit one chance. Similar to how Choji’s ability is determined by his physical attack if she uses her improperly the effect is negated.

  62. I thought Choza was the one that nailed Asura Pain If you look closely at the wrist bands it seems Chouji was the one that missed Deva Pain.

  63. Your are right, Choji is on the right and his dad on the left. Deva Pain managed to dodge it in time. (

  64. First, I have to say it’s a good thing I wasn’t drinking anything while I read this – I loved the tongue-in-cheek humor LOL Thanks for explaining battle strategies to us civilians, too. I know the idea of real-world tactics in Naruto was meant to be taken with a grain of salt, but I still learned a lot ^_^

  65. @elfarren
    i really enjoyed writing this and im glad you enjoyed it. haha i could totally go way more in depth on this stuff but then its hard to make a joke about stiff plunges beating the 2 prong front…. hmmm maybe thats the joke already 😉

  66. Personally I dont think he’s overrated. Im not a shiki fan but I think he’s got great potential. I mean he has no great powers himself except the shadow bind which havent been shown over powering yet. But he has a mastermind, yea I said it a mastermind. Therefor he could be a great leader or assistant. He is the type that sits back, monitors the enemy and finds a hole in an unbreakable defense. I see him as a coach, he doesnt have the physical skills of his players but he knows how to use and combine them. As of this article its kinda unfair looking at the situation. He had no “scouting report” meaning he had no idea what his enemy was capable of. He had a great plan to defeat the first enemy which failed because he just happened to have more then 1 heart… Now he had to go up 2 all-star players where he only had 1 all-star player and 2 little leguers. At this point the only thing you can do is play your defense as good as possible untill you find a weakness in their attack or defense that you can abuse. The plan that finally killed them both was brilliant being a plan B. In my opinion if skiki wasnt this smart they all wouldve died, cause they werent suppose to win this. Kakashi is a bad ass but he would never beat them both by himself saying that ino and chouji really arent any help nor competition to the 2 immortals. Shiki without his brain would be plain useless. So seeing that his brain decided the battle with no collisions on their side, I think he did a great job. He couldve done better, but hey you can always do better. My grade would be an B- for his leadership in this battle.

    Just my 2 cents

  67. bah…hate 2 cents…2 bajillions here…

    @vapofa- but coolbeans is right you know, in battle your lowest grade is your overall score, this happens in many places(eg your windows experience rating for all you MS fanboys), so the grading is correct!

  68. in that case there is no good grading in any battle cause everyone has an weakness, the strongest is he who can reduce his weakness and maximize his strenght. If your strenght makes up for your weakness then you overall strenght is higher then your weakness. Its called balance.

  69. Or you can turn your weakness into a strength. Make it to your advantage.

    Coolbeans great post. I’m with you on the whole Shikamru being overrated. Don’t hate him but he is way too overrated. Btw are you a beaner?

  70. @vapofa thats why i gave him a realworld score, a manga world score, and a combined score. in the anime world he did pretty good. in the real world he woulda been up a creek without a paddle. i guess ill just have to make that clearer in the future.

    @captinmexico21 no im a white boi from the suberbs of ohio, represent…lol… anyways i picked that name in like a half second and went with it. its somthing my marine buddy says constanly and was all i could come up with at the time… haha a little lame i know

  71. ok, obviously we all know shika’s really smart, i mean kakashi himself confirmed that. the thing is he sometimes takes that over the edge. And actually a good summary of shika’s true ability could be deduced from what temari told him while he was escorting her as a chuunin ambassador.

  72. @coolbeans:

    Good valid points about Shikamaru, yes its Shika… not Shiki. Lol.

    I(a Shika fan) was also wondering why they were broken up during the battle for so long.

    Its because of difference in experience. Fighting against two Akatsuki(most dangerous groups of criminals) immortals, and coming out winning, I’d say that’s good enough in itself. Immortals usually have MUCH more experience than non-immortals.

    All Shikamaru needs is more experience in the battlefield. Kakashi was obviously the most experienced person in their group, which was why he was able to quickly get back on his feet just like the immortals did.

    Not only that, Shikamaru is a very limited fighter. We all know he would pwn much more if he had more chakra/techniques.

    As a Shikamaru fan(I’m a fan of many characters in the Naru-verse), I don’t think he’s THE BEST. But he’s up there with the rest of them. ^_^ Remember, EVERYONE in the Naru-verse has advantages and disadvantages. Therefore you can’t really say who’s THE BEST.

    Lets just say Kakashi wouldn’t be able to defeat Hidan by himself… and Shikamaru would’ve been easily killed if not for Kakashi’s help. Its a win-win for everyone. ^_^

  73. @totalitarian:

    Can you post the link for what Temari told him?

  74. I’m not totalitarian, but the only time I can think of where she speaks to him specifically about his growth is in this scene, and it’s a filler scene before the Revenge of Asuma.

  75. I would say choji and Ino served their purpose Ino found the 2 freaks and thats all he needed her for. After that she went on guard the base status(useless). Choji was just a diversion for kakashi to step in and hand some a**. Once their purpose was served they would have just been in the way after that. I would say shika had his plan thought out until they found out that kakazu was a heart snatching freak.

  76. Shika is da man! He’s like the Batman and MacGuyver of Nartuoverse. I’ll give him an A+ for tactics. He is the best strategist in the series. He had everything perfect. He was fighting ridiculous guys who Kishimoto was making up powers for as he went along. I mean Kakuzu has to be killed five times? Give me a break.

    He is probably underrated. The guy has an over 200 IQ. He is beyond genius. He should be changing the world like Leonardo Da Vinci. Instead he is hanging out with Naruto and Choji and still doesn’t understand women.

    He is also the best leader by far among the kids. Unless the team is filled with girls like Temari and Ino. Then he’ll hide in the corner as they beat him up and run things.

  77. Damn… i was almost 100% sure that naruto would answer “no problem dude, i will save your country when im hokage” – that might have made the retardation levels more equal because shikamaru has taken the lead recently…

    btw: i just registered to – normally i wouldnt even bother about posting comments, but i find your blog and sense of humor very amusing – keep it up.

    ps: sorry for crappy english

  78. @ narutodriveshondas i agree untill kakuzu was shown as a multi heart freak plan= a+ buuuuut after that just because a units original task was over doesnt mean they are in the way by doing other things. organics are…… well changing

    @ lorrizi to be truthful intelect doesnt= saving your commrads nor does it mean painting pictures, all gooood-en stuffff-smmm. lol just raggin on ya 😉 oh btw leader doesnt = team. with temari and ino i could come up with a (anime) way to beat any bad guy. *note that “anime” is because its not realistic*

    @ shopad keep leveling up your awsomeness then and i like alot of what you say its not quite my initial reaction, but pretty close

  79. @coolbeans (&everyone) – I have solved the mystery of Shika’s recent retardation

    He has a brain tumor from smoking

  80. how do you get a brain tumor from smoking???? maybe lung cancer but a brain tumor??? WTF!!?!!

  81. @ eiliem and Ix ReFleX
    his recent retardation come from the fact that he got bludgened about the head (figuratively) and while we have 2 and a half months to think about it. manga time passed=about 20 minutes begining to end………….. wait a sec shikamaru is so overrated that when sec’ ops’ said that the balck things seem to be chakra recievers he didnt know what that ment….hmmm smart ine huh, it only took every one else untill the next slide but u were smart enough to figure it out 7 ISSUES LATER!!!!!

  82. lol i know he’s a retard. i was just questioning the whole “brain tumor” idea

  83. lol Ix ReFleX i can only see a little bit straight. yay pre deployment!

  84. lol wow

  85. beer whiskey sake beer vodka scotch beer….you get the point lol Ix ReFleX

  86. hey. i just realizde…. in this post you say “bring that hate mail on” but you don’t give any email address… WTF!??!!!? I WANT TO SEND YOU HATE MAIL DAMNIT!!!!!!

  87. osu evans @ yahoo. com
    come ond get it!!!!!! 😉

  88. and you understand how that post goes im sure

  89. yeah. i get the point. no need to elaborate any more on it 😀

  90. lol im gonna make you block me within 5 minutes!! MUAHAHAHA!!!!

  91. haha shows you im gona go smoke and ill be gone longer than that….. i win this round reflx 😉

  92. you can’t smoke…. shikamaru smokes and you dont wanna be like him do you!!!!!!

  93. no no no he trys to emmulate my awsomeness but can u blame him?

  94. why the hell would any one want to emulate you???

  95. because i am swazyes illegitimate son…… pure awsomeness, almost 😉

  96. LOL . you wish!!!! the swayze is too awesomeness for you

  97. yes i dont have his keki genki……… yet. but just you wait, wait for the cool dirty beans dancing style jutsu. then i will show you true peace……. i will show you MY PEACE

  98. are you gonna blow up my village too?

  99. lol MY PEICE hahaha thats dirty

  100. ha!!!! so where do you think nagato is??? the mountain or the tower???

  101. well as a radio tech and judging from the many maps they show the only way he could progect waves from the tower is if its UHF and above. lol did you know a moon shot is acutally a message bounced off the moon? do you think hes really that messed up or that the chakra use leave him looking like choji after the red pill? that is. is he a weak bitch or did he really go all out like konan thinks?

  102. i think he’s on the mounts cuz there rocks and shit behind him in distance… look here

  103. i think he’s on the mountains but my comment had a link so its still awaitin moderation… i emailed you the link

  104. that is……. idk what to say. i didnt even notice it when i read. it almost looks like he is on hokage mountain

  105. @Reflex – lol, it was suppose to be funny so I didn’t want to go and describe the whole process for *how* the tumor that started in his lung would have gotten to his brain, but if it bothers you:

    smoking causes tumor in lung(s)
    which oxygenates blood which then return to the heart to be pumped to the rest of the body
    cancerous cells detach from the tumor and are carried by the blood
    into the heart
    which pumps them straight into the brain (and other important parts of the body)

    (however, for the amount of time he smoked, I don’t think a tumor would have had time to grow and send out little cancer cells)

    And now the joke is dead, good job 😛

  106. too much knowledge for my mind!! *reflex has a stroke* ….
    god eiliem.. you killed him!!!!

  107. Oh no! *Chases down Tsunade and demands she fix ReFleX*

    All better?

    Man, these forums get so silly when there are only two or three people. 😛 If you scroll up the Naruto 436 discussion you can find out what kind of pokemon Ibiki is…

    …that information is totally relevant to Naruto!

  108. lol what pokemon is she??? im too lazy to go look it up 😀

  109. Shikamaru is a thinker, not a fighter.

    Ask Einstein to fight Muhamed Ali and he’ll definitely lose… unless of course Einstein had prepared himself ahead of time with an Atomic Bomb.

    Anyways, I hope you guys get my point.

    Shikamaru would never be able to defeat Kakuzu with his intelligence because Kakuzu would kill him before he even comes up with a plan. That’s why Kishi had to make Kakashi come along, because Chouji nor Ino could defeat Kakuzu… which was why they were just standing around doing nothing.

    But Hidan’s combat style and immortality followed a pattern that can be detected, only if you’re a genius. Once Shikamaru figured out the pattern, then it was game over for Hidan. Kakashi would have been killed or forced to retreat sooner or later against Hidan.

  110. @rocklee
    shika’s original plan didnt include kikashi. he was going to go out without him and prolly woulda dided

  111. @coolbeans:

    I said “Kishi had to make Kakashi come along”.

    Not “Shika had to make Kakashi come along”.

    And yes, in my previous post and other post, I basically stated that Kakashi would have died without Shikamaru to take care of Hidan, and Shikamaru would have died without Kakashi to take care of Kakuzu.

    The reason why most of you guys think Shikamaru sucks is because you guys expect him to be like Kakashi. He’s not. He’s Shikamaru.

    Shikamaru and Kakashi both have their advantages and disadvantages. Although they’re both geniuses in their own ways, Kakashi is more of a fighter and quick adapter. Shikamaru is more like the type to stay back and find out the patterns if there are any, if not then he’s screwed.

    Every character in Naruto has their merits, and for you guys to disregard Shikamaru as a genius just because he can’t adapt to a FIGHTING situation on the go… is just simply ridiculous.

    Imagine if I said Kakashi sucks because he can’t figure out how to defeat Hidan. That’s just not fair to Kakashi.

    I say, give everybody the credit they deserve. Don’t overrate people, don’t underrate people. Simple as that.

  112. Sorry if I sound obnoxious. Its just the weird way in which I word things. ^_^

  113. Great post but I have to disagree with the part where you think Shikamaru didn’t talk to his squad during the battle. The entire point of this battle was to make the enemy had the upper hand so when they did seperate them, (Which was the entire plan to begin with Hence the hole predug and the explosives and what not) they wouldn’t think it was part of their plan.

    Ino is the healer and should have no roll in the fight so the fact that she didn’t fight makes perfect sense. She became a healer because her skill as a warrior is lacking. They explained that in the anime. On top of that her mind transfer Jutsu is too dangerous to use on enemies that know of your presence.

    Basically all of the bad things you said about Shikamaru in this battle were things that he planned to have happen. Once he seperated himself from the rest of them the plan was over and the rest of the team had to fend for themselves. Again that was a part of the plan.

    By the way I don’t like him either but so far I have yet to seem him do anything that would make him a bad tactition.

  114. @rocklee
    you are correct he is a stay back fighter and thats fine. thats a valid and offten used tactic. the only problem is he should then be a better communicator. if he doesnt direct his fighters and he doesnt fight then…… no fighting gets done you know. hes got plenty of potential but hes just not quite where he needs to be yet

  115. for all of you guys saying shikamaru is over rated play him in halowars…lol i just played that demo and i kicked a$$… its a realtime strategy game which is something shikamaru would pwn people at, however some would struggle…. just a suggestion… anyways i think shikamaru is better than most of the group **cough tenten cough** and them..hes not a fighter hes a lover…lol

  116. @bjbthe1
    if she was a healer why didnt she heal anyone? i understand about the mind transfer thing tho. and i explain above the difference between tactics and stratagy. its a bit of a strech to relate it to manga but you get the general idea. hes more of a general than a front line corporal. lol he just needs to work on his resorse handeling skills. i see where your comming from with al that tho

  117. @shinobimadness
    now tenten really…… is that fair to compaire him to one of the worst people in the show….. lol i had some ground chuck that was better than tacobell grade d meat to haha just kidding

  118. sorry bout comparing those two but i was trying to make a hes very skilled… i wouldn’t be surprised if he was a jonin like Ikibi as in one thing they specialize in or sorry to say ebisu…hmmm what ever happened to konohamaru and iruka?….

  119. Shikamaru is smart, I’ll give him that… but I’m willing to bet that if he were debriefed after the battle, he would immediately throw Chouji and Ino under the bus… because Shikamaru is also lazy. Also, it would have been great if he kept Hidan’s head in a jar futurama style. We would be able to hear Hidan comment on all kinds of things – as only Hidan can!

  120. @prawlkage
    im on the fence on that, super lazy vs. its a drag but we have to grow up sometime naruto….. which shika would show up in the after action report? ps im totally watching futurama right now love the referance!!!

  121. sweet..coolbeans..that’s what i wanted to hear from a long…long…long time…

    *hates shikamaru*
    he is way-over-rated… intelligence in LAZY guys is obvious…but making them look like the main-character…that sucks!!! i wish he fought with pain…and then realize that he was a dumb-@ss all along…

  122. @ pain lol in the middle of a second article, this one is pre shippuden and really gona lay into him 😉

  123. Like I said. Take him for what he is, not what he isn’t.

    I’m sure you guys would have found better uses for Chouji and Ino. /sarcasm

    If you have Kakashi, you don’t want Chouji or Ino getting in the way.

    Just like how everyone is told to let Naruto handle Pain all by himself. There’s times when a leader must tell his people to back off and let someone else take care of the situation.

    That’s what smart leader do. They can analyze the situation, and accept that they’re not up for the job. Then when the time is right, they can get back in and finish the job, like Shikamaru did with Hidan.

    You guys may see him as a coward or someone who lacks leadership skills in tough situations. But actually, he made the wise choice of pulling them away from the fight when he realized they were in the way.

  124. Great overview! I liked very much!

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