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Kūgo Ginjō is the leader of Xcution and was the first Substitute Shinigami. He is an antagonist from Bleach, who appeared in the Lost Subistitute Shingami arc.
HistoryKūgo was the first Substitute Shinigami, receiving a Substitute Shinigami badge. Captain Sui Feng has stated that he stole his Shinigami powers and called him a criminal and murderer. One day, Kūgo met Shūkurō Tsukishima, who he discovered had powers like his. He told Tsukishima that he would stick with him from the day on and taught the boy how to use his powers and fight. Kūgo eventually discovered that his badge allowed the Soul Society to watch him and it had been a plan by Jushiro Ukitake. He proceeded to give up his position and disappeared, working with Tsukishima to form Xcution, an organization of Fullbringers. They made a pact with Kūgo to share one another’s powers. 17 months after Sōsuke Aizen was defeated, Kūgo decided to go after the new Substitute Shinigami, Ichigo Kurosaki. He had Tsukishima put him and the rest of Xcution under the power of his Fullbring so he looked like the sole villain when their plot to steal Ichigo’s Fullbring to strengthen their own really got under way.
Meeting IchigoWhile Ichigo was walking home with his friends, they saw a thief running away with a bag he snatched from Kūgo. Ichigo managed to take down the thief and returned the bag to Kūgo, who thanked him and offered to buy him ramen. Ichigo turned him down and the Fullbringer noted he was surprised about how wary Ichigo was as a Substitute Shinigami badge fell out of his bag. Later Kūgo went to Unagiya Shop where Ichigo worked and asked Ikumi Unigaya or Ichigo if they wanted some ramen. They refused and Kūgo sat down to eat it, angeringIchigo at how bold he was being, before telling Ichigo and Ikumi that he was a customer looking for a odd job store. Kūgo put down a picture of Ichigo’s father, Isshin, and asked about him. Ichigo said he was his father and he could tell him anything he wanted to know, but Kūgo asked if he could provide all the answers, saying there were things even Ichigo didn’t know about his family. Kūgo tried to explain what he knew, but Ikumi interrupted, saying they’d call him after reviewing the information. He got up to leave, telling Ichigo to go to Urahara Shop to see something interesting. Outside, Kūgo met up with his allies, Riruka Dokugamine and Giriko Kutsuzawa, who said they’d failed at their objective. After Ichigo saw Karin leaving Urahara Shop, Kūgo showed up and told Ichigo that she’d been making regular visits to the shop. He went on to say there were a number of things Ichigo didn’t know about Kisuka Urahara and finally introduced himself Kūgo gave Ichigo Xcution’s card, before leaving and sure enough, Ichigo called the number on the card, eventually getting through to Kūgo. He complained about the complex process it had taken to contact the Fullbringer, but Kūgo said it would just cause him problems if it were never so complex He arranged a meeting with Ichigo for the following evening and when Ichigo arrived at the meeting place, Kūgo noted that he was early. Ichigo told him his friend, Uryu, had been attacked earlier and he wanted help. Kūgo asked him if he trusted him and Ichigo replied that he probably wasn’t a normal human. The Fullbringer said he wondered about that and that Ichigo had no one else he could count on. Kūgo lead him into Xcution’s headquarters, joking about how he used his investigation of Isshin to get Ichigo’s attention. After typing a code into a door, Kūgo had Ichigo use his card to open it and lead him inside, where the other members of Xcution were waiting. Kūgo then told him that their goal was to give Ichigo back his Shinigami powers.
Fullbring TrainingIchigo asked how they planned to do so and why they would help him, before grabbing Kūgo by the shirt, demanding that he explain who he and his comrades were. The Fullbring told him to calm down and take a seat and since he couldn’t answer all of Ichigo’s questions at once, they should just take their time. Kūgo offered him a drink, but he refused and Kūgo told Giriko give him an orange juice. The Fullbringer explained that Xcution was made up of humans born with a special ability. Kūgo said that it would be easier to demonstrate this ability than explain it and touched the rim of his glass, making it glow. The drink floated out of the glass and into Kūgo’s mouth. He explained that he had the power to pull out and command the soul within an object to the point that he could change the shape of an object he was familiar with. This power was Fullbring and Kūgo demonstrated it again by turning his necklace into a large sword. At that moment, Riruka entered the room who Kūgo was surprised to see her back so soon and he asked if she’d found the person she was sent to get. She said she had, but complained about how dark the headquarters was and asked Kūgo when he was going to put more lights in. He replied that he had no intention of doing so and told her to put on her glasses, but she refused. Kūgo introduced her to Ichigo but wanted to wait until the recruit she brought came in before he introduced Ichigo to her. Riruka called in Yasutora “Chad” Sado, much to Ichigo’s surprise and he demanded to know what was going on. Kūgo told him to calm down again and asked him and Chad to seat down while he explained. Riruka began asking questions about Chad and Ichigo, which Kūgo ignored and told Giriko to get Chad a drink. Riruka demanded to know if Ichigo was the Ichigo they’d been trying to recruit, but Kūgo told her to wait. Giriko then asked him to put his Fullbring sword away and told him he’d have to pay for the damage it had done to the floor. Kūgo did so and told Ichigo to stop glaring at him, before asking if he understood Fullbring and Ichigo said he did. Kūgo explained that all of their parents had been attacked by a Hollow before their birth, resulting in traces of that Hollow’s power being passed on to them while they were in the womb. Kūgo said that they hated the power of Fullbring, telling Ichigo he should relate, given his hatred for his former Hollow powers. Kūgo explained that Xcution wanted to get rid of their powers and they’d discovered that they could pass them to one who had the powers of a human and a Shinigami. Some of their older allies had done so and now, Xcution wanted to give Ichigo his Shinigami powers back so they could be normal humans. Kūgo explained that they’d discovered that Chad was a Fullbringer too and he wanted to help Ichigo get his powers back. Kūgo told Ichigo that Xcution would help him get his power back, plus they’d give him their own powers as well, and Ichigo accepted the offer. Ichigo returned to Xcution’s headquarters two days later, asking Kūgo why he had been called there and the Fullbringer asked if he was complaining, pointed out that he’d come willingly. Ichigo told him to shut up, before asking if he was going to do any training. Riruka then used her Fullbring power to place Ichigo inside her dollhouse and Kūgo looked on as she explained her Fullbring’s abilities and the goal of the training. Kūgo accused her of being unreasonable and told Jackie Tristan that he didn’t know if Ichigo would make it through okay. However Ichigo succeeded in activating his Fullbring using his Substitute Shinigami badge as a medium and Kūgo explained that just as every battle Ichigo had was carved into his soul, they were also carved into the soul of the badge and it remembered his powers. Riruka let Ichigo out of the dollhouse and told him to leave with Kūgo backing her up, telling Ichigo that Fullbring puts on more strain than one realized. He went on to say that Ichigo’s body could fall to pieces if he pushed himself too hard and that he could go a few more days without his powers, promising to call Ichigo after he has rested himself. Later, Ichigo returned to Xcution, explaining that Orihime Inoue was attacked. Kūgo told him it was most likely Tsukishima, who was Xcution’s former leader and the one who came up with the plan to give their powers to a Substitute Shinigami. But when they tried, Tsukishima killed the Substitute Shinigami and all the Fullbringers who gave him their powers. Kūgo, after showing him a Substitute Shinigami badge, went on to say that Tsukishima wanted to keep Ichigo away from Xcution and had probably attacked Uryu and Orihime to get his attention. Kūgo then sent Ichigo home to rest up for the next part of the training. The next day, Ichigo was put in a fish tank to fight Jackie and Riruka, uninterested in the fight, went to leave despite Kūgo insisting that she needed to stay to negate her Dollhouse ability. Riruka replied that she could come when it is done and Yukio Hans Vorarlberna told Kūgo that was what he hated about her. Kūgo later went to talk to Chad and told him that that Ichigo was training against Jackie. Chad said his timing was perfect, much to Kūgo’s surprise, and Chad asked him about Tsukishima’s Fullbring powers, telling him that keeping secrets was pointless. Kūgo said he wasn’t keeping secrets and said if Tsukishima had an ability as dangerous as Chad suspected, then he would’ve told him about it. Kūgo explained that Tsukishima’s Fullbring power was a sword that could literally cut through anything, but that was all it could do. Chad said it might have changed since they last saw Tsukishima, but Kūgo said that Fullbrings don’t evolve. Chad pointed out that his own abilities had evolved with time and Kūgo explained that his powers had just been at their first stage, then he’d unlocked their true nature. Xcution had had their powers for a long time and Tsukishima had fully developed his powers long ago. Chad asked about what happened to Orihime and Kūgo said that was troubling, asking if Uryu had troubling memories. Chad said he didn’t and Kūgo told him to check again, since if he did, there would be a problem, but if he didn’t, then Tsukishima didn’t attack Orihime. However Tsukishima suddenly showed up, greeting Kūgo, who asked him what he was doing. Tsukishima noted that he didn’t see Jackie and attacked the fish tank, but when it was broken, Ichigo emerged in a new Fullbring form, shocking Kūgo. Ichigo attacked Tsukishima and Sado tried to help, but Kūgo told him to wait since they could afford to tell Ichigo about Tsukishima now that his Fullbring had developed. Chad replied that they didn’t know how powerful Ichigo’s Fullbring was and telling him Tsukishima attacked Orihime could make him underperform. Ichigo suddenly appeared in the front of the two, thanking them for looking out for him, before attacking Tsukishima. However the Fullbringer cut him and tried to finish him off, but Kūgo blocked him. Tsukishima mockingly asked if he was really trying to intervene, but Kūgo replied that he was the one interfering. Ichigo told him not to get in the way, but he just elbowed Ichigo in the neck, telling him to be quiet and stay down. Tsukishima told Kūgo fighting him was suicide, but he just responded by saying Tsukishima was the one who would be dying. They began fighting with Kūgo eventually firing an energy blast at Tsukishima, but he emerged unscathed and cut Kūgo on the right side of his face. Tsukishima said that was close and asked what might have happened if he slashed up a building with people inside. Kūgo told him it was okay, since he was only landing on empty ones, but their fight was interrupted by Ichigo and Yukio. Yukio used his Fullbring to place Ichigo in his video game console and retreated, bringing him to Xcution’s backup HQ where Kūgo met up with them. Ichigo asked about Tsukishima and Kūgo said that he’d retreated for the time being. He went on to say that he was concerned about what Tsukishima was intending since if he wanted to go after Xcution, he would have done so, but he was clearly after Ichigo. Yukio told Kūgo he was over thinking things since Tsukishima wouldn’t have attacked Ichigo while he was in his video game console. Yukio tried to leave, but Kūgo told him he needed his help to train Ichigo since his Fullbring completely shut out spiritual energy. Yukio protested at first, but agreed to help and asked if it’d be an all out fight, to which Kūgo replied by saying that seemed to be the best method with him. Yukio placed Kūgo and Ichigo in his console and Kūgo explained that Yukio’s Fullbring power let him lock people in subspace and he could control it with his console. Ichigo asked what his point was and Kūgo said everyone thought about how the power worked, so he shouldn’t be embarrassed about it. Ichigo said he never wondered about it and Kūgo replied that he never had that notion. Ichigo demanded to know why he asked and Kūgo replied that it didn’t really matter, but this was the nicest it got in the game. Ichigo noted that it was incredibly desolate and Kūgo summoned his Fullbring, saying they should have rules like those in a video game. Ichigo asked what kind of rules he was thinking of and Kūgo said it should be simple, then asked Yukio to give them each six HP. He then asked Ichigo if he needed a tutorial, but Ichigo said he knew what to do and summoned his own Fullbring. They began fighting, until Yukio put Orihime in the game and Kūgo said the healing item had arrived. Orihime attempted to introduce herself, but Kūgo just told her to spare the pleasantries and heal Ichigo. As she was doing so, Chad arrived, saying he knew Ichigo didn’t want to involve her, but they needed her. Kūgo started to say something, but Chad stopped him and said he hadn’t come to help Ichigo, he came to train himself and had Yukio set up another room for him. Kūgo told him to do as he pleased and eventually asked Orihime if Ichigo was healed yet. Orihime him told to wait, but Kūgo replied that he didn’t have the time and asked Ichigo if he was ready. Ichigo said he was and the Fullbringer attacked him, but Orihime used her new technique, Shiten Koshun, to block. Kūgo was knocked backwards and his shoulder was cut and Orihime explained that it reflected the offensive power of attacks back at the attacker. Kūgo noted that she was rather sadistic and Orihime replied that she didn’t care if he call her that, but he shouldn’t attack her when she said not to. However Ichigo got to his feet and continued fighting Kūgo, who eventually noted that it was a good idea to have Orihime there, since Ichigo seemed to fight better when he was close to those he cared about. Kūgo eventually told Ichigo he had too many random thoughts in his head and slashed him across the eyes, blinding him. He stopped Orihime from helping him and told Ichigo that he lost his resolve along with his powers, so he would drag it back out. Ichigo demanded to know what Kūgo was trying to do since he promised to help him. Kūgo replied that Xcution promised to help Ichigo get his powers back and to do that, he needed to master his Fullbring. Ichigo said he couldn’t trust Kūgo after he blinded him, but the Fullbringer asked why he agreed to the training if he couldn’t trust him, since he wouldn’t have been able to do anything if he was betrayed. Kūgo began attacking Ichigo with his fists and Orihime tried to intervene again, but Kūgo had Yukio lock her in a cage. Ichigo started succeeding in dodging Kūgo’s attacks, thinking he could use the Fullbriner’s sound and presence to know where he is. However Kūgo revealed he’d been letting Ichigo dodge his attacks and slashed his shoulder, before impaling him with his Fullbring sword. Kūgo told Ichigo he was going to kill Chad and Orihime and he should have expected that since they were not comrades. Ichigo became enraged and his Fullbring suddenly started to change. Kūgo grabbed the materialized blade of Ichigo’s Fullbring as an enormous surge of energy was released. As the dust settled, Ichigo emerged with his Fullbring completed and Kūgo told him he was proud, explaining that when someone completed Fullbring, another person had to be nearby to control the release of energy, risking their own lives. That was why Kūgo wanted to be close at hand when Ichigo completed his Fullbring. He then apologized for his act and said he was a rather clichéd villain, before welcoming Ichigo to Xcution.
Fighting TsukishimaKūgo then had Ichigo perform sets of 100 pushups to strengthen his body enough to deal with the demands of Fullbring. Kūgo eventually asked if Ichigo was already tired, who just got angry and said that he was obviously tired, asking him many sets he had to do. Kūgo said they were only at 14 and told Ichigo to do another since his name could translate out to “1” and “5”. Ichigo replied that he hated when people used his name to make that kind of pun, but Kūgo pointed out that he always shirts with 15 patterns and Ichigo replied by calling him a stalker. Kūgo then asked Ichigo if he saw something when he completed his Fullbring and Ichigo was surprised that he knew this happened. Kūgo explained that he’d seen him surrounded by spiritual energy and he’d cut his eyes so he would see this, since it was proof he was getting his Shinigami powers back. Kūgo went on to explain that when Ichigo lost his powers, a tiny portion of it had reformed in a single location within over time. Xcution had then used the energy his Fullbring had produced to give that power a jolt. Now they just had to strengthen Ichigo’s body and Fullbring until his Fullbring fused with his Shinigami powers, giving him a greater power than a normal Shinigami. Kūgo gave Ichigo his Substitute Shinigami badge, noting that his Fullbring was something to see and told him he needed to name it. Later on, as Ichigo was running through the streets after he found that Tsukishima had used his powers to turn all of his family and friends to his side, Kūgo found him and explained Tsukishima had gotten to the rest of Xcution. He brought Ichigo to a location that even the rest of Xcution didn’t know about and Ichigo asked what was going on. Kūgo explained that, using the information he’d gotten from Chad about the attack on Orihime and the current situation, he’d deduced that Tsukishima’s Fullbring power went beyond cutting everything. He seemed to be able to cut into people’s past and place himself in their memories as whatever he chose. Kūgo said that this power made sense since Tsukishima’s Fullbring medium was a bookmark. Ichigo asked if this would be undone if Tsukishima was killed and Kūgo said that he didn’t know, but asked if he could kill him anyways. However Yukio suddenly found them, saying that their conversation was disturbing and Kūgo asked how he located them. Yukio revealed that his Fullbring had a tracker and told them to come with him, saying that Kūgo messed up, but no one was mad at him and they’d soon have him back to normal. Yukio led Kūgo and Ichigo to a mansion in the woods where Tsukishima greeted them. Kūgo stopped Ichigo from just attacked Tsukishima, since one cut could turn him to Tsukishima’s side if they were right about his Fullbring’s power. Kūgo and Ichigo were lead into the mansion, where they found Ichigo’s family and friends waiting. Kūgo assured Ichigo that they still remembered him, so they wouldn’t attack him. Ichigo just ran upstairs and Tsukishima followed him, allowing Kūgo to destroy the staircase. He then told Ichigo he could fight all out since none of his friends and family could get to them. Ichigo engaged Tsukishima and Kūgo tried to help, when suddenly a chandelier fell on him. He was then confronted by Moe Shishigawara, who said that he shouldn’t worry about another person’s fight. Kūgo noted that Moe didn’t have tools with him and the chandiler chain didn’t break, it fell due to the screws coming out. He wondered what kind of Fullbring power Moe had and then faced off against Moe, Jackie, Giriko, and Riruka. Kūgo managed to dodge all their attacks, eventually blocking a punch from Moe with his sword. He noticed that a piece of his sword’s guard had been broken off and Moe said Kūgo was lucky he hadn’t hit his body that time, since he’d gotten a good roll. Kūgo asked him what he meant and Moe revealed his Fullbring, Jackpot Knuckle, explaining that the top showed rolls that manipulated probability. When he’d hit the guard of Kūgo’s sword and made the chandelier fall, he’d “hit the jackpot”. Moe then told Kūgo to bring it on so he could show him what “killing blow” truly meant. Eventually Kūgo was forced out of a window, noting how much 4 against 1 put him at a disadvantage. He wondered how Ichigo was doing and looked over at him, seeing that him was having trouble fighting Tsukishima. As Tsukishima moved to finally cut Ichigo, Kūgo took the attack himself, causing him to fall to the ground. Ichigo rushed to his side and asked if he was okay, but Kūgo just told him he should be focused on Tsukishima. Ichigo managed to fend off an attack by Tsukishima and Kūgo tried to get up, telling Ichigo that Tsukishima’s power had not yet affected him and they needed to stop him before it did. Uryu Ishida then showed up and told Ichigo to come towards him. Ichigo was hesitant, since Uryu was the first of his friends attacked, but the Quincy revealed that Kūgo was the one that attacked him and fired arrows at him. The Fullbringer blocked them and attacked Ichigo, while Tsukishima engaged Uryu. Ichigo asked Kūgo if he’d been under the influence of Tsukishima’s Fullbring and he revealed that was half true. That last cut was a second cut, which returned him to normal. Kūgo then took out the Substitiute Shinigami badge he had and combined it with his sword, before telling Ichigo he was taking his Fullbring and impaled him with his sword. Kūgo explained that he’d attacked Uryu first because Ichigo would need to be able to discern the Quincy from the others and changing Uryu would have made the fight to easy. Tsukishima then explained he had cut Kūgo because he was a poor actor, pointing out that Kūgo started addressing Ichigo as ”Kurosaki” after he’d cut him again. Kūgo then took Ichigo’s Fullbring powers and walked away with Tsukisima, who said he felt bad because Ichigo was crying. Kūgo just replied that he was no longer useful to them and they’d probably never see each other again. However a sudden burst of energy caught Kūgo and Tsukishima’s attention and they looked back to see Ichigo with his Shinigami powers restored. Rukia Kuchiki explained how she’d used a sword developed by Urahara to restore them and Kūgo said that was impossible, since he’d taken Ichigo’s powers and one person couldn’t restore them. However Byakuya Kuchiki, Renji Abarai, Kenpachi Zaraki, Ikkaku Madarame, and Toshiro Hitsugaya showed up. Renji explained that they’d all contributed their spiritual energy and Rukia said that Kūgo took only the power merged with Ichigo’s Fullbring. It was thus impossible for him to take Ichigo’s Shinigami powers.
Final Battle with IchigoIchigo proceeded to engage Kūgo, eventually swinging his Zanpakuto and unleashing a powerful shockwave. Thinking it was his Getsuga Tensho, Kūgo noted that the attack had improved, but he’d need more than that to win. However Ichigo replied that what he’d just done was a “practice swing” and unleashed a real Getsuga Tensho, while Kūgo could only watch, awed by his massive amount of spiritual energy. The Fullbringer managed to avoid the Getsuga Tensho, which wiped out half of the mansion and Ichigo said he wouldn’t miss again. Kūgo decided that it’d be best to retreat, but Ichigo intervened, knocking him to the ground. Kūgo wondered if his Fullbring had granted him greater physical strength, only to get blasted by another Getsuga Tensho. Hitsugaya revealed that Kūgo was the original Substitute Shinigami and Captain-Commander Yamamoto wanted him to bring Kūgo down. However the Fullbringer emerged with a new skeletal outfit as Hitsugaya explained that all the laws regarding Substitute Shinigami were created because of Kūgo. Byakuya, interrupting, saying they should be focusing on Kūgo, who agreed. The Fullbringer thanked Ichigo for his powers, since without them, he never would’ve survived the Getsuga Tensho. Chad and Orihime showed up and Tsukishima tried to add extra details to their pasts, but Kūgo told him not to, pointing out that he’d broken many people when he tried that before and then Chad and Orihime would be useless to them.
Chad and Orihime began struggling with the influence of Tsukishima’s Fullbring, but Urahara and Isshin knocked them out, taking them away from the battle. The rest of Xcution showed up on the scene and Giriko and Yukio were angry since Kūgo was supposed to share Ichigo’s power with them. He proceeded to cut them all, telling them not to get angry since he was going to keep up his part of the plan, and granting them each some of Ichigo’s powers. The Xcution members took on new Fullbring forms and Tsukishima asked Kūgo if he was going to give Moe some of Ichigo’s power. Kūgo replied that Moe would just cause problems if he had stronger powers and he was going to kill him anyways once this was all over.The members of Xcution each faced off against a Shinigami opponents and Yukio used his new powers to create different rooms for each of them to fight in with Kūgo facing off against Ichigo and Uryu in a recreation of Karakura Town. After fighting for awhile, the two began hiding from Kūgo, who tried to goad them into coming out. Eventually Ichigo came out and Kūgo asked him if he and Uryu had thought of a plan. The Shinigami said neither of them had one and attacked with another Getsuga Tensho, but Kūgo managed to slash through it, hitting Ichigo with a Getsuga Tensho of his own. Uryu fired some of his arrows at the Fullbringer only for him to dodge and the Quincy deduced that Kūgo had taken Ichigo’s abilities along with his Fullbring powers. As the fight went on, Kūgo noted that Ichigo was starting to fight on par with him and asked him what he was fighting for, much to his confusion. Kūgo explained that Tsukishima was dying and when he did, the pasts he’d altered would go back to normal. Kūgo then repeated his question and Ichigo didn’t answer, prompting the Fullbringer to tell him about an enemy he should be fighting. However Ichigo dismissed his words as an attempt to weaken his resolve and Uryu agreed, saying that Kūgo was just running out of options. But the Fullbringer replied that he could beat both of them easily and told Ichigo that the Substitute Shinigami badge was given to someone even if they weren’t of any help to the Soul Society. Kūgo explained that the real reason for the badge was to observe Ichigo and restrict his abilities as a Shinigami. He pointed out that Ichigo’s spiritual energy was always going berserk when he was in Shinigami form, but was completely subdued in his human form. Furthermore, when he first used his Fullbring, Ichigo’s spiritual energy had flowed from his badge and he’d heard his friends through it. Kūgo stated that the whole scheme was a plan by captain Jushiro Ukitake to control Substitute Shinigami and everyone in the Soul Society had known. Kūgo said he and Ichigo had both been conned by one of the most peaceful people in the Soul Society, but Ichigo angrily told him to shut up and released his Bankai. Kūgo asking if he was going to break away from reality again. Ichigo replied that he did suspect something was strange when Ukitake gave him his Substitute Shinigami badge. However he’d reasoned that Ukitake wouldn’t try to deceive him in a way he would notice and the explanation he’d given about the badge was so he’d choose to protect people on his own. Ichigo told Kūgo he always wanted to have the power to protect others and since the Shinigami gave him back his powers, he was going to protect them. Kūgo decided that he had no choice but to kill Ichigo and released his own Bankai. Ichigo noted that he’d forgotten Kūgo was a Substitute Shinigami as well and the Fullbringer reminded him that he had the power of a Hollow as well, which was another similarity they had. Ichigo replied that their fight was about to be finished and they resumed fighting. As they battled, Kūgo wondered why Ichigo didn’t oppose his decision to fight the Shinigami, eventually noting that Ichigo was trying to understand him and denying him everything he was. Kūgo and Ichigo clashed for a final time, resulting in the Fullbringer’s sword breaking and him taking a fatal blow. As Kūgo fell to the ground, he wondered what might have happened if Ichigo became a Substitute Shinigmai before him, then died. Kūgo’s body was brought to the Soul Society, but Ichigo requested that he be allowed to bring it to the Human World so he could bury it there.
Kūgo is usually very calm and collected, as well as skilled at manipulating and charming other people into doing what he wants. However this hides a more arrogant, sadistic and cruel side, taking delight in the pain of others, bragging about his own accomplishments, and underestimating his enemies. Kūgo possesses extreme ruthlessness, wanting to kill one of his most loyal allies just because he could be a threat in the future. He is also very excitable, with an enjoyment for taking risks, not having Tsukishima attack Uryu just so Ichigo could figure out what was going on. While under the effect of Tsukihsima's Fullbring, Kūgo was very different, being much more cautious and caring about his allies and innocent people, even willing to hurt himself to protect them. He also states he always carries ramen with him, due to his like for it.
Being a Fullbringer, Kūgo possesses considerable spiritual power and can see and sense spiritual beings. He is an extremely skilled swordsman, as well as able to fight well unarmed, and has superhuman speed and stamina. However Kūgo 's most notable ability is the power to manipulate the souls contained within objects. He has also exchanged powers between the other members of Xcution, allowing him limited control of their Fullbrings.Kūgo's main Fullbring is Cross of Scaffold, where he transforms the pendant on his necklace into a large claymore sword. The sword's handle extends up into a hollow space in the blade, so that he can wield it at closer quarters. Kūgo can generate a large amount of energy around the blade, which explodes when he attacks with it. To enhance Cross of Scaffold, he can merge his Substitue Shinigami badge with it. When he does so, Kūgo can absorb the Fullbring power of others by stabbing them with Cross of Scaffold, which he can transfer to to other Fullbringers. With Ichigo's powers, Kūgo can form a powerful skeletal armor on his body and use his Getsuga Tensho technique, where he concentrates energy into his sword and unleashes it in a slash like blast. Kūgo can also enter a Bankai form, greatly increasing his power, and can concentrate spiritual energy into his sword to fire as a beam.
- Tite Kubo has stated that Kūgo's theme song is "Last Man Standing" by Bon Jovi.
- On the color page of chapter 449 of the manga, Kūgo has blue eyes, but seems to have brown ones on the cover of volume 50.