Is The Katana Overrated? – Loadout

The Katana is one of the most legendary swords in fiction and in real world history, but it’s also one of the most misunderstood weapons.

An iconic part of Japanese culture and history, the Katana has also established itself as an icon of pop culture with appearances in everything from games…

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  1. A few contradictory statements made in the video. Japanese did use spears, and their metal ore was not that good and that's why it was folded so many times, to drive out impurities.

  2. bows and spears are 1000 times better weapons. swords are items of status, high society and cult. the price these people paid for a fine sword was absurd in todays standards, and treating this weapon with respect meant to treat the effort your ancenstors (many weapons passed down generations) with respect. some swords also were given by some landlord to honor a citizen or to rank him up.
    a sword is way more than just a sharp piece of metal

  3. The Katana never really adapted or changed design like European swords did. I mean, look at the variety of these swords through history culminating in sabers and rapiers, which I believe are superior to the katana. I guess because Japan isolated itself from the rest of the world from the earliest times they didn't need to adapt.

  4. While you went into great detail regarding the history of the Katana and its significance, you barely actually talked about its performance. What can it do in terms of cutting performance and what not? You pointed out how ridiculously insane the cutting performance of the Katana is depticted in pop culture but then went on and barely talked about its actual performance as a cutting device.

  5. I accept that you can put a sharp edge on it. But it is still a piece of steel. How can it not dull when striking hard objects, especially rock?

  6. The one problem with the Katana is that they break easily. I love 'em but if I were to go into a fight I'll choose the 12th Century Crusader sword or a hand-and-a-half instead.

  7. I think the katana it’s absolutely legendary. But the supposed cutting a rock and not having any damage whatsoever it’s total hogwash. Westerners just like to over rate this sword.

  8. There is a weaponsmith in Argentina, province of Cordoba that he himself decided to learn how to do katanas by trial and error. To tell you that in 1997 the Emperor of Japan in his own persona bought a sword from him tells you how he ended up!!!

  9. Katan's overrated. Japanese, most of the time, were isolated so their weaponary lacked innovation which is brought by competition like in Europe.

  10. There's nothing wrong with the katana, it was a good sword. They tended to be of very high quality to match the wealth of those who often wielded them. But a katana is not universally the best sword. A European longsword is, in many respects, a more versatile and better all around weapon. Katanas are more or less one of the best cutting swords in it's weight class, although it does have some competition with swords such as the scimitar and my personal favorite, the falchion. But cutting power is not the only thing to consider. A sword with a sharpened point gives more options for dealing with heavy armor. A sword with a proper crossguard gives better protection to the wielder. Longswords, due to their more hilt centric weight distribution, tend to be a little more agile than katanas without sacrificing much cutting power.

    Different swords are good for different things, and there is no one sword that is universally the "best." A katana would generally be a better choice against lightly armored foes, while a longsword would perform better vs. a foe clad in plate or chain armor. One could argue that a mace or hammer would actually be a better option for dealing with full plate armor though. There's a reason why warhammers saw so much use in the medieval era.

  11. "One of the most legendary swords […] in real world history."

    Not even SLIGHTLY. The katana has never been all that notable in history. It was never used anywhere other than in a small island nation on the other side of everything important and relevant, and even there, it was at best a distant third side-arm in any notable situation, after the spear and most notably the bow.

    No, the sword in the collection would not have been able to cut through a stone, no steel sword can, unless it's a pebble of marble or other soft stone.

    Folding the steel doesn't generally exceed 10 times, and very VERY seldomly does it reach as many as 14-15. 20 times doesn't happen, there's no need or use, because it gives no benefits. There might be exceptions to this, but that's only for bragging, "Oh, MY sword is folded 20 times". And, in fact, there's a good reason NOT to fold more than that. Folding is, indeed, meant to remove or homogenize impurities in the blade…but carbon is an impurity in the steel, and can also be removed.

    The status symbol of the sword is more or less all over the world, and always have been. The katana, the knights sword, the "doppelsöldner" double-pay men of the 16th mercenaries who carried the twohander swords, the officers sword or saber, the rapiers of the musketeers, etc. All are higher status symbols.

    No-one has ever EVER used "random unarmed civilians" to test a sword on. That's nonsense. They didn't use ANY living bodies, in any situation. What WAS done, but was also looked upon as barbaric, was test it on dead bodies, predominantly executed criminals. The "tested it on peasants" nonsense is, at best, folklore, urban myths, and "oooh, ain't it cool" hyping.

    Japanese culture etc, at least in the western world, isn't so much "respected" as it is "revered" or even "deified", this in general due to things like video games, movies, comic books, etc. It really started in the 1800s, when Japan opened to the rest of the world after having been a closed nation for centuries. The Japanese culture, in all its forms, was seen as "quaint" and "exotic" and thus created large amounts of interest, and this has never really ended.

    Splitting a persons head in half is impressive, absolutely. Through a helmet, even more so. Of course, a western sword would have had no more difficulty doing it, it's a sharply edged heavy striking weapon. As for through the helmet, it sounds very impressive…until you realize that, the kabuto or helmet of Japanese armor was often made out of leather, and if not then of plates of iron, meaning there was plenty of weak spots that could be split apart. This is not a knights steel helmet such as a bascinet or great helm here.

    Is/was the katana a good sword? Yes, certainly. But saying that, you have to take into account other things. It was the sword in use by the "aristocracy" of a small, isolated island nation that didn't really come into contact with anyone else in the world. Which is also why it is more or less unchanged through-out history. The techniques for making the steel that went into it, and making the blade itself, never changed notably over nearly a millenium, because it didn't have to. So, for what it is….yes, it's a good sword.
    But you will note that NO other place on the planet that made steel blades made them that way. Which begs the question, why would Japan find the perfect sword….and all of Europe and Asia never actually found that? Could it be because they evolved both in metallurgy and in sword-making, leaving the methods that Japan used behind?

  12. I thought the katan was awesome when I was a teen for a few reasons, and I believe this might apply to other people too.

    1. First when it is featured in movies it always looked fast and nimble whilst the long sword was usually portrayed as heavier and clunkier, not always but often. A swift sword was cooler for me at the time and the duels with it also looked cool, for example in the last samurai.
    2. The only real martial art with swords at the time was kendo (I don't count olympic fencing) and the sword that they use looks like a katana.
    3. Buying into the myth that folding the metal a million times made the sword incredibly strong, and that the japanese had discovered a sword making process far better than the west.

    Now I prefer the european sword much more. There are more videos and media that portrays a long sword correctly, how nimble and effective it is. HEMA also emerged which showed everyone how a real duel with european swords would look like.

  13. i just want to tell my opinion but the katana is in essence, a simple asian saber used as a side arm to the far more dangerous, easier to manufacture, frankly far cooler looking, pole arms, heavy mace and the spear,

    but do to it been made for peoples of higher class and from pop culture phenomenon overshadow its actual usage

    and yeah when i meant how far more dangerous the others weapons are, just look at a kanabo, a sort of loooong mace that has studs all over it, that is scary

  14. Overrated? Possibly. Probably. Especially in pop culture and perhaps by the media in general. But, there is definitely a soul to an original katana, made by scarce iron, than a run-of-the-mill longsword. I think so, anyway.

  15. There is too much noise when the lady speaks. It is okay to understand. It sounds like she uses the mic of the laptop.
    For the rest quite a lot of info during loadouts

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