Boruto Episode 168

Boruto Episode 168

Training Begins!

Although this episode is primarily a training episode, I actually found it to be quite good. I don’t think we learned anything new from it. But, it was a good episode for reinforcing some of the concepts surrounding the ninjutsu system that I don’t believe were explained well in Boruto yet.

Still, even with these slightly more in-depth explanations, it only scratched the surface. A prime example of this is when Kakashi reminds Boruto of the five basic elemental chakra natures. He makes it sound like these are all the chakra natures, but that’s not the case.

As Boruto rightly points out, there are two other basic chakra natures, Yin and Yang (though, Crunchyroll translated these as Light and Shadow). That brings the basic nature count up to seven. However, we actually know of up to 24 chakra natures in total.

For more information on chakra natures, I suggest reading my posts on the strongest chakra nature, extra chakra natures, and upgraded chakra natures.

Kakashi using a purple lightning chakra transformation from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Kakashi using a purple lightning chakra transformation

Anyway, since Boruto doesn’t have the massive amount of chakra that Naruto has, he’s incapable of using the giant Rasengan. But, considering Konohamaru can use a form of that jutsu, it’s not really impossible. It just won’t be as massive as Naruto’s.

Even so, Kakashi decides to teach Boruto how to add a nature transformation to his Rasengan instead. As you may recall, this is actually something Boruto has been able to do for a long time. He actually used a lightning-style Rasengan to help defeat Momoshiki Ōtsutsuki.

The way in which Kakashi decides to train Boruto is also interesting, but I’ll get into that later on. Let’s move on to Sarada’s training for a moment.

Sharingan and Chidori

Obviously, just as Boruto wanted to learn a powerful, new jutsu, so too did Sarada. She wanted Sasuke to teach her how to use Chidori. Funnily enough, this is also a jutsu that Kakashi could have taught her, just as I mentioned last week that Kakashi could teach her how to use her Sharingan.

But, as Sasuke rightly points out, Sarada isn’t ready for a jutsu like Chidori just yet. Even with her Sharingan, she wouldn’t be able to properly control Chidori since she only has one tomoe.

What I really liked about the scene in which Sasuke was explaining this to Sarada is that he simplifies the explanation of the Sharingan just like Kakashi did with the explanation of chakra natures. Sasuke mentions the single-, double-, and triple-tomoe variants, but stops there.

Sasuke's triple-tomoe Sharingan from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Sasuke’s triple-tomoe Sharingan

Sure, he could have mentioned that there are the Mangekyō and Eternal Mangekyō variants as well — and the Rinnegan variants — but that would have made things unnecessarily complicated. Sarada doesn’t need to know all of that right now, so he leaves it out.

Also, I like that Sasuke explained how exactly the Sharingan gets upgraded (at least for the first few upgrades). This is something that I pointed out last week as well. It doesn’t matter how much Sarada trains, she won’t upgrade her Sharingan without some external pressure that creates intense emotion.

And since Sarada lives in a relatively peaceful era, that’s hard to come by. I think it’s pretty clear that her Sharingan is going to be upgraded at some point. However, how far along her Sharingan will get by the end of the series is the big question.

I really don’t see Sarada awakening the Mangekyō Sharingan. I think she’ll max out at the triple-tomoe variant, but how she’ll get there is a mystery to me.

Wind-Style Rasengan

Moving back over to Boruto’s training, let’s start off with what seems to be a contradiction: Boruto’s nature affinity. In this episode, Boruto says that he believes his affinity is for the Wind nature. However, it was previously confirmed that his affinity is for the Lightning style.

So, I guess we’re just ignoring that?

Boruto’s changing nature affinity aside, one of the parts I really liked about this training episode came when Kakashi gave Boruto a tip for how to visualize his Wind-style nature transformation. He said Naruto told him that the secret was to visualize his chakra divided into two halves that are grinding against each other.

This is actually the tip that Naruto learned from Asuma Sarutobi — Konohamaru’s uncle and former leader of the Ino-Shika-Cho trio. My guess is that most people didn’t pick up on that little reference, but I liked it.

Boruto creating the wind-style Rasengan from the anime series Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Boruto creating the Wind-style Rasengan

Eventually, Boruto figures out that he can perfect his Wind-style Rasengan by utilizing a shadow clone, much like Naruto used to do with his standard Rasengan. With two sets of hands, he can more easily control the formation of the jutsu.

However, one thing Boruto didn’t pick up on is that he can actually use shadow clones to speed up the time it takes to master a jutsu. Kakashi had Naruto create thousands of shadow clones at a time to speed up his training when he was learning how to use the Wind style, but he doesn’t mention this to Boruto.

Obviously, Boruto can’t make the same number of shadow clones as Naruto, so it would be much less effective. But, the concept is still there. Even with a single shadow clone, Boruto would be able to cut his training time in half.

Conclusion

I’m interested to see what kinds of upgrades Mitsuki returns to Team 7 with if any. He was already the strongest team member, so it’s possible that he won’t have gained any new skills during his time with Orochimaru. Even if he focuses on recovery there, he shouldn’t be surpassed by Boruto and Sarada too much if at all.

It also looks like Team 10 and Shiki’s team will also be getting training arcs of their own in the near future. According to the next episode preview, those two teams are going to come face-to-face with Deepa during a joint mission. Could their loss against Deepa be the catalyst for their own training arcs?

I think it’s likely. It wouldn’t make sense to have Team 7 be the only team to be getting significantly stronger. Team 10 and Shiki’s team are the two most important genin teams in the series after Team 7, so it makes sense for them to be next.

What do you think of Boruto: Naruto Next Generations episode 168? Do you think Sarada is going to awaken the double-tomoe Sharingan soon? If so, how far along do you think her Sharingan will get by the end of the series? And what do you think of Boruto’s change in chakra nature affinity? Let me know in the comments.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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