Jeremy enjoys gaming when not helping manage the college he graduated from.
Organization 13 in Kingdom Hearts
Although largely absent from the first Kingdom Hearts, the black-cloaked Organization XIII members serve as the primary antagonists for most of the following games. A group full of literal Nobodies, they work to regain human hearts, no matter the cost.
Later, Sora discovers the "true Organization XIII" and encounters more nefarious foes—which reign supreme? Taking from both groups, these are the ten strongest Organization XIII members in Kingdom Hearts!
As befitting her semi-inducted status, Xion's rank falls outside the Organization's numbering, further highlighted by her existence as a Replica instead of a Nobody. But despite her troubled origins, Xion inherits Sora and Roxas's ability to wield a Keyblade, the strongest type of weapon in the series.
Xion demonstrates impressive proficiency with both sword and magic, preferring light-elemental spells. Her biggest weakness is inexperience, but in terms of raw talent, she outstrips most Organization members.
Nobody of: Lea
Axel's a tricky character whose fluctuating loyalties make him hard to predict. But he's a skilled warrior initially wielding two Chakram weapons alongside fire spells, but eventually gains the ability to summon his own Keyblade.
Either way, Axel has beaten Xion and battled Marluxia to a standstill. He's also smart enough to know when he's outmatched, doing his best to avoid Saïx and Xemnas's wrath.
Nobody of: Braig
Despite a cocky attitude, Xigbar displays a cunning mind and fierce power, wielding twin Arrowguns that snipe foes from range. He's one of few Nobodies who knows what Xemnas is really up to and joins both of the Organizations.
Plus, Kingdom Hearts 3 reveals a big secret about Xigbar that likely means we've only seen a fraction of his power.
A "true" Organization member, Vanitas is the darkness extracted from Ventus's heart. After years of arduous training under Master Xehanort, Vanitas wields a Keyblade with fierce skill (despite being outnumbered, he and Xehanort take down Terra, Aqua, and Ventus with relative ease).
Like Ventus, Vanitas emphasizes speed, and his ability to control the Unversed gives him an army of minions when the need arises.
6. Dark Riku
Another true Organization member seen in KH3, Dark Riku is actually the remnant of the Riku Replica from Chain of Memories. Although rarely encountered, his skills are just a smidgen below Riku's and bolstered by his acceptance of dark-related powers.
Nobody of: Isa
Arguably the most underestimated character in the series, Xemnas's second-in-command goes from dangerous to lethal when he enters Berserk mode by absorbing energy from the moon. It took the combined might of Sora, Donald, and Goofy to beat him in KH2; in KH3, he was only felled by Sora, Roxas, and Xion.
The only one-on-one Saïx ever lost was against Roxas in 358/2 Days (largely because Saïx hadn't yet unlocked his full moon powers).
Heartless of: Terra-Xehanort
Arguably the most confusing character in the entire series, Ansem takes his name from Ansem the Wise, but he's actually the Heartless version of Terra-Xehanort. Either way, he serves as the main antagonist for the original game and joins the renewed Organization to support his original persona.
The strongest Heartless of all time, Ansem's a capable warrior, but is perhaps more dangerous with his non-combat abilities, including time travel, possession, disguise, and teleportation.
Nobody of: Sora
Essentially a dual-wielding version of Sora, Roxas has many impressive wins under his belt. He separately beat Xion, Axel, and pre-moon Saïx, pressured Riku to the point of giving in to darkness, and outdueled Sora (who only won by calling his disarmed blade back to hand).
Heck, according to the official KH wiki, "His style and level of power is somewhat like Sora's Final Form", an enormous complement.
Nobody of: Xehanort
A member of both Organizations, Xemnas is confirmed as the strongest Nobody in existence, so powerful that Marluxia wouldn't battle him even alongside Axel and Larxene. Interestingly, Xemnas doesn't wield a Keyblade despite his original form being able to, preferring to channel the power of "nothingness" into his lightsaber-like ethereal blades.
1. Master Xehanort (and Other Xehanorts)
The original form of Ansem and Xemnas, Master Xehanort not only leads the true Organization, he even fills its ranks with alternate forms of himself, like Terra-Xehanort and Young Xehanort.
Xehanort frequently demonstrates his superior power; notable instances include countering Mickey's Ultima spell with a massive Stopza and easily defeating Eraqus and Ventus. He tends to be beaten only when outnumbered and successfully forges the ultimate χ-blade.
Other Organization 13 Members
Even bundling Xehanort's forms into one, many formidable characters narrowly missed today's list, like Larxene and Marluxia. Plus, story-power doesn't necessarily equal boss difficulty; while considered weaker members in lore, Xaldin and Demyx encompass some of the hardest fights in KH2.
Sora's own fluctuating strength makes it difficult to gauge his opponents' power, and debate still continues about their exact standings. But for now, as we await Square's next Kingdom Hearts adventure, vote for your favorite Organization member and I'll see you at our next gaming countdown!
© 2019 Jeremy Gill