The DC Universe is no stranger to powerful and dangerous entities. From deadly assassins to god-like heroes, the characters that’ve been rampaging across the pages for over 70 years have often been too strong for the world around them. For that reason, writers have occasionally resorted to inserting powerful items and weapons into the world to help balance the scales. And since they’re weighing against some of the most comically overpowered characters in all of fiction, these weapons have to be as strong if not more so. But in true DC fashion, writers may have gone overboard and created some absolutely outrageous weapons for the characters to play around with. The pages of their comic lines have been graced with swords that can cut through anything, guns that can shoot moon-sized bullets, and rings that do just about whatever the writers need them to do at any particular moment.
Some are powered by ancient magic, some are created through scientific ingenuity, and others still are just powerful because the universe made them that way. Here’s just a quick rundown of the 20 most powerful weapons in the DC Universe. As a point of order, the list doesn’t include weapons that became characters, like Red Tornado, androids that are meant to operate autonomously, like Amazo, or clones of other characters meant to be used against them, like Superboy. Only tools with direct offensive capabilities will be considered weapons and only the most powerful will make it onto the list, regardless of iconography, so Harley’s mallet, Green Arrow’s bow, and all forms of the batarang are off the table.
20 THE SWORD OF SUPERMAN
Created in the direct aftermath of the big bang, the Sword of Superman is a massive, semi-sentient cosmic blade. Despite being created eons before Clark Kent was born, it conveniently had an ‘S’ shape on the pommel, hence the name. After hurtling around the universe for the better part of existence before it fell into the hands of pre-Crisis Superman.
As soon as he touched it, he gained near omnipotence and omniscience, making him even more of a literal god than pre-Crisis Superman already was. Because he’s Superman and ironically rejects the notion of being overpowered entirely, he hurled the sword back into space. This mighty weapon ranks so low on this list because it was later revealed that only Superman could possibly wield it.
19 THE SPEAR OF DESTINY
The weapon used by a Roman soldier to pierce the side of Christ during the crucifixion, the Spear of Destiny first appeared in the DC universe in the hands of Adolf Hitler. The Fuhrer used it to turn any superheroes in his presence into Nazified versions of themselves.
Though he eventually lost control of it in a battle with the Justice Society of America, Hitler cursed the spear to corrupt whoever used it. It’s been used a few times since then, demonstrating its status as a powerful magic artifact. Unfortunately, it often can have very random effects and has the whole curse thing about it.
18 THE ASTRO-HARNESS
The signature tool of New God Orion, the Astro-Harness is mysterious battle-gear that allows its wearer to fly, shoot powerful blasts of astro-force, project force field barriers that can absorb kinetic energy for fuel, use gravity manipulation to create tractor beams, and can even interface with Orion’s Mother Box to project Boom Tubes and hack computers.
It is also programable and self-repairing, letting it operate remotely for brief periods without Orion’s help. While wearing it, Orion’s already formidable strength is amplified to an unknown degree but could potentially be limitless. Unfortunately, while it’s never been outwardly stated, it’s highly believed that only Orion can possibly handle the Harness’s power.
17 THE LASSO OF TRUTH
The signature weapon of Wonder Woman, the gilded Lasso of Truth, also called the Perfect, was forged by the Greek god Hephaestus. Like most of his crafts, the Lasso is unbreakable and has a number of magical properties. It can seemingly extend to any length, is immune to most forms of counter magic, and even has some limited hypnotism powers.
Most famously, anyone tied up in the lasso is automatically compelled to tell and experience the truth, making it invaluable for interrogation. In the right, practiced hands, the Lasso can be used for any number of offensive and defensive maneuvers.
16 JUSTICE BUSTER
As the only out-and-out human in the Justice League and arguably the most prominent human character in the entire DC Universe, Batman’s main challenge is keeping up with his superpowered contemporaries. But for that, he has the Justice Buster armor. Specifically designed to take on the entire Justice League at once, the armor turns Batman into a one-man wrecking machine with specific counter measures for each individual Leaguer.
Among its more impressive add-ons are dwarf-star studded fisticuffs, a neurotoxin spray, a dehydrating foam cannon, and even a legendary artifact called the Bind of Veils just to deal with Wonder Woman’s Lasso.
15 GOD KILLER
In the comics, the mythical God Killer sword was forged by Hephaestus for Deathstroke, who he’d contracted to assassinate an ancient Greek Titan. As the Titan was effectively immortal, Deathstroke needed a magical blade to complete the mission. Along with being able to slay the unkillable, the sword can alter its own size and weight, can unleash devastating shock blasts, and can absorb energy to be redirected with double the strength.
It can also alter its form, letting Deathstroke use it as a sword, a staff, or even a cat o’ nine tails whip. He can even separate the sword into two blades for dual wielding.
14 THE ALL-BLADES
Created by the mysterious and enigmatic All Caste warrior group, the flaming copper All-Blades were specifically created to kill any and all magical entities and are incapable of harming anyone else. The blades themselves are immaterial, vanishing when not in use and only capable of being summoned when their user is in the presence of absolute evil.
Though powerful, the All-Blades’ potential are limited to the capacity of their wielder’s soul. Their current wielder is former Robin, Jason Todd, aka Red Hood, who trained with the All Caste upon his resurrection and has learned how to summon them at will.
13 THE SOULTAKER SWORD
Perhaps the most famous sword in the DC Universe, Katana’s Soultaker Sword can extract the souls of anyone it slays. Since the sword was created in the 14th century and was initially owned by an evil samurai warlord, the blade has amassed thousands of souls over the years, including Katana’s late husband, Maseo.
Once absorbed, Katana can access the sword’s souls for advice, information, and strength. It was later revealed that the souls form the sword can extend her lifespan virtually indefinitely and can even grant her true enlightenment. It also makes her the defacto leader of the legendary Sword Clan.
12 THE COSMIC STAFF
Brandished by several different characters over the years, the Cosmic Staff was created by Ted Knight as an advanced model of his Gravity Rod. It constantly absorbs star energy and converts it into malleable energy that its user can use to fly, create force fields, shoot energy projections, and even create small energy constructs.
It also had some very specific abilities. For example, it could detect radiation, had a mild telekinetic factor, and could even emit pure heat hot enough to melt steel. Despite being owned by multiple heroes, it’s most famous for being the primary weapons of Courtney Whitmore, aka Stargirl.
11 NTH METAL WEAPONS
A bizarre mix of magic and science, the Nth Metal weapons wielded by Thanagarians have a veritable cornucopia of different powers. Most prevalent is its gravity negating effects which allow Thanagarians to use their impractical wings to fly. It also gives its wielder a healing factor, total immunity to magic, augmented strength and speed, and, in certain configurations, can even blast solar energy beams.
It also has occasionally demonstrated semi-random effects. When exposed to raw Nth Metal, an ancient Egyptian prince and his betrothed were introduced into a cycle of reincarnation that eventually saw them reborn as Hawkman and Hawkgirl.
10 KHAJI DA
The Beetle Scarabs were a tool of the advanced alien conquerors known as the Reach who shot these living computers to planets across the galaxy. Once attached to a native subject, the scarab would turn its host into a Reach shock troop. The scarab sent to Earth, called Khaji Da, was purified by mystical energies in ancient Egypt and cured of its programming.
When it bonded to its human hosts, archeologist Dan Garrett and student Jaime Reyes, it endowed them with all of the Reach’s technology in the form of advanced battle armor that could fly, produce sonic blasts, had malleable limbs, could fire self-made projectiles, heal its user, absorb shadows and light, and even operate of its own will if need be.
9 THE TRIDENT OF NEPTUNE
In Greek mythology, the sea god Neptune wielded a trident, a three-pronged fishing spear. In the DC Universe, this same weapon has been passed down the royal lineage of Atlantis. Just holding it allows its owner complete control over Atlantean infrastructure and mechanics. Currently wielded by Aquaman, the golden Trident of Neptune is primarily used to manipulate all forms of water.
It is so powerful that it can redirect entire ocean currents at its user’s will. In close quarters combat, it can be used to stab, cut, and block. Its tips are sharp enough to rip through Darkseid’s stone skin. At a distance, it can fire off electric bolts, control the weather, and even alter organic matter.
8 ZEUS'S ARMOR
The most recent addition to this list, Zeus’ Armor is a divine breastplate that was intended to be Wonder Woman’s inheritance and a weapon against the encroaching Dark Gods. For reasons that have yet to be explained, it was instead bequeathed to her brother, Jason, who learned that he can use the armor to access the powers of the entire Greek pantheon.
So far he’s only used the strength of Ares, the speed of Hermes, the winds of Zeus, and the wisdom of Athena, but hypothetically has any number of gifts related to the old gods. This weapon has yet to show its full potential, but is already a formidable tool for anyone to use.
Though often mistaken as an independent character, Mageddon is very much just a machine. Used as a world-destroyer in a previous age, Mageddon is a giant computer that can cause sentient life to resort to it’s basest insticts, inspiring entire populatiosn to tear themselves apart by its mere presence. Though not indestructible, Mageddon survived for millenia traped in a black hole’s gravity well and withstood bombardment from all of humanity when the entire planet was temporarily granted superpowers.
When truly threatened, Mageddon can self-destruct in an explosion that theoretically could destroy all material reality, an ability it was apparently never intended to activate as it can directly control anyone who gets too close to it.
6 THE MIRACLE MACHINE
Invented at the cusp of the thirty-first century, the Miracle Machine was designed to be just that, a device capable of performing the impossible. Anyone who uses it has their very thoughts transformed into reality. Due to the nebulous nature of the human mind, this can potentially have unintentional, devastating effects to existence.
It has only been used a few times in the history of existence, primarily by the futuristic Legion of Super-Heroes and only under dire circumstances. It’s most famous appearance was during Final Crisis when Superman was shot into the future and used it to stop Darkseid and Superboy-Prime simultaneously.
The Warworld proves that when you can’t top the Death Star in terms of awesome giant space weapons, then ripping it off will do. A giant celestial satellite, the Warworld was created by advanced, barabaric aliens who foolishly created a psychic steering function that drained it’s user. The Warworld killed the entire race without firing a single shot.
Because of this, the machine was altered to use a crystalline key to control it. It then fell into the hands of the alien tyrant Mongul, who discovered that full potential of the space station. It’s defensive weapons put it on the same scale as multiple armadas and it’s main cannons can destroy entire planets. Even Superman needed assistance in disabling it.
4 MOTHER BOXES
A signature tool on New Genesis, the Mother Boxes are brick-sized living computers that can integrate with other computers, non-electronic machinery, and even organic matter to augment its host with a variety of powers. Among the more standard powers they grant are Boom Tube generation, a spectrum of sonic abilities, flight, telepathy, technokinesis, and advanced energy manipulation.
For reasons unknown to even their creators, the boxes have a mystical bond with both their owners and nature which lets them heal wounds, soothe psyches, and disrupt illusions. When their owner dies, a box will self-destruct out of loyalty, but this rarely happens as Mother Boxes can even manipulate the life-force energy in their hosts to keep them alive.
3 POWER RINGS
Often refered to as the most powerful weapons in the DC universe, the colored Lantern Power Rings are divided into a spectrum of emotions each relating to a different color. While most rings endow their users with the same basic powers, namely flight, augmented strength and speed, ability to survive in space, and the limitless potential of hard-light constructs, certain colors of rings have additional effects.
Red Lantern Rings let their users spew plasma, Indigo Lanterns can force empathy and heal, Star Sapphires can teleport to their true loves, Orange Lantens can manifest the souls of the people they kill, Black Lantern Rings can reanimated corpses, and White Lantern Rings can emulate all the other colors’ abilities.
2 THE MOBIUS CHAIR
Perhaps the most intelligent being in the entire DC universe is the New God Metron. Tasked with accumulating all the knowledge in the universe, Metron created the Mobius Chair, a floating throne capable of moving ‘slideways’ over time and space. The chair itself is embued with the nigh omniscient knowledge of the New Gods, meaning that anyone sitting in it has encyclopedic knowledge about just about everything, including future events.
It even knows the true identity of the Joker. In addition, it has a tractor beam capable of moving entire planets, can create unbreakable and super-tangible force fields, and even control Mother Boxes.
1 THE ANTI-LIFE EQUATION
The most dangerous weapon in the DC Universe isn’t a sword, gun, or even a vehicle. Rather, it is the amebious concept of the Anti-Life Equation, an existential mathematical algorithm that hypothetically proves that free will is non existent and life is meaningless. Split apart and hidden in the minds of humans, the Equation was first completed by Darkseid, who used it to completely control anyone who heard it.
Darkseid also found it to have reality-altering effects, granting him immortality, the ability to resurrect the dead, and even control the Antimatter Universe. It was changed in the post-Flashpoint universe to be less overpowered and could only be used by specific individuals.