First Great Shinobi War

Many of the records from this war were lost due to the chaos and widespread fighting of the time. However, this war is important for the fact that it involved, for the first time, organized ninja forces by village rather than scattered clans and groups, and that it cemented the village system as the dominant ninja government in the Elemental Lands.

Major Forces


Earth Country's ninja village, Iwa had the largest ninja force in the Elemental Lands. It had frequently been used to quell various fiefdoms along Earth Country's borders.


A ninja village formed in the lands east of Earth Country and northwest of Fire Country, Taki serves the needs of much of the surrounding fiefdoms to the annoyance of Earth Country. This has enabled it to grow fairly large and be considered as part of the six major villages.


Fire Country's official ninja village, Konoha was the first ninja village to form. It held a significant military advantage due to its first leader, the Shodai Hokage, and his ability to control Biju.


Wind Country's ninja village, Suna is hidden deep within the deserts of the country. Because of the difficulty in crossing the desert, Suna pays less attention to its neighbors than it should.


Lightning Country's ninja village, Kumo, and Lightning Country resent Konoha and Fire Country's control over land trade routes and better sea ports. Kumo also boasts the second largest ninja force in the Elemental Lands.


Water Country's official ninja village, Kiri works closely with Water Country's Navy and a large number of its ninja serve on board the ships to give them a decided advantage on the sea. Water Country largely wants to pursue trade and shipping without being involved in major wars, but is unhappy with the destructive power Konoha can unleash.


First Kage Summit (15 AF)

As the various ninja villages formed and grew, a growing discontent with Konoha's monopoly on the Biju, given the Shodai Hokage's ability to control the demons. Mindful of the problem, the Shodai Hokage called the first Kage Summit in late 15 AF. At the Summit he and Tobirama Senju negotiated with the various leaders and, in an attempt to prolong the peace and avoid a major war, he gave away the biju to the six other major village of the time - two to Iwa, two to Kiri, two to Kumo, one to Suna, and one to Taki - while keeping no biju for Konoha. It was his hope that by spreading out the biju to other villages, they wouldn't feel the need to start a war over the issue. The Summit concluded in early 16 AF with a tentative alliance between the villages to maintain peace.

Spring War (16 AF)

Only a month or two after the conclusion of the Kage Summit, Madara Uchiha attacked Iwa with the intent to force it to summit to Konoha. Word quickly reached Konoha and when Madara returned, he was called to task over his actions. Refusing to accept punishment, he clashed with the Shodai Hokage and Tobirama Senju in an attempt to wrest control of Konoha from them, controlling the Kyuubi against the two and injuring Tobirama. Madara fled and was pursued by the Shodai and Mito Uzumaki, catching up to him along the northern border of Fire Country. Mito used her skills with Fuinjutsu to seal the Kyuubi into herself after subduing it. The Shodai focused on Madara himself, and after a lengthy battle, apparently killed Madara. The terrain they fought in had been altered enough that the location was referred to as the Valley of the End from then onward.

The dispersal of biju in jinchuuriki form to different villages sparked expansionist feelings in Earth Country and Lightning Country, two of the countries whose village received two jinchuuriki. Iwa already maintained a sizable ninja force, the largest at the time, and had been frequently used for pressuring neighbors during talks. In addition, Madara's strike against the village left them wanting revenge, with his coup attempt providing an opportunity. Thus, only a couple months after the Summit ended, Earth Country and Iwa began expanding their borders by invading Taki's territory, Fire Country, and Wind Country.

Early use of Taki's jinchuuriki blunted Iwa's invasion long enough for sufficient military forces to come to bare and halt Iwa's initial strike into their territory, though nearly half of their land had been captured by that point. Taki's forces began fortifying key locations and roads, settling in for a prolonged defensive war.

Wind Country, caught off guard by the attack, traded space for time and allowed Iwa's forces to advance into Wind Country far enough to reach the desert. Half the Iwa force began marching on Suna while the other half began skirting the desert to head for the coastline. Operating in the sandy desert bogged down the Iwa forces, and Suna struck mercilessly in hit-and-run strikes over the following months. The force was destroyed in detail without being able to report the situation. The eastern force was harried randomly, forcing it to stay on guard and slowing its progress to a crawl.

Tobirama, suspecting Iwa might try to make a move after the Summit, had staged part of Konoha's forces near the border to respond in case of attack. This force hit the Iwa line but was mauled badly by one of Iwa's jinchuuriki. The survivors switched to hit-and-fade tactics to slow the advance and get intelligence. Iwa's advance was finally halted at the town of Market in the north and the fortress of Tanzaku Gai in the south. The Shodai Hokage took command of the forces facing Iwa's jinchuuriki, negating that advantage. Iwa's Kamizuru Clan spotted a weak point in the line and exploited it in a drive toward Konoha. Konoha's Aburame Clan engaged them in battle while reserve forces cut off the hole in the line and dealt with the other Iwa forces that made it through. Nearly the entire Kamizuru clan was wiped out in the fighting. A healed Tobirama lead a relief force that pushed Iwa lines back in the north far enough for Konoha to link up with Taki's defense line.

Operation Firestorm (17 AF)

Having stabilized the situation in the north, Tobirama then launched an offensive southwest from Tanzaku Gai in an attempt to cut off the southern Iwa force battling Suna. The force, realizing its situation, had begun withdrawing near the end of the previous year and settled into a well defend-able location to weather the Konoha attack. For the first few days, they successfully held off repeated attacks by Konoha nin, until Suna forces swept up the more lightly guarded rear and broke the lines. The Iwa forces retreated back to their main lines in disarray, pursued by the joint Konoha-Suna force. Iwa was forced to deploy their second jinchuuriki to stop the offensive.

With the locations of both Iwa jinchuuriki known, Suna began an offensive led by their jinchuuriki along their northern border further west. With most of the attention on Fire Country and dealing with the situation there, Suna pushed Iwa back across the border and into Earth Country. One jinchuuriki and a large force of ninja were shifted from Fire Country westward to stop the assault, but Suna had gained a several dozen kilometer deep foothold on Earth Country before being stopped.

Now that the center and north was weakened, Taki forces and the Shodai Hokage began their own offensives. By the time the lines had stabilized once more, Taki had recovered half their lost territory, including a major port Iwa had been using for supplies, and Iwa's foothold in Fire Country had been reduced to a depth of a dozen kilometers. As the year ended, both sides began building defense lines.

Second Front (18 AF)

Lightning Country, seeing the prolonged fighting drawing attention to the west, decided it was now the right time to begin their own expansion plans. Kumo nin began pushing into Fire Country. The Shodai Hokage was forced to lead Konoha's reserves to stop Kumo's advance. With his presence, Kumo's jinchuuriki could not be fielded and the smaller battle front allowed Konoha to halt the invasion progress before it got into the more open parts of the country. Near the end of the year, Kumo sent both its jinchuuriki against the Konoha lines. Tobirama Senju was named the Nidaime Hokage by the Shodai just before the Kage left to join the battle. The Shodai Hokage badly injured both jinchuuriki, but was killed in the battle.

Lightning Country's eastern fleet began raiding and attacking along Fire Country's east coast. Fire Country's eastern fleet responded, but was soundly defeated in several battles and found itself trapped in port. With sea opposition out of the way, Lightning Country ships began shutting down shipping along the coast with impunity, sinking all merchant ships trying to enter or leave ports along that coast.

In an attempt to take advantage of Iwa's lengthy time fighting, Lightning Country's western fleet began attacking Iwa's coastline. The clashes between navies proved indecisive despite Earth Country's forces generally coming off worse. They maintained enough of a presence that Kumo could not secure a beachhead into Earth Country.

On the western front,Taki managed to recover the rest of its territory while Suna was gradually forced out of Earth Country in the south. The center was fairly quiet, with neither Konoha nor Iwa willing to risk an offensive at that point.

Bloody Mist (19-20 AF)

During all the fighting, Water Country stayed neutral and continued their trading and shipping with all their normal partners. This began changing in 18 AF as Lightning Country ships repeatedly sank Water Country vessels and ignoring Water Country's demands to stop sinking neutral shipping. In early 19 AF, a Lightning Country raiding squadron attacked what it thought was a massive merchant convoy only to discover it was a disguised Water Country fleet. After destroying the squadron, the fleet continued up the Fire Country coast, relieving the trapped Fire Country fleet and smashing a quarter of Lightning Country's navy in that theater.

The Water fleet based itself out of Fire Country ports and proceeded to shatter Lightning Country's eastern fleet in a series of brutal strikes, destroying ships, materials, and port facilities all along the southern and eastern coast of Lightning Country. They also escorted several convoys of transports that strengthened Konoha's defense line, seized the islands between Water and Lightning, and made amphibious landings behind Kumo's lines.

Though the Shodai was dead and Kumo jinchuuriki recovered from their injuries, Kiri's two jinchuuriki were now in the field against Kumo, resulting in the fresh Kiri ninja leading the push that drove weary Kumo forces back into Lightning Country and within a few dozen kilometers of Kumo itself. The shorter resupply chain for Kumo forced the offensive to a halt. Kumo nin were also forced to repulse numerous landings by Kiri along the southern coast.

On the western front, both sides continued their largely stalemate war, launching probing attacks here and there but largely working to train up more ninja for an inevitable offensive.

Blindsided (21 AF)

As the fifth year of the war began, both fronts were largely stalemates, with neither side wishing to make a risky large-scale push that could open themselves to attack. The status quo finally changed mid-way through the year when a Taki nin, Kakuzu, went rogue and wiped out much of the ninja village. The loss of leadership caused chaos in Taki lines, and Iwa was quick to take advantage. Taki forces managed to regroup and reform just within Fire Country borders, but by that point had lost all their territory. Iwa pushed east rapidly, but was stopped by Iron Country, formed the previous year. While Iron Country had declared itself neutral, it was not going to allow itself to be overrun and defended itself during the Iwa push with its elite samurai forces.

Iwa stopped that offensive and promised to not try to violate the neutrality again. Instead it turned south and tried to keep its offensive going. Unfortunately, the eastward push had given forces time to set up a line, preventing Iwa from driving into Fire Country from the north.

Sensing an opportunity, a Konoha Jounin named Hiruzen Sarutobi launched an offensive north from his section of the line in the northwest section of the front. The Nidaime Mizukage and the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist were touring Konoha's western front when the offensive began, and joined in. Iwa forces, concentrated too far east for the failed southern push, couldn't stop the offensive and nearly were cut off from the rest of the lines. The Nidaime Tsuhikage took it upon himself to counterattack while Iwa forces retreated, eventually facing off against the Mizukage in battle. The two fought hard and in the end managed to kill each other. Iwa forces made an organized withdrawal with the delays the Tsuchikage was causing, giving up much of the land they took but denying Konoha the chance to wipe out a significant section of Iwa's military. Further offensives pushed Iwa's line back to Taki's ruins and the area's major port.

Trench Warfare (22 - 24 AF)

Despite the efforts of all sides, no major gains could be made or kept over the next few years of fighting. This resulted in the same few dozen kilometers of land changing sides of the course of months. Lightning Country's western fleet finally managed to force Earth Country's fleet into a major engagement and defeated the fleet. It was unable to capitalize on the victory due to damage incurred by the fighting and impressive terrain rearrangement to increase the defensibility of Earth Country's ports and coastline. Water Country's fleet continued the destruction of Lightning Country's eastern fleet and Kiri managed to form several beachheads into Lightning Country, but was never able to keep them for more than a month.

Several teams of Kumo's Master Bounty Hunters managed to infiltrate the Allied lines and ambushed the Nidaime Hokage along with the five ninja team escorting him during a tour of the Lightning front in 24 AF. The Nidaime made Hiruzen Sarutobi his successor as Hokage, then engaged the enemy force to allow the rest of the ninja in his team to get to safety. The team gathered forces and immediately headed back to aid the Nidaime. They arrived too late to save the Hokage, but the force prevented the enemy from taking the body and pushed them back across the lines.

Iron Country (25 AF)

In 25 AF, Iron Country, seeing the lack of significant change in the fighting for two years, campaigned for a ceasefire and for the leaders of the villages to meet in Iron Country, as neutral territory, to discuss ending the war. By mid-25 AF, the various leaders agreed and negotiations began in the city of Funkakou Gai. Several months later, the Treaty of Funkakou Gai was signed, formally ending what was known as the Great Shinobi War.

In an effort to keep the major countries on the mainland from causing friction by being so close together, sections of each country's territory along with the independent fiefdoms overrun by the fighting were taken to form numerous small countries to separate the surviving combatants. The five major villages involved in the war were formally labelled Great Villages and became the only ones able to call their leader a 'Kage'.

Managing to bring the warring leaders together and form a peace treaty gave Iron Country a lot of renown and it quickly became the location for meetings on neutral ground.

Great Shinobi Wars
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First Great Shinobi War Second Great Shinobi War
Konoha Conflicts
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Iwa Conflicts
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