Appearing in the very first game of the series, they have been a mainstay in nearly every game since then. Sometimes they are activated by using the character's Ultimate Ninja Art, while other times they may be a separate selectable character, or only playable in specific story missions.
Typically reserved for the leaders of specific factions, though other characters may have similar enhanced forms.
Official Awakened Forms
- Ultimate Asuka: Introduced in Senran Kagura: Burst when Asuka and Homura each use one of Hanzō National Academy's Super-Secret Ninja Art Scrolls for their final battle against one another. Later she would be able to use this transformation using her Ultimate Ninja Art, but it was only available as a separate character in Senran Kagura 2: Deep Crimson and Senran Kagura: Peach Beach Splash. Visually she lets her hair down and gains a green glow (especially with her swords).
- Crimson Homura: Introduced alongside Ultimate Asuka when Homura uses the energy of the scroll to finally unsheathe her seventh sword, Engetsuka. Later she could transform just by unsheathing the sword (or even without the sword in an offscreen gag during the Senran Kagura: Shinovi Master -Tokyo Yōma-hen- anime), and it is usually used as her Ultimate Ninja Art, but is also available as a separate character in both the 3DS games and Peach Beach Splash. Visually she lets her hair down as it turns bright red and she puts away her six swords to draw Engetsuka in their place.
- Ice Queen Yumi: Introduced in Senran Kagura: Estival Versus as Yumi's Ultimate Ninja Art (replacing White Widow, where she summoned a giant ice spider). It is also used extensively in the Senran Kagura: Shinovi Master -Tokyo Yōma-hen- anime, and is available as a separate character in Peach Beach Splash. Visually her hair magically grows long and her eyes shift as she puts away her fan and manifests a blade made of ice.
- Abyssal Miyabi: Introduced in Senran Kagura: Shinovi Versus as her Ultimate Ninja Art, Paradiso of the Abyss. However she would only transform into it briefly to perform an attack and then transform back. Estival Versus changed the Ultimate Ninja Art to Divine Judgment which allowed her to be controlled in this form. The form also appears as a boss during the Abyssal storyline in Senran Kagura: Burst Re:Newal. Abyssal Miyabi is available as a separate character in Peach Beach Splash. Visually she grows six wings and begins to fly as her hair turns black (aside from a single white patch) and she uses a demonic-looking sword.
- Heaven's Tower Yūyaki (天楼の夕焼): Though the name may not be the official translation, Yūyaki recently gained this form in Shinobi Master Senran Kagura: New Link by using the power of Yasha to become more powerful.
Unofficial Awakened Forms
These characters have enhanced forms that may or may not be considered "Awakened" forms, and have thus far not been known to have that label applied to them.
- Frenzied Hikage: While never available as an alternate character, Hikage has access to a stronger form that changes her moveset. In Senran Kagura: Burst it could be activated once per mission when at low health, while in other games it was instead attached to one of her Ninja Arts. Visually she hunches over with her eyes glowing red and her tongue hanging out as her movements become more deranged and erratic and her speed dramatically increases.
- Scarlet Haruka: Only available as a Boss, and only in Senran Kagura: Burst Re:Newal. While other characters are given Scarlet forms when controlled by Yōma, and possibly even given some new attacks, in Scarlet Haruka's case she changes her playstyle completely (though in the original Burst she was just like all the other Scarlet characters and did not get this dramatic change). Like all Scarlet characters she gets the red skin and glow and demonic eyes. However, she also floats in the air and has an array of gears and puppet parts floating around her body used for various massive attacks. Other Scarlet characters with less dramatic changes include Homura, Hikage, Yomi, Mirai, and Ryōki, along with various grunts. The Ayakashi also seem to convert their host into a Scarlet form.
- Calamity Imu: Overtaken by her bloodline's Root of Calamity, Imu becomes the final boss of the Hebijo Clandestine Girls' Academy storyline in Senran Kagura: Shinovi Versus. She gains a glowing purple aura around herself and becomes more powerful, but goes into a berserker rage. She has not been able to access this form since, and has never been playable with it.
- Berserk Ryōki: When her halo is touched, it turns red and Ryōki's sweet personality inverts into a swear-laden furious one. She casts away her shotgun and shield and summons her coffin hiding many armaments, including a Gatling gun and 3 missile launchers, to use as her weapon. She can access it temporarily by activating her Ultimate Ninja Art, HAPPY TURN. She is in this form full-time as the final boss of Estival Versus and in Peach Beach Splash, when she pilots the giant robot Heaven's Casket, she will reach up and touch her own halo to turn it red once the robot has taken enough damage.
- Jasmine: A bit of a different case, as Sayuri uses some of her own life force to transform into her younger self when she was at the peak of her power. Gameplay-wise they are separate selectable characters and you cannot change one into the other (and arguably Sayuri is quite stronger than Jasmine in terms of damage, despite the lore saying otherwise). Normally the change only occurs during cutscenes, however during the final Special Mission where you play as 23 shinobi girls attacking Sayuri in succession, once you're down to the last playable girl (Asuka) and have nearly won, Sayuri will say it's time to "get serious" and will transform into Jasmine for the remainder of the fight. However, Jasmine would later gain an enhanced form during Senran Kagura: New Link where she would draw upon the power of the Yōma Gate to transform into a stronger form and gain a new weapon.
- Yōma Fubuki: Used in the anime Senran Kagura: Shinovi Master -Tokyo Yōma-hen- and the game Shinobi Master Senran Kagura: New Link, this is Fubuki when she accesses the power of her half-Yōma heritage. Used when she's already in Shinobi Form, it adds red markings to her skin and increases her power.
All five members of Senki Shu have stronger forms that they can transform into, and the name of all of these cards have "Awakening" in them, so they are likely official Awakened forms but we're putting them here for now.
- Awakening of Insanity Hyōki
- Awakening of Collapse Miki
- Awakening of Envy Reki
- Awakening of Evil Maki
- Awakening of Disaster Yuki
- In Senran Kagura: Burst Re:NeWal, if any of the characters with official Awakened forms play a mission that used an Awakened form, then they will automatically use theirs for the mission even if it's not their mission. For example, if you use Yumi in the Ultimate Asuka vs. Crimson Homura mission, then Yumi will automatically transform into Ice Queen Yumi for the duration of the mission.