TOPS Knives just released two new knives, the CUMA Kage and Tidal Force. Both are definitely big and bold.
The KAGE (Pronounced KU-MA KA-GAY), means “Shadow” in Japanese. The name is drawn from one of the designer’s lifelong passions, GI JOE: the Arashikage (Storm Shadow) Clan.
SIJO Waysun Johnny Tsai is a lifelong martial artist and world-renowned self-defense instructor. Riding off the success of his wildly popular TOPS Knives release, the C.U.M.A. TAK-RI, and its connection to the GI JOE Ninja Commando Snake Eyes, Sijo wanted to create something that he has sought after since his childhood, a functional Snake Eyes Sword.
Wanting to show influence, but not wanting to make an identical sword to the comics, Sijo drew the sword to his favorite Escrima stick length, 24″. Through years of training Sijo has found that 24″ is a perfect length for close range combat with an edged weapon or stick.
He then changed the tip and added a striking Punyo tip to the handle. Sijo didn’t just want a short tactical sword, he wanted to create a bush sword that could replace an axe, one that could fell a tree as well as remove an enemy’s limb in combat. Once satisfied with his initial hand drawings, he sent the sketches to his good friend Roland III of FOX KNIVES USA fame to transfer the hand sketch to a digital format.
Once the artwork was complete, Sijo landed back with his family at TOPS KNIVES. Over the next two years, Sijo and TOPS created a prototype and at the suggestion of Leo Espinoza and Craig Powell, TOPS added some fullers and holes to the handle to lighten the weight of the sword, Outside of the new fullers and holes in the handle, the sword’s CAD file was created from the original hand and digital drawings provided by Waysun Johnny Tsai and Roland Hinojosa III.
During the prototype stage, IDW comic book / GI Joe artist Robert Atkins agreed to upgrade the official Snake Eye’s sword in the comic book with The C.U.M.A. KAGE. That story arc written by GI JOE legend Larry Hama, is GI JOE: SNAKE HUNT and runs in GI JOE: A Real American Hero issues numbered 266-276.
The C.U.M.A. KAGE is finally here and Sijo could not be prouder of the final product that TOPS KNIVES has delivered.
Let’s face it. Cleavers are awesome. So are Karambits. Put them together the right way, and you end up with an interesting tool. The Tidal Force is that tool. Use it for daily tasks. Use it for food prep. Use it for self-defense. Whatever you decide to use it for, you’ll look good doing it. It has TOPS famous differential heat treated 1095, Some classy burlap Micarta handles and a solid Kydex sheath with a leather dangler.