A katana is a type of Japanese sword with a blade length greater than 23.6-28.7 inches (60-73 centimeters) and characterized by its distinctive appearance: a curved, slender, single-edged blade, circular or squared guard, and long grip that can accommodate two hands. Often called a "samurai sword" or "samurai's sword" because of its use by the feudal warriors, it became a symbol of the samurai caste.
Renowned for its sharpness and cutting ability, its origins go back at least as far as the Kamakura Period (1185–1333). Most often held with two hands, some techniques and combat styles were performed with a one-handed grip. The katana was generally carried in a saya, or scabbard, manufactured from lightweight wood, with a coat of lacquer on the exterior and a wooden knob on one side for attaching a braided cord.
The samurai's sword does higher damage than most other melee weapons, however, it lacks the special effects of Jingwei's shocksword or the Shishkebab. On the other hand, it has a higher critical damage than most bladed melee weapons, and has a relatively low AP cost compared to similar weapons, allowing for more attacks in V.A.T.S. The samurai sword is the oldest weapon in the game, originally being wielded by Toshiro Kago, a Japanese samurai.
The samurai's sword can be found in the waste disposal area of Zeta, accessible through the maintenance level (which can be entered only during the quest "Among the Stars"). It is at the outer southwest area in a closet full of medical supplies (see waste disposal article for a map (B) with the location marked). The sword should be acquired while Toshiro Kago still resides in the engineering core, for after his disappearance it will be gone from the shelves. It can, however, be found later, before the Lone Wanderer enters the Bridge: by simply killing Toshiro and looting his body. No one on the bridge will become hostile.
When trying to exit the waste disposal area, the teleportation matrix might not work. PC users can fix it by selecting the teleporter in console and use the command "activate". [verified]
The sword might not appear if Toshiro Kago has been killed before entering the waste disposal area. [verified]
The sword may not appear even if Kago is not dead. [verified]
When decorating your Megaton house, the sword's image will not appear while idle. However, if you look directly at it and get close enough to pick it up, then the option to pick it up will appear - picking it up will place it in your inventory like normal even though you can't see it. [verified]
It is possible to acquire two swords. First, get the one in the waste disposal. When you return to the engineering core, drop it right in front of Toshiro. Talk to him and tell him you found his sword and he'll miraculously acquire one. Kill him and it will be on his body (just don't lose/forget the one you dropped). [verified]
Fixed as of the most recent patch.
It is possible to equip Toshiro with his sword and still retain a copy. Reverse pickpocket the sword onto him, allow him to equip it, and pickpocket it back. [verified]