Dean Cardiss was told by a judge he had shown no remorse after a jury heard how he left a four-year-old boy with brain and spinal injuries as a result of degrading and cruel abuse.
A trial heard harrowing evidence of how Cardiss used pliers to inflict injuries to the boy's body.
Cardiss, 33, is also thought to have used a horse whip to attack the boy, attacked him with a Samuari sword and used a wooden plank to beat him.
The offending took place in Leeds.
Medics were shocked when they examined the extent of the boy's injuries and said he would have been in agony when they were inflicted.
Leeds Crown Court heard Cardiss took "obvious pleasure" in causing injuries to the boy.
The boy appeared "lifeless" when he was taken to Leeds General Infirmary in 2015 suffering from head injuries and had bruises and burns to his body.
He had also suffered injuries to his spinal cord and had fractures to his vertebrae, heel and pelvis.
Doctors also found evidence that the boy had been sexually abused.
Cardiss was also found guilty of violent offences against two girls when they were aged around three or four years old.
Cardiss used hair straighteners and hair dryers to inflict burn injuries against the girls.
He also used the back of a red hot hair dryer to inflict a "branding" mark to the boy's body.
Cardiss denied any offending at his trial, blaming others for inflicting the injuries.
He was found guilty of one offence of wounding with intent, five offences of inflicting grievous bodily harm, one offence of assault by penetration and nine offences of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
Judge Guy Kearl, QC, told Cardiss he was imposing the life sentence because he was "intelligent and manipulative" and a posed danger not only to children but adults.
He was told he must serve a minimum of 11 years in custody.
The judge said: "The offences can best be described as you torturing those children.
"The public needs protecting against you for the foreseeable future."
Detective Chief Inspector Warren Stevenson, of West Yorkshire Police Protective Services Crime, said: "Cardiss was responsible for inflicting a horrendous catalogue of abuse on the victims, who were vulnerable and defenceless young children.
"The nature of the injuries he caused to them, particularly to the young boy, indicate that these were systematic and deliberate acts from which he derived some sort of sick satisfaction and sense of power.
"The evidence identified during our investigation shows that he is clearly a controlling bully of the worst kind and we hope the significant sentence he has received will provide some reassurance to the families of the victims and to the wider community who will be understandably shocked by what he has done.
"We will always treat any offences of abuse against children very seriously and we have specialist safeguarding officers who will continue to work closely with their colleagues in local authorities and other partner agencies to protect children from harm.
"This was an extremely challenging case where painstaking efforts were required to get the accounts of these young victims, and we are very grateful to all the health and social care professionals who played their part in bringing this case to a successful conclusion.”