Here are the 30 best anime series of all time, including both classic anime franchises and new series. This list of the best anime will help beginners find which anime to start watching in the world or anime fans decide which anime to try next. Otherwise, check out the best anime by freak standards. It's not easy to narrow it down to just 30 anime and rank them, and there are many others worth watching outside of this list of recommendations, of course.
Death Note is number one on our list for many reasons. Firstly, it has been voted the number one anime series of all time by Japanese fans. It is also ranked as the number 1 most popular anime series on the website MyanimeList. Who decides what the best anime series of all time are? Me? You? Or maybe it's a matter of personal taste.
There is a lot to consider when compiling a list like this. For example, whether to put quality before fan favourites or whether the most influential anime series deserve a special place at the top. After receiving a considerable amount of love and hate for my list of the 15 most powerful anime characters, I thought I would also make a list of the top 10 anime series of all time. For many anime fans, you may have inadvertently started with Dragon Ball Z.
The series was very popular in the 1990s. However, many of those viewers may not have become long-term fans of the genre. This was almost my story as well. It wasn't until more than a decade later that I returned to anime due to a series of circumstances.
I quickly went from being a casual viewer to an avid fan. After watching many of the best anime series, and re-watching some of my favourites, I am quite confident to offer my opinion on what I find to be my personal favourites. Even as I write this sentence, I realise that it would not be the same opinion for many others, as every fan has their own personal favourites. I have a special relationship with each of the selected series.
Not only did they appeal to me, each for their own reasons, but the artistic styles, voice acting, music and score, difficult themes and thought-provoking nature of many of them are what make them stand out for me. I could watch, and have watched, each of these series more than once, and the second viewing allows me to appreciate them that much more. The main character, Subaru, is thrown into another world, Isekai, and his adventures begin after a chance encounter with the heroine, Emilia. It has quite a lot of comedic overtones, with Subaru, an anime fan, initially trying to predict everything that will happen around him based on his experience watching anime.
But things don't work out that way. The series is popular largely because of its mystery and horror genre themes. It is enjoyed by both Japanese and international audiences. The story is relatively short, spanning less than 40 episodes, which makes it concise and to the point without getting too sidetracked, which is often the case with long series.
The series revolves around a fictional world of shinobi, where Naruto learns to become a ninja master with the help of his friends and other masters. The ninja techniques used in battles are derived from chakra energy. Dealing with themes such as strong bonds with friends and family, betrayal and overcoming various situations, the series is an intriguing adventure for all ages. The series is easy to understand, especially for newcomers, and is considered by many fans to be a top-notch anime that deserves to be on every top 10 list and, for many, even number one.
Naruto has probably one of the largest anime fanbases in the entire genre. Rurouni Kenshin is an anime based on a wandering swordsman trying to put his tormented past behind him. It is set in the Meiji era of Japan, with a glimpse into the lives of people during that time. After stumbling upon a struggling martial arts school, he decides to help, trying to lead a simple life, but it turns out to be anything but.
The series deals with a wide range of issues, but there is an underlying tone of remaining humble and giving of oneself to help those less fortunate and in need. There are numerous adventures in the series packed with great action with an anime style that blends brilliantly. It's a very good story overall. Rurouni Kenshin definitely deserves a place on the list of the top 10 anime series of all time.
In the not too distant future, Commander Motoko Kusanagi, or simply the Commander, and her group of officers as part of Public Security Section 9 fight high crime throughout Japan. Ghost in the Shell is set in the year 2030, where science and technology have advanced allowing humans to become cyborgs with various abilities to help humanity progress. However, Japanese syndicates have begun to use them to their advantage. Ghost in the Shell has inspired a generation of other anime, TV series and films thanks to its concepts and art style, directed by Mamoru Oshii.
While its live-action film may not have received the same accolades, it remains one of the best anime series of all time. Steins;Gate is among the top 10 highest rated anime series of all time on many rating platforms. This is not the only reason it deserves to be on my list. Its sci-fi and time travel theme is one of the best in television and film.
The series is set in Akihabara, Tokyo, which is a place of visit for many fans. Rintaro Okabe, a university student, discovers time travel and, together with his co-workers at the Future Gadget Lab, must try to stop an evil corporation from carrying out its plans. There are a number of plot twists and surprise moments that will keep you tuned in episode after episode. After an attempt to revive their deceased mother through alchemy, two brothers go awry when the whole thing goes horribly wrong.
The older brother, Edward, loses his arm, while his younger brother, Alphonse, loses his entire body, and takes the form of metal armour to save himself from death. Reviving someone from the dead is a great taboo in the world of alchemy, with grave consequences, as the results show. The two set out on a quest to find the Philosopher's Stone in an attempt to right their wrongs. But this is only the beginning of a wild adventure for the duo.
Leaving their small hometown, they are thrust into a world much bigger than themselves, having to overcome quite a few challenges and also prevent an evil group from also finding the Philosopher's Stone in order to achieve their goals. After a chance encounter, Fuu, a teenage waitress working in a teahouse, rescues two master swordsmen, Mugen and Jin, who have been arrested by the Japanese police after their fight unintentionally causes the death of a local magistrate's son. At the time, the son was harassing Fuu, who saves the duo as a result of their help. She tasks the two of them with accompanying her across Japan in search of the sunflower-smelling samurai, and this is where the adventure really begins.
The series is set in Edo-era Japan. The great thing about this is that Samurai Champloo tries to be historically accurate to the period, not only in the lifestyles, but also in the events that take place, in which the characters are indirectly involved. Samurai Champloo is also one of the three anime series that my fiancé has made a point of watching in its entirety. The hip-hop musical themes, besides being very appropriate, bring a unique style to accompany the great sword battles throughout the series.
A decade ago, a mysterious anomaly known as Heaven's Gate appeared over most of South America. Soon after, another appeared in Tokyo, known as Hell's Gate, which altered the sky and wreaked havoc on the surrounding area. As a result, the stars in the sky disappeared, replaced by false stars. Each of these false stars is linked to people who possess special abilities, known as Contractors.
These Contractors have been found and trained by various governments to use as spies and assassins. However, every time they use their abilities, they have to "pay the price, which comes in various forms, overeating, hurting themselves, changing their bodies and the like. The powers come at the cost of their humanity, killing through goals and rationality, suppressing any emotional and other human impediments that prevent them from achieving their goals. Even beyond the spectacle, there is much to unravel.
There is a rich lore that has the potential to be explored beyond the episodes of the series, with so many questions. The plot twists are crazy, with bombshells at every turn. The voice actors do a great job in both the Japanese and English dub, and the emotional connection is what keeps me coming back for more. Re-watching the series a second time, there is so much more to understand.
You realise that every action has a consequence in the history of the war, which goes back many generations before Eren and Mikasa are involved. Although the series is coming to an end soon, and there is still much to unravel, one can only hope for a prequel series that will keep fans coming back for more. The series follows the adventures of Monkey D. Luffy, along with his crew of pirates.
They try to find the greatest treasure, left behind by the legendary pirate Gold Roger. The title of the series derives from this treasure, known as "One Piece". After being sent back in time some 18 years, 29-year-old Satoru tries to avoid the death of his mother as a teenager, a story that began after a series of kidnappings when he was in 5th grade. The series is slow, but worthwhile.
The premise may not be real, but the struggle and emotions shown by Satoru are very realistic, and deal with issues of society and real-world struggles. The series has a great authenticity, despite its futuristic themes. The realism is what draws you in and keeps you entertained with action, comedy and a soundtrack that rounds out the package. The story is set in a post-apocalyptic future.
In it, humans live in peace with AI-equipped androids. But things quickly change for the protagonist, Inspector Re-L, after a series of murders cause tensions and threaten to dismantle the peaceful state. The story is vivid and feels all too real. By focusing heavily on philosophical and moral issues that we face in the real world, the series deserves to be watched at least twice to grasp all the nuances and concepts it brings to the table.
One Punch Man is a relatively new series compared to others on this list. With only two seasons released, spaced four years apart, it continues to leave fans wanting more. The series revolves around a seemingly oblivious hero, Saitama, who does it just for fun. As the title suggests, he is able to defeat his enemies with a single blow.
A young warrior named Goku, along with his friends, is on a mission to defend his planet from an onslaught of attacks by alien enemies. But things are not as simple as on paper, as Goku learns that he too is from another planet, and there are a number of twists and turns throughout the 90s series. Most kids who grew up in the 90s will have seen or known Dragon Ball Z. In South Africa, it was a huge hit, as I remember all my friends rushing home between 4 and 5pm when the series was on.
Whether we were in the middle of a football or cricket match, the streets would clear. This was the impact of the show, which many still remember fondly. This is my list of the top 10 anime series of all time. I imagine that at least five of these series would be on many lists, and quite a few would be questioned.
See results See trailer Chilllllllllllllllll naruto alone lo no im no gunna be one of those pl One Piece and Dragon ball Z honorable mentions hahahahahahahahahahahahaaaaaaa. These are probably top 2 Rezero sucks, MC keeps dying, too many suffer If you guys don't like this list go make the f**kin list yourself. See if people disagree or agree with you. Man, please don't s**t talking about other people's list.
It doesn't ruin your life anyway Aot definitely deserves at least top 10 and don't comment shit if you can't appreciate what's good theres a reason and its popular JJBA, OP and DBZ should be on there and Naruto needs higher, this list is a BIG MEGA L Ermmm I don't agree with this maybe add these ; naruto; attack on tittan; darling in the franxx; baka and test summon the beasts; demon slayer; black clover;avatar; bleach; sorry for the uppset but i dont like this list???????????????????? Wow, no mention of Inuyasha or Ranma. What a crappy list, strong disrespect to Rumiko. AoT downgrades its third and fourth season by reallocating budget to Yoshiki lmao Is the story really that good? It seemed pretty simple to me. This anime shattered every preconception I had going into it, don't be put off by the silly comedy of the first few episodes.
Also, it's practically hard to be part of the anime community and not come across some sort of Attack on Titan material. The books have also become very popular around the world, and some anime fans even prefer them because of the proper pacing and writing, which is lacking in certain parts of the series. Since then, Clannad has become one of the most unique anime series I have ever seen, a masterpiece in my opinion. Soul Eater is a highly entertaining anime series about a group of students who attend a gun and teacher school, Shibusen, in Death City, a fictional town in Nevada.
Whether it's the incredible animation done by Trigger, the larger than life characters like Kamin or Simon, or the infinitely increasing power ceiling with each episode. There are several different anime series, tons of games, a lot of spin-offs, and even some light novels. Some famous anime series originating in Japan - like Cowboy Bebop or Dragon Ball Z - have found an enthusiastic audience in dubbed versions in English-speaking countries. And there are also people who practically devote their lives to following each new season of anime.
Every year, hundreds of new anime are broadcast on television and distributed to movie streaming platforms and hit screens, and the number of must-see titles continues to grow year after year. Overall, this is a very well-made, fun and stylish anime series that you will definitely have fun watching. So, after decades of exploring and enjoying Japanese animation, and after checking the rankings of some of the top anime websites, we've put together our definitive list of the best original anime TV series you definitely need to watch, ranked from number 25 to our number one pick. It's a very unique anime with some very quirky characters, although it may take some time to get used to, it will inevitably get you hooked.
This anime is brilliantly directed by the great Osamu Dezaki, who allows the classic novel on which it is based to become an anime adaptation.