Best 36 Anime Series You Must Watch(Ranked by Anime Fans)
Are you a die-hard anime fan?
I think you have watched many anime series and movies, so, can you list your best anime?
Around hundreds of new anime series are aired on TV and distributed to the movie streaming platforms and anime-based games are increasing significantly, and the number of awesome anime-based contents are getting popular in recent years and this trend continue to increase.
After checking the ranking on many different leading anime websites, we have come up with our ultimate list of the best 36 best anime series which you must watch.
1. Death Note
Death Note is the Number one best anime series you must watch.
It has been voted the number one anime series of all time by Japanese fans and also ranked as the number 1 most popular anime series on the MyanimeList website.
Death Note is rather dark, and its protagonist isn’t a stereotypical good guy like in many other series.
The prodigal high school student Light Yagami finds the Death Note and begins testing it by writing the name of a criminal in it. The criminal dies immediately, and Light realizes how devastating the power of the notebook in his hands really is.
Light decides to clear out the world from criminals with the help of the notebook, and people begin worshiping him. The police, though, realize that there is a serial killer targeting criminals and try to apprehend him with the help of an eccentric detective named L.
The original manga series was published from 2003 to 2006 and includes 12 volumes and 108 chapters.
The anime series developed by Madhouse was composed of 37 episodes directed by Tetsuro Araki.
In 2006 a light novel based on the series was also released, followed by a series of Nintendo video games and three live-action films, a TV drama, and mini-series in Japan as well as a US film shown on Netflix in August 2017.
The series became so popular that there was even a Broadway musical written and composed based on it.
Naruto is the Number two best anime series you must watch.
Naruto, the greatest anime with the theme of Ninja, was initially released as the Weekly Shonen Jump manga by Masashi Kishimoto in 1999 and run until 2014.
The anime Naruto series was completed in 2017 after no less than 15 years, consisting of two titles: Naruto aired in 2002-2007 and Naruto: Shippuden aired in 2007-2017.
The setting of Naruto is the fictional world of Shinobi (Ninja), and the ineffective boy Naruto is growing by the help of many friends and masters there. Naruto and other Ninja characters battle with various Ninja techniques using the chakra energy.
Lots of anime’s essentials such as strong bonds with friends and family, betrayal, and parting are represented in this anime.
Many anime fans may pick out Naruto as the top of anime especially for foreign people, and it deserves it.
3. Attack On Titan
Attack on Titan is an anime series based on the manga of the same name by Hajime Isayama., it is Number three best anime series you must watch.
The first season began airing in Japan on April 7, 2013, on Mainichi Broadcasting System.
Attack on Titan is set in a world where humanity lives inside cities surrounded by enormous walls that protect them from Titans; gigantic humanoid creatures who devour humans seemingly without reason.
The story centers around Eren Jaeger, his adoptive sister Mikasa Ackermann, and their childhood friend Armin Arlelt, whose lives are changed forever after the appearance of a Colossal Titan which brings about the destruction of their home town and the death of Eren’s mother.
Vowing revenge and to reclaim the world from the Titans, Eren, Mikasa, and Armin join the Scout Regiment, an elite group of soldiers who fight Titans outside the Walls.
Attack on Titan has become a critical and commercial success.
As of December 2019, the manga has over 100 million tankōbon copies in print worldwide, making it one of the best-selling manga series of all time. It has won several awards, including the Kodansha Manga Award,the Micheluzzi Award,and Harvey Award.
The anime series has also been well received by critics, with the first three seasons being met with praise for their story, animation, music, and voice acting, thus boosting the series’ popularity in U.S. and Asia.
4. Sword Art Online
Sword Art Online is a Japanese light novel series written by Reki Kawahara and illustrated by abec., it is the Number four best anime series you must watch.
Kawahara originally wrote the series as a web novel on his website from 2002 to 2008. The light novels began publication on ASCII Media Works’ Dengeki Bunko imprint from April 10, 2009, with a spin-off series launching in October 2012.
The series is about a young man called Eren Jaeger who vows to destroy all the giant humanoid Titans on earth after they destroy his hometown and kill his mother.
The imagery, the incredible storyline, and the atmosphere of this TV series is what makes it so unique and why it is loved by most anime fans.
Sword Art Online has received widespread commercial success, with the light novels having over 20 million copies sold worldwide.
5. One Piece
One Piece is number fiver best anime Series you must watch, I think all the anime fans knows this Series.
There’s a reason Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece has been going steady since 1999 and spawned all manner of theatrical and TV spinoffs.
We just can’t get enough of the wacky, engrossing saga of stretchable pirate captain Monkey D. Luffy and his ongoing quest to become the next Pirate King.
The series is endlessly entertaining, but the characters are what keep you hooked over the course of 900 episodes (and counting).
Pokémon, also known as Pocket Monsters in Japan, is a Japanese media franchise managed by the Pokémon Company.
It is one of the most popular Japanese anime and games around the globe now, and ranked number sixth best anime series you must watch.
Pokémon are creatures of all shapes and sizes who live in the wild or alongside humans. There are currently more than 700 creatures that inhabit the Pokémon universe. The young boy Satoshi travels all over the world with various Pokemon like Pikachu to become a Pokemon master.
7. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is the number seven best anime series you must watch.
It is a Japanese anime television series adapted from the Fullmetal Alchemist manga by Hiromu Arakawa. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is the second anime television series based on Fullmetal Alchemist, the first being 2003’s Fullmetal Alchemist.
Unlike the first Fullmetal Alchemist, which was only partially based on the manga series by Hiromu Arakawa, this series was made after the manga series was completed and followed the original plotline closely.
With the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, you will never be bored and feel the need to fast forward a scene. Every minute of this brilliant anime series is spectacular and is worth your attention and time.
8. Hunter X Hunter
Hunter x Hunter is the number eight best anime series you must watch.
Hunter x Hunter starts out with a familiar trope: A hero, in this case a young boy named Gon, leaves his small town for the first time on an adventure.
He leaves the island on a quest to find his long-forgotten father who had left him behind. His only clue? He’s a world-famous licensed Hunter — so Gon sets off to take the notoriously deadly exam and become a Hunter himself.
It sounds mundane and almost cheery, but Hunter x Hunter is anything but.
The emotional highs and lows and the arcs of both the protagonists and antagonists are some of the best. As with most shonen, the dramatic action is fantastic, too.
9. Tokyo Ghoul
Tokyo Ghoul is a Japanese dark fantasy manga series written and illustrated by Sui Ishida., and ranked number nine best anime series you must watch.
It was serialized in Shueisha’s seinen manga magazine Weekly Young Jump between September 2011 and September 2014, and was collected in fourteen tankōbon volumes.
10. Dragon Ball Z
Dragon Ball Z is definitely one of the most popular anime series around the world.
The story starts with Gokuu, who is living peacefully with his wife and son five years after winning the martial arts tournament.
The arrival of Raditz, who claims that he is Gokuu’s long-lost brother, changes all of this. He tells Goku that he is a warrior from a now-extinct race from another planet.
Gokuu was sent to earth as a baby in order to conquer and destroy our planet, but after suffering from a head injury lost his memory and became a good-natured person fighting to protect the weak.
After this revelation, Gokuu and his friends are faced with numerous attacks from extraterrestrial enemies.
The characters have grown and matured since the prequel Dragon Ball series, which is truly fun to observe if you are a fan of the series.
The Dragon Ball Z series aired from 1989 to 1996 and included 261 episodes. Due to the huge popularity of the series in the US and in Japan, 17 movies and a total of 148 video games based on Dragon Ball have been released.
11. One Punch Man
One-Punch Man is a Japanese superhero franchise created by the artist ONE.
It tells the story of Saitama, a superhero who can defeat any opponent with a single punch but seeks to find a worthy foe after growing bored by a lack of challenge due to his overwhelming strength.
ONE wrote the original webcomic version in July 2009, with more than 100 million total views and 20,000 hits per day.
12. My Hero Academia
My Hero Academia is a Japanese superhero manga series written and illustrated by Kōhei Horikoshi. It has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump since July 2014.
The series has been adapted into an anime series and an Anime Movie, as well as spawning the Spinoff series My Hero Academia: Vigilantes.
The story is set in the modern-day, except people with special powers called “Quirks” have become commonplace throughout the world. In a world of chaos and confusion, Pro Heroes have now risen as the new profession to fight off powerful supervillains.
A young boy named Izuku Midoriya is Quirkless, meaning he has no powers, but he still dreams of becoming a great hero one day.
13. Re: Zero -Starting Life in Another World
Re: Zero -Starting Life in Another World, which is also called just Re: Zero, is looked on as one of the best Japanese anime and light novels released in the 2010s.
Season 1 started with 25 episodes in 2016, and the newly edited version is aired from the beginning of 2020.
Finally, season 2 of Re: Zero is scheduled to be released in 2020.
The main character Subaru is sent to Isekai (another world) with no superpower except a certain ability. The story proceeds with the encounter with the heroine Emilia.
14. No Game No Life
No Game No Life is a Japanese light novel series by Yū Kamiya.
It is a surreal comedy series that follows Sora and Shiro, shut-in NEET siblings and the online gamer duo behind the legendary username “Blank.”
They view the real world as just another lousy game; however, a strange e-mail challenging them to a chess match changes everything—the brother and sister are plunged into an otherworldly realm where they meet Tet, the God of Games.
15. Fairy Tail
Fairy Tail is a Japanese manga series by Hiro Mashima.
The series aired from 2009 to 2013, and during that period, won a number of anime awards, including the best Japanese Anime Award in the 19th Anime and Manga Grand Prix in 2012.
The story follows the adventures of Natsu Dragneel, a member of the popular wizard guild Fairy Tail, as he searches the fictional world of Earth-land for the dragon Igneel.
16. Code Geass
Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion often referred to simply as Code Geass, is a Japanese anime series produced by Sunrise. It was directed by Gorō Taniguchi and written by Ichirō Ōkouchi, with original character designs by Clamp.
Code Geass is an anime series set in 2010 following the conquest of the Holy Britannian Empire over Japan.
The empire retorts to its powerful robot weapons called Knightmare Frames to take away everything from the Japanese people, including the name of the country which the occupiers rename to Area 11.
Lelouch Lamperouge, the protagonist, was once born a prince of the Britannian Empire but gave up his right to the throne after the brutal murder of his mother, and then vowed to destroy his father – the emperor.
After being caught in the crossfire between the two armies, he is saved by a mysterious girl called C.C., and he embarks on an adventurous journey as a masked vigilante called Zero to fight the Britannian Empire with all means possible.
17. Love Live!
Love Live! School Idol Project is a Japanese multimedia project co-developed by ASCII Media Works’ Dengeki G’s Magazine.
It launched in the August 2010 issue of Dengeki G’s Magazine, and went on to produce music CDs, anime music videos, two manga adaptations, and video games.
Nine high school girls, Honoka Kosaka, Eli Ayase, Kotori Minami, Umi Sonoda, Rin Hoshizora, Maki Nishikino, Nozomi Tojo, Hanayo Koizumi, and Nico Yazawa, form an idol group called μ’s (pronounced as ‘Muse’) in order to save their school, Otonokizaka High School, from closing.
18. The seven deadly sins
The seven deadly sins is a adventure and fantasy anime series.
It is about seven knights who represent the seven deadly sins. The group of knights originally plotted an overthrow of the Liones Kingdom but failed because of the Holy Knights and disbanded.
19. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba is adapted into an anime from the manga by Koyoharu Gotoge, which was serialized on the Weekly Shonen Jump in 2016.
The first season of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba with 26 episodes was welcomed by both fans of the manga and people who had not read it.
The anime is set in the Taisho period (1912-1926) in Japan where demons exist with human beings.
The main character Tanjiro Kamado finds his family is killed by the attack of demons and only his sister Nezuko is changed into a demon. He decides to become a demon slayer to restore her to a human.
This anime includes every important part for an excellent anime from the main character’s purity and growing to friends with the spirit of brotherhood and respect for any characters.
The battle scenes between demon slayers with swords and unique demon characters are intense, which is beautifully drawn. Each character’s past and background including even demons are respectfully depicted in this anime.
This anime has not completed yet, but it is safe to say that Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba will grow to represent the best anime in Japan and around the world.
20. Cowboy bebop
It’s hard to believe Cowboy Bebop is over 20 years old because of how well it still holds up, both in its conception and its execution.
The space western that introduced the world to Spike, Jet, Faye, Ed and of course Ein still looks gorgeous, with a resonant story, strong characters and one heck of a soundtrack that ensures it remains one of the best anime ever made.
Cowboy Bebop has had an indelible impact that reaches far beyond anime; everyone from Orson Scott Card to Rian Johnson to Robin Williams have praised the series and cited its influence on their work.
Cowboy Bebop still works so well because of the continually relatable story at the heart of its genre-bending 26-episode run.
Its exploration of adult themes like loss anchors the crew’s journey throughout the stars, making it a series we’re happy to revisit even after all this time. Three, two, one, let’s jam!
Clannad is one of the Kyoto Animation’s masterpieces, which is recommended for any kind of anime fan.
There is no action scene or supernatural event in this anime, but human drama is represented sensitively.
There are two parts in the anime: Clannad in 2007-2008 and Clannad After Story in 2008-2009.
The story follows the daily life of the main character Tomoya and the heroine Nagisa in high school.
It reaches the climax in the second half of the anime, and touching episodes move you. It is totally worth spending the amount of time for 44 main episodes.
22. Monogatari Series
Monogatari Series, produced by the animation studio Shaft under the direction of Akiyuki Shinbo, is a popular anime series released in 2009.
It is adapted into an anime from the novels written by Nisioisin (Nishio Ishin). The first season of the Monogatari Series started as Bakemonogatari, Nisemonogatari, and Nisemonogatari Black in 2009-2012.
Monogatari means story or tale in English, and various bizarre stories are depicted focusing on unique characters such as the high school boy Koyomi Araragi and several heroines.
23. Neon Genesis Evangelion
Neon Genesis Evangelion, commonly referred to as Evangelion, is a Japanese anime series, created by Gainax, that began in October 1995.
The Evangelion series revolves around the organization NERV, using large mechas called Evangelions to combat monstrous beings called Angels.
They are piloted by several of the main characters, including Shinji Ikari, Asuka Sohryu, and Rei Ayanami. While the initial episodes focus largely on religious symbols and specific references to the Bible, the later episodes tend to go deeper into the psyches of the characters, where it is learned that many of them have deep-seated emotional and mental issues.
Through the exploration of these issues, the show begins to question reality and the existences therein. Much of the series’s content was based on Hideaki Anno’s own clinical depression.
24. Detective Conan
Case Closed, also known as Detective Conan , is a Japanese detective manga series written and illustrated by Gosho Aoyama.
It has been serialized in Shogakukan’s Weekly Shōnen Sunday since January 1994 and has been collected into 98 tankōbon volumes as of April 2020.
Due to legal problems with the name Detective Conan, the English language releases from Funimation and Viz were renamed to Case Closed.
The story follows the high school detective Shinichi Kudo (renamed as Jimmy Kudo in the English translation) who was transformed into a child while investigating a mysterious organization and solves a multitude of cases while impersonating his childhood best friend’s father and other characters.
Fate/stay night, based on the game for Windows, was released as the first season of the Fate Series in 2006, followed by the past story Fate/Zero in 2011-2012.
The main character Shiro Emiya survives the Holy Grail War with his servant Saber. The new series Fate/Grand Order – Absolute Demonic Battlefront: Babylonia has been aired on TV since 2019.
Bleach was aired from 2004 to 2012 and gathered a serious fan following during the years.
The story revolves around a high school student called Kurosaki Ichigo, who can see ghosts. He receives this special power after an accident in the hollow of a tree.
During the incident, when he and his family gets attacked by the Hollow, a Soul Reaper named Rukia Kuchiki rushes to save Ichigo and his family and gets injured while protecting them.
Ichigo promises to take Rukia’s powers in order to save his family, and as a result, the young boy begins training to be a Soul Reaper (Shinigami).
The plot is quite similar to that of Sixth Sense, so if you enjoyed that movie, you will most probably like Bleach as well.
27. Soul Eater
Soul Eater is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by series creator Atsushi Ōkubo. The series revolves around three teams consisting of a weapon user called a “meister” and at least one “demon weapon”, humans that can transform into a weapon.
These teams attend a special school called Death Weapon Meister Academy that’s ran by the headmaster, Death. They defend the world from the forces of evil as well as attempt to craft a death scythe, a weapon fit for Death, by hunting down 99 evil human souls and one witch soul.
The manga is published by Square Enix and was first released as three separate one-shots serialized in two Gangan Powered special editions and one Gangan Wing in 2003.
The manga started regular serialization in Square Enix’s Monthly Shōnen Gangan manga magazine from May 12, 2004 to August 12, 2013.
28. Steins Gate
The Steins; Gate anime is an adaptation of the visual novel Steins; Gate, originally developed by 5pb and Nitroplus.
The anime series was produced by White Fox and directed by Hiroshi Hamasaki and Takuya Satō, with a composition by Jukky Hanada and music by Takeshi Abo and Murakami Jun.
The Steins; Gate anime adaptation was initially announced on July 25, 2010, by Chiyomaru Shikura on his Twitter account, with further details being revealed on the September 2010 issues of the Japanese magazines Newtype and Comptiq. The anime started airing in Japan on April 6, 2011, spanning a total of 24 episodes and an OVA.
29. Ghost In The Shell
Ghost in the Shell is a Japanese cyberpunk media franchise based on the seinen manga series of the same name written and illustrated by Masamune Shirow.
The legendary cyberpunk anime series Ghost in the Shell was originally released in 1995 as an anime film directed by Mamoru Oshii, which was followed by the first season of the TV anime series Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex under the direction of Kenji Kamiyama.
30. Sailor Moon
Like Dragon Ball Z, Sailor Moon was the introductory anime to many fans that got them hooked for life.
This series is greater than the sum of its already fantastic parts, with gorgeous animation, an empowering story of friendship and love with a rich mythology, and characters who felt real, with flaws, goals and heartbreak to humanize them against a larger-than-life fantastical backdrop.
You didn’t keep watching each monster-of-the-week episode to see how the Sailor Scouts would take him down; you kept watching because you wanted to see the chemistry between Usagi, Rei, Ami, Makoto, and Minako in everything from playing in the arcade to learning the secrets of their Moon Kingdom heritage.
Sailor Moon has stood the test of time as a seminal anime that many modern classics have evolved from and been inspired by, from the way it helped cement the mahou shoujo genre to its incredibly progressive presentation of well-rounded LGBT characters. Plus, those outfits were amazing.
Inuyasha , also known as Inuyasha: A Feudal Fairy Tale , is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Rumiko Takahashi.
It is a popular Manga published by Weekly Shonen Sunday with 56 volumes totally, and adapted into an anime.
The series begins with Kagome Higurashi, a 15-year-old schoolgirl from modern-day Tokyo who is parallelly transported to the Japanese era of Sengoku period after falling into a well in her family shrine, where she meets the half-demon, Inuyasha.
When a demon from the era tries to take the magical Shikon Jewel embodied in Kagome, she inadvertently shatters the Jewel into many pieces that are scattered across Japan.
Inuyasha and Kagome set to recover the Jewel’s fragments, and through their quest they are joined by the monk Miroku, the demon slayer Sango, and the kitsune Shippo. Together, they journey to restore the Shikon Jewel before its full power falls into the hands of the evil Naraku.
32. Akame Ga Kill
Akame ga Kill! is a Japanese manga series created by Takahiro and illustrated by Tetsuya Tashiro. It was serialized in Square Enix’s Gangan Joker from March 2010 to December 2016.
The plot revolves around a young boy called Tatsumi who comes from the countryside, and who sets off to go to the Capital along with two friends – Sayo and Leyasu.
The journey involves numerous adventures with the Night Raid group of dangerous assassins who recruit the young boy to help them fight the corruption of the Empire.
All members of the Night Raid are specialized in different types of fighting and killing. They are all armed with Teigu, which are Imperial arms made from extremely rare materials. They also are accompanied by Danger Beasts.
33. Violet Evergarden
Violet Evergarden is a Japanese light novel series written by Kana Akatsuki and illustrated by Akiko Takase.
It won the grand prize in the fifth Kyoto Animation Award’s novel category in 2014, the first ever work to win a grand prize in any of the three categories (novel, scenario, and manga).
Kyoto Animation studio released the quality anime Violet Evergarden in 2018, which is based on the light novel with 3 volumes.
The anime movie Violet Evergarden: Eternity and the Auto Memory Doll was released in 2019 after the TV anime series, and the brand new story Violet Evergarden the Movie will follow the stories as a film in April 2020.
The life of the girl Violet who works writing for others as Auto Memory Dolls is depicted with the beautifully-drawn pictures in this anime.
FLCL (pronounced Fooly Cooly) is short even by normal anime standards, but there’s a lot to be said for a good sci-fi comedy that knows how to call it a day before wearing out its welcome.
FLCL is about as bizarre and hilarious as anime gets, with the original series revolving around an ordinary suburban boy named Naota Nandaba and his new “friend,” a quirky alien woman named Haruko Haruhara.
The very first episode features Naota growing giant robots from his head, and the series only gets wackier from there. The surreal tone, the incredible soundtrack and the experimental animation style all serve to make FLCL a wholly unique and unforgettable anime experience.
35. High school DxD
High School DxD is a Japanese light novel series written by Ichiei Ishibumi and illustrated by Miyama-Zero.
The story centers on Issei Hyodo, a perverted high school student from Kuoh Academy who desires to be a harem king and is killed by his first date, revealed to be a fallen angel but is later revived as a devil by Rias Gremory to serve her and her devil family.
Issei’s deepening relationship with Rias proves dangerous to the angels, the fallen angels, and the devils.
36. Samurai Champloo
Samurai Champloo stylized as SAMURAI CHAMPLOO, is a Japanese anime series developed by Manglobe.
It featured a production team led by director Shinichirō Watanabe, character designer Kazuto Nakazawa, and mechanical designer Mahiro Maeda.
Samurai Champloo was Watanabe’s first directorial effort for an anime television series after the critically acclaimed Cowboy Bebop. It was the first broadcast in Japan on Fuji TV on May 20, 2004, and ran for twenty-six episodes until its conclusion on March 19, 2005.
What is your best anime? let us know in the comments below.
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