The recent few years have been spectacular for otakus all over the world. We have had a bunch of new animes, like Jujutsu Kaisen, achieve a lot of fame. Moreover, the highest-grossing Japanese film record of Spirited Away was broken by a new film this year- Demon Slayer: Mugen Train. Undoubtedly the tides in the anime world are shifting, with many new animes slowly becoming pillars of the community. If you enjoyed the dark-shounen anime about demons, this list is made for you. Here, we’ll be taking a look at the best animes like Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba.
The darkness of such a show is apparent when you see Tanjirou trudging through a vicious storm, carrying his sister. After his father’s death, he was tasked with earning and taking care of his mother and sister; however, their house was attacked. When he reached home one day after work, he found his mother dead and his sister in a terrible condition, as she became a half-demon herself. Boiling with rage, Tanjirou vowed to get revenge, and so begins the tale of our demon slayer.
Demon Slayer has an interesting premise and outstanding art; while many in the anime community love the anime and sing high praises of it, there are also fellow otakus that believe its story to be lackluster. Whatever the case be, one cannot deny that the anime can attract many viewers. If you’re one such person who loved the anime and want to find more series like it out there, let’s get right to it without any further ado-
1. Jujutsu Kaisen
- Episodes: 24
- Studios: MAPPA
- Genres: Action, Demons, Supernatural, School, Shounen
- Aired: Oct 3, 2020, to Mar 27, 2021
Jujutsu Kaisen is a newcomer in the anime world and has already gained immense popularity, being considered one of the best shounen out there. It is the story of a high schooler, Yuuji Itadori, a member of the Occult Club at school. The group tends to fool around with “cursed” items. However, when Yuuji happens to touch an actual cursed item, his life takes a turn for the terrifying.
While visiting his grandfather on his deathbed, Yuuji learns of his regret of not having a “proper death” and makes it his own duty to provide everyone with just that. Thus begins his adventure and battle with Curses, destructive supernatural beings feeding on the negative emotions of humans.
When Curses attack his school premises, and Yuuji finds his friends in danger, he swallows the cursed item in hopes of being able to fight the Curses. This gives him an immense amount of magical energy but also puts him on perils path. What he has done is a mistake so grave that he could end up dying for it. However, some people are apparently willing to help him. The Tokyo Metropolitan Jujutsu Technical High School decides to take him in and teach him the ways of a Jujutsu sorcerer. What lies ahead for Yuuji, and will he be able to face it?
- Episodes: 24
- Studios: Tezuka Productions, MAPPA
- Genres: Action, Adventure, Demons, Historical, Samurai, Shounen, Supernatural
- Aired: Jan 7, 2019, to Jun 24, 2019
Like Demon Slayer, Dororo is also an anime about demons and revenge. Hyakkimaru was born without any limbs, eyes, ears, nose, or even skin. His father, a samurai lord overcome with greed, had prayed to 12 demons to make his lands prosperous. As a result, the demons took away different parts of Hyakkimaru’s body. And he was sent afloat in a river by his mother, out of mercy. Fortunately, He received help from a medicine man, who prepared prosthetics and weapons for him, allowing him to at least fend for himself.
Now, many years later, Hyakkimaru- a grown boy who can’t see, feel, or hear anything, is on a quest against the 12 demons, spread throughout Japan, causing chaos wherever they go. Hyakkimaru hopes to gain back his body parts and confront his father. On this journey, he meets a thieving young boy named Dororo, who tags along with him after growing interested in Hyakkimaru’s life. As the unique pair travels through various regions of Sengoku era Japan, what will come of their journey, and is revenge really the answer?
- Episodes: 25
- Studios: Production I.G., Wit Studio
- Genres: Action, Military, Mystery, Super Power, Drama, Fantasy, Shounen
- Aired: Apr 7, 2013, to Sep 29, 2013
Humanity is driven to near extinction when it faces attacks from giant humanoid monsters called Titans. These massive beasts tear through towns, bringing destruction in their wake. The last hope of survival comes behind three concentric solid walls, where the remaining forces of humanity stay. It has been 100 years since the previous titan attack, and humans seem to be returning to a peaceful life within the walls.
However, everything changes when a colossal titan causes a rupture in the outermost wall, allowing an army of titans to flood into the defense structure. This was the day that Eren lost his mother. He vows to eliminate all the titans from the world and revenge her death, thus beginning years of training to get into the military. Along with him are his friends Mikasa and Armin.
While this anime is also dark and revolves around revenge, it is similar to Demon Slayer as the military structure is like that of the Demon Slayer Corporation. Attack on Titan goes a step further, showing the socio-political situation that the titan threat creates. It is a fantastic anime to watch because of the immersive story and detail. There’s a reason it is considered one of the best animes out there.
- Episodes: 366
- Studios: Studio Pierrot
- Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Super Power, Supernatural, Shounen
- Aired: Oct 5, 2004, to Mar 27, 2012
Ichigo Kurosaki’s peaceful life as an ordinary High School student suddenly changes when his family is attacked by a Hollow, corrupted spirits that devour human souls. Protecting his family is Rukia, a Soul Reaper (Shinigami) tasked with protecting the locality from similar Hollows, who is heavily injured during the battle. Since she cannot recover from her fatal injuries, it falls onto Ichigo to take her powers and use them to protect the area.
Soon, Ichigo begins living a double life as a Shinigami and a student. However, he later learns that some of his friends and classmates can also interact with the spirits that haunt his world. While he learns more about the world of Soul Reapers, he comes across a threat that is even greater than the Hollows.
5. Hunter x Hunter
- Episodes: 148
- Studios: Madhouse
- Genres: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Shounen, Super Power
- Aired: Oct 2, 2011, to Sep 24, 2014
Hunter x Hunter is an adventurous anime about a young boy named Gon, searching for his father. The latter left his family behind to become a hunter. Hunters search for treasures, travel to mysterious territories and deal with many unknown monsters. These hunters hold highly respectable and influential positions in society. Gon wants to find out what was so special about being a hunter that his father decided to abandon his family.
To become a hunter, Gon must first take a test. The Hunter Exam has many candidates from all over the world. Each is skilled and highly talented in various respects. The story follows Gon’s adventure as he tries to compete with the other exam candidates, making friends and rivals on the way. However, the outside world is full of mystery and danger, something that Gon will have to find out the hard way.
6. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
- Episodes: 64
- Studios: Bones
- Genres: Action, Military, Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Magic, Fantasy, Shounen
- Aired: Apr 5, 2009, to Jul 4, 2010
Edward and Alphonse Elric live lives of tranquility in the beautiful countryside along with their mother. However, their peaceful world is shattered to pieces upon her untimely death. The two brothers decide to do something foolish. They use a forbidden form of alchemy, human transmutation, in hopes of bringing back their mother. However, it goes terribly. Edward loses his left leg while Alphonse loses his entire body. Edward gives away his right arm, sealing Alphonse’s soul to a suit of armor. And the brothers somehow survive with a failed experiment.
A few years later, they learn more about the science of alchemy and are now on a pursuit to get their bodies back. Edward joined the state military as it’ll help him get closer to a fabled artifact called the Philosopher’s Stone which holds immense powers and possibly will get them their bodies back. However, they soon realize that they aren’t the only ones searching for it.
7. My Hero Academia
- Episodes: 13
- Studios: Bones
- Genres: Action, Comedy, School, Shounen, Super Power
- Aired: Apr 3, 2016, to Jun 26, 2016
In a world where 80% of the human population has “quirks” or unique superpowers, Deku is born without any. He faces embarrassment and ridicule from many classmates. His lack of powers, however, doesn’t wane his interest in these quirks. He closely studies many superheroes’ quirks and deeply admires his idol, the number one superhero, All Might.
As destiny rolls its die, Deku ends up being chosen by All Might as an inheritor for his peculiar power. One which can entirely change the course of Deku’s life. Soon, Deku is admitted into U.A. High, a famous school with one of the best hero training programs. The anime shows his journey as a student in the school, along with his talented classmates. Deku must prepare for a world of adventure and danger as the threat of a villainous organization looms on their heads.
- Episodes: 25
- Studios: A-1 Pictures
- Genres: Action, Demons, Fantasy, Shounen, Supernatural
- Aired: Apr 17, 2011, to Oct 2, 2011
Rin Okumura’s ordinary life turns to shambles when the Earth is attacked by demons. He watches as his father, an exorcist, protects him and his brother, Yukio, from the attacks of ferocious demons from Gehenna. Rin further discovers that he is actually the son of Satan, the ruler of the demon world, Gehenna.
Blue Exorcist follows Rin’s quest as he decides to become an exorcist and defend Earth from the forces of Satan. He wishes to fight against his actual father and stop him from conquering Earth. Who will prevail?
- Episodes: 12
- Studios: CloverWorks
- Genres: Sci-Fi, Mystery, Horror, Psychological, Thriller, Shounen
- Aired: Jan 10, 2019, to Mar 29, 2019
This anime is the story of a group of orphan kids living in the Grace Field House. They live peaceful and carefree lives as a big family, with their caretaker, Isabella, who they call mama. They are free to do as they please with their time but have to give a test every day. The kids are also forbidden from wandering too far away from the premises of the orphanage.
However, their happy-go-lucky lives don’t last forever. When the children are adopted, they leave the orphanage and are mysteriously never heard of again. Having lived a few years in the orphanage, the three eldest children begin to suspect something. What mystery will the children uncover?
- Episodes: 12
- Studios: Orange
- Genres: Action, Drama, Fantasy, Mystery, Seinen
- Aired: Oct 7, 2017, to Dec 23, 2017
After Earth was almost entirely destroyed by six meteors, which later broke off to form six moons around Earth. The only living thing able to survive on the remaining ground of Earth are those called Gems- creatures that beautifully reflect sunlight. Living on one of the moons is a malicious species called the Lunarians, who attack the Gems to use their fragments as decorations. Each Gem is assigned a role to protect themselves.
The anime follows the emotional and adventurous story of the Gem called Phos. They are a young gem who wants to be helpful in the war against the Lunarians. However, because of their fragile nature, they’re instead assigned to compile an encyclopedia. While performing their tasks, Phos meets another Gem who is also unhappy with their assigned task. Watch as the two gems try to find a role that they can both enjoy while growing to change themselves mentally and physically.
- Owari no Seraph
- Made in Abyss
- Fire Force
- JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
- Tokyo Ghoul