For many of us, myself included, our adventure into the world of anime began with the most popular adventure anime around. The Shounen genre sparked the adventure anime craze but several other genres have proven that they are also forces to be reckoned with. Chasing Anime has listed the top 32 adventure anime that need to be watched!
What is an Adventure Anime?
It is difficult to define “adventure anime”, simply because the genre contains so many variations.
Most adventure anime see the protagonist embark on a journey to explore new lands. They either do this alone or with a group of people at their side.
The journey can be physical, spiritual, supernatural, or even emotional. Usually, however, the result has the protagonist and his companions, show some level of growth when compared to their outset.
What is the Best Adventure Anime?
Hunter X Hunter is the best adventure anime. It has one of the highest scores on MAL (9.21) and fulfills all the staple criteria for adventure anime. It sees our cast traveling to new lands, facing tough challenges, and growing as people because of it.
For a look at some of the best adventure anime out there; Chasinganime has compiled a list of must-watch series that any adventure anime fan can’t afford to miss.
1) Hunter X Hunter
Hunter X Hunter is synonymous with the term, ‘adventure’. If you look up the word in the dictionary, all you will see is this face staring back at you.
Gon, a young and adventurous child, sets out to take the Hunter Exam and attain the coveted title of ‘Hunter’. In doing so, he hopes to follow in his absentee father’s footsteps and, hopefully, uncover some of the mysteries surrounding his long lost dad.
Hunter X Hunter is the epitome of a great coming of age story. Departing as nothing more than a hyperactive child, Gon eventually learns to control his power and his maturity along with it.
Early on in the series, Gon is faced with a formidable opponent in Hisoka. While undergoing a challenge to steal the other’s tag, Gon finds himself at the mercy of Hisoka, who willingly forfeits his tag. Gon does not want to win in such a way but Hisoka refuses to accept it back. He claims that he wants to fight Gon when he becomes more powerful.
Sometime later, Gon and Hisoka meet for a face-to-face showdown. Gon has grown substantially since then and is finally able to give back the tag he had held onto all this time.
We all have a history we would rather forget. Failures, shortcomings, and embarrassments that plague our sleepless nights. Hunter X Hunter teaches its audience to revel in those moments. Learn from each mistake and use it to grow toward a brighter future.
Continue reading Hunter X Hunter from where the anime stopped by purchasing the manga. This is the best way to support your mangaka.
2) One Piece
Following close behind Hunter X Hunter, One Piece is probably the most popular adventure anime to ever be released. I can’t think of something more adventurous than setting forth on a voyage across the seas in search of buried treasure!
After eating a Devil Fruit, a unique that gives the consumer one of several varying powers, Monkey D. Luffy becomes imbued with the power to stretch his body like rubber. He sets out to sail the seven seas with his Nakama, unearth the fabled treasure and become the Pirate King.
One Piece does a lot of things well. Great music, great characters and great writing. What it does best however, is world building.
One Piece creates a world rife with life that almost starts to feel real once your suspension of disbelief kicks in.
The adventures we go on with the Strawhats directly impact the world around us. Bounties shift up and down, stricter regulations are put in place and characters both grow stronger or meet their demise.
Despite being set in such a fantastical setting, the world of One Piece mirrors our own with its dedication to things like politics, cause and effect.
How One Piece Takes Us on An Adventure.
With such an amazing world to explore, it would be fairly boring if we were forced to watch the life of a farmer play out on an indistinguishable island somewhere.
No; instead One Piece offers us the chance to go anywhere we want, secure in the knowledge that these absolute titans of combat, will in no way be fazed by anything thrown their way.
3) Goblin Slayer
Goblin Slayer spits in the face of the traditional fairy tale adventure series. If face spitting is the kind of kink that you’re into, maybe you should stick around. There’s plenty more where that came from.
Goblin Slayer sees the titular protagonist of the same name traversing through the world to eliminate each and every goblin from existence.
This anime seems traditional during the daytime. Potions, wizards, magic, and other adventure tropes are seen in abundance.
However, when the lights go out and the goblins make their appearance, the cheery setting is replaced with blood, death, and sexual violence.
After a novice priestess finds herself cornered by several advancing goblins, our hero shows up to save the day. Bloodied and frightened, this priestess mirrors our expectations as viewers.
We were all prepared for a light-hearted adventure anime in a magical kingdom. Yet, we were naively met with this grotesque abomination of a series instead.
However, as Goblin Slayer gestures to the priestess and, in turn, to the audience; he offers his name as an invitation to join him on this backward adventure.
Should you choose to let go of your preconceptions of a traditional adventure and any sensibilities you hold dear, Goblin Slayer offers a unique take on the adventure anime genre.
Continue reading Goblin Slayer from where the anime stopped by purchasing the manga. This is the best way to support your mangaka.
4) Sword Art Online
Many anime lovers also hold a passion for gaming. I’m sure several of you have stayed up all night hooked on whatever game you were invested in at the time. The sun rises and you’re forced away to go to school or work, wishing you could play it forever.
But what if you could never leave?
After being trapped in a VR video game, where death in the game results in death in the real world as well, talented swordsman Kirito attempts to battle his way through a hundred-floor dungeon. The end goal – defeat the final boss. In doing so, he hopes to return, with his companions, back into reality.
Sword Art Online is a ‘love it’ or ‘hate it’ adventure anime. What it lacks in a strong narrative and realistically flawed characters, it makes up for in style and action.
This is an adventure we otaku have all dreamt of. Being transported into your favorite game to live out your wildest fantasies. We never think of the apparent risk associated with this however.
Sword Art Online does a great job of showcasing the consequences of getting what you wished for. Maybe adventures aren’t all they are cracked up to be.
5) Fairy Tail
When one thinks of adventure, images that spring to mind evoke a sense of wonder, amazement and joy. If you are in the market for an upbeat and happy adventure, look no further than Fairy Tail.
Sometimes you don’t want to see a bunch of goblins attacking unarmed civilians. You don’t want to see people pushed to the brink of death. You don’t want an adventure anime that’s too heavy on the heart.
Fairy Tail is the whimsical story of a group of mages who practice magic under the guild of the same name. When rookie magic user Lucy is invited into the guild by the hot-headed Natsu, the group try to tackle all the problems they face through love and friendship.
Fairy Tail has its sinister moments of course. However, the majority of the show is just as the concept would have you believe – magical. Humor is par for the course here as well.
Fairy Tail doesn’t want to dazzle you with its narrative. It was made for those seeking adventure from the comfort of their own home. It asks of you not of your power level for assisting in battle, but what flavor tea you would like to drink while joining in on the victory festivities.
Fairy Tail isn’t that serious, and that’s just fine.
6) Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic
Aladdin is a great Disney movie. One of the largest contributing factors of this, is Robin Williams’ excellent portrayal of the genie. An incomparable voice coming from a veteran actor. Robin Williams is great but…
Did you ever want to put him in your pocket?
With the mystical Djinn Ugo (located in his flute), Aladdin travels around the world. One day, he meets Alibaba Saluja; a young man in search of treasure from a nearby dungeon. The two team up and set forth on a course to explore the lands.
The two set off around the globe tackling various dungeons. Cameos from established characters such as Sinbad and Jafar also make an appearance in the first and sequel series. Magi also delves deep into themes of war, slavery and political corruption also.
I would recommend Magi to anyone who loved Aladdin and was saddened by its short runtime. Anyone looking to relive their experience in Agrabah should give Magi their attention.
Continue reading Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic from where the anime stopped by purchasing the manga. This is the best way to support your mangaka.
7) Digimon Adventure
So, it’s come to this. Forced to pick a side. Digimon fans and Pokémon fans make their stand to fight for the anime they think deserves the victory. All I have to say is…
If you think the Pokémon anime is better than the Digimon anime then we can’t be friends anymore.
Similar to Hunter X Hunter, Digimon is all about growth. I mean, the focal point of the show is evolution. Not only do the monsters themselves evolve, but their human partners along with them.
This sentimentality isn’t to discount the battles though. Rest assured, if you choose to watch this adventure anime, you won’t be short of crazy monster fights to choose from.
Do…do I really need to explain this one? It’s Pokemon for crying out loud! You go out, catch monsters, and make them fight to protect your honor as a Pokemon master.
Ok now that all the animal lovers have officially left the room, we can discuss the even deeper intracies of forcing your beloved pets into hand to hand combat.
Pokemon is an adventure for the strategist. The kind of person who loves optimizing a strategy when present with a myriad of options. That’s ‘myriad’ spelled like this: ‘AN ABSOLUTE BUTTLOAD – SERIOUSLY, HOW MANY ARE THERE NOW?!
Type matchups, move choices, and abilities, all need to be considered, and that’s just for one member in your team of six!
Pokemon was also made for the collector. When we were young, many of us had trinket collections. Baseball cards, stickers; we scoured convenience stores, bookshops and discarded trash cans looking For that holographic Charizard card (just me who went dumpster diving?)
We were all adventurers when it came to completing our collection. Why not relive that excitement through the eyes of Ash and his Pokemon pals.
9) Attack on Titan (Shingeki no Kyojin)
Adventures often connote feelings of happiness. Visiting new regions and discovering fabled treasure. Most adventurers we have covered thus far (Luffy, Lucy, Alibaba, etc), set out on an adventure of their own accord.
Eren Jaeger wasn’t afforded such a luxury.
After the wall protecting his city is destroyed by colossal beings known as titans, Eren Jaeger vows to rid the planet of their existence entirely.
Attack on Titan appeals to a more mature audience. While I don’t inherently agree that adventure anime like Fairy Tail or Digimon can only be enjoyed by young children, I can see how those types of shows could deter a more aged viewer.
Attack on Titan is a dark adventure that centers more so around the planning of the adventure. Several episodes of this show do not feature fight scenes whatsoever. Instead, the overwhelming sense of dread gradually escalates, as the next twenty minutes are dedicated to cowering in fear of an oncoming threat.
Anime like One Piece are easy to watch but hard to relate to. When faced against a giant sea monster, I’m sure most of us wouldn’t buckle up and get ready to rumble.
Attack on Titan does a great job of expressing genuine human emotions to its audience. Unfortunately all of these emotions are rather negative. Anger, fear, and confusion are the set menu with this adventure anime. Were you to stand in Eren’s shoes, how long do you think you would survive?
10) Zero no Tsukaima (Familiar of Zero)
Adventure doesn’t have to always be about fighting huge monsters and journeying across distant lands. Emotional adventures require just as much mental fortitude as any other kind of quest. Zero no Tsukaima uses love not only to enrich its action narrative, but focuses on the main relationship as an integral part of its story.
Zero no Tsukaima is an Isekai anime. After living life until his teenage years in Tokyo, one day Saito is summoned to the mystical land of Halkeginia. Now he is forced to become the familiar of a student magician names Louise.
I’m sorry…did someone just…confess? In my adventure anime? In my magic-slinging, sword-swinging, action-brimming, “ThEy kIsS?! ArE yOu KidDInG?!”, adventure anime?!
Yes, it’s true. Zero no Tsukaima is one of the few modern Shounen that is not afraid to delve into the love-lives of its characters. Other anime will either only hint at such an affair. That, or have any intimate moments interrupted by a phone ring, door knock or giant monolithic sandworm attack (I’m looking at you, Cardcaptor Sakura).
Much like Sword Art Online, Zero no Tsukaima shows us the adventure of entering into a relationship with someone else. The initial attraction, building into infatuation and then even further into love. Entering into the honeymoon phase and fighting for the relationship when things get tough.
Most of us have undergone such a romantic adventure before. Zero no Tsukaima does a great job of tickling your nostalgia bone. For those yet to find their partner, Zero no Tsukaima does a great job of showing you what to look forward to.
11) Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure
Catapulting itself into the stratosphere of meme culture, here we have the internet’s favorite reference. If you’ve never heard of this adventure anime before, strap in; because things are about to get crazy.
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure is a story spanning multiple generations. The initial plotline follows the well-mannered Jonathan Joestar’s rivalry with his adopted brother Dio. Each subsequent arc follows a different member of the Joestar lineage (but all holding the nickame ‘Jojo’).
Let’s take a break from the adventure anime list for a second. This article has now become…
HOW MANY JOJO REFERENCES CAN WE NAME IN THIRTY SECONDS?
1) To be continued…
Usually accompanied right before disaster strikes in order to engage the viewer to continue to the next episode, fans have adopted this meme in order to imply a sudden disaster after a failed stunt for example.
2) It Was Me…Dio!
Fans have used this iconic line to poke fun at those who have had the rug swept out from under their feet. Perhaps you clicked a link titled, “SuPeR SExY LaDy NUdEZ RevEALeD” hoping for something amazing. Unfortunately the trolls are abundant nowadays and if you aren’t getting rickroll’d, stickbug’d or Toyota Corolla’d, you are more than likely getting Dio’d
3) Your next line is…
Jojo possesses the uncanny ability to foresee his opponents next vocalization. This often leaves the enemy dumbstruck at this eerie mind reading capability. Fans have started to use this for online individuals who attempt to backtrack on a comment or post they have made to Reddit, after it was met with animosity. “You’re next line is…”I was only pretending to be stupid to fool you guys”.
We see right through you anon.
Phew, looks like we’re out of time. There are so many more references that Jojo has to offer. This anime spawned the phrase, “Is that a motherf*cking Jojo reference?” among the community.
Adventures are best enjoyed alongside like-minded people with who you can get along well. Should you embark into the world of Jojo, rest assured that you have thousands of friends ready and waiting for you.
Just don’t be alarmed when you come across scenes like this.
12) Samurai Champloo
Do me a favor really quickly. Listen to this short piece of music.
This one goes out to all the music lovers out there. This samurai anime is unlike anything you have ever…heard before?
Samurai Champloo’s plot focuses on three main characters. A young woman named Fuu who hires two samurai; Mugen and Jin. Together, the trio attempt to track down a mysterious samurai who smells like sunflowers, that Fuu wishes to find.
Samurai Champloo’s claim to fame is its soundtrack. Those not in the know may be surprised to learn that Nujabes developed this OST. Nujabes have always been famous for their chilled and mellow music.
What’s an adventure without a great backing track to go along with it?
MAL (Fate/Zero): 8.36
MAL (Fate/stay night): 7.36
Do you like History? Of course, you do! The only total bummer about History though, is that it wasn’t full of smoking hot babes, am I right gang?
Luckily for you, Fate was thinking the exact same thing and underwent their own adventure: to genderbend every historical figure known to man…or woman.
Where to begin with the Fate series? No seriously, that’s a genuine question. The watch order of this franchise alone is an adventure itself!
Each variation of the Fate series has a different storyline. However, the loose thread running through all of them sees human beings (dubbed Masters) summon historical figures (dubbed Servants) in order to battle each other in a war for the Holy Grail.
Gigguk created a very helpful guide for newcomers to the Fate franchise. Be sure to check it out to see just where you should begin.
Our protagonists usually travel across vast lands and encounter obtrusive obstacles. It’s your standard affair for an adventure anime.
How Fate Stands Out from Other Adventure Anime
Fate is such a gigantic franchise, with the resources available to invest in its already successful IP. Because of this, your adventure is not limited to only the big screen.
Dust off your reading glasses and get to work on the visual novels. If that isn’t your style, Fate Grand Order (FGO) is one of the most profitable cell phone games ever created.
If you’re more of a console or arcade gamer, several versions of the series have been ported to consoles in different genres be it fighting, action or RPG.
In Japan, arcade machines also allow Fate fiends to get their fix whenever they like.
Fate is the adventure anime that never has to end. Whether it be on the TV, computer screen, or in the palm of your hand, Fate will always be there to confuse both you and your sexuality.
I never thought I would have a crush on Leonardo Da Vinci!
14) Log Horizon
Log Horizon follows the same beats as Sword Art Online. A group of people find themselves trapped in the fantasy MMORPG Elder Tale. When this anime first released, many people were quick to flock to the forums to brand it as an SAO clone.
However, it is what Log Horizon does differently that allows it to stand on its own.
SAO is gaming-lite. In my opinion, it was created to appeal to as wide an audience as possible. As such, very little detail is given to the actual gameplay involved in SAO.
Not all anime fans are gamers after all, and some may have been deterred by endless exposition about the ideal specs of each character.
Log Horizon was the anime made for the hardcore gamer. Much more care and attention is given in this adventure anime to the battle and combat mechanics, as well as all of the unique powers.
15) Made in Abyss
The only place left unexplored in the world is the Abyss. The Abyss is an enormous cave system, rife with dangerous creatures and undiscovered relics.
Would you be brave enough to enter?
A young orphan named Riko dreamt of becoming a ‘cave raider’; the name given to those who seek adventure in the previously mentioned pit.
Wanting to follow in her mother’s footsteps and solve the mystery of the Abyss, Riko teams up with a humanoid robot named Reg and the dup make their way into the cave’s depths.
Made in Abyss taps into the human drive to attain knowledge. We all hate the feel of confusion and the inadequacy of being unable to comprehend difficult topics.
Think of it as a really difficult problem you have faced at work or school. You try to find the solution but as hard as your rack your brain, you just can’t solve it. Now imagine if the entire rest of the world was also trying to solve that problem alongside you.
The first person who found an answer would surely be met with untold praise and a deep sense of satisfaction. Competition and a thirst for knowledge are things that drive all of humanity to take action.
Made in Abyss keeps it’s viewers engaged with the promise that their dedication will not be handsomly rewarded.
Continue reading Made in Abyss from where the anime stopped by purchasing the manga. This is the best way to support your mangaka.
16) Rave Master
From the same mind that brought us Fairy Tail, comes this overlooked gem. If you enjoyed your time with Natsu, Lucy and Grey, and were looking for something more, Rave Master will definitely scratch that itch.
The plot of Rave Master can get very complicated. In its simplest form, the story filled a boy named Haru’s journey as he searches for several magic jewels, known as Raves. Once he collects them all, he will attempt to use them to destroy the terrorist organisation known as Demon Card.
If you like Fairy Tail, I cannot recommend Rave Master enough. Not only are the fights and action scenes incredibly exciting but the comedy rivals that of it’s sibling as well.
Those in the mood for a good funny bone rubbing should definitely give Rave Master a watch.
17) Seven Deadly Sins (Nanatsu no Taizai)
Adventures are best embarked on with a plentiful party of participants. If you aren’t such a solo player and prefer banding together with a large group of comrades, 7ds has some of the most unique and powerful Nakama you could ever hope to find.
The Seven Deadly Sins were an order of knights who disbanded years prior due to supposed mutiny. After returning from hiding, Princess Elizabeth joins forces with Seven Deadly Sins leader Meliodas, to recruit the former sins, clear their names, and reclaim their land from the tyrannical Holy Knights
Seven Deadly Sins is a Shounen like no other. If you were disappointed in the lack of development for your favorite side character in anime such as Naruto or Bleach, Seven Deadly Sins dedicates a lot if it’s time to either developing it’s main cast or at the very least, creating a more memorable supporting cast.
Each of the sins has an interesting backstory and their own personal vendettas against a demon named Fraudrin; the demon who manipulated them into unsealing the demon race from their prison. As they fight we uncover new information about each character – especially Meliodas who is revealed to be the demon King’s cursed son.
If you love a large cast of interesting characters, Seven Deadly Sins is a must watch.
Continue reading Seven Deadly Sins from where the anime stopped by purchasing the manga. This is the best way to support your mangaka.
18) Majo no Tabitabi
You hate large groups. Hate prolonged interactions. Hate wizards.
If this describes you, Majo no Tabitabi could be your perfect match.
The plot follows the travels of Elaina. Having long-held aspirations of journeying around the world, she now sets out and encounters many different people along the way, often assisting them in their troubles.
Unlike Seven Deadly Sins, Naruto and Bleach, here we are given a more personal take on the adventure anime, following solely Elaina. We get to witness the adventure from one perspective. While it may seem boring to only follow one narrative, I would argue the opposite.
“A camel is a horse designed by a committee” and “too many cooks spoil the broth” are very famous idioms. The meaning implies; giving too many people a say in what should be done in any situation, will often result in disaster (apologies to the camels who were offended by this section).
Likewise, in storytelling, if everyone tried to recount a story, likely facts will become jumbled and timeframes will be mistaken. Through Majo no Tabitabi, we get to relive the bedtime stories our mother used to read us before bed. Hearing tales of faraway lands and liberated citizens.
There isn’t much better than a bedtime story from mom.
19) Mahou Shoujou Lyrical Nanoha
Nanoha is a timeline adventure in that this tale spans multiple years. Similar to Jojo in a sense but retaining its main character throughout.
Each arc follows a different storyline but the central focus is often Nanoha and her adventures with her magical partners.
This is a great contrast as while Jono presents us with new characters to fall in love with each series, Nanoha allows the viewer to witness its protagonist grow before passing the reins to a new protagonist that Nanoha trained.
If you get very invested into a story and it characters, Nanoha provides excellent service.
If you have ever finished a book or tv show and thought, “NO! IT’S NOT ENOUGH! I NEED TO SEE THE LIFE OF THIS CHARACTER UNTIL THEY DIE!” Nanoha should be able to appease your tastes.
20) Accel World
You’re fat and nobody likes you!
Good; now that I have your attention, let’s talk about Accel World and why being fat can sometimes result in untold fame and a beautiful girlfriend.
Ok, so while there is not a direct causal link between Haruyuki Arita’s weight and his social success, Accel World wants to drive this message home. The outside is not what matters. It’s the demonstration of true character that can captivate one’s peers.
Accel World is the story of Haruyuki Arita; an overweight and bullied middle schooler obsessed with video games. Unlike our traumatised pasts however, one day Haruyuki is introduced to an Augmented Reality Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (ARMMORPG) called Brain Burst.
The game speeds up a person’s mental faculties to such a degree that time itself around them appears to stop. Together with his attractive upperclassmen Kuroyukihime, they attempt to reach level ten of Brain Burst, discover the game’s creator and come to know its true purpose.
How Accel World Details the Adventure to Confidence
Accel World reopened some long sewn wounds. I must admit, even I dislike watching such a protagonist at first. Perhaps because most of us use anime to escape, it’s enjoyable to watch the kinds of people we strive to emulate. If I wanted to watch someone overweight being bullied for twenty minutes I would just open my old year book and re-watch some memories.
Accel World’s adventures are two-fold. The surface level adventure and the emotional adventure. While we as viewers are not so braindead as to believe that one day fame, fortune and love will so elegantly be dropped onto our laps, Accel World give us the exaggerated version of a ‘what if’ scenario.
By showing you Haruyuki achieving so much by accepting who he is and never giving up, the creators hope to inspire a generation of teens who are going through similar circumstances.
It isn’t just about conquering obesity. It’s about conquering the mental block that shames us for not only our appearance, but everything we may feel embarrassment towards. Be it a dislike of your nose, your skin, your taste in music, or anything else that defines who you are; Accel World wants you to know that you are beautiful inside and out and will love you all the same.
21) Kimetsu no Yaiba (Demon Slayer)
If you are an elitist, and only choose to dine on the very most gourmet styles of animation and story, then do I have an anime for you.
Tanjiro, a well-mannered teenager and humble charcoal salesman, one day returns from an outing to find that his family has been murdered by a demon. However, his sister, now transformed into a demon, has been left alive. Together, the two depart the quaint cottage they once lived in, to find a cure and turn Nezuko back into a human.
Kimetsu no Yaiba is a powerhouse. The show managed to rival One Piece in manga sales and for those unaware, this is unheard of. One Piece is and has been the undisputed king of manga turnover for decades. Yet, here comes the new kid on the block to throw their hat into the ring. Or should I say, throw their hanafuda earrings into the ring?
One of the reasons many set out for adventure is the opportunity to explore new worlds. Those who have lived in their hometown for the majority of their life can understand the mundanity of viewing the same unchanging scenery each and every day.
Going even a step further, a lot of anime also have similar art styles. it can also get repetitive watching the same styles of animation day in and day out.
Kimetsu no Yaiba blows the roof off any preconceived notions you had toward the limitations of animation. Once you witness the lustrous set pieces and gorgeous flowing animation, you will not be able to return to the stunted CG renders you once held dear.
Those looking for an adventure set in vibrant and awe-inspiring settings can look no further than Kimetsu no Yaiba
Continue reading Kimetsu no Yaiba from where the anime stopped by purchasing the manga.
22) Cardcaptor Sakura
Cardcaptor Sakura is an adventure two times over. Depending on which version of the show you choose to watch, an entirely different adventure is in store for you.
After opening an old book, Sakura mistakenly releases several magical Clow Cards into the world. Each card is possessed by some kind of spirit and it is up to Sakura to track down all the cards, defeat the spirits and return them safely.
Cardcaptor Sakura was released in two variations. The original Japanese version; untouched and unedited, and the 4Kids dubbed version (titled just, “Cardcaptors”); which was heavily edited in order to appeal to a male audience (who populated the majority viewer base of anime at the time in the West).
Cardcaptor Sakura is a love story, through and through. Scenes with action are aplenty but it is always used to further the romantic relationships of the cast. Many of these scenes were removed for the English dub. The focus was instead shifted to the monster fights. Li Syaoran; Sakura’s love interest and a solidified side-character, was also pushed to the forefront and given more screen time.
Who wants to watch a show with a girl protagonist, am I right guys? Gross!
If you have ever read a choose your own adventure novel, this would be the anime equivalent. When faced with a choice in such books, you could either choose the left path to take shelter at a nearby inn or the right path to valiantly proceed into battle.
Likewise, if you prefer a more subdued, thought-provoking, and heart-wrenching story about love, watch the Japanese version. Or you could just be a filthy casual and gorge yourself on the dubbed version.
I think you can guess which one I’d recommend more.
23) Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood
Widely renowned as the greatest anime of all time, Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood blends a perfect cocktail of action, story, and character development.
Fullmetal Alchemist is a story about loss. After a failed transmutation that was supposed to bring their deceased mother back to life, both the Elric brothers are left missing parts of or their entire bodies.
After the older brother, Edward, links his brother’s soul to a piece of armor; he modifies his missing limbs with metallic substitutes. The two embark on an adventure to return their bodies to normal.
Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood and the 5 Stages of Grief
If you have ever lost something important to you, Fullmetal Alchemist taps into the sense of despair you experienced. The five stages of grief are recognized as; denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally, acceptance.
Our protagonists deny their mother’s loss, becoming angry at the unfairness they have been dealt with. They then try to bargain with God and return their mother to life. They become depressed at their failed experiments until ultimately…well, I suppose you’ll just have to watch it for yourself to see if they make it to the final stage of acceptance.
Fullmetal Alchemist teaches us that nothing is lost forever. Even if something can never be physically retrieved, our mental state can be remedied through time and compassion. Never give up trying to reclaim what you once had, even if that reclamation is only metaphorical.
24) Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? (DanMachi)
It’s a harem adventure.
Do you need more incentive?
Join 14-year-old Bell Craner, a budding explorer under the goddess Hestia, as he travels the globe in search of adventure. Unbeknownst to him, however, several mortals, deities, and even Hestia herself, slowly begin to develop affections towards him.
A fairly by-the-books harem but also one that just nails all the tropes associated with the genre to such a degree, that I couldn’t stop watching.
As all of us anime and game lovers are well aware, sometimes we just have too many girls throwing themselves at us. It can be difficult to choose the perfect girlfriend when so many cute options willingly present themselves. DanMachi is perfect for helping you navigate this rigorous obstacle course in your own dating lives, by listing the criteria by which to judge your potential partners.
In all seriousness, DanMachi is a great anime for those who enjoy love interests littered throughout their adventure. While playing through an RPG, if you ever wanted to stop by at the local village and take the milk maid out on a date before venturing onwards to slay a mighty dragon, DanMachi is perfect for you.
25) Cowboy Bebop
A gritty and realistic adventure about bounty hunters juxtaposed next to a fantastical space-western setting. Cowboy Bebop is an icon of the anime industry – truly timeless in its narrative.
Cowboy Bebop follows the lives of a group of four bounty hunters (five if you count goodest boy, Ein) as they travel across the galacy.
Cowboy Bebop’s excellent writing and gritty realism is what has kept viewers watching and re-watching this show for more than twenty years.
If fantastical settings featuring larger than life monsters and out-of-this-world powers do not appeal to you, Cowboy Bebop takes the premise of an adventure, implements it into its set pieces, before subverting the genre with its character writing.
Truly a masterpiece in animation.
26) Dragon Ball
What can be said about Dragon Ball? The grandfather of the Shounen genre, this anime inspired a new generation of action adventure anime. If you have not watched this anime yet, it may be time to pay your respects.
Dragon Ball, in its original incarnation, follows the life of Goku, as he hopes to find the seven mystical dragon balls and summon a powerful dragon named Shenron who can grant whoever summoned him their greatest desire.
If you like screaming, then do I have good news for you. Dragon Ball is an adventure anime about fights. Yes, the characters explore new and interesting worlds, but ultimately, these worlds will soon be decimated once someone goes SSJ2.
Adventures aren’t always about exploring new worlds, they can also be about exploring new people and enemies as well. Dragon Ball’s cast is massive as one would expect from such a long-running show. As such, the enemies have also evolved over time to become more threatening to our protagonists.
It seems there is no cap on the power-up potential of characters in this show. If you are a fan of fight scenes and twenty-minute screaming matches, Dragon Ball should satisfy you.
27) Spice and Wolf
Another lovey-dovey adventure but not in the same vain as Zero no Tsukaima. Spice and Wolf offers something to a more mature audience.
The story revolves around Kraft Lawrence, a travelling merchant who meets a wolf deity named Holo. The two decide to travel together and go on many adventures.
Due to the age of our cast, the romance in this anime is much more in line with what one would expect from a pair of graduate students.
Zero no Tsukaima plays up to the audience the immature uncertainty of love. The jealousy, the embarrassment and everything else that teenagers succumb to when searching for love.
Spice and Wolf sees the protagonists journey through the gauntlet of romance but in a much more adult-like manner. If Zero no Tsukaima annoyed you due to the immaturity of its cast, you may find Spice and Wolf more appealing.
Many people’s first leap into the world of animated romance comes Inuyasha; a beautiful love story set in the interesting backdrop of a world gone by.
Inuyasha is the protagonist of this show and a half-demon. He sought a magical jewel, hoping it could transform him into a full demon. However, the jewel was accidentally shattered by the reincarnation of a goddess. The two reluctantly decide to work together to recover all of the fragments scattered across Feudal Japan.
Inuyasha is another romance anime but not one without action and exploration as well. The anime does a great job of pacing itself so as to not have the romantic climax peak too early.
The setting of Feudal Japan is also incredibly interesting for those interested in anime or Japan in general. Being able to explore such a world through this medium is great for both entertainment and as a learning resource.
Not so much the devil dog protagonist but you get what I mean.
What is also great about Inuyasha is that it has very strong male and female leads (which is very rare to find in Shounen at the time). As mentioned previously, even anime like Cardcaptor Sakura where stripped of all they were worth in order to appeal to a male audience.
It is great to see the birth or at least one of the ancestors of gender equality in Shounen anime. While it may seem commonplace during the present, the adventure to get here was one long struggled toward. Many anime (such as Cardcaptor Sakura) lost their lives fighting the adventure for direct localizations and Inuyasha was at the forefront of this revolution.
29) Tower of God
Rarely do we see Korean works discussed when comparing anime but Tower of God made such an impression on us, we felt that it had to be included on this list.
Story protagonist Baam, is a young man trapped at the bottom of a tower, with only his childhood friend Rachel to keep him company. All he wanted in life was to continue living in her presence. However, one day, Rachel voices her desire to conquer the tower, leaving Baam behind. Baam, unable to live without her, desperately follows behind.
With a very unique art style, this anime has been adapted from the Manhwa by Korean artist SIU. It is great to see Korean representation in the anime world and with Korean culture growing exponentially each day, it is only a matter of time before more and more Manhwa make their way onto the big screen.
Korean culture has exploded into the mainstream in recent years. Whether it is Korean dramas or K-pop music, people are finally coming to realize the amazing media that this country has to offer.
if you are a fan of Korean culture and Korean entertainment, I cannot recommend Tower of God enough for that fact alone.
30) Itai no wa Iya nano de Bougyoryoku ni Kyokufuri Shitai to Omoimasu (BOFURI: I Don’t Want to Get Hurt, so I’ll Max Out My Defense)
Now that is a mouthful and a half. A very cute and light-hearted adventure set in a VRMMO landscape similar to Log Horizon. Our protagonist, however, differs from the typical protagonist of such anime drastically.
After receiving an invitation to join her friend in the new VRMMO New World Online, Kaede agrees to join despite being a complete novice. Absolutely petrified of receiving damage, she allocates all of her skill points into defense and vitality. This leads to her gaining the reputation of ‘unkillable’ among the other players. With much to learn about herself and the games, she teams up with several other players to embark on several adventures.
Bofuri, the Joy of Breaking the Status Quo.
Bofuri prides itself on the enjoyment one can have during their adventure when not conforming to a set path. While preparation is surely important (emphasized by the players in the game who go for a more specialized build), our protagonist prioritizes fun and exploration. This in turn, rewards her with many fun skills that compliment her insanely high defense.
The entire show holds notions of breaking free from the shackles that tradition would have bind us.
Kaede causes headaches for those in power at developer meetings, as they constantly complain about how she doesn’t follow a set path. She is also garnering too much attention for her quirky playstyle which is not what the developers wanted to promote.
Focusing on what she wants to do, rather than following the best guides available, she is rewarded with an overall more enjoyable experience. I think we could all learn a lesson as sometimes it’s just better to stop obsessing with best pathing and enjoy the game.
Bofuri is a wonderfully inspiring adventure anime that I think everyone should watch when they need to feel motivated.
31) Golden Kamuy
An adventure inspired by real life events. if you were ever in need of a splash of reality in your adventure fiction, then look no further.
Saichi Sugimoto, a veteran of the Russo-Japanese war, goes on a quest to find a huge fortune of gold left behind by the Ainu people. he is joined by a young Ainu girl named Asirpa.
This is a great adventure and one that can inspire real life treasure hunting (with safety precautions I hope).
The story references several real-life events such as the 1904 Russo-Japanese War and the Battle of 203 Hill. In order to ensure there were no factual inaccuracies, an Ainu language linguist was also hired for the series.
This anime is great for those who love exploring different cultures. Travelling around the world is an adventure in and of itself. Seeking out new lands, new people and learning new ways to look at the world.
Likewise, in this anime we learn so much about the Ainu people (how they hunt for example). It’s very interesting to gain such knowledge and be able to apply it to a people still alive today.
Golden Kamuy is a great anime for those who seek adventure exploring the real world. Get ready for that adventure by binge watching this series first.
32) Dog Days
Another Isekai anime and a possible allegory for racial divides acted out by the warring nations of a populace of cat and dog people?
Dis gon b gud.
In the magical world of Flonyard, wars are not battled with violence. Instead, akin to sports festivals, champions compete to raise money for their home kingdoms. After being summoned to the dog-like kingdom of Biscotti Cinque must fight to uphold their honor.
Upon gaining the knowledge that he cannot return home, Biscotti scientists attempt to find a solution to this predicament. In the meantime, he must serve Princess Millhiore by continuing to fight as Biscotti’s hero.
“Baby’s first race war” I like to refer to this anime as. Adventure isn’t always about fighting baddies and trekking through unexplored dungeons. There is a lot of politics that go into the molding of the lands that our heroes explore.
While you won’t see any hardcore prejudices in this anime, it is a great look into the reality of how politics and adventure can intersect. If only real-world could strive to be as accepting toward such notions as Dog Days has been.
Start Your Adventure With Our Anime Recommendations
Adventure anime has a lot more to offer than at first glance. While a lot of these shows encompass similar elements, at their core, they are all unique and offer different stances on the adventure anime genre.
Start your adventure into the world of adventure anime by watching some of our recommendations. Also, feel free to let us know what your favorite adventure anime is down below.