With the greatest anime games, you can expect to go into epic adventures, solve puzzles, cry some tears with compelling stories, and possibly even dip into the horror zone. The best anime-inspired games, like the best manga and anime shows, have a wide spectrum of tones ranging from serious and evocative to grandiose and juvenile.
Series like Dragon Ball and Neon Genesis Evangelion are clearly “shonen,” whereas Sailor Moon and the like are unmistakably “shojo,” and so on. You can nearly always find an anime-inspired video game that you enjoy, no matter what your own preferences are.
10. Doki Doki Literature Club
The following platforms are supported: PC Many questions may arise if you are unfamiliar with Doki Doki Literature Club. In addition, I can tell you that the Doki Doki Literature Club, despite its name, isn’t what you’d expect. In the screenshots, you might think you’re dealing with a typical anime-inspired dating sim, but beneath the dazzling harem veneer lies a terrifying psychological nightmare.
As a psychological thriller and interactive visual novel, Doki Doki Literature Club is sure to mess with your mind. Even though it’s charming, the tale deals with disturbingly dark themes and topics such as suicidal thoughts and the grotesque in Doki Doki’s story. It’s worth the risk if you’re brave enough to listen to Doki Doki Literature Club’s tale.
9. Dragon Ball FighterZ
In Dragon Ball FighterZ, you can play as the most powerful characters in the Dragon Ball universe and take revenge on any of their many adversaries. Frieza, Buu, Kid Buu, Beerus, Cell, and Capt. Ginyu are just some of the villains you can take on Goku as.
Dragon Ball FighterZ is by far the most successful fighting game based on the Dragon Ball universe to date, despite the fact that it’s been around for more than 30 years. It’s fast, punchy, visually stunning, and – depending on your moral compass – it makes you feel like Goku.
8. Tales of Berseria
Tales of Berseria is a classic JRPG with a major anime influence, and more. In spite of its lack of originality in fighting, the 60-hour campaign provides enough challenge to keep players engaged. However, the emotional-captivating tale is the main draw.
This is the first time that a female protagonist has appeared in a Tales of Berseria game, and she’s merciless in her quest to avenge her brother’s death. Tales of Berseria follows a predictable path, but you’ll be surprised by every plot twist and kept entertained by the battle scenes in between.
7. Astral Chain
Astral Chain is a great fit for those who enjoy anime that is stylish, worldly, and awe-inspiring. Those familiar with PlatinumGames’ other properties, such as Bayonetta and Nier: Automata, will recognize the tone and feel of Astral Chain immediately as well.
Battles are quick and furious, and the game’s vibrant graphics and imaginative boss fights all add to the excitement. Astral Chain, on the other hand, delivers a compelling story that’s a little out of the ordinary for the genre. Astral Chain is the most stylish and categorically shonen alternative for a little bit of everything, including cleverly-designed side missions, platforming, and puzzle-solving components.
6. Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors (999)
Another strange sleeper hit, 999 has a distinct gameplay flow built on an unexpectedly compelling plot. Just as with Catherine, the tale can take a number of various turns depending on your decisions, but in 999, finding the “real ending” takes several tries.
Players must endure a visual novel-style narrative interrupted by puzzle-solving sections to avoid dangerous scenarios. With eight other captives, you wake up aboard a cruise ship, and your only purpose is to find the door marked “9” before time runs out and you’re sunk. Even worse, if you violate orders in “the Nonary Games,” a bomb in your stomach will go off. In 999, the stakes are tremendous from the beginning to the conclusion, and you can sense the intensity from the opening sequence until the end.
However, the game’s subversive and sexually-charged moralizing is practically impossible to fit into its imaginative complex RPG style for general appeal. Catherine deserves more recognition, but the game itself is to blame. Throughout the book, Catherine relates the narrative of a young man whose faith in his relationship is shaken by nightly attacks from a succubus.
This game’s only action occurs when Vincent is sleeping, and it involves shifting blocks around to climb a building and flee a huge creature that is clawing its way up from the ground. To keep you entertained, the story given by day is as compelling as Catherine’s under-pressure puzzle-solving. If you’re willing to look past the strange premise, you’ll find that Catherine: Full Body is the greatest method to fully immerse yourself in this bizarre tale.
4. Fire Emblem: Three Houses
There are several ways in which the latest Fire Emblem game lives up to and even beyond its name. It’s easy to lose track of the fact that you’re playing a turn-based strategy game when you’re immersed in such an expansive hub world, an engaging tale, and a cast of engaging characters.
At its foundation, Fire Emblem: Three Houses is a complicated, class-based strategy game. While mastering its combat may take some time to achieve, it’s as satisfying as any turn-based strategy game can be.
3. Ni No Kuni 2: Revenant Kingdom
There are many differences between Ni No Kuni 2 and its predecessor, yet it nevertheless manages to stand on its own as an ambitious, rewarding JRPG with a huge heart at its core. Battles are no longer turn-based, the city management gameplay loop and skirmish battles have been revamped, and Studio Ghibli has not been involved. Fast and furious action is an improvement over traditional turn-based combat in the original Ni No Kuni, but I’ve never been a fan of the latter.
It’s true that Studio Ghibli didn’t oversee the art direction for Ni No Kuni 2, but you wouldn’t know it at first glance. Characters and settings retain the Ghibli aesthetic, although a deeper examination shows some inconsistencies. When it comes to video games, Ni No Kuni 2 has some of the most unique and enchanting towns that I’ve ever encountered.
2. Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch
Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch is a must-see for fans of anime, video games, and happiness, regardless of whether or not you’ve heard of the name Miyazaki. From the stunning visuals to the heartfelt tale, Ni No Kuni oozes Ghibli. To be expected, the game’s gameplay fits nicely into the JRPG pattern, with an overworld to explore and towns to travel through.
There’s an anime-inspired game out there for everyone. When compared to other JRPGs, Ni No Kuni stands out because of its attention to detail. The plot is heartfelt, the art has aged well, and progressing through the tale involves minimal grinding – even less if you want to embark on sidequests.
1. Dragon Quest 11
Exactly what you’d expect from the Dragon Quest series, this latest outing is a roller coaster ride. In the end, it’s a large, vibrant world full with absurdly endearing characters and moments of genuine emotion. “One of this generation’s finest RPGs,” according to GamesRadar’s assessment of the Switch version released just recently.
Beautifully detailed in the style of Akira Toriyama’s manga, the anime-inspired 3D environments are a feast for the eyes and ears. Dragon Ball and Chrono Trigger character designer Shigeru Miyamoto was in charge of designing Dragon Quest 11’s art.
There are a few chapters that are very difficult, even tragic, but for the most part, the universe and its inhabitants will fascinate you so much that you’ll wish they were real. In addition, the gameplay cycle demands some grinding, but not excessively. The fact that Dragon Quest 11 stands so tall above literally decades of JRPG classics tells you everything you need to know about it.
Check out our list of the top visual novels if you’re looking for more adventures, whether they are anime or not.
With an English degree from Arizona State University under my belt, I began freelancing for publications like as SFX Magazine, Screen Rant, Game Revolution, and MMORPG while also working in the field of content management. Currently, I am in charge of GamesRadar’s western regional executive branch, aka my apartment, and write about whichever horror game I can’t complete because I’m a staff writer in Arizona.