The 20 Best Survival Anime of All Time, Ranked

All good anime plots have something important at stake - but in survival anime, what's at stake is life itself. In these shows, characters get thrown into situations unlike any they've ever faced before, and are forced to use every ounce of their intelligence and strength to stay alive. 

Some of the best survival anime take place on Earth, like Dr. Stone, which follows a teenager named Senku as he tries to rebuild society using the power of science. Others, like Uninhabited Planet Survive! and Astra Lost In Space take an intergalactic approach to the genre. Some depict the consequences of unavoidable disasters, like Tokyo Magnitude 8.0, while others like Btooom! and Sword Art Online thrust the characters into potentially fatal situations that are manmade.

No matter what the situation, these series push their characters to their absolute limit, creating tension and drama in the process. Which ones do you like? Be sure to vote them up!


  • 1
    1,258 VOTES

    After all of humanity is encased in stone for thousands of years, those who emerge must rebuild society from the ground up. Senku, a scientific prodigy, makes it his personal mission to bring back civilization through science.

  • 2
    582 VOTES
    Photo: Madhouse

    Ryouta Sakamoto might be an unemployed shut-in who lives with his mother, but he does have one thing going for him: he's Japan's top player of Btooom!, an online game. The game becomes frighteningly real when he's suddenly transported to a real-world version of the game on a desert island, and he has no choice but to eliminate his opponents if he wants to leave the island alive.

  • 3
    418 VOTES

    Astra Lost in Space

    Astra Lost in Space
    Photo: Lerche

    When a group of teenagers is suddenly transported thousands of light-years away from their camp site, they find themselves lost in the middle of space with seemingly no way back home. While they eventually find an abandoned ship that can help them, the journey itself will be an arduous one. 

  • Highschool of the Dead
    Photo: Madhouse

    When the zombie apocalypse reaches their high school, a group of students and teachers must figure out how to stay alive, reunite with their families, and escape the zombie hordes. This is easier said than done - especially since some of the humans would rather use the situation to their advantage than help others.