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11 Great Alternatives For Your Favorite Anime (That Might Just Be Better)

Updated November 4, 2019 30.2k votes 9.3k voters 367.3k views11 items

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Trying to discover new anime can be a hassle. Even if you're a real otaku, you might pass up some truly great underrated anime gems if you don't do some serious digging. Typical recommendations generally lead people to a group of popular anime titles revered as "next level anime" but, quite frankly, get more hype than they deserve.

Anime that's better than average stuff rarely gets a proper recommendation. This is the anime you need to see if the basic titles interest you, but you don't want to invest in the same off-brand trash everybody else does. The anime that stands apart as unique and beautiful. If you can parse through the generic, fan-service flood of anime titles, better versions of popular anime are just waiting to be watched.

  • If you're looking for a delinquent-reformation program to force-feed you colors and loud noises, then Nanbaka is the perfect anime for you. Not everybody thinks that being on lockdown is an awesome party time, though. 

    Rainbow: Nisha Rokubō No Shichinin is a reformation program with a more serious setting, focusing on a group of delinquents and the exploration of their dark pasts. This anime goes to show that following the lives of criminals can be entertaining, even if the series doesn't shove fan service down your throat. 

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  • Vigilante teenagers uniting to form gangs and take control of a city as part of a larger, grand design are apparently not terribly difficult to come across in Japan. In both Terror in Resonance and Durarara!!, bonding to form a self-righteous gang is a common theme. 

    However, Terror in Resonance executes its pacing perfectly, while Durarara!! struggles to catch up with itself at some points. Durarara!! is also heavily focused on the supernatural, but lacks the mystery solving Terror In Resonance delivers in spades. 

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  • It's hard to compare ninja anime without lumping them all together in the same genre, but Nabari no Ou sets a higher standard. It has an engaging, fast-paced storyline and, unlike Naruto, won't leave you waiting for the plot to progress while you slog through filler episodes.

    If you like Naruto, however, Nabari no Ou is an anime worth checking out. It utilizes the concepts of ninjas holding things sealed away inside them, wielding cool weapons, and fighting epic battles, but with less whiny 14-year-olds and pointless, boring, drawn-out fight sequences. So yeah, it's just the good parts of Naruto

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  • Katanagatari is comprised of the same samurai-goodness Rurouni Kenshin offered, but it's not an outdated feudal story. Katanagatari steps outside the realistic boundaries Ruroni Kenshin placed on the genre, bringing a psychedelic revamp to the well-worn story of warring Japan.

    With an upbeat soundtrack and fluid action scenes, you'll forget about the serious atmosphere and outdated animation of Kenshin, and be brought into a world of colorful and witty warriors.

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