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The 20 Greatest Hand-To-Hand Fights In Anime History, Ranked

List Rules
Vote up the coolest anime fights that showcase hand-to-hand combat.

Great anime fights don't have to involve legendary weapons, intricate elemental powers, or anything complicated. Sure, those kinds of fights can be amazing, but sometimes all you need is the brutal, raw strength that comes from hand-to-hand combat. The best hand-to-hand fights in anime are just as exciting as the more complex battles, especially when they have great animation to back them up.

One particularly memorable fight is from Naruto - Kakashi and Obito have plenty of powers outside of their punches, but the intimacy of hand-to-hand combat helps underscore their fraught relationship. There's also Ohma versus Raian from Kengan Ashura, a fight that proves that CGI can be glorious in the right hands.

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  • 1
    113 VOTES

    Kakashi Vs. Obito - 'Naruto'

    Kakashi Vs. Obito - 'Naruto'
    Photo: Naruto Shippuden / Studio Pierrot

    Obito and Kakashi are former childhood friends who have finally been reunited as adults - but Obito is trying to destroy the world, and Kakashi is trying to stop him. This spare, no-holds-barred fight takes place in an alternate dimension created by the Mangekyo. Because there's no background and no one to interfere, the sole focus is on their movements.

    Rather than using their plethora of jutsu, they fight with their hands. This fighting style highlights their strained relationship in a way that a flashier fight might not have. 

  • 2
    81 VOTES

    Naruto And Sasuke Vs. Momoshiki - 'Boruto'

    Naruto And Sasuke Vs. Momoshiki - 'Boruto'
    Photo: Boruto: Naruto Next Generations / Studio Pierrot

    Watching Sasuke and Naruto duke it out as adults is bound to be exciting no matter how they approach it, but this fight is particularly noteworthy because they can't rely on all of the earth-shattering jutsu they've used in the past. Momoshiki can absorb jutsu, so they have to rely on brute strength instead.

    This leads to a beautifully choreographed scene of hand-to-hand combat that proves that Naruto and Sasuke can handle anything if they work together.

  • 3
    54 VOTES

    All Might Vs. Nomu - 'My Hero Academia'

    All Might Vs. Nomu - 'My Hero Academia'
    Photo: My Hero Academia / Bones

    Up until this fight, MHA fans knew that All Might had an incredible reputation, but they hadn't really seen him earn it.

    During this fight, he unequivocably proves his strength. Nobody else can handle the Nomu, but All Might sends him flying out of USJ with a decisive punch. Everyone in Class 1-A is in awe of his raw power, and rightly so. 

  • 4
    58 VOTES

    Eren Vs. Reiner - 'Attack on Titan'

    Eren Vs. Reiner - 'Attack on Titan'
    Photo: Attack on Titan / Wit Studio

    This fight happens just after Reiner has finally revealed his true identity as the Armored Titan. Viewers barely have time to process the shock before the fight begins. Both combatants transform into their Titan forms while Mikasa tries desperately to help from the side. The two unleash massive punches that send each other flying, and Eren even manages to rip off Reiner's arm.

    Unfortunately, it's not enough for Eren to avoid being captured, because Bertholdt can transform, too. 

  • 5
    61 VOTES

    Gon Vs. Hisoka - 'Hunter x Hunter'

    Gon Vs. Hisoka - 'Hunter x Hunter'
    Photo: Hunter x Hunter / Madhouse

    It took an absurd amount of training and effort for Gon to even be able to approach Hisoka, so this fight was a long time coming - and oh boy is it satisfying. The fight does involve liberal uses of Hisoka's Bungee Gum, but there's a whole lot of freehand fighting.

    The parts where Hisoka is just standing there and Gon is flying around the room with all his might emphasize the gap between them while also showing just how far Gon has come since their last encounter. 

  • 6
    59 VOTES

    Saitama Vs. Boros - 'One Punch Man'

    Saitama Vs. Boros - 'One Punch Man'
    Photo: One Punch Man / Madhouse

    Most fights in One Punch Man are resolved instantaneously - much of the show's comedy is derived from Saitama's ability to instantly defeat his foes. But during his showdown with Boros, he actually struggles.

    The wild movements and intense flashes of color help make it clear that unlike most of the fights in the series, this one is serious - but it's still going to be resolved the same way all the other ones are - with a massive, high-powered punch.