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15 Underrated Isekai Anime You Probably Haven't Seen

Updated September 13, 2021 13k votes 2.7k voters 96.1k views15 items

When you think of isekai, what are the first shows that come to mind? While everyone has a different knowledge base, many anime fans will think of well-known shows like That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime, Re:Zero, Sword Art Online, and The Rising of the Shield Hero. There's nothing wrong with enjoying what's popular, but sometimes you want to appreciate anime that's less well-known. With that in mind, we'll be counting down some underrated isekai anime that deserves more hype than they get.

Some of these series have been forgotten after debuting a decade or so in the past, like Escaflowne and The Twelve Kingdoms. But there are also modern series that didn't get the attention they should have, like Ascendance of a Bookworm and Grimgar: Ashes and Illusions. Vote up the anime that you'd recommend to fellow fans, and vote down the ones you think should stay obscure. 

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  • Photo: White Fox

    Rather than a typical isekai where the protagonist is a regular human who has to get used to a magical world, The Devil Is a Part-Timer! is about the Demon Lord Satan of the land of Ente Isla who suddenly finds himself in the real world. With no magic and no understanding of how to survive in modern-day Japan, he has to scramble to figure things out on his own. So what does he do? Get a job at McDonalds, of course! Only anime can not just deliver such an outlandish premise, but actually do it well. 

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  • Isekai isn't exactly known for its realistic feel. High-powered fantasy can be a lot of fun, but sometimes it's nice to have something a little more down-to-earth. Grimgar: Ashes and Illusions is an isekai that focuses on realism.

    Its cast of characters are transported to a new world with no special powers or positions and have no choice but to join the army as low-level soldiers in order to survive. Rather than focusing on taking down a high-powered villain or attaining OP skills, this series is concerned with the character's emotional adjustment to their situation and their daily struggle to survive. 

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  • Photo: Ajia-Do

    After Motosu Urano passes away, she's reincarnated into the body of an impoverished, sickly 5-year-old girl living in a medieval setting. This is all difficult enough, but she soon finds out that in this world, books are luxuries only available to the rich! Using her new identity as Myne, she sets about trying to create the books she loved in her old life.

    But with the limitations of her body and the social structure of her new world, it's no easy task. That's exactly what makes the show so interesting. Myne isn't OP, but she's scrappy, innovative, and dedicated to her goal. 

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  • Photo: White Fox

    Have you ever thought that isekai heroes can be a little too reckless with their personal safety? If so, you should check out Cautious Hero: The Hero Is Overpowered but Overly Cautious, an anime where the opposite attitude is taken to the extreme.

    When Seiya Ryuuguuin is summoned to save the world of Gaeabrande, he's happy to do it, but not before he over trains and buys more potions than he's likely to need in a life time. But while his fellow heroes find his attitude perplexing, it might be exactly what's needed to get the job done.

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