In 2011, a Japanese animation studio called White Fox blew the collective minds of everyone away with the release of the mind-blowing gem of an anime called Steins; Gate. Fans and critics so well received it that it’s considered one of the best anime ever, and it deserves to be so.
Based on a 2009 visual novel of the same name, the anime tells the story of an eccentric scientist and genius, Rintaro Okabe, and his friends. They accidentally invent the sort-of time machine through which they can pass messages to their past selves. These small messages can effectively alter the future as their past selves follow their instruction.
The group is faced with a great dilemma and danger when they discover that their device is damaging the timeline. Meanwhile, a mysterious organization is tailing them behind for reasons unknown. Now, Rintaro needs to find a way to remedy the damages to the timelines, while keeping his loved ones and himself from the imminent danger posed by man and nature.
Although multiple OVA and spin-offs are already available, it still isn’t enough. Now that a sequel or continuation to the anime isn’t going to be here anytime soon, all we can do is look for other similar animes. But therein lies a problem.
Everything about this sci-fi masterpiece is so unique that nothing has ever come close to replacing it in the fans’ minds, and we don’t want them to do so. Some masterpieces shouldn’t be replaced as they’re supposed to be one of a kind. But that doesn’t exactly stop us from craving more.
So here we have compiled 23 animes that can give you even remotely the same feeling as Steins; Gate.
When talking about animes that have the same vibe as Steins; Gate, we cannot go without mentioning the show’s sister anime. Robotics; Notes is one of the few connected animes of Steins; Gate. Although all these ‘connected’ animes aren’t explicitly linked with each other, there have been hints in the shows suggesting they’re in a shared multiverse. Robotics; Notes happen in a universe that diverged from the original Steins; Gate universe.
Apart from the always gaming Kaito Yashio, Akiho Senomiya is the only other Central Tanegashima High School Robotics Research Club, member. Akiho is the only one working towards achieving the club’s long-time dream of completing the GunPro1, a giant, fully functioning robot. But her mission isn’t going to be easy as completing the robot takes a lot of money, and the club is broke.
Things get a little serious as the lazy but brilliant Kaito discovers an ominous report from Airi Yukifune, an AI that should only exist inside the augmented reality game he used to play. But the contents of the reports were far more shocking as they would have a catastrophic impact on their future.
One of the best and most similar animes to Steins; Gate out there is this one. It packs the same mysterious and thrilling feeling that made Steins; Gate our favorite, and it also integrates these feelings with enigmas of time traveling.
Satoru Fujinuma has a mysterious ability. Through the ability he termed “Revival,” he can turn back time to a few minutes before an event transpires, and he has saved countless lives with this ability. He attempts to use his ability when he finds himself wrongfully accused of murdering someone close to him. But instead of going a few minutes back, he found himself 18 years in the past.
Satoru is forced to relive his past and discover the connection between a murder that happened 18 years ago with murder in the present. As he unravels the mysteries one by one, he is forced to handle the astonishing truth while protecting his loved ones.
Higurashi: When They Cry
This is one of the best animes out there that can stand tall with the thrilling and serious aura of Steins; Gate with an added bonus of being a slight horror.
Hinamizawa is a small and less populated mountain village, and at first glance, it might feel quaint and calm. But beneath its surface, the village holds some dark and mysterious secrets. Keiichi Maebara is a boy from Tokyo who just recently moved into the village. He befriends a group of girls from his school and finds joy in playing with them.
But Keiichi starts to discover that all is not well in the village as a series of murders and missing people attracts his attention. Also, he began to feel that his friends were keeping some secrets about the village from him. A secret that could change Keiichi’s perception about everything in the dreaded village.
Summer Time Rendering
Although this might be pretty new for anime fans as it just started airing in 2022, Summer Time Rendering shouldn’t be new for manga readers. Its mix of suspense and thriller with mystic elements is reminiscent of Steins; Gate.
Taking place on the fictitious island of Hitogashima, Summer Time Rendering tells the story of Shinpei Ajiro. Before he left for Tokyo to pursue his education, Shinpei used to live with the Kofune family and their two daughters—Mio and Ushio, on Hitogashima Island. He had to come back to the island when he heard the news of Ushio’s supposed death by drowning.
But when he returned to the island, he began to suspect that Ushio’s death might be more than just a drowning. As he began to experience more and more bizarre things, Shinpei started to unravel the dark and ancient secrets of Hitogashima Island that could endanger everything he held close.
Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica
Although this one might feel out of place compared to the rest at first glance, Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica got the right to be on the list. Just like Steins; Gate, Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica also deals with a complex storyline that can keep you on the edge through your watching.
Madoka Kaname and Sayaka Miki used to be two regular middle school students living their mundane lives. But their entire world is changed when they’re met with Kyuubey, a cat-like magical familiar. Kyuubey offers to grant them anyone’s wish, but instead, they would’ve to become magic girls- beings powerful enough to fulfill their dreams.
But the new transfer student Homura Akemi who revealed herself to be a magical girl herself, warns them not to take the offer as she claims that things aren’t the same as they seem.
This is one of the most popular anime out there right now, and like Steins; Gate, Tokyo Revengers deals with time traveling and protagonists hoping to alter the past to save their loved ones.
Takemichi Hanagaki used to be popular and respected in middle school, and he even had a girlfriend. But the past is far too different from his bleak present. His life is further devastated when he hears of his ex-girlfriend’s death. Feeling worn out of life, he attempts to end his life with suicide. But instead of being dead, he found himself 12 years back in the past, when he was in middle school.
Takemichi discovers that he has the ability to travel between the past and the present, and he also realizes that by altering the past, he can change the future. Having the literal power to change the future, Takemichi takes up the mission to save his loved ones and to change the future for the better.
Noein: To Your Other Self
This anime holds a lot of similarities to Steins; Gate. Noein: To Your Other Self deals with time traveling and parallel worlds like the latter. It also got some impressive character arcs and developments similar to Steins; Gate.
Due to some reasons in their respective homes, Haruka and Yuu are planning to run away. But before they can do so, they’re met with a stranger who claims to be Yuu from the future. He told them about the gripping war between two opposing forces that are going to happen in the near future.
The stranger also informed them of another thing, and it shocked both Haruka and Yuu. He claimed that Haruka held the key to stopping the war and saving the future. Little did they know that this reveal was going to turn their lives upside down.
The Girl Who Leapt Through Time
Although this is not in a serious tone compared to many others on this list, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time has all the right to be on the list. Like Steins; Gate, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time deals with time traveling and the consequences of changing the past. Its treatment of character developments as both realistic and deep is truly something to marvel at.
Makoto Konno was a normal high school girl with mundane problems and friends with whom she used to pass her time. But her whole world changed when she discovered her new ability to leap across time. As she started to enjoy her life more with this newfound ability, she began to understand that not everything was as easy as it seemed and that her actions had dire consequences.
NHK ni Youkoso
Although it doesn’t tackle time traveling, NHK ni Youkoso does have some similarities to Steins; Gate. Like the protagonist in the latter, the main character in NHK ni Youkoso is someone who deeply believes in conspiracies and firmly believes that some mysterious organization is out to get them. They also share another similarity in that both characters strongly develop their characters as they’re faced with the issues in their respective stories.
Tatsuhiro Satou is a hikikomori and shut-in who is deeply paranoid about his surroundings. He firmly believes that a mysterious organization called the Nihon Hikikomori Kyokai (NHK) is the hands behind creating shut-in NEETs (Not in Employment, Education, or Training) like him. However, a chance encounter with a girl slowly began to open up his world, letting in new friends and even leaving home. And now, he is (almost) ready to face his biggest challenge yet: Society.
Re: Zero − Starting Life in Another World
Unlike Steins; Gate, this anime grips heavily on fantasy but concocts a story filled with suspense and time travel, just like Steins; Gate. Also, Re: Zero and Steins, the same studios, created Gate, so there are bound to be some similarities stemming from that fact.
Subaru Natsuki used to be a normal teenager on earth, minding his own business, but his perception of everything changed when he was dropped into another world. In this fantasy world, magic and everything that came with it were possible! What further adds to his astonishment is that he can’t be killed.
Of course, he learns this in the hardest way possible, but he discovers that whenever he is killed, he is brought back to some times before his murder. This gives him an added bonus of knowing what’s about to happen. Hence, his life, full of pain and adventure, began.
Like Steins, Gate, the main character, attempts to save his loved ones using his powers. Although it doesn’t have time traveling, it has many mystical elements with unexplained powers and phenomena.
Even if it was for a few seconds at a time, Yuu Otosaka had the mysterious ability to take over other people’s minds and bodies. This ability has helped him cheat on his exams several times, making him top of his class and enrolling him in a prestigious high school.
But his mischievous life is interrupted by a mysterious girl who coerced him into joining the Hoshinoumi Academy. He realizes he is not the only one with special abilities there. As he joined the student council, which supervised the people with powers and strived to help those with new abilities, he got entangled with complex situations that he couldn’t even comprehend.
Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
Although this anime is a bit more dramatic compared to Steins; Gate, despite being set in a fantasy world, both animes have a pretty serious and realistic view of the world.
After the war between Japan and the Holy Empire of Britannia, Japan was renamed Area 11 after its defeat. Like many defeated nations, Area 11 is extremely resistant to the tyrants of Britannia.
Lelouch Lamperouge is the exiled prince of Britannia who got himself in the crossfire between the Holy Empire of Britannia and Area 11 rebel armies. Fortunately, with the help of a mysterious figure, he could escape from the dire escape using the power called “Geass,” which was bestowed upon him. Using this power and a mask to hide his identity, Lelouch became the hero called “Zero” and began his adventurous journey back home.
Zankyou no Terror
Like Steins; Gate, this anime deals with conspiracies that threaten the world, and our protagonists find themselves right in the thick of these world-changing events.
In the alternate world presented by this anime, Japan is devastated after a terrorist attack. Yet the police could not do anything about it as they couldn’t find any clue about the perpetrators. Six months later, two masked teenagers take responsibility for the attack and directly challenge the authorities.
With the law enforcement and detectives tailing them behind, this anime tells the story of the two masked boys. They shouldn’t exist, yet they’re here, and as they want to erase themselves, they want to take everything with them.
Kono Yo no Hate de Koi wo Utau Shoujo YU-NO
This anime is originally based on a 1996 visual novel, considered the grandfather of modern time-travel anime and visual novels. As such, Steins; Gate itself had been greatly influenced by it. Like Steins; Gate, this anime involves time traveling and parallel worlds.
A young student named Takuya Arima is shocked to find a package delivered to him from his father, who had gone missing some time ago. The package contained a letter informing him of the existence of parallel worlds.
Although he first dismissed it as just fiction, he soon realized that the device in the package allowed him to travel between parallel worlds. Now that he has found this, he is sure his father is lost and sets out to find him.
Vivy: Fluorite Eye’s Song
Like Steins; Gate, this anime has sci-fi elements like time traveling and Artificial Intelligence. Both of the animes also deal with changing the past to avoid a catastrophe in the future.
The world is being destroyed as highly advanced and evolved AIs are out for blood and are eradicating all humans from the world. In this desperate situation, a scientist takes a gamble to save the world.
A hundred years back in the past, Vivy was just an ordinary AI who spent her entire life entertaining her audience, that is, until she was met with a highly advanced AI from the future who was on a mission. Together with her new friend, Vivy joins the mission to stop a war that is going to devastate the world from ever coming into existence.
This is another anime that focuses on time traveling and the protagonists trying to save people in danger.
Cheng Xiaoshi and Lu Guang run a small shop called “Time Photo Studio”, there, they grant customers’ wishes for a reasonable price. They do this by entering the customer’s photographs and changing the past within the photo to meet their customer’s wishes. But they have to be extremely careful not to change things past a certain point, or else everything will be in peril.
Things start to go wrong as the two friends increasingly find themselves in situations where their business and personal lives collide.
This might be the oddest one out of all the anime on this list, but Baccano! has earned its slot. The increasing introductions of new mysteries as you delve into the story and the fictional yet realistic integration of sci-fi into the story are closely similar to that in Steins; Gate.
In 1930s Chicago, the transcontinental train started its journey. In a place somewhere else, a gang war has just broken out. In another place, a man is on the search for the elixir of immortality. Also, two thieves have started on something big. The mystery thickens as all of these worlds start to come together.
Like Steins; Gate, this anime deals with suspense and mystery surrounding an unnatural phenomenon.
Kouichi Sakakibara was transferred to Yomiyama North Junior High and is about to start his classes after failing to attend school for the first month as he was sick. Despite his classmates’ warnings, he befriends Mei Misaki—a girl with an eyepatch who doesn’t talk to anyone else in the class.
But soon, he realized the truth about his classmates’ warnings and the eerie truth about Mei.
Like most in the list, this is concerned with the concepts of time traveling and everything else it comes with. However, this one is a bit twisted compared to some on this list.
One day, a reserved and quiet middle schooler named Yukiteru Amano discovers that his phone diary, which he used to write about his daily life, has started to display information about things that are yet to happen. Later he discovers that he is not the only one with this “Future Diary,” and this is all the ability of the god of time and space, Deus Ex Machina.
The god informs him of the survival game that will decide the true successor of Deus Ex Machina. As Yukiteru is dragged into this world with his friends, he needs to survive through the game against rivals and other deviant forces.
This one is also about time traveling and saving the lives of loved ones by changing the past.
Naho Takamiya, a sophomore student, one day finds a letter addressed to her by a person claiming to be her from 10 years into the future. Although she first dismissed it as nothing but a joke, she soon realized that things were transpiring in her life just like the letter said they would be. Now that she knows its legitimacy, she strives hard to correct the things in her life as told by her future self to achieve a better and happy life.
Like the protagonist of Steins, Gate, the main character of Sakurada Reset have the ability to time travel using a certain machine. This anime has some intricate plot twists that make the story more complex with each episode.
Sakurada is a city where inhabitants there are born with special abilities, and Kei Asai is one of them. One day he had a chance encounter with a girl on the rooftop of his school. This girl had the ability to rewind time up to three days back, but no one, including the girl herself, was able to know if the time had been tampered with or not, that is, except for Kei.
Kei’s ability to remember everything through photographic memory had allowed him to keep his memories despite the girl rewinding the time. With their combined powers, the duo attempts to help everyone.
One cannot create a list of animes with unnatural phenomena without mentioning the OG supernatural anime: Death Note. Like the protagonist in Steins, Gate, Light from Death Note is someone with genius-level intellect who attempts to tamper with something abstract and unnatural.
Light Yagami used to be a somewhat normal teenager with a genius-level intellect until he discovered the Death Note. The mysterious note supposedly belonging to the god of death bestowed the user the power to kill anyone they wanted. With this newfound power, Light began to rid the world of criminals so that he could create a perfect society.
But his plans won’t go smoothly as the law enforcement, and a detective with a mind rivaling Light are tailing closely behind him.
Kimi no Na wa
Last but no way least, this masterpiece of an anime. Like Steins; Gate, Kimi no Na wa has a lot of time traveling, and mystical elements are woven intricately into its storyline. Apart from the amazing story, it has one of the most breathtaking visuals and animations ever in anime history.
It tells the story of two people; Taki Tachibana and Mitsuha Miyamizu. Both have been brought up and lived in different worlds. Yet their fates somehow become crossed as they’re body-swapped with each other. As they live out each other lives, they learn more about themselves as much as about the other party.
As the two discover a tragedy about to happen, they desperately try to hold on to each as the terrifying mysteries surrounding them start to unravel.
Also read: 21 Anime Like Ao Ashi That You Need to Watch