The following list of masterpiece anime features the best shows that have won awards and succeeded in gaining fans all over the world. These anime series have become cultural icons, with each series examining human emotions and complicated ideas through epic adventures and character development.
Whether you’re a longtime anime fan or new to the genre, these outstanding anime programs take you to fascinating worlds and will change your anime-watching experience filled with new adventures.
Watch these masterpiece anime series, take a trip to captivating worlds and exciting plots, and get attached to unforgettable moments. It’s a very tough task to shortlist only a few, but these 13 anime series are among the best in the anime world.
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13 Masterpiece Anime To Watch
1. One Piece
Eiichiro Oda’s “One Piece” is a long-running manga and anime series as the story follows Monkey D. Luffy, a young pirate with a rubber-like physique, after consuming a Devil Fruit and his Straw Hat Pirates. Luffy seeks One Piece and becomes the Pirate King in a world where pirates rule the seas.
Luffy sails from his homeland to find One Piece and gather a crew. He meets many interesting personalities, both friends and foes, magical creatures, and exotic islands. Luffy’s crew develops with each member’s aspirations and motivations for joining.
The Straw Hat Pirates fight pirates, the Navy, and Warlords of the Sea. They travel the Grand Line, a difficult sea path with dangerous weather and deadly enemies.
Luffy and his crew discover the dark secrets of the universe, including the enigmatic Void Century and ancient weapons that can change the world. They fight the Yonko, the four most powerful pirates in the New World, in epic battles.
Luffy’s tenacity, optimism, and dedication to his companions make him a charismatic and inspiring protagonist. His Gomu Gomu no Mi rubber powers allow him to stretch and fight with extraordinary strength and elasticity.
- Number of episodes: 1069 – (On-Going).
- Studio: Toei Animation.
2. Naruto Shippuden
Naruto Uzumaki, a teenage ninja from Konohagakure, wants to be the strongest ninja. Naruto grows, makes friends, and pursues his objective in a world of ninjas and mysterious powers. Naruto carries the powerful Nine-Tailed Fox, which destroyed his village when he was a baby. Naruto is rejected by many villages and experiences loneliness and persecution as his parents died when he was born.
Naruto studies at the Ninja Academy and joins Team 7 with Sasuke Uchiha and Sakura Haruno under Kakashi Hatakeas, their head leader. Team 7 trains, complete objectives, and fights powerful foes. Naruto befriends many important characters, including his mentor Jiraiya, the wise Hokage Kakashi, and the kind-hearted ninja Hinata Hyuga. Naruto’s relationships with them drive the story.
Naruto and his comrades get caught up in political intrigue, power struggles, and Akatsuki as the story progresses. They face great foes like the immortal Orochimaru and the enigmatic Uchiha clan, especially Sasuke, who wants retribution.
Naruto’s attempts to prove himself to the town and overcome his darkness are also explored. Naruto’s unyielding dedication, relentless energy, and faith in friendship inspire others and influence his ninja and personal growth.
- Number of episodes: 500.
- Studio: Pierrot.
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3. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
“Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood” is a compelling anime about alchemy, the science of altering materials. After a disastrous alchemical experiment, Edward and Alphonse Elric search for the Philosopher’s Stone to repair their bodies.
The Elric brothers’ sad attempt to resuscitate their mother through alchemy begins the story. Edward loses his left leg and Alphonse his entire body. Edward sacrifices his right arm to tie Alphonse’s soul to armor to save his brother.
The Elric brothers become State Alchemists to atone for their sins. They risk their lives to discover the Philosopher’s Stone, a powerful object, and discover a massive conspiracy involving crooked officials, ancient artifacts, and artificial people with ulterior agendas.
They meet a variety of allies and foes with their own motives and secrets. The brothers struggle with personal pain and terrible global truths. They discover that restoring their bodies is about growth and understanding others’ feelings.
“Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood” is a modern anime masterpiece due to its stunning animation, rich world-building, its brotherly shared bonds.
- Number of episodes: 64.
- Studio: Bones.
4. Jujutsu Kaisen
“Jujutsu Kaisen” is a gripping supernatural anime about cursed spirits and sorcery. Yuji, a gifted high school, accidentally invites powerful curses by finding a cursed talisman. He swallows the talisman and lets Sukuna Ryomen possess him to save his friends and innocents. Yuji, a rare and important asset to the Tokyo Metropolitan Jujutsu Technical High School, controls his body.
Satoru Gojo, a jujutsu sorcerer, introduces Yuji to a world where sorcerers fight curses to maintain the delicate balance between the supernatural and the human sphere.
Yuji meets other talented jujutsu sorcerers and battles perilous curses that endanger the human world and his own life as he trains. Along with his Jujutsu Technical High School classmates, he overcomes difficult missions, terrible curses, and Sukuna Ryomen’s secrets throughout the series.
“Jujutsu Kaisen” has swiftly become popular for its fascinating storyline, breathtaking animation, dramatic battle scenes, and rich universe of curses and sorcery.
- Number of episodes: 24 – (On Going).
- Studio: MAPPA.
5. Demon Slayer
“Demon Slayer” is an exciting anime series about demons threatening humanity. Tanjiro Kamado, a kind-hearted boy, becomes a demon slayer after his family is brutally attacked by demons and his sister Nezuko is turned into one.
Tanjiro joins the Demon Slayer Corps to avenge his family and find a means to bring back his sister Nezuko to human form. Tanjiro travels with a gang of experienced and different demon slayers to cure Nezuko and stop the demons’ reign of terror.
Tanjiro and his comrades battle progressively strong demons with unique talents and terrible backstories as the series continues. They discover horrific facts regarding demon origins and the Twelve Kizuki, the fiercest demons.
“Demon Slayer” addresses family, determination, and human connection. It explores the characters’ inner growth, steadfast justice, and loss and suffering. The series shows the brutality of demons and the beauty of friendship, devotion, and the human spirit.
“Demon Slayer” captivates viewers worldwide with its gorgeous animation, exciting action sequences, and emotional plot. It brilliantly blends tremendous action with character moments, putting viewers on a rollercoaster of emotions as they root for Tanjiro and his allies as they fight demons to save humanity.
- Number of episodes: 55 – (On Going).
- Studio: Ufotable.
6. Dragon Ball Z
Goku, a mighty Saiyan warrior, and his companions fight progressively formidable opponents to save Earth. The plot begins several years after “Dragon Ball,” with Goku married to Chi-Chi and raising Gohan.
Raditz, Goku’s long-lost brother, arrives on Earth and reveals his Saiyan origins, posing a new threat. Raditz kidnaps Gohan, prompting a confrontation in which Goku sacrifices himself to defeat his brother.
Goku trains with strange beings in the afterlife to get stronger. Vegeta, Goku’s home planet’s prince, and Frieza, who wants to rule the universe, threaten Earth.
Goku and his companions confront stronger enemies like the Androids, Cell, and Majin Buu as the series progresses. They discover hidden powers, form new friendships, and push themselves to safeguard their loved ones and Earth.
“Dragon Ball Z” covers epic battles, tremendous energy attacks, and Goku’s Super Saiyan transformation. The show mixes tremendous action with comedy. It is one of the most popular anime series ever due to its colorful characters, catchphrases, and complex mythology.
- Number of episodes: 291.
- Studio: Toei Animation.
7. JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure
Based on Hirohiko Araki’s manga, “JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure” is a bizarre anime series. Each Joestar generation has its own plot, powers, and enemies. The series is known for its eccentricity and innovation with its magical talents and colorful characters.
In the late 19th century, Jonathan Joestar fights his adopted brother Dio Brando, who wants to control the Joestar fortune and release the Stone Mask. Their conflict links the Joestar bloodline’s fate to mystical forces.
Later Joestars inherit the mantle and confront new obstacles. Each episode features a new protagonist, known as “JoJo,” The Joestars and their friends fight powerful Stand users, ancient vampires, and other-dimensional entities.
“JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure” is recognized for its colorful visuals, complex stories, and intense battles. It takes viewers on an epic and surprising adventure across many time periods and locations. It is a weird anime series that honors Hirohiko Araki’s bold imagination.
- Number of episodes: 190.
- Studio: David Production.
8. Attack On Titan
“Attack on Titan” is a thrilling anime adaptation of Hajime Isayama’s manga. Eren Yeager and his companions combat Titans in a deserted world where humanity is nearly gone. Paradis is a city where people live in fear of the Titans. Eren, Mikasa, and Armin want to leave the walls and defeat the Titans. However, a massive Titan breaks the outside wall, destroying their existence.
Eren joins the Survey Corps, the military’s elite squad, to recapture land from the Titans and discover their origins. Eren and his troops battle the Titans and internal political conflicts and learn stunning revelations about the world they thought they knew.
“Attack on Titan” explores survival, identity, and humanity. It examines the psychological effects of living in fear, combat, and freedom. The series’ horrific Titan-human battles push the heroes to their utmost as they face their anxieties and investigate the secrets around them.
- Number of episodes: 88 – (On Going)
- Studio: Wit Studio, MAPPA.
9. Death Note
“Death Note” is a psychological thriller about Light Yagami, a high school student who finds the Death Note. He finds the Death Note after Ryuk, a Shinigami, drops it.
Writing a name and picturing a face in the notepad kills anyone. Light plays a deadly game by using the Death Note to kill criminals and unfit people to improve the world.
L, the mysterious detective, gets desperate to solve the extraordinary rise in strange fatalities as Light becomes famous. The story explores morality and justice as they face life and death. The plot surprises viewers and keeps them on the edge of their seats.
Death Note is defined as the psychological war between two great minds investigating and playing to catch each other.
- Number of episodes: 37.
- Studio: Madhouse.
Rukia Kuchiki, a Soul Reaper, gives Ichigo Kurosaki, a high school student, her powers to protect his family against Hollows, evil spirits that feast on human souls.
Ichigo becomes a Soul Reaper and protects the living from Hollows, and guides the dead to the afterlife with his new skills. He fights along with Rukia, Orihime Inoue, Uryu Ishida, and Yasutora “Chad” Sado.
Ichigo and his friends become involved in a broader fight with the Soul Society, an organization of Soul Reapers that maintains spirit world balance. They confront powerful Hollows, Soul Reapers, and the Espada, an organization of disloyal Soul Reapers.
The series explores honor, justice, and power’s corrosive cycle. “Bleach” combines supernatural action, comedy, drama, and occasional horror with an interesting backstory.
- Number of episodes: 366.
- Studio: Pierrot.
Steins;Gate is an exciting and mind-bending animation where the story follows Rintarou Okabe, a mad scientist, and his friends who mistakenly transmit text messages to the past, changing the time. Rintarou and his companions initially play with their discoveries. However, they soon grasp the dangers of manipulating time and accidentally discover a dangerous time travel organization.
They risk their lives and humanity as they learn more about time travel. Rintarou’s discovery of “D-Mail,” which can modify the past, thrills the story. Each change alters the timetable, causing unintended effects and a mounting need to fix problems.
Rintarou, along with his pals, gets caught up in conspiracies, time loops, and SERN’s pursuit as they deal with the consequences of their deeds. They must solve time travel’s mysteries, face their problems, and make tough decisions to defend their loved ones and time.
Steins;Gate It explores the psychological effects of altering reality, the morality of time travel, and the dangers of meddling with forces beyond human understanding.
- Number of episodes: 26.
- Studio: White Fox.
12. Code Geass
“Code Geass” is a politically charged anime series set in an alternate future where the Holy Britannian Empire has conquered most of the world, including Area 11, Japan. Lelouch Lamperouge, a former prince of Britannia, rebels as “Zero” against the oppressive empire.
Lelouch gets Geass from a strange girl named C.C. Geass, that lets its user order others without inquiry. Lelouch uses his newfound power to overthrow Britannia and create a peaceful society for his sister Nunnally.
Lelouch leads the Black Knights’ uprising against Britannia with his strategic genius. He inspires the oppressed with his cunning, manipulation, and loyalty.
- Number of episodes: 50.
- Studio: Sunrise.
Dr. Kenzo Tenma is a late-20th-century German neurosurgeon. In the operating room, Tenma must choose between saving Johan Liebert, a young kid, or the mayor.
Tenma disregards the mayor’s serious state to save Johan. However, this decision starts a chain of terrible events. Years later, Johan, now a charismatic and manipulative young man, commits several murders. Tenma discovers that Johan is a monster who can conduct horrific acts and manipulate others as he becomes involved in the investigation.
- Number of episodes: 74.
- Studio: Madhouse.
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