You love action anime, but you are tired of seeing the same few titles popping up all over your feed. Perhaps it’s time for something fresh. Then check out this list of 16 underrated action anime series that deserves more attention.
It includes some of the most electrifying shows in recent years, from sci-fi thrillers to post-apocalyptic adventures – and all of them prove that old adage about dynamite coming in small packages. Whether you’re looking for a short time-killer or an epic battle that spans dozens of episodes, this article has you covered.
What’s more, we’ve even included bonus information on movie tie-ins and new seasons where applicable. So what are you waiting for? Grab some popcorn, settle in, and get ready to enjoy these thrilling stories without crowdsourcing the internet for your entertainment:
16. Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio: Ars Nova
Aoki Hagane no Arpeggio: Ars Nova is an action anime series with a unique blend of action and sci-fi. Set in the near future, it follows the story of humanity’s last hope against the powerful Fleet of Fog, led by mysterious, intelligent ships called ‘Vessels.’
To counter them, humans put together ‘Blue Steel,’ a special force consisting of vessels from the past resurrected and commanded by their newly created AI, Iona. With its stunning visuals and gripping action scenes, this award-winning show offers a thrilling experience for fans of both anime and science fiction.
It has become immensely popular since its release in 2013 and spawned multiple sequels as well as other media adaptations, including movies, games, novels, and manga.
15. Nurarihyon No Mago
The action anime series Nurarihyon No Mago, also known as “Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan,” is quickly gaining popularity amongst anime fans. Adapted from a manga by Hiroshi Shiibashi, the show follows Rikuo Nura – a young boy who is the heir of an ancient yokai clan.
As if having two totally different sides to his personality weren’t enough for a teenager’s plate, Rikuo must learn to balance both his human and yokai sides if he desires to become the great ruler of all yokai.
The animation style is bright and unique, and each episode brings an exciting new adventure that pits Rikuo against both his enemies and inner struggles.
In every battle, there are interesting twists and visual treats that bring life to this unusual world of beasts and mysticism. If you’re looking for an action anime with some immersing elements of weirdness, then Nurarihyon no Mago should be on the top of your list.
14. Air Gear
Air Gear is an action-packed anime series, popular since its release in 2006. The plot follows Itsuki Minami as he enters the world of Storm Rider and attempts to join an AT gang so he can gain more power.
Throughout the series, Itsuki discovers not only powerful storm riders but also some eccentric characters who have complicated relationships with each other and seek to master the powers of A.T.sA.T.s. Each of these characters must then face their own destiny and confront the challenges that come their way – be it a rivalry or trusting another team member.
What makes Air Gear stand out amongst action anime series is its entertaining yet thrilling plot, driven by great battles between Riders on their Ats and boundless special effects used to add intensity to these scenes.
13. Arslan Senki
The epic fantasy action anime series “Arslan Senki” is a must-watch for any fan of the genre. Based on the celebrated manga by Hiromu Arakawa, this series follows Arslan, the prince of the embattled kingdom of Pars.
Fighting against a determined enemy and faced with difficult decisions at every turn, Arslan strives to make his father’s dream of peace come true. With smooth animations and riveting battles, “Arslan Senki” captivates its viewers from start to finish.
The compelling characters draw you in and root for the protagonists as they learn leadership skills, forge alliances and discover secrets about their pasts. While addressing serious themes such as faith, loyalty, sacrifice, and war, this spectacular anime series never fails to deliver entertainment and inspirational moments.
12. Asura Cryin’
Asura Cryin’ is an exhilarating, action-packed anime series that will thrill and captivate audiences of all ages. It follows the adventures of Tomoharu, a high school student rooted in reality who must traverse the realms of dreams and nightmares in order to save his best friend, Takatsuki.
With a visually stunning world full of mecha robots and magical battles, Asura Cryin’ packs a punch. Japanese animation master Gonzo brings the story to life with stunning art direction and beautiful music that complement all of its exciting action set pieces.
Fans of fast-paced action and fantasy worlds are sure to be hooked from beginning to end as they join Tomoharu on his extraordinary journey. Asura Cryin’ gives plenty for both casual viewers and devoted followers alike, as this nostalgic series from the late 2000s truly stands out from other anime offerings at the time.
11. BlazBlue: Alter Memory
This series packs in plenty of excitement and intense animation that keeps viewers engaged and entertained. Taking place in the Thirteenth Hierarchical City of Kagutsuchi, BlazBlue follows a group of heroic rebels as they fight to save the world from rogue monsters, powerful witches, and an evil entity known as the Black Beast.
Through their only weapon – Arc System Works’ awesomely advanced technology – the heroes battle against overwhelming odds with powerful weapons and special techniques.
Boasting beautiful visuals, epic fights, and a gripping story, BlazBlue: Alter Memory is one of the most beloved action anime series ever made. With its cool characters and engaging plotlines, it’s easy to see why viewers have fallen in love with this thrilling franchise.
10. The Akiba’s Trip The Animation
“The Akiba’s Trip The Animation” is an action-packed anime series that takes place in the famous Akihabara area of Tokyo. It follows a group of friends who gain special abilities to fight off vampires and other supernatural creatures that have infiltrated their beloved city.
The show has great visuals, exciting fights, and endearing characters that you can’t help but cheer for every step of the way. Its concept combines two of the most popular genres – action and comedy – which makes it a thrilling experience for fans. With so much going on in such a compact package, this anime is a must-see for any fan of the action genre.
An interesting plot full of surprises ensures everyone remains entertained throughout its run, while audiences are also treated to great visuals, as this series is known for its animation quality. Additionally, with plenty of references to otaku culture, there’s something new to be discovered around every corner.
9. Peace Maker Kurogane
Peace Maker Kurogane is an action anime series beloved by fans all over the world. The series follows the adventures of Ichimura Tetsunosuke, a 16-year-old who started as a page in the Shinsengumi during the Bakumatsu period in 1860s Japan.
Through his quest to become stronger and search for peace, Tetsunosuke discovers the joys and sorrows of life, as well as his true destiny.
This heartfelt story has everything from cutting-edge martial arts action to interesting characters with complicated mindsets. Each episode accentuates its signature style while presented with visually stunning animation.
8. A.I.C.O.: Incarnation
A.I.C.O.: Incarnation is an action-packed anime series for fans of entertainment that combines the thrilling elements of science fiction with a compelling story about human determination.
The series follows Aiko Tachibana, who must journey through a mysterious world filled with hostile cyborgs to uncover the secrets behind a strange phenomenon known as ‘Burst’—a dangerous transformation of matter that has disrupted the balance of nature.
As she battles complex characters such as mysterious scientists as well as her own emotions, Aiko attempts to uncover the truth and save humanity from destruction in this breathtaking anime series.
With its intricate plot and captivating action scenes, A.I.C.O.A.I.C.O.: Incarnation is sure to keep audience members on the edge of their seats, featuring jaw-dropping artwork and dynamic soundtracks that bring each scene to life.
7. Triage X
The action anime series, Triage X, follows an all-star cast of characters as they wage war against crime involving the mafia and drugs to make their city a better place.
The elite team of warriors consists of doctors, mercenaries, assassins, and vigilantes whose mission is to eliminate the “unseen demons” in the form of enemies that threaten their city’s safety.
Each character brings unique skills and advancement to their fight against corruption. The thrilling storylines of explosive violence mixed with sporadic comedic relief create an amazing viewing experience for fans everywhere. With every threat faced comes a lesson from which we can learn and apply in our own lives.
Triage X has become popular not only for its intense action but also for its moral lessons about human nature, striving for justice and survival at any cost in order to achieve an ideal world free from evil.
6. 91 days
91 Days is a must-watch action anime series full of twists and turns. The story follows the life of Angelo Lagusa, a man that lost his family to a mafia vendetta. After taking time to hone his skills and fortify his will, he dons an alias and launches a revenge mission against the powerful Vanetti family.
With solid animation sequences, amazing storytelling, and plenty of action, 91 Days has earned its title as one of the best action anime series out there. From hidden guns to bloody gunfights, it’s sure to impress even the most seasoned anime fanatics.
Furthermore, viewers can learn crucial lessons about revenge and justice throughout this intense show without feeling overwhelmed – perfect for those that enjoy a good storyline in their action anime series.
5. Druaga no Tou
Druaga no Tou is an exciting Japanese action anime series that has gained immense popularity among anime lovers. The anime includes one of the best characters in its genre, with each character having a unique story and bringing their own style of excitement to the table.
The story follows adventurer Jil endeavoring to climb the mysterious Tower of Druaga in order to get his hands on the legendary blue crystal known as “The Blue Crystal Rod.”
Following Japan’s usual senses of technological advancement and high production values, Druaga no Tou leads players through dungeons filled with mobs and bosses they must maneuver around while gathering items and special powers in order to increase their chances of victory.
With unforgettable characters, exciting adventure themes, and its fantastic blend of tech adventure and fantasy, Druaga no Tou offers an incredible gaming experience for viewers.
4. Tiger & Bunny
Tiger & Bunny, an action anime series that debuted in 2011, is still popular today for its complex character relationships and intriguing storyline. Focusing on two superheroes – Kotetsu T. Kaburagi (aka Wild Tiger) and Barnaby Brooks Jr. – the show follows the duo as they fight crime in a world where superheroes are recruited and ranked to get sponsored.
While each hero strives to be the best in Hero TV’s rankings, their ultimate goal is to solve cases assigned to them by City-zens with the help of their heroic peers. This exciting combination of crime-solving and competition makes Tiger & Bunny both unique and thrilling.
Tiger & Bunny also add creative elements such as individualized NEXT powers to keep viewers engaged and eager for more. With plenty of action scenes, interesting characters, and unexpected plot twists, this anime series goes beyond typical superhero shows by focusing not only on fighting against crime but also on fighting for recognition within groups.
3. The law of Ueki
Action anime series like “The Law of Ueki” offer fantastic worlds and stories that are full of breathtaking battles and intense storylines. Taking place in a world filled with evil forces, The Law Of Ueki follows the struggles of a young man named Ueki Kousuke.
He has been bestowed with special powers by a mysterious figure known as Mr. K, who takes him on a journey to fight against monsters and other supernatural villains.
Ueki is the only hope to save his world from its impending doom. With the incredible superhuman strength and the ability to transform anything into its opposite form, Ueki can turn trees into swords or pebbles into boulders.
Together with powerful allies such as Mori, Mori’s assistant Ai, Robert Haydn, and others, he embarks on an epic journey full of action-packed sequences that would keep any anime fan on the edge of their seats.
Fans of The Law Of Ueki will be endlessly enticed by its stunning visuals and thrilling soundtracks while they follow Ueki’s adventure against impossible odds.
2. Darker than Black
Darker than Black is an action anime series that has become beloved by fans all over the world. The show follows a mysterious man known as Hei, a contracted killer who works for certain parties in order to earn money. His mask conceals his true identity, and he must battle against powerful supernatural forces that threaten mankind’s future.
The show features heart-stopping action scenes, intriguing plot twists, complex characters, and beautiful animation. For those looking for a thrilling anime series to watch, Darker than Black provides an excellent option.
With creative storytelling and breathtaking action sequences, this is a show that will keep viewers on their toes as they try to unravel the series’ various mysteries—not to mention its inspiring messages of resilience and determination.
1. Atom The Beginning of Atom
Atom: The Beginning of Atom is a thrilling action anime series from renowned creators Tetsuro Kasahara and Katsuyuki Motohiro. It depicts the moment when A.I.A.I. robots start to become part of society with their advancements and how humans embrace this change.
Following the story of two genius inventors, Umataro Tenma, and Hiroshi Ochanomizu, the animation faithfully re-creates their inventions which aim to create a helpful robot that can understand human emotion.
With its stunning visuals, powerful action sequences, and relatable characters, Atom: The Beginning of Atom has managed to garner immense popularity among viewers since it premiered in 2017.
This exciting series also possesses callbacks to its classic predecessor Astro Boy by affirming its progressive values, making it an absolute must-watch genre for all action fans.
In conclusion, for all the fans of action-packed anime series, the list of 16 underrated masterpieces is a great place to explore. Every series highlighted in this article offers high-stakes adventures, impressive animations, and scintillating storylines that will captivate many anime watchers.
There is something to take pleasure in for everyone. Getting lost in thrilling battles and complex character developments can be an escape from reality and even help you hone your cognitive skills. So what are you waiting for. Go ahead and start checking out these awesome shows.