Strategy or tactics, whatever you call it is an amazing art form that encourages cerebral activities and leads to heightened tension. If you love strategy games or even movies then you will certainly enjoy these anime where our characters have to think long and hard like they are in a game of Chess before making vital decisions.
Table of Contents
In this Isekai anime, Shimazu Toyohise is engaged in a fierce battle against Li Naomasa and he mortally wounds the latter while sustaining fatal injuries in the process. Whilst walking, bleeding and wounded, he is suddenly transported into a corridor of doors where he finds a man at a desk waiting for him. Toyohise is then again transported to another world by the same man where he meets a group of warriors who have been transported just like he was to be a part of a group known as the Drifters.
This anime follows the story of Toyohise in this new Isekai world composed of humans and other mythical beings such as elves, hobbits, and dwarves. In this world, however, humans have waged a losing war against another group of great warriors known as the ‘Ends’ who plan on taking over the world and killing the drifters.
In this anime, you’ll get to see a slew of creatures such as giants and dragons being used by the Ends to slaughter everything in their path. Just as Daenerys the Queen of Dragons did, literally.
In the beginning, the Ends possessed dominion over the northern side of the continent and were trying to invade the south through an important fortress at the northernmost tip of a nation called Carneades.
A group of the world’s native magicians known as the Octobrist Group, however try to gather all the Drifters in order to prevent the destruction of their world from the hands of the Ends.
Watching this anime is like taking a front seat row in history class. This anime highlights the story of the warring period of China through its various events and characters whose names are derived from that of the actual people who were significantly involved in the warring era of China around 221 BC.
The anime follows the story of Xin and Piao, two war orphans who were born during China’s Warring States period. While working as servants within a poor village in the Kingdom of Qin, they both dream of someday becoming great warriors, hence prompting them to go on a bout of daily training. On a certain day, Piao is taken to a palace for unknown reasons by a minister and after a few months, returns to the village on the verge of death urging Xin to relocate to a different village.
Upon arrival, Xin meets Zing Yheng, the king of Qin who happens to be very identical to Piao. Xin later learns that Piao was serving as a body double for the king and was fatally wounded during a power struggle for the throne. Xin later relinquishes his anger towards Yheng and decides to help him reclaim his rightful seat on the throne by ousting his half-brother Cheng Jiao. With the operation being successful, Xin becomes a part of the Qin army and strives to become the Greatest Commander in the World while also helping Yheng unify the various states to help put an end to the incessant violence and wars.
19. Darwin’s Game
Little did Sudo Kaname know that he would be trapped in a game that would change his perception of the world as he knows it, making him become a ruthless master strategist.
Just as the name implies, Darwin’s Game is a mobile app game whereupon acceptance of the invite, one becomes a player forever. In this game, users are given special abilities known as Sigils which they use to survive and crush their opponents. One upside to this game is that the users win an incredibly huge sum of money upon defeating their opponents, the downside on the other hand is that the game is a deathmatch. Hence, you either kill your opponents or be killed.
Definitely a game I want to be in, as long as the stacks keep coming in.
Also worth mentioning is the fact that within the game there are a number of perks the users get to buy with their money such as time-off from fighting, buildings, and so on. In order to survive and keep winning, players must use immense strategy, quick thinking, smart wits, and extensive planning to outsmart and win their opponents.
After experiencing a relentless myriad of murder and conquest, Kamado seeks to clear the game, then find and eliminate the Game Master.
18. Attack on Titan
Attack on Titan introduced us to two superb strategists ― Erwin and Armin ― who against all odds strived greatly to free their people from the oppression of the Titans and Marleyans.
Attack on Titan is definitely a must-see as it’s one of the best strategic anime to ever hit the big screens.
It takes place when the Colossal and Armored Titans invade Paradis Island after 100 years of peace. This ultimately led to mass destruction and loss of lives as the regular Titans flock through the city eating everything in their path even though they have no need for digestion, as they obviously lack a digestive system.
Fast-forward a few years later, all the regular Titans have been eliminated mostly by the survey corps and the protagonist, Eren, goes rogue and decides to kill all Marleyans regardless of their age, gender, or social status.
Nope, I’m not talking about Naruto Uzumaki himself, we all know how dumb he is. Other characters such as Itachi, Minato, and Shikamaru have been widely acclaimed for their strategic abilities.
Itachi has been widely praised and in fact, gained a lot of fanboys for his calm thinking abilities and strategic moves.
One of his most notable displays of the strategy involves his battle against Kabuto whom he used Izanami upon to release the Edo Tensei. Another instance was when he came up with an idea to destroy with the help of Naruto and Killer Bee, Nagato’s Chibaku Tensei which would have otherwise meant sure death for the trio.
Minato on the other hand was instantaneously able to decipher the Masked Man’s abilities ― finding out that he needs to touch someone in order to use Kamui on them ― and deal a fatal blow at the last millisecond despite just meeting him in combat for the first time
Now I know you might not be a leader who fights ― Kim Jong Un ― but you should definitely emulate these characters to improve upon your strategic thinking.
16. Bungou Stray Dogs
Bungou Stray Dogs takes place in Tokyo and involves a series of scuffles between the rogue organization ― the Port Mafia ― and the Armed Detective Agency.
The Port Mafia which boasts a slew of extremely powerful members seek to use and get ahold of Atsushi ― a member of the Armed Detective Agency ― who possesses an ability that allows him to transform into a white tiger possessing incredible speed, strength, durability, and regenerative abilities… precisely not the type you can lock in a zoo!
Some notable characters such as the self-proclaimed detective ― Ranpo Edogawa ― uses his intelligence to solve cases within a matter of minutes, and he has yet to encounter a case which he can’t solve.
15. Saga of Tanya the Evil
Saga of Tanya the Evil is not your typical Isekai anime. The main events of the anime occur after a middle-aged salaryman who was on the verge of death ― as a disgruntled employee whom he just fired pushes him in front of a train ― encounters a being claiming to be God. The being due to the middle-aged man’s lack of belief in God allows him to die and then decides to reincarnate him as a little girl in a war-torn world in the hopes that he’ll come to believe in God.
Tanya finds herself in a nation embroiled in war in the early 1900s and she eventually decides to join the military so she can quickly rise in ranks and get to a position high enough to prevent her from going to the battlefield. This is due to the fact that she would leave the cycle of reincarnation and be sent to hell to pay for her countless sins for eternity should she not die a natural death or refuses to have faith in the entity she mockingly named Being X ― the self-proclaimed God who reincarnated her.
14. Assassination Classroom
Earth faces jeopardy after a certain tentacled creature destroys 75% of the moon, leaving it in a permanent crescent shape. This creature threatens to destroy the earth, lest they kill it within a year. This prompts the government to assign the creature to a classroom of misfits as a homeroom teacher and promises to award $100 million to any student capable of killing.
The anime sees the students employ various kinds of strategies and assassination techniques in an attempt to kill Koro-sensei, but most of these prove futile as he possesses supernatural abilities such as regenerative abilities and ultra-fast speeds of up to Mach 20.
Koro-sensei teaches the students a variety of subjects including assassination techniques and ultimately helps them improve their grades.
13. Hunter x Hunter
Hunter x Hunter, otherwise known as Hiatus x Hiatus is definitely one of the best and most strategic anime to grace the animeverse. It is packed with fast-paced action, critical thinking and cautious moves.
The story revolves around Gon who set out to be a Hunter in search of his father who left him when he was little to pursue the same cause. Along his journey, Gon encounters a lot of people with whom he makes friends. Characters like Killua, Hisoka, Chrollo, Zeno, and Meruem have been shown to possess high reasoning, strategic and deductive abilities.
Hunter x Hunter is one of the few anime which lets you understand that a battle isn’t always won by the strongest.
Teamwork, strategy, cooperation, and resilience are some of the things you’ll get to see in this sports anime centred around Volleyball.
The story revolves around Shoyo Hinata, a young high schooler aiming to make it to the Nationals in the Volleyball talent. Throughout the series, Hinata and Kageyama use their superb talent and skills to enhance their teamwork and slowly revive their school’s lost reputation back to its initial glory while winning various tournament matches and scaling various obstacles along the way.
11. Dr Stone
While Dr. Stone might be a science anime, season 2 saw Senku create a myriad of strategies to ensure his Kingdom of science prevails against Tsukasa’s ― who loathes scientific advancements. It’s been 3,500 years since everyone on earth got petrified when Senku suddenly gets de-petrified and discovers the fluid which would later be used to depetrify a handful of other humans.
Senku wishes to use science to revive every single human and help humanity recover its glorious civilization and advancement which have all been lost. Tsukasa on the other hand thinks reviving all of humanity would lead to the same oppression, manipulation, entitlement, and fight for power posed by the rich and powerful of the society, therefore he aims to revive only the youth in a world where everyone is equal whilst killing off all the old and rich.
In the stone age, Senku ― in his teen years ― creates a slew of sophisticated inventions such as an armoured tank, dynamite, and the cell phone in his fight against Tsukasa. He also intelligently outwitted Tsukasa and used his knowledge of knowing how to revive his sister to make him jump ship and join his science army. While watching this anime might be intriguing, you mustn’t try to replicate some of the inventions displayed except, of course, you plan on turning your house into the next Chernobyl.
10. Future Diary
Being a survival game involving death matches between individuals wielding a certain phone, you’ll find no shortage of smartness, strategizing, and cunningness in this thrilling anime.
The story revolves around timid Yuki ― the protagonist ― who is highly incapable in combat but always ends up getting saved by Gasai Yuno ― a girl pathologically obsessed with him ― who is a highly capable combatant that kills without the slightest hesitation.
9. Vinland Saga
If you’re a fan of Viking stories, then this is an anime that you definitely need to add to your watchlist. The story takes place in an era when the fierce Viking warriors go on a conquest to conquer foreign countries and steal their treasures, lands, and any other thing they can lay their hands upon. The anime follows the story of Thors, a strong Viking warrior who deserted to a faraway land. Years later he is tracked by the Jomsvikings army, deceived, and killed. His son, Thorfinn vows to avenge his father’s death by joining the assailants’ army, getting stronger, and killing the leader who dealt the final blow to his father.
Fast-forward to the 22nd century, in an era where all citizens are subjected to brain scans in order to ascertain their likelihood of committing crimes.
With the power to carry out such enormous psychological evaluations, the officers sworn to protect the populace began abusing the power for their personal gains. Akane Tsunemori eventually rises to the task of instilling law and order.
The strategic theme of the anime revolves around investigations, law enforcement, and crime detection. The story sees Akane and her partner attempting to catch a problematic and difficult-to-catch criminal mostly because he carries out his crimes through a proxy.
7. No Game No Life
Sora and Shiro are siblings who spend all day educating people on how to play all sorts of games, until a god challenges them to a game of chess. After the match, they are deemed worthy to be transported to an entirely new world where the future of the countries rests on the outcome of games.
The brother and sister pair then decide to win their way to the very pinnacle of domination all in an effort to challenge the gods of games again.
6. Alderamin on the Sky
Ikuta is an incredibly idle youth who likes leading a simple life. Due to the war looming about to befall the horizon, he was left with no choice but to enlist in the military.
At first, neither he nor anyone had any idea that it was his destiny to become a great general.
This anime highlights a lot of strategy and the harsh realities of war as Ikuta and his comrades fight to survive while fending off the new soldiers with technological advancements.
Gangs, headless monsters with mysterious abilities, cyber entities, vampires, extremely powerful humans, and assassins just to name a few are all entities that reside within one big time-bomb of a city.
Ikebukuro ― a city most of us would definitely not want to be in ― is plagued with fantasy, intrigue, and mystery. This anime shows a slew of fascinating characters whose storylines intertwine in amazing ways to draw a narrative that will excite anime fans yearning for a little bit of deceit and manipulation.
4. Legend of the Galactic Heroes
Historical events and cleverness drive the skill of two young master strategists as oppositions in the intergalactic war that has lasted for 150 years. The progression of the war, however, isn’t as smooth, as different nations fight for power and dominance.
Things that you’ll get no shortage of in this anime include manipulation, struggle, and nationalism. Large-scale strategic battles dominate this intergalactic tussle as the two young commanders steadily climb up the ranks, with a grand battle on the horizon. This anime is definitely a must-see for anime fans yearning for tactics and conspiracy.
3. Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
The anime takes place in an era when Brittania is progressively conquering the world, and there are only a handful of nations that can resist their might and advanced technology.
Lelouch Vi Brittania, the protagonist, is an exiled prince who attends high school in the Japanese region. On a certain day after encountering a witch, he is granted the power of the Geass, an ability that lets him order anyone to do anything. Being a master tactician, coupled with his newly found powers, he sets on a journey to set Japan free, conquer Brittania, and reclaim his rightful position.
2. Classroom of the Elite
Classroom of the Elite, just as the name implies is really a classroom of the elite. This psychological thriller anime takes place in the Tokyo Metropolitan Advanced Nurturing School, a school set up by the Japanese government to nurture and raise the generation of people that will support the nation. The boarding school provides its students with a high degree of freedom and the money being given to the students by the government is based on merit.
Throughout the story, the individual classes ― A – D ― use a myriad of strategies to boost their merit and get ahead of their competing classes. The class with the lowest merit (points) gets assigned to Class D and is labelled as inferior.
Ayanokoji Kiyokata is a smart student who deliberately scores a 50 on all his papers in the admission exam and gets relegated to Class D. Using his incredible mental aptitude, smartness, and strategic thinking, he helps his class boost their merit all through the series.
1. Death Note
Death Note hardly needs any introduction and is the creme de la creme of all strategy anime. It shows the story of two smart Geniuses ― L and Light ― trying to get the best of each other and ultimately win their scuffle. Light, otherwise known as a Kira, is a high schooler who uses the Death Note to kill criminals, provided he knows their faces and writes down their names.
L, the world’s best detective gets enlisted by the police force to help uncover the identity of the killer. L against all odds almost uncovered Light’s true identity but little did he know he would be going up against death gods (shinigami) too.
There you have it, the top 21 strategy anime. While watching any of them it’s imperative you learn the little you can from the main strategic characters while thinking of how you may be able to implement strategic thinking in real-life situations.
Join us on Discord
Drop a line and Chat with the Community
More Top 10s
Last Updated on July 24, 2021 by saaddhillon Overpowered anime characters that are forced to reveal their extraordinary strength after being taken for losers are
Last Updated on July 24, 2021 by saaddhillon Overpowered anime characters that are forced to reveal their extraordinary strength after being taken for losers are