Exploding onto the Summer 2020 season with its unique blend of action and sci-fi that takes the well-worn concept of “the game is real life” in an interesting direction, Deca-Dence has been one of our favorite series of the year so far, standing out not just because of its episode 2 twist but also its solid action direction, distinct art style, and engaging characters. While we’d say Deca-Dence is a pretty unique show, that doesn’t mean there aren’t more like it and that’s exactly what we’re focusing on today! As usual, we’ll be basing our picks primarily on similarity of plot, setting, themes, and characters. Let’s get started!
Similar Anime to Deca-Dence
1. Kuutei Dragons (Drifting Dragons)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: January 2020 – March 2020
Kuutei Dragons, like Deca-Dence, is set in a world where people harvest monsters for both food and fuel, in this case the titular dragons. The story follows a crew of dragon hunters, or drakers, aboard the airship Quin Zaza, specifically newcomer Takita who not only looks a lot like Natsume from Deca-Dence but has your fairly typical genki-girl protagonist personality along with a great capacity for memorable faces.
She’s also mentored by an older male crewmember, Mika, who while more over-the-top than his Deca-Dence counterpart, has a similar dynamic. Like the Gadoll, the dragons in Kuutei Dragons have pretty strange and interesting designs and are part of some solid action sequences. There’s no huge twist like in Deca-Dence and much more time is spent on the ‘eating the monster’ part of the world with some strangely appetizing dragon dishes. For your information, Kuutei Dragons is also a fully 3DCG anime, and sometimes arguably feels a little too similar to real-world whaling, and is certainly a series worth checking out for Deca-Dence fans who appreciate its world-building.
Kuutei Dragons PV
2. Suisei no Gargantia (Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet)
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: April 2013 – June 2013
Set in the distant future, Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet follows a young genetically-engineered mech pilot named Ledo who is part of an interstellar war against hordes of bizarre, squid-like creatures called Hideauze. During one battle, Ledo and his sentient mech, Chamber, get flung into the far reaches of space until eventually crash-landing on Earth which has become almost completely covered by a vast ocean. After he and Chamber are discovered by Gargantia, a fleet of scavenger ships, he must then learn to adjust to this new world and begins to uncover mysterious connections to his own old life in space.
Compared to Deca-Dence, Gargantia has a similar feeling with the whole mobile-fortress concept, in this case being the titular fleet of ships, and the struggle against a seemingly overwhelming, monstrous enemy. Without spoiling much, there also is a bit of a twist in the story but overall it’s just a solid sci-fi action series with similar ideas explored in its setting and the addition of rad, and personable, mech in Chamber that make it a good recommendation for Deca-Dence fans.
Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet Trailer
3. Kujira no Kora wa Sajou ni Utau (Children of the Whales)
- Episodes: 12
- Aired: October 2017 – December 2017
Swap out an endless ocean with sand and a fleet of ships with a mobile island called the Mud Whale and you have the world of the Children of Whales, but there’s more to. Somewhat similar to Deca-Dence’s Tankers and Gears, the society on the Mud Whale is divided into the Marked and Unmarked who are people able to use a psychic power known as Thymia but have reduced lifespans and more normal-lived people without powers respectively.
The story follows Marked archivist Chakuro who is obsessed with recording everything and a mysterious girl he and his friends encounter on a new island that will change their lives forever. Although more fantasy and mystery than sci-fi action, Children of the Whales’ world with its rigid class structure and humanity aboard a giant moving vessel is certainly similar to Deca-Dence’s titular fortress. It also has its own strange creatures in the Nous to boot which is why it fits nicely on this list.
Kujira no Kora wa Sajou ni Utau PV
Any Anime Like Deca-Dence ?
4. Accel World
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: April 2012 – September 2012
Launching us squarely into “the world is a game” terrority, Accel World takes place in the future year of 2046 where augmented and virtual reality are commonplace thanks to widespread collar-like Neuro Linker computers that can wirelessly connect to users' brains to easily bring them into VR and AR. The story follows Arita Haruyuki, a comically short and fat middle school student who is bullied and lacks self-confidence but is highly skilled at games—VR racketball, at least. He unexpectedly is contacted by the popular and beautiful student council vice-president who introduces him to a secret game called Brain Burst that can let users jump outside their bodies in the real world by accelerating their brain waves so quickly that time almost stops and play an eerily intense and lifelike VR fighting game of the same name that will remove this power if a player runs out of points.
Although arguably not super similar in terms of overall feel, Accel World does explore some of the same concepts as Deca-Dence that should appeal to those fans, particularly if they are also interested in some very anime school romance subplots. Also some pretty good faces from Haruyuki to be seen!
Accel World Trailer
5. Infinite Dendrogram
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: January 2020 – April 2020
Perhaps trying to one-up Accel World’s universe with the series’ super-advanced VR MMO arriving in 2043, the titular Infinite Dendrogram is the first game that can perfectly simulate all of the five senses for its players and has “infinite possibilities” largely thanks to each user being given an in-game AI companion called an Embryo with unique powers and personalities that change as they level up. The story follows newbie Mukudori Reiji and his more experienced older brother Shuu as they adventure through the world of Infinite Dendrogram.
Although this series is not a masterpiece by any measure, it might be a good recommendation for Deca-Dence fans who enjoy the sci-fi game aspect and real people interacting with advanced AIs but are looking for something more light-hearted with more cute girls and some wacky characters like Shuu’s cool, machine-gun-wielding bear avatar.
Infinite Dendrogram Trailer
6. Sword Art Online: Alicization
- Episodes: 24
- Aired: October 2018 – March 2019
Although it’s the third season of the popular, often contentious, Sword Art Online series, Alicization is surprisingly fairly easy to jump into without having seen the previous installments as it goes over the basics for newcomers, but is it worth watching for Deca-Dence fans? A solid maybe. Sword Art Online game survivor Kirigaya Kazuto, aka Kirito, finds himself in yet another game called Underworld and begins to question his own identity. This new world is created using Soul Translator technology which connects a person’s spirit/consciousness directly instead of through the brain, making it feel even more real. Kirito finds his memories being continually erased save for a vague recollection of the name “Alice”.
Without spoiling much, Alicization is best connected to Deca-Dence in its exploration of AI characters which blur the lines between them and organic life with explorations of their own free will and morality. It’s still SAO but goes in some more interesting directions and notably nerfs Kirito’s overpoweredness to give more room for new deuteragonist Eugeo. It also has solid action and production values that Deca-Dence watchers should appreciate which overall makes it worth checking out for fans.
Sword Art Online: Alicization Trailer
Altogether, while Deca-Dence is still very much its own show with unique quirks to set it apart in the world of anime, there’s plenty of other series worth exploring for fans looking for more, even beyond this list including the ultra-popular Shingeki no Kyojin (Attack on Titan).
In any case, we hope that you enjoyed our recommendations here and might find a new series to check out while we wait for Deca-Dence to finish or afterwards. Please let us know what you think in the comments section below and be sure to stick around Honey’s Anime for more recommendations, reviews, and more of your favorite anime. We’re loggin out for now. Until next time, see ya~!