6 Anime Like Shiki [Recommendations]

In a bold move away from horror that is just gruesome and gory, Shiki is subtle, and disturbing. It nods respectfully to the earliest myths about vampires, and forces questions about good and evil, right and wrong, and the human and the other.

Protagonists Natusuno Yuki and Toshio Ozaki end up forming an unlikely duo when tragedy strikes the small town of Sonoda. In the midst of loss of life, fear of more tragedy, and the tortured existences of the shiki, Toshio and Natsuno find themselves navigating the ugliest sides of humanity while searching for their own answers about morality and ethics. Shiki asks the watcher to enter its twisted world while leaving all semblances of black and white at the door. Horror, suspense, and darkness mingle with what it means to be human, and Shiki leaves you questioning—and wanting more.

Similar Anime to Shiki

1. Another

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: Jan. 2012 – Mar. 2012

In contrast to Shiki, Another has no problem showing exactly how the blood splatters everywhere. With gruesome visuals, gory deaths, and the perpetrator sitting quietly among the ranks of the victims, Another makes for a stomach-turning watch for any horror fan.

Another is the story of a small town with a curiously unnerving air about it. Kouichi Sakakibara finds himself transferred into the village, and particularly, into Yomiyama North Middle School’s class 3-3. He becomes interested in classmate Mei Misaki, and thus the gruesome deaths begin. Or, continue that is—what does the village’s history have to do with the disturbing occurrences?

Like Shiki, in the midst of calamity, Another sets up a group mentality gone terribly wrong. Though it’s more gruesome than its counterpart, it keeps the themes of mystery, suspense, and the human and its other—strikingly to the point of referencing the theme in its title. The series explores the dirtiest, grittiest sides of humanity, and it’s hard not to come face to face with the ultimate moral question: what would you do in that situation?

Another First PV Promotion Video ver, 1

2. Higurashi no Naku Koro ni

  • Episodes: 26
  • Aired: Apr. 2006 – Sep. 2006

Keiichi Maebara moves into a quiet village, and as expected, the horror anime begins. The village, Hinamizawa, is a charming countryside and in a deceivingly innocuous seeming harem-esque development, he’s able to make friends with a group of cute girls. Unfortunately, that’s where the harem stops and horror rears its ugly head.

The village has been seeing mysterious deaths, connected to a traditional festival and the village’s patron God, Oyashiro. However, as Keiichi finds out more about the deaths, the village lifts its idyllic veil and what comes forward is a geniusly written combination of complex characters, ugly secrets, and sheer horror.

Keeping a high suspense, high pay-off pacing, Higurashi no Naku Koro ni explores the dark underbelly of humanity, just like Shiki. It delves into the psychological aspect of its characters, thoroughly exploring how fear, societal pressures, and human selfishness can create utter madness. It’s dark, and offers an honest look at just how extreme human instability can get. It offers a great story for any fan who enjoyed Shiki’s exploration of the human condition.

"When They Cry" Blu-ray BOX 30 seconds CM

3. Tokyo Ghoul

  • Episodes: 12
  • Aired: Jul. 2014 – Sept. 2014

Tokyo Ghoul starts with the oldest trick in the book. Average college student and protagonist Kaneki Ken finds himself the object of an extremely attractive woman’s attention, and it turns out to be painfully too good to be true. As in, Kaneki will never be able to look at a hamburger again too good. As in, he’s always tempted to eat his best friend too good.

Attacked by the woman, and waking up hours later with an insatiable craving for human flesh, Kaneki finds himself turned into a Ghoul. Thus begins a story of friendship, struggle, and manipulation as Kaneki is brought into the dark world of what it means to no longer be human.

Gory, fast paced, and featuring lots of battle sequences, Tokyo Ghoul is different from Shiki because of its shounen battle anime draw. However, Tokyo Ghoul is not to be underestimated. With complex characters and dedicated development of their stories, relationships, and motivations, Tokyo Ghoul offers a deep exploration into desperation, loss of humanity, and the instability of a clear cut morality.

Tokyo Ghoul - Season 1 - Official Uncut Trailer

Any Anime Like Shiki?

4. Monster

  • Episodes: 74
  • Aired: Apr. 2004 – Sept. 2005

Kenzou Tenma is a doctor, and Monster, begins with the ultimate moral question a doctor must face. There are two patients that both need immediate medical care, and one must be saved at the expense of the other. Who will you choose to save?

Faced with this question, Tenma chooses to save a young boy at the expense of the town mayor, unwittingly becoming the epicenter of a chain of gruesome murders. With all evidence pointing to the young boy as the perpetrator, Tenma is wracked with insecurity regarding his choice. But the plot goes deeper. Exploring child abuse, sociopath psychology, brainwashing, and a host of other dark human behaviors, Monster quickly becomes about more than just an exploration of the ethics of medical practice. It spreads its roots into the disconcerting corners of the human condition and makes for an addicting, suspenseful watch.

Monster has a lot to offer any viewer who enjoyed Shiki. Teetering at the edge of insanity while running the gamut of tragedy, fear, and revulsion, it swiftly pulls aside the curtain on humanity in a state of exceptionally indecent undress—and the product is blood-curdling, upsetting, and undeniably compelling.

5. Shinrei Tantei Yakumo (Psychic Detective Yakumo)

  • Episodes: 13
  • Aired: Oct. 2010 – Dec. 2010

Yakumo Saito is a high school student who was born with a mysterious red eye that allows him to communicate with the dead. In a fresh change from unwitting male protagonists, Yakumo has been exposed to death, murder, and the twisted motivations of men his whole life. Joined by Haruka Ozawa, whose daily life has been more than disturbed by a series of deaths, the two form an odd detective duo, listening to the tales that dead men tell and uncovering the horrific secrets of the living.

Yakumo’s character, though tortured, is quite a bit more stable than protagonists who are suddenly thrown into elaborate horror plots. He knows how ugly things can get, and his character provides the viewer with a sense of agency. In contrast to being dangled in suspense and entirely unsuspecting of what will happen next, Shinrei Tantei Yakumo offers the viewer a chance to conjecture at what happened, why it happened, and who did it. However, it’s precisely this active viewing that allows the show bring watchers in as participants—disconcerting and spine-chilling when the show explores the motivations and psychology behind gruesome murders, suicides, and other unnatural deaths.

Shiki viewers will find the well paced mystery and suspense of Shinrei Tantei Yakumo appealing. Yakumo’s mysterious eye and his ability to talk to the dead run parallels with Shiki’s inclusion of the undead, and art and music production lend both shows a similar ambiance.

TV Anime Shinrei Tantei Yakumo PV

6. Re:Zero kara Hajimaru Isekai Seikatsu (Re:ZERO -Starting Life in Another World-)

  • Episodes: 25
  • Aired: Apr. 2016 – Sept. 2016

Subaru Natsuki is living an average life when he meets a beautiful girl named Emilia and then finds himself dead. And then alive again. Bewildered, and suddenly thrown into an inexplicable new world, Subaru must unravel the mystery behind his on again off again deadness, and also come face to face with the darker forces at play just beyond the horizon—or right behind him, as is often the case.

Featuring some dark themes and character motivations, brutal murder, and a complex plot Re: Zero is more of a dramatic thriller than it is standard horror. That being said, considering that the plot involves the main protagonist dying again, and again, and again the show offers the same kind of terror and thrill a Shiki viewer may be looking for. The show is artfully executed, well-paced, features a set of entertaining characters and is wrought with twists and turns that any mystery viewer will be able to appreciate.

[TV animated decision "Re: different world life start from zero" dispatch PV

Final Thoughts

Plague, death, decay, murder—the horror genre always delves deeply into the ugliest, rawest, and most painful aspects of what it means to be a human. All of these shows do a great job of doing exactly that, offering undeniably entertaining and often uncomfortably thought-provoking twists and turns to sate even the most cynical of viewers. After getting a taste of horror by watching Shiki, why not check out a few of these recommendations and follow through all the way down the rabbit hole?

Comment down below if any of these anime utterly messed you up or if we missed any that you loved! Happy watching, and we hope you don’t find yourself awake, home-alone, at 2AM…

by Prags