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Sword of the Stranger is an animated film that would honestly surprise you, even if the topic at hand is a common one with its beautiful fighting choreography and great storytelling, without leaving behind the growth all these characters go through, this is one film you shouldn’t run away from, just unsheathe your sword and face it head on!
However, in this article, we beg to ask ourselves, “Are there any anime series similar to this wonderful studio Bones masterpiece?” Keep on reading to find out our 6 Anime Like Sword of the Stranger!
Anime similar to Sword of the Stranger
1. Blade of the Immortal
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: July 2008 - December 2008
What would it feel like to be immortal? You could ask Manji, he’s a special type of swordsman, not only because he uses more than the traditional katana-like swords, but also because an old witch named Yaobikuni, has inflicted him with an unique condition, where no matter how bad his wounds are, he would heal and pretty much return to combat in a blink of an eye. Seeking redemption for his past actions and vengeance for the death of his sister, Manji strikes a deal with Yaobikuni in order to regain his mortality, he will kill 1,000 evil men for the 100 good men he had killed in the past.
Definitely, the one thing that both of these series share in common is the fact that both main characters are driven by redemption, they search for a way to forgive their past sins, no matter what it takes. There’s also the fact that both characters looked to protect loved ones or people who became close to them,and we could also mention the fight choreography, which is not something you’d like to miss! Full of action, blood, and stubbornness, Blade of the Immortal is not a series you should miss.
2. Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Kenkaku Romantan [Rurouni Kenshin]
- Episodes: 94
- Aired: January 1996 - September 1998
Full of regrets from many years of being a samurai who killed just to obey his former Lord, Himura Kenshin decided to become a Rurouni, a Lord-less wanderer who vowed to never kill another person, no matter what, that’s when his inside-out word comes in handy! However, when the self-proclaimed Battousai the Manslaughter wants to exact revenge on the Kamiya family name by trying to kill Kaoru Kamiya, he decides to take action and afterwards, Kaoru asks him to stay. Drawing an end to his wandering years.
When it comes to similarities, there are shades of stubbornness all around both film and anime, definitely. For example, there’s a lot of Kaoru in Kotaro, in the way he will always stand his ground for what he wants or think is right. And also, while not as kind-hearted on the outside, Himura and Nanashi definitely share similarities in their conduct, respect, and honor. Something that seems to be a kind of code among rurounin. This is one of the anime classics everyone must see at least once!
3. Samurai Champloo
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: July 2008 a December 2008
What happens when two equally-matched rounin meet by fate? Well, we would need to answer that later because Fuu, a clumsy waitress, keeps getting in trouble! After she spills a cup of tea over the governor’s spoiled son, she almost gets a finger cut for her accident but after striking a deal with a rounin named Mugen, he ends up taking out all of his bodyguards. Everything goes well until another rounin named Jin,steps in. Mugen, driven by the thirst of a fight, challenges Jin right on the spot and while the two of them go at it, equally countering moves until they get caught and with the help of Kasumi, they escape. It won’t be too long until they end up joining forces but you can rest assure that eventually, they’ll end up going at it again until we have an answer for our question.
Samurai Champloo is a mix of comedy and rampant action that sometimes shocks you how quickly they can move between those two genres. When it comes to similarities, there’s no doubt that this anime series shares some resemblance with the relationship Nanashi had with Luo-Lang. You could even call Mugen and Luo-Lang brothers with the way they love to fight (well, it would not be by their looks, right?) and in the same sense, you could see some similarities between Nanashi and Jin, both are calm and collected and only draw their weapons when there’s no other choice. A light-hearted, action-filled, weird-looking, anime series that you must definitely check out.
Any Anime Like Sword of the Stranger?
4. Afro Samurai
- Episodes: 5
- Aired: January 2007 – February 2007
Revenge, there’s only so much someone can take, especially for a little boy as he watches his own father die in front of him. “Justice” defeated the former “Number 1”, thus becoming himself the new title holder and with it, his life as the unbeatable samurai began. You could also say the same for the young boy as his life as he knew it then died with his father and a new one begun. To avenge his death, he would challenge his father’s murderer and give him a taste of his own… justice.
Gore, Gore and Gore. Afro Samurai’s distinctive action and fight choreography style will have you mostly at the edge of your seat, just as with Sword of the Stranger. They have no limits in showing how an enemy is defeated and how much it hurts. Even so, both main characters will only draw their swords when it’s necessary and there’s also the fact that they’re both being accompanied as they travel through the land. For “Number Two”/Afro Samurai there’s Ninja Ninja, a loudmouth sidekick with not-many-interesting-things-to-say (remind you of anyone?). I know this may sound cliché, but in the world of anime, Afro Samurai definitely stands out and you should really give it a watch to see why!
5. Seirei no Moribito [Guardian of the Sacred Spirit]
- Episodes: 26
- Aired: April 2007 – September 2007
After being accused of becoming possessed by a water demon, young prince Chagum had fallen into many incidents where his life would end up being in peril. Having noticed this, his mother the First Empress,becomes suspicious of the Emperor, and believing he had ordered to finish her son’s life, she takes it upon herself to find a way to save Chagum before it’s too late. As fate would have it, Balsa Yonsa, a skilled spear-wielding bodyguard is contacted by soldiers loyal to the Empress. Once she meets her, is asked to protect Chagum’s life to the very end. Now, young prince and bodyguard must travel the land to escape the Emperor’s soldiers and fulfill the Empress’ wishes, no matter what happens, Chagum must be kept alive.
As we compare this series with Sword of the Stranger, we get instantly reminded of the strong bond that Kotaru and Nanashi developed as they travel and survive through many risks. Also, the spirit of Nanashi lives strongly within Balsa, as they are both considered the best warriors of the land either by rumor or perception, but they won’t go out of their way to attack anybody. Calm and collected, with a hint of caring protection, both main characters act as bodyguards in the beginning of their story but in the end, they become as close as they can.
6. Ninja Scroll [Juubee Ninpuuchou]
- Episodes: Movie
- Aired: June 1993
There’s nothing more annoying than being involved with matters that mean nothing to you, especially when they can bring back memories from a past you’d like to forget. Such are the events Jubei Kibagami goes through as he wanders feudal Japan as a rounin. However, he finds himself in the middle of an on-going war with a group called The Devils of Kimon, which members come with special abilities that make them near immortal in the eyes of an average person. Even so, one of them known as Tessai kidnaps Kagero, the only survivor of her ninja clan, Jubei won’t just stand still and decides to do something about it. After she pays him back showing him where to reach his destination, he meets with Dakuan, a spy working to dethrone the Shogun of the dark’s Toyatome clan. Making him an offer he can’t refuse, all three will end up joining forces and settling for one final goal, the extermination of The Devils of Kimon.
Remember what I said in the beginning of number 5’s comparison? “Gore, Gore, Gore”? Well you could multiply this by 10 and still fall short. This R-rated movie makes use of its and it’s not afraid to show as much as they want. Speaking of comparisons, Jubei and Nanashi share some heavy set of wits as they always calculate what to do and as fast as it’s necessary. There’s also the fact that both are wandering rounin who really would like to be on their own before being dragged into trouble. However, once they are in trouble, their skill in battle could be near unmatched against any enemy.
I really hope you didn’t read this article while you were eating, since most of these anime series are so full of blood to the brim you might end up with some of it on you! If you’re looking for a heart-warming action-filled adventure, Sword of the Stranger and all of these series will do more than just fine, so be sure to get a hold of your nearest katana and prepare for your final battle!
What did you think of this article? Do you agree or can you recommend us other amazing series similar to Sword of the stranger? Let us know in our comments section below or on our social networks!