The most popular, most well-known titles are some that are found by anime-lovers pretty quickly. Most recommendation lists will include many of the following: One Piece, Bleach, Naruto, Black Clover, something from the Dragon Ball franchise, Fairy Tale, Inuyasha, Assassination Classroom, Demon Slayer, My Hero Academia, Hunter x Hunter, Fullmetal Alchemist, and the list goes on. If you have found yourself reading this piece and have not watched some of these we just mentioned, you have a long enjoyable road of anime viewership ahead!
If you are like many forum readers, though, you have already seen many or all of the usual favorites. Are you looking for something that cannot be found on every other recommendation list? If the answer is yes, you have come to the right place! Today we wanted to talk about some of our favorite shounen anime that are newer in production and that we haven't all seen already. Without further delay, here are some unusual shounen picks to consider for your next weekend binge.
Tate no Yuusha no Nariagari (The Rising of the Shield Hero)
Tate no Yuusha no Narigari is probably the most well-known anime on this list. Naofumi Iwatani is summoned to another world with three other "heroes" to fulfill a prophecy. The old stories go that there are four heroes, one representative of a different weapon, who will eventually save the kingdom of Melromarc. For the most part, the heroes are so revered that churches with strong followings have been made to them. There is a following for the Sword Hero, the Bow Hero, and the Spear Hero. But for Naofumi? He is the shield hero, and because a shield is not as much of a weapon, he doesn't have any of that support. As far as everyone else is concerned, being the shield hero is a dud of a skill.
Naofumi is betrayed early on and decides to go his own path. This isekai (world-changing) and shounen anime is also a harem that doesn't skimp on the comedy. The world that Naofumi has been summoned into has many video-game style elements. The video-game isekai has become popular in recent years, and Tate no Yuusha no Narigari is an excellent addition to that part of the genre. If you love an underdog hero, lots of cute girls, and would enjoy watching someone figure out how to keep up with a sword and bow while only having a shield, this is for you.
Chain Chronicle: Haecceitas no Hikari (Chain Chronicle: The Light of Haecceitas)
Chain Chronicle was first an RPG that came out in 2013, but you do not need to have played it to enjoy this anime adaptation. Before you start Chain Chronicle, the only thing to know is that the viewer arrives as the final storming of the Demon King's castle goes badly, and the rebellion forces lose and are scattered. We join the defeated heroes as they encounter a young man, Aram, who has a brightness in spirit and unselfish plans for the Demon King's defeat.
As Aram and the previously defeated warriors progress, they keep losing comrades and morale. Is there any chance the Demon King can be defeated? The story is already dense in episode one, so just strap in for a slew of fight scenes, some exciting battles of good versus evil, and picking up previous knowledge on the fly. Though it is a little unusual, the viewer only has about as much knowledge as Aram, the newest recruit. Where Chain Chronicle really delivers is not in its character development so much as in the animation, but fight scenes more specifically. The accompanying soundtrack is enjoyable as well.
Arifureta Shokugyou de Sekai Saikyou (Arifureta: From Commonplace to World's Strongest)
After being taken against their will to a new world (can you tell we're loving these video game isekai?), Hajime Nagumo watches his classmates get powers to fight the dungeons in which they will be shortly fighting. In another case of who-gets-the-worst-character-roll, Hajime does not receive any skill that is offensive or defensive. If this is not enough for Hajime to deal with, a moment of betrayal from a classmate causes Hajime to fall off a cliff into the abyss containing the lower levels of the dungeon.
Hajime miraculously lives to fight another day. Though he has fallen to the strongest depths of the dungeon, Hajime has an unusual skill. With that and the finding of rare objects in a dangerous place, Hajime loses his arm, but not his life. He finds a way to survive and is massively overpowered by the time he makes it back up to the top of the dungeon. By his time, our sweet main character from the beginning has turned into a hardened veteran of battle, complete with a hot harem that seems to be very interested in tagging along with him, indefinitely. Arifureta shocks the viewer in the first episode and then invites them on a journey to see Hajime transform into a survivor and an entirely different person.
In a genre as vast as shounen, it can be hard to narrow down the range of titles out there. We hope you found a title you want to try here today that a little off the beaten path. If you take your shounen with a side of comedy, we hope you try Rising of the Shield Hero. If you want to watch a pure hero battle real and philosophical darkness, check out Chain Chronicle. And if you want some more adult humor with some shounen scenes that are not for the novice, give Arifureta a watch!
Which one of these makes your next watchlist? Have you seen these titles yet? Let us know in the comments!!