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Sci-fi is the premise of creativity; the road map to the future. From apocalyptic turmoil, cities of technological prosperity, and dystopian societies; all the way to worlds out within the vastness of space. This broad variety allows for each of us to find what’s right for us, making for a large community comprised of individuals. We hare at Honey’s Anime look to bridge more individuals like yourselves, with nothing short of the best in the world of sci-fi manga. Like a match made in heaven, there’s always that perfect something, for that perfect someone. Thus, without further ado, we present to you our Top 10 Sci-Fi Manga; where excitement shall be reborn.
10. World Customize Creator
- Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Magic, Shounen
- Volumes: Ongoing
- Mangaka: Hero, Tennki; Hijikata, Yuu
- Published Date: 2013 - Ongoing
A video game lover is usually just that, someone who loves video games, but for Yusuke Tagami, this becomes much more. At the behest of an unknown voice, Yusuke is brought to a world known as “Caltsio”. With the ability to create, destroy, and customize all that is, Yusuke takes on a new life as the “Evil God of Calamity”. What was once a game, has now become a reality.
What may come off as a run-of-the-mill manga built off an overused story premise, manages to shock you with its brilliant execution, and keen aptitude for making old elements feel new again. As you ride along with protagonist Yusuke Tagami, his fascination with this new world will certainly channel its way to the reader as well. Piqued with intrigue, you will find yourself immersed within each page. Almost as though you can feel the atmosphere of the environment, and sense the aura of each passing individual that Yusuke happens across throughout his journey. It’s a surprise, fantasy filled, read with an incredibly realistic touch. We couldn’t ask for anything more.
- Genre: Action, Mystery, Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi, Shounen, Supernatural
- Volumes: 4
- Mangaka: Sugimoto, Iqura
- Published Date: 2004 - 2006
After experiencing a nightmare play out before her eyes, Aiko would wake to learn that the horror had yet to end. One moment she’s watching her family being slaughtered, the next, she’s waking up on a laboratory table with a grotesque arm grafted onto her body. The arm, derived with DNA from a beast called “Chimera”, controls its master, against Aiko’s will. Powerless, Aiko is forced to play along with the actions of this disfigured arm as her fate shifts out of her control.
Mixing sci-fi with a splash of horror is not a cocktail we’ve never tasted before, but only a few pack as flavorful a punch as Variante. Exploring the mysteries of the Chimera is not without its fair share of bone chills and blood buckets. However, amongst the cringing content is a well-established tale of morality, the element of fear, and man’s obsession with the need to control. All of which is funneled to its readers through the conflicting emotions of its well characterized protagonist, Aiko. If you’re a fan of horror, a fan of science fiction, or just looking for something to spice up your day, then Variante won’t cease to please
8. EDEN: It's an Endless World!
- Genre: Action, Drama, Sci-Fi, Psychological, Seinen
- Volumes: 18
- Mangaka: Endo, Hiroki
- Published Date: 1997 - 2008
After a worldwide pandemic eliminates 15 percent of the human population, an organization known as “Propater” topples the UN as it marches onwards to seize control of the world. However, to their dismay, a young boy and a girl with an immunity to the lethal virus, Enoa Ballard and Hana Mayer respectively, manage to escape the clasps of the Propater. Fast-forward twenty years; now a drug lord in South America, the boy aids his son, Elijah Ballard, as they take the fight to the Propater’s doorsteps. Engulfing the world in a tug of war of power, terrorism, and humanity.
Taking one’s depiction of the future and bringing it forth to reality can often leave us with an over saturated, unrealized, and unsorted piece of work; but in the hands of Hiroki Endo, we instead get an unimaginable breath of fresh air. We get to live in a world that feels; at times, more realistic than our own, we get to see growth amongst characters through the likes of both trauma and love; and most of all, we get a good laugh from its well-positioned sparks of humor. All of this, while immersed in the eye-catching details of its highly-finessed artwork. The attention to detail is astounding both in picture quality and progression of story. Spanning 18 volumes, there are more than enough pages of excitement to quench your sci-fi thirst.
7. Fort of Apocalypse (Apocalypse no Toride)
- Genre: Action, Mystery, Horror, Sci-Fi. Shounen, Psychological
- Volumes: 10
- Mangaka: Kuraishi, Yuu; Inabe, Kazu
- Published Date: 2011- 2015
After being framed for murder, Yoshiaki Maeda finds himself detained at Shouran Academy Juvenile Detention Center, alongside cellmates Masafumi Yoshioka, Mitsuru Yamanoi, and Gou Iwakura. Convinced that his unfortunate fate has yet to end, Yoshiaki sees no hope when he learns of the current power struggle that has engulfed the prison.
Unfortunately, he may be right. Unbeknownst to the occupants of the prison yard, the outside world has been brought to its knees by a zombie apocalypse; and with a van filled with infected people heading straight for the prison, Yoshiaki is just one bus stop away from complete calamity.
A new spin on the classic zombie apocalypse genre, Apocalypse no Toride brings forth innovation in a world that at times feels stagnant. Zombies may be old news, but the well-crafted traits of Apocalypse no Toride give birth to some of the most unique takes on zombies yet. The fight to stay alive for individuals who seemingly already lost their lives to the gripes of government authority, lets us peer into the mindset of those that we label as inhuman. The struggle of being down on your luck, but still finding the strength to push for another day, teaches us of the personal fight within and without oneself; and what it takes to maintain character in an unforgiving world. Has your interest piqued yet?
6. Until Death Do Us Part (Shi ga Futari wo Wakatsu made)
- Genre: Action, Drama, Sci-Fi, Supernatural, Seinen
- Volumes: 26
- Mangaka: Takashige, Hiroshi; Song, Ji-Hyung
- Published Date: 2005 - 2015
All throughout history, those that could see the future have always been lauded and highly sought after. Nowadays, the hunt for such highly skilled individuals is still on, as they are often on the radar of powerful organizations; and Haruka Tohyama is their next target. Blessed with precognition abilities, Haruka finds herself hunted by those who wish to take advantage of her, but when she is nearly captured, she makes a final plea to a blind swordsman, Mamoru Hijikata. Protect me, “until death do us part”. Will he accept?
A blind samurai tearing through evil in considerable style; could it get any better? Of course it does. Well-portrayed action and lavished with great art. A nice variety of characters tossed into a world shared with supernatural and technological aspects alike. All of which is seamlessly blended with a premise and plot development that’ll have you craving for the next page. Not to mention, any story that involves reading the future is always an interesting one, and always one worth the read.
- Genre: Action, Mystery, Mecha, Sci-Fi, Psychological, Seinen
- Volumes: 8
- Mangaka: Urasawa, Naoki; Tezuka, Osamu
- Published Date: 2003 - 2009
In a world occupied by the likes of both human and machine, it takes a keen Europol detective, Gesicht to solve a mysterious string of human and robot deaths. However, to his surprise, the evidence seems to be pointing towards the hands of something that hasn’t been the culprit of a crime in 8 years; a robot.
Suspense should be the mother of all great storytelling as it never fails to impress. Thanks to the cleverness garnered by the pairing of Urasawa and Tezuka, Pluto emerges as a classic. This piece of gold, on par with its legendary creators, has everything it takes to make for a mind-bending piece. As such, its numerous awards only help to reiterate the many reasons why you should be reading this manga right now. It is the perfect chance to get your detective gears turning as it will have you fitted at the edge of your seat, and on the tip of your toes with its creative plot twists and unrivaled development. It is an impenetrable piece that never leaves its readers too far behind in its astonishing world.
4. Psycho-Pass: Inspector Shinya Kogami (Psycho-Pass: Kanshikan Kogami Shinya)
- Genre: Sci-Fi, Shounen, Police
- Volumes: Ongoing
- Mangaka: Gotou, Midori; Sai, Natsuo
- Published Date: 2014 - Ongoing
Free will and safety are often put in the balance of right and wrong, and with the advancement of technology, the expectations of these elements of life are placed upon a whole new spectrum. Capable of categorically placing people based on physical, psychological, and emotional traits, society has been thrust into a new way of life. The technology that makes this all possible; “PSYCHO-PASS”.
Unfortunately, for those lacking in their PSYCHO-PASS, a special government agency; home to Shinya Kogami, takes on the responsibility of apprehending these individuals and taking them into custody. Even if they haven’t committed a crime.
Challenging your grasp of ethics, and your struggle to discern right from wrong, PSYCHO-PASS will keep you on the fence as you look within yourself to try and find the answer to some of society’s greatest questions. It proposes the discussion of nature versus nurture in one of the most captivating ways, as you ponder how far is too far. Is it right to punish someone for a crime he or she has yet to commit? Dancing in tandem with that question, Psycho Pass will show you just how similar two sides of a coin really are. Each character doesn’t only present a key element to the story, but also represents the faces of humanity; and just how human, an inhuman conscience may be. As you traverse from page to page, you will be urged to ask yourself, who is the real criminal? All the while, digging deeper into the mystery at hand.
3. The Ghost in the Shell (Koukaku Kidoutai: The Ghost in the Shell)
- Genre: Action, Sci-Fi, Police, Psychological, Seinen
- Volumes: 1
- Mangaka: Shirow, Masamune
- Published Date: 1989 - 1991
In a future riddled with the likes of technology; ranging from cybernetic implants to full-on robots, the way of life may seem far separated from what we know today. However, in this near future, cyber-hackers and technological terrorists are no more uncommon, and it is up to Major Motoko Kusanagi, and the Public Security Section 9 to battle these growing threats. But, when Motoko walks into the path of a “ghost” hacker known as the Puppeteer, things become much more dangerous than she’d hoped for.
Brought to life in 1989 by Masamune Shirow, Ghost in the Shell planted itself upon society as a piece of work meant to be witnessed, and never forgotten. A steampunk machine littered with original artistry, soaked in a gritty and unique taste of atmosphere. The dystopian nature of its vast world depicts a raw interpretation of a future led by the likes of technological domination and a splintered society. With compelling characters engulfed within twisting mysteries, the world of Ghost in the Shell will leap off the page. With the right amount of complexity, this ambitious tale will boggle your mind in all the right ways from start to finish. With an upcoming film set to blow Hollywood away, there has never been a better time to hop onto the Ghost in the Shell bandwagon.
2. 20th Century Boys (20 Seiki Shounen)
- Genre: Mystery, Drama, Historical, Sci-fi, Psychological, Seinen
- Volumes: 22
- Mangaka: Urasawa, Naoki
- Published Date: 1999 – 2006
When his childhood buddy suddenly commits suicide, Kenji; a convenience store manager, lets his suspicion urge him into banding together with his old friends as they probe the rise of a mysterious new cult. With terrible events happening all around the world that resemble a book the boys created back in 1969 known as the “Book of Prophecy”, it is the struggles and determination of these boys that will unfold the mysteries at hand; and hopefully, prevent the extinction of humanity.
Another piece by Naoki Urasawa, 20th Century Boys will have you engrossed within the complex of its story right from the first page. You simply can never get enough, as its well scripted plot twists, and passage between timelines make it feel as though you’re coming across a great piece of work for the first time, all the time. A tale about ordinary people doing extraordinary things, its cast of well-depicted characters are the heart of this unimaginable world presented to us. 20th Century Boys is a wonder, as it is suspenseful, unexpecting, and a downright enjoyment to read. It is yet, another classic by Naoki Urasawa that we hope you will become a part of.
- Genre: Action, Adventure, Game, Romance, Sci-Fi, Shounen, Super Power, Supernatural, Pschological
- Volumes: 16
- Mangaka: Iwashiro, Toshiaki
- Published Date: 2007 – 2010
When Ageha Yoshina stumbles upon an odd calling card, left behind in a phone booth with the word “Psyren” written on it, he makes a life-changing decision after deciding to keep the card. After his classmate Sakurako Amamiya’s lone cry for help when revealing that she too had a similar card, she suddenly goes missing; urging Ageha to dial the card’s number in hopes of easing his confusion. Met with the message: “would you like to go to Psyren?” Ageha is thrusted into a life-or-death game, in which he must use his newfound psychic abilities, “PSI”, to fight his way back home.
With a very strong story, built on top of unique characters, interesting plot elements, and finished off with stunning artwork, Psyren presents everything necessary for a one-of-a-kind masterpiece. Laid out with precision, it’s almost as though you are handling a puzzle; in which each piece of conflict, struggle, character development, and outcome has its place within the broader picture. The intensity of this piece, dished out through well-paced storytelling, takes grasp of the readers’ interest without ever losing its grip. Iwashiro has given us a reason to question the concept of reality, while losing ourselves in this mesmerizing creation titled Psyren.
Traveling through the world of sci-fi; laden with technology, vast with exploration, and ripe with mystery; can be exhausting. However, once you flip the book closed, you’ll almost always come scavenging for more. Thus, we at Honey’s Anime hope that our list of Top 10 Sci-Fi Manga can offer a few satisfactory pieces of work to keep you well occupied. In this highly sought after genre, there’s always something out there to tickle your fancy. So, if we missed something that’s worth a shout out, then swing by the comments below and do it some justice.
“Improbable made possible.” – Rod Serling