The top 50 Steampunk Anime!
Guide to Steampunk Anime
The amalgamation of science fiction, fantasy, and alternate history, steampunk is a subgenre that has captured the imaginations of creators and audiences alike. Particularly, steampunk has found a comfortable home within the world of anime. With its aesthetics rooted in the 19th-century industrial steam-powered machinery, steampunk is much more than a visual spectacle. It's a lens to explore complex themes about technology, society, and human nature.
The Aesthetics of Steampunk Anime
Before delving into the recommended series, it's crucial to understand what constitutes the steampunk style. Often characterized by the retro-futuristic design of its machinery, fashion, and architectural elements, the class draws heavily from Victorian-era aesthetics and industrial steam-powered machinery. Much like in steampunk fashion, steampunk anime incorporates corsets, goggles, and Victorian attire, often combined with advanced technology, thus offering a unique blend of the past and the future.
The style permeates every aspect of anime, from character design to world-building. Art plays a crucial role in immersing the audience in this extraordinary universe. The steampunk art in these anime often displays intricate designs of steam-powered machinery and sprawling cityscapes filled with complex gear systems, flying airships, and retro-futuristic technology.
The Appeal of Steampunk Anime
So, what makes steampunk anime appealing? Beyond the rich aesthetics and breathtaking steampunk decor, the compelling narrativesit's draw viewers in. The reports often focus on themes of rebellion, innovation, and the ethical implications of technology.
Just as a steampunk outfit is incomplete without the quintessential steampunk hat or glasses, a steampunk anime would be incomplete without its exemplary elements: complex machinery, intricate technology, and an atmosphere of rebellion. For example, a character donning a steampunk dress and sunglasses riding an airship over a sprawling steampunk city is a common yet always fascinating sight in these anime series.
Notable Steampunk Anime
Among the most beloved steampunk anime is "Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood." Set in a world where alchemy, a pseudoscientific predecessor to modern chemistry, is the highest scientific achievement, the steampunk elements shine through with the characters' prosthetic limbs and the alchemical transmutations often presented as complex mechanical devices. The show also cleverly employs items like steampunk lamps to enhance the industrial atmosphere.
Next, "Last Exile" is a classic steampunk anime that presents an exciting world of aerial battleships. The series' defining feature is its iconic steampunk airships, transporting viewers to a realm of high-stakes air battles and intricate politics.
Another intriguing series is "Steamboy," a film by Katsuhiro Otomo, creator of "Akira." This movie beautifully captures the essence of steampunk, showcasing detailed contraptions like a steampunk clock or steampunk watch and grand cityscapes indicative of a steam-powered future.
In the realm of steampunk anime, these series and movies stand as a testament to the genre's enduring appeal.
Going Beyond the Usual
Anime is not limited to Victorian-era designs; it often experiments with unique interpretations. Some series may use steampunk elements to portray a dystopian future, complete with steampunk robots and boots, pushing the boundaries of what steampunk can be. Others infuse their narrative with cultural elements, giving birth to a unique blend of Victorian steampunk with Japanese aesthetics.
In this fusion of cultures and eras, even characters' names and places can have a distinctive steampunk flavor. Steampunk names often sound aristocratic or mechanical, further enriching the narrative's world.
Lastly, in the grand spirit of creativity that embodies steampunk, some series may venture into unexplored territories, adding their unique twists. Imagine an anime featuring a massive steampunk truck roaring down a city street, its gears whirring and steam billowing out. Such inventiveness adds to the allure of steampunk anime, proving the genre is ripe for innovation.
Steampunk anime offers a journey into a world where the past meets the future, inviting us to explore familiar themes in unfamiliar terrains. Its appeal lies in its ability to use retro-futuristic aesthetics to create narratives that transcend time and culture, engaging audiences in a dialogue about technology and its implications. From the intricate designs of steampunk clothing and decor to the grand tales of rebellion and progress, the world of steampunk anime is worth exploring.
1. Fullmetal Alchemist
"Fullmetal Alchemist" follows the Elric brothers on their journey to find the Philosopher's Stone in a world where alchemy and steampunk technology coexist.
2. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
Set in a post-apocalyptic steampunk world, "Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress" tells the story of humanity's struggle against zombie-like creatures known as Kabane.
Directed by Katsuhiro Otomo, "Steamboy" is a visually stunning film in a steam-powered, alternate Victorian era.
4. Howl's Moving Castle
Based on the novel by Diana Wynne Jones, "Howl's Moving Castle" follows the adventures of Sophie as she encounters a magical moving castle and becomes intertwined with a mysterious wizard.
5. Last Exile
"Last Exile" is a thrilling anime set in a steampunk world where battleships and airships engage in aerial warfare.
6. Castle in the Sky
Directed by Hayao Miyazaki, "Castle in the Sky" tells the story of a young girl named Sheeta and a boy named Pazu as they embark on a quest to find a legendary floating castle.
7. Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water
"Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water" follows the adventures of Nadia and Jean as they unravel the mysteries surrounding Blue Water, a powerful gem with incredible potential.
8. Violet Evergarden
While not strictly steampunk, "Violet Evergarden" incorporates steampunk elements into its world, where Auto Memories Dolls help people express their emotions through beautifully crafted letters.
9. Princess Principal
"Princess Principal" is a spy thriller set in an alternate steampunk version of Victorian London, where a group of young girls carry out secret missions for the Crown.
10. Clockwork Planet
In a world where Earth's surface is uninhabitable, "Clockwork Planet" follows the story of a high school student and a female automaton as they try to repair the intricate clockwork mechanisms that keep the planet running.
"D.Gray-man" follows Allen Walker, a young Exorcist, in a world plagued by demons and an organization called the Black Order that fights against them using steampunk-inspired weaponry.
Set in a fictional European country in the early 20th century, "Gosick" revolves around the adventures of a detective and a curious girl with a knack for solving mysteries.
13. Eureka Seven
In a world where surfing through the sky on robotic boards is the norm, "Eureka Seven" tells the story of Renton and Eureka as they embark on a journey of adventure and romance.
14. The Vision of Escaflowne
"The Vision of Escaflowne" follows Hitomi, a high school student transported to the world of Gaea, where she becomes involved in a war and pilots a giant mecha called Escaflowne.
15. Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo
A unique adaptation of Alexandre Dumas' classic novel, "Gankutsuou," transposes the story into a futuristic and abundant world filled with revenge and intrigue.
"Trigun" combines steampunk elements with a Wild West setting, following the adventures of Vash the Stampede, a legendary gunslinger with a bounty on his head.
17. Ergo Proxy
Set in a post-apocalyptic world, "Ergo Proxy" explores the mysteries of a domed city and the philosophical questions surrounding the nature of humanity and artificial intelligence.
"Karneval" follows the journey of Nai and Gareki as they navigate a steampunk-inspired world filled with circuses, secret organizations, and supernatural beings.
19. Code: Breaker
In "Code: Breaker," Sakura witnesses a vigilante known as Code: Breaker in action and becomes involved in a world of superhuman abilities and a government conspiracy.
20. Pandora Hearts
"Pandora Hearts" combines fantasy and steampunk elements in a story centered around a young man named Oz Vessalius and a mysterious pocket watch.
21. Tales of the Abyss
Based on the popular video game series, "Tales of the Abyss" follows the adventures of Luke and his companions in a steampunk-influenced world filled with political intrigue and ancient prophecies.
22. No. 6
"No. 6" is set in a utopian city-state that hides a dark secret. When Shion discovers the truth, he becomes entangled in a rebellion against the city's oppressive regime.
23. Vanitas no Carte (The Case Study of Vanitas)
"The Case Study of Vanitas" is a vampire fantasy set in 19th-century Paris, where a human doctor named Vanitas and a vampire named Noé embark on a quest to cure a curse affecting vampires.
24. Terror in Resonance
In modern-day Tokyo, "Terror in Resonance" follows two mysterious teenagers who orchestrate a series of bombings as a social protest.
25. Bungo Stray Dogs
While not purely steampunk, "Bungo Stray Dogs" features characters with supernatural abilities and a blend of historical and contemporary elements in a secret organization setting.
26. Record of Grancrest War
"Record of Grancrest War" takes place in a continent torn apart by chaos, where lords and mages fight for power using magical crests to create and control territories.
27. Gurren Lagann
"Gurren Lagann" is a mecha anime set in a post-apocalyptic world where humanity fights against the oppressive Spiral King using giant robots and a spirit of rebellion.
28. Ulysses: Jeanne d'Arc and the Alchemist Knight
"Ulysses: Jeanne d'Arc and the Alchemist Knight" reimagines the historical figure Jeanne d'Arc in a steampunk-inspired world where alchemy and war collide.
"Baccano!" tells the intertwining stories of characters across different periods, from Prohibition-era America to 1930s New York, with supernatural and steampunk elements.
30. Black Butler
"Black Butler" follows the story of Ciel Phantomhive, a young earl who contracts with a demon named Sebastian to seek revenge for his parent'sparents' murder.
31. Ghost in the Shell
While not strictly steampunk, "Ghost in the Shell" explores themes of cybernetic enhancements and the blurring line between humanity and technology in a futuristic setting.
32. Tiger & Bunny
"Tiger & Bunny" is a superhero anime set in a city where heroes with corporate sponsors protect the citizens, blending elements of modern superhero stories with a steampunk aesthetic.
33. Code Geass
"Code Geass" is set in an alternate world where the Holy Britannian Empire dominates, and a young prince named Lelouch vi Britannia seeks to overthrow the empire using his power of Geass.
34. Soul Eater
"Soul Eater" follows a group of students at the Death Weapon Meister Academy as they train to collect evil souls and protect the world from supernatural threats.
35. Revolutionary Girl Utena
"Revolutionary Girl Utena" combines surrealism, symbolism, and fantasy elements in a story centered around Utena Tenjou and her journey to become a prince.
36. Kuroshitsuji (Black Butler)
"Kuroshitsuji" is a dark fantasy series that follows the demonic butler Sebastian Michaelis and his contract with Ciel Phantomhive, the young head of the Phantomhive family.
37. Guilty Crown
In "Guilty Crown," Shu Ouma obtains a powerful ability to extract weapons from people's hearts, leading him to become involved in a resistance movement against a tyrannical government.
38. Arslan Senki (The Heroic Legend of Arslan)
Based on the novel series by Yoshiki Tanaka, "The Heroic Legend of Arslan" depicts the epic tale of Prince Arslan as he fights to reclaim his kingdom from invaders.
39. The Big O
"The Big O" occurs in Paradigm City, a city with lost memories. It follows Roger Smith, a negotiator, and his giant mecha known as Big O as they uncover the truth behind the city's forgotten past.
40. Princess Tutu
"Princess Tutu" combines ballet and fairy tales in a unique story about a duck turned into a human who becomes the magical Princess Tutu, tasked with restoring shattered pieces of a prince's heart.
41. Tegami Bachi (Letter Bee)
In a world shrouded in perpetual darkness, "Tegami Bachi" follows Lag Seeing, a Letter Bee tasked with delivering mail and unraveling the secrets of the government organization Amberground.
42. Kekkai Sensen (Blood Blockade Battlefront)
"Kekkai Sensen" is set in Hellsalem's Lot, a city created after a portal to the "Beyond" opened in New York City, where humans and supernatural beings coexist in chaotic harmony.
43. Mawaru Penguindrum
"Mawaru Penguindrum" follows the story of the Takakura siblings as they encounter a mysterious entity known as the Penguin Drum and delve into the secrets of fate and destiny.
In "Aldnoah. Zero," an interplanetary war erupts between Earth and Mars, and a young Earth soldier named Inaho Kaizuka becomes involved in the conflict using advanced mecha technology.
45. Noein: To Your Other Self
"Noein: To Your Other Self" explores the concept of parallel universes and follows a group of teenagers as they are caught in a battle to save their world from destruction.
46. Norn9: Norn+Nonet
"Norn9: Norn+Nonet" centers around a group of individuals with special powers aboard a ship called Norn as they uncover the mysteries surrounding their existence and purpose.
47. Dance in the Vampire Bund
"Dance in the Vampire Bund" follows the story of Mina Tepes, a vampire princess, and her efforts to establish a sanctuary for vampires in the modern world.
48. Seraph of the End
In a world where vampires have enslaved humanity, "Seraph of the End" follows Yuichiro Hyakuya as he joins the Moon Demon Company to seek revenge and save his remaining loved ones.
49. Airship Dragoon
"Airship Dragoon" is an original steampunk-inspired anime series that combines elements of adventure, warfare, and political intrigue in a world dominated by airships and steam-powered technology.
50. Legend of the Galactic Heroes
"Legend of the Galactic Heroes" is an epic space opera that chronicles the conflict between the Galactic Empire and the Free Planets Alliance, with themes of politics, war, and leadership.
These are just a few examples of the top steampunk anime titles. Each series offers a unique blend of steampunk aesthetics, captivating storytelling, and memorable characters that will transport you to imaginative worlds where steam-powered machinery and advanced technology coexist. Whether you're a fan of action, adventure, romance, or mystery, steampunk anime isthere's waiting to be discovered and enjoyed. Happy watching!