What are the Different Genres of Anime? This Will Enlighten You

What are the Different Genres of Anime?
Anime is not synonymous to cartoons as it is popularly believed. It is considered as an art form by those who appreciate it. This art form with elaborate and emotional storylines is made, keeping a larger audience in mind. Entertainism lists out the different genres of Anime for its beloved fans.
Entertainism Staff
Last Updated: Apr 9, 2018
Did You Know?
Sci-Fi is the most popular genre as it involves robots, post-apocalyptic storylines, and futuristic technology.
Anime originated in Japan and dates as far back as 1917. It grew in terms of realism all through the 20th century. The visual, animated series are so diverse that it is difficult to define it in terms of style.

Its virtual impact on the rest of the world has generated curiosity and interest in Japanese art, culture, and language. Therefore, one can find an array of genres in anime just like TV shows or movies. Anime genres are not in line with the American animation themes as the anime expressions used in Japan are unique.

Given below is a list of various styles and genres of Anime!
Anime Styles
Classic Anime

The legendary 'Godfather of Anime', Osamu Tezuka, created the 'Astro Boy' series based on Disney cartoons. His creation of the character with a large head and huge eyes, small nose, and mouth has become the center of Japanese comics. Even though the features softened with time, the design still seems exaggerated. The most prominent example is the 'Dragonball' series which have semi-realistic as well as imaginary characters.

Realistic Anime

These portray a rather realistic, tall character with a high-tech punk look which can distinguished from normal cartoons. The storyline is more serious, and is used in a number of anime genres, the best example is 'Akira' anime series, fantasy, sci-fi, and dramatic series.

Children's Anime

Series with cute characters that have tiny arms and legs, big eyes, small mouth, and sometimes, no mouth. This anime targets small children. Even the animals featured in these series are simple and not like traditionally drawn animes. 'Hamtaro' is one such children's anime style.

Computer Anime

The styles created using 3D animation is truly amazing. Though the traditional look is maintained, the characters get a virtual makeover. This style is used in Mecha anime, with the 'Gundam' series, and 'Final Fantasy' movies.
Anime Genres
Action

This genre deals with explosive action storylines and characters mostly based on adventure. The popular series include 'Bleach', 'One Piece', and 'Freezing'.

Adventure

Adventurous storylines and characters are a part of this genre. Mixed genres in Adventure are: Adventure - Action, Adventure - Historical (due to its uncanny ability to tell a story), and Adventure - Slice of Life. Popular series include 'Kino no Tabi', 'Fullmetal Alchemist', and 'Pokemon'.

Animation

This genre includes American animated series; the popular series are: 'Samurai Jack', 'Spawn', and the 'Penguins of Madagascar'.

Bishounen

This genre deals with a central male character who is good looking and has strong homosexual undertones. It refer to boys under the age of 20 as in Japanese a "pretty man" is called 'biseinen'. It mainly targets audience comprising young girls and women. The popular series include 'Ouran High School Host Club' and 'Fruits Basket'.

Comedy

This genre includes not just lighthearted anime but also a combination of action and adventure. Popular series include 'Sayanora Zetsubou Sensei', 'Full Metal Panic', and 'Lucky Star'.

Demons

This genre deals with dark entities like demons, witches, sorcerers, and evil spirits along with action. Popular series include 'Inuyasha', 'Yu Yu Hakusho', and 'Ichiban Ushiro no Daimaou'.

Drama

Full of suspense, realism, emotions, paired with romance with a touch of adventure and seriousness, this genre has popular series which include 'Darker than Black', 'Death Note', and 'Monster'.

Ecchi

This genre deals with lighthearted sexual content and romance. Popular series include 'Elfen Leid', 'Freezing', 'Zero no Tsukaima', 'Futari Ecchi', and 'Ladies vs Butlers'.

Fantasy

With magical worlds, monsters, magical powers, and kingdoms, this genre portrays exotic characters and designs with enthralling visuals. Popular series include 'Fairy Tail', 'Fullmetal Alchemist''.

Harem

This genre deals with love and romantic relationships between the central character and those of the opposite sex. Popular series include 'Da Capo', 'Love Hina', and 'School Days'.

Hentai

Adult romance which is mainly pornographic and has explicit scenes is a part of this genre. Popular series include 'Bible Black' and 'Mistreated Bride'.

Horror

This genre deals with bloodbath and gore scenes with lots of mutilated, scary visuals. Popular series include 'Mnemosyne', and 'Higurashi no Naku Koro ni'.

Josei

Mature romantic liaisons, especially, with school or mundane life settings, aimed at female audience between the ages, 18 - 40, form a part of this genre. It has a serious storyline. Popular series include 'Paradise Kiss', 'Honey', and 'Clover'.

Kids

This genre deals with anime for kids and lighthearted stories which are centered around cute characters. Popular series include 'Digimon', and 'Pokemon'.

Love/Romance

This genre deals with romance and relationships often filled with humor. With tons of devoted followers in this category who can connect with the situations portrayed by the characters, it is one of the popular genres. The series include 'Love Hina', 'Ai Yori Aoshi', and 'Clannad' which have a large fan following.

Mencha

This genre includes military, action-packed drama, martial arts, and adventure. Mechas means giant robots and the storyline may feature space-age, fantasy, and evolution. Popular series include 'Mobile Suit Gundam', and 'Neon Genesis Evangelion'.

Music

This genre deals with everything musical and expressing it as a hobby with a touch of romance. Popular series include 'NANA', and 'Nodame Cantabile'.

Mystery

This genre deals with unexplained events, there is slow progression of the story as the drama enfolds, sometimes dark and obsessive in nature. Aimed at an audience that loves thrilling, adventurous rides. Popular series include 'Death Note', 'Monster' and Darker than Black'.

Psychological

This genre deals with mystery and psychological plots that leave the audience guessing and wanting more. With an excellent storyline and characters, it grips the attention of the viewer from the start. Popular series include 'Death Note', 'Monster', and 'Code Geass'.

Samurai

This genre deals with themes that have historical background and lot of action, can be comical at times but purely related to martial arts. Popular series include 'Gintama', 'Samurai Champloo', 'Blade of the Immortal', and 'Rurouni Kenshin'.

School

This genre includes drama, comedy, slice of life, and the love/romance of school and university life. Popular series include 'The Melanchony of Haruhi Suzumiya', 'Beelzebub', 'Amagami SS' and 'Great Teacher Onizuka'.

Sci-Fi

This genre deals with robots, aliens, space, advance technology, and civilizations. It is the most popular genre, and the popular series include 'Level E', 'Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann', and 'Zoids'.

Seinen

This genre deals with mature relations and are psychologically and sexually violent, targeted for an audience from ages 18 - 40, they are mostly for adults. Popular series include 'Cowboy Bebop', 'Futari Ecchi', and 'Rainbow'.

Shoujo

This genre deals with teen female romance topics which tell a unique story. The targeted audience are aged between 7 - 18. Popular series include 'Nana', 'Lovely Complex', 'Kare Kano', and 'Vampire Knight'.

Shoujo-ai

This genre deals with lesbian relationships and romance, and is less graphic than Yuri. Popular series include 'Candy Boy', 'Simoun', and 'Ga-Rei: Zero'.

Shounen

This genre mainly targets young males (ages 7 - 18), and is influenced by Harem, Mecha, and martial arts genres. It involves plenty of action, and the main male character is usually surrounded by enticing female counterparts vying for his attention. Popular series include 'Chobits', 'Bleach', and 'Bamboo Blade'.

Shounen-ai

This genre deals with sexual relationship and romance between two males, but is less explicit than Yaoi. Popular series include 'Junjo Romantic', 'Sekaiichi Hatsukoi', and 'Uragiri wa Boku no Namae wo Shitteriu'.

Slice of Life

This genre depicts realism in mundane life activities with traces of romance, school activities, popular series include 'Kino no Tabi', 'School Rumble' and 'Ai Yori Aoshi'.

Space

This genre features space adventure, time travel, space invasions, and space combat. Popular series include 'Planetes', 'Cowboy Bebop', and 'Mobile Suit Gundam'.

Sports

This genre deals with school sports/action where the series revolves around an extremely talented main character or a weak-in-sports character who rises to be a sports champion. Popular series include 'Major s1', 'Hajime no Ippo', and 'Prince of Tennis'.

Super Power

The superhero genre where the main character deals with his adversaries through exceptional powers, popular series include 'Dragonball Z', and 'Naruto'.

Supernatural

Dark fantasy and subjects make good storylines, especially, those that deal with demons and supernatural entities. Popular series include 'Natsume Yuujinchou San' and 'Ao no Excorsist'.

Vampire

Though it belongs to the supernatural genre, it has risen to prominence in the recent times, popular vampire series include 'Hellsing', 'Rosario + Vampire', 'Trinity Blood', and 'Blood +'.

Yaoi

Primarily like Shonen-ai (male with male)

Yuri

Primarily like Shoujo-ai (girl with girl)

Hope you enjoyed browsing through the various genres. The dilemma to distinguish various Anime is finally resolved.