Looking for anime that will leave you glued to your chair? Do you like captivating, interesting and full of mystery stories? Do you prefer thrillers to conventional shonen ? This list is for you!
Suspense (also known as thriller ) is a genre that should usually surprise and captivate the viewer. A good suspenseful anime should keep you either scared or excited about what happens next, and desperate for conflict resolution.
For all you anime fans looking for a little more excitement than the typical shonen genre , this list is for you!
Monster , one of the most classic and acclaimed on this list, tells the story of doctor Kenzou Tenma. Tenma, a renowned neurosurgeon, is forced to choose between saving the mayor of his city or the life of a boy. Due to his recent rise within the hospital hierarchy, he makes the morally correct decision: Save young Johan Liebert.
However, this decision brings serious consequences to doctor Tenma and one of them is the loss of his elite position in the hospital. But due to the mysterious death of its director and two doctors, he regains his position, not without escaping suspicion from the authorities of having had to do with the sudden disappearances of the employees.
Due to lack of evidence, the doctor is released, and continues to work at the hospital, becoming its director.
Nine years later, when Tenma saves the life of a criminal, his past comes back to haunt him: once again, he comes face to face with the young man whose life he saved, now turned into a monster. This leads him on a hunt to repair the damage he has done due to his decisions.
Monster is a dark and gripping story of human nature, a mature offering that continues to amaze throughout its length.
A self-proclaimed mad scientist, Rintarou Okabe, rents a room in an old building in Akihabara, where he invents “gadgets of the future” with his peers. Mayuri Shiina, his childhood friend, and Hashida Itaru, a hacker whose nickname is Daru.
The three characters spend their time using the most promising device they have created, a peculiar machine nicknamed the “microwave phone”, which has the characteristic of transforming bananas into a green gel.
Miraculous as it is, this phenomenon provides nothing concrete for Okabe’s quest for scientific discovery… Until his fellow lab mates are called into action by a series of mysterious occurrences and get an unexpected hit: The Microwave Phone. can send e-mails to the past, altering the flow of history.
Steins Gate is an adaptation of the acclaimed visual novel by 5pb and Nitroplus , and tells the story of Okabe, who will have to deal with the weight that comes with obtaining the key that unlocks the realms of time. This series is rated as one of the best anime ever, and we couldn’t help but include it on our list.
Musashino City is terrorized by a wave of murders and attacks caused by an infamous young man on roller skates, Shounen Bat. The authorities try to catch him, but they do not understand the attacker.
As Shounen Bat continues to attack the town’s residents, detectives Keiichi Ikari and Mitsuhiro Maniwa begin to investigate the criminal’s identity, but as the number of victims continues to rise, paranoia also increases.
Will they be able to catch the killer, or will they get paranoid?
Satoshi Kon, one of Japan’s most acclaimed directors, directed this incredible series that mixes psychological horror with suspense in a story that will leave more than one glued to the seat.
Perhaps this could be the only anime on this list that needs neither an introduction nor a description, as Death Note is one of those anime that is recognized worldwide. However, for those looking to start their journey into the suspense and thrillers that anime can provide, Death Note is a fantastic way to start.
Shinigami are gods of death who can kill anyone, provided they have seen their face and write their victim’s name in a notebook called a Death Note. One day, a bored shinigami decides to drop his Death Note into the human world, just to entertain himself and see how things unfold.
The one who finds the Death Note that day is Yagami Light, a prodigious high school student, who finds society deplorable and tests the notebook to see if it works. After the criminal whose name he wrote in the notebook immediately passes away, Yagami marvels at his discovery and recognizes the devastating power he could hold in his hands.
With this divine ability, the young protagonist decides to end all criminals, to create a new world where crime does not exist and people follow him as a God. However, the police discover that there is a serial killer who is dedicated to killing criminals, and as a result, a game of cat and mouse ensues. In order to apprehend the culprit, Japanese investigators enlist the assistance of the world’s greatest detective: an eccentric young man whose only known name is L.
For anyone who is looking for a fascinating series and hasn’t had a chance to watch Death Note yet , watching this anime is a must.
Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica
I know what you’re thinking: How come a series literally titled ” Magical Girl Madoka Magica ” is on a list about thriller anime? What parallel world have we entered? And we understand the confusion!
However, you shouldn’t dismiss a book because of its cover, and Madoka Magica is one of those wonderful gems that is critically acclaimed for its plot twists and the darkness and depth of its themes. She has even been referred to as the “dark” version of the magical girl genre .
This anime tells the story of Madoka Kadame and Sayaka Miki, who are regular elementary school girls with ordinary lives. But, all that changes when they meet Kyuubey, a magical and mysterious familiar , and Homura Akemi, the new student.
Kyuubey gives them a proposal: he will grant any wish they make of him, but in exchange, each of the girls will become a magical girl, gaining the strength to fulfill their dreams. But all is not rosy, and newcomer Akemi urges them not to take the deal, because all is not as it seems.
Mahou Shoujo Madoka ★ Magica is a story of hope, friendship and despair, dealing with the difficulties of having magic and the price that must be paid to fulfill a dream.
Death Parade was released in 2015, and went on to earn the title of the best of that year, and with good reason.
After death, there is no heaven or hell, there is only a bar that is on the path of reincarnation and oblivion. There, the manager will dedicate himself to challenging groups of two people who have recently died to a random game of chance. That game will determine whether they will have a reincarnation or be forgotten.
Whether during a game of bowling or darts, each person’s true nature will come out in a parade of death and memories, following the whims of the bartender. Welcome to Quindecim, where Decim, the arbiter of death, awaits you.
Death Parade is a follow up to a one-shot OVA whose purpose was to train young animators, expanding the story and broadening the cast of characters receiving trials. But for Decim, the judge, things get complicated when a mysterious black-haired woman appears, causing him to question all of her decisions.
Zankyou No Terror
Japan is the victim of a terrible terrorist attack on a nuclear plant. The government feels helpless for not having been able to do anything, and the police go around in circles looking for a way to catch the culprits.
The city remains inert without any clues, until six months later, a strange video appears on the internet. In it, two young boys who identify themselves only as Sphinx directly challenge the police, threatening to cause destruction and chaos in Tokyo.
Unable to stop the mass panic spreading through the city, and desperate for clues in the investigation, the police struggle to take effective action against the terrorists, with detective Kenjirou Shibazaki caught in the middle of it all.
Zankyou No Terror (also known as Terror in Resonance ), tells the story of Nine and Twelve, the two young men behind the masked Sphinx figures. They shouldn’t exist, but they stand strong in a world filled with deception and secrecy as they bring the city to their knees, hoping to bury its tragic reality.
Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni
Don’t be fooled by the cute images associated with this series, because they are a trap. This anime is full of psychological horror, suspense, and mystery.
Higurashi, also known by its English name, When they Cry , is a psychological horror series that tells the story of a people with strange customs: Hinamizawa.
The story begins when the protagonist, Keiichi Maebara, moves to the quiet and simple town of Hinamizawa in the summer of 1983. The young man becomes inseparable with his classmates, Rena Ryuuguu, Mion Sonozaki, Satoko Houjou and Rika Furude, but the Darkness reigns beneath the facade of tranquility and simplicity that dominates their lives.
As the town prepares for the annual festival, Keiichi discovers the local legend that precedes it. First, he realizes that there have been many murders and disappearances in the town in recent years, and it all seems connected to the festival and the patron god of the town: Oyashiro.
Keiichi tries to ask his new friends about these terrible incidents, but they all suspiciously evade the subject and refuse to answer his questions. As increasingly strange events unfold, Keiichi wonders what his friends are keeping from him, and if he can really trust them.
When madness and paranoia begin to nest in the heart of the protagonist, he will come face to face with the mysteries hidden by Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni, whose narrative is told through multiple story arcs.
The series is based on the famous visual novel of the same name, which was a complete success in Japan.
Boku Dake Ga Inai Machi
Also known by its English title, Erased, this series tells the story of Satoru Fujinuma, who has a special peculiarity.
When tragedy is about to occur, Satoru is dispatched several minutes before the accident occurs. The nonchalant 29-year-old manga artist has taken advantage of this powerful yet mysterious phenomenon, which he calls “Revival,” to save many lives.
However, when he is wrongly accused of having killed someone close to him, Satoru returns to the past again, but this time 18 years in the past, to 1988. Soon, he discovers that this murder is connected to the kidnapping and murder of one of his former companions. class, the lonely and mysterious Kayo Hinazuki. These events occurred when Satoru was just a child, and this is a second chance to set things right.
Boku Dake Ga Inai Machi is a story full of suspense, psychological elements and manipulation that will not allow the viewer to get up from the seat from the beginning to the end.
Rainbow: Nisha Rokubou no Shichinin
Japan, 1955: Mario Minakami has just arrived at Shounan Reformatory along with five other teenagers who have been arrested on serious criminal charges. All assigned to the same cell, they meet inmate Rokurouta Sakuragi, a former boxer, with whom they form a close bond. Under his guidance, and with the promise that they will meet again outside after serving their sentences, the criminals will begin to see their desperate situation in a better light.
Rainbow: Nisha Rokubou no Shichinin follows the seven cellmates as they fight together against the brutal suffering and humiliation inflicted on them by Ishihara, a sadistic guard with a grudge against Rokurouta, and Gisuke Sasaki, a doctor who abuses young men. Facing these hellish conditions, the seven inmates must muster all the strength they have to survive until their sentences are served; but even if they do, what kind of lives await them on the other side?
Many of the reviews that talk about this series say pretty much the same thing: that they couldn’t get off the screen until they finished. Isn’t that what good suspense is all about?
Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor
Kaiji Itou is a good-for-nothing prowler who spends his days drinking beer and stealing hubcaps, until he ends up being tricked by his old co-worker. Suddenly unable to pay off his friend’s massive debt, Kaiji is offered a shady deal to participate in an illegal, illegal gambling on a cruise ship. This turns out to be nothing more than the beginning of his new life in Hell: thrown headfirst into a life-threatening roller coaster filled with mind games, deception, and lies.
Based on the first entry in Nobuyuki Fukumoto’s famous gaming series, Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji: Ultimate Survivor follows our unlucky protagonist. This, he is forced to fight not only against other people, but also against the mysteries of his psyche. Kaiji finds out the hard way that the worst aspects of human nature come to the fore when they hit the wall, and that the most fearsome dangers of all are greed, paranoia and the instinct for survival.
With a plot similar in some ways to Death Parade , gambling with your own life never works out, does it?
Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo
In the year 5053, French aristocrats Viscount Albert de Morcerf and Baron Franz d’Epinay attend Carnival on Luna. While Franz is just looking to have fun, Albert is looking for something else to fill his life, but finds more than he bargained for in The Count of Monte Cristo, a mysterious and charming nobleman who meets his gaze during an opera performance. .
Through some twists and turns, Albert befriends the Count and he introduces him to French society. The Count, however, has more on his mind than just friendship; he plans to finally unleash his revenge on those who mistreated him years before. Gankutsuou follows the interconnected fates of Albert and the Count and the ultimate price that must be paid for revenge.
The anime is a new version of the classic French novel about The Count of Monte Cristo, but with futuristic modifications and full of science fiction.
In 1972, a popular and charismatic student named Misaki, belonging to class 3-3 of North Yomiyama High School, died suddenly in the middle of the school year. Since then, the city of Yomiyama has developed a sinister atmosphere, due to the dark secrets it hides.
In the spring of 1998, ninth-year student Kōichi Sakakibara moves from Tokyo to Yomiyama, and to the same class and school as the late Misaki. Shortly after his transfer, he seems to correctly interpret the atmosphere of the town and becomes suspicious of the class representatives who visit him during a brief hospital stay.
Also, he is attracted to the mysterious student Mei Misaki, as the rest of the students and teachers treat her like she doesn’t exist. Ignoring everyone’s warnings, including Mei herself, Kōichi begins to get closer not only to her, but to the truth behind the terrible phenomenon that plagues class 3-3 of North Yomiyama School.
Another follows the story of Kōichi, Mei, and their classmates, as they are caught up in a series of tragic and unavoidable events, which will bring about the possibility of uncovering the terrible mystery behind Yomiyama. However, this could have lethal consequences.
Another ‘s story is full of twists and mysteries, and is one of the most popular and well-known entries on the list.
Megumi Shimizu, 15, dreamed of a glamorous life in the big city. However, her unexpected death in the sleepy town of Sotoba marks the beginning of what appears to be a ferocious epidemic that turns summer into a season of blood and terror.
A young doctor named Toshio Ozaki begins to doubt the nature of the disease and comes to understand that in order to discover the truth, he must abandon his humanity. Meanwhile, Natsuno Yuuki, an antisocial young man from the city, is plagued by Megumi’s sudden death and must realize the pain of friendship in the face of her own tragedy.
Toshio and Natsuno make an unlikely pair as they work together to save Sotoba from being transformed into a ghost town of vampires. Shiki , adapted from the horror novel written by Fuyumi Ono, goes beyond your average vampire story. It tells the tragic story of survival in a world where one cannot easily distinguish between good and evil.
Forsaken by God, the Shiki, as the vampires call themselves, have only their will to live while facing the fear of the paranoid and unbelieving villagers. Shiki explores the boundary that separates man from monster.
Higashi no Eden
On November 22, 2010, Japan was hit by missile attacks, an act of terrorism that fortunately did not harm anyone, and became known as “Careless Monday.” The tragedy is quickly forgotten, and society continues their lives as usual.
During her graduation trip to America three months later, student Saki Morimi’s life changes forever when she is saved from an unexpected problem by Akira Takizawa. Takizawa is cheerful, but strange in many ways: he is completely naked and suffers from amnesia, believing that he is a terrorist. Furthermore, he owns a strange cell phone loaded with 8.2 billion yen in digital cash.
Despite Takizawa’s suspicious traits, Saki quickly befriends the enigmatic young man. However, unbeknownst to her, this is the beginning of an exciting game of death involving money, cell phones, and saving the world.
Higashi no Eden chronicles Saki’s struggle to unravel the mysteries behind her savior, while Takizawa faces off against other individuals armed with similar cell phones and memories that reveal their possible connection to the event months ago.
Justice, and its application, has changed. In the 22nd century, Japan enforces the Sybil System , an objective means of determining each citizen’s threat level by examining their mental state for signs of criminal intent, known as their Psycho-Pass. Inspectors uphold the law by subduing, often with deadly force, anyone harboring the slightest ill will. Joining them are the Enforcers, jaded inspectors turned latent criminals, given relative freedom in exchange for carrying out the other inspectors’ dirty work.
Into this world enters Akane Tsunemori, a young woman with a sincere desire to uphold justice. However, as she works alongside veteran Shinya Kougami, she soon realizes that the Sybil system’s judgments are not as perfect as her colleagues assume.
Questioning everything she’s learned, Akane wrestles with the question of what justice really is, and whether it can be defended through the use of a system that may already be corrupted.
Yakusoku No Neverland
Surrounded by a forest and a gated entrance, the Grace Field House is inhabited by orphans who live together as one big family, cared for by their “Mama”, Isabella. Although they are required to take tests daily, children are free to spend their time however they see fit. They generally play in the garden, as long as they don’t venture too far from the orphanage, a rule they are expected to follow no matter what.
While life is quiet and simple, every few months, a child is adopted and sent to live with his new family, never to be seen again.
Despite this, the three “older brothers” have their suspicions about what is really going on in the orphanage, and are about to discover the cruel fate that awaits the children who live in Grace Field, including the twisted nature of their beloved. Mother.
This anime is one of the most recent on our list, but it is undoubtedly one of the best examples of the mystery and suspense genre that we have been able to mention.
Lonely high school student Yukiteru Amano spends his days writing a diary on his cell phone, all the while conversing with his two seemingly imaginary friends, Deus Ex Machina, who is the god of time and space, and Murmur, the servant of the god. .
Deus, after revealing to him that he is a real entity, grants Yukiteru a “Random Diary”, displaying highly descriptive entries based on the future and forcing him to engage in bloody royal combat with 11 other equally powerful future diary holders.
The last person left alive will be designated as the new God of time and space, and Yukiteru must find and kill the other 11 to survive. To achieve this, he must form an alliance with a girl who harasses him: Yuno Gasai, who also has a diary, and is responsible for ensuring his safety. But there is more to the girl than meets the eye, as she might have other plans for her unrequited love.
Mirai Nikki , although not to everyone’s taste, is an intriguing series, with moments of suspense and mystery where perhaps the enemy is closer than you imagine.
The suspense genre in anime is one of the best, and can sometimes be interspersed with sci-fi, fantasy, historical drama, and other elements that elevate it to its finest. Currently, these series are the best in keeping the viewer on tenterhooks until their last episode, but do you think we missed any? And would you be willing to take a look at the series on this list?