Top 15 Dark Anime Like Attack on Titan

Attack On Titan is widely recognized as one of the most popular and influential anime series. According to MAL, it’s the most popular anime with more than 3,4 million members (people who have watched it). The series has attracted so many fans thanks to its mysterious, action-fueled, and captivating story. Fans who are looking for dark anime series like Attack on Titan will definitely find this list interesting.

Various anime lists recommend AoT to both anime newbies and veterans because of its versatility. This anime series has the potential to turn even non-anime watchers into weebs.

Overall, the story of Attack on Titan comes down to this: Eren Yaeger’s life turns upside down after the wall protecting his village from Titans, monstrous humanoid creatures, gets breached, causing utter havoc. He loses a close relative in a very gruesome way and witnesses firsthand the atrocious power of Titans.

After this traumatic experience, driven by anger, Eren decides to dedicate his life to the eradication of Titans by enlisting into the Survey Corps, an elite military unit that fights the Titans outside the protection of the remaining walls.

Here are 15 dark anime like Attack on Titan (Shingeki no Kyojin).

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15. Parasyte: The Maxim

Like Attack on Titan, Parasyte: The Maxim is a pretty gory and dark anime.

The series explores the conflict between humans and alien-like species from the POV of a special teenager. And why is he so special? Well, the alien-like worm lives in symbiosis with him instead of taking over his brain.

14. Hunter x Hunter (2011)

Hunter x Hunter starts as a typical lighthearted and cliché shounen with a lovable cast of characters that have unique powers. But as the series progresses, it gets REALLY gritty with lots of twists and turns.

The main similarity to Attack on Titan can be found in the Chimera Arc, where people are getting eaten by powerful species called chimera ants.

The anime follows Gon’s journey as he sets out to take a hunter exam and find his missing father.

13. Berserk

While Berserker’s anime adaptation has never reached the manga’s fame, it’s still another dark and bloody anime like Attack on Titan set in a similar period.

Guts, a talented swordsman, teams up with the flamboyant Griffith and his band of mercenaries known as “The Band of the Hawk” to fight their way into the royal court.

12. Code Geass

Code Geass is a show that tackles complex themes like war, philosophy, and discrimination. You will appreciate the moral dilemma in Code Geass if you enjoyed it in Attack on Titan.

Lelouch Lamperouge is a banished prince of Britannia on a quest to destroy the empire that destroyed everything he held dear.

11. Akame ga Kill!

Tatsumi is a young boy from the countryside who comes to the city to enlist in the military and earn money to give to his impoverished village. He sees the city’s capital as a place where he can live a happy life and find opportunities. But as soon as he arrives in the city, he quickly understands just how rotten it really is.

After a series of unanticipated occurrences, he is hired by Night Raid, a group of assassins attempting to overthrow the government and fight corruption.

10. Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba

Demon Slayer has achieved similar commercial success to Attack on Titan. Around 2,5 million people have added the series to their MAL watch list. Meanwhile, Attack on Titan has been added to roughly 3,5 million anime lists. The anime is loved for its excellent storytelling, enthralling characters, and first-class animation.

When we look at the plot, it follows a similar premise to Attack on Titan: The MC is a young boy who goes through a tragedy related to the slaughter of his family members, who were killed by monsters. These monsters are starting to have the upper hand in the world. Driven by the desire to avenge their families and protect what’s left, the protagonist will do anything that produces such a result.

9. Claymore

In a similar vein to Attack on Titan, Claymore features characters who live in an inhospitable world where they fight for survival.

Yoma are demons that devour people and may mimic their appearances. This enables them to effortlessly prey on humans by blending in with them Due to this, it is also challenging to locate them. The Claymores are the only method for identifying and eliminating Yoma.

The Claymores are female hybrids who can tell a demon from a regular human and have the capacity to slay demons. However, at any point, their half-demon side could seize control and transform them into carnivorous creatures.

Raki was exiled from the village after a yoma killed his family. Fortunately, he meets, Clare, a charming claymore, and joins her on her quest to slay the demons wreaking havoc on the world. But will he be able to support Clare in maintaining her humanity despite her daily battles with demons?

8. The Promised Neverland

The Promised Neverland checks off many of the same dark mystery boxes as Attack on Titan does. This is also the main reason why fans should consider checking out this survival anime with a lovable trio of protagonists.

The Promised Neverland begins with Emma, an orphan who lives her days in true happiness alongside the other orphans. Every child there enjoys their everyday pursuits such as playing and eating exquisite food. Apart from that, they also have to pay close attention while completing rigorous tests. But hold on. At this point, you realize that this is not your typical orphanage…

But it’s only after Emma witnesses the awful reality behind the real purpose of the orphanage that the orphans start to wonder what’s hidden behind the thick concrete walls on the orphanage’s premises.

7. D.Gray-man

One of the most underrated shounen, D. Gray-Man is filled with dark themes and plenty of action.

D. Gray-man is set in the 19th century and centers around a young boy called Allen Walker who joins an organization of exorcists, the Black Order. The exorcists use an ancient substance, Innocence, to combat a very powerful but evil man known as the Millenium Earl. His goal is to wipe out humanity for good, and he uses an army of demons for that.

After the Black Order finds out that Allen Walker might be the destined prodigy who is 100% compatible with Innocence, they realize that the ultimate defeat of the Millenium Earl might be finally within reach.

In both series, humans live in fear of supernatural beings who can consume them. An orphaned MC is hell-bent on exterminating the creatures and has a unique power that might be the answer.

6. Black Bullet

Black Bullet is set in a futuristic world where humans live on the brink of extinction. This is due to a parasitic virus called Gastrea, which is turning humans into a Gastrea, altering their DNA and form.

Like in Attack on Titan, the remaining humans are forced to barricade themselves behind a wall/barrier. Unfortunately, this barrier is about to collapse so the only option is to fight them.

5. Seraph of the End

Seraph of the End is another dark anime similar to Attack on Titan.

The protagonist of Seraph of the End is determined to kill all vampires and avenge his deceased family that got killed by them.

Both shows revolve around specially trained humans taking on supernatural foes.

4. Tokyo Ghoul

In the same vein as Attack on Titan, Tokyo Ghoul is another dark, gory, and suspenseful show that’s worth considering. Like in AoT, there are monsters who consume humans and a special MC who battles a lot of inner conflicts.

Tokyo Ghoul is set in an alternate reality where humans live alongside ghouls.

Ken Kaneki is a college student who ends up heavily injured after being attacked by his date who was—unknowingly to him—a ghoul. Fortunately, he is taken to the hospital in time and undergoes an organ transplant so that he can live. When he gains consciousness again, he slowly realizes that he has become a half-ghoul because he received a ghoul organ transplant. He has to face a new, harsh reality and adapt—that is if he wants to survive in the unrelenting ghoul world.

Prepare yourself for some of the most epic anime battle scenes and great character development.

3. Knights of Sidonia

This dark sci-fi seinen anime has only 12 episodes but that’s more than enough to leave a lasting impression.

The main similarity to Attack on Titan lies in the way how humans live in both series. They live in seclusion and fear because there are more powerful species that threaten their very existence.

The series focuses on the main fighting squad that is determined to defeat their alien foes.

2. God Eater

God Eater is cut from the same cloth as Attack on Titan.

We are introduced to a post-apocalyptic era where the reckless MC, like Eren, tries his best to eradicate the monsters that threaten the existence of humanity. The remaining humans are forced to live behind walls and they form squads to fight off enemies, similar to how people live in the AoT Universe.

1. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress

Fans who appreciate the post-apocalyptic setting of Attack On Titan will very likely love Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress.

The story of the series is set up in the time of the industrial revolution when suddenly an unknown virus spreads and starts to transform normal humans into the unknown bloodthirsty creatures known as Kanabe, who feed on the flesh of the humans. There is only one way to kill them and that is by destroying their steel-coated heart, protected by a number of layers. Nevertheless, if you failed to do so and in return bitten by them then only a fate worse than death awaits you as you will become one of them.

In between all of this, there exists a young man who successfully develops an anti-Kabane weapon in order to kill them, and here starts the ruthless battle between Kabane and the group of people who are ready to do everything in order to survive this horrific reality they are confronting right now.

Like Eren, the MC is a hot-headed half-human with a ‘kill them all’ mentality and a unique power that helps them fight. Their goals also draw parallels between the series because both deal with killing some sorts of monsters in order to protect people. 

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Mia Milanová
Mia Milanová

For years, I've been writing about anime & digital marketing, fusing my academic background (psychology) with my love for writing and anime (200+ shows devoured!). At 9 Tailed Kitsune, I share my love for anime and create a space for fans to connect. ✨

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