With so many isekai anime shows airing each year, there is a lot to pick from. But what if you want to narrow it down to the isekai series that actually have a good plot? Well, turns out, it’s not that easy.
So what makes a good plot? Some of the golden rules say that the story needs to be a combination of the following: have characters that stick with you, a great beginning and ending, compelling structure, suspense, and a situation that interests the reader.
In this list, I focused on curating a list of engaging and binge-worthy isekai shows that are well-known for having a good plot.
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10. Kumo desu ga, nani ka
That time I got Reincarnated as a
Slime Spider, OOPS SORRY, WRONG SHOW.
There have already been numerous comparisons made between this and Tensei Slime, and in terms of the game system, I agree. However, our protagonist Kumoko brings to mind Honzuki no Gekokujou from Ascendance of a Bookworm. She is both cute and funny.
The narrative centers on Kumoko, who has been resurrected as a spider. She’s not the only one, though! Her entire class appears to have also been isekai’d!
9. Log Horizon
Without mentioning Log Horizon, one of the best trapped-in-game isekai with an unquestionably good plot, it wouldn’t be a complete list.
Log Horizon, unlike SAO, begins to unfold slowly. Compared to other stuck-in-game isekai shows, it has a more realistic approach to life in an MMORPG world. That is to say, it mostly revolves around utilizing the surroundings and deftly manipulating the system to improve the quality of life.
The online fantasy role-playing game Elder Tale has gained popularity all around the world. But when “Novasphere Pioneers,” its eleventh expansion package, is installed, 30.000 users in Japan are stuck inside.
Shiroe, a graduate student who struggles with social interaction, is one of them. However, he joins forces with a diverse group of other players to create the guild “Log Horizon” in order to survive in a world filled with monsters.
8. The Twelve Kingdoms
This is a series with a strong female lead, amazing worldbuilding, and an original plot set in a beautiful, mysterious setting.
An odd man shows up one day and vows devotion to Yoko Nakajima, a dissatisfied high school student. Following a struggle with creatures that resemble demons, he then transports her and two of her classmates to another realm. In contrast to her classmates, she has changed physically and is able to understand the language. However, because they are Earthlings, they are considered haunted fugitives and must constantly travel across the 12 nations in order to survive and discover why they were sent here.
7. No Game No Life
Despite being created in 2014, No Game No Life’s relevancy hasn’t changed much in the past eight years.
NEET siblings Sora and Shiro have little interest in the outside world. They prefer to play video games at home and go under the alias “Blank,” which is well-known in the online gaming community. This is because Blank is reputed to be so brilliant that no one can defeat them.
One ordinary gaming night, they receive a bizarre email invitation to play chess. They agree and triumph, only to be taken to Disboard, a fantasy realm where Tet, the God of Games who had before challenged them, currently reigns. Every disagreement is resolved through playing games, and magical powers prevent physical damage.
The overpowered siblings give their old world no second thought and instead concentrate on becoming the new gods of Disboard.
NGNL’s plot is compelling because fans want to see how the genius duo succeeds.
The last few minutes of the well-known virtual reality game Yggdrasil are here. However, when the servers start to go down, Momonga, a formidable wizard and the leader of the dark guild Ainz Ooal Gown, chooses to spend his final moments playing the game. To his amazement, Momonga is still fully awake as his character even though the clock has struck midnight, and additionally, the non-player characters seem to have grown personalities of their own!
When faced with this unusual circumstance, Momonga orders his obedient followers to assist him in exploring and taking control of this new universe in order to learn what has caused this development and whether there are any other individuals experiencing a similar condition.
The plot is quite distinctive since it differs from do-gooder power fantasies. The OP MC and his subordinates are trying to establish world dominance, after all. This is what keeps it intriguing, despite the fact that it could occasionally be a little challenging. Because the author is a D&D player and fan, we can also see that the world mechanics there are very sophisticated.
5. Grimgar: Ashes and Illusions
Haruhiro awakens out of the blue, remembering nothing but his name. Although there are many people here, nobody seems to know anything. Haruhiro gathers a group of individuals and begins exploring.
Fans often praise Grimgar for the fact that the protagonists just acclimate to the new world and lose their memories of the old one. As a result, they don’t spend too much time on the “isekai” component.
Re:Zero is another excellent isekai with a good plot and a guarantee that you’ll feel high-arousal emotions throughout the whole series.
After being pulled to a new world, Subaru and his new female companion are both killed. He quickly awakens and discovers himself in the same situation as just before he was slain. And the day begins to repeat itself once more.
3. That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime
With its hilarious protagonist, fantastic world-building, and bewitching plot, That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime is one of the best isekai shows you can watch.
Slime’s MCr dies and comes back to life as a SLIME in a fantasy world like an RPG that is full of monsters and magic. His intelligence and special Predator ability, which allows him to steal other beings’ abilities, help him gradually but surely become OP.
2. Saga of Tanya the Evil
Tanya Degurechov, once one of Japan’s top office workers, was reincarnated as an orphaned young girl in a harsh world as a result of a bitter deity’s choice.
Despite having a seemingly innocent look, she soars through the air, brutally dispatches her enemies, and even commands an army!
Consequently, Tanya will emerge as the most dangerous individual in the Imperial Army because she puts efficiency and professional growth above all else.
All in all, Saga of Tanya the Evil has a truly unique twist on the isekai genre. I mean, it’s a war isekai with an evil and selfish MC!
1. Mushoku Tensei
Mushoku Tensei is a relatively new isekai gem. It has a gripping story, beautiful animation, and nuanced characters. The MC’s character development is among the most impressive because we witness his mental and physical maturation. In addition, the world is rich and well-built, which will surely draw you in.
The story focuses on a miserable 34-year-old NEET who dies in a car accident and reincarnates in a fantasy world while maintaining his memories and intelligence.