15 Best Anime About War And Military With a Deeper Storyline

The Shounen anime is overwhelming with plenty of good action, thrilling tournaments, monster-slaying and mid-blowing sports battles. When it comes to detailed widespread combat anime on topics such as war and military, there are a handful of shows that fully serve the military trope.

So in this cream-of-the-crop content, we will be highlighting watch-worthy & talk-worthy anime about war, military, and politics. Keep in mind the below-mentioned shows will be fully focused on war & military topics such as war-torn countries, large-scale group battles, and individual character’s struggles & motives, so this list is going to be damn exciting.

15: Avatar The Last Airbender

Avatar The last airbender is american based anime about ancient war

Despite not being accepted as a classic cult Japanese anime series, Avatar is recognized as an American Animated series staged in an Asiatic-inspired world. Whether it’s Japanese or American, global anime fans should not be bothered by its origin and instead, enjoy one of the best anime about ancient war and the self-discovery of Aang “The Last Airbender“.

In a world divided by the elements of water, earth, fire and air, the Fire Nation has launched a brutal war of expansion. Only the Avatar, the master of all four elements, can restore balance.

After vanishing a century ago, Aang the current avatar has been founded frozen in an iceberg by Katara and Sokka of the Southern Water Tribe.  Now the hope of whole world nations is weighted on Avatar who only has the potential to neutralize this war.

14: The Pilot’s Love Song

Pilot's love songs is a thought provoking anime about war

In my honest remarks, The Pilot’s Love Song is definitely not the best war-focused anime, however, it delivers a combination of heavy-hitting drama and, a little bit of romance staged in a war-torn world. All generic features aside the blend of its action with characters’ emotions will make you cry if you’re a sofie at heart.

This story begins as a light-hearted comical show where the protagonist Kal-el Albus is sent to Isla “an island in the sky” to plot revenge. He was enjoying his carefree life attending Cadoques High’s Aerial Division until a surprise attack by another air tribe drags Isla into a bloody war.

13: Kingdom Of Ruins

Kingdoms of Ruin is latest anime about war and revenge

Kingdoms of Ruins is one of the latest anime about war with plot twists like no other anime. Honestly from its first episode to last, you’ll be scratching your head about how the hell this happened! One terrible thing about this anime is its animations which is kind of slow relative to its plot action, however its static art style with rich landscapes will amuse you.

God has created two races initially “Humans and witches”. Witches have been blessed with magical powers and considered guides for humans. After excelling in the field of tech humans became cocky and initiated war against witches.

In this war-torn scenario, a witch apprentice Adonis loses his beloved Witch Chloe, and embarks on a vengeful journey to destroy humans for this sin.

12: Gate

Gate is a sci fi fantasy anime about war and military

Just imagine the scale of war if things fantasy and sci-fi combined to deliver a military kind of action storyline. If you can’t imagine, just give a shot at Gate anime, a sci-fi mixture about war and fantasy.

When a mysterious portal opens in Tokyo, it leads to a medieval world engulfed in constant warfare. As armies wield sorcery in battles against fearsome dragons, Japan’s Self-Defense Forces must now intervene on this battlefield without rules.

11: Violet Evergarden

Violet evergarden is a anime about war effects on soldiers

Yup, I know Violet Evergarden is not an anime about war and the military because it’s a drama slice-of-life slow paced anime. Where it lacks action and crowded fights it can deliver a tearful story about what happens after war. So it’s an overall thought-provoking anime about war and its consequences on individuals.

Violet leaves behind the bloodstained battlefields after years as a deadly military weapon known as an Auto Memory Doll. With the war now over, she struggles to find purpose in the peaceful world and understand humanity’s complex emotions.

10: 86-Eighty Six

86 anime is mecha anime with war theme

I am not a big fan of Mecha genre and yet the ultimate reason for me to watch this underrated tale with no bad episode was its maturistic plot blended with Mecha theme. Discrimination, privilege, pride and unlikely bonds form the basis of Eighty-Six which definitely is the need of a mature Otaku.

In a desperate fight for survival, the nation of San Magnolia turns on its own people—those with dark hair and eyes are stripped of identity and numbered “86. Here enter the white hair elite beauty Vladilena Milizé who joins the Spearhead squadron to battle their inhuman maltreatment.

9: That Time I reincarnated as a slime

slime anime is a isekai anime about war

Many would have enjoyed Slime anime for its detailed fantasy world-building but what kept me engaged with its plot was its political strategies and widespread wars between empires. It’s a full package that an isekai-to-action lover can enjoy without losing interest.

This one of the best Isekai fantasy revolves around a commoner salary man reincarnated as an op inhuman slime in a fantasy world. Instead of enjoying a low-profile life in these mysterious lands, Rimuru makes his own country or territory combining different species of this world.

Obviously, a new country doesn’t stand a chance against already established ones, so there will be lots of wars and adventures between humans and other species.

8: Drifters

Drifters is a seinen isekai anime

Drifters is a seinen Isekai anime mostly resembling with Kouta Hirano’s classically famous world Hellsing. It doesn’t resemble in terms of plot but the art style and story’s non-stop action pacing. Anti-heroes lovers can’t resist this dark fantasy anime about war and non-stop action.

Following the Isekai plot many different historical figures suddenly transported to another fantasy world as Drifters to fight against “Ends” people responsible for the creation of the Orte Empire.

Among the protagonists, there’s our main figure Toyohisa Shimazu who also got transported in this war-torn world. Our protagonist is a kind of natural leader who gathers the other historical figures to fight against Ends.

7: Fullmetal Alchamist Brotherhood

Fullmetal Alchamist Brotherhood

In case you don’t know, Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood is a quite long and top-rated anime of all time on MAL. Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood immerses the viewer in a compelling war atmosphere.

The complex political machinations fueling the country’s militaristic direction are chilling in their plausible realism. Even smaller-scale battles carry weight, with violence feeling visceral and lives meaningless in war’s grinding gears.

War has ravaged the nation of Amestris for years. Brothers Edward and Alphonse Elric have joined the state military as “dog of the military”, attempting to regain what they’ve lost through forbidden alchemy.

As they hunt for the Philosopher’s Stone, rumors spread of shadowy experiments in the north and unrest growing along the eastern border. The brothers soon find themselves entangled in a vast conspiracy reaching to the highest levels of government, uncovering atrocities that could ignite an inferno of rebellion within Amestris.

6: Berserk

Berserk is a masterclass in crafting a gritty wartime atmosphere. It pulls no punches in depicting the unflinching violence and horrors that soldiers face on the battlefield. Through its stunningly grotesque artwork and heavy shadows, Berserk is undoubtedly known as a titan anime about war and its protagonist’s struggles.

In a dark medieval world ravaged by endless war, Guts is a lone mercenary who sells his formidable sword-skills to the highest bidder. Bearing deep scars from battles past, he lives only to slay his foes in an endless hunt for vengeance.

5: The Saga of Tanya The Evil

Where the anime world is known for beautiful waifus, there’s our wicked Isekai girl Tanya who is damn terrifying. Bro if you hate Isekai anime as their MC waste so much time finding his own purpose in this new land, I bet this dark Isekai’s Tanya goes in, hard.

In a world wracked by a ruthless continental war, Tanya Degurechaff rises swiftly through the ranks of the Imperial Army’s mage corps. Once a Japanese salaryman, Tanya’s rebirth as a little girl in this alternate world brings only relentless combat.

Driven by a fanatical will to survive, Tanya’s tactical brilliance and merciless magical prowess make her a fearsome weapon on the battlefield.

4: Code Geass

Code Geass is classic mecha anime about army and rebellion

It would be a shame in the genre of military anime to forget about the classic tale of rebellion Code Geass. Honestly, it could be boring just to watch crowded action scenes of war alone but with mecha mystery and vengeful rebellion, anyone even adults can root for Code Geass.

Though its introduction is useless for cult anime fans, this rebellious story revolves around Lelouch who got some badass Geass powers to get revenge against Britannia.

3: Attack on Titan

attack on Titan is a legendary anime about military

Though initially kicked off as a fantasy action anime with a complex plot, It was a charming journey of Attack On Titan that ended up as the best anime about war, military, politics, and mystery. After 2023 sadly AOT fans won’t be getting any news about this anime as this properly ended in 2023.

Whether we talk about character developments, soundtrack behind emotional action scenes, unpredictable plot twists, and overall mystery, AOT is a total rollercoaster of emotions.

Within massive walls, humanity huddled in fear of the ravenous Titans that have decimated their numbers. Among the survivors are Eren, Armin, and Mikasa, now soldiers bowing to rid the world of the monsters.

2: Vinland Saga

Vinland Saga is thought provoking anime with rich theme

Vinland Saga is the only award-winning adaptation of the same manga series that not only presents war on a widespread scale but also delivers its consequences and how such wrecked killing can affect soldiers and individual citizens.

This thought-provoking beautifully animated tale follows Thorfinn a vengeful protagonist who embarks years journey to avenge his father’s murder. Over time traveling with a pirate crew, he becomes so unstoppable that even historical figures call his name with pride.

Whereas its first season fully focuses on providing widespread wars, its second season beautifully brutally portrays war consequences enlighting the live of war victims.

1: Grave of The Fireflies

Grave of the fireflies is rich anime about war effects on individuals

Spirited Away, The Wind Rises and The Grave of Fireflies are such movies that force Otaku fans to praise Ghibli Studios. While people think non-stop action is a necessary element to make an anime about war and the military, Ghibli Studios has proven them wrong with this anime film about what happens after war.

In the final days of World War II, 14-year-old Seita and his younger sister Setsuko are left orphaned after Allied firebombing destroys their home and family. Struggling to survive in the aftermath of incineration and collapse, the siblings move from shelter to shelter in the devastated countryside.

As bombs continue to rain down and the flames creep closer, their story becomes a heartbreaking microcosm of humanity’s darkest creation: modern war, and the innocence it inevitably claims.


The ultimate motive for making this anime list about war & military-related shows is to rank the best in the military genre with a thought-provoking plot and watch-worthy art style. I hope you’ll like this list and would love to take a shot at Anime Auditor’s other relative pages.