5 anime to watch for the plot (and 5 anime fans love for the characters)

Sword Art Online: Alicization has better characters than plot (Image via A-1 Pictures)
Sword Art Online: Alicization has better characters than plot (Image via A-1 Pictures)

There have been a lot of shows produced in the decades anime has been around. Many of them have unique stories that capture the attention of fans for the entire season. These anime shows have intense driving plot points that keep audiences hooked till the very end.

Meanwhile, other shows use the characters to pull the audience in. They do not care too much about the plot as long as the characters are interesting. This is not necessarily a bad thing as long as the anime is interesting to watch.

Note: This article reflects the author's personal opinion.


5 anime where the characters were good but the plot was even better

1) Death Note

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Death Note is easily one of the most iconic shounen anime of all time. It follows Light Yagami as he obtains a mysterious notebook known as the Death Note that allows him to kill anyone whose name he writes in the book. He also seems to make acquaintances with Ryuk, a Shinigami. Light goes on a killing spree, murdering those he believes deserve to die, while adopting the alias Kira. The world's greatest detective, L, joins the scene to discover who Kira is and take him down.

Although the characters in this anime are absolutely fantastic, many fans appreciate the plot more. The cat and mouse chase between Kira and L captured the interest of all anime fans. When the show first aired, everyone would watch each episode excited to see what came next. They would also create their own theories on who would win in the end and how.


2) Hunter x Hunter

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Hunter x Hunter is known for being one of the best shounen anime out there. The main story follows Gon as he goes on adventures with his friends in search of his father, a legendary Hunter named Ging. However, this general plot is not what most people watch Hunter x Hunter for, rather the audience typically prefers the plotlines in each individual story arc.

The Yorknew City arc and Chimera Ant arc are said to be two of the greatest story arcs in all of shounen anime. The various side stories occurring all at once that blend to create a bigger picture was executed masterfully and makes for an enjoyable viewing experience. Meruem, King of the Chimera Ants, is also said to have had the best character development of all time during the Chimera Ant arc.


3) Attack on Titan

Like Death Note, the characters in Attack on Titan are absolutely stunning. The audience has grown up with many of these characters and has grown emotionally attached to them.

With that in mind, it is the intricate plot that makes people want to watch the show. The plot twists at every turn and Isayama's willingness to kill off beloved characters keeps fans interested in Attack on Titan.


4) Steins;Gate

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Steins;Gate is an incredibly complex and logical anime. It can get confusing at times with the various Worldlines and Okabe's goal of reaching Steins;Gate with Reading Steiner. But that is what makes it interesting and enjoyable. Fans love watching the events of this anime unfold as they try to figure out what is going to happen next.

Although the characters are absolutely amazing in this show, the plot and its execution are what make this show a timeless masterpiece. Steins;Gate did time-travel right and will always be a classic.


5) Fate/Apocrypha

The Servants summoned in Fate/Apocrypha (Image via Netflix)
The Servants summoned in Fate/Apocrypha (Image via Netflix)

Fate/Apocrypha is essentially about a Holy Grail civil war, known as the Great Holy Grail War. The Yggdmillennia Clan announced the Holy Grail to be in their possession and their intended secession from the Mage's Association. In response, the Mage's Association sent 50 of their most elite magicians but only one returned, this was Yggdmillennia's declaration of war. Each side gets seven servants, meaning 14 masters are participating in this war.

Most of the characters are not developed or fleshed out, which makes sense as the anime is only 25 episodes long, but this gives room for the plot to outshine the cast. The concept of a Holy Grail civil war is incredibly cool and makes up for many of the bland characters.


5 anime where the plot was overshadowed by the characters

1) Sword Art Online: Alicization

Alice and Kirito in Alicization (Image via A-1 Pictures)
Alice and Kirito in Alicization (Image via A-1 Pictures)

Sword Art Online: Alicization is a bit different than the regular Sword Art Online fans are used to. The newer season revolves around growing artificial souls in a virtual reality which can then be sent to the real world and put inside artificial bodies. Though this might sound interesting, most fans watched this season for the new and returning characters.

Eugeo, the deuteragonist of Alicization and Kirito's best friend while in the artificial world, quickly became a fan favorite. He was a cool, refreshing character who did not participate in any love triangles or anything of the sort.


2) Darling in the FranXX

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Darling in the FranXX has a typical mecha anime plot. In the distant future, humans have been brought to the brink of extinction due to mysterious giant creatures known as Klaxosaurs. Kids must pilot mechas known as FranXX in order to defend humanity.

Many fans found the plot to be boring, but the characters, especially Zero Two, were intriguing. The way her background was handled and her characterization was amazing and fans wanted more from her. However, many fans have expressed disapproval at her conclusion. They believe she should have gotten a better one.


3) Kyoukai no Kanata

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Kyoukai no Kanata does not have the most interesting story. It follows Mirai Kuriyama as she meets and makes friends with new people while trying to kill youmu, manifestations of a person's negative emotions.

Although the story is not the most captivating, the characters are amazing. Each character has a cool personality that made fans gravitate towards them rather than the plot.


4) ReCreators

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ReCreators is a show about fictional characters coming to life. The characters Sota Mizushino creates and writes in his notebook appear in the real world.

Although the story is not the most engaging, the characters make up the difference. Each character is unique and has their own story, especially the protagonist, Sota.


5) Hundred

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Savage, an extraterrestrial organism, has attacked mankind and the only way to fight back is to use a Hundred. Hayato Kisaragi joins a prestigious military academy to hone his skills and master a Hundred, right beside his female peers of course.

This is a typical mecha harem anime that is done all the time. The plot lacks uniqueness and is incredibly bland. The characters, however, make the show much more entertaining. Even though they are forgettable themselves, they bring more comedy to the anime and get laughs out of fans.