On this page, you’ll find our collection of free online anime games, based on animated series from Japan such as Naruto, Dragon Ball Z, Bleach, One Piece, and more! Go on adventures and missions, fight enemies, or design new outfits for your favourite heroes. If you’re a fan of multiplayer games, don’t forget to check out our Anime MMO games page as well!
Anime – Japanese animation
Anime is derived from the word ‘animation’. In Japan, ‘anime’ is used to refer to any animated cartoons, but outside of Japan the word is used to describe cartoons and animated movies specifically from Japan (and sometimes also non-Japanese productions that mimic the style and character designs, or ‘anime-influenced animations’). While commercial anime has been a very established media format in Japan since at least the 1930s, Japanese cartoon series only really began to enjoy mass popularity in the West in the late 80s and the 90s.
Anime in the West
In the 1960s, several adaptations of Japanese series, such as Astro Boy and Speed Racer, were released in the US and these cartoons were well-received. This led to the creation of series such as Vicky the Viking and Heidi, which were intended for both Japanese and European child audiences. However, anime really broke through into the mainstream with the release of the visually stunning movie adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo’s manga Akira, which was released in 1988. To an audience that conceived of cartoons as children’s entertainment, the post-apocalyptic violence, cyberpunk body horror, and large-scale urban destruction portrayed in Akira was a game-changer. It launched the 1990s wave of anime imports that followed soon after with series such as Dragon Ball Z, Pokémon, Sailor Moon, and Neon Genesis Evangelion.
Anime games online
The spread of the internet has continued to increase the popularity of anime outside of Japan, with various subscription-based streaming services offering both classic and brand new anime series. There are websites offering scanlations (fan-made scans and translations) of running manga series, so that fans can keep up to date with the latest chapters of their favourite comics. You can also find many games based on popular anime characters and series online, and we’ve collected some of the best ones on this page for you to play for free. Have a browse and find all of your favourite heroes and villains!