10 anime series with the best character design

Tulisha srivastava
Anime with best character design

Character design is what sets anime series apart. Any good series needs its own set of iconic characters to make it worth the watch.

There are a lot of factors that distinguish an anime from the crowd. Whether it’s the storyline, plot twists, art style, or soundtrack, everything plays a part in making a series “iconic.” However, the first thing viewers notice in anime before watching it is its character design.

The heroes, villains, and even the side characters all play a major role in shaping the story. A good character design in any anime should have a good character’s aesthetic, personality, behavior, and overall visual appearance.

Characters in anime are, for the most part, incredibly unique, with gorgeous designs that are sure to be remembered for all the right reasons. As a result, some characters become the show’s highlights, owing to the unique nature of their designs. Here’s a list of ten anime series with some of the most engaging and amusing character designs.

1. Jujutsu Kaisen

The key visual of Jujutsu Kaisen Shibuya Incident Arc

There’s no denying that Jujutsu Kaisen is the epitome of modern anime, not just in terms of story but in every aspect. Perhaps no other series can compare to the level of individuality and depth each Jujutsu Kaisen character has. This anime really takes the top spot on having every single character that is memorable and glorious. 

Whether it is Yuji’s kindness, Gojo’s confidence, or Mei Mei’s greed for money, each character has a way to make their presence known. The complex power system in the series allows each character to possess unique abilities that also add to the overall charm of the series. 

2. One Piece

One Piece straw hats bounties after Wano

There’s no denying One Piece is the greatest story in anime history. The expansive worldbuilding and years of Luffy’s journey are incomparable. And all that is accentuated by the unique character design. The series has over a thousand characters, and many have made a place in the viewers’ hearts.

One Piece’s character design suits its bright and cheerful tones. Eiichiro Oda once stated that he gave the protagonist a rubber ability so the series won’t get too dark, no matter how intense the plot gets. He also introduces several bizarre and oddly shaped characters who surprisingly fit the story well. Despite the dark themes of One Piece with racism, slavery, tyranny, and so on, its intriguing character design always keeps the series light-hearted.

3. Naruto

An image of character design from the Naruto anime.

As a Shonen classic, it only makes sense for Naruto to have one of the best character designs of all time. The characters are influenced by a variety of different sources, such as Japanese folklore and mythology, and other popular franchises, such as Dragon Ball and Saint Seiya. 

Overall, the series characters are a unique blend of several influences, and they are noted for their distinct and intricate designs. The characters are mostly simple but memorable. What sets them apart is their unusual attire, spiky hair, and unique abilities. 

4. Hunter X Hunter

Hunter X Hunter anime long-running

In terms of character design, this anime series may have the strangest synchronization in terms of styling. The bizarre and overly emphasized character design fits perfectly well with the story’s dark themes. Hunter X Hunter has some of the most amazing villains in all of anime.

This weirdness, however, is what makes Hunter X Hunter storyline catchy. The character composition is entirely centred on the animal theme chosen by the chairman and consists of the most significant members of the Hunter Association. 

5. Demon Slayer

An image from Demon Slayer Season 3 finale

This historical fantasy series follows the never-ending fight between humans and demons. Therefore, the majority of the cast fall into two categories; demons and demon slayers. However, no others are remotely similar in the series. The heroes and villains are equally memorable. 

Furthermore, several have personalities and appearances somewhat parallel to their abilities. For example, Rengoku had a fiery appearance thanks to the Flame Breathing Technique he uses. On the other hand, Water Breathing users such as Giyu, Urokodaki, and Tanjiro are rather calm and collective people. 

6. Bungou Stray Dogs

Bungou Stray Dog Summer 2023 anime

As a Seinen series, Bungou Stray Dogs is not as widely known compared to other Shonen series. The series explores heavy themes such as child abuse, war, trauma recovery, and repentance. The characters’ names all reference real-life literary figures from countries such as Japan, America, Russia, etc. 

At the same time, their abilities are actually the titles of those authors’ books. For example, Osamu Dazai’s ability “No Longer Human” is a fictional book with the same author. The story follows a character who tries to mask his alienation and then attempts a failed suicide. This is no different from the Osamu from the series. Several such examples can be seen throughout the story, making it truly interesting.

7. Jojo’s Bizarre Adventures

JoJo's Bizarre Adventure anime character design

Jojo’s Bizarre Adventures has an art style and character design like no other anime. Its iconic style is popular for its wacky poses, character depths, and top-tier application of color. No two characters are the same since each has a physical trait that makes them unique. 

The use of buffed-up and slender formations distinguishes between powerful and lean individuals in the character design. Thanks to the variety of clothes and distinct color coding, all the characters are easily recognizable and set apart from one another.

8. Vinland Saga

Vinland Saga Season 2 anime series 2023

Another anime with the best character design we have on our list is Vinland Saga, which is just as underrated as any good Seinen series. Unlike many other anime riddled with over-exaggerated characters and plots, Vinland Saga has always opted for a more realistic approach. 

Even though the first season had a few larger-than-life characters, such as the joyously aggressive Thorkell, these were mostly the exception. Additionally, the show’s brutally honest portrayal of violence and the harsh reality of its surroundings may sometimes make it difficult to watch. But despite this, the character designs remain mainly unconventional. 

9. Bleach

An image from Bleach TYBW

Bleach has a rather extensive cast as one of the Shonen Big Three. Every character has a distinguishing feature that makes it easy for fans to remember them. The characters are overly exaggerated in several ways, which makes the simple art style somewhat captivating. 

Aizen remains one of the most iconic villains in anime history. It’s not just because of his monstrous strength or unparalleled genius, but the fact that the series has a way of making him unfaithful despite portraying him as thoroughly cruel is astounding. 

10. Spy X Family

Spy x Family main characters celebrating with streamers

Spy X Family quickly captured the viewers’ hearts with the adorable family dynamic. However, the series has much more to offer than daily family life. The story follows a time of war where the main characters work daily to keep the peace between two enemy nations. 

The characters mostly have secret identities that they keep hidden from even those closest to them. Loid Forger is a spy who is difficult to read, while Yor is a beautiful assassin. However, the series’ best part is the charming Anya Forger, who has telepathic powers. 

Many of these anime can currently be streamed on Crunchyroll and Netflix. In the meantime, check out our other anime coverage below:

Jujutsu Kaisen chapter 230 | 10 short anime series | 10 nostalgic anime series | JJK confirms Megumi’s return | Jujutsu Kaisen young Gojo | One Piece Gear 5 importanceOne Piece Episode 1071 | One Piece Gear 5 anime schedule | One Piece chapter 1089 | Jujutsu Kaisen Episode 4 | One Piece live-action trailer breakdown

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