The Isekai (other world) genre in anime has exploded in popularity in the past several years. Riding the wave of this new trend came lots of amazing shows, but also an abundance of shows that were just awful, causing some to simply ignore anything with the label of Isekai.
To help keep Isekai on the anime fan radar I have put together a list of shows fitting this genre that I absolutely enjoyed and recommend for others to check out. This is a larger list so I will be breaking it down into a few parts. So here we go with Part 1:
No Game, No Life
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Genres: Game, Adventure, Comedy, Supernatural, Ecchi, Fantasy
Alternative title: No Game, No Life
No Game No Life is a surreal comedy that follows Sora and Shiro, shut-in NEET siblings and the online gamer duo behind the legendary username "Blank." They view the real world as just another lousy game; however, a strange e-mail challenging them to a chess match changes everything—the brother and sister are plunged into an otherworldly realm where they meet Tet, the God of Games.
The mysterious god welcomes Sora and Shiro to Disboard, a world where all forms of conflict—from petty squabbles to the fate of whole countries—are settled not through war, but by way of high-stake games. This system works thanks to a fundamental rule wherein each party must wager something they deem to be of equal value to the other party's wager. In this strange land where the very idea of humanity is reduced to child's play, the indifferent genius gamer duo of Sora and Shiro have finally found a real reason to keep playing games: to unite the sixteen races of Disboard, defeat Tet, and become the gods of this new, gaming-is-everything world.
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Demons, Magic, Fantasy
Alternative title: Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken
Thirty-seven-year-old Satoru Mikami is a typical corporate worker, who is perfectly content with his monotonous lifestyle in Tokyo, other than failing to nail down a girlfriend even once throughout his life. In the midst of a casual encounter with his colleague, he falls victim to a random assailant on the streets and is stabbed. However, while succumbing to his injuries, a peculiar voice echoes in his mind, and recites a bunch of commands which the dying man cannot make sense of.
When Satoru regains consciousness, he discovers that he has reincarnated as a goop of slime in an unfamiliar realm. In doing so, he acquires newfound skills—notably, the power to devour anything and mimic its appearance and abilities. He then stumbles upon the sealed Catastrophe-level monster "Storm Dragon" Veldora who had been sealed away for the past 300 years for devastating a town to ashes. Sympathetic to his predicament, Satoru befriends him, promising to assist in destroying the seal. In return, Veldora bestows upon him the name Rimuru Tempest to grant him divine protection.
Now, liberated from the mundanities of his past life, Rimuru embarks on a fresh journey with a distinct goal in mind. As he grows accustomed to his new physique, his gooey antics ripple throughout the world, gradually altering his fate.
Genres: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Military
Alternative title: Gate: Jieitai Kanochi nite, Kaku Tatakaeri
Off-duty Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) officer and otaku, Youji Itami, is on his way to attend a doujin convention in Ginza, Tokyo when a mysterious portal in the shape of a large gate suddenly appears. From this gate, supernatural creatures and warriors clad in medieval armor emerge, charging through the city, killing and destroying everything in their path. With swift actions, Youji saves as many lives as he can while the rest of the JSDF direct their efforts towards stopping the invasion.
Three months after the attack, Youji has been tasked with leading a special recon team, as part of a JSDF task force, that will be sent to the world beyond the gate—now being referred to as the "Special Region." They must travel into this unknown world in order to learn more about what they are dealing with and attempt to befriend the locals in hopes of creating peaceful ties with the ruling empire. But if they fail, they face the consequence of participating in a devastating war that will engulf both sides of the gate.
Genres: Adventure, Supernatural, Drama
Alternative title: Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi
Stubborn, spoiled, and naïve, 10-year-old Chihiro Ogino is less than pleased when she and her parents discover an abandoned amusement park on the way to their new house. Cautiously venturing inside, she realizes that there is more to this place than meets the eye, as strange things begin to happen once dusk falls. Ghostly apparitions and food that turns her parents into pigs are just the start—Chihiro has unwittingly crossed over into the spirit world. Now trapped, she must summon the courage to live and work amongst spirits, with the help of the enigmatic Haku and the cast of unique characters she meets along the way.
So I'm a Spider, So What?
Genres: Adventure, Mystery, Comedy, Fantasy
Alternative title: Kumo Desu ga, Nani ka?
The day is as normal as it can be in high school as the students peacefully go about their everyday activities until an unprecedented catastrophe strikes the school, killing every person in its wake. Guided by what seems to be a miracle, a handful of students are fortunate enough to be reincarnated into another world as nobles, princes, and other kinds of people with prestigious backgrounds.
One girl, however, is not so lucky. Being reborn as a spider of the weakest kind, she immediately experiences the hardships of her dire situation. Even so, she must press on to survive the numerous threats that endanger her life. Discovering that her new world has a system like that of an RPG, she tries her best to hunt prey and defeat monsters to level up and evolve. As she gradually grows stronger, she hopes one day her efforts will be rewarded, and that she will be granted a better life.
I will include some more of my favorites in Part 2!
If there is another type of list you would like to see us make, drop your suggestion in the comment section below.