In this list I will be going over the 5 best isekai anime of 2020, at least in my opinion. If you don’t know what an isekai anime is, isekai literally translates to “other world”. Typically an isekai anime is based on a character that is trapped in another world. Usually this is a magical world. However, recently it’s been used to refer to any anime where the protagonist is sent to, or visits another world. Some people consider video game anime to be isekai, many of them share many similarities. However, these are not true isekai or at the very least the general anime community does not consider them to be isekai.
SPOILER WARNING: While I try my best to avoid spoilers in my anime reviews. It can be hard to write a detailed review of some anime without including spoilers!
Table of Contents
5: The 8th son? Are you kidding me?
The 8th son? Are you kidding me? This anime is pretty generic for an isekai actually. It has an over powered main character, who goes to a magic school, gets a harem, and becomes the lord of his own domain. There are a few things that set this one apart though. First of all the main character actually marries women, or gets engaged at least. Most anime tend to stick to the “friend zone” and tease a relationship. This one kind of gets straight to the point. Which is somewhat refreshing actually.
This anime is much more straight forward than most isekai and the story progresses much faster. In the first season (12 episodes) the main character goes from being a poor noble, to being a rich peasant, then a rich noble. It does not like to beat around the bush with it’s story. This does however leave it feeling somewhat choppy, when you are a noble in one episode, a peasant in the next, and a noble again in the next episode it can leave you as a viewer feeling like you are missing something.
The anime likes to jump around to different places very often, which obviously makes it feel very jumpy while you are watching it. For some people these issues aren’t very big and are just a minor annoyance. For other people this could completely ruin the experience of watching the anime.
I’m not trying to harp on this anime, and I actually genuinely enjoyed it. But if you are new to isekai anime then I do not recommend starting here. The anime is very bland and generic for an isekai, and honestly the only reason it’s even on this list is because there were only a handful of isekai released in 2020. But that being said, there were some good isekai released in 2020 so I definitely recommend reading on.
4: By the Grace of the Gods
Speaking of generic isekai, the thing that sets this anime apart is how it does generic. I would actually classify this anime as generic for an isekai, but it doesn’t do generic in the same way taht a normal generic isekai does. What do I mean by this you might ask? Well the plot of this anime is generic, but the story is far from it.
This anime is about a regular office worker reincarnated as a young man in another world. He’s given a guidebook by god, which explains magic, his skills and abilities and various other necessities. He practices magic daily and becomes quite powerful, he also tames slimes. If you’re looking for an anime version of slime rancher then this is more or less you’re go to.
The primary focus of this anime is the main character and his army of slimes. He seems to be completely obsessed with the small jiggly creatures. He uses his simes to preform various jobs and requests for the local adventurers guild increasing in rank. He even opens a shop using his slimes.
So the story of the anime isn’t really typical for an isekai, it follows a slime breeder just doing pretty normal and uneventful things using his slimes. It’s more like a slice of life in that sense. But the plot is very generic for an isekai. An over powered protagonist, transported to another word, very good at magic, and pretty much everything else, joins and adventurers guild and uses his power to slap powerful monsters and help the people, eventually becoming a hero. If you’re into isekai then I would really recommend this one to watch, but again if you are completely new to the genre then I would not recommend this as your first isekai.
3: My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!
Also featured on my list of longest named anime, you can read that here. This anime is actually pretty good, and definitely does not follow the generic isekai script. This anime is about a young schoolgirl who loves dating sims. Right away it starts to sound like a generic reverse harem anime. But I assure you it is not. I honestly put this anime off for quite some time because it looks and sounds like a reverse harem, and while it does seem to start out that way. As it continues though you realize it’s more of a parody on generic reverse harem anime.
So she is trapped in another world that is more or less an exact copy of the dating sim she was playing. The only problem? She is in the body of the primary antagonist of the game. The antagonist always ends up either dead or exiled at the end of the game depending on the rout that the protagonist chooses to follow. This usually results in a satisfying ending, well that is if you aren’t the antagonist.
So her Job now is to stay alive and try not to get exiled. Her first goal is to get all of the guys on her side. She accidentally gets all of the guys and a couple of girls to fall for her. But she is concentrating so hard at avoiding the death flags that she is completely oblivious to this. Eventually the guys begin to form relationships with the girls who surround her and everyone just starts to see her as a snack obsessed friend.
The anime is very funny, it’s a great comedy, and is a far cry from the generic isekai script so this is one I would actually recommend watching!
2: Kuma Kuma Kuma Bear
This is a generic isekai in all of the best ways. Honestly at first glance this appears to be an anime aimed at a much younger audience. And it might be, but it is very good actually. It’s more or less a parody of the generic isekai script. The main character is transported to another world with an over powered ability, in this case a suit that looks like a cutsey bear costume. Our protagonist absolutely hates the appearance of her suit, thinking that it makes a good set of pajamas, but that’s about it.
The problem? If she takes it off she more or less becomes a normal human. This is a problem when you’re in a world full of scary monsters that love to eat humans. When she first starts adventuring everyone looks down on her because of her cutsey appearance, but that quickly changes when her accomplishments lead her to be compared to the best adventuring parties.
Over time her actions start to become political as reforming the landscape of a nation because you’re bored tends to be looked down upon. And defeating certain monsters leads you to be seen as a national treasure. It doesn’t hurt either that the young princess completely falls for your bear costume. Actually every kid in the kingdom falls for her bear costume leading her to be one of the most popular people in the nation.
Overall I cant really express how funny this anime actually is. If you like a good comedy then this one is definitely worth watching!
1: Kami no Tou: Tower of God
So here is where I would usually include a few honorable mentions. However, considering how few isekai were actually released in 2020, and how low quality some of them were, I decided to skip straight to number 1. And this anime is no joke. It’s honestly debated whether this should be considered an isekai or not, but I do consider it one. If you consider this an isekai then this anime is more than worthy of the number 1 spot on this list. In fact I would even include it on a list of best isekai anime ever made. This anime is a genius.
If you aren’t familiar this anime starts out as a webtoon, effectively a Korean web manga. It was animated in Japan though. The cultural references from Korea rather than Japan give this anime a completely different feel from a normal anime. The story is very well done, and the characters not what you typically expect from Japanese anime.
Overall I really can not express exactly how good this anime is, and that’s just the first season, while I haven’t read the webtoon myself, everyone I’ve heard from says to expect even greater things from season two. Assuming of course that it’s animated in the same style as season one. Overall this is probably one of the best isekai to date, and is truly a diamond in the rough for this year, and also how it landed a very solid place on my list of best new fantasy anime of 2020, which you can read here.
Regardless I highly recommend checking this anime out. Whether you are new to isekai, or an old time fan, or if you don’t even like it and you’re just reading this list to read it. This anime is a breath of fresh air in the anime community. So it comes highly recommended from me!
This has been my list of best new isekai anime released in 2020. What did you think? Did I miss any anime? Do you think one of these deserves to be higher or lower on the list? Leave a comment and let me know, and look forward to my next list of the best anime!