[Updated] It has been 2 years since we made this post and its still visited since we all love martial arts anime. If you are looking for some great anime in the martial arts genre in the year 2018, please so ahead and check out the entire article.
However, if you have watched most of this already and looking for new anime in this genre, check out our recent post: New Martial Arts Anime
1. Baki 2018
Can you imagine yourself facing off someone who can annihilate an entire army barehanded? This might seem like a nightmare for normal people but it is Baki’s dream. Since his childhood years, he has no other goal in mind other than beating his father, Yujiro Hanma who is regarded as the strongest man alive. He rigorously trained both his body and mind for several years just to be at least worthy enough to challenge his father. But sad to say, during their first encounter Yujiro did not even considered Baki an opponent but a child trying to prove his worth and failing miserably.
The upcoming continuation to Baki’s journey is expected to be more brutal and intense than the last. It has been decades since the first season was aired so the sudden announcement of its second season got a lot of classic anime fans hyped. Known to be one of the best martial arts anime of all time, the wait is truly worth it as long as it delivers the same or even more outrageous fight scenes every episode. Fans would definitely witness various fighting styles like kung fu, karate, grappling, street fighting style and a lot more.
2. Hinomaru-Zumou 2018
Sumo wrestling is a famous traditional sport in Japan. Despite its popularity, we rarely see sumo wrestlers take the center stage in an anime series. Although I’ve noticed a few anime series that follows the life and adventures of sumo wrestlers, none of them are as grand as One Piece, Naruto, and Samurai X which are also based on Japanese martial art disciplines.
Hinomaru-Zumou 2018 aims to break the silence and introduce sumo wrestling to the world in a more exciting and action-packed perspective. The story will revolve around the struggles and accomplishments of Hinomaru, a rising sumo wrestler who may not be gifted with a big and strong physique but has a bigger heart and determination to cope with such disadvantage.
3. Dragonball Heroes 2018
There are a lot of speculations surrounding the newest installation of the Dragonball franchise entitled Dragonball Heroes 2018. The success of Dragonball Super made this anime series possible and millions of fans across the world are looking forward to another story involving Son Goku and the whole gang. Some online sources claim that the new antagonists are ancient Sayans who managed to survive when Freeza destroyed their planet.
I just hope they don’t mess up the power levels once more since these Sayans back then are obviously weaker than a Super Sayan and given Son Goku and Vegeta can power up and be as powerful as Gods, it’s interesting how the writers can think of villains that can challenge them. And with this, surely, most of its fight scenes would land in various list of top anime fights.
4. Yu Yu Hakusho Special 2018
The adventure of Yusuke Urameshi in the anime series Yu Yu Hakusho played a major role in starting the anime fever way back in the 90s. His easy going attitude which can instantly switch to a relentless and determined one if the need arises easily captured the heart of viewers. Together with his new found friends who also have their own unique personality and special abilities, they battled strong demons in a tournament to the death and even visited the underworld just to save earth. They are unsung heroes who did not ask for anything in return and are contented in just seeing their loved ones back in Earth safe.
Their story ended well especially with Yusuke reunited with his childhood sweetheart but no one would dare complain if they added more to it. The Yu Yu Hakusho Special 2018 is expected to be a hit just like its predecessor and with characters that millions of anime fans already know and love, there’s only a very slim chance that it won’t meet everyone’s expectations.
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5. Ultimate Muscle 2018
Fighting enthusiasts often frown when anything about wrestling comes up. The popular wrestling we often see on television is scripted and does not involve any kind of skill whatsoever so we can’t blame them. However, professional wrestling is a different story. They are not actors but real fighters who can submit people bigger than them and use their extensive repertoire of technique to disable their opponent and force them to surrender. It’s even considered by some as an art due to the grace and precision required to successfully pull-off powerful wrestling techniques. All of the wonderful things about wrestling are featured in the Ultimate Muscle franchise and they are releasing a new anime series this 2018. It’s safe to assume that it will still focus on our hero, Mantaro Kinnikumaan who is also known as Kid Muscle. What challenges await the wrestling prodigy this time around? Will his in-born talent and the techniques passed down by his father be enough to overcome them?
6. The King of Fighters: Destiny
Anime shows are usually based on Mangga and Light Novels but there are rare exemptions like The King of Fighters. This franchise started as a fighting game where the player chooses a character among a group composed of fighters with varied styles, weapons, and specialties. Later on, the game was improved and it became a team battle where you need to select three fighters to complete your team. Each of the fighters in the King of Fighter games has a unique backstory which is probably why it was not hard for its developers and anime producers to formulate a grand story that would link them all together. Given the success of the game, the anime series received tons of praises. Fans of the game were excited to see their loved characters and the special moves they have in game used in the anime version. The King of Fighters: Destiny aims to replicate the same success or even trample it with a better one. For me, this alone made2018 an epic year for both anime and fighting game enthusiasts!
7. The Emperor’s Strategy
Korean Light Novels are gaining popularity nowadays. Some of these novels even managed to surpass those made by Chinese and Japanese writers in terms of number of readers and overall popularity online. The Emperor’s Strategy carries the leading flag among all of them. This Korean Light Novel is expected to have an anime adaptation and everyone is highly excited about it. Who wouldn’t if we are talking about a story that has almost every tasty flavor packed in one including politics, action, history, friendship, and even romance? Although this upcoming anime show target’s mature audiences, I’m quite confident that the lovable characters, interesting story, and eye-catching art style will be more than enough to attract viewers of other generations. It will surely be a great samurai anime to watch.
8. Batman Ninja
Heroes are not limited to those with super powers. This is what Batman has proven over the years. Although it’s debatable that having insurmountable money and influence itself can be considered as form of power, we still can’t deny the fact that Bruce Wayne, who is the man behind the mask, is a mere human. Like any one of us, he can die once inflicted by a mortal wound or if deprived from oxygen. Nevertheless, his determination to implement his own version of justice is inhuman. He would go through any length just to serve what is due for those who defile Gotham city. He is cunning and merciless which makes him the super hero Gotham needs. But what if he is suddenly transported to the samurai era? How would Batman react with the new environment, allies, law, and enemies? This is what Batman Ninja is all about and every anime fan is exited how the popular marvel hero will turn out as both an anime character and ninja!
9. Kengan Ashura
Can’t get enough of Baki the Grappler? Are you hungry for more brutal and intense anime fight scenes? Then you should check out the upcoming anime series Kengan Ashura. It won an online poll where the winning manga series gets an anime adaptation and anyone who read at least three chapters of the manga would surely vote the same. Kengan Ashura has a lot of similarities with Baki the grappler but the most striking one is the main protagonist. Tokita Ohma, the young mysterious fighter featured in Kengan Ashura, started out as a nobody which is similar to Baki when he was hiding his true identity. No one knew his name or his origin yet he can defeat muscular street thugs easily and he does so even if he is outnumbered by a huge margin. He eventually finds himself in a gladiator arena run by influential businessman where they are represented by their own fighters. How will Tokita Ohma carve his name in the history of street fighting? Is his raw strength and peculiar technique enough to reach the top against seasoned and ruthless martial artists?
10. Majutsushi Orphen Hagure Tabi
Are you into fantasy/action anime? Do you want a better plot than the protagonist being transported to another world which is overused nowadays? If it’s a yes then look forward to Majutsushi Orphen Hagure Tabi this 2019. This anime series is bound to take the world by storm with a unique plot and lovable characters. If it manages to create a wonderful fantasy world alongside with an interesting plot then nothing can stop this anime series from reaching the same heights or even higher than Overlord and Dan Machi. Have you heard or read about this upcoming anime series? Are you looking forward to what new things it will offer in the fantasy genre? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
And it’s a wrap! Have you found an anime series worth your time? I know some of the titles mentioned above are not purely under the martial arts anime genre but I guarantee that all of them are packed with intense action scenes and cool characters with unique fighting skills and abilities. If ever you are not pleased with an entry included in this list, you can always share your opinion in the comment section. You might be able to convince me to improve the list based on your suggestion. And as always, don’t be shy to give us a LIKE AND SHARE THE ANIME LOVE MINA!