Everyone likes action, everyone likes a good, well-crafted romance, and everyone likes it when the protagonist, in a twist of heroism, saves the girl in danger.
What if we told you that you can find all three of these elements combined in a single anime?
And as if that were not already enough, we have also brought you together our top 20 with the best recommendations we could think of.
Rankings are based on our experience and personal taste. There may be spoilers throughout the article too, so be careful.
Table of Contents
20. Sword Art Online
Certainly one of the most talked-about series of recent times, with many series under its belt and the quality of them not exactly consistent.
The events center on Kirito, nicknamed the black swordsman, in different virtual MMORPG video game worlds, accompanied by as many allies as enemies.
Fans will already know this but the main focus of multiple of SAO’s animated seasons is Kirito’s rescue of Asuka. We awarded it the last position because even though it’s famous, the story and the execution are disappointing.
19. WorldEnd: What do you do at the end of the world? Are you busy? Will you save us?
This anime is known for its excellent soundtrack and cast of characters, both considered among the best of the release vintage.
500 years have passed since humanity became extinct due to monstrous beings known as Beasts.
The survivors live on floating artificial islands, but the Beasts are preparing their attack to conquer these as well.
Only a group of young girls, the Leprechauns, can wield the ancient weapon that can defeat these creatures: Karyon.
But into the lives of these young girls, whose lives hang by a thread, enters Willem, a young boy who is the last human being still alive, awakened after being hibernated for all these centuries.
It will be up to him to step in and save the day and the girls in danger.
18. The Daily Life of the Immortal King
A 2020 Chinese production that goes into 15 episodes to tell the story of Wang Ling.
The boy possesses incredible powers from an early age, but in order to lead a normal life, he decided to confine them in a talisman.
But when he is required to use them to save Sun Rong, the girl in question, he won’t think twice.
The concept is cool but the execution is mediocre due to the lack of meaningful character growth. We still recommend it if you like the theme and maybe to laugh a little bit.
17. Full Metal Panic
Take action, comedy, and science fiction combined with mecha elements and add loving moments, here you have Full Metal Panic.
In an alternate present in which The Soviet Union still exists, Cold War is still ongoing, fought by powerful Mecha.
In this setting, the protagonist is Sosuke Sagara, tasked with protecting and saving the mysterious girl Kaname Chidori.
A viewing characterized by exquisite animation techniques that will immediately make you think of anime from the early 2000s. The music is also quite good and it’s one of the main pros of this show.
16. The Rising of the Shield Hero
Originating as a light novel and later adapted into an anime, The Rising of the Shield Hero is an isekai fantasy, thus having as its premise the protagonist’s journey to another world.
After being transported to a fantasy world through a book, young college student Naofumi Iwatani will be chosen as one of four heroes entrusted with a legendary weapon.
He will be responsible for protecting the kingdom from cyclical waves of enemies.
Slavery is present in this world’s customs and the isekai setting is a great way of showing such a sensitive theme.
Naofumi’s most loyal ally, Raphtalia, was one of them, before the protagonist saved her, making her nightmares end.
Erased lasts a full 12 episodes and merges Mystery/Crime, Psychological, Supernatural, Thriller, and sentimental elements.
The main character is Satoru Fujinuma, a 29-year-old mangaka without any success, mostly due to suffering from the notorious writer’s block.
However, following mysterious happenings, he obtains a power called Revival that allows him to go back in time just enough to save people’s lives.
During his far from a happy childhood, one of his classmates had been murdered, and this is where his mission begins. What does this have to do with his mother’s murder?
The main mission will be to rescue the classmate, Kayo, his first love as a child.
14. Chrono Crusade
Chrono Crusade is set in the 1920s in New York, with America just emerging from WWI. On the way to apparent prosperity, evil lurks in the shadows in the form of hellish demons.
The Order of the Magdalene, a military organization, was founded to fight this menace. Priests and exorcist nuns are charged with fighting such demons to protect the public order and the world.
The two main characters are Chrono and Rosette, who go steady in this eternal struggle against evil, with the particularity of Chrono being a demon and Rosette a Nun.
The former is a repentant demon turned to good, the latter a nun. And in their multiple dangerous missions, Chrono will have to rush to her aid.
13. Snow White with Red Hair
An award-winning anime and one of the best historical romance anime that, as you may have already guessed from the title, openly takes inspiration from the Snow White fairy tale, along with its medieval-like historical setting.
Shirayuki is a young herbalist who leads a quiet existence in the kingdom of Tambarun.
One day Raji, the prince of her country, decides to take her with him as his concubine. Shirayuki does not want this and decides to run away to escape this arranged marriage.
During her escape, she will meet Prince Zen, who welcomes her to court as a herbalist to help her resolve the matter and save her, but the two will end up falling in love in a heart-warming love story.
12. Bungo Stray Dogs
Bungo Stray Dogs is a mystery anime with supernatural elements written by Kafka Asagiri and drawn by Sango Harukawa.
Atsushi Nakajima, the main character, is an orphan boy who lives with others like him in an orphanage. After being kicked out of the same, however, he finds himself wandering homeless.
And it is at this time that he rescues a man attempting to commit suicide, one Osamu Dazai, a strange detective. Tog He’s part of a detective agency with his partner Kunikida, who is peculiar, to say the least.
Indeed, both are endowed with supernatural powers and deal with cases deemed risky for the police force. He thus joins them in solving the particular cases to which they are assigned.
In one of the multiple cases, we will see Nakajima save Kyoka, a girl who later plays an important role in the story.
One of the major exponents of Isekai genre and one of the best anime with magic.
The protagonist Subaru ends up following an accident in the mysterious magical world of Lugunica. Here he will make the acquaintance of Emilia, a half-elf with whom he falls in love from the start.
But following an unfortunate accident in which they both lose their lives, the protagonist realizes that he can come back to life, much like a respawn in video games.
What mystery lies behind this strange event?
From here on, Subaru’s primary goal will be to save Emilia for love, since without turning around the anime is based entirely on their relationship.
It’s also worth mentioning that this is one of the best romance anime with demons and spirits in its setting in our opinion.
10. Ancient Magus Bride
A 24-episode anime series based on the manga of the same name by Kore Yamazaki and animated by Studio Wit.
The protagonist of the story is young Chise Hatori, a girl who, after losing her entire family in previous years, decides to sell herself off at an auction.
She wants to change her life and find some light after many years of suffering. To her rescue comes Elias, the other protagonist of the anime, whose head is shaped like a canine skull and he wants to make her a magician.
Ancient Mangus Bride is a great dark fantasy anime that has one of the best romance with an early couple, and this is all thanks to its wonderful cast.
9. Fate/stay night: Heaven’s Feel Route
Fate is one of the most popular series in recent years. Its universe is divided into several different media, where summoners, called Masters, evoke familiars and fight to conquer the Holy Grail.
Heaven’s Feel is one of the multiple routes of the franchise and is divided into 3 movies. Technically, the route focuses on Sakura, the girl who is rescued by Emiya, the protagonist of all the other routes.
Nonetheless, he is still one of the main characters in this movie. Considering that Sakura had a terrible past, as shown during the events of Fate Zero, her rescue is quite touching.
In the other routes, this doesn’t happen and she is left alone.
An action and fantasy anime with supernatural elements composed of two seasons of 12 episodes each.
The story follows the bizarre duo of Yato, a minor god, and Hiyori Iki, an average schoolgirl. One day, Hiyori saves Yato from a car accident, taking the hit instead of him.
The girl’s soul is not stable anymore and she cannot return to her body, so Yato will do anything in his power to give her body back and save her in return. But in the middle, a lot of things will happen.
If you want some romance and great action, this is the anime for you, even though the setting is nothing special, as it’s used very often in the anime medium.
7. Rurouni Kenshin
A great classic when it comes to samurai-themed anime is definitely Rurouni Kenshin, a 95-episode anime based on the manga of the same name by Nobuhiro Watsuki.
In this drama for proud Japanese warriors, stories of love and conflict evolve that are sure to make you appreciate the work, as this is one of the best action anime you can find.
The protagonist of the series is Kenshin Himura, a legendary warrior who, after helping to depose the Tokugawa shogunate, lives his life protecting people from injustice, and searching for atonement.
In this, he will be aided and abetted by the beautiful Kaoru Kamiya, whose meeting will kick off the events of the series.
Kenshin and Kaoru are a great couple and tender moments won’t miss. But their relationship will also be undermined by adverse events, where Kenshin will also be forced to rush to the aid of the beautiful Kaoru.
6. Ore Monogatari!!
The story follows the adventures of Takeo Goda, a two-meter-tall, muscular student who doesn’t have much luck with girls. Every girl he likes ends up falling in love with his far more attractive best friend Makoto Sunakawa.
One day Takeo rescues a girl named Rinko Yamato from an attacker on a train, and so the two unexpectedly fall in love at the first sight.
The original manga had good success in the East, even placing as the best manga for girls for multiple years. Very recommended if you like love stories and for lovers of strange couples, rather than the usual ones.
Ore Monogatari!! is one of the best romance anime on Hulu, in case you were wondering where to watch it.
5. The Vision of Escaflowne
From the same creator of the popular Macross comes The Vision of Escaflowne, an extremely ambitious project that it prompted no less than Bandai to allocate as much as 30 million yen per episode for their production.
The story revolves around Hitomi Kanzaki, an ordinary high school girl with two great passions: running and tarot cards.
Thanks to the latter she has a vision one night where she dreams of finding herself in an unknown world completely different from Earth.
But believing that the whole thing is just a strange dream, she doesn’t give it too much thought.
She will be forced to believe it when a dragon and a swordsman named Van Fanel, the other main character, appear before her one night during a training session.
After killing the dragon by saving Hitomi, the two are mysteriously sent to the warring planet Gaia, where the war against the Zaibach empire is heating.
Everybody knows Inuyasha, a big classic of the shonen genre and anime in general with one of the best romance subplots ever made.
The story stars Kagome, a young girl who, as a result of an accident, will fall a well and be catapulted into Sengoku-era Japan. Here she will be reborn as the reincarnation of the priestess Kikyo, to protect the four winds’ sphere with Inuyasha’s help, a canine-like demon.
The situations that the two will experience in their adventure in search of the orbs are many. And among them, Inuyasha’s rescues of Kagome can’t be missed.
Inuyasha is a really must that you should watch if you haven’t already. Its fusion of some of the best action, stunning settings, and romance is always worth experiencing.
Steins; Gate is one of the best Sci-Fi anime ever made, an animated adaptation of the visual novel that premiered in the spring of 2011.
The plot follows Rintaro Okabe, a boy who with his two childhood friends runs the so-called Futuristic Gadget Laboratory. The only notable gadget the trio has created is a microwave that has the mystifying power to turn bananas into green goo.
Okabe, who is also a big fan of time travel, happens to be at a conference on it one day. It is here that he will find the dead body of Makise Kurisu, and from which everything will begin.
The protagonist will discover that their Phone Microwave is the foundation for a time machine. As for every story with time travel, danger looms around the corner.
And with that, Okabe will have to save his childhood friend Mayuri from a dark fate, as well as Makise Kurisu.
Why? You will discover this by watching the breathtaking anime.
2. Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai
Based on Hajime Kamoshida’s light novel of the same name, Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai is a 2018 anime by CloverWorks.
The plot revolves around Sakuta Azusagawa, a high school boy who keeps to himself and has only two friends.
This is caused by the fact that rumors are circulating about him allegedly assaulting some boys. One day, while walking around the library, he runs into a girl dressed as a bunny.
The girl’s name is Mai Sakurajima, his senpai as well as a popular actress. The two will begin to discover each other, opening doors to their various past experiences, and end up falling in love.
Mai suffers from a particular mental condition, similar to depression. Sakuta will help her a lot in this, bringing her out of her shell and back to normal life, saving her. And indeed, Sakuta is what makes this one of the best romance anime with a cool MC out there.
1. Monogatari Series
The story deals with the events of Koyomi Araragi, a generous boy attending high school who sees his life change after meeting Kiss-shot Acerola-orion Heart-under-blade, a vampire.
The main character will save her by giving away some of his blood, and this will make the boy a vampire too.
After becoming almost human again as a result of these events, he begins to find himself amid various affairs involving spirits, gods, and ghosts while living his private life.
Araragi is one of the most generous and constantly trying to help others anime protagonists you can find on the square.
So we’ll let you imagine how many times he has rushed to the aid of the girls in the female cast of the long-running series.