Time travel is a common plot device in anime. This anime depicts a wide variety of ways to interact with and alter time, including characters who travel through time, communicate with alternate realities, and relive the same day over and over again.
Even though time travel has been used quite frequently in anime, several episodes and movies have done interesting things with the concept. These stories have a fresh take on time travel without sacrificing quality prose, plot, or characterization.
Some of the best time travel anime series are those listed here.
1. The Time Travel Masterpiece That Is Steins; Gate
Many consider Steins; Gate to be the pinnacle of animated television. Time travel is the focus of this story, which follows the exploits of a “crazy scientist” named Rintaro Okabe. As SERN, which is also interested in time travel, learns of the machine, they steal youjo senki season and end up killing one of Rintaro’s pals in the process. In order to prevent his friend’s death, Rintaro must go through time, but his efforts set off a domino effect of time travel complications.
Viewers of Steins; Gate have praised the show for its realistic treatment of time travel and its well-thought-out canonical guidelines. Fans of serious science fiction as well as romance, comedy, drama, and the genre as a whole will like this show.
2. The Nobunaga Concerto, whose theme is like “The Prince and the Pauper”
Saburo, a slovenly high schooler, travels back in time to Japan’s Sengoku era and assumes the identity of Oda Nobunaga, leader of the Akechi Clan, owing of their striking resemblance.
It’s the facts and the incredible rotoscope technique that drive the plot of Nobunaga Concerto, rather than the relationships between the characters. They also didn’t resolve a major mystery before the end of the series’ 10 episodes.
3. Orange Tackles Serious Subjects
Orange follows Naho Takamiya, a young girl who, ten years in the future, receives a letter she wrote to herself. The story is based on the popular manga by Ichigo Takano. In an effort to prevent a new student named Kakeru Naruse from taking his own life, Naho and her companions use the information she gleaned from her future self.
The way Orange examines grief in his narrative by sending signals to alternate worlds to prevent catastrophes is refreshing and thought-provoking. The show’s popularity stems from its realistic depiction of despair and the relatability of its characters.
4. Future Diary (2011)
This is an older game, but it’s still enjoyable. It’s a free-for-all where players find out what will happen next through text messages. Middle school classmates Yukiteru and Yuno compete against ten others to become the next Deus Ex Machina, or God of space and time.
The primary relationship explored in Future Diary is one that is grim, vicious, and merciless. One of the leads is possibly the most vicious and psychopathic protagonists in the history of anime. Excellent for fans of yandere stereotypes.
5. Your Name Is a Beautiful Romantic Illusion:
The film Your Name was directed by Makoto Shinkai. Mitsuha Miyamizu, a young girl from Itomori, and Taki Tachibana, a young boy from Tokyo, begin to trade bodies. Throughout the film, the couple learns that they are physically and temporally apart. They band together to prevent the inhabitants of Itomori from being wiped out by a comet.
Critics and moviegoers alike praised your name. The movie’s animation, score, and emotional effect were huge draws. Mitsuha and Taki’s endearing love thriller keeps readers on the edge of their seats with their desperate attempts to recall each other while altering the past.
6. Tatami Galaxy’s premise is a lot like that of Groundhog Day
Tatami Galaxy’s premise is a lot like that of Groundhog Day, which is why the two movies are often compared. The format of Tatami Galaxy is similar to that of Groundhog Day in that a single day continuously loops. Watashi (which means “I” in Japanese) is the protagonist who constantly having flashbacks of his first day of college and yearns for a “rose-colored” version of the ideal collegiate experience. Despite this, he has no idea what this means.
All 11 episodes follow a fairly standard formula, but the series’ strengths lie in its distinctive visual design and excellent soundtrack. The coolest part of this story is the ending, which exemplifies the important moral that underlies all time travel stories. In other words, it’s not so much about making the perfect choice as it is about making a choice and then fully appreciating the consequences.
7. Erased (2016):
Erased, a 2016 psychological murder mystery with time travel elements, is set in Tokyo and Hokkaido. In Erased, our protagonist, Saturo, experiences a phenomenon called “revivals,” which transport him back in time just before something dreadful occurs, allowing him to prevent it from occurring.
After witnessing the murder of his mother, he travels back in time 18 years to prevent the same fate for himself and several of his former classmates. Anyone who enjoys mysteries and crime thrillers should watch Erased. It’s an exciting mystery that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
8. ‘The Girl Who Leaped Through Time’ is a delightful slice-of-life story in many ways:
A science fiction/romance film, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time was released in 2006. It was inspired by the same-named novel by Yasutaka Tsutsui. Makoto Konno, a high school student, discovers that she has the ability to travel through time. She actively seeks to improve the quality of her own and others’ lives through the application of this ability.
At first, Makoto utilises her abilities carelessly to advance in school and escape awkward circumstances. But when she learns that she has a finite supply of her strength, she must make some difficult choices. An endearing tale with lots of heart, The Girl Who Leaped Through Time is a wonderful read. Both the animation and the voice acting are excellent.
9. Inuyasha Is a Timeless Classic:
Fans consider Inuyasha to be among the very best anime ever made, therefore it’s safe to say that it will remain in their hearts forever. This is the tale of Tokyo teenager Kagome Higurashi, who finds herself transported to Japan’s Sengoku era. There she meets the demonic half-dog, half-human Inuyasha, and they embark on a quest to recover the missing pieces of the Shikon Jewel.
Inuyasha has been out for almost twenty years, yet its popular stories and engaging characters have not lost their ability to win over new viewers. This epic fantasy story about good and evil takes place in Japan and throughout time as Kagome and Inuyasha travel back and forth between the past and the present.
10. Zipang is a time-traveling epic set in the past.
Zipang is an anime based on the manga by Kaiji Kawaguchi that follows the events of a fictional war from the past. The show follows the people who serve aboard Japan’s most cutting-edge destroyer, the JDS Mirai. The Mirai is caught in a bizarre storm one day. After leaving the mysterious region, the party finds themselves in June 1942, at the beginning of the Battle of Midway. The protagonists of most time-traveling anime aim to alter some aspect of the past or the future. On the other hand, the Zipang crew does their best to prevent time travel. Despite their best attempts, the Mirai’s crew is drawn into the conflict and must fight for both sides. The protagonists of this narrative are engaged in an effort to counter the war’s totalitarian and military propaganda.