The best anime of 2024 so far

2023 was an exceptional year for anime. And if the first few weeks of 2024 are any indication, audiences can likely expect another great year of great shows.

From new seasons of returning favorites such as My Hero Academia, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, Sound! Euphonium, And Mushoku Tensei: Unemployed reincarnation to exciting new premieres such as Wonderful in the dungeon, Kaiju #8, Dragon Ball DaimaAnd Lazarusanime fans have a lot to look forward to in 2024.

To help you keep track of everything coming out this year, we’ve gathered a quorum of Polygon’s anime enthusiasts to compile a list of the best anime of the year. For clarity and convenience, these shows are presented in reverse chronological order so that the newest releases always appear first. We’ll be updating our list periodically, season by season, so stop by often to see what’s new, what’s hot, and most importantly, what’s best. To enjoy!


Image: MAPPA/Crunchyroll

Where to watch: Crispy roll

Sk8 the infinity director Hiroko Utsumi is back with another original anime series. This time it is a fantasy comedy about Araji Tomobishi, a shy young student who transfers to a new school full of losers and gangsters. Worse still, he becomes possessed by a powerful spirit whose power inadvertently puts him between two of the strongest gangs in his school. To top it all off, the poor guy just wants to lose his virginity, and instead he accidentally hits people, putting him in increasingly deadly and precarious situations.

If you’re looking for a nonsensical action comedy with over-the-top antics, JoJo’s bizarre adventure-like combat and memorable character designs, Bucchigiri?! is an absolute pleasure. —Toussaint Egan

Brave Bang Bravern!

A blue-horned robot staring at a red and white robot as it poses dramatically with an animated logo projected holographically behind it.

Image: CygamesPictures/Crunchyroll

Where to watch: Crispy roll

Fans from last year Mobile Suit Gundam: The Witch of Mercuryrejoice: there’s another great giant robot anime to watch this year, and again, it’s easily one of the funniest anime comedies of 2024 as well.

Directed by veteran mecha anime director Masami Ōbari, Brave Bang Bravern! follows the story of Isami Ao and Lewis Smith, two mech pilots who meet during a joint American-Japanese military exercise in Hawaii. When their military base comes under siege by an alien threat, all hope seems lost – until a giant humanoid robot named Bravern comes to save the day… but only if Isami agrees to pilot it.

But where exactly did Bravern come from, and how does he know who Isami is? The answer, for now at least, is that you don’t have to worry about it – just atmosphere! A big-hearted parody of ‘super robot’ anime with explosive action, fun characters and intense homoerotic undertones. Brave Bang Bravern! is an early contender for one of my favorite anime of 2024. -AT

Metallic Rouge

A woman standing in a forest of glowing alien plants, surrounded by a halo of light as intricate circular symbols bathe the upper half of her body in Metallic Rouge.

Image: Bones/Crunchyroll

Where to watch: Crispy roll

Bones, the critically acclaimed studio behind popular anime Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, Eureka seven, Mobpsycho 100And My Hero Academia, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. What better way to celebrate the iconic production house than with an all-new original anime that combines tokusatsu-inspired action with a Byzantine sci-fi plot?

It is set in a future where humanity has colonized the inner solar system and androids known as ‘Neans’ are at their beck and call. Metallic Rouge follows the story of Rouge Redstar – a Nean with the ability to disguise himself as a human who is sent to Mars on a top-secret mission. Together with her partner Naomi Orthmann, Rouge fights a terrorist faction of androids bent on overthrowing society, as they transform into a super-powered armored fighting form known as ‘Metal Rouge’.

Co-written by Yutaka Izubuchi (RahXephon) and Toshizo Nemoto (Loghorizon), the series feels like a perfect throwback to the aesthetics and storytelling of early aughts sci-fi anime, complete with wild left-field plot twists, dense world-building, and a New Jack Swing inspired theme song bop. It’s certainly an entertaining watch, one that requires repeat viewings to pick up on every new detail and clue the series manages to throw at its audience. -AT

Solo leveling

A black-haired anime boy in a blue hoodie with bloodstains on his face, holding a sword in a dark hallway.

Image: A-1 images/Crunchyroll

Where to watch: Crispy roll

React to Solo levelingI knew nothing about it other than it was one of the most anticipated anime releases of the season; I didn’t even look up the premise before diving in. By the time the credits rolled on the third episode, I honestly still couldn’t tell you what exactly happened in the third episode. Solo levelingbut I knew I was addicted.

By combining typical fantasy adventure beats with video game elements, Solo leveling is a unique and exciting take on the typical zero-to-hero story. Sung Jin-woo isn’t the most dynamic lead, I’ll admit, but the spectacular animation, impeccably choreographed action, and relentless pace of storytelling always keep me excited to play the next episode. —Sadie Gennis

Wonderful in the dungeon

A group of adventurers in various outfits and armor dissect a mushroom monster to cook in Delicious in Dungeon.

Image: Studiotrigger/Netflix

Where to watch: Netflix

Wonderful in the dungeon (also known as Dungeon Meshi) is the anime this year, with a fun cast of characters and a delightful plot: as a group of adventurers fight their way through a dungeon to rescue one of their fallen friends, they try to save money by eating the creatures they kill. It turns out that the creatures in this labyrinth are more edible than expected. Along the way, the gang learns a lot about the dungeon and the people in it by analyzing the creatures they kill and eat.

The author behind Wonderful in the dungeonRyoko Kui has an obvious love for the fantasy genre, as you can really see in her attention to detail when it comes to fantasy racing, crafting, and world-building that could rival even the best Dungeons & Dragons Dungeon Masters. All the characters are charming in their own way, and each episode will make you more excited for the next. —Julia Lee