6 Anime & Games that Explore War in Very Different Ways

War themes have always been prevalent in works of fiction such as film and television. Anime and anime-inspired games are no exception. Here’s a list of 7 anime and anime-inspired games that explore war themes

 

Youjo Senki

Youjo Senki follows a twist on the old Isekai formula of “reincarnation and transported to another world” by combining Isekai with the “military” genre. The main character Tanya Degurachaff starts off as a sociopathic salaryman with multiple personality disorders that is murdered and teleported to another world by a figure claiming to be god. As punishment for being a horrible human, he is reincarnated as a girl into a war-torn, magical world with a reminiscent of Germany in the early 1900s.

Tanya progress through life as an infant slowly regaining knowledge until he is fully aware of his previous life by the age of 9. Desperate to live a comfortable life, he puts together a plan to join the military and rise into the ranks while spiting the god that did this to him sending Tanya on a wild journey of madness and insanity.

 

Hetalia

Hetalia blends real-world history with comedy. The series personifies varies countries, with an emphasis on those take played a major role in World War II.

There’s plenty of witty jokes and observations, but nothing too controversial or inflammatory. Instead of focusing on death and war crimes, Hetalia is content with poking fun at cultural differences and light-hearted stereotypes.

Think of it as the original Drunk History.

 

Grave of the Fireflies

Grave of the Fireflies is a somber reminder of the devastation Japan faced during World War II. The story follows a pair of siblings trying to survive in the countryside after the city of Kobe is firebombed by American forces.

Grave of the Fireflies eschews action and jigonism to show how everyday people suffer during war. It’s one of Studio Ghibli’s best and most emotional efforts.

 

Armor Blitz

Armor Blitz is a mobile and browser game where you assemble a squad of anthropomorphic tank girls from the WWII era and lead them to battle. The world takes place in Valhalla, resting place for the spirits of warriors and weapons. What was once a peaceful afterlife has become a warzone — the Corruption has entered your world and begun to invade.

Collect tank girls to grow your army, upgrade them to get stronger, and take back your land from the evil Corruption. As the newly appointed General, only you can take command and bring victory to the spirits of Valhalla.

GATE

GATE blends fantasy with the modern day for an overlooked aspect of the military: humanitarian aide.

The series follows the Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) and Officer Youji Itami exploring a fantasy after discovering a gate. As a result, Japan gets pulled into the new world’s politics, which includes war and rebuilding.

 

Valkyria Chronicles

Valkyria Chronicles is an alternate-fantasy take of World War II. You take control of Welkin Gunther and Squad 7 as they protect their homeland from Imperial forces.

Inbetween the hybrid tactical-shooter gameplay, you’ll be treated to a touching story of a small nation being dragged into a devastating war.

Let us know your favorite war based anime or game in the comments!

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Alex Jaxon
I've been hooked on sci-fi, gaming, and anime ever since watching Trigun, Outlaw Star, and playing Final Fantasy. I love exploring shows and subjects that have been passed over. Pro-VR, pro-lewd, pro-indie gaming, and anti-censorship. I take about 4 major trips a year to other countries and love to visit the local fan conventions (sci-fi, anime, games, VR) when I can.
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