They say never judge a book by its cover. But the first thing you judge is “how good” something looks…
It can’t be helped. We’re 70% visual, after all. According to Science.
An anime is nothing without beautiful visuals
The story doesn’t matter if you can’t stand how bad an anime looks. Because the whole concept of anime centers around beauty and eye-candy.
Without it – it has no foundation to stand on.
So with that in mind – here are some of the most aesthetically pleasing anime that will draw you in, from the VERY beginning.
Aesthetically Pleasing Anime:
1. Land Of The Lustrous
Land Of The Lustrous is an anime series by Studio Orange. I’ve noticed only a handful of people talk about it.
Despite the high ratings on sites like MAL.
If we’re talking about recent anime shows (2018), The Land Of The Lustrous will take your breath away and have you panting for life.
It’s that gorgeous.
I’m surprised at how refreshing the animation is, and how stunning the anime characters are in general.
The background scenery has some of the most sharp details. Nothing goes unnoticed or ignored.
It’s a CGI anime. So that’s part of its visual charm.
But don’t worry – it’s not the CGI garbage you tend to see with a lot of anime shows.
This is the kind of series with CGI so good, it’s more likely to convert you than scare you away.
2. The Royal Tutor
The graphics are really something else. Images don’t do it any justice.
But with that said – the anime itself is about 4 princes with their own “royal” tutor in the palace.
Vibes are similar to Assassination Classroom, in terms of personal development, life lessons and even inspiration.
But the animation quality in The Royal Tutor is much better and aesthetically pleasing with ease.
3. God Eater
This anime uses CGI animation, and the result is so refreshing compared to most anime shows.
I won’t claim to have watched ALL CGI anime, but God Eater takes the #1 spot for its impossibly good animation, realism, and powerful graphics.
The fact that it’s a horror/action series only makes the “dark” scenes more grim and disturbed. Because it seems so surreal when you experience it.
4. Little Witch Academia
This anime is made by the same studio who did: Kill La Kill. And like Kill La Kill, the graphics are really impressive and fresh.
Not to mention Kill la Kill was inspired by Gurren Lagann to some extent, so it’s no surprise why LWA looks so good.
And the best thing about this series? There’s no fan-service or anything else to ruin the fun.
It’s one of Studio Trigger’s most successful projects in the last decade, for good reason.
Orange is a lot different to the usual style of anime I’ve seen. Aesthetics and visuals have their own taste and flavors compared to your “usual” school series.
And the story is one of the most emotionally driven I’ve got wrapped up in.
It’s about Kakeru Naruse, a student who’s on the verge of suicide after his mothers death.
Guilt, shame, self-hatred and depression almost drive him to his own death.
But his friends with the help of a letter from the future… do their best to make sure he lives to see a happier day.
6. Terror In Resonance
Another impressive anime with solid animation, visuals and looks.
I’m not even the biggest fan of Terror In Resonance, but that doesn’t matter. Because if we’re talking about aesthetics, then this anime is so on point and hard to ignore.
On the surface – the anime claims to be about “terrorism” and that’s proven in the 1st episode.
But you’ll soon discover the story digs deeper than that, and there’s a reason to the madness.
Related: The Most Intense 18+ Anime Series That Are Too Mature For Little Kids
7. Snow White With The Red Hair
This anime is beautiful in almost every way. From the animation, to the background scenes, character designs and the romantic story that follows.
Not a single image or frame is missed with this beauty.
Annoyingly it reminds me of “Yona Of The Dawn” which you’ll understand if you’ve watched it.
But that aside – the visuals can’t be ignored here. And neither can the aesthetics and overall “feel” of the animation style.
8. Violet Evergarden
Released in 2018, there’s almost nothing that can challenge Violet Evergarden in a match of visuals.
Kyoto Animation is known for its gorgeous animation and visual quality in general. And the emotions expressed by each character here is only proof.
It’s what I call “flawless” for its aesthetics and art style. Not including this is a crime in my eyes.
Related: 9 Emotional Quotes From Violet Evergarden
9. The Ancient Magus Bride
Released back in 2017, The Ancient Magus Bride takes animation to new levels of “breath-taking”.
Even by 2019’s standards, there won’t be dozens of shows much better than this for its visuals.
It doesn’t matter how trivial a scene might be. Or how “small” a detail is. The Ancient Magus Bride catches it all, and puts it on display to make sure you’re blown away when you see it.
10. Kino’s Journey: The Animated Series
Adapted from the original series: Kino’s Travels, the animation, quality and eye-candy has been engineered to please.
From the lush backgrounds, bright scenes, realistic images and tasteful art style.
If you love anime shows about traveling the world and listening to people’s unique stories, this is all you need.
No other anime does it like Kino’s Journey.
11. Kabaneri Of The Iron Fortress
For an anime made by WIT Studio’s, not to mention the same studio who produced Attack On Titan, this shouldn’t come as a surprise.
Kabaneri takes cues from Attack On Titan, and applies its own style to give it something unique and special.
And that’s reflected in the anime’s story, plot, character designs and action.
It’s not as famous as AOT, but it doesn’t need to be.
It stands on its own 2 feet, in almost every way possible.
Relevant: The ONLY 12 Anime Like Attack On Titan.
12. The Garden Of Words
Nothing in the history of anime has ever looked this good.
The Garden Of Words was released years ago, and nothing comes close. Even in 2019.
The rain drops, concrete and every other detail is impossibly realistic. It’s almost as if you’re watching a “real life” movie come to life.
And the main characters don’t even make sense (meaning they’re so realistic it’s hard to wrap your head around).
Not the best movie, but the aesthetics can’t be challenged. It’s in a league of its own.
13. Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Madoka Magica is the most successful magical girl series to date (except for Sailor Moon, Precure and Yuki Yuna).
It’s officially one of the darkest shows ever made, too. Aside from the new magical girl show: Spec Ops Asuka.
On top of the interesting character designs and the impossible “hair that defies gravity”, it’s a gorgeous series.
Somehow it manages to blend “cute-ish” character designs, with sharp and solid animation… And some dark atmosphere to top it all off.
The anime series deserves all the hype it gets if you ask me. And the visuals don’t slack off, either.
14. Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid
Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid, produced in 2017 by Kyoto Animation.
As you’d expect – it was one of the best anime that year had to offer.
One stand-out trait is the visuals, but that’s typical of Kyoto Animation anyway.
It’s got the “aesthetics” part down. Because the anime looks good from all angles.
The stupid yet hilarious comedy, and the sometimes ridiculous fan-service only makes this anime more enjoyable, as well.
Kyoto Animation does it again with this gorgeous looking series.
There are 4 personalities in Hyouka:
- The laid back, lazy guy who’s smart but prefers to be introverted.
- The curious girl.
- The straightforward character.
- The humble guy who see’s himself as “average”.
All 4 characters work together to solve mysteries, even if it means “making up” mysteries on the spot. To give them an excuse to solve something.
It’s a thought provoking show in its own way, and each personality adds their own “spice” to the story.
It helps that it looks good, too. With fan-service being non existent (except for that 1 episode).
Produced by Shaft Studios (like Madoka Magica), Bakemonogatari is a large part of many “separate” series that bind together.
The themes are:
It’s an odd series, but the visuals as expected by Shaft are something else.
Most seasons of the Monogatari series have some nice aesthetics, too.
17. Yona Of The Dawn
Produced by Studio Pierrot, the same studio behind:
- Tokyo Ghoul.
Yona Of The Dawn is a romance/supernatural series with half as much action as Akame Ga Kill.
One thing you’ll appreciate other than the aesthetics, is the witty humor and the “seriousness” of the story.
Somehow none of those 2 elements get in the way of each other. It does the total opposite.
The only thing it lacks is a 2nd season, and maybe more action and depth to the protagonist.
Otherwise it’s become one of my favorites, and you’ll love it if “aesthetics” matters to you.