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Dragon Ball Z is one of the most popular anime series and since it has a lot of episodes, it might take you a while before you wrap everything up. But, since it’s not like One Peace or Detective Conan, you’ll reach the end at one point. This means that, after you’re done with Dragon Ball Z, you’ll need another anime to watch. You might already know which anime you intend on watching, but you might also be in the search for something new, especially something that is similar to your beloved Dragon Ball Z.
Anime is quite a diversified genre and you’ll be able to find something for everybody’s tastes. But, due to this diversity, it might not always be that easy finding exactly what you want and that is why we are here.
In today’s article, we are going to help you find some anime that are similar, in one way or the other, to Dragon Ball Z, thereby helping you in your decision what to watch now that you’re done with DBZ. We hope you’ll find our list helpful, so keep reading to see the 10 best anime to watch after Dragon Ball Z.
Dragon Ball GT / Dragon Ball Super
Genre: adventure, martial arts, comedy, fantasy
Original run: February 7, 1996 – November 19, 1997 (GT), July 5, 2015 – March 25, 2018 (Super)
Episodes: 64 (GT), 131 (Super)
Additional material: 2 anime movies
Dragon Ball GT
Due to a wrong wish of Pilaf, who summons a new dragon with the black-starred dragon balls, Goku returns as a child and the orbs spread throughout the universe. King Kaio informs Goku that if the spheres are not gathered within a year of the wish, the Earth will explode. So Goku, Son Goten and Trunks decide to go in search of them, with Pan taking Goten’s place in the end.
After various adventures in the universe, the three meet the robot Gil, who has taken the place of the Dragon Radar, and gather all the spheres. When Goku, Trunks and Pan return home they discover that Baby, an enemy belonging to the Tsuful race met during the journey, has arrived on Earth and has taken possession of Vegeta’s body. Only by reaching the level of Super Saiyan 4, thanks to the transformation into a Golden Monkey, Goku manages to defeat the opponent and save Vegeta.
Meanwhile, in hell, Doctor Gelo and Doctor Mieu – the evil scientist who created Baby – open a gap between the world of the underworld and the world of the living and create an artificial copy of #17 which, merging with that of Earth, gives life to Super C-17. Goten, Trunks, Pan, Uub, Son Gohan and Vegeta defeat all the old enemies who had come down the gate but they can’t do anything against the cyborg. Goku, after defeating Freeza and Cell and witnessing the death of Dr. Gelo and Dr. Mieu, manages to destroy Super #17 with the Dragon’s Fist and thanks to the help of # 18, furious for the killing of her husband Krillin by her brother.
Due to too many wishes expressed over time, the dragon balls have become corrupted and, at the moment of summoning the dragon Shenron, a blue dragon appears in its place and then splits into seven evil dragons. Goku and Pan easily defeat the first four, while Suu Shenron and San Shenron manage to stand up to Goku Super Saiyan 4, and are only annihilated with great effort. Lastly, Li Shenron appears, the most powerful of the seven dragons, who defeats even Goku and Vegeta. The only one to overcome the dragon is Gogeta Super Saiyan 4: the result of the merger between the two powerful Saiyans.
At the end of the fusion, Goku is defeated to protect Earth, and Vegeta is punched in the shoulder by the evil dragon in a desperate last attempt to attack. Goku then collects the energy of all the inhabitants of the universe in a Genkidama, finally disintegrating Li Shenron. Shortly thereafter, the original Shenron dragon appears who takes Goku with him and returns to heaven, seemingly merging with him. One hundred years later, Goku Jr. and Vegeta Jr. (descendants of Goku and Vegeta) face off in the final of the 64th Tenkaichi Tournament under the gaze of an elderly Pan, who recognizes an adult Goku among the spectators. Pan then tries to reach him, but Goku disappears into the crowd and then flies away on his golden cloud.
Dragon Ball Super
The story of the anime begins 8 months after the defeat of Majin Buu, when the Earth has once again become a peaceful place, and continuing with the events of the films Dragon Ball Z: The Battle of the Gods and Dragon Ball Z: Fukkatsu no F, in addition to telling the story after these events.
With this saga, the series begins and the search is narrated, by the God of destruction Beerus and his servant and mentor Whis. This takes themto Earth where Goku, Vegeta and the rest of the Z Warriors are living in absolute peace.
The next part of the series continues with the resurrection of Freeza by his subordinates who travel to Earth in search of the Dragon Balls. After a 4-month training and a new transformation, he travels to Earth to complete his revenge against Goku. This saga takes place within the framework of a Martial Arts Tournament between Universes 6 and 7, organized by the brothers and Gods of Destruction, Champa and Beerus, with the sole argument of knowing who has the strongest universe between them. They choose, as a priority, the best fighters of their respective Universes. For Universe 6, Champa chooses as competitors: Botamo, Frost, Magetta, Kyabe and Hit; For their part, the Universe 7 competitors chosen by Beerus are: Vegeta, Goku, Piccolo, Majin Buu and Monaka. At stake will be the fate of the Earth and the Dragon Superspheres, the latter much larger than those already known, each on a planetary scale.
In this saga, the Supreme God of all the Universes, Zenō, among other less important characters than this, is also revealed within the series itself. After the 6th and 7th universe tournament, Goku and the Z Warriors return to Earth. Monaka aims to reach the Planet Pot-au-feu, and will unknowingly do it together with Goten and Trunks where there is an important water protected by an unknown being, where he meets the most wanted bandit in the galaxy. Goku and Vegeta, with the help of Jaco, the galactic patrolman and friend of Tights, Bulma’s older sister, arrive on that planet to face more problems.
The next saga in the series involves Future Trunks. This character could barely escape alive to his alternate present since his reality is in chaos due to a new enemy known as Goku Black, whose appearance is identical to Goku’s, which is why Trunks uses the only alternative to return. in time to seek help from his friends from the past. In this saga, new characters were unveiled, such as Black himself and Zamasu, an apprentice of Kaio-shin from Universe 10.
In the next saga, at the request of Goku, the tournament of power begins, organised by Zenō, in which 8 of the 12 universes will participate since the 4 universes that will not fight have a higher mortality rate than the other universes . (It is defined by Zenō himself). Each universe must form a group of 10 representative fighters who will fight in “Battle Royale” mode: a massive Combat of everyone against everyone, simultaneously. Faced with the unexpected and strict rules, Son Goku only has a few hours to recruit the 10 members of the Seventh Universe. The participants from Universe 7 are: Son Goku, Krillin, A-18, Son Gohan, Piccolo, A-17, Vegeta, Ten Shin Han, Muten Roshi and Freeza, since Majin Buu is in hibernation and there is no way to wake him up. they face very strong fighters in them stand out the troop of pride and especially jiren who is the final rival to beat.
It is only logical that fans of Dragon Ball Z should want to see what happens next in the series. This is why Dragon Ball GT, the anime-exclusive sequel to Dragon Ball Z, and Dragon Ball Super, the real sequel written by Akira Toriyama. Both series are set within the same narrative continuity and follow the same basic premise, but expanding it to other worlds and including new characters. So, if you’re a fan of Dragon Ball Z, these two are certainly the first ones you’ll want to check out.
Yū Yū Hakusho
Genre: adventure, martial arts, supernatural
Original run: October 10, 1992 – December 17, 1994
Additional material: 2 OVAs (6 + 2 episodes), 2 anime movies
The protagonist of this show is a fourteen-year-old student, Yusuke Urameshi, a bully who has no respect for either the rules or the authorities. Despite this, one day he sacrifices himself to save a child who is about to be hit by a car; his death, not foreseen in the afterlife, creates a certain confusion (also because the child would have survived the accident anyway). To resolve the situation, he is given the opportunity to come back to life. After demonstrating the purity of his soul and having almost risked losing his physical body following a fire started by an arsonist in his house, he manages to come back to life thanks to the kiss of his classmate, Keiko Yukimura, without which he would’ve had to wait another 50 years before being able to reincarnate again.
After returning to life, Koenma grants Yusuke the title of “Underworld Detective”, charging him with investigating supernatural activity within the Human World. He then begins to carry out missions for the safeguarding of peace between the human world and that of spirits, increasingly threatened by the raids of evil demons. The first mission that Yusuke is required to face is to recover the three treasures of the spirit world (the hungry sphere, the demon-killing sword and a mirror that with the light of the full moon allows its owner to fulfill his every wish as long as that he is willing to sacrifice his life), stolen by a trio of demons: Gouki, Hiei and Kurama.
After recovering the treasures of the spirit world, Yusuke is sent to the tournament organized by Genkai, the teacher of the powerful “wave of astral light”, with the aim of stopping a powerful demon named Rando, who signed up for the same tournament with the aim of becoming the disciple of Genkai and steal the technique from the teacher after killing her. After many efforts overcome together with his friend / rival Kazuma Kuwabara, Yusuke manages to carry out his mission and therefore begins a training period lasting six months, in which Genkai teaches him to dominate and enhance his astral powers and with them his deadly technique: the Reigun .
As soon as he returns from his training, Yusuke has to face an invasion of demonic insects sent into the human world by the four venerable beasts, a group of demons with extraordinary powers locked in the “castle of the labyrinth”, from which they want to set out to conquer the world. This time, Yusuke can count not only on Kuwabara, but also on the unexpected help of Hiei and Kurama sent by Koenma to help him, as part of the punishment that the two demons have to pay for the theft of the treasures; at the end of a long series of battles that see the group busy, Yusuke manages to beat Suzaku, leader of the four beasts, drawing on his own vital force in order to defeat him and thus save the life of Keiko who remained in the world of men had been attacked by those who were under the influence of demonic insects.
The second part of the anime opens with the rescue of the beautiful ice lady Yukina, imprisoned in the villa of Gonzo Tarukane, a jewelry merchant, who had placed a large group of demons led by the Toguro brothers, a pair of apparently weak demons as they are beaten with relative ease, thus allowing Yukina to be rescued. Shortly after, the two brothers, believed dead, will prove extremely strong and cruel during the black martial arts tournament, a tournament in which Yusuke and his companions are forced to participate, because, in case they were to decline, they would have to pay with their lives.
After the winning the tournament, the protagonists will have to fight against powerful demons, led by Shinobu Sensui, who want to destroy humanity. Finally Yusuke himself will organize a tournament that will unify the world of demons.
This classic 90s anime certainly deserves a spot on our list because it has a lot of similarities with Dragon Ball Z. Conceptually similar to another entry on this list (Bleach), Yū Yū Hakusho is a anime that combines adventure with supernatural elements and martial arts. Sounds familiar? Well, both Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z have similar elements, with a big difference being that Yū Yū Hakusho is set in modern times. Still, this anime should be able to provide enough entertainment for Dragon Ball Z fans due to the similarities between the two shows.
Genre: action, comedy, superhero
Original run: October 5, 2015 – July 2, 2019
Episodes: 12 + 24 OVAs
Additional material: 1 original animation DVD
On a supercontinent, powerful monsters and villains have wreaked havoc in the cities. In response, millionaire Agoni founds the Hero Association, which uses superheroes to fight evil. An unassociated hero, Saitama, is from City Z and performs heroic deeds for his own pleasure. He has trained himself to the point where he can defeat any enemy in one fell swoop, but his unmatched strength has left him with an overwhelming feeling of boredom.
Saitama eventually becomes a reluctant mentor to Genos, a cyborg seeking revenge on another cyborg who killed his family and destroyed his hometown. Saitama and Genos join the Hero Association, but due to the low score on the written entrance exam, Saitama is placed on a low entry level and his achievements go unnoticed and unnoticed by the public.
The Hero Association calls all top heroes for a meeting and informs them that the seer Shibabawa had a vision that the world is in danger. Immediately after the meeting, an alien named Boros invades the planet. The heroes fight the invaders outside Boros’ ship, while Saitama gets on board the ship and fights Boros. Saitama meets other heroes such as the martial artist Bang, the Esper Blizzard and King, a hero who is considered the strongest man in the world. Monsters are also appearing more and more frequently at that. Another growing threat is the villainous martial artist Garo, Bang’s former apprentice and self-proclaimed “hero hunter” who fights and defeats heroes to get stronger.
The monster influx is apparently the doing of the Monster Association, an organization made up of monsters who want to destroy the Hero Association. They attack various cities, kidnap the child of a Hero Association executive, and recruit fighters by offering them “monster cells” that cause people to mutate into monsters with extraordinary abilities. Meanwhile, Garo bonds with a child who idolizes heroes, seeks out heroes to fight, and greatly improves his fighting skills. The Monster Association tries to recruit him and kidnaps the child when Garo refuses. Garo enters the Monster Association headquarters in City Z to rescue the child, but is captured.
The Hero Association is also violating headquarters to save the executives’ child, and a chaotic battle ensues that destroys the city of Z. The majority of the leaders of the Monster Association are killed, but many of the heroes who have become cocky in their skills are defeated. Garo, who has gained enormous power, defeats the remaining heroes before Saitama in turn arrives and defeats him. Despite the objections of the other heroes, Saitama spares Garo’s life and lets him flee to unknown parts.
After the battle, the Hero Association’s poor performance causes public opinion to decline. Several heroes and officials decide to retire or join the Neo Heroes, an up and coming rival group that, with its larger membership and the leadership of hero Blue, who claims to be the son of the, seems to be more effectively managing the growing monster threats for a long time missing explosion.
One-Punch Man is in so many ways a spiritual successor to Dragon Ball Z. It is a martial arts-based anime where fighting is equally as important as the characters’ psychological dilemmas. But, in a way, it is also a refreshing polar opposite of DBZ, since the show’s main character is the strongest person on Earth and is, therefore, usually bored because he lacks a true challenge. Still, the show fluctuates between complex psychological issues and severe boredom very effectively, which is why we definitely recommend it.
Genre: adventure, fantasy
Original run: October 20, 1999 – present
Episodes: 953 (as of December 6, 2020)
Additional material: 14 anime films, 13 television specials, 7 OVAs + 4 shorts
The series begins with the execution of Gol D. Roger, a man known as the King of the Pirates. Just before his death, Roger makes mention of his great legendary treasure, the One Piece and that it can be taken by whoever finds it. This marks the beginning of an era known as the Great Pirate Age. As a result, countless pirates set sail for the Grand Line in order to find it. More than twenty years after Roger’s death, the One Piece remains to be found.
A young man named Monkey D. Luffy begins his adventure from his home in the East Blue Sea to find the One Piece and proclaim himself as the new King of the Pirates. In order to create and become the captain of his own crew, the boy established the Straw Hat Pirates, the swordsman Roronoa Zoro being the first nakama that Luffy rescued and enlisted, allowing both of them to continue on their journey. Soon after, Nami, a thieving navigator, Usopp, a lying sniper, and Sanji, a womanizing cook, join them on their voyages, in addition to landing a ship called the Going Merry.
In their travels, the crew faces several powerful enemies such as Buggy the Clown, Captain Kuro, Don Krieg. or the man-fish Arlong. The group manages to reach Loguetown. After finally reaching the Grand Line, the group meets Crocus, the keeper of the lighthouse and caretaker of Laboon, a gigantic whale at the entrance. He gives them information to navigate the sea and about Laugh Tale, the island where Roger left the One Piece.
During their journey to Arabasta, the Pirates arrive at Little Garden, where they befriend two local giants, and confront various members of the Baroque Works. After Nami falls ill from passing through the place, they arrive at Drum Island in search of medical help, where the Straw Hats invite an anthropomorphic and medical reindeer named Tony Tony Chopper to join the group, and he accepts. Once the crew reaches Arabasta, a series of battles begin against the Baroque Works and their leader, the Warrior of the Sea Sir Crocodile. Luffy finally defeats Crocodile and liberates the kingdom, subsequently having the crew say goodbye to princess Vivi. Immediately afterwards, Nico Robin, an archaeologist, formerly of the Baroque Works, joins the crew.
After an encounter with the Foxy Pirates, who challenge them to a series of pirate games, a Navy admiral named Aokiji appears to them and tells them that Robin has been involved in the search for archaic stones called “poneglyphs”, which were created by an ancient civilization. After that encounter, the Straw Hats arrive at Water 7, where the carpenters of the place inform them that Going Merry is too damaged and cannot be repaired, causing Usopp to temporarily resign from the crew. They then have an encounter with a cyborg named Franky, the leader of the Franky Family, as well as Tom’s ward, who built the ship of the King of Pirates. The CP9, an intelligence agency of the World Government, captures Robin and Franky in order for them to reveal information regarding the use of the poneglyphs and the ancient weapons that they may contain, so their friends go to their rescue to Enies Lobby, where the Straw Hats declare war on the Government itself, resulting in a series of fights between the pirates and CP9.
At the end of the final battle against the agents, the crew manages to rescue Robin. In addition, Franky builds a new boat called the Thousand Sunny, in order to replace the lost Going Merry; he then joins the crew as their carpenter. After that, the pirates come across a ghost ship, where they meet Brook, a skeletal musician who was revived with a devil fruit, and furthermore, whom Gecko Moria, another member of the Seven Sea Warriors and captain of the gigantic Pirate ship Thriller Bark, stole his shadow.
Once the pirates defeat Moria, Brook joins them. After reaching the Sabaody Archipelago, the crew prepares to enter the New World, the second half of the Grand Line. While there, they befriend Silvers Rayleigh, the former first mate of the Roger Pirates crew, and ask him to re-coat their ship so they can cross the Red Line through the ocean floor. Straw Hat are involved in a revolt caused by a World Noble; to end the rampage, one of the Seven Warriors of the Sea, Bartholomew Kuma, separates them by sending them to different places using his powers. Luffy arrives on an aphrodisiac island called Amazon Lily, where only women live, ruled by Boa Hancock, one of the Seven Warriors of the Sea.
Once the boy learns that Portgas D. Ace, his adoptive brother, is a prisoner in Impel Down, Luffy sets out on a journey to free him, managing to release other prisoners, such as the fishman and member of the Sea Warriors Jinbe, who they locked up after refusing to collaborate with the Government, and old enemies. The protagonist realizes that his brother is now at Marineford to be executed by Navy soldiers. As soon as he arrives, a war breaks out between the Navy forces, and the crew of the renowned Edward Newgate, known worldwide as “Whitebeard.”
In the midst of the chaos and the climax of the battle, Ace and Whitebeard are killed. Luffy mourns the loss of Ace, as well as the loss he experienced as a child with his other foster brother, Sabo. With the help of Jinbe and at the request of Rayleigh, Luffy decides to send his nakamas the message of waiting two years until they meet again, all of them undergoing an intense training regimen, some of them being under the supervision of important characters. Two years later, the crew regroups in the Sabaody Archipelago, targeting Fishman Island and then entering the New World.
At that moment, a sectarian group of fishmen appear, claiming that their species is superior to humans, causing a coup to decide the future of the island. However, the Straw Hats defeat the New Fish-Man Pirates, indirectly saving that territory. The protagonists leave the place and arrive in the New World, but not before confronting one of the Four Emperors, Big Mom.
Arriving on the island of Punk Hazard, the group meets an old acquaintance and newly appointed Warrior of the Sea, Trafalgar Law, with whom they make an alliance to overthrow Kaido, another of the Four Emperors. The alliance quickly becomes meddlesome in a battle against scientist Caesar Clown, the one responsible for the partial destruction of Punk Hazard two years ago. After being defeated, the alliance mobilizes towards Dressrosa, a kingdom dominated by the Sea Warrior Donquixote Doflamingo, who secretly controls a market black of artificial devil fruits, known as SMILE.
Once there, Luffy enters a competition whose prize for reaching first place is the fruit Mera Mera, who previously belonged to his deceased brother Ace; however, his other adoptive brother, Sabo, makes himself known to Luffy, who at first distrusts him because he believed him dead too, but later he gives him his place in the tournament so that he is the one who wins the prize while he dedicates himself to save their nakama from the attack of the Donquixote Pirates. After the Shichibukai was defeated by the crew, the Navy agrees to silence the incidents, and they decide to call a meeting with all kingdoms affiliated with the World Government.
Sometime later, the Straw Hats split, being separated within a period of two days, as the new companion named Kin’emon, who joins them from Punk Hazard, tells them that they must find their friend Raizo to fulfill a mission. Especially who is on a “ghost island.” However, once the group regroups on an arcane elephant named Zou — which is where Raizo is found and inhabited by anthropomorphic beings capable of speaking called mink; there they discover that Sanji has disappeared. Meanwhile, one of Kaido’s commanders attacks the animal, leaving them with the options of carrying out an offensive or searching directly for the cook.
One Piece might not involve many martial arts elements, but this pirate fantasy has a lot of fighting that fans of Dragon Ball Z are certain to enjoy. The anime is one of the longest and most popular anime series ever and people generally love its light tone, the creativity behind the stories and the characters (especially the protagonist, Monkey Luffy), the humour and the great action sequences. While it might not rely on the same concept as Dragon Ball Z, One Piece is surely going to offer tons of fun for DBZ fans, which is why we strongly recommend it.
Genre: adventure, supernatural
Original run: December 16, 2006 – December 4, 2010
Additional material: 4 anime films, 1 live-action film
Ichigo Kurosaki is a seemingly ordinary Japanese teenager who has the ability to interact with spirits. One night, Ichigo bumps into an entity that had not previously known a shinigami – Japanese personification of the God of death – named Rukia Kuchiki, who he is surprised that he can see her and her latent spiritual power. However, their conversation is interrupted by the appearance of a hollow, an evil spirit that leaves the Kurosaki family and Rukia badly injured when trying to protect Ichigo, she tries to transfer part of her powers to Ichigo so that he can face the hollow in equal conditions.
However, Ichigo inadvertently absorbs them almost completely and manages to defeat the spirit with ease. The next day, Rukia appears in Ichigo’s class as a normal-looking human, and informs him that it happened because she has absorbed the spirit. Most of the powers cannot return to his world until she regains them. Meanwhile, Ichigo welcomes Rukia into his home and takes her job as a shinigami, defending good souls from hollows and directing them to Soul Society.
Which forces both of them to work together to achieve their goals while Ichigo learns about the workings of the shinigami and at other times is forced to save some of his companions or friends when they get involved in supernatural incidents. Eventually as his experience increases, Ichigo gets valuable allies that will help him better balance his double life as a teenager and shinigami as Kon, an artificial soul who personifies him when he has to face Hollows, Uryu Ishida, and the mysterious Kisuke Urahara the owner of an antique shop who knows a lot about hollows and Shinigami.
A few months later, in Soul Society they realize that Rukia had given her powers to a human, which is forbidden, so they send a detachment to arrest her and then apply the death penalty. Ichigo fails to avoid Rukia’s capture, but along with several of his classmates, who also possess spiritual abilities, is sent under the guidance of Yoruichi Shihōin to the Soul Society by Kisuke Urahara—they both turn out to be ex-shinigami captains—to rescue the prisoner.
There, Ichigo and the rest fight against the shinigami military elite and finally manage to stop Rukia’s execution. Back then, it is revealed that Rukia’s execution and Ichigo’s rescue attempt were manipulated by Sōsuke Aizen, a high-level shinigami, who was believed to have been killed, but it turned out to be part of his plan. in order to take control of Soul Society. Aizen betrays his companions and shinigami allies to go to Hueco Mundo, the place where the hollows live, becoming the main antagonist of the series. Thus, Ichigo allied himself with those who were his enemies in Soul Society when he realized the farce planned by Aizen.
Some time later, new enemies appear, which are sent to the real world by Aizen, who intends to destroy the Karakura City in order to forge a key with the spiritual energy that is there to be able to access the King of Soul Society and have control of all the worlds. Later Aizen He sends Orihime Inoue to be kidnapped to attract the attention of the soul society and Ichigo who upon seeing that the shinigamis consider Orihime a traitor for evidence that she escaped to the dimension voluntarily decides to go to her rescue assisted by her faithful friends and more afternoon of the support of captains of the society of souls.
As a result all of the Espada – the most powerful of the Arranks – are defeated, and Ichigo undergoes intense training to become strong enough to fight Aizen. Once Ichigo used all of his shinigami powers to defeat Aizen, he reverted to an ordinary human, thus losing his abilities. Seventeen months later, Ichigo meets a group of humans with special abilities who called themselves “Xcution.” After that, Ichigo undergoes arduous training to regain his shinigami powers. First, he manages to develop his own fullbring after the appearance of Shūkurō Tsukishima, the former leader of Xcution and who seemed to be the new antagonist of the story. However, after Ichigo manages to complete his skills, it is revealed that the true leader of Xcution is Kūgo Ginjō, a former surrogate shinigami whose plan was to train Ichigo and then absorb his powers. With the help of the Soul Society, a battle ensues that ends Kūgo and his plans, and Ichigo manages to regain his lost abilities.
Regardless of the supernatural elements that are present in the core of Bleach, this story still offers enough action, fighting and world saving that we can somewhat compare it to Dragon Ball Z. Bleach also has a great amount of psychological depth which makes it a great stand-alone show, but also something that you can easily get invested into after Dragon Ball Z, so we highly recommend it to you.
If you want to check our full guide for watching Bleach, click here.
Naruto / Naruto: Shippuden / Boruto
Genre: adventure, fantasy, martial arts
Original run: October 3, 2002 – February 8, 2007 (Naruto), February 15, 2007 – March 23, 2017 (Naruto: Shippuden), 5 April 2017 – present (Boruto)
Episodes: 220 (Naruto), 500 (Naruto: Shippuden), 177 (Boruto, as of December 6, 2020)
Additional material: 11 anime films
The protagonist of the series, a teenager named Naruto Uzumaki, is the bearer of the nine-tailed demon fox sealed in his body. Twelve years before the beginning of the events set forth in the narrative, the fox demon attacked the Village hidden in the foliage. To save Konoha, the head of the village, the Fourth Hokage, sacrifices his life and seals the demon fox inside his newborn son Naruto. The Hokage wished the people to see Naruto as a hero, as Naruto was holding back the fox demon. However, the villagers perceived Naruto as a demon in the flesh and hated him.
After the incident, the Hokage forbids talking about the fox’s attack, and Naruto only finds out about his unusualness by chance, years later. At the beginning of the first part, Naruto hardly completes his studies and receives the title of genin – a beginner ninja. He and two of his classmates, Sasuke Uchiha and Sakura Haruno, form a team under the guidance of the experienced Sensei Kakashi Hatake. As the story progresses, Naruto finds new friends among the villagers and masters new abilities, considering them necessary in order to fulfil his dream in the future – to become a Hokage. Soon Konoha is attacked; the fugitive ninja and the wanted criminal Orochimaru, together with his henchmen, attack the village, killing its head, the Third Hokage.
Being able to swap bodies with other people, Orochimaru wishes to obtain the body of Sasuke Uchiha, considering his hereditary abilities suitable for himself, since Sasuke is the representative of the Uchiha clan, the most gifted among ninja. Sasuke voluntarily goes to Orochimaru, believing that he will give him the opportunity to become stronger and take revenge on his older brother Itachi. Before the beginning of the events of the narrative, Itachi destroyed the entire Uchiha clan with the exception of Sasuke, for whom revenge became the meaning of life. Naruto, wanting to return the departed Sasuke, leaves Konoha and devotes himself to training. He works with the legendary ninja Jiraiya, a former comrade of Orochimaru, to prepare for the next encounter and eventual battle with Sasuke.
After training with Jiraiya, Naruto returns to Hidden Foliage Village and reunites with his grown-up friends. Team #7, which previously consisted of Naruto, Sasuke and Sakura, is being reorganized. Now it is called “Team Kakashi”, and Sasuke’s place is taken by another young ninja – Sai. The leading role of the opponents of Naruto and his friends is occupied by the “Akatsuki” organization, whose members seek to capture all the tailed demons, including the nine-tailed, imprisoned inside Naruto.
Meanwhile, Sasuke Uchiha, considering further training with Orochimaru senseless, betrays him and kills him. After finding his older brother in order to avenge the destruction of the clan, he engages in battle, during which Itachi suddenly falls dead. The Akatsuki leader Tobi then informs Sasuke of the truth that the killing of the clan was entrusted to Itachi directly by the leadership of the Hidden Leaf Village. Angered by this discovery, Sasuke joins Akatsuki in order to destroy Konoha. Meanwhile, on Tobi’s orders, the Akatsuki members attack the Hidden Leaf Village. At the cost of great efforts, the residents of Konoha manage to repel the attack, but the village itself is almost completely destroyed.
At the advice of the Kage – the leaders of the largest ninja villages – Tobi states that he is collecting tailed demons in order to recreate the ten-tailed biju and create a powerful illusion that can control humanity. When the leaders of other villages refuse to help Toby, he announces the beginning of the Fourth Ninja World War. In response, the five largest countries form an alliance led by the Raikage and a unified shinobi army, of which Kazekage Gaara becomes commander-in-chief. Fighting between the parties begins: on the side of Akatsuki, numerous clones of the Zetsu and dead ninja summoned by Orochimaru’s former ally Kabuto Yakushi are fighting, and on the side of the alliance are shinobi of five countries.
On the second day of the war, Zetsu revives Kaguya Otsutsuki, the progenitor of the art of shinobi, who once plucked the fruit from the chakra tree and gave it to people. Now she wants to regain chakra for herself, for which earlier Akatsuki collected tailed beasts. Team Kakashi manages to defeat Kaguya and seal her, and Naruto fights Sasuke, who admits defeat. The final chapter of the show shows Konoha’s life after a decade.
Boruto: Naruto Next Generations
Years after the Fourth Great Ninja War, Naruto Uzumaki has fulfilled his dream of becoming the seventh Hokage, thus supervising a new generation of ninjas. The hero of Konoha has married Hinata Hyuga, with whom he has two children: Boruto and Himawari. Boruto is part of the ninja team, led by Konohamaru Sarutobi, and complemented by Sarada Uchiha, the daughter of Sasuke Uchiha and Sakura Haruno, and Orochimaru’s artificial son, Mitsuki.
Boruto considers that Naruto puts his duties in the village before his duties with his family. Little Uzumaki meets Sasuke, who has returned to the village to warn Naruto of an impending threat. There is little time left for the development of the next edition of the Chunin exams, so Boruto asks Sasuke to become his teacher, to which the Uchiha replies that he will, as long as he can learn to master the Rasengan, to which he replies that this is not a problem, because he will master it in a short time, and to achieve it, he requests the help of Konohamaru. His eagerness to obtain a higher rank, leads him to cheat on the exam, using a device called “Kote”, invented by Katasuke, who is part of the scientific team of ninja weapons of Konoha; as a consequence, Naruto disqualifies him during the fight against Shinki, Gaara’s son.
Such actions generate a discussion between father and son, which is interrupted with the appearance of Momoshiki and Kinshiki Ōtsutsuki, characters that Sasuke warned Naruto about, the attacks have as main objective the kidnapping of Naruto and thus being able to use Kurama’s chakra, to revitalize the dying Shinju of the dimension they came from. Seeing his father risk his life to protect everyone, a repentant Boruto convinces Sasuke and the Five Kages to join them on Naruto’s rescue mission.
Thus, they travel to another dimension to save Naruto; the combat seems to tilt in favour of the Kages and company, Momoshiki turns Kinshiki into a chakra fruit to increase his strength, even so, it does not turn out to be a sufficient rival for the joint attack, which Naruto has already joined. However, unfortunately for everyone, Katasuke intervenes and attacks Momoshiki, using the jutsus contained in the Kote, a chakra that the latter absorbs using his rinnegan, which provides him with energy to continue fighting.
As Sasuke distracts Momoshiki, a weakened Naruto, he lends his remaining chakra to Boruto and thus forms a giant rasengan to defeat Momoshiki. Although he dies, noticing the untapped potential of his killer, Momoshiki lives long enough to have a private conversation with Boruto, on another plane of reality, and warns him that soon, he will face moments of much tribulation. Not knowing what the future holds, Boruto accepts his fate.
The Naruto franchise is one of the most popular animanga brands in the world. The initial anime, Naruto, follows Naruto Uzumaki’s childhood, continuing into the story of a young adult in Naruto: Shippuden. Boruto, which is still airing, follows the adventure’s of Naruto’s titular son. Although the shinobi setting is a bit different than the world of Dragon Ball Z, there is still enough fantasy and more than enough martial arts to satisfy fans of DBZ, so it’s a recommendation from us.
Genre: adventure, fantasy, romance
Original run: October 16, 2000 – September 13, 2004 (original run), October 3, 2009 – March 29, 2010 (The Final Act)
Episodes: 167 (original run), 26 (The Final Act)
Additional material: 4 anime films, sequel series (Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon)
Japan, Sengoku era. Inuyasha, a half-demon (han’yō), steals the Sphere of the Four Spirits from a village, an object that can greatly increase the powers of an individual (demons or men with an evil spirit). Inuyasha does not go too far: Kikyo, the young priestess of the village, pierces him with a sacred arrow which, through Inuyasha’s body, sticks to Goshinboku, a sacred tree in the nearby forest. By the power of the sacred arrow, Inuyasha remains frozen in a magical sleep suspended in time.
Mortally wounded, perhaps by Inuyasha himself, Kikyo recommends that her younger sister Kaede burns the sphere together with her body so that it cannot fall into the wrong hands.
Japan, present time, Shibuya city. Kagome Higurashi is a middle school student and lives in the family’s ancient Shinto temple. On her 15th birthday, she is leaving the house to go to school when she catches her little brother Sota looking for his cat Buyo in the temple sanctuary. Suddenly Kagome is sucked into the ancient well attached to the shrine by a huge demon, the Millipede Joro, awakened thanks to the spiritual power of Kagome, and finds herself transported to the Sengoku era.
Disoriented, the girl wanders around the outside of the well: she notices the tree god Goshinboku, familiar to her, and goes there. He finds Inuyasha there, still sealed in a magical fifty-year sleep. The villagers capture her and take her to the old priestess Kaede. She quickly realizes that Kagome is the reincarnation of her sister Kikyo. Meanwhile, the centipede attacks the village.
Kagome is forced to free Inuyasha from his long sleep so that he can face the demon. After defeating him, Inuyasha attacks Kagome to take possession of the Sphere of the Four Spirits, which the young woman hides inside herself, in order to become a complete demon. Kaede, however, slips Inuyasha a magical rosary, which forces him to obey Kagome’s command and to remain temporarily motionless. In an attempt to defeat another demon who had taken possession of the Sphere, Kagome shatters it and its fragments scatter throughout Japan.
The girl and Inuyasha must join forces to recover all the fragments and rebuild the gem. To the two, between whom a strong bond develops after a turbulent start, soon new travelling companions are added: Shippo, a little fox demon cub; Miroku, a depraved young Buddhist monk, victim of a Naraku curse; Sango, a resolute exterminator of demons in search of his brother Kohaku, whom Naraku has made his slave; Kirara, cat demon (nekomata), Sango’s battle partner. The six friends are bound together by common hatred towards Naraku, the great antagonist of the story, a half-demon who aspires to seize the Sphere to increase his demonic power.
Kagome, Inuyasha and their companions meet many friends and as many threats on their way: Inuyasha’s half-brother, Sesshoumaru; Kikyo who died 50 years earlier, is brought back to life thanks to a part of Kagome’s soul; Naraku himself, who deceived Kikyo and Inuyasha to kill each other out of hatred; Naraku’s corresponding “helpers”: Kanna and Kagura; finally a wolf demon called Koga who, in love with Kagome, arouses Inuyasha’s jealousy, so much so that every meeting between him and Inuyasha is a new opportunity for confrontation.
InuYasha is an anime that comes very close to Dragon Ball Z due to its focus on martial arts, superhuman abilities and its fantasy setting. InuYasha has been a very popular anime that managed to balance out a historical setting with modern issues, and although it has a much darker tone and less humor than Dragon Ball Z, it is certainly a show fans of DBZ should enjoy, which is why we strongly recommend it.
Hunter x Hunter
Genre: adventure, fantasy, martial arts
Original run: October 16, 1999 – March 31, 2001 (original); October 2, 2011 – September 24, 2014 (remake)
Episodes: 62 (original); 148 (remake)
Additional material: 1 anime film, OVA series (30 episodes)
The main character, Gon Freecss, lives on Whale Island. Gon’s parents are – supposedly – long dead. When he was 10 years old, Gon entered the territory of a fox bear, but is rescued by Kite. a Hunter. Kite tells Gon that he is looking for Gene Freecss, Gon’s father and one of the greatest Hunters, who is actually alive and well. Gon decides to go to the exam and, becoming a Hunter, start looking for his father.
As he passes the exam, Gon finds friends to accompany him on his journey: Kurapiku, the last of the Kurt clan; Leorio Paladinite, a medical student convinced that money rules the world; and Killua Zoldik, a member of the famous family of assassins. During the exam, Gon and his friends also meet Hisoka, a sinister assassin magician. After the exam, the four friends break up, agreeing to meet on September 1 in Yorknew.
Suddenly, during the first week of September, the Phantom Troupe appears, killing the auction participants and stealing all the goods. A gangster war begins between the mafia and the Phantom Troupe, in which four main characters are involved.
A few days later, Gon is unable to buy a copy of Greed Island, a videogame, but he does manage to hire a multimillionaire who promises to reward anyone who passes the game. Starting to play the game, Gon and Killua enter its world, but the Phantom Troupe, which also started playing it for unknown reasons, concludes that the island, which is the game world, is located somewhere in the real world. In the game you need to collect about a hundred cards with different effects, completing various tasks and quests. Players unite in alliances to go through the game together, but a certain Demoman with his henchmen appears, brutally killing the players.
To get the last card, which is not available to the Demoman and his minions, Gon, Killua and Bisky ask Hisoka for help; they win the card from Rezor, Jin’s friend, one of the developers of Greed Island and now the gamemaster of this game. The Demoman wants to take the cards away from Gon and his friends, however, having developed a strategy, Gon, Killua and Biscuit defeat the Demoman and his associates, get the last cards and go through the game.
Having met Kaite, Gon and Killua decide to help him in his research. They find the paw of a giant insect, which turns out to be a chimaera ant. The queen of chimaera ants, devouring representatives of other species, is able to transmit the characteristics of the creatures that were eaten to her offspring. There have been cases where chimaera ants have destroyed entire ecosystems in this way. In this case, the queen turned out to be the size of a person and began to eat people, transmitting the characteristics of people to the soldier ants. The soldier ants began to kill people and animals in large quantities and feed them to the insatiable queen.
The queen has the goal of giving birth to a king who, possessing unprecedented strength, can establish new anthills. In addition to the king, the queen must give birth to a royal guard, which is also incredibly strong and subordinate to the king. During the exploration, Gon, Killua and Kite get closer to the anthill, but Neferpitu, a chimaera ant from the royal guard, seriously injures Kite, and Gona and Killua are left to flee. Neferpitu brutally kills Kaite and, controlling his body with the help of Nan, uses him for training, and Gon and Killua, unaware of it, return to the city and train there under the direction of Biscuit so that the chairman of the Hunter Association, Netero, finds them strong enough to attack the ants and save Kite.
However, the friends do not succeed, and two months after the murder of Kaita, Gon learns that someone is controlling Kaita’s body, and sets fire to a thirst for revenge. Meanwhile, the queen gives birth to a king, whom she gives the name Meruem, but dies from the wounds received during childbirth. Meruem absolutely does not care whether his mother is alive or not, and taking the royal guard with him, leaves the anthill, captures the Republic of Eastern Gortho and kills its leader, and Neferpitu manipulates his body and thus rules the entire country. The king decides from the entire population of Eastern Gorto, five million people, to select the most capable of Nan in order to make them part of his army to conquer the world, and simply make the rest of the inhabitants’ food for ants.
Gon and Killua are still taken on a mission to destroy the king in order to take revenge on Neferpit. Netero must take over the king while Gon, Killua, and four other Hunters distract the royal guards. The king, meanwhile, is fond of logic games such as chess, shogi and go, but when he is told that there is a gunga game similar to chess in East Gorto, the king takes an interest in it. The king meets a blind girl named Komugi, whom he cannot beat in gungi. The king begins to understand people and, without knowing it, becomes attached to Komuga and becomes more humane. The battle of the Hunters and the Guard begins.
After the problem with the chimaera ants was resolved, the Hunter Association faced the question of appointing a new president. Elections begin according to the system proposed by Gene Freeks and adopted by the rest of the Zodiacs. Meanwhile, Killua asks his younger sister Alluka to heal Gon, who is in critical condition after his transformation during the battle with Neferpitu. Alluka heals Gon, and then Killua forbids her to use her abilities so that she can live a normal life. Having recovered, Gon meets with Kite, who is reborn as a chimaera-ant girl, and finally manages to forgive himself for not being able to save Kite from Neferpita.
After that, Gon meets with Jin and asks him about why Jin decided to become a Hunter, and then father and son talk to each other for a long time about their adventures. It turns out that Gon has lost his abilities for Nan, so he stays at home on Whale Island, and Killua sets off on a journey with Alluka. Sometime later, Netero’s son, Beond, arranges an expedition to the Dark Continent, a wild, unexplored place that is much larger than the world known to people. The expedition is sponsored by the Kakin Kingdom. Fearing that this expedition will provoke huge disasters, as, after the last expedition, the five strongest political forces in the world allow Kakin to join their organization in exchange for the fact that all member countries of the organization have an equal right to use the discoveries. Instead of Pariston and Gene, who left the post of the Zodiacs, Kurapika and Leorio take their place. The zodiacs decide to keep an eye on Beyond so that he doesn’t do anything rash.
As far as being similar to Dragon Ball Z goes, Hunter x Hunter comes very close. Not only is this a martial arts-based adventure anime, but the protagonist, Gon Freecss, has a hairdo that is evidently inspired by Saiyans. The show follows Gon’s endeavours to become a Hunter, someone who can track down wild beasts and hidden treasures and who possesses unbelievable abilities through the manipulation of their Nen, like his father. Each individual episode is very fun and entertaining, but the most important elements are the show’s arcs, which show Gon’s character development. There are two iterations of the anime – the original series which ran from 1999 to 2001, and the remake that started from the beginning of the story, and ran from 2011 to 2014.
Sword Art Online
Genre: adventure, science fiction
Original run: July 8, 2012 – September 19, 2020
Additional material: 2 anime films
Sword Art Online (SAO) is a massively multiplayer networked role-playing virtual reality (VRMMORPG) released in 2022; thanks to NerveGear, a helmet capable of stimulating the user’s five senses through direct manipulation of the brain, the players can impersonate and control their own character in the game directly with their mind.
SAO officially opens on November 6, 2022, but logged in users realize it is impossible to log out. The creator of the game, Akihiko Kayaba, reveals himself to be a psychopath and informs them that he has imprisoned them: if they wish to return to being free, the last level of the game must be reached and passed (represented by the 100th floor of the flying castle of Aincrad, where the final boss is found), however in the event of death in virtual reality, the NerveGear will cause a brain coma to the player by means of electric shocks to the brain. The players are immediately hospitalized and artificially fed.
Among the many players to witness Kayaba’s words is Kazuto “Kirito” Kirigaya, one of the 1,000 beta testers who had the chance to try the game in preview. Backed by his previous experience, Kirito works hard to complete the game on his own, but over time he will pair up with a player named Asuna whom he will fall in love with. Two years later, the protagonist discovers Kayaba’s identity in SAO, confronts him and defeats him once and for all, thus earning both his own freedom and that of the other players still alive.
Upon returning to the real world, Kirito discovers that 300 SAO players, including Asuna, have not yet awakened. Following a lead according to which Asuna would find herself imprisoned in another VRMMORPG called Alfheim Online (ALO), Kirito also participates in this other game, in which he accidentally meets Leafa, his cousin Suguha. With his help, Kirito discovers that the players trapped in ALO are part of a plan devised by Nobuyuki Sugō to perform illegal experiments on the human mind and find a way to control it. Additionally, Sugō also plans to marry Asuna in the real world to take over her father’s company, which is why Kirito goes on a rampage and annihilates him both in ALO and in reality.
Once Sugō is defeated in the world of ALO, Akihiko’s ghost program will give him “the seed”, or the world generation program, giving him the choice to destroy it or use it. Kirito will choose, during the party in Agil’s pub, to make it available to the whole world, so that everyone can create their own world, and give a new lustre to the category of VRMMOs, almost brought to extinction due to Sugō.
A short time later, Kirito plays Gun Gale Online (GGO) to investigate some mysterious deaths that are taking place in the real world. Assisted by a player named Sinon who guides him in this other reality, Kirito identifies and reports to the authorities the perpetrators of the various murders, including some former members of a guild of assassins that he had faced in SAO .
Kirito is then hired to test the Soul Translator (STL), a cutting-edge machine characterized by a much more realistic and complex interface than those tried by him previously. Unlike the real world, in the virtual reality mainframe – called the Underworld (UW) – of this new technology, time passes thousands of times faster, and Kirito’s memories of what goes on inside are cramped. However, Kirito is seriously injured by one of SAO’s assassins and ends up waking up inside Underworld without being able to remember how he found himself there or how to disconnect, leaving his real self in the real world in a comatose state.
Sword Art Online is probably not going to be your first choice after finishing Dragon Ball Z since it’s a science-fiction series, but it still offers enough to entertain you. The show follows humans trapped in the world of a VR game, where they use their superpowered avatars to save them and the world. The latter is a similarity with Dragon Ball Z, as well as the fact that the show indeed has a lot of fighting. The animation is great, the characters as well so, even if it is far from the fantasy setting of Dragon Ball Z, the three seasons are definitely worth the watch.
My Hero Academia
Genre: adventure, fantasy, superhero
Original run: April 3, 2016 – present
Episodes: 88 (as of June 27, 2020)
Additional material: 2 OVAs, 1 ONA, 2 anime films
The story takes place in a world where people are born with different supernatural abilities and the dream profession of becoming superheroes becomes available, but there are also those who take on the role of villains rather than superheroes. Hero courses are also offered in various schools. There are very few people who are born without an ability.
This is where the protagonist, Midoriya Izuku, comes into the picture. All kids have to come up with their ability by the age of 4, but unfortunately, this didn’t happen to him. Izuku has been a fan of superheroes ever since he was a child, especially of his number one hero, All Might, the Symbol of Peace. Like every little kid, Izuku wants to be a superhero when he grows up, so no wonder he was very saddened when he found out he didn’t have any abilities. Everyone, even his own mother, told him to give up his dream, but he didn’t; he studied persistently and then applied to one of the best hero training academies, UA.
Of course, everyone laughed at him for that, as well as for writing various information and notes about professional heroes in a booklet. Here we can already assume that Izuku is rushing to his loss and has no chance of being a hero or being recruited to the hero formation at all, but the protagonists says this at one point: “This story is about how I became the greatest hero.”
One day, Midoriya runs into an villain who attacks him, but All Might arrives and saves him. Midoriya insisted on talking to his idol and asked if he could be a hero without ability. All Might likewise gives him a negative answer, which completely shattered Mizuku’s dreams. He had almost given up when he saw that the previously captured villain had escaped and captured a preschooler (Katsuki Bakugou), whom no professional hero could help because of his villain ability. Then something moved in Midoriya and he an to the villain to save his friend.
All Might later notices this and hurries to their aid, later admitting, after witnessing Midoriya’s heroic act, that he could, indeed become a superhero. All Might then trains him so that the boy, as his successor, can take over his ability and get into the UA Hero Division. Midoriya completes the training with long, hard and painful work, then acquires All Might’s ability and successfully completes the entrance exam. So he takes his first steps on the path to becoming a hero, which is long and full of struggles.
There are little scenes at the end of the episodes from which we can learn things about the universe. The OVA series also add additional narrative elements. Midoriya also has to face tough opponents during his time at school, with the show always adding more and more villains, some of which include the Evil Alliance, the Eightfold Purification, and finally Grentle Criminal and his helper, La Brava.
Although My Hero Academia is not similar to Dragon Ball Z in style and setting, it is certainly similar when it comes to the genre. Namely, My Hero Academia is by far the most popular modern martial arts anime and, in that aspect, is somewhat of a successor to Dragon Ball Z, who – along with the other shows in the franchise – was the most popular one during its original run. The characters are great, but what makes My Hero Academia so great are its villains and the fighting scenes, which are among the best in the whole industry. This is definitely a show you’ll love if you’ve loved Dragon Ball Z.
And that’s it for today. We hope you had fun reading this and that we helped solve this dilemma for you. See you next time and don’t forget to follow us!