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Best chess anime for thrilling chess lovers

Are you a chess lover? Or do you get obsessed over a good chess game, The mind-blowing moves that fascinate you whilst you watch and play?

The most interesting part about chess is when anime characters from our most liked and favourite shows participate in the game. There is a record of multiple and so many characters that have played chess and leveraged its advantages and edge in their tales.

To elaborate, chess is often used to reflect the characters’ themes and personalities, just like the famous “Shogi” that is traditionally played and known all over the geographical location of Japan and beyond.

In recent times, anime has received lots of accolades and love from its audience all around the world and across the globe. I think it is because of the pandemic that caused a lockdown. Anime points out incredible stories; everyone loves a good story. This is primarily the reason behind anime’s fame.

Chess involves using the mind; it’s more like a mind game. And there are anime that are centred around chess. They form a mixture that is perfect for mind games and a distinctive scenario.

The main character in some anime uses his intelligence to win and defeat the opponent. In some cases, an anime character uses a chess game to manipulate others for a win.

However, regardless of how the storyline is, it is certain that this anime will glue the audience to their seats. Below is a list of the anime whose strategy emanates from chess.

1. Black Butler

Black Butler

Black Butler is an incredible show to start with, Directed by Toshiya Shinohara and Hirofumi Ogura. It revolves around a 12-year-old boy called Ciel Phantomhive in Victorian-era London, ranked in the position of an Earl after the scenario that happened on his 10th birthday.

What happened was that the phantomhive manor went under attack, and it was a tragedy that Ciel found his parents dead with his dog. Again, he was abducted and sold into slavery. Too much trouble for a mere ten-year-old; would you be able to survive it? Honestly, I don’t think l can.

Because he was young and would never forget the incident that had happened, he had an aim to revenge those who murdered his parents. He is a chess expert and applies a tactical approach to life, just as the tactics in chess.

Sometimes, he even makes statements like life is not a game of chess but lives it like that regardless. The show has wonderful ratings on several platforms. If you found the storyline interesting and want to check it out, it is available on Netflix.

2. Code Geass (2006–2008)

Code Geass 2006 2008

Sit tight because I am about to tell you about a smart and intelligent British prince in exile, Lelouch Lamperouge, sent by his father, King Charles of Britain, as a bargaining chip to Japan alongside his sister Nunnally Lamperouge after the death of their mother Marianne of Britain, is murdered.

Because of her death, Nunnally lost her sight and could not walk. Can you imagine how traumatizing this can be? After the battle, Lelouch assured his friend from Japan, Suzaku Kururugi, that he would bring Britain down to the ground; now, this is getting more interesting, right?

Time ran by, and seven years later, Lelouch found himself in the middle of a terrorist attack and met a girl, C.C., who rescued him from the British guards. Sounds like a love story is about to begin but let’s not get excited yet.

Apparently, she made a deal with him that Lelouch would receive a mysterious power called “Geass”. The power enables you to command anyone to do what he asks.

Things like giving up the will to live, dispute, or die – but for these powers to be active, it can only be with the help of eye contact. Seems like Lelouch has gotten just what he needs to destroy Britain.

(Chess Anime)

For you to better understand what the series is set in an alternate history where there are three Superpowers: Britain, the Chinese Federation and the European Union (EU).

The British Empire defeated Japan on August 10, 2010, with the help of a new secret weapon, the “Autonomous Armored Knight”, known as the “Knightmare Frame”. Interesting right.

Lelouch used his new powers to kill the British guards; He went further to use Geass to find out who killed his mother and make a suitable world for his sister.

If you were the one, you would have done the same thing. Lelouch became the leader of a resistance movement known as black knights. Because of that, he became popular with the Japanese public for his rebellion.

It is ironic that Charles the king also possesses the same power as “Geass” he erased his memory at the end of the first season, to no avail, because Lelouch regained his memories in the second season and founded a new country: The United States of Japan.

3. Death Note

Death Note

If you are someone who loves magic, A unique and amazing storyline that glues you to your screen, then this is absolutely for you. The show has gained popularity because of the plot that is based on a magic notebook through which the owner could kill anyone by just writing his name on the notebook.

Kira was the owner. As of now, Light, the owner and the entire team are trying to figure out the real identity of Kira. That is so weird, right? Nonetheless, they were all smart and intelligent because they played chess while they were talking and enjoying the shows.

Now, this is what the series is centred on. Light subsequently attempts to use the Death Note to carry out a worldwide massacre of immoral people just to create a safe and crime-free society using a god-like vigilante named Kira.

4. No Game, No Life (2014)

No Game, No Life (2014)

What more would you ask for after l give you a chess-themed series that also takes you on a ride to other realms? So now you are enjoying chess, celestial beings and a stiff competition that we don’t know the end of.

The plot focuses on Shiro and Sora, two step-siblings from Hikikomori. They were suckers for online gaming and were quite popular in Blank.

There would not be any form of conflict with one another because of a spell known as the Ten Pledges.

This forces them to resolve their differences by gambling, and the rules are magically enforced. The system allows players to cheat in a cautious way. By doing so, Sora and Shiro travelled to Elkia, a nation filled with humans and became friends with the Duchess Stephanie Dola.

It becomes more interesting because the winner of the crown in the gaming tournament gets to decide who rules next, as they represent the whole of humanity. All these strategies are a form of using chess expertise to succeed.

5. Kakegurui


Well, to be very honest, this series is not entirely about chess per se but rather more about gambling. The manga named Kakegurui was the inspiration for this anime series.

In 2017, around July to September, the show’s first season came out, followed by season 2 airing from January to March of 2019. Our protagonist, Yumeko Jabami, was in a race to win, competing with other students, believing her luck would make her the best.

She was not really being very honest but what matters is she rose to the top. Many platforms have highly ranked this anime, which shows how much people have loved it.

MyAnimeList, IMDB and AniList all have this show ranked about 70%, which is great. With so many people you wouldn’t want to miss it. It’s just one Netflix click away.

6. March Comes in like a Lion

March Comes in like a Lion

March comes in like a lion, which is very interesting, but for the softies, it will be a bit emotional. The story centres around Rei Kiriyama, a shogi-playing expert at only 17 years old.

He came from Shinkawa, which was very close to the Sumida River in Tokyo. I would say that Rei was mentally unstable, depressed, anxious and a loner. When his family got killed in an accident, it became worse.

The relatives he thought he had didn’t like him, and he was hated even more by the children of the family that had adopted him. After feeling like his presence was a nuisance to people, he left and rented an apartment in Tokyo. His perfect skills in shogi became his way of survival because there was no way he would bother anyone for anything.

In the nearby town called Tsukuda was the Kawamoto family, whom Rei met upon his arrival. It was a family of a grandfather and his three granddaughters who ran a traditional Japanese pastry shop.

They could relate to his wounds and scars because they, too, had gone through something similar. The warm welcome they gave him was what he really needed; the love was slowly patching up his wounds and giving him a place of comfort.

7. Attack on Titan

Attack on Titan

You don’t even need a thorough introduction on this one. If you know him well, you know that Armin is not just smart with his schemes but is also a very exceptional chess player.

The way he orchestrates his plans is like no other. He can think of the most complicated moves while keeping his eye on his enemies. Armin moves at such a very great speed that it has now become part of him. The possibilities of the result are on the left for hope because he is so unpredictable, moving the pieces like an expert would.

Some other characters give him credit for his genius mind and do not hesitate to follow whatever decision he tells them. That includes even in crucial moments like battles, you can always count on him.

His composure is one of his greatest strengths. Armin can remain calm even in tough situations, poised with a stable mind and body language. Everything about his moves is strategic and well thought through.

Hajime Isayama did a great job on this Japanese manga series. Even those who don’t watch anime have definitely heard about it. The plot is about the human race being preyed upon by very huge humanoids called the Titans, who were hungry for human flesh. So Eren Yeager has set himself to destroy these creatures after he lost his mother.

8. Moriarty The Patriot

Moriarty The Patriot

Relax and spare yourself the shocking moment of realizing that l have included this series on this list. It goes back to the 19th century, when the influence of Britain was all over the world.

Extreme levels of classicism during that time meant that the poor would always remain poor. Chances were low that you would actually make it up the ladder starting from the bottom.

William James and Louis James had lost their parents, and Albert Moriarty took them in. William James was in the mafia and he was the boss who could always come up with a solution every time.

The same way chess flows with ups and downs clearly depicted how the show was moving. Many fans have loved this anime and given it top ratings on several platforms. If you want to watch it yourself, Netflix is the right way to go.

9. Naruto


Naruto! One of the masterpieces to ever come of the anime industry. Pretty much everyone is familiar with the title, at least. While it isn’t really about chess, the characters are playing their rivals as if it were a chess game.

The manipulative and tactical moves of chess were being used in fighting. The themes in Naruto touch from divinity to horror. The plot is about a young warrior, Naruto Uzumaki, who possesses powers that make him an extraordinary human being.

This resulted in him going far from his village people. Naruto wanted to become the village leader and the greatest ninja but this would not happen until he elevates into a higher level.

From the look of the thing, it seemed like it was just meaningless hope because even the basics of ninja techniques were hard for him.

He couldn’t do any of them, so how will he lead his people? They ended up joining forces with Sasuke, the genius; Sakura, the intellect, and Kakashi, who was the leader.

The backup was like the fuel that Naruto needed for his fire to lead his people. It wouldn’t be an easy ride because a lot was against them.

The whole of Hidden Leaf village was under threat, and the only choice left for hunting was to become stronger than before. He had to make it happen to keep his dreams alive and maintain his newly-found friendship.

10. Durarara!


Have you heard about Dullahan? He is the main character of the Japanese anime show called Durarara. He was working as a courier in Ikebukuro in the underworld.

What Mikado Ryugamine really wanted was a big city with a lot going on, a lot of life and vibes. In Ikebukuro, he started attending Raira Academy with his childhood friend, Masaomi Kida. They haven’t been together for a very long time.

They met at the train station and thought it would be a good idea to see what was going on in Ikebukuro. The reason why I recommend this anime to you is because there is a character who is a chess guru.

Something you might have probably thought of when you started reading. The genius Izaya is very sly and can manipulate every other character you will see in this anime. If you wanna have a good time with it, you can get in on Netflix.

11. My Hero Academia

My Hero Academia

Most people know My Hero Academia to be an anime mostly in the action genre. There is a combination of both chess and action. The protagonist, Izuku Midoriya, uses chess to train his mind. He might not be as good as Kiritsugu Emiya and Light Yagami, but his skills cannot be disregarded like anything.

It’s still a pleasure to watch him play. Izuku has a passion for the game, and as shocking as it is, you must believe it. You’ll see him using in fights applying the mind boggling strategies he picks from playing chess. His mind has become very sharp.

12. Diabolik Lovers

Diabolik Lovers

Rapping it up with one of the best chess players on the list. Reiji Sakamaki is undoubtedly a master player, and everything he does proves it. He pre-calculates everything he does, which makes no one outsmart him.

He always shines at what he does. His rivals can be so good at chess, but something about him makes him unbeatable. Reiji is very smart and is a fast thinker which always works to his advantage.

The most interesting part is that you know every move he is making is making an impact. Nothing is wasted because he calculates and strategizes everything so that it effortlessly flows.

Everyone watching him play has no other option but to give him respect. You really need to take your time and watch Reiji play and l guarantee you, you won’t regret it.

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