Who are the strongest anime characters of all time?
Anime has a solid reputation for delivering incredibly strong characters capable of enduring the most intense battles.
While some use sheer brawn to defeat their foes, others draw upon otherworldly powers and conjure demons from the depths of Hell.
We’ve explored the world of anime to bring you the strongest anime characters of all time.
The Strongest Anime Characters
Our ranked lists are created by researching and rounding up information from the most reputable web sources.
Here’s our list of the 25 strongest anime characters:
25. Akira Fudo
Our first entry for the strongest anime characters is Akira Fudo, the main protagonist from the long-running series, Devilman, of which fans are eagerly anticipating the next installment.
This world-famous anime from legendary Go Nagai revolves around powerful demons, which Akira Fudo gets to know a little too personally when one tries to possess his body.
Throughout Devilman, Akira struggles between his demonic powers and human nature, this emotional conflict underpinning his battles with the apocalyptic forces of Satan and his minions.
24. Shigeo Kageyama
Not all superheroes feature ripped abs, bulging biceps, and gigantic pecs, as Shigeo Kageyama from the popular series Mob Psycho 100 goes to show.
This unassuming student from Salt Middle School could pass for the typical school nerd, but doing so would be to overlook his unique and immeasurable psychic powers, which he unleashes in exceptional circumstances.
Kageyama is the most powerful esper of all the characters in Mob Psycho 100, feared for his psychic explosion ability which can be seen coming with the “Shigeo’s Progress Towards Explosion” meter.
Moving away from psychic powers to more down-to-earth fighting styles involving swordplay, and introducing Sinbad, who appears in the series Magi: Adventures of Sinbad.
Sinbad is known for his brains and brawn, but if it comes to a fight, his swordplay techniques combined with his ability to use both black and white Magi makes him a powerful opponent.
He puts these skills to good use, capturing dungeons, destroying mountains, and leading entire armies to victory on the battlefield.
With his chiseled jaw and muscular physique, The Seven Deadly Sins’ Escanor stands out by sporting a glorious mustache.
He’s also a gifted fighter, known throughout the Kingdom of Liones as “The Strongest Holy Knight” for his ability to gain incredible powers throughout the day — before the onset of nightfall causes them to wane.
Escanor can be seen fighting with a variety of weapons in The Seven Deadly Sins, including an ornamental axe known as a Rhitta, a large spear, and “The One,” which unveils his ultimate form.
It’s not always the good guys who are the strongest anime characters; in Re: Creators, the main antagonist Altair is the character who should be feared the most.
This powerful young woman is actually a Military Uniform Princess and is responsible for bringing the Created into the real world to fully realize their destructive power.
In addition to superhuman strength, Altair possesses psychic abilities, capable of throwing a giant mech over a great distance with just the flick of her fingers.
20. Usagi Tsukino
Another unassuming-looking character with hidden powers is Usagi Tsukino, otherwise known as Sailor Moon, the Guardian of Love and Justice.
Sailor Moon died 10,000 years ago during the war between the Terrans and Selenites and was reincarnated on Earth as Usagi Tsukino, where her phenomenal strength makes her a force to be reckoned with.
Her strength also comes from her leadership and teamwork, and she often teams up with other characters to save the world from total destruction.
Sailor Moon’s Rei deserves a special mention, not least for her status as one of the best black hair anime girls out there.
19. Ainz Ooal Gown
Ainz Ooal Gown, the main protagonist of Overlord, is an undead skeleton creature completely lacking flesh and skin, making him fearsome to look at.
He uses his mystical powers to obliterate evil spirits and anyone else who is foolish enough to stand in his way.
In fact, he is so powerful that the second-strongest character in Overlord’s world is also Ainz Ooal Gown, albeit wearing a disguise.
18. Kusuo Saiki
Not all the strongest anime characters are found in action series; occasionally, you can find them crop up in unlikely genres, including one of the best comedy anime series, The Disastrous Life of Saiki K.
The eponymous hero Kusuo Saiki can do anything from reading people’s minds to changing his form and teleporting across the room, although for the most part, he struggles to suppress his powers to avoid unwanted damage.
A hilarious send-up of similar anime based around psychic abilities, The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. is a comedy gem well worth watching.
17. Yuu Otosaka
Yuu Otosaka, the main character from the anime series Charlotte, not only has the ability to possess another person, but he can also steal their abilities for himself.
This makes Otosaka an exceptionally dangerous character for his foes, who can only hope to exploit his vulnerable body while he’s occupying someone else.
This makes him one of the most unique characters in the anime universe, with the opportunity to plunder every ability in the world with the potential to destroy universes.
16. Haruhi Suzumiya
Being quite literally a god is a surefire way to get on the list of most powerful anime characters, and the titular star of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya has the credentials of a deity to qualify.
With the power to completely destroy reality if she so wishes, Haruhi Suzumiya isn’t to be trifled with, but fortunately, she’s unaware of just how powerful she really is.
Haruhi also gets a little help from her school friends, including one of the best green hair anime girls, Tsuruya.
Adapted from the popular manga, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya anime proved to be a huge hit, winning multiple awards, including Best TV anime at the Tokyo Anime Fair in 2007.
15. Madara Uchiha
Our first visit to the hugely popular, long-running shonen series Naruto brings us to Madara Uchiha, one of the most popular villains and one of the most powerful.
With his jet-black hair and ability to rain meteors down on a battlefield, Uchiha is more than a worthy opponent for Naruto as they square off in one of the series’ major arcs.
An integral element of the Naruto universe, Madara Uchiha may be set to appear on the big screen, with the long-awaited live-action movie in development by Lionsgate Studio.
14. Ryo Asuka
Devilman may have begun life way back in 1972, but it continues to entertain new audiences, for instance with the release of Masaaki Yuasa’s Devilman Crybaby in 2018.
It’s no surprise Ryo Asuka is known for his ridiculous powers since he’s actually Satan himself, capable of shattering moons and causing large-scale natural disasters.
To add a little twist to the tale, Ryo doesn’t realize he’s Satan until late in the Devilman saga, bringing a degree of conflict to this character with nearly absolute power.
13. Gon Freecss
When we first meet Gon Freecss in Hunter X Hunter, he seems like an ordinary boy, albeit one with a surprisingly accurate fishing rod he can set loose at incredibly high speeds.
Of course, this isn’t Gon’s only ability, and since he’s a hunter, he gets all the benefits of this status, as well as a talent for picking up new skills at the drop of a hat.
Gon’s true ability is his purity of heart and strength of mind, which grants him the fortitude to overcome his opponents with superior strategies, which he executes with youthful abandon.
Another one of the strongest anime characters who isn’t quite what he first appears to be is Ross, the royal soldier from the anime series Senyuu who takes the fight to the demon king.
Ross, it turns out, is actually the legendary hero of Creasion, whose real name is Shoin, and his task of defeating the demon king is made all the more difficult by the fact his best friend Crea is trapped inside his body.
An underrated anime series that deserves more fans, Senyuu blends action and comedy to great effect over its single-season run.
Introducing our first character from One Punch Man, it’s another character with the power to destroy entire cities if she so desired: Tatsumaki.
An S-class Rank 2 hero from the Hero Association, Tatsumaki is recognized as one of the strongest characters in the One Punch Man universe, her short stature belying an incredible gift for extra-sensory perception.
Capable of redirecting a bombardment attack from alien spaceships and even lifting entire cities, Tatsumaki may even be more powerful than Saitama himself, although the two characters have yet to put this theory into action.
The huge success of anime series such as JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure goes to show how popular the undead can be, and Hellsing’s Alucard is no exception.
With his name spelling “Dracula” in reverse, it’s clear that this character isn’t your run-of-the-mill vampire and is capable of tearing human flesh and spilling the blood (and drinking it too) of anyone who gets in his way.
The more recent Hellsing Ultimate series is one of the bloodiest animes in recent years, so if you’re looking for something along the lines of JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and Tokyo Ghoul with a little more bite, it’s worth checking out.
9. Eren Yeager
What’s the best way to take on giant Titans in combat? If you’re Eren Yeager, it’s to transform into a deadly and unstoppable Titan yourself.
This certainly works for Eren Yeager, who towers over the other anime characters in this list by some margin, and whose life force allows him to regenerate quickly.
It’s hardly surprising that this hugely popular series is delivering more episodes, with Attack on Titan expanding its content with material said to take place “before and between” the original three series.
8. Naruto Uzumaki
Returning once again to Naruto, the action-packed series which gives Dragon Ball Z a run for its money in terms of the number of episodes and seasons.
The eponymous hero, Naruto, starts as a beginner, but throughout the series, he becomes an extremely powerful ninja with impressive physical prowess, becoming one of the strongest martial artists in the anime universe.
As Naruto’s fighting style continues to improve, he faces a long list of powerful characters determined to take him out of the picture, although few have enough power to do so.
Gurren Lagann’s Simon starts his journey as an underling to much more powerful characters, but over the course of its 26 episodes, he transforms into one of the strongest characters of them all.
Simon is one of few humans capable of using the Spiral Power to its full extent, which allows him to unleash massive beams of power from his core drill.
Visually striking and full of impressive action sequences, Gurren Lagann remains one of the most popular mech animes to date, with fans around the world.
6. Kaguya Otsutsuki
The final character in this list of incredibly powerful anime characters from Naruto is Kaguya Otsutsuki, who consumes the God Tree’s fruit and becomes Ten-Tails.
Unlike most other tailed beasts, including the nine-tailed demon fox, Otsutsuki can perform everything from interstellar travel to erasing people’s memories and can unleash a shockwave from her eyes.
Also known as the Rabbit Goddess, Kaguya is a fearsome antagonist capable of controlling the elements with her awe-inspiring God Tree chakra.
5. Tetsuo Shima
No other Japanese animated movie had quite the same impact on Western audiences as Katsuhiro Otomo’s Akira, a sprawling science fiction masterpiece set among the neon-drenched skyscrapers of Neo Tokyo.
Akira’s central villain is Tetsuo Shima, an ordinary teenage school dropout who gains devastating psychic powers when he’s unwittingly drawn into a top-secret weapons experiment.
Visually stunning and an iconic example of anime at its finest, Akira deserves its place among the very best Japanese animation has to offer.
4. Anos Voldigoad
The Misfit of Demon King Academy is another anime series that draws upon the realm of demons and monsters for the backdrop for its action.
Protagonist Anos Voldigoad is himself the reincarnation of a demon, which makes him incredibly strong, as well as a keen sword fighter who wields a weapon forged from the original God of Destruction.
Despite his demonic background, Anos isn’t inherently evil, but that doesn’t stop him from employing some ruthless methods when dealing with his enemies.
3. Son Goku
Dragon Ball has long held legendary status in the anime fandom community, setting the bar for action-packed fight scenes, where characters level up above and beyond anything seen elsewhere.
The hero of Dragon Ball, Son Goku (otherwise known as Kakarot), is no exception to this rule, with the power to destroy entire worlds, not least when he assumes the Ultra Instinct form.
The influence of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan on Dragon Ball is apparent in the fluidly animated fight scenes, although live-action will always struggle to replicate the crazy excesses of the best-action anime.
Another Dragon Ball super-powered character is Zeno, a supreme god with the right of life and death over multiple universes, capable of controlling the gods of destruction.
Zeno and Future Zeno are the only characters in the Dragon Ball universe capable of using Erase, an ability used to eradicate anything from existence, including those who are immortal.
What makes Zeno even more dangerous is his child-like nature, as he commands space and casually plays with entire galaxies as if they were toys.
The strongest martial artist on this list can be likened to a massive karate god, making Saitama from One Punch Man the strongest anime character in the entire universe.
No other character is capable of consistently destroying their opponents with a single punch, and Saitama frequently does this with little more than a bemused expression on his face.
Another great action anime series that satirizes the genre, One Punch Man features some truly epic battles rendered in exceptional animation.
The strongest anime characters come from all walks of life, bringing psychic abilities, magical powers, and unique fighting skills to anyone who opposes them.
We’ve explored the best of the best, from the deceptively cute Sailor Moon to One Punch Man Saitama.
Some honorable strongest anime character candidates include Light Yagami from Death Note, Midoriya from My Hero Academia, Ichigo, who fights evil spirits called Hollows in Bleach, and the title character from Akame Ga Kill.
Here’s a quick recap of the 25 strongest anime characters of all time:
- Son Goku
- Anos Voldigoad
- Tetsuo Shima
- Kaguya Otsutsuki
- Naruto Uzumaki
- Eren Yeager
- Gon Freecss
- Ryo Asuka
- Madara Uchiha
- Haruhi Suzumiya
- Yuu Otosaka
- Kusuo Saiki
- Ainz Ooal Gown
- Usagi Tsukino
- Shigeo Kageyama
- Akira Fudo
If you enjoyed this article, check out some of our other anime lists:
- The 25 Best Bearded Anime Characters
- The 25 Best Bald Anime Characters
- The 25 Best Sci-Fi Anime Movies & Series
- The 25 Best Naruto Characters
- The 25 Best One Punch Man Characters
- The 25 Best Dragon Ball Z Characters
Which strongest anime character is your favorite? Leave a comment below.
The 25 Best Anime Cats, Ranked
What are the best anime cats? Cats are something you either love with every fiber of your being or vehemently...
The 25 Best Anime Teachers, Ranked
Who are the best anime teachers? With high school being such a prevalent setting in anime, it makes sense that...
The 25 Best Orange Hair Anime Girls, Ranked
Who are the best orange hair anime girls? Orange hair is interesting in anime because it can either be a...