Yasuke is an original net animation anime series focused on the same-named historical figure, a warrior of African descent who served under Japanese daimyo Oda Nobunaga during the Sengoku era of samurai conflict in 16th century Japan.
The series stars LaKeith Stanfield as the titular character and was created by LeSean Thomas and animated by Japanese animation studio MAPPA. Netflix debuted the series on April 29, 2021.
I’ve compiled a list of 10 anime to watch like yasuke. They’re all really great, so I hope you enjoy them!
1. Afro Samurai
After losing a duel with a man named Justice, Afro, a young child, witnessed his legendary samurai father’s death. Justice took the Number One headband after destroying his foe and proudly embraced its godlike powers.
That day changed Afro’s life forever, as he committed himself to training in order to be strong enough to face Justice. Afro eventually won the Number Two headband after years of preparation and hard work, and now has a chance to battle his arch-enemy.
Unfortunately, he still has to battle a long war as new opponents emerge to take his headband as he prepares for the final clash with his father’s assassin. ‘Afro Samurai,’ like ‘Yasuke,’ is about a samurai who battles his inner demons in order to face his foes as obstacles appear in his path.
Claymore follows a group of emotionally numb women, with violence, blood, gore, pride, and superhuman abilities eliciting a wide range of reactions from the audience.
Not only do the stories share similarities in terms of weapons, but also in terms of vengeance, hate, and an odd moral consensus between the authors. Both tales are riddled with hidden symbolism, a teasing that not only raises heart rates but also causes shock and agitation.
Claymore is definitely a series you should watch if you enjoyed yasuke.
3. Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Kenkaku Romantan
Hitokiri Battousai was a legendary assassin who lived in the Bakumatsu era’s final years. He was feared as a ruthless killer throughout the world, but he mysteriously vanished at the height of the Japanese Revolution. Even though it has been ten years since then, the mere mention of Battousai still fills war veterans with dread.
Battousai, unbeknownst to them, has left his bloody lifestyle in an attempt to atone for his crimes and is now known as Kenshin Himura, a roaming swordsman with a positive outlook and a strong will. Kenshin swears to never kill again and dedicates his life to defending the poor.
He runs into Kaoru Kamiya at her kendo dojo one day, which is being threatened by an impostor posing as Battousai. Following Kenshin’s assistance, Kaoru encourages him to remain at the dojo, and the former assassin momentarily stops traveling.
Both portray intense, beautifully choreographed, and lavishly animated swordfights as well as stories that deal with themes like revenge and the morality of killing.
A boy is saved after being rejected and dumped in a river by a medicine man who, despite the odds, saves his life. Later, the man provides this limbless boy with prosthetics and weapons before sending him on a legendary quest to avenge his father, samurai lord Daigo Kagemitsu, for his wrongdoings.
He walks alone for years until he meets Dororo, an orphan who becomes his companion. Now, the two must fight to stay alive in a demon-infested world. Like ‘Yasuke,’ ‘Dororo’ introduces viewers to an unlikely pair of a samurai and his young companion who must escape a world filled with violent, life-threatening challenges.
5. Vinland Saga
The plot of this series depicts a dramatized version of events that occurred in England in 1013 AD. With each passing year, the war between England and the Danes worsens.
Death has become a way of life for the Viking mercenaries, and they are relishing every moment of it. Allying with either side would result in a huge shift in control, and the Vikings are content to make a name for themselves and take whatever spoils they can.
Thorfinn must seek vengeance on Askeladd, the man who murdered his father, amid the chaos. The Vikings’ only paradise seems to be the ongoing period of war and death. Vinland Saga is definitely an anime like Yasuke you’ll want to check out.
6. Samurai 7
After being harassed for a long time by fearless mechanized bandits, the farmers of Kanna Village know they have little choice but to fight back for their survival. As death by hunger looms, some individuals decide to seek out trained samurai to face the challenge of the murderous bandits.
The villager’s quest culminates in the discovery of seven professional warriors brave enough to battle and defeat the band of outlaws. Fans of ‘Yasuke’ who want a lot of samurai action and drama should watch ‘Samurai 7,’ which, considering its different premise, is still fun to watch. This is definitely an anime like Yasuke worth watching.
7. Stranger: Mukou Hadan
To make ends meet, a young orphan named Kotarou and his dog Tobimaru steal from unsuspecting villagers during Japan’s Sengoku era. Kotarou, on the other hand, is forced to flee when he is pursued by assassins sent by China’s Ming Dynasty for unknown reasons unrelated to his petty crimes.
When Kotarou is attacked and Tobimaru is poisoned, the two run into Nanashi, a ronin who has taken shelter in a small temple.
Despite the fact that the samurai saves the helpless couple from their pursuers, he believes there is no need to aid them further; but, when offered a gem in return for his services as a bodyguard, he reluctantly accepts Kotarou’s offer of employment—just before Tobimaru is healed and the two arrive at their destination. As the three embark on a dangerous journey, it becomes clear that their route is fraught with peril, as the Ming Dynasty has sent a fearsome swordsman to catch Kotarou and fulfill a prophecy.
8. Samurai Champloo
When a group of samurai mistreats a young woman named Fuu, she works as a waitress in a tea shop. An enigmatic outlaw named Mugen and a young ronin named Jin save her. After proving himself to be a worthy foe, Mugen assaults Jin.
The two start fighting and unintentionally kill Shibui Tomonoshina, the magistrate’s son. They will be put to death for this crime. They can avoid execution with Fuu’s assistance. In exchange, Fuu requests that they accompany her on her search for “the samurai who smells like sunflowers.”
9. Brave 10
The story takes place about a year before the Battle of Sekigahara during the Warring States era. Kirigakure Saizou, an Iga ninja on the lookout for his life path, crosses paths with Isanami, a maiden from the Izumo shrine who is being targeted by assassins.
Isanami, who survived Tokugawa Ieyasu’s forces burning the Izumo temple, travels to Shinshuu to seek shelter with Sanada Yukimura. At the same time, Sanada Yukimura is assembling the Sanada Ten Braves, a group of ten extraordinary heroes whose combined power will enable them to change the course of history. The mystical force concealed within Isanami will soon awaken during the continuous battles.
10. House of Five Leaves
House of five leaves is another anime like Yasuke. The plot follows Masanosuke Akitsu, an unfortunate ronin who wanders from one location to another and is considered unreliable by his bosses is the protagonist of ‘House of Five Leaves.’ When Yaichi hires him as his bodyguard, he eventually finds work.
The ronin, on the other hand, has no idea what he’ll have to do when he’s pulled into the world of crime. Now, he must decipher Yaichi’s motivations and history when dealing with his own moral dilemmas. ‘House of Five Leaves’ will provide fans of ‘Yasuke’ with similar epic action scenes to those seen in the previous film.