Tower of God: 12 Similar Anime You Must Watch

‘Kami no Tou’ adapts the manhwa/webtoon of author-illustrator Lee Jong Hui, aka S.I.U., into a thrilling anime that premiered in 2020. The story follows the protagonist, Twenty-Fifth Bam, who has lived his entire life trapped beneath a mysterious and massive tower. When his only friend, Rachel, who dreams of witnessing the sky from the structure’s peak, enters it, Bam goes after her. Once inside, he discovers the world of regulars and irregulars and must participate in the former group’s deadly trials and challenges.

Each tower floor presents obstacles and guardians, promising to grant the deepest desires to those who reach the highest level. The anime is notable for its world-building, suspense, and multifaceted characters who are not shy about expressing loyalty or backstabbing in unpredictable circumstances. For viewers who enjoy visually stunning stories with deadly games and conflict between classes, here are 12 anime similar to ‘Tower of God’ that you might find equally entertaining.

12. Darwin’s Game (2020)

Based on the manga by FLIPFLOPs, ‘Darwin’s Game’ chronicles Kaname Sudō, who is drawn into the dangerous titular game after his friend’s death from playing the same. The mobile-based application lets Kaname and other players gain supernatural abilities as they play against each other to survive in the real world. The game forces participants to confront dangerous opponents and form alliances while dark secrets loom behind the game’s origin, rules, and the vicious villain — the Game Master. Kaname’s ability to control a powerful snake is crucial to his survival strategy. Like ‘Tower of God,’ ‘Darwin’s Game’ involves cutthroat fights with complex rules, intense battles, and fatal consequences.

11. Alice in Borderland (2014-2015)

Before its mega-hit live-action adaptation on Netflix, ‘Alice in Borderland’ appeared on screens as an original video animation. Based on Haro Aso’s manga series, ‘Imawa no Kuni no Alice,’ it follows Ryohei Arisu and his friends, who find themselves in a deserted Tokyo where they must compete in deadly games to survive. Each game tests their intellect, strength, teamwork, and ability to think straight under pressure, with failure resulting in death. The intense and high-stakes environment of ‘Alice in Borderland’ mirrors the challenges faced by Bam in ‘Tower of God.’ Both series delve into themes of survival, human relationships, exploitation of power, and the lengths individuals will go to achieve their goals.

10. The Ones Within (2019)

Adapted from the eponymous manga by Osora, ‘The Ones Within’ AKA ‘Naka no Hito Genome (Jikkyouchuu) revolves around a group of young individuals who are mysteriously transported to a virtual world. Here, they must participate in various games and tasks that test the features of their body and mind. The protagonist, Akatsuki Iride, and his fellow participants are tasked with clearing these trials to return to their world before they find themselves deeply immersed in the games and the truth behind 13th Avenue. Much like ‘Tower of God,’ this series features a suspenseful environment that surrounds the characters as they try to achieve their objectives. Both narratives explore a fight for survival amidst the unfolding mysteries of their respective worlds.

9. Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? (2015-2023)

Based on the light novels from Fujino Ōmori and Suzuhito Yasuda, ‘Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?‘ (often shortened to ‘DanMachi’) is set in a world where gods live among humans and oversee dungeons filled with monsters. The story follows Bell Cranel, a low-level adventurer who dreams of becoming a hero. After a chance encounter with the deity Hestia, Bell joins her Familia and begins various quests within the dungeon to gain experience and prove his worth.

The series shares thematic elements with ‘Tower of God,’ including ascending through levels of dangerous tests and well-defined personal growth. Both anime feature protagonists adapting to their mysterious surroundings in order to overcome challenges and gain a reward. The constant progression and battle against the enemies in ‘DanMachi’ align well with Bam constantly facing off against new opponents.

8. Plunderer (2020)

Plunderer’ adapts Suu Minazuki’s manga of the same name to exemplify rich and thrilling storytelling with their detailed worlds and complicated yet rational rules. This world determines the worth of its populace by assigning every individual a “Count” number, which influences their social status and survival. The story follows Hina Farrow, a girl searching for the legendary Ace, whose mother has been banished to the Abyss after her Count drops to zero. Hina encounters Licht Bach, a Legendary Ace with an unusually powerful Count, as they attempt to infiltrate the government known as Alcia. The series is reminiscent of ‘Tower of God’ thanks to its focus on a challenging ruling body. Both series feature leads who — after losing a loved one due to the system — are left with no choice but to embark on a difficult journey.

7. Kakegurui (2017-2019)

Kakegurui’ brings the hit eponymous manga from writer Homura Kawamoto and artist Toru Naomura to the screen for a visually striking gambling experience. The Netflix anime takes place at the prestigious Hyakkaou Private Academy, where students are ranked according to their gambling abilities. Yumeko Jabami is a new student who quickly disrupts the established order with her skills. She willingly faces off against vicious student council members in their rigged games to eventually take on the President. These games, often involving life-or-death stakes, create a tense and thrilling atmosphere.

While ‘Kakegurui’ focuses on gambling rather than climbing a tower, it shares similarities with ‘Tower of God’ in depicting social hierarchy, psychological battles, strategic thinking, and the pursuit of power. The characters in both series must comprehend the rules and their opponents in minimum time to ensure their victory. Additionally, ‘Kakegurui’ does not step away from breaking conventional high-school settings, introducing its own version of a vicious tower as part of a test.

6. Future Diary (2011-2012)

The anime adaptation of Sakae Esuno’s eponymous shōnen manga follows Yukiteru Amano, a high school student who comes across a mysterious journal that informs him of events about to take place. Though he aims to use the diary for academic purposes, Yukiteru is nevertheless thrust into a deadly cat-and-mouse game of survival when a number of other characters — who can also predict the future — come after him.

As Yukiteru and other contestants contest for the title of a god, they must form alliances and defend each other against members who have gone rogue. Like ‘Tower of God,’ ‘Future Diary’ is rooted in unforeseen plot twists and an unusual competition that knows no risk boundaries. Additionally, both anime feature reluctant protagonists who are sometimes forced to set aside their morals and resort to vicious strategies for survival.

5. The God of High School (2020)

Author Yongje Park’s ‘The God of High School’ is set in a world where three different realms — humans, gods, and demons — interact with each other. The story follows Jin Mori, a high school student who participates in the titular martial arts tournament where the winner will have their wish fulfilled without fail. The competition attracts fighters from across the country, each equipped with top-notch physical skills and abilities.

As the tournament progresses, Jin and his friends encounter a deeper conspiracy involving ancient powers and supernatural forces. A fellow Japanese anime adaptation of a South Korean manhwa, ‘The God of High School’ has many elements in common with ‘Tower of God.’ Both series feature a competitive, high-stakes environment where participants face their toughest challenges to obtain the ultimate reward.

4. Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water (1990-1991)

Created by Hideaki Anno and the Studio Ghibli auteur Hayao Miyazaki in what remains the latter’s final television work, ‘Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water’ is partially set in a world inspired by French author Jules Verne’s classic works, including ‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.’ The anime follows Nadia, a young girl with a clouded past, and Jean, a young inventor, as they embark on an adventure across the seas.

Their voyage leads them to encounter Captain Nemo and his submarine, the Nautilus, where they learn dark truths and battle the evil Neo-Atlantean forces. Similar to ‘Tower of God,’ ‘Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water’ is about taking on one challenge after another as the risks increase. Moreover, the historical Tower of Babel also plays a significant role in the series — as an interstellar communication device and a weapon of mass destruction — making the classic all the more compelling for fans of ‘Tower of God.’

3. The Tower of Druaga: The Aegis of Uruk (2008)

Based on the eponymous arcade game and the ‘Babylonian Castle Saga’ video game series that followed it, ‘The Tower of Druaga: The Aegis of Uruk’ is the first installment in the anime series. Written by Shoji Gatoh and directed by Koichi Chigira, it follows a group of adventurers led by Jil, a young warrior aiming to conquer the Tower of Druaga and obtain the legendary Blue Crystal Rod. The tower is filled with murderous monsters, traps, and guardians, making each floor a test of strength and strategy.

The ‘Tower of Druaga’ franchise shares many similarities with ‘Tower of God,’ starting right from the central concept of having determined characters ascend a mysterious tower to obtain a precious object. Moreover, the titular buildings are reminiscent of each level, each presenting new challenges and dangers. The character motivations and the overarching quest for power among different communities parallel Bam’s journey and the rivalry between regulars and irregulars in ‘Tower of God,’ creating a similar sense of narrative and fictional world.

2. World Trigger (2014-2022)

Adapted from Daisuke Ashihara’s manga series of the same name, ‘World Trigger’ is an action-packed anime set in conflict between humanity and the invading creatures known as Neighbors. The story revolves around Osamu Mikumo, a trainee in the National Defense Agency, and Yuma Kuga, a hybrid between a human and a Neighbor. They join hands in their mission to eliminate the otherworldly threats amidst the interdimensional warfare and the political intrigue within the Border organization.

The series also employs mecha anime elements with the Border Patrol equipped with Trigger, a technology that converts their build into a Trion-made battle body. ‘World Trigger’ shares similarities with ‘Tower of God’ in depicting strategic battles, teamwork, and the struggle for survival against formidable forces. Both series feature protagonists who must rely on their wits and allies to overcome those odds and help their friends face the scrutiny of their respective worlds. The lengths Osamu goes to save Yuma from fellow soldiers and Neighbors is comparable to the blending of the irregular-to-regular turn of Bam and Rachel.

1. Deadman Wonderland (2011)

A creation of manga writer Jinsei Kataoka and artist Kazuma Kondou, ‘Deadman Wonderland’ is set in a dystopian future where the protagonist, Ganta Igarashi, is wrongfully imprisoned in the titular place, which turns out to be a twisted amusement park-like facility. The prison features brutal games and lethal performances, with inmates forced to participate to ensure their safety and entertain the notorious audience. The constant poisoning in Ganta’s bloodstream has an unexpected reaction, giving him the ability to manipulate his own blood as a weapon.

Similar to ‘Tower of God,’ ‘Deadman Wonderland’ involves characters fighting through a hidden, enigmatic structure where each level or challenge presents significant threats and opportunities. Moreover, the character developments in the series align with Ganta’s search for the truth behind the massacre of his classmates, paralleling Bam’s attempts to clear himself and Rachel of their respective trials amidst intense challenges.

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