9 votes

Suggestions for manga/anime focused on hand-to-hand combat primarily?

Recently I've started getting really into manga/anime that focuses pretty heavily on brawling.

I binged Kengan Asura, which primarily focuses on a fighter named Ohma and his coach as they fight in an underground fighting ring.

Baki was very similar, but probably a bit more silly, and a bit more focused on the conflict with his father.

Part of my problem is I don't really know what to look for after this. Does anyone have any suggestions for either manga or anime that is focused on fighters / fighting like Kengan or Baki?

26 comments

  1. [8]
    Jealot Link
    There's Megalobox, Ashita no Joe and Hajime no Ippo if you're into boxing.

    There's Megalobox, Ashita no Joe and Hajime no Ippo if you're into boxing.

    9 votes
    1. saiyanprideparade Link Parent
      I've seen Megalobox! I forgot about that. I loved every second of it.

      I've seen Megalobox! I forgot about that. I loved every second of it.

      4 votes
    2. mrbig Link Parent
      Megalobox is AWESOME! It's like a mix of Rocky and Cowboy Bebop!

      Megalobox is AWESOME! It's like a mix of Rocky and Cowboy Bebop!

      3 votes
    3. Rem Link Parent
      /thread

      Ashita no Joe

      /thread

      1 vote
    4. [4]
      Randomacts Link Parent
      My only gripe with Megalobox is how they gimped the video quality to make it look 'old'. Besides that it is a an amazing anime and I think that it fits what OP was looking for if he hadn't already...

      My only gripe with Megalobox is how they gimped the video quality to make it look 'old'. Besides that it is a an amazing anime and I think that it fits what OP was looking for if he hadn't already seen it.

      1 vote
      1. [3]
        mrbig (edited ) Link Parent
        Well, let me defend the creators choice here: they didn't do this to gratuitously make the anime look "old" or "bad", but rather "vintage" and "old-school", in order to evoke in the viewer...

        Well, let me defend the creators choice here: they didn't do this to gratuitously make the anime look "old" or "bad", but rather "vintage" and "old-school", in order to evoke in the viewer references of another time and emphasize the grittiness and poetry of Megaloboxes' environment.

        Think about 2012s The Artist (an Oscar-winning movie), that Walking Dead black-and-white episode or the beautiful Mad Max: Fury Road – Black and Chrome Edition. A reduced color palette can be a powerful artistic resource. Even I shot two black-and-white shorts!

        The mere notion of video quality is also extremely relative! If you're playing a videogame, 120FPS is extremely desirable, while a movie shot and played at that rate would look like a soap opera for most people.

        3 votes
        1. [2]
          Randomacts Link Parent
          I'm sorry but go back and watch Cowboy Bebop or any old studio ghibli movie remastered on bluray ect and they look amazing. This isn't about looking 'old school' it just looks bad. Or rather they...

          I'm sorry but go back and watch Cowboy Bebop or any old studio ghibli movie remastered on bluray ect and they look amazing.

          This isn't about looking 'old school' it just looks bad. Or rather they had little technical knowledge and wanted to make it look old but failed horribly. This is not an artistic choice like Cuphead is in that it looks old timey or any old 8bit Indie game but rather it just kind of looks like trash.

          Also you have zero understanding of frame rate as well it appears. The reason people think that movies at high frame rate can look weird is that most of the examples people have seen are it done poorly with the wrong shutter speed or improper lighting for high frame rates. Nobody would see a 240fps game and think that it looks like a soap opera it simply isn't how it works.

          1. mrbig (edited ) Link Parent
            No need to be sorry, but I do think you're wrong. The version of Cowboy Bebop everyone first watched in the late 90s was not the remastered one in 1080p or whatever, but standard NTSC, with each...

            I'm sorry but go back and watch Cowboy Bebop or any old studio ghibli movie remastered on bluray ect and they look amazing.

            No need to be sorry, but I do think you're wrong. The version of Cowboy Bebop everyone first watched in the late 90s was not the remastered one in 1080p or whatever, but standard NTSC, with each frame being composed by two fields for a total of 525 scan lines. We're not even talking pixels here yet! Megalobox tries to replicate that look and feel, not the look and feel of current remasters.

            Also you have zero understanding of frame rate as well it appears.

            I don't think you're in a position to assess my knowledge with such precision, and, even if you were, saying someone has "zero understanding" on something is a very efficient way to be wrong. Because, by logic, you're wrong if my knowledge exceeds zero by any amount. I happen to be a film major, so yeah, my knowledge on this particular subject exceeds zero quite a bit.

            The reason people think that movies at high frame rate can look weird is that most of the examples people have seen are it done poorly with the wrong shutter speed or improper lighting for high frame rates.

            Oh, yeah, I bet Peter Jackson has a lot of trouble understanding such difficult subjects...

            Nobody would see a 240fps game and think that it looks like a soap opera it simply isn't how it works.

            I actually agree with that, but there was nothing in my preview comment implying anything of the sort.

            3 votes
  2. [5]
    mrbig Link
    I don't know what you consider "brawling", but, while having a metaphysical component, Hunter x Hunter is basically a martial arts anime, with several tiered leagues, challenges, and competitions....

    I don't know what you consider "brawling", but, while having a metaphysical component, Hunter x Hunter is basically a martial arts anime, with several tiered leagues, challenges, and competitions. It's also one of the best shounen I have ever watched, with a surprisingly touching and mature story about friendship.

    5 votes
    1. [4]
      saiyanprideparade Link Parent
      Thanks! I'll definitely check out Hunter x Hunter. Its one of those ones I've always heard about but never really looked into.

      Thanks! I'll definitely check out Hunter x Hunter. Its one of those ones I've always heard about but never really looked into.

      2 votes
      1. [3]
        Randomacts Link Parent
        There are some rough parts near the end but overall I think that you would enjoy it going by what you are asking for. The rough parts I speak of are basically just because it is a shonen anime...

        There are some rough parts near the end but overall I think that you would enjoy it going by what you are asking for.

        The rough parts I speak of are basically just because it is a shonen anime from an era before My Hero Academia. Modern shonen has proven that they can drop a few cours at once then take a break to keep the quality high but that historically wasn't the case.

        I still suggest it just remember what genre it is. :)

        2 votes
        1. [2]
          Grawlix Link Parent
          I'm watching it on Toonami, and while parts of it are deeply flawed, it's also brilliant. I don't think I'd be as bothered by things like the pacing or the narration if they weren't holding back a...

          I'm watching it on Toonami, and while parts of it are deeply flawed, it's also brilliant. I don't think I'd be as bothered by things like the pacing or the narration if they weren't holding back a show that's otherwise kind of a masterpiece.

          I love it, I just wish it went through a bit more editing. :p

          2 votes
          1. Randomacts Link Parent
            Yeah those sorts of issues are why I really hope that shounen shows going forward all release with breaks so that animators don't get overwhelmed. Doing 100+ episodes without a break is just a...

            Yeah those sorts of issues are why I really hope that shounen shows going forward all release with breaks so that animators don't get overwhelmed. Doing 100+ episodes without a break is just a recipe for disaster and cut corners.

            2 votes
  3. [2]
    demifiend Link
    How about One Punch Man or Fist of the North Star?

    How about One Punch Man or Fist of the North Star?

    4 votes
    1. gyrozeppeli Link Parent
      FoNS has not aged well at all, but One Punch Man is fantastic.

      FoNS has not aged well at all, but One Punch Man is fantastic.

      1 vote
  4. [2]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. saiyanprideparade Link Parent
      Appreciate this! Both of those sound really great. Kingdom in particular sounds really interesting.

      Appreciate this! Both of those sound really great. Kingdom in particular sounds really interesting.

      2 votes
  5. InkWalking Link
    Hmmm, been a while since I was into fighting/brawling but here's a few that I remember: Hajime no Ippo - The OG boxing manga/anime. Still ongoing but pretty good. History's Strongest Disciple...

    Hmmm, been a while since I was into fighting/brawling but here's a few that I remember:

    Hajime no Ippo - The OG boxing manga/anime. Still ongoing but pretty good.

    History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi - Manga/anime about a kid who learns a bunch of different fighting styles. Starts off relatively low power level but ends up getting a little crazy towards the end.

    The Breaker - Manhwa that is kind of similar to HSD (mentioned above). Random kid ends up gaining substantial fighting potential and trains with his master. Another one where power level starts off pretty low but then goes kinda crazy.

    Tenjo Tenge - Been a looooong time since I watched this, but if I remember right it's about a highschool that teaches martial arts. Kinda fan service-y if I remember right.

    3 votes
  6. [6]
    Possum Link
    This may be a bit of a stretch but Vinland Saga is a great manga about Vikings. There are lots of sword and axe fights, but the protagonist's father is a man who has sworn to not kill and fights...

    This may be a bit of a stretch but Vinland Saga is a great manga about Vikings. There are lots of sword and axe fights, but the protagonist's father is a man who has sworn to not kill and fights only with his hands. Semi-spoilers, but his son eventually does the same (after lots of fighting with daggers however).

    2 votes
    1. [2]
      Comment deleted by author
      Link Parent
      1. Possum Link Parent
        Sorry! I wasn't sure how to convince OP it might fit their requirement without the mild spoiler.

        Sorry! I wasn't sure how to convince OP it might fit their requirement without the mild spoiler.

        1 vote
    2. [3]
      Rem Link Parent
      You should also mention the anime is coming up soon. I believe it airs in spring if I'm not mistaken.

      You should also mention the anime is coming up soon. I believe it airs in spring if I'm not mistaken.

      2 votes
      1. [2]
        Possum Link Parent
        I totally forgot that myself, but thanks for reminding me!

        I totally forgot that myself, but thanks for reminding me!

        1 vote
        1. Rem Link Parent
          Oh no problem! Glad I could help!

          Oh no problem! Glad I could help!

    3. saiyanprideparade Link Parent
      I'm totally fine with sword / axe fights. I actually have read Vinland Saga, another one I forgot I've read. I enjoyed this very much. If I re-wrote my original post, I guess I might call for...

      I'm totally fine with sword / axe fights. I actually have read Vinland Saga, another one I forgot I've read. I enjoyed this very much.

      If I re-wrote my original post, I guess I might call for fighting that is somewhere vaguely grounded in reality, which Vinland Saga definitely fits into.

      1 vote
  7. [2]
    Nashooo Link
    Holyland. Amazing manga. If you read one series this year, let it be this one if you haven't read it yet.

    Holyland.

    Amazing manga. If you read one series this year, let it be this one if you haven't read it yet.

    1 vote
    1. saiyanprideparade Link Parent
      That sounds like exactly what I'm looking for. Thanks!

      That sounds like exactly what I'm looking for. Thanks!

  8. grizzchan Link
    Hajime no Ippo is a classic boxing manga/anime. Over 1000 chapters and still ongoing.

    Hajime no Ippo is a classic boxing manga/anime. Over 1000 chapters and still ongoing.

    1 vote