Imagine Code Geass without "magical eyes", mechs, ideas like "the one who yells louder wins", immortal women and stupid idealism (hi Suzaku). You with me so far? Now, imagine Code Geass where there are dozens of great commanders like Lelouch on both sides, where political intrigues, plots and schemes are far from uncommon. Imagine battles of epic proportions and war on the galactic scale, where winning side is decided only by commanders intelligence, number of troops, their morale and available resources, not superunits like Lancelot. Do this and you've invented LoGH.
In Both the hero is nobility. Lelouch was a discarded prince while Reinhard was a poor noble. But both want to remove the nobility from power. Both have grand plans to unify the world for the sake of their sisters. Both are charismatic and have strong allies and enemies. Both are Genius military guys and will make sacrifices for the grand dream.
Aristocratic governments, political machinations, Xanatos' gambits, the whole shebang.
Hubris. Revenge. Noblesse Oblige. Revolution. Heroics. Anti-Heroics. Tragedy. Power grabs. Machiavellian schemes. Funny European names. If you like those, then you'll like both shows.
In addition, both stories follow a young man who wants revenge by increasing his power until he can succeed in overthrowing the monarchy because of the Emperor being a jackass who ruined the life of the protagonist's sister.
Code Geass is essentially a "down to earth" (literally) version of Legend of the Galactic Heroes, and I don't mean that in a condescending way.
Since the basic plot and characters are similar, I thought I'd outline some of the main differences between the two shows. Oh, and I'm also writing this under the assumption that people like these shows primarily because of the strategy behind the battles.
Some minor spoilers may be included. You have been warned.
Legend of Galactic Heroes
1. There are Lelouches on both sides (i.e. people other than Lelouch are not portrayed as whimpering idiots).
2. There is none of that "I have the
But focus heavily on tactics and strategy.
Empire, politics, rebellions, good characters and all that jazz
what happens when there are bunch of brilliant masterminds like lelouch on both sides vying for world supremacy that is LOGH. Code Geass is pure mecha while LOGH is spacewar.
Both have battles that don't rely on strength in numbers or the capability of weapons to fight. They rely on strategies and tactics.
Lelouch/Zero can compare to Reinhard because they are both tactical geniuses, as is Yang, Wenli from LOGH.
Both anime give a clear explanation on how their world is run and the background of it.
LOGH is the Mature and Sophisticated version of CG. It's the evolution from a kid still Potty Training, to being the Engineer that built the Zero-Gravity Space Toilet. It's the leap from being a Pee Wee League Basketball kid, to being the next Michael Jordan. It's the upgrade from Atari 2600 to the Playstation 4 or Xbox One. It's the difference in illumination between a Candle and the Sun. It's the transition from an Appetizer to the Main Course- and that is the main merit of watching CG, as to prepare you for the Real Deal.
When one has seen enough of the "Staples" and "Popular"
Code Geass take heavy inspiration from LOGH, and some may come to say Geass is the "teenage shounen" version of LOGH.
I prefer LOGH, because it's much more fleshed out compared to Geass. I would recommend LOGH to most people I know, while I would only recommend Geass to someone who can get by it's "edgy teenage drama" feel.
I'll be harsh - Legend of Galactic Heroes is anime for grown ups instead lukewarm and childish thing that is Code Geass. I can not believe that CG is up on the leaderboards with LoGH. If You watched LoGH You will know what I mean. LoGH is all the things that is Code Geass + better politics, believable military strategies and better characterization. Only thing that LoGH lacks and may put you of is animation, its obsolete but You will get used to it and grow to love it by the end of the series :)
Political plots, desire of power and revenge, clash of 2 ideals, brilliant military commanders, epic battles, the shape of the 2 animes looks quite similar.
The main difference is that Code Geass reaches the peak of "popcorn" animes (it is not a reproach) whilst LoGH has way more depth, it is a rewriting of History in the space opera genre.
Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu is Code Geass father. It creates the genre, it creates the "choral" storytelling type in animation (story with lot of balanced characters facing each other, beyond the manichean traditionnal vision) and Lelouch's archetype with Reinhard von Lohengramm.
Both animes tell ascent of a charismatic / machiavelic character who is a strategic genius. Both are about politic manipulation, war, peace (this is more developped in LOGH), love, friendship and trahison.
But above all, they use same dramatic mecanic and are typically huge greek tragedy with tearing plot-twist which make you hate a character, prefer another, questionning you about morality ... especially in
One can see how Legend of the Galactic Heroes influenced Code Geass. Despite both being set in the future, they both use medieval political systems and decor, the battles in both are very strategic (more so in LotGH) and they both feature an ambitious protagonist whose goals are for the sake of his sister.
+ Revolve primarily around Political Theories.
+ Military/ Sci-Fi orientated.
+ Extremely intelligent MC's.
There is an empire that rules with power, but suppresses human right's of citizens.
Both protagonists want to overthrow the ruling empire for different reasons.
They have a sister they want to protect and whom they are fighting for at the beginning. They don't want to lose her.
They have a close friend who has a similar view of the empire and wants to change it.
Both anime use themes of war and politics.
The main focus is about the strategic masterminds that the protagonists are and everything counts for on one move.
This epic and dangerous adventure is backed up by great pieces of music.
Ginga Eiyuu Densets is set
Imagine Code Geass, but without the self-awareness, the intriguing dynamic between two deeply flawed main characters with different ideals, the pizza-eating hottie and the cool mecha action scenes to back the dumb tactical battles up. You with me so far? Now, imagine Code Geass where Lelouch and Suzaku are two Gary Stu characters who are basically measuring the size of their dicks on space, where political intrigues, plots and schemes are far from uncommon but also led by one-dimensional villains who almost reach "monster of the week" status. Imagine spaceship battles where every commander from both factions besides the two main characters is unbelievably dumb
In terms of tactics and conquest themed story lines, as well as a battle of intelligence.