Interest Stacks

Essential Space Anime

Dec 26 2023, 9:40 PM | Updated Feb 2, 6:06 PM
A list of essential anime based in outer space.

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu: Waga Yuku wa Hoshi no Taikai

Legend of the Galactic Heroes: My Conquest is the Sea of Stars

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu: Waga Yuku wa Hoshi no Taikai
Movie, 1988, 1 ep Me:- Author:10
Prequel movie to Legend of the Galactic Heroes

This movie is the pilot episode for Legend of the Galactic Heroes. It features the first battle the two main characters, Reinhard and Yang, face off in as well as sets up the series in a grand fashion.

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu: Arata naru Tatakai no Overture

Legend of the Galactic Heroes: Overture to a New War

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu: Arata naru Tatakai no Overture
Movie, 1993, 1 ep Me:- Author:10
Better version of the first two episodes of Legend of the Galactic Heroes

A remake of the first two episodes, this movie has aged spectacularly and has nicer animation and cinematography than the first two episodes. Having a longer runtime, it also adds more detail to the story and is a definitive way to begin the series.

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu

Legend of the Galactic Heroes

Ginga Eiyuu Densetsu
OVA, 1988, 110 eps Me:- Author:10
This highly regarded show is the anime adaption of Yoshiki Tanaka's celebrated Space Opera novel series. With it's grand sweeping narrative, massive cast of characters and universally relevant themes in politics and human nature, this sci-fi epic has established itself as a benchmark in anime storytelling.
Kidou Senshi Gundam
TV, 1979, 43 eps Me:- Author:9
The legendary mecha series that kick-started its own sub-genre. Mobile Suit Gundam is one of Japan's most successful franchises and is beloved all over the world. This first entry was the birth of the "Real Robot" genre where mechs were used more as tools for war and were not romanticized. Being a much darker take, it also focuses on the psychological effects of war on its cast as well as humanity's desire and ability to transcend itself.

Kidou Senshi Zeta Gundam

Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam

Kidou Senshi Zeta Gundam
TV, 1985, 50 eps Me:- Author:9
Zeta Gundam is the sequel to the original series that takes everything up another notch. With a bigger focus on characters, politics, worldbuilding and themes it manages to be a more than worthy successor.

Kidou Senshi Gundam ZZ

Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ

Kidou Senshi Gundam ZZ
TV, 1986, 47 eps Me:- Author:6
ZZ Gundam is the third entry in the series. Following Zeta Gundam, it continues the previous conflicts with a new cast of characters.

Kidou Senshi Gundam: Gyakushuu no Char

Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack

Kidou Senshi Gundam: Gyakushuu no Char
Movie, 1988, 1 ep Me:- Author:8
The final entry in the main Gundam series, this movie concludes the rivalry between two major characters and serves as the end to the general story of this timeline

Kidou Senshi Gundam: The Origin

Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin

Kidou Senshi Gundam: The Origin
OVA, 2015, 6 eps Me:- Author:9
A semi-canonical prequel to the Mobile Suit Gundam series featuring Char's origin story
Uchuu Kyoudai
TV, 2012, 99 eps Me:- Author:10
Cowboy Bebop
TV, 1998, 26 eps Me:- Author:9
Top wo Nerae! Gunbuster
OVA, 1988, 6 eps Me:- Author:9
Being Studio Gainax's and Hideaki Anno's first big hit, Gunbuster was major influence on anime that paved the way for Neon Genesis Evangelion. It was also the originator of many staple tropes of Gainax. The story features two female leads that are trained to use mecha to combat an alien invasion.
TV, 2003, 26 eps Me:- Author:8
TV, 1982, 36 eps Me:- Author:8
A famous mecha series created in the 80's, Macross features a war between humans and the alien race Zentradi. Another real robot anime, Macross sets itself apart by introducing idol culture, love triangles and drama to the genre.

The movie version, Macross: Do You Remember Love?, is not a substitute for the series but is something every anime fan should experience.

Uchuu Senkan Yamato

Star Blazers: The Quest for Iscandar

Uchuu Senkan Yamato
TV, 1974, 26 eps Me:- Author:-
Nearly unrivalled in its impact on space operas, Space Battleship Yamato is a Leiji Matsumoto story which set the groundwork for all space anime going forward. The story features humanity's last hope of the human race on the ship Yamato racing to a distant planet before the Earth is annihilated by an alien Empire's asteroid bombardment.

Uchuu Kaizoku Captain Herlock

Space Pirate Captain Harlock

Uchuu Kaizoku Captain Herlock
TV, 1978, 42 eps Me:- Author:7
Space Pirate Captain Harlock is a Leiji Matsumoto story taking place in an era where humanity is stagnant and over reliant on robots to do work. Captain Harlock is a Space Pirate rebelling against this state of affairs, but now he must defend the Earth against a secret alien invasion. All while dodging the ire of the lazy and corrupt Earth government.
Ginga Tetsudou 999
TV, 1978, 113 eps Me:- Author:7
This Leiji Matsumoto story, Galaxy Express 999, features a young boy accompanied by a mysterious woman going on a journey to a planet where he can freely obtain a mechanical body and achieve immortal life. In its episodic nature, this melancholic and contemplative story covers themes of poverty, desire, dreams, tragedy, life, death, love, and many other facets of the human experience. All while experiencing a wide array of strange and whimsical planets via a space travelling steam-powered train.

Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199

Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199

Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199
OVA, 2012, 26 eps Me:- Author:9
Densetsu Kyojin Ideon
TV, 1980, 39 eps Me:- Author:7
Written by Yoshiyuki Tomino, the creator of Gundam, Space Runaway Ideon features a tragic war between humans and an alien race. The humans end up piloting an ancient Lovecraftian Super Robot which is a source of great mystery throughout the series. This is the series Tomino is most proud of and its ending was Anno's biggest influence for End of Evangelion.
Densetsu Kyojin Ideon: Hatsudou-hen
Movie, 1982, 1 ep Me:- Author:9
The shocking and avant-garde ending for the Space Runaway Ideon Series featuring the conclusion to the war between Humanity and the Buff Clan, This movie was Hideaki Anno's biggest influence for End of Evangelion
Terra e... (TV)
TV, 2007, 24 eps Me:- Author:7

Musekinin Kanchou Tylor

The Irresponsible Captain Tylor

Musekinin Kanchou Tylor
TV, 1993, 26 eps Me:- Author:7
TV, 2014, 13 eps Me:- Author:-
Seihou Bukyou Outlaw Star
TV, 1998, 24 eps Me:- Author:-

Sidonia no Kishi

Knights of Sidonia

Sidonia no Kishi
TV, 2014, 12 eps Me:- Author:-

Soukou Kihei Votoms

Armored Trooper Votoms

Soukou Kihei Votoms
TV, 1983, 52 eps Me:- Author:7
This Mecha series sets up a more realistic interpretation of the Real Robot sub-genre. It's a very influential series in the military mecha genres and created a massive franchise.

Space Cobra

Space Adventure Cobra

Space Cobra
TV, 1982, 31 eps Me:- Author:7
A classic space series featuring a witty and comedic ex-space pirate Cobra which is directed by Osamu Dezaki. This is a fun stylish action series rather than a more serious space opera.

Seikai no Monshou

Crest of the Stars

Seikai no Monshou
TV, 1999, 13 eps Me:- Author:-
Mugen no Ryvius
TV, 1999, 26 eps Me:- Author:-

Kanata no Astra

Astra Lost in Space

Kanata no Astra
TV, 2019, 12 eps Me:- Author:-

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