Born beneath the gallows tree from which his dead mother hung, Guts has always existed on the boundary between life and death. After enduring a terrible childhood, he spends his adulthood in brutal combat, pitting his strength against others in order to build his own. Life is simple enough for Guts until he meets Griffith, the inspirational, ambitious, and beautiful leader of the mercenaries, the Band of the Hawks. When Guts loses to Griffith in a duel, he is forced to join the group, and, despite himself, finds a sense of camaraderie and belonging amongst them. However, as Griffith leads his soldiers from victory to victory, the bloody wars and underhanded politics reveal a side to him that nobody quite expected. Can Guts, a simple warrior, defend those who have come to mean the most to him, all the while struggling not to lose to the darkness he has carried with him his entire life?
Arslan is the prince of the Palse kingdom, a beautiful country which is located amidst the sand dunes. Peace in the land of Palse is soon disrupted when the Lusitanian army attacks, led by a man known as Silvermask who claims to be the true heir to the throne. After fleeing his home under siege with his only remaining general Daryoon, the young prince travels from kingdom to kingdom, gathering the support and loyalty of new friends, including Gieve the minstrel, Pharangese the warrior priestess, and Narsus the master strategist to help him reclaim his beloved Palse.
Arislan and Berserk definitely have similarities which make them mutually recommendable. While both take place in a different environment, both involve a great deal of battles between countries, non-samurai based, and violent. Strategy is key in Arislan, and is a focus in Berserk as well. Arislan is definitely not as emotionally involving as Berserk, perhaps due to the fact that Arislan is only 6 episodes. Both do share the fact that they end quite abruptly ;)
if you liked berserk for its european influenced medievil setting, political manuvering and strategy intensive plotline then this show is for you.
The war between the monarchical Galactic Empire and the democratic Free Planets Alliance has raged ceaselessly across the galaxy for over a century, with the fleets of both powers having fought countless battles. Currently the conflict revolves around the strategic Iserlohn Corridor, one of only two passages of space through which the two forces can access each other. Here the Empire has built the nigh-impregnable Iserlohn Fortress, whose deadly weaponry has thwarted repeated efforts by the Alliance to capture her. Phezzan, a neutral mercantile state, controls the other corridor. The long war has resulted in an indecisive stalemate, but there are two men from the two worlds who will change everything: Yang Wenli, a gifted strategist from the Alliance who wants nothing more than to retire and be a historian; and Reinhard von Lohengramm, a man from the Empire whose ambition knows no bounds. Their loves, struggles, triumphs and failures play across an interstellar stage of intrigue, war and death.
The animation isn't great in either, but looking past that one finds exceptionally rich writing for an anime; featuring strong characterisation - particularly of a beautifully bishonen male who seeks after power who has a complicated relationship with another prominent character - and an epic, multi-faceted plot. Admittedly Berserk ends far too soon, the scope of its sweeping epic cut painfully short - while Galactic Heroes marches through a staggering number of episodes to a masterful conclusion - but fans of one should by all means try the other as well.
Both of these anime feature an epic and dramatic story centered around two deep and well developed characters. Among these characters I found Griffith from Berserk and Reinhard from LOTGH to be very similar, both being young feminine looking men with dangerously grand ambitions, strategic genius, and subversive ideas. They also each share a distinct tone in their storytelling which can best be described as poetic. This poetic aspect overlays the constant brutal battles that drive each of these anime and creates an unsettling but engaging contrast. I think that anyone who is willing to overlook the shift in scenery and time period will appreciate one series if they did the other.
Dr Kenzo Tenma is a genius surgeon working in post-Cold War Germany who has a bright future ahead of him. He is admired by his colleagues, loved by his patients, and due to marry his boss' daughter, the beautiful Eva Heinemann. One day, when two patients in desperate need of emergency surgery are wheeled into his hospital, Tenma faces a terrible choice of saving the orphaned boy who came first or the mayor of Düsseldorf, whose recovery would raise the hospital's profile and boost his own career. Against the demands of his superior, Tenma does what he believes is right and saves the child. However, his decision not only damages his prospects, but unleashes a chain of events so horrific that it might have come from the depths of his worst nightmares. Laden with guilt, Tenma begins a journey across Germany in search of a formidable young man who will challenge his morals, his love for life, and his very sanity.
Serious-minded seinen anime with a dark mature storyline about a blond, beautiful man and his ambiguous motives towards the world at large - and another man who knows him well and whose relationship with him unfolds in very interesting ways. If you enjoyed either one of these anime you really should consider watching the other.
In addition to the above recommendation I'll point out the shared predilection to fairly complex (but not overbearing), well thought out plots, as well as believable and well-developed characters.
It was prophesied that Alexander the Great would first rule the world and then destroy it. Born the prince of Macedonia, his father was determined to have him remain an obedient military pawn whilst his mother wished for him to be a destroyer of worlds. Now, as Alexander moves across Babylonia towards the "Hindu" lands, enemies from both outside and within his camp struggle to stop him before he can conquer the world and bring about the prophecy of its destruction. Can the world be saved, or is fate truly the deciding factor of life and death?
Both are stories of strong men, which hold destiny of many in their hands. Both struggle with their fate, even if their perspective isn't the same, as Alexander knows to be a ruler while Gutts (the Berserk protagonist) doesn't realize it.
Both great series with lots of action. There are the huge battles where its army vs army, and the smaller battles where the heros duke it out. The constant action leaves no time to get bored of the story lines. In both however, the stories are amazingly complex filled with friendship ambition and destiny. The plot of Alexander is more mystical and based on politics, philosophy, and strategy, whereas berserk (from Guts' perspective) is more about the path of a warrior and the human condition (the nature of evil), both contain elements of each however. I loved both of these series and would highly reccomend them to anyone who needs more badass in their life.
Samurai Deeper Kyo is a story of two men in one body - the humble, polite Mibu Kyoshiro and the legendary samurai Onime-no-Kyo, who has a price on his head. Consequently, Mibu Kyoshiro is captured for having an uncanny resemblance to the samurai. As the story of SDK progresses, we learn more about the two unique souls that inhabit the same body.
The main character Kyo and Kyoshiro are intense -- and in my opinion similar to Gats. No, this anime is not as adult as Berserk, but I do consider it a serious anime, like Berserk and Ninja Scroll. There are also historical elememnts and warriors who fight to express the formless, unexplainable feeling that is to express emotion and energy through motion and perfection. As in Berserk, you get the sense that they've been honing their abilities since birth. As with Berserk when he was killing again and again, just killing to get by, you will feel that intensity in this anime, you will become the character on screen and have a wrinkled forehead as if you, YOURSELF, are fighting for your life, doing whatever necessary to survive. And yes, the battle goose bumps will occur when you watch this, too, especially when Kyo emerges.