If you're looking for anime similar to Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica, you might like these titles. All recommendations are made by Anime-Planet users like you!
Kamba and Shouma Takakura have taken care of their sickly younger sister Himari since their parents disappeared years ago - that is, until the day she died. But as the boys grieve by her hospital bed, Himari sits up, adorned with a strange penguin hat. Suddenly, the three of them are transported to a vibrant world where the hat, using Himari's body as a puppet, charges these brothers with a task: find the Penguin Drum and their sister's life will be saved! Now aided by some odd penguins they received in the mail, the duo must find this mysterious item or risk losing the sister they care for so much. However, they aren't the only ones with their sights on the Penguin Drum, for new enemies await them around every turn, all connected in ways they would have never imagined...
Madoka Magica and Mawaru Penguin Drum have this dark, shrouded atmosphere that makes their worlds seem hopeless, unpredictable, and better off just letting the ''fate'' of their worlds take over. These shows have the power of taking people who seem so ordanairy and making their lifes a living hell, constantly fighting for what they want, even when they know that it may not come to light. The fate of the characters seems just about impossible to change...
The fantasy aspect, which usually makes a lot of shows more bright and loving, can make the worst darkness come out. The characters are out there for their own needs and won't stop to get what they want. While their causes seem reasonable, the boundaries that are pushed can be overwhelming, trying to change the outcomes of the people they care about. Also, the animation styles are both unique and bright.
Both shows have a similar theme: fate and what you would give up for the power to change it. They also both have interesting visual styles that set them appart from other series.
Both these anime are pretty similar in the way that they both deal with the philosophy of fate and magical things happening to change it. They're also both completely not what you would expect. Madoka Magica is about magical girls in frilly outfits with a cute little animal thing, Mawaru Penguindrum involves a anthro-ish penguin hat, a cute little sickly sister who loves her big brothers, and adorable quirky penguins. How is that similar at all? Because they both seem really lighthearted and happy and deal with normally cutesy premises, but are actually shockingly dark, however Mawaru Penguindrum has more comic relief and is A LOT weirder than Madoka Magica.
Both these animes have the same concept of "fate" and this never ending loop of dispair in which it causes unless someone makes a sacrific to change it.
Both of these deal with the same philosophical perspective on the concept of fate and the power to change it. Both shows take very cynical view on the subject, allowing the main plot to be about wanting to change the “fate” of the bad situation the characters find themselves in and wanting to protect those dear to them.
If you like one you should really check out the other.
While visiting her grandparents on a remote island, Shiina Tamai, our young protagonist, inadvertently finds a strange star shaped creature, which she names Hoshimaru. This creature, while seemingly harmless and unusual, holds many secrets. As Shiina and her new friend Akira soon find out, their creatures are much more than they seem to be...and against their will, they are thrown into a dangerous and hostile situation of trying to save the world from others who would use their dragonets to enslave it.
Both of these series takes a setting that is typically family friendly, and puts a dark twist on it. Not for the faint of heart!
Both anime take their respective genres (Magical girls and pocket monsters) and subvert it into something delightfully twisted. If you want to see darker versions of the normally kid-friendly genres, try both of these anime.
Disguising themselves visually at first appearance as something family friendly, only to turn out being quite dark and twisted. Liked it in one of them? Then try the other.
Both animes are fairly messed up. The actions of their protagonists may seem questionable and leave you pondering even after the show is over.
In a dark and dreary dimension, the mysterious Black Rock Shooter roams the desolate landscape with her gigantic gun, pausing only to battle against other mysterious super-powered girls. Elsewhere, a teenage girl is excitedly preparing for her very first day of junior high, eager to begin her new life of attending a basketball club and befriending the elegant new girl. But what exactly is the connection between these two worlds?
Visually stunning and totally different outlook on their respected genres both series are far more than watchable. Each with a complex story that starts out hard hitting and grabs you tightly until the very end.
In both anime friendship prevails, and the main characters fight for her best friend, living in an uncaring world. The fights are in a very similar scenario. If you liked one of them you must watch the other. I recommed both
The art style are very similar, very beautiful. You're also going to like the original plots in both animes as they take different turns and twists throughout.
Both feature the alter ego of a young girl fighting strange creatures in a surreal otherworld.
It is the year 1983; and in the village of Hinamizawa, on the night of the cotton drifting festival and in the days following it, a series of deaths occurs. The only hope for the village and its inhabitants is the shrine maiden Furude Rika who, with the help of her invisible partner Hanyuu, is able to travel back in time and alter the events that led to disaster. Unfortunately, regardless of what changes are made, each voyage ultimately ends with the death of Rika and many of her friends. But when Rika’s friends start remembering things that happened to them in previous worlds and take steps to avoid the same outcomes, Rika realizes that their chances of survival have never been better. Can she really challenge and defeat fate itself?
While it's a given you must watch the first season of Higurashi first before watching Kai,and while I'd say the premises of both shows are rather different at first glance, the overall backstory behind Higurashi fits in rather closely with Madoka's and both series have continuously startling new revelations about the characters in the series and the fates they've been forced to accept. I would say more but I don't want to give away any spoilers for either series. Just keep in mind, if you liked one there's a good chance you'd probably like the other.
In both anime the characters are condemned to a future with a final of pain, the history repeats and repeats, but a person with the potential and the help of her friends can change this future and make amazing miracles. I recommend both, because them teach you the importance of life and how to change a sad finally with a miracle, nothing is impossible, if you give you heart to it.
Both anime package their dark story in cutsy characters and also, the underlying plot of what is really going on is kind of similar.
Both Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica and Higurashi no Naku Koro ni Kai tell the story of a girl willing to do anything for the sake of her friends, no matter how painful it may be. Both feature elements of darkness and are full of chilling twists and turns despite appearing cute at first glance. If you expect either of these series to be full of sweetness; prepare to be shocked
At a typical elementary school in Japan, yearly chores are being distributed. Yuri and 3 other students are chosen to be the beneficiaries of the alien hats for the year. Alien hats?! Yuri's sentiments, exactly. Despite her misgivings, she and her classmates must round up stray aliens that have escaped from a crashed spaceship -- with the help of the alien hats, of course.
Both of these series blend and twist what it means to be one set apart from society. Both of the shows compare and contrast rather nicely if you're okay with one you'll certainly want to check out the other.
Both anime involve young, female protagonists that find themselves battling strange, otherworldly creatures. Both take a step out of reality, but have a similar message of growing up and dealing with your fears. Both also involve some interesting twists. If you like one, try out the other.
Both Alien Nine and Madoka Magica focus on the mental and emotional toll that come with the power and responsibility of protecting others. Madoka and Yuri have to deal with otherworldly beings that threaten their world and try to manage their respective "contracts" with beings that they don't fully understand.
Both are brief, superficially cute series that quickly turn traumatic. Madoka is more coherent and literary, while Alien Nine is brutally strange and fractured.