Anime games

Animation and Anime

Anime now is a global entertainment phenomenon. The influence of anime is so far-reaching and often subtle, that it’s impossible to say where it ends or to imagine much of modern pop culture without it. For many, anime is one of those words they hear used so much, and in so many different situations, that they don’t even really notice it anymore.

Not that long ago, though, anime was a very niche interest outside of Japan, and not something that most people in English-speaking countries would have known about.

The Anime Look

Anime is a slippery thing to try to define! The word itself can mean different things to different people and in different places.

To Westerners, anime originally meant any animation made in Japan. The Japanese word “anime” is a loan-word—from the English word “animation”, of course—but, confusingly, in Japan it just means any animation, even if it’s from the West!

When you think of the English word “anime” though, you probably have a certain visual style in mind. It’s a bold, abstracted style of animation that favors camera work over character movement to create action. Most distinctively, anime characters often have highly-stylized faces with very large eyes and sharply-drawn, simplified features, drawn in bright colors.

Beauty and the Budget

Anime is a great example of how limitation can make for great creativity. Early anime studios were small teams with even smaller budgets, so couldn’t afford Disney-style traditional animation techniques. These teams pioneered the “limited animation” approach, where the focus is on the transition between scenes instead of character movement. Limited animation meant the teams needed fewer frames and so each one could be more detailed, giving anime a real sense of mood. It also evolved to define the look of anime and became one of its greatest strengths.

Another distinctive aspect of anime movies is that they have stayed 2D. While the big, Western animation houses have all made the switch to full 3D for their movies, most Japanese anime houses haven’t, relying on their art and stories to win them praise. It’s certainly an approach that seems to have worked!

The Anime World

The stories in anime are surprisingly deep and mature when compared to animation from the West. Often they are visceral, even gory and may contain adult themes. They are also often highly experimental, blending genres and containing strange stories, told in mind-bending ways.

Moving West

Anime has been popular in Japan since the early 20th century, but in the 1960s it began to spread across the world.

A French Fascination

The French craze of “Japonisme” began as early as the 19th century and it’s said that Vincent Van Gogh was an avid collector of Japanese woodblock prints, making him a candidate for the first Otaku in Europe!

It wasn’t until the seventies that anime started to find a mass audience in France, sowing the seeds of legendary French “anime” productions like Ulysses 31. Today, France is the biggest consumer of Japanese manga (comics) outside of Japan itself, buying more Japanese comics than French ones.

America and the Anglosphere

In the seventies and eighties, anime also started to find an audience in the US, thanks to distributors finding space for the more “family-friendly” anime on Saturday mornings. The impact of the dynamic anime style was huge, and groundbreaking series like Cowboy Bebop and Dragon Ball Z were not only hugely popular with English-speaking audiences but also helped establish a visual and story telling style that is still easy to see in anime today.

Studio Ghibli, meanwhile, further legitimized the art form in the eyes of Americans, producing a series of beautiful, hand-drawn films that captivated viewers and wowed critics. Following the well-deserved Best Animated Feature Oscar win of Spirited Away in 2003, none could doubt that anime, as a cultural force, had arrived.

Games and the Anime Influence

As gaming and anime are both pillars of modern Japanese culture, it’s only natural that there are thousands of games created to tie-in with successful series and manga (comic books).

What is more surprising is the way that the style has transcended its origins, with many popular modern gaming franchises such as the Persona series using the distinctive style of anime in their art, despite having no connection to any anime show or manga comic.

What Makes an Anime Game

An anime game is any game that is based on an anime show, of course, but it’s also any game that is rendered in the distinctive anime style. It’s a vibrant and easy-to-recognize style that many find extremely cute. Despite this, it manages to communicate mood and feeling very effectively, so perhaps it’s no wonder that so many game developers see it as a go-to style choice.

Anime Games on Gamepix

The anime games found on Gamepix cover every conceivable sub-genre, from dating sims to RPGs and everything in between. If you have even the slightest interest in anime, you’ll be spoiled for choice by our selection of browser anime games.

If you’re a hardcore, card-carrying otaku who watches anime with the original voice track and no subs, we have a selection of games we know will appeal.

If, on the other hand, you’ve never played a Final Fantasy game in your life and needed to Google the word “otaku” just then, we have the range of anime games to convert you.

All of them are free, like all of our games and none of them need you to install or update anything, ever. So why not pick one, dive in and enjoy the gorgeous visuals and engrossing strangeness of anime games?


Is there a free anime game?

Yes! There are a lot of free anime games. In fact, all of the browser anime games we have here on Gamepix are completely free to play, so why not take a look at our extensive range of anime games and give one a go?

Where can I play anime games?

Right here! We have a huge variety of browser anime games for you to choose from, all of them totally free. And because they’re browser games, you can play them on any device with a web browser, so you can play them anywhere you go. Enjoy quality anime games on the move, with whatever device you have on you.

What are the most popular anime?

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