Samurai and manga are two fantastic flavors that complement each other well. For nearly 50 years, samurai have been the heroes of popular and highly renowned series. The finest samurai manga of all time, including both classic and current releases, is listed below.
As a reason, the genre often displays a deep love for history and the warrior spirit, topics that make for ageless series, as seen by the fact that our list dates all the way back to the 1970s. Manga shows the genre’s power and capacity to appeal to a wide range of groups of fans.
Jintetsu, the young samurai, views avenging his father’s death to be a matter of honour. However, it is revealed that the murderer is a corrupt government official, and the authorities are now determined to hunt Jintetsu down like an animal. The only problem is that Jintetsu is already dead.
Jintetsu’s ravaged body, torn to pieces by a pack of dogs, has been discovered by Genkichi, an outcast and skilled inventor. Genkichi provides the dead youngster a new, unbreakable steel body and a talking sword—exactly what he needs to take on the gang ravaging his town and the mobster who ordered his father’s assassination. But what about Otsuki, the lovely girl he abandoned? Steel armour is a good defense against any blade, but it can’t take away Jintetsu’s sorrow.
14. Totsuidekita Yome ga Aisouwarai Bakari shiteru
The story follows A samurai is concerned that his wife always appears to wear a fake smile while she is with him.
If you’re looking for a peaceful samurai manga, this is the one for you.
13. Laughing Under The Clouds
To combat the new era’s rising crime rates, the Gokumonjou, an unbreakable jail, was built in the center of a massive lake at the start of the Meiji period. The ferrymen are the famed Kumou brothers: Tenka, the eccentric family leader; Soramaru, the wild but honorable second son; and Chuutarou, the mischievous youngest. Despite their difficult jobs, the three live rather peacefully in the ever-cloudy town of Oumi with their housekeeper, Shirasu Kinjou.
The legend of the deadly “Orochi,” a serpentine beast that emerges every three hundred years in a human vessel, lies buried in Oumi’s long past. Unknown to Soramaru and Chuutarou, the Kumou family’s true mission is to lock the Orochi away before it completely revives—or else the world would be destroyed. In the midst of the monster’s second resurrection, the Kumou family must find the strength to continue smiling beneath the clouds.
12. Scarlet Empire
Kotetsu Miyasaka, a first-year high school student with a natural ability for kendo, enjoys the sport alongside his younger brother, Yayoi. Yayoi, who has always been under Kotetsu’s shadow, enlists at a different school than his sibling, where he now studies alongside second-year kendo prodigy Chihiro Kawase. However, with an important kendo competition approaching, Chihiro threatens Yayoi with interfering with his brother’s shinai (a wooden sword used in kendo) in order to ensure Chihiro’s success. When Yayoi refuses to cooperate and returns home with bruises, Kotetsu, enraged, challenges Chihiro to a duel with steel swords. During the fight, however, Kotetsu travels through time to the Bakumatsu era, the final years of the Edo period.
Unsure of who is friend or foe, Kotetsu is caught by Souzou Sagara, the leader of a roushi band. Seeking Kotetsu’s strength, Sagara invites him to join his group and help transform the world. As if life in the Edo period wasn’t enough chaotic, Kotetsu encounters familiar characters from his own era but with radically new identities. He must survive in this deadly age while contributing to the history of ancient Japan as he joins forces with Sagara.
At the dawn of the Edo era, the samurai Toyohisa Shimazu is engaged in a violent conflict with the legendary Tokugawa dynasty in order to secure the Shimazu clan’s successful retreat.
After his whole unit is slaughtered, Toyohisa manages to single-handedly force the enemy to withdraw—at the risk of mortally injuring himself. He walks out of the battlefield depressed, only to find himself in a white corridor, where he is promptly slammed into a door. He awakens in a new world, where he meets “Drifters,” other renowned warriors who died and wound themselves in the same world. Together, they harness their past lives’ wisdom and experience to take over an empire and confront an unknown evil power intent on annihilating humanity.
10. Kaze Hikaru
During the Bakumatsu revolution, which marked the end of the Tokugawa era and the beginning of the Meiji era, a young girl called Sei Tominaga disguises herself as a young boy named Seizaburo Kamiya to join the Shinsengumi in order to revenge the deaths of her father and brother.
9. Kubikiri Asa
There are few good stories in a prison world, and this is the world of Kubikiri Asa, the Shogun’s beheader and master samurai. The world is filled with wrath, greed, and bloodshed. A world filled with depravity and sin. If he can retain his calm, one man can make things right. This is a story of epic proportions, of sword studies steeped in history and dreadful intent, of blood rivers, painful screams, bondage, torture, and the evil inherent in human failing. Samurai Executioner is a striking blend of darkness and fire, fine lines, and a fine man in the face of human decay, written by the acknowledged masters of the worldwide medium of manga.
8. Saraiya Goyou
Akitsu Masanosuke, a masterless samurai, is a talented and devoted swordsman, but his naive, quiet character has caused him to be fired by the lords who have hired him time and time again. He becomes a bodyguard for Yaichi, the charismatic head of a gang known as “Five Leaves,” because he is hungry and desperate. Masa begins to think that Yaichi’s goals are not what they appear to be while being troubled by the gang’s sinister activities. Despite his concerns, the more he digs into the world of the Five Leaves, the more attracted he becomes by these cunning, intriguing criminals.
7. Peace Maker Kurogane
Peace Maker Kurogane tells the story of Ichimura Tetsunosuke, a Choushu Domain boy who had to see his parents being slaughtered right in front of his eyes. He then decided to contact Shinsengumi in order to join the group.
Ichimura Tetsunosuke, on the other hand, lacked the desire, force, and courage to eliminate whoever threatened Shinsengumi’s peace. He wasn’t on his own. Tetsunosuke, his brother, was accompanying him. In Shinsengumi, he also made a lot of friends. But, while preparing to become unstoppable, will he be able to handle all of the blood that his peers will shed? This is a manga that you should certainly check out!
Tadanaga Tokugawa, Japan’s sadistic rulers, has ordered Japan’s first martial arts tournament with actual swords, shocking even his most devoted servants. When the audience realises that the first match pairs the one-armed Gennosuke Fujiki against the blind and lame Seigen Irako, even the most determined opponents proclaim the event a joke and the fighters’ disabilities an insult to their status.
The majority of the audience is unaware of Gennosuke and Seigen’s intense hate for one another, which comes from their battle to become the successor to the mad samurai Kogan Iwamoto, commander of the infamous Kogan-ryuu dojo. Their once-friendly rivalry for Kogan-ryuu and Mie, Kogan’s daughter, swiftly devolves into violence when one of the young warriors enrages the master, setting off a series of events that ends with their terrible injuries.
Shikizaki Kiki, a skilled swordsmith, made 1000 blades long ago, and among his twelve last works, the legendary deviant blades stand apart. These swords are among the best in Japan, each with its own unique traits.
Forward several decades and you’ll find Yasuri Shichika and his older sister Nanami living on an isolated island.
Togame: A lady with long, white hair and the ability to strategize joins Shichika on a journey to acquire the twelve swords. They must engage in tough battles with the blade wielders while learning more about themselves and their true desires and goals.
4. Blade of the Immortal
Manji is a legendary swordsman in feudal Japan, renowned as the “Hundred Man Killer” for murdering one hundred men. But there’s something considerably more terrifying about him than his gloomy reputation: he’s immortal. This is the work of Yaobikuni, an eight-hundred-year-old nun who implanted bloodworms in Manji’s body that can cure practically any wound.
Manji decides to kill a thousand bad persons to atone for his crimes. Yaobikuni agrees to this proposal, promising to reverse his immortality curse if he succeeds. Soon later, Manji encounters Rin Asano, a 16-year-old girl who asks for Manji’s help in eliminating the people who killed her parents.
Manji first rejects Rin’s frantic appeal. Manji, however, changes his mind and offers to guard Rin for four years due to her obvious lack of strength. With their alliance formed, the two start off on a hazardous path of violence, revenge, and atonement, each seeking to accomplish their own life’s purpose.
3. Rurouni Kenshin
Bakumatsu, a period of conflict during which civilians revolted against the Tokugawa shogunate, ended ten years ago. The revolutionaries desired an era of peace and a prosperous country free of oppression. The Meiji era has begun, but peace has yet to be achieved. Even if swords are prohibited, people are still killed on the streets. Orphans of war veterans have nowhere to turn, while the government is willing to just stuff its own pockets with cash.
Kenshin Himura, a wandering samurai, continues to struggle to ensure that the principles he fought for are still worth the lives sacrificed to bring in the new era. He was feared as the most vicious murderer of all the rebels when he was known as Hitokiri Battousai. In order to atone for the lives he murdered, Kenshin has pledged never to kill again, and he may never find peace until killing is no longer an option.
In the 11th year of Meiji, Kenshin comes across Kaoru Kamiya, the owner and head instructor of a tiny dojo that is facing closure. The police force is helpless to stop a guy claiming to be the famous Battousai from murdering people in the name of her dojo. Kenshin’s journeys are put on hold for the time being as he joins Kaoru to clear both of their names. But how much longer can he stay before his history finds him?
Japan is abruptly overrun by alien monsters known as “Amanto” during the Edo era. Despite the samurai’s best efforts, the Shogun quickly sees that their efforts are hopeless and decides to surrender. This is the start of a tense relationship between the Shogunate and Amanto, which leads to a nationwide sword ban and the death of the samurai spirit.
One odd guy, however, wields a wooden sword and refuses to abandon his samurai title. Gintoki Sakata does different odd jobs around town to make ends meet now that his type is no longer needed. They manage the Yorozuya company with his self-proclaimed apprentice Shinpachi Shimura, the terrifying extraterrestrial Kagura, and a big dog named Sadaharu, often getting tangled up in all sorts of weird and amusing antics.
Vagabond is a fictionalised account of Musashi Miyamoto, one of Japan’s most known swordsmen, and his transformation from a swordsman obsessed with being “Invincible Under the Heavens” to an enlightened warrior who gradually learns the value of close friends, self-reflection, and life itself.
Shinmen Takezou is a wild, rough young man in 16th-century Japan, both in look and behaviour. His combative behaviour has earned him the wrath and terror of his community, prompting him and his best buddy, Matahachi Honiden, to go in pursuit of something more exciting than the rural existence. The two friends enrol in the Toyotomi army, hoping for fame, but when the Toyotomi suffer a catastrophic loss at the Battle of Sekigahara at the hands of the Tokugawa Clan, the buddies barely make it out alive.
Shinmen comes home after the two are separated on a self-appointed mission to inform the Hon’iden family of Matahachi’s survival. Instead, he finds himself a wanted felon, accused of murdering his friend because of his violent past. When he is caught, he is tied to a tree and allowed to die. To escape being followed by the authorities, a wandering monk, the famous Takuan Soho, takes pity on the “demon kid,” surreptitiously freeing Shinmen and naming him Musashi Miyamoto.