The 21 Best Psychological Anime Series Recommendations

21 Twisted Psychological Anime Series That Will Mess with Your Head

Most psychological anime tv shows are one of the greatest ones of all time. They usually get both mature and young people hooked with the twists and plots they reveal during the show. Sometimes, these series are even able to mess with your emotions and make you feel a nade more than you should.

Many psychological anime series fits neatly into the “horror” genre, as they have all the same terrifying qualities despite lacking scary monsters and ghosts.

With no further ado! Here are 21 of the best psychological thrillers to watch on your anime streaming websites these days!

21. Re:Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu

psychological-anime

  • Episodes: 25
  • Studios: White Fox
  • Genres: Drama, Fantasy, Psychological, Thriller

Let’s start our psychological anime list with this dark Isekai anime series named “Re: Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu” which depicts the life of Subaru Natsuki, which turns upside down when he found himself in another world.

At first, It didn’t seem too bad until he is attacked by a group of thugs in an alley. His only weapons being a single bag of groceries and a cell phone, he did not last long against the group.

Satella happened to come across the fight as she was chasing down a thief, and helps Subaru (heals him). So, Subaru is thankful and decides to help Satella search for her stolen insignia.

Later on in the day, he manages to find the location of the insignia, but things did not go as planned. Therefore, Out from the shadows came a darker force, and Subaru and Satella were murdered right on the spot.

However, Subaru wakes up in the alley where he was attacked by thugs, where they are currently standing trying to get his valuables.

20. Ergo Proxy

psychological-anime

  • Episodes:  23
  • Studios: Manglobe
  • Genres:  Sci-Fi, Mystery, Psychological

Ergo Proxy is one of the best sci-fi and psychological anime of all time, but it’s sad that it hasn’t received the recognition that it deserves. The story of this mysterious anime starts after an explosion that left people forced to live in isolated, domed cities.

They live in a controlled society and are assisted in daily life by autonomous robots called AutoReivs. In one of these cities, Romdo, Inspector Re-l Mayer, leads an investigation concerning AutoReivs that have gone mad after being infected by the Cogito virus.

Therefore, she comes in contact with a monster called Proxy. Meanwhile, in the city, the immigrant Vincent Law is on the run after being framed for involvement in several Cogito cases. Together, they set out on a journey to the dome city of Moscow in order to unravel the mystery of the Proxies.

19. Death Parade

psychological-anime

  • Episodes: 12
  • Studios: Madhouse
  • Genres: Game, Mystery, Psychological, Drama, Thriller

Death Parade is one of my favorite psychological anime of all time! yeah, this Japanese anime series will teach you the true nature of human beings. The plot follows what happens after death. Right after people’s death, they arrive at the Quindecim, a bar attended by the mysterious white-haired bartender named Decim.

After death, humans go to either heaven or hell, but for some people, they face a bartender who challenges them in random games, that will decide their fate later During these games, the true nature of humans appears, be good or bad, your Welcome to Quindecim, where Decim, decides your afterlife!

In the death parade people receives a judgment, however, a strange, black-haired girl causes Decim to begin questioning his own rulings.

18. Future Diary

psychological-anime

  • Episodes: 26
  • Studios: Asread
  • Genres: Action, Mystery, Psychological, Shounen, Supernatural, Thriller

The series offers themes of romance, drama, and gory scenes, also in this psychological anime you’ll meet the queen yet the best yandere anime girl of all time Yuno Gasai!

The Mirai Nikki’s Story follows the reserved ordinary boy Yukitero Amano, who used to spend his day writing in a diary on his cell phone and occasionally talking to his imaginary friend, Deus Ex Machina, and Mur Mur.

However, Deus turns out to be the master of time and space, and Mur Mur is his servant. Deus grants Yukitero a Random Diary, which gives him detailed entries of what happens during the day.

He, along with eleven others, are pinned against each other, having different diaries. The last person standing becomes the new god of time and space. Therefore, Yukitero ends up teaming up with Yuno Gasai, an insane stalker who would do anything to guarantee his survival.

Read Also: Here are The Amazing New Romance Anime Series of 2019 to watch

17. Perfect Blue

psychological-anime

  • Movie
  • Studios: Madhouse
  • Genres: Dementia, Drama, Horror, Psychological

Here is Such a great Japanese psychological anime movie that has even inspired Hollywood to make a movie adaptation of it.

The story of this Japanese animated film follows Mima Kirigoe a J-pop group member! She decides to leave the group to pursue her acting career, hoping all her fans would continue to show their loving support. However, changing careers wasn’t as easy as she thought. The first thing she decided to do was be in a crime drama series.

As her difficulties increase, a fan who refuses to believe Mima stopped being an idol begins talking to her and even set up a detailed site to impersonate her. Adding on to that, CHAM! appears to be doing better without her, rather than falling apart and disbanding.

16. Zankyou no Terror

terror-in-resonance

  • Episodes: 11
  • Studios: MAPPA
  • Genres: Mystery, Psychological, Thriller

Here is another psychological anime series where villains are the main characters, this mystery animated tv show will really hit you right in the feels. Zankyou no Terror plot is set in an alternate version of the present, where a shocking terrorist attack strikes Tokyo.

Well, the only hint to the identity of the culprit is a bizarre video uploaded to the internet. The police, baffled by this cryptic clue, are powerless to stop the paranoia from spreading across the population.

While the world searches for a criminal mastermind to blame for this tragedy, two mysterious children—children who shouldn’t even exist—masterfully carry out their heinous plan.

Cursed to walk through this world with the names Nine and Twelve, the two combine to form “Sphinx,” a clandestine entity determined to wake the people from their slumber—and pull the trigger on this world.

Read Also: The 20 Amazing Japanese Anime Movies You Must Watch Right Now!

15. Shinsekai Yori

shinsekai-yori

  • Episodes: 25
  • Studios: A-1 Pictures
  • Genres: Sci-Fi, Mystery, Horror, Psychological, Supernatural, Drama

This Masterpiece psychological anime series will mess with your head! Shinsekai Yuri highlights the theme of A Massive ability that can manipulate matter remotely turning many power wielders to violence, which resulted in a long period of trouble. Finally, after a chaotic era shaped by the rise and fall of oppressive regimes, psychic humans were able to achieve a fragile peace by isolating their society and creating a new world bound by complex rules.

There, Saki Watanabe has just awakened to her powers and is relieved to rejoin her friends at Sage Academy, a special school for psychics. However, unease looms as Saki starts to question the fate of those unable to awaken to their abilities, and the children start to get dragged with mysterious matters such as the rumored Tainted Cats said to abduct children.

Shinsekai Yori is a great psychological anime series that depicts tells the story of Saki and her friends as they adventure to grow into their roles in the supposed utopia. Accepting these roles, however, might not come easy when faced with the dark and shocking truths of society, and the impending havoc born from the new world.

14. Parasyte -the maxim-

parasyte-the-maxim

  • Episodes: 24
  • Studios: Madhouse
  • Genres: Action, Sci-Fi, Horror, Psychological, Drama, Seinen

One of the best horror psychological anime I have ever seen so far is Parasyte! you really must watch this anime series, because it is so awesome and you’ll thank me for this recommendation.

The story follows Shinichi who was able to prevent Migi the Parasyte that bite him, from traveling further up into his brain. Hence, both beings retain their separate intellect and personality.

As the two encounter other Parasytes, they capitalize on their strange situation and gradually form a strong bond, working together to survive. This gives them an advantage in battling other Parasytes, who frequently attack the pair when they realize that Shinichi’s human brain is still intact. Shinichi feels compelled to fight other Parasytes, who devour humans.

13. Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica

psychological-anime-series

  • Episodes: 12
  • Studios: Shaft
  • Genres: Psychological, Drama, Magic, Thriller

Madoka Magica is one of the greatest magic anime tv shows ever! well, this Japanese psychological animated series follows Madoka Kaname and Sayaka Miki are regular middle school girls with regular lives. All that changes when they encounter Kyuubey, a cat-like magical familiar, and Homura Akemi, the new transfer student.

Kyuubey offers them a proposition: he will grant any one of their wishes and in exchange, they will each become a magical girl, gaining enough power to fulfill their dreams. However, Homura Akemi, a magical girl herself, urges them not to accept the offer, stating that everything is not what it seems.

This is a story of hope, despair, and friendship, Mahou Shoujo Madoka★Magica deals with the difficulties of being a magical girl and the price one has to pay to make a dream come true.

Read Also: The 10 Action Romance Anime Series With a Strong Male Lead

12. Higurashi no Naku Koro ni

higurashi

  • Episodes: 50 / Two Seasons
  • Studio: Deen
  • Genres: Mystery, Psychological, Supernatural, Thriller

Hey, horror anime fan! this is the best anime recommendation you will ever get, yeah this one will scare the shit out of you so sit tight and get your adrenaline ready to get moving.

The story of this anime tv show follows Keiichi Maebara, who has just moved to the quiet little village of Hinamizawa in the summer of 1983. He quickly befriends Rena Ryuuguu, Mion Sonozaki, Satoko Houjou, and Rika Furude.

However, darkness lurks underneath the seemingly idyllic life they lead. As He learns that there have been several murders and disappearances over the past few years. The incidents appear to be connected to the festival, and when he asks his friends he gets no response on the subject. As a result, this, and more incidents, cause madness and paranoia to begin taking root in Keiichi’s heart, and he will encounter many dark mysteries.

11. Danganronpa

survival anime

  • Episodes:  36 / Three Seasons
  • Studios: Lerche
  • Genres: Mystery, Psychological, School

Danganronpa is known as a popular video game franchise, yet it got an anime adaptation that you will probably love. The story focuses on Makoto Naegi, who was accepted into Hope’s Peak Academy, a school only accepted the most talented students.

Once accepted, each student is given a title to match their main skill or ability, which in Makoto’s case would be Ultimate Luck. Hence, Makoto and his classmates are overjoyed at first to be accepted into this school, as it guarantees a job after graduation.

However, that feeling of happiness didn’t last long. Their principal Monokuma appeared, stating that they were to live the rest of their lives inside the school, with no exceptions besides the loophole. Therefore, If a student murdered a classmate, and successfully got away with it, then they would be able to graduate.

Read Also: Here are The Best Reverse Isekai Anime Series to Watch!

10. Welcome to the N.H.K.

psychological-anime-series

  • Episodes: 24
  • Studios: Gonzo
  • Genres: Comedy, Psychological, Drama, Romance

This good psychological anime series depicts the story of Tatsuhiro Satou, a college dropout who isolated himself for close to four years. Therefore, Many things could be going on during isolation, such as theories. If he rarely/never leaves his house, his knowledge is limited.

During his isolation, he believes there is a group causing him to be a NEET. This group is named Nihon Hikikomori Kyoukai (NHK), who he believes is trying to spread the NEET culture. So, Will Tatsuhiro finally be able to leave his apartment to get a job?

9. Ayashi no Ceres

psychological-anime-series

  • Episodes: 24
  • Studios: Studio Pierrot
  • Genres: Adventure, Comedy, Horror, Psychological, Supernatural, Drama, Romance, Shoujo

This is an old anime series but believes me it is a Goldie, this underrated psychological Japanese series follows Ceres, who was a tennyo (celestial maiden) who visited Earth to bathe. For a celestial maiden to return to the heavens, they must have their robe. But, A man stole her robe and forced her to become his wife. The robe being stolen led to children with a mix of human and tennyo blood.

Moreover, Aya Mikage was a descendant of Ceres and was about to celebrate her sixteenth birthday. So, Aya and her twin brother, Aki, are sent to their grandfather’s house to celebrate. In this House, They learn of the tennyo blood inside her and try to kill her. Hence, She learned she was able to transform into Ceres herself and has to learn to control the transformation if she ever wants life to go back to normal.

8. Gakkou Gurashi

psychological-anime-series

  • Episodes: 12
  • Studios: Lerche
  • Genres: Slice of Life, Psychological, School, Horror, Mystery

Gakkou Gurashi is another good psychological anime tv show that takes place at school, well, horror! mystery!  and school! this is probably what a good anime must deal with. The story centers around Yuki Takeya, a high school student who just so happens to love it so much. She, along with a group of friends, started the School Living Club, where they live at school rather than returning home.

The club is all an illusion, as the girls have actually barricaded themselves in school to protect themselves from the zombie apocalypse. Gakkou Gurashi! is a psychological anime that follows a group of girls who are obligated to adapt to a post-apocalyptic life all by themselves.

They have no means of contact with the outside world and are surrounded by hostile undead waiting to devour them. The girls must not only contend with the challenge of survival; they must also strive to maintain a false appearance of normality in Yuki’s presence.

Read Also: 20 Unknown Animes That you Probably Never Heard Of!

7. xHOLIC

xxxholic

  • Episodes: 37 / Two Seasons
  • Studios: Production I.G
  • Genres: Comedy, Drama, Mystery, Psychological, Supernatural

The story of this supernatural psychological anime tv show follows Kimihiro Watanuki who has an ability that he just hates. He has the ability to see spirits and creatures, which can be pretty annoying if no one else can see them.

One day, he gets this feeling he must enter a house, where he meets Yuuko. Yuuko claims she can rid him of his ability, but there’s a price. She demands that he work at her “store” that grants wishes to people, and thus With his ability, plus a wish-granting store, Kimihiro’s strange adventure starts.

6. Serial Experiments Lain

best-psychological-anime-series

  • Episodes: 13
  • Studios: Triangle Staff
  • Genres: Dementia, Drama, Mystery, Psychological, Sci-Fi, Supernatural

Serial Experiment Lain is among the best psychological anime of all time. It is a masterpiece that you should probably check out ASAP! The story of this psychological anime series Follows Lain Iwakura who receives an email from Chisa Yomoda, and she is not the only one.

Normally it wouldn’t be strange, but Chisa recently committed suicide. Moreover, Lain was also uninterested in technology but decided to follow the email into the Wired. She is faced with cryptic messages, these men in black appear around her, and they seem to know more about her than she does.

What is real, and what is in cyberspace? It is getting harder to tell the difference, and the bizarre events all started with a simple email. Serial Experiments Lain is a psychological mystery anime series that showcases the story of Lain as she makes crucial choices that will have an impact on both the real world and the Wired. As a result, In closing one world and opening another, only Lain will realize the significance of their presence.

Read Also: 10 Awesome Romance Action Anime Series with Op Mc

5. Erased

psychological-anime-series

  • Episodes: 13
  • Studio: A-1 Pictures
  • Genres: Mystery, Psychological, Supernatural, Seinen

What if you have the power to go back in time and correct what’s wrong! well, this time travel anime series is dealing with this theme, its story focuses on Satoru Fujinuma, who is sent back in time 18 years to prevent the events leading to his mother’s death, which began with a series of kidnappings in his 5th-grade year.

When tragedy is about to strike, 29-year-old Satoru Fujinuma finds himself sent back in time before the accident happens. Satoru is a mangaka who will use this powerful yet mysterious experience, which he calls “Revival,” to back in time and tries saving many lives.

However, when he is wrongfully accused of killing his mom, Satoru is sent back to 18 years in the past. Soon, he realizes that his mother’s murder is somehow linked to the abduction and killing of his childhood friend Kayo Hinazuki. now he wants to rectify everything. Boku Dake ga Inai Machi focuses on Satoru who wants to correct the wrongs of 18 years ago while saving those he cares about in the present.

4. Psycho-Pass

psycho-pass-anime

  • Episodes: 33 / Two Seasons
  • Studios: Production I.G
  • Genres: Action, Police, Psychological, Sci-Fi

Spoiler Alert: this anime’s final episode has the best hand-to-hand fight I have seen so far!

So if you love badass anime characters and most evil anime villains, just watch Psycho-Pass, a psychological mystery anime that follows The Sibyl System, which examines a person’s mental state to look for signs of criminal intent, called their Psycho-Pass. Therefore, Inspectors are the ones who enforce the law (sometimes using lethal force), along with Enforcers. Enforcers are inspectors who have become latent criminals and use their freedom to hunt down other criminals.

Hence, Joining the Inspectors is Akane Tsunemori, who has a strong sense of justice. However, After working with Shinya Kougami for a little bit, she learns the Sibyl System is not as perfect as they believe. As Akane learns more information, she finds herself debating the true meaning of justice, and if their current system can back up the true meaning.

3. Monster

monster-anime

  • Episodes: 74
  • Studios: Madhouse
  • Genres: Drama, Horror, Mystery, Police, Psychological, Seinen, Thriller

This is an old classic masterpiece from madhouse studio and one of the greatest psychological thriller anime of all time that I have seen so far!

During preparation for surgery, an event will change Dr. Kenzou Tenma’s life forever, as the hospital director orders him to switch patients and instead perform life-saving brain surgery on a famous performer. His fellow doctors, fiancée, and the hospital director applaud his accomplishment; but because of what he did, a poor immigrant worker is dead, causing Dr. Tenma to have a crisis of conscience.

Later a similar situation arises, and Dr. Tenma chooses to save the life of a young boy Johan Liebert instead of the town’s mayor. Furthermore, Nine years later Dr. Tenma saves the life of a criminal, however, his past comes back to haunt him. Because, once again, he encounters the monster he operated on. and now He must embark on a quest of pursuit to make amends for the havoc spread by the one he saved.

2. Yakusoku no Neverland

the-promised-neverland

  • Episodes: 12
  • Studios: CloverWorks
  • Genres: Sci-Fi, Mystery, Horror, Psychological, Thriller, Shounen

The Promised Neverland is a horror psychological thriller anime series that may be you next best anime you will ever see! The story takes place In a forest with a big gate entrance where orphans happily live as a family, with “Mama”.

Although they are required to take tests daily, the children are free to play as they want. Orphans are allowed to play outside, as long as they do not venture too far from the orphanage. They should follow the rules no matter what.

However, all good times must end, as every few months, a child is adopted by their new family. Never to be heard from again. The three oldest siblings have their suspicions about what is actually happening at the orphanage.

So, they are about to discover the cruel fate that awaits the children living at Grace Field, including the twisted nature of their Mama.

1. Death Note

best-psychological-anime

  • Episodes: 37
  • Studios: Madhouse
  • Genres:  Mystery, Police, Psychological, Supernatural, Thriller, Shounen

Death note is not only a good psychological anime that will mess with your head! but also a unique anime that you watch once in your lifetime; you will never come across such a Japanese masterpiece tv show twice.

The story follows A shinigami, who can kill any person, they only need to see their victim’s face and write down their names in a notebook called a Death Note. One day, Ryuk, bored by the shinigami lifestyle and interested in seeing how a human would use a Death Note, drops one into the human realm.

High school student and prodigy Light Yagami stumbles upon the Death Note and—since he deplores the state of the world—tests the deadly notebook by writing a criminal’s name in it. Hence, When the criminal dies immediately following his experiment with the Death Note.

So, Light quickly realizes and recognizes how devastating the power that has fallen into his hands could be. With this divine capability, Light decides to extinguish all criminals in order to build a new world where crime does not exist and people worship him as a god.

However, the Police quickly discover that a serial killer is targeting criminals and, consequently, try to apprehend the culprit. As a result, the Japanese investigators count on the assistance of the best detective in the world: a young and eccentric man known only by the name of L.

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