Since most mecha franchises span over decades, it is tough for new fans to get into this genre in particular. Macross, Mazinger Z, and Gundam are some of the most popular mecha series that require a significant commitment from the viewers since there is so much material to go through. Therefore, it is no surprise that it can be overwhelming especially for the new fans who have little knowledge of the genre. A simple overview of the total time one needs to spend in either of the well-known mecha franchises can be off-putting. Keeping this in mind, today we have compiled a list of some of the best mecha series that are ideal for viewers who aren’t sure about going into vast sprawling sagas. The listed anime can be considered a primer for newcomers to the mecha genre.
Neon Genesis Evangelion
Rated 8.5 on IMDb, Neon Genesis Evangelion is considered the greatest anime ever made by a considerable number of anime fans. Shinji Ikari, the protagonist of the show, confronts his existential isolation while he faces the threat of the Angels. The opening theme of the show itself is considered one of the best while the character building is mind-blowing. The incredible imagination is another aspect of Neon Genesis Evangelion that helps its stand apart from most anime of the recent decades, only a few shows have been able to come closer to it, but arguably none of them has surpassed it yet. You don’t need to be a fan of mecha anime to watch Neon Genesis Evangelion; it is a great anime and an ideal show for viewers who want to get introduced to the mecha genre.
Code Geass is a story of tyranny, power struggle, politics, and mind games. Lelouch, the protagonist, is gifted with the unique power of the Geass, which allows him to compel anyone who stares into it to follow the orders of its wielder. He was disappointed by the world of tyranny, which forced him to bring a revolution in order to restore peace and justice. The mind games on the show are quite similar to Death Note, but all the mecha action makes Code Geass even more entertaining.
It is hard to think of a Super Robot anime that has as much action as Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann. The protagonist of the series, Simon, is struggling with the meaning of life. However, over the course of the series, realizes his destiny and fights a war that scales time and space to lead a revolution of underground humanity. Gurren Lagann is sure to captivate the newcomers with its epic battles and transformations. The series pushes the limits of imagination, making fans fall in love with various characters and its world-building.
Eureka Seven takes the viewers 10,000 years into the future when humanity has long ascended to the stars. The protagonist, Renton, is obsessed with the idea of becoming a lifter, a person who can surf the skies. He finds his teenage life boring and unimpressive, so he dreams of running away. Surprisingly, one day a pilot named Eureka with a mecha falls into his lap, which allows him to be a part of the renegade organization. The twists and turns on the show are sure to entertain any sci-fi fans. Therefore, Eureka Seven is a fantastic entryway to mecha anime for the newcomers.
Full Metal Panic
Full Metal Panic used to be a popular anime in the early 2000s. It was a common recommendation for the newcomers who were looking to be introduced to the world of anime back then. After almost two decades Full Metal Panic remains a great anime worth-watching. The main character, Sousuke, is on a mission to protect Chidori, who is a high-school girl. In order to accomplish his task, Sousuke trained in a covert military organization often responds to the calls for help in his typical style leading to over-the-top, bombastic scenarios. The show is a high school comedy with mecha elements and an exciting introduction to the world of mecha anime.
Although the above list is not exhaustive, it undoubtedly contains some of the best mecha anime ever made. The newcomers will surely enjoy every single one of them. There are indeed some other excellent anime that could also have been a part of the list but keeping in mind the time investment, these five are arguably the best.