Sports Anime That Don’t let the Hype Die
Hype is a huge factor in sports anime. Some anime absolutely own it like it’s their monopoly, and it turns out that the anime that really capitalizes on the hype factor the most is sports anime.
Sports anime and hype go hand in hand. If a sports anime manages to capture hype properly, you will find yourself burning through its episodes like nothing.
You won’t be able to put the damn anime down until you run out of internet or every material the series has to offer, whichever comes first. As always, I have linked the MyAnimeList page of every anime for a detailed plot summary. So without wasting any more time, let’s get started with the list.
Chihayafuru took up a dying sport and gave it a lift up. Not many adults play Karuta or take it seriously as we see again and again in the anime but, Karuta qualifies as a sport and is a very good one at that.
In Karuta, there are 100 poems written on cards. A poem is read out and the players rush to take its card the player who takes the card or removes it from the “playing area” gets the point. Once a player takes all 50 cards on the opponent’s side, they win.
I am currently watching this anime and I absolutely love it. The animations are a bit meh but, the anime sure does manage to cash on the hype factor and it does it very nicely. I seriously like how the anime took a rather minor sport instead of going for the more orthodox or major sports. This fact alone makes it better than average sports anime.
Another anime that I am currently watching. The main character Sakamichi Onoda (nice name right there though. Sakamichi literally means “slope”) is an otaku looking to make friends but, the anime club is dissolved stuff happens and he decides to settle for the bicycle racing club. Now, this is not your typical sports anime.
It has very memorable characters who are very relatable. The overall anime itself is pretty damn realistic and feels very good to watch. It is a bit long but, the episodes are worth the time and internet spending. This one really makes you wanna pick up a bike and go racing yourself. Another anime further down the list has the same quality just on a whole different level. You will see.
3. One Outs
I have mentioned One Outs in like 2 more articles but I really can’t stop talking about it. As of writing this article, I have rewatched it (all 24 episodes) at least around 9 times and still love it just like the first time around. Rather than being about sportsmanship and fair game and all the other stuff normal sports anime, one outs takes a more “realistic”(?) approach to sports as the games in One Outs have a lot of politics, fixing, and planning behind them (both proper and underhanded). When it comes to underhanded planning though, no one beats the protagonist Tokuchi Toua and he is even skilled enough with the ball to have a one on one with the batter! No matter the odds against Tokuchi, he always finds a way to win. Be it stretching a game way longer than it should go on so that a storm starts and the game is canceled, to striking out every single batter of the opponent team in all 9 innings; Tokuchi finds always finds a way to win.
4. Initial D
I really don’t want to call this a sports anime but, it follows the same formula as one so here we are. Initial D probably has the best soundtrack in all anime I have ever watched (I have watched a lot. Last time I checked, I was on 437) and the soundtrack works perfectly to build up hype for and in every single race.
Even if it is a minor race, the soundtrack and the race itself are so damn good. Initial D is also a bit long but again, it is absolutely worth every single episode. I mean the protagonist literally learned how to drift by delivering tofu!! He did have talent as well and he also has this incredible ability to learn and adapt to the opponents and new tracks. Every single race in this anime is fricking amazing. Even in the last 2 seasons where they were starting to have a lot of budget troubles, the races remain amazing.
I admit they are not as good as the previous seasons but they are still good. If you ask me though, season 4 is probably the best. Good animations, good soundtrack, and by that point the anime is on full speed so there is a race in every single episode. I mean watching this anime really makes you feel like “gimme a car right now! Imma go mountain slopes to drift!”
I was extremely confused about what to put in the first place: Haikyuu or Initial D because both anime are extremely high on the hype factor, so much so that you don’t even realize how long they and you burn through episodes.
I put Haikyuu! In the 1st place because it is more of sports anime than Initial D because it is about an official sport, volleyball, rather than an unofficial sport, drifting. I never was fond of volleyball but, the moment I watched this anime, I was like, “yo, was volleyball always this interesting.” Anime is always good at influencing your thought process especially sports anime.
Haikyuu is literally about a school’s volleyball club aiming for nationals. That is how simple the plot is. The matches between every team are so damn hyped, and for a good reason. Haikyuu is long too, and undoubtedly, its best part is the match between Karasuno and Shiratorizawa. The match lasts for 10 full episodes but, not even a single second of those episodes feels boring. Haikyuu is just amazing.
So we are done with the list. I did not write this article in one sitting, and as of now, I am done with Chihayafuru season 1, and I am glad that I put it on the list.
Do check all these anime out; they are all literally gems. I am glad I started watching Yowamushi Pedal and Chihayafuru. Let me know down in the comments what you thought of my picks. As always, hang around the site for more of my boring fun articles and awesome art section. With that being said, I will take my leave. See ya!!