10 Coolest Fighting Styles In Anime, Ranked

Combat is the lifeblood of action anime. By watching people fight, audiences understand the opposing forces in a given narrative. While that alone is great, the conflict is better communicated to viewers if the fights are cool or engaging. Often, some of the best anime fights involve fighting styles that are unique, memorable, and stylish.

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These fighting styles dictate the rules of the combat, as it’s hard to stick with the action if there is no internal logic. Matches that just escalate in intensity without any rubrics or systems governing them end up feeling random. Fighting styles ground the action and allow for cool and creative sequences.

10 Spike Spiegel Honors Jeet Kune Do’s Fluidity (Cowboy Bebop)

The direction of Cowboy Bebop is not the only reason why its fight scenes look amazing. Spike is a practitioner of Jeet Kune Do, the martial arts philosophy based on Bruce Lee’s experience. It guides how Spike fights. His movements follow the natural rhythm of the fight, and he does not waste his energy.

Just like a Bruce Lee movie, Spike’s fights are incredible to watch. His body flows like water, and he holds the strikes to give them the impression of power. It reads super well in anime. While not superhuman, Spike’s fighting style is undeniably iconic.

9 Cursed Energy Has So Much Visual Impact (Jujutsu Kaisen)

It takes a lot of imagination to transform the concept of curses into a power system for a high octane action anime. Jujutsu Kaisen manages to achieve it with a lot of flare. There is some leeway with its limitations, but it’s not terribly outlandish. The two best manifestations of cursed energy as a fighting style are the Black Flash and Domain Expansion.

The anime relishes the opportunities it gets to animate those two move types. Black Flash is dramatic and dynamic. Each hit feels explosive. Domain Expansion has the liberty to reshape the environment, which leads to some amazing visuals.

8 Death Perception Makes Shiki Ryougi’s Combat Style Very Clean (Kara No Kyoukai)

Shiki Ryougi fights like a rogue. She uses short blades — knives, specifically — in conjunction with her incredible athleticism and acrobatics to slice through her opponents. She’s the epitome of an assassin. what gives Kara no Kyoukai its distinctive flavor as far as action is concerned are Ryougi’s Mystic Eyes.

Her eyes grant her Death Perception, or the ability to see the lines of death around her. If she cuts any of those lines, the object, person, or concept they belong to will instantly die. This makes all of her attacks precise and lethal. She is the flashiest when dealing with groups of enemies.

The conditions of performing alchemy are strict. The Law of Equivalent Exchange makes sure that alchemy, including its applications in fights, does not feel arbitrary. When Roy Mustang uses Flame Alchemy, he can only do it due to the transmutation circle on his custom gloves, as well as the friction he creates when snapping his fingers.

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Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is full of examples like this. Combatants are forced to think of creative solutions, so battle never gets stale. Even with its limitations, the potential of alchemy makes it extremely fun to watch. The Edward brothers prove themselves geniuses whenever they are given a chance to use alchemy in a fight.

6 Stands Are More Than Just Punching Ghosts (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure)

after JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure: Battle Tendency, the fighting style of the show moved from Ripple to Stands. This made combat in the series more uniform. Most fights are between Stand users, instead of Ripple users fighting vampires and zombies. Visually, it’s an amazing move, since Stands look cool.

The impact of a punch from Star Platinum or King Crimson hits harder for fans. The fights are flashier, but feel more fair. The potential of each Stand is limitless, but fighting with manifestations of a person’s soul is definitely fun and unique.

5 Spear Wielding Gets To Shine In Balsa’s Hands (Seirei No Moribito)

It’s very rare for anime to precisely capture the feel of a weapon, but Seirei no Moribito does that for its spears. Every swing from Balsa and Jiguro feels heavy, swift, and dangerous. The sound design for the hits is outstanding. On top of all of that, the movements in the fight are amazing.

The action is fast, but the swings are easy to keep up with. The choreography of the fights are also communicated well, which is a byproduct of the spear fighting style they use. There is heavy emphasis on quick strikes in close range mixed with acrobatics and kicks. It’s as elegant as it’s brutal.

4 Jutsus Created Some Of The Most Iconic Attacks In Anime (Naruto)

Utilizing concepts like chakra to create an intricate power system, Naruto revolutionized how people perceive ninjas. Instead of hiding in the shadows, this fighting system allows the ninjas a combat style that is more direct and elemental in nature.

So many aspects of ninja combat are legendary for anime fans. While not every technique uses it, the hand seals signal the start of an attack. In a sense, the jutsus are super powered martial arts rather than just being superpowers altogether.

3 All The Nen Types Lead To Amazing Combat Styles (Hunter X Hunter)

Not every Nen user in Hunter x Hunter fights the same. Emitters prefer ranged fighting, while Enhancers love hand-to-hand combat. Each type of Nen leans towards a different form of combat, but they are all cool in their own way. Two hunters stand out for the versatility of their fighting styles.

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Kurapika is a close range fighter who grapples his opponents to submission with Chain Jail. However, under specific conditions, he also has access to every other type of Nen, allowing him the ability to fight in any way he needs to. As for Hisoka, he prefers fighting close range, but his Nen has the properties of both rubber and gum, so he can employ a lot of trickery in his fighting style.

2 Hokuto Shinken Is A Terrifyingly Powerful Martial Art (Fist Of The North Star)

Fist of the North Star is known for its brutal action. While its post-apocalyptic setting is a big contributor to its tone and violence, Kenshiro’s fighting style also plays a huge part in it. Hokuto Shinken is a martial art that channels energy in single strikes across the vital points of a human body.

With his speed and accuracy, Kenshiro strikes his opponents repeatedly before they can even register what’s going on. What makes this fighting style so cool is that Kenshiro lets his enemies know that they have already died. After he tells them, they explode into chunks of blood, flesh, and organs.

1 Mugen Busts Out Champloo Kendo With Ferocity (Samurai Champloo)

Mugen’s fighting style can be characterized as erratic, reckless, and brash, but it’s a joy to watch. His Champloo Kendo mixes sword fighting with break dancing. It feels like Capoiera with Japanese swords. The blend is playful, intimidating, and vicious.

In contrast, Jin is a traditional swordsman. When next to each other, Mugen’s unorthodox style is even more visible. A show with a distinct fusion of hip hop and traditional Japanese art and customs like Samurai Champloo deserves nothing less than Mugen’s freestyle approach.

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