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13 Dark Anime Like The Promised Neverland

The Promised Neverland has become a popular anime series in the dark fantasy genre. Adapted from a manga with the same name, this anime will pull you out of your comfortable life and throw you through a difficult situation as you struggle with your emotions going through dark mysteries and brutal truths—an anime with unexpectedness, amazing storytelling with an element of horror and an eerie vibe.

The Promised Neverland, a dark anime adaptation, is a twisted tale of orphans living at the Grace Field House. Their beloved caretaker, Mama Isabella, forbids them to venture out even if they’re feeling adventurous and want to see what’s outside their forest home. A tragic tale of cute children who are left in the care of a seemingly loving woman. The orphans find themselves confronted with harsh realities that they never expected when Mama Isabella is revealed to work for evil demons to harvest food for demons from those she once called family.

The three oldest children, Norm, Liza and Nelle, followed Conny to hand over her left behind the toy. They were shocked when they found out she was dead at the orphanage gates but quickly realized that if they stayed there, they too, will suffer the same fate. The escaping children must stay safe from the demons of the outside world as they discover more secrets.

The children are raised with the idea that they will be adopted out to families one day. When these unfortunate souls learn their true fate, can even just at least three escape alive?

If you are into the dark psychological anime genre, here are ten anime recommendations of the same lot

Mujin Wakusei Survive

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Set in the 22nd century: space travel, planet colonization and anti-gravity basketball are commonplace. Planet Earth is uninhabitable, and people live in colonies on the surrounding planets. A mistake causes the protagonist, Luna, her pet robot, and six others to be thrown through a gravity storm and crash land on a seemingly uninhabited planet on a school field trip. 

There, Luna as their leader, Chako the robot cat, the spoiled rich boy Howard, Kaoru the lone wolf, the shy Sharla, Bell the obedient, Menori the prideful musician and the young genius Shingo must fight for their survival. But is the planet uninhabited, or are there beings out there waiting in the shadows?

Mujin Wakusei Survive is an underrated anime that plays on the same twisted formula The Promised Neverland does. It’s one you don’t want to miss out on!

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Made in Abyss

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The Abyss is a gaping chasm stretching down into the depths of the earth, filled with mysterious creatures and relics from a time long past. How did it come to be? What lies at its bottom? Countless brave individuals have sought an answer to these mysteries—those who are known as Divers and fearlessly descend into its darkest realms. The best and bravest among them were dubbed White Whistles by those left on top.

Riko, daughter of the missing White Whistle Lyza the Annihilator, aspires to become like her mother and explore the furthest reaches of a place called The Abyss. However, being just a novice Red Whistle herself, she is only permitted to roam its most upper layer. Riko encounters Reg: a mysterious robot who looks exactly like any ordinary young boy you might find in town. She comes up with his name right away because he doesn’t remember anything at all that happened before this chance discovery. Determined to uncover the secrets of Reg’s construction, they ventured into the Abyss and discovered it was a much harsher place than they had anticipated.

It’s one of the most messed up series ever, don’t let its’ adorable art style fool you! Much like The Promised Neverland, it starts off looking innocent but gets darker as time goes on.

Check Out: Top 40 Dark Anime To Watch In 2021

Angels of Death

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Rachel wakes up in the basement of a building and can’t figure out how she got there. She runs into Zack, trying to escape after being injured by someone on his way back from killing people. Rachel agrees to help him get away if he promises not to kill her when they’re free because all she wants now is death anyway, so that’s okay with her!

Rachel and Zack are off to an interesting start in this building. As they progress upward, the people seem more twisted than before. They all know Rachel- why is that? Facing a new boss on each floor, can these two achieve their wishes?

A little gem of a psychological thriller anime with twists and that aid the character development. A must watch for you dark anime fans.

Shiki

Fifteen-year-old Megumi Shimizu dreamed of a glamorous life in the big city. Still, her unexpected death marked the beginning of an epidemic that transformed what should have been summer into something bloodier and more terrifying. All three parts to this story come together when Toshio Ozaki finally realizes that he must abandon his humanity if he is going to find out the truth about what’s happening; meanwhile, Natsuno Yuuki from Tokyo becomes haunted by Megumi’s sudden death as well as learning just how painful friendship can be for himself.

Shiki tells the story of a world where one cannot easily distinguish between good and evil. This is especially true since Shiki have only their will to live as they clash with fear in Paranoid/unbelieving villagers. The boundary that separates man from monsters comes into play here; are these vampires or just people?

A psychological horror anime with a tinge of horror elements: Shiki pulls at you mentally and messes with what you believe to be true. 

Check Out: 14 Anime To Watch If You Can’t Get Enough Of Tokyo Ghoul

Bokurano

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Fifteen children, eight boys and seven girls alike, enjoyed their summer camp together when they suddenly discovered a grotto by the sea. When they entered the mysterious place, an old man was sitting at his desk who introduced himself as Kokopelli. He claimed to be working on this game involving giant robots that have been designed for 15 different alien invasions where he hasn’t found any volunteers yet, so he persuaded all but one of them into signing up in what would supposedly be a fun adventure before testing it out with anyone else around or telling him anything about its features whatsoever other than “it’s going to need some tinkering.”

Things start to take a much darker turn as the children must now pilot the giant robot Zearth one at a time in the hopes that they will have what it takes to defeat all of the upcoming enemies. But Kokopelli has left out one very important piece of information: the giant robot Zearth’s energy source.

The Promised Neverland is a story about an orphanage run by the devil, where he takes children and then eats them. The show makes you feel bad for these kids who are being used as food sources while at the same time keeping your eyes glued to every episode with its diabolical twists. Bokurano uses the same theme of using kids and hiding the dark truth.

Corpse Party

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One day, a group of classmates will perform the Happy Sachiko charm after school. This paper doll ritual is meant to make them stay friends forever, but if they do it incorrectly, then they’ll end up being dragged down into Tenjin Elementary School- which had been torn down years ago! Trapped until they can reunite and perform the correct charm again, these students will have to solve this mystery for everyone there not only to survive – but also escape from that dilapidated phantom of an elementary school.

If you want more gore than what The Promised Neverland has to offer, this psychological horror will be perfect. 

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From the New World

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When psychokinesis broke out in 0.1% of the population, society was thrown into a state of chaos; different oppressive regimes would rise and fall over time until finally it was decided that those with psychic abilities should live separately from others to avoid persecution. Saki has been anxious about her powers awakening for fear she will be left behind by friends who attend Sage Academy

On that day, she’s exceptionally relieved but has a new question; what would have happened if she didn’t have psychic powers? As the friends go down the rabbit hole and find a society where nightmares are reality.

Death Note

When Ryuk, a bored shinigami who’s seen it all, drops his Death Note into the human realm in hopes of seeing how one would use such a thing. He soon realizes that humans are much more chaotic creatures.

Light Yagami, a high school student and prodigy, stumbles upon the Death Note. Since he deplores the state of the world, he tests the deadly notebook by writing a criminal’s name. Unfortunately, the criminal dies immediately following his experiment with the Death Note, and he quickly recognizes how devastating the power that has fallen into his hands could be.

Light decides to extinguish all criminals to build a new world where crime does not exist with this divine capability. However, the Japanese police quickly discover that a serial killer targets criminals and tries to apprehend the culprit. To do this, they enlist help from L – an eccentric detective who has been dubbed as the world’s best!

Death Note may not have any child protagonist, but it’s certainly a messed up anime for the most part. A classic twisted anime series where we see Light and his descent into utter madness.

Check Out: 9 Must Watch Anime After You Finished Death Note

Puella Magi Madoka Magica

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Magi Madoka is known for its incredibly deceiving looks and messed up storyline.

After they were introduced to Kyuubey, a cat-like magical familiar, and Homura Akemi, the new transfer student: Madoka Kaname and Sayaka Miki’s regular lives changed forever as they became Magical Girl Warriors in an epic quest against evil witches bent on destroying humankind.

Kyuubey offers a deal: he will grant one of their wishes, and in exchange, they will each become a magical girl with enough power to fulfil their dreams. But Homura Akemi, a magical girl herself, tells them that everything is not what it seems and that they should not take the deal.

Check Out: 20 Of The Best Magical Girl Anime That Will Spellbind You

School-Live!

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Yuki Takeya loves her school so much that she does not want to ever leave! Megurigaoka Private High School is a unique and lively place where Yuki enjoys her carefree life as a third-year high school student. The club, consisting of the president Yuuri Wakasa, the athletic Kurumi Ebisuzawa, the mature junior Miki Naoki, and supervising teacher Megumi Sakura, prides itself on making the most of living at work in this exciting environment.

As a member of the School Living Club, Yuki is not allowed to leave campus for any reason. Despite having no idea it was happening all around them – that they were living through an apocalyptic event where zombies ravaged society. She lost herself in her imagination, where the school still went on without incident, and they are living normal lives. Her friends are set on keeping up appearances so she can maintain some semblance of normality before everything falls apart completely.

Attack on Titan

Centuries ago, mankind was almost completely wiped out by monstrous humanoid creatures called titans. What makes these monsters genuinely terrifying is that their taste for human flesh is not born out of hunger but rather pure pleasure and mayhem. To protect themselves from this threat that looms large on the horizon, the remnants of humanity have been living within defensive barriers over the last 100 years. However, after a colossal titan breaches the supposedly impregnable outer wall, the fight for survival against man-eating abominations begins anew.

After witnessing the death of his mother at the hands of a human-eating titan, Eren Yeager enlists in the Survey Corps to help fight these creatures. Alongside Mikasa Ackerman and Armin Arlert – two others who have also suffered losses from this vicious war against titans – they join forces with other soldiers to combat them so that no one else has to suffer what they did.

Attack on Titan is a dark, unsettling anime. The first episode will make you feel like your heart has been ripped out of your chest. Much like The Promised Neverland, with a seemingly ordinary beginning and horrible end. A piece of advice: don’t get attached; this anime has many favourite character deaths even before they get a proper chance at character development.

Check Out: Anime Like Attack On Titan: What To Watch After Finishing The Show

Darling in the Franxx

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In the distant future, humanity has been driven to near-extinction by giant beasts known as Klaxosaurs. Children are bred in Plantations and trained from birth for one sole purpose: piloting a mecha called FranXX against these mammoth creatures that threaten human existence. For many of them who have never seen life outside their fortress cities, they only exist if they can successfully defend mankind’s last chance at survival.

Hiro had been feeling down after failing an aptitude test, so he decided to go for a walk in the forest. He encounters Zero Two—a girl with horns who is rumoured to be ruthless and cold-blooded. Unfortunately, the Plantation then gets attacked by Klaxosaur before Hiro can process his encounter with this mysterious stranger!

Zero Two engages the creature in her FranXX, but it is heavily damaged and crashes near Hiro. Seeing her partner dead, Zero Two invites Hiro to pilot the FranXX with her, and they easily defeat the Klaxosaur. Hiro has seemingly been given a chance at redemption, but at what cost?

Check Out: 10 Anime To Watch If You Love Darling In The Franxx

Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash

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The group of strangers, thrown into this strange new world with only hazy memories and their name to identify them initially, could feel these three emotions resonating deep within themselves: fear, survival, instinct. They had been given no other choice but to accept the job as soldiers to survive in Grimgar’s game-like environment where they would eliminate anything that threatened peace there.

When the stronger candidates join together, those left behind must create a party to survive. Characters include Manato, the charismatic leader and priest; Haruhiro, who is nervous but clever as well as lighthearted in general; Yume, who has good luck with hunting animals for food; Shihoru, a shy mage; Mogzo, a kind warrior; and Ranta, a rowdy dark knight. The game is no joke. It’s kill or be killed. You will not have a chance to respawn if you die, and there are no do-overs in this game.

The Promised Neverland has a horror anime with mystery elements and horror elements weaved in a fantastic story that makes it compelling to watch. These are elements you’ll find in Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash as well – sacrifices will have to be made, and only the strong survive; similar themes these two anime series share.

Check Out: 30 Animes Like Sword Art Online That Will Transport You To A New World

And that concludes our anime recommendations like The Promised Neverland. Do you know of other psychological horror anime series you want to add to this list? Chances are, I may have missed a lot of your favourite anime series or anime movies that share the same dark vibe as The Promised Neverland. So let us know your picks in the comments, and let’s talk about them. Enjoy!

Written by Charlie

I've watched a lot of anime in my days, but that doesn't stop me from watching more. Whether it be new or old, I'll give it a run-through and tell you what I think about it. We're currently living in the golden age of anime with so many great shows out there to watch.

Some are better than others for sure, but they're all worth checking out at least once. My beautiful daughters also love watching animes...well not as much as their dad does!

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