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How To Find Your Next Favorite Manga

Did you remember that feeling when you just finished reading the best manga in the world, immediately jumped into the internet to find more like it, get a recommendation, read it, and it was just as equally as good? Me neither. 

Because let’s face it, the chance of finding a great manga that is similar to the one that you’ve just read among thousands of recommendations on the internet is next to impossible. 

So why not take the long route and try to find it yourself? It could be quite arduous, sure, but the fact of the matter is nobody knows your peculiar taste better than yourself. 

And that is the reason why I decided to list some of the things that I always look into whenever I’m in the mood for a manga treasure hunt. 

Keep in mind that this is the method that I use in order to find something that feels similar to the one that I’ve just read, not just a general recommendation. 

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1. Default recommendation 

The easiest way to find something similar to the one that you just read is simply to go visit the page of that particular manga on any of the manga database websites. 

More often than not, they will have a dedicated section where you’ll find several recommended titles based on that specific manga. Some websites will have an A.I.-driven recommendation while others are based on readers recommendation. 

From my experience, there will be more misses than hits with this method, but the one that hits is usually a jackpot. 

2. The same author

The next logical step would be to look into other works of the same author. Because if you like their current titles, it is highly likely that you’ll also like their other works as well. 

The best website to look into this sort of thing is MangaUpdates. There, once you click on the name of the author, it’ll show their complete bibliography. 

The main downside of this method is the fact that not every author is a prolific one. You get someone like Naoki Urasawa or Asano Inio who has tons of works, while you also have famous mangaka like Eiichiro Oda or Masashi Kishimoto who barely have any other works besides their most popular ones. 

3. Top titles in the same genre mix

A good manga rarely stays in the same genre. Sure, it has a dominant genre, such as action, horror, slice-of-life, etc. But more often than not, it is more like a mix of several genres at the same time. It might have some action, comedy, drama, and even some supernatural elements in the same pot. 

By looking for manga with similar genre mix, you’ll significantly increase the likelihood of finding another one that suits your particular taste. That being said, not many websites have the ability for advanced search like that. The ones that I feel could do that job properly are MangaUpdates and Kitsu. So give them both a try. 

4. Identical theme

Maybe what attracts you the most is not the author or the genre itself, but more of the theme that was explored within the story. Revenge, unrequited love, overcoming adversity, things like that. If so, you should look at other manga that share this identical theme.

One of the most obvious examples would be Naruto and Black Clover. Both are stories about an underdog orphan boy who wishes to become the strongest leader of their respective world despite being looked down on by people. 

As to where you could get this kind of information, there are several ways to go about it. First, just google the theme that you want. Typing “revenge manga recommendation” should yield pretty sizable results. 

Second, MangaUpdates usually list some of the themes within any given manga in their “Category” section. Clicking one of those should bring pretty interesting results. 

And finally, you could simply post a question on manga forums like Reddit or even Quora. Be sure to be as specific as you can with your questions. Throw a couple of examples while at it to make sure you’d get the answers that you’re looking for. 

5. Identical settings

Or maybe what interests you is the settings of the story. The time and place where the story takes place. A dystopian future, a barren wasteland, a medieval high-fantasy with orcs and elves, etc. 

An example of similar settings would be something like Ghost in The Shell and Battle Angel Alita. There are certainly different details between the two, but the overall setting is the same. A dystopian cyberpunk city.

You could use the same three methods that I mentioned in the previous entry to find the right recommendation for the settings as well. Google, MangaUpdates, and Reddit or Quora.

6. Similar character traits

Character traits are something like a smart yet psychopath character in Death Note, overpowered main character in One Punch Man, happy-go-crazy like Luffy from One Piece, etc.

The main character is the vocal point of the story. So the author would want to create and inject distinctive and even quirky traits and personality into this type of character. 

Not only to make them stand out from other characters, but also to make the readers feel some type of emotional connection to the main character. 

For getting a satisfying recommendation on this particular topic, I suggest you go straight to the forums. Asking it directly, with an example and a brief description, will lead to better and more accurate results. 

7. Other similar story elements

We’ve talked about two of the most common story elements before, the settings and characters. But maybe there are other elements of the story that interest you and that’s what you want to find in your next manga. 

Maybe manga with great character development, non-linear story progression, moral ambiguity, plot twist, multiple conflict and resolve, that sort of thing. 

And just like the previous entries, when looking for this kind of suggestion, you’d have a better chance finding what you’ll like by going directly to the forums. Post a question with as much detail as possible and you’ll likely get a better recommendation. 

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When looking for recommendations, the more specific you go the better the results would be. But the thing is, as you get even more specific, you are basically narrowing your options. 

Sometimes, what you want is so niche that you’d end up with no recommendation at all. So going through all of these seven options will give you more wiggle room while still being specific about what you want. 

To put my money where my mouth is, I urge you to check out my recommendation on 10 manga like Akira. There you’ll see me using all of these points to find and list ten manga that I think will yield a similar reading experience as Akira. 

If you want to start this journey, I’ve listed 9 websites that would be beneficial resources in the pursuit of your next favorite manga. But if all you want is simply a general manga recommendation, there are loads of those here in Manga Digest. And more on the way.

I hope this article could help you find the manga that you’ve been looking for. 


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