‘A.I.C.O. -Incarnation-‘ is an action-packed anime that will keep you at the edge of your seat at all times. Due to its short span, the show brings in quite a lot of ideas in its initial episodes itself. Though all this might be a little overwhelming at first, once the show establishes the plot, it becomes quite easy to understand what it is trying to portray. If you go by the ratings of the show, you’ll probably get the impression that it’s just another one of those typical anime that use cliched sci-fi archetypes to present an interesting concept. But if you start watching it with no expectations, you’ll realize that it’s way better than most similar shows out there. ‘A.I.C.O Incarnation’ has a very dire and dark opening theme that sets the tone for the entire show.
Set in the year 2035, the story begins with a research experiment going horribly wrong to an extent where the entire Kurobe Gorge gets eroded by a blob-like mass known as “Matter”. This event is referred to as the “Burst”. To prevent any further destruction, the scientists behind the experiment decide to quarantine the entire area. A few years later, an ordinary wheelchair-bound school girl named Aiko Tachibana meets a mysterious transfer student named Yuuya Kanzaki. He changes everything she knew about herself and her past and then convinces her to join him on a quest to find the answers that still lie in the depths of the “Burst”.
If you enjoyed watching this anime and are looking for more shows that are thematically and stylistically similar to this one, then we’ve got you covered. Here’s the list of best anime similar to ‘A.I.C.O. -Incarnation-‘ that are our recommendations. You can watch several of these anime like ‘A.I.C.O. -Incarnation-‘ on Netflix, Crunchyroll or Hulu.
10. Kuromukuro (2016-)
During the construction of the well known Kurobe Dam, an ancient artifact is discovered. This leads to the establishment of the United Nations Kurobe Research Institute that starts to investigate the artifact to understand its true nature. Soon, scientists from all over the world gather in the facility to unlock the secrets that it holds. One of these scientists’ daughter, named Yukine Shirahane, visits the facility one day and is somehow able to solve a small part of the artifact’s puzzle. As soon as she does this, a samurai from the Sengoku era named Kennosuke magically appears before her. Soon, they get to know that a threat from outer space is heading towards them and they must unite to protect their world from the approaching invaders. And while they are at this, Yukine also learns the true purpose of Kennosuke in her world.
9. Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex (2002-)
‘Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex‘ is the remake of a classic anime film that goes by the same name. It is set in a futuristic world where human body parts and organs can easily be replaced by using cybernetic technology. While this has completely revolutionized the world, technology has also lead to an increase in criminal activities. To deal with this, a special police unit called the Section 9 is established. Though they are easily able to get their hands on most criminals, they soon face their toughest case that deals with a hacker who controls cybernetic implants of others and makes them commit crimes. Will section 9 be able to race against time to stop this hacker who calls himself the “Puppet Master”?
8. Serial Experiments Lain (1998)
‘Serial Experiments Lain‘ is an existential classic of the 90s that tells the story of a young girl named Lain. After one of her classmates commits suicide, like everyone else, she receives emails from the dead girl. The girl’s messages claim that she did not need a body to exist and that’s the reason why she decided to kill herself. She also says that she now exists in a world known as “The Wire”. When Lain asks her why she’s doing all of this, the giro responds by saying: “Because God is here.” ‘Serial Experiments Lian’ is not just entertaining but it’s stretched much beyond the human imagination and clearly represents what anime as a medium is truly capable of. Coming from a time when only shounen anime was a major thing, this one is truly revolutionary and if you watch it with an open mind, you will definitely love it.
7. Revisions (2019)
Daisuke Dojima is a student who is told that he’ll be a part of prophecy once he grows up. This prophecy really boosts his confidence and he grows up with a strong hero complex. Later, he and his friends get involved in the “Shibuya Drift”, as strange events send them 3 centuries into the future. ‘Revisions‘ depicts the futuristic adventures of these kids wherein they have to fight a gruesome enemy using their own giant mechanical machines. This will not only allow them to get back to their past but it will also entirely transform humanity’s future. Pretty much like ‘A.I.C.O Incarnation’, this anime is quite simple compared to other sci-fi anime out there. The only difference between the two is that this show has a lot more mecha in it.
6. Last Hope (2018)
‘Last Hope’, also referred to as ‘Unit Pandora’, is an anime set in a futuristic world where the boundaries between humans and AI have almost been diminished. After an outburst of a massive biological evolution, the entire biological framework of the world changes and impacts everything from humans to machines to all sorts of materials. This leads to the formation of several forms of “existences”. What follows is a massive existential war where each form of life tries to take over the Earth.
5. Ghost Hound (2007-2008)
Unlike ‘A.I.C.O Incarnation’, ‘Ghost Hound’ is more of a supernatural anime. But the two shows are very similar when it comes to their main characters, who have confusing traumatic pasts. ‘Ghost Hound’ is about a small town where two children get kidnapped, out of which, only one is later recovered alive. Soon after this, a local man commits suicide and both of these events shape the lives of everyone in the town. 11 years after the events, people start getting back to their normal lives but the survivor of the kidnapping incident still gets nightmares of his sibling and the kidnapper. He later discovers that everyone can project their astral bodies and this sets him off on a hunt to find his lost sister and the man who ruined their life. If the politics and secrets involved in the story of ‘A.I.C.O Incarnation’ caught your attention, then ‘Ghost Hound’ is also something you might enjoy.
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4. From the New World (2012-2013)
‘From the New World’ revolves around a peaceful village where many possess the power of psychokinesis. This keeps the village safe and also free from poverty and crime. When Saki Watanabe discovers that she also possesses the same abilities, she enrolls herself in the Zeijin Academy to make sure that she can grow up and contribute to the safety of the village. But as peaceful as everything may seem, every once in a while, the students of the academy disappear and it is rumored that cat-like monsters kidnap them. When Saki’s close friend gets abducted, she realizes that she will have to take it upon herself to solve the mysteries behind these abductions. ‘A.I.C.O Incarnation’ and ‘From the New World’ both have some amazing mysteries in their plots and also have some very interesting messages about what it truly takes to be a good human being.
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3. Dennou Coil (2007)
‘Dennou Coil’ is overall quite lighthearted compared to the dark tone of ‘A.I.C.O Incarnation’ but it still has its own dark twists and turns and tries to explore what it truly means to be a human being, and the impact of technology. It revolves around an augmented reality project that is being tested over a city where just by putting on a pair of glasses, one can experience something truly magical. But soon, the kids of the town discover that there is a lot more to this project than what meets the eye.
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2. Haibane Renmei (2002)
Somewhere in a deep dark corner of the world, a doomed city exists where winged humans, called the Haibane, have their own little civilization. No one is allowed to leave this city and these Haibane have fewer rights in the outside world compared to normal humans. The Haibane erupt out of cocoons with no memories of their past lives except for a dream that helps them determine their names. Rakka is one of the youngest Haibane who tries to get used to her situation just like everyone else around her and her only source of information to the outside world are masked Renmei who are allowed to leave the city.
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1. Xam’d: Lost Memories (2008-2009)
Very similar to ‘A.I.C.O Incarnation’, ‘Xam’d: Lost Memories’ shows a world where technology has advanced to an extent where the existence of artificial life forms can spark a lot of philosophical debates. The only key difference between the two shows is that instead of being in the form of just “Matter”, the artificial life forms in ‘Xam’d’ take a more human-like avatar. Overall, this one has a longer runtime and has a lot more twists and turns that will keep surprising you till the end.
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