Watching the main character start out weak, then grow and develop into a better version of himself, eventually becoming overpowered as hell, is one of the most enjoyable aspects of a great anime.
This growth can be quite dramatic at times, to the point where the character is an entirely different person by the end of the series.
There’s My Hero Academia, an anime in which the main character, Izuku Midoriya, evolves from a helpless, weak middle schooler into a formidable, unbeatable, and awesome hero (even though he still cries all the time).
This list is for you if you’re looking for anime where the main character grows from a weakling to an invincible overpowered monster.
Best Anime Where MC Is Weak But Becomes Strong
15. Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash
Survival, fear, and instinct They can only sense these three emotions deep within their souls after being thrown into a distant nation with only foggy recollections and the knowledge of their name. A gang of strangers is forced to take on the only paying job in this game-like environment, that of a Reserve Army soldier, and to destroy everything that threatens the peace in their new world, Grimgar.
The survivors must form a party when all of the stronger candidates band together: Manato, a charismatic leader and priest; Haruhiro, a nervous thief; Yume, a happy hunter; Shihoru, a shy wizard; Moguzo, a kind warrior; and Ranta, a rowdy dark knight. Regardless of the similarities, this is not a game—there are no redos or respawns; it’s kill or be killed.
It is now up to this motley band of unlikely fighters to stay together in a world where life and death are separated by a razor’s edge.
Hajime Nagumo’s normal life is turned upside down when he and his classmates are summoned to a magical world and given the task of saving humanity. While his peers have exceptional combat skills, Hajime is mocked for obtaining an inferior transmutation skill with no genuine attacking power.
During an expedition in the Great Orcus Labyrinth, Hajime is duped by one of his classmates, sending him to the bottom of an abyss. Despite surviving the fall, Hajime is confronted with terrifying monsters and disasters that drive him insane. He decides to fight for his life, desperate to live and return home one day, only to meet Yue, an imprisoned vampire who is also attempting to escape the labyrinth. Yue and a few others accompany Hajime on his quest to return home, while gradually transforming from commonplace to the world’s strongest.
13. Chivalry of a Failed Knight
Few beings in this world can transform their souls into powerful weapons. These people, dubbed “Blazers,” study and train at the prestigious Hagun Academy to become Mage-Knights; among them is the only F-rated Blazer, so-called failure Ikki Kurogane. When the academy’s worst student discovers Stella Vermillion, an A-ranked Blazer who is also a princess, naked, she challenges him to a duel with severe consequences—the loser becomes the winner’s slave. Stella couldn’t possibly fail, could she?
Chivalry of a Failed Knight follows Ikki as he tries to prove his strength to a world that believes he is the weakest, all the while making new friends, learning new skills, and gaining experience.
12. My Hero Academia
The emergence of “quirks,” or newly discovered superpowers, has been gradual over the years, with 80 percent of humanity possessed of abilities ranging from element manipulation to shapeshifting. This renders the rest of the world powerless, and Izuku Midoriya is one of them.
The aspirant middle schooler has wanted to be a hero since he was a toddler. Because of his unfortunate fate, Izuku admires heroes and takes notes on them whenever he can. But his perseverance appears to have paid off: Izuku meets the number one hero and his personal idol, All Might. Might’s quirk is an inherited talent, and he has chosen Izuku as his successor!
After months of arduous training, Izuku enrols in UA High, a prestigious high school known for its exceptional hero training programme, and this year’s freshmen look especially promising. With his odd but bright peers and the looming threat of a malevolent organisation, Izuku will quickly learn what it means to be a hero.
11. The Rising of the Shield Hero
The Four Cardinal Heroes are a group of ordinary Japanese men summoned to the kingdom of Melromarc to save it. Melromarc is a country besieged by Catastrophe Waves, which have wrecked the land and caused misery for generations. The four heroes are given a sword, spear, bow, and shield to help them defeat the Waves. Otaku Naofumi Iwatani is cursed with the role of “Shield Hero.” Because of his mediocre offensive abilities and personality, Naofumi is mocked and belittled by his fellow heroes and the people of the kingdom.
When the heroes are given training materials and friends to train with, Naofumi goes out with Malty Melromarc, the only person eager to train with him. However, he is soon betrayed by her and falsely accused of exploiting her. Melromarc’s residents begin to discriminate against and despise Naofumi for something he did not accomplish. With a raging storm of hurt and mistrust in his heart, Naofumi embarks on his path of self-improvement and reputation-building. Later on, however, the difficulty of being alone sets in, so Naofumi buys Raphtalia, a demi-human slave on the verge of death, to accompany him on his journey.
10. Demon Slayer
Tanjirou Kamado has borne the burden of supporting his family since his father’s death. Despite living on a lonely mountain in poverty, the Kamado family lives a relatively peaceful and happy life. Tanjirou decides to go down to the local village one day and sell charcoal. Tanjirou is forced to seek refuge in the home of a strange man on his way back, who warns him of the presence of flesh-eating demons in the woods at night.
When he returns home the next day, he discovers that his entire family has been murdered. Worse, his sister Nezuko is the sole survivor, having been transformed into a ferocious monster. Tanjirou, consumed by rage and hatred, vows vengeance on his family and rallies around his lone remaining sibling. Tanjirou will go to any length to fight the demons and protect the last traces of his beloved sister’s humanity alongside the enigmatic Demon Slayer Corps.
9. Hajime no Ippo
While his father is away, Ippo Makunouchi, a teenager, works hard to assist his mother in running her fishing boat rental business. Ippo’s shy personality, lack of sleep, and the odour of the sea make him an easy target for bullies, who batter and abuse him on a daily basis. Rising boxer Mamoru Takamura rescues Ippo from a violent after-school incident and transports him to the Kamogawa Boxing Gym for treatment. Takamura and his fellow boxers, Masaru Aoki and Tatsuya Kimura, are taken aback by Ippo’s massive fists, which are the result of years of physically demanding family business service.
After a brief training session with Takamura, Ippo impresses the other boxers in a practise match against prodigy Ichirou Miyata. He recruits a competitor, Miyata, as well as a coach, Genji Kamogawa, the gym owner and a former boxer himself. Ippo will face a series of formidable opponents, each more powerful than the last, as he begins his professional boxing career. On his quest for greatness, Ippo will face victory, defeat, and a cycle of dedicated training. With his muscular body and unyielding fighting spirit, the gentle young man wishes to take on the world.
8. Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann
Simon and Kamina grew up in a remote underground town beneath the world’s famous surface. Kamina is a free-spirited loose cannon determined to make his mark, whereas Simon is a timid young child with few ambitions. Simon discovers a strange object while mining the dirt one day, which turns out to be the ignition key to an ancient war artefact named Lagann by the team. With the help of Yoko Littner, a hot-blooded redhead with a big gun who roams the world above, Simon and Kamina use their new weapon to repel a surprise attack from the surface.
The sky is now visible as a result of the conflict, forcing Simon and Kamina to embark on a journey with Yoko to explore the surface wastelands. They soon join the fight against the “Beastmen,” humanoid beings who torment the remaining humans in powerful robots known as “Gunmen.” Despite numerous setbacks and failures, the group fights heroically alongside other survivors to reclaim the surface while gradually revealing a galaxy-sized secret.
7. Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?
In the bustling city of Orario, life is never dull, especially for Bell Cranel, a naive young man who aspires to be the best adventurer in the region. After a chance meeting with the lonely goddess Hestia, his dreams become a little more real. Bell embarks on a fantastic adventure with her assistance, venturing deep beneath the city’s monster-infested dungeons known only as the “Dungeon.” Death lurks around every corner in the vast depths of this terrifying labyrinth, and a mysterious power glides among the shadows.
Even on the surface, survival is a hard-won privilege. In a world where gods and humans coexist, especially when they frequently clash, nothing is ever guaranteed. But one thing is certain: the fearlessly optimistic protagonist of this fantastic story will face a slew of failures, successes, and friendships.
6. Yona of the Dawn
Kouka’s kingdom is blessed with a lovely princess whose childish innocence enchants everyone who meets her. Yona, as she is affectionately known, grew up in the royal palace, safe from any harm. However, all good things must come to an end.
Yona’s ideal life is shattered when a heinous act of betrayal threatens to destroy everything she holds dear, including her birthright as Princess of Kouka. She is forced to flee the palace because she has no one to rely on other than her childhood friend and devoted bodyguard Son Hak. Yona finds that her country is no longer the secure sanctuary it once was as she is faced with the hazards of surviving in the wild with a target on her back.
Yona swears she will do everything in her power to overcome her ignorance and become powerful enough to crush her enemies. With Hak by her side, she must piece together the shattered shards of ancient mythology that may hold the key to reclaiming her homeland from those who plotted to steal it.
Daigo Kagemitsu, the greedy samurai lordland ,’s is dying, and he will do anything for power, even renounce Buddha and make a pact with demons. His prayers are answered by 12 demons, who grant him the power he seeks by assisting the growth of his prefecture, but at a cost. When Kagemitsu’s first son is born, he lacks limbs, a nose, eyes, ears, and even skin—yet he lives.
This infant is abandoned and thrown into a river. He is saved, however, by a medicine man who provides him with prosthetics and weapons, allowing him to survive and fend for himself. The boy grows and lives, and despite his inability to see, hear, or feel anything, he must defeat the demons who kidnapped him as a sacrifice. He reclaims a piece of himself that is rightfully his with each death. He walks for several years on his own until he meets Dororo, an orphan boy. The unlikely couple of castaways must now fight for their lives and humanity on an unforgiving, demon-infested planet.
4. Black Clover
On the same day, Asta and Yuno were abandoned at the same church. As children, they learned about the “Wizard King,” a title bestowed on the strongest mage in the realm, and vowed to compete for the role of the future Wizard King. However, as they grew older, the stark difference between them became clear. While Yuno can use magic with incredible force and control, Asta is unable to do so and is desperate to awaken his powers through physical training.
Yuno is given a magnificent Grimoire adorned with a four-leaf clover when they reach the age of 15, but Asta receives nothing. Yuno, on the other hand, is ambushed by a man named Lebuty, whose main goal is to steal Yuno’s Grimoire. Asta goes up against Lebuty, but he is outmatched. He finds the strength to persevere when he hears Yuno’s voice, even though he is without hope and on the verge of defeat. In rage, Asta unleashes his inner emotions and obtains a five-leaf clover Grimoire, a “Black Clover” powerful enough to defeat Lebuty. A few days later, the two companions embarked on an adventure with the same goal in mind: to become the Wizard King!
3. Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
In 2010, the Holy Empire of Britannia is establishing itself as a dominant military power, beginning with the conquest of Japan. Following its swift defeat, Japan was renamed Area 11, and it has seen significant resistance against these dictators in its quest to reclaim freedom.
A Britannian student, Lelouch Lamperouge, is caught in the crossfire between the Britannian and Area 11 rebel armed forces. He escapes, however, thanks to the timely appearance of a mysterious girl named C.C., who bestows on him Geass, the “Power of Kings.” Recognizing the immense power of his newly discovered “power of total obedience,” Lelouch embarks on a perilous journey as the masked vigilante Zero, launching a brutal offensive against Britannia in order to exact final vengeance.
2. Tokyo Ghoul
A sinister threat is invading Tokyo: flesh-eating “ghouls” who look and act exactly like humans. Ken Kaneki, a shy college student, hides his face in his books to avoid hearing about the escalating disaster. His loneliness is broken when a lovely woman named Rize Kamishiro approaches him and asks him out on a date.
Kaneki discovers while driving Rize home that she isn’t as sweet as she appears and that she has duped him. After a heartbreaking struggle, he awakens in a hospital to learn that his life was saved by transferring the now-deceased Rize’s organs into his own body.
Kaneki’s body starts to change horrifyingly, transforming him into a human-ghoul hybrid. Kaneki clings to his humanity as he embarks on his new horrific journey in the evolving brutal war between society’s new monsters and the government agents tasked with hunting them down.
1. Vinland Saga
Thorfinn grew up hearing stories about elderly sailors who had crossed the seas and arrived in Vinland, the legendary realm. It’s said to be warm and productive, with no need for fighting—a far cry from his birthplace in Iceland, and certainly not his current life as a mercenary. War is his new home. Despite his father’s assurance that “no one can accuse you of having enemies.” “There is no one to whom it is acceptable to cause harm,” Thorfinn realised as he grew.
The conflict between England and Denmark worsens with each passing year. The Viking mercenaries are relishing the fact that death has become the norm. Allying with either side will result in a significant shift in power, and the Vikings are content to make a name for themselves and take whatever prizes they can. In the midst of the chaos, Thorfinn must exact his revenge on Askeladd, the man who murdered his father. The Vikings’ only nirvana appears to be the ongoing era of war and death.
BONUS: Tsukimichi: Moonlit Fantasy
As part of a strange contract made years ago by a goddess and his parents, Makoto Misumi is sent to another planet to meet the goddess and become the hero. The deity, on the other hand, considers Makoto to be “hideous,” refusing to even look at him and rescinding his heroic title. The goddess forces Makoto to the darkest reaches of the wasteland, far from human civilization, in exchange for the ability to understand all languages except human.
As a result of the disparity between Earth and this new universe, Makoto’s latent physical and magical abilities awaken, making him enormously powerful. He meets other demihumans and legendary beings who are all captivated by his characteristics and join Makoto in establishing a new community where they can all coexist.
Despite his accomplishments, Makoto longs to meet new people. Makoto and his companions must fulfil his longing in a world where the goddess herself has forbidden him from mixing with his kind—and possibly transform society in the process.
That concludes this list; please share your favourite anime where the main character begins weak but quickly becomes powerful in the comments section!
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