Horror is by far one of the most popular and enticing manga genres ever created. For many fans, reading about supernatural, horrific, or gory events can be a fun and safe way to experience fear without putting themselves in harm.
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As such, there is never a shortage of scary and perturbing manga to read if you are looking for a spooky experience. Still, not every horror manga is as iconic as others. Below, we have created a list of the best and most scary horror manga in existence.
A Rank of the Best Horror Manga
The following manga have been selected according to how popular they are, how well-received they have been by general audiences, and how scary they are. Whether it is because of their terrifying plot, their amazing characters, or simply how shocking they can be, these are the best manga for horror fans.
10. Corpse Party
This manga was based on the popular game franchise of the same name. Corpse Party tells the story of a group of students who are tricked into performing a ritual that will supposedly help their friendship last forever. However, they soon discover that this charm is not what it promised, as it transports them into a haunted school where danger looms in every corner.
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They are led by Satoshi, a brave and selfless boy who just wants to save his sister from the vengeful spirits that inhabit the school. As they look for a way out, they will uncover the gruesome secret that this forsaken school is hiding, as well as fight the evil spirit trying to end their lives.
9. I Am a Hero
Hideo, a frustrated manga artist with low self-esteem, thinks of himself as a secondary character. He is not fulfilled by his job, has few and fickle friendships, and suffers from frequent hallucinations. His life is dull and he has no intention of changing it for the better. Yet, he is forced out of his comfort zone when a new virus is discovered.
This sickness, known only as ZQN, is transforming humans into flesh-eating zombies. These creatures are not only terrifying but they are also extremely aggressive, attacking any human they come across. Hideo will need to leave his role as a secondary character behind and turn into a hero to survive the unforgiving world that he now lives in.
Working in secret to keep the Queen safe, the English secret organization known as Hellsing is tasked with hunting down any vampire or supernatural being that threatens the peace. Their leader, Sir Integra, is a calculative and cold-blooded woman who hates vampires. She is accompanied by her family’s buttle, Walter, as well as the most powerful vampire ever Alucard.
Formerly known as Count Dracula, Alucard is a loyal servant of Hellsing, honoring a deal he made with Van Helsing, the founder of the organization. Despite their best efforts, the members of Hellsing will have to fight their hardest battle yet, as a Nazi military group known as Millenium has declared war against them. It is up to Integra, Walter, and Alucard to prevent these vile villains from winning the battle.
While trying to help a man who fell in front of an incoming train two high school students named Kei and Masaru are killed by the vehicle. Surprisingly, they do not awaken in the afterlife, instead appearing inside a small Japanese apartment with several other individuals and a strange black orb. Every one of the people they meet has died recently, which only makes the situation more confusing.
After waiting for a while, the black orb opens itself, revealing an old man surrounded by weapons. The man explains that they all work for him now and will have to take part in his alien-hunting game if they want to return to their normal lives. Forced into this cruel and dangerous game where their lives are on the line, our heroes will have to fight the monstrous creatures that torment Japan.
Seichi and his wife Miki went together on a trip to a beautiful island to get away from their daily and saddening lives. The death of their only son depressed both deeply, causing a strain on the relationship. Seichi wanted this trip to put an end to their conflict, but not in the way you imagine. He wanted to kill his wife and leave her body to rot on the isolated island.
When his plans fail and his wife runs away from him, he follows her into a dark cave, happy that she will have nowhere to run this time. However, he may soon regret this decision, as the cave is inhabited by a ruthless being who feeds on the unfortunate souls that enter his domains.
5. The Drifting Classroom
Shou used to live a normal life, arriving earlier at his elementary school every day to play with his friends. One day, an earthquake hits the zone, causing massive damage to the building and transporting it to a desolate land with no sign of civilization. Those who were on school grounds, Shou included, struggled to survive with the limited resources that were teleported with them.
Tragically, their provisions soon ran out, turning what was once a respectable community into an anarchy in which only the strong survive. With the adults in his life doing little to help their situation, it will be up to the young Shou to maintain the peace between his peers while they wait for someone to rescue them.
In this world, small creatures known as Parasites look for unsuspecting victims to take over their minds. As soon as they reach a human’s brain, the individual is considered dead, as the creature will have full control over the body and mind of its subject. Shinichi, a young and regular high schooler, is attacked by a Parasyte during the night.
Yet, instead of being controlled by the creature, they merge into a strange hybrid, as the being could only take control of his right arm. Forced into a bizarre partnership, Shinichi and the Parasyte named Migi will have to train their body and prepare to fight for their lives. Various powerful and cruel Parasites will try to fight them in an attempt to establish themselves as the strongest.
3. Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni
Keiichi is new to the small town of Hinamizawa but he is slowly adapting to his new home. The change was made easier thanks to his four close friends Satoko., Rina, Rena, and Mion, who made him feel welcome as soon as they met. One day, the girls invite Keiichi to the traditional Cotton Drifting Festival, an ancient celebration sacred to the people of the town.
It is during this festival that Keiichi learns about the curse of Oyashiro, Hinamizawa’s local deity. Each year, around the time the festival arrives, a person is killed, typically an outsider. Naturally, this story freaks out Keiichiro, and the boy only becomes more agitated when someone dies. Scared and with friends who refuse to answer his questions, Keiichi will have to figure out how to escape the curse or become the next victim.
Guts, also known as the legendary Black Swordsman, is a bounty hunter famous for his bravery and the ginormous sword that he wields. His skills caught the attention of the notorious group of mercenaries known as the Band of the Falcon. Their leader, Griffith, personally recruited and defeated Guts, becoming an inspiration for the latter.
After several years fighting together, the Band of the Falcon became one of the most prominent bounty hunter guilds in the world, all thanks to Griffith and Guts. Lamentably, the two close friends are about to face their most terrifying obstacle yet. They are not aware of how cruel and dark the world they live in is, but they will soon find out.
From Junji Ito, one of the most beloved horror authors in the world, Uzumaki tells the story of Kirie, a young woman who lives in the quiet and small town of Kurouzo-cho. On her way to meet her boyfriend, Saito, she notices that her father is not acting like himself, seeing as he seems to be hypnotized by a snail shell. When she tells her partner about this incident, he reveals that his family has also been acting strange.
Saito makes it clear that he believes something is occurring, and expresses his desire to move out of the town with Kirie. The woman does not listen to him, becoming a witness to the slow descent into madness of the citizens of Kurouzo-cho. This haunting and horrific tale will keep fans who chose to read it awake at night for weeks to come.
- This article was updated on November 7th, 2023