Bringing forward a very unique concept into the genre of high school anime, Classroom of the Elite revolves around a ‘perfect’ school that guarantees students a brilliant future. Koudo Ikusei Senior High School is made just for these ‘future leaders,’ where it provides students with top-notch facilities. But there’s a catch – the students have to perform exceptionally well in order to earn ‘points’ that they can use to avail these facilities.
After finishing this anime, you must be looking for more such high school adventures.
Anime similar to Classroom of the Elite
#1: Assassination Classroom
- Status: Completed (2015-2016)
- Genre: Sci-fi comedy, action
Assassination Classroom revolves around the students of class 3E of Kunugigaoka Junior High School, which like any other class, is a normal class – until they’re joined by a new teacher. This teacher is no ordinary, but a giant octopus-like creature with supernatural strengths. Having already destroyed 70% of the moon, forcing it to stay in a crescent shape forever, this teacher called ‘Korosensei’ threatens to destroy the whole planet by the end of the academic year. But here’s the catch – he can be stopped only if any one of his students manages to kill him. As Korosensei continues to teach all the subjects well, he also teaches the students ways to assassinate him, and every day starts with such attempts from the students.
The show, despite its ‘dark’ premise, isn’t actually dark as it features fair bits of comedy. The story has an emotional ending as well. Definitely worth a watch if you like Classroom of the Elite.
#2: Prison School
- Status: Completed (2015-2015)
- Genre: Sex comedy
Prison School takes us to Hachimitsu Academy – a traditionally girls-only school with severe rules and regulations – which has recently decided to admit boys. Soon after getting admitted, the protagonist Kiyoshi Fujino realizes that he is one among the only five boys in a school filled with thousands of girls. With the intense regulations still in effect, Kiyoshi and his friends are sent to the in-school prison for (of course) peeping at girls. Once in prison, the ‘Underground Student Council’ makes relentless efforts to get the boys expelled from the school to keep the school girls-only like it has always been.
Keeping the comedic and sexual themes aside, the show has very great animation and interesting characters. Prison School succeeds in breaking the stereotype of having seductive and submissive maidens in a show and gives strength to the female characters (while also maintaining the genre). Another great recommendation if you’re a fan of such unique schools as seen in Classroom of the Elite.
#3: Death Note
- Status: Completed (2006-2007)
- Genre: Mystery, psychological thriller, supernatural thriller
Death Note is a classic masterpiece in the genre of psychological and supernatural thrillers. It revolves around Light Yagami, a high school student who finds the ‘Death Note’ – a notebook able to supernaturally kill anyone whose name is written into it. Although initially in disbelief of its power, Light eventually decides to use the Death Note to eliminate all the criminals from the world – under the alias ‘Kira’ as given by the people – making the world free of crime. However, it doesn’t take long for him to become a target for all the police forces in the world.
His prime adversary, a world-class detective called ‘L’ easily tracks the identity of Kira down to Light himself. What follows is a game of unmatched wits between L and Light – two of the most intelligent people in the country.
The story is a joyride of suspense and thrill, with moments that make you bow down before the intellects of both Light and L. The show makes the viewers question their own morals and the sense of true justice. The way we get to peek right into the brain of Light just elevates the level of thrill during moments of sheer tension. If you love Classroom of the Elite, then you will surely love this breathtaking game of wits.
- Status: Completed (2017-2019)
- Genre: Gambling, psychological thriller
The story of Kakegurui revolves around Hyakkaou Private Academy, a prestigious ‘school’ made for the rich and privileged, where the status of a student is determined by means of gambling. The protagonist, Yumeko Jabami is a newly transferred sophomore, who is incredibly intelligent. Unlike others at the school who gamble for money and respect, she is someone who gambles because she enjoys it. Aided by her brilliance, she sees through scams and exposes cheaters, disrupting the pre-existing hierarchy of the school.
The show presents Yumeko as a compulsive gambler who takes immense fun in gambling. She is an extremely smart and observant individual and the show pretty much succeeds in expressing this aspect. The music, animation, and voice acting accurately convey the psychotic nature of the protagonist. Although the wit of Yumeko isn’t explored as well as is done in the case of Light from Death Note, it is still a great recommendation for fans of both Death Note and Classroom of the Elite.
#5: Baka and Test
- Status: Completed (2010-2011)
- Genre: Comedy
Baka and Test or Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu is the story of Fumizuki Academy – a school where the grades of a student determine the facilities and luxury he gets. This concept is utterly similar to Classroom of the Elite, except there’s a twist. The students can summon entities called ‘Shoukanjuu’s, whose powers depend on the performance of the students in the last exam. Naturally, the students of class F – the poorest performers – have the weakest Shoukanjuus. The protagonist Mizuki Himeji is one such student of class F. He befriends Mizuki Himeji, a brilliant girl who unfortunately ended up in class F due to a fever on the exam day. The students of class F realize the injustice they’re facing and swear to get the best facilities by defeating the class above them in Summoner Test Wars – where the winner gets to exchange classroom facilities.
The story does a great job in providing a point of view from the ‘looked-down’ students. The concept, although resembling Classroom of the Elite, is creative in its own way, and the pacing of the story is perfect. And with great comedy in the house too, this is one gem of a recommendation.
#6: My Hero Academia
- Status: Ongoing (2016-)
- Genre: Adventure fiction, Science fantasy, Superhero fiction, Comedy, Science fiction
A mixture of superhero action and shounen adventure, My Hero Academia revolves around a world where 80% of the population has superpowers called ‘quirks.’ The story follows Midoriya Izuku, an unfortunate young boy who didn’t make it into the 80% with quirks. Things change when his idol All-Might chooses him to be the next successor of his quirk ‘One For All,’ following which he starts attending U.A. High School, made for superheroes.
The story focuses heavily on the aspect that not every hero needs to have superpowers in order to be one. Izuku starts off as a powerless kid with one aim – to become the strongest. It is his will to save others despite being powerless himself that earns him the respect of his idol. The writer wonderfully portrays this aspect. If you are a fan of superheroes as well as Classroom of the Elite, this show is an absolute recommendation for you.
- Status: Completed (2015-2015)
- Genre: Comedy-drama, supernatural
The story of Charlotte is set in an alternate universe where a comet of the titular name ‘Charlotte’ passes close to earth every 75 years. A small fraction of kids inhaling the dust from this comet grows on to develop superpowers once they reach puberty. One such student is Yuu Otosaka, who develops the power to possess any person for a brief amount of time. He secretly keeps using these powers for his own good until a girl named Nao Tomori finds out about it and forces him to transfer to Hoshinoumi Academy, a school made specially to look after teenagers with such superpowers. Adventures of Yuu begins from there
Although action isn’t a strong point in this show, the animation, music and character design are absolutely phenomenal. Sharing the concept with My Hero Academia, Charlotte is a must-watch if you’re a fan of the former.
#8: Attack on Titan: Junior High
- Status: Completed (2018-2018)
- Genre: Parody, comedy
Leaving behind the serious tones of the previous animes, we move to a more childish and lightly toned anime show. Attack on Titan: Junior High is a parody of the famous Attack on Titan series which revolves around the latter’s characters – but in a high school setting. The spin-off makes use of numerous scenes and elements from the original show as a basis to create a comedic environment.
Though there is no real character or plot development as this is a parody, Junior High serves as a light refreshment after hours of headache watching serious, dark and psychotic ‘high-school’ animes.
#9: Komi Can’t Communicate
- Status: Ongoing (2021-)
- Genre: Slice of life, romantic comedy
Komi Can’t Communicate is a story about a girl called Shouko Komi, a really beautiful and intelligent girl newly admitted into the Itan Private High School. On the first day of her school itself, she manages to grab the attention of all her classmates and teachers alike due to her remarkable beauty. However, there’s a catch – she suffers from a very severe communication disorder, rendering her completely incapable of speaking even a word. However, things seem hopeful for her once she meets her first friend, Hitohito Tadano. Tadano is an average guy, of whom all others are jealous because of his friendship with Komi. Being Komi’s first friend, Tadano learns about her disorder and helps her complete her goal – to make a hundred friends.
The show does a great job at showing the chemistry between Komi and Tadano. This friendship between them is what makes the show relaxing to watch, although the side characters may seem like a minor headache to some. Although it is unlike Classroom of the Elite, in terms of plot theme, it still narrates the sweet story of two high schoolers which is definitely worth a watch.
#10: Your Lie in April
- Status: Completed (2014-2015)
- Genre: Romantic drama
If you’re too stressed after watching the innumerable fights, tense situations, and occasionally dark themes of the other shows in this list, then here is one show to lighten up your mood and soothe your ears with surreal music. Your Lie in April is the story of Kousei Arima, a child music prodigy who is able to play the piano accurately without missing a single note.
In an unfortunate turn of events, Kousei loses the ability to hear his own notes – although the rest of his hearing is unaffected – after he is traumatized by the death of his mother. This makes him lose all his morale to play and excel in playing the piano. However, things change after two years of not playing, he meets Kaori Miyazono, a free-spirited girl, who is also a violinist. Kaori motivates Kousei and compels him to play the piano once again.
This show is a beautiful composition that teaches us the meaning of living. Kaori, despite having a terminal illness, continues to live the last moments of her life with a free spirit so that she doesn’t carry any regrets to heaven. Not only that, but she urges Kousei to give up the monotonous way that he sees the world with, and play the piano for everyone he loves. The writers have done a brilliant job at this. Apart from this, the piano and violin performances, the theme music, and the heart-touching voice acting are truly top-notch. Despite not sharing a hierarchal or class-based concept with Classroom of the Elite, Your Lie in April is a one-of-a-kind show set among high schoolers that must not be missed by any lover of the romantic genre.
So those were my picks for animes similar to Classroom of the Elite, ranging from psychological thrillers like Death Note, to a gambling joyride like Kakegurui, to action in My Hero Academia, to heart-touching relationships in Your Lie in April. If you looking for more exciting anime to watch be sure to check out Anime Series similar to Skeleton Knight in Another World and check out our Instagram for more anime content.