Shounen (or “shōnen”) is one of the most popular genres. It leans towards young and teenage boys, but of course, reading a good manhwa regardless of its genre is our duty. (stomadentlab.com) It usually has a male protagonist who embarks in such a story plot that is adventurous and filled with challenges. Often, the shounen genre does not concentrate heavily on romance and comes in comedy, fantasy, action, or drama. Despite its focus audience, everyone should read shounen because it teaches lessons too, whether over friendship, oneself, or life.
Manhwas like Solo Leveling, Tower of God, The Gamer, etc., are quite already popular, and so are not included in this list. The below list of the best shounen webtoon/manhwa is the best example of how different emotions can come under shounen’s umbrella.
Best Shounen Webtoon/Manhwa
21. Wizard of Arsenia
Other names: 아르세니아의 마법사
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Shounen
Author: Sungho Park
Summary: The story starts when Lee Kyul Ip, a 3rd-year school student, suddenly transports into an alternative universe. After arriving at the new place, he meets Reyard of Great Red Dragons. He tells Kyul Ip that he is now in a place called Dragon Mountain on the continent of Arsenia. Reyard also says that he summon him to show another dragon that red dragons are not stupid. Now stuck in this weird situation, Kyul has two options to go back. The first one is to wait for Reyard to make magic from scratch, and the second is to create a dimension and gate himself return to his world.
20. Last word of the world
Other names: Tao Yu Mo Shi Zhi Shu, 桃与末世之书
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Martial Arts, Sci-fi, Shounen, Supernatural
Summary: After an apocalypse, civilization has disintegrated due to a wrong experiment. The world descended into tribes and small groups. People have also divided into two types: Cyborgs, a combination of the human body and mechanical parts, and the Beast Spirits, a mix of human and animal DNA. These two types continuously remain in a fight with one another to prove who holds much power. Among them is Hei Tong Shi, a cyborg who wanders between cyborgs and Beast Spirits. He previously was a part of a killer group, ‘Hei Qi Eight,’ but rebelled and left. Tong Shi fights to uncover the mysteries of the world and for himself.
The series is full of fight, action, and adventure; hence it is on our list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa.
Other names: 플레이어
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Shounen
Author: Park Jong-Seok (Story), Oh Hyeon-Jun (Art)
Summary: Player is an action-comedy-packed webtoon about a highschool student Seol Jin Heo who gets teleported into a manhwa after posting a ‘best comment.’ School life, fight, action, and story make this webtoon a perfect fit for the best shounen webtoon/manhwa list.
The story starts with the protagonist living in the real world. Where his classmate either outcast him or see him with pity. Later he gets into a webtoon and has to defeat the number 1 rank. Then ‘God’ of the manhwa sends him to his first mission with Libur.
18. Slave B
Other names: 슬레이브 B
Genres: Action, Adventure, Drama, Fantasy, Shounen
Author: Imines, Park Ji
Summary: When Shadow Lord, Secneum destroyed the current world’s peace, and now slaves neglected as humans. A slave couple adopted Niro, a half-elf and half-human boy after his parents died when he was a baby. Since Niro’s adoptive parents are slaves, they lose their life after getting mistreatment. Now Niro has the responsibility of his two young siblings on him. And if he wants to get everything on track then, there is only one thing he can do. He must graduate from the academy, Excanum, just like the current Emperor Muren, who was once a slave.
17. The Devil’s Boy
Other names: Angmaui Sonyeon
Genres: Action, Fantasy, School Life, Shounen, Supernatural
Author: Kirin, Jihyun
Summary: Jungho was a school student who got bullied real badly. He gets bullied to the point of self-harm, until one day, his prayers were answered by Mephistopheles. Mephisto was the archdevil who offers Jungho magical powers that would allow him to take revenge on his bullies. In return for these magical powers, he asked for his soul. For Jungho, it was an easy choice because what could be worse than this living hell he lives in. But he was unknown to the greater bad that will be coming on the ways that he is but a pawn in a much larger game played by demons and exorcists.
16. Volcanic Age
Other names: Volcanic Rebirth
Genres: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Shounen
Author: Tomato(Artist), Jeong-Jun(Story)
Summary: A Korean light novel converted into a manhwa series is in the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa. The story revolves around Joo SEO Cheon, a man who survives the age of war through sheer luck and becomes Hwasan factions elder only to live a life full of regrets and doubts. Lying on his death bed, when this man gets a chance of going back to the past, he made most of it.
He uses knowledge and data from his previous life to help to seek his goal early in advance. Has information about the locations of treasures and other things beforehand, which will be discovered later. He also established connections with people he knows will be important later on in the future life ahead. Joo SEO Cheon also impresses many sect leaders along the way. Now the only question arises, will knowing everything beforehand actually change his new future?
Other names: NA
Genres: Fantasy, Action, Supernatural, Shounen
Author: Yaruno and Nawa
Summary: This webtoon is based on a polt of creating a co-existence of dragons and humans together in a world where people live in fear of dragons. Protagonist Juka is a seventeen-year-old boy who is trying to bring balance between humans and dragons along with his dragon Lyth. He claims that humans and dragons can live side by side if they only took the time to understand each other. Juka was raised by a dragon sage and is dull with basic human etiquette. Will Juka ever achieve his dream of building Glacias, a city where humans and dragons can live in harmony?
The art and graphics display in this manhwa are eye-pleasing, gaining its position on the best shounen webtoon/manhwa list.
Other names: Veristas, Truth
Genres: Action, Comedy, Drama, Ecchi, Martial Arts, School, Shounen, Super Power, Supernatural
Author: Yoon Joon Shik (Story), Kim Dong Hoon (Art), Berry Star (Story)
Summary: Veritas is an important one on the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa. The story revolves around Ma Gangryong, a middle schooler who loves to fight and is considered the strongest student in his school. Once, when he meets a mysterious man Youcheon, his ideas of strength changed. After witnessing the man’s display of unbelievable kind of power, he pleads to the man for teaching him. After many persuasions, Youcheon finally takes Gangryong on as his student. One year later, some people came and announced that his “master” is dead. Gangryong has to follow them and go to a school where everybody has supernatural powers because he was the only student of his master. Now Gangryong is part of a world he has never seen before, and that will change his life forever.
13. Bal Jak
Other names: Baljak, Bal Jack, High School
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Ecchi, School, Shounen
Author: Kim Young Oh (Art), Young Jeon Sang (Story)
Summary: Next on the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa is Bal Jak. It is an underrated two-decade-old comic, which you should give a try. I this, Jo Pae, a slightly off-kilter boy, wants to become emperor of Korea. When he enters high school, his first step is to become the leader of the strongest school there is. No one was expecting it, and he takes down all of the school’s Yankees. Jo Pae is now the enemy to kill! And all the rival schools want to kill him regardless of any means!
Other names: 고수, Gosu – The Master
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Historical, Martial Arts, Shounen
Author: Ryu Ki-Woon, Moon Jung-Hoo
Summary: A young man Gang Yong, set forth to avenge his master, a once-influential martial artist who was betrayed by his men and barely escaped with his life. He is ready to bring terror and plunder among the murim as he is armed with his master’s supreme martial art techniques. But one year later, before he even got started, he learns that the ones who had betrayed his master are already dead, fighting among themselves. So what happens now is a question, but instantly, he is employed in a dumpling shop. His cover? A chubby dumpling delivery boy.
11. Tower Into The Clouds
Other names: 百层塔
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Manhua, Shounen
Author: Jio Ran
Summary: If you’re a man, then you should be able to reach the 100th level. A mage Mao Li, the main character, begins his journey of scaling the tower. The storyline starts with the awaking of Mao Li in a desert, with all his memory lost. He then saw a skyscraping tower and gets inside to seek help. There he meets the tower’s keeper cum registrar, who tells him about the tower and its challenges and powers. Keeper also persuades Mao Li to join the challenge of scaling the tower to fulfill his wishes, including his memories. Now, will Mao Li be able to reach the 100th level?
10. The Legend of Maian
Other names: Mayan Chronicles
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Ecchi, Fantasy, Romance, Shounen, Tragedy
Author: Im Dal Young (Story), Jeong Soo Cheol (Art)
Summary: This manhwa is in the best shounen webtoon/manhwa because it comprises every emotion. Be it comedy, action, drama, or tragedy. The story starts when a powerful sorceress, Felicia Rand Philistin, once tried to conquer the nation of Shurian. To stop this terror and destruction, a man stood up and rebelled against her oppression and domination. The people called him Maian the Brave (Yongja Maian), and it was he that sealed the evil sorceress. Thousand years later, the sealed sorceress is released by the mistake of Fenix Maian. Now he has to keep the sorceress from taking over the world once again and has to complete his ancestors’ efforts.
09. Knight Run
Other names: 나이트런
Genres: Action, Adventure, Drama, Mature, Sci-fi, Shounen
Author: Kim, Sung Min (Story & Art)
Summary: Knight Run is an underrated manhwa that needs to be on the best shounen webtoon/manhwa list. It is the story of the war in the era of space between humans and creatures of unknown origin. Initially, this webtoon will look like it is solely focusing on fights and wars, but there is more to it. This story is not just war-centric, but it also depicts the suffering and loss resulting from the war, whether won or lose. It displays the emotions and virtues humanity is possessing.
Here in the story, the battle is harsh, and the future looks unsettled and stormy. Amidst the turmoil, humanity tries to play its last hand. It’s time for the Knights who have received new orders to step into the fray and turn the tide of this war.
09. Troll Trap
Other names: 트롤트랩
Genres: Action, Fantasy, School life, Shounen
Author: Lee won seek
Summary: What will you do when you notice that someone you knew is no longer themselves? The changes they show are so peculiar that they are no longer…human? Troll Trap is the story of troll hunter Ha-Te. The story starts with Ha-Te saving Ji-Hyun from a monstrous troll, who came in the form of her baby brother. Later Ha-Te transferred to Ji-Hyun’s school and made her join his hunting spree as a part-time troll hunter. Follow hunter Ha-Te and the part-timer hunter Ji-Hyun on their adventure of hunting trolls to save humanity. It is an engaging and fun webtoon from the start, and that is why it is the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa.
07. God of High School
Other names: God of Highschool, GoH, The God of Highschool
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Martial Arts, Sci-Fi, Supernatural, Shounen
Author: Park Yong Je (Story & Art)
Summary: This one has to be on the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa as this webcomic has received a mobile game and an original video animation attached to the aforementioned game’s original soundtrack.
The webtoon starts when the main protagonist Jin Mo-Ri, a 17-year-old martial artist from Seoul, South Korea, is invited to join a Martial Arts tournament called “The God of High School.” A suspicious corporation sponsored this event. This tournament’s motive was to bring together people from all over South Korea on a regional then national level and select three representatives for the World Tournament ultimately. The tournament’s prize is that the host corporation will fulfill any wish of the winner. So join Mo-Ri and find out what his destiny is in the tournament?
06. Afterschool War Activities
Other names: Afterschool Military Activity, Banggwa hu Jeonjaeng Hwaldong, Duty after School
Genres: Action, Mystery, Psychological, Shounen, Supernatural, sci-fi
Author: Ha Il-Kwon (Story & Art)
Summary: Afterschool War Activities is a must webtoon that has to be on the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa. It is an exciting and overwhelming story about a group of high schoolers collected to serve in the army to help protect the country at the time of need. The story started when strange things began appearing from the sky, and the world is slowly dying. In light of this case, what’s happening in Korea was not good either. The highschoolers and college students have no choice but to join the military as there aren’t enough military men to fight these enemies. For helping others, they have to survive at the risk of their own lives. As things become more and more dangerous, it gets clearer just how much they’ll have to grow up if they want to survive.
05. Sweet Home
Other names: 스위트 홈
Genres: Action, Drama, Horror, Shounen, Supernatural, Thriller
Author: Kim Carnby (Story), Hwang Young-chan (Art)
Summary: Sweet Home is a featured thriller webtoon created by Youngchan Hwang and Carnby Kim. The story starts after an unexpected family tragedy. A reclusive high school student is forced to leave his home, only to face something much scarier. He has to face a reality where monsters are trying to wipe out humanity. Now he must fight alongside a handful of reluctant heroes to try and save the world before it’s too late and meanwhile hoping to see the last theatrical cut of his favorite series Maria from the sky. It is one of Kim Carnby & Hwang Young-chan’s two works, which made up the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa.
04. King of Hell
Other names: Demon King, Majeh
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Martial arts, Shounen, Supernatural
Author: Kim Jae-Hwan (Art), Ra In-Soo (Story)
Summary: King of Hell takes place in the past on the Land of Korea and its corresponding realms of the afterlife. The story primarily revolves around Majeh, the envoy to the next world, and his existence as King of “Hell.” Majeh was a great swordsman in life, but he was transferred to the next world as a servant of the King of Hell after his death. It was later discovered that he was a legendary swordsman placed in a magical realm called the Moorim, where the fiercest warriors were kept.
Upon His arrival in Moorim, Majeh was challenged by over 50 warriors at once, and he easily defeated them without any struggle. Majeh became one of the most dangerous people in Moorim after this incident and was remove and made envoy to the next world (hell) by the king. After a while, when a disaster occurred in hell, the most wicked demons escaped into the world of Mortals. Then King of Hell sends Majeh out to capture these escape demons. This is more than a decade old and still one of the best shounen webtoon/manhwas to date.
Other names: 노블레스
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, School, Supernatural, Shounen
Author: Son Jae Ho (Story), Lee Gwang Su (Art)
Summary: The next webtoon on the list of best shounen webtoon/manhwa is Noblesse. Cadis Etrama Di Raizel’ Rai’ rises from a white coffin placed within an abandoned building in South Korea. Rai is unimaginably beautiful, dignified, and nobleman. As he awakes in this unknown time, Rai must find out someone he can trust, his loyal companion, Frankenstein. After remain asleep for the past 820 years, Rai requires Frankenstein’s help to adapt to the current age. The story develops when Rai tries to mix with the human society of today. To do this, he transforms his old-fashion cloth into the uniform blazer of the nearby Ye Ran High School. After it turns out that Frankenstein is the principal of that school. Frankenstein enrolls him as a new student to help him understand modern society and experience a regular life.
Frankenstein’s plans soon go amiss partially because of the problems stemming from modern society and partly due to unresolved conflicts between him and his master’s troubled past. As no choice is left, Rai must use his mysterious power to protect those dear to him.
02. The Breaker
Other names: 브레이커
Genres: Action, Comedy, Drama, Martial Arts, School, Shounen, Senin
Author: Park Jin Hwan (Art), Jeon Geuk jin (Story)
Summary: Yi “Shioon” Shi-Woon’s daily life in his Nine Dragons High School includes beatings from fellow student Ho Chang and his gang. His life is far from ideal. But one day, a mysterious man, which later turns out to be a substitute English teacher named Han Chun Woo, spots one of these bulling and, instead of offering support, brands him a coward for refusing to fight back. This added insult to the pre-existing injury of Shinoon.
Shinoo decides to enroll himself at a martial arts academy after getting tired of daily abuse and bullying. During his way there, he stumbles upon Chun Woo, who was in a crisis, cornered in an alley by a group of angry men. Aggravated, Chun Woo suddenly dispatches them using martial arts techniques, which Shioon secretly records. He later uses this recording to blackmail Chun Woo into teaching him self-defense. Hesitantly, Chun Woo agrees and pushed Shioon into the world of martial arts, known as Murim. However, Shioon is innocent and ignorant of his master’s crooked past and society’s unseen downs. See how Chun Woo manages to teach Shioon and encourage him to survive in the world of Murim.
Other names: Hulejasig
Genres: Mystery, Drama, Horror, Romance, Psychological, Shounen
Author: Kim Carnby (Story), Hwang Young-chan (Art)
Summary: From a distance, Seon Jin looks like a boy who has money and a comfortable apartment, someone who only faces a hard time at school for being bullied, but the reality is different. There is nowhere that Seon Jin can find peace. He is ruthlessly bullied at school due to his reserved and quiet but not hostile nature and weak appearance. However, the real reason for Jin’s miseries and terror is his father and his secret deeds.
Dongsoo Seon, Jin’s father, is a successful businessman, a good social being, and a loving parent, which is merely a facade. The truth is that he is a deranged serial killer, and Jin is his unwilling accomplice. They are carrying out this killing spree for years without getting caught. However, all this comes to an end when his father is interested in the pretty and kind transfer student Yoon Kyun who becomes Jin’s love interest. Now it is in Jin’s hands to choose a path that whether he will let her go down in the clutches of his father or be the bastard of a son who rebels against his father.