What could be more fun than seeing the 19th century through the art in a manga? If you’re craving to see steam-powered machinery and gears in a Victorian setting, steampunk manga is exactly what you need.
The number of steampunk series is limited compared to other genres, but the ones that exist are truly refreshing. Their beautiful art style and exciting storylines will surely captivate you. If you’re a steampunk fan, these mangas are your true gems.
Manga is a wonderful way to learn Japanese. If you want to learn Japanese but are not sure how, check out our learning Japanese roadmap to help you out.
15. Steam Detectives (Kia Asamiya, 1994 – 2000)
In Steam City, coal is the only energy source, so people have excelled in using steam-powered technology. However, when the night falls, white mist covers the whole city, creating a hub for crimes by hiding the actions and identity of criminals.
Narutaki, a young detective, aims to maintain the peace of his city by following and catching the criminals in the mist. A criminal called “Steam Stealer” continues to suddenly show up in the streets and drain the blood of people acquainted with Narutaki. Who is this mysterious person? And why is he after Narutaki?
Check out volume 1 of these series on Amazon here: Steam Detectives (Volume 1)
Find other volumes of this manga here: Steam Detectives manga series
14. Clockwork Planet (Yuu Kamiya, 2013 – 2018)
A thousand years ago, the earth had reached its end. Until an exceptional engineer called “Y” revived it using gears and mechanical know-how and renamed the Earth “Clockwork Planet.”
Naoto is a high school student with a passion for machinery. He spends his days enjoying studying machinery. His special hearing talent allows him to hear the slightest sound in gears.
One day, a box suddenly crashes into his apartment. Inside it is a broken automation girl with extraordinarily unique and intricate movements. She’s broken, so he repairs her, and she vows to serve him as her master forever. Will this mysterious girl turn the gears of Naoto’s life in a way he never imagined?
You can find volume 1 here on Amazon: Clockwork Planet 1
Check out other volumes in this series here: Clockwork Planet manga series
13. Samurai 7 (Akira Kurosawa, 2006 – 2007)
Based on a film by Akira Kurosawa, Samurai 7 is set in a futuristic world where humanity has taken over the solar system. In the village of Kanna, residents are facing food shortages because bandits in airships are stealing their food. The bandits kill the citizens of any town who do not cooperate.
Tired of being scared and hungry, the villagers hire samurai to protect them against the bandits. Luckily, they come across a group of 7 samurai in mecha and use powerful swords to fight against enemies. Are these samurai capable of freeing these poor villagers from their misery? You’ll have to read it to see.
The first volume of this manga here on Amazon: Samurai 7 Volume 1
12. Beyond the Clouds (Nicke, 2018 – Present)
Theo has grown up reading fantasy books and yearns to experience the adventures he reads. He grew up in Yellow Town, a town filled with machinery and industries, where the smoke covers the stars and blue sky.
Theo is a talented youngster whose world revolves around fixing and building machinery. His fantastical dreams come true when he finds Mia, a girl with a broken wing, in the pile of his favorite junkyard. Theo is determined to help Mia return to her home by building her wings. This leads to an incredible journey that you’ll enjoy every minute of.
Find volume 1 on Amazon here: Beyond the Clouds 1
Other volumes in this series can be found here: Beyond the Clouds manga series
11. Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (Hayao Miyazaki, 1982 – 1994)
One thousand years have passed since the industrial civilization. Humans once thrived from technology by using the earth’s resources. That is, until humanity reached its downfall when the “Seven Days of Fire” occurred, which ended most of the world’s population.
Humans now live in separate kingdoms, but humanity is still on the brink of extinction as the “Sea of Corruption,” a forest filled with dangerous insects and poisonous fungi, spreads across the land and takes over villages.
Nausicaä is the princess of the Valley of Wind. She is intelligent, empathetic towards humans and the environment, and has a gift of communicating with giant insects. Amidst wars and environmental crises, will Nausicaä lead humanity toward survival? Or will all humans inevitably die?
Check out volume 1 on Amazon: Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, Vol. 1
This series also comes in a deluxe box set containing 2 hardcover volumes: Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind Box Set
If you’re looking for a specific volume, you can find other volumes in this series here: Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind manga series
10. Kino’s Journey (Keiichi Sigsawa, 2017 – Present)
Kino’s Journey follows a young traveler, Kino, and her bike, Hermes. Kino travels across the lands, exploring different cultures, beliefs, and rituals. Kino stays in each country for only three days, which is enough for Kino to know about the city.
The manga focuses on complex psychological themes, human behavior, and societal problems, which are very much relatable to the issues in our modern world.
Every chapter of Kino’s Journey has an interesting and mind-blowing story to tell. What bizarre life realities will Kino’s upcoming travels reveal?
You can check out volume 1 of Kino’s Journey here on Amazon: Kino’s Journey- the Beautiful World 1
Other volumes in this series are available here: Kino’s Journey manga series
9. Broken Blade (Yunosuke Yoshinaga, 2006 – Present)
Rygart Arrow is born with a rare condition: he does not possess magic. In a world where everything is dependent upon using magic, Rygart is considered useless. He goes to military school, but having no magic, he ends up living as a farmer on the country’s outskirts.
Luckily, he made friends in school who were the current queen and king. Upon meeting them, Rygart realizes that his country is in the midst of a war against an army led by their other school friend, Zess. Rygart is disappointed as he cannot be of use since he does not have magical powers to operate the mecha suits used in wars.
But his life takes a drastic turn when Rygart finds out about an ancient and mighty mecha suit that only he, a non-magician, can use. Can Rygart save his country and fight against his friend, Zess?
Get volume 1 here on Amazon: Broken Blade Vol. 1
Other volumes in this series can be found here: Broken Blade manga series
8. Unbreakable Machine-Doll (Reiji Kaitō, 2010 – 2016)
In the early 20th century, humans developed a technology involving magical circuits installed in automatons called Machinart. The people who control the automatons are called puppeteers. Soon, machinart became used for military purposes.
Raishin Akabane and his automaton, Yaya, join the prestigious Royal Academy. He aims to become the strongest puppeteer to take revenge on the man who murdered his family. However, Raishin’s grades are low, and his school is full of talented and extremely powerful classmates. Will Raishin get his revenge, or will he lose all he has?
If you can read and understand Japanese, the Japanese Edition of volume 1 can be found on Amazon: Unbreakable Machine Doll – Vol.1 (Alive Comics) Manga
7. Tegami Bachi, Letter Bee (Hiroyuki Asada, 2006 – 2015)
In Amberground, the sky is always dark, and an artificial sun is the only light source. The country is divided into three parts, the capital, “Akatsuki,” where there is always light, then Yuusari, and farther away is Yodaka. The farther the area from the capital, the darker it gets.
What’s worse is that giant armored insects called Gaichuu, which hunt on “hearts,” exists in these areas. Despite the dangers, the Letter Bees travel across lands to deliver letters.
Lag Seeing is a child whose mother is taken away from him, and a Letter Bee called Gauche Suede is ordered to deliver him to his aunt. After their memorable journey, Lag becomes inspired by him to become a Letter Bee.
Five years later, Lag sets out to become a Letter Bee, meet Gauche again, and find the mystery behind his mother’s disappearance. But what will Lag find on his journey as a Letter Bee?
Check out volume 1 on Amazon here: Tegami Bachi, Letter Bee, Vol. 1: Letter and Letter Bee
You can find other volumes here: Tegami Bachi, Letter Bee manga series
6. Steamboy (Katsuhiro Otomo, 2005 – 2006)
In the mid-19th century, a young boy named Ray lives in the U.K. Ray is passionate about steam-powered machines, and his father and grandfather are great inventors working at the Ohara Foundation in the U.S.
One day, Ray receives a black ball from his grandfather, asking him to take it to Mr. Stephanson and not give it to the foundation. While the men enter his house and chase Ray to retrieve the ball, Ray runs to protect it. It turns out the ball is an object that can change the world for the better or worse. But the Ohara foundation intends to use it for their evil intentions.
Can Ray protect the ball from getting into the wrong hands, which could bring unimaginable destruction? Or will something else happen instead?
You can find volume 1 of Steamboy here on Amazon: Steamboy, Volume 1 (Steam Boy Ani-Manga)
5. The Case Study of Vanitas (Jun Mochizuki, 2015 – Present)
Long ago, a vampire named “Vanitas” was hated by all other vampires because he was born on the night of Blue Moon. He was sent to the forest, where he had to survive alone in the cold. For his revenge, he made a book that would curse the ones who opened it.
Years later, in the 19th century, a man called Noé traveled to Paris to find the book of Vanitas. A sudden incident causes him to meet a man named Vanitas. He claims to have inherited the book and his name from the real blue moon vampire, Vanitas.
Now, he uses the book to cure curse-bearing vampires. Using Noé strength and Vanitas’s healing skills, the duo saves the vampires from going extinct.
But what are the secrets and true purpose behind Vanitas’ actions? There’s only one way to find out…
You can find volume 1 of this manga here on Amazon: The Case Study of Vanitas, Vol. 1
Check out other volumes in this series here: The Case Study of Vanitas manga series
4. Metropolis (Osamu Tezuka, 1949)
Technically, Metropolis is more dieselpunk than steampunk, but it is too good not to include it in this list.
Metropolis is set in a futuristic world where humans have almost achieved their peak using science. Duke Red, the leader of an evil organization, asks Dr. Lawton, a scientist, to create a robot with superpowers. After its completion, Dr. Lawton realizes the destruction Duke Red would cause by this robot. So, he escapes with the robot making it seem like it was burned.
Lawton names the robot Michi and raises it as his child. Michi accidentally renders Lawton unconscious and goes outside of his house. There, he meets a child name Kenichi who protects him. While Dr. Lawton is discovered and killed by Duke Red, they search for Michi.
Michi’s a child in search of his parents. But what will happen when he finds out that he’s nothing more than an artificial being and a weapon for humans? Will he become humanity’s worst enemy?
Check out this manga on Amazon here: Metropolis manga
3. Trigun (Yasuhiro Nightow, 1995 – 1997)
Trigun is one of the most popular manga in the USA. It is set in the 32nd century on the planet of Gunsmoke. Vash is a young man who’s chased by bounty hunters all the time because he has a $$60 billion (in double dollars) bounty on him. He has this bounty on him because he had once destroyed the city of July. But Vash does only have fragments left of his memories and past.
Vash is a pacifist who does not fight and only uses his abilities to protect others. He’s a gunman with such powers that no bounty hunter can kill him. However, Vash won’t die until he finds “the man” he’s hunting for.
Who is this man that Vash looking for? And what is his real past? Read Trigun now to find out!
Volume 1 of this manga can be found on Amazon here: Trigun, Vol. 1
You can also check out the omnibus version that combines both of the volumes in one book here: Trigun Omnibus
2. D Gray-Man (Katsura Hoshino, 2004 – Present)
Millennium Earl is the evilest of all devils. When someone loses their loved ones, Millennium Earl offers to revive them. Using the souls of the dead, he makes the weapon “Akuma” and traps the soul for eternity.
The only weapon to work against Akuma is “innocence,” 109 objects spread across the world after the Great Flood. The Earl aims to destroy all innocence and eradicate all humans.
Alan Walker is a young exorcist born with an innocence in his hand and an eye that can see through souls having Akuma. As he joins the Blue Order, an exorcist organization, they work together to find all the innocence and defeat the Millennium Earl.
This battle is to do or die for all of humanity; who will be the one to win at last?
Volume 1 of this manga can be found on Amazon: D Gray-man, Vol. 1: Opening
Check out other volumes of this manga here: D Gray-Man manga series
1. Fullmetal Alchemist (Himoru Arakawa, 2001 – 2010)
After the death of their mother, Alphonse and Edward decided to bring back their mother by using human transmutation, a forbidden form of alchemy. However, their plan fails as Edward loses his leg and Alphonse loses his whole body. Only his soul is attached to steel armor by Edward sacrificing his arm.
The only way Edward and Alphonse can now have their bodies back is by using the powerful Philosopher’s stone, from which they can bypass the laws of Alchemy. Edward becomes a national alchemist and, on his journey to find the stone, learns truths that would change his life forever as his transmutation did more than he had believed.
Can the Elric brothers resurrect their bodies? What will happen on the bizarre journey they’ll have to go through?
You can get volume 1 of this classic manga on Amazon here: Fullmetal Alchemist, Vol. 1
A 3-in-1 edition of the first 3 volumes can be found here: Fullmetal Alchemist, Vol. 1-3
You can also get a complete box set with volumes 1-27 and extras here: Fullmetal Alchemist Complete Box Set