Has there ever been a better time to be an anime fan than currently? Even though the highly popular Japanese form of animation spans at least 100 years, it has never been more in demand or globally recognized. With an increase in popularity, of course, comes to an increase in the number of anime films and shows that are available online, in many cases completely free of charge. What a wonderful time to be alive!
Not only is there more anime available than there ever has been before, but this recent spike in popularity has also resulted in new free anime streaming sites popping up on the internet almost every day. Although anime used to be something of a niche interest, it has finally reached mainstream recognition. Although it used to primarily only interest young people in Japan, anime has become a global phenomenon, which means that it is now easier than ever to stream your favorite anime titles online for free.
There was once a time when accessing anime was far from convenient. If you wanted to watch a new anime film or series, you often had to pay to have a DVD or VHS shipped to your home from japan. Fortunately, this is no longer the case. Free streaming has become an increasingly common means of accessing all sorts of content, anime included. No more waiting around for weeks (or sometimes months) to see that anime that you can’t wait to watch. With just a few clicks of a mouse, you can be watching the top anime movies and shows in no time!
As a matter of fact, there are so many free anime streaming sites out there that deciding on which one is right for you can sometimes be a difficult, time-consuming process. How are you supposed to conveniently figure out which anime streaming sites are high quality and full of great content, and which ones are not even worth a second thought?
Well, that is precisely what I hope to help you with here on StreamingSites. There is no need for you to go through the frequently grueling and potentially stressful trial and error process of finding the best free anime streaming sites. Simply browse my list of the best free anime streaming sites and apps, check out my reviews, and figure out with ease which sites are perfect for your anime streaming needs!
There are many factors that go into discerning the best free anime streaming sites from the less than desirable ones. Among other things, we will judge each anime site based on how well (or poorly) the site is designed, the range of titles a given site has available, in what quality a site lets you stream content if the premium version of the site is worth your money, and how many user features the site offers in order to provide you with the most personalized and streamlined anime viewing experience possible.
Some anime streaming sites try to offer the possible titles, and others just home in on a given subgenre or type of anime. Which one you choose, of course, will be a matter of what you are looking for. Maybe you only like one kind of anime … chances are you won’t want to have to sift through millions of movies and shows that are of no interest to you. In that case, one of the high niche and specialized sites are probably the best way for you to go.
If you are anything like me, for example, you like your anime to be dark, ominous, dramatic, violent, and edgy. The darker, the better, if you ask me, which is why I don’t typically waste my time on the anime streaming sites that are more geared towards younger kids. So, when I first learned of an anime streaming site known as Dark Anime, I was immediately intrigued.
And Dark Anime did not disappoint. It offers a vast collection of only the darkest, grittiest anime titles in the world. None of that really happy or cheesy stuff. Only the anime that will keep you up at night. It is truly the perfect library of free anime for anyone who likes their anime on the grimmer, grimier, grittier end of the spectrum.
But how does Dark Anime hold up in terms of design, usability, and features? Well, let’s dive in and take a look, shall we? Welcome to the dark side of the anime world…
You might be unsurprised to learn that Dark Anime has a sleek black, gray, and white theme to the interface. This, of course, lends the site a look that mirrors the content well. I, for one, always appreciate when a site looks like what it does. If Dark Anime were to present itself with, say, a bright yellow and green theme, it would conflict too much with the content. The design of Dark Anime makes sense and allows you to sort of getting lost in the world that this streaming site has to offer.
Then the site asserts itself in nothing but thumbnails of the best darker anime titles available. These thumbnails are separated into sections. You’ll find Recently Updated first, then Recently Added. Keep scrolling down, and surprisingly, you will be greeted by a comments section. This serves as a sort of forum for the site as a whole.
I found that I enjoyed the inclusion of this comments section more than I thought I might. It catches you off guard a little at first, but once you get accustomed to it, it becomes a very helpful resource for navigating the site, chatting with like-minded anime fans, and voicing opinions about the site. I am not sure whether the moderators actually comb through these comments to take advice on how to improve the site, but it’s still a cool feature, nonetheless.
Speaking of these comments, it appears as if one of the most common complaints pertains to the limited scope of content available on the site. Dark Anime features newer titles primarily. So, if you are a big fan of the classics, you might be slightly disappointed. However, the newer titles are often bigger, arguably more dynamically animated, and more epic than ever before … so, if you like your anime to be as current as possible, Dark Anime’s content will likely not be a problem for you whatsoever.
In addition to being able to comment on the site itself, each video also has its own comments section where you can “react” to videos (as you can on Facebook) and discuss the episode or movie in question. One thing that I appreciate about this site is the fact that the community is very friendly and courteous. The number one rule of comments sections, for example, is ‘please, no spoilers.’ The users of this site are people who are truly passionate about anime, who really know their stuff.
Mobile and Desktop Experience
Dark Anime is one of those rare sites that looks just as good on a mobile phone as it does on your desktop computer. I did run into some problems with ads, however, on my iPhone. This, of course, could be solved by switching to a Premium membership (more on that in a moment). The site itself, though, looks exactly the same on my phone screen as it does on my laptop screen. Great optimization, if you ask me.
It would be amazing if they developed a Dark Anime app. Especially since they do offer a paid premium subscription. It would just make it all the more convenient and streamlined when it comes to mobile viewing. But, aside from that, the mobile site seems to work fairly well (once you get past the initial hurdle of mobile ads).
Pricing and Plans
As far as I can tell, the only real perk that comes along with being a premium member is the fact that ads get eliminated from the site. Oh, plus, you get a special badge, depending on how much you contribute per month (from kohai to Sama). Premium memberships are available for anyone who contributed via Patreon. You can contribute anything from $1 a month to $10. This is one of the most unique and versatile ways of approaching the tiered membership system that I have seen on an anime streaming site, and I appreciate the affordable nature of it.
Suggestions that I have for Dark Anime
In addition to an app, I would like to see the mobile site’s ads calm down quite a bit. They interfered way too much with my enjoyment of the site on my phone – to the point where I had to close my browser numerous times to make them go away. Ads are fine, especially for small sites like this, but make them reasonable if you are going to rely on them!