In a rickety old building in Akihabara, mad scientist Rintarou Okabe and his lab assistants work on so-called future gadgets. However, their most successful contraption to date, the Phone Microwave, a machine that can turn bananas into gel, also has the added function of sending emails into the past, thus altering the flow of history.
Beloved by many and considered the most intelligent anime of its time, what anime recommendations could possibly stack up?
For Fans of Time Travel
The Takakura family has always been dealt equal hands of joy and sorrow by fate. For the twin brothers Kanba and Shouma, they have had more than their share of sorrow with their parents dead and their sister critically ill. When their sister Himari is given temporary leave from the hospital, they take her to the aquarium where she collapses. However, Himari is inexplicably revived when a penguin hat from the souvenir shop is put on her head. Her revival comes at a cost, though. There is a new entity in her body that tasks the boys with finding the mysterious penguin drum.
It sounds ridiculous, insane, really, but so does the synopsis of Steins;Gate. However, while Steins;Gate gained popularity, Penguindrum remains relatively obscure. However, with so much symbolism, both are anime series you can spend multiple watches analyzing.
In the near future, the dimension of La’cryma, the protectors of humanity, are at war with the dimension Shangri-La, a dimension bent on destroying all humanity. A group known as the Dragon Calvary is sent through time to find the only thing that can stop the Shangri-La: the Dragon Torque. In the present, Haruka and Yuu are contacted by a member of the Dragon Cavalry who believes Haruka possesses the Dragon Torque and claims to be Yuu from the future.
Both anime series operate within the idea of quantum physics that each action you take in the past creates a different timeline. While Steins;Gate stays in the same area and operates in days or weeks, Noein is actually more ambitious as it deals with the characters greeting their young selves and the issue of sustaining their bodies in the past.
In Search of the Lost Future
In normal days, the Astronomy Club of Uchihama Academy is dedicated to reading the stars. However, these are not normal days. After a series of bizarre events start happening around the school, the club is forced to deal with ghosts, break up civil unrest among the clubs, and all the while investigating a cube-shaped relic.
Like Steins;Gate, In Search of the Lost Future is all about love and time travel. While it has more supernatural elements mixed in, it still takes it plot very seriously like Steins;Gate, and provides a refreshing change from what looked like another dramedy.
For Fans of Genius Characters
From the New World
After the sudden outbreak of psychokinesis, the .01% of the population that developed it started using their powers for nefarious means. Far into the future, the town of Kamisu 66 is wholly populated by psychics with the young Saki being one of the most recent to awaken her powers. Finally she can join the rest of her friends at the Sage Academy. However, her school days are plagued with questions that threaten to unravel the dark secrets of her idyllic village.
While From a New World is slow to get going, it has the same intrigue and mystery that ultimately hooked people with Steins;Gate. While Steins;Gate develops their characters in different ways, in From The New World, you get to watch the characters develop through the experiences they have as they age, and by the end, like Steins;Gate, it hooks you in and doesn’t let go.
Light Yagami is a high school prodigy and genius. However, he has an ever-increasing boredom and disdain for the rotten violent world. One day, he happens upon a notebook, called a Death Note, which states that if you write a name in it, the person will die. To his surprise, the notebook’s claims turn out to be true. This Death Note, the property of the Shinigami gods of death, gives Light the power to change this world and he decides to become its new God by executing all criminals.
Okabe and Light are two sides of the same coin. Both are extremely intelligent, but one walks a darker path while the other tries to set things right in the world. Both believe they are doing good, but ultimately, are they?
After being saved from a vampire attack, high school student Koyomi Araragi finds he has several supernatural side effects. While trying to live a normal life, he ends up catching a classmate after falling down the stairs and finds she is near weightless.
Although the characters in Bakemongatari aren’t geniuses by any stretch of the imagination, like in Steins;Gate this show does excel in creating a variety of interesting characters that are deeper than meets the eye, even if it can be a bit heavy on the dialogue at times.
For Fans of Conspiracy
Welcome to the NHK
College dropout Tatsuhiro Satou has been living as a hikikomori for four years, and in his isolation, he has come to believe in a number of conspiracy theories. Primary among them is that a conspirator is behind his NEET nature. Although he tries to overcome it, his NEET nature is a deep hole to crawl out of.
You can see a lot of Welcome to the NHK’s main lead in many of the characters in Steins;Gate, but ultimately what pairs these two shows together is the conspiracy. Both feature some comedy about it, but Steins;Gate often stays serious when it really counts while Welcome to the NHK takes more a dark comedy route.
Eden of the East
On an event known as “Careless Monday,” Japan was hit by a series of missiles in a terrorist act that fortunately did not harm anyone. Months later as the attacks are all but forgotten, Saki Morimi goes on a celebratory trip to America. There she falls into unexpected trouble with a man named Akira Takizawa, a man that appeared before her completely naked. Drawn into the mystery around him, Saki’s life is changed forever.
Eden of the East had the promise to be Steins;Gate before Steins;Gate. However, while it started off strong and its mysterious conspiracy had the chance to be great, it stumbled in the end. However, it had some great characters that its plot didn’t do justice to.
Terror in Resonance
After a terrorist attack on a Japanese nuclear facility, the country was paralyzed to act. After six months of searching for the perpetrators, the public is shown a video tape of two boys known as Sphinx that take credit for the attack. Threatening more mayhem, it is up to the police to catch these terrorists.
Both Steins;Gate and Terror in Resonance take the route of acting like nothing is going on except what is already happening, but leaving behind a trail of breadcrumbs for what will happen later. As the stories go on, the plots twist and turn in the same fashion, ultimately leading to the conspiracy being the reason for the mysteries left unanswered up to that point.
Did we miss any of your favorite anime recommendations for Steins;Gate? Tell us about it in the comments section below.