Mecha stands for mechanical (as in mechanical units or robots). You’ll never see a mecha anime without a robot or mechanical suit in it. That’s the most important element of it. And while this subgenre is rising in fame as the days go by, it almost always uses a standard formula to carry the plot. As a general trend, mecha is often seen alongside the military, sci-fi, and action genre.

This may very well be the most iconic anime subgenre as there is a multitude of memorable shows in this category. The mecha can be considered to be one of Japan’s most popular exports. Some of the earlier iconic titles from the late 70s and 80s include Mobile Suit GundamMazinger Z, and Super Dimension Fortress MacrossNeon Genesis Evangelion is considered to be an iconic and dark deconstruction of the genre as it examined the psyche of young pilots. Gurren Lagann was a massive hit that brought the genre back to its hot-blooded and idealistic roots. With a rabid fanbase that loves mecha designs, this genre is one that has been consistently popular over the years.