The 12 Best Anime Series With Human Ships And Guest Bodies

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Relationships in anime are not limited to friendships, rivalries, romances and family. They can also be supernatural, with one form sharing their body with another, as if they were a vessel or host.

Human ships and guest bodies are basically the same trope, and it’s a trope that can contribute a lot to an anime’s sense of world building, plot progress, and character development. When done right, it can make any series much more interesting and engaging.

Here are our picks for the best anime series with characters who are human vessels and guest bodies for another entity.

Naruto and Kurama are basically the poster children of this trope, with the orphaned boy Naruto as the host in which the demonic fox Kurama is sealed. They are central to Naruto and Naruto Shippuden.

Because of all the damage and chaos that Kurama had caused before he was sealed, everyone was afraid of him. Now that he is sealed in Naruto, everyone fears and despises Naruto too.

The only good thing is that Kurama (reluctantly) lends some of his huge chakra reserves to Naruto, because if Naruto dies, Kurama dies too. This symbiotic relationship makes Naruto one of the strongest ninjas in the world – and Kurama eventually becomes fond of him.

In Flame of Recca, Recca Hanabishi uses the power of his ‘flame dragons’, which appears to be a simple element manipulation ability. But there is a deeper story behind his powers – one in which he is a human vehicle.

It has not been fully explored in the anime series, but the flame dragons were once humans and former clan leaders. After death, their ghosts inhabit the next clan leader, bringing with them their skills and expertise.

Heir to the now-dead Hokage clan, Recca has the ghosts of eight former clan chiefs within him, and he can tap into their powers, but he must first prove to them that he is worthy of their powers.

Ichigo Kurosaki from Bleach is a human craft type character first introduced as a common man. Circumstances turned him into a Soul Reaper after Rukia Kuchiki gave him some of her power.

Ichigo’s sword, called Zangetsu, has a mind of its own. And while Ichigo isn’t exactly the full-time craft for Zangetsu – the sword hosts the spirit – Zangetsu inhabits Ichigo’s inner world (or his consciousness).

Later, after the Hollowfication process, another entity comes to live in his inner world: the Hollow Ichigo.

Both entities in his inner world are his powers, giving him destructive abilities such as Getsuga Tenshou and the badass Hollow Mask form.

Dota: Dragon’s Blood revolves around the character of Dragon Knight Davion, who hunts dragons. But his fate changed one day when he met Eldwurm Slyrak, who fused his soul with the soul of the Dragon Knight.

With his newfound dragon powers, Davion must embark on an adventure to defeat Terrorblade, who hunts dragons and gathers their souls to accomplish a very sinister plan.

The story of Shaman King includes shamans, which are people who can merge with spirits (known as their Guardian Spirits). Under the Spirit Fusion technique, the shaman becomes the vessel for the Guardian Spirit. Or, in other words, possessed.

Like other anime series in which hosts get powers from sealed entities within, shamans in Shaman King also gain powers from their Guardian Spirits. However, the Guardian Spirits are not always locked into the shamans, which is a unique twist on the human craft character trope.

Yuji Itadori from Jujutsu Kaisen is a high school student who eats a cursed finger – and becomes host to Ryomen Sukuna, a cursed ghost who was once King of Curses more than a millennium ago.

Unlike other guest bodies that use their guest’s power, Yuji switches places with Sukuna, giving the Curse direct control over his body. Whenever Sukuna takes over, markings appear all over his physical appearance.

However, there are times when Sukuna talks to other people by simply forming a mouth and eyes on Yuji’s skin.

That time I was reincarnated as slime is one of the more famous isekai anime series, with a protagonist who is murdered in his world and then magically transported to another world – to be reincarnated as a slime.

But thanks to the Predator ability gained during his transition of worlds, Satoru can absorb the traits, abilities, and attributes of anything he consumes and make them his own.

One such meal was his friend-slash-sworn-brother, the Storm Dragon Veldora, who willingly allowed himself to be consumed in hopes of being released from sealing. Since then, Veldora resides in Satoru’s body and grants him the attributes and powers of the Storm Dragon.

Devilman crybaby is about a world where demons are about to take over, and they do so by possessing people and making them experience pain, trauma and madness.

Unfortunately for these demons, there are some people who manage to conquer possession and regain control of themselves.

One such person is Akira Fudo, who manages to overpower the devil possessing his body. By doing this, he becomes a “devil’s man” who retains his own consciousness and bodily control, but also has access to the powers of the devil Amon within him.

In Parasyte: The MaximParasitic aliens have invaded and dispersed the world by eating human brains and taking over their bodies.

Shinichi Izumi, one of the infected, managed to prevent his alien parasite from traveling to his brain – by catching it in his hand.

Now his right hand is conscious, able to communicate and act independently. Not only is it smart, Migi (the parasite controlled hand) can turn into deadly blades and deal damage.

Together, Shinichi and Migi must work together to survive in a world where their enemies are disguised as humans.

In black clover, the human barrel trope is used in a truly extraordinary way. It turns out that the source of Asta’s Anti-Magic is the grimoire that contains a sealed Liebe – the same grimoire that Asta acquires.

Since he has no magic, Asta is suitable to host the Anti-Magic as there are no side effects for him. The devil in the grimoire can channel Anti-Magic into him, for use in battle and otherwise.

The human barrel trope is also used in more traditional ways, such as in the Devil Binding Ritual and Devil Assimilation.

Yu-Gi-Oh! is an anime adaptation of the manga series of the same name, which spawned the famous card game that follows the same rules and mechanics of the game in the story.

The story revolves around Yugi Mutou, who, after solving a mysterious puzzle, became host to an ancient ghost. Using the Millennium Puzzle, Yugi and the spirit within him – known as Dark Yugi – can switch places and take control of the body while the other watches from within.

They make clever use of this during a match against a mind-reading opponent (using the Millennium Eye). Yugi and Dark Yugi constantly switch places to confuse the opponent’s reads.

Like its predecessor, Boruto: Naruto Next Generations characterizes the human craft trope. This time, however, it is Momoshiki Otsutsuki, rather than a Tailed Beast, who has been sealed in Boruto with the help of Karma.

Karma is deeper and darker than the Tailed Beasts. While both provide the host with power boosts, Karma is used to revive fallen Otsutsuki members. In Boruto’s case, it was Momoshiki who placed a seal before he perished.

Over time, Karma unlocks the original Otsutsuki member’s building blocks: their abilities, powers, attributes, and even genetic makeup. It continues to progress until they are completely revived and use the body as their vessel meaning that the vessel will eventually become the Otsutsuki.

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