10 Most Successful Anime Villains, Ranked

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In general, anime villains are foiled by the end of their respective stories. It relays to audiences that evil never pays and how, in the end, wrongdoers receive their just desserts. A hero’s triumph gives closure and wraps a story up succinctly.

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However, there are plenty of antagonists who were surprisingly successful by the end of their wicked careers. Some achieved exactly what they wanted, while others completely evaded justice for their actions. These villains are evidence that it is possible to achieve one’s dream through wicked deeds so long as they are devious and powerful enough to make their plans a reality.

10 The Shadow Lord Overthrew Lief’s Kingdom

Deltora Quest

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The Shadow Lord was a malevolent entity and the main antagonist of Deltora Quest. Once the kingdom’s gems were scattered, nothing prevented him from returning and dominating the entire nation. He assigned each missing gem to a guardian, who controlled a region and its power as extensions of the Shadow Lord’s own will.

Lief spent his entire childhood under the Shadow Lord’s thumb, which illustrates how widespread and lasting his reign actually was. Gray Guards roamed the streets, rewriting the laws and illustrating how much the villain controlled the souls of the land’s oppressed people. The Shadow Lord may have ultimately been defeated, though not without a great deal of pain and suffering to those he meant to harm.

9 Shigaraki Was Frequently Successful, Albeit With Setbacks

My Hero Academia

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Shigaraki in My Hero Academia.

My Hero Academia’s Shigaraki had even more successes than All For One. He outlasted Overhaul’s criminal enterprise, usurped Re-Destro’s Meta Liberation Army, and even captured Bakugo during the attack on the forest camp. The heroes may have been able to retrieve him, yet it illustrated how unsafe U.A. actually was.

Shigaraki’s only noticeable failures were his botched first attack on U.A. and his inability to save All For One from All Might. Aside from that, he’s had a fairly promising career as the new Symbol Of Evil.

8 The Major Got The Destruction He Craved


<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>The Major in Hellsing.

The Major was Hellsing‘s main antagonist and a man that embodied destruction itself. His Millennium Organization’s only goal was to cause as much death and chaos as possible. Although thwarted by Alucard, he still managed to accomplish his grim task.

When attacking alongside the Iscariots, London’s streets flooded with blood in the greatest massacre the city had ever seen. A countless number of innocent people died, meaning that the Major’s goals were widely successful even if Integra destroyed his robotic body. In the end, he “died” content since he set realistic expectations for himself.

7 Blackbeard Took The New World By Storm

One Piece

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Blackbeard in One Piece.

One Piece‘s Blackbeard is the single most successful antagonist of the entire series. So far, he has liberated Impel Down’s worst inmates, delivered Ace to certain doom, and even betrayed the World Government without facing any repercussions. Most importantly, his ability to steal powerful abilities, such as Whitebeard’s Tremor-Tremor Fruit, makes his crew extremely deadly.

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Despite Blackbeard’s victories, he has been set back on a few occasions. For example, he failed to capture Luffy at Mock Town and was thwarted at Amazon Lily by Rayleigh. All the same, his ability to evade justice is impressive.

6 Eren Wiped Out 80% Of His Enemies

Attack On Titan

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Eren runs to Zeke in Attack on Titan the Final Season.

Ever since Eren discovered humanity’s role in Paradis’ suffering, he became Attack On Titan‘s main antagonist. By deceiving Zeke and unlocking the Rumbling, he began a burning crusade that left eighty percent of humanity in smoldering ruins.

In the end, Eren’s friends stopped him from destroying all non-Eldian life on the planet. However, he was still statistically successful in obliterating his enemies and guaranteeing that the only way to mediate Paradis’ differences with the rest of the planet was brute force.

5 Yujiro Enjoyed Life As The World’s Strongest Man


<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Yujiro Hanma gets slightly entertained in Baki.

Baki’s Yujiro had things much easier than many of his antagonistic peers. He began the series having fulfilled his objective to become the world’s strongest man. None were capable of stopping him, including the series’ titular protagonist, in spite of his best efforts.

Yujiro enjoys his reputation by using it to terrify others and get what he wants. Whether casually threatening the president of the United States or attacking his friends as a greeting, few are bold enough to stand up to him, and none can actually win.

4 Sasuke Killed The Targets Of His Vengeance


<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Sasuke stabs through Karin to kill Danzo in Naruto.

Naruto‘s Sasuke Uchiha has been obsessed with revenge ever since being introduced. His first target was Itachi. Sasuke betrayed the village and joined Orochimaru in order to defeat Itachi.

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After Itachi’s death, Obito informed Sasuke of the real truth behind the Uchiha genocide: that Danzo Shimura was its primary benefactor. Sasuke attacked the Five Kage Summit in order to reach him and eventually killed Danzo as well. The only time Sasuke failed was when attempting to take over the entire world. Regardless, two-thirds of his villainous ventures concluded in total success.

3 Ozai’s Reign Went Unchallenged Until Aang’s Return

Avatar: The Last Airbender

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Fire Lord Ozai from Avatar: The Last Airbender.

Ozai was the main antagonist of Avatar: The Last Airbender and a man of formidable power. He continued the Fire Nation’s legacy of oppression and finally sacked the Earth Kingdom due to carefully placed infiltrators. He also captured Iroh, a dissenter who risked disgracing the family name.

Perhaps Ozai’s greatest victory was when his forces routed an enemy revolution, even though he lacked any firebending whatsoever at the time. The villain’s only meaningful loss was at the end of the series when Aang forcibly stripped him of his power.

2 Pucci Successfully Reset The Universe

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Pucci in JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, Stone Ocean.

Pucci was the most ambitious villain in JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure. He sought to evolve his Stand into “Made In Heaven,” an ability that could accelerate time around him. Despite Jolyne’s best efforts and escape from prison, he was ultimately successful in not only becoming stronger, but also annihilating virtually every last hero as well.

In the end, Pucci successfully managed to restart the universe. However, because he failed to kill Emporio before his Stand took effect, the young boy killed him using Weather Forecast’s Stand disc.

1 Satan Destroyed The World & Its Greatest Defenders

Devilman Crybaby

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Satan looks on a dying Akira in Devilman Crybaby.

Satan was Devilman Crybaby’s worst nemesis. As the most successful villain in history, he managed to destroy not only the world, but also Akira, the only being capable of challenging his strength.

In the end, Satan relaxed on the shell of a ruined Earth, completely content even though many of his demons had died to procure his victory. He only realized how lonely he was after Akira’s corpse did not respond to him. In this regard, Satan’s greatest downfall was that he achieved everything he wanted.

NEXT: 10 Anime Villains Who Never Kill Their Opponents


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