Anime gunslingers often appear in Western-inspired settings, creating some of the most iconic characters. While top stars like Trigun and Cowboy Bebop peaked in the 1990s, it’s always a good time to step back… and appreciate the lone wolves who solidified their positions in anime history.
There are other types of gunmen in anime: charismatic vampires, like the immortal Alucard in Hellsing, or trained assassins, like Train Heartnet in Black Cat. They are all famous for their precision gun skills and ability to take down targets that most would consider impossible. Gunslingers come and go in anime, but these are the elite who bear this name.
Death Child (Soul Eater)
Death the Kid is the son of Death and the most famous character in Soul Eater (an anime famous for its controversial ending). He received his name from the famous historical gunslinger, Billy the Kid, and fights with his Demon Twin Guns, the power of which depends on the strength of the person wielding them.
Death The Kid is a truly extraordinary gunslinger who has earned quite a reputation for himself. His ranged skills are very precise and he has multiple attacks that can take down thousands of enemies with a single shot. While gunmen are often known for shooting bullets, Death the Kid also uses guns as close-range weapons, using martial arts skills to turn them into deadly weapons in a close-quarters fight.
Revy (Black Dress)
Revy is one of the most famous villains in anime and one of the main characters of Black Lagoon, providing most of the action in the series. She spent a long time honing her gun skills and had her first kill at a young age. At some point, she developed sadistic pleasure in harming others.
She is capable of using all types of guns, however, she primarily uses her two Beretta 92Fs, a handgun popular among the military and law enforcement in real life. Her ability to use handguns is impeccable, and her abilities increase even more when she is subjected to extreme pressure. Revy also has unnatural abilities including dodging bullets and being able to quickly fire a shotgun immediately after.
Guido Mista (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 5: Golden Wind)
Mista is one of the best characters in JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure and one of the main characters in Golden Wind, as well as one of the most interesting characters. His Stand is called Sex Pistols, which works in tandem with his marksmanship.
Mista’s Stand are six individuals that look like bullets. He often fires them alongside real bullets, where they can redirect his bullets any way he wants. This makes his shots much more accurate than any real talent could give him. It also makes his battles much more interesting, with careful tactics able to surprise his enemies. His Stand also aids him in reloading ammo faster, as they quickly reload.
Ryo Saeba (City Hunter)
Roy Saeba is one of the best anime characters of the 80s and a jack-of-all-trades who serves as the main protagonist of City Hunter. His organization serves the same name. Due to his profession, along with his gun skills, he often participates in skirmishes that require his shooting ability.
Near the beginning of the series, he loses some of his memories and does not know who he was before. However, his skill with guns never disappeared. He can always shoot exactly where he wants and can hit the exact same spot multiple times without failure. Although he is proficient with all different types of firearms and has incredible aim even with non-firearms, his primary gun of choice is the Colt Python pistol.
Spike Spiegel (Cowboy Bebop)
Spike Spiegel is the main anti-hero of the popular series Cowboy Bebop, undoubtedly one of the best original anime series ever made. He is good at everything he puts his mind to, including hand-to-hand combat, and has a high level of proficiency with a variety of weapons.
One of his favorite guns is the Jericho 941, which is quite rare in the real world. However, his gun is a heavily modified version, more suitable for a man who wants to shoot to kill. Thanks to his keen senses, he is able to hit most of his targets with precision. Spike is also seen using many other types of guns in the series, many of which are also uncommon in the real world.
Kiritsugu Emiya (Fate/Zero)
Kiritsugu Emiya is the main protagonist of Fate/Zero and an extraordinary character, as well as the father of Shirou Emiya, who serves as the main protagonist of Fate/Stay Night, one of the best fantasy anime out there. . His dark and anti-heroic traits make his dynamic with the chivalrous Saber intriguing.
Kiritsugu was trained in all types of weapons and combat, where he initially took on the job of killing the Magus. Kiritsugu does not have a particular weapon that he favors, as he often has to switch between different types of guns. He is proficient in all ranges of combat, whether it is sniper, mid-range or close combat. His magic also focuses on time manipulation, which greatly improves his already accurate marksmanship.
Heartnet Ship (Black Cat)
Train Heartnet is a former assassin and the main character of Black Cat. He was trained in survival and gun handling by Zagine, the man who killed Train’s parents. Train uses his training in the hope that one day he can exact revenge, however, Zagine is killed by someone else.
Train, one of the best assassins in anime, spent most of his time as a skilled assassin until he quit and became a bounty hunter. However, his skill with guns never changed. His weapon of choice is a unique revolver called Hades. Hades has a variety of bullets and special abilities, such as the Freeze Bullet, which will freeze anything it touches upon contact. His strongest attack used in the series is called Burst Railgun, which uses both his physical strength combined with a bullet. This attack can destroy Hades’ crate, which is said to be indestructible.
Beyond the Grave (Gungrave)
Gungrave is based on a video game series and is one of the best anime noir series to date. It focuses on Beyond The Grave, a unique character formerly known as Brandon Heat, who has come back to life. During his life, he was an exceptionally skilled gunman, as he worked as a Sweeper.
He mainly specializes in three types of weapons. Two of them are dual pistols named Right Head of Cerberus and Left Head of Cerberus, named after the three-headed dog of hell in Greek mythology. His third weapon is not a third head but instead a coffin that turns into a weapon called the Death Hauler. In addition to his gun skills, he also gains several other abilities after being revived, such as regeneration and improved strength and speed.
Alucard (Hellsing/Hellsing Ultimate)
Alucard is one of the strongest vampires in anime and is the main protagonist of Hellsing and Hellsing Ultimate, the latter of which is fully adapted from the manga series. He is a vampire whose true identity is Vlad the Impaler and the infamous Count Dracula. Although he has many incredible vampiric powers, he usually focuses on using his two shotguns.
The first shotgun is a specialized weapon of the Hellsing family designed to kill monsters using silver bullets. It is named Hellsing ARMS Casull and is a large semi-automatic pistol. His other gun is nicknamed the Jackal and is made specifically for Alucard and improves upon the Hellsing ARMS Casull in every aspect. Alucard is skilled with guns, but he relies more on their strength, as they inflict large wounds on opponents and can even explode upon impact. His vampire strength and speed also allow him to shoot quickly and take down dozens of monsters quickly in one of the best vampire anime.
Vash The Stampede (Trigun/Trigun Stampede)
Vash the Stampede is the main character of Trigun and the new adaptation of the series, Trigun Stampede. He is a cheerful hero who never intends to kill, even though he specializes as a gunman, and he is one of the best characters with a “no killing rule” .
Vash’s main gun of choice is the .45 caliber Long Colt, which is also the weapon used by his brother Knives. Thanks to Vash’s alien abilities, he can perform all kinds of different attacks. This also increases the accuracy of his gun. Vash has many gunfights in the series, but none is better than his final fight with his brother Knives, who was one of the scariest kids in anime when he was younger. This fight alone is one of the best, if not the best, gunfights in anime.