Hunter × Hunter – The Ultimate Guide to the Anime Sensation

Hunter × Hunter

Welcome to the ultimate guide on the epic anime series Hunter × Hunter. This in-depth article will take you on a journey through the captivating world of Nen. You’ll meet the main characters like Gon Freecss, Killua Zoldyck, Kurapika, and Leorio Paradinight. We’ll explore the show’s story arcs, from the thrilling Hunter Exam to the intense Chimera Ant invasion.

We’ll also look at the differences between the original 1999 anime and the 2011 version. By the end, you’ll understand this beloved anime. We’ll cover where you can watch and read it too.

Key Takeaways

  • Comprehensive guide to the acclaimed anime series Hunter × Hunter
  • Explore the captivating world of Nen and the main characters like Gon Freecss, Killua Zoldyck, Kurapika, and Leorio Paradinight
  • Dive into the thrilling story arcs, from the Hunter Exam to the intense Chimera Ant invasion
  • Discover the differences between the 1999 and 2011 anime adaptations
  • Learn where to watch and read the Hunter × Hunter series

Introduction to Hunter × Hunter

Hunter × Hunter is a popular anime series by Yoshihiro Togashi. It tells the story of Gon, a young boy aiming to be a “Hunter.” Along his journey are Killua, Kurapika, and Leorio. They explore a world of mysteries and the powerful Nen.

Brief Overview of the Series

In 1998, the manga of Hunter × Hunter started. It then became two successful anime series. The first, by Nippon Animation, ran from 1999 to 2001. The more famous one from 2011 to 2014 by Madhouse covered more stories, including ones not featured in the first anime.

The Manga and Anime Adaptations

Both anime versions closely follow the manga. But, the 1999 version has an extra part of the Hunter Exam. The 2011 anime includes more of the manga’s story, like the Chimera Ant arc and the 13th Hunter Chairman Election arc.

Hunter × Hunter Characters

Gon Freecss is the lead in Hunter × Hunter. He’s a passionate, young boy on a quest. His goal is to find his dad, Ging, by becoming a Hunter. Gon is all about never giving up, being smart, and an amazing fighter. He learns about Nen, a mysterious power, to become even stronger.

Killua Zoldyck

Killua is Gon’s loyal friend in Hunter × Hunter. He hails from the Zoldyck family, famous for being assassins. Killua can use electricity, which is pretty cool. He wants to ditch his family’s tough rules and goes with Gon to chase his own dreams as a Hunter.


Kurapika carries a heavy legacy in Hunter × Hunter. He’s from the Kurta Clan and is their only survivor. Since his people’s eyes are valuable, he looks to get them back from the Phantom Troupe. His tale of seeking justice and revenge is key in the story.

Leorio Paradinight

Leorio is the friend who is aiming to be a doctor in Hunter × Hunter. He joins the Hunter Exam to get the money needed for his dream. He’s like the realistic one in the group, balancing things out with his practical view, distinct from the others’ special powers.

The Hunter Exam Arc

The Hunter Exam arc kicks off the Hunter × Hunter story. It’s where we first meet Gon and learn about his goal to be a Hunter. The 1999 show starts with Gon’s childhood and how he met Kite.

Kite becomes a key part of Gon’s life as a mentor. He helps us understand Gon’s reasons for wanting to be a Hunter. This arc also shows us what the Hunter world is like.

The Four Main Characters’ Designs

Gon, Killua, Kurapika, and Leorio look a bit different in the 1999 and 2011 anime. The 2011 version uses brighter colors and has more detail. This makes the characters more alive and brings a fresh look to the show. These changes add to the story’s feel.

Nippon Animation vs. Madhouse Adaptation

The Hunter Exam story appears early in both the 1999 Nippon Animation and the 2011 Madhouse shows. They share the same main plot. But Nippon Animation adds an extra exam part that Madhouse doesn’t have. Yet, Madhouse sticks closer to the manga, showing different ways the two studios worked with the story.

Zoldyck Family and Heavens Arena Arcs

After the Hunter Exam, the story moves to the Zoldyck Family arc. Gon and friends head to the Zoldyck estate to save Killua. This arc dives into Killua’s dark past and the mighty Zoldyck clan. The clan, skilled in assassination, proves tough for our heroes. They must face danger in the Zoldyck estate and deal with the family’s harsh rules.

The next arc is at Heavens Arena. Here, the characters improve their Nen powers in tough fights. Gon, Killua, and friends work hard to learn new skills and climb the arena’s tournaments. This part is key for their growth. They get better with Nen, preparing for even harder tasks ahead.

Zoldyck Family

Yorknew City Arc

The Yorknew City arc is a big part of Hunter × Hunter. It shows us the Phantom Troupe, a scary group. Kurapika wants to stop them because they hurt his clan.

This story has fights, big thefts, and looks deep at Kurapika’s mission. We see why he’s so set on defeating the Phantom Troupe.

The Phantom Troupe

The heart of the Yorknew City arc beats with the Phantom Troupe. They’re a strong gang with risky Nen powers. Their actions keep the story intense, making readers root for the heroes to beat them.

Kurapika’s Quest for Revenge

Kurapika is out for vengeance against the Phantom Troupe. He lost his clan and wants to get their eyes back. This quest takes him on a journey exploring tough topics like revenge and justice. We see Kurapika face moral challenges in his search for revenge.

Greed Island Arc

The Greed Island arc brings us into a special world – the Greed Island game. In this virtual reality game, Gon and Killua search for clues about Gon’s dad, Ging. The arc shows us cool game features that make the story richer.

The Game of Greed Island

Greed Island is not your average video game; it was made by Ging, who happens to be Gon’s dad. Only Hunters with a license can enter this secluded island. It’s full of tough challenges, powerful spells, and rare items. Gon and Killua must face all these to find Ging.

Gon and Killua’s Training

Gon and Killua train hard in the Greed Island arc. They work on their Nen skills to be ready for tough tasks. This arc shows how they improve their powers and become even better friends. Their effort and friendship help them reach their aims.

Chimera Ant Arc

The Chimera Ant arc is seen as one of the most amazing stories in Hunter × Hunter. It shows a new species, the Chimera Ants, who are very powerful. They can take on the traits and skills of what they eat. This story is filled with action and high stakes, testing the characters in every way.

The Chimera Ant Invasion

It focuses on Meruem, the powerful Chimera Ant king, and his guards. They make everyone, including the heroes, face tough moral questions. They must deal with the Chimera Ants’ strong and sometimes cruel ways.

Meruem and the Royal Guards

As the arc reaches its peak, Gon changes massively because of his need for revenge. This part of the story dives into its characters’ darker sides. It shows the serious effects of their decisions. This moment highlights the series as something special in storytelling.

Gon’s Transformation

The Chimera Ant arc shows the Hunter × Hunter story at its best. It talks about tough moral choices and the big impact of too much power. It has made a lasting mark on the anime and manga world. This arc is widely considered one of the most memorable in these mediums.

13th Hunter Chairman Election Arc

The 13th Hunter Chairman Election arc happens after the Chimera Ant invasion. The Hunter Association is in a rush to pick a new leader. It brings new political challenges and intrigue. Characters deal with power struggles and personal goals.

The Battle for the Next Chairman

After the last chairman dies, the association is in chaos. Everyone wants to be the new chairman. Gon, Killua, Kurapika, and Leorio get caught up in the fights and political games. These threaten their group.

They find allies, share secrets, and work through changing loyalties. Everyone tries to help their favorite win. The arc shows how deep and complex the Hunter × Hunter world is. It makes the characters face power, ambition, and their choices.

The main characters struggle to balance their own goals with the association’s needs. They often disagree as they try to shape the election’s result. The story ends in an exciting battle. The characters face tough decisions with big effects on the future.

Hunter × Hunter Anime vs. Manga

The 1999 and 2011 anime versions of Hunter × Hunter stay true to the manga but have key differences. The 1999 edition adds an extra phase to the Hunter Exam not found in the manga or the 2011 show. The 2011 version, on the other hand, includes more of the manga like the Chimera Ant and the 13th Hunter Chairman Election stories.

Differences between the Adaptations

The 1999 Nippon Animation version brought a fresh twist by adding an extra stage to the Hunter Exam. It wasn’t part of the original manga or the 2011 show. This addition tested the main characters with new challenges. In comparison, the 2011 series delved deeper into the manga’s plot. It explored the Chimera Ant crisis and the 13th Hunter Chairman Election, expanding the story beyond what the 1999 show covered.

Faithful Adaptation of the Manga

Both the 1999 and 2011 versions get a thumbs up for sticking close to the manga by Yoshihiro Togashi. The 2011 rendition from Madhouse stands out for its breathtaking animation and captivating story. It pays great attention to properly telling the manga’s complex tale.

Where to Watch and Read Hunter × Hunter

Fans can watch the 2011 Hunter × Hunter anime on Crunchyroll and Hulu. It’s available in both subtitled and dubbed versions. Sadly, the 1999 version has few legal ways to watch it.

But, those wanting to read the manga are in luck. The entire series can be found on VIZ Media’s Shonen Jump service.

Streaming Services

The 2011 series, done by Madhouse, is on Crunchyroll and Hulu. You can watch it in Japanese with subtitles or in English. This way, everyone gets to enjoy the awesome story.

Manga Availability

Yoshihiro Togashi has been writing the Hunter × Hunter manga since 1998. Fans can access over 30 volumes through VIZ Media’s Shonen Jump service. This is a great way to read the full story.


Hunter × Hunter is a much-loved anime that has caught the world’s attention. It’s known for its deep characters, detailed world, and thrilling stories. This guide looked at why it’s a top choice for those who love shonen anime.

The anime has been warmly received, thanks to adaptations by Nippon Animation and Madhouse. Yoshihiro Togashi’s manga is still going strong. Fans all over the world find the show’s deep stories and characters unforgettable.

The adventure of Gon Freecss and his friends is far from over. Hunter × Hunter will keep drawing in new fans. It shines with its amazing stories, stunning art, and memorable characters. The show is a true work of art, showing how limitless creativity and imagination can be.


What is Hunter × Hunter about?

Hunter × Hunter is an anime series loved by many. It tells the story of Gon Freecss, a young boy aiming to be a “Hunter”. Hunters are people with special skills and can go to hidden places. The show explores Nen, a mysterious power, as Gon and friends take part in exciting missions. This includes the tough Hunter Exam and the battle against Chimera Ants.

How many anime adaptations of Hunter × Hunter are there?

There are two well-known anime versions of Hunter × Hunter. The first, by Nippon Animation, was from 1999 to 2001. The second, by Madhouse, aired from 2011 to 2014 and covered the whole manga to that point.

Who are the main characters in Hunter × Hunter?

The main characters in Hunter × Hunter include Gon Freecss, Killua Zoldyck, Kurapika, and Leorio Paradinight. Gon is a determined boy. Killua is his best friend and a talented assassin. Kurapika wants to bring justice to his destroyed clan. Leorio dreams of being a doctor.

What are the major story arcs in Hunter × Hunter?

The main storylines in Hunter × Hunter are the Hunter Exam, Zoldyck Family, and the Heavens Arena. They also include Yorknew City, Greed Island, Chimera Ant, and 13th Hunter Chairman Election. Each arc brings new challenges and adventures for the characters.

What is the difference between the 1999 and 2011 anime adaptations of Hunter × Hunter?

The 1999 adaptation by Nippon Animation has a different part of the Hunter Exam. This part is not in the manga or the 2011 version by Madhouse. The 2011 anime covers more manga material, like the Chimera Ant and 13th Hunter Chairman Election arcs. These events are not in the 1999 version.

Where can I watch and read Hunter × Hunter?

The 2011 anime is on streaming services like Crunchyroll and Hulu. To read the manga, you can find it on VIZ Media’s Shonen Jump subscription. This service has the complete series digitally.。

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