Image Source: FUNimation on YouTube

Writer Hajime Kanzaka began his Slayers light novel series way back in 1989. Since then, it has been adapted to more than a few anime. However, with multiple television series, movies, and original video animation episodes (OVAs), it can be difficult to keep it all straight. We’re here to help.

[Note: This guide is presented in loose chronological order for the fictional world where Slayers takes place.]


Prequel Series

Slayers Excellent (1998) – 3-episode OVA Series

The story of Slayers Excellent begins with heroine, the young genius sorceress Lina Inverse, reminiscing on how she and traveling magic-user “Naga the Serpent” first met. This short series is a light-hearted record of Lina’s adventures with Naga before she met the swordsman Gourry and her other friends that star in the main television anime.

Where to Watch: Home video only (ADV Films in North America, Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand)


Slayers Special [a.k.a. Slayers: Dragon Slave, Slayers: Explosion Array] (1996) – 3-episode OVA Series

This OVA series gives fans three more stories featuring Naga, as well as Lina, who reluctantly travels with her. Together, they encounter a crazy scientist making chimeras, a weak boy whose mother hires Lina and Naga to train him, and a magic mirror that creates clones and causes overall trouble.

Where to Watch: Home video only (ADV Films in North America, Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand)


Slayers The Motion Picture [a.k.a. Slayers Perfect] (1995) – Anime Film

Like the OVAs Excellent and Special, this film focuses on the adventures of Lina and Naga before the former meets her travel companions from the television series. In this story, Lina and Naga reunite when they both get their hands on discounted tickets to a hot springs island. However, the island turns out to be dominated by bandits, and the two have to work together to unravel a sinister plot being woven there by a demon.

Where to Watch: Home video only (ADV Films in North America, Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand)


Slayers Return (1995) – Anime Film

Continuing the travels of Lina and Naga, the two decide to help a girl who ran away from her home village after it is enslaved by a tyrant. However, secretly the two sorceresses are trying to obtain the magical metal “orihalcon”–a treasure of the elves that is said to be left in the girl’s village.

Where to Watch: Home video only (ADV Films in North America, Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand)


Slayers Great (1997) – Anime Film

The seemingly never-ending adventures of Lina and Naga continue. In this 64-minute film, the two sorceresses wander upon a village of golem-makers. The golems the craftsmen make are used for both entertainment and doing tasks around the village. After saving a girl named Laia from a golem out of control, they are introduced to her golem-maker father and brother who are always bickering with each other. While the father asks for Lina to be the model for his golem that will be entered into a competition at an upcoming festival, the son falls for Naga’s beauty and asks her to be his model. The golem that wins the competition will also decide which who will rule the village.

Where to Watch: Home video only (ADV Films in North America, Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand)


Slayers Gorgeous (1998) – Anime Film

This is the final film featuring Naga and Lina traveling together. It begins when the two are thrown into the middle of a feud between a man and his daughter, the latter of which leads an army of dragons. While Naga decides to help out the daughter in their family feud, Lina takes the side of the father.

Where to Watch: Home video only (ADV Films in North America, Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand)


Main Series

Slayers (1995) – 26-episode TV Anime Series

Also known as The Slayers, this is the beginning of Lina’s adventures with wandering, dim-witted, but good-hearted swordsman Gourry Gabriev, who just happens to own the legendary Sword of Light. While they initially travel as a pair, they encounter a human-turned-chimera man named Zelgadis who seeks to regain his humanity, and a justice-loving princess who wants to learn magic from Lina named Amelia. While each member of the party has a separate goal, they find themselves united to attempt to defeat a man possessed by a demon god… and save the world in the process. Of course, they have their share of comedic mishaps along the way.

Where to Watch: FUNimation via YouTube (North America Only), PSN


Slayers Next (1996) – 26-episode TV Anime Series

After saving the world not just once but twice in the last season, Lina and Gourry continued their travels together, while Amelia and Zelgadis went their separate ways. However, they reunite to help Zelgadis find the Claire Bible, a magical tome that might have the information he needs to turn back into a human. However, with the appearance of a mysterious sorcerer named Xellos and the meddling of a wannabe evil princess named Martina, things may prove difficult for our heroes. To add to the mess, there seems to be a much deeper, much more sinister plot being concocted behind the scenes…

Where to Watch: FUNimation via YouTube (North America Only), PSN


Slayers Premium (2001) – Anime Film

While it was released over four years after the end of Slayers Try, this 30-minute film by a different animation studio takes place in the interval sometime between the events of Slayers Next and Slayers Try. This comedic tale follows Lina and her friends, who arrive in a town that ends up being cursed by a race of octopi. The effect of the curse? Everyone inflicted is doomed to speak in the language of the octopi, making them incomprehensible.

Where to Watch: (ADV Films in North America, Madman Entertainment in Australia & New Zealand)


Slayers Try (1997) – 26-episode TV Anime Series

After once again saving the world and going their separate ways, the gang reunite once more to attend a ceremony celebrating the disappearance of the barrier that separated their continent from the rest of the world. After the four encounter a Dragon priestess girl named Filia, they find themselves going on an adventure to the outside world in order to overturn a dangerous prophecy. And, according to the priests of the temple of the Fire Dragon King, they need someone strong to do this task… Someone strong like Lina Inverse (though she is actually their second choice).

Where to Watch: FUNimation via YouTube (North America Only)


Slayers Revolution (2008) – 13-episode TV Anime Series

Produced over ten years after Slayers Try, Slayers Revolution tells the tale of Lina Inverse and her friends embarking on a brand new adventure. However, Lina finds herself being pursued by a royal special investigator who seeks to arrest her for the crime of “Being Lina Inverse.” On her way to beat up the kingdoms that labeled her as a criminal, she encounters Pokota, an adorable, stuffed animal-like creature that can speak the human language and use high-level magic spells. They find out that the nation Pokota is from hides an extremely dark and dangerous secret.

Where to Watch: FUNimation via YouTube (North America Only)


Slayers Evolution-R (2009) – 13-episode TV Anime Series

This television anime series serves as the second half of Slayers Revolution. Lina and her friends continue their journey to find a way to save their companion Pokota’s country. Along the way, they encounter a suit of armor who has a voice and attitude that seems quite familiar.

Where to Watch: FUNimation via YouTube (North America Only)


Related Series

Lost Universe (1998) – 26-episode TV Anime Series

This series, while not technically taking place in the same world as Slayers, takes place in the same multiverse created by the Lord of Nightmares. As opposed to Slayers‘ world of magic and medieval-styled cityscapes, Lost Universe is an adventure in space featuring futuristic technology.The story of Lost Universe follows Kane Blueriver, a “Trouble Contractor” who solves the problems of clients around the galaxy with the help of his ship’s computer who materializes herself as a hologram named Canal and a girl aiming to be the “best in the universe,” Millie.

The Japanese version of the anime features many of the same voice actors from Slayers in the cast (playing different characters, of course), including the voices of Slayers’ Lina, Gourry, Zelgadis, Amelia, and Martina. The protagonist Kane even uses the Psi-Blade, a “sword of light” that looks (and sounds) very similar to the one Gourry from Slayers uses.

Where to Watch: Crunchyroll

Comments (6)
  1. Thanks, this is a really helpful guide.

  2. @.@ For all of the Slayers tv series you can purchase them on DVD in both the US and UK,the same is true for Lost Universe.

  3. Is this is a sign of things to come?

    • For the Slayers franchise? Sadly, no.

      After the success of our guide to the Fate anime, we decided to see how interested readers would be for guides to other sprawling franchises. Slayers seemed like a good place to start.

  4. Seeing this makes me regret the novels I missed even more.
    In the middle of the current second craze of US light-novels, it would be good if some publisher was willing to take series who don’t have animations from 2015+.

  5. This article is a big help!
    I bought & enjoy the big book shaped 3-season dvdpackage: thank you!

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