Berserk: Where (& How) to Catch Up With the Manga & Anime

Just a few months after the last chapter dropped, the Berserk manga is resuming at last with Chapter #363. With this release (and maybe the next), there should be enough uncollected material for a Volume 41 to come out in the next year or so. In anticipation of this, Berserk is definitely a series worth starting or restarting (despite the frequent hiatuses and irregular release schedule), and there are several options available to do so legally.

How to Read the Berserk Manga

Guts Berserk Manga

In terms of legal ways to read Berserk online, you won't find a subscription service like Shonen Jump that offers it in full for a small fee. However, the manga subscription app Mangamo has been adding Dark Horse titles this year, so there's a good chance some of Berserk may make its way on there.

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In terms of where to purchase the manga... Well, there are quite a few avenues to go down. Since this is a Dark Horse licensed manga, the most obvious route is through the Dark Horse website, where you can purchase it digitally (though it does list retailers for physical sale as well). The price varies, but frequent manga sales usually bring the digital versions down to around $4-5 a volume, which is a steal.

Other places to buy volumes digitally are Amazon (available to read through Kindle/Comixology) and iBooks (or Apple Books... whatever they're calling it now). When the aforementioned Dark Horse sales take place, these sites' listings tend to match the price available through Dark Horse.

As for print releases, Dark Horse lists a website called Things From Another World to purchase from, but there's also RightStuf, Amazon, or any local book shop (Books a Million, Barnes & Noble, etc.). TFAW and RightStuf will usually have the series available for around $11-12 a volume during their sales.

How to Watch the Berserk Anime

Guts and co Berserk Anime

When it comes to the Berserk anime adaptations, things get a little tricky. First off, depending on how you count it, there are three different major adaptions of Berserk by three different animation studios. Second, not all arcs have been adapted, and with the material that is adapted, many parts of the manga are cut out (likely for time and budgetary concerns). That said, for those who don't plan on purchasing the manga anytime soon, here are some ways to engage with the anime.

Starting with the least accessible, in 1997, Studio OLM (responsible for the Pokémon anime) started adapting the manga and ultimately released 25 episodes. These episodes covered the first arc (Black Swordsman) and part of the second arc (Golden Age). Unfortunately, it isn't available to stream anywhere, but the full 25-episode, six-disc DVD collection is available for purchase on Amazon, though it appears to be limited in stock.

Next up are the Golden Age Arc trilogy of movies, which originally released in 2012-13 and are made by Studio 4°C. Of course, this covers the well-regarded Golden Age Arc, retreading some ground from the OLM adaptation. On Funimation, the second and third films are available to stream, both subbed and dubbed versions, but for some reason not the first. Thankfully, Netflix has all three films available to stream, both subbed and dubbed. Lastly, on Prime Video, while not available for free through the Amazon Prime subscription, all three films can be rented or bought to stream.

Last is the 2016 CG adaptation of Berserk from studio GEMBA. This long-awaited anime finally advances the storyline from the previous adaptations. It covers the third arc (Conviction) and the first half of the fourth arc (Hawk of the Millennium Empire), but omits some material, like the sub-arc (called "Chapters" in the manga) Lost Children.

On Funimation, the series is listed but currently unavailable to stream (it seems to have been removed). On VRV or Crunchyroll, both seasons are available to stream, subbed and dubbed. On Prime Video, both seasons are available to stream for purchase, dubbed only. Lastly, on the new HBO Max, both seasons are available to stream, subbed only.

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