Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Anime and manga

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

This is the manual of style for anime, manga, and related articles. It is written with a strong eye towards friendliness to new contributors, who make up the majority of edits to anime- and manga-related pages. This style guide establishes a standard form for articles about anime and manga series, franchises, and characters. It explains the agreed-on naming conventions for series, terminology, and characters in properties with and without official English translations. It offers guidance for the proper, top-down development of encyclopedic article sets on expansive Japanese media franchises. Finally, it gives links to other relevant policies and guidelines wherever helpful.


This manual of style applies to articles about anime, manga, and related topics, and is a topic-specific subset Manual of Style of the following

Manuals of Style

For more general guidance on editing conventions, see Wikipedia:Manual of Style. For standardized translations and romanizations of some Japanese terms, see:

For discussion, help, and editing collaboration on anime and manga articles, see also Wikipedia:WikiProject Anime and manga.

Editors should also keep in mind the guidelines suggested on

WikiProject Films
, as those seem to work well for episodic media, including manga.

Article names and disambiguation

Use the most

WP:NAME: TV | Books | Films

If several articles share the same title, use the Wikipedia page naming conventions:

  • Anime film article – title (film)
  • Anime TV series or live-action drama/tokusatsu article – title (TV series)
  • Manga article – title (manga)
  • Light novel article – title (novel) or title (novel series)
  • Video game articles, including visual novels – title (video game)
  • Musical article – title (musical)

In cases where title disambiguation is necessary between several articles related to the same intellectual property, the article about the original format of the work is generally organized to act as the "base" page. For example, the article Yu-Gi-Oh! is about the manga series, with sub-sections and a disambiguation page leading to the other subjects with the same title.

The preceding guidelines should address most instances relating to

talk pages if you have further questions.


As per the

Manual of Style (Japan-related articles), always make redirects for alternate names and titles, especially if the title uses macrons
or other characters which are difficult to type with a standard keyboard. Note that redirects can be made to specific sub-sections of a page if necessary.

Page layout for a series article

WikiProject Japan (Talk)

Founded: 18 March 2006
(18 years and 25 days ago)
Articles: 91,351 (180 featured)



Project pages

anime & manga, seiyū) • Reviews (A-Class, Peer) • TranslationParticipants (inactive) • ToDo (cleanup

Task forces
Project links
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Related pages


Needhiragana}}   {{Needkanji

Project parentage
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All material in an article should be

reliable, secondary sources). Articles should be self-contained, only referring to subpages for additional information or details if the main article or a section becomes too long. Follow guidelines at Wikipedia:Summary style
when creating subarticles.

Article structure should be flexible and responsive to the content and context of the individual subjects. The following structures are those that many editors find useful when developing an article, but alternatives to the outlined structures are acceptable on a per article bases.


This should ideally be able to stand on its own as a short article, providing a brief summary of the topic and touching on all the main points of the whole article. At the very least, this should describe the anime or manga, its premise and plot, its author or director, and the English language licensees (if any). Avoid needless trivia, and keep the recommendations of

Wikipedia:Lead section
in mind.

Articles about series which have been adapted into other media should introduce the original format of a work rather than the format of the work most popular in English. For example: "Bleach is a manga series which was later adapted into an anime series", NOT "Bleach is an anime series based on a manga of the same name."


Although this is not a section, the

is applicable.


This should comprise a succinct description of the plot and major subplots, but please avoid excessive details of twists and turns in the story. Differences between the original versions and adaptations (whether Japanese or international) often fall within the scope of this section, usually warranting at most a distinct subsection. Also try to avoid

Wikipedia guidelines
when including spoilers, and do not avoid inserting them where necessary to explain the series in an encyclopedic fashion.


The character section should consist of brief character outlines, as opposed to a simple list. The length of each entry and inclusion of characters will vary with the character's importance to the story. The character section should include voice actor credits (if applicable, see {{Voiced by}} and {{Voiced by2}} ). There is no need to create a separate voice actor section.

For shorter or simpler series, it is often possible to avoid the need for a character section by crafting the plot description such that it introduces all significant characters. Where possible, this is the preferred method, as prose reads more professionally than lists.

  • Character sections should not be divided into numerous sub-sections, as this makes the table of contents unnecessarily long.
  • Minor characters may be included here, but article length should be considered.
  • If the majority of characters' descriptions consist of one or two sentences, a bullet list is most appropriate; if the majority of characters descriptions consist of one or more paragraphs, then a definition list is preferred; if a separate List of (series) characters exists (see below), prose is preferred. See also: Wikipedia:Summary style.
  • If the character section grows long, please reconsider the amount of detail or number of characters included. Beyond that, a separate page, named List of (series) characters, may be appropriate.
  • Separate articles for each character should be avoided unless there is enough
    material to warrant a separate article.
  • Regarding names:
    • Characters should be identified by the names used in the official English releases of the series. If there are multiple English releases, such as both a manga and anime, use the one that is best known and that has contributed most to the work's becoming known in the English-speaking world (usually the primary work).
    • If there is no official title, Characters should be identified by their most commonly known name, as per Wikipedia's
      naming conventions
    • Character names should be given in western order and, in the case of a dictionary list, in


This is a difficult section to define, and can, if appropriate, generate several sub-sections and even whole sections. Topics that can reasonably be included are: the origins or inspirations of the subject; homages to other works or artists; notable production staff (typically: directors, leading voice actors, and sometimes producers or other personnel); music; issues arising from the transition from one medium to another (e.g.: manga to anime, anime to film, etc.) or from one language to another (such as alterations to storylines, international voice actors, air dates or dates of publication). Although this is an amorphous section,

avoid making it a list of trivia
. If tidbits of information cannot be cited or worked into a coherent discussion of the subject, reconsider including them.


This section is for the discussion and critical analysis of the works theme and ideology as seen by third party reviewers. This is may be distinct from the production section and allow for expansion on different themes, including spirituality, environmentalism or the creator's intention for the audience. Academic analysis of works should be included and comprise this section if possible. Susan J. Napier's Anime from Akira to Princess Mononoke is one such work.


This section can include, as appropriate, separate subsections for information on the original version of the work, as well as any related anime series/

splitting it out to a separate article titled List of (series) episodes, List of (series) chapters, List of (series) novels, or similar. When splitting an article, please follow the guidelines at Wikipedia:Copying within Wikipedia. It is preferable to spin out in this way only one format at a time, rather than grouping all media together in a single list. You may find the {{Graphic novel list}} and {{Episode list
}} templates useful for formatting these lists.

For shows that are broadcast on or after midnight in their country of origin, use the actual airdate instead of the advertised media date. For example, an episode advertised for April 2, 2015 at "24:30" or "深夜00:30" has an actual airdate of April 3, 2015 at 12:30am, so use "April 3, 2015". Add a footnote if the cited references cannot sufficiently explain the situation. When listing an English broadcast where applicable, the same actual airdate rule should be applied if necessary. If the country of origin running the English broadcast has multiple time zones, refer to the main advertised time zone to determine the actual airdate. In the United States and Canada, this is most commonly the Eastern Time Zone.

When writing plot summaries for anime episode lists, follow the same length guidelines as you would for

television series episode lists, which are approximately 100–200 words. For manga lists, the length of a single tankōbon
volume's summary should generally be between 150 and 350 words, with longer lengths reserved for a series or volume with more complex plots or multiple self-contained stories. Remember, it should summarize the main plot points, not every minor detail and scene.

Do not include statements such as The series was never released in the US. or The manga has not been translated to English., as these imply that Japanese and English are the only two languages, or that Japan and the US are the only two countries. Instead, use phrasing such as The anime was never released outside Japan. or In 2011, French and Italian translations of the manga were published.


This should concisely describe the opinions expressed about the subject by reviewers, critics, academics, and (if reliable, secondary sources exist) fan communities. Varying opinions, criticism kind and harsh, and controversies should be presented in a

neutral tone
. Although difficult to acquire, criticism and reactions from non-English sources (especially original Japanese responses!) are strongly desired.

The anime and manga wikiproject keeps various

reliable sources
which can be consulted to improve this section.


Series articles should be placed in one of the subcategories from Category:Anime debuts by date and Category:Manga debuts by date (as applicable). There should be only one anime and one manga release year category for each article unless there are multiple releases (e.g., a TV series, an OVA series, and a film).

It is also helpful to include one or more of the subcategories from Category:Anime and manga by demographic, Category:Anime and manga by genre, and Category:Anime and manga by topic. Try to pick the most accurate categories, and avoid redundant genres. For example, action is a subcategory of drama, so if you include action as a genre it is not necessary to also include drama. In general, two or three genres should be sufficient for most articles. The demographic of a manga series is generally determined by the demographic of its magazine of publication, rather than by subjective criteria such as how its art looks.

Page layout for a character's article

Note that the heading titles are not set in stone—adapt them as appropriate for your character and context. This is a guideline for the sorts of information to include and the general order.

Character lead

A one-to-three paragraph summary of context, including that this is a fictional character, who they were created by, what works they appear in, their role in these works, and why they are notable. This is the usual

material, and should ideally be able to stand on its own as a potted summary.

Character infobox

Although this is not a section, the

template documentation
for instructions.

Creation and conception/Development

Out-of-universe information about the creation process, including influences upon the creators. Differences between adaptations, both between media and during translation, and between sequels would also be discussed here. The best sources of information are interviews and critical analysis; be especially careful of

original research
here. Use a title appropriate for your section's actual contents.

Character outline

Information about the character revealed in the story goes in this section—note, however, it should maintain out-of-universe prose (see

Wikipedia guidelines
when including spoilers, and do not avoid inserting them where it is necessary to explain the character in an encyclopedic fashion.

In order to not place

undue weight
on any one element it is necessary to list only the important elements of the character. Long lists like every named attack of the character gives more importance to less important attacks. Exhaustive backgrounds which chronicle blow-by-blow accounts of a character's history overwhelm the reader with trivial information, and are generally incomprehensible to people who are not already fans.

Voice actors or Actors

This is an optional section that can be included as a subsection of "Development", particularly if information about how actors approached the role is available. Character songs can also be listed here in a subsection.

Character reception

Out-of-universe information on responses to, popularity of, and influences upon others. Reviews, critical essays, and academic analysis are good sources; appearances in other works, poll results, merchandise (including, if possible, sales figures), statements by other creators that the character was an influence for them, etc. are also valid topics here. Per the

guidelines for writing about fiction
, you must have at least some of this material in hand before you create a character article—this is the meat of your notability.


For articles on directors,

voice actors, etc., follow Wikipedia:WikiProject Biography. Regarding the subject's name, use the English form used by the subject personally, or if that is unknown, the form most commonly used in English. See also Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Japan-related articles#Names and Japanese name#Japanese names in English
. Include as much as possible of the following:

  • Name in Kanji and literal transliteration if different from the usual English name,
  • Years of birth and death (if applicable),
  • Notable works, and
  • Styles, inspirations, students, and subsequent influence.

Infobox - aliases


  • For lists of works and roles, follow Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Lists of works, and use a chronological order of broadcast/release. For extensive lists of works, you can opt to use tables per Wikipedia:WikiProject Actors and Filmmakers#Filmography tables. Do not include "voice of" or "(language) dub/version" in the person's role or notes when it is obvious they are working on the localization, however a separate "live action" subsection may be useful to highlight non-voice-over works.
  • Do not assume the person voiced in a show or a particular character based on your own hearing as that is original research. As these credits are highly contested, provide citations to reliable sources.

Companies and organizations


Wikipedia:Companies, corporations and economic information for basic guidelines. Include years of founding and dissolution (if applicable) and notable works attributable to the organization. (In practice, notable works is often given as a comprehensive list.) For anime publishers, add Category:Anime companies, Category:Animation studios
, or both, as appropriate.


The standard

Template:Infobox convention. If you have any questions or problems with this infobox, you can discuss them on the template's talk page


Articles larger than stubs should display the standardized beginning and ending structure that is inline with the larger Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Layout page. A simple breakdown of an article not under distress should include infoboxes above the lead and the content body before appendices and footers. The breakdown for appendices is more regimented with the flow of See also -> Notes (if needed) -> References -> Further reading -> External links.

See Also should not duplicate wikilinks to pages linked within the body or to pages in navigational templates. References can be formatted in various ways, but articles should conform to a single

General references represent an issue to text–source integrity, but are an acceptable starting format for all but biographies of living persons. Further reading should not duplicate referenced material. External links
can contain links to official sites and other useful unofficial sites.

See also