Why Is the Isekai Genre So Popular in Japan?

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A brief history of isekai and its popularity

The word isekai (異世界) originally meant “another world” and was also used in reference to foreign countries, but nowadays, isekai is usually used in the nuance of “another realm” regardless of whether we’re talking about the stories isekai genre or not. 

When you look back at the history of Japanese isekai fiction in general, we can go all the way back to the early eighth century (circa 711 to 712 CE) with the publication of Japan’s oldest mythology work, Kojiki (English title: “Records of Ancient Matters”), because one of the stories in the book has a character (Izanagi) traveling to a foreign realm.

There is actually a whole list of other works before our modern times that feature isekai stories, like Otogi-zōshi (a collection of short stories written between 1392 and 1573 CE), as you can see on a list of isekai books chronologically compiled here.

The modern isekai fantasy’s popularity started to heat up in Japan during the 2010s, notably with the huge hit of That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime novel in 2013. The popularity spread as that series became adapted into manga and anime. (Source) SWORD ART ONLINE was another isekai work that exploded in popularity during the 2010s in Japan.

In the last decade, the genre has blown up in proportions, with so many stories available to choose from.

Japanese work culture 

I suspect one of the reasons why isekai became so popular in Japan is due to our work (or should I say OVERWORK) culture. 

Perhaps many readers are already aware of the dire working environment in Japan. Overtime happens to many people on a daily basis. Deaths from overwork are all too common, and we have a word for it. It’s 過労死 (karoushi), which literally translates to “death from overworking.” It was coined back in the 1970s

Life as a working adult is pretty bleak in Japan. Just this June, The Asahi Shimbun (one of the major newspapers in Japan) reported that in a global research, Japan came “dead last” out of 18 nations and regions that were surveyed in terms of being happy at work.

Not only is the employment environment generally unsatisfactory, but workers in Japan haven’t been given a substantial pay raise in the last 30 years. THIRTY YEARS! Even when everything else is getting more expensive.

With that socioeconomic background, I feel that isekai gives relief to a lot of working people, particularly men. The classic isekai setting typically has an average guy “transferring” into a different realm with a whole lot of superpowers he didn’t have before, then using those powers to become a hero and save the new world.

Isekai escapism

Also, isekai stories are easier to slip into compared to fantasy stories that have entirely new and original settings because isekai stories typically have a protagonist from the modern age going to another realm. (Reference) That means the author can utilize modern ways of speech in writing, and it’s more simple for the readers to understand and relate to the protagonist. I think both the genre’s appeal and ease of reading are two of the big factors contributing to its initial popularity.

Maybe, for a brief moment, while reading an isekai story, the readers can enjoy being in the shoes of the protagonist and imagine themselves being the mighty and powerful hero who gets all the girls.

With that all said, at Irodori Comics, we have a collection of isekai books that can relieve you from the burdens of the real world and quench your thirst for sexy times. Below are seven isekai genre recommendations from our collection, from orthodox stories to more unique ones!

Below are seven isekai genre recommendations from our collection, from orthodox stories to more unique ones!

Isekai genre hentai recommendations

Great news for you is that we have a New Life Sale featuring a bunch of our popular isekai hentai books on MEGA SALE right now!

New Life Sale

Here are seven recommendations of isekai stories from the New Life Sale!


Tales of a Harem in Another World 1Tales of a Harem in Another World series by Tachibana Omina

Naoki Oikawa was busily fapping away to his naughty porn mags when he was suddenly transported to a fantasy world filled with demon lords, monsters, and… sexy babes? Join the ostensible MC-turned-hero as he helps his comrades defeat the demon lord by using the power of his own semen!

Gyatei’s Note:
This series is a classic isekai story from one of our popular artists, Tachibana Omina. If you want to read a series that is the gold standard of isekai hentai fantasy with a tremendous number of women from various species, this story is for you. 

Tales of a Harem in Another World is currently available from Chapters 1 to 7, along with some extra chapters!

My Harem in Another World Season 1 Anthology

My Harem in Another World Season 1 Anthology by Ootori Mahiro 

Ichiro Tadano is isekai’d to a fantasy world, where his possessions make him one of the richest man in the world. Like all Isekai MCs, he builds a harem of sexy monster girls who are happy to suck him, fuck him, and even lick his ass! While his harem starts with succubi and elves, it’s not long before he’s joined by dragon girls and cat girls! It’s smorgasbord of monster girl pussy!

Gyatei’s Note:
My Harem in Another World is a HUGE series separated into “seasons” (like a TV drama series), each season containing 4 episodes. Astonishingly, the harem gets bigger with every season.

If you’re not sure about getting the entire anthology, you can read the first episode of the first season entirely FREE online on the Irodori Comics Store!* Or you can buy and download the DRM-free version of it for just 10 cents!

*You must be logged in to the Irodori Comics Store to read the work for free

The individual episodes are on sale right now, but so are all three anthologies. Make sure to check them all out!

1. My Harem in Another World Season 1 Anthology
2. My Harem in Another World Season 2 Anthology
3. My Harem in Another World Season 3 Anthology

If you want to learn more about Mahiro, check out the interviews we did with him here!

1. Interview with Ootori Mahiro (Part 1)
2. Interview with Ootori Mahiro (Part 2)

Sweet Life in Another World Compilation

Sweet Life in Another World Compilation by Anzayuu 

This compilation includes “Sweet Life in Another World” Chapters 1 to 5 with exclusive bonus pages featuring all the beautiful elf ladies from the series!

Gyatei’s Note:
This story is for elf lovers who are into peaceful and super sweet relationships where elven ladies take good care of the protagonist.

This compilation contains Chapters 1 to 5, with some exclusive bonus pages.

Individual chapters are also available and currently on sale.

I Became a Mage in Another World 1

I Became a Mage in Another World series by Fukuyama Naoto

Sasuke Sayama, loner, pervert, and… magician? After being transported to another world through his bathtub, he meets Aina and Elisa, two warrior princesses loyal only to their kingdom. But how long will that loyalty last when faced with pleasure? Tricking them into signing a “magical contract”, Sasuke casts “lewd crests” upon them, breaking their minds and quickly converting their loyalty from their kingdom, to his cock.

Gyatei’s Note:
In this story, the protagonist doesn’t become a hero in another world but a powerful mage. Check out how he uses his new magical ability to cast spells on beautiful ladies.

This story is currently available until Chapter 4. All chapters are on sale. No compilation has been released yet.

1. I Became a Mage in Another World 1
2. I Became a Mage in Another World 2
3. I Became a Mage in Another World 3
4. I Became a Mage in Another World 4

Eyeing the Hot Elf in Another World

Eyeing the Hot Elf in Another World series by Ayakawa Riku 

When I got sent to another world, I ended up as a mere villager. And I didn’t get any special powers. Maybe it’s time I move on and enjoy myself a little by seducing this gorgeous elf chick.

Gyatei’s Note:

Just like many other isekai stories, the protagonist is sent to a realm different from his. But the twist is that he doesn’t end up as a hero. He just ends up being an NPC-like villager with no superpower. The unique parts of the story are not just the settings but also the number of magical items that appear in each of the chapters that the protagonist uses on the heroines. If you’re looking for a different kind of fantasy isekai series, this one’s for you.

Eyeing the Hot Elf in Another World series is currently available up to Chapter 4.

School of the Seven Sisters - Chapter 1: Playing House

School of the Seven Sisters series by Akatsuki Myuuto 

A teacher gets transferred to a school in the boondocks, where all the students are girls… and beautiful, horny ones at that.

Gyatei’s Note:
The School of the Seven Sisters series is an isekai work that is not set in a fantasy world but in modern-day Japan. You might get the impression that this is a simple harem story, but with each chapter, the plot thickens. Without giving away too much about the story, the afterword of each chapter gives you insight that the author really went out of his way to do solid research for this series.

This series is great if you like a mysterious plot along with a bunch of hot harem sex scenes.

School of the Seven Sisters is currently available up to Chapter 5.

New Game+ With my Harem 1

New Game+ With My Harem series by Navier Haruka 2T 

A burned-out salaryman goes all-in on a state-of-the-art virtual reality headset in an attempt catch a break from his dreary day-to-day, and ends up blacking out in the middle of an X-rated game when the… “relief” is beyond what he anticipated. When he wakes up in the future with three half-naked babes in front of him, he assumes it’s part of the experience… Will his dream become a nightmare!?

Gyatei’s Note:
This series is also a unique isekai story that doesn’t take place in a fantasy world. Instead, it takes place in a sci-fi setting, in a world beyond the 23rd century.

Other than the overarching plot that progresses as you read the chapters, this series is great for anyone who has special kinks for plentiful boobs, big butts, slobbering tongues, and spitting into places. You can really tell the author is really into those things from the details of the scenes.

New Game+ With My Harem is currently available up to Chapter 5.

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