How to Watch the Fate Anime Series in Order - IGN (2024)

The Fate series is an incredibly popular and beloved anime series you might be interested in watching. From the outside, it's often regarded as one of the more complex series to watch. There are dozens of spinoff series featuring the Fate name, whether it be anime, manga, games, or light novels. However, once you understand the origins of the series, it becomes much easier to understand how to watch the different seasons of the anime.

With over 20 different anime projects, Fate is a series worth your time and attention. Whether you've been interested for a while or haven't heard of the series until now, we've got you covered with the Fate anime watch order. You can also check out our guide to the best anime of all time for more options.

Jump to:

  • Which Fate anime to watch first
  • Fate Stay/night watch order
  • Fate/Grand Order watch order
  • Fate anime spinoffs

What Is Fate?

The entire Fate umbrella of anime spawned from a visual novel called Fate/stay night, which was released in 2004. The game was created by Type-Moon, a studio founded by Kinoko Nasu and Takashi Takeuchi. Nasu crafted the story of the game, while Takeuchi was in charge of the art. The two remain in these roles for most visual novels released by Type-Moon, although the company is bigger now with more staff.

How to Watch the Fate Anime Series in Order - IGN (1)

To this day, Fate/stay night has never officially been released in the West. It remains only playable in Japanese, although quality fan translations do exist. Naturally, this makes the different anime series the best way to experience the visual novel and the rest of the series.

Fate/stay night offered three different routes: Fate, Unlimited Blade Works, and Heaven's Feel. Each of these routes has differing fights, character interactions, and story events. Each route begins the same with Shirou Emiya thrust into the Holy Grail War, but the events that follow couldn't differ more. For this reason, there are three different anime series that stem from the original game. These are each titled under the name of the route, so it's easy to know which anime you're watching.

Over time, the Fate series has spawned an incredible number of spinoffs and subseries. With each having a different name, it's easy to get lost in the dozens of different anime available to watch. Luckily, there is an order that makes sense and acts as an introduction to the ideals and norms of the series.

Which Fate Anime Should You Watch First?

How to Watch the Fate Anime Series in Order - IGN (2)

While there are different opinions on which Fate series you should start with, there is one anime that allows you to get a clear understanding of the series. This is the first anime Fate/stay night received, simply titled Fate/stay night. It was produced in 2006 and mostly follows the first route of the visual novel, titled Fate. Although it isn't anywhere near a perfect adaptation, it's the only anime that adapts the first route that includes critical moments of Saber's character arc.

This will spoil some things that happen in both the Unlimited Blade Works and Heaven's Feel anime adaptations, but you'll get spoiled regardless of what order you watch them in since they each reveal things about the others. We recommend starting from the beginning though, as Fate/stay night is meant to act as the start of the series.

The Best Fate/stay night Series Watch Order

How to Watch the Fate Anime Series in Order - IGN (3)

The Fate series is unique in that you can ultimately watch any of the series you'd like and mostly understand the events. Since it is not chronological, the watch order is up in the air with each series. However, there is an ideal order that will give you the best understanding of the series and its elements.:

1. Fate/stay night (2006)

As outlined above, the Fate/stay night anime produced by Studio Deen is the best choice for your introduction to the series. You'll experience the first route of the Fate/stay night story and gain an understanding of Masters, Servants, and the intricacies within the world of Fate. This anime follows Shirou Emiya after he is caught in the middle of a massive battle. This leads him to be thrown into the Holy Grail War, a competition where the winner gets a wish of their choice granted.

2. Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works (2014-2015)

The second Fate anime series you should watch is Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works. This follows the second route of the visual novel, which has a major focus on Rin Tohsaka, one of Shirou's classmates. Shirou and Rin's paths eventually intertwine, and the events that follow see the pair racing to get their hands on the Holy Grail. This anime series is split across two seasons, totalling up to 25 episodes.

3. Fate/stay night [Heaven's Feel] I. presage flower

Fate/stay night [Heaven's Feel] I. presage flower is the first in a trilogy of movies adapting the third and final route of the visual novel. Here, Shirou Emiya must surrender his peaceful life as the Holy Grail War begins in Fuyuki City. Sakura Matou, the main heroine of the Heaven's Feel route, is thrown in the middle of the war as her and Shirou's peaceful life comes crumbling down.

4. Fate/stay night [Heaven's Feel] II. lost butterfly

The second movie, titled lost butterfly, was released in 2019 and showcases a wide range of events. Here, massive changes happen to the fabric of the previous two routes. Shirou decides on who his fight is for, and Masters and Servants begin disappearing one by one to an unknown evil lurking in Fuyuki City.

5. Fate/stay night [Heaven's Feel] I. spring song

The third and final movie adapting the Heaven's Feel route, spring song features some of the flashiest and most dazzling fights the entire series has to offer. Ufotable crafted a movie you'll be thinking about long after the credits roll. Its conclusion is a satisfying end to the movie trilogy, with strong narrative moments from each main character.

6. Fate/Zero

Fate/Zero is a unique case as it is a prequel to the events of Fate/stay night. It is based on the light novel series written by Gen Urobochi, known best for his works Madoka Magica and Psycho Pass. Although you might think it'd make sense to watch this before the main anime series, Fate/Zero can actually spoil critical elements from Unlimited Blade Works. The series follows Kiritsugu Emiya as he enters the 4th Holy Grail War, which takes place in Fuyuki City. It's an intense look at clashing ideologies and what one will do to accomplish their dream.

How to Watch Fate Anime Spinoffs

How to Watch the Fate Anime Series in Order - IGN (4)

After you've completed watching the anime series that directly tie into Fate/stay night, there are dozens of other seasons, movies, and specials you can watch of the different Fate spinoffs. For these, it doesn't matter at all which order you watch them in for the majority, as most are unrelated and one-off titles. Each is set in its own time period with different rules and stipulations behind its Holy Grail War. However, there are some Fate spinoffs that you do need to watch in order. This mainly applies to the Fate/Grand Order anime series, which is based off the mobile game.

Fate Spinoff Watch Order

Any of the following spinoff series can be watched in any order you see fit.

  1. Today's Menu for the Emiya Family
  2. Lord El-Melloi II Case Files
  3. Fate/Prototype
  4. Fate/strange Fake: Whispers of Dawn
  5. Fate/Apocrypha
  6. Fate/EXTRA Last Encore
  7. Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA ILLYA
  8. Carnival Phantasm

Fate/Grand Order Watch Order

To get a better understanding of the Fate/Grand Order anime series, you must understand the source material. Fate/Grand Order is a mobile game available for iOS and Android devices. There is an ongoing story that follows an organization called the Chaldea Security Organization, whose mission is to prevent the extinction of humanity by utilizing both magic and science. To save humanity, it must identify and destroy the Singularity events that lead to human extinction.

There are eight different Singularities that occur in Part 1 of the story. The anime series produced so far only cover this area, so we won't be talking about Cosmos in the Lostbelt or Arc 2. Essentially, each Singularity is a different Holy Grail War that takes place in a different time period with different Servants and Masters. Each is a self-contained story, but they tie together with overarching plot elements and themes. There are anime series or specials for the Prologue and Singularity 6-8. If you'd like to experience the first five Singularity storylines, you'll need to play the FGO mobile game. With that being said, here is the watch order for the Fate/Grand Order anime.

1. Fate/Grand Order: First Order

First Order is the prologue anime adaptation of Fate/Grand Order. The future of humanity was looking strong under the monitoring of the Chaldea Security Organization until suddenly extinction was less than two years out without warning. Ritsuka Fujimaru and Mash Kyrielight are sent to Fuyuki City in 2004 to determine the cause of the Singularity and take it out.

2. Fate/Grand Order: Camelot - Wandering; Agateram

One of two movies covering the 6th Singularity, Fate/Grand Order: Camelot - Wandering follows Bedivere, the wandering knight. Set during 1273 A.D. in Jerusalem, Ritsuka and Mash must unite forces with Bedivere in a land raged with war by three separate powers.

3. Fate/Grand Order: Camelot - Paladin; Agateram

The second movie covering the 6th Singularity closes the arc and sees Ritsuka and Mash resolve the Singularity needed in their quest to save humanity. This movie sees plenty of action-packed fights and the resolution of Bedivere's story. While it's not necessary to watch these films before the next Singularity, they will give you an expanded view of Ritsuka, Mash, and this universe.

4. Fate/Grand Order Absolute Demonic Front: Babylonia

Babylonia is a fan-favorite arc for a reason, with lovable characters and an exciting storyline. Set in the land of Uruk, Ritsuka and Mash are tasked with solving the sudden appearance of three goddesses and hundreds of Demonic Beasts. There are multiple characters you might recognize from Fate/stay night, too, like the King of Heroes, Gilgamesh.

5. Fate/Grand Order Final Singularity - Grand Temple of Time: Solomon

Fate/Grand Order Final Singularity - Grand Temple of Time: Solomon is the endpoint for the Chaldea Security Organization to save humanity and find a future. There is only one enemy who remains: Solomon, the King of Mages. This movie puts a fitting bow on the entire Observer on Timeless Temple storyline, with a fitting conclusion and a wonderful cast of characters.

How to Watch the Fate Anime Series in Order - IGN (2024)
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