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The Top 15 Light Novels With Overpowered Main Characters

Zett is a high school student who loves reading light novels, web novels, and manga.

This article includes the top 15 overpowered main characters found in light novels.

This article includes the top 15 overpowered main characters found in light novels.

Light novels are short reads targeted towards young adults. They are compact and usually published in A6 size, but they can also be found online. There are many types of light novels out there, but this article includes my personal light novel recommendations with the theme "Overpowered Main Character" or simply "OP MC".

Even though these are light novel recommendations, a few web novels are also included. Moreover, the list contains Japanese, Chinese and Korean novels.

The Best Light and Web Novels With an OP MC

  1. Legendary Moonlight Sculptor
  2. No Game No Life
  3. Tales of Gods and Demons
  4. The Tales of Brave Isagi the Demon Lord
  5. LV999 Villager
  6. When a Gun Nerd Is Reincarnated to a World of Magic He Established a Harem Army With Modern Weapons!?
  7. Other World's Monster Breeder
  8. Problem Children Are Coming From Another World, Aren't They?
  9. Spirit Chronicles
  10. Skeleton Knight, in Another World
  11. Lazy Dungeon Master
  12. Other World Canceller
  13. If It's for My Daughter, I'd Even Defeat a Demon King
  14. Dashing Through the Blue Sky
  15. Adamantine Dragon in the Crystal World

Before we get started with the list, let's review what makes an OP MC as well as some of the common tropes and themes that can be found in their stories.

What Makes an OP MC?

OP MCs can be found in shounen and action/adventure anime, manga and web novels. (Their immense strength would be wasted in a story that doesn't see any action.) Due to random circumstances or a diligent training process, a normal guy becomes overpowered—either physically or magically. They far outrank any baddy that comes their way, so there is little suspense when a battle takes place.

OP MCs are almost exclusively male. These stories are usually written for men whose fantasy includes being idolized by a harem of women. Because of this, OP MCs are usually found in slightly adult- or mature-themed stories. (One Punch Man and Mob Psycho are a few exceptions.)

But since normal men are reading these stories, the main character should be at least a little relatable, right? While these characters are extremely powerful, when it comes to appearance, they are quite normal looking.

Official "Legendary Moonlight Sculptor" Korean Light Novel Cover

Official "Legendary Moonlight Sculptor" Korean Light Novel Cover

1. Legendary Moonlight Sculptor

Alternative Title: Dalbic Jogaksa

Released: 2007

Genre: Action/Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Romance, School Life, Sci-Fi

Personal Rating: 4/5

Plot Summary

Lee Hyun has worked hard all his life but he can't seem to catch a break. He is constantly strapped for cash. Despite working himself to the bone, he still makes time to play his favorite MMORPG, Continent of Magic. He is so good at the game that he is known by other players as the "God of War". At the time of his coming of age ceremony, he decides to quit playing. After reading about people selling their avatars online, he attempts to earn something for his time spent in-game. Little does he know, this decision will change his life forever.

Through a series of coincidences, his avatar is sold for 3.1 billion won. He is elated, only to be crushed moments later by a money-hungry loan shark. But now that he knows he can make money from gaming, he decides to make his mark in the first-ever Virtual Reality MMORPG, Royal Road.

This is a tale of Lee Hyun's rise to the position of Emperor.

Reason to Read

Aside from the main character being insanely overpowered, he also has a very unique personality. He is very lucky, and can successfully acquire rare skills, encounter important characters and complete missions with S Rank difficulty. The plot can be considered fast-paced, though some parts can get a little boring. The romantic scene with the love interest and some real-life and drama scenes can be awkward. The action scenes are excellent, though. Overall, I assure you this is a good read.

"No Game No Life" Volume 1 Cover

"No Game No Life" Volume 1 Cover

2. No Game No Life

Alternative Title: Nō Gēmu Nō Raifu

Released: 2012

Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Ecchi, Fantasy, Harem, Romance, Shounen, Supernatural

Personal Rating: 4/5

Plot Summary

Sora and Shiro are hikikomori step-siblings that don't have much going for them in the real world. In the virtual world, however, they are known as "Blank", an undefeated gamer team. When they win a game of chess against Tet, a god from a world called Elkia, they find themselves transported there. In this world, games are used to resolve most conflicts, as citizens are unable to fight one another due to the spell known as the Ten Pledges. The step-siblings must work together to defeat sixteen species in order to challenge Tet once more, and hopefully find a way back home.

Reason to Read

Many people are hyped to read the light novel version after watching the anime. With the two MCs with unique personalities, each serious scene becomes lighthearted and comical. Moreover, the MC's overpowered intelligence makes them super strong, and I'm sure you've guessed already that they've never lost any game except to each other. Additionally, this is such a great series because each volume has them conquer a new race and face a new set of challenges.

"Tales of Gods and Demons" Cover Art

"Tales of Gods and Demons" Cover Art

3. Tales of Gods and Demons

Alternative Title: Yao Shen Ji

Released: 2015

Genre: Action, Comedy, Fantasy, Harem, Martial Arts, Romance, Xuanhuan

Personal Rating: 4/5

Plot Summary

Nie Li, a skilled Demon Spiritist, was killed by a Sage Emperor. But somehow, instead of moving on to the afterlife, he wakes up in the body of his thirteen-year-old self. He must re-train himself with the knowledge from his previous life to protect his city and defeat those who betrayed him.

Reason to Read

Tales of Gods and Demons is of the best novels I've read. The protagonist has a determined spirit, and with knowledge of his previous life (since he was transported back in time), he is so very very overpowered that he is comparable to his elders and seniors. Moreover, the plot is fast progressing, and I don't think the fighting scenes are lacking either. The way that the author describes the situation is simply excellent.

"The Tales of Brave Isagi the Demon Lord" Japanese Light Novel Cover II

"The Tales of Brave Isagi the Demon Lord" Japanese Light Novel Cover II

4. The Tales of Brave Isagi the Demon Lord

Alternative Title: Yuusha Isagi no Maou Hanashi

Released: 2014

Genre: Action/Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Harem, Mystery, Romance, Shounen, Tragedy

Personal Rating: 3/5

Plot Summary

After being summoned to a new world three years ago to defeat the Demon Lord, Isagi has finally done it. Now that things have settled down, he wants to confess his love to the female healer of his party who helped vanquished evil alongside him. He also wants to start an Adventurer's Guild to prevent anything similar from happening in the future. All seems fine and dandy, that is until he is summoned once more . . . by the Princess of the Demons! Now he has little choice but to help the demons fight the adventurers, the very people he originally fought to protect.

Reason to Read

The main character is quite original in that he had experienced being a hero, and will now experience being the enemy of humans. I also like the fact that after he had been summoned back, the world he once knew had changed so much, in a way that he couldn't predict. Though there are scenes that were written awkwardly, and too few action and fighting scenes, it’s still a good light novel to read for fun.

"LV999 Villager" Illustration

"LV999 Villager" Illustration

5. LV999 Villager

Alternative Title: LV999 no Murabito

Released: 2015

Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Fantasy, Shounen

Personal Rating: 3/5

Plot Summary

In a fantasy world, every person is given a role to play by the gods; Warrior, Fighter, Cleric, Magician, Rogue, Merchant, Hunter, Sorcerer and Villager. Those with powers go out into the world and hunt monsters for money. But a majority of the population have no such power, and they are given the weakest role, Villager. One Villager, Kagami, learns from a young age that if he wants to make a lot of money, he has to learn how to kill monsters. That is why he dedicates 20 years to training, which results in him being a LV999 Villager.

Reason to Read

If you want an insanely overpowered character, then this is the light novel for you. The MC is capable of defeating enemies with his combat skills (which could be compared to One Punch Man). The comedy is pretty great, especially in scenes with the MC’s macho girl sidekick. The light novel is written and translated quite well—particularly the fight and drama scenes.

"When a Gun Nerd Is Reincarnated to a World of Magic He Established a Harem Army With Modern Weapons!?" 3rd Volume Cover

"When a Gun Nerd Is Reincarnated to a World of Magic He Established a Harem Army With Modern Weapons!?" 3rd Volume Cover

6. When a Gun Nerd Is Reincarnated to a World of Magic He Established a Harem Army With Modern Weapons!?

Alternative Title: Gunota ga Mahou Sekai ni Tensei Shitara, Gendai Heiki de Guntai Harem o Tsukucchaimashita!?

Released: 2013

Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Ecchi, Fantasy, Harem, Romance, Seinen

Personal Rating: 3/5

Plot Summary

Hotta Youta is given a second chance after being murdered on his way home from work. Instead of moving on to the afterlife, he finds himself being carried by a bunny-eared woman! This is a gun vs magic war that Hotta finds himself in the middle of!

Reason to Read

This is one of the typical light novels where the protagonist retains the memory of his previous life and tries to build new things, in this case, guns, from those memories. With his choice of weapon, he's so overpowered that he can easily kill monsters at a distance. However, the main character has a kind and considerate personality, which means he's easily deceived. Furthermore, there are few fighting scenes in this novel, and more conversations and romantic interactions.

"Other World's Monster Breeder" Illustration

"Other World's Monster Breeder" Illustration

7. Other World's Monster Breeder

Alternative Title: Nonbiri Ikusei Shiteimasu

Released: 2015

Genre: Comedy, Ecchi, Fantasy, Harem, Mature, Romance

Personal Rating: 3/5

Plot Summary

Souta suddenly finds himself in another world and is given the unpopular profession of "Monster Tamer". But by using the skill "Absolute Domination" to his advantage, he makes quite the name for himself with an impressive collection of monsters.

Reason to Read

The light novel reminds me of Kono Suba and Pokémon. It's like Pokémon in the sense that the "Capsule Ball" resembles the obvious Poké Ball and the profession of "Monster Tamer" focuses on catching and taming monsters. On the other hand, it resembles Kono Suba wherein the MC first tested his skill on a Goddess which resulted in her being "captured".

"Problem Children Are Coming From Another World, Aren't They?" Volume 1 Cover

"Problem Children Are Coming From Another World, Aren't They?" Volume 1 Cover

8. Problem Children Are Coming From Another World, Aren't They?

Alternative Title: Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai Kara Kuru Sō Desu yo?

Released: 2011

Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Martial Arts, Shounen, Supernatural

Persona Rating: 3/5

Plot Summary

Sakamaki Izayoi, Kudou Asuka and Kasukabe Yō have been blessed with psychic powers, and thus are completely bored with normal, everyday life.

Their lives become much more exciting when they each receive an envelope, inviting them to play a high-stakes game using their abilities. They are transported to another world where they must help the No Name community regain its prestige by playing "Gift Games".

Reason to Follow

I would encourage anyone who has watched the anime adaptation to read the light novel version. Though some parts have been changed, the anime still follows the same story as the light novel. The three main protagonists are depicted with their own unique abilities. Moreover, the light novels deal with one character's perspective more often (especially dyring the action-fighting scenes) which allows the readers to really get to know each character.

"Spirit Chronicles" Cover Art

"Spirit Chronicles" Cover Art

9. Spirit Chronicles

Alternative Title: Seirei Gensouki

Released: 2018

Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama, Fantasy, Romance, Shounen, Tragedy

Personal Rating: 3/5

Plot Summary

Amakawa Haruto died before reuniting with his childhood friend who had disappeared five years before. Rio is a boy from the slums whose mother was killed in front of him when he was five-years-old. These two have nothing in common, but somehow Haruto is resurrected in Rio's body. They have to find a way to cooperate to reach their individual goals while sharing a body.

Reason to Read

The first thing you'll notice after reading this light novel is the fast-paced progression of the story, which often skips ahead in time (it will be stated that three years have passed without even describing what happened during those years). No one can really deny that the MC is seriously overpowered, and additionally, he is of royal descent. What I really like about this novel is that it does not focus on romantic interests, but on the goal of the MC for revenge, and the technological advancement of the MC's empire due to his teachings.

"Skeleton Knight, in Another World" Cover Art

"Skeleton Knight, in Another World" Cover Art

10. Skeleton Knight, in Another World

Alternative Title: Gaikotsu Kishi-sama, Tadaima Isekai e Odekake-chuu

Released: 2014

Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy, Romance, Shounen, Supernatural

Personal Rating: 3/5

Plot Summary

After falling asleep while playing an online game, Arc, the protagonist, wakes up in a different world with his avatar's skin—which happens to be a skeleton. He is equipped only with his best weapon and armor from the game. Now Arc must use his newfound abilities to find a way to get his original body back.

Reason to Read

At a glance, the prologue and character profile of the protagonist does resemble the MC of Overlord. However, this light novel's MC is a cursed holy undead, and thus could certainly get his human body back (though personality-wise, he does resemble Overlord's MC). Moreover, unlike Overlord, the MC does not have a companion. The fighting scenes are clearly described, but the plot does not really follow a definite path. Moreover, the MC's go-with-the-flow personality is a little distasteful, in my opinion.

"Lazy Dungeon Master" Illustration

"Lazy Dungeon Master" Illustration

11. Lazy Dungeon Master

Alternative Title: Zettai ni Hatarakitakunai Dungeon Master ga Damin wo Musaboru Made

Released: 2015

Genre: Fantasy, Comedy

Personal Rating: 2/5

Plot Summary

Meima Masuda loves to spend his days doing nothing. He is completely content with being lazy. That is until he is summoned to another world where he meets Rokuko, a young blonde girl who demands that he help save her dungeon. He has little choice in the matter, because as the new "Dungeon Master", if the dungeon core is destroyed, he will die.

Reason to Read

As a Dungeon Master, the main character is seriously overpowered in that he is capable of beating high-classed dungeon managers. Moreover, the main character also has the wits and brains to solve difficult situations. Unfortunately, the light novel is a bit fast-paced and some character profiles and designs (e.g., behavior and personality) don't fit the situation.

"Other World Canceller" Fan Art

"Other World Canceller" Fan Art

12. Other World Canceller

Alternative Title: Isekai no Kyansera

Released: 2015

Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama, Fantasy, Mature, Romance, Seinen

Personal Rating: 2/5

Plot Summary

Right before a giant meteor strikes earth, "Hitto" (his gamer tag) decides to spend his last moments playing his favorite game. But just when he thinks it's all over, he wakes up in a field in the game world with a single skill, "Canceller". Can Hitto make the best of this situation, despite having such an underwhelming skill? With his gaming expertise, he just might be able to become one of the most powerful players.

Reason to Read

The main character has a unique skill that allows him to cancel anything (and can be applied to many situations). Though the novel is slightly slow-paced and some parts can be boring to read—like too many conversations and redundant thoughts of some characters—the plot has been well laid-out.

"If It's for My Daughter, I'd Even Defeat a Demon King" 2nd Volume Cover

"If It's for My Daughter, I'd Even Defeat a Demon King" 2nd Volume Cover

13. If It's for My Daughter, I'd Even Defeat a Demon King

Alternative Title: Uchi no Musume no Tame Naraba, Ore wa Moshikashitara Maō mo Taoseru Kamoshirenai

Released: 2015

Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Romance, Slice of Life

Personal Rating: 2/5

Plot Summary

Dale is a skilled adventurer in his prime. During a job, he finds a young devil girl named Latina. Conflicted, he decides to take her in rather than leave her to die. He becomes her adoptive father, and together they go on exciting adventures.

Reason to Read

I remembered little about this light novel. The story revolves around the main character parenting a child he found in the forest. The MC is certainly skillful and leads a comfortable life from killing monsters in the area before finding his "daughter". One lacking aspect of this light novel is the fighting (again) and almost all situations focus on the daughter.

"Dashing Through the Blue Sky" Volume 3 Cover

"Dashing Through the Blue Sky" Volume 3 Cover

14. Dashing Through the Blue Sky

Alternative Title: Seiun wo Kakeru

Released: 2013

Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Romance, Shounen, Slice of Life, Supernatural

Personal Rating: 2/5

Plot Summary

One day, a mysterious man appears in a remote village. The mysterious man becomes a blacksmith, and greatly improves the lives of those around him with his abilities. His arrival triggered the revitalization of the village—trade became more popular and labor became easier on the villagers.

Reason to Read

Most readers, including me, would say this light novel is indeed very light—meaning it does not really include heavy conflict or problems in the story. The novel focuses mainly on the improvement of the transported MC's village as they make upgraded tools and weapons for the village. Moreover, the life of the MC is certainly peaceful, as he gets married and has a child rather early in the story. Other than that, if technological advancement and kingdom building is your thing, then this is the light novel for you.

"Adamantine Dragon in the Crystal World" Cover

"Adamantine Dragon in the Crystal World" Cover

15. Adamantine Dragon in the Crystal World

Alternative Title:

Released: 2015

Genre: Action/Adventure, Comedy

Personal Rating: 2/5

Plot Summary

In a fantasy world known as Flow, there was a Demon Emperor that was so powerful he even intimidated the Gods. Therefore, the Gods decided to banish him to another world where his magical powers are useless. He must find a way to survive in a world ruled by mecha.

Reason to Read

Mecha and magic together is an unusual combination. The MC is overpowered based on his previous life and body that fused with his current body. It's also a bit mature-themed, as he has a harem with girls who are also very overpowered. In addition, what I like most about this light novel is how the MC tries to conceal his powers.

Some Overpowered Recommendations

That ends my list of the best light novels with overpowered main characters. I hope you've enjoyed the recommendations. Are there any titles that I've missed? Let me know in the comments below!

© 2017 Zett Noir Cromwell

Comments

dcWF on April 20, 2020:

Where the heck is the A Certain Magical Index

EA on March 17, 2020:

So for isekai canceler, he could just stop the rotation of the planet hmmmmmm

Error on January 27, 2020:

Also, The New Gate has a really OP MC but maybe this is too obvious

What on January 22, 2020:

Are you ACTUALLY recommending "For My Daughter, I Might Even Be Able to Defeat the Demon King" to the parenting theme lovers? Uhhh

Helloda on August 19, 2019:

The creator of the post is a genious, i had read so many light novels, isekai, and chinese novels, i didn't have anymore, until i found this post. By the way, 4/5 to Tales of Demons and Gods is perfect, i would love it if you could do another one but with chinese novels like tales of demons and gods, thank youuuu.

Hello on April 25, 2019:

Recommend Overgeared, Everyone Else is a Returnee, I Reincarnated For Nothing, Half Prince, Expecting to Fall into Ruin I Aim to Become A BlackSmith, The Seed of Evolution; Before I Knew It I Was One Of The Champions.

nightdash on March 14, 2019:

I recommend Overgeared, Master Hunter K, Reincarnator, Main character hides his strength, stop, friendly fire, Emperor of Solo Play, etc

Rock on November 23, 2018:

How about adding some Xianxia/Wuxia and Korean novels to the bunch. Just like I Shall Seal the Heavens, Renegade Immortal for example. The protagonists from these novels start weak but by the end of the novel, they could basically create and destroy universes. And how about, Overgeared and Seoul Station Necromancer for Korean? Overgeared is, as the title says, an Overgeared person that destroys people in the VMMORPG world of Satisfy, plus the godly character development is a delicious side dish. Seoul Station Necromancer if you also want an OP mc that is basically a 1 man army

Sunnisong on November 22, 2018:

I usually don't read many review lists, but I quite liked your explanantions and recommendations. I have saved several of the suggested light novels to read now! And indirectly you helped me FINALLY, finally figure out what the name of the light novel I've been searching for, Arifureta. (Didn't finish it, but remembered it started off strong and was curious if it was worth going back and finishing)

Очередной аноним on November 22, 2018:

I would also recommend reading these:

1. Kumo Desu ga, Nani ka? (I’m A Spider, So What?)

2. Dungeon Defense

3. Overlord (Well, there was no chance to leave it without a mention, huh? However it seems like you've already read it, although not included it in the list.)

I'm also planning on reading The Saga of Tanya the Evil. I can't include it since I haven't read it yet, so some reviews may be helpful :)

Zett Noir Cromwell (author) from Cebu City, Cebu, Philippines on October 26, 2018:

Thanks for the suggestion! I'll go take a read on that!

ZeroGravity on October 24, 2018:

Loved your suggestions. Looking at your 4 rated novels which are already my favorite I decided that if I find even one 4 rated novel I haven't read I am going to read it. Sadly I have already read all the 4s. Maybe I might try one of your 3s. Lastly a heads up madsnail author of TDG has messed up the novel once he started manuha trust me u are going to bang your head about the writing once you reach the last/recent 30 chapters. and have a look at Against the Gods U will Love it I can vouch for that.

han on October 16, 2018:

it seems like most of the books are aiming for a male reader

StarMartial on August 28, 2018:

Hey, you should have added I SHALL SEAL THE HEAVEN.

Sypnosis: If I want something, the heavens better have it. If I don’t want something, the heavens better not have it! This is a story which originates between the Eighth and Ninth Mountains, a world in which “My fate is to seal the heavens like a demon!”

momo on August 27, 2018:

Overlord? 0_0 you really MUST read it its so freaking good

Zett Noir Cromwell (author) from Cebu City, Cebu, Philippines on July 21, 2018:

Yeah. I think so too.

I've read a few chapters back then and MC sure is OP, especially leading a race.

99 on July 21, 2018:

The death mage that doesn't want a fourth time would also fit in here. I've read up to where it is updated (chapter 164) and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Zett Noir Cromwell (author) from Cebu City, Cebu, Philippines on July 13, 2018:

Wow. You must really be one of the avid readers like me!

66 on July 12, 2018:

I have read 3 of those LN

mumfie on May 08, 2018:

Was a good list but when Tales of demons and Gods got included i got the impression that it darkened the whole list as a whole by what was written...

In my personal truth it is just a read for those who do not care and are simply waiting for more updates on others, nothing, i mean nothing sets it apart from the others with non existing personality's for the supporting cast. and since this is a universal truth if you look at it with scrutinizing eyes and compare it with others, it would then come in to question if the others are truly good or bad as the writer says

Gill on March 19, 2018:

Thanks for the recommendations. I found many that novels that I have not read. I also like your description of MC’s personalities it helps quite a lot. Looking for another list in the future.