Top 10 Anime Characters Who Went From Rival To Friend


The last episode of Ranking of kings was released on March 25, 2022 and no one could have seen Daida and Miranjo getting engaged. This is especially shocking because it was a woman who used Daida and brought her kingdom close to ruin.

It is often in anime that former rivals become friends. Sometimes the reasons are the circumstances of the situation, other times a character seeks redemption when they see the error in their ways. Whatever the reasons, characters who once stood as their own worst enemies often become each other’s most treasured friends.

Serpico (Berserk)

Serpico in the Berserk manga.

Initially, Serpico wasn’t as antagonistic towards Guts as Farnese, but he did whatever he felt was necessary to protect Farnese. However, as Farnese becomes a true member of the group, Serpico begins to do so as well.


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Despite all the reasons to hate Farnese, Serpico is extremely loyal to him. The same persists as he sees what kind of man Guts really is. Guts often fights horribly close battles and is usually the only muscle for those fights. However, Serpico became a friend he could lean on from time to time to get the job done. If these two hadn’t become friends, they would both have been dead ages ago. In many ways, Serpico contrasts with Griffith, and this time Guts won’t be betrayed.

Katsuki Bakugo (My Hero Academia)

Katsuki Bokugo smiles during a fight in My Hero Academia

Bakugo has long had a burning hatred towards Midoriya and has always refused to be less than him. Sometimes you can wonder if they were friends earlier in the series, but it wasn’t until recently that Bakugo bared his heart and apologized to Midoriya for all the wrong he did.

The relationship between Bakugo and Midoriya throughout my hero academia is the one that continues to excite. As the manga nears its conclusion, readers see a new relationship blossom between these different characters from the previous one. Now true friends, not fierce rivals. Midoriya always strived to be the hero, to save others no matter the cost. But when it was worn out, it was Bakugo who rescued it from obscurity.

Piccolo (Dragon Ball Z)

One of the most iconic characters in dragonball universe, Piccolo was once one of Goku’s greatest enemies. In fact, he was born for the sole purpose of killing Goku to avenge his father’s death. It’s rather poetic that Piccolo, the son of King Piccolo, sacrifices himself for the son of his father’s mortal enemy, Gohan.

Related: Top 10 Best Friendships In Dragon Ball

Piccolo served as the main character in the series and played an important role as a mentor who was too important in the series, allowing Goku to rest quietly in the afterlife as he leaves his friend to form his sons. Goku may have brought the fusion technique to Earth, but it’s really Piccolo who pushes Goten and Trunks to master it.

Farnese (Berserk)

At first, Farnese was a religious fanatic who would stop at nothing to try to ruin Guts. In the end, events unfolded around her and she saw that Guts might not be wrong. She became a new person even learning magic, which she officially considered a heretic.

Her role as Casca’s guardian was incredibly important to Guts, bonding the three of them. Farnese’s initial appearance is that of a selfish woman, but this changes drastically with the time she spends with Guts and the others. When she visits her family to get a ship, she agrees to stay with them and marry Roderick although that is what she really wanted.

Hiei (Yu Yu Hakusho)

Hiei by Yu Yu Hakusho

Hiei first emerges as Yusuke’s toughest battle yet and immediately makes Yusuke his goal to surpass from there. They became allies simply by circumstance, but as they fight side by side, they end up becoming close friends.

Hiei could have easily been written off at the end of his arc, but his character’s potential was seen and he became the most useful supporting character in Yu Yu Hakusho. Hiei has saved the others numerous times and was even willing to sacrifice the use of his arm to secure victory. Hiei’s support on the show is vital and even though his ambitions sometimes seem questionable, he always chooses the right decision.

Luxus Dreyar (Fairy Tail)

Laxus Dreyar frowning in Fairy Tail

Laxus’ character journey is the most intriguing of Natsu’s previous foes. Laxus is a man who almost seemed like Fairy Tail’s ideal wizard. However, his ambition for power and leadership was too overwhelming and pushed him to the point where he was willing to sacrifice all of Magnolia.

Related: 10 Disney Villains Who Would Make Great Friends

Laxus underwent a journey via exile where he eventually transformed into a much kinder man. He became a wizard willing to sacrifice himself for his friends at any cost. His character has long been beloved by fans and it is widely believed that he will eventually be the next Guild Master of Fairy Tail. His character initially represented a man who didn’t deserve to be in a magic guild to a man who represented what a guild master should be.

Gaara (Naruto)

Naruto is known to change his enemies to his side through his words and his strength. Gaara was truly the first person Naruto really connected with (except maybe Sasuke) upon seeing the similar pains of loneliness and rejection.

Naruto became Gaara’s first friend, forming an adorable friendship. Gaara was rampant evil before, a sense of suspense could be felt every time he appeared on the pages or on screen. But once he’s become an ally, there’s a sense of comfort and awe when he appears. Gaara continued to motivate Naruto, seeing that he was able to overcome the oppression he suffered from his village and become its leader – the Kazekage.

Suzaku Kururugi (Code Geass)

Suzaku seems determined

Suzaku and Lelouch share one of anime’s most interesting dynamics and hate each other and share an incredible friendship. The two reach dark places to eventually become allies one last time and it is through this that they can achieve the miracle of world peace.

It is often said in Code Geass that when Lelouch and Suzaku team up, they can do anything. However, due to separate ideals throughout most of the series, it seems almost impossible for them to become allies for good. Lelouch’s ideals are “the end justifies the means”, as Suzaku uses the system and tries to change things from within without bloodshed. In the end, however, their ideals change and they are able to save the world together. Suzaku is Lelouch’s most important character at the end of the series and pursues his will, becoming a hero and a true knight of justice.

Vegeta (Dragon Ball Z)

Vegeta wears a pink shirt and looks crazy in Dragon Ball Z

The rivalry between Goku and Vegeta was often one-sided, with Goku seeing Vegeta as a friend and ally, and Vegeta seeing Goku as a rival and a threat. However, in the final arc of Dragon Ball Zthere is an acknowledgment from Vegeta that puts aside his bitterness and hatred towards Goku.

Vegeta as a friend was able to pose as a hero, so to speak, for Earth when Goku couldn’t. While strength is often a driving force for saiyans, Vegeta seems to seek to protect others more than even Goku. Vegeta has sought more than strength and is often even more heroic than Goku. Vegeta’s ancestry to one of the “good guys” has made him a fan favorite and even the deuteragonist of Dragon Ball Super.

Takasugi Shinsuke (Gintama)


The rivalry between Takasugi and Gintoki is legendary and it was this character who always initially appeared as the main antagonist of the series. However, as more is learned about Takasugi, his motives begin to make more sense. Eventually, he and Gintoki reconcile and fight as friends one last time in the series’ final battle.

Takasugi acts as a foil for Gintoki and if their roles had been reversed, they might have acted the same way with the same conclusions. While Takasugi led a dark path, he eventually found the path of light. The story focuses much more on Takasugi towards the end than other supporting characters as he becomes an ally and his character ends beautifully giving one of the anime’s biggest conclusions.

Next: 10 Times Anime Villains Beat The Hero

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