• Games-based manhwa offers readers immersive experiences by combining virtual reality and the real world, making it an exciting subgenre of manhwa.
  • The Slumbering Ranker, L.A.G, and Overgeared are some of the best picks in the game manhwa subgenre, offering action, fantasy, and adventure.
  • These game manhwa explore themes like technology's influence on storytelling, the fusion of reality and virtual reality, and the potential of virtual reality gaming.

Games-based manhwa transports readers into their vast realities where they can experience the world of digital gaming. This subgenre of manhwa offers readers immersive and thrilling experiences as they can seamlessly mesh virtual reality and the fictional real world by combining fantasy, adventure, and technological elements.

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For game manhwa, its allure lies in the ability to explore the limitless potential that virtual reality offers and how the genre can provide an exploration of technology’s influence on storytelling, making it an exciting and dynamic subgenre of the broader manhwa world. As regards the subgenre, below are some of the best picks of the bunch.

10 The Slumbering Ranker

Anime-planet Rating: 4.1/5

  • Author: Chun Jin-Hee
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Fantasy, Game

The Slumbering Ranker, like most game manhwa, is based on virtual reality gaming and revolves around the central character, Lee Hyunsung, who becomes an overpowered player after spending 10,000 hours within Idea, the most popular online game.

He gains an exclusive skill that can only be activated by sleeping, allowing him to fight and level up. After acquiring what is known as the God rank class, it remains to be seen whether Hyunsung can become a top ranker within the game or if he is only experiencing a dream that is too good to be true.

9 L.A.G

Anime-planet Rating: 4.2/5

  • Author: Hyun Ahm
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Drama, Fantasy, Horror, Sci-Fi

The manhwa takes place in an unknown space called L.A.G, where humans awaken and can use skills and abilities to fight against monsters that appear on each floor room of L.A.G. The goal of L.A.G is to survive the hellish missions and objectives of each floor and get to the bottom floor. The story revolves around the regressor protagonist who has repeated life and death countless times within L.A.G.

However, in his current life, he can own an unlimited amount of passive skills to help complete his missions and ultimately escape L.A.G. Rather than have knowledge of the future as a regressor, in this new life, he will not have any understanding of what is to come until it happens, leaving him to rely on only his skills to find an escape from the deadly L.A.G.

8 Overgeared

Anime-planet Rating: 4.2/5

  • Author: Park Saenal
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Fantasy

The adventure manhwa is the typical game manhwa that features the fusion of reality and virtual reality. The story focuses on the central character, Shin Young-Woo, also known as Grid, in the world’s best virtual reality game. Grid always has ill luck revolving around him, having lived a reasonably tough life in reality and the game.

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His luck starts to turn around when he earns himself a special class during a quest: the legendary smithing class known as Pagma’s Successor. With his newly acquired skills, Young-Woo builds the life he has always wanted for himself within and outside the game.

7 Murim Login

Anime-planet Rating: 4.3/5

  • Author: Zero BIG, Jang Cheolbyeok
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy

Murim Login combines a fair number of genres and subgenres and manages to top it off with its game setting. The manhwa is set in a reality where humans can become Hunters and thrive by hunting monsters that spawn from the ‘Gates’ while also amassing skills and leveling up. The story follows Jin Tae-Kyung, an E-rank hunter who accidentally picks up a VR (Virtual Reality) game machine and logs into the game. Tae-Kyung is immediately transported into the world of the game, which is set in the world of Martial Arts.

After arduous ordeals and training, Tae-Kyug can finally escape the game and return to the real world. However, the strength and skills he receives in the game follow him into the real world, but out of care for his NPC friends within the game, Tae-Kyung decides to return to the world of Murim.


6 Hardcore Leveling Warrior

Anime-planet Rating: 4.0/5

  • Author: Kim Sehoon
  • Release Years: 2016-2022
  • Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy

Hardcore Leveling Warrior immaculately depicts how the lines between reality and virtual reality could easily blur into each other. The series is centered on the show’s protagonist, Gong Won-Ho, the former No.1 ranked player in the world’s most popular virtual reality game, Lucid Adventure.

Gong Won-Ho loses all he has worked for after he is defeated by a mysterious player during a quest. He is stripped of all his stats and skills and is returned to Level 1 from Level 99. With nothing left to him, Gong Won-Ho sets out on a journey of redemption to regain his rank and, at the same time, earn enough money to settle all the debts he has racked up in the real world.

5 The Gamer

Anime-planet Rating: 4.1/5

  • Author: Seong Sangyoung, Sangah
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Fantasy, Action

The Gamer entirely fuses reality and virtual reality into one game-like real-life simulation, which is experienced through the eyes of the protagonist, Han Jihan. The story follows the life of Han Jihan, a regular high school student who suddenly develops a unique ability where his entire world becomes a game-like simulation.

After gaining this ability, Jihan can now see things like the stats of items and the power levels of people around him. He can even gain skills and level up. What unfolds afterward is Jihan’s exploration of the mysteries of his new abilities and the surrounding events of his decisions regarding them.

4 Mystic Musketeer

Anime-planet Rating: 4.0/5

  • Author: Lee Subaek, Gpli
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Fantasy

Mystic Musketeer is about the hyper-realistic virtual reality game called Middle Earth. The series focuses on the former army sniper, Ha Leeha, who, due to an unfortunate accident, lost his ability to walk and became paraplegic. Out of pity and consideration for his emotions, Ha Leeha is gifted the virtual reality game Middle Earth by his mother and cousin.

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Presented with the opportunity of a new life, Ha Leeha devotes himself to the game to make real-world money from his achievements. However, things are already off to a bad start as he somehow selected the lowest-tier class: the musketeer class. Whether his real-life marksman qualities will be used in Middle Earth remains to be seen.

3 Taming Master

Anime-planet Rating: 4.0/5

  • Author: Park Taeseok, Bingbinggo
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Fantasy

Taming Master is the game manhwa staple; the series embodies every aspect of the subgenre, ranging from its visuals to its infusion of virtual reality. The manhwa is set in an alternate reality but takes place in the virtual reality game Kailan, the world’s largest-scale virtual reality game. The story follows the central character, Park Jinsung, also known as Ian, who is a well-respected player in the online gaming world.

After the new updates to Kailan, Ian decides to reset his level 93 in-game character to acquire a hidden class, but Ian picks Kailan’s most useless class: The Summoner class. To compound his problems, he is placed on academic probation by his lecturer in college as a result of a bet between the two. With Kailan being reputable for its hellish leveling system, Ian must level up his character to the level of his previously reset character within two months.

2 Pick Me Up: Infinite Gatcha

Anime-planet Rating: 4.2/5

  • Author: Wasakbasak, Hermode
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Fantasy

Pick Me Up seamlessly fuses the Isekai and game genres to produce a captivating reading experience. The series is set in an alternate world where mobile games are commonplace. In this world, the Gacha mobile game is infamous for its outrageous difficulty. The story is centered on the central character Loki, also known as Han Yslat, the master gamer ranked 5th in the world.

While raiding a dungeon in the game, Loki loses consciousness and awakens as the in-game character, Han Yslat, a 1-star level one hero. To find a way to escape the game, he must lead his newbie master and heroes with him to the 100th level and clear the game.

1 The Game That I Came From

Anime-planet Rating: 4.0/5

  • Author: MOKF 黑鸟社
  • Release Years: Ongoing
  • Genre: Action, Adventure, Fantasy

The Game That I Came From is a manhwa that almost unifies reality and virtual reality through the premise of the story’s ability concept. The manhwa blurs the lines separating the two so much that both realities are almost identical. However, the manhwa’s ability to mesh both realities and equally provide thrilling entertainment places it atop this pile. The story takes place in a world where humans can get superhuman abilities once they max out their in-game levels.

The protagonist, Ling Ce, finally obtains this after years of hard work and struggles, but he gets worthless abilities. He is still in disbelief at his ill luck when a mysterious power suddenly transports him back to three years before. Now, back in the past and retaining all the memories of his previous life, Ling Ce will do all he can to change the outcome of his life.