GUNNM/Battle Angel Alita Manga Order

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Gunnm or Battle Angel Alita is a Japanese cyberpunk manga series written and illustrated by Yukito Kishiro.

The Story of Gunnm/Battle Angel Alita

Set in a post-apocalyptic future, this is the story of Alita, a cyborg found in a dump by a cybernetic doctor who rebuilds her and take care of her.

Alita has lost her memories, with one exception: she remembers the legendary cyborg martial art Panzer Kunst. This motivates her to become a bounty hunter as she tries to rediscover her past, a journey that will impact people around her.

Gunnm is the Japanese name of the manga that was changed to Battle Angel Alita in English. While the main character is named Gally in Japanese, she is called Alita in the English version. Other names have also been changed in English.

Our Manga Order to the Gunnm/Battle Angel Alita Franchise

Battle Angel Alita consists of three manga series and several side stories.

Battle Angel Alita, the original manga and its spin-offs

Battle Angel Alita (1990-1995)
The original manga consisting of 9 volumes or 5 volumes in the Deluxe Edition. As the story expanded a few years later, the last chapters/original ending was made obsolete and no longer canon. The official story now stops around chapter 51 (this is generally indicated in most editions nowadays).

Battle Angel Alita: Last Order (2000-2014)
A direct sequel to the original manga in which Alita continues her quest to discover her mysterious past. It consists of 19 volumes (5 volumes in the Omnibus edition, an incomplete collection as it only contains the first 15 volumes).

Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle (2014-present)
Considered the last chapter in the franchise, the story is still ongoing and alternate between two timelines: the first takes place directly after Last Order, while the other is set during Alita’s childhood.

Battle Angel Alita: Holy Night & Other Stories (1997-2006)
Spin-off series released in a single volume that collects four short stories: Holy Night, Sonic Finger, Hometown and Barjack Rhapsody. More info on these below!

Ashen Victor (1995-1996)
A prequel story taking place in the same universe as Gunnm but has no link with Alita’s story. The events related happened 6 years prior to the first volume of Battle Angel Alita. This is an optional reading, as the story has no impact on the main story.

Alita Battle Angel: Your Complete Manga Order

You will notice that the prequel stories are not placed at the beginning of this reading order. This is a guide for first-time readers, where it is not advised to read the prequel before the original manga.

Battle Angel Alita (GUNNM)

Originally, the manga was published in nine volumes by VIZ Media. Kodansha Comics, the current English publisher, has re-edited in part this collection:

Battle Angel Alita Vol. 1
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 2
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 3
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 4
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 5
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 6
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 7
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 8
Battle Angel Alita Vol. 9
Ashen Victor: Motorball Diaries From The World Of Battle Angel Alita

The manga was republished in Deluxe edition a few years ago:

Battle Angel Alita Deluxe 1 (Contains Vol. 1-2)
Battle Angel Alita Deluxe 2 (Contains Vol. 3-4)
Battle Angel Alita Deluxe 3 (Contains Vol. 5-6)
Battle Angel Alita Deluxe 4 (Contains Vol. 7-8)
Battle Angel Alita Deluxe 5 (Contains Vol. 9 & Ashen Victor)

You can also buy the boxset for the Deluxe edition of Battle Angel Alita.

Battle Angel Alita: Last Order (GUNNM: Last Order)

Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 1
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 2
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 3
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 4
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 5
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 6
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 7
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 8
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 9
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 10
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 11
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 12
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 13
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 14
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 15
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 16
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 17
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 18
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Vol. 19

Kodansha Comics has released an Omnibus Collection, but has never finished the publication. Those 5 Omnibus covers the fifteen first volumes:

Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Omnibus Vol. 1
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Omnibus Vol. 2
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Omnibus Vol. 3
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Omnibus Vol. 4
Battle Angel Alita: Last Order Omnibus Vol. 5

Battle Angel Alita, the Short Stories

Finally, we think you can now dive into all four short stories! Though those side stories take place during Battle Angel Alita and Last Order, they contain some spoilers and are told in a way that considers you are familiar with the stories. To avoid any form of spoilers for new readers, we think this is the best moment to read them.

Battle Angel Alita: Holy Night & Other Stories

For those who want to read them in chronological order, here are some details:

Holy Night is set 6-5 years before the start of volume 1
Sonic Finger takes place between volume 4 and 5 of the original manga
Hometown is set between the first and second chapter of volume 6 of the original manga
Barjack Rhapsody happens after Last Order volume 2

Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle (GUNNM: Mars Chronicle)

Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 1
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 2
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 3
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 4
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 5
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 6
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 7
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 8
Battle Angel Alita: Mars Chronicle Vol. 9

More About Battle Angel Alita

Alita: Battle Angel, the Movie Universe

As a fan of the manga, James Cameron acquired the rights to “Alita: Battle Angel” with 20th Century Fox in the early 2000s. Initially keen on directing the adaptation himself, the project was constantly delayed due to his Avatar commitments and the challenge of capturing the manga’s authentic visual style. Eventually, in 2016, he hired Robert Rodriguez as director, with Rosa Salazar using motion-capture technology for the lead role of Alita. The movie was released at the beginning of the year 2019.

Both James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez have hinted at sequel plans, a topic still alive in 2023, albeit with limited details available.

Alita: Battle Angel – Iron City (2018)
A tie-in novel written by Pat Cadigan serving as a prequel to the movie
Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
Directed by Robert Rodriguez and written by James Cameron and Laeta Kalogridis. Starring Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Ed Skrein, Jackie Earle Haley.
Alita: Battle Angel – The Art and Making of the Movie (2019)
Only available used or second hand market, this book offers a behind the scene look at the movie, with concept art, photos and interviews.

About the author of Battle Angel Alita

Born on March 20, 1967, in Japan, Yukito Kishiro is a celebrated manga artist who rose to prominence with Gunnm (Battle Angel Alita) in the nineties.

Yukito’s artistic journey began early. He started drawing monsters during kindergarten and continued to draw as he grew older. Despite his father telling him not to pursue a career as an artist because he “could not make a living of it”, this comment obviously didn’t deter him and he received the “Best Newcomer Manga Artist Award” from Shonen Sunday Magazine for his 1984 short story, Kikai.

In 1990, Yukito launched Gunnm in Business Jump magazine. However, a motorcycle accident in 1994 led to physical and psychological injuries, forcing an earlier-than-expected conclusion to his manga.

Yukito didn’t left the universe of Alita behind him very long, as he first continued his work with the video game Gunnm: Kasei no Kioku, released on PlayStation in 1998. He also penned several short stories and reignited the Gunnm series with the sequel, Last Order, sparked by the Deluxe edition’s re-release of his manga series.

Expanding the Gunnm/Battle Angel Alita universe, Yukito created a third manga series, Chronicle, while a movie adaptation was released in 2019. Additionally, Yukito is also the creator of Aqua Knight, a fantasy seinen that he set aside to focus on Last Order.

Want to read more cyberpunk manga? There are several must-read in the genre, including Akira, Ghost in the Shell and Blame!