Set in a medieval Europe-inspired dark fantasy world, the story centers on the characters of Guts, a lone mercenary, and Griffith, the leader of a mercenary band called the "Band of the Hawk". Themes of isolation, camaraderie, and the question of whether humanity is fundamentally good or evil pervade the story, as it explores both the best and worst of human nature. Both the manga and anime are noted for their use of graphic violence and sexual content. Miura premiered a prototype of Berserk in 1988.
The actual series began the following year in the now-defunct magazine Monthly Animal House, which was replaced in 1992 by the semimonthly magazine Young Animal, where Berserkcontinues to be serialized intermittently.
The series was adapted into a twenty-five episode anime series covering the series' Golden Age arc by Oriental Light and Magic from October 7, 1997 to March 31, 1998.
A trilogy of films, Berserk: The Golden Age Arc, was released beginning in 2012.
A second anime adaptation began broadcasting on July 1, 2016.