Definition of mecha in US English:



  • (in anime, manga, etc.) a large armored robot, typically controlled by a person riding inside the robot itself.

    ‘I loved the design of the giant mecha, and how it was integrated into the look of the show’
    as modifier ‘a series of mecha battles that are action-packed’
    • ‘After a good half-minute of character development, our heroes cart out their mecha for some soporific combat.’
    • ‘Flanking the forward bulge of the mecha are two 40 mm, liquid-cooled auto-cannons, effective against small targets, such as tanks and APCs.’
    • ‘The mecha action is really secondary to the show.’
    • ‘Most of the inexperienced pilots controlling the mecha are killed.’
    • ‘Earth is repeatedly attacked by the Mimetic Beasts, leaving Goh and Anna to defend it in their battle mechas.’
    • ‘Mecha fans should enjoy its fusion of formula elements with classic American hard SF.’
    • ‘A team of ace pilots in convertible mecha take to the skies in order to save the world.’
    • ‘In between the jokes, there is plenty of space battle action, liberally peppered with clean CG mecha.’
    • ‘The biggest problem is the mechas, which stick out like sore thumbs from the rest of the animation.’
    • ‘They got to work on a revised finale, this time offering mainstream audiences all the mecha action they demanded.’


1980s: Japanese meka, shortened from mekanizumu ‘mechanism’, mekanikaru ‘mechanical’, etc.