->''In the caves behind my house, I found a softer world. They understand what I had to do for love. They don't believe in restraining orders.''

''[[http://www.asofterworld.com A Softer World]]'' is a PhotoComic, full of dark surrealist comedy and just plain weird stuff. Generally, Emily Horne takes the photographs and Joey Comeau writes the captions. The comics often focus on death, love, loneliness, or other similarly heavy themes. There are few if any actual characters, apart from Baby Doom (now deceased) and a small cat.

In [[StrictlyFormula almost every comic]] slightly cropped or zoomed versions of one photograph are arranged into 3 panels, with a short line of text over each one; the writing is usually divided into a straight line, a {{subversion}} and [[{{Bathos}} an over-the-top punchline]]. A frequent variation will have a second punchline in the [[AltText rollover text]].

Shares a forum, [[http://www.truthandbeautybombs.com/bb/index.php Truth and Beauty Bombs]], with ''Webcomic/DinosaurComics'' and ''The PerryBibleFellowship''.

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!!This comic features examples of:
* AffectionateParody:
** [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=338 This particular strip]] is a parody of the ''Webcomic/{{XKCD}}'' formula.
** ''Webcomic/{{XKCD}}'' returns the favour [[http://xkcd.com/144/ like this.]]
* AllJustADream: What the narrator would like to see in the newspapers, for once.
* AlwaysABiggerFish: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=1075 "i have never seen them scared before"]]
* AltText
* BadassGrandma: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=226 "I made a shank from my dentures."]]
* {{Bathos}}: The main source of the strip's humor.
* BeautifulDreamer: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=656 But that's not good enough.]]
* BestYearsOfYourLife: Over a picture of [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=665 two kids on a ship]].
--> "Childhood is the best part of life. So don't worry, kids. [[BlackComedy You won't be missing out on much.]]" (AltText: "I honestly thought the iceberg would chicken out first.")
* BlackComedy: When the strips are humorous at all. It's also common for the actual strip to be poignant but have darkly humorous alt-text.
* CallBack: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=26 truth and]] [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=227 beauty]] [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=667 bombs]].
* CameBackWrong: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=668 Although the narrator doesn't mind.]]
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=232 "Get off your ass if you're hungry, you lazy zombie fuck."]]
* TheChessmaster: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=364 Subverted painfully]].
* CozyCatastrophe: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=102 "Atomic war means no traffic in the mornings, no bills in the mail. I can stay in bed with you all day."]]
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=920 You, me, and a zombie outbreak.]] Don't answer now. But be careful not to wait too long either. (I can't think of anyone I'd rather share my ammo with.)
* CuteKitten: "PrideAndPrejudice [[RecycledInSPACE with kittens]]. [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=427 No]], Kittens and Kittens and even more kittens, oh my goodness, by Jane Austen."
* DeadSparks: Quite a few.
* DealWithTheDevil: "I sold my soul to the devil, but didn't get paid or anything. He said it'd be good experience."
* DeathByOriginStory: "[[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=314 I never wanted anything to happen to my parents...]]"
* DefiantToTheEnd: "[[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=791 I fought my way into this world. I'll fight my way out.]]"
* DestructiveRomance: Quite a few.
** "[[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=709 I love you the way a knife loves a heart,]] the way a bomb loves a crowd, the way your mother warned you about, essentially."
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=876 "Our love is a forest fire]] and we are the little things that live in the trees."
* {{Disneyfication}}: Subverted. "I asked for a fairy tale romance. [[GoneHorriblyRight In my defense]], I've never read any actual fairy tales. [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=528 (First time I've ever wished for a disney version.)"]]
* DontFearTheReaper: "[[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=400 Before we met, I was so afraid of dying.]] But if the end comes today this will have been enough."
* DoomyDoomsOfDoom: Baby Doom.
* DyingDream: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=228 "This is the fifth afternoon we've spent just making cupcakes.]] Maybe we didn't survive that crash."
* EvilIsCool: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=972 "You aren't a very good person]], but god damn, you make bad look awesome." [[invoked]]
* FairCop: "[[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=482 I don't mean to seem disrespectful officer]], but god damn. I want, like, three of you."
* FairyTale: See Disneyfication.
* FlippingTheTable: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=586 Fuck this table and fuck you!]]
* GodwinsLaw: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=803 Zig-zagged]] - "People who compare every petty evil to Hitler...are worse than {{Dracula}}!"
* HappilyFailedSuicide:
-->I took a bottle of pills when I found the photographs of them together / But instead of dying I pooped all over our bed / which is a funnier story, in the long run.
* HitlerAteSugar: In the alt text of [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=716 number 716]].
* IJustWantToBeSpecial: "I woke up in the woods covered in blood. Which means I'm either crazy or a werewolf. But I'm not a nobody."
* ILikeMyXLikeILikeMyY
* IncompatibleOrientation: "Love you. Miss you. Wish you weren't queer."
* KillTheGod: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=244 "God? You're next."]]
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=909 But the real version. Where the ant let the grasshopper die.]]
* KnockKnockJoke: Often used, and often twisted.
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=30 "I can't remember" she says and starts to cry.]]
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=732 "It's the police, sir. Open the door. There's been an accident."]]
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=268 "Who's where, grandma? Did you take your medicine?"]]
* LivingStatue: But they've all seen enough to know not to show it.
* LoveMakesYouCrazy: "I get a crazy impulse when you smile at me. Like I want to step in front of a bus, in a good way."
** Then there's this, which may cross over with LoveMakesYouEvil...
--> "I want people to tell their children terrifying stories about the things we did."
--> "For love."
* MamaBear: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=638 Inverted.]]
* MediaWatchdog: Parodied.
* {{Metaphorgotten}}:
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=654 How should one serve revenge?]]
** [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=662 An addendum to the Sphinx's riddle.]]
** "[[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=735 I usually sleep in, but not today.]] Today I wake like the Kraken! Weird and damp. ([[AltText Surrounded by terrified fishermen.]])"
* {{Nerd}}: Some of the "characters". Possibly the author himself.
* NiceToTheWaiter: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=716 Subverted and parodied]].
-->If someone is nice to you but mean to the waiter,
-->good.
-->A waiter killed my whole family.
* NotBigEnoughForTheTwoOfUs: "This town isn't big enough for the two of us. ... Let's run away together!"
* OneTrueThreesome:[[invoked]] "Okay, you don't think 'threepover' is funny. But I still want to sleep with you both."
* ParentalAbandonment: Played for equal measures of laughs and drama.
* PleaseWakeUp: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=656 Please don't leave me alone with our stupid children.]]
* PlatonicLifePartners: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=946 "You and I will never be a great love story.]] That's okay! Let's see what kind of story we'll be! (Ooh! Ooh! I hope it's science fiction.)"
** [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=1113 "but i do want to hang out with you for basically the rest of my life"]]
* ProtocolPeril: "'It's a compliment in their culture.' ... I am never believing anything you say again. ([[NoodleIncident Now come bail me out.]])"
* RageAgainstTheHeavens:
--> "Operator, put God on. Yes, I'll hold."..."God? You're next."
** "[[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=964 Mm, Girl. Did it hurt?]] When you fell from heaven? For rebelling against God?"
* RemixComic: There's an entire [[http://community.livejournal.com/askatingworld community]] devoted to resetting the comics to figure skaters.
** This seems to be catching:
** ''{{Glee}}'' has [[http://asoftergleeworld.tumblr.com two]] [[http://asofterworldofglee.tumblr.com separate]] ''ASW'' remix Website/{{Tumblr}}s.
** ''Series/DoctorWho'' [[http://adoctorworld.tumblr.com/]].
** ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' [[http://asofterequestria.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' [[http://asofterhome.tumblr.com/]].[[http://asofterhome2.tumblr.com/]]
** ''VideoGame/EarthBound'', including the general ''Mother'' [[http://asofterearth.tumblr.com/ series]].
** ''KingdomHearts'' [[http://asofterkh.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Series/KaizokuSentaiGokaiger'' [[http://apirateworld.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Franchise/DragonAge'' [[http://asofterthedas.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Manga/AxisPowersHetalia'' [[http://ahetaliaworld.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Literature/TheHungerGames'' [[http://asofterhungergames.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Series/ParksAndRecreation'' [[http://asofterpawnee.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Franchise/MassEffect'' [[http://asoftereffect.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Franchise/StarTrek'' [[http://asoftertrek.tumblr.com/]]
** ''WebSite/ThatGuyWithTheGlasses'' [[http://asoftertgwtg.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Film/TheAvengers'' [[http://asofteravenger.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'' [[http://asofter221b.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Series/TeenWolf'' [[http://asofterteenwolf.tumblr.com/]]
** ''VideoGame/GhostTrick'' [[http://asoftertrick.tumblr.com/]]
** ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou'' [[http://asofterworldendswithyou.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Franchise/TheSlenderManMythos'' [[http://aslenderworld.tumblr.com/]]
** ''Podcast/WelcomeToNightVale'' [[http://asofternightvale.tumblr.com/]]
** ''VideoGame/{{Uncharted}}'' [[http://an-uncharted-world.tumblr.com/]]
** ''[[VisualNovel/NineHoursNinePersonsNineDoors Zero]] [[VisualNovel/VirtuesLastReward Escape]]'' [[http://kiichu.tumblr.com/tagged/A-Nonary-World]], [[http://www.tumblr.com/search/a+nonary+world]]
** ''WebOriginal/{{Fandomstuck}}'' [[http://asofterfandomstuck.tumblr.com]]
** ''Franchise/{{Transformers}}'' [[http://asoftertransformers.tumblr.com]]
* {{Revenge}}: You dedicate your life to it...then, the day after you get it, [[{{Metaphorgotten}} you see it for much cheaper online]].
* RomanticRunnerUp: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=259 Second best isn't so bad]].
* ScrewDestiny: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=452 "When I was just a little girl,]] I asked my mummy what should I be? "Fuck 'should'," she said."
* ScrewYourself: "I would totally make out with my clone. If it was okay with her. No pressure."
* SecretOtherFamily: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=802 #802]], although the reason it upsets the narrator is typically a little off.
* ShapedLikeItself: The "random strip" button is labeled "fnord"
* ShoutOut: To Spider-Man, among others.
** 594 is entitled [[{{ASongOfIceAndFire}} A Song of Ice and Fire Ants]].
** 443 is titled [[{{TheSimpsons}} Me fail romance? That's unpossible]].
** [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=633 633]] references a parody comic of ASW by [[http://xkcd.com/144/ XKCD]]
** "Hell is other people" is the AltText for one comic, a reference to Jean-Paul Satre's ''NoExit''.
** Nirvana gets one in the alt text for [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=776]]
*** And again [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=536 here]].
* SmartPeoplePlayChess: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=799 Geniuses play chess in bed.]]
* SomeOfMyBestFriendsAreX: "I'm not racist. My best friend is black. SHE'S the racist one."
** Deconstructed in another comic - having a gay friend doesn't mean you're not a bigot, it just means your friend isn't paying enough attention.
* SophisticatedAsHell
* SpaceIsNoisy: Averted [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=816 "This is the way the world ends not with a bang but only because explosions don't make sound in space."]]
* SubvertedRhymeEveryOccasion: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=492 "You and me, and baby makes..."]] [[spoiler: "...life into a series of compromises.]]"
* ThereAreTwoKindsOfPeopleInTheWorld: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=648 648]] and [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=784 784]].
* TitleDrop: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=3 Comic #3]]
* ToHellAndBack: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=666 Painfully subverted:]]
-->"If you died, I would go through hell to bring you back. That would be easy. I'm not sure how to deal with us just drifting apart."
* TransEqualsGay: "No, I don't want to be a woman. What a stupid, limiting idea of homosexuality. I want ''you'' to be the woman."
* VerySpecialEpisode: Occasionally, the strips forgo jokes to deliver a poignant message.
* ViolenceReallyIsTheAnswer: [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=470 "and the guilt I expected never came."]]
* VirginSacrifice: "If I could get a hold of a beautiful virgin girl, would I be summoning you in the first place?"
* WeAllDieSomeday: [[http://asofterworld.com/index.php?id=421 "I intend to deserve it." ]]
* WarpedAesop: Invoked by some of the strips, which run on the formula of "Standard aspirational phrase...horribly subverted by the end." Maybe none more than [[http://www.asofterworld.com/index.php?id=67 this one]]:
--> As a child I learned that books set you free, an encyclopaedia held over my head...waiting in the dark as he crept into my room. ([[AltText long overdue]])
* WriteWhoYouKnow: The authors have used photos of their friends.
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