[[caption-width-right:350:From Level Zero to [[TookALevelInBadass Level Badass]] in 9:01 minutes.]]

"The Reward" is a short film that was created by students of the Danish animation school The Animation Workshop as their bachelor project. After its release in January 2013, it went viral within days of going online, gaining a lot of attention on Tumblr.

Its popularity is largely based on its epicness and play with familiar fantasy tropes. The awesome music doesn't hurt either.

The short can be watched in full length [[http://youtu.be/kkAYze6ae18 here]]

[[http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1862188728/the-reward-tales-of-alethrion The Kickstarter campaign]] to develop the short's universe into a more complete and coherent narrative wrapped up on April 6th, 2013, and the creators are currently working to build "Tales of Alethrion" into a full-fledged series.
! Tropes found in ''The Reward'' include:

* AdrenalineMakeover: The two slowly grow into the role of {{Badass}}es over the adventure, and it's visible.
* AdventureDuo: Self-explanatory.
* AdventureTown: The heroes pass through a few, most notably the colorful tower city.
* AllThereInTheManual: WordOfGod states that the protagonists' names are Wilhelm and Vito, respectively, Vito being the magician and Wilhelm the swordfighter. Their village is named Tohan. It's also stated that Wilhelm spends his time wasting his life in the small village.
* AndTheAdventureContinues: [[spoiler: Not only for the two kids who "inherit" the map, but for Wilhelm, Vito, and the two cute girls they pick up -- who already seem pretty solid on that [[ThePowerOfFriendship Power of Friendship]] deal.]]
* AwesomenessIsVolatile: The high-five that our two adventurers share when they realize that the greatest reward is their newfound friendship leads to an explosion of awesomeness. Literally.
* BadassBeard: Vito grows a damn impressive one.
* BadassMustache: Wilhelm grows one after he [[TookALevelInBadass takes a level in badass.]]
* BattleCouple: Wilhelm and Vito, naturally, of the SwordAndSorcerer type.
* BigThinShortTrio: The three thugs from the City -- a foppish Big, a sniveling, toad-like Short, and the Thin is the leader.
* BookEnds: The story starts in Tohan with the unnamed hero passing the map on to Wilhelm and Vito (though seemingly by accident) and ends with Wilhelm and Vito returning as seasoned heroes, "accidentally" dropping the map to pass it on to the next generation of good-for-nothings.
* CasanovaWannabe: Vito at first. After he [[TookALevelInBadass takes a level in badass]] his success with the ladies vastly improves and he becomes a ChickMagnet.
* ConvectionSchmonvection: The narwhals seem to be pretty heat resistant, considering that they're swimming through lava.
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: Our protagonists slay a High God, among other impressive and monstrous beings.
* {{Fingore}}: To [[spoiler: Wilhelm]], and quite unexpectedly so.
* FistBump: Shared by the two when lying in bed together snuggled against a dragon in its lair.
* PhysicalGod: Has a brief appearance before he's slain by Wilhelm and Vito.
* HeterosexualLifePartners: Arguably so. They're shown to be very popular with the ladies once their adventure gains momentum. On the other hand, the two share a few touching moments and are shown lying in bed together, naked or at least in their underwear by the looks of it, [[FistBump bumping fists]].
* HomoeroticSubtext: Being a bromance this trope is played with. Especially at the part with the [[DidTheyOrDidntThey dragon cave...]]
* ItsTheJourneyThatCounts: The whole theme.
* {{Kissgusting}}: Not in the short, but in a [[http://imgur.com/67sdjYc comic drawn by the directors]] by way of a MagicKiss.
* PantyShot: When the Hero tosses a pretty girl into the air.
* PurpleIsPowerful: When Vito comes into his own as a sorcerer he wears purple colored lenses and his spells cast a purple aura.
* RedOniBlueOni: Vito is Red Oni to Wilhelm's Blue Oni.
* SupernaturalIsPurple: Vito runs into a cave that spews magenta-colored smoke -- and has to be dragged out of it by Wilhelm. But then, [[ChekhovsGun his own magic manifests as purple]]...
* TearsOfJoy: Vito does it something serious when [[spoiler: Wilhelm wakes up after collapsing from blood loss.]]
* TerribleTrio: The three thugs. Also overlaps with BigThinShortTrio.
* TheStinger: After the credits [[spoiler:it turns out that if our heroes had just looked ''behind'' the mirror...]]
* TheVamp: The leader of the thug trio. ([[AllThereInTheManual A Kickstarter comment mentions that her name is Mira.]])
* TimeCompressionMontage: How the two protagonists turn from young boys to older, epic heroes.
* TookALevelInBadass: Wilhelm and Vito are far from seasoned adventurers when they start out. But once they realize ThePowerOfFriendship they conquer everything with an unstoppable amount of badassery.
* TreasureMap: What sends our protagonists on their epic journey.
* VitriolicBestBuds: At first, at least.
* WalkingTheEarth: They may be following a map, but Wilhelm and Vito seem to get into a lot of sidequests.