is a webcomic
created by Jordan Quigley that has since been taken over by two others, and now has a much quicker update schedule.
The story starts out with a group of adventurers; Andil, an elven fighter who is competent enough to be incompetent; Xavier, a human who is (probably?) a ranger; Laldera, a human sorceress, and Lana, a human rogue. These are The Heroes.
Of course, there's a reason the comic is called anti
-HEROES. Within the first few strips, Lana gets herself killed in a trap Andil shoved her into (though he probably didn't realize it); in typical D&D
fashion, her allies loot her corpse and leave her behind. One strip later, she becomes much more competent when a mysterious necromancer in a fully concealing cloak resurrects her as a vampire. Originally shocked and upset, Lana ends up following him anyway, thus beginning the title team of anti-heroes. Eventually joining her and the necromancer are an incompetent illusionist ghost named Kaalinor, his equally incompetent ghost buddy Frank
, and a tiefling ranger named Keriss.
Oh, and before we forget to mention, it proudly proclaims to be a fancomic for The Order of the Stick
In the Author Comments of Strip 219, the author finally confessed that he couldn't continue to do the comic anymore and narrowed down two options for his fans to vote for: 1: that he simply releases all his notes, future characters, plot points and secrets (à la Chainmail Bikini
), or 2: that he finds another artist to carry on with the comic. The fanbase overwhelmingly voted for Option 2.
And from Strip 220 onwards, Team Dypen (consisting of Giant in the Playround members Dyluth and leakingpen) has officially taken over. General consensus among the fanbase is that so far, they're doing a great job. Dyluth handles creating all of the art, and the primary scriptwriting is handled by leakingpen, whose real name is Alexander Hollins. Other writing of his can be found at www.dreamfantastic.com.
anti-HEROES provides examples of the following tropes:
- Action Girl: Lana; Keriss
- All Genes Are Codominant: See Good Wings, Evil Wings below.
- All Your Base Are Belong to Us
- Anti-Hero: Does this even need to be explained?
- Anti-Villain: Eldhin is a questionable example, as he's probably aware of what Arderas has done and is capable of. However, he's only doing it because Arderas is threatening his mother.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: This happens frequently. And Lana lampshades it at one point.
- Buxom Is Better: Not noticeable because of the art style, but Lana's boobs get larger when she becomes a vampire. The author's notes attribute this to a vampire's +4 bonus to charisma.
- By the Lights of Their Eyes: Subverted.
- Casual Danger Dialog
- Catch a Falling Star: Not so much "catch" as just casting feather fall.
- Celestial Paragons and Archangels / Demon Lords and Archdevils: Aldran's and Eldhin's mother and father, respectively.
- Centipede's Dilemma: Kaalidor can ride in a cart as long as he's not thinking too much about it. But since he's a ghost, once he starts questioning it... the moving cart go right through him.
- The Chooser of The One
- Color-Coded Time Stop: The "Time Stop" spell uses negative colors.
- Conveniently Timed Attack From Behind: Aldran loves doing this.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Kaal, sort of. He's still hopelessly stupid, but he's actually surprisingly competent and knowledgeable when he's put into a position where his illusionist training comes in handy.
- Dark Is Not Evil: For people who traditionally fit the villain mold, the main characters are awfully nice individuals. They're certainly nicer then the Ivory Veil.
- Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Aldran will punch out Cthulhu.
- The Ditz: Kaal
- Dope Slap
- Dumbass Has a Point: Kaal is usually the butt of these jokes.
- Evil Twin: Aldran or Eldhin. Have fun figuring out which one it is.
- The Faceless
- Face Palm: Aplenty.
- Filler: Team Dypen is also doing a filler arc where Laris teams up with the Heroes.
- First Episode Resurrection: Lana is killed in the first comic, but Aldran brings her back to life as a vampire.
- Follow the Leader: The page header even notes that it's inspired by The Order of the Stick.
- French Maid Outfit: A bugbear in a maid outfit. Zarah lampshades how bizarre this is in the author comments.
- Fun with Acronyms: Incredible, Daring, Invincible Overseers of Time? and Stuff.
- Girlish Pigtails: Zurie; the "immaturity" variety.
- Good Wings, Evil Wings: Subverted, or arguably, played straight. Aldran and Eldhin have gray wings, which are halfway between good and evil wings. Of course, they were the offspring of a fiend and an angel.
- Good Is Not Nice / Light Is Not Good: Justified; the Ivory Veil are attempting to free Arderas, the very definitely evil demi-god responsible for the disappearance (if not death) of Eldhin and Aldran's father.
- The Guards Must Be Crazy: The two goblin guards sure are, but then again they were apparently chosen on purpose.
- I Call It Vera: Keriss calls her blades "Free" and "Sample".
- Idiot Ball: Played for comedy, usually with Kaal but other characters have their moments. While chained to a wall, Laris is trying to pull the anchor spikes out of the crumbling rock. One comes out easily, the other takes a lot longer. Moments later he's using the spikes that held the chains to pick the locks of his shackles. Another character asks why he simply didn't do that with the second shackle after he got one hand free. Laris just walks away in embarrassment.
- I'm a Doctor, Not a Placeholder:
Turrick: I'm a diviner, not an accountant.
- Insane Troll Logic: "Duck Duck Wolf" has it in abundance. Possibly justified because of how scared those people are.
- I Will Show You X: Keriss to a con, er, lizard.
Keriss: Well, I also happen to have a free sample. (draws her weapons) This is Free, and this is Sample. Want some?
- Knight Templar: The Ivory Veil show strong signs of this.
- Levitating Lotus Position: Turrick appears like this in Keriss' drug-induced trip.
- Love Across Battlelines: Aldran's parents.
- Mirror Routine: Kaal, when he runs into the person he's disguised as.
- My Catfight Sense Is Tingling: Kaal shows us his in "You Didn't Think it Was Natural, Did You?"
- Ninja Maid: The bugbear maid has rogue levels.
- Not So Different: Finx tries to invoke this in order to Breaking Speech Aldran; it doesn't work.
Finx: Vengeance seems to be all that you know, we're a lot more similar than you think.
Aldran: Oh don't start with that, I'm well aware we share common traits. But there's one fundamental difference between you and me.
Finx: Oh yeah? And what's that?
Aldran: 'I'm WINNING!
- Our Dwarves Are All the Same: They have a dwarven cleric? It was lampshaded.
- Physical God: Arderas (demigod, please).
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Of the anti-heroic variety.
- Red Shirt: In this case, bowmen have no luck.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Arderas
- Spot the Imposter: Beautifully subverted in "Alter Egos".
- Square Race, Round Class: Bugbear maid. Enough said.
- Taking You with Me: Attempted by Eldhin on Aldran. It didn't pan out.
- Team Dad: The man in the cloak named Aldran.
- Tempting Fate: Lampshaded.
Lana: We can see the tower from here, it's not like something totally unexpected is going to suddenly jump out and stop us from getting there.
Aldran: Let's get out of here!
Lana: Okay, we must have been lucky that time.
Aldran: Go ahead. Tempt fate some more why, don't ya?
Lana: At least it couldn't possibly get any wor—
Aldran: SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP!
- Our Vampires Are Different: And apparently they can become normal again. Or at least, there used to be a way for them to do so.
- Villain Protagonist: Subverted. They're villains in name only.
- Winged Humanoid: Both Eldhin and Aldran.
- Wretched Hive: Lavakport