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Is your story a Low Fantasy?:

A few weeks ago, I got curious about this term, as someone mentioned it somewhere. I google it, and find the trope entry here, and, as it turns out, my own story fits nicely with my own work in progress.

The basic story concept is this; what if there were 3 planets in 3 paralell universes that had humans look Negroid on one, Caucasoid on the other, and Mongoloid on the last? And what if each seperate universe had an overarching theological "truth" that was irrefutably true in their own universe, but totally false on the others? And what if there were dimensional gates that connected these three worlds?

My story fits, as the worlds have human dominated societies, human conflicts, Grey and Grey morality, a slighty cynical tone, a serious plot with a small bit of dark humor. The only exceptions are the inclusion of different magic systems, which is actually quite high for a low fantasy, and the science fiction elements mixed in there.

So, what's your story about, and how does it fit (or not fit) into low fantasy?

It's easy, mmkay?
Would you base these truths on real-world relgiions or would you make them up?
At first I didn't realize I needed all this stuff...
 3 Mr AHR, Thu, 12th May '11 1:04:49 PM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
I...I don't know?

To be honest...I kinda forget I'm writing fantasy sometimes.

It just...has magic and shit in it.
The "truths" would be broad enough to allow different real world religions to exist within each world. Not everyone on these worlds is under the exact same religion, nor are all of them the same race or culture. There are subraces, like a race of darker skinned desert dwellers and a fairer skinned race of forest dwellers on the Caucasoid world. The longer lasting religions are man-made, and are ultimately a different interpretation of an overarching theology (such as Christianity and Islam). Those that came and went are based on lesser or even false gods who were merely humans who used the magic system to become that powerful for a limited time.

 5 annebeeche, Thu, 12th May '11 2:26:13 PM from by the long tidal river
watching down on us
[up][up] Same here. Even though there's magic and mythological creatures in Beowulf Ecgtheowing, I still think of it as historical fiction.
Banned entirely for telling FE that he was being rude and not contributing to the discussion. I shall watch down from the goon heavens.
 6 doorhandle, Mon, 23rd May '11 4:18:13 AM from Space Australia!
Well, my main work is probably the exact opposite, but i have considered toying with the idea by having a nonmagical medieval setting where all the knights had Charle Atlas Superpowers...

Ballista-surfing is a common tactic, for one, and there is one guy who can fire a crossbow like a machinegun...

Lurker
I think my story is low fantasy, mostly by virtue of not fitting into any other fantasy genre.

Technically, my protagonists are trying to save the world as seen in High Fantasy, but that's from natural disasters rather than a absolute evil Dark Lord. Either way, the main focus of the story is the relationships between the characters and their internal conflicts, not the epic quest.

edited 23rd May '11 6:40:23 AM by Tjatter

"Sometimes the appropriate response to reality is to go insane"
Pretty much all of my fantasy stories are Low Fantasy. There are only humans, Grey and Grey Morality, low magic (mostly), much cynicism, all the stuff. They do tend to get on an epic scale towards the end though, with the characters' struggles, though still personal, still ending up affecting the world at large.

 9 feotakahari, Mon, 23rd May '11 8:53:22 AM from Looking out at the city
Fuzzy Orange Doomsayer
It's interesting to realize that while I have attempted Dark Fantasy, I've never actually tried Low Fantasy. Even when I write a cynical setting with little magic, my protagonists tend to have and use magical capabilities. (This might be because I find it more plausible for a character to be a One-Man Army if said character has kewl occult powaz.)
That's Feo . . . He's a disgusting, mysoginistic, paedophilic asshat who moonlights as a shitty writer—Something Awful
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Early renaissance level tech? Check. Petty, personal struggles that get tangled into overarching, complex webs of intrigue? Check. Not even the best and most entertaining intrigue is immune to sufficient application of brute force? Check. Most characters have gaping, almost tragic character flaws? Check. Dark, bitter, cynical and generally hostile world? Check. Magic (mostly the scary kind) is there, and it influences some points in the story, but the story hardly revolves around it? Check.

I think it's more on the lines of Dark Fantasy.

You exist because we allow it and you will end because we demand it.
Hmm, hadn't know about Dark Fantasy. I'd say it's very similar to Low Fantasy, which makes sense seeing how all of our works seem to fit both of them.

 12 Madass Alex, Wed, 25th May '11 8:19:19 PM from the Middle Ages.
 13 jasonwill 2, Wed, 25th May '11 9:04:28 PM from West Virginia
Hey, when I heard the phrase speculative fiction, I needed not worry anymore what my genre was. Sci Fi, fantasy, and anything in between. though i write lots more towards sci fi
as of the 2nd of Nov. has 6 weeks for a broken collar bone to heal and types 1 handed and slowly
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[up]That pretty much describes my writing, too. Everything I write is somewhere on the sci-fi - fantasy - horror continuum.
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 15 Crystal Glacia, Sun, 29th May '11 3:37:14 PM from Cedarpointland
patience, young padawan
I write Urban Fantasy, but categorizing it as either High or Low Fantasy is kinda hard since it has elements of both.

  • High Fantasy
    • There's epic-scale political plots that can affect entire countries. In fact, this is the main plot.
    • The world it takes place is is a very magic-driven setting closely tied to Earth.
    • Magic is generally looked upon as a good, common part of life.
    • There are some areas stuck in Medieval Stasis, but mainly due to Time Dissonance.
    • There's some staples of High Fantasy, such as elves, dragons, swords, sorcerers, monarchies, empires, and peasants.
    • Vince exists.

  • Low Fantasy
    • Most of the High Fantasy elements are played more realistically.
    • In fact, the entire world in general tends to be played more realistically.
    • Magic has a cost- your sanity.
    • Clear-cut Black and White Morality is exceedingly rare. Every last character, no matter how purely good or purely evil they start out as ends up doing something difficult or contrary to their original intentions.
    • War tends to be pointless, and almost never for a "noble" reason.
    • Thornton exists.

Since Low Fantasy has one extra point on High Fantasy, I guess it leans closer to the low end.
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Total posts: 15
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