The description is all over the place - I can't tell if this is supposed to be just literally that the goal of a story is to save two or more different worlds (is that tropeworthy?) or if the two paragraphs about the danger being caused by the fact that someone has bridged the two worlds is actually an important element of the trope. The examples are crazy too, whatever the definition of this trope is supposed to be. There's zero context examples, examples that talk only about more than one world or a real world and a virtual game world but not about having to save them, and some that talk about saving one world with or without help from both worlds. I also don't know what's going on with half the examples being listed as "Examples of Trapped in Another World".
That really looks like Save The World, created when the latter was video game specific.
OK, I've found the oldest description:
Save Both Worlds. If someone is Trapped in Another World, and goes back home at some point (generally it's not a The Last Temptation, but it can be) or spent a large chunk of the beginning (i.e. not the very beginning of the first episode, but half the season or so), their homeworld is inevitably dragged into the conflict. The Muggles are running around, gaping, and trying to film as the local monsters of the other world muscle in and start destroying buildings. The Hero and friends from both worlds have to work together and fix things.Some time afterwards, the description was rewritten into this awful mush.
edited 29th Jul '13 8:23:27 AM by SeptimusHeap
Ugh. The current description isn't actually a description, just one large Example as a Thesis.
Yeah, that's messy. We'll need to overhaul this. The name is self-indicative; there are two worlds and the heroes want to save both of them. All we need to do is build on this.
No, the other one.
I think it's pretty clear what it is, and the description is understandable, though it could be a lot better. It's basically upping the ante from Trapped in Another World by also making it more relatable to the audience, since Earth is also included in the threat, which eliminates the possibility that the hero could just go home and leave the world to its demise. Subtrope of Saving the World.
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OK: I propose to switch @3 into the page and do an example cleanup.
What is this? I think a straightforward description would be better. But I feel like there should be a little more done to the description in 3.
I pretty much agree with what Another Duck said in post 6 — the thread is pretty clearly about a story that begins with the protagonist ending up in some flavor of Another Dimension, but eventually comes back so that the problems in the other dimension begin to involve in their home dimension as well, thus upping the dramatic tension. Thus, the two worlds' fates are linked, and Saving the World becomes Save Both Worlds.
edited 21st Aug '13 7:25:22 PM by NativeJovian
As a further note, I've frequently seen this used to mean "hero takes a third option when faced with a choice between which world to save".
So a rename may be in order as well.
I think @10 fits actually in the current definition. You can "save both worlds" if both are in danger.
It may fit in the current definition, but what I tend to see it used as (which is a purely subjective thing - I haven't actually done a wick check) is as one out of multiple options - Save Both Worlds as opposed to just saving one. It's not just used as "both worlds are in danger".
I think it fits. The Hero's told their options basically boil down to save one world, lose the other, but he insists that they have to find some way to save them both.
I think what Jovian said in #9 is a pretty good encapulation of the trope definition:
a story that begins with the protagonist ending up in some flavor of Another Dimension, but eventually comes back so that the problems in the other dimension begin to involve in their home dimension as well, thus upping the dramatic tension. Thus, the two worlds' fates are linked, and Saving the World becomes Save Both Worlds.
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Choosing to save both when presented with conflicting options to save one or the other is just Take a Third Option except The Same, but More Specific. I don't really see the value of restricting the trope to that when the "alternate world problem bleeds back into real world" trope clearly exists as well. And encompasses the same examples.
I'm not saying that's what the definition should be. I'm saying that's the definition I'm seeing used.
I would probably say something like "for extra dramatic tension, it can be implied that the only way to save one world is at the expense of the other, creating a dilemma about which one is more worth saving, or if there's any way to Take a Third Option...."
The main thing I'm unclear about on this trope is if the fates of both have to be linked or if it's literally just that the main character has to save both worlds - there was mention of the connection between the two worlds being the cause of the problems in one or both worlds in the description at one point but it wasn't clear to me if that was an example as thesis or if that was the point of the trope.
My thinking is that the conflict has to be something that spans both worlds. If it's just conflict A on one world and conflict B on another, that's not an example.
No, the other one.
I think it has to be the same base problem the worlds needs saving from. If there's no connection, it's just Save The World twice. I don't think how it's solved is relevant. The hero may fail, choose to only save one of them, or save both. As long as the dilemma is still there, and actually played up as such, rather than one world just being a throw-away place, I think it counts.
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Even if it's two separate problems, is the fact they have to be dealt with at the same time important enough to be a separate trope, even if the "two different worlds" element is just The Same, but More Specific?
I think I agree that if there's no connection to the problems of both worlds then it's not a distinct trope. But does that mean that the point of this trope is actually about problems that span more than one universe or are caused by there existing a connection between two universes? Maybe it's sort of the same thing since if you're going to introduce a problem like that into the story, then convention suggests the hero will have to save both worlds by the end of the story? I'd be inclined to try to answer my own question by checking the examples, but I'm not familiar with them and don't understand why they're divided the way they are, plus so many are zero context or too little context. Is anyone familiar with enough of the examples mentioned to venture a guess about the sorting or add some context?
edited 20th Sep '13 7:43:42 PM by StarValkyrie
I think this trope is about a problem spanning both universes. The connection can be the cause of the problem, but doesn't have to.