Main Dark Fantasy Discussion

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08:14:39 AM May 6th 2017
edited by Beaumain
Is there dark fantasy at all, as a genre? It seems to me that the article describes a genre in a vacuum, while most actual examples given neither match the description, nor have a lot in common. How Cthulhu Mythos ended in the same genre with Game of Thrones? Where's "evil empire" part in either? How's "magic is evil" in Maleficent? Or in Witcher, where Geralt, Tris and Yennefer use it all the time?

Looks like the description of the genre is itself fictional and is not based on existing media.

And in reality, there seem to be at least two very different genres, both labelled "dark fantasy". One, more widespread, is "fantasy + horror" (Cthulhu Mythos, Pan's Labyrinth, various vampire fantasy). The other is more or less dystopian medieval fantasy about Dung Ages (Game of Thrones, Berserk, etc). Combination of the two is very rare, I can only think of Solomon Kane.
06:14:35 PM Apr 11th 2013
Would the Silent Hill Series count as a Dark Fantasy?
08:52:34 PM Oct 25th 2013
Not really. It's Urban Fantasy at most, just a bit darker.

Take the "can be pretty much described as Standard Fantasy Setting meets Crapsack World" bit - sure, the world we see in Silent Hill appears to be fairly crapsack (unless the main characters are simply mentally ill), but it is in no way derived from a "standard fantasy setting" (if anything, they went the "let's take a zombie incident and make it more supernatural" route).
09:30:21 AM Sep 3rd 2011
edited by lordGacek
Below is what I've cut from the article. It's a couple of fine points, if in need of a bit of my polishing, but the problem is that it is not fantasy (unless some kind of Punk Punk or crossover genre). Whaddya think?

  • Technology is seen as a result of unethical progress. Even when done to make certain things possible, the end result is far from perfect. Augmentations eat away at one's humanity, genetic research is done for the sake of war and profit and against the subject's will, and any advance in telecommunications opens new and fascinating ways to control people.
  • Artificial sentiences and robots have nothing but contempt for their creators.
  • Abusive Precursors are often the norm, and there is plenty of powers and Cargo Cults that will stop at nothing to learn more about the tech they left behind, all at the cost of innocent lives.

07:58:43 PM Sep 5th 2011
Well, technology is part of fantasy. It isn't a mainstay but it does have an effect on the fantasy setting as Technology allows the non magical person to use their nefarious ends.

Genetic research can be easily be explained with alchemy as characters like Lezard uses to breed homunculus for his own twisted purposes.

Artificial sentience can be replaced with golems or clockwork.

But yeah, it does potentially fit in the Punk Punk area.
02:01:50 PM Sep 7th 2011
I'd wait for one or two more Tropers, to hear more opinions. My idea is that Dark Fantasy is specifically fantasy, treated as a proper genre or subgenre, and I've never heard of such a genre as "dark SF". While I can agree that amounts of technology may find a way in, your examples would as well fit as a bullet point in the paragraph for magic.
11:21:25 PM Sep 16th 2011
This guy was obviously a 40k fan.
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