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Our Humans Are Different

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A page for describing how humans are portrayed in fiction as opposed to real life.

This trope has been Launched!
Proposed By:
Shelly22 on Dec 20th 2018 at 5:19:04 PM
Last Edited By:
Shelly22 on Jan 11th 2019 at 5:54:05 PM
Name Space: Main
Page Type: trope

It might not look like a human or talk like a human, but it's still a human, at least by name. Even if they have Pointy Ears, a rubber forehead, or Psychic Powers - so what? So do all the other humans they know.

Basically, this is what you get when you call a smeerp a human.

So maybe you have an idea for a novel and want it to be original. Maybe you have seen too many stories with Our Elves Are Better or Our Monsters Are Different plots and want to make things interesting. Maybe you want to create a fantastical race but you don't want to just recycle the same ones that everyone else has already used.

The problem with making up an entirely new race is that it can be hard, especially since so many things have already been done before. This is probably why so many writers recycle the old races in the first place. Recycling old races also has the bonus of saving the writer the trouble of explaining things as much. Saying a creature is an elf, for instance, prepares the reader for the fantasy genre without the writer having to mention said genre.

So what if you want the benefits of using a recycled race in a fantasy story but don't want to use elves or dwarves? What if you think that having a bunch of humanoid races who are called something not-so-human strains the Willing Suspension of Disbelief?

Well, you could just make up a fantastical race anyway and call them humans.

This trope is for when you want enough fantasy elements to make your story pop in your selected genre, but you don't want to make it as crazy as, say, Dungeons and Dragons. Maybe Middle Earth is a little too racially divided, and you want your story to have a different feel.

It is important to note here that humans are the most common race used in fiction (probably because, well, Most Writers Are Human). Humans are usually considered to be the most mundane of all the other races, because to us, well, they are. In this sense, "mundane" is less about what is magical or not and more about what is "normal" or not.

It is also important to clarify what is meant by the word "human." Does the creature even have to look humanoid at all or does the writer have the right to call it human anyway, no matter what it looks like? This is made especially complicated by the fact that humans seem to be able to procreate with anything (Half-Human Hybrids, anyone?).

Ways to show that your humans are different:

  • By making humans have superpowers. This is the most obvious one, but it can be harder than it sounds. It is not the same as "my human character found a fountain of youth and now lives forever." In order to qualify, the character has to have powers because they are human, not because they chanced upon a Mass Super-Empowering Event.

  • By making humans have a different origin story/evolutionary path. So instead of saying that humans are primates you could say that they are crustaceans (or that their ancestors were). Notice that giving humans a different backstory as a species counts; but if it is events, rather than the humans themselves, that have changed, then it is just an Alternate Universe and not this trope. Also note that examples of this trope can lead to an Alternate Universe, but they are not exclusive to it.

  • By giving humans a bizarre ability or weakness that they don't normally have in real life, such as an allergy to movies.

  • Give humans a different way of thinking. You could make them Actual Pacifists or a Proud Warrior Race, to contrast with humans in real life, who do both. Or you could alter their brains to give them different abilities such as better memory.

  • Give them unusual physical traits, such as cat ears or weird hair colors. You could also give them some kind of ability that has to be cultivated, such as Training the Gift of Magic or Supernatural Martial Arts.

Please note that this trope relies on the humans themselves, not any events surrounding them. Creating an Alternate Universe with Crystal Spires and Togas does not make your humans different unless it is explained in-story that humans are Perfect Pacifist People who like to build utopian societies on a genetic level.

The opposite of Humans by Any Other Name. Contrast Human Aliens (aliens which appear indistinguishable from humans but are explicitly not). See the Not Quite Human index for a list of common traits that might make your humans different. Also see Humans Are Indexed for tropes about humans in general.

Compare and contrast Human Subspecies (which may or may not look like standard humans but are genetically related) and Witch Species (which may be either of the above but are primarily distinguished by their ability to do magic where other people can't). See also Superpowerful Genetics, Randomly Gifted, The Gift, and Our Mages Are Different, although not all wizards (or Jedi, psychics, mutants, etc.) are necessarily human in the first place. Whether or not human-descended Mutants, Differently Powered Individuals, and Posthuman Cyborg qualify or not tends to vary depending on the setting and specific example.

While it can be difficult to draw a hard line, generally this trope is only in play when a significant proportion of greater humanity is different, not just a few special individuals - The Chosen One or even The Chosen Many are not examples of this trope (although The Chosen People could be).

Also contrast Ambiguously Human, which is for when whether a character is human or not is not always explicitly mentioned in-universe.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 

  • In A Centaur's Life, all humans are a Little Bit Beastly or are Cute Monster Girls. This ranges from people with cat ears and tails, to centaurs, to merfolk who appear similar to real life humans until their legs merge at the knees. The explanation given was that in this version of Earth's past, six-limbed creatures became dominant instead of those with four limbs, giving humans diversity based on how that extra pair of limbs developed (whether that be extra legs for centaurs, or wings for angelfolk). Highlighting the distinction, there are also anthropomorphic frog people, snake-like Antarcticans, and Starfish Aliens, but they are all explicitly not human.

  • One Piece: Humans, while otherwise fairly real-life standard, regularly reach heights and sizes well beyond those of real-life people. Besides normal humans around a meter and half to two in height (most characters), there are also humans around two and half to five meters high (Crocodile, Brook, Kuzan, Doflamingo, Katakuri, etc.), and some really big folk six to eight meters from head to toe, and often quite broad as well (Gecko Moria, Kuma, Whitebeard). These are distinct from giants, which are a distinct species in-universe - Word of God is that this is simply how height naturally varies among humans in the One Piece world.

  • My Hero Academia: Prior to the beginning of the series, humanity began to develop "Quirks", natural superpowers that range from glowing to shooting fire to growing wings. This radically changed the definition of what it meant to be "human", leading to a period of unrest and strife as people struggled to figure out what to do about Quirks. By the present day, 80% of humanity has a Quirk, while 20%, like protagonist Izuku Midoriya, are born Quirkless.

    Films-Animated 

  • In Strange Frame, humans have colonized the Jovian moons, resulting in many humans becoming genetically engineered to survive in the differing environments of the moons. Thus, there are now humans with furrier bodies or even extra limbs who are still considered humans.

    Literature 

  • In The Culture, "human" is an umbrella term referring to all the species of bipedal, hairless apes (or non-primate ape analogues) that have evolved independently across the galaxy. While it's frequently glossed over and agents of the utopian Culture were able to move about on Earth with only minor modifications, detailed descriptions note that there can be enough differences in the height, proportion, skin color, and reproductive processes to qualify as Rubber-Forehead Aliens. Others have drastically altered their physical forms to the point where they're only considered human for the sake of legal and oral convenience, and some Culture expatriates have even gone on to join other species.

  • The Death Gate Cycle: Humans have a natural affinity for mental and elemental magic, in contrast to the elves' affinity for Magitek and the creation of enchanted objects and the Sartan and Patryn's powerful probability-based magic. In something of a twist, this makes the humans, as a species, considerably more closely tied to natural life than the elves are - their mental magic, for instance, allows the humans of Arianus to tame dragons, which the elves cannot, while the humans of Pryan are better farmers than the local elves, who have not even mastered basic crop rotation.

  • The Halfblood Chronicles: Humans are naturally suited for mentally-focused magic, such as illusions and telepathy, but have little in the way of magic pertaining to control of physical matter. This in contrast to the elves, who have considerable power insofar as physical magic and the creation of magical artifacts goes but cannot manage anything in the way of mental magic without the aid of artifacts. On those rare occasions where elves and humans produce half-elves, these possess the magic of both their parent species, making for potentially very powerful mages.

  • In The Silmarillion, humans and elves were similar races, created by Illuvitar and referred to as his children. At that time, humans were like elves in strength and stature, but this changed later as the world aged. The most crucial difference between elves and men was that men were mortal, and elves were immortal.

  • The Fifth Season: Humans have "sessapinae" in their brains that let them sense vibrations and seismic phenomena, a survival trait in the Death World they inhabit. Those born with the Functional Magic of orogeny can "sess" the exact composition of the earth for miles around, drain energy from their surroundings, and control seismic activity in the region.

  • Lilith's Brood : By Adulthood Rites, the human race is Long-Lived on the order of centuries, resistant to disease, and sterile, thanks to genetic manipulation by the alien Oankali who rescued them After the End. All children that are born are human-Oankali hybrids.

    Live-Action TV 

Stargate SG1: After humanity discovers the Stargate, they learn that Earth was originally colonized by the Ancients, who later left the cosmos when they ascended. "Humans" as we know them are descended from the remnants of those who did not ascend. After a timeskip, it is discovered that humans eventually regain the old technology that the Ancients used, and end up with a similar society, although it is not clear whether they choose to ascend this time.

Babylon 5: Human history is relatively the same in this series as it is in real life, except one crucial difference: human history was actually tampered with by aliens (the Vorlons and the Shadows, to be precise). The Shadows were to blame for much of humanity's warlike nature, because they taught them to fight and kill in the name of progress as a species. Meanwhile, the Vorlons tampered with human genetics, trying to create human telepaths to fight the Shadows with. Sadly, humans became little more to either side than weapons to be used against each other.

    Video Games 

  • Jak's species in Jak and Daxter has long Pointy Ears, natural hair colors in various abnormal tones, and some have technicolor skin. They're still referred to as humans.

  • The Legend of Zelda: Most games treat Hylians as a Human Subspecies. They're known for their long, elfish ears and their ability to "hear the gods" better than round-eared humans. Other than those differences, however, they're interchangable with non-Hylian humans. There aren't any physical or social differences and they interbreed just fine.

  • In Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2, humans are one of the five main races in Tyria. Despite looking like and being called humans, they're more like elves. Humans are a race that was once very powerful but have now fallen into decline. They tend to shun technology and consequently are socially stuck in the past, especially the isolated human nations of Elona and Cantha in Guild Wars 2. They originally had a special affinity and respect for magic, due to it being granted to them by their gods, who brought humans to Tyria.

  • World of Warcraft: Early in its history, the world of Azeroth was seeded by the Titans with a variety of species crafted from earth, rock and metal. These were later afflicted by the Old Gods with the Curse of Flesh, which turned many into creatures of flesh and bone that became the ancestors of several later species. In one ancient species, the giants, the Curse resulted in the Vrykul, who while still large and powerful were much smaller and fleshier than their stony progenitors. The Curse further affected the Vrykul, giving them even smaller and fleshier - and in their view stunted and weak - children. Many of these were killed, but some were raised in secret and hidden away in another continent to live their own lives, where they became the progenitors of the human race. While otherwise fairly normal (by fantasy standards), WoW's humans are technically the smallest species of giant in the world, and technically closer kin to hill-sized beings of living stone than to elves and dwarves.

  • In Legend of Mana, the human race encompasses a wide variety of sapient beings: from the Little Bit Beastly to full on Civilized Animals, mythological creatures such mermaids and centaurs, and various others in addition to "ordinary" humans like the player character. Basically any sapient creature that isn't said to not be human such as Sproutlings, Faeries, or Jumi is human.

    Web Comics 

  • Unsounded: Humans are unique in that they demonstrably possess a soul, which lets them access the Background Magic Field of the Khert and delivers their memories to the Khert upon death. Other sapient beings, such as the ancient Senet Beasts and the "Two-Toe" Lizard Folk, see this with some envy or consternation, not least because the dominant religion takes this as proof that Humanity Is Superior.

  • Genocide Man is set in a future world that was ravaged by Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke and that now bans any form of "genetic deviancy". The Reveal that the One World Order genetically engineered the entire human race to be more peaceful and complacent via a Synthetic Plague that killed 1.5 billion people as a side effect doesn't go over well.

  • Humans in Hero Oh Hero are able to use magic and can also randomly have strange hair colours (the latter typically being from being born in high magic areas regardless of if the person in question has any powers). The setting's elves are a race (in the non-Tolkien sense) of humans with green hair, skin and Green Thumb powers who're called "elves" as a slur by The Empire.

Feedback: 111 replies

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:20:00 PM

Dear god. Paragraphs. PLEASE.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:24:38 PM

You have to add a laconic.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:25:55 PM

Sorry can you tell me how to do that?

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:26:24 PM

Well, use the gray circle to edit and in the box under the title, write a laconic.

Dec 20th 2018 at 6:41:50 PM

In A Centaurs Life, all humans are a Little Bit Beastly or are Cute Monster Girls. This ranges from people with cat ears and tails, to centaurs, to merfolk who appear similar to real life humans until their legs merge at the knees. The explanation given was that in this version of Earth's past, six-limbed creatures became dominant instead of those with four limbs, giving humans diversity based on how that extra pair of limbs developed (whether that be extra legs for centaurs, or wings for angelfolk). Highlighting the distinction, there are also anthropomorphic frog people, snake-like Antarcticans, and Starfish Aliens, but they are all explicitly not human.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:32:38 PM

Now it just looks worse.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:34:15 PM

Yeahhh, that's because you put the description in the laconic box... Just put that all back where it was and then add a short sentence in the laconic box.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:35:24 PM

That's because your laconic isn't short. Apparently you cut and pasted the entire contents of the draft into the laconic where it doesn't belong. Edit: War Jay ninja'd my post

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:40:32 PM

So I'm not allowed to write a detailed description? I'm supposed to just make a little one? What about all the ideas I have in my head? Also, my grammar skills are in fact better than this so don't worry about it. I am just having trouble with this system.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:42:26 PM

You don't understand. The laconic isn't the description. The laconic is just a short sentence that tells you what the trope is in the simplest terms possible. The description goes in the trope box where you had it before.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:45:29 PM

Adding a laconic did not fix my messed up paragraphs.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:46:02 PM

No. Now you have to go back and fix it. Just don't touch the laconic box and you'll be fine.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:49:47 PM

I'm going to do this one paragraph at a time.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:57:17 PM

Well, now I know what the problem was. The system doesn't like copy pasting. Every time I copy from my Word document it does this to my paragraphs. I will have to print it all on the site instead. No big deal, just time consuming.

Dec 20th 2018 at 5:59:20 PM

Take your time, now that you know what you're doing you're already on track.

Dec 20th 2018 at 6:01:09 PM

You might find it works if you copy it into a .txt document first, then copy/paste it again from there. There are some issues with certain characters not registering correctly since the site update, which might be causing problems with your paragraph spacing.

You can force a new line by entering \\ at the end of a paragraph/line break.

Dec 20th 2018 at 6:05:25 PM

  • Jak's species in Jak And Daxter has long Pointy Ears, natural hair colors in various abnormal tones, and some have technicolor skin. They're still referred to as humans.
  • The Legend Of Zelda: Most games treat Hylians as a Human Subspecies. They're known for their long, elfish ears and their ability to "hear the gods" better than round-eared humans. Other than those differences, however, they're interchangable with non-hylian humans. There aren't any physical or social differences and they interbreed just fine.
  • Invoked in Little Dragons Cafe. Celis is a witch with a bias towards anyone who can't just magic. She refers to them as "humans", even obviously non-human orcs.

Dec 20th 2018 at 6:31:08 PM

Text Formatting Rules, for when you need it. * at the start of a line creates a bullet point,

  • like this.

Dec 20th 2018 at 6:55:00 PM

In The Sorcerer's Apprentice people are able to use magic because they use more of their brains.

Dec 20th 2018 at 8:13:37 PM

Ralph Bakshi's Wizards is somewhat vague about whether the Fairies and Elves are actual human, but the evil wizard Blackwolf asks if his son will be "Human or Mutant," so it could count.

Dec 20th 2018 at 8:56:13 PM

Keep your chin up, Shelly, you'll get the hang of this.

The next step is to make a section for examples. At the bottom of your description, you put four dashes, then on the line below you type !!Examples:

The end result should look something like this...


Examples:

Dec 21st 2018 at 11:52:23 AM

Can someone explain to me how to make the folders I want under the examples section? I used the folder control command to make the first one, but I am not sure how the other ones work. I tried it all out in the sandbox and it doesn't seem to be working.

Dec 21st 2018 at 11:59:28 AM

Also a few times my links have been turning red. I have noticed this happens when the system says the link is leading to the wrong page. Not sure how to fix this either. For instance, in Jokubas' post, there is a link to the Frog Men trope, but when I try to make the link, it doesn't work.

Dec 21st 2018 at 3:38:42 PM

Sure, so it would look something like this:

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]

* In ''Manga/ACentaursLife'', all humans are a LittleBitBeastly or are [[CuteMonsterGirl Cute Monster Girls]]. This ranges from people with cat ears and tails, to [[OurCentaursAreDifferent centaurs]], to [[OurMermaidsAreDifferent merfolk]] who appear similar to real life humans until their legs merge at the knees. The explanation given was that in this version of Earth's past, six-limbed creatures became dominant instead of those with four limbs, giving humans diversity based on how that extra pair of limbs developed (whether that be extra legs for centaurs, or wings for angelfolk). Highlighting the distinction, there are also [[FrogMen anthropomorphic frog people]], [[SnakePeople snake-like Antarcticans]], and StarfishAliens, but they are all explicitly not human.

[[/folder]]

    Other Notes 
  • With the titles of works, you need the namespace, in this case Manga, followed by a /. (You don't need to do this for links to tropes.)
  • You can pothole names, linking to other pages through different text [[{{Tropes}} like this]] or [[TropeAreTools like this]], which would display like this and like this. So for Half-Human Hybrids you might need to do something like [[HalfHumanHybrid Half-Human Hybrids]].
  • If there are no apostrophes/hyphens/etc in the title, {{Half Human Hybrid}}s can also work (Half Human Hybrids without the hyphen), but it won't necessarily show the formatted display name that some titles have, and adding the - or ' manually will break the wiki text, ie. {{Half-Human Hybrid'}}s.
  • ...None of which applies if the trope already already has an alternate title, which Half Human Hybrids actually does, so you could just type HalfHumanHybrids.
  • All wiki link text in these comment threads shows up as blue even if it's wrong, so there may be links you would still need to fix after the fact.

[=Example goes here=] would be how you display unformatted text, btw.

Dec 21st 2018 at 2:40:14 PM

  • Humans in the Star Wars galaxy have microscopic organisms called midi-chlorians in their cells. People with an exceptionally high number of them are able to use the Force. Some of the fictional races/species are considered related to Humans and referred to as near-humans, but that doesn't necessarily protect them from Fantastic Racism.

Dec 21st 2018 at 2:50:26 PM

  • In Final Fantasy X the Al Bhed are a tribe of people that have spiral pupils. Why? Who knows, who cares.

Dec 21st 2018 at 3:18:02 PM

^ Are they being treated as human equivalent?

Dec 21st 2018 at 4:28:46 PM

Yeah, the Al Bhed look indistinguishable from Tidus, Wakka, Lulu, and other Humans. They're culturally distinct in having their own language and weird eyes, but still human. Yuna's Heterochromia is explained with the reveal that she is half-Al Bhed herself.

The Guado are also stated to be a separate species from Humans, with their defining features being their gruff-looking faces. Big Bad Seymour is proof that they can mate with humans though.

Dec 21st 2018 at 6:02:57 PM

See the Not Quite Human index for a list of common traits.

The opposite of Humans By Any Other Name. Contrast Human Aliens (aliens which appear indistinguishable from humans), Human Subspecies (which which may or may not look like standard humans but are genetically related), and Witch Species (which may be either of the above but are primarily distinguished by their ability to do magic where other people can't).


Not sure about the FFX and Star Wars examples? The Guado are basically elves with really long arms and hands and branch-like Anime Hair. They're not called humans and humans do exist in the setting, so I don't think they'd count. Similarly the Al Bhed are said to be more of a Human Subspecies, treated a bit like the Romani, discriminated against on the basis of their spiral pupils and machina-centric culture.
In Star Wars, the Force and midi-chlorians aren't unique to humans. But there are, I think, examples of "humans" in the setting that look more alien than some near-humans, so they might count. I think the idea, though, is that for unique powers to qualify humans for this trope, it would have to be a power that pretty much all humans in the setting share, not just a few special individuals.

Dec 21st 2018 at 5:34:54 PM

Thanks alot so far Unsung. You have been a great help.

As for any examples people want to add, be sure to remember what the other tropes that are similar to this are talking about. Check out the Our Tropes Are Different page, or the Our Monsters Are Different page, because they contain many similar tropes. Sorry if I'm not clear enough about what the trope means, but it is supposed to be the same as, say, Our Souls Are Different or Our Mages Are Different, just with humans in particular instead of some other species.

As for the Star Wars example, I think it may count because humans don't have midi-chlorians in real life. But the question here is, does real life have anything to do with this trope or are we measuring this using some other criteria? This trope is still under construction, so I am open to any ideas anyone has. But I won't post something under the examples page unless I am sure that at least most people agree on it.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 9:55:07 AM

For sure, you're welcome. I think the issue with Star Wars is that it opens the door a little too wide, maybe? We have other tropes for humans with powers, so there'd be a lot of doubling up. Plus the Force is something special about a few individuals of various species, not really something that's unique to or universal among humans.

For a more in-universe reason, midi-chlorians are a microbe that resides in all living things, just more so in Force users, so more a form of Applied Phlebotinum than something different about humans specifically.

Literature

  • In The Culture, "human" is an umbrella term referring to all the species of bipedal, hairless apes (or non-primate ape analogues) that have evolved independently across the galaxy. While it's frequently glossed over and agents of the utopian Culture were able to move about on Earth with only minor modifications, detailed descriptions note that there can be enough differences in height, proportion, skin color, and reproductive processes to qualify as Rubber Forehead Aliens. Others have drastically altered their physical forms to the point where they're only considered human for the sake of legal and oral convenience, and some Culture expatriates have even gone on to join other species.

Dec 21st 2018 at 7:53:38 PM

The list of tropes that Unsung mentions as "Contrast" is important because they all look similar on the surface, but distinct within context (i.e if the context's right).

That is, care should be taken whether an example belongs to which trope.

Dec 21st 2018 at 8:10:59 PM

Shelly, you might have figured this out already, but I'll state it for the record just in case: the foldercontrol command is for opening and closing all folders at once, not for making folders.

This is shaping up to be a very interesting trope. I'm not ready to throw in my hat yet, but you're learning really fast and I'm proud of you for that. The more you learn and the more you develop this draft, the sooner I can toss in my hat.

Dec 21st 2018 at 8:15:25 PM

Shelly, another thing we should let you know is that if you click the gray circle next to a comment, you can go to "markup mode", which shows you how the poster wrote it- you can just copy/paste those examples from markup mode if it makes it easier for you.

Dec 21st 2018 at 8:23:21 PM

Video Games

  • In Guild Wars and Guild Wars 2, humans are one of the five main races in Tyria. Despite looking like and being called humans, they're more like elves. Humans are a race that was once very powerful but have now fallen into decline. They tend to shun technology and consequently are socially stuck in the past, especially the isolated human nations of Elona and Cantha in Guild Wars 2. They originally had a special affinity and respect for magic, due to it being granted to them by their gods, who brought humans to Tyria.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 12:46:07 AM

Thanks for the encouragement Miss_Desperado. If anyone can find any problems with my draft, please let me know. This can include things like spelling errors, or maybe there is a paragraph in the description that needs to be deleted. Also let me know if you find anything wrong with my links.

I am not sure what else I am supposed to do with this page besides add more examples. Am I supposed to add a picture? I know quite a few tropes that don't have pictures, so I am not too worried about it.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 1:18:16 AM

^ For this kind of trope, I don't think it's necessary, but just in case: I'd like a collection of picture of "humans" from different works, and with the caption "Yes, they're all humans. What did you ask?"

Dec 22nd 2018 at 5:59:34 AM

^ Yes, I now think that this trope is redundant. I don't know how you feel about it, but I believe we don't need it.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 10:11:13 AM

I'd say that's different in the same way that Human Aliens is — with those tropes, "standard" humans are still the norm in the setting. This trope, meanwhile, comes into play when "human" is used to refer to characters that might well be considered Ambiguously Human (or superhuman, or not human at all, a Humanoid Abomination or another species, etc) in another setting and by real world standards, but in the work they're in, they're the norm.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 6:37:11 AM

^ I see... It can be doable then.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 9:24:36 AM

An expert would have to carefully tweak the descriptions on both this draft and Ambiguously Human to minimize confusing one with the other. I think it's doable.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 9:50:11 AM

Yeah, it seems to me that a fairly large part of Ambiguously Human is that the ambiguously human character doesn't fit in with the norm — there are the regular humans, there are the obvious non-humans, and then there's this guy who looks human but, uh, is he? If every human, called as such, has the same sort of unusual characteristics, I think it would outside the territory of Ambiguously Human in that sense. In theory, you could take a perfectly normal human and put them in a setting full of weird supernatural humans like the ones in this trope, and they'd technically be Ambiguously Human.

Put another way, the Ambiguously Human character being unusual and out of the norm seems just as major a part of the trope, if not more so, than any physical or supernatural characteristics they may or may not have.

Anyway, a couple things:

Firstly, the folders need to be in alphabetic order. In this case, it means you need to take the Video Games folder and put it at the bottom.

Secondly, the titles of works need to be put in italics — you do that by putting two apostrophes, as in '', before and after each link.

Thirdly, the links Jak And Daxter, The Culture and Dungeons And Dragons are missing namespaces — the bit before the link that says what type of work they are. The link to D&D, for instance, should be written as TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons rather than DungeonsAndDragons. This is due to how the site organizes its pages — the only pages without a namespace are trope pages, so adding a link without one makes the site think you're linking to a trope instead of a work. This makes the link turn out red, because the site doesn't recognize it as a valid link to a page.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 9:58:55 AM

Aye, I do think this is salvageable. It's related to Ambiguously Human, but it's not the same concept, and we can work with what we have here to make the difference more obvious.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 12:29:38 PM

Hmm... actually I checked Ambiguously Human before I tried to launch this trope. I felt the concepts were similar, but I never thought they were confusing.

I always saw Ambiguously Human as a storytelling device, rather than a trope defining humans themselves. In other words, Ambiguously Human happens when writers have characters who appear to be human but don't want to bother explaining whether they are actually humans or not, so it is never really talked about in-universe.

This trope is about when a writer is still during the character development stage, or rather, the creature building stage of the writing process. The writer is trying to find out what creatures to put in his/her story at the moment, and decides at some point that he/she could get away with just making all the creatures humans with different "racial" superpowers, for instance.

In other words, in order to qualify for this trope, the character has to be mentioned as a human in-universe, despite obvious differences to real humans, whereas to qualify as Ambiguously Human, the character has to appear to be at least mostly human but said characteristics are not elaborated upon or even mentioned in-universe.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 12:35:21 PM

Also, I'm not sure how to clarify the difference in my draft seeing as I don't understand what is so confusing. Sorry if that makes me seem a little dense. I just thought the two tropes were already very different enough without further elaboration.

I'm open to suggestions here. Anyone have any ideas about the best way to handle this?

Dec 22nd 2018 at 12:46:47 PM

There. I added a little explanation at the end of the draft. Is this good enough, or do the two tropes still seem a little too confusing?

Dec 22nd 2018 at 2:08:12 PM

Maybe start with this? For the sake of making it clear right from the topic sentence.


It might not look like a human or talk like a human, but it's still a human, at least by name. Even if they have Pointy Ears, a rubber forehead, or Psychic Powers — so what? So do all the other humans they know.
Basically, this is what you get when you call a smeerp a human.
And then end with this? Changes in bold.
The opposite of Humans By Any Other Name. Contrast Human Aliens (aliens which appear outwardly indistinguishable from humans), Human Subspecies (which which may or may not look like standard humans but are genetically related), and Witch Species (which may be any of the above but are primarily distinguished by their ability to do magic where other people can't). Many of these examples would qualify as Ambiguously Human, Differently Powered Individuals, or simply Humanoid Aliens in other settings, but in the works in which they appear, they are referred to as human, and they form a significant proportion if not the entirety of humans in a given setting.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 5:56:30 PM

An example I remember having seen some time ago under Our Giants Are Bigger, with some edits:

Anime and Manga

  • One Piece: Humans, while otherwise fairly real-life standard, regularly reach heights and sizes well beyond those of real-life people. Besides normal humans around a meter and half to two in height (most characters), there are also humans around two and half to five meters high (Crocodile, Brook, Kuzan, Doflamingo, Katakuri, etc.), and some really big folk six to eight meters from head to toe, and often quite broad as well (Gecko Moria, Kuma, Whitebeard). These are distinct from giants, which are a distinct species in-universe — Word Of God is that this is simply how height naturally varies among humans in the One Piece world.

And a couple more from memory:

Literature

  • The Death Gate Cycle: Humans have a natural affinity for mental and elemental magic, in contrast to the elves' affinity for Magitek and the creation of enchanted objects and the Sartan and Patryn's powerful probability-based magic. In something of a twist, this makes the humans, as a species, considerably more closely tied to natural life than the elves are — their mental magic, for instance, allows the humans of Arianus to tame dragons, which the elves cannot, while the humans of Pryan are better farmers than the local elves, who have not even mastered basic crop rotation
  • The Halfblood Chronicles: Humans are naturally suited for mentally-focused magic, such as illusions and telepathy, but have little in the way of magic pertaining to control of physical matter. This in contrast to the elves, who have considerable power insofar as physical magic and the creation of magical artifacts goes but cannot manage anything in the way of mental magic without the aid of artifacts. On those rare occasions where elves and humans produce half-elves, these possess the magic of both their parent species, making for potentially very powerful mages.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 7:47:03 PM

Anime and Manga

  • My Hero Academia: Prior to the beginning of the series, humanity began to develop "Quirks", natural superpowers that range from glowing to shooting fire to growing wings. This radically changed the definition of what it meant to be "human", leading to a period of unrest and strife as people struggled to figure out what to do about Quirks. By the present day, 80% of humanity has a Quirk, while 20%, like protagonist Izuku Midoriya, is born Quirkless.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 7:53:55 PM

Hmm..there seems to be a problem when I try to link pages that have non-capitalized words in them, such as {{Call a Smeerp a "Rabbit"}} and Everyone Is a Super. Not sure how to fix this, but I will keep trying.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 7:56:28 PM

^ Just make a normal link. The customized links — the ones with punctuation or non-capitalized words — don't usually show up in the launch pad, but they'll show up as normal once the page is launched.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 8:00:42 PM

So should I leave it alone once it turns red, or should I leave it while it's still black?

Dec 22nd 2018 at 8:18:18 PM

Fixed a couple of potholes in the description. Just write it as so: [[CallARabbitASmeerp text]].

As for The Sorcerers Apprentice, just write a normal Wiki Word: Film/TheSorcerersApprentice. The custom title feature automatically handles rendering it with punctuation (though it's bugged in TLP comments, it renders fine in the draft itself).

You're either rather new here, or haven't looked into how a lot of the site's features actually work, right? For text formatting issues like you've been having here, Text Formatting Rules is your friend.

Dec 22nd 2018 at 9:02:23 PM

Actually, Unsung got to that first. I have been reading it, and it has been a big help, but it isn't like actually doing it, you know? And I have been trying things out in the sandbox too so you don't need to worry about whether I know how to use that.

Also, I don't really like it when people do things for me, because I don't learn that way. And as for the links: it is hard for me to understand them sometimes because there seems to be a different rule for certain pages for what to me looks like no explainable reason. With the Smeerp example, Call A Rabbit A Smeerp is not the title of the page; this is: Call a Smeerp a "Rabbit".

I know that what you did worked, but that doesn't make it any less confusing because all the other pages I have done so far only worked when I got the title exactly right (except HalfHumanHybrids, I had to change that one, but only the hyphen).

Dec 23rd 2018 at 3:13:26 AM

It's definitely a lot to take in, but given it's only been what, two days? I wouldn't sweat it.

So there are two similarly named pages — Call A Rabbit A Smeerp, where you call a mundane animal by an alien/fantastic name, and Call A Smeerp A Rabbit, the opposite. The human equivalent of the first would Humans By Any Other Name, but somehow we never had the opposite of that until this draft.

The key thing I think you want is that you want to type titles in CamelCase (ie. LikeThis) without any apostrophes, quotation marks, hyphens, or other punctuation for links. As long as the link is correct, any formatting should happen on its own. Some pages do have a few alternate titles, which you can find at the bottom after the examples. Curly Brackets ({{ }}) will create wiki links, but not when there's punctuation.

A pothole is just text which links to something other than what the text actually says. It would look like this: [[{{Pothole}} text which links to something other than what the text actually says]]

Dec 23rd 2018 at 4:27:28 PM

All right, I consider the description of this draft to sufficiently clarify how it's distinct from thematically similar tropes, so I've tossed in my hat.

Now, despite what the TLP Guidelines say, five more hats than bombs does not automatically mean this draft is ready for launch, because some unidentified tropers around here like to toss on hats willy-nilly for no good reason. Use your head.

Dec 24th 2018 at 12:37:59 PM

Five Races should be potholed somewhere, as I feel one execution of this trope is to make the humans fit into any role other than Mundane.

Dec 24th 2018 at 4:01:59 PM

This is shaping up well. I've added my hat as well — the main thing missing, I think, are examples.

On that note: the second bullet point in the description — the one about unusual ancestries — reminded me of something.

Videogames

  • World Of Warcraft: Early in its history, the world of Azeroth was seeded by the Titans with a variety of species crafted from earth, rock and metal. These were later afflicted by the Old Gods with the Curse of Flesh, which turned many into creatures of flesh and bone that became the ancestors of several later species. In one ancient species, the giants, the Curse resulted in the Vrykul, who while still large and powerful were much smaller and fleshier than their stony progenitors. The Curse further affected the Vrykul, giving them even smaller and fleshier — and in their view stunted and weak — children. Many of these were killed, but some were raised in secret and hidden away in another continent to live their own lives, where they became the progenitors of the human race. While otherwise fairly normal (by fantasy standards), WoW's humans are technically the smallest species of giant in the world, and technically closer kin to hill-sized beings of living stone than to elves and dwarves.

Dec 24th 2018 at 5:01:30 PM

A lot of Five Races High Men and Transhumans are going to fall into this by default, yeah? Depending on whether or not they're still considered human in the setting, how many of them and how widespread they are, etc, so not all of them, but it's probably a discussion we need to have. Middle Earth's Numenoreans, exultants from The Book Of The New Sun. Earth X, where all humans become mutants, which is implied to be the next step in the Celestials' plan for all life — next they all become shapeshifters like the Kree, before finally becoming Sufficiently Advanced gods like the Asgardians. Would that one actually count? I'm not sure.

Dec 24th 2018 at 8:29:56 PM

In the case of Transhumans, I am not so sure that counts, although I think it deserves an honorable mention. Many human races in fiction exist the same way as humans do in real life, but they later alter themselves using technology, which is the same thing that people do in real life. I would say then that in those cases, it is not this trope.

However, if enough time has passed and all humans are like this, rather than just a few, then it would count because all humans would be that way in-universe. If they are described as being different than "normal" humans in-story, then it is not this trope.

This is much more difficult when you consider that any kind of technological or biological alterations people make are usually not passed on genetically, so each generation would have to be refitted with this ability each and every time. If people are starting out as "natural" humans before they turn into something else, it is not this trope. However, if humans have changed themselves genetically, it would count because that would be the new normal.

In your Earth X example, I am not so sure either because I don't know the story. I think when this change occurs is just as important as if. Like, does the change to humanity occur during the course of the story, or is it backstory? If it is backstory, and humans have already changed, then it would count. But if humans are still undergoing this change during the story, it would not count because the "new" humans are not the normal ones yet.

This could also happen: In one story, humans are changing into something else, but in the sequel, humans have already changed. So the first book would not count as this trope but the second book would.

...Anyone confused yet?

As for the Numenoreans, I think they may count but in order to really know I would have to double check by reading the Silmarillion again, and I hate that book so I would rather not.

Dec 24th 2018 at 10:53:27 PM

I wonder if we have a trope about "possible future human evolution".

Dec 25th 2018 at 3:56:14 AM

Adding onto to the Everyone Is A Super entry:

In some cases humans may be able to learn Supernatural Martial Arts where any human is able to acquire powers through training alone.

Dec 25th 2018 at 8:15:57 AM

Yeah, I was saying that not all transhumans and High Men would count, but there are posthuman societies, humans chosen by the gods, and so on that definitely would. Just be a matter of sifting through the examples to find them. This tends to figure into a lot of in-setting Atlantis/Ancient Astronauts myth and very, very far-future settings. I'll be keeping an eye out.

Rereading it, it seems as if Earth X goes all the other way and calls all the newly empowered humans mutants, so skip that for now. That might change in the sequels, but I don't have them on hand.

I'm pretty sure the Numenoreans count, but I don't have the knowledge to write an example.

Dec 25th 2018 at 6:08:02 AM

The Jenkinsverse is this in spades. Humanity is the most powerful species in the galaxy. Most alien weapons harmlessly bounce off of humans, because humans evolved on a deathworld. As a result humans have calcium based skeletons, their tissue is so dense kinetic pulse fire canít penetrate, and much more. Essentially the only downside is humans have trouble breathing in most atmospheres other than Earth.

Dec 25th 2018 at 7:08:11 AM

^ Not sure if that counts. If I recall correctly, the basic conceit of the Jenkinsverse is that humans are physically and biologically exactly as we are in real life, and that it's only the aliens who are uniformly so frail and pathetic that we all seem like Superman in comparison.

Given that, as I understand it, this proposed trope is about humans who possess unusual, fantastical or alien characteristics that we do not have in real life, I have misgivings about how well the Jenkinsverse fits with this draft. Put another way, I suppose my question to the draft's sponsor here is whether absolute human traits or relative human traits matter more here.

Dec 26th 2018 at 2:29:07 PM

Hmm.. I just remembered what I think might be a few more examples.

In the film Doctor Strange, certain humans can develop the ability to become sorcerers. The magic they use involves manipulating reality and dimensions. They can also channel this magic into themselves to heal their injuries, but they have to exchange their magical powers for it.

In the Pokemon universe, humans seem to be invincible. They can survive flamethrowers, body slams, and massive falls. Team Rocket even develops a resistance to electricity due to the many times they have been shot by Pikachu's thunderbolts.

Dec 25th 2018 at 9:27:56 PM

I just discussed the Numenoreans with my sister, and she had some valuable insights:

The Numenoreans were considered in-universe (and especially among the elves) to be the best humanity had to offer. They were taller, wiser, gifted with foresight, and more united as a group than the rest of the humans who existed on Middle Earth were. That said, they were never mentioned as "normal" humans - in fact, the Numenoreans were explained to be the most like the elves out of all the races of men, which would qualify them as abnormal.

Also, because of their closeness to the elves, it is possible that there were more interracial marriages between them than there were among the other races of men. This would make them more like elves genetically as well.

Thing is, Tolkien tried to create a prehistory to real world history when he did this, saying at some point during his writings that Middle Earth is actually what prehistoric Earth originally looked like, and that the other races either hid or died out. According to him, this is why we don't see them today. It is a beautiful idea for a book, but it doesn't make humans seem any less mundane. However, I do recall the Silmarillion mentioning near the beginning that men were like unto elves when they were first created, being the same size and having similar behaviors.

Dec 26th 2018 at 3:05:15 PM

Pokemon doesn't count as there are no explanation how they're "invincible". For crying out loud, it's a kids show with family-friendly injuries.

Dec 26th 2018 at 3:23:29 PM

Yeah, Pokemon falls under Cartoon Physics more than the properties of the humans themselves.

Dec 26th 2018 at 8:18:03 PM

^^

However, I do recall the Silmarillion mentioning near the beginning that men were like unto elves when they were first created, being the same size and having similar behaviors.
I believe that Tolkien created the elves as a sort of thought experiment for what humans might have been like if we had never fallen into the original sin — he was a very devout Catholic. By that logic, it makes sense that he would have described the original, un-fallen humans in his works as having been like the elves.

But this is getting off-topic.

Dec 27th 2018 at 3:58:52 PM

Well I finally managed to look through all my movies, books, and video games, but I haven't found any more examples.

I noticed that we have 13 hats now. When we had 5, Miss_Desperado advised against launching it yet. Is 13 hats enough, or should we wait a little longer?

Dec 27th 2018 at 4:02:32 PM

Compare Our Mages Are Different as well. Examples like the ones from Sorcerer's Apprentice and Doctor Strange are probably better off there, and on Training The Gift Of Magic, than here.

Dec 27th 2018 at 4:34:02 PM

Yeah one of the biggest problems with this is the lack of examples. The similarity between this draft and other tropes is turning out to be bigger than I expected.

However, with Our Mages Are Different and Training The Gift Of Magic, can't those two examples belong in both? After all, humans wouldn't be able to train the gift of magic if they did not already have magic, which we don't have in real life. And the rest of humanity not knowing about those wizards did not negate the fact that magic was a "normal" biological ability. Training The Gift Of Magic also applies to non-human characters and humans who were not supposed to have magic but ended up with it anyway, whereas Our Humans Are Different does not.

Also, I am starting to see the reason why the Numenoreans were mentioned. They are a group of humans in the setting who were different than humans in real life. I allowed a similar example in The Legend of Zelda. So, since this draft is becoming so difficult, I propose that we broaden it's definition to include examples where certain humans are different, but not all of them, as long as it is still considered normal in the setting.

Dec 30th 2018 at 4:20:32 PM

I'm fine with reasonably large groups of humans who are different from other humans qualifying for this. I don't think it has to be all humans in a given setting, just a significant proportion.

But I do think listing all supers, mutants, or mages in a setting where those are common is too much — it would just open the door to every comic book and fantasy novel, and a lot of duplication between this and any subtropes. And maybe it hasn't been said outright, so I'll be direct: I do think this is a supertrope in those cases, at least in part.

Dec 27th 2018 at 5:09:25 PM

Hmm... I guess that is something I will have to think about.

I suppose that the word "normal," as we are using it, is not clearly defined. So are we talking about "sociologically normal" or "biologically normal"? An example would be the X Men universe. In it, people are naturally evolving into mutants, so it would qualify as biologically normal. But, their condition is not sociologically normal, which is the reason the entire plot happens.

Personally, I am leaning towards biologically normal. I think that sociologically normal should be included too, but if we are forced to choose between the two, the natural biology should be more important.

Dec 27th 2018 at 9:49:18 PM

I'm sorry, I'm not quite clear on exactly how you're defining that distinction. But what I'm basically saying is that those examples would fall under this trope by default, and they have their own pages, so we don't have to list them again individually here.

...Mostly, I mean. Not all mages are necessarily human, for example (if they're elves or gnomes, etc). But that's why I think it needs to be its own page, with a link back to this page (once it launches) noting the difference.

Dec 29th 2018 at 11:31:11 AM

Suggestion withdrawn.

Dec 27th 2018 at 9:45:10 PM

I would say that anything that evolves from humans also counts.

Dec 29th 2018 at 1:29:35 AM

If you're still wondering on when to launch, a good rule of thumb is to not interrupt discussions of Does This Count.

Dec 29th 2018 at 11:20:43 AM

I didn't want to be the only one commenting, but the Everquest example sounds more like Human Subspecies. A lot of things are going to be subtropes of this. I don't think that's a bad thing, it just needs to be established and explained in the description.

Dec 29th 2018 at 9:36:46 AM

So you're saying that if the evolution of humans is mentioned in past tense, it counts because it is a different evolutionary history, but if humans are the past evolution, it does not count?

Also, when I see an example that I think works, I usually wait a good while before I post it under the examples page, because I am giving people enough time to comment. If no one comments, I assume that there is either agreement or non-participation, so I post it anyway. Actually, I realized that doing this is a good thing because no one seems to comment unless I post something they don't like under the examples page. In a way, I am trying to subtly nudge people into participating.

Also, if anyone hates the draft, they can always throw a bomb, so...not really trying to stop anyone from sharing their opinions.

Dec 29th 2018 at 12:34:20 PM

It counts if they're still called humans, I'd just say that the example might already be covered by a subtrope — a subtrope that's only a subtrope in certain cases. I've already hatted this, I just think it's worth hammering out these details.

Dec 29th 2018 at 11:30:54 AM

I would say Human Subspecies is the better trope then, since even I didn't know about it until you mentioned it just now.

The only "Humans" in the game are called as such. Erudites are so stuck up and higher-than-thou over every other race that being called a human is an insult.

Dec 29th 2018 at 6:17:27 PM

I guess this trope isn't bad, it's just rare, huh?

Dec 29th 2018 at 7:50:18 PM

Film Animated

  • In Strange Frame, humans have colonized the Jovian moons, resulting in many humans becoming genetically engineered to survive in the differing environments of the moons. Thus, there are now humans with furrier bodies or even extra limbs who are still considered humans.

Dec 29th 2018 at 7:53:27 PM

^^ I wouldn't even say rare, necessarily — rather, I think that a lot of its specific variations are already defined as subtropes like Human Subspecies, Witch Species and so on.

Put another way, it would work more or less like Our Dragons Are Different — it has a lot of subtropes, like Catlike Dragons, Dragons Are Divine, Dragons Are Demonic, Dracolich, Draconic Humanoid, Weredragon and so on, which while technically all examples of Our Dragons Are Different are kept under their own pages for clarity and to expand on specific themes. Our Humans Are Different would probably end up working as much like an index page as anything else — it would have its list of subtropes, and then it would also include examples that would not fit in a specialized page.

Of course, the fact that we can't simply list every work containing humans (unlike every work containing dragons or elves or whatnot) reduces the amount of examples that would go on the "default" page, i.e. here.

Dec 29th 2018 at 8:33:23 PM

Literature

A staple of the Wuxia and Xianxia genre, where regular humans have inner channels for ki to flow and even a Dantian, a fictional organ dedicated solely to manipulate energy, the regular inner organs are have Yin and Yang attributes while males have natural Yang energy flow and females have a natural Yin energy flow, there are also plenty of variant body types more suited towards or against certain ways of combat, development or energy manipulation. This humans also have acupoints an can be completely transformed if pierced in certain ways, from getting over a cold to awakening ancient bloodlines

Dec 30th 2018 at 11:13:23 AM

You know what is really funny about this? I wanted to make this trope similar to tropes like Our Dragons Are Different, but I never actually thought of making this a supertrope like them. Lol it's just one of those things that brings a tear to my eye...

Anyway, thanks Theriocephalus and Unsung. Also, if anyone can think of any specific tropes that can be listed as subtropes to this, be sure and list them. I know that quite a few have already been mentioned, but it never hurts to check if there are more.

I also need to know about the tropes that I have already potholed in the draft. Do I list those as subtropes, or is there no point since there are already links to them on the page?

I am thinking of taking the same route as Our Monsters Are Different and listing relevant tropes on the bottom of the page, under a tropes tab.

Dec 30th 2018 at 2:53:56 PM

I have a few suggestions for the subtropes list. Humanity Came From Space counts as a different evolutionary history, with Advanced Ancient Humans and Humanity Is Advanced being related to this. Also, do the "humans are x" tropes count, seeing as the draft mentions that giving humans a different mindset works? Examples of this would be Humans Are The Real Monsters and Humans Are Diplomats, among others.

I also would like to know if an index page can be a subtrope of another index page, such as with Humans Are Indexed.

Dec 31st 2018 at 1:26:02 PM

An index can cross-index other indexes, definitely.

I'm just a little leery about this page doing too much? If it were more just an index I suppose that wouldn't matter as much, but the original scope of this seemed to be calling a species in a fantasy setting or another world human even if they seemed very different from humans on Earth. At first acknowledging that this was a sliding scale seemed to make sense when it came to transhumanism, evolution, alternate history, superpowers and magic talent and so on and so forth, but it's starting to feel a little muddy. I still think it's a good idea, I'm just not clear that everyone is on the same page with regard to what that idea is.

If it is just that broad and pretty much everything human-related is part of it, that's fine, but I do think the initial description had a somewhat narrower focus.

I think I've said too much, though. We could use a fresh pair of eyes on this other than my own.

Dec 31st 2018 at 1:10:38 PM

So calling them humans no matter what they look like is a trope, not an index.

I do agree that this page is doing too much, actually. The description is already quite long, and I would hate to add a list of subtropes that make it longer.

Thing is, after all the hard work I have poured into this draft, getting on every day hoping I didn't say anything stupid and worrying about getting suspended for posting too many replies (if it isn't possible, I worry about it anyway), I would rather just leave the draft as is and hope for more examples to show up. Maybe playing this trope completely straight is just rare, like I said before. Lack of examples is just lack of examples. And if there are more tropes that need potholing, I can do that, but otherwise I think this draft is finished (besides lack of examples).

Jan 2nd 2019 at 3:44:35 PM

For anyone who is new to this page, I would like to clarify a few things:

1) Don't bother looking at all the replies on here, seeing as there are so many, and no one except me is replying anymore. If you don't know what this trope is about, then you can read this post or read the description in the draft.

2) There are 5 main points mentioned in the draft. These are the criteria for whether something qualifies for this trope. All you need is one for your examples. You do not need to have any more than that. They are represented by the bullet points in the above draft.

3) Remember the last sentence. Your example of humans being different has to be normal in the setting, and it has to comprise "a significant proportion, if not the entirety of humans in the setting." Using The Legend of Zelda example, Hylians are not the only humans in the setting, but they are a large number of the humans in the setting, so they are not a minority. This makes them still count.

Any questions about this are welcome. But there will be no more arguing about what this trope entails, because I have just clarified it. If you don't like it, then don't post. If I have to, I will add all the examples myself, without anyone's help. I am to that point now.

Jan 2nd 2019 at 9:07:08 PM

You don't need to worry, you haven't done anything suspension-worthy. People other than you have been replying as recently as December 29th, and you only started this trope on the 20th. You need to be a little patient with these things — that's really not that long for a draft of this scope. Please don't get frustrated and lash out. Just take a step back, maybe contribute to a few other TL Ps, edit some pages, go on the forums. Wiki Magic will do its thing, but sometimes it takes a little time. Sometimes the best thing to do is just bump the thread every few days.

People should read the previous discussion, though, because the stuff about subtropes and whether this should be an index is really the only thing I think we still need to hash out. If it's an index, that probably makes the lack of examples less of an issue, but we would just have to add the indexed tropes.

Jan 2nd 2019 at 9:00:18 PM

Jan 3rd 2019 at 12:15:16 PM

Unsung is right; be patient, sometimes letting things sit for a bit is for the best. There's no rush to get anything done. I know I've not been posting here in a bit but I have been silently lurking since we ironed out the basics. This is a big, broad trope you're working on, so give it a little time and maybe take a break from this draft to cool your head a bit.

Jan 3rd 2019 at 12:30:34 PM

  • Humans in Hero Oh Hero are able to use magic and can also randomly have strange hair colours (the latter typically being from being born in high magic areas regardless of if the person in question has any powers). The setting's elves are a race (in the non-Tolkien sense) of humans with green hair, skin and Green Thumb powers who're called "elves" as a slur by The Empire.

Jan 5th 2019 at 11:56:37 AM

That seems like a pretty good number of examples, really. Okay, so the only thing I'd suggest is adding a few more qualifications. You've had a pretty solid list of what the trope is right from the start, but I think maybe we just need a little more on what it isn't, as well.

I edited this based on the last few paragraphs of the current description, but I worry it's getting unwieldy. Maybe this could be rendered down into a bullet-point list as well?


Please note that this trope relies on the humans themselves, not any events surrounding them. Creating an Alternate Universe with Crystal Spires And Togas does not make your humans different unless it is explained in-story that humans are Perfect Pacifist People who like to build utopian societies on a genetic level.

The opposite of Humans By Any Other Name. Contrast Human Aliens (aliens which appear indistinguishable from humans but are explicitly not). See the Not Quite Human index for a list of common traits that might make your humans different. Also see Humans Are Indexed for more tropes about humans in general.

Compare and contrast Human Subspecies (which may or may not look like standard humans but are genetically related) and Witch Species (which may be either of the above but are primarily distinguished by their ability to do magic where other people can't). See also Superpowerful Genetics, Randomly Powered, The Gift, and Our Mages Are Different, although not all wizards (or Jedi, psychics, mutants, etc.) are necessarily human in the first place. Whether or not human-descended Mutants, Differently Powered Individuals, and Posthuman Cyborgs qualify or not tends to vary depending on the setting and specific example.

While it can be difficult to draw a hard line, generally this trope is only in play when a significant proportion of greater humanity is different, not just a few special individuals — The Chosen One or even The Chosen Many are not examples of this trope (although The Chosen People could be).

Jan 8th 2019 at 3:55:37 PM

The trope was rogue launched, so unlaunched.

Jan 11th 2019 at 5:38:44 PM

  • The Fifth Season: Humans have "sessapinae" in their brains that let them sense vibrations and seismic phenomena, a survival trait in the Death World they inhabit. Those born with the Functional Magic of orogeny can "sess" the exact composition of the earth for miles around, drain energy from their surroundings, and control seismic activity in the region.
  • Liliths Brood: By Adulthood Rites, the human race is Long Lived on the order of centuries, resistant to disease, and sterile, thanks to genetic manipulation by the alien Oankali who rescued them After The End. All children that are born are human-Oankali hybrids.

Jan 8th 2019 at 4:59:29 PM

Should be Randomly Gifted rather than Randomly Powered, that's my bad. There's also a line break two lines above that, not sure if that should be there.

Other than that, I think we're good. :)

Jan 8th 2019 at 11:03:12 PM

  • In Legend Of Mana, the human race encompasses a wide variety of sapient beings: from the Little Bit Beastly to full on Civilized Animals, mythological creatures such mermaids and centaurs, and various others in addition to "ordinary" humans like the player character. Basically any sapient creature that isn't said to not be human such as Sproutlings, Faeries, or Jumi is human.

Jan 11th 2019 at 5:20:01 PM

Sorry I haven't been on in a while. I didn't know stuff could be unlaunched, lol.

Jan 11th 2019 at 5:54:05 PM

Alright, I just rechecked the draft and I don't see any problems, so I'm going to launch.

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