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Comic Book / Pathfinder: Worldscape

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A Massive Multiplayer Crossover event published by Dynamite Comics in 2016 featuring licensed properties under their print including John Carter of Mars, Red Sonja and four Iconics from Pathfinder (Also the main characters of their comic). It features the exploits of four adventurers from Golarion - Valeros, the fighter; Seoni, the sorceress; Kyra, the cleric and Merisiel, the rogue - who are plucked from their world to a mysterious prison dimension called the Worldscape, where the greatest warriors of other worlds such as Golarion, Earth/Hyboria and Barsoom are drawn into an endless struggle for the entertainment of an immortal tyrant. As the four Pathfinders attempt to survive and reunite amid this deadly backdrop, their travels and machinations bring them into contact with other heroes, villains, and monsters plucked from beyond time and space. In time, the heroes become embroiled in a conflict for two powerful magical artifacts—the Scepter and the Crown—that promise control over the Worldscape—and perhaps also escape from it. Gathering both artifacts and punching a hole back to their home worlds will require teamwork and alliance with a rag-tag group of the greatest warriors of three worlds.


The series is written by Erik Mona and the art provided by Jonathan Lau with alternate covers provided by Reilly Brown, Ben Caldwell, Sean Izaakse, and Tom Mandrake. The series ran for 6 issues and each chapter contains character sheets with stats for Earth and Barsoom characters to roleplay with. A second volume was released in late 2017 in hardcover format as an prequel anthology focusing on Red Sonja, John Carter and Tarzan before they met the Pathfinders, as well as iconic anti-hero Seltyiel that also come from their world.

A third volume was released in late 2018 featuring Dejah Thoris, Vampirella, Herbert West the Re-Animator and the Swords of Sorrow reunited as a direct follow up to the series.


This comics features examples of the following tropes:

  • Adaptational Attractiveness: Xanesha looks much more human than the gaunt, twisted monster with Creepy Long Fingers she is depicted as in Rise of the Runelords. Plus she lacks her Adventure Path counterpart's bizarre conical breasts.
  • Adaptational Modesty: Compare how much of an Ms. Fanservice that Phaidor was in Warlord of Mars being clad in gold ornaments and nothing more and how her Worldscape counterpart is dressed more conservatively - though they still bear some similarities like neck insignias. It may have something to that Worldscape!Phaidor was raised in a different environment than Barsoom!Phaidor.
  • Adaptational Villainy: In both the comics and books, Phaidor was an sympathetic Anti-Villain that loved John Carter - even more so in the comics where she gets Adaptational Heroism. The one from the Worldscape takes her father's place as Holy Hekkador and is portrayed every bit as ruthless and brutal as her father and she makes a point that unlike her alternate versions, she will not be as "weak" as they were.
  • Advertised Extra: Tarzan was announced as one of the main characters, even being featured in the certain covers where he doesn't appear. He only makes his real appearance in the finale, something which Word of God laments for sidelining him.
  • And the Adventure Continues: Literally in the case of the Pathfinder adventuring party, since they were transported to the Worldscape in the middle of their quest and after helping to save The Multiverse, they are returned to the exact spot where they started and proceed to continue what they started.
  • A Day in the Limelight: The second volume focuses on stand-alone adventures from John Carter, Red Sonja, Tarzan and Seltyiel.
  • A God Am I: A rare heroic example, as Fantomah makes this claim to Seoni (see Badass Boast below), but assures her that she has nothing to fear from her.
  • All-Loving Hero: Kyra, as carrying over characterization from the source material. She saves the life of an complete stranger, and even after he proves to unworthy of her help by ratting him out to the local authorities, she still offers him a chance at redemption.
  • All There in the Manual: The character sheets at the end of every issue contains information about characters that isn't addressed in the story while Volume 3 explores the world building. For example, the Cult of Issus came into power when its Holy Hekkador made an deal with Camilla who abandoned her pagan Norse gods, converted to the Therns' faith instead and turned it into Shareen's state religion.
  • Another Dimension: The comic takes place in the demiplane known as Worldscape that draws individuals from Earth, Golarion and Mars.
  • Anti-Magical Faction: The Therns enforce the will of Issus in Shareen and regards it as the one divine force in the Worldscape and any foreign magic to be aberration that must be rooted out.
  • Anthology Comic: The second volume is a compilation of prequels featuring other heroes before the Pathfinder's adventuring party arrival in the Worldscape.
  • Arch-Enemy: Red Sonja and Kulan Gath are still bitter enemies, and so are John Carter and the Holy Therns.
  • Badass Boast: Fantomah gives one to Seoni when asked if she is the queen of this jungle:
    Fantomah: Queens. Empresses. They rise and fall. I am beyond that. I am Fanthomah. I am not this jungle's queen. I am its goddess.
  • Bald of Evil: The Therns are typically hairless just like in the source material. But due to being stranded in a alien world, they can't afford to make wigs to cover their heads like in their homeworld. As such, they ditch it entirely, wearing their baldness as a symbol of pride and makes them more threatening to their enemies.
  • Ban on Magic: Kyra nearly gets arrested and forced into the arena by the Holy Therns because she healed someone with her goddess Sarenrae's power. With that said, Kulan Gath is kept off limits since he is Camilla's right-hand man and the Therns serve her. This turns out to be a fatal mistake, since Gath is conspiring to usurp Camilla and has her assassinated.
  • Betty and Veronica: An all-female version with Kyra as the Betty and Phondari as the Veronica to Merisiel's Archie.
  • Big Bad Ensemble:
    • In Volume 1, the role of Big Bad is split between Empress Camilla and Kulan Gath, who rule the Worldscape together but he is secretly plotting to overthrow her behind her back.
    • Volume 3 really makes a shuffle out of this trope between Phaidor, Nex the Archmage and the Blood Queen, all of them with their personal agendas.
  • Big Good:
    • Fantomah and the Council of Jungle Kings. They serve as guardians and protectors of the Worldscape with the Council serving as the most stabilizing force in the demiplane.
    • The Traveller from Swords of Sorrow is built up as this in Volume 3.
  • Bittersweet Ending: In Volume 1, the bad guys are defeated as Kulan Gath's plot turned to have been for naught since Fantomah safe kept the MacGuffin with her all this time, and the heroes quickly dispose of him. John, Tarzan, Sonja, Tars and the Pathfinders return to their respective homes when the Crown and the Scepter are reunited, but on the flip side, their memories are erased from these events are erased and the Jungle Kings elect to stay in the Worldscape to guard the artifacts.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy:
    • Xanesha's mask has the special power to control people's minds whether to calm them down or make them fight for her. She uses it in Issue 5 to brainwash John Carter to fight in the arena against Sonja.
    • Romulus and Remus turned out to be under the influence of their crowns.
  • The Bus Came Back: It's revealed what happened to Phondari after her departure in Warlord of Mars: Dejah Thoris: she spent all this time trapped in the Worldscape.
  • Cadre of Foreign Bodyguards: Empress Camilla has a group of Holy Therns (White Martians) serving as her personal bodyguards as well as enforcers to Xanesha.
  • Came Back Wrong: The Re-Animator resurrects a couple of Holy Therns as experiment, but they are hollow shells of their former selves. This trope gets actually inverted with Camilla, who is brought back but she is not evil anymore as she feels shame for her actions. In turn, she warns that the same could happen to Gath (who was reduced to just a finger).
  • Church Militant: The Holy Therns are a bodyguard force, a religious police and clergy rolled up into one. They are also an very evil example of this trope.
  • Creepy Good: Fantomah is a Friend to All Living Things that takes the shape of a skeletal female, which disturbs Seoni greatly. Thun'da agrees that she is rather creepy, but she has been an unquestionable ally to the Council and her Establishing Character Moment has her healing a banth that Seoni had killed in self-defense because she took pity on it. Its also revealed that she released Merisiel from Camilla's service, returned her to Golarion and safeguarded the artifacts the villains were searching all along.
  • Cool vs. Awesome: Adventurers from a D&D-inspired game join forces with pulp-era heroes including several classic jungle kings and the Warlord of Mars alongside his Green Martian best friend against a court of tyrannical slavemasters, their creepy White Martian enforcers, an army of intelligent apes and an evil sorcerer from Hyborian times.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Valeros stabs one mook through the head while he is distracted.
  • Decadent Court: Shareen's court delights in watching fights to the death in the arena and boo at the champion who spares their defeated foe.
  • Equal-Opportunity Evil: A fantasy version of this at any rate, since Camilla employs minions from different worlds such as Kulan Gath (a Hyborian sorcerer), Xanesha and Ruthazek (a lamia and a dire ape from Golarion, respectively), Phondari (a Black Martian) and Merisiel (an elf), with the last two being lesbians. Quite progressive for a tyrant that ruled an African tribe like a deity and practiced human sacrifice. Justified since they are all trapped in another realm and need each other to advance their goals.
  • Evil Chancellor: Kulan Gath acts as Camilla's vizier, but he is secretly plotting to overthrow her with an army of apes led by Ruthazek.
  • Eviler Than Thou: While Camilla ruled the Worldscape with iron fist, Kulan Gath's machinations turned out to be even more ambitious: seeking to use the Scepter and the Crown to conquer all possible versions of Barsoom, Earth and Golarion and finish Nex's original experiment to become a god.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Merisiel of the Pathfinders adventuring party is revealed to have joined Camilla's Decadent Court. Turns out it was a fake-out, she did initially join them years ago when she was a less moral person, but had her memories wiped out by Fantomah and was returned to Golarion. After going back to the Worldscape with her friends, she pretends to help Kulan Gath to steal the Scepter, but she is actually following Fantomah's will all along.
  • Fantasy Gun Control: Firearms like rifles, muskets and radium guns (essentially blasters) are present due to people from different timelines being drawn to the Worldscape, but they are rare and used sparingly due to lack of ammo. Most people just relies on swords and melee weapons at any rate.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Justified, as the Worldscape draws people from several dimensions across time and space. The series features Hyborians (Red Sonja), elves (Merisiel), Martians (Tars Tarks, Dejah Thoris, Phondari and the Therns), magic users (Kulan Gath, Seoni and Kyra), pulp-era characters (Thun'da, Tarzan, Camilla), intelligent gorillas (Ruthazek), vampires (Vampirella), whatever the hell Fantomah is and several others.
  • Five-Man Band: Shareen's court fits the position very nicely.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Fantomah is a guardian of the jungle and all its creatures. In her first appearance, she heals a banth (a Martian lion) mortally wounded by Seoni in self-defense.
  • From a Single Cell: Gath is so throughout destroyed by Fantomah that only a finger remains of his body. This is still enough for West to resurrect him.
  • God Guise: Camilla was originally worshiped as a goddess by the jungle tribesman that her ancestors ruled over, and when stranded to the Worldscape, she fools the Holy Therns (a race with god-like delusions as well) into thinking she is one of them.
  • God in Human Form: Fantomah might as well be considered the closest thing to a deity in the story, since she has powers beyond the ken of any being trapped in the Worldscape - even if limited by Camilla and Kulan Gath's presence. She looks just like a normal human female with one peculiarity - her face is a blue, angry skull.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Empress Camilla, who rules over the Worldscape at the start of the series. She originally used to rule a forgotten kingdom in Africa that performed electric human sacrifices to Thor.
  • Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex: Valeros and Red Sonja promise that if they survive at the end, they will celebrate this way. They sure do during the goodbye party.
  • Gladiator Games: The main form of entertainment for the Worldscape's residents. Valeros is forced to fight into the arena by Xanesha for Camilla and her court, but he refuses to execute his defeated opponents, which gets him booed by the audience and lashed for his insubordination.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Nex The Archmage, a long deceased character from Pathfinder lore is revealed to have created the Worldscape in a bid to attain godhood. However, he died before achieving his goal though his creation still remained drawing individuals from the three worlds. Volume 3 reveals that he is still alive and plotting his return by collecting gods.
  • High Priest: The White Martians still keep their Holy Hekkador in the Worldscape. Except this time, its not Matai Shang, but his daughter Phaidor who takes center stage in Volume 3.
  • Historical Domain Character: King of the Goblins features Vlad the Impaler and Elizabeth Bathory trapped in the Worldscape.
  • Human Aliens: The humanoid races of Barsoom such as the Reds, the Blacks and Whites - though Phondari has grey skin and silver hair, Dejah and Phaidor look indistinguishable from an Latin and Nordic women respectively. Lampshaded in Volume 3 when a Numerian cyborg gloats about Dejah's human weakness and she corrects him stating she isn't human.
  • I Choose to Stay: At the end of the miniseries, the Council of the Jungle Kings decide to remain in the Worldscape to guard the Scepter and the Crown from falling it in the hands of another power-mad lunatic like Gath. Tarzan is the only one allowed to return.
  • Interspecies Romance: A short-lived one between Merisiel and Phondari, an elf and a Black Martian respectively.
  • Jungle Princess:
    • Pha, the love interest of jungle hero Thun'Da, used to be the princess of the jungle kingdom of Shareen before she was overthrown by Camilla and imprisoned.
    • Cave Girl is a member of the Council of Jungle Kings, though she only appears in the final issue.
    • Queen La from Tarzan is also featured in his stand-alone story. Volume 3 reveals that she joined the Council too.
  • Killer Gorilla: The entire ape population in the Worldscape composed of many species are rallying under King Ruthazek, a dire-ape from Golarion that serves as The Dragon to Kulan Gath.
  • Killer Space Monkey: White apes, the most dangerous animal in Barsoom wildlife, are found in the Worldscape. Valeros is almost killed by one before he is enslaved by Xanesha and her Therns.
  • Kiss of the Vampire: Seltyel feels this way when bitten by Draculina.
    Seltyel: Hey, its not so bad. It actually feels kind of gooo——
  • La Résistance: John Carter leads the resistance against the evil rulers of Shareen.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Anyone that succeeds fleeing the Worldscape has their memories during the time trapped there erased when they return home. Its revealed that Merisiel was pulled into this place 20 years ago and helped Camilla steal the Scepter from Thun'da and Pha, but under mysterious circumstances, she returned to Golarion and didn't remember any of these things. Their memories are restored when they are pulled back however.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: When Red Sonja tells Kulan Gath in Issue #6 that "she is really tired of hearing his voice", according to Word of God that is supposed to be a commentary on her lackluster rogues gallery, since he is the only villain she gets to fight regularly and at the time of publishing, he was also the Big Bad in the concurrent volume 4 of Red Sonja's comic.
  • Let's You and Him Fight: A fight occurs between Valeros and Red Sonja when they are set against each other in the arena on Issue #1.
  • MacGuffin: The Crown and the Scepter are sought by all Worldscape denizens in a effort to return home or gain ultimate power. Guess which one the villains want to do with them?
  • Mad Scientist:
    • The Re-Animator to be expected. He is enlisted by Phaidor to resurrect Camilla and Kulan Gath for her own means.
    • Ras Thavas from Barsoom, though unlike his comic book incarnation, he isn't a bad guy.
  • Manchurian Agent: Merisiel was actually transported to the Worldscape twenty years before she met the Pathfinder party and recruited to help Kulan Gath and Camilla gain the Crown and the Scepter. After succeeding in this task, she was returned to Golarion by Fantomah, wiping away all her memories of the past events. After being brought back, her memories are restored and she helps Gath to steal the items by infiltrating Camilla's court. This trope then gets flipped back to him when its revealed that Merisiel has been playing The Mole for Fantomah this whole time and handed Gath the fake artifacts.
  • Massive Multiplayer Crossover
  • Meaningless Villain Victory: Kulan Gath manages to have Camilla assassinated and steal the Scepter, declaring that he will conquer the multiverse when reuniting it with the Crown... Only for them to turn out to be fakes. In fact, Merisiel gave the artifacts away to Fantomah decades ago, meaning there was never any chance of him achieving his goals. He isn't given enough time to lament over this, since he gets killed by the heroes shortly afterwards.
  • Mercury's Wings: Camilla wears a winged helmet as an allusion to her Scandinavian background.
  • More Criminals Than Targets: It seems that among the many warriors pulled into the Worldscape, most happen to be killers, thieves and other assorted scum than actually heroic legends. There are at least enough of them to form a Wretched Hive in Shireen.
  • More Predators Than Prey: Likewise, there is a small number of herbivores among the wild life displaced into the jungle with most animals encountered being white apes, banths (Martian lions) and dragons.
  • Multinational Team: A fantasy version, since the good guys not only come from different nations, but also different worlds and timelines such as John Carter, Thun'da and Cave Girl (American), Tarzan (British), King Rex, Pha and Tabu (African), Wambi (Indian), Red Sonja (Hyrkanian, a Fantasy Counterpart Culture of Russian/Mongolia), Tars Tarkas (Green Martian), Valeros (Andoran), Seoni (Varisian) and Kyra (Qadiran).
  • The Multiverse: In addition of the Worldscape drawing individuals from three separate worlds, it also takes people from different versions of Earth. Kulan Gath and Red Sonja are native from Hyboria, a pre-historic version of Earth that is radically different from the more modern Earth which John Carter and Roger Drum / Thun'da came from, and the Holy Therns encountered in the Woldscape are noted to be different than the ones Carter fought previously, and he says they might have come from an different version of Barsoom as well.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • An alternate cover of Issue #3 is inspired by one of the covers for A Princess of Mars, the first book in the Barsoom series, the only difference is Dejah Thoris is replaced with Kyra.
    • A Machine Man from Warlord of Mars: Dejah Thoris can be seen walking through Shareen's market.
    • Among those mentioned to have escaped from the Worldscape, it is perhaps unsurprising that Durvin Gest, legendary agent of the Pathfinder Society and in-universe Memetic Badass, is among them.
  • Nature Hero: The Council of the Jungle Kings is made of this trope. They are an array of seemingly ageless jungle-themed heroes marooned in the Worldscape for decades, which include Tarzan and Thun'Da.
  • No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Kyra saves the life of an young knight being assaulted by some thugs... Only for said knight to rat her out to some Holy Therns because she followed the goddess Sarenrae. To be fair, she didn't knew any better about Mordred, King Arthur's traitorous bastard son.
  • No Kill Like Over Kill: What happens at the end of the series to Kulan Gath, as he gets shot through the head by John Carter and then vaporized by a Physical God. Given he can survive a Boom, Headshot!, no wonder this was necessary to bring him down.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Tarzan and the twin brothers Romulus and Remus were wild children raised by animals (Tarzan was raised by apes, while the twins were nursed by a she-wolf). They tell him they are all very much alike in their We Can Rule Together offer.
  • Off with His Head!: Mordred gets swiftly decapitated by John Carter.
  • Path of Inspiration: Subverted with the Cult of Issus in the Worldscape. Whereas it originally promised paradise and prosperity for those on Barsoom that took pilgrimage to their domain as an elaborate scheme to enslave them, the Holy Therns don't practice the same. Probably because their existence is out in the open and their "goddess" Issus is long dead, but they still keep the pretense up to preserve Camilla's power over the city of Shareen.
  • Physical God: Fantomah is outright stated to be a jungle goddess. Given her bizarre set of powers, she could qualify.
  • Public Domain Character: Very obscure ones.
    • Empress Camilla, the immortal queen of a forgotten African kingdom, descended from Norse explorers that ended up in Africa and discovered immortality's secret. She first appeared in Jungle Comics #1
    • Thun'da and his love interest Pha, Tabu, Wambi, Cave Girl and King Rex were all jungle heroes from comic books that fell to obscurity and public domain.
    • Mordred from Arthurian cycle appears in Issue #3.
    • Romulus and Remus are featured in the Lord of the Jungle one-shot.
    • Stardust the Super Wizard appears in the Swords of Sorrow issue in Volume 3.
  • Putting the Band Back Together: The Traveler intends to reunite her three champions (Dejah, Vampirella and Sonja) to stop the looming threat. She summons Sonja back at the end of Volume 3 and states that they need to form an army.
  • Really 700 Years Old:
    • Being an elf, Merisiel is much older than she appears: when Kulan Gath calls her a young lady, she replies she is over 105-years old and possibly older than him. Being a Evil Sorcerer that extended his lifespan using foul means, he disagree.
    • Camilla herself casually mentions having 500 years ago. While not elaborated in the story, she is supposedly immortal because of an elixir used by her people to extend their lives.
    • Since her last appearance in Warlord of Mars: Dejah Thoris, Phondari is at least more than 437 years-old, but due to her Martian biology she still retains her youth.
  • Religion of Evil: The Cult of Issus from The Gods of Mars is established as the state religion in the Worldscape and every other religion is outlawed, with all "heretics" being sentenced to the arena. Its noted that their religion is not actually real since Issus wasn't a goddess and as such her priests can't draw power from it like Kyra does from her faith and rely on alternate methods.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Phaidor is established in Volume 3 to have converted Camilla to the Cult of Issus and turned Shareen into The Theocracy. Despite her importance in the court, Phaidor isn't even present nor is she alluded to in Volume 1.
  • Retcon: A minor background fluff example, but it was originally stated that Camilla gave power to the Therns by pretending to be one of them. Volume 3 slightly alters this information by stating that she converted to their religion by striking a deal with its Holy Hekkador Phaidor.
  • Science Fantasy: Due to elements from Barsoom bleeding over into straight up fantasy, we have airships and radium guns available next to dragons, sorcerers and barbarian heroes. Volume 3 has Numerian robots from Golarion fighting against Amazons and Martians.
  • Skull for a Head: Fantomah manifests herself as a blonde woman, but when her Game Face is up, she transforms into a blue skeleton. Also doubles as a Rare Female Example.
  • Snake People:
    • Xanesha is a lamia matriarch from Golarion, the same world as the Pathfinders.
    • The snake-men enslaved by Romulus and Remus in Lord of the Jungle also count.
  • Shout-Out:
  • The Starscream:
    • In the main series, Kulan Gath plots to betray Camilla and gain possession of her artifacts, but his ambitions go beyond just ruling the Worldscape. He wants to rule all possible realities of the three worlds.
    • In King of the Goblins, Elizabeth Bathory betrays Vlad Dracula at the end of the story and rules over New Wallachia with his head decorating her throne room.
  • Stupid Evil: Mordred immediately rats Kyra out to the Holy Therns for using magic, despite her saving his ungrateful life from thugs and him being completely defenseless without his weapons. He immediately dies by John Carter's sword for his treachery.
  • The Theocracy: Shareen under Camilla is effectively ruled by the White Martians' Cult of Issus, which she pretends to be a member herself and their edicts are religious in nature. Unlike in Barsoom, where their objective was to enslave as many Martians as subtly as possible without giving away their presence, their aim is to repress any foreigner religion other than Issus worship. Following Camilla's death in Issue #5 Vol. 1, the city falls into chaos until the void is filled by Phaidor, the high priestess of the Holy Therns.
  • Tragic Monster: Happens to Vampirella when she is compelled by the Blood Queen to turn Seoni into a vampire against her will. Even her own victim comprehends this isn't her fault and forgives her as she sinks her fangs into her neck with tears in her eyes.
  • Trapped in Another World: The crossover's premise with heroes from all over the Multiverse searching for a way to return to their respective homes.
  • Undead Child: In Issue #2 Seoni and John Carter find a school bus with the skeletons of many little children, and then they are reanimated by Kulan Gath to attack them.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: Mordred wastes no time in selling out Kyra to the Holy Therns after she saved his life and healed him because her magic belongs from another deity that isn't Issus.
  • Villainous Legacy:
    • The Worldscape's creator Nex is said to have died a long time ago, having created the demiplane in his bid for godhood and Kulan Gath is trying to finish his work.
    • Barsoom's false goddess Issus is long dead by this time of the series, but her worship is still kept very much alive and enforced by the Holy Therns, who made it the state religion of Shareen.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Phondari is the only bad guy to survive at the end, being last seen restrained by the heroes after Kulan Gath's defeat. Its not made clear if she returned to Barsoom with John and Tars or if she was left in the Worldscape. Its also unclear what became of the citizens of Shareen that are trapped in the Worldscape after their city descended to chaos with their Empress' death.
  • Wretched Hive: Shareen, the Worldscape's capital city, since most of its residents are killers, fighters and thugs brought from all over the cosmos, and many are the worst of the worst. It seems like a truly lawless place since its Decadent Court is just as corrupt and depraved as its people and the only rule they seem to follow is banning magic on grounds of it being blasphemy.