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Standard Fantasy Setting

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The generic fantasy setting. High Fantasy, Heroic Fantasy, and Low Fantasy are usually set here, along with many Tabletop RPGs and Video Games; however, this is not required. This is Newer Than They Think. Trope Maker The Lord of the Rings, though written earlier, only developed a cult following in The '60s. Dungeons & Dragons, beginning in 1974, and The Sword of Shannara, the 1977 first novel by Terry Brooks, acted as Trope Codifiers.

Another Trope Maker is William Morris, who wrote many such works in the 1890s. Four were reprinted by Ballantine's Adult Fantasy Series from 1969-73. That series is another likely Trope Maker in itself.

The Tough Guide to Fantasyland by Diana Wynne Jones will tell you pretty much everything you would like to know about the place (minus a few dead horses and unicorns). If you can get your hands on a copy, Barbara Ninde Byfield's 1967 guide The Glass Harmonica (reprinted in 1973 and 1994 as The Book Of Weird) is informative and funny. For (roughly) antithesis of Standard Fantasy Setting-style fantasy see New Weird, Magic Realism and Mundane Fantastic. See also Airport Novel

Common ingredients:

  • Post-Tolkien, this usually has at least three of the Standard Fantasy Races of heroic peoples.
  • Monsters: These are usually divided between regular wild monsters (which can range from slightly more aggressive wild beasts to things like griffins and dragons) and monstrous sapient beings, such as goblins, orcs, trolls, ogres, or any sort of big, ugly, muscled humanoid filling in the basic niche. They're barbaric, hostile, and a constant danger to the heroic peoples, but modern works may portray them more sympathetically.
  • Functional Magic:
  • Countries and governments:
    • The Empire: The primary antagonistic government, usually the largest as well. The Empire is powerful, decadent, amoral and expansionistic; it's usually ruled by squabbling nobility competing for power with each other while trying to court favor with the ruler, and will eye its neighbors with acquisitive interest. It may be led by the story's main villain, in which case stopping it when it tries to conquer the world will be the primary focus of the story.
    • The Good Kingdom: Usually the land the heroes come from, a bright and peaceful land of rolling hills, rustic hamlets and bustling cities. It will typically be menaced by the Empire/Dark Lord/Horde's ambitions and plots.
    • The Alliance: This will typically either replace or include the Good Kingdom. Once the villain makes itself known, the good nations of the world will band together in an alliance to defend themselves.
    • The Horde: A great mass of monsters, barbarians and despoilers on the warpath. In some works, the Horde will be acting of its own initiative; in others, it'll be the army or pawn of a greater force. It's usually undead or orcish, and every so often made up of beast men when the author wants a little variety or is a fur fan. For even more variety, all three may turn up at once.
    • Bland Name versions of Camelot and Avalon.
  • Standard royal courts. Decadent Courts may be added if the world is terrible or a Dark Fantasy setting.
  • A (usually) European-style Pseudo-Medieval setting.
  • Fantasy Character Classes, if the work in question is a Roleplaying Game of some kind, though this is not a necessary element. If it's not a game it may still feature some of the character archetypes that inspired the modern classes.

The following are allowed to be removed if the setting falls in certain values of Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism, or due to other Implementation Details:

All of the above are inherited, to one extent or another, from Following The Leadership of Dungeons & Dragons and The Lord of the Rings.

See also Standard Japanese Fantasy Setting, to see how Japan has further shaped the trope.

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Examples of settings conforming to this standard include:

    Anime and Manga 
  • The author of Dragon Knights is a huge fan of The Lord of the Rings and it shows. Even though it's a Japanese series, none of the names adapt well to the Japanese language, there are European-style castles, and European-style dragons. There are four races: humans, dragons, faeries, and demons, everyone important seems to carry swords, and most of them have magic. Also, dragons.

    Comic Books 
  • Sojourn which, being part of the multigenre of Sigilverse, deliberately invokes all fantasy tropes.



    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons is the Trope Codifier, an understandable result of it evolving out of a fan-made Tolkien wargame. For this reason, most of the original settings from TSR fell into this archetype, although they would usually put their own distinctive spin on it. As the franchise grew and developed, other settings went in different directions, so you'll find this game under all groupings of this trope.
    • Greyhawk is a Standard Fantasy Setting with Medieval European Fantasy basis filtered through a Sword and Sorcery lens, mostly manifesting in the focus on human nations and human-based problems, such as militant theocracies, inter-kingdom wars, or the Nazi-esque Scarlet Brotherhood, and the general Gray-and-Grey Morality and Black-and-Gray Morality.
    • Forgotten Realms is the "purist" of the original TSR settings, and most closely sticks to this. Perhaps due to the popularity of R.A. Salvatore's Drizzt novels, it became the most "mainstream" of the settings, and has consistently held the largest setting-specific fanbase of the gameline.
    • Dragonlance filters this trope through a combination of Mormon theology and chivalric romance tropes, with a major emphasis on the presence of dragons and the ongoing struggle between the gods of good and evil, making it the most High Fantasy of the mainstream TSR settings.
    • Birthright explores this trope by emphasizing the Medieval European Fantasy sub-trope; it has a distinctly Welsh feel in its naming conventions, and focuses heavily on the Divine Right of Kings ideology, with the setting being ruled over by nobles who literally have slivers of divine power imbued in them. In contrast to other settings, monsters are rarer in Birthright, and usually consist of traditionally malign humanoid races such as orcs, goblinoids and gnolls; giants and dragons are a rare, dwindling force, whilst mythically inspired monsters are replaced by awnsheghlien, which are nobles who bear shards of the dead God of Evil and so are corrupted into monstrous forms.

    Video Games 

    Web Comics 

A few particularly non-compliant fantasy settings include:

    Card Games 
  • Magic: The Gathering is an interesting example. The original release of the game was an attempt to cram in as many possible familiar fantasy elements in a single setting as they could. After that, however, the game started to develop its own style, and the current creative team describes it as "Magepunk".
    • Additionally, every plane on in the multiverse has their own flavor. Dominaria started as this, with the usual accoutrements of reclusive forest-dwelling elves, pseudo-medieval human nations, rampaging dragons, lost Precursor civilizations, and a variety of momentous villains scheming to bring about its ruin, but a long series of big, disastrous events made it more of a fantasy take on a Post Apocalyptic world. So, they started over again with the plane of Shandalar, which is, again, standard.
    • Most other planes don't especially hew to this trope, however — Mirrodin fits thematically, but is distinguished by its emphasis on blending metal and living matter, and then got taken over by biomechanical demons in any case; Zendikar likewise fits most themes, but is saturated with raw magic that constantly alters its landscape and was later eaten by Eldritch Abominations; Ravnica is a fantasy City Planet with a heavy focus on class struggles and Magitek; Innistrad is rooted in Gothic Horror more than anything else; and so on.

    Comic Books  
  • Fables: The Homelands are a patchwork of technologies, cultures, and magics of all types, with literally every imaginable fantasy or mythical creature or race.

    Fan Works 
  • With Strings Attached is an almost 100% noncompliant fantasy setting, to the point where the only trope that really applies is Medieval Stasis, and that only in one of the two cultures on C'hou; the other is a thriving quasi-Victorian land with guns, factories, etc. Also, there are elves, but Word of God says they're just a pointy-eared race of humans. The Keys Stand Alone upends everything the reader knew about C'hou, turning it into an Anachronism Stew with everything from cavemen to spacemen, but still largely a noncompliant fantasy setting.

  • Most fantasy written prior to the late 1970s.
  • Most stuff set in our day and age (even if most of the action takes place elsewhere).
  • The Ambergris Cycle.
  • The Bartimaeus Trilogy, an Alternate History version of our world where magicians run an oppressive government in Great Britain.
  • Bas-Lag. (China Miéville's main setting)
  • The Black Company.
  • Chronicles Of Magic is set in a fantasy world, but lacks elves, dwarves, etc. and instead relies almost completely on human characters. The exception to this is Magic itself, which is an actual living being that imparts its power on others.
  • Codex Alera.
  • Jo Clayton's Duel Of Sorcery and Dancer trilogies.
  • The Edge Chronicles differs from the standard by relying more on Minovsky Physics than Functional Magic, emphasising goblins and trolls over elves (only get brief mentions) and dwarves (a type of goblin), and having really weird steampunk technology in the last book. (It's powered by crystallised lightning.)
  • The Empire of the Petal Throne setting, used in both game and novels, is distinctly non-standard, with no elves, dwarves, trolls, or anything similar to European fantasy, by design.
  • The Etched City by K.J. Bishop.
  • Gormenghast is set in a sprawling city castle complex yet the timeless, routine, indolent nature in which the castle is maintained means it could be in any time period from High Medieval to Victorian. There is no apparent magic or magical races, yet once you get beyond the Earldom of Gormenghast, the world is fairly modern (or steampunk), complete with skyscrapers.
  • Zilpha Keatley Snyder's Green-Sky Trilogy, begun in 1975 and completed in 1979 (with a video game sequel released in 1984), has none of the allegedly standard elements, other than a faint resemblence to the "lurking evil that might return" part... only it turns out not to be evil at all.
  • Clive Barker's fantasy works Imajica and Abarat.
  • Stephen Hunt's Jackelian Series.
  • The Journey of the Catechist by Alan Dean Foster. No elves as such (although dwarves are mentioned in passing); while there are various monsters, they're decidedly different. There are, however, quite a few non-standard sapient races, including talking animals. And the kingdom and empire are both morally grey.
  • Kingdoms of Light by Alan Dean Foster. (It takes place inside a world inside a rainbow, where the main characters are all humans that were once animals.)
  • Anything by Brandon Sanderson, Mistborn and The Stormlight Archive most notably.
  • The Princess Bride, which makes no attempt to make the (fairly limited) magic "make sense".
  • The Seventh Tower.
  • The Starbridge books by Paul Park.
  • The "Szerer cycle" written in the early Nineties by the Polish author Feliks W. Kres. No fantasy races, but there are sapient cats and vultures, magic (for the most part) takes the form of learned mystics who can once-a-lifetime bend the world to their will or magical artifacts that can be loosely described as leftovers of creation, war with the local flavor of Orcs is a constant low-intensity conflict waged from frontier keeps, the whole world (which is a small continent) is ruled by a single empire loosely patterned on Rome. Fantasy Gun Control happens because the empire has no interest in developing technology that can make its military obsolete, but gunpowder cannons are common on ships and coastal defences. Most of the stories involve the fringes of society, such as criminals in outlying regions or frontier military men, all of them in decidedly unheroic roles.
  • Conan cycle written by Robert E. Howard, set in prehistoric age where societies are modeled either on neolithic tribes or on the earliest Middle-Eastern civilizations (usually Mesopotamian with some Indian influences added for a good measure) with rare and loosely defined magic.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Tékumel is one of the earliest aversions in tabletop games, pre-dating Dungeons & Dragons in development stage.
  • Exalted was created specifically to subvert this trope, focusing more on Bronze Age swords-and-sandals fantasy and Chinese mythology than on the Medieval European Tolkienque things. Nonetheless, some parts of it remain (partially because they're old enough or universal enough that they appear in those influences, too.)
  • A few of the Magic: The Gathering settings, especially Rath, Mirrodin, and Ravnica. (Some are compliant, though.)
    • However, the earliest core sets had a setting best described as this. (That plane, Dominaria, gradually changed over time and is now amid an After the End phase following the conclusion of the Time Spiral block.)
  • Dungeons & Dragons has a few settings that fall into this.
    • Planescape (popularized by Planescape: Torment) was one of TSR's two experiments with "Cosmic Fantasy", focusing on setting the players up to explore the higher and lower planes of The Multiverse instead of a standard faux-historical world. Even the setting's hub, Sigil, which ultimately proved more memorable than the rest of the setting for many fans, is different, being a completely enclosed vaguely Victorian-ish Dungeon Punk city where angels and fiends regularly rub shoulders in the streets and the overall atmosphere is one of anti-heroic cynicism and selfishness.
    • Spelljammer was TSR's other experiment in "Cosmic Fantasy"; this is the Science Fantasy setting of D&D, in the form of using Sufficiently Analyzed Magic mixed with mythical/mystical viewpoints of what "space" is being actual reality to enable for magical interplanetary travel.
    • Dark Sun is perhaps the biggest aversion, taking place on a post-apocalyptic and hyper-deadly version of your Standard Fantasy Setting where Magic is Evil (because it saps the life of the planet, and directly caused the global desertification) and has been replaced with Psychic Powers, where many standard races have either been driven extinct or undergone drastic changes (there are no gnomes, goblins or orcs, dwarves are bald, illiterate workaholics usually kept as slaves, elves are towering desert-running thieves, halflings are head-hunting cannibals), and bizarre races like giant sapient praying mantises, vulture-folk, and lizard-folk are considered "normal".
    • Wagadu Chronicles is a third-party setting based on ancient Africa, the creators said they wanted to raise awareness of African Culture and deliberately subvert this trope.
  • Shadowrun, which combines a Cyberpunk Earth with The Magic Comes Back, resulting in orcs, elves, dwarves and trolls (who are actually Human Subspecies whose traits emerge in response to the increased background magic level) existing alongside cyborgs, and spellcasters intermingling with drone-controlling hackers.
  • Talislanta.
  • Jorune is an early example of a game engineered specifically to defy this trope.

    Video Games 

Examples of settings that are almost compliant with the standard include:

    Comic Books 
  • Orc Stain: Orcs are the most prominent race and Organic Technology is everywhere.
  • The 2000 AD series Kingmaker takes place in one of these which has recently been conquered by aliens.

  • The Death Gate Cycle started out as a post-apocalyptic flavor of this standard, but then the world ended again. The current setting is in some ways very close to the standard and wildly divergent in others. See the article for details.
  • Discworld started as a parody of fantasy in general, by sending up "standard" (Tolkienesque) fantasy, the grittier Fafhrd-and-Grey-Mouser type, the thud-and-blunder story (Conan and that ilk), and even some more outre stuff like Dragonriders of Pern and the Cthulhu Mythos on an equal opportunity basis. The series arguably gets much better when it stops being almost entirely a collection of Bizarro versions of other works (most people would say somewhere between books 3 and 5). By later books it's something like what a Standard Fantasy Setting would look like if you let it not only leave Medieval Stasis, but accelerate through several centuries of technological and cultural development in a couple of decades.
  • The Dragon Crown War is a borderline example. The only common nonhuman races are elves (the most commonly-encountered ethnicity of whom, the Vorquelves, border on Enslaved Elves as downtrodden refugees from a destroyed homeland) and dragons; the setting's "dwarves", the urZrethi, are actually ancient matriarchal shapeshifters who were created though they abandoned that allegiance long ago; the Big Bad's armies are composed primarily of the Wookiee-like gibberkin rather than the more traditional orcs; finally, Medieval Stasis is averted as gunpowder and cannons are invented in the prequel and the technology becomes increasingly widespread over the course of the main trilogy.
  • The First Dwarf King seems to be a standard medieval fantasy at first, but before long, hints of something else begin to creep in. For starters, the characters use guns instead of bows and arrows. Eventually, it becomes apparent that the setting is a Science Fantasy with (admittedly heavy) High Fantasy elements.
  • The Garrett, P.I. series goes out of its way to subvert or deconstruct elements of this trope, both by giving them a Film Noir spin and by pumping up the snark quotient.
  • Heralds of Valdemar takes the chrome of the standard and then goes its own way with it. Medieval Stasis is averted (particularly over the course of the series as a whole, though things do change quite slowly), most magic in Valdemar is Psychic Powers, and humans and various Intellectual Animals are the only sapient species. However, the original Tarma and Kethry stories are, besides having Magical Native Americans, pretty standard, suggesting that most of Velgarth is more standard than not; Valdemar is just a weird hermit kingdom up in the corner of the map that does everything their own way. Even in Valdemar, the Last Herald-Mage Trilogy is pretty much paint-by-numbers medieval fantasy other than the note that the time of plate armor and tournaments is past; it's only afterward that Valdemar starts to really diverge.
    • The backstory of the setting includes a cataclysmic war that ended civilizations across the continent and left few people to repopulate and rebuild, making it a technically After the End setting, but it's not really clear how standard it was before. Renowned sorcerers put their power to uplifting animals and creating new species, and there were colleges studying what's called "modern medicine", neither of which are attempted much if at all in the mainline series.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Naturally, Dungeons & Dragons has settings that fits this mold as well.
    • Eberron is similar, in that it is the logical conclusion of a High Fantasy standard: magic is an industry and the setting's atmosphere is similar to Inter-World War Europe. All races diverge, slightly to significantly from standard (among other things, its response to the Always Chaotic Evil trope is essentially LOLWUT?, so for example the ancient druidic culture that saved the world from Cosmic Horrors ten thousand years ago is actually the Orcs), and industrial magic yields a Steampunk tone without actually using any significant steam or clockwork, which coined the phrase "Dungeonpunk". That would be "Low Fantasy" (magic is a toolkit, society changes and grows), instead of "High Fantasy" (magic is wondrous and can't be replicated, society is stuck in stasis).
    • Mystara has definite traits of the Standard Fantasy Setting, but is more directly based on pulp fantasy novels, and thus is a Fantasy Kitchen Sink where science fiction tropes and fantasy tropes rub shoulders together. Most of the human nations are Fantasy Counterpart Cultures, there's a gargantuan flying city drifting about the world, protected by magitek air planes, the planet is a Hollow World with its interior set aside as a museum for extinct animals, plants, races, and cultures, the world was originally ruled by a super-advanced technological society that literally blew itself back to the Stone Age by means of an implicit nuclear war so powerful it shifted the planet's axis, and there's at least one crashed alien spaceship somewhere on the planet. Perhaps the simplest summary of what makes Mystara unique is that The Magocracy secretly sits atop the ruins of an ancient nuclear reactor, and has advanced to such heights by learning to draw radiation from the reactor and convert it into mana.
    • The Nentir Vale setting definitely uses this as a base, but twists it for more of a pulpy "metal" aesthetic. It's a post-apocalyptic world where the players are heroes helping to rebuild civilization from the brink of extinction, with deliberate moral ambiguity built into the setting (such as ditching the "Always Lawful Good" counter-trope to Always Chaotic Evil), and where the destruction even extends to the afterlife. Heaven is literally broken in this world, and has been for countless mortal generations.
  • GURPS Banestorm was originally a pure Standard Fantasy Setting with the one wrinkle being that humans originally came from medieval Earth, and explained Medieval Stasis through wizards' dislike of gunpowder and other technology as a threat to their power. In Fourth Edition, however, the developers decided to examine the ramifications of the technological filter and make it less effective, leading to gunpowder factories in low-mana Caithness and several societies of underground engineers throughout Ytarria.
  • Pathfinder is built on a basic chassis of Dungeons & Dragons and the core books are standard fantasy, but further books mix in Gothic Horror tropes and a bit of Science Fantasy in the margins, allowing Golarion to become its own thing. Perhaps the easiest way to describe it is "Mystara for the 2010s", with the same pulpy Fantasy Kitchen Sink aesthetics but more modern socio-cultural mores.
  • Runequest has most of the traditional trappings of a fantasy setting, save for the fact that Glorantha is not modeled after Medieval European Fantasy (it draws more design inspiration from the Bronze Age) and focuses on a more Greyand Gray Morality narrative.
  • Warhammer Fantasy; the Empire and the Dwarves heavily utilize firearms and even have experimental Steampunk technology, while the Skaven's Magitek gives them ratling guns, rat-portable flamethrowers, sniper rifles, energy cannons, mechanical lighting-spewing hamster-wheels, etc.
  • Warhammer 40,000: Though it's diverged a lot, it's still clearly this (or Warhammer Fantasy) at the foundations, but darker, and on a galactic scale and darker — there are the elves (Eldar), dwarves (Squats, wiped out for not fitting the tone), orcs (Orks), the Forces of Darkness (Chaos) in an interstellar Mordor (The Eye of Terror) the Kingdom of Men (The Imperium of Man) with paladin knights (the Space Marines) and the absent True King (the God-Emperor of Man, confined to the life-support of the Golden Throne).

    Video Games 
  • Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura is set in once-SFS, in which industrial revolution has happened; Steampunk level technology, otherwise compliant. Some parts are more compliant than others, and the conflict between the Standard Fantasy Setting and the rise of steam and gunpowder is a major plot element.
  • Dwarf Fortress lacks any magics beyond Necromancy as of yet, but otherwise fits this trope very well. Toady One has commented that the game will be a standard fantasy setting generator. Some details like monsters and magic will be different from world to world. And given the game's incredible modding potential, how much any given world plays straight or subverts the standards can easily depend on the player's whims.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • The series, on the surface, is largely compliant. Tamriel itself is a fairly typical Medieval European Fantasy setting. Functional Magic is present, along with most of its subtropes. Elves (known as "Mer") are present in several flavors (including the High Elf Altmer and Wood Elf Bosmer). "Humans" are present and divided into several races mostly revolving around a Fantasy Counterpart Culture (including the Romanesque Imperials who lead a primarily "Good Kingdom"-style Empire, as well as the Horny Vikings Nords and Moorish Samurai Redguards). There are also two (playable) Beast Races, the Khajiit and Argonians, as well as Orcs, who, in a nod to Tolkien, are a twisted race of Elf ("Orsimer"). The setting is also largely stuck in Medieval Stasis, with thousands of years passing but very little development in terms of society or technology (barring a few exceptions noted below).
    • That said, digging deeper into the lore quickly reveals a number of non-compliant features, drawing heavily from the New Weird style in many places. A handful of prominent examples:
      • The setting does have a (now extinct) race of Dwarves. However, they vary from the standard Tolkien depiction rather drastically. For starters, they are actually the Dwemer ("Deep Elves"), a sub-race of Mer. They were extremely technologically advanced compared to the rest of Tamriel, most notably for their hybrid Magitek Steampunk technology. They were very much Robot Masters, creating "animunculi" Mecha-Mooks ranging from Fun Size "Spider Centurion" workers to human-sized "Sphere Centurions" to outright Humongous Mecha, ranging from twice-human-sized "Steam Centurions" to thousand foot tall monstrosities like Numidium. Numidium in particular was built by the Dwemer to house the Heart of Lorkhan, the heart of the "dead" creator god, hoping to create their own god. The Dwemer mysteriously disappeared during the 1st Era, with the most prominent theories involving their activation of the Numidium. Numidium would later be acquired by Tiber Septim, founder of the Third Tamriellic Empire, who would use it as a weapon of war to complete his conquest of Tamriel. Other notable inventions of the Dwemer (which remain unmatched by any extant race of Tamriel) including a Weather-Control Machine, a machine capable of (relatively) safely reading the eponymous Elder Scrolls while bypassing the usual side-effects of blindness and insanity, and a method of instant, silent communication with one another, even over vast distances. The Dwemer were also notably extreme Naytheists in a setting where the existence of god-like beings is indisputable (which they justified not by denying their existence, but by asserting that they are not truly "gods").
      • The series has an extremely Alien Sky, while its appearance is implied to be your mortal mind making it into something you can grasp. The sun and stars are not mundane balls of flaming plasma and gas, but are instead holes punctured in the fabric of reality by Magnus (the et'Ada of light and magic who served as the "architect" for Mundus) and the Magna-Ge (his lesser et'Ada followers) as they fled Mundus during its creation. The holes lead to Aetherius, the realm of magic, and through them, magic flows into Mundus (which is visible in the night sky as nebulae). Nirn's two moons, Masser and Secunda, go through technically impossible phases and when they aren't full, you can see stars behind the dark parts ("hollow crescents"). They are said to be the "decaying remains" (or "flesh-divinity") of the dead creator god, Lorkhan, remaining from when his body was sundered and his heart ("divine spark") was cast down onto Nirn. The eight planets visible in the night sky are said to be the realms of the Aedra, or Eight Divines, who made large sacrifices to aid Lorkhan in the creation of Mundus. (Another theory states that they are the remains of the Aedra, similar to Lorkhan and the moons, who actually died during creation but now "dream they are alive".) Between Mundus and these various celestial bodies/phenomena is Oblivion, the "infinite void". While Oblivion itself is said to be infinite, it contains the 16 known "planes" of Oblivion, each belonging to one of the Daedric Prices, as well as over 37,000 "pocket realities" and "chaos realms".
      • Another non-compliant oddity is the existence of a space race between the Second Tamriellic Empire (under the Reman dynasty) and their rivals, the Aldmeri Dominion, to explore Aetherius in the late 1st Era. The Aldmeri used Sunbirds, ships somehow literally made from the Sun. The Empire, on the other hand, used "Mothships", enormous Ancestor Moths bred, hollowed out, and flown into the void on strength of willpower alone. (Ancestor Moths have a special supernatural connection which also allows them to be used to somewhat protect mortal readers from the power of the Elder Scrolls, which is why the Scrolls are kept and read by the Cult of the Ancestor Moth.) The results of these expeditions have largely been lost to history, though it did leave the Imperial Legion with the Imperial "Mananaut" corps.
      • Dunmeri Tribunal deity Sotha Sil lives in a Clockwork City (which you get to visit in Morrowind's Tribunal expansion) of his own creation where he studies the "hidden world". As revealed in The Elder Scrolls Online, Sotha Sil's creations reach full blown Schizo Tech status, as he created complex computer systems, semi-organic cybernetic servants, turned himself into a Cyborg, and may have even uploaded his own mind into his city (meaning he may not have been killed during the events of Tribunal) all while the rest of the world was stuck in medieval stasis. Given that he is (was) a reclusive Physical God, his creations and advancements have never proliferated outside of his city.
      • In the backstory, it is strongly implied that Pelinal Whitestrake, the legendary Berserker/crusader who led the Alessian forces against the Ayleid empire in the 1st Era, was actually a time-traveling, divinely-constructed cyborg warrior and possibly the human form of the dead creator god, known as a Shezarrine. He wore full plate mail armor at a time when only the Dwemer could construct it and had abilities far beyond those of most mortals. Needless to say, a divine war-cyborg from the future is seriously incongruous for an early medieval-era setting, and the devastation he wrought upon the Ayleids was as extreme as one would expect from a being in such a situation.
      • The Loose Canon KINMUNE, a story by former developer/writer Michael Kirkbride, features an AI construct whose primary purpose was to be remotely piloted by miners for a magical drug getting sent back in time to ancient history, going insane due to being severed from the network she was attached to, having the residual personalities from her last operators in her, and becoming an important oracle in Elder Scrolls history.
      • The setting of the spin-off Dungeon Crawler game Battlespire is the the eponymous Imperial Battlespire, a training ground for the Imperial Battlemages located in the "Slipstream" between Mundus and Oblivion. Essentially, it is a sort of space station.
  • Final Fantasy XII14th-century politics, 18th-century weapons, 22nd-century transportation (although most people just take caravans everywhere.)
  • Might and Magic and Heroes of Might and Magic (old verse) take place in what at first appears to follow the standard quite closely, and will keep that appearance if you only play the Heroes games and therefore miss the extensive Science Fantasy elements in the setting.
  • Ravenmark: Scourge of Estellion generally fits. You have The Empire of Estellion, the kingdom in the form of the Commonwealth of Esotre, The Horde in the form of the Lyri warbands (although the Cardani also fit). There is no Alliance, although Estellion and Esotre have been allies for a long time (at least, until the sequel). As typical, humans make up the largest population group. Jackdaws are this setting's Hobbits. Dwarves are a minority (but they typically don't have beards). The game's take on Elves is fairly unique, though. Unlike Tolkien's tall, high-and-mighty elves, the Cardani Elves are short rat-like people whose culture is based around the idea of insatiable greed. Their homes are the treacherous Cardani Swamps. While every other power uses small units called Daggers that can be joined with like Daggers to form more formidable (but less maneuverable and vulnerable to flank attacks) Deuces and Trines (this also includes the wild Lyri), the Cardani fight in large Swarms that rely on speed and We Have Reserves tactics. Functional Magic isn't used much, although certain people are able to call on the elements. The Empire owes its foundation to wind magic, allowing La Résistance to fight off the Carsis nobles' flamesoul magic. Blood Magic is occasionally used by The Empire's assassins (all Heroic Bastards). Medieval Stasis is played straight for the Tellions but averted for the Sotrans, who live in much a harsher climate and need to innovate to survive. Thus, front-line Sotran troops are armed with muskets and bayonets, while Tellions rely on swordsmen, pikemen, and archers. Sotrans also have prototype inventions such as armored walkers and hovering artillery platforms.
  • Rift is superficially similar to Warcraft, but cranks up the magitek and does more playing around with race tropes.
  • Tales of Maj'Eyal is generally pretty standard with its tropes, though implementation varies; you've got slightly-nonstandard use of standard races (such as halfling slingers being part of a long Roman-esque military tradition), but while Medieval Stasis is largely played straight with mechanical technology, it isn't with Lost Magitek; ancient wizards had a very scientific approach, often used magic for genetic engineering and travelled to many worlds through the farportals. However, it only truly breaks the mold with the Embers of Rage DLC, where we see tribes of orcs and giants who make wide use of steam technology and even steam-powered guns.
  • Warcraft: Removes the Medieval Stasis, and integrates modern, steampunk, and sci-fi technology with pre-modern armor and architecture. Both expansions thus far to World of Warcraft have introduced a lot of Magitek. The first two games, however, fit the trope to a "T".

    Web Original 
  • The Once and Future Nerd is set in a mostly compliant setting, but with an elf with a southern American accent, no Monochrome Casting, and a lot of quirks here and there, including wizards who have the basics for an atomic theory going.
  • Tales of MU is set in a formerly compliant setting, but with the Medieval Stasis removed. The current time period is sort of like the modern age, in the same way that the Standard Fantasy Setting is kind of like the middle ages.

    Western Animation 
  • Adventure Time is an interesting case as it is set After the End where The Magic Comes Back and it takes the form of an RPG Mechanics 'Verse. Both radiation and magic have managed to shape Earth into the Land of Ooo — a mostly Heroic Fantasy setting with several gimmicks and some bits of technology here and there. Fantastic Sapient Species include people made of food, anthropomorphized animals, gnomes, goblins, vampires, and ghosts as well as a variety of monsters such as dragons and Eldritch Abominations. Humans are extinct, though. Races are organized in kingdoms (usually ruled by princesses), cities/towns (ruled by mayors), or hordes (in the case of some monsters). Magic is functional but there's no established system more than the fact the whole setting draws inspiration from Dungeons & Dragons. And, of course, the primary method of fighting is with swords. A huge variety of them.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender. While there is The Empire and a kingdom along with rebel fighters, Magic A Is Magic A, and a variety of other fantasy world tropes, there are several differences. Most prominently, instead of being in a European-esque world, the Avatarverse is a fantasy counterpart to East Asia (mostly China and Japan), with some Inuit culture thrown in for good measure. The only other races with human-level intelligence are spirits who all pretty much reside in a different world, and Medieval Stasis is completely subverted, with nascent Steampunk in the original series (ironclad steamships, tanks, mega-drills, submarines, and zeppelins), which evolves into all-out Diesel Punk in the sequel (complete with radio, skyscrapers, automobiles, film, biplanes, and mecha-tanks).
  • Winx Club displays many of the necessary tropes. The difference, however, is that our Magical Land is composed of several planets with non-disguised, advanced technology instead of being only one world. Barring that, you can find fairies, witches, merfolk, elves, leprechauns, centaurs, and a whole assortment of spirits of nature and/or magic. The magic takes the form of either magical transformations or Power Crystals. A non-negligible chunk of the cast are princesses or otherwise related to royalty and nobility, all of them gorgeous period garments. An alliance is formed between several kingdoms at some point because Evil Overlords are rampant. To oppose them, we have magical warriors (predominantly fairies) and White Magic coming from a Dragon God.

Alternative Title(s): ISO Standard Fantasy Setting, Standard Fantasy Settings