Paonia Pawns is a long-running sci-fi webcomic by Michael J. Ahlers, in which a group of high school students learn that their universe, and a multitude of parallel ones, are being toyed with by a group of callous Reality Warpers called "The Players." Gaining the ability to travel between these universes, the heroes try to survive on a series of hostile alternate worlds and eventually strike back at the Players.
Any new reader should be aware, despite the art-style on display, the comic's plot goes to some seriously dark places.
Paonia Pawns contains examples of
- Alternate History: Every world the heroes visit is an example of this. "Paonia" is the name of the alternate-American state they themselves originally hail from.
- Bald Black Leader Guy: Jimmy, possibly, for a certain definition of "leader".
- Death of a Child: Benny's young clone gets tossed out an airlock when it is learned the original was a serial killer.
- Kill 'Em All: Saintjohn ends up nuking all but five of the massive ensemble cast, including all of his fellow Players. It eventually gets undone, allowing for a mostly happy ending.
- The Plague: Wiped out the population of one world, leaving the survivors confined to a handful of orbiting space stations.
- Planet of Hats: Hippie World and Pastel World are among those visited.
- Reality Warper: The Players and people they give the power to can change reality simply by saying "Plot Change", and stating the alteration.
- Wham Episode: When it's revealed that Benny is a serial killer.
- World of Weirdness: Zombies, vampires, robots, androids, clones, animal-people..
- Zombie Apocalypse: Another world suffers one of these.