Professor Nader "Welcome to the URealms Forums! Please make sure to read the rules before posting!
Your posting ability may be restricted for the first 24 hours!"

Lets straighten out Fantasy subgenres, and talk about the subgenres Urealms falls under.

Alright, so this might become a bit of a tangent.

Some info about the wonderful genres of fantasy, in relation to Urealms. This is a subject I’ve done some recreational research on. I feel I’ve been thorough, but the subgenres of fantasy are not written in concrete anywhere as far as I can find (does written in concrete sound better than written is stone? Sorry, off topic), and my opinion is gonna filter in here some. If you really care that much go look it up yourself, you obviously have time to do so, look how much time you’re wasting here. Anyway, Rob’s Urealms, I’m going to define it as a mix of comic fantasy, and high fantasy with a few elements of epic fantasy. Urealms is not Hard, or dark fantasy but i thought i would mention them to. Comic fantasy isn’t quite what it sounds like, its a satirical fantasy, intending to use humor to parody other, more serious fantasy works, in this case traditional DND. This is no bad thing, and just to make sure it’s understood, I love Urealms ad judge it to be rightly superior to other DNDs.  High Fantasy, often confused with epic fantasy is my personal fav kind of fantasy; its defined by and driven by its characters. High fantasy is most often set in a world entirely separate from ours, and is based in medieval like times (My first book suggestion comes in here: Malazan Books of the Fallen. This series is possibly the best fantasy series ever written, but lets get back on topic). Epic fantasy is, again, most often set in a world entirely separate from ours, and is based in medieval like times, but what sets it apart, is its high morals. Epic fantasy is good vs. evil on a huge scale, like a universe changing scale (Load of the Rings is the perfect example and the founder of this genre). Another feature that generally occurs in epic fantasy is the inclusion of an (often young) nobody who must go out on a quest and save the world. Oh, and good always wins. If you dislike that good trumps all future, you should find some dark fantasy. They often contain elements of horror, and virtue is not guaranteed the win. If you liked the Bopen campaign, you’re gonna want to find a mix of dark and high fantasy to read (may I suggest the Back Company, series by glen cook. Very morally grey, fairly good set of books).  Ok, only a few more subgenres. Hard fantasy, which focuses on keeping supernatural elements (magic) consistent, not to be confused with magical realism fantasy, a subgenre that focuses on making magic as realistic as possible (a good example is The Stormlight archives by Brandon Sanderson. A little childish and not the best stuff ever written, but still a good example of magical realism fantasy). I think that’s all I wanna talk about on this topic. As you can probably tell, I have a lot to say about fantasy books, and if this post gets decent views (or if it doesn’t) I’m probably gonna post another thread on book suggestions (and how great Malazan is for real check it out). I mean I didn’t even mention how much I hate Game of thrones. And I never suggested The Wheel of Time (Robert Jordan). That makes me wanna rewrite this whole post. But it’s my bed time so I won’t. Goodnight.

Hope you liked my crappyish essay thing. i will put more time into my next one.



  • edited May 2017
    URealms is a high fantasy (tons of magic, many fantasy creatures) and comic fantasy (obvious) setting, this is true.
    However, it is also one with dark fantasy elements, namely such as the ageless, and the lore prominently featuring the death of one of the prime gods. As almost all the high-fantasy elements came as a result of the death of a god, that firmly places at least a foot in the doorway of Dark Fantasy. This is even more of a justifiable classification as, without the death of the moon, the Birth of Magic would never have happened; that leaves us with some fantasy creatures, but no magic at all, firmly and definitively stripping away the High Fantasy classification, and arguably dropping it all the way down to Low Fantasy.
    I would also argue it does not qualify as an Epic Fantasy as the scale is not large enough in scope in each session for the "grand scale" definition of epic, nor is it so focused on a single nobody to fall under the "story format" definition of epic.

    I do believe I once saw a specific turn of phrase describing a fantasy setting with such a mixture of tones as URealms has, but alas I cannot recall it presently.

  • Well it does have elements from Steampunk fantasy as well.
  • edited May 2017
    @Simona ; Not really. I mean sure it has elements of steampunk tech but story-wise it has nothing to do with the steampunk (sub)genre. Also even then most steampunk tech seems to be benu, which is a long gone race, which actually helps add to High Fantasy as it becomes not just "steampunk" but "technology of the ancients", a staple of fantasy in general but most especially High Fantasy

  • A great but lengthy series that does a good job of depicting the worlds of both a dark and high fantasy that I recently got into is the manga Berserk. The world starts out as a dark fantasy with very few mythical or fantastical beings, a few demons here and there that most people don't know about but thats it. The world is an incredibly unforgiving place and very much like the actual middle ages. This greatly changes with the most recent arc called the Fantasia arc, from this point on the world is largely that of a high fantasy. The world is filled with fantastical creatures and brave knights who fight them to protect people.
  • @Davrial *hums* Looking like that it does make more sense. 
  • @NegativeZero_ by your definition, i would call urealms "Hard fantasy", if only because it's a game. because it's a game, there are some consistent rules, otherwise the game would be bullshit, with players making up shit just because they can. granted, the game isn't fully developed, so changes are being made, but once the game is complete, whenever that is, it will be consistent.
    All that being said, yes, this game world is primarily comedic. it's satire on D&D, and fantasy in general, while at the same time retaining a level of seriousness, as rob has built the game and the lore to reflect the themes of death, controlling one's fate, and the occasional harsh realities of life.

    on a more personal note, The Stormlight Archives, along with all of the Cosmere books Sanderson has written, such as the Mistborn series, are among the best books i've ever read :smileporc: the depth of the world creation, the characters are usually fun to read, the plot's are detailed and layered much deeper upon closer looks, the connectivity between the stories, using characters like Hoid to show that the worlds all connect, it all comes together in one of the most brilliant forms of story telling i've ever seen. IDK, i'm just curious as to why you think the books are childish?

  • @Blast_burn Your right, i'm not quite justified in calling Stormlight childish; childish i not quite the correct word. But i do believe Stormlight is geared to a younger audience than lets say, Malazan, Game of Thrones or even Urealms. I can see a 10 year old picking up Stormlight, but i cant say the same about a lot of the other stuff i read. And its not that i did not enjoy Sanderson’s Stormlight, its very creative, but i don’t quite agree with you about his plot depth. To me his stories seem a little flat, i think its ratio of action to raw character building that gets me. On the other hand, I really disliked Mistborn, and I’m not overawed about the way he finished Jordan’s Wheel of time. I understand why people like his stuff, but it’s never really done anything for me; I’ve never had a moment when reading his stuff where I had to put the book down and think about what just happened. In short I’ve never been amazed. I’ve been entertained, but never amazed. For me Sanderson sits on a line between good and just ok. But who knows, he’s barely even started Stormlight, Maybe I’ll change my mind.

    As for Urealms being hard fantasy… nah, I don’t think so. In my mind, hard fantasy is characterized by the rules put on supernatural stuff. You can’t just pull a spell out of your ass, say, “I want this to happen” and have “this” happen. The spell of bearding is a perfect example. The spell fireball gives people face hair? For me that was one of the funniest moments in Urealms, I loved it and I love Urealms. But Urealms is not hard fantasy. Magic is simply so interconnected with the Urealms it would be nigh on impossible for Rob to make everything realistic enough for it to classify as hard fantasy, and I don’t think that’s what he’s going for anyways, I mean, results are based entirely on random roles… maybe I’m wrong but I really don’t think Urealms is hard fantasy. That said I would classify Stormlight as hard fantasy.

    As for my response to you @Davrial, i see where you coming from, saying Urealms in not epic fantasy. As i said before, i think it only has a few feature of Epic fantasy.  At all. I could get where your coming from if you classified it as part of the horror genre. That argument is justifiable. But Dark Fantasy is not horror. Dark fantacy is defined by moral greyness or darkness. Malazan accomplishes this by never quite letting you figure out who has the moral highground. In otherwords, chariters are never black and white, good or bad. In the first book of the Black Company series, this moral gray is achieved though having the morally pure do things that are very much not virtuous. In Urealms, morals are pretty clear; bopen is bad, virgo is good. The murder bros are bad, the law is good. A lot of energy Is put into making sure characters do explainable things. I don’t think it classifies as dark, but again, I could be wrong, and you should probably tell me how and why I’m wrong. 
  • Rob is definitely trying to make it morally grey tho.
  • @NegativeZero_ fair enough. different strokes for different folks :dank: 
Sign In or Register to comment.