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Post Apocalyptic Fantasy

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Orc Knight, Dec 23, 2017.

  1. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    Music to set the mood: 'I Don't Want To Set The World On Fire' by The Ink Spots and 'To the apocalypse in daddy's side car' by Abney Park.

    I'm assuming a great many of us are aware of the post apocalypse, so the titles straight forward and to the point. Given fantasy's drift towards epic end of times sort of battles with winner take all and magical nukes and the like, the literal Four Horseman running amuck, comes the question (possibly, I know I'm not the only one asking it) of, what happens next?

    I will grant, it's probably easier to see the effects when it's games like Fallout and it's like. Still, what happens when the magic is no longer powerful enough to see armies of hundreds of thousands transported nigh instantaneously? When the magic warp gates are no longer in use and the roads no longer functioning due to decades of warfare? The air ships and magic trains don't run or there are serious gaps in knowledge due to libraries and the old masters put to the fire? Or the sword. Or the flaming sword.

    I get that a lot of fantasy, especially in games, has had these things happen, but it's usually happened a thousand years ago. So, what happens directly after it? I obviously ask about this because of my own setting takes place after such a an end. There are some books and media that do look into it (Villains By Necessity and Grunts. Some D&D settings. Any Warhammer 40K Feral or Feudal worlds), but what of you? Is this even something that's came up for you?
     
  2. My WIP and the project i'm planning are both examples of Post Apocalyptic Fantasy. Although the apocalypses were, in both cases, in the far distant past, and the present is better described as Dystopian Fantasy.

    I'll talk about the project in planning. The apocalypse occurred when magic was destroyed, killing everyone with magic (most of the population.) After that a totalitarian regime picked up the pieces. A world designed to be maintained and run using magic slowly crumbled. Its architecture and technology, made possible through the aid of magic, receded into the distant, forgotten past.

    Of course, the immediate result would be anarchy. Most of the population is dead. After that, a takeover by a totalitarian regime, which no one can resist. suppression or destruction of all knowledge of magic. Most technology was designed to be operated in conjunction with magic. Technology devolves due to this.
     
    Orc Knight likes this.
  3. shangrila

    shangrila Inkling

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    I had an idea for a story set after all the gods had a Ragnarok style showdown and trashed the world, either dying or leaving in the process. Now everyone is picking up the pieces, trying to survive without the tangible existence of their gods plus all the monsters and other dangerous crap left over from the war.
     
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  4. Michael K. Eidson

    Michael K. Eidson Archmage

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    To my recollection, as a writer of fiction I've not written a single fantasy apocalypse yet, or alluded to any in the past. They're such nasty things I always do my best to avert them. I've never seen the need to present any apocalypse in backstory either.

    As a Game Master, I've had some huge calamities in D&D and other fantasy rpg campaigns. In those situations where the campaign continued afterwards, the focus was on how the surviving PCs responded, and what steps they took to start life anew. None of those campaigns lasted for long after the cataclysmic event.
     
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  5. Mythopoet

    Mythopoet Auror

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    My world is sort of post-apocalyptic. Well, post-post-post-post-apocalyptic. It's set in far future many millions of years from now and there have been many apocalypses. But my goal is to have all this history of rising and falling society affect the "story time" world in concrete ways. And to really try to think about the development of humanity over that large space of time.
     
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  6. WooHooMan

    WooHooMan Auror

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    Talislanta is one of the best fantasy settings out there and it's post-apocalyptic. Also Dark Sun and Scarred Lands count.
     
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  7. LWFlouisa

    LWFlouisa Troubadour

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    Much of my Science fiction is a harder variant of Post Apocalyptic fantasy. In fact, I believe the apocalypse in itself closer to fantasy than science fiction.
     
  8. Demesnedenoir

    Demesnedenoir Istar

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    Mine is post-apocalyptic, but no one actually knows the extent of the apocalypse, heh heh. I’m actually writing the first series 500 years after the event, but I’m also working on a stand alone set immediately after the event.
     
  9. LWFlouisa

    LWFlouisa Troubadour

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    Post Apocalypse (as well as Apocalypse) used to be there own genres in speculative fiction. It wasn't until recently Science Fiction started monopolizing everything, and included these and Dystopia in their ranks. (In indication of how agents don't really know what they're doing.)
     
  10. Russ

    Russ Istar

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    Although such things are fluid, my recollection is that PA fiction has always been considered a sub genre of sci fi. I can't think of any of the classic examples of PA fiction that were ever really considered anything else. Are there some I am missing?

    I also am curious as to why you think Science Fiction has begun to monopolize everything? I also have no idea why you think agents are the cause of why certain books are considered parts of certain genres and why you think this group of professionals are clueless.
     
  11. LWFlouisa

    LWFlouisa Troubadour

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    I didn't know stating my opinion constituted an Ask An Atheist episode.
     
  12. Russ

    Russ Istar

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    I didn't know that your opinions were immune from being questioned, or that you have some special dispensation that allows you to insult groups of people with impunity.

    Would you prefer next time that I just explain why I think your opinions are wrong without doing you the courtesy of trying to understand the underlying evidence and assumptions to see if there is something that I have missed in your analysis? That is easier and quicker to do than asking a few questions, but often not as likely to produce productive dialogue.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2018
  13. D. Gray Warrior

    D. Gray Warrior Troubadour

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    My problem with Post-apocalyptic fantasy, or any kind of science fantasy for that matter, is that I don't know how to go about building the world. Is it our world where magic returns? Is it just the standard fantasy setting setting with laser swords and robotic horses?
     
  14. Orc Knight

    Orc Knight Archmage

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    I think it can run the gauntlet for all of those. Fantasy is stretchy enough as is already. Though the horses might be golems and light swords seem to be common enough. When they're just not on fire. And Star Wars is one of the big ones. But go back far enough to John Carter of Mars and Flash Gordon and other planetary romances that also follow in it. And you can throw in a great many of the Punks with it too. The Prince of Thorn series comes to mind as a recent Post Apocalypse Fantasy too.
     
  15. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

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    Ad hoc posts will get their noses slapped with a newspaper. You do remember newspapers, right?
     
  16. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

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    Post apocalyptic:

    Shannara

    Mark Lawrence’s Broken Empire
     
  17. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

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    The original post intrigues me. What happens right after? For some reason my mind went to the John Brunner classic, Stand on Zanzibar, a book that has stayed with me because it shows people surviving. Not through an apocalypse but through the general breakdown of society due to pollution and overpopulation and such (it was written in the late 1960s). I thought it realistic. People survive. They survive in really crappy environments and their lives turn to crap because of it. But they keep on trying to keep on.

    So, to return to the OP, I can envision magicians continuing to try to work magic, only it's as balky as a mule and as unpredictable as, well, as a human. Things work and then they don't and then they do but differently. People will definitely look around for scapegoats. They'll find them, too. In some ways, the afterward will be worse than the during. It's a cool concept; not sure it's been done.
     
  18. Russ

    Russ Istar

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    Housecleans as well.
     
  19. Queshire

    Queshire Auror

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    Not sure if it fits, but one of my main setting is post-post-apocalyptic and it's fantasy. There used to be an interstellar civilization, but it collapsed and the collapse broke reality so bad that it created magic. Now a few eras later the cloned space marines have become dwarves and the descendants of the scientists and technicians have become elves.
     
  20. Russ

    Russ Istar

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    or even Horseclans with the autocorrect...
     
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