I'm writing a fantasy comics and I am stuck on a particular idea. Imagine if Hell existed on our planet. Like hell is here, we simply cannot see it, because there is an invisible barrier between the two dimensions, stopping hell from overlapping with our dimension. So if this barrier broke, portals would start opening throughout the world, allowing things from the other side, hell, to get into our world. Would it be possible, even for a fantasy story?

  • $\begingroup$ China Miéville's The City & the City (2009) "won the Locus Award for Best Fantasy Novel, Arthur C. Clarke Award, World Fantasy Award, BSFA Award and the Kitschies Red Tentacle, and tied for the 2010 Hugo Award for Best Novel". A TV mini-series (which I haven't seen) has been made by the BBC in 2018. $\endgroup$ – AlexP Jan 6 '19 at 1:52
  • $\begingroup$ @AlexP thanks. This is the first time I'm hearing about this. I'll check it out $\endgroup$ – Nass King Jan 6 '19 at 1:55
  • $\begingroup$ Related: worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/q/70068/30492 $\endgroup$ – L.Dutch - Reinstate Monica Jan 6 '19 at 4:07
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    $\begingroup$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because "Is it possible in a fantasy story" seems to have a very trivial "yes" answer and the question has no other issue or context to possibly restrict that. $\endgroup$ – StephenG Jan 6 '19 at 7:29
  • $\begingroup$ A list of fictional worlds where this is true would probably have dozens of thousands of entries. $\endgroup$ – Renan Jan 6 '19 at 13:13

Of course.

As with many aspects of writing fantasy, the answer will almost always be "yes, of course! It's your world, you make up the rules!" Like: Can I have dragons? YES. Can I have Elves? YES. Can I have portals? YES. Can I have polydimensional beings that ordinarily consist of dissociated arrays of tentacles bilocate into our universe as large purple dragonflies? YES.

You get the point with this kind of question.

Works for sci-fi too, even though they don't always like to admit it! :)

Basically this works because you will show, through your story telling, and possibly through visual art techniques, that people in the ordinary dimension can not see or interact with people in the demonic dimension. You'll eventually show how the break-down occurs and how people cross through the portals.

Problem solved!

  • $\begingroup$ It works great for SciFi. Consider the Star Trek NG episode, "Time's Arrow" where the "dimension" was simply existing in time a fraction of a second away from where we're living in time. Whether you liked the episode or not, it was a brilliant way of looking at the 4th dimension. $\endgroup$ – JBH Jan 7 '19 at 5:52
  • $\begingroup$ To clarify, this largely only works for "soft" SF. Hard SF is a lot more discriminating, or else it becomes soft SF. $\endgroup$ – Gryphon Jan 7 '19 at 14:07

Yes, it is a very common clichè.

To make it into a less common clichè, perhaps, you could have that your world is already hell, but people just don't realize it.


For travelling across dimensions that exist in the same world: https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ShadowWalker

For a world that has gates to other dimensions: https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/PortalCrossroadWorld

Specific about Hell and its gates: https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/Hellgate


A bit late, but how I'd go about it would be to basically make it one huge DOOM parody! (mainly base it of the 2016 "reboot") Y'know the whole using the resources of literal Hell (or at least a very hellish dimension) to fuel humanity's ever growing needs for energy. Mostly just for fun, but also to explore some of the interesting implications of such a setting. OH! And of course to better distinguish your setting from DOOM's is that there is no one-man-army marine or "DOOMslayer" (in the 2016 game) to fight off the legions of Hell or there was...but he (or she) mysteriously vanished. (or something like that)


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