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Questions tagged [low-fantasy]

For questions focused on worlds where magic exists, but is rare, in a world otherwise abiding to natural laws.

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65 votes
23 answers
12k views

Why would people bury their dead in tombs when they might become zombies?

This is partly a Skyrim-inspired question, but also relevant to a story I'm trying to flesh out. In this world, magic and necromancy are perhaps not commonplace, but certainly not unheard of. Walking ...
user avatar
52 votes
14 answers
12k views

Why do goblins never form societies bigger than about 500 members?

The goblins in my world are classical fantasy goblins. They aren't too smart, have primitive technology, live in tribes, and use tamed boars, wolves, and other wild animals. They usually have a boss, ...
TheDyingOfLight's user avatar
50 votes
20 answers
8k views

How to make this "friendly war" plausible?

I'm trying to come up with this scenario in a sort of "medieval fantasy" setting. There are two towns. One, Caertydin is a large city with all the appropriate tropes, while the smaller town, Siege is ...
komodosp's user avatar
  • 9,469
39 votes
13 answers
11k views

How advantageous is an invisible sword?

An adventurer has come into possession of an invisible sword. How advantageous in a duel or skirmish would this be? Good for a one-time trick, a significant advantage throughout a fight, or even a ...
Cain's user avatar
  • 2,587
38 votes
31 answers
11k views

What kind of a unit/army would prefer fighting from a low ground position?

It's a well-known fact that attacking or defending from a high ground gives a wide range of advantages over an opponent occupying a lower position. I'm DM-ing a campaign where PCs are about to defend ...
LordMarkus's user avatar
33 votes
9 answers
6k views

Antler Helmet: Can it work?

Lord Woodesy wants to have a glorious antlered helm! But he has heard that having antlers, horns, or other projections on a helmet can be severely detrimental in conflict since they can be grabbed or ...
Cosmic Orrery's user avatar
32 votes
15 answers
8k views

Best Way to Style Ridiculously Long Hair (for magic purposes)

Okay, so for the story I am working on, I have a problem-or, rather, Serena the Shaman/Witch has a distinct problem. She has only one low-mana spell-Hydro Jet-and it deals low but consistent damage. ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
31 votes
18 answers
12k views

How does an all-female medieval country maintain itself?

Here's a question that came up while I was tinkering with a setting I'm working on. How would a small city-state, with a population in the tens of thousands, where all children were girls, sustain ...
Amechra's user avatar
  • 411
31 votes
14 answers
9k views

In a world without stars, how would travelers navigate at night?

On Earth, sailors would navigate the oceans at night by using the stars as guides; since there are no landmarks in the ocean like there are on land (save for the occasional island), that's pretty much ...
Alexader Ferguson's user avatar
30 votes
20 answers
9k views

Would dual wielding daggers be a viable choice for a covert bodyguard?

In the setting of a royal court in a stereotypical 'medieval' low-fantasy world, the royal princess must obviously be guarded. Assuming this society sees it as 'unbecoming' for a woman to be armed, ...
Loid Thanead's user avatar
  • 1,363
29 votes
15 answers
5k views

Minimum tech level required to outrun a terminator?

In the Terminator movies, a nigh-unstoppable cyborg travels back in time from the future to the present day to relentlessly hunt down and kill the human protagonists. They primarily manage to evade it ...
Makst's user avatar
  • 935
28 votes
15 answers
10k views

How does an immortal vampire king hide his vampirism and immortality?

I am aware of this question, but I think my situation is somewhat different. In the low-fantasy setting I'm working on, the king is a vampire in a world in which vampirism is punished by death. But ...
Ryan_L's user avatar
  • 13.8k
27 votes
14 answers
6k views

What would prevent the genocide of a legitimately dangerous race?

I’m writing a low magic fantasy story in which there’s a race of creatures called shadow-thralls that were basically bred as a slave race by a wizard thousands of years in the past. In the present day,...
Doguskang's user avatar
  • 529
26 votes
10 answers
4k views

How to utilize dragons that are too small to ride in warfare?

Dragons in my setting are significantly smaller and less physically powerful than most depictions. The large males reach about 100 kilograms and just over two meters tall. This means that they ...
user avatar
26 votes
12 answers
6k views

How Can I Protect Medieval Villages From Plops?

After creating my version of fantasy slimes (please see this and this for more on them, they're called Plops) I realized a problem with their basic physiology. That is because in medieval times (and ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
26 votes
9 answers
4k views

The green and the dragons

In several fantasy works they have the iconic dragons, giant reptile creatures and that commonly breathe fire. In some works these creatures were tamed and trained to serve as military weapons in wars,...
Wizard King's user avatar
  • 2,704
25 votes
17 answers
9k views

How could people in the medieval times defeat an armored vehicle?

In my setting there is a mad artificer making armored cars for the army. The cars have wooden frames with 10 mm of steel on every side, wooden wheels with metal plates covering them, and are propelled ...
TheEmperorProtects's user avatar
24 votes
17 answers
8k views

Why is this less profitable for an adventurer to craft and then sell an artefact, rather than to sell ingredients needed to craft the artefact?

Suppose we have standard world of fantasy RPG videogame. The MC (main character) earns money by killing monsters and then selling loot. Also, sometimes there are people happy to pay generous reward ...
KarmaPeasant's user avatar
  • 1,958
24 votes
10 answers
10k views

What early middle ages weapons would suit an extremely strong child?

I'm worldbuilding low fantasy with technology level of the early middle ages. Very few of the people could tap into psionic power, which makes them faster and stronger than common people. Average ...
Wim's user avatar
  • 251
23 votes
17 answers
7k views

A huge forest native almost solely to elves who are widely regarded with hatred. What's to stop an army from simply burning the entire forest? [closed]

A big army, fearful and hateful of elves, is standing in front of the forest they all (or vast majority of) reside in. Behind them is a stream, and beyond the forest is the coast. What is to stop them ...
veryconfusedman's user avatar
22 votes
13 answers
5k views

Fantasy Military Arms and Armor: the Dwarven Grand Armory

I'm having some trouble coming up with arms and armament for my fantasy world's dwarven race. I have a few ideas for what they could wield but I'd like a few more to really make this army feel Alive. ...
John V.'s user avatar
  • 714
22 votes
24 answers
7k views

What would a sentient, intelligent, but very small bird use as a ranged weapon against human or larger armored targets?

So I have sparrows, which are sentient and intelligent, which are physically exactly still just the same, no extra hands or anything, so any weapon would have to be held in the feet or somehow ...
grimmsdottir's user avatar
  • 6,247
22 votes
12 answers
8k views

How to realistically implement magic-users in medieval warfare?

So, I’ve seen other settings before where magic-users – mages, sorcerers, wizards and similar – are basically gods. There have been fantasy stories where a mage can singlehandedly wipe out an army, ...
user avatar
21 votes
16 answers
8k views

Modern military equipment in a fantasy world

So we've (re)discovered a portal to a magical realm akin to 12th century Europe but with magic. We have giants, trolls, dwarves, wizards, etc. One faction calls upon our aid. Invoking a supposed ...
Mormacil's user avatar
  • 8,777
21 votes
14 answers
5k views

What kind of weapon would be most useful for a fantasy civilization of blind creatures?

In my low-fantasy setting there is a civilization of completely blind humanoid creatures. Their ability to perceive the world is directly related to the other senses (hearing, smell and touch), which ...
Soel's user avatar
  • 909
21 votes
11 answers
4k views

Where to employ domesticated goblins in a fantasy world?

Goblins are small, diminutive humanoid creatures. They are approximately the size of a small child, they are short-lived, and they have very low intelligence. In my fantasy world, goblins have been ...
user avatar
20 votes
11 answers
7k views

How to not get blinded by an attack at dawn

I'm imagining a low-tech medieval fantasy world where an attack at dawn such that the defenders are forced to look into the rising sun conveys a huge advantage. The effect on my fantasy humanoids ...
lazarusL's user avatar
  • 301
20 votes
10 answers
5k views

What's a good fire-resistant material to write on?

In my setting (pretty generic medieval fantasy), certain valuable texts can simply not be copied (because of certain religious beliefs, a will to protect information through secrecy or because of some ...
Dastardly's user avatar
  • 1,481
20 votes
5 answers
3k views

Feasibility of Giant Butterflies as Predators

I have asked multiple questions about giant caterpillars, now it's time to account for their evolutions. Sure, giant flowers could and probably would exist in Alendyias; an Engorger dying in a flowery ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
19 votes
19 answers
8k views

How can children dying increase fitness?

There are three true gods in the world: Order, Chaos and Nature. All of them patron a couple of humanoid races that carry their values. While Order and Chaos carry on their petty feud fought by their ...
LuizPSR's user avatar
  • 2,220
19 votes
8 answers
3k views

Making Suitable Clothing For Fire Mages

In my world, there are mages capable of wielding the power of flame. The trouble is, trainee pyromancers tend to burst into flame, whenever they get excited. And later on, truly gifted pyromancers ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
19 votes
2 answers
1k views

What would mice use as raw materials for clothing?

This is my first question and I hope I didn't go beyond the scope of this forum. I am working on an amateur tabletop role-playing game, and I'm wondering how to make clothing & architecture feel ...
Flocon's user avatar
  • 243
17 votes
8 answers
2k views

what would allow for the use of cannons but not handheld guns

I'm looking to create a low fantasy world set in roughly the equivalent of the dark ages such that cities are defended with castle walls and armies are equipped with swords, axes, spears, bows, ...
BKlassen's user avatar
  • 2,008
17 votes
10 answers
6k views

Justifications for Axe Bayonets

A rather simple question in my opinion compared to my typical: Why would a nation with Napoleonic age technology and weapons use axe bayonets over the more standard 'spear-like' bayonets? They were ...
John V.'s user avatar
  • 714
16 votes
11 answers
5k views

What problems would a truly gigantic fantasy city encounter?

Supposing a world that falls somewhere between low and high magic, what would stop a city of truly epic size from existing? The city is a city-state that has existed for millennia. It is pretty much ...
biziclop's user avatar
  • 3,007
16 votes
6 answers
8k views

If it could be shaped, would chitin from giant insects make decent body armor?

I found a previous question on using chitin from giant insects to make weapons and armor, but the answer left out something I had considered for the medieval fantasy setting I'm developing. The answer ...
Arvex's user avatar
  • 3,034
16 votes
3 answers
3k views

Realistic fantasy Orcs [closed]

I want to figure out what kind of effects following physical attributes and in-universe conditions would have on Orc populations, society and warfare in a realistic low-fantasy setting: Physical ...
Nick Dzink's user avatar
  • 1,788
15 votes
11 answers
5k views

Can a low-tech sailing ship tell how deep the water is?

I'm trying to figure out the challenges faced by a low-tech civilization mapping its world. They have access to roughly Renaissance level technology, plus some (not very abundant) magic. One question ...
rwallace's user avatar
  • 4,907
15 votes
10 answers
3k views

Metal or alloy for special sword

A unique sword is to be forged for the hero, a human-dragon hybrid. Forged in the dragonfire of his draconic father... I don't actually think it would be much different than a sword from a regular ...
JANXOL's user avatar
  • 1,967
15 votes
7 answers
5k views

Will a Humans Tolerance Keep Going Until Full Immunity?

Context: This is a post apocalypse low fantasy, soft science world. In it megacorps have built a protected city for citizens to survive. The world outside the walls in dangerous, with toxic gas, ...
Saxionkin's user avatar
  • 443
14 votes
11 answers
5k views

How to design an effective polearm-bow hybrid?

Full disclaimer : I acknowledge full well that in real life hybrid weapons are completely silly and impractical but I'm currently writing a fantastic-ish story where power fantasy is a key element. ...
Anonymousworldbuilding's user avatar
14 votes
10 answers
3k views

Is it possible for the tribe to ignore useful technology?

I'm worlbuilding a low fantasy inspired by the dark ages something like 6th to 9th century in our world. The geography is completely different with one supercontinent containing almost all the ...
segir62400's user avatar
13 votes
17 answers
5k views

Could normie beat a psionic in a swordfight?

I'm writing low fantasy set in alternate Earth with technology level of 6th century. In my world I have psionics, born something like 1 in 10,000. They are several times stronger than normals, from 3 ...
regetex580's user avatar
13 votes
8 answers
6k views

Could accuracy compensate for lack of strength in archery?

Setting: I'm worldbuilding a medieval fantasy which I try to keep as realistic as possible. In my world, fantasy races are subspecies of the humans, which I define as compared to humans: Humans (same ...
loxerih164's user avatar
13 votes
10 answers
2k views

Variable Intelligence Among Dragons

In the land of Dracoriri, there are dragons. There weren't always dragons, once humans were the dominant species, but then magic-an unexplained phenomenon-invaded earth alongside creatures from ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
13 votes
6 answers
4k views

How Fireproof Could a Fire Creature Be?

Typically in fantasy, creatures that are infused with fire (dragons, pyromancers, fire elementals, fire-infused monsters, you get the drift right?) seem to be completely unharmed by said fire and its ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
13 votes
3 answers
371 views

What Benefits Could Tongue-eating Lice Have For Mermaids

Well, after asking Would mermaids be affected by tongue-eating lice evolving alongside them?, I realized they would be a worthy addition to a more monstrous subspecies of mermaid. There's only one ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
12 votes
19 answers
5k views

Why Would Adventurers and Mages Wear Impractical Clothing?

What Is The Problem? In this question, a woman from the modern age is brought into the medieval era, which is problematic because what we consider fashionable today is incredibly immodest. In my story,...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
12 votes
14 answers
5k views

How to prevent super-strong slaves from escaping and rebelling

I have a fantasy setting that is about as advanced as the late 15th to early 16th century. There are humans and many other sapient non-human species; humans are one of the only species to create large ...
BoaHancocklover's user avatar
12 votes
16 answers
5k views

How to serve the gods

TL;DR: How can a mortal become worthy of being listened to by the gods? I'm seeking a logical framework to establish a specific relationship between gods and mortals. The Relationship: Mortals can ...
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