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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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12 votes
8 answers
3k views

How would an underground society measure time? [duplicate]

I have a very mind-boggling question about time reckoning. I have a race of Dwarves, that at the very beginning of their history lived only underground and were forbidden to reach the surface. They ...
Faegir Dariusson's user avatar
12 votes
6 answers
3k views

How can I make combination weapons widespread in my world?

I'm writing a low fantasy fiction in a XVIII century-tech kind of world. The reason of the setting is that I love early modern muzzleloading weapons, and I think guns can make fantasy more interesting....
MAG's user avatar
  • 487
12 votes
3 answers
1k views

How Would Humanoids Form Their Own Gems?

Sequinoans. This strange race of Amazonians has many unusual traits, but the foremost our scholars are concerned with are their gems. You see, Sequinoans somehow form gems naturally, perfectly smooth ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
12 votes
7 answers
2k views

What would a potion that increases resistance to damage actually do to the body?

Alright, we are in a medieval fantasy setting. In this setting, northern warriors (basically vikings or typical fantasy barbarians) have berserkers that use certain potions that make themselves ...
Chuck's user avatar
  • 1,389
12 votes
5 answers
418 views

Traveling in a world with ever-changing landscapes

I am trying to build a fantasy world which is not made of matter, but of raw imaginative power. This world has an overall fixed shape, bound to the memories of a sleeping godlike being, but everything ...
Soel's user avatar
  • 909
11 votes
12 answers
5k views

Valid reason for not having plate armor in early medieval, low-magic fantasy setting?

I'm world building a low-magic, early (to high) medieval (early 12th century-ish) fantasy world for a ttrpg. This world revolves around humans, but -while not something commonly encountered by humans- ...
Jacco's user avatar
  • 704
11 votes
15 answers
5k views

How can kaiju exist in nature and not significantly alter civilization?

I'm building a world where kaiju-sized creatures exist alongside regular-sized creatures. How these kaiju don't crumble under their own weight doesn't matter, and can be explained away by them being ...
M Arif Rahman Winandar's user avatar
11 votes
8 answers
3k views

How hard would it be for a blacksmith to produce a cauldron?

I'm writing a story with a fantasy-adventure-like background. The usual world where adventurers take quests and explore dungeons, but instead, I want my main focus to be on the support roles. Those ...
GFA's user avatar
  • 484
11 votes
5 answers
2k views

Challenges for using a bull as a character's mount

I'm writing a character for a fantasy setting, and I wanted him to be a gruff half-orc war master whose mount is a bull. I wanted to know if there has ever been an actual historical use of bulls or ...
as.beaulieu's user avatar
11 votes
4 answers
1k views

What does a Dracula-esque villain need to maintain a magical castle and a variety of minions?

Picture this: there is a high fantasy world with a majority of humans, but in recent times there have been other, monster based species gaining traction (i.e werewolves, naga, harpies). In this ...
Doctor Ansem's user avatar
10 votes
15 answers
5k views

Unconventional ranged weapon for primitive sci-fantasy race?

This race lives underground in massive caverns/cave network. Hundreds of square miles large per cavern. Large/wide/tall enough that they have their own atmospheric conditions, essentially large ...
Bastion's user avatar
  • 101
10 votes
9 answers
3k views

How do you motivate people to post flyers around town?

This one feels a bit trivial, but I am genuinely stumped on how best to word a job specification that one of my characters is posting in a fantasy world. The basic idea is I have a dwarf who is in a ...
Andrew Micallef's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
455 views

How could these giant animals travel oversea?

I've got these 2 giant apes like creatures who are too heavy to go on the ship to be taken to another continent. What are some ways that they could possibly get across the sea? This is a medieval epic ...
Beginner's user avatar
  • 593
9 votes
8 answers
6k views

How can I heat my buildings without fire in a low-fantasy setting?

In my low-fantasy setting there is a civilization of blind people living in a very safe and isolated region of the world. Thinking about how this civilization could have developed throughout the ...
Soel's user avatar
  • 909
9 votes
6 answers
2k views

Alternative chalk board materials

For the sake of context, this is a fantasy setting where this character has no access to magic and lives in a small village. He would like to write a book and since wiriting materials are a little ...
PompousPamplemouse 's user avatar
9 votes
9 answers
2k views

How can nations control large plains and deserts?

How can organized nations in a fantasy setting control large land masses (20-30,000 km²) made of deserts, rocky deserts, and drymuds? By control, I mean enforcing laws, defending it during conflicts, ...
ShadeQ's user avatar
  • 227
9 votes
9 answers
4k views

Best mythical creature to use as livestock? [closed]

Imagine a world where all the magical and fantastical creatures that exist in mythology or folklore actually exist. Everything from dragons, griffins, goblins, harpies, trolls, etc. - they can taken ...
user avatar
9 votes
5 answers
1k views

What limitations make sense in the context of a narration-based magic system?

The storyteller sits down. He has a tale to tell, a tale of a village that was suffering a drought. A tale of the desperation of the villagers. The desperation that led them to seek the help of ...
Mark Gardner's user avatar
  • 2,884
9 votes
7 answers
514 views

Best Military Use of Mercenary Giant Ape Men?

In my setting there is a race descended from Gigantopithecus blacki. These creatures retain much of their ancestors physical features, such as: •An impressive height of 2.75 meters (9 feet in freedom ...
user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
683 views

"African" states alliance?

To start this off I will dispel preconceptions: Africa had great empires and was not technologically inferior to Europe before the invention of guns. They had quilted armor (the equivalent of ...
neo flare's user avatar
  • 1,415
9 votes
5 answers
1k views

What binary poisons could work when ingested?

What are two non lethal substances that will combine to create a strong poison when ingested close together? Hopefully my character would be able to drink one of the substances mixed in to a wine or ...
Mais's user avatar
  • 131
8 votes
8 answers
4k views

Usefulness of a weapon based on throwing hot water

The people of my flat medieval fantasy world have found a rune that generates infinite boiling water, and they want to use it to kill each other. Sadly the water cannot be made with momentum included, ...
A random person no.0's user avatar
8 votes
15 answers
3k views

How to build a defensive wall that Stone Mages can't easily deconstruct?

Assume that the time period takes place at some point before cannons and other later siege equipment (medeival, antiquity, bronze age, etc.) Stone mages can affect materials that follow the geological ...
Foosic17's user avatar
  • 1,266
8 votes
5 answers
2k views

What is the maximum population density in a settled land where farming and homesteading is impossible?

Let’s say that early middle ages humans discovered and expanded into a newly discovered land. Those humans made a concentrated effort to populate this new territory; they shipped several ships of ...
user avatar
8 votes
8 answers
2k views

How effective would a pole-arm blunt weapon be?

No metal weapons allowed I'm limiting this to wooden or composite ones only (for example the use of something as tough or harder than lignum vitae and other materials). I accept far fetched answers ...
Anonymousworldbuilding's user avatar
8 votes
5 answers
2k views

What's a viable reason for why underground societies are more accepting of slavery?

In fantasy, a relatively common trope in fantasy settings, particularly D&D, is underground societies that are more willing to endorse slavery than surface-dwelling societies. We see it in the ...
Brinstar77's user avatar
  • 1,477
8 votes
10 answers
2k views

Dedicated castle assault unit

Medieval warfare can get ugly, particularly during sieges. Most will agree that the best course of action is to sit tight for a year or two and hope the defenders starve before your attacking force ...
JANXOL's user avatar
  • 1,967
8 votes
6 answers
2k views

How to trap and kill a T-Rex-like creature?

The story: in a fantasy iron age world, a T-Rex-like animal (actually more like the size of allosaurus) has emerged from the forest and started killing people. The animal always retreats to the forest ...
M Arif Rahman Winandar's user avatar
8 votes
5 answers
372 views

Why would a herbivore be armed and aggressive?

In Dracoriri, I plan to have a species of small dragon called a Malidge (by small, we mean about the size of a human). These dragons are red, shiny, and covered in plates instead of scales, a natural ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
8 votes
8 answers
563 views

Determining Feasible Mermaid Locomotion Methods (Land Edition)

Lately, I've again pondered how mermaids could move on land. I know certain fish, like frogfish, devilfish, and even batfish, as well as mudskippers, have developed fins that work as feet. However, I'...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
8 votes
3 answers
727 views

In what way could a small, non-magical force hold a castle against a larger, magically-abled force?

Say that through some subterfuge and the element of surprise, a small, well equipped force of soldiers managed to wrest control of a castle from a government. The government wants that castle back, ...
Scott Maher's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
3k views

What would define kingdoms in a fantasy setting? [closed]

Preface: This is a very abstract question since it really would depend on the worldbuilder, and the type of setting they are trying to build. In Established Works In works such as Lord of the Rings, ...
Cristian C.'s user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
227 views

Is there development of advanced polymers/composite materials?

Background: seeking modern technologies, resources, etc that could potentially be discovered and applied in a fantasy setting where manufacturing processes, while advanced, are more akin to the late ...
Malaxes's user avatar
  • 81
8 votes
4 answers
375 views

How does a species with heat cycles deal with over population?

I'm at the very early world building for a potential story where I have a sort of humanoid feline species that I need to have been known as expansionist and/or war-like in the past but not be ...
dsollen's user avatar
  • 33.6k
8 votes
5 answers
317 views

A Pangaean civilization has its land split apart by something

I want to write a story that has a Pangaean like world, but human civilization already existed during that era. Basically, the earth just has one giant piece of land while the rest is the sea. People ...
not chocobo's user avatar
8 votes
5 answers
439 views

How Quickly Can you Get From a Population Of 100 Humans to a Walled City-State?

For an RPG, I'm building a world that is the inverse of the fantasy world which contains ancient ruins and long-lost arcane secrets. This world will be home to the folks who built those first ...
Sean Dalton's user avatar
7 votes
10 answers
890 views

Medieval military tactics, given the presence of a single invincible champion in every nation's army

The setting is low fantasy medieval. Magic (and other supernatural things) belong exclusively to the realms of the gods, and are not for mortal beings to wield. However, there is one major exception. ...
Makst's user avatar
  • 935
7 votes
8 answers
3k views

How Many Soldiers are Needed to Patrol/Defend a Medieval Wall?

I have a walled city in a medieval RPG setting. It's out in the middle of a desert and has an impossibly efficient means of acquiring water and producing food off of farmland inside the walls (magic ...
FlyingLemmingSoup's user avatar
7 votes
9 answers
1k views

Gaining The Engorgement Enchantment For Peasants

So, this question concerns gaining the Engorgement Enchantment, which one can only obtain by killing an Engulfer without a weapon (ie. non-natural weaponry, one must use one's own body to accomplish ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
7 votes
5 answers
1k views

Creating a Predator For Snappers

Yep, it's another predator question. I know lots of animals eat fish, but the Snapper is a different breed of deadly animal, a ferocious, amphibious pirahna with dagger-hard teeth and the ability to ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
7 votes
4 answers
1k views

Why there is white ash everywhere?

In my world a war happened between a few tribal leaders a really long time ago. Those leaders had nearly god-like magical powers, giving them the ability to modify bodies, matter (like earth, stone, ...
ShadeQ's user avatar
  • 227
7 votes
3 answers
288 views

Can ecological collapse happen in a person's lifetime?

I'm writing a story for a character who is a an old monster hunter. In his younger days, he used to make a living by hunting the most dangerous monsters which are basically the story's equivalent of ...
M Arif Rahman Winandar's user avatar
7 votes
5 answers
398 views

Transportation in a fantasy world without wood

In my low-fantasy world wood is a very limited resource because all forests are haunted. Cutting a tree often means drawing the wrath of the creatures living in the woods, resulting in some very ...
Soel's user avatar
  • 909
7 votes
4 answers
215 views

How would you realistically set up bat racing on an island?

One of my main characters lives on an island where people bet on bat races. My story is set up so that bats are domesticated and race one another in dark caves. The bats would use echo location to ...
Frances Cherest's user avatar
7 votes
5 answers
830 views

How could an animal produce miraculous saliva?

Many species arise from evolution, but as in many fantasy works the creatures are created by gods, titans or something similar, so I think this gives a certain freedom to create creatures with ...
Wizard King's user avatar
  • 2,704
7 votes
2 answers
285 views

Determining Predator/Prey Relationship for Plop and Chompers

Yes, I know I've created two different questions that resulted in a Plop or Chomper predator, respectively. However, given that Plops and Chompers are among the most common monsters in Alendyias, it ...
Alendyias's user avatar
  • 13.5k
6 votes
8 answers
4k views

Removing slaves' digit to prevent uprising

What digit, if removed, would hamper a human from fighting using medieval weaponry? (I'm toying with both thumbs but this may be too limiting in the work that the slaves can do or both little fingers ...
Corrbear's user avatar
  • 111
6 votes
12 answers
3k views

Why would guns be more popular/useful than magical swords against other humans and entities [closed]

Suppose there are some swords (not man made, but abundant enough to arm an army), that grant their users a magical abilities such as: extremely heightened reaction/increased perception of time and ...
FIRES_ICE's user avatar
  • 3,143
6 votes
9 answers
3k views

Can an Umbrella deflect a Great Wyrm Red Dragon’s Breath?

From Giant in the Playground Forum: Well a Great Wyrm Red breathes hot enough to theoretically liquify[melt] 4 inches of solid iron across an 80 foot or so line. So an 80 foot wall of iron 4 inches ...
Enthu5ed's user avatar
  • 3,759
6 votes
14 answers
868 views

How can the remains of a god's corpse be kept off the black market and out of the hands of mortals?

A demigod is a mortal being infused with divine energy. This essence comes from a divine spark in their soul that activates due to some external traumatic event. This spark is very rare, and most ...
Incognito's user avatar
  • 38.5k