Trope Workshop:Fantastic Tribulation

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The Fantastic Tribulation is a setting where the world has been through an event where supernatural forces (such as monsters from fantasy) bring chaos throughout Earth. This massive phenomenon renders society incapable of countering the event through conventional means. This leads to either an Urban Fantasy or an After the End scenario which then turns into a Cozy Catastrophe. Both, however, involve people gaining magic or some other form of mystical powers that are crucial to surviving in this new world.

An interesting trend seen in media like Korean web novels and webtoons is how this event may cause dungeons to appear (especially when monsters are involved) that can be conquered by unique individuals. These people with powers counter these changes, thus giving way to stability. They are often connected to a system that functions like RPGs that can grant them these abilities and may be related to the apocalypse. By defeating them, these people bring temporary peace, including treasures, equipment, and mystical resources. Magic always plays a part as being the cause or another tool for people to use.

The society that comes into fruition where a status quo or even benefit from the change. Thanks to the inclusion of these changes, civilization may find benefits such as new energy resources and the advancement of technology. However, other problems may occur, not only from these forces but also from the people seen as protectors.

Contrast The Magic Comes Back.

Examples of Fantastic Tribulation include:

Anime and Manga

  • The World Is Overflowing with Monster, I’m Taking a Liking to This Life is set in a world that has been devastated by monsters with no access to electricity and other modern conveniences. People can use an RPG-like system that gives them skills, jobs, and increased stats... but animals and monsters also utilize this system.
  • JK Musou - Owaru Sekai no Sukuikata has monsters rampage globally, leading to societal decline. People called 'Players' can use skills and magic like in a role-playing game.
  • In Bouken-ka ni Narou!: Skill Board de Dungeon Kouryaku, an event called 'The Stampede' has caused dungeons to appear worldwide, along with monsters ravaging the world. Civilization has bounced back as the government allows people to become Adventurers to venture into dungeons, defeating monsters and levelling up while gaining magical items and equipment.
  • In Ookami Nante Kowakunai!!'s Tonda Birthday Present, the high-school student Tetsu has a grandfather who is an inventor, but the machines usually blow up in his face. So for his grandson's birthday, he makes a virtual reality machine to play 'Dragon Chest' for his birthday, but it malfunctions. This event causes the game to become real where people turn into NPCs and monsters while Tetsu becomes the hero and save the princess from the Dragon King.


  • System Apocalypse causes various creatures such as monsters and aliens, to appear on Earth, including no modern technology, but the System helps by acting like an RPG for people. It also provides other services such as functions for buildings and providing necessities if preconditions are met.
  • In The S-Classes that I Raised, dungeons have appeared worldwide where monsters spill out, leading to catastrophe for the population. Awakened are people who simultaneously emerge that use supernatural abilities, level up, and check their status through interfaces.
  • The New World series by James Khan, consisting of World Enough, and Time (1980), Time's Dark Laughter (1982) and Timefall (1987), is set in a world where magic came back and technology abruptly stopped working, and the creatures of myth reappeared.
  • The Earth is Online: Myriads of black towers begin to float above cities, ominously but harmlessly. Then one day, a voice announces, “Ding dong! November 15th, 2017. The earth is online.” Next thing people know, the towers are issuing deadly survival games, and humans are suddenly gaining unusual powers.

Oral Tradition, Folklore, Myths and Legends

Tabletop Games

  • In the backstory of Shadowrun, magic has come back. Yeah, a significant fraction of humanity turned into elves, orcs, trolls and a couple dozen of other races. Sure, practically every mythological beastie from dragons on down popped out of the woodwork. Yeah, there were political upheavals. Did that end the world? Hell, no! That would be bad for business! Besides, Cyberpunk tech made dealing with the Sixth World so much easier.
  • The interdimensional invasion by the "High Lords" which establishes the setting of TORG explicitly revolves around each participating cosm getting a foothold on Earth and changing the laws of nature in the area where it has control to make Earth reflect its native reality. The various realities vying for control of the Earth included a traditional High Fantasy setting, a Cosmic Horror world, two different Cyberpunk worlds, and several Pulp and Weird Fantasy cosms. Players were "Storm Knights opposing the invasion of Earth

Web Comics

  • microHUNTER has everyone in the world shrinks down to 3cm, where items like insects, birds, rats, and even doors are dangerous. However, people are granted abilities that have their strength determined by a level while also checking their status through game-like windows.
  • Solo Login has Players that can access places filled with monsters to level up while gathering money and equipment. Sky Players can access Sky Castles while Underground Players can enter Underground Dungeons. Monsters can travel outside of Underground Dungeons and attack cities.
  • In I am the Sorcerer King, ten years ago, Rifts appear worldwide, where countless monsters pass through and cause chaos. People called the Awakened are connected to the Ahkasha System under the Director of Ahkash and allows them to access notification windows, acquire a job, level up, grind stats, and gain skills.
  • In Omniscient Reader’s Viewpoint, the world goes through an apocalyptic event where people must participate in deadly Scenarios for cosmic live streamers. Every person is granted unique skills while also gaining coins that can be used to upgrade these skills.
  • Raid (SF) has a setting where a supercomputer has taken over the world by introducing nanomachines worldwide. Everyone has a watch-like device called a Nanocircle, which augments their abilities and grants equipment, including getting rewards from various quests given by the computer.
  • In Solo Leveling, portals worldwide called Gates connected to another dimension dubbed a Dungeon where monsters termed Magic Beasts. Simultaneously, people known as Hunters appeared with magical powers that can fight these beasts while keeping the public safe from them.
  • Kill the Hero has Dungeons appearing around the world where monsters poured from portals. At the same time, divine beings called Nimbus appeared that grant a small number of people called Players with a power called the Authority. A Player has access to skills depending on the Nimbus while being able to level up and check their status through system displays.
  • In Raid, 50 years ago, Demon World Gates appeared worldwide where Demon crossed these portals then cause havoc. Concurrently, God then granted humans called Masters (whose powers co-relate to MMORPGs roles like Tanker, Melee DPS, and Healer) who fight against these monsters.

Western Animation

  • In the episode "The Console" from The Amazing World of Gumball, a Game Child temporarily turns the entire town into a JRPG where Gumball, Darwin, and Anais form a party to turn the city back to normal.
  • In Thundarr the Barbarian, the Earth’s climate and geography have been drastically changed due to a meteor passing its orbit. This led to magic, savagery, and Weird Science appearing on Earth, resulting in chaos worldwide.

Other Media