Thursday, May 23, 2024

“The World After the Fall” Is a Manhua That Questions Isekai.

January 2, 2023 by  
Filed under Anime, GM, Manga, News

( The World After the Fall is a manhwa series that I’m really into at the moment for a number of reasons. This series features the team of writers S-Cynan and Sing-Shong and artist Undead Potato and it’s a dope tandem.

What Is “The World After the Fall”?

This series is about a world that has been besieged by towers that require people to enter them and basically beat it to save the world. Those people are chosen and lured by promises of power and money.. However, once they get inside, they realize that the towers—called Tower of Nightmare—are horrific places where people typically don’t complete them.

The first isekai element comes in the form of return crystals called Regression Stones. In the real world where the towers exist, they supposedly returns a person back to when they just began the tower. They’re promoted as items to use because someone can return to just before they entered the tower and basically survive easier since they have knowledge of the tower, monsters, and bosses.

A movement forms around the stones where there are those who believe they’re too risky to use because no one has ever run into someone who used the stone. It’s uncertain if it kills the person or truly returns them to the beginning of the tower. Another question it raises is what happens after the tower is completed.

If someone took the stone and beat the dungeon, no one would know. It’s also risky because it basically creates another timeline—similar to Goku being saved by Trunks in Dragon Ball Z. The main character, Jaehwan has joined the movement and is determined to defeat the tower.

However, time in the tower is strange and it passes faster inside than in the real world. After so many years of struggling to advance and close calls, several members of the movement bailed. It’s reasonable when you’ve almost died multiple times and seen allies die often.

In the end, Jaehwan is the only one who hasn’t used the stone and is driven by a hatred of the tower and its owner. When he reaches the final floor, the tower owner seemingly didn’t expect anyone to complete it. When the main character arrives, he wants answers and finds out that there are greater machinations at work in regards to why the tower exists and why humans have to tackle it.

Following his battle with the tower’s owner is when the manhwa really picks up. For readers of the novel, they will know even more about the world that Jaehwan enters afterwards. Before I forget: the art style here is really good. Undead Potato does action scenes wonderfully and it reminds of the artist who worked on Solo Leveling.

The World After the Fall - Manhua Isekai.

Stab Is the Most Powerful Attack

In the series Survival Story of Sword King in a Fantasy World, the main character who undergoes the isekai treatment spends decades and decades in a hellscape where he develops an extremely powerful Stab attack. It’s the only move he knows until he learns to slash sideways and vertically.

That sounds basic as hell and it’s there for comedic effect since the main character in that series is basically a max level being but only has basic attacks. He’s powerful enough that those three or four attacks are ridiculously powerful.

In The World After the Fall, Jaehwan only masters the Stab. His whole thing is to just stab through the tower and its owner. Over time, he develops more powerful and faster versions of Stab and it comes down to his fight with the final boss of the tower.

Again, he was in the Tower of Nightmare for years and in that time, he fought the tower master several times. He was continuously revived by the tower master who knew he was a valuable commodity but was becoming frustrated by this guy who wouldn’t play ball.

With so many defeats and having used Stab so many times, he develops a ridiculously powerful attack that only becomes more powerful as the manhwa goes on. Also, his physical ability and strength increases as a result. While the series has a bit of a serious, action-packed tone, the comedy here is really good and tied into Jaehwan being an overpowered character.

“The World After the Fall” Questions Isekai

One thing I love about The World After the Fall is that it questions isekai by having an early confrontation with a powerful being before kicking off the real isekai adventure. It’s the battle between Jaehwan and the tower owner where the main character is kind of in the role of the reader.

When we read these series, some of us really want to know more about the rules of the world—the rules of all of this. Who are the greater powers and why do they want humans to undergo this ordeal. What gives them the right to do it? Also, what happens when someone finally defeats the big calamity.

Usually, when an isekai series of this nature is out, it goes on for a while. The break that authors take might result in a drop in readers who move on to active series and new stuff. The World After the Fall basically gives you the last stretch of that story by dropping the reader several years into the quest towards the end.

Then we move on to the next part of the hero’s quest: destroying the root of the nightmares and the towers.

Another thing that rocks about this series and also pokes at isekai is the question of traveling back in time. It shows that time travel in isekai is most something of a selfish act or one of self-preservation while also pointing out that it’s likely that the Regression Stones can result in branding timelines. If people use the Stones and continue through the tower, that’s not the original event in the timeline.

Jaehwan basically exists in the real timeline as the sole survivor. However, being revitalized multiple times technically goes against the timeline as he should’ve died multiple times at the hands of the tower master.

Finally, Jaehwan’s advancement beyond the tower and his ability to defeat the tower boss only came after he reached enlightenment from fighting the boss so many times and almost dying. When he truly experiences isekai, he enters a world where he is one of the most powerful living beings walking.

Overall, the series is truly worth a read. It’s not this super deep series but it touches on some elements of the isekai while keeping the action and adventure going. There is very little breathing room between battles and encounters in The World After the Fall.

Staff Writer; M. Swift

This talented writer is also a podcast host, and comic book fan who loves all things old school. One may also find him on Twitter at; metalswift.

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