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Good worldbuilding comics

Sourced from https://www.reddit.com/r/Fantasy/comments/qo4s0o/any_good_high_fantasy_comic_booksgraphic_novels/ (Also check out link for more webcomics and Bande Desinees)



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  • Monstress by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda is great, amazing art. And it has the cool worldbuilding you are looking for.

    Monstress fits the bill for sure, if you can stomach the highest war crimes to page count ratio I have ever seen.

    Monstress is an excellent ongoing epic fantasy comic. It's set in a steampunk Asian setting, and the worldbuilding is really cool.

    Really beautiful illustrations too!

    The art is incredible

  • Jeff Smith’s Bone is initially light hearted but soon becomes properly epic.

  • The Order of the Stick is amazing, the comics are based on the webcomic but with some extra book only content. Basic stick figures have never been so expressive.

  • It's also much more comedic adventure than epic fantasy, but I found Rickety Stitch and the Gelatinous Goo to be very charming.

  • Coda has great characters and very wry humor, a bit of D&D and a little Mad Max.

  • Seven to Eternity is a pretty grand fantasy with very well developed characters and plot and has really incredible visuals.. very interesting mix of western and mystical elements

  • Moonshadow is another good one, though it's a little older (1989) but very well written. Possibly more scifi than pure fantasy, but it's got a lot of both and a good amount of philosophy, if you're into that. It think it's beautiful, but it's mostly watercolor and a little more visually abstract than most comics.

  • Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind is a really good graphic novel with very unique and well done world building.

  • World building is good but moreso as it pertains to the wider cosmere as a whole.

    The world is fun, the characters are decent, the magic is great, the execution is off enough that overall it's not great. Sanderson has said himself that it didn't turn out very well but he hopes it's taught him enough that future graphic novel endeavors can shine.

  • Unique and beautiful worldbuilding (even considering books).

  • Great worldbuilding and themes, with plenty of action, humor, romance, tragedy...pretty much everything you could ask for in a fantasy adventure. And the art is consistently beautiful and never lazy.

    Elfquest holds up. Try it out. Plus it's free on line

  • A bunch of kids playing D & D get sucked into it’s world for two years. When they come back, one of them is missing and none of them can speak about it. A couple of decades later someone sends them their dice from the game and….

  • The whole chosen one in a fantasy realm having been stolen from our world, only time moves differently there, so he comes back as a fully grown, sword wielding man. The story moves between both realms.

  • T. Kingfisher's early work when she went by Ursula Vernon, and it is complete, and the world is lovely.

  • Great world building, amazing art, great characters

  • You want LORE? You want WORLD building?

    So: the gods are dead, 777 777 worlds are ruled by 7 insane demiurges, some weird bastards just beheaded the King of the Universe in your bedroom and stole your boyfriend? Time to take the Key from the Universe and kill six billion demons! The beginnings are false and God is a consummate liar.

  • Hellblazer (John Constantine) is a grittery take on the whole magic detective thing as is pretty damn good

  • looks to be a darker take on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, was one of the big influences behind Dresden

  • An excellent representation of restarting the post-apocalyptic Earth.

  • I don't think you can call it high fantasy but Carla Speed McNeil's Finder has very unique and detailed world building. Each collection has detailed notes at the back where she explains many of the things you can see in the panels so you can just read for the story or really dig into the details by reading the notes as you go.

  • Battle Chasers has some really cool characters and world building. The artwork is top tier, by one of the all time best comic artists- Joe Madureira. It kind of fizzled out, but they did make a solid RPG videogame in the same world.

  • Armies by Jean-Claude Gal and Jean-Pierre Dionnet. It's a collection of short stories all set in the same world, originally published in the French Metal Hurlant magazine. There's a great omnibus collection by Humanoids press that collects them all. The second half of the book features Arn's Revenge, a longer story set in the same world.

    The stories have nice twists, and they have a strong Conanesque sword & sorcery vibe to them. And Gal's art is absolutely gorgeous. Some of the best I've seen in comics.

    There's also Diosamante by Jodorowsky and Gal. It's a standalone graphic novel that was intended to receive a sequel, but sadly Gal died before it was finished and Jodorowsky left it unfinished rather than replacing the artist.

  • It's a standalone graphic novel that was intended to receive a sequel, but sadly Gal died before it was finished and Jodorowsky left it unfinished rather than replacing the artist.

  • weird fantasy with gorgeous visuals and no text at all. The story is told purely through images.

  • series of fantasy graphic novels. If you're interested in science fiction with fantasy elements

    There's one more book - Les immortels de Shinkara that doesn't seem to be part of this Comicvine volume

  • This absorbing first volume of Afar follows teen siblings Boetema and Inotu, fleeing from an android cutthroat in a post-industrial desert landscape. Concurrently, 15-year-old Boetema unexpectedly develops the capacity to astral project to another world while asleep. Markedly non-European in art style and inspiration, the combination of otherworldly science fiction, medieval African, and post-industrial design makes for a welcomingly distinct experience.

  • The first two volumes in The Nameless City trilogy follow the developing friendship between Kaidu, the son of a foreign-ruling-class diplomat, and Rat, a local of the Nameless City. After an attempted assassination of the city’s aged ruling General reveals deep conflict within the foreign ruling nation itself, Kaidu rediscovers the formula to a lost weapon developed by the original builders of the Nameless City; but should this information be shared with the city’s current occupiers, given to those who would seek to expel them, or kept secret? The third and final volume The Divided Earth comes out in September 2018!

  • The five volumes of the Shutter saga see explorer Kate Kristopher drawn into the mysterious and damaged world of her long lost father and the illuminati-esque group known as Prospero. This world is the world of Story itself, with anthropomorphic animals, pop-cultural references, well-developed characters and relationships, and, of course, plenty of adventure.

  • Multiple people have already mentioned it, but I'm also gonna throw in my endorsement for Astro City. The world building done by Busiek and co. is excellent. There's a real sense of history and legacy to it all, the locations feel vibrant and lived-in, and there's so much to explore over the course of the series. It's basically the Marvel and DC universes if they moved along in real time, as opposed to maintaining a status quo across several decades. It's one of my favorite comic book "worlds" to escape into for an hour or so.

  • It doesn't get better than Lazarus.

  • Writer Kurt Busiek (Astro City, Marvels) teams up with artist Ben Dewey and pull you into a magic filled world, or better said, a once magic filled world. Here all types of anthropomorphic animals gather and live in a floating city. And yet as these animals try to make due in their daily lives, a growing problem doesn't go unnoticed, one that could bring an end to their world.

  • Holy shit, this. I am not a manga fan in general, but One Piece is the one manga that I just absolutely adore.

    The imagination, the world-building, the wonder, the marvel of it all! Oh, what I would do to peer into that marvelous mind of Oda's.

  • Judge Dredd might be the pinnacle. I'm biased, obviously, but Mega City 1 is more than a setting, it's arguably the main character of the series. Beyond MC1, the other Mega Cities of Earth, off world planets, the Universe itself is fleshed out week to week. Judge Dredd occurs in real time and changes over time affect stories. See fads come and go, and return. See villians change and adapt and return. The world building and lore are just beautiful. See a character get arrested and sent to the cubes for 3 years? Wait 3 years and see what happens when they get released. That's just the surface, but it's fantastic and, IMO, second to none. It helps that the co-creator, John Wagner, has been writing and shaping the timeline for the past 42 years. Other help out, but he is, inarguably, the main guy.

  • Not an entirely fictional story, but Berlin by Jason Lutes is historical fiction about late 20’s Berlin that paints such a vivid picture of the city that’s so accurate and engrossing.