Re: Royal Road Tags Description

Hello Everyone! Starvingsloth here.  :DrakanWine:

Since the introduction of the new tags, I've been wondering if there are any centralized list of each tags' description. I searched the FAQs and forum posts, but it seems like there aren't any post like that (yet). I do actually find the description of each tags, and it's located at the author's dashboard when submitting a new fiction. But! we can only read the genre and tags description while hovering over the options. That was really inconvenient! So, I figured why not create a post for all of the tags descriptions?


In this post I provided all of the currently available tags on Royal Road, each linked to their own advanced search page, and with a rough count on each tags fiction count (per November 19th, 2020). I also provided a google sheet for better viewing and sort capability: In the sheet there are also the genre description for MyAnimeList and NovelUpdates for comparison.

I initially wanted to start a discussion on what is a good tag and what is not a good tag, but I think I'll create a separate post to discuss about that. 

Anyway, I hope this list is useful for your experience on Royal Road as it's useful for me! Happy reading!

Spoiler: Content Warnings

Spoiler: Genres

Spoiler: Status

Spoiler: Tags

P.S. working with the forum bb code is a pain, don't recommend at all 3/10.  DrakanAngry
I'll try to update the list as best as I can, if there are any tags added or removed.

Last Updated: February 6th, 2021 - add STUB

Re: Royal Road Tags Description


starvingsloth Wrote: working with the forum bb code is a pain

Jawohl da, mein Bester. It is like wrestling with snakes. 

On another note, as I am here, it would be nice if Royal Road had an Bishōjo/Otome tag, wouldn't you agree? 

It seems there are a lot of stories out there where a main goal of the plot is for the guy (or girl) to get the girl (or guy.) 

I know I'm writing one!  😃

Re: Royal Road Tags Description


Tenori Wrote: Never really understood what counts as High Fantasy and what's Low Fantasy. Is everything that's set in a world or universe "not ours" automatically high?

From what I understand, if it involves an alternate fantastical world, it's a High Fantasy. If it's based on the primary world, our Earth, it's Low Fantasy. So yes, everything that's set in a world or universe "not ours" is automatically High Fantasy.

I think the intent of the distinction is to determine the tone of the story, at first. So a High Fantasy would involve more fantastical elements and things that require more suspension of disbelief, while a Low Fantasy would be more toned down and focused on the realism of the fantastical aspect. But nowadays I think High Fantasy is much more popular than Low Fantasy, at least from what I experience on Royal Road.

Re: Royal Road Tags Description

On the "what's what kind of fantasy" question: 

Originally, the High/Low split was exactly what Starvingsloth said, but this was back when the field was much smaller. King Arthur, Classical Mythology, and various stories from the Arabian Nights were all low fantasy. Lord of the Rings was considered high fantasy because it was an unrecognizable world, as were the Conan stories, even though both take place in a mythic, forgotten period of Earth's history. 

As the fantasy genre expanded, this old version of the high/low split became less and less viable. Portal/isekai stories, for example, inherently involve Earth, so figuring out if Narnia is low or high depends on your perspective. Contemporary and urban fantasy differentiated from historical fantasy. Other genre-indicators (military fantasy, quest stories, etc.) started carving up more of the genre, but they weren't small slices since the whole pie was getting larger and larger. 

No one ever sat down in a committee and voted to change the definition of high/low, as evidenced by the fact that people still use the old definition sometimes; but it's just not very descriptive that way. Most people seem to use it as an indicator of quantity now: high fantasy means a lot of fantastical elements, while low fantasy is more realistic. This allows it to apply to various forms of urban fantasy, for example (or contemporary fantasy, if it doesn't always take place in a city); Jim Butcher's The Dresden Files and Larry Correia's Monster Hunter International are both urban/contemporary, but Dresden is high fantasy while MHI is mid-to-low (having a wide amount of fantastical elements, but the heroes usually solve the monster problem by shooting it in the face until it's no longer a problem). 

Defining it one way or another would require the Royal Road admin staff to make a ruling on which version to use, which I'm not certain is the best course of action. I think it's better to let the authors and readers decide what it means for this site. 

Anyway, the reason I actually came to this thread was to point out that the latest update added a new STUB tag. I think this post is extremely useful to everyone and worth updating.