View Full Version : Which one is better, real history or alternate history?

01-24-2011, 11:23 PM
I want to make a manga (a real serious one, meaning I will want this one published, so I have to think about the target market). I have plan pretty much about everything (character, setting, story, etc).

It's about war that happened in my country. The setting is at WW2 and the enemies are Holland and Japanese (yeah, we fought against both Allies and Axis, scary...).

One last problem is... is it going to be real history genre or alternate one. If it's real history, then well... that's it. Nothing fancy, just a war manga. If it's alternate, then I will add quadpedal mechanized units into the war along with tanks, and some weapons that several years of the time.

According to your personal opinion, which should I choose? And why?

01-25-2011, 02:00 AM
If it's alternate history, your going to have to do more than just "add quadpedal mechanized units into the war along with tanks, and some weapons that several years of the time." you have to justify why these exist within said alternate timeline, or even since you seem to have a real event occurring parallel to/as your story you might want to give some reason as to why events have otherwise played out exactly as they have in this reality, sans the obvious advanced weaponry.

personally on this case i would go with real history, it's simpler to deal with personally the whole near future warfare stuff feels a little overplayed (though WWII is not exactly fresh material either so...).

I might also suggest taking the same concepts and premise (world at war, split largely into two factions, one nation having representatives of both sides as their enemies) but change the names and chronological setting to something more fitting what you want to add. your stories premise and tone stays mostly intact (assuming that there isn't a major reason for this being set specifically in uh...wherever you happen to live.) and you still get to have you fictional war machines, like having your cake and eating it to.

also, can't say i know for you homeland specifically but weren't tanks around in WWI?

01-25-2011, 03:04 AM
I also thought at some point to use real history... but that means I also have to "mimic" that time perfectly (or at least very close). The problem is I have lack of confidence to do that (I'll bound to create historical inaccurate things). Not because I'm lazy to research, but there's lack of documents available here (there's even less on the internet).

Anyway, thanks for the input. I've never though about why the technology become so advanced...

I live in Indonesia. Strategically placed, VOC invaded us, and then Japan came, and finally after Japan lost in WW2, Holland back. So we fought against 2 big nations...

There is a reason why I choose that timeline and place, which is I want to use the premise of my country independence day (also known as the August 17th).

With tanks, I mean the quadpedal mech unit still doesn't that almighty, it needs organic support from other tanks and infantry. I will use Sherman 2 and Sherman 2 Firefly as the tanks (already exist, though I don't know if they're actually fight in my country).

01-25-2011, 03:14 AM
There's enough crazy inventions in WW2 that you have a fair bit of freedom. I'd highly reccomend reading Zack Parson's hilarious book on the crazy inventions of WW2; My Tank is Fight.

Also you sent me a PM a while back and I replied, haven't heard from you since. Have you been checking your PMs? @_@

01-29-2011, 11:33 PM
If you plan to have a really serious manga, I would have as much realism as possible. That's just my thoughts on this issue.

01-30-2011, 02:09 AM
Your thoughts will be much appreciated ^_^ Yeah, the manga would be very serious (it's a war after all). I want to add some mecha for two things:
1. To appeal younger audience (since I think they love mecha)
2. To find excuse if there's some inconsistency with technology at that time.

For reason #2, I know and have researched about WW2 era (weapons and technology). But I never do research which of those technology that enter my country (I think most of them would comes from Japan though, since they invade us from 1942 to 1945). One thing I absolutely know is that our forces really like Bren Light Machinegun.

And also, I want to know how's life at that time here (and how's technology that used in daily life). No one to ask and there's little resource to read... I guess I will just use what I can get from Wikipedia.

BTW, some people vote for alternate history. I wish they want to explain why they chose it.

01-30-2011, 12:50 PM
Yeah, I'm generally all for mecha, but right here they seem kinda gratuitous combined with this type of serious plot... Perhaps taking an original point of view, like a tank crew or aircraft pilot, would kill two birds with one stone? I'm not sure if your country even had any at the time, admitedly, but some sort of new perspective would certainly help set it appart IMO. ;I

01-30-2011, 07:56 PM
No, my country didn't have any of that. Holland (the invader) have it, but my country is forced to guerrilla tactics. In fact, my country is one of the founder of such tactics. There's no way we could win such a large scale forces without resorting to "dirty" tactics... or I would prefer to call it special forces tactics, huwahhh ^_^

Actually the story would be taken from a sniper and company leader POV (a girl and a guy). It will feature a "battle" that doesn't recorded in history, but taken place behind the major event of my country history.

BTW, how much inaccuracy could you tolerate when reading a WW2 war manga?

Oh, so that I'm not mistaken, Kenshin (or Samurai X) is categorized as a real history, right? Even if with the almost unrealistic nature of the sword fight?

02-03-2011, 08:00 PM
Kenshin is marked as history since that is it's genre. "Realistic", though, is a bit of a stretch. In some sense it is realistic such as the setting and situation but as you say, the fights are totally out-of-this-world. That's bordering in fantasy genre territory.

Regarding inaccuracy, as long as it's not something totally and blatantly inaccurate like D-Day being any other day than June 6, 1944, then I think it would be fine. You should still strive for accuracy though such as cultural beliefs, dresses, food, technology, and so on.

02-11-2011, 04:48 AM
Alternate history is definitely more awesome. Not really sure about them mechs though. They can be awesome too unless they suck.

02-11-2011, 06:04 AM
I was thinking that perhaps I could go Valkyria Chronicles route? Still with tanks and realistic weaponry, but doesn't necessarily stick accurately to the history... like perhaps I could "remake" the Sherman, or make the weapons (a little) more advanced that it should be... Don't know about adding some magic though...

02-11-2011, 02:46 PM
you could use parelel universes. Our time, our history, but with a twist.

02-11-2011, 11:01 PM
Ummm, isn't that what is called alternate history?

02-12-2011, 07:31 AM
Hum. T'was thinking about this more, and I guess it really depends on your mecha drawing abbility, and how seriously you want your plot to be taken. Creating new, cooler variants to existing vehicles, or going just slightly off your rocker like Metal Slug does, could really give you some neat things to draw and fool around with... But yeah. It will start suffering from "it works because I say so" syndrome like all alternate history things.

02-12-2011, 08:53 PM
Its awesome bro, i wish i can read it in no time.

I choose alternate one, you must include something new, the real history is kinda boring except you can create story line like Urasawa Naoki does.

paralel universe or mecha is not bad idea but its kinda common right now.

02-12-2011, 09:05 PM
Ummm, isn't that what is called alternate history?

I think is called like that... I don't know. Is about a story about our world and time, but changing a fact in the history (example: Ex Machina: It change the 9/11).

02-12-2011, 09:59 PM
I think alternate history is when you change about some facts that happened in the past. Like what if Germans is the winner of WW2? What if Albert Einsten created a time machine to kill Hitler before he declare war on all Europe. Or something like that...

02-12-2011, 10:20 PM
yeah thats the kind of story I was talking. It our reality, but with a historical change.

02-12-2011, 10:24 PM
I don't want to change much facts of the history though, since that part of history is what I want to convey to my reader. If I mess with the history itself, then it won't reach to my reader (the history, I mean).

02-13-2011, 01:55 AM
In my opinion, if the story is gonna take place in our world, during a certain event that happened in that past, I would definitely suggest real history, some readers might read alternate history and go "what a load of bullfrogs!!!" and stop.

Just my opinion C: Good luck!

02-13-2011, 02:08 AM
In my opinion, if the story is gonna take place in our world, during a certain event that happened in that past, I would definitely suggest real history, some readers might read alternate history and go "what a load of bullfrogs!!!" and stop.

Just my opinion C: Good luck!

Yeah, this kind of stories, demand a lot of knowledge.

02-19-2011, 05:07 PM

02-19-2011, 08:55 PM
Yeah, this kind of stories, demand a lot of knowledge.

Isn't it the other way around? Real history is the one that needs lots of knowledge. Since if I make mistake in real history, readers will get angry and say "Hey, this is not what happened back then in 1945!"

02-25-2011, 04:01 PM
Well, it depends on how you look at it. Real history, you know dates, facts, and you can research everything. If you're doing a fantasy story with some historical facts then you will have to fill in the blanks - weapons, clothing, culture, events, and so on. Maybe that's what he was trying to say?

02-25-2011, 05:20 PM
real history is better than pretty much anything u could make up

02-27-2011, 07:26 AM
I would advice you, real story. but you need to make sure that behind the story there is a message given to the readers. usually when there is a message behind the story, the reader get attract by the story. during your manga it would be best to follow the journey of one soldier during the war.

02-27-2011, 07:44 PM
Hey, that's exactly what I want to convey to the readers ^_^ Like our independence is all because these all nameless heroes. Though there are two protagonist (the usual, male and female). So the story follows the "journal" of these two soldiers (one officer and one sniper)