Handloaded Magic YKTTW Discussion

Handloaded Magic
Characters use spells and powers by loading them into their hands.
Tropeworthy? Needs Examples Already have?
(permanent link) added: 2013-04-03 18:38:43 sponsor: Zeta edited by: Arivne (last reply: 2014-10-06 09:02:34)

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Vancian Magic is a specific form of "rule magic" in which a spell-caster must "load" and prepare expendable spells or superpowers before hand, much like a gun.

This trope takes it a step further. To use your Magic Loaded Hands, the wielder of these fantastic powers must literally load the magic directly into their mitts - either their palms or digits. Spells or superpowers have to be switched out like weapons, usually creating some sort of glowy effect on the user's hands. They are also usually limited to using (at most) two at a time. Some games will restrict this further and require one hand to wield mundane weaponry or select items.

In terms of video-game design (because that is typically where this trope flourishes), this means that you can put a spell-caster or psychic in the game or a magic and powers system that essentially functions identically to a First-Person Shooter.

See Also: Hand Blast, Powers as Programs, Power Fist and Tricked-Out Gloves


First-Person Shooter
  • BioShock
    • Powers in BioShock and BioShock 2 come from genetically-engineered Plasmids that occupy the user's hand, causing deformities along with the activated powers.
    • The Vigors in BioShock Infinite work the same way.
  • The Darkness video games had a small variation in which the hands were extra tentacles, freeing up hand space for extra guns.

Stealth-Based Game
  • Dishonored. The magical powers the player characters gain from the Outside emanate from the hand with their tattoo.

Western RPG
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind allows you to select spells or activateable magic items separately from weapons, but "ready spell" and "draw weapon" are different and mutually exclusive actions. In other words, if you hit the "ready spell" key while you have a weapon out, it will sheathe the weapon and "unsheathe" the spell, and vice versa.
    • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim has spells equippable to your right and/or left hands just like weapons, and does not allow you to put a weapon and a spell in the same hand.

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