Created By: Prophet on January 5, 2012 Last Edited By: Prophet on February 18, 2012

Never Mix Magic

Combining two different types of magic is bad.

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In a world of Functional Magic, there are many different types of magic and phlebotinum, each with its own complex set of rules and laws. And they each work pretty well as long as each one is kept separate. However, mixing magics is almost always disastrous. The two magics tend to interact in fairly unexpected ways, sometimes appearing far bigger or smaller than expected and sometimes creating an entirely new magic altogether.

Needs More Examples, Needs a Better Description


  • In the Aladdin animated series, Genie often used this as the reason he couldn't simply poof away someone else's spells or magic.
Community Feedback Replies: 17
  • January 6, 2012
    Tabletop RPG
    • Shadowrun.
      • It is much more difficult to create a magical initiatory group if it includes different types of magicians (e.g. hermetic mages, shamans, physical adepts, etc.).
      • Ritual Sorcery cannot have different types of magicians on the same team.
  • January 6, 2012
  • January 6, 2012
    Mutually Exclusive Magic is when you can't learn two opposing types of magic. This is when you can't mix two different types of magic. They're similar and there's going to be overlap, but they're not identical.

    I really wish people would read both trope and YKTTW before declaring in bold that they've found a match.

    The question is, do we want to expand Mutually Exclusive Magic to cover this or let both tropes exist?
  • January 8, 2012
    Contrast Yin Yang Bomb.
  • January 10, 2012
    May or not lead to an Unholy Nuke
  • January 10, 2012
    I'd say yes, mutually exclusive magic should cover this. If you really want two different tropes on the subject then you'll have to address the Similar Tropes in the description so we know the difference.
  • January 10, 2012
    In Age Of Aquarius, different magical traditions are based on differing sets of beliefs. So mixing them outright results in a conflict of worldview between mages. As in "What frakkin' demons? I do know Frost Giants, I don't know any demons!". And an attempt to reconcile the beliefs results in a form of Post Modern Magic which is flexible but much weaker than Ancient Traditions.
  • January 13, 2012
    Video Games:
    • In the Final Fantasy series, Red Mages, who use both Black and White magic, can never use the highest levels of either type.
  • January 13, 2012
    ^ Now that's Mutually Exclusive Magic rather than this trope.

    I can already see confusion in the future.

  • January 14, 2012
    Probably, but it happens with tons of tropes. I hope this example might help to mitigate some of the confusion here. Video Games:
    • Played with in Magicka. You MUST mix several types of magics in order to cast powerful spells (Averted) but there are some types of magic that can't be mixed (Mutually Exclusive Magic) whereas other SHOULDN'T be mixed (Straight). Ex: Lightning and rain...
  • January 22, 2012
    Do Not Mix Phlebotinum?
  • February 2, 2012
    Some examples currently in Mutually Exclusive Magic would be more proper here.
  • February 2, 2012
    The Hollows series has this going on. Rachel can do witch magic and demon magic because of an elven cure for a blood disease she had as a child which reveals that witches are related to demons, a secret the witches do not want made public. To elaborate: witch magic is considered helpful and benevolent. Demon magic is considered foul and evil. So mixing the two is considered corrupting the helpful witch magic with the foul demon magic.
  • February 2, 2012
    In One Piece, a person who eats two Devil Fruits, fruits that bestow a set of superpowers, is killed instantly.
  • February 4, 2012
    In Fairy Tail, is said that Makarov's Fairy Law and Hades' Grimoire Law are two kind of magics that should never clash or mix with each other.
  • February 6, 2012
    Done in an episode of Pee Wees Playhouse when Jambi's magic combined with other magic and gave Pee-Wee a little tiny head.
  • February 18, 2012
    another Dungeons And Dragons one. By AD&D/AD&D2 rules mixing different magic potions causes weird effects, sometimes beneficial, but including things like lethal poison gas and explosion. This includes drinking them without a long enough pause, by the way.