Created By: zarpaulus on May 29, 2017 Last Edited By: zarpaulus on June 14, 2017
Troped

Bio Armor

A suit of "armor" that is alive.

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trope
There's Powered Armor, and then there's this, the Organic Technology equivalent.

Leaving aside the fact that you're essentially wrapping a living being around yourself, it often forms some sort of symbiotic connection with the wearer, often drawing nutrients from the wearer's blood. Needless to say that might have adverse side effects. An even worse version might be sentient, and capable of taking over.

Might be worn by a Heroic Host. Subtrope of Clingy Costume and Living Clothes. Compare Living Weapon, a creature used as a weapon.


Examples:

Anime and Manga
  • Guyver is a classic anime and manga series about a high-school kid who gets his hand on a powerful set of technorganic armor that enhances the capabilities of its host and has to fight monsters called Zoanoids. The armor is virtually indestructible, and is able to regenerate from pretty much any wound, its only weak point being its Control Metal. As long as the Control Metal is intact, it can rebuild the host from the data stored within. But if it's critically damaged, the suit will eat the host alive.
  • Naruto: Obito, having survived being crushed by a massive boulder is Recuperating at the lair of the Big Bad. When told that his friends are in trouble, he uses Guruguru as Armor and allows him to do most of the fighting.

Comic Books
  • Marvel Comics: The alien symbiote race are basically this, bringing not just a new kind of a new suit, but enhanced strength and an armor to protect the user. Venom is the prime example, but also there're more symbiotes from the same planet as well some new entities created by the users (like Carnage and Anti-Venom).

Film
  • In Independence Day the small and physically frail aliens wear large and tentacled bio-suits that almost qualify as Mini-Mecha, though even then they can be knocked out by a sucker punch from Will Smith.

Literature
  • In the New Jedi Order series the Yuuzhan Vong wear "Vonduun crabs" as armor, which can stop blaster bolts and even lightsabers, but turned out to be fatally allergic to a type of tree pollen, which was later developed into a Synthetic Plague that could kill all Yuuzhan Vong and their "technology".
  • God-Emperor Leto Atreides II from the Dune series wears a full-body suit composed of living sand-trout, turning himself into an immortal human-sandworm hybrid. His only weakness is being immersed in water, which is what happens at the end of God-Emperor of Dune.

Tabletop Games
  • Living armor is one of Transcendent Technologies Inc's products in Hc Svnt Dracones. They allow their users to act like they have Reclamation surgeries, the TTI-Poltergeist even incorporates Transcendent tech, but if injured they have a habit of freaking out and sucking their users' blood.
Community Feedback Replies: 22
  • May 29, 2017
    darkemyst
    Possibly worn by a Heroic Host. Subtrope of Clingy Costume.
  • May 29, 2017
    JesseMB27
    It has been several years since I've seen this movie, but a movie called Star Kid (or some have joking called as being a "G-rated Guyver") involved a boy finding an alien suit of sentient armor. I believe it was organic in part (based on its nickname of "Cy", being short for cyborg with the latter meaning organic), and thus might qualify for this potential trope.
  • May 29, 2017
    Benthelame
    The Blue Beetle's Armor is this, hence his name. . Naruto has an example as well. Obito, having survived being crushed by a massive boulder is Recuperating at the lair of the Big Bad. When told that his friends are in trouble, he uses Guruguru as Armor and allows him to do most of the fighting.
  • May 30, 2017
    Koveras
    • God Emperor Leto Atreides II from the Dune series wears a full-body suit composed of living sand-trout, turning himself into an immortal human-sandworm hybrid. His only weakness is being immersed in water, which is what happens at the end of God Emperor Of Dune.
  • May 30, 2017
    Getta
    We havr Living Clothes...
  • May 30, 2017
    NateTheGreat
    First question: "alive" as in biological, sentient machine, or both? Second question: "armor" as in a distinct shell, additional layer of durable "skin", or both?
  • May 30, 2017
    zarpaulus
    ^ Given that the title says "Bio" Armor I would say it's pretty apparent that it means it fills all the criteria for living, not just sentience.
  • May 30, 2017
    NateTheGreat
    But there are permanent symbiotic armors (you can't remove it without killing either you or the armor), synthetic life form armors (it's alive and you can take it off, but it was grown in a lab), etc.

  • May 30, 2017
    zarpaulus
    ^ I don't see any reason why this can't cover both of those.

    And "symbiotic" and "synthetic" aren't mutually exclusive.
  • May 30, 2017
    Prime32
    What about stuff like Frieza's "Bio Suits"? Members of his race can grow layers of hard tissue over their bodies that don't serve any vital biological function, and are treated as clothing or armor.
  • May 30, 2017
    Getta
    Maybe this should be called Flesh Armor or Biological Armor? Dunno if "armor made from hides, bones or carapace" would fit here tho.
  • May 30, 2017
    Basara-kun
    To add something about Getta said, this should be a Sub Trope of Living Clothes since the clothes that lives serves as armor for the user more that just clothes and for specific use for battle or war.

    Comic Books:
    • Marvel Comics
      • Alien symbiote race is basically this, bringing not just a new kind of a new suit, but enhanced strength and an armor to protect the user. Venom is the prime example, but also there're more symbiotes from the same planet as well some new entities created by the users (like Carnage and Anti-Venom).
      • In Iron Man story "Extremis", there's a new military nanotechnology serum called Extremis, which is another intent to recreate Captain America' Super Serum which was supplied to Tony Stark as a way to save him. As a result, Tony now can create Iron-Man suit just by his thought at any moment.
  • May 30, 2017
    Getta
    Note that "Living" armor doesn't have to be organic, while "organic" armor doesn't have to be actually living (re: my comment about armor made of bones and carapace)

    So what exactly would be this trope?
  • May 31, 2017
    zarpaulus
    ^ First sentence is "Organic Technology version of Powered Armor". Organic Technology is usually assumed to be alive and the "powered armor" part requires motility at the very least.
  • May 31, 2017
    Getta
    ^ So armor made of nanobots or a "metal" armor with AI in it don't count here, I suppose?
  • May 31, 2017
    zarpaulus
    ^ No.

    Incidentally, anyone familiar with Guyver care to explain it?
  • May 31, 2017
    DustSnitch
    Is this a sub trope of Powered Armor? If not, then the mention of Powered Armor should be removed from the opening sentence.
  • June 1, 2017
    Dravencour
    @zarpaulus: Guyver is a classic anime and manga series about a high-school kid who gets his hand on a powerful set of technorganic armor that enhances the capabilities of its host and has to fight monsters called Zoanoids. The armor is virtually indestructible, and is able to regenerate from pretty much any wound, its only weak point being its Control Metal. As long as the Control Metal is intact, it can rebuild the host from the data stored within. But if it's critically damaged, the suit will eat the host alive.
  • June 1, 2017
    Getta
    This may justify Animated Armor.
  • June 3, 2017
    Arivne
    Compare Living Weapon, which is a weapon that's alive.
  • June 3, 2017
    Getta
    Heroic Host in the description should be bluelinked.
  • June 14, 2017
    zarpaulus
    Launch soon?
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