Tiered By Name
Additions or alterations to names signify stronger versions of said beings.
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(permanent link) added: 2013-09-02 05:52:27 sponsor: KarjamP (last reply: 2013-11-25 06:49:00)

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Characters or enemies who return stronger tend to have letters or symbols or other similar prefixes or suffixes (like X, R, Mega, Super or even Mk II) either at the end of their names or at the beginning of one.

A variation is when the name itself is modified to signify it's stronger (like "Machop" to "Machoke" to "Machamp").

Bonus points if the character or enemy's either recolored or has his appearance changed to look more menacing.

Subtrope of Underground Monkey and Meaningful Name. Compare Randomly Generated Loot, which tends to use a similar naming convention for equipment.


Examples:

Anime and Manga
  • Higher-level Digimon often have the names of their prior level with a prefix attacked, such as Greymon - MetalGreymon, or Garurumon to WereGarurumon. However, there is no universal rule, as there's Digimon who change their names entirely when gaining levels, such as Togamon - Lillymon - Rosemon.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!:
    • The franchise has many monsters that act as variants of the same base monster, though not always stronger, with the connection being signified by a partial name change, such as Dark Magician to Dark Sage or Dark Magician Knight. Played straightest with the Gagagigo family, Gagagigo's card lore tracing his evolution into Giga Gagagigo, then Gogiga Gagagigo.
    • There's also the LV monsters, which are more this trope combined with Power Levels and/or Character Level. Examples include Armed Dragon and its more powerful forms Armed Dragon LV3, Armed Dragon LV5, etc., or Silent Swordsman and its more powerful forms, among others.
  • Megatron from Transformers and Galvatron are the same being from two different time periods, although in some continuities, they're two different people.
  • In Bleach, the true name of a sword in full release tends to be build up on the release name - such as Senbonsakura (thousand cherry blossoms) becoming Senbonsakura Kageyoshi (thousand cherry blossoms vibrant display

General
  • It's pretty common for there to be a "dire" version of an enemy that is a suped up version of a common enemy in video games and tabletop games. For instance, a dire wolf is harder than a wolf. A dire rat is more dangerous than a rat.

Literature

Live-Action TV
  • Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: Rita Repulsa's Putty Patrollers are replaced with Lord Zedd's Z Putty Patrollers, which have a Z on their chests and are practically indestrucible - unless you hit them directly in the "Z" in which case they explode into harmless bits.

Professional Wrestling
  • The Road Warriors (also known as the Legion of Doom) were repackaged in 1998 as LOD 2000, with little changing except more colorful shoulderpds and the addition of Sunny as their manager. This lasted for about six months.

Tabletop Games
  • In Warhammer 40K, Tyranid units that are stronger than usual are usually referred to as "Unit's Name" Prime.
  • There's various templates in Dungeons & Dragons that can be applied to a single creature to modify its stats (size, ancestry, and other traits), which are then reflected in its name. Usually a good indicator of a Mary Sue / Min Maxer if applied to a PC.
  • In Ogre by Metagaming and Steve Jackson Games, The titular A.I. controlled tanks were identified by putting a "Mark X" after the word "Ogre", with the X being a Roman numeral (I, II, III, IV, V, VI). The higher the number, the more powerful the Ogre.
  • The decker programs sold by Hacker House for the 'Shadowrun supplement Virtual Realities'' had numbers at the end of their names. The higher the number, the larger and more powerful the program.

Video Games
  • Final Fantasy:
    • In the remake of Final Fantasy V for the Gameboy Advance (and later iOS) there is Omega MK. II, which is not only stronger than the original Omega but is also 22 levels lower than the original.
    • Final Fantasy XII has another Omega named Omega Mark XII, one of the last marks you fight and also an optional superboss. In the Japan-exclusive version (named Final Fantasy XII International Zodiac Job System) Omega Mark XII is also fought on the 99th floor of trial mode.
    • The series in general also does this for the spells: Fire -> Fira -> Firaga.
    • * In Final Fantasy VII, the summon Bahamut comes in 3 insreasingly powerful versions, culminating in Bahamut Zero
  • Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story and Mario & Luigi: Dream Team both have most of the bonus bosses be tougher versions of the normal bosses found in the game. They have the same name as the originals, but with "X" added to them. The latter also has the Underground Monkey mooks having names of the original mooks with "R" at the end of them.
  • Almost all of the bosses and minibosses in Kirby's Return to Dream Land that appears in extra mode has "X" added to their names, in addition to looking more menancing than their normal mode counterparts.
  • In the Mega Man Battle Network games, depending on the game, the enemies may be leveled with letters alpha, beta and omega, or a number (1, 2, 3) followed by EX and/or SP. Bass will often be an exception: He had been XX, BS, GS, etc.
    • The life virus in Megaman Battle Network Transmission gains an "R" in its name and a different color when it was revived.
  • Pokémon:
    • Many Pokemon have a two-part name with one part changing to reflect a higher power level upon evolution, such as Machop - Machoke - Machamp, or Larvitar - Pupitar - Tyranitar
    • All Mega Evolution forms in Pokémon X and Y officially have the name "Mega <mega evolved Pokemon>".
  • Borderlands prefixes its upgraded enemies with "Badass", then "Badmutha", and finally "Superbad" as player progresses through levels of New Game+.
  • The Slimes in Dragon Quest have a lot of buffed variants, including an infamous one that only takes one point of damage and gives out high EXP. All of them have "Slime" in their species names.
  • Many enemies in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim have many auto-leveled variants distinguished from the base mook by some power ranking slapped after the name. For example: Draugr Wight, Draugr Deathlord, Reaver Marauder.
  • When Sonic the Hedgehog is powered up by the chaos emeralds, he becomes ''Super Sonic" and turns yellow. There's other transformations from other sources as well, but this is the most famous.
  • The "Hyper" prefix is used in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door for variants of enemies that charge their attacks. Some more traditionally upgraded foes get the "Elite" prefix.
  • Bonus Boss Vanitas Remnant in Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep Final Mix has more attacks than the original, all of which One Hit Kills you if you did not set your abilities up right.
  • In Warcraft III, most neutral creeps of a line use different suffixes (but there's no universal "this suffix means this type" effect) in addition to the usual size, model and hue differences. For example, Bandit/Salamander/Ogre Lord, Forest/Ice/Dark Troll Trapper/Priest/Warlord, Ancient Sasquatch/Wendigo/Hydra, etc.
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