God Hand (or Godhand, or God's Hand) is a popular name for a person, item, or skill, almost exclusively in Japanese media and usually related to melee combat.
The appeal of the name is obvious. By comparing one's hand to that of a god's, it makes it seem like one can do impressive feats with them. For those who fight with their hands, obviously it's an appealing notion. Additionally, it evokes the idea of the "hand of God"
, while still being concise.
The reason this is primarily a Japanese-media trope is because the Japanese tend to use "god" in their names without considering it as blasphemous as western audiences.
Compare Red Baron
, which this often gets used as when it's a title. When it's a weapon, it's usually a Power Fist
Anime and Manga
- Twister: In-universe, an F5 tornado is refered to as "The Finger of God".
Live Action TV
- Michael Carpenter in The Dresden Files is known as "The Fist of God." Unlike most of the Japanese examples, this isn't just a boast; Carpenter is a Knight of the Cross and empowered by God to fight evil (his sword is made from a nail from the Cross).
- Magic: The Gathering: Not In-Universe, but used as fanspeak. A different definition of "hand" than most uses of this trope, but a "God Hand" is generally considered seven cards that, when drawn, will defeat an opponent in the first round. The exact definition of a God Hand can sometimes be a source of great contention.
- In a post on the Role Play Online site (rpol.net), a poster demonstrated the game-breaking potential of the Hulking Hurler Dungeons & Dragons class by taking advantage of every possible loophole to create a monstrously powerful character, Urldred the Mountainthrower. His weapon was an eighteen-foot nickle-iron meteorite he called the Fist of Heaven.
- Obviously the game God Hand, where the title refers to a legendary warrior's actual arm. The trope name comes from a line from the game's ending theme song.
- Kun Lan, Big Bad of the game Killer7 has the title "God Hand." At one point he catches a bullet shot at his hand and uses its momentum to fly away. It's a weird game.
- A recurring Fist-type weapon in the Final Fantasy series is called the Godhand (God's Hand in Final Fantasy VII). It tends to be among the most powerful weapons of its type, and often has a Holy attribute.
- Another Squaresoft game, Ehrgeiz, has a progagonist nicknamed Godhand.
- The best Fist-type weapon in Phantasy Star Online is called "God Hand." It's actually popular since it provides a slight boost to all stats while still keeping the unarmed animation, which for some Casters is the fastest.
- The most powerful Strike attack in Persona 3 is called God's Hand. This is more literal than most, as it involves a giant golden hand striking from above!
- The skill returns in Persona 4 as the second strongest single-target physical attack.
- One of three Advanced classes in Dragon Quest VII is called the Godhand.
- Lenny in Shadow Hearts: Covenant makes a pact with a demon and becomes "Godhand."
- Mas Oyama, Korean-born (but spent most of his life in Japan) Karateka was nicknamed "Godhand." He is the probable trope-maker.
- Hirohito Furui, the keyboard player from the J-Rock band GARNET CROW, is nicknamed "Godhand" for his playing skill.
- A rare subversion in Argentinian soccer player Diego Maradona. He was nicknamed The God's Hand not because of his ability as a soccer player but by the fact that he managed to score a goal with his hand (the most obvious possible infraction) in a very important World Cup match without getting caught, leading to Argentina ended up winning the match thanks to that unruly play. In other words, his God's Hand was his ability to cheat with that hand without getting caught, or that the score was really thanks to the Lord Himself hitting the ball. It's actually a disparaging nickname in this case.