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[[quoteright:350:[[VideoGame/FireEmblemElibe http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Canas_darkness_2222.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:[[DarkIsNotEvil Elder magic, not dark magic.]] [[InsistentTerminology Get it right.]]]]

->''"I have seen the night torn into thin darkling strips and woven into shapes too bleak for dreams."''
-->-- '''Crovax''', [[http://magiccards.info/wl/en/24.html Strands of Night]], ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering''

A form of ElementalPowers dealing with shadow and darkness.
It can take several forms:
* Darkness as an element is frequently portrayed as acting nigh-identically to its polar opposite, {{Light|EmUp}}, with characters "projecting" darkness as you would light.
* Shadow element, on the other hand, is usually focused on creating things-- typically corrupted or imperfect copies of something else, or intangible illusions. Characters are also sometimes able to [[ShadowWalker use shadows to teleport]].
* Either form is often used in systems that allow the combining of abilites to create "dark" versions of other powers by combining Casting a Shadow with other ElementalPowers or other power sets.
* Both darkness and shadow powers frequently act as the inverse of HardLight -- shadow-beings or creations of [[PureEnergy pure darkness]] will be able to affect the world as if they are solid objects. If a shadow being is the LivingShadow animated from an existing being, the victim probably CastsNoShadow unless it is returned.
* Some portrayals of elemental shadow or darkness paint it as a sort of [[LifeDrain life-devouring]] [[GreyGoo ectoplasmic goo]].
* In some portrayals, elemental shadow is little more than PureEnergy with black and purple food coloring.
* Darkness is sometimes associated with gravity thanks to mysterious real world physics concepts like dark matter and destructive black holes, which has lead to many shadow casters doubling as {{Gravity Master}}s in recent years.
* Other frequently invoked associations are {{Antimatter}}, and the PowerOfTheVoid.



Given the prevalence of DarkIsEvil, darkness as an element is often used by {{Villain}}s in a clear-cut case of BadPowersBadPeople. Even when DarkIsNotEvil, darkness-based powers are almost always relegated to [[AntiHero Anti-Heroes]] and other morally grey individuals. It wouldn't do to have the white side of BlackAndWhiteMorality use darkness-based powers, after all. Either way, darkness-based powers are frequently associated with negative emotions -- fear, hatred, anger, pain, etc. As probably ''the'' most PrimalFear in the human psyche, don't expect darkness to be pleasant, even when it's not actively malevolent. Evil darkness-users will often play this up, [[EvilFeelsGood luxuriating in their evilness]], while others will usually become TheStoic (suppressing their negative emotions by suppressing ''all'' their emotions) or just have a lot of {{Angst}} to deal with.

Characters using darkness-based powers are sometimes WeakenedByTheLight, which may be shown by having Casting a Shadow opposed by LightEmUp or HolyHandGrenade in ElementalRockPaperScissors. When the two are combined, however, the result is a YinYangBomb.

----
!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: {{Anime}} & {{Manga}}]]
* ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'': in the Sinnoh League, we have Tobias, whose signature Pokemon is [[spoiler:the legendary Darkrai]]. Possibly lampshaded as an ActorAllusion in the dub.
* ''CodeBreaker'': The Prince's power is this, featuring literal edges.
* The Nara clan of ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' have the ability to control their shadows and can "solidify" them in order to use them to [[PeoplePuppets control]] or strangle opponents. Their reach can also be amplified by extending to other shadows (specifically, the length is not "used up" going through another shadow).
* ''Manga/OnePiece'':
** Blackbeard has the literal "Darkness" power. Oddly, he mainly uses it to crush his opponents with ''gravity''; the chain seeming to go "dark->black->black hole->super gravity" or possibly the other way around. This is fairly typical of the superpower logic in ''Manga/OnePiece''.
** Gekko Moria has power over shadows; mostly, he steals them from people and uses them to reanimate corpses into zombies, although he can absorb them himself to become more powerful or just use his own shadow to attack directly as well.
* Takane Goodman in ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'', #2 Darkness (Shadow) as a form of GreenLanternRing. Prone to getting stripped, as the series has stripping disarm attacks; and when she tried to counter that by making her clothing out of Shadow, she ran up against Asuna and her magic cancel power. She usually uses her power to create golems for attack and defense, the other shadow user who has appeared used his power more like a Green Lantern, forming blades, etc. She is definitely one of the good guys, if a little over serious.
** The Magic World Arc introduces Kagetarou, who ''acts'' like an antagonist at first [[spoiler:but turns out to be a buddy of Rakan]]'s. There's also [[BigBad Fate Averruncus']] accomplice, [[spoiler:Dynamis, who can summons swarms of Invincible Minor Minions and a humongous EldritchAbomination, is stated to be almost as powerful as Fate himself, and tried to kill Nodoka and came damn close to succeeding, wiping out two of her friends who tried to protect her the first time, and only being driven off the second time by Setsuna (who hacked his right hand off at the forearm) and Kaede]].
*** [[spoiler:His personality and temperament are much less extreme than originally suggested, however. He's actually fairly ''reasonable.'']]
*** Negi's Magia Erebea may count as well, since, basically, it is still black magic, he just prefers lightning powers over darkness. Even Rakan notes that Negi's Affinity lies in the dark side.
*** There's ''also'' Kotaro Inugami, who has at his disposal the ability to summon vast swarms of autonomous spirit wolves made of darkness/shadow.
* Hayate Yagami of ''MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'', the Queen of the Night Sky who has Diabolic Emission, a SphereOfDestruction that envelopes the land in pure darkness, as her signature spell. Oh, and [[DarkIsNotEvil she's the cheerfully optimistic]] BigGood of the series. [[ArtifactOfDoom The Book of Darkness]], [[SuperEmpowering the one she inherited her powers from]], probably fits the personality type a bit better.
* In ''Anime/DigimonFrontier,'' darkness is just one more element and not inherently evil. The original Legendary Warriors -- the warrior of Darkness included -- were all good guys, and the new one, like every bad guy in the first half of the series, was [[BrainwashedAndCrazy corrupted by Cherubimon]] [[spoiler:but eventually got better, joining the team as the SixthRanger]]. More of his attacks than not have "Dark" or "Shadow" or some other darkness-related word in the name and involve black energy.
* Pumpkin Doryu, from ''RaveMaster''
** Haru's MorphWeapon sword also has a darkness aligned form, Sacrifar. It turns Haru into TheBerserker, [[DarkIsNotEvil though it wasn't entirely the fault of the sword itself.]]
* From ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'':
** Hiei's Dragon of the Darkness Flame could be considered a mixture between fire and shadow. He's a ''DeadpanSnarker'' though, so it's O.K.
** Asato Kido uses a direct manipulation of his shadow, allowing him to [[spoiler: paralyze Yusuke with it during their fight]]. He also has enough control to use it to write [[spoiler:Dr. Kamiya]]'s name in his own blood after being attacked in the hospital.
* Onimaru's last [[TheDragon Dragon]] in {{Yaiba}} was [[MeaningfulName Dark]], the demon of Darkness. He could engulf people in his shadows and send other creatures [[OneHitKill into another dimesion forever]].
* [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Celty]] from ''{{Durarara}}'' is a [[HeadlessHorseman Dullahan]] capable of manipulating shadows and giving them physical form. The uses of this ability range from creating weaponry (usually a scythe or dagger) and restraining enemies...to [[MundaneUtility instantaneously dressing herself and letting her type faster]].
** It's also interesting to note that the shadows she manipulates aren't restricted by the presence or absence of the sun, meaning she can manifest a weapon at noon just as easily as she can at midnight.
** Notably, her shadow is always drawn darker than all others, even when she's not manipulating it.
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'' has Kyoraku's [[EmpathicWeapon zanpakuto]], Katen Kyokotsu. One of its 'games' is to attack through shadows -- between Kyoraku's own shadow and whatever he wants to hit. The target must be casting a shadow, however. In this case, the shadow manipulation itself is less creepy than the inspiration for it -- 'children's games' where the loser dies.
* Pride from ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' slices, dices, and [[ImAHumanitarian eats]] with his extensible shadows. [[spoiler:He's powerless in complete darkness, though. [[AchillesHeel Shadows cannot exist without light]].]]
* Kageyama, Jose, Simon, and Zero from ''Manga/FairyTail'' are all users of this type of magic, the first one weaker than the other three.
** Well, Kageyama uses Shadow magic while the other three uses Darkness magic.
** [[spoiler:Mirajane]], after she using her Take Over, she uses Darkness magic as well.
** Jellal can use Darkness Magic, but it's not his primary magic.
** Rogue, the Shadow Dragon Slayer can use this as his power.
** [[spoiler:As can Gajeel, when he briefly absorbs part of Rogue's power.]]
* The ''Manga/AhMyGoddess'' manga featured a demon with power over "true darkness", which she used to make the surrounding area pitch black and cancel out all light sources (including flashlights and light magic).
* Momose from ''Manga/BloodyCross'' has the ability to control shadows. She can summon beasts made of shadows, shoot shadow spikes, and use it for stealth (hiding in people's shadows) and for some form of teleportation (disappearing into a swirl of shadows on the ground).
* In ''SaintBeast'', [[TheLancer Luca]] has shadow as his {{Elemental Power|s}}, standing in contrast to TheHero's power of [[HolyHandGrenade light]].
* Varete of WitchHunter show just how powerful shadows can be, with her power to control shadows. She can block ''swords'' with the shadows up her sleeve and level entire towns using the shadows cast from a tree. She is almost impossible to hit with attacks, as she can use even the shadows between her hair and her head to attack and defend, with an almost limitless amount of mana to allow her to fight for extremely long times.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Book]]
* In Marvel Comics, Darkforce users can use this, although they aren't all evil.
* Jackie in ''ComicBook/TheDarkness'' manipulates the dark, but broadly speaking, he's a good guy. For a mob hitman. Well, he's better than the wielder of the [[LightIsNotGood light powers]], anyway.
* Malice Vundabar, the youngest member of the [[NewGods Female Furies]], could summon a shadow monster called Chessure.
* TheDCU's shadow wielders, by and large, draw their powers from an alternate dimension known as the Shadowland (or Dark Zone). Much like their Marvel counterparts, they range the gamut from hero to villain. Most interestingly, the shadows created by [[Comicbook/{{Starman}} the Shade]], were at one point analyzed by a police scientist. [[GoMadFromTheRevelation He went insane the moment he looked at the sample in the microscope.]]
* TheDCU's PhantomLady on the otherhand uses science!. Well a Dark Light gun from a mysterious European scientist.
* Shadow Lass/Umbra from ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}}. Definitely a good guy, though her incarnations in the Postboot continuity was an ill-tempered AntiHero.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fanfic]]
* In the ''WesternAmination/JackieChanAdventures'' fanfiction project ''FanFic/ProjectDarkJade'', Jade usually gains a a variation of this in stories where she once again becomes a Shadowkhan (refer to the Western Animation entry below):
** In ''Fanfic/QueenOfAllOni'', after Jade resumes the role of Queen of the Shadowkhan, she gains the ability to move through shadows, and eventually gains [[MagicWand a pair of fans]] that can fire blasts of shadow chi.
** In the ''WesternAmination/JackieChanAdventures'' and ''WesternAnimation/{{WITCH}}'' crossover ''Fanfic/{{Kage}}'', Jade gains the ability to move through shadows, and her SuperPoweredEvilSide has shown the ability to use shadow-based CombatTentacles.
* The title character of [[http://www.fanfiction.net/s/4625008/1/The-Shadow-Khan-Season-1 The Shadow Khan]].
* In ''FanFic/TheThreeKingsHunt'' Rebecca Hawkins can do this.
* In the {{Disney/Frozen}} fic Fanfic/SorryAboutTheMess, Anna gains Shadow magic midway through the story in contrast to Elsa's Ice magic
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* A non-evil example would be Arithon from ''WarsOfLightAndShadow''. He's called the Master of Shadow for a reason, having power of the darkness and anything related to it, while his half-brother is the Lord of Light.
* {{E|motionlessGirl}}thereal of ''Three of Heart, One of Blood'' is able to manipulate shadows to the point where she can create sentient beings with them, albeit fueled by her own personality in a sense. She also averts the {{Stripperific}} clothing rule by wearing large, conservative dresses.
* The Dark court in ''WickedLovely''. They are emotional parasites and, at the hight of their power, can manipulate shadows and form strange 'shadow creatures', which follow their leader of the time, although they serve little purpose. Generally, the edginess comes from the darkly seductive nature of them - one subspecies, the gancanagh, are addictive to mortals and the embodiment of DeathBySex. They also like tatoos, although this half-applies to all the fey in Melissa Marr's work. It's AuthorAppeal, as Marr herself has several tatoos.
* In ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'', the [[SealedEvilInACan Dark One]] manifests an [[GodInHumanForm avatar]] with the power to create black fire, a "sphere of black light", and generalized darkness in rooms. This may be [[JustifiedTrope analogous]] to its other unique ability, to block access to the One Power: it can destroy physical light as it can magical [[LightIsGood Light]].
** Myrddraal are terrifying, though that just may be because of their {{Eyeless Face}}s, extraordinary combat abilities, and love of rape. They possess the ability to teleport through shadows.
* In ''Literature/LordOfTheRings'', the [[TheDragon Nazgűl]] generate terror in their enemies and are the most powerful in darkness. Since their chief weapons are fear, terror...um, and a [[Series/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus fanatical dedication]] to the Dark Lord, they are WeakenedByTheLight.
* In ''Literature/TheSilmarillion'', the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Unlight]] of [[AnimalisticAbomination Ungoliant]] falls somewhere between Casting a Shadow and the PowerOfTheVoid.
** Frighteningly, while her heir Shelob is WeakenedByTheLight, Ungoliant actively ''[[BigEater consumes it]]'' and spits out blackness.
* In ''TheBlackCompany'', the ''Shadowmasters'' are aptly named. Ironically, one is afraid of the dark. Make of that what you will.
** He's not so much afraid of the dark as the flesh eating shadows (or worst) that might be hiding in the dark.
* Sir Sam Vimes of ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' is infected with the Summoning Dark, a "quasidemonic force of pure vengeance" in ''Discworld/{{Thud}}'', but manages to [[HeroicWillPower break its power over him]] before it can force him to [[TheFettered overstep the boundaries]] of the law and lose his essential Vimesness. In the next book, ''Discworld/{{Snuff}}'', it's revealed that a part of the Summoning Dark merged with the Guarding Dark, Vimes' own SuperpoweredEvilSide, and he can call on its power when seeking "vengeance", i.e., trying to solve a murder outside the boundaries of existing law. He uses this connection to see in pitch blackness, communicate with subterranean races, and become a witness to distant events taking place in darkness.
* The villain of ''LukeSkywalkerAndTheShadowsOfMindor'' is a Force-user who has a different view of the Force than that of Jedi or Sith; he believes that the Force is the Dark, which is basically destruction and entropy; he induces visions of the Dark - of being alive in the eons after all the stars burn out - to cause despair that he can then use. On a metaphorical mind-battly level, his ultimate technique is to become a black hole, which [[ItMakesSenseInContext makes sense in story]].
* OlderThanFeudalism: The Plague of Darkness from ''Literature/TheBible'', made particularly notable by commentaries stating that not only was this particular darkness a distinct physical thing that would swallow up any light that the Egyptians tried to produce, but that, during the last three days of the plague, it became so "thick" that it froze the Egyptians in place until it dissipated.
* This is one of Nico's powers in ''PercyJacksonAndTheOlympians'' due to being a son of Hades. He's capable of shadow travelin (opening portals in the shadows) and cover himself in them to stay hidden. His father is even capable of creating barriers of it
* In ''Literature/MalazanBookOfTheFallen'' there are a few flavours of this. The Elder Warrens of Kurald Galain and Kurald Emuhrlan are, respectively, the Warren of Darkness and Warren of Shadow. There is also Meanas, the younger Warren of Shadow.
* All Necromancers in ''Literature/SkulduggeryPleasant''.
* Melisandre of Asshai in ''ASongOfIceAndFire'' is a "shadowbinder", and can create shadow copies of people to do her bidding. Her shadow powers are a subset of her [[PlayingWithFire fire-based magic]], because "there can be no shadows without light" and vice-versa.
* Literature/LightAndDarkTheAwakeningOfTheMageknight: This is Calador's awakening. Ironic since he works for an organization called "The Order of the Light" that fights shadow monsters.
* In ''Literature/TheShadowSpeaker'', Ejii is a Shadow Speaker and has the ability to listen to the shadows.
* TheKingkillerChronicles has in the Faerie realm a power of shadows, one of whose uses is to weave into a Shaed, a super-cloak made of shadows that can be re-sized at will, among other powers.
* In ''IronCouncil,'' Judah Low creates a golem out of shadow, capable of choking people on its "flesh."
* The [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Shadowlord]] in ''Literature/SmokeAndShadows'', a SorcerousOverlord from an AlternateUniverse has used shadow magic to conquer much of his world, and tries to do so with the protagonist's Earth as well.
* In ''Literature/TheManWithTheTerribleEyes'', the shadow monsters run on something called the Void that gives them powers over darkness. [[spoiler: The Man has the same powers.]]
* In ''Literature/DarkHeart'', Myrren Kahliana and other followers of the dark god Vraxor can conjure blasts of darkfire, an icy-cold black flame that consumes whatever it touches like acid. Myrren also demonstrates the ability to create a cloak of shadow that makes her invisible in darkness.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Music]]
DJ the S' "[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pbMcOfQbFO0 Disciple of Darkness]]" is a compilation remix of Darkness-based themes from video games.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* {{Mortasheen}}'s [[http://www.bogleech.com/mortasheen/jabbersnatch.htm Jabbersnatch]] uses a low-level version of this, being able to absorb all light in its vicinity to turn itself into a solid black Sillouette. It uses this power to be a [[ThingsThatGoBumpInTheNight highly effective boogeyman]].
* The Shadow Queen, a villainess in the ''{{Champions}}'' adventure ''The Great Supervillain Contest''. She had Darkness powers, including the ability to solidify, project, and merge with shadows.
* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' has a number of monsters that create and/or use darkness and shadows as weapons, such as the shade, shadow dragon, and shadow mastiff. The shadow demon was more effective in darkness/shadow but couldn't create or manipulate it.
** The Shadowdancer PrestigeClass in ''Tabletopgame/DungeonsAndDragons'' (also available in ''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights''). Again, DarkIsNotEvil, though it does synchronize well with the Thief class.
** One of the power sources for ''Tabletopgame/DungeonsAndDragons'' 4th Edition is Shadow, which is the dark half of arcane magic. (This is mirrored with the ''ForgottenRealms'' own Shadow Weave in lore.) So far, Assassin is the only class released that makes use of this power source.
** Now, however, any class can technically pull in power from it with certain feats; some classes may pick up shadow powers and/or have their own variant of the class that almost exclusively pulls from it; and there are a few races that have ties to shadow.
** The 3.5 book ''Tome of Magic'' introduced the Shadowcasters, which were just like they sound, an entire class based on the use of shadow magic.
** "Shadow" spells are a type of semi-real illusion. Some of these mimic other spells. The mimicry version are higher level, and act less real. If someone successfully [[Memes/TabletopGames disbelieves]] they only suffer how real the illusion is, other wise they suffer the full effects.
*** Min Maxer's [[note]] or maybe munchkins, the extend spell part of the article doesn't take into account Tabletopgame/DungeonsAndDragons' stacking rules for cumulative multiplying effects[[/note]] [[http://brilliantgameologists.com/boards/index.php?topic=5638.0]] [[note]] Click the button "Acquisition of Prestige" and then read the Shadowcrafter segment.[[/note]] have found a way to make it MORE real than 100%. Thus if these min-maxing methods are used, someone is being attacked by the spell, or something the spell created, and victim ''succeeds'' on his saving throw to disbelieve, he is in even more danger than the regular un-mimiced 100% regular version of the spell. Sadly the guide fails in taking the final step of the process, mentioning how to make the saving throw as easy as possible for your opponent and ways to force your opponent to choose to attempt the saving throw.
*** For other [[GameBreaker game breaking]] wackyness you can mimic the spell miracle by compiling several loopholes into one glorious combo [[note]]Go on the mentioned the previously mentioned link, click on the button below "Feats Deserving of Special Mention", and read arcane disciple (luck) segment[[/note]]. Even though it says you need the arcane disciple (luck) feat for this, you could, in theory, say that ''any'' wizard/sorcerer with that feat would let ''you'' use the trick. But that is ''really'' stretching your luck.
* Mentioned in the backstory of the ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' universe, but sadly not playable on the tabletop, are the Umbra, a strange race of aliens that look like completely black spheres. They have the power to manipulate any shadows in the vicinity, turning them into [[CombatTentacles huge toothy tentacles]] that tear people to pieces. And they can do this to ''any'' shadow. Even the ones in your pupils.
** The Dark Eldar have "darklight" weapons that use some kind of energy that resembles tangible darkness mined from other dimensions.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer}}'' had a minor chaos god named Obscuras (see more [[http://www.goblin-online.net/download/obscuras.txt here]]) whose powers were mainly based on shadow, and who could grant to his followers the ability of seeing without requiring light. Some people can still obtain powers based on shadow without worshipping him, however.
** There is a whole section of common magic called the Lore of Shadows.
* The [[DarkIsNotEvil Darklings]] from ''TabletopGame/ChangelingTheLost'' have a buy-in with the Contracts of Darkness. They don't involve shadow manipulation, however, as much as they play on some of the stereotypical qualities of darkness (creepy, unnerving, etc.).
* The [[MeaningfulName Lasombra]] clan of vampires in ''TabletopGame/VampireTheMasquerade'' had the ability to control and create shadows as their signature power. When handled correctly, this made them more disturbing than their initially more monstrous allies from clan [[BodyHorror Tzimisce]]. Usually, it just ends up being an excuse for the use of tentacles for naughty purposes.
** The Khaibit bloodline from the successor game ''VampireTheRequiem'' gets a toned-down version of Obtenebration, complete with the power to interact with ghosts and spirits, teleport through shadows, and turn into a shadow yourself. Between this and their fluff (which paints them as worshippers of Set who work to keep back even darker monsters), they are ''quite'' popular in play.
** ''TabletopGame/MageTheAwakening'' has this in the Death Arcana, and practioners are neither worse nor better than any other mage. The issue over how shadows are merely the absence of light is [[JustifiedTrope justified]] by that exaplation simply being part of the Lie, and that darkness is a meta-physical representation of death.
* In ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'', this lies within Black's purview. It has the "[[http://magiccards.info/ps/en/53.html negative emotion]]", "[[http://magiccards.info/som/en/65.html physical darkness]]", "[[http://magiccards.info/vi/en/2.html night]]", and "[[http://magiccards.info/wl/en/10.html evil]]" variants all represented.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Toys]]
* In ''Franchise/{{Bionicle}}'', the Makuta were all about this, though characters belonging to other species sometimes had shadow-based powers as well. Also, if one tapped into their inner dark side or had their inner light drained, they automatically gained shadow powers.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Rumia of ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}'' was made to play with this notion. Her power, the power of darkness, is meant to sound like the dark and powerful abilities of other characters on this page, but she is actually one of the weakest of all {{youkai}} in Gensokyo. Her darkness only blinds anyone within her field - which includes herself - and she is known for crashing headlong into trees. It is fortunate she is so weak, since she is a man-eater. The ribbon in her hair is supposed to be an amulet keeping her powers in check, however, so WildMassGuessing holds that she would be the unstoppable "[[BonusBoss EX-Rumia]]" if that amulet was removed.
* Count Bleck in ''VideoGame/SuperPaperMario'', who has the Chaos Heart. Doubles as PowerOfTheVoid.
** Although it rarely comes up, [[SuperMarioBrothers Bowser]] can cast Shadow Magic - most notably, taking the form of a shadow and zipping/teleporting around the room.
** [[spoiler:The Shadow Queen]] in ''VideoGame/PaperMarioTheThousandYearDoor'', who has the ability to cast shadow lightning bolts, as well as a powerful wave of darkness.
* ''VideoGame/TreasureOfTheRudra''
* Shadow from ''VideoGame/TalesOfPhantasia'' and ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia''.
** A female example from ''Symphonia'' is Pronyma. And, predictably enough, she dresses like a demonic hooker.
** [[DarkIsNotEvil Emil]] and [[MeaningfulName Tenebrae]] in ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphoniaDawnOfTheNewWorld''.
** Also, [[BlackMagicianGirl Rita]] from ''VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia'' can use darkness spells such as Violent Pain, Negative Gate, and Spread Zero.
** Elise from ''VideoGame/TalesOfXillia'' is an odd case, as she's one of the game's two primary healers, yet all of her offensive magic is dark element, as opposed to light (Which practically all of the other healers in the series use).
* Two types in Franchise/{{Pokemon}} utilize this Trope, although the one you'd think that would utilize it is not among them:
** [[OurGhostsAreDifferent Ghost-type Pokemon]] follow the "Shadow Element" form and several Ghost-type attacks, such as Shadow Punch, utilize "Hard Dark".
** [[Videogame/PokemonColosseum Shadow Attacks]][[note]]"Dark" Attacks in Japan[[/note]] are Anti-Light versions of otherwise normal attacks. This is due to its nature as TheCorruption.
** Although some Dark-Type attacks, such as Dark Pulse and Night Daze, also utilize "Hard Dark", the type ''itself'' is more based in [[CombatPragmatist trickery]] than Anti-Light. On the other hand, {{Holy Hand Grenade}}s[[note]]Which prior to Gen VI were all Fighting Type[[/note]] are Super Effective against Dark types but are ineffective against Ghost Types and don't have a different impact on Corrupted Pokemon than other attacks do. The effectiveness is better expressed by the Japanese name for the Dark type: "[[DarkIsEvil Evil]]".
* The Shadow Element in ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger''.
** [[AntiHero Magus]]' exclusive spell line (starting with Shadow Bomb)
** While Robo can't use magic for the simple fact that [[CaptainObvious he's a robot]], his Beam Spin attack counts as Shadow-elemental.
** Combining any two elements (Light/Lightning, Fire and Water/Ice) also results in a Shadow-element attack. The most powerful magical triple techs, such as Delta Storm and Delta Force, fall under this as well.
* The Shaman/Druid and Dark Mage/Sorcerer classes in ''Franchise/FireEmblem'', whose arcane sorcery resemble shadows leaping from the ground or flames of dark energy.
** Despite the fact that it is usually used by villains, this series is especially big on DarkIsNotEvil, as [[VideoGame/FireEmblemElibe Canas]], the current trope image, seems to subvert the typical personality attributes by being a genuinely good person, who studies elder magic out of passion to the "dark" arts rather than wishing harm to others. Even though he is the villain, [[VideoGame/FireEmblemTheSacredStones Lyon and his royal mages, including Knoll]], practiced dark magic in order to help Grado citizens and show that the magic feared by many can have good uses. Finally, [[VideoGame/FireEmblemTellius Pelleas]] gained enhanced magical abilities by allowing his soul to be possessed by spirits, but only wants to be a good ruler worthy of his people. ''VideoGame/FireEmblemAwakening'' is a bit more black and white, at least on the surface, as not only is the BigBad a powerful Sorcerer, but of the two playable Dark Mages, one is a {{Yandere}} with a marked cruel streak and the other is a [[NightmareFetishist rather]] [[BloodKnight unhinged]] StepfordSmiler.
** The series as a whole associates dark magic as being extraordinarily powerful, which is what makes it so dangerous. Dark magic is depicted as being able to allow people to communicate with the dead, absorb life energy, negate attacks entirely, or just outright FantasticNuke people. Because it's so powerful, it seems that those with weak hearts become corrupted by it (something that's actually a major plot point in [[VideoGame/FireEmblemElibe the seventh game]]). The side-effects of failing to control the darkness range from becoming an EmptyShell to a full-on FaceHeelTurn. On the other hand, those with strong wills are capable of maintaining their sense of self - but it takes a great deal of self-control.
* Darkness and the powers derived from it are central to the universe of ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts''. The BigBad Xehanort and his various incarnations mostly utilize darkness as their magic of choice (except for [[PowerOfTheVoid Xemnas]]). TheHeartless are [[MadeOfEvil Made of Darkness]] and thus of course use it in many of their attacks. But though many villains utilize it, the heroes agree that [[DarkIsNotEvil Dark Is Not Always Evil]]; past [[TheLancer deuteragonist]] Terra and present deuteragonist Riku have the ability to use dark attacks like Dark Firaga, Dark Aura and Dark Volley, to name a few. Riku, in fact, is the only Keyblade wielder thus far who has managed to completely tame the darkness (since Xehanort is, after all, evil).
* [=ShadeMan=], [=DarkMan=], and [=KillerMan=] in ''VideoGame/MegaManBattleNetwork''.
* Dark Necrobat/Dark Dizzy from ''VideoGame/{{Mega Man X}}5'' and Dark Mantis from ''X8''. The former uses darkness to [[TimeStandsStill stop time]], the latter's a ninja who incorporates dark energy into his attacks. Naturally, both of them are weak to [[HolyHandGrenade light-elemental]] attacks.
* Ganondorf in ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda''.
** Midna, a DeadpanSnarker from ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess''.
* Darkness is an effect of some attacks in ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros''. They're mainly Ganondorf's speciality, but Mewtwo and Giga Bowser can use them as well. (And White {{Pikmin}}, though that's considered to be [[PoisonousPerson poison]].)
* Good ol' Dracula and Death in ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}''. Dracula uses #4, Death uses #1.
** Not to mention various other monsters in the series, who, between themselves, make liberal use of all four varieties.
* In ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'', Gravity-elemental spells usually manifest as spells of darkness, appearing as orbs and/or vortexes of shadowy energy. The Gravity summon Diabolos is also a BigRedDevil that is sometimes fought in a dark, shadowy alternate dimension. Otherwise the Dark-elemental abilities you're likely to see frequently are Shadow Flare and the Dark Knight's Dark Wave/Darkside attack. The Ivalice titles like ''FinalFantasyTactics'' and ''FinalFantasyTacticsAdvance'' work Dark into the standard ElementalRockPaperScissors set-up.
* The "Bane" element in ''VideoGame/OgreBattle''.
* In ''VideoGame/LegendOfDragoon'', Rose is the Dark-elemental dragoon [[spoiler:and the black monster.]]
* Tir and Ted, the known holders of the Soul Eater Rune in ''VideoGame/{{Suikoden}}'', as well as the people who possess its child runes, the aptly named Darkness Runes. While heroes, they tend to be broody types, since the Soul Eater is guaranteed to bring tragedy to one's life.
** As well as the "Rune of Punishment" in ''VideoGame/SuikodenIV'' and it's child rune, the "Condemnation Rune", in ''VideoGame/SuikodenV''.
* Marlowe in ''VideoGame/VisionsAndVoices'' specializes in Necrotic spells.
* Jackie Estacado from the video game adaptation of the aforementioned ''VideoGame/TheDarkness''. Despite being a nice guy (erm, [[AntiHero insofar as an enforcer for the Mafia can be considered "nice"]]; he's pretty cuddly compared to his boss), his powers include his ability to form a shield of darkness and somehow ''breathe in'' darkness to replenish his health, his ability to summon Darklings, his use of CombatTentacles of darkness, and even imploding a small piece of darkness to create a freaking ''black hole''! To top it off, light - ''any'' light - will weaken his powers, but a solar eclipse will supercharge them.
* Death/darkness spells from the ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' series, which are OneHitKill attacks.
* ''VideoGame/CityOfHeroes'' has 'Darkness' as a stock [[ElementalPowers elemental damage type]] and a very common powerset. Its flavour text mainly involves 'drawing power from the Netherworld' and draining souls and such, but [[DarkIsNotEvil it's equally available and used by heroes as well as villains]]. In game mechanics, Dark sets actually tend to be along the lines of ComboPlatterPowers, but are very powerful when used right.
* Dark Jak in ''VideoGame/JakIIRenegade'' is capable of funneling Dark Eco through his body as a result of two years worth of experiments that pumped it directly into him. The Dark Eco takes the form of lightning, and all of his powers are somewhat electricity based with a purple hue.
* The elemental affinity of the main protagonist of ''VideoGame/BlazBlue'', Ragna the Bloodedge, is darkness. This is also the case for Hazama, as most of his non-chain snake attacks seem to be surrounded with dark energy.
* In ''VideoGame/ArcanaHeart'', both [[ElegantGothicLolita Lieselotte]] [[EnfanteTerrible Achenbach's]] and [[CuteWitch Yoriko]] [[RobeAndWizardHat Yasuzumi's]] default arcana's, [[LivingShadow Gier]] and [[TheGrimReaper Dieu Mort,]] deal with Darkness element powers.
* Shade from ''VideoGame/SecretOfMana''.
* The "Sorcery" and "Necromancy" schools of magic in ''RomancingSaga'': ''Minstrel Song'' deal with spells of this nature and is mostly used by monsters and evil sorcerers who attack your party. However, it can be also be used by a character who [[GuestStarPartyMember temporarily joins your party,]] [[spoiler:though it turns out said [[TheMole character]] is a [[BadPowersBadPeople minion of the Big Bad.]]]]
* The god [[MeaningfulName Charnel]] in ''VideoGame/{{Sacrifice}}'' gives your wizard access to dark magic if you choose to follow him.
* ''VideoGame/MetroidPrime 2: Echoes'' has the Dark Beam, which is a shot of dark energy (which, when charged, [[FreezeRay freezes things]]).
** The Ing are a weird subversion. Aside from their attempted DemonicPossession attacks, their only energy-based attacks (or at least [[GameplayAndStorySegregation the only ones you have to deal with]]) are light beams.
* Some of ''VideoGame/ExitFate'''s dark-elemental characters play this trope straight, while others subvert it. They fit the character requirements, but [[DarkIsNotEvil only some of them are evil]]. The playable Dark-elemental characters include: among others, a {{Necromancer}}, a mercenary, a [[EmoTeen goth]], a [[DemBones ske]][[CameBackWrong le]][[InhumanHuman ton]], a MadScientist, reclusive or enigmatic mages, a vampire, a gangster, a [[InstantAwesomeJustAddNinja Ninja]], a KnightInSourArmor [[TheAtoner Atoner]], and a...[[EmptyShell so]][[TheSoulless me]][[EvilIsDeathlyCold thi]][[HumanoidAbomination ng]]. The dark status effects are poison and chaos.
* This is one of the first abilities learned by the Sage class in ''VideoGame/DragonQuestIX''. The other class of magic they learn is from the [[StuffBlowingUp Bang element.]].
* ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' has shadow priests, warlocks, and death knights (also AnIcePerson). However, DarkIsNotEvil. PayEvilUntoEvil is also very much in play for death knights and somewhat for warlocks.
* Arguably, Guy from ''Franchise/StreetFighter''. During his Bushin Musou Renge, a shroud of darkness blinds his foes while he pummels them into oblivion. Akuma's Shun Goku Satsu, on other hand, while visually similar, doesn't count as he is actually dragging his opponent into hell.
* Interestingly, the Death School in ''VideoGame/{{Wizard 101}}'', while summoning up the undead and draining life from foes, is actually fueled by the casters heroics and courage. In other words, in order to cast Death spells, you need to be willing to face great danger without fear. So basically, yeah, you beat your enemies down with the fact that you have the courage to stand up to them; a trait thought of as good and heroic is the basis for summoning the Grimm Reaper to rip out souls and feed them to you. This is situational irony, that is 'results or reality being quite different from expectations.'
* In ''VideoGame/TricksterOnline'', Dragons can either obtain the Dark or Light Pact, [[MutuallyExclusiveMagic but not both]], upon the [[ClassAndLevelSystem Job Change]] from Shaman to Magician. This can be further upgraded to Dark Lord for more Dark-based magic. Also, takes a dip into GravityMaster with the Gravity Crush spell, which causes massive damage to up to 6 targets around the caster, but [[AwesomeButImpractical takes 3 seconds to cast and guzzles a ton]] of {{M|ana}}P.
* ''VideoGame/FallFromHeaven'' has Shadow Magic, combining elements of 2 and 3.
* [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters Many characters]] in ''VideoGame/SengokuBasara'', including DemonKingNobunaga himself, his sister [[BrokenBird Oichi]], and his AxCrazy BloodKnight retainer [[WhiteHairBlackHeart Mitsuhide Akechi]]. Others include [[EvilGenius Hanbe Takenaka]], [[MisanthropeSupreme Yoshitsugu Otani]], [[BlackAndWhiteInsanity Mitsunari Ishida]]...and [[DarkIsNotEvil Sasuke Sarutobi]]. Gameplay-wise, it drains health from enemies, so most dark elementals tend towards GlassCannon territory.
* Noob Saibot from ''Franchise/MortalKombat'' can create a LivingShadow copy of himself.
* ''VideoGame/ShadowHearts'' has almost every character possessing an Element. [[AntiHero Yuri Hyuuga]] has the Dark Element in his [[{{Shapeshifter}} default form]]. While he's uncouth and rude, he means well.
* In ''[[VideoGame/StreetPassMiiPlaza Find Mii]]'', Miis or wandering heroes in black clothes can use their magic to darken rooms.
* In the RealTimeStrategy ''UniverseAtWar'', the [[AncientAstronauts Masari]] has the ability to [[YinYangBomb switch between Light and Dark at will]]. Dark is mainly focused on defensive capabilities, granting units weak but rapid firing weapons, faster movement speed and [[RegeneratingShieldStaticHealth Dark Matter armour]]. The [[WeaponOfMassDestruction Matter Controller]] also charges up and fires Matterstorm, a concentrated surge of Dark Matter that immobilizes enemies caught in the storm while [[StatusBuff buffing up your own units who are exposed to it (specifically increased firepower and rapid DMA regeneration)]]. Pursuing the Dark Matter branch further improves your army's defensive capabilities in Dark mode [[CripplingOverspecialization at the cost of losing considerable firepower]]. Dark seems to represent nobility and calmness, as evident by the Dark Matter branch heroine [[BigGood Queen Altea]], the benevolent leader of the remaining Masari on Atlantea who does not use violent means but instead uses her [[TheMedic healing powers]] and strong magical spells to guide and protect her troops in battle.
* [[TokenEvilTeammate Nix]] in ''VideoGame/InFAMOUS 2''.
* In ''DragonQuestVIII'', Angelo, despite being otherwise very much ThePaladin, can learn the Whack series of OneHitKill spells.
* Oswald from ''VideoGame/OdinSphere'' is able to harness the power of the [[EvilWeapon Belderiver]] he wields to transform into a vicious shadow creature with [[LightningBruiser greatly enhanced speed and power]], at the cost of having his POW meter rapidly eaten away at as long as he's in that form (and in story terms, being slowly weakened until his soul is destroyed and he's turned into a ghostly Revenant if he uses it too much.) He's also constantly stalked by [[GrimReaper Halja]] because of his power, who are always waiting for him to let his guard down so they can kill him and drag him off to the Netherworld.
* ''VideoGame/TheDenpaMen'' has Dark-type Denpa Men in the second game onwards. In keeping with the Denpa Men being ColorCodedForYourConvenience, they're purple (since black was already taken by the NonElemental Denpa Men). They're the rarest of the nine regular Denpa Man types. They have high resistance to both Dark- and Light-type attacks (where most Denpa Men are only resistant to their own type), but are slightly weak to all the other elements. Dark-type ''attacks'' aren't super effective against anything, but only Dark-type enemies have any resistance to them.
* ''VideoGame/{{Boktai}}'' has Hell-type magic to go along with Sol and Luna, and naturally it's aligned with The Immortals and their undead servants. The only subversions are Sabata who still uses it after his HeelFaceTurn, Django when he gains the ability to become a vampire, and Red Durathor who uses Sol-based attacks because she is a plant-type Immortal (and naturally, you have to face her as a vampire).
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* ''Webcomic/{{Project 0}}'': Ciro and Kareem can [[http://www.centralcitytower.com/2010/11/project-0-page-203.html turn themselves into shadows]] as a stealth mode.
* Shadowmancy in ''CatLegend'' seems to be a mixture of 2 and 3, with some additional, potentially creepy elements such as entering others' dreams. The most prominent user, Mercutious Nymndemise, is an unusual case, since, despite initially being set up as an antagonist, he's actually a pretty decent guy.
* Rose Lalonde of ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' may not be [[DarkIsNotEvil evil]], but she's definitely TheUnfettered and uses pretty damn powerful [[TheDarkArts dark magic]], as well as having a black outfit and a black ''BattleAura'' to boot.
* The main character in ''TheBurned'' can manipulate shadows, despite being a good guy. He primarily attacks with shadow needles, which are hard to detect when it's dark out.
* There's Shadow Dancer - as explained in the Dungeons and Dragons section above - in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick.'' The snag is that he's in a stick-figure comic where there are no shadows.
* Tsillah of ''WapsiSquare'' has some interesting shadow manipulation powers. While the full extent of her abilities is yet to be shown, she can [[http://wapsisquare.com/comic/2012-02029-your-clothes/ construct clothing out of shadows.]]
* In ''Webcomic/{{Roommates}}'' both the Erlkönig and Jareth were shown to have power over the shadows. They can summon [[LivingShadow shadow beasts]], catch things and people with [[HardLight tangible shadows]], make a cool entrance by invoking EmergingFromTheShadows etc.. Also while the Erlkönig does almost [[MasterOfOneMagic all his magic through this element]] (even the not directly darkness related things like teleporting), Jareth seems to avoid it when he can... except when his [[SuperpoweredEvilSide dark side]] takes over that is.
* Curio from [[{{Webcomic/Morphe}} morphE]] is a Moros mage who specializes in casting shadows. His first spell during the opening chapter was coating the room with wisps of darkness.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* There seem to be a number of these in the Literature/WhateleyUniverse right now. Nacht is a DeadpanSnarker with a {{Supervillain}} mother, but she seems (so far) to be neutral. Sabbath is definitely in it for the crime. Blacklight may be a villain in training. They don't all have the same weaknesses, and {{Canon}} has it that some of them got the powers from a magical source, so rules of physics need not apply.
* Several characters have these abilities in the ''GlobalGuardiansPBEMUniverse''. Nearly all of them fall under Category Two. Nocturne, Eclipse (who can also [[LightEmUp manipulate light]]), Shadowcloak, Night Vision, Raven, Tatterdemalion, Moonshadow (who, like Eclipse, can also [[LightEmUp control light]]), Zmierzch (Polish for "Twilight"), Bloody Mary, Muerte Oscura, Shadowspawn, and Obsidian.
* ''TheQuestportChronicles'': [[BigBad The Master of Darkness]], who is ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin.
* Blackfriars of the OmegaUniverse can teleport via a combination of angles and dark shadows.
* Grue from ''Literature/{{Worm}}'' generates and manipulates darkness that blocks hearing, touch, microwaves, radio frequencies and radiation in addition to dampening certain superpowers. After his second trigger event, it can even [[PowerCopying copy other people's powers]].
* The Dark, an old and powerful supervillain from Literature/{{Brennus}} can create solid {{Living Shadow}}s to serve him.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Shadow Khan from the ''WesternAnimation/DoubleDragon'' cartoon used the Black Flame. His attacks were a combination of #1 and #2 (darkness based attacks that are fueled by death, fear, hate, etc) and he could create/imbue minions which darkness as well.
* [[DarkMagicalGirl Raven]] of ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans''. Her powers take the form of darkness and her inherent demonic nature is ChaoticEvil, but she manages to be one of the good guys anyway through sheer HeroicWillpower (just don't [[SuperpoweredEvilSide make her angry...]]).
--> [[DarkMagicalGirl Raven:]] Remember ''me?''
--> [[ButtMonkey Dr. Light:]] ''(pales)'' I'd like to go to jail now, please.
* In his introductory episode, Ebon from ''WesternAnimation/StaticShock'' refers to himself as a "Master of Shadows and Darkness". Not to mention his [[LivingShadow general appearance...]]
** A minor character named Nightingale could create and control shadow, though the show insisted on calling it dark matter, for whatever reason.
* Makes an appearance in [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS3E1TheCrystalEmpirePart1 the third]] [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS3E2TheCrystalEmpirePart2 season premiere]] of ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'', where oddly enough it is [[spoiler: not only the episode's villain who is shown using it, but also Celestia and Twilight, made all the more conspicuous by the fact that [[TheSacredDarkness Luna]] does not partake]]. Despite being linked to fear and despair, there doesn't seem to be any moral problems with ''casting'' it, [[spoiler: at least at inanimate objects]].
* [[BigBad Pitch]] in ''WesternAnimation/RiseOfTheGuardians''. Notably, his powers are actually constructs of black [[DishingOutDirt sand]], so they're more physical than most examples here.
* In ''WesternAnimation/MuchaLucha'': The Return of El Malefico, El Malefico has a lot of Darkness based powers.
* In ''WesternAnimation/JackieChanAdventures'' there are the Shadowkhan, demonic ninjas that travel through shadows, but have no will of their own, only acting when summoned. In season 4, it is revealed that there are 9 tribes of these shadowy warriors, with vastly different forms, each deadly in their own way, and each serving a different Oni general, and when the masks the generals are sealed in are all brought together, the generals would be able to summon enough of the warriors to make the world dark forever, and destroy ALL good magic. Luckily, the Chans stop it.
[[/folder]]
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