->"''I'm not deficient. I'm SUPERIOR! Humans. Are. '''Superior.'''''"
-->-- '''John Crichton''', ''Series/{{Farscape}}'', [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdNk0OMJPCg#t=1m35s "Crackers Don't Matter"]]

Humanity, despite all our [[PunyEarthlings weaknesses]] in comparison to most of the other alien races, have managed to [[HumansAreTheRealMonsters carve out]] or create an [[TheEmpire interstellar empire]] usually with [[EarthIsTheCenterOfTheUniverse Earth as the capital]]. This can be in TheFuture or TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture, usually made possible by captured, recently discovered [[ImportedAlienPhlebotinum alien]] or Ancient [[AppliedPhlebotinum Phlebotinum]] and through [[HumansAreSpecial sheer willpower or just simply being Human]], enforced with an offscreen RedshirtArmy and {{Cool Ship}}s. If in the case of EvilIsCool, humankind is led by an EvilOverlord, or some form of OneWorldOrder with [[FantasticRacism extraterrestrial or mutant racism or hatred]], and the higher echelons of these governments are [[HeWhoMustNotBeSeen almost never seen]]. All aliens are portrayed by the government as AliensAndMonsters despite some of them having feelings too, or in the case of [[TheGovernment a nation]] or TheFederation, Humanity is [[DuringTheWar at war]].

Often the ''Homo sapiens'' race is [[SuperSoldier genetically, technologically]], and [[MightyWhitey racially]] [[BadAss enhanced]] or turned into a trained TykeBomb force in the attempt to ensure Humankind always comes out on top against the ScaryDogmaticAliens. This usually works, with the resultant super soldiers and the navy turning the tide of the wars in humankind's favor. Eventually after the war is finished the super soldiers end up as a sort of SpacePolice, and with the [[TheEvilArmy Imperial Forces]] in the case of an evil humanity. Sometimes the ruling agencies lead by a HiddenAgendaVillain has the intent of upgrading the human race genetically.

If EvilIsCool is noted, this can occur with Humanity's subjugation of alien races along the way as well as aiding them in their ultimate goal of having Humans on the top of the [[HumansAreTheRealMonsters food chain constantly]]. However, if there is a [[LaResistance resistance]] with alien sympathizers, usually this will take momentum and can lead to the Empire being overthrown to become TheFederation. If a bunch of aliens ally themselves together to defeat the Human BigBad (often with renegade humans [[MightyWhitey leading the revolution]]) then [[HumanityOnTrial humanity is put on trial]] or it subtly is either the [[KillAllHumans end of humankind]] or the beginning of [[TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt human subjugation]].

The prevalence of this trope in early science fiction in particular is partially attributable to ExecutiveMeddling on the part of JohnWCampbell, editor-in-chief of ''Astounding Science Fiction'' (the defining publication of the golden age of sci-fi) for over thirty years, who flatly refused, under any circumstances, to publish any stories in which aliens were shown as equal or superior to humans.

[[SarcasmMode It has nothing to do with]] [[MostWritersAreHuman the writers being humans themselves]].

SubTrope of HumansAreSpecial. Compare MirrorUniverse, HumansAreTheRealMonsters, HumansAreCthulhu, HumansAreWarriors. Contrast HumansAreMorons, HumansNeedAliens,SuperiorSpecies, for when it's a non-human species that is superior. Whether HumansAreMorons or HumanityIsSuperior is the dominant trope in science fiction at the moment is something of a CyclicalTrope. See HumanityIsAdvanced when humans are superior in technology as well.

----
!!Examples:
[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* Human(oids) are explicitly stated to be superior in ''TengenToppaGurrenLagann'' due to their ability to access Spiral Energy, because their physical shape is the most efficient form for using it.
** Even if a creature isn't humanoid, it if can evolve, [[EvolutionaryLevels its shape over time will tend towards humanoid.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comics]]
* {{Lampshaded}} in an early Magazine/{{MAD}} parody of ''ComicStrip/FlashGordon'' called "Flesh Garden", in which the evil alien emperor pits Flesh Garden against the great enemy of all - a man in boxing gloves.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* ''StarWars'': Not only are humans one of the most common races (everywhere from Tatooine to Coruscant), they're also the one with the most widely known descendants (Zabrak, Miraluka etc). One of the fundamental tenets of TheEmpire was that [[FantasticRacism Humans were best]] - everyone from Palpatine down was at least partially human unless they were a) extremely lucky or b) [[BunnyEarsLawyer really really good at their jobs]] (see also, Grand Admiral Thrawn).
** Whilst they aren't all force-sensitive like some species they do have a very high number of these compared to other species and have produced the strongest of force users the galaxy has ever witnessed.
*** May just be the law of averages at work, however, considering that the human population seems an order of magnitude higher than that of other races. More people -> more Force sensitives -> better chances of producing a Force prodigy.
** Inverted in the EU novel ''StarWars: TheOldRepublic: Revan'', where it's revealed that the old Sith Empire, while didn't discriminate against humans (those who weren't slaves), had the True Sith holdings all the power (the Emperor and several members of the Dark Council are shown to be True Sith). The humans are still the majority even in the Empire, though. In fact, the True Sith discriminate against other True Sith who aren't Force-sensitive.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* In Nick Pollotta and Phil Foglio's novel ''illegal aliens'', though initially technologically inferior to the alien races they encounter, Humans catch up very VERY quickly (albeit with the help of an alien technician) and surpass the weaponry, medical, and general technologial abilities of the aliens they got most of the technology from in the first place, by sheer inventiveness, for example, [[spoiler: they regenerate members of an extinct alien race, create a type of {{unobtanium}} ship armor an alien earlier on in the story was lying about to make them think alien ships were tougher than they really were, created ORIGINAL weapons based on an "atomic vortex" that started with a pistol that was ridiculously powerful and escalated to a cannon that could wipe out massive fleets of automated attack satelites, and generally overcame any and all opposition by races whose technology they hadn't even known about mere months before.]]
* In the novel ''Pandora's Planet'', Humans are, on average, smarter than the aliens who invade Earth, only being beaten because half the time the Humans were fighting each other.
* Humans in ''The Damned Trilogy'' by Creator/AlanDeanFoster are faster, stronger, tougher, and fiercer than every other sentient species, bar none. They're also the only species with the ability to resist the PsychicPowers of the Amplitur, who have brainwashed entire species into being happy slaves. So, the discovery of humanity by the Weave of free species at the beginning of the first book marks a critical turning point in their war to remain free. Unfortunately, humans are feared by the other sympathetic alien species precisely for those qualities and the uncomfortable question comes up that if they win the war, what will happen to human/alien relations then?
** Technically there are faster, stronger and tougher races than humans but Humans are a JackOfAllStats species, faster than the strongest species, stronger than the fastest but fiercer than all. Ironically all three books deal with Humans who try to be more than just warriors.
* [[TheEmpire The Empire of Humans]] in Yulia Latynina's "Inhuman" is very much evil, bloated and corrupt; at the time of its founding it was less corrupt and more evil, with constant executions, mind control and biological warfare. However, [[spoiler: almost all of that is revealed to have been NecessarilyEvil: TheEmpire's founder only came to power and introduced those measures ''after'' the democratic government, along with the Earth's entire ecosphere and 98% of the human population, was eaten by the Ttakas, a race of [[ExtremeOmnivore truly extreme omnivores who ate other species as an alternative to eating each other (though they did that too whenever possible)]] that also happened to breed ''very'' rapidly and be incredibly inventive. And those measures worked: humanity survived and built an empire, while the Ttakas were killed off by use of a very nasty, advanced human-engineered virus, along with other things whenever that proved impractical.]] Later wars and oppression really were mostly for the evil, though. Admittedly, it still is not so much a case of humans alone being bastards; more like almost all the sapient species encountered, in one way or another.
* In AnneMcCaffrey's ''Rowan'' series, Humans are the only ones with PsychicPowers, which not only give them CasualInterstellarTravel, they allow them to handily defeat the hostile [[BugWar insectile aliens swarms]]. The Mrdini, who have been restricted to slow GenerationShips and which have to kill off (and it's implied, ''eat'') excess population to finish the trip, and use [[HeroicSacrifice mass kamikaze tactics]] to fight the Hivers, are both grateful and pissed when they meet this MarySue species.
* Creator/JohnRingo's ''Literature/LegacyOfTheAldenata'' series has humans as one of only two (out of six) races physiologically capable of killing. Naturally, we're better at it than the other one.
* In Creator/FredSaberhagen's ''Literature/{{Berserker}}'' novels, the [[TechnicalPacifist technically pacifistic]] Carmpan race (they are literally pained by even indirect performance of a violent act against any species, but have no trouble giving humans militarily useful intel) found in humanity the potential "{{badass}}ness" to be effective Berserker-killers, and so trained and equipped us to be just that.
** They were certainly deeply indebted to humanity for suffering the scourge of war through its history until the point where nothing less would serve. But where did the Carmpans train and equip Humanity? What follows suggests that the humans had all the goods:
---> When they came, you were dug in and ready on a hundred worlds. Because you were, some of you and some of us are now alive.
* The Colonial Union in JohnScalzi's ''OldMansWar'' and sequels is very much like this.
** At least until you start to get a wider view of the 'verse in ''The Last Colony.'' Turns out that, despite humanity's quick expansion immediately after venturing out into the universe, in the last century or two humans have settled into the same StatusQuoIsGod back-and-forth as the rest of the local races. The [[PlotArmor necessity]] of allowing the viewpoint characters to survive gives a very distorted view, one [[OrwellianEditor encouraged]] by the government.
* Creator/StrugatskyBrothers' NoonUniverse series depict the humanity as THE superior power in the galaxy, with only a few of other races capable of spaceflight. The humans are so advanced that they are helping other civilizations into space age using covert agents known as Progressors.
** Subverted in that many alien species are [[HumanAliens humans in anything but name]], and are only written as aliens as an excuse to write dystopian settings (dystopian Earth humans would not be accepted by Soviet censorship).
* Turtledove's ''{{Worldwar}}'' and ''Colonisation'' series both play this straight and divert it. When the aliens come they overrun most of the world using superior (presumed modern) technology, but are unable to full conquer Europe, America and some of Asia due to a combination of lack of numbers and human tenacity, and the fact that the aliens were expecting Crusades level technology. Humanity is also far more variable than the aliens (their homeworld has been civilised for ~50,000 years), and so manage to make up most of the difference in about 50-60 years, and by 100 years after the initial invasion are way ahead, including some sort of faster-than-light drive (as seen in ''Homeward Bound'').
** It's not just the Race either. Apparently, the Race has already conquered two other races, who were exactly like them (LizardFolk with a set mating season and a slow, measurable approach to innovation).
* Another one by Turtledove, short story "The road not taken". Due to some weird twists of fate, humanity suddenly finds out the universe is full of spacefaring alien races. It also finds out everyone else has a technological level several hundred years behind its own, with very rudimentary knowledge of space travel and warfare. The result is a (implied) [[CurbStompBattle curb-stomping]] of intergalactic proportions.
** The sequel inverts this. After humanity starts conquering the galaxy, its own progress pretty much stops. Then they encounter a race who also doesn't have the FTL technology but are way more advanced than humans in other areas. Guess what's implied here.
* ''Birthright: The Book of Man'' by Creator/MikeResnick
* Name-dropped briefly in Creator/JackVance's ''Literature/PlanetOfAdventure.'' A HumanityOnTrial (by combat) ends with a very angry Reith repeatedly smashing the alien's head against a sidewalk.
--> '''Dirdir Elite''': "Sub-men are not subject to arbitration."
--> '''Adam Reith''':""I am no sub-man. I am a man and quarry to no one. If a wild beast attacks me I will kill it."
* Eric Flint's novel ''MotherOfDemons'' both plays this trope straight and subverts it, at the same time. On the planet Ishtar, humans encounter a species of mollusk-like sophonts called gukuy. Humans are far speedier than gukuy (in fact, the gukuy are not even able to properly see the running motion of humans until they become used to it because it's so much different than they expect), and are capable of using spears, which gukuy cannot use and which can exploit a weak point on the gukuy (namely, it can hit an area unprotected by the hard mantle which results in impaling a gukuy's brain). In fact, gukuy widely consider humans to be demons because of those two factors. Yet, gukuy bodily fluids are so poisonous to humans that they will die within minutes from a ''bite wound'', and humans are only capable of digesting regurgitated "childfood" (partially digested vegetation) produced by the maia (a larger, less-evolved sophont than the gukuy).
* In ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'', while [[TheFairFolk the Elves]] are prettier, more graceful, and have stronger magic than humans, they lack wisdom, intuition, and the ability to create new things-- areas in which humans will always be superior, giving them the upper hand over Elves every time.
** Properly speaking, Elves ''aren't'' prettier and more graceful than humans, they just ''make you think they are'' using their stronger magic. When Magrat Garlick got literally right in the face of the Queen she may have momentarily seen her true face due to iron-induced GlamorFailure, which matches the description of TheGreys.
* This is the belief of the Steel Angels, also known as the Children of Bakkalon, a [[ChurchMilitant militant religious sect]] that appears in GeorgeRRMartin's "Thousand Worlds" ScienceFiction setting. They are most prominent in the short story "And Seven Times Never Kill Man", in which a human trader attempts to [[TrainingThePeacefulVillagers arm the nonhuman inhabitants]] of a planet the Children have colonized in order to prevent their race from being wiped out.
* This was an EnforcedTrope at ''AstoundingScienceFiction'' when Creator/JohnWCampbell was in charge. He required that any story involving aliens must show them to be inferior to humans to reflect his personal belief that white men were superior to other races.
* Pretty much anything written by Creator/GordonRDickson, if it has humans against aliens. Humans may be technologically inferior or physically weaker, but they always win, [[{{Determinator}} one way]] [[HumansAreDiplomats or another]]. Or just by being [[InformedAbility waaay too awesome]] to handle.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In ''Series/BabylonFive'', the human power [[TheFederation (Earth Alliance)]] likes to give off the ''impression'' of punching well above the weight of such a young power with their militaristic bluster and gigantic ships), but considering their humiliatingly poor performance against the Minbari, Babylon 5 being taking nearly as much damage from a Centauri cruiser's ''warning shots'' in "Acts of Sacrifice" as it took from a massive Earthforce assault in "Severed Dreams", Sheridan describing Centauri fighters and pilots as decisively superior to Earthforce's own in the same episode, and the BadFuture in ''[[Recap/BabylonFiveTheLostTales01 The Lost Tales]]'' where Galen shows Sheridan a possible timeline where the Centauri easily stomp the Earth Alliance and bomb Earth's cities to dust, they're nowhere near the top of the Younger Races, let alone the Middle Children such as the Minbari and Streib or the First Ones. Creator/JMichaelStraczynski himself describes the Earth Alliance as being in the "lower third" of the ''Babylon 5'' food chain, and they helped win the Dilgar War by tipping the balance in an alliance with several other races, not because they were as powerful as the Dilgar. Also note that the Narns are near or at parity with the EA despite being around a century newer to the galactic scene. The Earth Alliance is a subversion--a race that on first impression seems exceptionally powerful, but is militarily a paper tiger that uses bold impressions, clever diplomacy, and extensive trade networks to build clout rather than force of arms.
** LetMeGetThisStraight: Humanity is a lower tier power that regularly has a seat at the table with the most powerful races in known space. In fact, they usually provide the table, too. While the Earth Alliance may not be superior in a strictly military sense, it's a little harder to make the broader point about humanity.
*** Delenn pretty much says that providing the table is humanity's hat. As a result, they tend to have friends, which can be very helpful as long as you don't do something truly stupid (like, say, starting a war with the second most powerful civilization in the known universe).
*** France provided the table for the Paris Peace Treaties despite having just gotten stomped all over by Nazis. Switzerland has a long history of diplomacy despite never being considered a world-class superpower.
** Despite this, by ''Series/{{Crusade}}'', humans have warships that can match Minbari ''Sharlin''-class war cruisers one-on-one. However, it's mentioned they only have about 50 of those (''Warlock''-class destroyers), while Minbari probably have hundreds, if not thousands. So, technologically, they can probably match the other powers, but they don't have enough to fully protect themselves.
*** The ''Excalibur'' has the same amount of firepower as a Vorlon Heavy Cruiser but has to wait for a minute before firing again. Humans might not yet be able to protect themselves from the Minbari but the Minbari have zero interest in fighting humans again. The ''Excalibur'' was a human-Minbari collaberation.
* ''Series/BlakesSeven'' has [[TheFederation the Terran Federation]] survive an alien attack in the home galaxy with warning from the Liberator.
** The [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intergalactic_War_(Blake%27s_7) Intergalactic War]] cost the Federation [[http://www.hermit.org/Blakes7/SevenCyc/I.html 80%]] of the navy. In "Aftermath" two officers state the the Federation's 'historic' victory was bought at a terrible price. Later in the series, the Federation suffers [[http://www.hermit.org/Blakes7/Essays/ServFed.html multiple revolts]] and is forced to use a mind control drug since they lack military power.
* ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' has the Sebacean Peacekeepers as a ruthless space 'human' [[TheEmpire empire]] with [[TykeBomb hardcore soldiers]]. But the quote is from John Crichton, the only true human in this part of the universe. The instance quoted though was a subversion - the alien was attacking them through their eyes, and Crichton was the only one with [[DisabilitySuperpower dull enough eyesight to fight it]].
** Sebaceans are eventually revealed to be an engineered offshoot of early humanity (with generally enhanced lifespans, physiology, and healing) that were used as a peace-keeping force in an ancient interstellar U.N.. The do have one major flaw; they don't sweat efficiently and at high temperatures they shut down. Essentially anything near body heat temperatures causes them to fall into a coma- giving Crichton a serious advantage when Moya is invaded by a team of Peacekeeper commandos.
** In the [[http://farscape.wikia.com/wiki/Category:Wars,_Battles_%26_Skirmishes Scarran-Peacekeeper War]] the Peacekeepers suffered many defeats.
*** Which just goes to show that there's AlwaysABiggerFish, but then keep in mind that aforesaid Bigger Fish also has problems of their own. While Scarrans are biologically hardy by nature, all of their cunning and ingenuity is largely due to a plant that they must regularly consume in order to keep up their intelligence. Said plant dictates how they expand, since they cannot go too far away from planets that can grow the stuff.
**** And then Crichton inadvertently reveals ''Earth'' has a similar flower in abundance (not realizing the significance of the plant to Scarran expansion),[[NiceJobBreakingItHero putting his home-planet on their priority target list]].
* ''Series/StargateSG1'' and ''Series/StargateAtlantis'' has Humanity surviving against near-impossible odds against the ScaryDogmaticAliens who've annihilated many other species who attempted resistance. This is mostly limited to humans from Earth since the Goa'uld has enslaved humans and the Wraith cull entire civilizations. Even with humans from Earth this is occasionally subverted with an AlternateUniverse where [[TheBadGuyWins the good guys lose]].
** Let's review: [[Film/{{Stargate}} in 1996 the Tau'ri used the stargate to go to Abydos]]; on this trip, they confronted the Supreme System Lord Ra and killed him. Three years later Apophis paid a visit to us using the Stargate and pissed off a few people. We just declared war to an interstellar empire while only having limited resources due to keeping the Stargate a secret. Twelve years later the Goa'uld are gone, the Ori are gone, the replicators are gone, the Wraith are in the middle of a civil war and the Tau'ri are a major intergalactic superpower while no one on Earth has any clue about what's going on out there. In a span of ten years, we progressed from petty civil wars on our planet to bearing the legacy of two of the greatest races which have ever lived with ourselves becoming the Fifth Race(actually, the sixth if we count the Ori). All in secrecy and with limited resources. If we would have the whole planet's support, we could crush the Wraith and thus surpass the Ancients themselves.
*** Of course, considering that all of the [[AlternateUniverse alternate universes]] seen in the show are in some degree worse off than the main universe, it is implied that we're seeing the best possible outcome, where everything goes right for Earth.
** You know, all of this could be due to Tau'ri being far more careful using the Stargates and using them effectively. Other races just use them for travelling and the best they care do to at guarding them is just to place a few guards around them or leaving them without any attention at all. Tau'ri put their Stargates deep inside military bases, guarding it with enough firepower to annihiliate a small army and in addition installing a some sort of shield to the gate that can be closed to prevent any kind of enemy forces coming through. And unlike most other races of galaxy, they also use scientists to study gates, aliens and alien technology in an attempt to reverse engineer something new out of them.
*** Careful barely covers it, nobody else seems to bat an eyelid at using the gates that will kill you instantly if there is anything wrong at the other end, which you have no idea of knowing until you get there. Although no one comments on it, this aspect of the gate design is a pretty major flaw in Atlantis, where half the gates seem to be in space. The humans are the only ones who seem to check if a gate is actually viable before going through it. Also, the humans almost immediately have the idea to build a barrier that allows the connection, but instantly vaporises anything that doesn't send a valid code, which is a little harsh, but saved them constantly. Even after seeing how effective it is, the Gould don't copy the idea. Although one does put something similar in place that just redirects you to another gate, rather than kill you.
*** The reverse engineering of alien technology is a little strange, given that they couldn't reverse engineer technology designed by ''humans'' from another world. The Tollan have a few hundred years on humans due to not having the equivalent of the Dark Ages (which really wasn't as bad as people think it was) to slow down scientific progress and being generally peaceful in nature. It's mentioned that their technology doesn't have any moving parts, circuits, or wires, which makes reverge engineering nearly impossible. Then they turn around and start reverse engineering Goa'uld, Asgard, and Ancient technology, which is mostly crystal-based (i.e. no moving parts, circuits, or wires). Hmm. Granted, the Tollan had some neat toys none of the other races appear to possess (only one Ancient managed to come up with a wall-phasing device and didn't tell anyone about it). Granted, they've had help with some of it, like the naquadah reactor, but not the rest.
*** "Reverse-engineering" might actually be a misnomer in this case, as we repeatedly see that in the engine core of Earth starships are crystals and in battle it's often mentioned that they are "switching" to another set of weapons. This implies that Earth ships are really made from a mash-up of technology from various races, with certain systems remaining unchanged from their baseline models and the SGC simply rigged up some kind of universal interface to link them together.
* [[TheEmpire The Terran Empire]] in the ''Franchise/StarTrek'' MirrorUniverse used captured Vulcan technology to carve their own empire, which ended with them being subjugated.
** Of course, this only happened because they started being nice.
*** After having pissed off a large number of races inclined to hold a grudge. The sudden total transformation of the [[TheEmpire Terran Empire]] is something that no-one in their right mind would have trusted in - not after a couple of centuries of utter brutality.
** The "In the Mirror, Darkly" episode of ''StarTrekEnterprise'' shows that the Empire was almost lost when several subjugated races rebelled if not for Mirror!Archer obtaining the Prime!''Defiant'' and using its advanced tech to kick their collective asses.
* TheUprightCitizensBrigade eloquently stated, "Humans RULE, dolphins can SUCK IT!"
** "No way dolphins! You'll never get our jeans!
* In the ''Series/DoctorWho'' episode "Utopia", it's revealed that baseline humanity (as in, non-{{Transhuman}}, look-in-the-mirror humans) is one of four species that makes it through to the dying days of the Universe, ''100 trillion years'' into the future (well, the Doctor actually explains they went transhuman and back a few dozen times, including periods as pure data, but they always eventually revert to the default "hairless monkey" model). Let that sink in for a while, and also consider that of the other three species, [[WordOfGod one is the]] [[PlanetLooters Sycorax]].
** Not only that, but humanity is also a ''very'' successful species throughout its history, building at least four "Great And Bountiful Human Empires" (the third of which spanned ''three galaxies''). Even in the 21st century, UNIT forces take it to the Tenth [[ProudWarriorRaceGuy Sontaran]] Battle Fleet, cleaning their clocks in ground warfare, and by the 41st century they are going toe-to-toe with the resurrected ''[[SufficientlyAdvancedAlien Dalek Empire]]''.
** And wiping the floor with the Cybermen in the Cyberwars.
** The Dalek Cult of Skaros went so far as to attempt to create Dalek-Human hybrids, believing this would give them whatever traits made humans such great survivors. [[spoiler:Instead it led to their downfall since their hybridized leader became too human in the eye-stalks of the others. Humanity itself defeated them.]]
** However they do have a lot of help from the Doctor.
* In the backstory of ''Series/{{Lexx}}'', humans led by the Brunnen-G destroyed the Insect Civilization. The Insects were mighty planet-sized monster with greater resources, but their human opponents had greater resourcefulness. [[spoiler:The last surviving Insect possessed a human and created the Divine Order because it (rightly) believed it would be more successful using humans to defeat themselves.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Generally, humans are the dominant race in ''DungeonsAndDragons''. Guess that bonus feat really does help.
** It's NOT as prevalent as it was in 1st Edition though. Races like dwarves and elves were flat out barred from all but a handful of classes, and even then could never level up as high as humans. Most humanoids(orcs, goblins, ogres, etc.) in the Monster Manual got it even worse, being little more than [[AlwaysChaoticEvil savage brutes that deserved to be exterminated to the last man]] whose only spellcasters were "shamans" and "witch doctors". Gary Gygax flat out stated that the game was meant to favor Human Player Characters in the DMG.
** Bonus feat, bonus skill point per level, no attribute penalty (often more problematic than the bonus), no permanent crippling of level competence and spellcasting ability (in a game where spellcasting progression is [[LinearWarriorsQuadraticWizards essentially quadratic to a nonspellcaster's linear progression]])... ''DungeonsAndDragons'' has been designed to exemplify this trope, barring system breaking exploits. Even in 4th Edition, they retain large advantages in anything they want to follow, and are the baseline no other race shall surpass.
*** They still CantArgueWithElves though.
**** Tell that to a human with a high enough Charisma + Intelligence! (Or a big enough Fighter.)
***** While the fluff treats elves as awesome, mechanically they are a horrible race for any kind of optimizing.
****** 4th edition improved elves a great deal, but at the same time half-elves were RescuedFromTheScrappyHeap and are now better than elves in many respects. We're just ''that'' good. (Oh, and humans are still better.)
* In the ''FadingSuns'' RPG setting, humans have been expanding onto other planets and [[HumansAreTheRealMonsters conquering alien races]] for thousands of years with little trouble- until they meet [[ScaryDogmaticAliens the Vau]]. Not so much expanding now: the Vau aren't as expansive or aggressive as the humans, but they could be called ultra-defensive.
* ''[[TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}} Warhammer 40K]]'' brings us the Imperium of Man, a massive galactic [[TheEmpire empire]] whose domain encompasses millions of worlds and countless citizens. Its armies number in the trillions, with thousands upon thousands of war machines at their disposal (including HumongousMecha the size of ''mountains'') and include many of the deadliest warriors in the galaxy. While human technology is not the most advanced of the setting, the Imperium is nevertheless capable of achievements that often match (and in some cases exceed) those of other races. Given the [[EvilVersusEvil grim morality]] of the setting, it's no surprise that the position of humanity as the dominant galactic power is reflected in their [[KillEmAll attitude towards alien civilizations]].
--> ''"It is our destiny to rule the universe, just as it is the destiny of the Xeno to pave our way."''
** In spite of its clearly dominant position, the Imperium of Man is dying. For the past ten thousand years or so, it has experienced virtually no social or technological progress and has been in a perpetual state of conflict with ''everyone'', including itself. To make matters worse, there are indications that the GodEmperor of Mankind is dying as well; his death would result in the collapse of the Imperium's faster-than-light navigation network and could potentially cause a NegativeSpaceWedgie that would consume the entire galaxy. Be that as it may, humanity is certainly [[TheDeterminator not going to give up without a fight]].
** Historic fluff indicates that while humanity did not occupy as much of galaxy, the species was technologically more powerful during the ''Dark Age of Technology''. Much of the Imperium's military might is built upon the forgotten legacies and reverse engineered accomplishments of that bygone era. Lost records and misinformation propaganda makes it impossible to exactly gauge the might of pre-Imperium mankind, but what little is revealed paints them as a vastly powerful interstellar civilization that other galactic powers acknowledged as formidable.
* ''Web and Starship'' is a 2–3 player board game where the players compete to form the largest empire. One species travels faster than light by using the Web, which allows near instantaneous travel between planets that are part of the Web, but to get to a new planet takes years. The second uses Starships, which get to new planets much quicker, but results in slower internal communication. In a three player game, the third species is humanity, who starts off with no means of traveling faster than light. But each of the first two races will be negotiating with the humans to get an advantage over the other race, and humans are capable of developing both Web ''and'' Starship, which makes it pretty easy for the humans to win if they do.
* Humans are the biggest and the baddest in the {{Traveller}} universe.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* It's shown in ''Franchise/{{Halo}}'''s fluff that the Covenant tend not to be very inventive or innovative when it comes to their own superior technology, as the vast majority of it had been scavenged from the remains of the Forerunner civilization. Humans, on the other hand, had to pretty much build everything on their own; indeed, after the war ends, ''VideoGame/{{Halo 4}}''-era media shows that humanity has been able to somewhat surpass the technological barrier, though most of what they have is still closer to pre-war tech levels.
** The Covenant never improved on their technology because it was scavenged from Forerunner ruins. To improve upon it, or even suggest the idea is heresy. And the UNSC was already ahead in AI and computer technology, again because of the Covenant religion. In ''VideoGame/HaloReach'' it's revealed that [[spoiler:the human [=AIs=] have actually been secretly guiding humanity for centuries, making sure they develop in the right way. None of this is malevolent; they see it as necessary, both to their survival and as service to their "Creators".]]
** Lampshaded in the Halo Graphic Novel, which had two Elites talking about the humans. One talks about how brave and persistent the humans are (wondering why they hadn't asked the Humans to join the Covenant yet) while the other just claims they're puny (and that the "Demon" is really just a bunch of people made to look like only one).
** This trope as a whole is slightly subverted in that humanity would have lost the war had the Covenant not splintered in two, with the Separatists deciding to ally with the humans; in fact, the Flood might have taken all of Earth had the Separatist fleet not sterilized a good chunk of Africa. Additionally, the Elites and Prophets had already reached roughly the same technological level as 26th century humanity ''before'' they began messing around with Forerunner technology (which happened well before the Roman Empire ''even existed''). [[spoiler:[[DoubleSubversion And then we find out that in the distant past, humanity had already established an interstellar empire capable of defeating the Flood and putting up a good fight against the Forerunners, before the latter basically nuked them back to the Stone Age]]]].
*** [[spoiler:[[ZigZaggingTrope However, the Prophet allies of these ancient humans also managed to independently develop an advanced interstellar civilization, not to mention the fact that both species had to research Forerunner technology themselves in order to hold out as long as they did during their war against the Forerunners]]]].
* Played with in ''Franchise/MassEffect'': humanity's sudden rise to power has been unprecedented, as they're new to the galactic stage (having only discovered the technology everyone uses 30 years ago) yet have become more powerful economically, militarily, and population-wise than several pre-established powers like the batarians and hanar. They've also introduced several technological advances of their own to the galactic community, like space aircraft carriers and medigel. However, humanity is still MUCH weaker than the most powerful races in the galaxy: the turians, asari, and salarians.
** There are also a number of human organizations who use this as their core belief. Of note are Terra Firma, a political organization that constantly lobbies the Systems Alliance government, and Cerberus, a secret black ops group with many government connections and wealthy financial backers whose goal is to ensure human superiority in the galaxy. These two are closely linked, with Terra Firma serving as Cerberus' political mouthpiece.
* The Black Lance organization, in ''VideoGame/WingCommander IV'', was part of a far-ranging plot to upgrade the human race after the war with the Terran Confederation's war with the Kilrathi out of the belief by [[spoiler:Tolwyn]] that humanity ''wasn't'' superior without genetic modification of humans and their society.
* ''VideoGame/PokemonRedAndBlue'': Alakazam has an IQ in the thousands. Macargo is hotter than the surface of the sun. Ponyta's hooves are harder than diamond. There are several more Pokémon with similar godlike abilities (or who are simply ''gods''), yet humans are the ones in charge.
** Humans invented pokeballs, giving them a bit of an advantage. On the other hand, however, as anyone who's played the games can tell you, those things only work two, maybe four times out of ten once you get to that level of play.
--> Game: [insert Pokémon name here] was only pretending to be caught!
--> Player: FUUUUUCK!
* ''{{Runescape}}'': Theoretically, humans are the weakest race of all, except maybe goblins. All of the major countries, however, are human dominated, except for Morytania (vampyre) and the Elven forest which is in the middle of a civil war. This vast human power is attributed to runestone magic: thanks to rune stones produced via the recently discovered Runecrafting skill, any Muggle can become a mage with the proper training.
** Nex, a terrifying creature feared by the gods, and a dreaded servant of the ambiguously dark god Zaros, prefers humans in her army instead of the undead or demons. Despite her terrifying appearance, Nex is apparently a GoodBoss. Torva, Pernix, and Virtus, her three best human soldiers in history, were noted to have died as mortals of old age, not in battle, and Nex honored their memory.
* ''{{X-COM}}'':
** In the titular series of games, the organization goes from a clandestine U.N.-backed organization (''UFO Defense'') to a self-sufficient paramilitary entity dedicated to preserving Earth's interests in space (''Interceptor'' and ''Apocalypse'') thanks to a tenacious penchant for reverse-engineering alien technology. Organizations outside X-COM, however, exhibit some HumansAreTheRealMonsters with their wanton discrimination against androids and [[HalfHumanHybrid alien-human hybrids]].
** [[VideoGame/XCOMEnemyUnknown The Firaxis remake]] reveals that [[spoiler:the Ethereals want to turn humans into SuperSoldiers to face an even greater enemy. All the enemies you fight are their previous, failed, attempts at marrying physical strength, cybernetics, intelligence, and [[PsychicPowers the Gift]]. Unfortunately for them, their plan [[GoneHorriblyRight works too well]], provided you complete the game and destroy TheMothership]].
* ''XCOM'''s SpiritualSuccessor series ''UFOAfterBlank'' has humanity recovering from being almost completely wiped out to successfully scaring the beejesus out of a superior alien species (in the first game), successfully destroying not one, but ''two'' alien invasion forces (in the second game), and successfully {{terraform}}ing Mars, despite the attempted intervention of ''four'' separate alien species (in the third game). HumanityIsSuperior almost taken to the extreme, if you exclude the fact that more of the principal characters are driven by desperation rather than heroics.
* The extremely racist Lord Garithos of ''VideoGame/WarcraftIII: The Frozen Throne'' holds this belief. He's a JerkAss toward his dwarven and elven allies, and is pretty much the reason that the Blood Elves break away from the Alliance. The rest of the universe definitely disagrees with him since the humans needed their alliance with the high elves and dwarves to beat back the Horde. It's very clear that currently, no singular race would ever be able to rule over the rest of Azeroth.
* [[spoiler: The Fal'Cie]] in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII'' believe that HumansAreTheRealMonsters ''and'' that HumanityIsSuperior. Their entire scheme revolves around taking advantage of both of these traits to manipulate humans into [[spoiler: destroying Cocoon (which would doom the Cocoon Fal'Cie and the human populace) in order to bring back The Maker]].
* ''VideoGame/GalacticCivilizations'': for thousands of years, interstellar travel relied upon slowly moving jump-gates into position at subluminal speeds; humanity, meanwhile, slaps together a hyperdrive in about half an hour and sends it to everyone, even minor players, before becoming a significant galactic power. Of course, whether or not humanity actually wins over everyone else is mostly down to you, except in the campaign for ''2'', [[spoiler:where humanity ultimately gets seven shades kicked out of it by the Dread Lords, leaving the Drengin to rise to dominance in ''Dark Avatar'']].
** Hilariously, there is a Minor Race in the game that is noted to have been mere ''months'' away from perfecting hyperdrive themselves, and are rather disgruntled that humanity stole their thunder.
* Humanity in ''Videogame/DarkSouls'' and [[Videogame/DarkSoulsII its sequel]] [[spoiler:or rather, the Dark Soul that makes humans "human"]] empowers the setting's greatest champions (in the form of the protagonists) and its greatest horrors [[spoiler:the Abyss and its progenitor Manus]].
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[[folder:Web Comics]]
* King David from Webcomic/DominicDeegan takes this view, almost never corrupting humans in his plans, but freely affecting other species. He also serves as a deconstruction of this trope, showing just how far someone with this mindset would be willing to go and what they would do in order to achieve and maintain this.
* [[DeconstructedTrope Deconstructed]] and then [[ReconstructedTrope reconstructed]] in Webcomic/{{Freefall}}. Sam Starfall, the only alien seen so far, is a member of a sapient octopus race that evolved on a planet that managed to avoid mass extinction events and thus has less advanced cell chemistry. Despite apparently looking like some EldritchAbomination outside his suit and being able to [[ExtremeOmnivore eat things that would kill a cockroach]], he's more-or-less physically inferior to most of what has evolved in Earth's biosphere. To put it in perspective, he once got beat up by a child back when he tried [[ItMakesSenseInContext mugging humans for a living]].
** Even the robots in the comic are generally inferior to humans. Economics has made it so most[[note]]aside from the ones built as heavy machinery[[/note]] are built from relatively flimsy materials, making them physically inferior to humans, and their neural nets are only rated for up to 80 years, while humans at the time are expected to live at least 160 years.
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[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''TheSalvationWar'': [[http://bbs.stardestroyer.net/viewtopic.php?t=118771 Armageddon]]: in response to {{Satan}} declaring dominion over humanity and "{{God}}" (or rather, Yahweh) closing the pearly gates... humanity fights back, and eventually, the U.S. military [[spoiler:''kills {{Satan}} with a pair of anti-ship missiles'']]. As a defecting general turned newly-installed-by-the-U.S.-government ruler of Hell puts it:
-->"[[spoiler:{{Satan}}]] is dead. Humans killed him with their weapons. With their weapons, not with magic, for magic and superstition is powerless in the face of human science. We are powerless in the face of human engineering. They have won this war and nothing we say or do can change that. Hell is changed forever and nothing we can do will change that either. The humans have told me they wish me to be the new leader in Hell, answerable only to them. I have agreed. If you do not like the idea of me as your leader, don't tell me." [[spoiler: Abigor]] gestured at the Marines and their vehicles. "TELL THEM!"
* The story of [[http://www.orionsarm.com/xcms.php?r=oaeg-view-article&egart_uid=483ae5827604f Glarion: The Glorious Conquerer]] from ''OrionsArm'' is a deliberate contrast to the rest of the setting where humanity is anything but superior. Terragen civilization on a whole ''is'' superior in many ways to all xenosophonts it has contacted though, but there have been still more advanced civilizations discovered elsewhere - just not contacted yet because of the distance.
* Explored in [[http://imgur.com/gallery/4HIGm The Kevin Jenkins Experience]], where humans' evolving on what is by galactic standards a horrific death world has resulted in their being far, far superior to other species in ''every'' regard.
* Witness the [[http://www.reddit.com/r/hfy Humanity, Fuck Yeah!]] subreddit, which exists solely for this trope to blossom (with a nice helping of HumansAreWarriors and occasionally HumanityIsInsane and/or HumansAreCthulhu).
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