The traditional example.
Masters of offensive magic, these mages are all about attacking with spells and doing lots of damage with them. Typically these mages will be users of most if not all types of Elemental Powers
(one element is not unheard of though), with Fire, Ice, Lightning
being particularly common, and may fall under Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards
. They do not heal (or only have minor healing spells) and typically pack Area of Effect
spells in their arsenal.
Very frequently Dark Is Not Evil
Black Magician Girl
and Lady of Black Magic
are subtropes and are often paired up with The Medic
, White Mage
, or White Magician Girl
as a Foil
. Specifically paired with a White Mage
it's Black and White Magic
Often overlaps with Squishy Wizard
and Glass Cannon
. Contrast The Medic
and White Mage
Not to be confused with Black Magic
(which is outright evil rather than merely destructive) or the character Black Mage Evilwizardington
(though he is an example of both tropes).
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Anime and Manga
- Mahou Sensei Negima!: there are two classes of normal mages. A "Wizard" focuses on attack magic while others protect, whereas a "Magic Knight" fights up front and uses spells. Negi chose the latter, but Yue has chosen the "Wizard" style complete with the Final Fantasy style Black Mage outfit.
- Although Kagura from Inuyasha has shown herself to be very fit physically (being a demon, it comes naturally for her), she always fights using wind-using spells and magic. She also has no issues cutting up your best friend and then turning them into a zombie to lure you into an ambush.
- In the .hack//Legend of the Twilight anime and manga. Hotaru would be the battle mage of the group, except she's afraid to hurt the monsters.
- Fatina, from The Tower of Druaga: The Aegis of Uruk. She uses a large staff that resembles a cannon for nuking things with her fire magic.
- Kuesu from Omamori Himari.
- While her personality is perhaps more in line with a White Magician Girl, Mahoujin Guru Guru's Kukuri uses demon summoning magic.
- In Slayers, black mages (like Lina and her sometime-sidekick Naga) are specifically wizards who call on Mazoku for their spells; both they and shamans (like Zelgadiss) can get very, very destructive effects. In fact, many "elementally offensive" spells, like the classic Fireball, are shared by both forms of magic.
- Hayate Yagami of the Lyrical Nanoha franchise, who as the Queen of the Night Sky, comes with the widest variety of nuke-level offensive spells in the cast. These range from releasing city-wide spheres of darkness to creating massive icebergs that dwarf space ships.
- Yu-Gi-Oh! has the Dark Magician. An excellent example of Dark Is Not Evil, as he fights to protect Yugi, and in his previous life, he was a priest who sacrificed his life for the Pharaoh.
- Trisana Chandler from Tamora Pierce's Circle of Magic. This is actually a downside of winning the Superpower Lottery: Her extremely powerful weather magic (where "weather" also includes natural disasters) would put her in high demand as a war mage, but she'd prefer to be a healer, something which she's simply too strong for. To paraphrase, "it would be like performing surgery with a mallet."
- All four kids, and some of their students, can put their magic to spectacular offensive use when they need to, though Tris is the most naturally suited to it.
- The Saga Of Recluce inverts this and White Mage; those who use order magic (which can improve health, speed healing, and strengthen and protect) are called black mages, while those who use chaos magic (which is, as the name implies, very destructive) are the white mages. On the grand scale, however, the black mages have easily the greatest destructive potential because they can manipulate weather patterns, which makes the nation of Recluce with its numerous black mages a (highly resented) world power.
- A few examples from The Wheel of Time:
- the Green Aes Sedai are known as the "Battle Ajah." In the final book, they are on the front lines of the Last Battle.
- Ashaman are trained to think of themselves as weapons first, and men second. There are a few who learn healing spells, but they're generally the exception. They also notably wear black uniforms, and live in a fort called The Black Tower.
- It is implied by some of Tuon's actions and dialogue that Damane don't learn Healing, and would not be trusted to use it, if they did know it. They are kept on leashes, and outright referred to as weapons.
- The BBC/Starz series The White Queen portrays Elizabeth Woodville, queen consort to Edward IV, as a witch with actual supernatural powers. Throughout the series, she is able to call down terrible thunderstorms on her enemies at strategically critical moments, cause her enemies' deaths through magical curses, and otherwise wreck terrible destruction with her magic. When her husband, King Edward, lies dying of a fever, another character, Margaret Beaufort, says that the king will be fine because the queen will just brew some magic potion to heal him. Needless to say, that is not one of Elizabeth's powers, and Edward dies. That being said, Elizabeth (and her mother and her eldest daughter, also portrayed as witches) are shown to have some non-offensive powers, including divination magic; also, Elizabeth did use her magic to make Edward fall in love with her in the first place, or at least to help the process along. Still, it would appear that the Woodville women in this show are at least partial examples of this trope.
- Norwegian black metal band Emperor take this literally in one of their most well-known songs, I am the Black Wizards.
- This is the title of the song Чёрный маг, by Russian band Epedemia.
- Dungeons & Dragons
- The Forgotten Realms setting has the Cormyrean War Wizards, masters of combat magic, who have made it as both a 3.x edition Prestige Class and a 4th edition paragon path.
- The 2nd Edition Complete Wizards Handbook had the militant wizard kit, which concentrated on offensive spells.
- The 3.5 Complete Arcane and Miniatures Handbook Sourcebooks both featured the Warmage class, which is this trope to the exclusion of everything else.
- Evocation specialists in general tend to take this role.
- In 4th edition, the Wizard class can be built this way — although there are certainly alternative options.
- The Sorcerer class is arguably closer to the spirit of the trope, especially the very "blasting focused" Dragon Soul and Storm Soul variants.
- Vampire: The Masquerade generally avoided this (overt magic use being a breach of The Masquerade), but there were still a couple paths of Blood Sorcery based around massive eruptions of magical energies, such as Path of the Levinbolt, Lure of the Flames, The Fires of the Inferno, and the incredibly fun Koldunic Way of Fire.
- Magic: The Gathering: Instant and sorcery focused decks tend to function this way, as opposed to the Summon Magic of creature-based ones. Red is your go-to colour for this, since it's the colour of "kill it with direct magical damage", with maybe a bit of blue mixed in for card draw, instant/sorcery recursion and the occasional counterspell. Black can do okay, with a lot of effects that instantly kill creatures or drain life from the opponent, but the other two colours tend to be much more focused on summoning and as a result rarely have a place in this kind of deck. Of course, virtually every red-aligned mage will have direct "kill it with fire/lightning" spells, but a lot of the time they're used to open up a hole for the monsters to go through and occasionally as a finisher, rather than being the be-all and end-all of the player's strategy.
- Ammo: Almost every player character that knows magic at creation will use an offensive spell (Air, Water, Earth or Fire). Learning more elements later is helpful because of Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors being in effect. The fifth option is Life that, while loved by the team, is serious crap for the character himself. ALL demons that know magic will spam elemental attacks like rain at a funeral.
- Black Mage from 8-Bit Theater, naturally.
- Iris from Aetheria Epics.
- Ariel from Drowtales, though she prefers shapeshifting to her offensive spells.
- Richard from Looking for Group is as black as they come, and deadlier than he is dead.
- On the subject of liches, Xykon in The Order of the Stick — other than the occasional hold spell, he tends to leave all non-hurty spellcasting to menials.
- Vaarsuvius was initially this, mostly going for powerful and destructive spells like Fireball. However, after a brief stint as evil, a chat with Xykon of all people, and a Heroic BSOD, V is trying to be a little more rounded, creaitve, and strategic, and use support spells more. It was off to a rocky start, but helped with the return of Zz'dtri.
- Angelika from Our Little Adventure.