A character so mind-bogglingly lucky that it defies all chance. They'll win every contest or lottery they enter (in especially extreme cases, they don't even need to, the winning ticket will somehow come to them). Usually a weak explanation is given for this luck, attributing it to some kind of supernatural force but not going into any kind of detail. Despite the trope title, this luck does not necessarily begin at birth.
Sometimes the character actually dislikestheirluck, because it makes things boring or alienates friends, or if it's the kind of luck that involves their friends dying instead of themselves.
The extent of this luck can vary greatly; sometimes the lucky individual has to be careful with taking advantage of it, lest it run out at the worst possible time. Other times it applies all the time and can get a little ridiculous.
Often some kind of Amplifier Artifact can bestow this super-luck. If Clap Your Hands If You Believe is a large force in the series, expect it to be a Magic Feather in the end. If the artifact in question follows Equivalent Exchange and gives you bad luck if you lose it, then it can cross into Artifact of Death or Artifact of Doom. Of course, if your luck is dependent enough on said artifact in these ways then it may not count as this trope anymore (See Winds of Destiny, Change).
In games, this may be represented with by a Luck Stat or Luck Manipulation Mechanic. Compare Winds of Destiny, Change, which generally has no subconscious element (i.e. wielders have to want something to happen). See also The Fool, who frequently has luck but it's never quite to this level. See also The Magic Poker Equation. May be related to Born Winner. Contrast Idiot Houdini and Lucky Bastard, which is a villain or otherwise unsympathetic character who continues to succeed primarily because of luck, as well as Unluckily Lucky. The opposite is Born Unlucky. A character using a Two-Headed Coin in coin flipping may also appear to be this until The Reveal.
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Anime and Manga
Millefeuille Sakuraba of Galaxy Angel has this as her defining trait. In the second episode, a meteor smashed the casino she was playing in to give her the win. That's just one of many instances of her extreme luck. This was later balanced by a recurring and plot-convenient Conservation of Luck.
In the games, Millefeuille's luck isn't quite so outrageous, but even though the anime exaggerates everything to incredible proportions, it's still pretty close; such as winning the grand prize in a supermarket sweepstakes SIX TIMES IN A ROW. At the end of her path in the first game, she retires from the Angels, believing that she's used up all her luck... but it and she are back for the next one.
Her luck goes both ways in the game. If she's lucky, she's unbelievably lucky, when something involving bad luck happens, it happens in a spectacularly bad way.
The character PocoLoco in Part 7 has this power which works by having a spirit tell him stuff to do that may sound stupid until the good luck factors in.
In Part 3, there's a character with a book that can predict the future - and it's explicitly mentioned that anything that appears in the book will come to pass, no exceptions. But it's completely ineffective against the heroes, who escape unscathed thanks to a series of lucky Prophecy Twists that become increasingly implausible - the biggest would have to be when the book shows a picture of the main character having bullets being shot through him...and then it turns out those bullets were shot through the picture itself.
The mahjong genius, Akagi Shigeru. His game style involves a shocking level of insight into how his opponents think and a degree of luck that could only be called godly. He plays like a drunk with a deathwish, but he never loses.
Washizu possesses this too, as his luck is referenced as a supernatural ability on multiple occasions. It's what gets him the killer Dora 12 hand in Episode 25 of the anime, which would instantly kill Akagi (yes, literally kill) if he self-drew the tile (Tsumo) or won from Akagi's deal-in (Ron).
Likewise, the eponymous mahjong anime heroine Miyanaga Saki has "superhuman luck" as, quite literally, her SUPERPOWER. Ridiculous amounts of luck seem to be very common for most of the characters, since they routinely pull off hands that have about one chance in a lifetime to happen, but Saki is especially outrageous, since she can apparently pull off one-in-a-billion-chance hands almost literally at will.
Subverted in the final arc of (and really, throughout) Kaiji. In the final gamble of the first series, Hyoudou tells Kaiji that he won because he possessed "the luck of the King" and goes so far as to patronizingly give Kaiji the winning lot, telling him that Kaiji should "absorb" the luck and make use of it. Later, Kaiji realizes that Hyoudou saw through Kaiji's strategy and deceived him. There was no random luck involved; it was all planned out.
Joey Wheeler pretty much wins most of his duels by being on the good side of luck-based cards though he may be more of a subversion, ironically enough, as he's been subject to many useless card draws. Not to mention his luck based cards are more supplemental than anything to his lesser deck, poor duelist that he is. He does manage to use them in inventive ways, like against Yami Malik.
Played much straighter with Ryuichi Fuji, a Game Master whose luck extends to being able to randomly walk into a restaurant and win a prize letting him get free meals, press random buttons on a keypad and get the code, break for pool and have all of the balls hit someone, and win at Russian Roulette (with only one chamber empty).
Jaden in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX is notorious for his unnatural luck. At one point, in the duel with Camula, she uses Giant Trunade and then attacks directly, which should end the duel. Why doesn't it? Because one of the cards returned gives him 500 life points upon return to the hand.
Naruto Uzumaki is shown to have unnaturally high luck while he and Jiraiya are looking for Tsunade. He wins big by putting a coin he picked up off the ground into a slot machine (anime had him try a lottery and win that instead). His chakra training also had the inadvertent side effect of blowing dice Jiraiya was using to bet for information into just the total number to allow him to win.
Naruto is so lucky during his time spent with Jiraiya, that just walking remotely close to nearby gaming vendors and casinos result in everyone winning.
Sakurako of Mahou Sensei Negima!. Her luck is so well known that, when the Muggle part of Negi's class found themselves unable to find where Negi's travelling party went, they relied on Sakurako to randomly lead them in the right direction, which she successfully did... despite the fact that it's a location so magically hidden, that a normal human has a lottery's chance of accidentally stumbling across it. It's a Running Gag that whenever the 3A girls are betting on something, she wins, no matter how unlikely the eventual outcome was. Word of God says that should she ever get a pactio, it would boost the luck of whoever she chooses.
In the "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue, it's mentioned that she became an assistant to a government official, and when she concentrates she can affect the global economy.
Irresponsible Captain Tylor: Justy Ueki Tyler is a lazy, incompetent, bumbling idiot, and as the name might suggest, he is the most irresponsible man to ever hold the rank of "Captain." He also happens to be the luckiest man alive. He gets out of near-impossible situations by nothing but luck (unless he's really just that good.). At his bad days he only escapes from overwhelming fleets; on his better days he sinks them. Without any weapon. Or fighter. Damn, they sink themselves.
The show itself goes to significant lengths to suggest that this is subverted, and Tyler is just that skilled and using Obfuscating Stupidity to hide his brilliant tactics.
Touma has the opposite problem. His special power destroys his own luck so he's born unlucky, if you don't count his Unwanted Harem.
Played straight when he finds out that Kaori has this and rightfully angsts over it. As a Saint, she's basically unkillable—but her friends are not.
In Cowboy Bebop, Faye Valentine's debut episode set her up to look like this. A casino hires her, claiming she's this ancient lady-luck figure who can win every game she's ever played and never cheated. "She was just a born winner." It appears for a while Faye is indeed the woman they speak of, as when she works the blackjack table, she takes everyone's cash almost effortlessly, even robbing our hero Spike of every chip (save one). Then Spike nonchalantly points out that she was cheating. As the series goes on, we see Faye is anything but lucky.
In Franken Fran, a man on death row who defied multiple attempts to execute him is posited to be just that "fortunate". Ultimately, though, he dies when struck by lightning, as each time he evaded death made it that much more likely for him to be killed by improbable means.
The lead character from ION. She has known a jinx since she was little that when you say it, you land in a fortunate situation. She uses it often.
One Piece: Monkey D. Luffy has been described as having the Devil's Luck. While the lightning bolt that saved him on the execution platform may have been his father Dragon's doing, or not, he's survived any number of encounters due to extreme good fortune.
Elie in Rave Master, to the point that letting her loose in a casino is a genuine way for the gang to make a large amount of money fast.
Ranma ˝: Whenever Akane Tendo enters a raffle or some other competition based solely on luck, she always wins first prize.
Man: Congratulations! You win a trip for one to a health salon.
Nodoka: Isn't that wonderful?
Akane: Oh, I'm usually lucky at these things.
The whole category of "Abnormals" in Medaka Box. The basic criteria of which is to be lucky enough to open a door with a randomly changing password by entering random numbers. On the first try, with no hesitation.
Tetora from Joshiraku, to the point where Marii all but starts worshiping her.
The plot of Binbougami ga! revolves around Ichiko Sakura's extreme good fortune.
Case Closed: Ran Mouri has absurdly good fortunes playing luck-based games like Poker or Mahjong. First seen when she goes into a mahjong parlor where her father Kogoro is gambling, very upset because he took Conan with him... then she gets interested in the game itself... and in the next scene she has fleeced her dad and his companions out of all their "prizes". (And then the owner of said parlor, who doubled as a loan shark, appears dead...)
While you hardly call the circumstances of his birth and life lucky, Rau Le Cruset from Gundam SEED mentions often that fortune is on his side, and indeed his plan to kill everyone by playing both sides nearly goes off without a hitch. He manages to become a high ranking officer on Zaft (a military of genetically engineered supermen) despite not being a superman himself but being such a skilled pilot that they never ever question him, and serves for years and is never exposed. He leaks info to their enemy, and is never ever caught, or not believed. And during the finale he in short order 1. Manages to survive fighting his rival because said rival just happened to have poor mech to mech battle equipment that day as he was on fire support. 2. Manages to fight the one guy with superior power that won't kill anybody, allowing him to escape. 3. Launches a pod with data critical to his plan at 2 warring armies and the army that he needed to retrieve it is able to get it because the hero on the other side has a nervous breakdown in battle. 4. The people with the data (the data enables nuclear power) opt to use all of it on nuclear missiles rather than solve their more immediately energy crisis, and nuke their enemy. 5. His own army has a superweapon of their own that they are now willing to use and both sides are now posed to wipe out each other (and thus humanity) to total extinction. His luck finally runs out on the last day, when he's unable to break the hero, who kills him, and his plan is foiled when the hero's sidekick is able to stop the superweapons.
Lupin III... Possibly. Sometimes it's hard to tell if he pulls off some of his tricks by luck or actual planning. Nevertheless, when he offers the entire treasure on a poker hand or flip of the coin... he's only lost when the game was rigged.
Gladstone Gander, Donald Duck's cousin. His luck goes to absolutely ridiculous extremes, much to Donald's dislike. Much of the character's humor comes from watching the Rube Goldberg Device of Deus ex Machina events that make everything go his way. Worst of all, he revelled in his luck, knew everything was coming to him without any effort, and thought working was beneath him, which made the character all the more obnoxious. At one point it's implied he's lucky because the Goddess of Luck fell in love with him. It would certainly explain why his luck doesn't work when it comes to gain Daisy Duck's love. In the Don Rosa canon It Runs in the Family - Gladstone's mother Daphne is/was ridiculously lucky, as well. This was in turn based on a lucky hex symbol a traveling painter had placed on the family barn as a gift for the new child. It was once established, however, that Gladstone's luck cost him the greatest prize: Scrooge, disgusted by how lazy he is, has continuously refused to leave him anything.
Perhaps the most spectacular example is when Gladstone gets saddled with a contract to move a house from the top of one mountain to the top of another: A hurricane comes by and moves the house from the mountain to the other with no damage to it whatsoever.
Subverted in one comic where Donald and his nephews dig up every square inch of a beach, looking for a sultan's lost ruby (with a massive reward attached). Gladstone just lays there and waits for his luck to bring it to him. At the end of the day, a cop busts Donald for digging up the beach, Gladstone goes home... only leaving Huey, Dewey, and Louie to dig in the one exact spot they never searched - the one Gladstone was laying on. It's right there. The ruby was directly under Gladstone the whole time, and he never found it because he was waiting for it to fall into his hands. And guess who ended up as a chauffeur to Donald and his nephews...
Zigzagged twelve ways until Sunday in one comic, where he and Donald both enter a fishing contest. Gladstone quickly catches what appears to be the largest fish in the water with no effort at all, while Donald's rod breaks. Huey, Dewey, and Louie, meanwhile, run into a fellow who knows where far bigger fish swim (he himself only didn't win the contest because he'd already won plenty of times). The nephews catch a fish larger than Gladstone's and attach it to Donald's boat, making it look like Donald will win. As everyone is heading for shore though, Donald's boat is hit by a runaway speedboat, knocking his fish into Gladstone's boat and letting Gladstone win the contest. Donald gets the last laugh though, when it turns out that the young daughter of a millionaire was trapped on the speedboat and had a large reward for whoever could save her. So while Gladstone's luck got him to win the contest, Donald ended up getting a much bigger reward than the prize.
Generally, when heroics need to be done, Donald (or the nephews) gets to use whatever karma Donald gained by taking a lot of misfortune (usually because of Gladstone's good luck hurting Donald) to pull off feats where you need a LOT of luck to pull off heroism (such as saving the millinaire's young daughter by steering the runaway speedboat away from running aground on sharp rocks). Even if it becomes The Greatest Story Never Told in the process, that's why Donald, not Gladstone, is often the hero.
Worth mentioning is that when Gladstone learns there's trouble, he goes in to help, luck or not. A noteworthy example was when Donald was drowning in a river. He dived in immediately to save him, swam against the current and gave him the attention needed until medical assistance arrived.
His annoying lucky streak extends tobeyond the pages. When the Italian branch of Disney (it actually happened) got the idea to playfully point out which crimes the Disney characters would have committed if they were real-life characters, guess who was the only one who got away with a clean criminal record? However, a number of readers have noted this is probably because Gladstone rarely does anything other than wallow in his own luck.
In one comic he did have a "charm" of some sort, kept in a vault that he never let anyone see inside. It was a dime like Scrooge's. It wasn't a charm, it was a reminder of the brief time his luck failed him and he had to get an honest job. Gladstone was so ashamed of having worked he kept the dime inside the vault just so he'd never have to see it.
Lots of his "unlucky" moments are just benefits in disguise:
In one Don Rosa story, a contest involved catching entries tied to balloons and when a balloon flies above Gladstone, he refuses to exert himself reaching for it, reasoning that if it was the winning entry, the balloon would pop and drop the entry into his hand, which actually happened. Donald's nephews, however, uses Gladstone's luck against him, by filling the ballot with tickets with his name on it, and only one with Donald's. Just as Gladstone, sure of his victory, picks out the winning ticket, and hands it to the judges, he realizes to his horror that picking out Donald's ticket would truly require luck. And surely enough, the ticket is Donald's. But then later, his consolation prize (a year's supply of oolated squiggs) turns out to include a fish that swallowed a 10 carat diamond, while the main price, a cruise on a ship, ends up getting icebound, leaving Donald with the worst vacation ever.
He was unlucky to be discounted as Scrooge McDuck's heir since Scrooge couldn't respect someone who never worked for a living. But he never needs any money, he gets everything by luck, for someone like him Scrooge's money would be more trouble than it's worth.
Scrooge got a taste of what trouble Gladstone would cause when he let Gladstone try his luck as a stockbroker. That particular day, every single business failed for Scrooge, handing Gladstone loads of opportunities. Scrooge concluded that the Gladstone Luck was the only thing that could possibly beat him, and left him one particular business - a comic book franchise (Gladstone comics). Scrooge reasoned that not even Gladstone would manage to pull that one off.
Inverted in a Don Rosa comic. Due to being struck by lightning on his birthday while in front of a magic symbol in his youth, Gladstone is always phenomenally unlucky on his birthdays. He spends the entire comic trying to get away from attending, but circumstances bring him to his own party, where he admits the truth. When a lightning storm suddenly shows up he manages to undo the curse, and prevent Donald from gaining luck powers of his own.
And on top of that, his luck occasionally got him into more trouble than he would have been in without it. One story involved a treasure in the Amazon, and he decided he needed a helicopter to get to it before Donald could. He got there, but he didn't know that the tribe native to the area attached negative superstitions to helicopters. (Yes, they played with this character a lot. As a general rule, Gladstone's luck works at its best when he just lets it flow. When Gladstone asks for something specific, most of the time it come back to bite him. Lazing around is his most profitable activity.)
This is the sum of the Marvel Universe character Longshot's powers. After appearing in a miniseries of his own, he was grabbed by Chris Claremont for a stint in the X-Men, despite not originally being a mutant (he was first thought to be a genetically engineered alien). Longshot's luck was extremely strong but limited: it could only be used for altruistic purposes.
The Ultimate Universe version has even better luck with no such restriction. In his first appearance, a man is about to kill him with a machete and is suddenly struck by lightning. On a clear day. Without damaging anything in the area.
The only one who has ever defeated him was Scarlet Witch, a mutant who also has the power to manipulate luck.
Domino from Marvel Comics, (best known from her X-Force days); her probability-altering powers are not as strong as Longshot, things just tend to fall in her favor.
It could be pretty powerful sometimes, though. For example, there was a time when somebody put a revolver to her head and pulled the trigger. Six times. All six bullets failed to fire. The odds of this actually happening are, needless to say, astronomically low.
Unlike most of the examples here, she can actively trigger her powers as well. She once had to infiltrate a mansion to open a safe. She had no idea what the combination of the safe was, so she just entered the telephone number of one of her ex-boyfriends (who had nothing to do with the mission or the safe). She is not surprised when it opened the safe.
She doesn't actively trigger her powers in the sense that she can turn the luck on or off, it's more like she has to be aware of what she is affecting the probability of. From TOW, "if debris falling from the sky was about to hit her in the head, she would still be hurt if she stood still. However, if she tried to avoid it, she would move perfectly to avoid each and every piece about to hit her."
Same thing was used in a Judge Dredd story, when a psyker in a Circus of Fear manipulated the odds so that her boss, seeing the six misfires, angrily tried the same on himself. Bang.
Black Cat, who first appeared in Spider-Man's adventures has (well, sometimes) an interesting inversion of this: She gave OTHER people bad luck. Good when it affects your enemies, bad when it affects your friends...
A largely defunct American manga, Pantheon High, had a character with this kind of luck because he was the son of the Japanese goddess of luck, Benten. (Un)fortunately he had no guarantee whatsoever of getting lucky in ways that are actually useful to his situation. When he and two girls are threatened by the World Snake, one of the girls remarks that he might end up beating the snake, or he might end up making out with both of them at once.
It could be argued that Groo The Wanderer fits this trope - all the bad things happen around him, afflicting everybody else, never Groo himself.
Spirou and Fantasio fit this trope whenever they appear in the same story as Don Vito Cortizone, alias "Vito La Déveine" (French for Hard Luck Vito). In the comic book featuring Vito's first appearance, he chooses them because of their luck.
Spawny Get (Geordie English for Lucky Bastard) from Viz embodies this trope, typically having a piece of moderate bad luck that causes a piece of very, very good luck. In one strip, he is carrying a ten-pound note into a bookmaker's to place a bet when he slips on a turd; he lets go of the money and yells "Oh bugger, I've skidded on a dog dirt!" The ten-pound note flies into the hand of the bookmaker, who assumes Spawny Get is placing a bet on a horse called "Oh bugger, I've skidded on a dog dirt". Which wins. At odds of 1,000-1.
This was explicitly the only power of Johnny Thunder, a Golden AgeGag Series character best known for his membership in the Justice Society of America. He was the seventh son of a seventh son, born on July 7th, 1917, and this gave him uncanny luck. It later turned out that the circumstances of his birth had given him control over a genie called the Thunderbolt, and it was the T-bolt who pulled him out of so many jams.
The X-Wing Series has Wedge Antilles, the "designated survivor" and everyman of Star Wars, who is sometimes seen in-universe as lucky, though it's not to the extent of most people on this page. There was actually a one-shot comic called "Lucky", the cover mentioning "The Curse of Wedge Antilles"; in it he thinks◊ about◊ it◊, flashes back to his first love and how she and most others around where he lived were killed while he was "luckily" away, and thinks "Lucky? Sometimes it doesn't feel like it.◊" When he was a child, he was "lucky" enough to be some distance away from his parents' refueling station when they were killed. At many, many points, he was "lucky" enough to survive events that killed his companions and friends; he once reflects on the first Death Star and how he was "lucky" enough to be able to fly away while Biggs Darklighter stayed and was killed. In the novels he is vaguely aware of his Plot Armor, at least in that it seems like friends are always dying while he lives, has some survivor's guilt, and wonders what will happen when his luck runs out.
To some extent, Baron Soontir Fel as well, Wedge's Imperial (metaphorical) twin. He is undoubtedly the best damn pilot in the Empire next to Vader, but surviving two tours of duty in the ridiculously fragile TIE fighter or TIE Interceptor takes more than mere skill. Even when he was finally shot down by Wedge, he survived with no injury. Despite the fact that a TIE Interceptor is such a physically small craft that downing one without killing the pilot is near-impossible even if you have a Jedi actively trying to do so.
One novel had some fun with this when Wedge Antilles as a general was coordinating a battle which they were supposed to lose (well, retreat believably) as a part of a larger strategic maneuver. To put it in his own words: "We're about to achieve a tremendous victory we don't want."
The Marvel heroine Shamrock appears to have this power, though it's actually a form of I See Dead People—ghosts often agree to help her in return for her completing their Unfinished Business. (Notably, she got killed off in one burned-out alternate continuity after a foe convinced her that with so many people already dead, there was nothing left to achieve in the world, and it was time for her and her ghosts to finally rest.)
Talisman from the Justice Machine comics. His mutant power is Karma — as long as he's working for a righteous cause, good things happen to/for him (and by extension his teammates). One of the team's standard combat maneuvers is "let Talisman be taken hostage and dare the villains to shoot him".
Roulette from the Hellions, enemies of the New Mutants, could create disks of energy that affected probabilities (white for good luck, black for bad).
NarutoFanFics have a tendency of taking Naruto's good luck and flanderizing it to ridiculous degrees. Take, for example, the Naruto fanfic Yet Again with a little extra help. One such occurrence is when Naruto has to bet on either Sasuke or Tenten for a swordsmen's tournament, having (correctly) predicted that they would be the two finalists. To help him decide, he flipped a coin. It landed on its side. You can guess how the match ended. In fact, Naruto was so lucky during that tournament that he ended up winning thirty million ryo.
Lindsay Lohan's character in the film Just My Luck has extremely good luck, until she inadvertently swaps her good luck with a man's equally extreme bad luck by a kiss, and the rest of the film has her searching for the man to reverse the exchange.
The protagonist, Kyle Johnson, in The Luck of the Irish. He's a popular junior high basketball player, gets good grades by guessing answers, finds money on the ground often because of the lucky gold coin he wore his whole life.
Somewhat seen in the film Maverick, with Mel Gibson as the title character. In fact, that's pretty much what it's about. Although sometimes it could be seen as a subversion, his bad luck usually ends up being a con.
Goes to ridiculous heights when he gets four of the five cards for a Royal Flush to beat his opponent's Straight Flush (only hand in poker that can actually beat it and the best hand possible.) on an "all in" for the tournament and manages to get the fifth card on a single cut of the deck. With instances before and after failing in practice, it seems he can only do this at the best possible moment.
Forrest Gump. He becomes, in chronological order: able to walk after being born disabled, a football star, war hero, Olympic champion, successful business owner, multimillionaire stockholder, and national phenomenon, all just out of sheer chance while bumbling his way through life. Not to mention setting various historical events in motion without even realizing it...
It's strongly hinted that he isn't really disabled, but his mother (being equally naive) is being conned by a quack doctor. His luck is in being scared into running himself out of the braces on his legs, and concluding that he's miraculously got better.
While Gump really is incredibly lucky throughout the film, it should be noted that this often happens because of him doing what he believes to be the right thing to do. A major theme of the film is Forrest doing things that everyone considers stupid just because he doesn't consider the pros and cons like everyone else, and just does the simplest thing with childlike sincerity. One of the best examples is him becoming a war hero without firing a single bullet: he goes to the jungle to find his friend, and he ends up personally carrying to safety what is implied to be ALL his injured squadmates instead of, say, calling for someone to help them. His only reaction to being told to stop because napalm is about to be dropped in the jungle is to yell "I've gotta find Bubba!". So while he is incredibly lucky and, in a way, he doesn't know any better, he DOES become a war hero because he does something heroic. There are other situations in the film where he is very lucky as sort of a karmic payoff for doing something silly, but noble in its simplicity.
Subverted in Lord of War: Yuri manages to come out unscathed from a drug-induced stroll around Monrovia despite having unprotected sex with a prostitute, encountering a pack of hyenas and two militia members who would have killed him if their Kalashnikovs had not jammed, not to mention being a rich Westerner in one of the deadliest African cities. The subversion? He had just committed his only actual murder and wanted nothing more than to die himself. Easily one of the darkest moments in an already very dark film.
In Godzilla (2014), you can count how many times Ford survives with his encounters with the MUTO, the same one he keeps encountering. 5 times, the last 2 due to Godzilla's Big Damn Heroes moments.
Teela Brown, in Larry Niven's novel Ringworld, was the result of a project to try to breed a person with supernatural luck: she, and her ancestors for seven generations, were all born because of lucky draws in Earth's Birthright Lottery. The Puppeteers figure that humanity exists primarily due to luck anyhow (since humans are just Puny Earthlings), so breeding for luck will make humans extremely lucky. There is much debate about whether she is extremely lucky, and, for that matter, what it means to be extremely lucky.
The debate is mainly between the other main protagonists. Louis thinks she's lucky because she has survived many brushes with death, each time by pure chance. Nessus argues that her luck does not exist because the rest of the crew was not protected. Louis counters that the luck works only to preserve her and her fortunate genes; he says that her luck brought them to the Ringworld in the first place, because it will be the safest place for her descendants to ride out an inevitable galactic disaster.
The counter-counter-argument is that the Puppeteers were already planning this expedition before they started the breeding program that produced Teela. In universe there are yet more viewpoints and further levels of argument.
Canon indicates that the luck is real. Niven has a later story in this universe, Safe at Any Speed, showing a future world populated by people even luckier than Teela. The protagonist gets swallowed by a giant pterodactyl and comes out perfectly unhurt.
Interestingly, when recruiting for the mission, they have a lot of trouble filling the Born Lucky slot. Teela Brown is the only one they can reach, since attempts to call the others end in very improbable failures. Either Teela's luck is causing her to win a position on the mission by process of elimination, or the luck of all those other candidates is causing her to lose.
Funny thing is, Teela refuses (at Louis's urging) to join the mission at first, at which point Nessus receives word from another Puppeteer that another candidate was found. Apparently, Nessus doesn't talk to the others of his kind much because this "other candidate" is once again Teela.
Ways, from the Terry Pratchett science fiction novel The Dark Side of the Sun is a robot built with an intrinsic ability with p-math, meaning he can manipulate probability to make himself lucky. In one scene he's forced to roll 3 sixes twice in a row at gunpoint to prove his identity.
Rincewind, another of Pratchett's creations from the Discworld, has the most amazing luck (thanks to being the pawn of the Lady herself), and has leapfrogged in, out, around, and through so many sticky situations relatively unscathed that even Death doesn't know when he'll die. Bear in mind, however, that in this case amazing luck doesn't necessarily mean amazingly ''good'' luck.
As stated above, Rincewind is amazingly lucky because he survives everything he's put through. Rincewind himself feels it would be luckier not to go through these things at all, but the Lady doesn't seem to see it that way...
The problem is that while the Lady blesses him on a regular basis, Fate is out to get him. Literally. The two of them are playing a board game, and Rincewind is one of the Lady's favorite pieces that Fate is always trying to take off the board.
Nobby and Sergeant Colon are also Born Lucky. As Watchmen, they are always stumbling across important clues (usually without realizing it) and surviving "million to one" events seemingly by chance. By the time of Snuff, they have demonstrated this power so often Commander Vimes finally catches on and gives orders to just let them follow their noses, confident they'll trip over the key to the mystery sooner or later.
Erast Fandorin in Boris Akunin's detective novels always wins in gambling games, which causes him to find them boring. In The Turkish Gambit (and its movie adaptation), he exploits this to win a donkey in an inn in a game of dice to transport away Varvara Suvorova... who later discovers, to her shock, that she was his stake. Later in his career he uses this ability to expose a fake lottery wherein he loses his bet (meaning that there was not a single chance to win, otherwise, he would have). Even later, he plays Russian roulette in front of a suicide club president to convince the latter to accept him to the club. In fact, he comes from a family where luck always skips a generation: his father and only son were extremely unlucky, while his grandson (Nicholas Fandorin) was extremely lucky again.
Rene Arroy in the Arcia Chronicles is actually nicknamed "the Lucky One" or "Lucky Rene" for his improbable luck that saves his skin again and again throughout his life and unlife.
Subverted in the Alfred Bester story "Oddy and Id". Oddy has the ability (unknown to himself) to have everything go in his favor. The subversion is that what he gets is what his id wants, not what his ego does. So while he really wishes for peace, his id really wants him to be galactic dictator and a war soon enables this.
This is one of Mat Cauthon's defining characteristics in The Wheel of Time series. He goes from the son of a horse trader in a small town into a rich gambler throwing around money like it grows on trees simply because he can regain it easily. While all three of the ''ta'veren'' characters tend to twist probability and cause unlikely and bizarre events to happen just by being there, those events can be either good or bad. Mat, however, adds an elven gift of luck to this. Not only does he have amazing luck in general (including battle), but his gambling luck is openly supernatural: If he's paying attention, coins are liable to land on edge, and dice on their corners. (Happily, this sort of thing never happens when it would have gotten him killed....)
It should be noted that his luck can often be a string of bad luck that turns out to be useful to him in the end, such as losing a dice roll when winning would result in a fight, or losing many rolls as a sign that something is about to happen.
As a matter of fact, his luck is so predictable that he WEAPONIZES it - if he's getting too poor of a streak, he and his friends know the fecal matter is going to hit the impeller, because his good luck is "being stored up" for what's to come, which has saved their hides several times.
In A.E. van Vogt's novel The Weapon Shops of Isher, the character of Cayle Clark is a "callidetic giant", which makes him crazy lucky to the point that being forced into sex slavery comes out to his advantage.
Robert A. Heinlein's recurring Marty Stu Lazarus Long had "a feeling for what makes the frog jump", which his descendants put down to latent Psychic Powers, but which he saw as a learnable skill. That he just happened to be born with.
In Harry Potter, there's a potion, Felix Felicis, that gives the user luck and will make everything go their way, usually in improbable ways. For example, when Harry drank it, he accidentally bumped into Ginny while invisible, causing her to think it was her current boyfriend, and got unusually annoyed and dump him, so that leaves her open for Harry. It also gave Harry the perfect chance to bribe Slughorn. Later it is used by nearly all the main characters to survive the climactic battle. The effects are temporary, and Slughorn advised against abusing the potion, as it'd make one reckless after a while. It's also banned from sporting events, essays, and elections.
It should be noted that the potion doesn't actually make one lucky, per se. Rather, it lets the user instinctively take actions that will bring them towards the best possible outcome.
Thursday Next had a villain who could manipulate entropy. Thursday soon learned to judge whether her enemy was near by seeing whether a lot of weird coincidences were going on.
The Duck from Spider Robinson's Callahans Crosstime Saloon stories is an interesting variation of this: his luck (and the luck of those around him) is not unbelievably good or unbelievably bad, but simply extreme, tending to cancel itself out over time. As he puts it, if you're standing next to him and win a million dollars, rest assured that you'll have lost it again by nightfall.
Bink's power in Xanth looks like this, but it's actually that magic can't harm him. This was determined to be a top-tier magic talent.
Given that everything in Xanth is at least partially magical, it is.
The reason his talent manifests as luck is because his talent can't hurt him either. In other words, it makes it look as though he's just lucky at avoiding magic, because if fireballs just bounced off him, people would just start punching him. And that would be his talent causing people to punch him, thus harming him indirectly via magic.
"The gods always smiled on Watt, though. When the wildlings knocked him off the Bridge of Skulls, somehow he landed in a nice deep pool of water. How lucky was that, missing all those rocks?"
"Was it a long fall?" Grenn wanted to know. "Did landing in the pool of water save his life?"
"No," said Dolorous Edd. "He was dead already, from that axe in his head. Still, it was pretty lucky, missing the rocks."
Edd's own bad luck is interesting as well despite being at least partially a matter of perception. For example when they name one of their scarecrows after him it gets filled with arrows by the enemy but once the men start betting on which scarecrow will get hit the most Edd's one stops being hit.
The Malazan Book of the Fallen has Oponn, the bifurcated God of Luck. Their chosen tend to have absurd luck, with occurrences like "avoiding a assassin's crossbow bolt by picking up a coin" or "killing an enemy by tripping and falling into them with your sword". It's suggested that this eventually turns around on the poor mortal, but hasn't happened to any of those chosen so far.
Bilbo Baggins from The Hobbit is explicitly stated to have been born with an unusual amount of luck. It saves his life on several occasions.
From the Star Trek Novel Verse, Auger in Hollow Men. He's a wide-eyed innocent youth serving under Captain Steyn (a freighter captain and sometimes smuggler). She has him on the crew entirely because he's Born Lucky (well, that and she's quite fond of him). He has a natural affinity for gambling, and seems to somehow “tap into”...something...other beings can't, so as to always win. Note that this is consistent with the TV show, which occasionally suggested luck was governed by an unknown force that could be sensed or even controlled. Quite why this boy has the talent remains unexplained. Steyn apparently doesn't care, she's just happy it makes her money.
In the world of the aleators from Riddle of the Seven Realms by Lyndon Hardy, luck is a literal commodity which powerful individuals have managed to hoard for themselves. It's also a finite natural resource, so the hoarding of vast quantities of luck by such people means that everyone else in that world is Born Unlucky by default, and must exercise extreme caution just to make it though a day alive.
Arthur Dent from The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is both this AND Born Unlucky. He's one of only 2 humans to survive the destruction of Earth (amongst other events throughout the five book trilogy), but this isn't necessarily a good thing.
Falkor the Luck Dragon from The Neverending Story belongs, as you may have gathered, to an entire species of dragons who are Born Lucky. He is very conscious of this and will often rely on blind luck to get him and Atreyu through tight spots.
In the Kurt Vonnegut short story "Report on the Barnhouse Effect," the titular effect is devised by Prof. Arthur Barnhouse, which allows him to manipulate luck. At first, it merely lets him ensure that dice will come up as whatever he wants to roll. He eventually develops it to the point where he starts to border on Reality Warper powers, and hides so as to go on a quest to destroy weapons to prevent future wars. The narrator, a former student of Barnhouse, is taught how to do it by the end and decides to continue the work of the likely ailing Barnhouse.
Princess Odelia is seen as the luckiest of the princesses in A Brother's Price. Her older sister Ren reflects that she doesn't know how Odelia wasn't at the theater explosion that killed their eldest sisters - and would have killed Ren if she hadn't been sent out for crying - but it's of a piece with her luck.
Seven in Wearing the Cape got this as his power. He describes it as like a guardian angel who keeps him safe and indulges his whims, but doesn't work for stuff like picking lottery numbers.
In Mack Reynolds' Section G novel Code Duello, one operative is a young man who's never lost a bet. When he bet on a horse race, his horse broke its leg, but he still won; there was a big pile-up on the racetrack, and his horse limped across the finish line first.
Live Action TV
An episode of The X-Files, "The Rube Goldberg Variation", was about a man whose luck was absolutely ridiculous. The catch: Whenever his luck gives him a benefit, the universe seems to "balance" itself by either making him unable to benefit from it, or inflicting something bad on someone else. During the episode, he is desperately trying to raise a large sum of money very fast (for a sick kid's medical bills). When he wins it by gambling at a Mob table, they assume he was cheating and throw him off a roof. (He lands in an industrial laundry basket, harmlessly breaking his fall.) When he buys a lottery ticket, he wins, but (a) the payoff would take too long to help the sick kid, and (b) the ticket is for waaaaaay more than he needs and he is terrified of the inevitable backlash so he throws it away. The guy who picks the ticket up gets hit by a bus seconds later.
In an episode of Red Dwarf, they find a luck virus that causes extraordinary goodluck. For instance, Lister gets a dosage and he's able to solve ten digit combination on a lock of quarantine room.
Tom Chance, from the mid 80s series Chance in a Million, for whom life always seemed to fall in place (including once knowing the train schedule of an obscure route, from having been held hostage by terrorists in the past, who forced their captives to memorise the London Underground timetable...)
Supernatural had a rabbit foot that gave this but once you lost it, it did the exact opposite: that is, giving you bad luck. For example, while in possession of the foot, Sam Winchester could survive gunfights by virtue of having everyone else's gun jam when pointed at him and win as much as $2000 dollars from each Scratch And Win ticket he bought. Once the foot was stolen, however, Sam started tripping over everything up to and including thin air, lost his shoe in a sewer hole, had a hotel room heater catch on fire when he was doing literally nothing, and knocked himself out while trying to put out said fire.
Much of a Seinfeld episode is dedicated to reiterating the fact that everything consistently turns out all right for Jerry, and nobody else. And then he gets thrown into prison with the gang for a year. But before then, he's pretty darn lucky.
Elaine:(exasperated) You know, one of these days, something terrible is going to happen to you! IT HAS TO!
Jerry:(nonchalant) No, I'll be fine.
Chance Harper's "power" from Strange Luck. It's not always good luck, but it all works out sooner or later.
Lance White from The Rockford Files. Jim Rockford himself points out that Lance's good luck is always balanced by the people around him suffering from bad luck.
British-Iranian comedian Omid Djalili has a sketch titled "The Bloody Lucky Arab" in which he portrays a stereotypical rich Arab who manages to strike oil everywhere he goes. Mostly on golf courses.
Rob Mariano, especially in Redemption Island where he's put on a tribe full of the dumbest players since the cast of Samoa and manages to not once run into his Achilles' Heel (Food challenges, but also some physical challenges), manages to get the lion's share of screentime, and is good at all the puzzle challenges. Conveniently, that's what most of the individual immunity challenges were! (Read: Challenges he had to compete in) That's some amazingluck if the producers weren't slanting the show for him and Russell.
Likewise, Rachel in the American Big Brother. She comes back with an unbreakable alliance with Brendon and is also paired up with Jeff and Jordan, who are likewise unbreakable. They are then put against people who barely know each other and have never played; the veterans (Rachel, Brendon, Jeff, Jordan, Daniele) have. The challenges are all something they're familiar with. After her boyfriend was evicted from the house, he somehow wins a popular vote to come back but is voted back out again. Then after things get turned around again and causing Jeff and Daniele to be voted out, then Rachel and Jordan are put on the block, Porsche is forced to open Pandora's Box...and the twist seems tailor-made to benefit Rachel and Jordan. Conveniently, the next veto competition (Read: That Rachel needs to win) is... a carbon copy of the first competition in the game that Rachel won, with a different prop. The twist manages to save both Rachel and Jordan, then the next head of household challenge is a challenge that Rachel had already won in the past - and just a couple days before, she was talking about how she did so well on it. When she's forced to open Pandora's box, it's not a game changing power that completely sabotages her game like it did to Porsche...it's a shopping spree. That's some amazingluck.
This is Mr. Lucky's shtick, as his name indicates. In any game involving chance he apparently can't lose.
MAD had an article (in issue #133) called "What is a Born Winner?" about such people. "A Born Winner is easy to spot. He's the guy who's drafted the morning the war ends. He's the guy who marries for love and then discovers his bride concealed the fact that she's a millionairess to avoid fortune hunters. He's the guy who's turned away from a fancy restaurant for not wearing a tie the very same night thirty-six diners succumb to food poisoning."
Transformers has Jackpot, whose main character trait is that he's possessed of uncanny good luck. This particularly shows up in the TransTech story "Gone Too Far", where he puts it to use hustling people with his partner Hubcap.
Douglas Richardson of Cabin Pressure claims to have been Born Lucky. Sometimes he does so to avoid exposing a successful scheme, but other times Douglas's good luck involves factors, such as the weather, that are beyond even Douglas's control.
Many tabletop games use an "action dice" system which allow a player to add another die to a roll's final result to avoid bad luck, create an exceptionally good result, etc, a certain number of times a session.
A version of this is part of a deity's legend in the Forgotten Realms. Tymora, goddess of luck, supposedly flips a coin for every person born in Faerun. If it comes up heads, that person will have good luck in their life. If it's tails, naturally, bad luck follows. And for those extremely lucky few where the coin lands on its edge...they make their own luck, not being fated to anything.
Savage Worlds has the "Luck" and "Great Luck" advantages, which give you one and then two more spare die re-rolls per game session.
Marvel Super Heroes models super-luck by allowing characters with the power, like Longshot listed above, to pick which die is the tens die and which the ones die when rolling d100. Look into the statistics of that die roll and you'll see it's the most powerful ability in the game.
Halflings in 4.0 Dungeons & Dragons have a power that basically emulates really good luck. And in 3.5 you had the Fate-Spinners, whose entire arsenal of powers was based around luck manipulation.
3rd edition Halflings were inherently lucky as well, reflected in their racial +1 to all saving throws.
The 3.5 sourcebook Complete Scoundrel had a prestige class based around this trope. The "Fortune's Friend" could force so many re-rolls a day in so many different situations that he must have been as infuriating to the DM and his teammates as he was to his foes.
There was also the Luckstealer from Races of the Wild, who could curse others with bad luck, and claim their good luck for himself.
In GURPS it is possible to give characters varying levels of the Advantage aptly named "Luck". There is also Super-Luck which, while much more expensive, is well explained by a nearby picture of a man standing in an alleyway surrounded by bullet holes. There is also another Advantage called "Serendipity" which causes fortunate coincidences boutside dice rolls as the GM sees fit.
Mutants & Masterminds features "Luck Control" as a superpower which allows the user to change the effects of other character's dice rolls, helping your allies and hindering your enemies. "Probability Control" from the Ultimate Power sourcebook is a more traditional example of this trope; your power rank becomes the minimum result for any one die roll that round. To put it another way, a person with 20 ranks in this power could essentially throw their dice away and declare "I win."
Asian Dhampyr from the Vampire: The Masquerade supplement Kindred of the East are best known for their luck powers, a spiritual side effect of the unlikelihood of their existence. They are born to Asian vampires with more significantly more Yang chi than Yin, the only time said vamps are fertile.
Meanwhile, Vampire: The Requiem has the Bohagande bloodline. Their unique Discipline, Sunnikuse, emphasises draining the luck from others, typically supplementing the Bohagande's luck in the process.
Champions has the Luck power: the more levels of it you have, the luckier you are.
This is how the Edge stat works in Shadowrun - and humans get an extra point of it as a racial bonus.
Witch Hunter: The Invisible World. If a character had the Lucky talent, fortune favored them and always seemed to intercede on their behalf in the direst of circumstances.
The Spycraft tabletop game, designed around the cinematic physics of spy movies, obviously has an entire feat tree of abilities that embody this trope. Among other things, there is an ability that causes you to roll a die after being hit by any attack. If it comes up odd, circumstances interfere and the attack misses entirely and you take no damage instead. Extra funny because it applies to things like nuclear explosions and buildings falling on you as much as the usual bullets and fists.
All of White Wolf's Mage games rely primarily on powers that manifest as extremely convenient turns of fortune, referred to as 'covert' magic. The "entropy" sphere from second edition deserves special mention for even blatantly magical effects manifesting as insanely good luck of the "a grenade goes off at your feet. conveniently, all the shrapnel happens to miss you and a gust of wind negates the blast wave" variety.
Nobilis has a Gift simply known as Luck, which allows you to bring yourself some good fortune. "I was born lucky" is also entirely acceptable as text for an affliction, which will produce minor miracles whenever the HG thinks it's appropriate.
The character Fortune in Metal Gear Solid 2 seemed to be literally Immune to Bullets because she was too lucky in battle to ever get hit; unfortunately, her luck in her personal life was as awful as her luck on the battlefield was good, and she became a Death Seeker.
Subverted, though, in that it was all set up artificially and deliberately behind the Man Behind the Man
Double Subverted: However, after the device was removed from fortune and she got shot for once, she STILL manages to deflect missiles, actual missiles, apparently by luck.
Venus from Metal Gear Acid 2 demonstrates her supernatural ability to toss coins that only come up heads, dowse for water and hit targets with her gun a handful of times. Her initial assertion that she was 'lucky' seemed just to be her being obtuse, but by the time you fight her it turns out to be her power. She still got disappointingly little mileage out of it.
Kyosuke Nanbu of Super Robot Wars Compact 2, and the OG series has this. His backstory has him surviving a space shuttle crash, with minor injuries. In OG 1 a traitor sabotages a prototype Humongous Mecha and Kyosuke once again crash lands and escapes unscathed. It's also a reason given for surviving the beating that he got from Axel Almer. For some reason this inhuman luck does not actually include the Lucky skill. (Tasuku has this.)
It's been theorized that this luck is in fact what allows Kyosuke to perform well in his Alteisen, which is, in all honesty, an outdated Real Robot that really wants to be a Super Robot when it grows up. Anyone else using the Alt would probably find themselves shot down pretty quickly.
To be honest, this trope, when combined with his skill, experience, and determination makes him damn near impossible to kill. (having a really tough mech doesn't hurt either).
Then there's Arado Balanga in Alpha 2/Original Generation 2, who once survived his mech blowing up because he couldn't eject in time. In fact, for a long part of Original Generation 2, every mech he pilots gets severely damaged or destroyed.
This is Nell's defining character trait in the Advance Wars series. She has an occasional chance of causing more damage than normal, and her CO and Super CO powers amplify this luck immensely. Her sister, Rachel, doesn't have Nell's normal luck but her CO Power (though not Super CO Power) increases her luck for the turn.
This also applies to Flak and his Dual Strike counterpart Jugger, although it's more depicted as brute force (but works the same ingame) and comes with the drawback of sometimes inflicting less damage than expected.
The Lady Luck dress sphere in Final Fantasy X-2 has abilities based on luck, including rolling huge dice & spinning reels for results.
In Halo 3, the Artificial Intelligence Cortana says this to the protagonist of the series, Master Chief:
"They let me pick, did I ever tell you that? Choose whichever Spartan I wanted. You know me. I did my research; watched as you became the soldier we needed you to be. Like the others, you were strong and swift and brave. A natural leader. But you had something they didn't. Something no one saw, but me. Can you guess? Luck."
Which makes sense, since the aforementioned character not only is the only one Spartan left alive (well, he was), but he is also able to avoid almost certain death several times during the 3 games of the series.
This comes to a point in Halo: Reach, where the new Player Character is Noble Six. He/she is, in every way, exactly like Master Chief, if not better. So why is it he/she dies while Chief goes on to live? He/she didn't have luck.
This also comes up in the expanded universe prequel book Halo: Reach (unrelated to the video game except for location), where Halsey chooses John to be the first Spartan to test the Mjolnir armor because "You've always been lucky."
Princess L'Arachel from Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones appears to actually be divinely blessed; she wins coin tosses when the tosser is cheating. This is reflected in her growth rates, as she'll almost always max out the Luck Stat on her own.
In Fire Emblem Jugdral, the people who have Ulir Holy Blood (like the sisters Adean and Briggid and their children) have Luck growths of at least 30%, among the best ones in the whole FE franchise. In-story, this is supposed to be tied to a blessing bestowed upon Ulir the "Bow User", creating a whole legend in regards to their descendants - now the Royal House of Jungby. Adean herself invokes her Born Lucky status in the Oosawa manga by pulling a Go Through Me to recruit Prince Jamuka, standing in between two armies and hoping the legendary luck of the Jungbies causes her to be unharmed by Verdane's barrage of arrows. And except for a mere cut on her cheek, it works.
Another standout example is the playable Anna from Awakening; while her other stats are solid but nothing to write home about, her Luck growth is 80%, with a +3 modifier, no less .
Tewi Inaba has this as her main ability, and can even spread it to others. One chapter in the Inaba of the Moon and Inaba of the Earth manga had her digging a pool for Princess Kaguya, and every place she she dug had her striking gold, silver, and other assorted treasures.
The main character Reimu Hakurei also has this power. Her luck mostly manifests in each game as her literally wandering around until she stumbles upon the Big Bad of the latest incident. The last chapter of Curiosities of Lotus Asia even mentions that Marisa hates to play dice with Reimu because Reimu always wins.
The Wood Elf Gaenor from The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind expansion Tribunal is a bit of a Bonus Boss. You first meet him as a sort-of beggar in Mournhold, where he will demand that you give him some money. If you do, he will continue to ask for more until it reaches outrageous sums you probably won't be able to pay and even if you can, we won't believe you really have the money anyway. Either way, pay him or deny him the money, he will get angry. Come back a few days later to encounter him again. This time, he is wearing a full set of (extremely expensive and powerful) Ebony Armor. He will confront you and tell you how he came upon a Lucky Charm. Ever since he found it, he had insane amounts of luck, money was practically falling into his pockets all the time, he never lost a fight, hell, he never even got injured. Then he decides to take revenge on you for the money thing earlier. While in battle, he lacks any significant uber-destructive attacks, his insane luck makes more than up for it. You see, in the game, all the important chances, such as whether or not a blow will hit or miss or whether or not a Magic Reflection/Damage Reflection spell will kick in, is influenced by a certain stat. You guessed it. And yes, you heard that right, damage reflection and spell reflection. The guy has very powerful amounts of that. Gaenor is so lucky that he can make you kill yourself by attacking him. Should you, despite all the odds, manage to kill him, you can loot the lucky charm from his pockets, but while the enchantment is certainly powerful, it only grants 20 Luck points. Attribute-Wise, however, Gaenor had 770 of them...
One of the most straightforward ways of beating him is to temporarily increase your own Luck to similarly absurd levels with potions.
In Skyrim, Imperial characters are given a trait called imperial luck which increases the amount of gold they can earn from looting containers. There's also the 'Prowler's Profit' bonus which increases your characters chance of finding assorted gemstones, and two perks in the lockpicking skilltree that make you find more money and magical items.
Joachim from Valkyria Chronicles II has fortune smiling upon him, but he never sees it that way, being a glass half-empty kind of guy. If something good happens to him, he'll still find something to complain about: Girls like him, but he wants to be left alone. He was saved from a bullet by a statue, he loved that statue! You get the picture...
In Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas you can select your Luck SPECIAL stat at the start of the game. This mainly determines your chances of getting critical hits in combat. However, in New Vegas it influences your gambling ability.
In Fallout and Fallout 2, it still determined critical chance but setting the Luck value to maximum and picking the Sniper perk made every single hit scoring a critical. Even better, picking the Jinxed trait with Luck maxed out is the epitome of assholishness to your opponents.
Mr. House of New Vegas has a maxed out luck stat, representing his ability to see probabilities and manipulate them to his own benefit.
Woozie in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is blind, but he's so incredibly lucky that he can often pass as sighted anyways. He can even race a car along a narrow, winding ledge!
Some characters in Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney believe that Phoenix wins most of his cases by sheer luck since he always manages to turn the case around in his favor when all seems lost. Franziska von Karma even notes Phoenix's luck out loud after she finds out from Edgeworth that he fell through a broken bridge to a river 40 feet below (Said river was stated to be notorious for being deadly) and only suffered minor bruises and a bad cold - In the middle of winter, while the bridge was on fire! To top it off, in Apollo Justice, Phoenix gets run over by a car, flies 30 feet in the air, smacks his head into a telephone pole, and only suffers a minor ankle sprain! To quote Franziska herself: "As always, hard to know if he should be called lucky or unlucky."
Giancarlo from Lucky Dog 1 is widely renowned as the Lucky Dog because of his fantastic luck, which has helped him escape from prison at least four times in a row. He seems to have been blessed with great luck from a young age after he survived an attack on his family that left both his parents dead. In fact, his luck is even represented in-game by a lucky meter which starts out at 100% but can nevertheless drop depending on the actions he takes throughout the course of the game.
Kieta from Gakuen Heaven has this as his only "special trait". When the bridge malfunction on his way to his new boarding school and the bus crash, both he and the driver fell out onto his futon that just happened to fall out of his bag, open up and land in time to catch and save both of them.
Makoto Naegi from Dangan Ronpa has his entire high school identity based on this trope. He's the Super High School Level Good Luck - meaning his only "talent" or "special trait" is the fact that he was lucky enough to win the lottery to attend Kibougamine Academy.
Nagito Komaeda from Super Dangan Ronpa 2 is a partial subversion in that his luck manifests as two extremes: immeasurable good luck followed by catastrophic bad luck, which is then negated by another run of good luck. You find out in one of his Free-Time Events that his luck caused the death of his parents, which was then countered by the good luck of a hefty inheritance; that, of course, was followed by being kidnapped for ransom only to be released when the kidnapper realized no one would pay the ransom, which led to Nagito finding a winning lottery ticket; and so on and so forth.
His luck eventually manifests in-game when he plays a game Russian Roulette to get into the hidden Octagon room in Chapter 4. He finds that just using one bullet in the chamber is too boring and opts to use five instead, counting on his good luck to help him win. He does.
Achewood's Ray Smuckles can't seem to turn around without falling into a pile of money
In Dubious Company, Sal is the future high priestess of the god of Randomness, things tend to go her way.
In Spinnerette, this is an explicit superpower of Benjamin Franklin. So long as he's in a future the existence of which depends on his surviving to return to the past, anything that might harm his person will miss him and every strike will be a lucky perfect hit.
Homestuck has Clover of the Felt and Vriska Serket. Though, we don't know if Clover was born lucky, or just received the power from his master, and Vriska actually steals luck from other people.
Pretty much the only reason (aside from Sniper's vigilance) that Zee Captain is still alive.
Andrew "Lucky" Day was a Golden Age hero who used his luck to make up for the fact that, otherwise, he was just an ordinary guy.
Andrew "Lucky" Starr is "Lucky" Day's grandson, and has inherited not only his grandfather's love of adventure, but also his incredible good fortune.
Lady Luck of the Knights of Norfolk is an active probability manipulator.
Bedlam, a supervillain from the same setting, isn't so much lucky himself as he is capable of instilling bad luck in everyone around him (thus giving himself the appearance of good luck). Jinx is another villain who has the same powers.
The 'probability Warpers' of the Whateley Universe have this. Currently there are so many of them at Whateley Academy that the administration has problems spreading them out among different dorms. Kismet also has magical powers. Hazard also has some kind of precognitive gift. Clover is trying to become a powerful wizard too. Then there's Murphy whose luck is usually bad.
Callie Linder in Metamor City has a "chaos aura" that tends to produce good luck for her but has varying effects on people near her.
In the animated series, Class of the Titans, the phenomenal luck of one of the main characters, Neil, allows him to win everything from battles against mythical creatures to coin tosses. This is especially useful for him since, unlike the other Titans who are descended from ancient Greek heroes and possess incredible fighting abilities, Neil is descended from Narcissus and only has his ancestor?s good looks and vain personality.
Gladstone Gander, listed and pictured above, makes a guest-starring appearance in an episode of DuckTales, where his luck is actually weaponized by Magica De Spell in order to bypass Scrooge's security system. Despite being hypnotized into stealing it he is still cursed due to using his luck for evil and is instead saddled with bad luck. Naturally, but the end of the episode he gets his luck back and refuses to learn his aesop about relying on luck for everything.
In the Futurama episode "The Luck of the Fryrish" the seven-leaf clover given to Fry's nephew, also called Philip J. Fry, granted him lifelong luck. "The ever-lucky Fry made his fortune after striking oil in the bathroom of the mansion he had won in a lottery."
In Kim Possible, Ron is definitely lucky. It's explained by a combination of the Ron factor and the Mystical Monkey Power. His ownfather, an actuary, calculates that Ron should've been taken out years ago on Kim's missions.
Princess Azula of Avatar: The Last Airbender has been called "born lucky" explicitly: she’s firebending prodigy and everything comes naturally to her, earning her her father's "love" and a place as heir apparent to the throne. But she winds up being a deconstruction; she's so used to success that she cannot cope with failure, and when events start turning against her in the final episodes her sanity begins to nosedive. By a sequel comic she's convinced that there's a grand conspiracy responsible for her downfall, rather than admit weakness or failure on her part.
Lazlo: "Don't be silly, Edward. I don't believe in luck!"
(It then zooms out to reveal it's storming, all except for a sunny spot following Lazlo.)
An animated short called Lucky Lydia wherein the title character had impossibly good luck. Examples include waking up to a rainbow (complete with a pot of gold) every morning, finding several hundred dollars in loose change, and winning a poker game when her opponents had marked the cards. In fact, about the only unfortunate thing that happened to Lydia throughout the short was her friend being unable to come out and play (said friend had gone to the doctor to have her blood dyed red).
An episode of The Powerpuff Girls focused on a small-time crook who had this power... to an extent.
In The Fairly Oddparents, the Turners' next door neighbors the Dinklebergs show signs of this. For example, the moment the Turners buy their current house, the one next to it goes on sale note Due to Mr. Turner throwing the "For Sale" sign out of his yard... at which point it landed upright in the yard of the next house over, which the Dinklebergs buy for less money, even though it's bigger and fancier.
In Ben 10, Gwen managed to get her hands on a magic amulet that made the holder lucky beyond belief. She made a superhero outfit and did heroic acts just to get back at Ben, who was being a Smug Snake at the time. Basically, she showed up, stuff happened, and crisis averted. Then she destroys it, along with the other 4 in the set,]], due to the various problems they could cause note They were causing Ben bad luck, hogging the limelight and potentially breaking the plot. That and avoiding the problems if someone else got hold of them.
Ultimate Book of Spells: The episode "Lucky Gus" featured Gus being extremely lucky and alienating his friends because of that. It turns out Zarlak was behind this good luck wave exactly to keep him apart from his friends. It also counts as Loophole Abuse, since he used the luck spell because the boarding school where the heroes live is protected against Dark Magic and lucky spells aren't dark. Fortunately, Zarlak forgot the spell on and Gus used his luck to save the day.
An episode of the Animated Adaptation of Krazy Kat revolved around Krazy being this trope. She would win contests she hadn't even entered and miraculously be the 500th customer at an ice cream parlor simply by "strolling along, minding [her] own business". When a jealous Ignatz demands how she does this, she replies "I guess I'm just born lucky."
Napoleon Bonaparte allegedly had as a hiring policy that whenever he was asked to decide between two people with equal recommendations he'd ask them if they were lucky. Reasoning that if you don't know who to pick, you might as well pick the one who has been lucky thus far.
Counts as a kind of justified trope, in fact - someone who is "lucky" may simply have some unquantifiable or unnoticed skill or other factor aiding them.
Adolf Hitler survived dozens of assassination attempts, most of them by sheer luck.
In one of the few instances where alcohol actually did something good, Seth MacFarlane slept in with a hangover on the morning of September 11th and missed his flight-Flight 11 to be exact.
Mark Wahlberg was about to take one of these flights too, but decided to fly to Canada instead and visit one of his friends.
A man named Tsutomu Yamaguchi was in Hiroshima when the atomic bomb was dropped. He was injured and spent the night there before returning to his hometown. Which wasNagasaki. He survived again and lived to the ripe old age of 93. If that's not simultaneously the worst and best luck in the world, then what is?
Even more than that, Yamaguchi returned to Nagasaki still significantly injured, so he went to see a doctor. The doctor asked him how he had been injured, and as Yamaguchi was explaining the vaporization of Hiroshima, the second bomb dropped. In the middle of his explanation. That's remarkable coincidence.
Other sources say that he was in the office of his supervisor, explaining what he'd experienced in Hiroshima. The disbelieving supervisor supposedly told him in exasperation, "you're an engineer.Think about it! How could just one bomb destroy a whole city?" just as the Fat Man exploded.
As a result of being one of very few people to survive the only two offensive atomic bombings in history, and the longest-lived of them, he became an extremely vocal opponent to nuclear weapons, and his voice was respected in Japan (which, to this day, refuses nuclear derivatives—although nuclear power plants are just fine).
Amongst seafaring cultures particularly, a child born with the amniotic sac attached over his/her head was considered a sign of good fortune (and protected against drowning).