An ability or a situation that prevents the use of items. If the character's power mostly comes from his or her items, this can be a serious
threat to them, even if they're high-level, and possibly one of the only ways to bring them down.
See also: No-Gear Level
and Mooks Ate My Equipment
. In a world where superpowers come from equipment, a Power Nullifier
has the same effect.
- A number of cards in the Yu-Gi-Oh! Card Game do this: Jinzo, Royal Decree, Prohibition and Naturia Bamboo Shoot, just to name a few.
- Dungeons & Dragons: in 1st and 2nd Edition the Wand of Negation could prevent magic items from using their spells and spell-like functions.
- Pokémon: the moves Embargo and Magic Room for any items and Heal Block for any healing items, and the ability Unnerve for held Berries.
- Several more "competitive" battle environments disallow the use of any items on your Pokémon, with the only assistance allowed being held items. This included all battles against other players until Pokemon Black And White, which introduced a "Wonder Launcher" option to include items in battle.
- The White Seal floors in Dark Cloud 2 do this for healing items.
- In Final Fantasy XII, the climb up the Pharos tower requires you to make a sacrifice before proceeding up the second section (which is five floors and one Boss Battle). One of the sacrifices you can choose is to give up your Items command.
- In Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (the one by Criterion Games), the Racers can activate a Jammer weapon that not only prevents Cops within the radius of the Jammer's effect from using any weapons, but also makes the minimap disappear for Cops, reveals any Roadblocks called in beforehand and causes any Spike Strips deployed beforehand (by Cops, of course) to disappear.
- In Metal Gear Solid, your weapons are de-activated when you get into the nuclear warheads store.
- In Final Fantasy VII, one of the random effects that can be activated while you're fighting in the Golden Saucer Arena is the deactivation of your Item-command.
- In Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon, one possible bad result of the Luck Roulettes is not being able to use items.
- In Super Mario RPG, Bowyer shoots arrows to disable buttons on your controller, thus preventing Mario from either attacking, casting spells or using items. Later, in the Moleville Mines, Croco will challenge you to a fight. After he loses half of his HP, he will steal all of your items, and you won't be able to use them again until you defeat him.
- During the final fight with Bowser in the first Paper Mario game, Bowser could stomp Mario and prevent him from using items, jump attacks, or hammer attacks for a couple of turns. The Spy Guy's hammer attack can do the same thing.
- In Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga, the Boos in Bowser's castle can steal command blocks from the brothers during a battle. Depending on which block is stolen, the brothers can't jump, use their hammers or use their hand powers for the next turn.
- The same happens during the battles with Popple.
- The Bonus Boss of Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story, Bowser X, temporarily steals your special attacks as you use them.
- Mario & Luigi: Dream Team Dream Team's Bonus Boss, Bowser Jr., does the same. Also subverted during the dream arena battles, where your items are replaced with a predetermined and limited inventory, and the turn limit also discourages item usage.
- Attempting to access the item screen in Bayonetta during an Alfheim portal challenge? You'll be greeted with this◊. Angel Slayer, the Lost Chapter, takes place entirely within Alfheim, and this restriction is not lifted.
- Because items lower your score, the entire game is this when going for Platinum trophies and the like.
- Much like Bayonetta, The Wonderful 101 also restricts item usage in Kahkoo-regah. Unlike Bayonetta, there's no message if you attempt to access the item screen. You're just denied access to that section of the menu if you pause the game. And once again, the special Operation 101 contains the same restriction.
- Item usage in regards to score is still restricted, but only to items that make combat easier. Healing items for the health and unite gauge are fair game, thankfully, and will never have ill effects.
- There are several sections of Super Mario Sunshine where Shadow Mario steals Mario's FLUDD (water-shooting device), thus preventing him from hovering and forcing him to stick with his basic physical abilities like jumping.
- In many Roguelikes, if an equipped item (a wielded weapon or worn piece of armor/jewelry) is cursed then it can't be removed. While the equipped cursed item can still be used like normal, this prevents the player from swapping in a different piece of equipment of the same type. Some games go further and take equipment layers into account: in NetHack, if you're wearing cursed gloves then you'll be unable to change which rings you're wearing on your hands, since you can't take off your gloves to get at your bare fingers.
- The Arenas in most games of the Tales Series prohibit item use.
- Equipping the Barbatos Ring in Tales of Vesperia or using a piece of equipment with the "Barbatosian" quality in Tales of Graces also prevents you from using items. They're named after the infamous Barbatos Goetia, who really doesn't like it when you use items while fighting him.
- In most The Legend of Zelda games, there are items that cannot be used in all places. The most common example of this is not being allowed to use weapons when you're in someone's house. Many games in the series also feature 'cursed' enemies who often have blue flames or smoke (dark purple in Skyward Sword). Instead of burning Link, they will restrict the usage of his items for as long as the effect lasts.
- Azure Dreams: Anorexia ability prevent monsters from eating consumables (i.e., the kind that heals HP or cures status ailments). They are mildly Goddamned Bats when they appear as enemies, and completely useless when they are your allies.
- Particularly Egregious example in Heroes of Might and Magic IV: if a monster or character has protection from magic, they will also be unable to drink potions. So the choice is between brutally mauled by magic and unable to heal, or brutally mauled by fangs/claws/fists/whatever and unable to heal.
- During one dungeon in Shadow Hearts, Yuri and Zhouzen are forced to split off from Alice and Margarete and have their ability to use items confiscated (hopefully you've leveled Zhouzen enough so that he's learned his healing spell). Alice and Margarete, meanwhile, have their skills sealed. Later, Yuri and Zhouzen have their skills sealed off, but don't get the ability to use items back until they get out of the dungeon. This isn't a complete case, though, since you can still use items outside of battle (though the game pretends otherwise).
- Team Fortress 2's Medieval Mode takes away the ranged weapons of all but three classes (Scout, Sniper, and Medic with the Flying Guillotine, Huntsman, and Crusader's Crossbow respectively) and forces everyone to fight with melee weapons. Stick grenades and car batteries are still allowed in though. As it's not a huge focus of development, this can make tremendous differences in the value of the class. For instance, it hurts the Engineer tremendously since he doesn't get any of his buildings, and his low health and subpar weapon damage turn him into a Joke Character nobody plays unless they're trolling.
- In Mario Party 9, one event lets the current captain temporarily seal all the other player's special dice, keeping them from using them for their next turn.
- Dark Souls has the throwable "Lloyd's Talismans", which disable the use of Estus Flasks in a limited area. While computer-controlled enemies that use Estus are somewhat rare and generally don't have so much health that it makes a difference, they are almost a requirement when invading in Pv P to keep your foe from just running away and chugging Estus every chance they get (though if someone deliberately sought out invaders to duel it's generally agreed they shouldn't be doing this anyway).
- The final battles in Radiant Silvergun and Ikaruga both disable your weapons and have you dodge their Bullet Hell for 60 seconds.
- The Very Definitely Final Dungeon in Final Fantasy VIII has restrictions on what command can be used in battle, and the restrictions can be broken by defeating the bosses in it (not too hard if you know what you're doing). The restrictions include No GF, No Magic, and No Item.
- In Chrono Trigger, there are a number of enemies who have the ability "Lock-All", which prevents the player from using items or techniques. The enemies have high evade rates, lots of experience, and/or drop rare items.
- The Last Federation, if the player challenges Burlust warlord into a duel, his special abilities are disabled.