Seers
aka: Seer

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/peekablue_vision_tail.jpg
Like many oracles, she sees events through her eyes...the eyes on her tail.

"Many paths, many seasons I have seen.
Time has washed them away just like the sea.
So many fates, and dreams...
Will become...tragedies..."

People who can see into the future, past and to faraway places. People can be born with this or gain it through freak accidents. If the latter, expect a Reset Button.

When a seer is really powerful, she is The Omniscient or an Omniscient Hero. However, it might turn out that she is Not So Omniscient After All.

This can also lead into a Fantastic Aesop about not using this power for selfish gains. It can also lead to Fridge Logic about being able to see the future but not being able to avoid and/or fix many problems. But then stories that do are often accused of having God Mode Sues. Although the latter can justify a Gambit Roulette because the chance involved in such plans is negated by their powers. These types will likely invoke All According to Plan.

A Sub-Trope of Psychic Powers. A Sister Trope to My Significance Sense Is Tingling (a more vague feeling instead of visions). A common power of the Magical Seventh Son.


Sub Tropes:


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 
  • Tiffa from Gundam X, as one of the few surviving Newtypes. It's not her only psychic power, either.
  • The title character of Puella Magi Oriko Magica.
  • Kakei from Drug & Drop.
  • Mikoto and Sugihime in Gate 7.
  • Inverted in Tokyo Babylon, where Subaru meets a woman named Mirei who can see the past via touching objects. He even comments on how this kind of seer is extremely uncommon. It turns out that there are two other people able to do it: one is Mirei's mother, who uses this in an Heroic Sacrifice when Mirei is targeted by a Serial Killer... and the other is Hot Librarian Miyazaki, whom Mirei falls in love with.
  • In Haruhi Suzumiya, Taniguchi notes that Yuki's class treats her like an oracle, hanging on to her every word and basing decisions solely on if she said a single thing on any given day. Then comes the School Festival, and they assign her to be the Fortune Teller...and she gives extremely detailed "predictions" accurate down to the second.
  • Ichigen Miwa, Kuroh's late master in K, could see the future and predicted that his successor as the Colorless King would be evil. He sent Kuroh to track the boy down and kill him...
  • Sailor Moon: Rei Hino, who can produce visions in fire if she meditates and concentrates, called and also occasionally has premonitions.

    Comic Books 

    Fan Fic 

    Films — Animated 
  • Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas has shades of this, though it's unclear if her premonition is a one-time thing or if she can see the future often.
    • Or it may not be mystical at all — as Santa Claus points out, she's the only character with enough common sense to see that Jack's plan was doomed.
    • However, immediately before "Jack's Obsession," the flower she's holding transforms into a tiny Christmas tree...and then catches fire, foreshadowing the results of Jack's attempts to take over the holiday. She later tells Jack about this "vision," and he doesn't act shocked, so it seems as though she has the power of premonition.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • A common ability of Force-sensitives in the Star Wars universe.
  • The Oracle of The Matrix films is a subversion, as she can't actually see the future. She can, however, predict what choices people will make with near-perfect accuracy and from that extrapolate events that will come, through an innate understanding of the human psyche. She also admits that this ability has limits: if she doesn't understand a choice someone will make, she can't predict what they will do, and she doesn't know what will happen after that.
  • The Precogs of Minority Report.
  • X-Men Film Series:
    • X2: X-Men United: After being briefly overwhelmed by her telepathy, Jean Grey tells Scott that "something bad is supposed to happen."
    • The Wolverine: Yukio knows when, where and how a person will die.
    • X-Men: Apocalypse: Jean's precognitive ability expresses itself as a terrible dream full of death and mass destruction.

    Literature 
  • The Alteriens in Alterien all have precognition. However, they don't see everything and some may have visions of the same events from different perspectives.
  • The high spirits of Astral Dawn can see across all of time from the astral plane.
  • Many seers appear in the Trojan Cycle: The Trojans Cassandra and Helenus, the Achaean Calchas, and even the ghostly Tiresias.
  • The Raven Cycle's heroine, Blue, grew up in a house full of seers. Her mother, mother's friends. aunts, cousins, etc. are all seers except for Blue herself.
  • A lot of characters in Tales of the Branion Realm. Generally precognitive, and religious in nature.
  • The Rifter: The walls at the convent of Umbhra’ibaye are strung with bones who are issusha’im: women who’ve been stripped of their flesh but kept alive, with charms carved on the bones. This somehow gives them the power to see through time, seeing multiple possible futures as well as (maddeningly) the lives that they might have lived if they hadn’t been turned into issusha’im. The Payshmura use the issusha’im’s soothsaying to avert future events that they don’t want. Ji, an escaped issusha leading the Fai’daum, foresaw her own death but chose to go to battle anyway; presumably she thought the results of her staying home would have been worse overall, for other people.
  • The main character of the Cassandra Palmer series is the Phytia, the world's chief clairvoyant and guardian of the timeline. However, the power comes as a surprise to Cassie, and to everyone else, and she finds herself in the most wanted list of the supernatural world. Apart from being a clairvoyant, Cassie can time travel and shift around, a sort of teletransport.
  • In the Elemental Logic series, this is one of the abilities that can go with having fire blood. The seer Medric has dreams and visions that generally have to be interpreted, but accurately reflect the future. (Notably, he and his companions are fairly good at interpreting and acting on the things he sees.) Zanja, a fire blood but not an actual "seer", has limited prescience- she occasionally sees short-term future events, and her glyph card readings are always accurate, but her visions don't have the range or complexity of Medric's.
  • Niklaren "Niko" Goldeye from the Circle of Magic series, who mainly devotes his talent to spotting magical influence where it was otherwise missed, such as the protagonists. Occasionally he uses it for crime-solving, since he can spot lies, look into the past, and can have visions of the future.
  • Many novels and short stories by Philip K. Dick feature precognitive powers.
  • In The Changeover, the main character, Laura Chant, has a very mild case of this; more like a premonition when things can be expected to go wrong.
  • In Robert E. Howard's The Hour of the Dragon, Conan the Barbarian meets one. Somewhat cryptic.
    I am but an oracle, through whose lips the gods speak. My lips are sealed by them lest I speak too much. You must find the heart of your kingdom. I can say no more. My lips are opened and sealed by the gods.
  • Time Scout's Ianira Cassondra receives visions voluntarily and involuntarily. Sometimes leads to Fainting Seer.
  • Coryn from Guardians of Ga'Hoole, who can see the future in the flames of a fire.
  • Any medicine cat in Warrior Cats, and the clan leaders, too for that matter. They all get visions and prophecies from StarClan.
  • In the Foundation series by Isaac Asimov, Hari Seldon manages to perfect a science (psychohistory) that can predict what societies will flourish once The Empire dies. He uses it to try and set up a Utopia.
  • "The Seer and the Sword" by Victoria Hanely has Torina — who does need a crystal to use it.
  • Several versions in The Wheel of Time:
    • Some Channelers have the ability to make Foretellings, which are essentially spontaneous prophecies often phrased cryptically, or literally but misleading. The Foreteller doesn't necessarily know what her Foretelling means better than anyone else.
    • More rare are Dreamers, channelers with a strong connection to tel'aran'rhiod who can have prophetic dreams. Unlike Fortellings, the Dreamer usually does know what the dream signifies. Egwene, one of the main characters, is a Dreamer, as is at least one of the Forsaken per Word of God (popular fan speculation is that it's Ishamael).
    • Min has the ability to sometimes see images when she looks at people. These images foretell the future, and Min knows what they mean about half the time. She's the only person in the series with this power, and Word of God indicates that while it's not unique, it's very rare (as in, once or twice over the last three thousand years rare). The Seanchan, a culture who highly prize fortunetelling, are extremely impressed by Min's ability when they find out about it, to the point that the Seanchan Empress makes Min her personal adviser and gives her the title "Doomseer" on the spot.
    • The Aelfinn also have this power, which they sometimes use to answer the three questions humans who seek them out through a particular magical gateway are permitted. Exactly how this works (and how it differs from the above methods) is not made clear.
  • Lord Mhoram in the Chronicles of Thomas Covenant is described as "seer and oracle" to the Council of Lords. These abilities range from prophetic (and usually highly unpleasant) dreams to simply being extremely perceptive.
  • Watership Down features Fiver, a rabbit who is the runt of his litter (which may qualify him for Waif Prophet status). He has psychic visions that can both foretell the future (he sees the mass extermination of his warren early in the novel, which allows him and the other main characters to escape) and see events happening a distance away. In the novel's epilogue, we find out that he's passed this trait on to his children—one of them accurately predicts that someone is approaching before that someone is within earshot.
  • Yeva Belikova from Blood Promise has precognitive dreams.
  • In The Jungle Book, Kaa the python has a version of this which works backwards. He's over a century old (and still extremely healthy and powerful), and in the hundred years he's been alive, he's seen countless things. To that end, he can place himself into a trance and search his memories at will.
  • Keita Mori from The Watchmaker Of Filigree Street.
  • In Noob all Syriallians (which means bascially every single Non-Player Character from the Order) can see someone's future by looking into their eyes. Accuracy however varies greatly between individuals, so those with exceptional natural talent such as the Ashentäk Oracle can get harassed and pushed into becoming The Hermit.
  • At least two versions exist in the world of Mordant's Need.
    • Smashing a flat glass creates an augary, a collection of shards that each hold the image of one significant event from the future of the person or place pictured in the original glass. Since the images come entirely without context, interpreting an augary is somewhat less than an exact science.
    • Terisa has a dream early in the story that turns out to be prophetic, but it's never explained if she has some sort of psychic abilities, if it's a side-effect of the magic that later brings her to Mordant, or if people dreaming the future is just something that sometimes happen in the fictional version of New York she comes from.
  • In Harry Potter, Seers are wizards and witches who have the ability to see into the future. This seems to be one of the rare magical abilities that cannot be taught, only inherited, such as being a Parselmouth or a Metamorphmagus. Professor Trelawney the Divinations professor at Hogwarts has Seer ancestry, though she herself is also one, though she has only given two actual prophecies in her entire life, and has no memory of either. Professor Mc Gonagall is dismissive of Divinations in general and Trelawney in particular because she believes that seeing into the future isn't magic that can be taught and thus has no place in Hogwarts. Even a true Seer's prophecies don't always come true anyway, since people are perfectly able to Screw Destiny in this setting.
  • In The Girl From The Miracles District, the people who are connected to the Miracles District by being Pillars are often sent visions about upcoming events that might affect district's stability.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Buffyverse:
    • Drusilla, Doyle and later Cordelia all get visions. Where Drusilla's came from isn't explained but it's revealed she had them prior to becoming a vampire and that they had driven her quite mad; it was the reason she was turned since Angelus wanted her to suffer eternal torment. Doyle got them from the Powers That Be and passed them onto Cordelia via a kiss.
    • Whistler is also this, though his precognition is "all outta whack" after the destruction of the Seed of Wonder.
  • Screech in Saved by the Bell gets this for an episode.
  • Lexx's Time Prophet, who could only see the past — which luckily was identical to the future.
  • Merlin's Morgana, who gets future visions in her dreams.
  • Phoebe of Charmed can get premonitions just by touching something. She can see the past and the future.
  • Clyde Bruckman from The X-Files episode "Clyde Bruckman's Final Repose" can see past and future deaths.
  • In Babylon 5 Centauri have dreams of their own deaths, Londo sees himself and G'kar strangling one another to death in some twenty years. Turns out he was being controlled by a parasite and begging G'kar to kill him. And there are some seers who can get visions of other things, though still they tend to be omens of doom.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Time Lords claim precognition doesn't exist, causing a certain amount of anxiety in "The Deadly Assassin" when the Doctor has, to his surprise, a psychic precognition.
    • Carmen, a one-time character in the episode "Planet of the Dead," has what the Doctor describes as "low-level psychic abilities"; her husband Lou further explains that she can "just tell things," and has been doing so since childhood. Carmen's powers are somewhat limited on Earth—she's able to correctly win ten pounds "every week, twice a week" in a lottery—but being exposed to alien sunlight strengthens them, allowing her to see events happening miles away, accurately sense the true intentions of others, and provide individuals with prophecies about their futures (which leads to the season's last set of Arc Words). Those prophecies often come in riddling, obscure terms; this is lampshaded by Carmen, who seems genuinely frustrated and upset by her inability to explain exactly what she's sensing.
  • Sam and Ava in Supernatural have visions of the future.
  • In The Flash (2014), Cisco's metahuman ability is basically this. He can see into alternate universes, as well as locate people and occasionally see into the future.

    Mythology and Religion 
  • The oracles and sybils of ancient Greece and Rome, sworn to Apollo(n). Graeco-Roman culture took soothsaying very seriously: after an extremely pious Greek general lost a war in Sicily despite following the advice of his personal foretellers, his countrymen back home started inquiring into his past to find out where he had sinned, to motivate the Gods to give him false counsel.
  • The Etruscans who populated North Italy before the rise of Rome also had a very avid interest in foretelling the future. Their soothsayers, haruspexes, would foretell from the livers and guts of sheep and oxen, cloud formations, lightning strikes and unusual weather patterns and the flight paths of birds, among other things. Curiously, not a single bit of evidence of the Etruscans ever looking for signs from the nighttime sky, in astrology, has survived.
  • Modern Groundhog Day events presume that a rodent can be a seer, at least regarding the weather.
  • In Christian hagiology, Saint Clare of Assisi was given this by God, in order to attend Mass. This was because she was confined to a bed from illness.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In Dungeons & Dragons, divination is the school of magic that specializes in gaining information, including clairvoyance.
    • In the optional psionics for 3rd Edition, seers are psions who specialize in the same.
  • In Wraith: The Oblivion, part of the domain of Fatalism is seeing people's past and future. Practitioners are known as Oracles, and use pratically every conceivable method of divination to focus their powers.
    • The basic levels of Lifeweb allow a wraith to perceive what's happening around their fetters, or to divine the fetters of a target wraith, no matter where they are.
    • Behest, practiced in the African Underworld, allows its practitioners to see things at a distance, so long as they have something associated with the target. At higher levels it provides a limited degree of divination.
  • Clairsentients in Æon can see at a distance (vast distances - they can see places several light-years away) and look into the past and future.
  • In Warhammer 40,000, one of the Paths that the Eldar of the Craftworlds can take is the Path of the Seer, in which an Eldar learns to use his/her psychic power to its full extent. Eldar who become lost on this Path become Farseers, frighteningly powerful psykers who are able to see potential futures and determine which are most likely to happen and which can and should be made to happen to be the most beneficial.
  • Precognition in Rocket Age gives a person visions of the future which they can focus on to gain more specific information.
  • Since it takes a lot of inspiration from Watership Down (see its entry under Literature), Bunnies & Burrows naturally offers the option of playing a rabbit with oracular powers.
  • Visionary arcana, and in particular the Vision arcanum, is one of the kinds of magic available to Blue Rose adepts. It lets you see the possible future, with varying clarity depending on how skilled you are, ranging from a flash of blurry events for a beginner to a master being able to Rewind, Replay, Repeat her vision at will. It also comes with the added bonus of giving you a Spider-Sense.

    Video Games 
  • Hannah from Fire Emblem Elibe. When she gets Put on a Bus, Nils takes over her "oracle" duty.
  • Fallout
    • Bloomseer Poplar from Fallout 3 is a prophetic old lady living in the settlement of Oasis. Her precognition factors into the game play: you can ask about your future, and she will tell you something related to quests that you have not yet discovered.
    • The same goes for the Forecaster from Fallout: New Vegas. He can pretty much sum up the whole game for 300 caps.
    • And Fallout 4 gives us Mama Murphy, who'll reveal various hints about the Lone Survivor's future through her chem-fueled Sight.
  • Fateweavers from Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning. Contrary to the what the name implies, the Fateweavers can only see the Weave of Fate, they can't actually change it — no one can. They were honored in the past, but nowadays have a poor reputation since people don't like to receive bad news and tend to blame the messenger. Their reactions to meeting The Fateless One are mixed — part fear and shock that someone is able to alter the Weave, and part hope since the Fateless One can give them a new unwritten future.
  • Theresa from the Fable series is a gypsy with the power to see the future. She is blind, but is capable of seeing "other worlds". Especially in Fable II, Theresa plays the role of the seer.
  • Final Fantasy XIII-2 has Yuel and Serah who possess the "Eyes of Etro" that allow them to see into the future. However, having visions shortens the person's lifespan until they eventually die.
  • Shulk from Xenoblade has the power to see the future thanks to the Monado. Alvis also has this power, and is directly referred to as "seer" by the High Entia. The thing the two have in common? They're both gods. Or in the very least, Shulk's carrying one around.
  • Palutena in Super Smash Bros. (specifically the fourth installment) mentions having this skill in her discussion with Pit about Ness.
    • Palutena: Pit, we're having this conversation via telepathy. Meanwhile, the power of flight is a type of psychokinesis, and I see you from the heavens using clairvoyance. Finally, I call you back from the battlefield with something akin to teleportation.

    Webcomics 
  • Tower of God: All the Guides, which includes Evan Edrock and Hw Ryun, are said to be so knowledgeable in the ways of the Tower that at times they can foretell the future. Xia Xia also works as a fortune teller, however she probably gets all her knowledge by using her ever-common light houses.
  • Dominic Deegan is a seer for hire.
  • In Drowtales, the drowussu Chiri'nide and Shimi'lande Val'Kyorlsolenurn are seers, as is the leader of the light elves of Vanaheimr, Vala Hudr. Since it was revealed that drowussu are descended from light elves it may mean that prescience is a racial trait. This is later Retconned to a misinterpretation of Mind Reading, merely looking at peoples' future plans rather than looking through time or receiving miracles.
  • Seer is a player class in Homestuck that's concerned with seeing alternate timelines and having a non-linear perception of the main one. Notable seers include Rose, the Seer of Light, who can see the most likely path to victory. And Terezi, the Seer of Mind, who can see the consequences of people's decisions before they make them.
    • Mages are similar, with Sollux, the Mage of Doom, having visions of the apocalypse, and Meulin, the Mage of Heart, being an excellent matchmaker and empath.
  • The Seer: Korbyn.

    Web Original 
  • Apollo and Hera in Thalia's Musings. They're both prophecy deities who can see visions of the future.
  • The Pythia in Greek Ninja.
  • Dinah Alcott in Worm, with the side benefit of Ludicrous Precision. She can give the odds of a future event happening to within five decimal places.
    • Also Contessa, who has a form of precognition that lets her see guaranteed paths to victory. And unlike other forms of prescience, it can't be countered by other precogs.
    • The Simurgh as can only "see" past and future timelines. She doesn't have other senses.

    Western Animation 
  • Pictured: Peek-A-Blue of She-Ra: Princess of Power
  • Lion-O of Thunder Cats and ThunderCats (2011) through the power of the Sword of Omens.
  • In DuckTales, Fenton Crackshell's mother gets this for an episode.
  • Several characters of Delta State.
  • Shirley from Tiny Toon Adventures.
  • Pinkie Pie of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has her "Pinkie Sense", in which specific twitches and tics of her body (or combinations thereof) indicate certain future events; for example, her tail twitching indicates something's going to fall.
  • Garnet from Steven Universe can do a variation with her Third Eye. Instead of one clear future, she can see multiple paths the future can take.
    Garnet: Time is like a river. It splits into creeks, or pools into lakes, or careens down waterfalls. I have the map, and I steer the ship.
    • Sapphire also has this ability, which is where Garnet gets hers from. In a blink-and-you'll-miss moment you can see she came to a stop exactly where Ruby would be able to see her a second before she appeared. In her later appearance she uses it blatantly, though her Future Vision doesn't seem to be as advanced as Garnet's; While Garnet can see multiple outcomes, Sapphire only saw one outcome for the rebel attack in "The Answer."
  • Bill Cipher from Gravity Falls seems to have a variation of this power. According to his AMA, he can see "A KALEIDOSCOPE OF TEMPORAL PROBABILITY WITH FLUCTUATING RANGE!" See Garnet from Steven Universe in the above example, as this seems to be describing the exact same power.


Alternative Title(s): Seer, Precognition, Oracle, Clairvoyance

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/Seers?from=Main.Seer