For some reason, it's common for badges to be depicted as either giving special abilities to or augmenting the special abilities of the wearer. This could be rooted in the fact that military officers and the like wear them as symbol of [[AuthorityEqualsAsskicking authority]]. Authority is by no means necessary to use ''these'' babies, however.

This trope is common in {{RPG}}s, where they will be collected as equipment.

Subtrope of ClothesMakeTheSuperman.

[[IThoughtItMeant Has nothing to do with]] [[ImprobableWeaponUser using sewing needles, tacks, pushpins, or the like as weapons]]. Also has nothing to do with ThePenIsMightier.
* In ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', Ichigo has badge that can, among other things, detach his soul from his body.
* In ''Franchise/SailorMoon'' the main character has a brooch which serves as both a Transformation Trinket and a holder for her Power Crystal. Chibi-Chibi also gets one later on.
* In ''Anime/{{Voltron}}'', the keys to the lions hide themselves as pins.
** In ''WesternAnimation/VoltronForce'', the keys are required to activate Voltcoms.

* E.E. "Doc" Smith's ''Literature/{{Lensman}}'' series. The Lens, which is the badge of the Lensmen of the Galactic Patrol, gives the wearer a variety of useful mental powers, including language translation. It will also kill anyone who touches it other than its owner.

* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' has a handful of magical pins/periapts/scarabs/brooches, starting with 'brooch of shielding' which protects against Magic Missile and 'scarab of protection' which before D&D3 gave a saving throw against spells normally not allowing it, in later versions gives spell resistance and absorbs a number of lifeforce-draining or death attacks.
** ''TabletopGame/ForgottenRealms'' [[HeroSecretService Harper]] pins (AD&D2 ''The Code of the Harpers'' / D&D3 ''Magic of Faerūn'') give their wearers a bonus against mind-affecting effects, immunity to detection spells/psionics, Magic Missile and electricity/lightning attacks. They also blacken and start to jangle if worn by an evil being.

* In ''Videogame/EarthBound'' (and the other VideoGame/{{MOTHER}} games), one of the earliest really useful special items you get is the [[Creator/BenjaminFranklin Franklin]] Badge, which reflects electrical attacks. It should be noted that in Videogame/{{MOTHER1}}, the Franklin Badge only reflected PK Beam Gamma, which was a one hit KO.
* In ''Videogame/FinalFantasyTacticsAdvance'', certain characters wear a ribbon (the military style, with a badge) that makes them exempt from all laws.
* In the ''Franchise/{{Mario}}'' [=RPG=]s, badges affect stats and sometimes have more interesting effects:
** In VideoGame/{{Paper Mario|64}} and [[VideoGame/PaperMarioTheThousandYearDoor its sequel]], they are Mario's sole form of equipment, and do anything from giving the player extra information, to giving Mario extra moves, to giving already existing functions more effectiveness, to boosting Mario's stats when low on health. They're stat-boosting accessories in ''VideoGame/MarioAndLuigiSuperstarSaga'' and ''VideoGame/MarioAndLuigiPartnersInTime''.
** In contrast, ''VideoGame/MarioAndLuigiBowsersInsideStory'' and ''VideoGame/MarioAndLuigiDreamTeam'' turns it into a sort of LimitBreak instead where an in-battle badge meter can be filled up with successful attacks; the exact advantage given is determined by Mario's badge, while the rate and requirements for filling the meter up are determined by Luigi's badge. the effects range from healing the bros., to a defensive buff, to affecting enemies with bad status effects.
* ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou'' is built around this trope; every "player" in the "game" the protagonists are trapped in gains PsychicPowers from one. Neku, the PlayerCharacter, is unique in that he can use more than one (thus he can use pins in a PowersAsPrograms style). Oh, and the BigBad's EvilPlan is [[spoiler: to use modified pins to wire everyone up to a HiveMind. Neku's power makes him the best hope the MysteriousBacker has of countering it.]]
* In ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'', badges obtained by defeating gym leaders allow the player character's traded Pokemon to listen to them instead of ignoring orders. In early games, badges permanently gave a boost to a Pokemon's stats in battle.
* Many of the trinkets in ''Videogame/WorldOfWarcraft'' fall into this category, although it's hard to tell with some of them because their names are so vague.
* In the fourth installment of the ''VideoGame/EpicBattleFantasy'' series, some of stat-boosting or ability-granting pieces of flair are badges.
* Comically played with in ''VideoGame/BionicCommando Rearmed''. Two of the bosses are war veterans with such a ridiculous amount of medals pinned to their chests, that they can stoically NoSell bullets, lasers and rockets alike! A grenade lobbed over their heads, though...
* In ''VideoGame/{{Psychonauts}}'', merit badges represent mastery in various PsychicPowers. However, in most cases Razputin can't use the relevant techniques at all until he earns the badge, at which point he becomes an InstantExpert in their execution.