Video Game Effects and Spells
So what can you do in a video game? Jump, attack, swing your sword, rain fire and destruction on your enemy, heal your friends, or maybe do a backflip? This is an index of all the things that video game heroes and villains can pull off.
- Always Accurate Attack
This attack will never miss its target. Ever.
- Area of Effect
Attacks that hit a wide area, rather than a specific target. Beware friendly fire!
- Arrows on Fire
Arrows can kill you. But they can kill you better if they're on fire!
With the right item or spell, a character will be automatically revived in the event of their own KO.
- Awesome, but Impractical
A great, flashy move, which is hard to use or does little damage.
- Back Stab
A stealth attack from behind that does massive damage.
- Ballistic Bone
An attack that launches bones.
- Beat the Curse Out of Him
The way to free a cursed or possessed person is to beat him up.
- Beehive Barrier
A barrier made up of geometric shapes.
- Booze-Based Buff
Video games portray drunkenness in silly ways, often with positive status effects.
- Boring, but Practical
The mainstays of your skillset that you use over and over again, because they are the most effective.
- Bubble Gun
The gun shoots bubbles. Lame.
- Cast from Hit Points
A spell that draws from the user's own health or life energy.
- Cast From Money
It costs money every time that power is being used.
- Chain Lightning
A multi-hit lightning attack.
- Charged Attack
Charge up a skill by either collecting items or holding a button.
- Circling Birdies
A visual indicator of being dazed and/or confused and/or under certain Standard Status Effects.
- Combination Attack
A special attack that occurs when two or more characters use certain attacks at the same time or in rapid succession.
A sequence of moves that string together.
- Counter Attack
When the enemy attacks, you swat him right back.
- Critical Hit
An attack randomly does extra (or double) damage.
- Critical Failure
A chance for automatic failure (or Epic Fail) when executing a skill or spell.
- Damage-Increasing Debuff
A status ailment making its subject take more damage somehow.
- Damage Over Time
A negative status that inflicts a small amount of damage on a unit at regular time intervals.
- Dash Attack
An attack that simultaneously moves the user in a forward direction.
- Death or Glory Attack
A high risk attack that can be very powerful but can also backfire or disadvantage you.
- Desperation Attack
A super-attack available (or more powerful) only when the user is near death.
- Disadvantageous Disintegration
Your attack destroys not only your enemy, but also all the valuable stuff he would otherwise have dropped.
- Disc One Nuke
An exploit where a powerful item or technique is achieved early on in the game.
- Double Jump
Jump once, then you jump again in mid-air. No, it shouldn't be possible, but it's fun.
- Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors
Ice beats water. Water beats fire. Fire beats... spooky?
- Elemental Tiers
Elemental weapons (and sometimes spells) are drastically different in power level.
- Eleventh Hour Superpower
A powerful, unique weapon or ability suddenly obtained near the end of the game to help the hero get through the final challenges.
- Enemy Scan
HP: 200 MP: 90 Element: Potassium Weakness: Widdle Kitties
- Evolving Attack
An ability which can grow or change as you use it or gain levels.
- Field Power Effect
When the characters get supernatural bonuses or weaknesses based on the battlefield conditions.
- Finishing Move
A special combat maneuver you can only use to finish off a battle.
- Fire, Ice, Lightning
The three most common elements in RPGs.
- First Person Snapshooter
The increasingly common gameplay feature that has the player taking pictures of enemies, items, NPCs, or features in the environment.
- Fixed Damage Attack
A skill that does a set amount of damage, regardless of the caster's or target's statistics, or pretty much anything else.
- Goomba Stomp
Enemies in Platform Games can be defeated just by landing on top of them.
- Goomba Springboard
Games where you can stomp on an enemy to end up higher than where you started from.
- Gradual Regeneration
Hit Points and/or Mana Points are restored over time, depending if it's an ability or an item.
- Grapple Move
An attack done by grabbing an enemy and usually throwing them after.
- Grind Boots
Characters can grind a rail without a skateboard—just with their shoes.
- Ground Pound
The player jumps, ducks or crouches in the air, and comes down powerfully onto the ground.
- Ground Punch
When one or several of a character's attacks or moves involves punching the ground.
- Herd Hitting Attack
An attack that makes standing around in a group a bad idea.
- Home Run Hitter
An ability that hits so powerfully that the opponent is knocked all the way into the distance (twinkle!)
- HP to One
An attack that always reduces its targets' Hit Points to one (i.e. 1 HP away from death).
- Infinity+1 Element
A unique spell or element only usable by bosses or special units, with no weaknesses.
- Invulnerable Attack
An attack that makes you invincible while it's charging or executing.
- Kamehame Hadoken
An incredibly destructive, solid blast of Pure Energy emitted from the hands.
- Knockback Evasion
An action performed to stop being knocked back by a hit.
- Lag Cancel
A move you can do to shorten the amount of lag time after an attack, letting you move again more quickly.
- Last Chance Hit Point
If a normally lethal amount of damage instead reduces a character to their last Hit Point, and they can endure one more attack before being knocked out.
- Last Disc Magic
In Eastern RPGs, although magic is usually less efficient than melee attacks, a spell or set of spells later in the game will be much better than the rest.
- Last Ditch Move
An attack thrown by an enemy just before it dies.
- Level Drain
In RPGs, certain enemies can take Character Levels away from you (usually temporarily).
- Life Drain
An attack that hurts your opponent and heals you.
- Limit Break
A powerful attack or technique available after some requirement during battles (e.g. damage received) is fulfilled.
- Limited Move Arsenal
Characters can't just use everything they know; they have to rely on a limited subset of them during battles.
- Loot Command
A specific command you need to loot something from a defeated enemy.
- Magikarp Power
A character or ability that seems completely useless at first, but with repeated use and patience can be highly effective later.
- Mana Burn
An attack that damages the target's magic points.
- Mana Drain
A skill that drains a target's magic points and gives it to the caster.
- Mana Shield
A skill that makes attacks damage your magic points instead of your Hit Points.
- Maximum HP Reduction
Attacks that reduce the maximum number of Hit Points, not just their current amount.
- Mutual Disadvantage
When two sides are equally impervious (or vulnerable) to the other's skills or powers.
An enemy or spell that has no elemental affinity and hence no strengths or weaknesses against elemental opponents.
- Non Standard Skill Learning
This skill is learned in a different way than other skills in the game.
- Percent Damage Attack
A spell or attack that lowers the target's HP by a fraction of the current amount regardless of other factors. Often cannot inflict a killing blow.
- Player Guided Missile
You can personally ensure your attack hits its target, by guiding it there yourself.
- Power Copying
Where the hero can copy the abilities of bad guys and use them from then on.
- Quirky Bard
A gimmick class, character or unit often added by game designers trying to add variety.
- Random Effect Spell
Nobody knows for sure what will happen ... do you feel lucky, punk?
- Randomized Damage Attack
An attack/ability that has its damage/quality etc randomized per each usage, forcing you to be wise on using it.
- Recovery Attack
An ability to fight back after getting knocked down.
- Reverse Shrapnel
An ability that surrounds the user with deadly items, which then home in on enemies.
- Revive Kills Zombie
Situation where an undead or zombie enemy is damaged by healing magic or items.
- Rolling Attack
You roll yourself into stuff to travel quickly, and deal damage in the process!
- Sacrificial Revival Spell
This spell kills you, but it brings someone back to life.
- Secondary Fire
Where a gun can have a second "fire" button with a different effect than the primary "fire" button.
- Shockwave Stomp
Where a boss or character can smash on the ground and send out a wave of energy that causes damage.
- Situational Damage Attack
An attack that depends on some certain variable/action that can make it more powerful.
- Slap-on-the-Wrist Nuke
A powerful attack that is nonetheless far less damaging than its depiction implies.
- Slide Attack
A low-sliding action that sits between offensive option and a means of mobility.
- Special Attack
Any weapon, move, or tactic that is normally not a basic punch, kick, or whatever other forms of attack the user normally uses. May or may not require some form of Mana or energy to power it.
- Spin Attack
You spin around like a maniac in an attempt to make cheeky enemies give you a little breathing room.
- Splash Damage
An attack that does damage in a radius around where it initially hits, dealing less damage farther from the center.
- Splash Damage Abuse
Abusing an attack's Splash Damage or Area of Effect to get enhanced performance.
- Sprint Shoes
An item, ability, or spell that enables the player character to move around cities and town faster. May or may not have any use in actual combat.
- Stage Fatality
A finisher that sends the opponent into some environmental hazard.
- Status Buff Dispel
A spell that negates Status Buffs that enemies (or the players) have cast on themselves.
- Status Effect
Anything that changes how a character plays or battles, whether for good or ill:
- Status Ailment
Negative secondary effects that impair one's ability to fight an extended battle.
- Status Buff
Positive secondary affects in one form or another to a character or an ally.
- Stock RPG Spells
The various forms of magic found in most RPGs and other games with similar elements.
- Summon Magic
The ability to call on a magical, often mythological entity without the hassle of actually having it follow you around.
- Super Mode
A mode where an individual temporarily becomes much stronger, almost always accompanied by a visible change towards the Bad Ass end of the spectrum.
- Sword Beam
You swing your sword, and a beam of energy shoots out to hit opponents from a distance.
- Too Awesome to Use
It's so awesome, you actually don't want to use it; usually because It Only Works Once.
- Tornado Move
The ability to throw tornados or hurricanes to your enemies.
- Turn Undead
A standard spell which causes The Undead to panic or be destroyed, depending on the work.
- Unblockable Attack
An attack that can't be blocked; it breaks any defense or counter. Can usually be dodged or interrupted, however.
- Useless Useful Non-Combat Abilities
Abilities that let you get through situations without fighting, but end up not being all that useful.
- Useless Useful Spell
A spell or effect which sounds useful in theory, but rarely ever works in your favor.
- Useless Useful Stealth
When sneaking past an opponent isn't as easy (or rewarding) as just plain fighting them.
- Video Game Dashing
For when a character zooms forward for no explainable reason.
- Video Game Flight
Somewhat ironically, video games that actually let your character fly freely about the world don't always let your character fly freely about the world.
- Video Game Stealing
YOINK! You stole PIANO!
- Wall Jump
Who needs stairs? Just bounce yourself off the wall!
- You Nuke 'Em
Tactical or strategic nuclear warheads used in gameplay.
- You Shouldn't Know This Already
You get an item or instrument that can do all sorts of things - but you can't do them yet, because your in-universe character hasn't "learned" about them yet.