"I am Wrys, a humble curate. I cannot fight, but this staff I carry can heal your wounded. Take me with you, and you’ll be very glad you did."A White Mage is a character archetype and often a gameplay archetype which focuses on healing and/or buffing magic. They may also have access to magic that causes some status effects. Modern incarnations will often be given some offensive ability, often magic of the holy variety, though the Elemental Powers of water or wind may be given a healing affinity. Frequently, White Mages will be extremely effective against undead, either through the power of the Holy Hand Grenade, Turn Undead spells, or Revive Kills Zombie characteristics. Many games with a Character Class System or Job System, especially Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games, will have a White Mage class that fulfils the Healer role. A White Mage is almost always The Medic, although they have the addition of buffs. Female White Mages in Eastern RPGs are frequently the White Magician Girl, although they must also fit the personality requirements for that trope. White Mages are frequently paired with a Black Mage as a Foil. They also frequently overlap with Squishy Wizard, though they tend to be more resilient than their chromatic counterparts. Subtrope of Support Party Member. If a character has both healing and offensive magic in relatively equal measure, they are a Red Mage, instead. If a White Mage can sling healing spells while fighting on the front lines, you've got yourself what's known as a Paladin, or Combat Medic. Contrast Black Mage. Not to be confused with White Magic, which is only sometimes the source of a White Mage's power.
— Wrys, Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon
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- Dungeons & Dragons:
- Clerics, probably the Ur-Example. Although in practice, D&D Clerics tend to suck at their intended purpose in more than a few editions (damage out-grows healing ability quite quickly), but awesome through use of things that otherwise fall in Useless Useful Spell, and have decent stat-buffing ability for themselves and their teammates, and an innate ability to drive away undead creatures. It should be noted that unlike most White Mages, D&D Clerics are extremely proficient physical fighters (with the second-best hit die, second-best attack proficiency, and capable of wearing heavy armor and shields), though up until the third edition, they were also forbidden from using bladed weapons, unless their religion specifically allows this.
- The Healer class in 3.5, as the name implies, was an attempt at making a pure healing class without any of the martial attributes of the Cleric. They're immune to diseases and poisons, they can heal with a touch, and they can center a healing wave on themselves, and all that is in addition to their actual spells (which includes a lot of the Cleric's protection and buffing spells, but not the entire Cleric spell list). Plus, their spellcasting is spontaneous so they don't have to prepare their spells, they can cast healing spells in response to allies getting attacked (and not just on their turn), and they can maximize healing several times a day. In exchange, they can only use quarterstaffs as weapons and cannot use armor or shields (though they keep the Cleric's good attack bonus), they have smaller hit dice, and they have none of the Cleric's offensive spells (like Flame Strike), making them far less of a combatant than a Cleric.
- The Favored Soul (from 3.5's Complete Divine) is somewhere in between. They can wear medium armor (compared to the Cleric's heavy armor), they get the Cleric's higher hit die, and they can use all simple weapons. They only have a limited selection of spells (which, unlike a cleric or Healer, they can't swap out each day, but they do have access to the full Cleric spell list to choose from, unlike Healers), but they can cast them spontaneously. They also get the best saving throws (instead of one good category and two bad, all three are good), innate energy resistance, and damage reduction. Plus at higher levels they grow wings and can fly. It's significantly less of a game-breaker in the hands of a min-maxer than a cleric (mostly due to the limited casting ability) but tends to be much more flexible and powerful within the healing role itself.
- Pathfinder Clerics flirt more with this trope. Some can take devastating offensive spells, but they lose heavy armor proficiency. Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 Clerics were better warriors than the fighting classes with buffs, but this is not the case in Pathfinder. Most clerics also gain a massive boost to healing abilities and offense against undead via Revive Kills Zombie, making them far more effective. Evil clerics did not have buffed healing (a mild case of No Cure for Evil), but siphoned away the life force of living people and healed their often undead allies via an inversion of Revive Kills Zombie. Good and neutral Oracles can also fall into this trope, though Inquisitors and Druids usually do not, as the former is a "mysterious divine agent" with a limited selection from the Cleric's list.
- The entire point of the Life sphere in Spheres of Power.
- In Heroica, LEGO's dungeon crawl game system, the Druid character has a special ability that allows him to restore full health to himself or, depending on house rules, any other player. This is one of the only non-combat-related abilities to be found among the game system's eight playable characters.
- In Ammo, a very rare character choice, at least at startup. Healing is very limited in efficiency (the caster must choice ONE stat that he knows how to heal, over 15 possible), and every heal reduced temporanely the caster Magic stat by one... on a max value of 3 (for humans). Worth to mention that starting as a White Mage means no offensive magic until you learn some?
- In Bunnies & Burrows, the Empath is an Empathic Healer who can play as a White Mage, especially if they can reverse-heal as an attack.
- The Trope Namer is Final Fantasy I, which provided White Mage as a starting class. It's appeared in almost every Final Fantasy game since.
- Final Fantasy II has Minwu, a rare male example in the series.
- Final Fantasy III had White Mage as a job class, as well as the Devout job, the equivalent of the White Wizard upgrade from the first game.
- Final Fantasy IV had Rosa and Porom and also several White Mage NPCs.
- Final Fantasy IV: The After Years has an unnamed White Mage join your party. Rosa and Porom also return. Leonora starts as a White Mage, but quickly progresses to a Red Mage.
- Final Fantasy V had a White Mage job class.
- Final Fantasy VII has Aeris or Aerith as the character closest to being a White Mage. While everyone had the potential to fill the role because of the materia system, Aerith fits the best because her Limit Breaks all revolved around healing or supporting the party instead of causing damage. She's even the only one who is associated with the signature White Mage spell Holy.
- Final Fantasy IX had Garnet dress as a White Mage, and this was her primary use for the first part of the game. Once she gets her summons back, however, she's more of a summoner with White Mage as a secondary ability. Eiko Carol is introduced immediately after as the party's white magic specialist (with summoning as a secondary ability).
- Final Fantasy X has Yuna, although thanks to the Sphere Grid you could customize her to be anything with a little work (and any other character to be a White Mage, by extension).
- Final Fantasy X-2 had a White Mage Dress Sphere (job class), instead.
- In Final Fantasy XIII the White Mage abilities were split into two different specializations, with Medic getting the healing and cleansing spells while Synergist gets the buff spells. In an unusual male example, Hope is the closest thing the game has to a traditional White Mage, being the only party member to have both Medic and Synergist as primary specializations (and is arguably the best at both) and his Limit Break (Last Resort) looks like the Holy spell from Final Fantasy X. He even uses healing magic in a cutscene and is the only playable character to do so.
- Final Fantasy XIII-2 uses the same battle system with Noel being the one who has the better healing spells.
- Aya from Parasite Eve, outside of two attack abilities, uses healing and buffing abilities from the traditional Final Fantasy white magic set.
- Abe no Seimei from Onmyōji is the only one out of the four onmyōji with only one active attack skill. The rest of his active skills is buffs, debuffs, a defensive ability and a (very weak) healing ability.
- Several games in the Dragon Quest series feature the Priest job class.
- Marco from Radiant Historia is almost a pure White Mage in his skillset, having almost no abilities that are not buffs or heals.
- Princess Toadstool (not named Peach yet) served this purpose in Super Mario RPG, only having one damaging special attack.
- Tales of Phantasia has Mint Adnade, who would more or less codify the "cute cleric" stereotype associated with most white mages.
- In Tales of Symphonia, we have Raine.
- Tear Grants from Tales of the Abyss is possibly one of the most badass white mages out there.
- The MOTHER/Earthbound series has a tradition of making the protagonist one of these, which is rare for the genre. Ness, Ninten, and Lucas all qualify, having most of the advanced healing PSI and relying on physical attacks (and one or two late-game PSI attacks, like PK Rockin' for Ness and PK Love for Lucas) for offense, leaving most of the combat PSI to their female counterparts, Ana, Paula, and Kumatora.
- Cream the Rabbit served this role in Sonic Chronicles. Not only was she the only one with a group heal and resurrection spell, she could also replenish the party's MP, letting you spam special attacks.
- Mirania and Calista in The Last Story. Both girls can heal party members and, in addition, the former even has the Limit Break ability to bring back lost lives), while the latter can summon arcane circles that repulse enemy attacks.
Massive Multiplayer Online Games
- Grand Fantasia has the Acolyte -> Priest -> Cleric -> Prophet class progression, which is a pure White Mage archetype.
- The monks from Guild Wars fit this trope to a T and are almost allways expected to heal, reduce damage and cure conditions. Unfortunately for monk fans, the profession is no longer in the sequel because its design has no place for pure healing characters.
- Final Fantasy XI of course has the trope namer as a class.
- Final Fantasy XIV has 3 healing classes:
- The classic "White Mage" (WHM) Job. WHM's focus on direct powerful heals and restoring health over time.
- The "Scholar" (SCH) Job. The SCH's job is interesting because it starts its life as a damaging dealing class. SCH's focus on mitigating damage, either through providing shields that absorb damage or weakening enemies. Also can summon a fairy pet that provides more healing!
- With the release of the Hevensward expansion the "Astrologian" (AST) job was added. Astrologian's can use the healing over time of WHM or the damage absorbing shields of the SCH, but must choose which one to use before the fight begins. In addition, they draw randomly from a deck of cards which allows them to buff their party in various ways.
- Advocates in Nexus Clash can give out a wide range of buffs to huge numbers of other characters, enchant magic items, and heal others on a massive scale. They're the most powerful support class in the game, at the price that almost none of their abilities are any help to themselves.
- Final Fantasy Tactics, Tactics Advance, and A2 all have a White Mage job class.
- Tactics Ogre has the Cleric, Priest, and High Priest as pure White Mage classes. The Witch class is also a purely supportive spell-caster.
- The Fire Emblem series has Clerics and Priests, which use healing magic through staves, and Troubadours, mounted healers. They usually promote to classes that either add holy magic or fall more under Red Mage.
- Nippon Ichi's Strategy RPGs have the Healer class, most frequently seen in the Disgaea series. Without abusing skill learning systems such as reincarnation, fusing, or the apprentice system, he or she will only naturally learn healing and support magic.
- In Yu-Gi-Oh! Monster Capsule GB, Ryou Bakura fits this archetype as per his White Wizard character class in the manga.
Non Gaming Examples:
Anime and Manga
- MarineAngemon from the Tamers Forever Series, whose talents lie in healing and support.
- In Equestria: Across the Multiverse:
- Fluttershy's personal Paladin Armor works like this. She hates fighting, so her armor is primarily designed around healing and defense.
- A bigger example is the World of Empathy's Powered Armor version, the Bard System. As the inhabitants are all Actual Pacifists but understand their allies need to fight sometimes, the Bard Armor has zero offensive abilities but makes up for it by having a ton of supportive abilities to aid their allies without actually fighting themselves. This ranges from healing, to buffing up allies, to creating Hard Light bridges for allies to use. On top of it, the Bard System runs on Innocence Magic, a rare form of magic that Only the Pure of Heart can use (in this case, innocence referring to a lack of desire to do wrong) that buffs up light magic and weakens dark magic, especially corruptive forms of it. Unusually for this type of character, they're also a Stone Wall.
- The Beneficari in Shattered Twilight are effectively White Mages in green clothing.
- Kindrie from Chronicles of the Kencyrath. He's the most powerful healer in the Kencyrath, but while he has no equal with preservative magic, he can neither create nor destroy. This is a clue that he is actually one of the Tyr-Ridan—Argentiel, That-Which-Preserves.
- White Mage from 8-Bit Theater. Naturally, since she and every other character is based on the job classes from Final Fantasy I.
- The Noob features some white mages, not surprisingly parodying the character type.
- Looking for Group has Ben'Joon, or "Benny" for short. She is of an indeterminate heritage now determined to be half blue elf, half minotaur), and serves as the team healer/buffer.