"...I mean, he does have computer-generated blue all over him. That's what electricity looks like, right?"In Real Life, most lightning bolts are purplish white or bluish white. Sometimes they're reddish, orange or even greenish. However, in certain types of works, lightning bolts and other types of electricity are chiefly yellow (which is quite an uncommon color for lightning, at least when not having an orange tinge), often a simple zigzag shape and seldom striking from the ground to sky or from the one to be shocked to the object. Justified since yellow is a good warning color, associated with electricity and fire in general (and as we all know, lightning is electric). Most video games with the Fire/Ice/Lightning trinity will also make lightning yellow to differentiate it from ice (and to exhaust the three primary colours). In live-action films and more realistic video games, though, lightning bolts are still predominantly blue. However, sometimes it is very blue so that there is no white seen. Recently, purple has been added to the mix, but again it tends to be a very vibrant purple. A Sub-Trope of Color-Coded Elements.
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Anime & Manga
- Fate Testarossa in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha has an inherent affinity for lighting-based magic. Her lightning (as well as other spells) is yellow or golden in color.
- Most Electric Pokémon, with a few exceptions that fit in the blue category, like Pachirisu.
- One Piece
- The lightning created by Nami's Clima Tact is yellow.
- Laxus, from Fairy Tail, is a lightning mage whose attacks are all yellow or pale yellow.
- In the manga version of Naruto, lightning from ninjutsu is supposed to be yellow because of the color of chakra in the series was supposed to be yellow; the anime makes both blue.
- Cure Peace from Smile Pretty Cure! can use yellow lightning attacks.
- Along with the other elemental themed robots in GaoGaiGar (Hyoryu, Enryu and Fuuryu), Rairyu is the yellow one, with lightning powers.
- In anime adaptation of My Hero Academia, Denki Kaminari's Quirk produces yellow electricity.
- Every version of The Flash uses a yellow lightning bolt as part of his costumery. Thunder and lightning are a near-ubiquitous motif for the Flash family; their power source, the Speed Force, is sometimes physically represented as an eternal thunderstorm. Depending on the Artist, the Flash even leaves trails of yellow electricity (usually emanating from the yellow parts of his costume... somehow...)
- As does the Marvel Family. They are even transformed by yellow bolts.
- Spider-Man's Electro throws bolts of yellow electricity. They're also represented that way on his costume, although certain incarnations of the character fall firmly into blue lightning territory. This has been referenced in a few comics where Spider-Man is able to identify electricity at a distance as being from Electro because of its distinct yellow hue. In The Spectacular Spider-Man, it's actually green.
- Mega Man games have yellow lightning. For an example, Mega Man 1's Elec Man and Mega Man 10's. Mega Man X4 went with (mostly) yellow lightning, in contrast with the rest of the series which usually went with blue.
- One of the items in Shantae makes yellow lightning.
- DuckTales 2 on the NES had a yellow lightning bolt strike a block to make it go away. Magica DeSpell's lightning bolts in the first were yellow.
- Electric monsters in Pokémon have yellow lightning attacks (except Thunder, which is white in Ruby/Sapphire).
- PSI Thunder in EarthBound and MOTHER 3
- Giga Lakitu in Super Mario Galaxy 2.
- For some time City of Heroes gave hero players blue lightning and villain players red lightning, despite being the same powers. After issue 15 the player can make the lightning whatever color they want.
- The Jumper series features electricity traps coloured yellow with red sections which indicate a safe zone in the current. (Don't ask how it works. Just be glad they exist.)
- Crono, the protagonist of Chrono Trigger, uses lightning magic and has a yellow frame around the "lightning" reading on his status screen (whereas Merle's water is blue and Luca's fire is red). The lightning that he actually calls forth though are much more realistic and are very white with a light ting of blue. "Lightning 2" does shoot out yellow light before it releases the actual lightning though.
- Electric-type moves in Pokémon are portrayed as yellow in color, and many Electric-type Pokemon like Pikachu tend to be yellow-colored as well.
- In The Order of the Stick, most lightning spells create either white or yellow bolts — though Tsukiko's Electric Orb is blue. There is also the notable exception of Zz'dtri, who produces green lightning.
- Symbols in weather reports, to differentiate the bolts from the rainclouds, typically colored blue.
- "Risk of Electric Shock" warning signs in the United States are typically black on a yellow background, but that's more for OSHA compliance here than anything else.
Very Blue Lightning
Anime & Manga
- SCEPTER4's main powers in the anime K.
- Lightning Style/Lightning Release jutsu in the Naruto series.
- Misaka Mikoto of A Certain Magical Index and A Certain Scientific Railgun wields blue lightning.
- Saiyajins as SSJ2 and SSJ3 from Dragon Ball are surrounded by blue lightning.
- Piccolo is surrounded by blue lightning during his battle against Son Goku in the 23rd Tenkaichi Budokai, who is surrounded by red lightning.
- In Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid, "Thunder Emperor" Victoria Dahlgrün's magic produces blue lightning.
Films — Live-Action
- The eponymous Kamen Rider Blade uses lightning-based attacks and is colored navy blue.
- In contrast with its predecessor above, Mega Man X tends to go with blue lightning more often (Wire Sponge in Mega Man X2, Volt Catfish in Mega Man X3, Zero's Raijingeki from Mega Man X4, Bolt Kraken/Squid Adler in Mega Man X5, Gigabolt Man-o-war in Mega Man X8).
- Final Fantasy Tactics, as seen from the image of Thunderbolts and Lightning.
- Raiden in Mortal Kombat makes bluish-purple lightning.
- By default, electrical attacks in City of Heroes are bright blue. In City of Villains they're red, which is even less likely. In both cases, though, you can customise the colour to your own preference.
- BioShock's Electro Bolt plasmid, as well as other electricity, is marked by pure blue bolts (and glowing blue veins.)
- Dante's Alastor sword from Devil May Cry uses blue lightning.
- Ky Kiske of Guilty Gear uses blue lightning for most of his attacks and usually wears a white and blue outfit, in contrast to his flame-wielding red-colored rival, Sol Badguy.
- In Viewtiful Joe, Captain Blue and his daughter Sylvia's lightning attacks are, appropriately, blue. Electrical sources are also blue in general. Alastor's lightning is stylishly purple.
- In the inFAMOUS series, Cole's good karma lightning is blue.
- In the Shin Megami Tensei games, Zio spells typically release blue lightning bolts when cast. To drive the point home, the defensive spell to nullify lightning attacks in Persona 3 and Persona 4 is called Blue Wall.
- Luigi from Super Mario Bros. uses very bright blue electric attacks in a few games. note
- In Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's Portable , Fate's Evil Twin, Material-L/Levi the Slasher, has blue lightning compared to Fate's yellow. For each character, their lightning is the same color as their hair.
- Almost all MechWarrior games since 3 portray the PPC weapon as firing blue-white bolts, often intentionally meant to evoke comparisons to lightning as per the source material. The 2 series of games as well as Mech Assault featured crackling blue ball lightning for PPC shots, while the first game simply featured a nondescript blue beam. Mech Commander features blue-white electrical bolts in both iterations of the game. Mechwarrior Tactics looks like it will take the same route.
- Azure Striker Gunvolt definitely lives up to its name. The main character wears blue clothes, and his attacks are blue-colored.
- The Borderlands series uses blue as the color code for shock weapons and hazards. Yellow is exclusively for anything explosive.
- In Evolve, the Kraken's electrical attacks are faintly tinted blue. Markov's lighting gun plays this straight, with bright blue lightning.
- Lightning bending in Avatar: The Last Airbender. An exception is Ozai's first lightning bending seen, which shows a realistic white glow.
- Jay the blue ninja from Ninjago uses lightning of the blue variety.
- In The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes!, Thor can create thunderstorms and lightning from his hammer, Mjölnir. All the lightning is a very bright blue.
Yellow and Blue Lightning
Anime & Manga
- One Piece:
- The Enel is on both sides — his electricity is yellow in the manga and pale blue in the anime.
- In Dragon Ball Z the auras of Saiyans in the Super Saiyan 2 and 3 forms (as well as Vegetto in his Super Saiyan form, and Gohan post-Elder Kai powerup) crackle with blue lightning. In some of the games, it's yellow, however.
- In Zatch Bell!, Zatch uses yellow lightning while his twin brother uses blue.
- Erio Mondial from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS has yellow as his magic color, but when he uses lightning magic, his body and/or his weapon are surrounded by blue sparks. Fate taught him her spell Thunder Rage, but his version is blue in contrast to Fate's yellow (and it looks completely different, anyway). And Signum taught him her spell Shiden Issen, hers is a fire-elemental sword slash. His version is a lightning-elemental punch; when he charges it, his arm is surrounded by blue sparks, the impact of the punch creates a yellow explosion with yellow lightnings, and when it's over, his arm is surrounded with blue sparks again.
- In Yu-Gi-Oh!, Osiris the Heaven Dragon/Slifer the Sky Dragon has two Breath Weapons, since it has two mouths. The first mouth fires its regular attack—a long yellow thunder beam attack, called "Thunder Force." The second mouth fires blue lightning ball attacks, called Shou Raidan ("Summon Lightning Bolt"), that decreases the ATK (and in the anime, the DEF when the monsters are summoned in Defense Position) by the amount of 2000 points, and it will destroy any monster below 2000 points.
- The Pokémon Pikachu and Pachirisu, respectively. Sometimes both are seen at the same time.
- In DC Universe Online, players with the electricity power set uses yellow lightning for attacks and blue lightning for healing effects.
- In Pokemon, The Electric-Type is color coded and most of it's attacks are yellow, but in Pokémon Black and White: the electric dragon Zekrom uses blue lightning in its Fusion Bolt move, and blue lightning surges through its tail.
- God of War Series uses both in regards to the gods, with Zeus' usual lightning attacks being yellow/golde, but with Poseidon's, Kronos' and younger Zeus's being blue. Kratos later gains the whips of Nemesis, which generate green lightning.
- This shows up in the Kingdom Hearts series sometimes. Typically, heroic characters like Sora and Aqua use yellow lightning, while villains like Xemnas and Vanitas use Sith-style blue lightning.
- Although normal lightning in Tales of Symphonia is consistently blue- or purple-white, the Temple of Lightning requires you to shift the Sorcerer's Ring between blue, yellow, and red lightning types, which each break blocks of their own color.
- Visible to Super Smash Bros. player on the receiving end of a thunder-abusing Pikachu. The attack is most deadly when it turns from yellow to blue.
- Suikoden uses yellow in its early installments and whitish-blue later on. Flik uses lightning magic (though can change that if you want) and he is called "the Blue Lightning." Though this has to do with the color of his garment more than anything else.
- In Super Mario RPG, Mallow's basic lightning attack, Thunderbolt (which is a Herd-Hitting Attack) sends down a storm of white-blue bolts, resembling real-life thunderbolts. His more powerful Shocker move uses a cartoony yellow one, however.
- Monster Hunter uses yellow and blue lightning effects on certain weapons to represent paralysis ailment and thunder element, respectively. As a result of this distinction we have the somewhat ironic scenario of most thunder weapons being unable to inflict paralysis (and conversely, most paralysis-inflicting weapons don't deal elemental damage). Note that this only applies to the player; most thunder-element monsters are capable of calling down blue-colored bolts that inflict paralysis. Additionally, two monsters have red lightning: White Fatalis and Stygian Zinogre, the latter of which has Dragon-elemental lightning.
- Persona 4: Arena has three characters using Zio skills, so it uses different colors for each of them. Yu Narukami has the traditional blue lightning of the series, Kanji Tatsumi's is yellow to match his Persona's lightning bolt sword, and Akihiko Sanada has purple lightning, though it's really only noticeable in his Awakening Super, Maziodyne. Elizabeth also uses purple lightning in one of her special moves. Ultimax adds even more colors to the mix: Ken Amada uses greenish lighting for two of his moves, and Tohru Adachi has blood red lightning to match the color scheme of his Persona.
- Mega Man 7 goes with both. Cloud Man uses yellow lightning, but the weapon Mega Man copies from him shoots out a blue lightning ball. Same goes for Clown Man in Mega Man 8 and Elec Man in Mega Man Powered Up.
- Characters with the lightning element in Sengoku Basara display a variety of colours. Masamune, Kojuro, and Tadakatsu are blue, Muneshige is yellow, Yoshihiro is white, and Ranmaru and Matabe are purple.
- In Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2, Tesla coils attacked with blue lightning in normal circumstances and yellow lightning when supplemented by a Tesla trooper.
- In the Devil May Cry series we have yellow lightning, which Trish uses, blue lightning from Dante's sword, Alastor, and in the third game, purple lightning from his weaponized electric guitar, Nevan.
- The elements in Chrono Cross, including the summon, when cast will create yellow lightning. Yellow is also the element color of lightning. Guile however, has a tech that strikes the foe with purple lightning.
- The animations for PSI Thunder in EarthBound flash between yellow and blue.
- Every single lightning-based miracle in Dark Souls is either yellow or if very potent, orange. This is believed to be because they are all derived from the same source: the powers of Gwyn, Lord of Sunlight. In the final DLC for Dark Souls III, we finally see some blue lightning: the source of which is the Dark Soul, completely unconnected to Gwyn.
- In M.U.G.E.N, the original characters that use electricity, usually use blue or yellow (mostly), but there're others that can vary depending of the palette chosen. One known case is Tetsu Yatogi, who can use blue or yellow electricity depending of which button do you use to choose him.
- During the Death Battle between Thor and Raiden, they had Thor use Yellow lightning, against Raiden's blue lightning, both in order to show who shot the lightningbolt, and for a bit where Raiden redierects Thor's lightning back at him, which recolors it Blue. This is largely an artistic choice, as both Raiden and Thor are usually shown using the Blue variety.
- Ben 10:
- In Mixels the Electroids are primarily yellow, but the parts that harness their electric abilities are a light purplish-blue.
Anime & Manga
Live Action TV
- In The Flash (2014), the various speedsters give off lightning of various colors as they run:
- Barry and most other speedsters give off yellow lightning.
- The Reverse-Flash and the Rival have red lightning. No in-universe explanation has yet been given for why their color is different from everyone else's, though the obvious out-of-universe reason is to mark them as evil and contrast the yellow of the heroic speedsters.
- Zoom gives off blue lightning. One episode shows another speedster, Trajectory, who gets her powers from a "Velocity-9" Super Serum; her lightning starts off yellow but turns blue just before she disintegrates from the drug's lethal side effect of cellular degeneration. The STAR Labs crew theorizes that the degeneration is the cause of the color change, and this serves as a clue that helps them figure out that Zoom is Jay Garrick (or rather the man they think is Jay), who was also known to take V-9 in the past and suffers from the side effects. When Zoom is turned into the Black Flash, his lightning turns red; he's not evil at this point but he is The Dreaded.
- Savitar's Powered Armor turns his lightning white. Without the armor, it's the standard yellow.
- Cole's bad karma lightning in inFAMOUS and In Famous 2 is red. In the first game choosing to activate the Ray Sphere again to enhance your powers, an act so vile it permanently locks you at the lowest possible karma rating, turns it black.
- In Evolve, the Elder Kraken has red lightning. On the hunter's side, Blitz Markov's lightning gun, which does more damage the longer it fires without stopping, goes from blue to purple to red to gold.
- Spark Kirby uses green lightning.
- In Castle Crashers, the Red Knight is seen with purple lightnings, but in some fanarts is also seen with red ones.