- An Ice Person: If your chosen school is Ice. One of their summon spells is literally an angry, top-hat-wearing Snowlem.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: As the Divine Paradox, to fight an equally sized Aethyr Titan.
- Badass Adorable: The player is seemingly just a kid, but still embarks on endless dangerous adventures without fear or hesitation.
- The Bard: The player can cast their spells with wands that look like harps, mandolins, guitars, and flutes.
- The Beautiful Elite: The game notes that Fire wizards tend to be very attractive.
- Casting a Shadow: Regardless of whatever school the wizard starts in, they will eventually learn Shadow magic.
- Competitive Balance: Although each school has a different specialization, they're designed to be generally equal in terms of power.
- Crippling Overspecialization: Life wizards are exceptional healers, but have fun trying to deal any significant damage without high-tier gear, especially at early levels.
- Damage Over Time: Fire magic, for the most part, operates on this mechanic, with high-damage hit spells spread out over multiple rounds. Storm wizards deal comparably high damage, but it's all combined into larger single hits.
- Dishing Out Dirt: Sand-based magic fuels most of the Balance school's offensive spells. The Myth school's Earthquake spell is also a literal example.
- Glass Cannon: Storm and Fire wizards. These schools all have relatively low accuracy and health (especially in the case of Storm), but high damage.
- Green Thumb: Life wizards. Some of their advanced spells, particularly heals, are more comparable to pure White Magic.
- The Hero: By the time you reach the endgame, you've saved the Spiral from destruction four times. If you include side quests, nearly every NPC in the game has the Wizard to thank for solving their problems.
- Jack-of-All-Stats: Balance wizards, which makes sense as the lore states that they draw power from all the other schools.
- Luke Nounverber: This trope is practically enforced, as players must choose parts of their character's names from a set of lists rather than inputting them directly. However, you can choose "(none)" on at least one of them. Even the Trope Namer is possible, though it's not as overused as you'd think.
- The Medic: The Life school's playstyle revolves around healing. Death wizards also have shades of this, but can only heal themselves (by extracting health from their opponents).
- The Minion Master: Myth wizards can summon a vast range of minions to assist them in battle, and the Monstrology activity lets you capture the essence of certain mobs to create summonable minion versions of them.
- Necromancer: Death wizards. It's even the formal title of their class.
- One Steve Limit: Averted. You choose your wizard's first and last name from predetermined lists, which can lead to many wizards with the same name running around.
- Playing with Fire: If your chosen school is Fire. In a more literal example, the Immolate spell involves burning yourself, dealing high fire damage to your opponent if you manage to survive.
- Sand Blaster: Plenty of balance spells involve deserts or sand.
- Shock and Awe: If your chosen school is Storm. Some summon spells, like Storm Shark, also have shades of Making a Splash.
- Silent Protagonist: The only sounds you hear your wizard make are the "hurt" sounds that you make when you take damage in a fight.
- This is subverted in that the Wizard can talk... You just can't hear him/her. There's a "menu chat" system for players under 13, and more traditional (but still highly restricted) text-based chat for players over 13. For players over 18, there's a much less censored version, only available if you are confirmed to be 18 or older, with an active membership and a valid credit card on file.
- Stone Wall: If his/her chosen school is Ice. They don't do as much damage as most other schools, but boast high health and resistance, enabling them to tank very effectively.
- Summon Magic: Most offensive spells are based around this, although the summoned creatures disappear after they've attacked.
- Vague Age: The player looks like they're a teenager, but they may be just below or above that age range.
- Weak, but Skilled: Myth wizards have below average health and their attacks are average in terms of damage dealing, but they are able to remove wards and charms, stun, and summon minions as a backup. One myth spell even deals damage, attacks all enemies, and removes wards and charms.
- 11th-Hour Superpower: As the Divine Paradox, Scion of Grandfather Tree - you have 50,000 Health and mastery of all schools!
Headmaster Merle Ambrose
Merle Ambrose is the Headmaster of the Ravenwood School of Magical Arts. Originally from the world of Avalon, he journeyed to the heart of the Spiral and built Wizard City around the World Tree, founding the Ravenwood School to teach magic to young wizards of all origins. An ancient and powerful wizard, Headmaster Ambrose prefers to share his arcane knowledge with others rather than hoard it for himself— he truly loves and cares for his students and faculty, regardless of race or origin. While he keeps Wizard City secluded from the politics of the Spiral, he is treated with a great degree of respect by leaders of its various worlds.
- Big Good: Of Wizard City, and later of the entire game as head of the Council of Light.
- Cool Old Guy: The most powerful wizard alive and the leader of the Council of Light, as well as the headmaster of the most prestigious wizarding school in the Spiral.
- Did We Just Have Tea with Cthulhu?: Shares a bond with Grandfather Tree, one of the three Primordials that shaped the Spiral from the shattered fragments of the First World.
- Expy: Bears similarity to another magical headmaster, as well as the famed wizard Merlin of Arthurian legend.
- Really 700 Years Old: The player encounters Merle while reliving Morganthe's memories of her time as a Ravenwood student, centuries in the past. The Headmaster doesn't even look any younger. In an Avalon flashback, we see him as Artorius' court wizard, centuries before that. He still looks the same.
- Sink-or-Swim Mentor: Although he's shown to care deeply about his students, he's not hesitant to send the player into extremely dangerous situations.
Lady Nightstar, Grandmother of Ravens
- Arch-Enemy: Grandfather Spider. In ancient times, he locked him away, and then took his heart to fuel the Spiral.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing Initially, in Wintertusk, she is very kind and helpful. At the end of Empyrea Part 1, it's revealed she plans to end the Spiral and that no one other than herself and her mortal daughter, Mellori, will survive.
- Never Mess with Granny: Is powerful enough to cast you out of the Astral Plane and lock away another Primordial, Grandfather Spider.
- Rule of Three: Is one of the three Primordials, along with Grandfather Tree and Grandfather Spider.
Mellori is a character introduced during Polaris and is the daughter of the Myth scholar, Baba Yaga. She appears to be similar in age to the Wizard and accompanies them through the world's questline. At the end of Polaris, she enrolls at Ravenwood, where she joins the Life School and helps you fight Grandfather Spider during the events of Mirage. After the fight is finished, it's revealed that she is actually Grandmother Raven's mortal daughter, and was sent to finish off Spider as Raven knew you wouldn't be able to finish the job. Spider deflects her blast and ends up capturing her so that he can use her to get his heart back. During the first act of Empyrea, you manage to reach her, but Bat nearly kills her and she is currently unconscious.
- Action Girl: Mellori helps you stop Rasputin from breaking the Sky Anchor and comes with you to stop Spider in Mirage. She even tries to kill him when you refuse, but fails.
- Attack Backfire: Her attacking Spider is what allows him to capture her.
- Healing Hands: As a student of the Life School.
- I Just Want to Be Special: Mellori desperately wanted to explore the Spiral and be a hero. She gets her chance when she accompanies the Wizard to stop Rasputin.
- Meaningful Name: Mellori's name is derived from the corvus mellori, aka Little Raven. Fitting, as she is the mortal daughter of Grandmother Raven.
The Bat is the youngest son of Grandfather Spider and first appears in Empyrea. Initially presented as a villain, you later learn he wishes to stop his father and save the Spiral.
- Adorkable: He surprisingly has shades of this; his lair is a good example, along with the various puns and jokes he cracks during Sepidious.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Despite being the son of Grandfather Spider, he wants to preserve the Spiral and is generally pretty nice.
- HeelFace Turn: Is revealed to have pulled one against his father after the Temple of Light.
- Genius Bruiser: A powerful Shadow lord, and fiercely intelligent to boot.
- Overlord Jr.: Subverted, unlike his older brothers, who serve as the Big Bads for their respective worlds. Bat is more of an antihero.
- Physical God: He is a demi-Primordial and one of the most powerful Shadow wizards in the Spiral.
- The Unfettered: Is very, very focused on his goal of saving the Spiral, to the point where he attempts to murder Mellori.
- Walking Spoiler: It's hard to talk about him without spoiling a lot of Empyrea.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Ends up attempting to kill Mellori, as she is the only one who can break Spider's chains.
- Youngest Child Wins: As the youngest child of Spider. he is the only one who is successful is his goal (that is, saving the Spiral).
The former Professor of the Death School and self-proclaimed Master of Death, Malistaire Drake is the brother of Cyrus Drake and Big Bad of Act One. Driven mad by the death of his beloved wife Sylvia, the pursuit of the power he believes would bring her back leads him to first rip the Death School from Ravenwood, steal Grandfather Tree's Eye of History, and then orchestrate an Undead assault on Wizard City.
By the time that the Wizard catches up to him, he has stolen the Krokonomicon, and plans to wake the ancient Dragon Titan, responsible for destroying Dragonspyre, to serve him - placing the entire Spiral in grave danger. The Wizard battles him just before he can finish the job, saving the spiral and killing Malistaire, who joins his beloved wife as a ghost.
Years later, the Shadow Queen Morganthe tears Malistaire back to life as a lich bound to the Shadow Web. Confused and in pain, the newly-crowne Malistaire the Undying is able to hold on to distant memories of Sylvia and a burning hatred for the Wizard. He outmatches the Wizard's power but is sent hurtling through the void between the Worlds...
...Eventually landing in the midnight world of Darkmoor. Brokering a deal with the Vampire Lord Shane von Shane, Malistaire takes refuge in Castle Darkmoor, challenging the Wizard to a duel to the death by ancient law. Once again, he loses - and is released from the Shadow Web, allowing his spirit to finally rest with Sylvia.
- Berserk Button: Absolutely loses it when he thinks Cyrus is using Sylvia's memory to manipulate him.
- Big Bad: Of Dragonspyre, and the first story arc as a whole. He's also the Bigger Bad of Wizard City, Krokotopia, Marleybone, and Mooshu. As Malistaire the Undying, he briefly acts as The Dragon to Morganthe during the Azteca storyline. Finally, he returns as the Big Bad of the special side world of Darkmoor.
- Driven to Madness: What began as a quest to restore his wife to life descended into a quest for forbidden knowledge that corrupted Malistaire's heart and soul, causing him to abandon his morals in pursuit of greater power. When he's brought back from the Afterlife by Morganthe, he loses his mind again, becoming an undead creature of pure hatred.
- Omnicidal Maniac: Is willing to allow the Dragon Titan to obliterate/conquer the Spiral just to see Sylvia restored to life.
- One-Winged Angel: In Darkmoor, defeating him as Malistaire The Undying results in his transformation into a Haunted Malistaire, a being of pure shadow.
- That One Boss: Invoked. Malistaire the Undying is the single most powerful Exalted tier boss in the game, and his dungeon can take hours to complete without a well-prepared team. As he drops the highest-tier endgame gear available, dedicated players often must fight him several times. Thankfully for more casual players, he's an optional boss.
- Tragic Villain: Malistaire truly loved and was an exceptional husband to Sylvia, and was an outstanding professor at Ravenwood. In the end, his own inability to cope with loss led him down a path of darkness and insanity, losing everything he didn't even realize he had left.
Queen Morganthe Malory
Morganthe is a malicious and powerful sorceress who acts as the Big Bad of the second Story Arc. Born in Avalon, she learned mighty magic studying under King Artorius' court wizard, Merle Ambrose. Journeying with Ambrose to Wizard City, she became one of Ravenwood's most promising students but was expelled for practicing forbidden magic and nearly causing the city to fall into the Void. Humiliated and betrayed, the young Morganthe wandered to the lost world of Khrysalis, earning the allegiance through cleverness or fear of its denizens. As she grew in age, she grew in power, committing great acts of evil and darkness in the name of her new kingdom, the Shadow Web.
She is first mentioned in Celestia as the cause of the world's destruction— she brought down the Celestians in a bid to take their Astral Magic for her own. After the Wizard rescues Thurston Plunkett and his expedition in Celestia, she reveals herself and her plan: Use the Astral Magic to fulfill the ancient Grand Prophecy and remake the Spiral in her image. The player chases her through the worlds but keeps falling one step behind as the Grand Prophecy nears completion. Finally, with the help of the Council of Light and the mysterious being known as Old Cob, the Wizard confronts Morganthe in her Shadow Palace and defeats her, breaking her spells and pulling her forever into the Void between the Worlds.
- Arachnid Appearance and Attire: Of course, with her being the queen of the Arachna, you can't expect her to dress any other way.
- Arch-Enemy: To Merle Ambrose, her mentor in Avalon, headmaster in Ravenwood and nemesis as leader of the Council of Light. While Merle wants to preserve the Spiral's structure and protect its worlds, Morganthe considers the system flawed, seeking to remake it in her own image.
- Big Bad: Of Khrysalis, and the second story arc as a whole. She's also the Bigger Bad of Celestia, Zafaria, Avalon, and Azteca.
- Disney Villain Death: Falls into the Void between the Worlds through a rift in the fabric of reality after becoming overwhelmed by the raw power of the Primordials' Song of Creation.
- God Save Us from the Queen!: Umbra Queen of the Shadow Web, tyrant of Khrysalis, and a very evil woman.
- Ms. Fanservice: Not bad-looking for a centuries-old sorceress.
- Becomes Fan Disservice at the end of Khrysalis, when she transcends her mortal form to become a giant spider Shadow Goddess.
- One-Winged Angel: The Morganthe boss fight in the Shadow Palace is against five versions of herself at once. There are only four duel slots on the mob side of a dueling circle.
- Out-Gambitted: Right up until Khrysalis, the Wizard is always unable to keep up with her plans. Taken Up to Eleven in Azteca, where she actually manages to bring down Xibalba and destroy the entire world, right after the player finishes the long process of preventing that exact scenario.
- Spiders Are Scary: Has several pet spiders, and her Umbra Legion is heavily spider-themed. Her elite commanders are Spider Magi people, and the Spider Temple in Zafaria marks the beginning of her Grand Prophecy. Even her outfit is... spider-y.
- That One Boss: While the final confrontation in Khrysalis is challenging, the Young Morganthe battle in Ghost Avalon is notoriously difficult due to her unpredictable attack patterns and cheats.
- Token Human: The Umbra Legion consists almost entirely of Khrysalis Arachnids, but its leader is a human sorceress from Avalon.
Old Cob/ Grandfather Spider
Freed from imprisonment by the Wizard in the forsaken depths of Khrysalis, the mysterious being known as Old Cob aids the Wizard in their quest to defeat Morganthe. At the end of the Khrysalis questline, he betrays the Wizard, revealing himself as the Primordial god of shadow, Grandfather Spider. Free from his prison, he and his children launch an assault on the worlds of the Spiral, working with the shadowy and elusive Cabal to bring about and end to the universe itself. An insanely powerful and intelligent entity, Old Cob represents the strongest and most dangerous threat the Wizard, and the Spiral itself has ever seen.
- Affably Evil: States several times that he considers the Wizard a friend, and only engages in conflict with them because they're refusing to stop interfering in his business. Compared to the previous two arc villains, he has many more bits of humorous and witty dialogue. Don't let it all fool you, though— he's much more dangerous and powerful than he lets on, and his plans are numerous, ancient and infinitely complex.
- Arch-Enemy: Grandmother Raven, who broke his heart and went against his wishes when she created the Spiral.
- Big Bad: Of the third story arc. He's also the Bigger Bad of Polaris, Mirage, and Empyrea. As of the end of Empyrea Act One, it looks like he may be sharing the role with Raven.
- Blue and Orange Morality: Justified in that he's a Primordial. His true endgame, and even the purpose of his actions are mostly unknown to the Wizard, but his schemes over the course of Polaris and Mirage fit him squarely into the 'villain' category.
- The Corrupter: To Morganthe, and the Duck of Death in Pirate 101. He's also heavily suggested to have had a role in Malistaire's descent into madness.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Destroys Overlord Xerxes' entire army with one quick spell. It's implied that he was only defeated in Mirage because he was holding back out of subconscious respect for the Wizard, plus the sands of time being messed up threw a wrench in the works, and even that was basically a tie.
- Deadpan Snarker: A lot of his dialogue with the Wizard, post-Khrysalis, falls into this category. At certain moments, he drops the act completely, becoming almost ominously serious. You can practically feel him shift his tone from Old Cob to the primordial Grandfather Spider.
- Eldritch Abomination: At the end of Khrysalis, he is revealed as Grandfather Spider, one of the three Primordials that shaped the Spiral. While he appears in a (relatively) humanoid form ingame, he's consistently depicted as a colossal, shadowy spider by the Luphilim Oracles' images.
- We finally get to see his true form while in the Reverie in Empyrea Part 2. Even Mellori is horrified to see his freakishly large form.
- Evil Sounds Deep: His voice actor does an exceptional job at this.
- Greater-Scope Villain: Of the entire Spiral, spanning both Wizard 101 and its sister game Pirate 101.
- Rule of Three: Is one of the three Primordials, along with Grandfather Tree and Grandmother Raven.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Locked in the Black Hole in the depths of Khrysalis by Grandmother Raven. Even the Umbra Legion is terrified of the Thing in the Pit. Taylor Coleridge tricks the Wizard into releasing him towards the end of the second arc.
- Stone Wall: When fought in the Sands of Time, he has 99,999 health (he would have had 100k, but the game's engine couldn't handle that number at the time.) Multiply that with resistance to every school but Myth, and you get one houston of a tank. He was considered the most difficult main-quest boss until the release of Empyrea— and as the plot implies he was handicapping himself, a second, even more, challenging battle is likely on the way.
The treacherous advisor to the Empress of Polaris, Rasputin's schemes threaten to escalate tensions between the Empire and the Penguin Rebellion and bring chaos to Polaris. In Horizon Hold, his true form is revealed: Father Rat, one of Grandfather Spider's demi-Primordial children. The Wizard stops him from destroying the Sky Anchor and the Spiral along with it, and he retreats to nurse his wounds under his father's protection.
- Big Bad: Of the Polaris storyline.
- Expy: Probably the most obvious one in the entire game, which is saying something.
- Minion Master: His boss fight is based around him summoning his Titan Experiments to aid him in battle.
- Really 700 Years Old: He appears as a fairly old man, but is, in reality, the immortal son of an ancient Physical God.
- Token Human: The one human official in the Polarian Empire, surrounded by walrus, polar bears, penguins, and moose. Subverted when it turns out he's the Rat.
Overlord Xerxes/Father Scorpion
An ancient warlord who once ruled over all Mirage, Overlord Xerxes has been unwittingly reanimated by the Chronomancers and has returned to retake his lost empire. Halfway through Mirage, he is revealed as Father Scorpion, another son of Grandfather Spider. When he is defeated by the Wizard, he too flees to safety, with an irritated Spider scolding him for his recklessness.
- Amazing Technicolor Population: Downplayed. His dark skin can easily be mistaken for purple. Played Straight with his true form.
- Back from the Dead: He was supposedly resurrected from the dead in order to take back Mirage. Subverted when it turns out he was Not Quite Dead.
- Big Bad: Of the Mirage storyline.
- Didn't Think This Through: Unlike his brother, he rejects Old Cob's great strategy for Mirage, opting instead to lay siege to Aggrobah and retake the world for himself. When he's defeated by the Wizard, he doesn't exactly get sympathy from Cob for his rebellious actions.
- Disc-One Final Boss: Serves as this for Mirage, both at the 1/4 and halfway points of the world.
- Evil Overlord: The straightest example of this trope in the game— it's even his title. He's an ancient warlord who commands an army of the undead, and a definite badass as well.
- Really 700 Years Old: He's been awoken from eons of eternal stasis. Taken Up to Eleven when it's revealed that he's Father Scorpion, son of the Primordial Grandfather Spider.
- 0% Approval Rate: Quite a few of the Cabalists will mention they don't really like Medulla after you defeat him and the only reason they followed him was due to his mind-control. The Bat even remarks that he seems like a terrible boss.
- Big Bad: Of the Empyrea Act 1 storyline.
- Brain Monster: He even fights you inside an even bigger brain, just to pound in the theme.
- Glad I Thought of It: All of Medulla's self proclaimed ideas are not his own, with a lot of them originally coming from Bat.
- Hypno Ray: When he hypnotizes Mellori to break the chain of Ice and Fire, a ray shoots out from his eye.
- The Mole: He had managed to infiltrate the Arcanum and had volunteered to check out Empyrea, but was wrongly presumed dead.
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: Medulla is an egotistical floating brain with a high-pitched and very grating voice; he also got extremely close to his goal of attaching Mellori's essence to an essence canon and blasting the Paradox Chains holding the Chaos Heart in place. Not only that, but he's also one of the hardest bosses currently in the game.
Grandfather Tree, nicknamed "Bartleby" by Merle Ambrose, is the eldest of the Primordials and creator of the Spiral. Despite his unfathomable power, the vast majority of his energy is spent holding the Spiral together from his place at its center, leaving him tired and unable to intervene in mortal affairs. When Merle Ambrose journeyed from Avalon to Bartleby's island at the heart of the Spiral, he built his magic school there due to its proximity to Tree, and the two have become unlikely friends.
- Barrier Tree: His power and concentration combined with the energy of the Chaos Heart is what keeps the worlds of the Spiral from falling into the Void.
- Heroic Fatigue: His main personality trait, due to his situation. In his rare interactions with the Wizard, he often speaks of how tired he is, and his bark has formed into Exhausted Eye Bags.
- Physical God: In a world full of MacGuffins, Doomsday Devices, and Reality Warper wizards, the buck stops at Grandfather Tree. He is the first of the Primordials and has power which hypothetically exceeds that of Raven and Spider combined. Although he can't directly intervene in Spiral affairs, he singlehandedly maintains the Spiral Thread that keeps the worlds from the Void. Only the Titans exceed him in raw power.
- Portal Network: His energy fuels the Stormgates that allow travel between the Spiral's worlds. Ancient wizards tapped into that magic to create the World Doors, which improve the system by making the process instantaneous. To honor Tree, Wizard City's world door lies within him, making him a living Hub Level.
- Woobie: Despite being, essentially, the Spiral's equivalent of God, the constant energy required to maintain the Spiral leaves him perpetually tired and unable to interact with his children's lives, instead simply standing inert at the center of Wizard City. On top of this, one of his eyes was stolen by Malistaire after the game's events, and he's infected with disease following the Wizard's graduation (he recovers from both, however.)