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"Physiomancy is frequently credited as a healing art. This reputation is deserved, as its primary application is the knitting of broken flesh. But most students of the arcane do not fully appreciate that Physiomancy is merely a neutral manipulation of live flesh. As readily as it can be used to knit, it can be used to tear."

This is, quite literally, the power to manipulate biology and biological lifeforms (mostly animals, not plants), also referred to as biomancy, biokinesis, fleshwarping, fleshcrafting and more. Depending on the setting and the power level, it may vary in range (long-ranged vs. strictly hands-on), comprehensiveness (e.g. can only affect humans), or scope (e.g. limited to the user's own biology).

This is potentially a very broad power, with its capabilities including, but not limited to:note  Healing Hands and/or Healing Factor, Psychic Surgery, Shapeshifting, Shapeshifter Weapon, Bio-Augmentation and/or Body Horror. Usually a Lovecraftian Superpower when wielded by bad guys.

Supertrope of Master of Your Domain, which is when you manipulate your own biology.

Compare with Organic Technology and Art Major Biology.


Examples

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    Anime & Manga 

    Comic Books 

  • Winnowill from ElfQuest started out as a healer, but over time became able to shapechange herself and create mutant monstrosities.
  • Elixir from X-Force has this as his mutant ability. With touch, he can manipulate another person's cells. He primarily uses it to heal his teammates, but sometimes he can also use it offensively such as giving his enemies tumors.
  • Alpha Flight villain Scramble the Mixed-Up Man (a.k.a. Dr. Lionel Jeffries) could heal most non-lethal wounds with his touch, but he could also turn people into misshapen lumps of flesh if he so desired. And having gone insane after attempting to put dismembered dead soldiers back together and failing to revive them, he decidedly skewed toward the latter, until his brother Madison forced Lionel to use his powers on his own brain, apparently curing him. But when Lionel's attempt to give double-amputee Roger Bochs new legs failed (due to him using a cadaver's legs, which subsequently decayed), he asborbed Roger into his own body and became the monstrous Omega, before he was ultimately killed by Madison using Roger's Box robot.

    Film 

  • This kind of power isn't unheard of in the Star Wars universe. One key example occurs in Revenge of the Sith, when Palpatine asks Anakin Skywalker if he's ever heard of "the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the wise". He claims it's an old legend about a Sith Lord who was so skilled at controlling life that he could create life itself and even stop others from dying, something the Jedi had no idea about. Palpatine leaves out the detail that Plagueis was, in fact, his own master, and that the apprentice who murdered Plagueis was himself. And that since he lived recently, it's entirely possible that Plagueis created Anakin, who has no biological father.
    • In Star Wars Legends (the former Expanded Universe), Jedi could use this power to heal themselves or others of wounds, rather than unethical genetic engineering experiments like the Sith like to do.

    Literature 

  • In The Blood Ladders trilogy female magic is based around the body while male magic affects the external world. Female magic is usually used for healing or transformation but it's discovered that it can be used for destructive purposes as well, and since the magic doesn't care whether the "body" in question is alive or not it proves to be one of the more effective weapons against the undead.
  • Taggart from Ayize-Jama Everett's Liminal World books can use his power at range but it works a lot better when he's touching the target. He is referred to as healer by most people he meets but given that we see him stripping the myelin off people's nerves, redirecting their stomach acid to places stomach acid should never go, growing gills and armoring his own body in multiple layers of callused skin, he is clearly far more than that.
  • Physiomancers from the Shadow Ops books can use their power to heal, harm, warp or augment their own flesh or that of others as their skills permit
  • The Freak from the Unknown Armies novel Godwalker demonstrates this power via shapeshifting, gendershifting as well as healing of self and others.
  • Anyanwu from Octavia Butler's novel Wild Seed. Her healing powers are just a subset of her actual capabilities. Anyanwu is a healer but, as she gained experience, she learned to heal others and transform into various animal forms.
  • Panacea from Worm pretends to be just a healer but it becomes clear that, excluding her own body and conservation of mass, she can do anything to organic matter with just a touch and a few seconds of thought.

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    Tabletop RPG 

  • Biomancers from Dungeons & Dragons v3.5 have exactly this ability.
    • The Sarrukh Creator Race had it on non-Sarrukh reptilian creatures. This serves as an explanation for the sheer variety of reptilian creatures in the Forgotten Realms, often with only minor differences to other types — the standard Sarrukh solution to a new problem was making a new creature to solve it.
  • Trinity: The Aesculapians and the Norça both have this power, split in half: The Aesculapians can manipulate other people's (and their own) bodies psionically in order to heal them or hurt them, while the Norça can manipulate their bodies psionically in order to do things like disguise themselves or grow gills (or Wolverine Claws) to better survive a situation.
  • Unknown Armies has the magical school of Epideromancy which is entirely built around this power. Adepts of this school can heal any injury that is not self-inflicted and can reshape themselves and others if they have enough charges.
  • From Vampire: The Masquerade: The Tzimisce power of Vicissitude allows them to warp flesh and bone at will and even graft on body parts from other creatures.
  • Some of the Biomancer powers from Warhammer 40,000 like Regenerate, Hammerhand and Endurance fall under this powerset.

    Webcomics 

  • Wayward Sons this is ship physician Hara's power, and she can even alter people effected by the Star Core. This power has also been prophetically linked to her eventual death.

    Western Animation 

  • In Xiaolin Showdown the Monkey Staff was a Shen Gong Wu that gave the user agility, balance, and dexterity, but also gave him/her monkey-like features, such as a tail, facial features, and a craving for bananas. It could also potentially turn the user into an actual monkey if used too long. Despite this, it seemed to Jack Splicer's favorite Shen Gong Wu, and the only one in his possession in the Series Finale.

Alternative Title(s): Biokinesis, The Biomancer, Biomancy

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