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Clone Army

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Bringing new meaning to the phrase "One-Man Army."

"We shall take only the greatest minds, the finest soldiers, the most faithful servants. We shall multiply them a thousandfold and release them to usher in a new era of glory."
Col. Corazon Santiago, "The Council of War", Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri (Accompanies completion of the Secret Project "The Cloning Vats")

A common source of soldiers in science fiction is cloning. This can make sense if you want to mass produce one exceptionally good soldier (but beware of the Conservation of Ninjutsu!) or don't want to spend much time creating and raising an army of Designer Babies from scratch. Typically they grow to adulthood at an accelerated rate as well. But depending on how it is done, Fridge Logic may reveal that given how difficult assembling a single amoeba would be, mass chemical fabrication of multiceular human bodies would be the most counterproductive thing ever, and so choosing to do this rather than recruit them from amongst the populace where all that has already been done for them like normal is far costlier.

Related to Send in the Clones. Often overlaps with Expendable Clone and Faceless Mooks. May be used to justify We Have Reserves tactics. If the clones are a unique race they may form a Henchmen or Servant Race.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Blood+: The Corpse Corps are clones of the Schiff Moses.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist an Amestrian general explains that the actual reason human alchemy is outlawed is not the associated dangers, but that it could be used to create an army. Which is exactly what the Central Amestris high command did, and it gets activated to help them fight off a coup. Unfortunately, the manufactured humans turn out to be a completely insane zombie-like horde that eats anyone they come across, high command included.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ: Glemmy Toto has the beginnings of one with his corps of clones of Elpeo Ple, a powerful Newtype girl. Only about 13 of them are actually created before most of them die in the final battle.
  • Obito of Naruto created an army of Zetsu clones using Hashirama's DNA and the chakra of seven of the bijuu. Kaguya intends to reproduce this on a larger scale by converting the victims of the Infinite Tsukiyomi into clones.
  • All of the soldiers of Germa 66 from One Piece are clones, grown in tubes and programmed to be loyal and never question orders. Surprisingly, none of the soldiers are actually aware of their origins.

    Comic Books 
  • The Boy Who Wanted War had a scientist create a clone army based off his son's DNA. But there are still drafting from the population because it was not enough.
  • The Judge Dredd universe features extensive cloning by the police force to which the titular Judge Dredd belongs. Dredd is a clone himself and on occasion has to fight his "brothers" who have gone rogue. The clearest example of an actual army however are the Judda, a clone army built by a rogue genetic engineer in Australia.
  • Mickey Mouse Comic Universe: In "Blot on Their Friendship", The Phantom Blot seeks to sic Shebob of Camcordia — a Shelob expy — on Mickey Mouse and then clone her to create his own spider army.
  • Prophet: The backstory is about how the Earth Empire cloned John Prophet innumerable times so they could take over and enslave the universe. Not just straight clones either, but clones with special conditioning to obey the Empire, ones genetically modified to handle different environments, huge floating brain clones to direct other clones, even teenage Sex Slave clones. Eventually the clones rebelled and infighting destroyed the Empire. The main story is about sleeper agent clones reactivating and rebuilding the Empire, this time with nothing but clones.
  • Rogue Trooper has this as its backstory. The whole regiment was dropped into the Quartz Zone and promptly massacred thanks to the Traitor General with Rogue as the Sole Survivor.
  • Superman:
    • In Crucible, Korstus captures Superboy and creates dozens of Kryptonian clones with the intent of policing the universe.
      Korstus: The clonelings are not fully formed, but gene sequencing is almost complete. When they awake, I will have an army of obedient, all-powerful soldiers ready to keep the peace throughout the galaxy. I am sure this is as exciting to you as it is to me. After all, it is the DNA of the House of El that courses through them. I know you yearn for your dead family, Kara. You should be pleased that it will now have hundreds of new members.
    • In The Killers of Krypton, Harry Hokum steals genetic samples from Supergirl and then orders his head scientist to manufacture a army of Kryptonian clones. Nonetheless, Hokum demands to speed their development up, and his batch of new super-soldiers begin decaying quickly after being released.
    • In Reign of Doomsday, Lex Luthor creates an army of Doomsday clones to capture, the Superman Family, lock them away in a dimensional maze and hunt them down.
    • In The Girl with the X-Ray Mind, General Zod reveals he was banished into the Phantom Zone because he created an army of Zod clones to take over Krypton.
      Dru-Zod: I, General Zod, devised a duplicator ray and created an army of duplicates of myself to take control of Krypton!
    • In The Supergirl from Krypton (2004), Darkseid raises an army of Doomsday clones to keep the Amazons busy while he kidnaps Kara.
    • Legends of the Dead Earth: In The Man of Steel Annual #5, Lex Luthor the 60th tells Kaleb that his Imperial Guard are clones created from the best fighting stock in the Empire.

    Fan Works 

    Film — Animated 
  • Gallaxhar from Monsters vs. Aliens considers himself to be a perfect being, so he clones an army of himself.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • American Ninja 3 has an army of ninja clones.
  • In Oblivion (2013), the Tet cloned an army of astronaut Jack Harper to conquer earth, then switched to drones and had the Jacks maintain them.
  • When Agent Smith returns in The Matrix Reloaded, he has the ability to transform others into his clones.. By the final film, he has a massive one of these consisting of what very well may be the entire human race.
  • Pootie Tang: Parodied with the fake Pooties. Only an idiot couldn't tell they were fakes, but they fool everyone anyway.
  • Star Wars would probably showcase one of the most iconic instances of this trope:
    • The Clone Trooper Army made by the Kaminoans are first introduced in the aptly titled Attack of the Clones and further shown in Revenge of the Sith, all cloned from the famed bounty hunter Jango Fett, with some even being personally trained by him. They are genetically engineered for obedience, also age at twice the normal rate and are trained to be a Badass Army to take on the Separatist Droid Army. Most don similar-looking white armor and obviously bear similar faces. However, some clones do go out of their own way to try and make themselves be their own individuals in order to stand out, by painting their armor, dyeing their hair, shaving their head or growing their hair out to try different hairstyles and even getting special tattoos on their faces. In fact, there were so many of them made that the first generation of stormtroopers were mostly veteran clone troopers.
      Lama Su: 200,000 units are ready, with a million more well on the way.
    • Discussed in The Force Awakens. Kylo Ren is skeptical about the First Order's stormtroopers after Finn defects, suggesting a clone army would be preferable. The stormtroopers are raised to be warriors from birth, but are still regular humans with individual agency.

  • In the Alliance/Union series the Union military relies heavily on azi, mass-produced Designer Babies intended to help make up the population difference between the Union and Earth. They're not all clones per se, but many genotypes are copied many times.
  • A Certain Magical Index has a variation where the clones aren't meant to win against their intended opponent. The Sisters are a group of 20,000 clones who are created to fight and die to Accelerator, to make the latter more powerful. Misaka Mikoto, their gene-source was horrified when she discovered what was happening, and with Touma's help the project got shut down before Misaka-10032 was killed; 10031 still died. Mikoto and her doctor then managed to convince the city to distribute the clones across the world, where they could hopefully live something like normal lives. This is eventually revealed to be no more than a cover for their real purpose. The Sisters form a Hive Mind with their electricity powers, which the Big Bad exploits in order to summon a Humanoid Abomination needed for his plan.
  • In Steven L. Kent's "Clone series" (The Clone Republic, Rogue Clone, The Clone Alliance, The Clone Elite, The Clone Betrayal, and so on) all the enlisted men in every branch of the military are clones, and very disposable ones at that. In an interesting take on this concept, each individual clone knows that his fellow men are clones, but believes that he is a normal human. The inherent Fridge Logic in this scenario is given a rather inventive Hand Wave too.
  • In Old Man's War the Colonial Defense Force's personnel are all clones, but they're intended as replacement bodies for their geriatric recruits rather than mass-produced soldiers. In the second book an alien race is mentioned as having had an army of genetically identical clones, then another species wiped them out with a tailored virus and then massacred their civilian population.
  • The Kaldor in "Spacejack", the first Star Quest novel by Terrance Dicks. They're a clone army of blonde humanoids who believe they are a Master Race. Dicks may well have had the Sontarans in mind when he wrote it, given his work on Doctor Who and fondness for a Recycled Script.
  • At least one novel in the Star Trek Expanded Universe mentions the Arcturians, who provide clone soldiers for the Federation military.
  • In The Thrawn Trilogy books of Star Wars Legends, Grand Admiral Thrawn recovered some Spaarti cloning cylinders capable of growing a clone to adulthood in a matter of weeks and giving it the original's memories. Regular humans come out OK if shielded from the Force during growth, but cloned Jedi invariably go insane. Thrawn uses the cylinders to bootstrap a new Imperial army out of thin air, which combined with his typical masterful planning got him within spitting distance of defeating the New Republic.
  • In Worm, after the Slaughterhouse Nine are decimated, Jack had Bonesaw create an army consisting of ten clones of every member the Nine have ever lost, each with the original's powers and a reasonable attempt at their personalities. Bonesaw also created a couple of Hybrid Monsters combining two members' powers just for fun.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Dark Angel many of the X-5s have several clones, in the first season finale Max destroyed the stockpile of embryos so more wouldn't be born. When she was recaptured they tried breeding her the old fashioned way.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Sontarans are an entire race of this. They're all clones of a general who lived 10,000 years ago.
    • "The End of Time" features the Master Race, an army of six billion humans transformed into loyal clones of the Master.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • You can do this in 5e by abusing the combination of the spells Simulacrum and Wish. Simulacrum is used to create a copy of the caster with half the HP and all of the spell slots (though with no ability to regain spells), and Wish can be used to duplicate the effects of any spell. To create the clone army, you cast Simulacrum, creating a clone of yourself with the ability to use Wish. The clone uses Wish to duplicate the effects of your spell, creating another clone who can also use Wish. That clone also duplicates the Simulacrum spell, resulting in yet another Wish-capable clone, and so on.note 
    • Forgotten Realms: The historic Spawn Wars between several shield dwarven subkingdoms are so called because the warring factions made heavy use of legions spawned with the help of deepspawn, creatures capable of creating copies of creatures they eat. This ultimately turned out to be a terrible idea, as eventually the copied dwarves got integrated with regular society one way or the other — with the implied result that genetic variety amongst the shield dwarves crashed, contributing to their fertility issues in later eras.
  • Strange Stars: The Radiant Polity's military consisted of only one man, Hannibal Tecumseh Early. An insanely skilled soldier, the Radiant Polity cloned entire armies from him in times of war. Cryogenically preserved caches of his clones can occasionally be reprogrammed to be loyal to whoever finds them.
  • Warhammer 40,000
    • Most Dark Eldar are vat-grown. "Trueborn" units are considered superior, both in the setting and tabletop.
    • Many of the Adeptus Mechanicus's Skitarrii are grown in vats, or at least their organic components are.
    • Depending on the Writer, the Death Korps of Krieg may all be clones of the exact same guy, a fact they hide from outsiders and the Adeptus Mechanicus (who don't want that kind of technology running loose) by wearing gas masks everywhere.
    • While Space Marines aren't clones, the organs that given them their superhuman abilities were all taken from their Chapter's Primarch, and each Marine grows several (which are removed at death) so as to ensure the Chapter can continue recruiting.
    • Members of the Leagues of Votann are almost all either cloned (if biological) or assembled (if robotic) by the Votann.

    Video Games 
  • Battleborn: Oscar Mike and Whiskey Foxtrot are two clone soldiers who are remnants of a clone army from a long-forgotten war. The difference between the two apart from personalities is that Oscar Mike is a regular clone, and Whiskey Foxtrot is a defective one.
  • Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped: The Lab Assistants are revealed to be this in the Secret Warp Room, where the production line of them is shown.
  • Destiny 2: Emperor Calus's Leviathan is mentioned to have cloning vats that let him grow anything from mass-produced soldiers to purpose-built Designer Babies, explaining how he was able to continually replace lost Loyalists despite only having a single warship to his name. After he became a Disciple of the Witness, he brought the technology to his new flagship, the Typhon Imperator. This new generation of clones, the Shadow Legion, is made up of Empty Shells that have no will of their own, instead obeying orders mindlessly like biological robots.
  • Disgaea 5: Generic Asagis are recruitable, thanks to a surplus of them being created from the Double Illusion netherworld. This is encouraged with the Asagi Fan Club squad, which gives all squadmates bonus stats for every Asagi assigned.
  • Dragon Quest VI: While not mentioned in the game itself, the Pudgedevil enemies are clones of Murdaw, created by Mortamor via growing his cells ,which are granted further power via magical amplification.
  • Endless Frontier: It's revealed that the Shadow-Mirror had originally envisioned their W-Series forces to be this. They got as far as the prototype before realizing they had no way to accelerate his growth, so decided to go with androids instead.
  • Endless Space: Done on a literally galactic scale. The Horatio faction was founded by a massively narcissistic, massively eccentric trillionaire named Horatio, who left the Mezari empire all to discover his own star cluster to "settle". Fortunately for him (and unfortunately for everyone else), he awoke from suspended animation near an Endless citadel, which inside had genetic experiments, which he used to change himself into his twisted idea of "perfection". Boredom set in after a few years, so he decided to fill his planet with the most beautiful person to ever exist... Horatio. So not only is his army entirely Horatios, but his entire empire is populated by an unending tide of the perfect man, Horatio.
  • Fire Emblem: The Elibe games have War Dragons and their human counterparts Morphs who could be considered a fantasy version of this, being life created from artificial means using recycled quintessence(life force) for the purpose of being expendable soldiers.
  • First Encounter Assault Recon: The Replicas you commonly fight throughout the series are military clones created by Armacham Technology Corporation to serve as mass-produced, disposable and professional soldiers. They were originally designed to be voice-controlled but were also later modified to be controlled by a psychic commander, which went disastrously wrong.
  • Grand Theft Auto 2: The SRS Scientists have developed a large number of clones, who are the foot soldiers you can find and fight around the streets and during missions.
  • The King of Fighters '99 had the endgame involve armies of Kyo clones being staged across the world by Krizalid in an attempt to take over the world. Even if he were to succeed, which he did not, the governing body that created him had shut down his connections and the endboss of the next game, Clone Zero, personally terminated Krizalid because of how out-of-control he got. By 2001, no less that 9999 clones of Kyo had been made. NESTS didn't stop there, and decided to make an additional 9999 clones of K' as well, if 2002: Unlimited Match is considered.
  • In Little Big Adventure, the tyrannical Dr Funfrock maintains control of planet Twinsun with an army of clones.
  • The 1983 Atari arcade game Major Havoc has the title character leading an army of clones (all cloned from himself) against the automated bases of the collapsed Vaxxian empire, according to the backstory listed on the arcade cabinet.
  • Metroid Dread: This is Raven Beak's desire should he fully defeat Samus in combat, saying he could clone his daughter into an unstoppable army of the most powerful Metroid, not even needing her Metroid DNA to revive the Metroids themselves. Unfortunately for the leader of the Mawkin Chozo Tribe, Samus's Metroid powers fully awaken, defeating him and crashing his ship back onto ZDR, which allows an X Parasite to infect him.
  • Mortal Kombat has Mileena. She's a clone of Kitana who was originally made to replace her, with that plan being scrapped due to her extremely obvious physical deformity. In her Mortal Kombat X ending, she stumbles an incubation chamber containing countless identical clones of herself, and finds that she and they share a Hive Mind-style Psychic Link, multiplying Mileena's already high threat level by several orders of magnitude.
  • Stellaris:
    • Empires that research cloning can create clone armies. They're cheaper and quicker to train than ordinary assault armies, but deal more collateral damage.
    • The updated "Humanoids" DLC adds the Clone Army Origin, where a species was created as a clone army by a vanished Precursor race and they use ancient clone vats to reproduce. They're very good soldiers but short-lived and limited to 100 POPs. And have an archaeological quest line that can lead to a choice of two "cures" for their Clone Degeneration, one that makes them improved clones and another that allows them to reproduce naturally. As a Shout-Out to Star Wars, picking this origin and destroying a Spiritualist Fallen Empire earns you the "Directive 67" achievement.
  • The Prototypes from Sunrider are a "race" of cloned women who have been genetically enhanced to possess superhuman intelligence, telepathy, and a Hive Mind. L7 model Prototypes are specifically bred to act as warriors and field commanders, and they often lead PACT's ordinary human armies into battle while piloting the best Ryders in their arsenal.
  • In Total Annihilation the Arm's troops are clones while the Core's are robots with uploaded human minds. Or at least the Commanders are, the ordinary units could be just robots.
  • In Warframe, the concept is put through an interesting spin. The fascist Grineer Empire is trying to conquer the solar system with soldiers cloned in industrial quantities that they claim are sourced from "perfection". In reality, the entire empire is falling apart, dependent on copies of copies of copies, riddled with so many genetic defects that they're dependent on cyborg technology just to survive.
  • N.O.R.A.D from WarGames Defcon 1 have advanced to a point where their foot soldiers now consist entirely of clones, in comparison to their rival, W.O.P.R who uses robots instead.
  • XCOM: Enemy Unknown: The alien troops are collections of genetic and cybernetically modified clones from a variety of species under the control of the Ethereals.

  • In The Adventures of Dr. McNinja Frans Raynor had a shoddily-made army of Dr. McNinja clones produced in order to invoke Conservation of Ninjutsu on the original.
  • Galatea attempts to do this in The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob! but is talked out of it.
  • In S.S.D.D. the Anarchists use clones known as "Gigglers" as Cannon Fodder. They're engineered to feel no pain and are grown at an accelerated rate that leaves them no time for an education so they're dumb as rocks. They're controlled using an implant that pumps them full of happy drugs when they do something right, hence the name.
    • Lee is a clone grown by the Anarchist's enemies, the CORE, using a stolen cloning rig that was given to their R&D department. He was grown at a normal rate so he is smart, but still a bit flaky.
  • In Spazient, Lily is eventually revealed to have originally been part of a clone army.

    Web Original 
  • The main army of Tow Voor in Blood and the Stars are clones of a Supreme General.
    • Technically, the Plastic Soldiers of Coror could be considered clones, given that they have no individual personality of their own, but they'd probably fall more under Robot Soldier or Faceless Mooks
  • Fallout Lore: The Storyteller: The Mooks of choice for the Vault-Droid are clones created from his Vault Dweller DNA. The first batch were created at Vault 108 (and just like the vault's previous clone inhabitants were only capable of saying their own names), but most of them were killed by the east coast Brotherhood of Steel, with the survivors accompanying the Vault Droid to the Commonwealth and getting killed by Ranger Tanner several years later. Eventually, when he gets to the safari zone cloning lab, he tries to replace them with new ones, but they all end up misshapen and stupid due to his genetic code being damaged by radiation when he went through the glowing sea.
  • In Half-Life but the AI is Self-Aware, the reoccuring character models are Handwaved as being clones of the Science Team accompanying Gordon (or prototypes, in Bubby's case). When everybody is seperated after the first episode of Act 3, Dr. Coomer is found having gathered 300 clones in a plot to pull a Grand Theft Me on Gordon because he wants to escape the video game by hijacking his body. Though thankfully, this plan doesn't pan out and he returns to (relative) normalcy.
  • Mahu: In "Second Chance", the Galactic Commonwealth use entire clone armies as frontline troops rather than regular, citizen soldiers because of the high-casualty rates of their planet invasions. As time goes by and technology continues to improve however, clones are replaced by combat droids due to their higher endurance and firepower.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Lilo & Stitch: The Series finale film Leroy & Stitch, Dr. Hämsterviel clones the titular Leroy shortly after the experiment's creation, making them into his own massive personal army to take over the United Galactic Federation with ease. When his plan to kill all of Jumba's first 624 genetic experiments using a Death Ray fails, Hämsterviel uses the Leroy army as a backup plan. It seemed that the ensuing fight between the experiments and the Leroys would end with the Leroys winning, but thanks to Jumba programming a fail-safe in the original Leroy that all the clones share, they are all defeated when Lilo, Stitch, and Reuben perform a rocking version of "Aloha ʻOe".
  • The Nixels from Mixels, save for their king, the army's major, and a genetically modified muscular minion, consists of multiple clones of three base models, primarily used for swarm attacks.
  • In the Monsters vs. Aliens (2013) TV series, Coverton is asked by his master to clone one of the monsters for this purpose. Unfortunately, the chosen subject is B.O.B., a choice even Coverton finds dubious.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars, for obvious reasons. However, this actually goes into the ethics of the trope, which are less addressed in the films. The clones' wages are constantly delayed (making them effectively slaves), the fact that they were artificially aged and are still aging faster is giving them issues that are going unfixed (and stay unfixed after Order 66), Jango Fett's death means no more fresh genetic material and thus more and more clones are defective, clones are treated as defective simply for not wanting to fight in the war, most people outside the Jedi and a handful of senators treat them as utterly expendable despite their sentience, and the Order 66 arc reveals that there are chips in their heads — designed to give out a variety of orders with 66 being the one that gets selected in the end — that can malfunction and impair their thinking at any time OR just force them to obey.
    • Star Wars Rebels reveals that after the war ended the remaining clones were "decommissioned", although this seems to be functionally the same as being mustered out. It also makes a point of directly comparing them to stormtroopers; the stormtroopers are nowhere near the skill level or training, their weapons aren't as good, vision in their helmets is so bad it interferes with their aim, and their armor is of such a lower quality that it's little more than a uniform.
    • Star Wars: The Bad Batch shows that in the aftermath of the Clone Wars and the rise of the Empire, there are still some senators such as Riyo Chuchi of Pantora, advocating for the fair treatment of the clones (including retirement packages). Unfortunately, it all comes to naught, as the clones are unceremoniously discarded and any whose obedience to the Empire falters gets executed or sent to Mount Tantiss for the Advanced Science Division to be experimented on.
  • Steven Universe: Gems' asexual machine production makes basically all of members of a given caste clones. This extends beyond military classes to every position in Gem society. Gem castes even have the same voice actor portray all members of the group. However, when different individuals of the same gem type are shown, they tend to have some variation in appearance. At the very least, an individual gem is distinguishable by the location of their gemstone on their body.
  • The Predacons of Transformers: Prime were intended to be an army of war beasts in the service of the Decepticons. However, only the first of them, Predaking, ever made it to the battlefield; when he proved far smarter than anticipated, Megatron began to worry that the Predacons could become as dangerous to the Decepticons as they were to the Autobots.
  • In The Venture Brothers the second season premiere revealed that the boys were clones, and Doctor Venture kept a room of clones for when they inevitably die. In the season 3 finale, Sergeant Hatred takes the preformed clones and leads them as a Redshirt Army. This also serves to remove the safety net from the show.

    Real Life 
  • Some species of gall aphids parthenogenically produce warrior caste nymphs.


Kamino Tour

Prime Minister Lama Su gives Obi-Wan a tour of the cloning facilities on Kamino.

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