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"Come. Join me. Be part of my power."
Makuta (absorbing Nidhiki and Krekka), BIONICLE 2: Legends of Metru Nui

The heroes are fighting a near-immortal Big Bad and his second-in-command. Both of them appear to run on some sort of "life force" or have several lives... the only thing for the heroes to do is keep fighting to wear them down, hoping to get them down to nothing. Slowly, the villains realize the tables have turned, and they're losing...

So the Big Bad gives his life force a little boost by draining his companion to death.

Usually, the two villains get on very well and trust each other before this moment, just for that little extra Kick the Dog punch. Sometimes a particularly dedicated minion will even offer his life up voluntarily, but typically without any reluctance to accept it on the Big Bad's part.

This is a sister trope to Villain Override. See also Just Desserts. Contrast Bequeathed Power, which is a Heroic Sacrifice performed by "feeding" yourself to an ally, as well as Fusion Dance. May involve a Cannibalism Superpower.

As this is both a Betrayal Trope and frequently a Death Trope, unmarked spoilers abound. Beware.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, Gluttony is devoured for this purpose. Kimbley later succumbs to the same fate. However, the second victim ends up biting the devourer in the ass later on. Pride assumed that nobody could retain their sanity after being absorbed into him, but overlooked the fact that Kimbley was already insane and loving it.
    Kimbley: These cries of agony are like lullabies to my ears!
  • Digimon
    • In Digimon Adventure, VenomMyotismon eats his subordinate DemiDevimon for a marginal powerup during his Chewing the Scenery sequence. And he doesn't stop there, either, ultimately absorbing all of his surviving minions.
    • Devimon also absorbed The Dragon Ogremon by turning him into Black Gears and absorbing him. In an unusual instance, Ogremon actually survived because he was blasted out of Devimon after trying to attack Angemon.
    • In Digimon V-Tamer 01, Neo Saiba has Arkadimon delete and absorb the data of the partner Digimon of his allies in Alias III, although by then, they've already turned against him and joined up with Taichi.
    • Laser-Guided Karma kicks in when Daemon, who is Not Quite Dead, returns the favor, devouring his son after breaking his mind control hold over Neo.
    • Also, in Digimon Frontier, Lucemon does this to Crusadermon and Dynasmon shortly after their defeat by the Digidestined.
    • Happens all the time in Digimon Fusion due to the villains having the ability to Digi Xros with their underlings, whether the poor Digimon want to or not. DarkKnightmon plans to do the opposite with his older brother Bagramon, and actually succeeds in fusing with him to claim his power...for a few minutes, before Bagramon decides he's let DarkKnightmon have enough fun and devours him properly.
  • Dragon Quest: The Adventure of Dai: Near the end of the manga, the secret of Sorcerous Overlord Vearn's enormous power and longevity is revealed. Vearn has been going through cycles of splitting off his mind and magical power into a weaker second body, training his magic for centuries while his original body remains in stasis, and then recombining with his body to regain his youth. Vearn's Dragon, Myst-Vearn, is actually his original body in disguise, being puppeteered by a loyal Living Shadow named Myst. During the final battle Vearn is pressed enough by the heroes that he's forced to call back his body from Myst early, instantly going from Squishy Wizard to Master of All.
  • In Shinzo, the mons that have replaced humanity turn into cards after being defeated, and they can power up by assimilating another Enterran's card. One villainess, a general in the Big Bad's army, killed five of her peers well before fighting the heroes and used them to achieve a One-Winged Angel form.
  • Fall absorbs Deuce's magical power (killing her) in her final fight in Nora: The Last Chronicle of Devildom. This holds something of an inverted Heroic Sacrifice because Deuce throws herself in front of Nora's spell to protect Fall, then apologizes for her weakness as Fall absorbs her afterwards.
  • Inuyasha:
    • Hiten eats his younger brother Manten (more specifically he eats the shards of the Shikon jewel implanted in his brother's head) after he's killed. Also a subversion, as he genuinely cares for his brother, and is using the strength to avenge him.
    • In an anime filler arc, the leader of a tribe of panther demons does this to some of his subordinates when he realizes he is losing. Made worse since his tribe spent most of the arc gathering the shards to revive him after Inuyasha's father killed him in the past. The panthers give up the fight after their leader is defeated realizing he wasn't worth avenging.
  • Bleach:
    • Szayelaporro Granz has specifically designed minions which he can eat to heal himself. In the manga, he actually eats the minion, but in the anime, he turns it into a purple orb and then eats it.
    • Giselle of the Sternritter injected her blood into Bambietta, converting her into a powerful zombie. After Giselle's near-death, she drank the blood out of a pleading Bambietta to restore her own health.
    • When Yhwach infiltrates the Palace and his elite guard is killed, he absorbs the energy of every Sternritter not directly assisting him and uses it to revive his guards. After gaining full mastery of his powers and draining Ichigo, Yhwach repeats this on all the remaining Quincy save Uryu.
  • In the X/1999 anime series, after Fuuma has had his arm and half his face blown off, he orders Nataku to liquify and became a human skin graft, restoring himself for the final battle at the cost of his last henchman's life.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann does this in a very strange, but very awesome way in the final episode. Lordgenome, the reformed Big Bad of the previous arc, absorbs the Anti-Spiral's ultimate attack, converts it into energy, and allows the heroes to devour him for a power-up.
  • In The Stinger of Kill la Kill's episode 23, Big Bad Ragyo absorbs her secretary Rei Hououmaru (who until then had done almost nothing) into her body, to power her ultimate outfit. Hououmaru stoically resigns herself to her fate. Rei had after all always wanted the entire human race, including herself, to be consumed by the Life Fibers. When she is forcefully ejected from Ragyo in the next episode, Nui Harime feeds herself to the Primordial Life Fiber, which then fuses with Ragyo.
  • Naruto:
    • Orochimaru intended to do this with Sasuke. It ended up going the other way around.
    • Also, Kabuto later integrates Orochimaru's remains into his body to make himself stronger. It was ambiguous for a while who had devoured who, but Kabuto seemed to be more-or-less in control. Orochimaru still came back, just via a different route. He then reabsorbed the bits of himself in Kabuto.
    • Possession of the Rinnegan falls under this. After Pain's death, Tobi killed Konan and stole the Rinnegan from Nagato's corpse in order to gain a massive power boost for the upcoming war. Much later, Madara used Black Zetsu in order to take the Rinnegan from Obito for himself, though with The Reveal Nagato's Rinnegan was actually his to begin with in life, it was more a matter of taking back what was always his.
    • At the climax of Boruto: Naruto the Movie, there's a rare case where The Dragon actually asks the Big Bad to do this. In order for his master to defeat the heroes, Kinshiki implores Momoshiki to absorb him to gain his power, and asks him not to hold back. Momoshiki's only offended that Kinshiki ever thought he'd actually hesitate, then turns him into a chakra fruit and devours with him a Slasher Smile afterwards. Even though the subordinate was willing in this scenario, it still marks Momoshiki as a particularly loathsome villain since Kinshiki loved him, raised him and thought of him as a son, and Momoshiki proved he never cared about him at all.
  • Inverted in MegaMan NT Warrior (2001). When the good guys finally get the current villains on the ropes, Big Bad LaserMan decides it's best to make a strategic retreat and regroup. MegaMan DarkSoul decides he'd rather "regroup" his superior's power with his own, deals a finishing blow, and proceeds to take the "devour" portion of this trope quite literally.
    MegaMan DarkSoul: A bit bland... but filling!
  • Mag Mel from Bakugan kills and absorbs Mistress Sellon after she had outlived her usefulness, using her energy to power himself as he prepares to carry out his ultimate plan. The very next episode, he does the exact same thing to Anubias.
  • In Suite Pretty Cure ♪, Noise absorbs Falsetto to power up and cross the Bishōnen Line.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • The heroic version of this trope occurs twice. The first is with Jonathan Joestar and his mentor Zepelli, who gives Jonathan all of his Hamon power shortly before his death. A similar scene occurs with their grandsons Joseph and Cesar in Part 2.
    • The villain Vanilla Ice, who is devoted to the Big Bad Dio, a vampire, promptly decapitates himself hoping that his Master will feed on him before the final showdown against the protagonists. In a subversion, Dio rewards his sacrifice by resurrecting him as a vampire. That doesn’t takes any power from him, though.
  • Alexander does this to his mooks during the Final Battle of Yu-Gi-Oh!: Capsule Monsters, sacrificing their monsters to summon Reshef the Dark Being and making sure that when his Reshef is attacked, they take damage instead of him.
  • Amon did this in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX, sacrificing his partner Echo to the spirit of Exodia to gain the power required to use Exodius the Ultimate Forbidden Lord. And Echo was only too willing to comply to help him; given how selfish Amon was (saved from death as a child by a rich man's generosity, given all he ever wanted, never wanting for anything but then never being satisfied and wanting more), you have to wonder just what he ever did to earn such loyalty.
  • A heroic example in FLCL, where Canti powers up by devouring Naota, using him both as sort of a replacement for his missing parts and as living ammunition for his BFG form. He survives each time, though, and is out.
  • This is the theme of the Shadow Paladin and Tachikaze Clans in Cardfight!! Vanguard, with the Tachikaze taking it much more literally by actually devouring their allies (their clan's keyword is even called 'Engorge') and being 'dragons'.
  • In Berserk, Emperor Ganishka attempts to ascend to godhood through a ritual that involves him assimilating the lives of most of his remaining minions using his magical fog. He gains a much, much stronger form in the process, but unfortunately for him, he's still noticeably weaker than a Godhand like Femto.
  • One-Punch Man: The manga adaption of the Monster Association arc has the two leaders of the Monster Association pull this off on each other as the half-dead Orochi wanted to absorb Psykos to restore his body so he could find and absorb Saitama, while Psykos wanted the extra power boost to kill Tatsumaki. Since both of them are too strong-willed for the other to successfully fully assimilate, they instead result in an unstable but still incredibly powerful Fusion Dance.
  • In Outlaw Star, Hazanko merges with his Cool Starship after absorbing the power of the Galactic Leyline in the final episode. This includes assimilating his one remaining underling; the resulting monstrosity incorporates features of both of them.
  • In SD Gundam Force, the Evil Sword Epyon allows its wielder to steal the powers of those it slays. When Tallgeese gets it, the first thing he does is kill his servants, Mercurius and Vayeate to gain their wind and lightning magic. However, it's later revealed that the Sword also turns its holder into the Berserker Epyon, which was what Deathscythe was really planning on.

    Card Games 
  • One of the block mechanics is Magic: The Gathering was called "Devour" and worked via your creatures coming into play and "eating" other creatures you had in play for various benefits.
    • Black mages in general (and occasionally green ones) have a bunch of ways to sacrifice its creatures for more power. Cards like Momentous Fall and Ayli, Eternal Pigment allow you to turn your minions directly into life, cards, or ruined tactical positions, improving your tactical position at the expense of your servants.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: This is actually part of the overall mechanic. Monsters over Level 4 require you to Tribute one or more of your other monsters to summon them. And unless your entire deck is dedicated to the Weak, but Skilled, you will do this.
    • Not just Tribute Summoning. Fusion, Ritual, Synchro, Xyz, and Link Monsters usually require at least one - and usually more - monsters to summon properly, and that's very often the case with most other monsters that are special summoned via their own effects. Long story short, this is such an important part of summoning monsters in the game that it's very hard to make a working strategy without doing it. (However, the anime almost never depicts this as a bad thing unless you hurt them on purpose while doing so, like Pandora did.)
    • Although, a few cards that require Tributes can be a little disturbing. For example, the Beast-Warrior Man-Thro-Tro can damage your opponent if you Tribute other monsters (Normal Monsters only, and Tokens don't count) and the card art suggest it does this by throwing the Tributed monsters at the opponent. Even squickier is Insect Queen; in order for her to even attack, you have to Tribute another monster, and in the anime, this is interpreted as the monster eating the Tributed monster. Even worse, when her attacks successfully destroys monsters, you get to summon Insect Tokens, which the anime depicted as her eggs; the idea is to use the Tokens as Tributes for her to attack, which means the Insect Queen is willing to eat her own young. (Not that this isn't uncommon for some insects, but Insect Queen is horrific enough without knowing that.
    • Obelisk the Tormentor has this as his effect. After the usual Tribute Summon, sacrificing two more monsters lets him destroy all of the opponent's monsters.

    Comic Books 
  • In The Immortal Iron Fist, Orson Randall does the Heroic Sacrifice variant by giving up his chi to power up Danny Rand.
  • Another Heroic Sacrifice version: The Kingpin once had a henchman called the Answer, who was pretty much an Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain, but one good thing he did was give up his life energy to save the life of the heroine Dagger. (He got better later.)
  • Bloodscream, a sort of vampiric monster, partners with Cylla Markham to track down and kill Wolverine. When they find him, Bloodscream drains the blood from Cylla to replenish his strength, revealing that the only reason he'd brought her along was to feed on her.
  • During Avengers vs. X-Men, 5 of the X-Men each receive a portion of the Phoenix Force. When one is knocked out, the others get their portion of the power. In the end, there are only two left, Emma Frost and Scott Summers. Scott is on the ropes, so he knocks Emma out, allowing him to become the complete Pheonix.

    Fan Works 
  • In Day of the Barney, Barney kills Baby Bop in this manner.
  • The Dark World arc of the Pony POV Series plays with this trope. When Discord is betrayed by Rancor and mortally wounded, Fluttercruel tries to invoke this trope, begging him to absorb her to heal himself. Discord refuses, since she's the one being he actually cares for, then inverts the trope by giving her his remaining power, allowing her to become a true Draconequus and the (apparent) Final Boss.
  • Friendship Is Aura: Chrysalis absorbs most of her minions in the hope of one last power-up against Lucario. It still isn't enough.
  • In A Different Lesson, Heian Chao attempts to do this with Wu Xiu. Interestingly, both are actually gaining from this, Xiu being healed from Chao's powers and Chao feeding off Xiu's chi. Fortunately, a thrown shield from Po (the Shield of Fire Monkey Pass, no less) severs the connection that is making this possible. as a result, Xiu is rendered comatose while Chao is hurled to the ceiling.
  • The Bridge:
    • The Shadow of Red absorbs the strength of his minions when they are slain.
    • After seeing his subordinate Monster X's true power as Kaizer Ghidorah, Bagan decides he wants it for himself, so he orders Enjin to kill him, absorb his power, and return with it. It ends in failure when X fights back and ultimately kills Enjin. Unperturbed, Bagan decides to keep X as a loyal minion (since X has no idea Enjin was working for Bagan), and then drain X's power personally when he feels X has outlived his usefulness.
    • In the crossover with Equestria Girls: Friendship Souls called Hunters and Hollows, The Storm King brands each of his Hollow followers, claiming it is a symbol of unity. When Tempest Shadow starts to get rebellious and he sees his troops are more loyal to her, he activates his Resurreccion and everyone wearing his brand gets their energy drained into him to fuel his transformation. His new monstrous form then sprouts tentacles that can absorb the Hollows into his mass. Fittingly, the release command for his Zanpakutou is "Cannibalize". He explains that he was always planning to do this in order to get enough strength to defeat his arch-enemy Tirek, which was why he had Tempest gather as many followers as possible, but Tempest's little rebellion caused him to do it early. The only survivors of the experience are Yin and Yang, and that's all due to a combination of their unusual nature as modified Arrancar courtesy of Grogar, the Storm King being slain by Tempest's Soul Reaper Zanpakuto purifying and freeing all the Hollows, and Tempst's subordinate Gruber using up his own remaining time to keep their spiritual energy together during the cleansing.
  • Megami no Hanabira: Metatron attempts to do this to Father Phillips after Phillips loses to Mai and her friends. It backfires.
  • A variation in Dear Diary: the dragons are left alone, but Reshiram and Zekrom use their Pokémon as sacrifices to give them power, by making them fight each other in a battle to the death and absorbing the energy of the losers.
  • A Diplomatic Visit: Inverted - as Well-Hidden explains in chapter 25, Sombra was The Dragon to a higher-ranking villain (his creator, leader of the Umbrum), and assimilated their power into himself prior to his final clash with the Royal Sisters.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Highlander III: The Sorcerer: Kane kills one of his Co-Dragons after they have been released from their underground prison in order to gain his power and weed out his remaining opposition.
  • Highlander: Endgame:
    • Connor MacLeod forces his younger kinsman Duncan MacLeod to take his head and absorb his power, and thus have enough power to defeat the Big Bad. Sort of a Passing the Torch moment as well, as it's the hero from the original movie sacrificing himself for the good of the hero from the spinoff TV series.
    • Jacob Kell also kills his mooks to gain their energy. Had the film been edited together with any sort of care, this scene would have come after Duncan gaining Connor's power. Instead, it comes somewhat randomly near the end.
  • Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth. After Pinhead's shortlived right hand Monroe fails to offer Terri to him, Pinhead convinces her to instead take Monroe's place by his side and feed Monroe to him, which she obliges. The power is enough to give Pinhead humanoid form again.
  • In The Sorcerer's Apprentice, Horvath, himself The Dragon to Morgana le Fay, a Sealed Evil in a Can, uses the Parasite Spell on his minions Drake Stone and Abigail Williams, fatally draining their magic into his cane. He then uses this newly gained power to free Morgana, but it also turns out to make him a living lightning rod, enabling the heroes to defeat him with Tesla coils.
  • Tokusou Sentai Dekaranger: 10 Years After. In the climax, Kight Reidlich decides to absorb his Co-Dragons, Neo Dekarangers Assam and Mugi, to power himself up after his Muscle Gear armor proves ineffective against the original Dekarangers. None of them were aware or willing to do it, given their reactions.

  • In the climax of Phoenix and Ashes by Mercedes Lackey, the wicked stepmother drains her lawyer/sidekick/future son-in-law completely of life, and drains her two daughters until they are aged, withered, senile husks of their former selves.
  • Harry Potter: The final book largely revolves around the Elder Wand, which transfers its loyalty (and thus, full power) to whomever manages to defeat its previous "master." At the beginning of the series, its master is Albus Dumbledore, who is killed by one of the Co-Dragons, Severus Snape. When Voldemort gets his hand on the Wand, he kills said servant so that he can become its new master. Except Dumbledore actually wasn't its master by the time Snape killed him...
  • Discworld
    • Witches Abroad has Lilith draining all ambient magic from the ballroom in order to throw an attack at the Baron. The Duc (who's actually a frog given human form, as Lilith has a thing for making things work based on stories) reverts to his true form instantly.
    • Although non-magical, Mr. Pin's killing of Mr. Tulip in The Truth is a similar case of a villain sacrificing his most trusted ally in order to shield himself.
  • Variation in the last book of The Wheel of Time, where Shaidar Haran is sacrificed to further weaken the Dark One's prison and allow it to manifest more fully in the physical world. What makes it unusual is that Shaidar Haran was actually a sort of weaker copy of the Dark One to begin with so the Dark One didn't so much steal his power as take back what had been given. As Moridin said, Shaidar was "A vessel of my Master, one that is no longer needed."

    Live-Action TV 
  • Kamen Rider:
    • Kamen Rider Saber provides a double inversion with Storious and his most powerful monster, the Charybdis Megid, which gains all the combined powers of everything it eats. After Storious gathers up all of the components of the Omniscient Tome, he commands Charybdis to eat him and all of the components. Charybdis does this and promptly explodes, turning into a revived Storious now with all the powers of the Tome.
    • Kamen Rider Geats provides a similar scenario to the above from Saber. Archimedel, in an attempt to strengthen the Dunkleosteus Jyamato, decides to first feed his blood to it, then feeds himself soon afterwards... at which point Archimedel emerges as the new personality of the powered-up Jyamato.
  • In the penultimate episode of Juken Sentai Gekiranger, Long devours his loyal servant Sanyo after transforming into his true form, which ironically is a dragon itself. (Sanyo was actually a part of Long, which enabled him to survive his body's prior destruction at the hands of the Gekirangers.)
  • Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue has Queen Bansheera get the last bit of power she needs to complete her transformation from a scarred and damaged near-cocoon like state to a fully mobile and powerful humanoid one by draining Vypra, citing her many failures as reason for this punishment. It's neither the first nor the last in the long line of Bad Boss moments that leads to Diabolico's defection, and in turn, her downfall.
  • In Kishiryu Sentai Ryusoulger, Dragon-in-Chief Pricious is absorbed by Big Bad Eras (long unseen, then mostly looking like a giant egg thing) in order to transform into her fully mobile form to take the reins in the final arc, quite similar to Queen Bansheera (and interestingly, not as similar to Bansheera's sentai counterpart Grandienne, whose transformation didn't require any such thing and didn't last very long.)
  • In Teen Wolf, Theo kills two members of his chimera pack, Tracy and Josh, in order to "take their pain, and then take their power" on his quest to steal the lycanthropy of the Beast of Gevaudan.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons
    • In the adventure OA5 "Mad Monkey vs. the Dragon Claw", this is a special ability of Dragon Claw martial artists: the most senior one present can drain Hit Points from his fellow Dragon Claws, allowing him to fight longer. If the heroes fail, the Dragon Claw statue will do this to all Dragon Claw fighters in Kara-tur.
    • The Death Knell spell from Third Edition allows an evil cleric to do this to a dying comrade.
    • A number of powers of the Dark Pact, a warlock pact from Fourth Edition, have the warlock draining Hit Points from his allies to power his magic. Being as the Dark Pact was originally created by the Drow, who are natural backstabbers who hold absolutely no faith in friendship or fellowship... yeah.
    • During the Time of Troubles in the Forgotten Realms, Bhaal absorbed the souls of every assassin in the world in order to upgrade his avatar. To gain the strength to battle Bhaal's avatar, Torm likewise absorbed the souls of his own followers, but on a voluntary basis. This was done to justify the lack of an assassin class in 2nd Edition Dungeons & Dragons in-universe.
  • In the climax of the "Enemy Within" Warhammer campaign, the Big Bad drains lifeforce from the official he has been mind-controlling, allowing him to take his true form.

    Video Games  
  • Radiant Arc: After Kagan loses to the party, Seperus devours him against his will. After Zardon is revived in his base form, Seperus allows Zardon to devour him.
  • Resident Evil:
    • Seen in Resident Evil 4 as Salazar and his remaining Verdugo fuse with a Queen Plaga before his fight with Leon.
    • In Resident Evil 5, Wesker injects Excella with the Uroboros parasite, which devours her from within.
  • Warcraft:
    • In Warcraft III, the Death Knight hero can use the ability 'Death Pact' to sacrifice any non-Hero undead to restore health. The Lich can do the same thing for mana.
    • The ability also appears in World of Warcraft.
  • StarCraft:
    • The Defiler can "Devour" another Zerg to recharge their Mana Meter.
    • In StarCraft II, the hero character Tosh can remove health from a nearby biological unit to recover energy, which is used to cast spells.
  • Castlevania:
  • Mortal Kombat:
    • In Mortal Kombat 9, Shao Kahn absorbs Shang Tsung and gives some of his power to Sindel.
    • In Mortal Kombat 11, Kronika orders Cetrion to sacrifice herself, allowing Kronika to absorb her Elder God soul for a boost. Cetrion, though hesitant, complies.
  • A "heroic" version is the central gimmick of Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume. Your buddy is supercharged, dies at the end of the battle, and you get a power-up.
  • In Jade Empire, Smiling Hawk takes a bit of a beating from the player before his most devoted disciple arrives. Smiling Hawk decides that the disciple's life would be more useful than his help.
  • A variation in Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords; Visas Marr, having originally been The Dragon to Darth Nihilus and possessing a Force Bond to him, could be made during the fight against him (having joined the Exile) to commit suicide in order to weaken Nihilus. Visas just has to be either wearing her default outfit, or in her underwear, and can only be armed with a basic lightsaber. Her Relationship Values must also be at maximum.
  • Inverted in Final Fantasy X, when one of Seymour's incarnations features "morticorpus", a living shield that regenerates by draining his life. He does play this straight right before that Boss Battle, though, by absorbing the body of the recently deceased Maester Kinoc (who was killed by Seymour offscreen shortly before) along with four of his own mooks in order to jumpstart his transformation into the One-Winged Angel form that includes the morticorpus.
  • In Legend of Mana, after the Hero beats Lord of Jewels 999, its dragon Sandra offers it her core gemstone so it could be reborn as Lord of Jewels 1000.
  • Dragon Age:
    • In Dragon Age: Origins, a Blood Mage can drain health from other party members with "Blood Sacrifice", which is a good way to keep the Blood Mage alive since keeping "Blood Magic" active renders other forms of healing all but useless. If you're careless it's entirely possible to bring your ally to the brink of death.
      • In Origins, this is even a mechanic in a boss fight. A powerful Tevinter mage in a later mission starts draining his minions of blood to fuel powerful AOE attacks that can really mess up your party if you're not keeping track of his health. However, if you have all four party members close in to attack the minions before he can drain them, you can kill them first, and beat him before he can really use the technique. If you kill every minion before you beat him, you even get more experience points!
    • That's what the ranger's summoned pet is for. Well, that and disarming traps...
  • Inverted at the end of Silent Hill 3: Claudia devours the embryonic God to enable its birth, which of course destroys her.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, Big Bad Malladus was forced outside of Princess Zelda's body. With no convenient way to repossess her, Malladus opts to simply possess his not-as-compatible Dragon, Chancellor Cole, creating an unstable beast that serves as the Final Boss.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, Ghirahim greets and bows before a newly-restored Demise, who proceeds to forcibly convert Ghirahim back into his sword form. Ghirahim doesn't mind, though, laughing maniacally because this is the very thing he was created for in the first place.
    • In Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, Astor is beaten by the heroes one too many times for his liking, and furiously orders Harbinger Ganon to devour them. However, not considering Astor anywhere near worthy of ordering it about, the Harbinger instead painfully swarms the prophet in Malice, eventually absorbing his husk into itself and reaching its One-Winged Angel form.
  • In Soul Nomad & the World Eaters, Thuris drains Kanan, the leader of his cult for a power boost before his boss battle after the rest of his cult wasn't enough.
  • In Soulcalibur IV, Tira wants Nightmare/Soul Edge to do this to her because she has a bad case of Mad Love for it. In her ending, the opposite happens. Nightmare's body can no longer withstand its own power and dies while Tira begs him to stay with her. Tira gets her wish when Soul Edge's power merges with her.
  • Mother does this to Zeikfried in Wild ARMs.
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic: The Sith Inquisitor has the "Sacrifice" ability, which sacrifices your companion in order to restore health to yourself. Depending on how you play your character, your companion might indeed be The Dragon to your Big Bad. The Inquisitor also consumes force ghosts during the story to gain the power to confront his/her nemesis. All classes get this ability if they get to level cap and full dark-side.
  • In [PROTOTYPE 2], Alex Mercer prepares for the final battle by consuming his Evolved lieutenants.
  • In the final battle against Miraak in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim DLC Dragonborn, Miraak fights you while three dragons fly nearby. Each time he is brought near death he will absorb one of his dragons' souls to restore his health.
  • In Haunting Ground, a New Game Plus cutscene shows Lorenzo, a creepy old paraplegic and the real Big Bad of the game, crawling over to the defeated body of Ricardo. He sucks out Ricardo's Azoth through his mouth. Though its effects are not immediate, this is why Lorenzo starts off as a crazy old man and ends the game as a nearly indestructible young sorcerer. Azoth is the source of life in alchemy.
  • Near the end of Perfect Dark Zero, Zhang Li absorbs Chandra's life force after she brings him the Graal.
  • In Tekken 3, Ogre absorbs Heihachi (or Jin if playing as Heihachi) after the first round, resulting in him going One-Winged Angel.
  • Final Fantasy XIV:
    • Inverted in the Extreme Mode version of the King Moggle Mog fight. Whenever one of the Mogglesguard is killed, Moggle Mog will revive and heal them at the cost of his own health. This is actually the only way to damage him, as he is invulnerable as long as the Mogglesguard are alive.
    • A more classic version plays out in the battle again King Thordan, who was made a primal through Lahabrea's machinations. Knowing that the Ascians are manipulative and would most likely use him for their own ends, the first thing Thordan does with his new godhood is kill Lahabrea and devour his aether, destroying his immortal existence.
    • The boss of Hard Mode Haukke Manor summons various adds throughout the fight. Shortly thereafter she sucks their blood to fuel a devastating Blood Rain AoE attack. The lower their health when they're eaten the lower the resulting damage will be.
    • Despite being built up to be the final boss of the Dun Scaith storyline, Scathach is revealed to ultimately be a Sacrificial Lamb to the true Big Bad, Diabolos. He revived her in a weakened condition in order for the heroes to defeat her, and afterwards he would then consume her body in order to ascend to his final form of Diablolos Hollow.
  • Dark Souls:
    • The first Dark Souls has Dragonslayer Ornstein and Executioner Smough; whichever dies first will be absorbed by the one still alive for a significant power boost, with either Ornstein growing huge and strong or Smough gaining lightning powers. Their attitudes are very different depending on who dies; Ornstein respectfully places a hand on Smough's body, while Smough cruelly smashes Ornstein with his hammer before he even stops twitching.
    • Dark Souls 3 has the Nameless King, who has two phases; one where he rides a dragon companion, and a second one where he fights man to man. Once the dragon phase ends, the King absorbs it and then fights you himself.
  • In Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey Redux, the True Final Boss, Shekinah, will summon her lackey Demeter when she's on the ropes, commanding her to use her lifeforce to restore her to peak performance. This fully restores Shekinah, massively boosts her defense to everything except Co-Op Attacks, and allows her to use an expanded moveset that includes the Signature Moves of the Wailing Womb's bosses. Despite whimpering, Demeter agrees and dies for Shekinah.
  • In the Runescape quest Plague's End, during your fight with the Dark Lord, he'll eat the souls of Lord Iorwerth and King Lathas, your primary villains throughout that quest line.
  • In Shining Force II, after the demon-possessed King Galam is defeated by Bowie, Zeon finally rises, having regenerated enough to assume physical form. He then absorbs Galam's dead body, as well as the essence of the demon within him, into his being before initiating the final battle.
  • Monster Hunter 4: The Seltas Queen is always attended by a male Seltas, although she’s a bit of a bitch and considers the males expendable. On rare occasions, when exhausted and very near death, she will grab Seltas with her tail, repeatedly smash him into the ground until he dies from it, and then eat him right in front of you.
  • Kirby Star Allies: After Hyness is defeated the first time and his hood comes off, he summons his dragons, The Three Mage Sisters and drains their energy in order to give himself more health, as well as some new weapons.
  • Disgaea 5: Alliance of Vengeance: After Majorita is defeated the final time near the end of the game, Void Dark shows up and uses his Overload Brigante Eclipse to steal her Overload Broken Faith Magia. He then dismisses her as useless, leading Majorita to realize that he had been tricking her all along. She attacks him in retaliation, only to be slain and (ironically enough) be raised as a zombie herself with her own stolen Overload.

    Visual Novels 


    Web Original 
  • Implied to have happened in There Will Be Brawl, when Kirby is revealed to still be alive, there are no signs of either of his Dragons, and he's wearing the cap of one of them. Now, remember that Kirby's powers involve copying the powers of other characters by literally eating said characters, and he usually dons a hat reflecting said powers...

    Western Animation 
  • Inverted in W.I.T.C.H.: Cedric eats Phobos to gain his powers.
  • As noted in the page quote, Makuta absorbs Nidhiki and Krekka in BIONICLE: Legends of Metru Nui, as well as his pet Feathered Fiend Nivawk after he found the need for their services irrelevant. This was a mixed blessing however; he later claimed (assuming he wasn't just being a Sore Loser when Vakama rightfully points out he lost to the Toa Metru) that he had trouble suppressing their minds within his own, distracting him enough for the heroes to win.
  • Makuta does it again in BIONICLE (2015) at the climax of Journey to One, absorbing Umarak the Destroyer and the pieces of the Mask of Ultimate Power to open a portal to the Shadow Realm.
  • In Wakfu, Goultard dominates the fight against Rushu. Realizing he's in a bad position, Rushu calls upon his Shushu hordes to help him, and they merge into a huge mass of darkness. Rushu eats it to get a power boost that allows him to gain the upper hand against Goultard.
  • A literal example in Dinofroz. Before the final battle, dragon king Neceron zaps his three generals to gain their powers, leaving them dying. Oddly enough, despite him explicitely saying that they will die without their powers, the three dragons appear later alive and well, although two of them die for different reasons.
  • In the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic episode Twilight's Kingdom Part 2, Lord Tirek convinces Discord to pull a Face–Heel Turn, then turns on him and steals his magic when he's done with him.
  • A variation occurs in The Transformers; Megatron's plan was to lure the Autobots to their doom using a device that created a clone of Optimus Prime, but the plan was jeopardized when the real Optimus showed up. Then Megatron had a good idea; in order for the clone to win the trust of the heroes, he'd have it fight - and kill one of the high-ranking Decepticons. Meaning Starscream. Then he figured, he didn't have to sacrifice Starscream, he'd use the same device to clone him. (Well, maybe he could have stood to get rid of Starscream, but that was another issue.) And to make it even more convincing, he had Starscream control it remotely. (So it would be just as arrogant and loudmouthed as the real one.) In fact, this almost worked, the thing that gave the clone away being it disregarding Spike as "unimportant", a serious faux pas that ruined the whole thing.


Video Example(s):



During the final battle against Ketheric Thorm, he will end up sacrificing himself in a horrific ritual to summon an avatar of Myrkul, the evil god of death, to finish off the party.

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