Follow TV Tropes


Invisibility Cloak

Go To

"Cellophane, Mister Cellophane,
Shoulda been my name, Mister Cellophane
'Cause you can look right through me,
Walk right by me,
And never know I'm there!"
Amos Hart, Chicago

An invisibility cloak is a specific type of Applied Phlebotinum. It is worn on the body and renders the wearer invisible. It does not have to be an actual cloak and can be anything from a bodysuit to a ring. It can be magical, or it can be technological (in which case it may be referred to as a "cloaking device"), where the latter goes from a rather mundane suit whose colors change according to the environment, to a high-tech diffractive field that bends light.

A problem only occasionally brought up with these is that if the wearer's eyes are invisible, his retinas are also, and he should therefore be rendered blind. If it is a magical cloak, though, it can be explained away as being some kind of enchantment that lets you see.

When it is used in video games as active camouflage, you can sometimes see people cloaking this way as the light refracting around the character or monster's general shape.


Invisibility cloaks do exist, if only as radar and infrared stealth technology for planes. Experimental invisibility cloaks for humans also exist, while bigger stuff is in the concept stage. Except those are cloaking devices for vehicles, not personal invisibility devices.

Greek Mythology examples make this Older Than Feudalism.

Having said that, the Invisibility Cloak is a major tactical weapon in advanced societies that have abandoned radar-guided and heat-seeking weaponry, or at least when dealing with enemies who are using the Mark One Eyeball most of the time; for example, most soldiers only switch to thermal goggles in low-light conditions, making a device to turn invisible very useful for moving around unseen in the daytime.

Compare Invisibility, where this is an ability instead of an equipment or Invisibility Ink, which is far less permanent. Stealth in Space is this trope applied to spacecraft. Watch out for Invisibility Flicker, though.



    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Some of Doraemon's pocket gadgets are capable of invisibility. Fujiko F. Fujio was mindful of why true invisibility and vision didn't mix, and so the ones that can be applied to humans mostly work on perception filters.
  • Full Metal Panic!, ECS mode for 3rd generation Arm Slaves. Tessa's M6A1 also had ECS despite being 2nd-gen. The Other Wiki states that ECS is based on an array of rapidly oscillating lasers. The first models only shielded against infrared but the newest stuff works against optics as well — with the trade-off of having a strong ozone smell, attracting birds, and freaking out dogs.
    • ECCS sensors can see through the camouflage and light rain makes it completely useless. It is implied that ECS draws lots of power since every time we see it in use, the Arm Slave in question is either sneaking or standing still (which is a bit strange, seeing that 3rd-gen AS units have cold fusion reactors with nearly three times higher wattage than their 2nd-gen cousins, yet both carry ECS).
    • Mao was moving at a pretty good clip in the Behemoth story arc, trashing roadsigns and even "helping" Souske and Weber get their truck through a roadblock.
  • In Gantz, the hunters get controllers with the ability to turn their user invisible by "changing their frequency". Those who are also invisible and thus on the same frequency can see each other.
  • GaoGaiGar's Volfogg has his built-in Holographic Camouflage, which appears to render him visually invisible as he blankets the immediate area with other forms of sensor jamming (it's depicted as both bending light and projecting a false image). The only time it's 'broken' is when he either attacks something or that one time the Zondar turned out to have the ability to dive between dimensions, as he's careful to account for environmental effects. There's an external box version of it, but it's still only Volfogg whoever uses it - and is presumably the only one who's designed to.
  • Ghost in the Shell's Public Security Section 9 and a few baddies make frequent use of "thermoptic camouflage", which renders the wearer more or less invisible in both visible-light and infrared. In the movie, Major Kusanagi wears a skin-tight semi-transparent thermoptic suit; the various TV series have Section 9's combat uniforms thermoptic-equipped.
    • The manga and the film show the characters wearing special devices to be able to see while being invisible. However, in Stand Alone Complex, they are absent.
    • In the manga, the camo can be disrupted by dust and rain.
    • The Rangers (who were chasing S9 characters at the time) and Batou (an ex-Ranger) have eye implants designed specifically to work with thermoptic camo. This still doesn't explain how the others were able to see. Perhaps we are meant to assume that most of Section 9 have these implants.
    • The Umibozu commandos in the first season of Stand Alone Complex also had thermoptic camo as well when they were ordered to hunt down the S9 operators.
      • The camo also seems to work better in the anime, even keeping the characters invisible in the snow in one episode (without leaving footprints or getting visible snow to settle on them.
    • Having said that, the PS2 game establishes that thermoptic camo doesn't work in areas with high humidity, and attempting to use it will cause the user to appear like a multihued silhouette.
  • During the Hunter exams of Hunter × Hunter a minor character (a ninja) captures a giant pig by putting a rock under a camouflage cloak to get it to run into.
  • Subverted in Last Fantasy, where the invisible armor is invisible, and not the one wearing it. Needless to say, the armor is lost very quickly.
  • Otto's Stealth Jacket in Lyrical Nanoha, which works more like Real Life stealth technology, rendering the user invisible to regular search magic and technology. However, as Shamal demonstrated with Klarwind's more advanced sensors, it's far from infallible.
  • Swim Swim's group in Magical Girl Raising Project purchases an Invisibility Cloak that perfectly hides the user visually, though it won't protect her from magical skills. Her group uses it for multiple sneak kills, though it proves worthless against Snow White's Psychic Radar and Cranberry's enhanced hearing.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam SEED, Mirage Colloid for Gundams, ships, and mini-Death Stars.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam AGE has a near-perfect stealth system used by Vagan for their warships and space stations, though apparently the power requirements are such that Mobile Suits cannot mount it. They also appear to be unable to attack when it's active. The Bisidian pirates managed to steal one for their own ship. SID, guardian of the EXA-DB, has a more advanced version that can be mounted on a smaller frame.
  • Kaede from Negima! Magister Negi Magi gets one of these as her magical artifact. It's different from most of the other examples on the page in that rather than making the person merely invisible, it consumes them and then turns invisible. Inside is an entire house. Also Natsumi's artifact makes her and anyone holding her hand completely unnoticeable.
  • On Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl, Hunter J flies around Sinnoh in an airship with a cloaking device.
  • Rebuild World:
  • Sgt. Frog: The Anti-Barrier, or the system the Keronians use to become invisible to anyone other than a select few, like the Hinatas.
    • It's explained that very curious people (like the mangakas in the deadline arc, and the Hinatas early on) can see straight through it, but then it says this is how Natsumi and Fuyuki saw the Sergeant to begin with... yet Keroro had forgotten about the anti-barrier at that point. Someone slipped, or maybe Keroro's just a moron. (Hint: The latter.)
  • Vision of Escaflowne, Zaibach Guymelefs had stealth cloaks.
  • Helcats in the Zoids anime with their optical camouflage, though later on this is applied to just about anything... including factories.

    Asian Animation 
  • Happy Heroes: Doctor H. invents one in Season 2 episode 15 (which is literally titled "The Invisibility Cloak" and everything). Big M. tries to steal it, only to get Sweet S.'s pajamas instead.

    Comic Books 
  • Wonder Woman's Invisible Jet.
  • Buzz Allen, from Superworld Comics, had a belt that turned him invisible.
  • Detective Jim Brant, from Popular Comics, had an invisibility suit that allowed him to fight crime.
  • Mysta of the Moon, who was featured in Planet Comics, had an invisibility cloak.
  • Echo, from Yankee Comics, had an invisibility belt.
  • Solar, who was featured in Captain Aero Comics, had a "Cape of Mystery" that rendered him invisible.
  • The Scarlet Phantom, who was featured in an issue of All-New Comics, had a "phantom cloak" that turned him invisible.
  • Full-body "lightbender" suits are used fairly often in Matt Fraction's Casanova.
  • Minor hero the Invisible Hood (a.k.a. Hooded Justice a.k.a. Invisible Justice) in The DCU (and originally from Quality Comics) wore a chemically treated hood and robe that allowed him to turn invisible.
  • Marvel's current incarnation of Loki owns a magical cloak of invisibility. They also borrow (steal) an invisibility pendant (magical) from Lorelei and an invisibility belt (technological) from Sigurd. All these together are enough invisibility to hide them even from Mephisto.
  • Judge Dredd:
    • There is technology that allows assassins to cloak themselves completely, although they're still visible on infrared.
    • Judge Dredd once ran into a Predator who was hunting for Judges in Mega-City One, which frequently used its invisibility tech to escape.
    • In one story someone digs up a highly advanced weaponized wristband from the future, one of the features allowing the wearer to become invisible even to infrared.
  • Ghost, an Iron Man villain, has an armor suit that allows him to become invisible and also intangible.
  • The various versions of Phantom Lady typically have technology that allows them to turn invisible and intangible.
  • Ultimate X-Men and The Ultimates: Nick Fury has one, but it is very expensive to use for more than just some seconds.
  • Wonder Woman (1942): The Saturnians have full-body costumes which allow them to remain invisible on the light spectrum so long as they are in range of their "Invisibility Ray Generator".
  • Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith. A literal version when Vader skins a creature that has the natural ability to camouflage itself. Rather than hiding, however, he openly displays himself wearing it to the bounty hunters pursuing him as a non-verbal Badass Boast (the creature is the apex predator of the planet they are on). A couple of his hunters have extra-sensitive hearing and they can always pick up Vader's breathing apparatus, but Vader finds ways around that too.
  • The Private Eye P.I. himself wears a "Dreamcoat" hoodie, which projects opposite surfaces onto its faces to give him the appearence of transparency. Notably it doesn't include his face or his pants.

    Fan Works 
  • In Kyon: Big Damn Hero, Kyon's greatcoat, skinsuit, PDA, and weaponry conspire to give them one of these.
  • My Immortal gives us the most useless and self-contradictory invisibility cloak ever. People can see it when it's in use. But they can't immediately deduce that this means there's someone using it. But if you send a cat under it to check, you can tell when the cat nods to confirm. This may or may not be explained by the fact that the author persistently misspells it as "invincibility coke".
  • A team of mercenaries in The Dresden Files fic Fair Vote had the technological variant; surprising in a universe where magic-users are Walking Techbanes.
  • In Renegade, invisibility technology is used by Tali to sneak into an enemy base.
  • Calvin uses the technological version twice on his trademark box in Calvin and Hobbes: The Series.
  • Subverted in Rocketship Voyager. The Caretaker shows off a cloaking device in his archive but points out that it's useless for any practical purpose or scientific study as no eyesight or instrument can see in or out of it once activated.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier in The Avengers, much like James Bond's car listed below, had panels on the underbelly that displayed the sky above the ship, rendering it invisible to ground observation.
  • Die Another Day somewhat infamously had a car that used miniature cameras on one end wired to transmission screens on the other, much like existing technology. "Aston Martin call it the Vanquish, we call it... the Vanish."
  • The Tarnhelm is parodied in the 1989 film Erik the Viking, where the protagonist uses Aud's invisibility cloak, which only works on King Arnulf. Unaware of that Erik pulls off a hilarious "now you see me, now you you don't see me" scene on the villain's ship.
    • The priest cannot see it, the same way that he cannot see the Dragon of the North Sea or the gates of Asgard.
  • G.I. Joe - There is a camouflage suit used by Scarlett.
  • Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol has Ethan and Benji hiding themselves from a guard by hiding below a screen that projects an empty corridor atop them. It even adjusts itself to align with the guard's eyeline, though once more than one person is there to deceive, the machine stops working correctly.
  • One of the spy gadgets Dr. Honeydew and Beaker develop in Muppets from Space is invisibility spray. Unfortunately, it comes off when Fozzie washes his hands.
  • In the film serial The Phantom Creeps, Dr. Zorka has several futuristic devices, including an invisibility belt.
  • Predator: This is a Predator's main defense against the prey that it is hunting.
  • In the 1959 movie Santa Claus, Merlin gives Santa a flower that can turn him invisible.
  • The Smurf Village in The Smurfs has a magic field that renders the village invisible to anyone outside the field...most likely to those who aren't Smurfs.
  • Spawn (1997): Spawn's red cape is shown being capable of rendering him invisible. He then makes the mistake of turning it off while the cops are still looking for him, so recommence gunfight.
  • As with the various Star Trek TV shows, Cloaking technology plays a key role in several of the movies.
    • In Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, the cloaking devices allow Klingon villains to stalk Starfleet ships and take them by surprise. In Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home the heroes instead use the cloaking device from a stolen Klingon ship to conceal themselves while visiting 20th century San Francisco. The cloaked Klingon warship in The Final Frontier also ends up saving the day when Spock convinces the Klingons to help Kirk defeat "God".
    • Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country features a Klingon warship that can attack while cloaked, up until now a technological impossibility. Early on the cloaked ship falsely implicates the Enterprise in an attack on the Klingon Chancellor's flagship, and during the climax the starships Enterprise and Excelsior team up to hunt down and destroy the ship as it sneaks about taking shots at both ships.
    • Star Trek: Nemesis features another new development of the cloaking device, with Praetor Shinzon's Reman warbird Scimitar being able to not only fire her weapons while cloaked but also maintain her shields as well. His ship wrecks the Enterprise and makes short work of two Romulan warbirds that join the fight against Shinzon.
  • Star Wars: In The Phantom Menace, Darth Maul's ship has a cloaking device.
  • The Thief of Bagdad (1924) features one of these, which is a literal cloak.
  • The Invisible Man (2020) has this as the method the titular character uses to become invisible rather than a serum, specifically being a full-body suit fitted with hundreds of tiny reflective cameras that see and perfectly copy what is in front of and behind the wearer.

  • Elven warriors from the Fighting Fantasy series of books are often depicted as having invisible elven cloaks as part of their arsenal, which gives them a SKILL boost if fought in combat. One of them, Elranel the Elven Thief from Legend of Zagor, shows up as an optional opponent; if he's defeated (in a lengthy and arduous combat due to his already high SKILL stat) you're given an option to keep his cloak, but will need to abandon your armour - the cloak doesn't work when draped over metal.

  • In Artemis Fowl, Foaly creates an invention called Cam Foil to make the wearer of it invisible. It's more technological than Harry Potter cloaks, which serves some problems, such as it shorts out in rain and is not invisible to a camera. Also, the circuitry can be easily crushed and the wearer appears as a slight haze, so is still noticeable.
  • In the Captain Future reconstruction novel Avengers of the Moon, our hero uses a man-portable version of his spaceship's fantome generator to infiltrate the moon habitat of a high-ranking politician. Surprisingly Realistic Outcome occurs as he has to consider such problems as power supply (only ten minutes using his batteries), being able to navigate when you can't see, and how to hide his footprints. The solution they come up with is for Captain Future to walk in behind, and holding onto, his Robot Buddy Grag, who pretends to be a simple maintenance robot. Later Captain Future uses the fantome generator in a shootout by switching it on, moving his position and aiming his weapon at where he can hear the enemy is (sound can still travel through the field) then turning it off again, giving himself a momentary advantage over his opponents.
  • In John C. Wright's Chronicles of Chaos, the characters get the Ring of Gyges (from Greek mythology, see above) from the horse-shaped tomb of Gyges. It can hide the wearer from normal and paranormal sense impressions selectively. Colin Mac FirBolg does his best sniveling Gollum impersonation before donning it.
    Amelia warns him that what it really creates is a moral compulsion to not notice the bearer, which means it may not work on the innocent, such as children.
  • The Crimson Shadow: Luthien gets one, though it leaves behind a crimson silhouette wherever he was when wearing it, the source of the name "the Crimson shadow".
  • In The Death Gate Cycle, the Secret Police of the Arianus elves are known as the Unseen because they wear special outfits that blend in with whatever they are adjacent to. While not truly invisible, someone wearing one is very difficult for even a trained observer to see if they move slowly.
  • In Walter Jon Williams' Drake Maijstral series, the darksuit, which is the preferred working ware for Allowed Burglars, has a wide variety of stealth technologies built into it. However, as the name suggests, it's mainly useful at night. A blurry cloud of holographic darkness entering a window in broad daylight is likely to attract attention.
  • The Ganymede Takeover. A soldier of La Résistance uses an illusion machine to turn himself invisible. Unfortunately on turning it off again, he insists that I Can't See Myself, even though everyone else can see him. It's a result of the psychological effects of the illusion machines, which send the users crazy.
  • In Tribesmen of Gor we learn that the Kurii have developed a ring which makes the bearer invisible, by refracting light around the user.
    • In Explorers of Gor, the plot is driven by attempts to recover the ring and plant a booby-trapped fake on the other side.
  • In J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter series, Harry inherits a cloak from his father that makes everything beneath it invisible. Recreated beautifully on film too. This cloak is the Trope Namer.
    • And as it turns out, the cloak is one of the three Deathly Hallows. Other cloaks, such as ones woven from Demiguise fur, decay over time and are affected by outside spells, but the Hallow cloak is just as able to keep its wearer invisible as it was when it was first made and does not budge for one moment when a Death Eater attempts to Summon it off of Harry.
    • The power of invisibility was also applied to The Invisible Book of Invisibility. The copies are still missing.
    • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix has Headless Hats, which make only the wearer's head invisible.
  • In The Hobbit, Bilbo acquires a magic ring from Gollum. This ring grants invisibility to its wearer.
    • The sequel, The Lord of the Rings, identifies it as the One Ring, a major Artifact of Doom. The invisibility is a side-effect on mortal wearers who cannot simultaneously exist in the Visible and Invisible worlds. In fact, the ring actually makes its wearer more visible to those who are in the Invisible world, such as the Nazgûl. Spiritual beings, such as Sauron, are not rendered invisible.
    • The elven cloaks given to the Fellowship at Lórien give a certain amount of invisibility, causing their wearers to fade into the background so long as they are among nature. This allows Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli to stay unseen by an entire cohort of Rohirrim riding right past them and has a lot to do with Frodo and Sam's successful incursion of Mordor. This is well represented in the film adaptation of The Two Towers when, as an orc-company approaches, Frodo throws his cloak over him and Sam, and they immediately take on the perfect likeness of a boulder.
  • Incarnations of Immortality: In Under a Velvet Cloak, Karena finds from Morgan Le Fay that the velvet cloak has magical properties. Morgan teaches Karena how to use the invisibility, phase through the ground, protect the wearer from attack, and finally the spell Karena wanted — "Locate a person", to find her lost lover. Later in the story, Karena finds the most important quality of the cloak: the cloak is not magical — Karena did this all with her innate magical abilities.
  • The Morrors wear these in Mars Evacuees by Sophia McDougall.
  • In Astrid Lindgren's Mio, My Mio, Mio gets his cape mended by the seamstress. She mends it with fabric that turns Mio invisible when he wears the cape inside out.
  • In Morris Disappearing Bag by Rosemary Wells, the bag is effectively an Invisibility Cloak. Young Morris hides in it, to the envy of his older brother and sisters who won't let him use their toys. The bag itself is invisible all the time, leading to one of Morris' sisters saying "I hope you remember where you put the bag".
  • In Murderess, Lu and Hallwad use an invisibility potion to look for Aucasis in the Dark Ones’ tunnels without being detected.
  • Parodied in Myth Conceptions with the low-end-knockoff version, an invisibility sheet. Made of semi-stiff plastic, it can render someone who carries it invisible from observers on one side and can be rolled up for storage.
  • William Gibson's Neuromancer has Molly donning a "mimetic polycarbon" bodysuit, which changes pattern to match the surroundings, in order to infiltrate the Sense/Net headquarters.
  • The Belt Ghemmal in The Neverending Story that Xayide gives to Bastian, is made of glass and makes the wearer invisible. Bastian was disconcerted the first time he wore it as he couldn't even see himself, so he couldn't take it off without Xayide's help.
  • The Trope Maker is the Tarnkappe (aptly translatable as "camouflage cape") which Siegfried takes from the dwarf Alberich and uses to defeat Brunhild in the Nibelungenlied.
  • The magic ring in Orlando Furioso, which Angela uses to get away from Ruggiero in what might be the epic's most crucial scene. It reappears at various points and may have inspired the One Ring.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians: Annabeth Chase's Yankees baseball cap allows her, or anyone else who wears it, to become invisible.
  • Perry Rhodan has the 'deflector field' (not to be confused with Deflector Shields) as a relatively commonplace technology. It works by bending light around the cloaked object or person and, while useful under the right conditions, isn't too hard to foil since it only affects a small part of the electromagnetic spectrum (an early issue had an invisible intruder detected by 1970s Earth radar) and the field itself can be easily spotted by advanced sensors.
  • In the Prelude to Dune prequels, a Richese scientist invents the first no-field generator. He sells the technology to the Harkonnens, with the Baron having him build a no-chamber for secret meetings and a small no-ship for hidden strikes, before Rabban kills the scientist. However, unlike the future no-ships, this no-field is a typical cloaking device but doesn't shield against prescience, as evidenced when Rabban tries to use it to attack Wallach IX only for the Bene Gesserit to detect him with their powers and cause the ship to crash. They study the craft and then destroy it to prevent the technology from falling in the wrong hands. It's not clear if the re-discovery of the no-field is independent or a result of the Sisterhood using this knowledge.
  • Jack McDevitt's Priscilla Hutchins novels have "lightbenders"; basically high-tech invisibility suits. Access for the general public is highly restricted, but the Academy is allowed to use them for exploring new alien worlds. Their use requires care, though, since they don't hide the eyes.
  • L.E. Modesitt's Saga of Recluce books have invisibility that does render the wearer blind.
    • Well, sort of. To use the ability you have to first develop a supernatural sensitivity to either patterns (order) or energy (chaos), either of which means you can see more "blind" than ordinary people can see with light anyhow.
    • Also the ability is only schematically shaped like a cloak, it's not really an item so much as a spell that the caster has to fuel.
  • In Michael Flynn's Spiral Arm novel In The Lion's Mouth, Ravn recounts the use of these in the fight. After, Bridget's first guess is an Air-Vent Passageway escape before she deduces that in fact Ravn hid cloaks in the ventilation system, and then escaped, invisible, with her companion as soon as the door opened.
  • In the Starfist series by David Sherman and Dan Cragg, Confederation Marine combat uniforms are called "chameleons" - they incorporate an otherwise undescribed technology that approximates the color of objects in the uniform's near vicinity. Chameleons only work in visible spectrum, a weakness that is ruthlessly exploited by the series' recurring aliens and monsters.

    Later on, when the Marines are fighting against human rebels, they advance across an open field of chest-high grass. Apparently, no one realized just how brilliant this plan was until they got ambushed by the rebels who could easily spot them.
  • Star Wars Legends: One of the early plots of The Thrawn Trilogy is Grand Admiral Thrawn's search for Palpatine's hidden cloaking technology, suddenly made practicalnote  in a breakthrough shortly before the disastrous battle at Endor. But like a true total cloaking device, it's double blind—enemies can't see the cloaked ships, but the cloaked ships can't see outside their own field. Thrawn, being the Magnificent Bastard that he is, still finds some uses: like cloaked asteroids in low orbit used as siege weapons. Since the asteroids are invisible, the residents of the planet have no way of knowing whether they've cleared them all and thus have to keep the planetary Deflector Shields permanently raised. Which is quite problematic for a planet so heavily populated that it relies on importing food from off-world.
  • In Stuart Little the car Stuart drives has an invisibility button.
  • Sword of Truth: The Mriswith's cloaks render them invisible.
  • Tales of Kolmar: A demon summoner makes Marik of Gundar such a cloak in Song in the Silence. It also keeps any sound he makes from escaping, even twigs breaking underfoot, and masks his smell. Additionally, it makes it much harder to see most things, but any source of light is painfully bright.
  • The Traveler's Gate: The cloaks Valinhall Travelers receive from the Nye, when used in conjunction with the Nye essence, make the Travelers very difficult to perceive with any Territory powers. At first this is mostly helpful again Lirial, but it turns out to be very effective against Incarnations, who are constantly looking at the world through the eyes of their Territory.
  • In the Uglies series, the Specials have sneaksuits — suits which can blend in with the surroundings and cannot be seen through normal sight or infrared. The suits can be damaged and one particular character can sense their location since he is very perceptive (although the character in question is seriously underestimated).
  • In The Voyage of Alice, Alice meets a conman who claims to sell invisible fishes, and he says he gives her an invisibility cap which is conveniently supposed to be weightless and similar to air to the touch. Subverted, as it turns out it is a functioning invisibility cap, which saves everyone's lives in the story's climax.
  • In The Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan, Warders' cloaks blended with the scenery, making their heads and legs appear disembodied when the cloaks were worn. It's also possible to make a sort of invisibility field using the One Power, but it has to be anchored in place because it causes a weird ripple effect when it moves.
    • The material was apparently called "fancloth" in the Age of Legends, and some characters with know-how can make more than cloaks with it. Before he reveals himself, the newly-resurrected Moridin stalks various protagonists and a few of the other Forsaken swathed in the stuff from head to toe (except for his eyes.)
  • In While The Clock Chimes, invisibility caps are worn by the kingdom's royal family and the aristocracy, since they are so gorgeous that anyone who sees them goes blind. They are not, it turns out: really they are horrendously ugly.
  • The Republic of Plato: In the parable of the Ring of Gyges, Gyges finds a golden finger ring which makes its wearers invisible when the collet of the ring is turned inwards (toward the palm). It is a normal ring when the collet is turned outwards.
  • Laszlo Hadron And The Wargods Tomb: Isis Lagato uses a stealthsuit to infiltrate Sel'Akis.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Doctor Who:
    • In the two-parter "The Empty Child"/"The Doctor Dances", Captain Jack's spaceship has an invisibility cloak, allowing him to park it next to Big Ben.
    • The Doctor can make the TARDIS invisible too if he needs to keep a low profile. Leading to the 11th Doctor slamming face-first into it in "The Impossible Astronaut". While he's in the Oval Office.
    • In "The Time of the Doctor", two Sontarans try sneaking up on the Doctor, who quickly gets wise to them.
      Sontaran: Commander Skarr. That's the detection warning. Our invisibility cloak is compromised.
      Skarr: What's wrong with it?
      Sontaran: I don't know. I can't see it.
    • In "The Caretaker", the Doctor gives Clara a watch that can turn her invisible. She gives it to her boyfriend Danny Pink so he can see her interact with the Doctor and show there's nothing between them. However, the Doctor is more than capable of detecting it, and Danny switches it off when he realises this.
  • In the Sci-Fi Channel series The Invisible Man, Darien Fawkes was implanted with a gland that secreted a liquid that coated him and his clothing, causing light to bend around him perfectly. Active camouflage meets Psycho Serum.
  • Legend of the Seeker: The Mriswith's cloaks render them invisible.
  • There was an episode of Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman featuring a man who had invented an invisibility outfit.
  • In one episode of Pixelface, the QM invented a hat that rendered the wearer invisible. Unfortunately, the hat itself remained visible.
  • In what may very well be the earliest example of this on television, the "Manhunt in Space" serial of Rocky Jones, Space Ranger introduces the "Cold Light" device. The device works on an inverse of the heat mirage, where sufficiently cold light beams could render an object invisible. Remember, this was written in the '50s.
  • Similar to the Muppet Labs spray above, one episode of Sesame Street featured the spray-on invisibility cloak "Disappear-O".
  • Stargate SG-1:
    • In season 3 the Goa'uld system lord Nirrti used a personal cloaking device she developed (possibly reverse-engineered from the naturally phase-shifted Reetou) to try and ruin treaty negotiations between the SGC and Goa'uld. Fortunately anti-Reetou weapons could expose her.
    • The Sodan used Ancient cloaking devices that rendered themselves invisible, but turned out to attract extradimensional parasites.
    • In season 9 the team discovers Arthur's Mantle, which is basically a computer that takes the user out of phase, making them invisible, even after they leave its' proximity. Daniel guesses that a medieval storyteller who didn't understand the mechanics of the machine attributed its properties to an actual cloak.
  • Star Trek:
    • Cloaking Devices have been a mainstay of the series since "Balance of Terror" in Star Trek: The Original Series. Employed mainly by the Romulans, Klingons, Suliban, and even by the Federation itself (for the Defiant). The Federation is, as a rule, barred from using cloaking devices by the Treaty of Algernon, which also requires the Romulans to stay on their side of the Neutral Zone. A Lensman Arms Race ensues over the length of the franchise between those trying to make more effective cloaks and those trying to find new ways to detect them.
    • The Romulans once tried to take this Up to Eleven with a "phase cloak" that would make starships not only invisible but able to pass through normal matter. Unbeknownst to them, a Starfleet Insane Admiral illegally beat them to it. Both attempts failed catastrophically.
    • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Jem'Hadar soldiers go invisible when on the attack. The same series introduces the USS Defiant, a Pintsized Powerhouse starship equipped with a cloaking device on loan from the Romulans, with the understanding that the Federation will only use it against the Dominion and won't reproduce it.
    • In the Star Trek: Voyager episode "Dark Frontier", the Voyager uses a cloaking technique developed by the Hansens to rescue Seven of Nine years later. Unfortunately, as the Borg Queen points out, they gained knowledge of that technique when the Hansens were assimilated.
    • The numerous spheres in Season 3 of Star Trek: Enterprise are surrounded by powerful cloaking fields.
    • In Star Trek: Discovery, T'Kuvma's house is the only one in the Klingon Empire which possesses cloaking technology. After T'Kuvma is killed and his champion Voq is cast out, Kol offers the technology to the other Klingon houses in exchange for their loyalty, which causes the Federation no shortage of problems.
      • Season 2 then reveals that Section 31 ships use cloaking devices.
      • By the far-future setting of Season 3, cloaking tech is used by both the Federation and their rivals, the Emerald Chain. Notably, Discovery is now easily able to detect the presence of a cloaked ship from some distance, even if they can't pinpoint or identify it. She also has her own cloaking device.
  • Parodied in an episode of Wizards of Waverly Place when Max buys an invisibility poncho. When worn, only the poncho turned invisible, Max didn't.
  • Treadstone. In "The McKenna Erasure", a Treadstone agent hides from a thermal camera by wrapping himself in a foil survival blanket.
  • Played with in Kaamelott. Merlin is unable to turn people invisible, but got around it by designing invisibility panes, which makes anyone hiding behind them invisible. Just make sure you remember where you put them.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Greek Mythology: Hades had a cap that made its wearer invisible.
  • Russian folklore has an invisibility hat, which may also blind the wearer depending on the version of the legend (it usually doesn't; for example, Chernomor's hat in Ruslan and Lyudmila allowed Lyudmila to sneak all over Chernomor's palace with no difficulties seeing).
  • The Tarnhelm in Norse Mythology.
  • The Tarnkappe from German heroic legend, such as the one Siegfried took from the dwarf Alberich in the Nibelungenlied (and Siegfried didn't limit himself to non perv uses). King Laurin, another dwarf king from a different legend, also had one of these.

  • In the radio version of Flash Gordon, after Flash has conquered the cavern world of Syk, he reviews the troops now under his command. He asks Zarkov who the guys wearing cloaks are, and Zarkov identifies them as the Invisibility Batallion.


    Tabletop Games 
  • BattleTech takes the chameleon approach with mimetic armor coatings for some types of power armor. The "Chameleon Light Polarization Shield", invisibility on a Mech scale, has never been truly explained but is implied to somehow render a Mech invisible only in the visible light spectrum, allowing it to still hunt in its magnetic resonance and infrared sensor modes. Those Mechs that mount it have to find their own ways around not showing up to those, frequently resorting to advanced composites for construction and various gimmicks to reduce heat signature.

    The Word of Blake's new Void-Signature System combines the theory of the Chameleon Light Polarization System as well the Null Signature System with Battlesuit Scale mimetic armour to create a system which blocks you from Mag Scan, IR, Radar sensors as well as any visual system by making your 'Mech change colours as to appear the same as their background... thus simply being a blur.
  • Rings, cloaks and other Items of Invisibility from Dungeons & Dragons. Though by the time you can afford one, a lot of the enemies you'll be fighting will have ways around it. (The See Invisibility spell, Tremorsense, Scent...)
  • Rifts shows a surprising dosage of reality in averting the traditional sci-fi cloaking fields. The usual invisibility magic still works, but technological efforts at an Invisibility Cloak take the form of highly advanced "chameleon" fields or coatings which mimic the surroundings rather than bending light around them and making the user blind too.
  • Various versions exist in GURPS Ultra-Tech. By TL12 the Invisibility Surface works not only in the visual spectrum but well beyond it.
  • The villain Ambuscade from Sentinels of the Multiverse has a Personal Cloaking Device. When it enters play, Ambuscade flips from his Superhuman Hunter side to his Invisible Stalker side. As the Invisible Stalker Ambuscade is immune to damage, so the heroes must destroy the Personal Cloaking Device first to get him to turn visible again.
  • Eclipse Phase has invisibility cloaks in two forms: chameleon cloaks and metamaterial cloaks. Chameleon cloaks use complex arrays of sensors and light emitters to absorb light on one side of the cloak and emit a precise replica on the opposite side, effectively making the user invisible. Metamaterial cloaks are composed of advanced nanomaterials with a negative refractive index, which literally bend light around the cloak. The game actually addresses the Required Secondary Powers necessary to wear such a cloak, stating that the user is blind while wearing it unless they open up a slit to see through by using a piece of 'anti-cloak' (material with a refractive index that cancels out the cloak's).
  • Hc Svnt Dracones has three approaches. A display blanket loaded with a camouflage program can hide you if you're not moving. EM Cloaks cover your electromagnetic signature, but you're still visible. And finally a Scatterline Unit causes the wearer's outline to blur and become indistinct against their background.

  • Prospero's use of an Invisibility Cloak in The Tempest is a major plot point.

    • The Kanohi Huna, the Mask of Concealment, allows the wearer to become invisible, though they still cast a shadow.
    • The Kanohi Volitak, the Mask of Stealth, allows the wearer to camouflage themselves, making them harder to see. Unlike the Huna, they aren't entirely invisible, but it also deadens sound.
  • Zoids has Helcat, Liger Zero X, and Diablo Tiger.

    Video Games 
  • Battlefield 2142 has this as an unlock for the recon class. It only lasts for a short time, however; EMP will reveal it, and an unlock for support class can put any player using it on the map.
  • Each Command & Conquer RTS makes sure that it goes public with some kind of active camouflage unit. In the earlier games, especially before the Generals saga was even here, it's more likely that Invisibility Cloak is the expertise of a certain faction. A rule of thumb to reveal an enemy unit is to have a friendly unit approach it, use sensors, or hurt the enemy unit.
    • In the Tiberium series, the Brotherhood of Nod is rather fond of Invisibility Cloaks and is specifically mentioned to be the leader in that field. It first began with "Ezekiel's Wheel" Stealth Tanks and the occasional Crate Expectations bonus when the very first C&C game, Tiberian Dawn, debuted in 1995. And then, it just expanded from there. Tiberian Sun moved on to footsoldier and building versions when it included the aptly-named Chameleon Spy, as well as mobile and stationary Stealth Generators that can generate invisibility fields base-wide. As of Tiberium Wars, Nod even gained a Support Power derivative.
    • The Red Alert series takes Invisibility Cloak differently, what with even wackier science. The Allies understand this trope as the ability to jam radar or generate Fog of War using specialist vehicles and buildings. Although they mostly subvert this trope, they do learn to build a one-time prototype S.Tank-APC hybrid in Red Alert: Aftermath. Red Alert 2 sees no changes in their mindset: Mirage Tanks are implied to use holograms to hide themselves. The Soviets (and later on, Yuri's army and Imperial Japan) are more straightforward about this with submarine technology, which survived all the way to Red Alert 3.
    • Generals and Generals: Zero Hour are easily the most generous and the least sci-fi C&C games with this trope, seeing how Invisibility Cloak (innate or attained by upgrade) can apply to aircraft, footsoldiers, vehicles, and even buildings alike. Justifiable in a sense that most of it is merely from modern camouflage technology, rather than from Applied Phlebotinum. The extremest of extreme goes to none other than Zero Hour's Stealth General, Prince Kassad. He has the Support Power to cast an Invisibility Cloaks on literally anything.
  • One of the standard features of any Crysis nanosuit is a cloak mode. It's a Game-Breaker in singleplayer, but savvy players in multiplayer modes will still see a shadow and an enemy icon on their mini-maps with a handheld scanner. It slowly drains energy when sitting still, drains it much faster when moving, and totally empties the suit energy meter if you shoot before switching modes. A common and effective workaround for the latter is to uncloak for an instant, fire, then cloak again. Even if an enemy is looking right at you, you'll have a split-second before they manage to react to your presence to fire a shot or two.
  • Descent and Descent 2 both featured cloaking devices, which would render your ship (mostly) invisible for 30 seconds. Invisible, but not, notably, inaudible: if you fired a weapon, ran into a robot, or heck, even just ran into a wall, the robots would notice you and start firing in that general direction. They could also still detect you if you were foolish enough to leave your headlights on while cloaked in the second game.
  • Global Agenda has one for the Recon class. It also greatly increases movement speed or jump length (your pick) while active, making it a viable travel alternative to the jetpack.
  • The Fallout series features the Stealth Boy, which is established as a knock-off of Chinese technology, leading to Chinese stealth armor showing up in the Operation: Anchorage DLC for Fallout 3note . Both prevent the player from targeting an equipped enemy in VATS.
  • Several Final Fantasy games include invisibility spells or items. All physical attacks are a guaranteed miss while the item/spell is active (except in the Tactics games, where attacks can typically still hit, but the AI will ignore the invisible unit.) Some incarnations decrease magic evasion and/or magic defense as a trade-off.
    • Final Fantasy VI, prior to its Game Boy Advance remake, included a notorious bug, Vanish/Doom, which combined Invisibility (0% physical hits, 100% magic hits) with a Useless Useful Spell (instant death, laughably low hit rate). One-hit kill every time, even for bosses who are supposed to be immune to it.
  • Halo features lots of "active camouflage," a common Covenant light-bending device that can also be used by the UNSC's Spartans.
    • The UNSC has a less advanced version of this in the form of photoreactive paneling.
  • Link had the Magic Cape in The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. Also, the Stone Mask in The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask allowed you to become invisible because no one cares about a stone. Until you tried to do something plot-important with it on, like trying to take the Hookshot without starting the "beehive" cutscene beforehand in the Pirate Stronghold.
    "Hey! Some kid with a weird mask is trying to sneak into here!"
  • The Ninja character from Live A Live had an Invisibility Cloak.
  • Metal Gear had both two-way invisibility and active camouflage. The OctoCamo from Metal Gear Solid 4 is a peculiar example. To the player, Snake appears fully visible, just colored with the exact pattern and texture of whatever he's blending with, but while playing against Snake during a Sneaking Mission on Metal Gear Online, when the camo index is high, Snake is virtually invisible, barely even noticeable when he moves, and one presumes this is also how the AI sees it. Stealth Camouflage in MGS4 and MGO (A call back to the original MGS), one is totally invisible to the naked eye, but one is still visible by enemies using infrared in-game, and the user still has a shadow.

    The Stealth Camo is in a way Invisible to Normals since normal guards can't see you, but bosses, escort characters, and the Attack Team (the guards sent during an alert phase) can. It is possible they already know you're there and are specifically looking for you. Stealth Camo doesn't provide total invisibility, so you could still spot it if you know what to look for.
  • Shadow Pirates in Metroid Prime feature the "active camouflage" type of cloak (appear translucent in the visible spectrum, but stick out like a sore thumb in IR). Trace in Hunters can cloak itself in a similar fashion by standing still, but the cloak drops as soon as it moves.
    • The Omega Pirate, also from Metroid Prime, has a "Chameleon Manta" which lets him become invisible not only to the naked eye but also to infrared and X-ray vision. The only time he can be seen when it's activated is when he absorbs the highly radioactive phazon into his body.
  • In Metroid Prime: Hunters, when bounty hunter Trace is equipped with the Imperialist weapon, he can become invisible so long as he remains still.
  • Shounen Kininden Tsumuji also had an invisibility cloak that Tsumuji can use and sneak around enemies.
  • The RC-P120 from Perfect Dark had an ammunition-powered cloaking device as its secondary function. The game also featured stand-alone versions.
  • Super Mario 64, the Vanish Cap.
  • Super Smash Bros. Melee had Perfect Dark's cloaking device. These also prevent you from seeing yourself. Of course this doesn't affect the AI in any way. On the other hand, while you still react to damage from other players while cloaked, they can't actually hurt you until it wears out.
  • Late in WarGames Defcon 1, the W.O.P.R have developed a new technology, the Stealth Field Generator, which depending on the player's campaign, will be to capture (N.O.R.A.D) or defend (W.O.P.R) it. Succeed in their mission and the following stage will unlock a new unit, the awesome Slayer (N.O.R.A.D) or Mantis (W.O.P.R) vehicle, units with powerful laser cannons and capable of becoming invisible for up to sixty seconds.
  • Wing Commander, Kilrathi (and later human) stealth fighters.
  • StarCraft has a large number of "cloaked" units, both for the Protoss and the Terrans:
    • Terran Ghosts are latent psychics that can use their powers, coupled with a special suit they wear, to cloak themselves for as long as they have enough energy.
      • The campaign of StarCraft II has Spectres, "enhanced" Ghosts with a similar system. They can also be upgraded so they can cloak indefinitely.
    • Terran Wraiths have a cloak generator that also works on stored energy. It's mentioned that the damn thing is so secret that the Army does anything it takes to destroy wreckages so as not to lose the advantage.
      • A similar device is used in StarCraft II on the Banshee gunships. The invisibility is also not handled with a Hand Wave; when the gunship is cloaked, the whole cockpit goes dark and a visor slides over the pilot's face, presumably connected to a small exterior sensor. The same goes for the Specters' goggles, which slide on when they cloak.
      • The new, more detailed Wraith portrait reveals that this fighter doesn't even have transparent cockpits, to facilitate cloaking.
    • Protoss Observers and Dark Templar are permanently cloaked. The Observers use some kind of technological artifice, while the Dark Templar have invisibility skills as a cultural trait, given their history of persecution by the Khalai.
    • Protoss Arbiters aren't cloaked themselves but serve as an anchor for a reality-warping field that automatically cloaks allied units within a certain radius. This ability is carried over to the Mothership in StarCraft II.
  • The Spy in Team Fortress 2 has one built into his wristwatch. It lasts up to 8 seconds and then needs 30 seconds to recharge fully, so using it takes a fair bit of tactical sense. An alternate invisibility watch, the Cloak and Dagger, slowly regenerates while the player is cloaked but standing still, so they can be invisible forever, but it drains much faster while moving.
    • The Dead Ringer turns you invisible after faking your death to the enemy team. You also get a temporary 75% damage reduction, and the cloak doesn't flicker from bumping into enemies. The downside is it can only be activated by taking damage, requiring you to either run around uncloaked waiting for an enemy to shoot you (and hope it's not a random crit or other One-Hit Kill), or find environmental damage (most of which is also a One-Hit Kill) or a reasonably far drop. It also has an extremely loud de-cloak noise, can't be recharged with dispensers or ammo packs, and can't be reactivated unless it is fully charged. This watch in particular has been subject to many Nerfs over the years due to complaints about how much damage reduction it granted and how rapidly it could be recharged with ammo packs when first released, making it very easy to use to survive what would be lethal hits over and over again instead of the intended use of Faking the Dead.
  • Thief II: The Metal Age has invisibility potions. Sometimes they are available for purchase (and are very expensive when they are); sometimes they are hidden somewhere in a mission. The effect lasts for only a minute or so, and when it wears off, Garrett breathes very hard as though surfacing for air.
  • Tsioque has the titular princess find one in a crypt when she escapes from the dungeon, using it to evade Imp guards. She doesn't get to keep it very long, as she trips off the edge of a staircase and has to hang on for dear life as it blows away from her.
  • Warcraft III, Shades, Night Elves (subverted in that it's only at night and while stationary), Blademasters, and the Sorceress' Invisibility spell. In Warcraft II, casting invisibility on a Demolition Squad killed it outright, in Warcraft III it just tells you you cannot use it.
  • Doom and Doom II had a Partial Invisibility power-up; this didn't make it impossible to see the character, just extremely difficult, and those with ranged attacks would have a random deviation added to their shots (e.g. fireballs veering off something like 45 degrees from where you actually are at the time; the powerup is rather infamous among the playerbase since in practice, as you'll typically be strafing to avoid enemy fire, it actually makes them better at hitting you because now they can "accidentally" compensate for your movement). The Spectre also has this effect, albeit permanently turned-on.
  • Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception had the Gleipnir airborne fortress and Fenrir superfighters with their Digital Optical Stealth. Radar lock is also lost when it is active, though guns still work and dumb-firing missiles can still land on the slow Gleipnir.
  • Mass Effect 2 introduce this technology as a Tactical Cloak, used by an Infiltrator Shepard, Kasumi, and shotgun-wielding Geth Hunters.
    • Returns in Mass Effect 3, this time expanded to the Cerberus Nemesis and Phantom enemies, along with various Infiltrator characters in multiplayer.
  • Rogues in the Dragon Age series have this ability, which can be upgraded from "weak enemies may or may not notice you on a good day" to "complete invisibility even as you calmly shank an entire army of darkspawn."
  • In The Elder Scrolls series, it is possible to enchant the Chameleon effect onto armor, clothing, and/or jewelry. The Chameleon effect makes it harder for NPCs to detect the player. The effect can range from 1%-100%, with the chance of NPC detection decreasing the higher the percentage. Enchanting multiple pieces of equipment with the effect can quickly reach Game-Breaker levels, as enemy NPCs will be unable to interact with you in any way, allowing you to steal from or assassinate whoever you want with total impunity. If certain exploits are used to make the effect permanent, it can also be a Game Breaker in another way, in that it breaks the game by making it impossible to advance since you won't be able to interact with NPCs.
  • The Assassins in the F.E.A.R. series have active camo. Notably, the camouflage only covers the Assassins' body, not any weapons said Assassin is carrying, which forces them to rely on hand-to-hand attacks. They get around this by having finger-mounted claws that channel electricity into their targets.
  • The V38 Phantom TIE Fighters in Star Wars: Rebel Assault II have this, "a capability previously unheard of for ships their size". Ditto for the facility that produces them, whose cloaking device is disabled by the explosion of the Super Star Destroyer Terror.
  • Infamously, Wizards & Warriors for the NES features an invisibility cloak that turns the character invisible... but only to the player. Enemies can still hit you.
  • Touhou Project has resident Gadgeteer Genius kappa Nitori and her optical camouflage suit.
  • In Turok 2, some of the Endtrails have stealth camouflage.
  • Zoids games usually have optical camouflage as something that can be equipped to the player's mecha.
  • In the RTS game Achron, every single unit has active camouflage which is the justification for Fog of War (because, who is really that near-sighted?). If you get close enough to enemy units, you can see them. Nigh-perfect cloaking also exists in the game and units who have that ability activated can only be seen if a unit with the ability "Detector" is nearby.
  • Quake had the Ring of Shadows, which rendered the player invisible for a short period except for his eyes.
  • The biospark enemy in the Kirby series uses one of these in Squeak Squad. It isn't too bright about it, though - it leaves its gloves exposed.
  • In Secret Agent Barbie, a thief stole some fashion designs in order to create a ‘Translucent Suit,’ which is said to provide the wearer with near invisibility when worn.
  • The female assassins in Half-Life had cloaking devices when faced on the highest difficulty.
  • The Deus Ex series has invisibility biomods/augmentations, notable in that they rapidly drain your batteries and require a separate biomods/augmentations to be silent as well. There are also jackets, which don't drain your batteries, since it is a separate item, but they are rare and expensive, and once it is used up, it's gone.
  • The reboot of Syndicate has this for certain mooks, but you don't have one in either single-player or co-op.
  • Spoofed in Escape From St. Mary's: The cloak makes everything else invisible (it blinds you).
  • In Marathon, the Transparency Biobus Chip Enhancement grants you temporary invisibility. Some S'pht compilers use cloaking devices as well.
  • In Mega Man 7, the Wily Capsule explicitly pulls out a cloak when pulling off its disappearing trick.
  • In Monday Night Combat, this was one of the abilities of the Assassin class. Super Monday Night Combat tweaked it quite a bit; now it only makes you invisible to enemy players at a certain distance, but you're completely invisible to enemy bots and turrets.
  • The Novistadors in Resident Evil 4 have Predator-style invisibility, however they can't be cloaked and fly at the same time.
  • Ghost Recon: Future Soldier's second mission introduces the adaptive camo. It only works when stationary, crouched or prone - no sprinting unless using the cover-shift - and suffers from Invisibility Flicker. Enhanced vision modes, such as the player's own magnetic goggles or backscatter optics, and enemy vehicles can still see through it as well. Also, it can't cloak human skin (as seen in levels where Kozak and/or the others leave their sleeves rolled up, thus giving an actual reason for them to all wear skull-face bandanas), and it leaves the sights uncloaked, so as to facilitate actually aiming your weapons.
  • Near the end of The Secret of Monkey Island, Guybrush gets his hands on a necklace of eyeballs that renders him invisible to ghosts, which, luckily, all the bad guys happen to be.
  • The default special ability of the Infiltrator class in PlanetSide 2 is a regenerating cloaking device. It's not as powerful as most examples, a cloaker can be seen (unless perfectly still) by an enemy on the lookout for them, and cloaking players cannot attack enemies. The cloaking does, however, hide the Infiltrator from the minimap and from being spotted, and the nanomachines that generate the cloak can be switched for ones that absorb incoming damage as well as hiding the player (at the cost of draining more power). The alternate "Stalker" cloaking system forces the player to give up their primary weapon but allows them to stay cloaked indefinitely provided that they occasionally stand still and let the device charge back up.
    • The Flash ATV can also be fitted with a cloaking device, allowing an Infiltrator to make a stealthy and fast entrance. So long as the enemy doesn't hear the roar of the engine.
  • XCOM: Enemy Unknown:
    • Ghost armor, a late-game armor, has a built-in cloaking function that allows you to move completely undetected so long as you don't attack, with four charges per mission. Activating the cloak gives a +100% Critical Hit chance (reduced to +30% in the Expansion Pack), prevents the user being targeted by reaction fire, and breaks Suppression.
    • Autopsying a Seeker in Enemy Within yields the plans for the Ghost Grenade, a single-use itemnote  that cloaks all allies within its effect radius exactly like Ghost Armor – even MEC troopers.
  • This is stock equipment in S.L.A.I.: Steel Lancer Arena International. Since energy shields are momentary, uncertain things (they only have a statistical chance of triggering to reduce damage instead of being always on), the more reliable choice in this case is to use a cloaking device that renders the SV effectively invisible, save for a faint Predator-like outline on the upper portion of hulls at close range. Weapons can still be fired and don't drain your cloak meter any faster, so it wasn't unheard of for two or more completely cloaked fighters to dance around each other while invisible while blazing away, resulting in the odd but amusing spectacle from a distance of nothing firing at nothing.
  • Starsiege offers a form of cloaking that effectively masks a unit's radar signature while also causing the hull to mimic the local terrain textures. Moving while cloaked would cause the cloak to update its texture sets every few seconds, meaning that a sharp-eyed pilot could pick out something that resembles a constantly shifting chunk of Martian plains moving at a dead run and fire accordingly. Due to the way this particular system works, using the cloak on high ground is dumb, since it does nothing to hide a unit's outline, which will stand out quickly even on darker backgrounds—a lumpy green protrusion suddenly appearing on an otherwise smooth hilltop is probably not just a misplaced terrain texture.
  • If you have the Mantorok rune in Eternal Darkness, casting the "Reveal Invisible" spell with it results in your character turning invisible instead.
  • Every Support character in Evolve has one of these that can cloak anyone nearby them as well as themselves. The Medic character Lazarus also has one, though his only cloaks himself.
  • In Overwatch, Sombra has Thermoptic Camouflage, rendering her invisible to normal sight and allowing her to move twice as fast. However she needs to drop it to attack or hack or use her Translocator, and enemies can see her if she gets too close or use an ability like Hanzo's Sonic Arrow or Widowmaker's Infrared Vision, plus any damage will force her out of cloak.
  • Both TaskMaker and The Tomb of the TaskMaker offer these for sale. If the player is wearing one, he or she is less likely to be attacked by monsters or otherwise angered NPCs. However, the player will also be unable to interact with shopkeepers, and non-angered NPCs will only say "I can't see you!"
  • Everything or Nothing: The Porsche Cayenne Turbo is outfitted with one, and Bond later receives a Nano Suit. Caveat: He has to move very slowly, or else Invisibility Flicker comes into play. Later on the enemies receive one, though the Thermographic Vision and a well-placed EMP Grenade can foil their suits.

    Web Animation 
  • Red vs. Blue:
    • The Active Camo from Halo is Tex's armor enhancement. The Meta briefly uses it as well after capturing Tex in Season 6, and again in Season 8, though not as well.
    • In Seasons 11-13, Locus possesses this, as well as various soldiers of the Federal Army of Chorus and the Space Pirates in Charon Industries' employ.

  • In Elf Blood, the punk Scout uses one to escape from the Renegades after he tosses a grenade at them.
  • In Far from Home, the pirates have a device that makes them only appear on the scanner.
  • In The End, the alien spaceship piloted by the protagonists is supposed to be using one of these when it lands on Earth. The fact that it turns out not to be working properly is one of the factors that kicks off the plot.
  • Shadowscared, god of fear in The Gods of Arr-Kelaan has a cloak that makes him invisible to everything he fears (which is a lot). It was made by one of his followers who expected it to make him immortal, instead it just hid his ghost from Thannatria, Shadowscared could see him and he gladly gave it to him so he could pass on.
  • Lady Spectra's hi-tech "refractor cape" in Lady Spectra & Sparky.
  • The K'ul of Half-Man use these, humanity has limited ways of detecting them while using it.
  • In Recursion, Dr. Deathe has discovered a way to partially submerge mines in subspace, making them invisible.

    Web Original 
  • In New York Magician, Michel's watch can generate "slips", which are basically this, barring magical people and beings who can see through them.
  • In Orion's Arm this is done by using tiny lasers to project an image into the eyes of onlookers.

    Web Videos 
  • In Tales from My D&D Campaign, the evil Kua-Toa have developed a way to cheaply mass-produce invisibility cloaks by fueling them with chemicals in their own skin secretions.

    Western Animation 
  • Sheila from the animated Dungeons & Dragons (1983) TV series was equipped with a literal Invisibility Cloak.
  • Played with in one Invader Zim episode where Zim accidentally gets a Megadoomer assault robot that could turn completely invisible. Unfortunately, the pilot does not turn invisible, leaving Zim floating in midair as he stomps his way through the neighborhood.
  • Parody in Spongebob Squarepants: The "Boatmobile" of retired superhero duo Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy is permanently invisible. So whenever they need it, they wander around the parking lot/secret cave garage like idiots until they find it. But it's not only annoying, it's outright useless because driver and passengers are clearly visible.
    • Invisibility is the Boatmobile's default state; a malfunction causes a brief glimpse of a 1950s style sports car. Faaancy. The duo do carry around a car alarm on the keys, which renders it temporarily visible.
  • The Shroud of Shadows from Xiaolin Showdown allows both the user and anything it covers to become invisible.
  • The Renegades' Stealth Device from Challenge Of The Go Bots, said to be a holographic projector that worked across the entire electromagnetic spectrum.
  • One episode of Batman: The Animated Series featured a criminal who had stolen a supply of a plastic that could bend light around it, and had made for himself an invisibility suit (and similarly outfitted his car).
    • Batman might've also adapted a safer version of this (in the Batman The Animated Series episode, it's mentioned as being toxic to the user), as the suit in Batman Beyond, Terry's costume has a similar ability that he uses sometimes.
  • The Saurians of Mighty Ducks: The Animated Series had extremely sophisticated cloaking devices that not only rendered them invisible to the naked eye but to almost all forms of radar or locating devices. In fact, its power is why the Mask of Drake Du Caine is so important to Puckworld. It is the one and only thing that can see through their cloaks.
  • The costume worn by Spider-Man throughout most of Spider-Man Unlimited can briefly turn him invisible.
  • In one Transformers Generation 1 episode, Megatron invents and uses an Invisibility spray gun.
  • In Beast Wars, Ravage and his transwarp cruiser could cloak, rendering them undetectable to vision and scanners (but not to Silverbolt's keen sense of smell).
  • In Asterix, a spy was sent to observe a palace construction in Egypt. He blended into the background terrain, and also took the form of building blocks to hide. Naturally, he was added to the construction.
  • In Inspector Gadget: "A Clear Case", Dr. Claw invents an invisibility suit using diamonds to deflect light.
  • The Big Knights featured hats of invisibility that rendered the wearer invisible but required the wearer to be naked apart from the hat.
  • The The Neverending Story: The Animated Adventures of Bastian Balthazar Bux episode "Belt of Invisibility" has Vermin discover Gmal, an invisibility-granting belt that Bastian got from Xayide and then use it to commit a crime spree across Fantasia. Bastian is forced to get a second belt from Xayide to stop Vermin, only for this one to make him not only invisible, but eventually inaudible to everyone except Xayide.
  • In one episode of Aladdin: The Series lowly thief Amend Da Mula is given an arsenal of magical items by Mozenrath for a mission to turn the Sultan into a statuette, with one of then being a Belt of Invisibility. Iago, recognizing the trick, takes the belt from Amend and later uses it to get the Sultan away from the thief when he takes the form of a griffin.

    Real Life 
  • Metamaterials.
  • If you made a cloak out of a lot of tiny cameras and screens, it should be possible to get the invisibility effect while still being able to see the outside on a screen inside the cloak. It would be ridiculously fragile, though.
  • BAE Systems is developing an adaptive infrared camouflage system that makes vehicles blend with the background IR of the environment, making them practically invisible when viewed with IR cameras.
  • Real Life stealth systems have generally subverted this trope, opting instead for practical invisibility. Stealth equipment is in no way invisible. Instead, it's constructed with abnormal angles to deflect incoming radar oddly and painted with radar-absorbing paint. The end result is that anyone can see it, but it presents a much smaller target to enemy radar. So enemy radar would interpret a bomber as a flock of birds, or a cruiser as a ... something not a cruiser. The US military is working on an AR system for ground forces to enable them to see the enemy through walls (by feeding data from cameras set at alternate vantage points) thus allowing them to use cover more effectively.
  • The aptly named Invisible Octopus has probably the closest thing to this that exists in the natural world as seen here.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Cloaking Device


Greatest Cloak Ever

The Cloak of Levitation seems to disagree.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (8 votes)

Example of:

Main / InvisibilityCloak

Media sources: