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Robot Wizard

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Image by Jim Algar.

As You Know, robots are creations of science. So when you got a robot who can cast magic, which is usually at odds with science (even if they can go hand-in-hand), it becomes a pretty novel sight and comes up with plenty of strange implications.

A lot of magic in fiction requires the caster to have some metaphysical connection with magic—usually a soul—in order to use it. A robot capable of using magic, therefore, has enough of a Heart Drive to meet this requirement, according to some works.

For this to count, Clarke's Third Law should not be in effect (i.e. the magic shouldn't be some very highly advanced technology), and the character has to be explicitly robotic from inception (ergo cyborgs don't qualify for this trope: they count as Cyborg Wizards instead). Since Tropes Are Flexible, if an Artificial Intelligence somehow has supernatural powers, they count for this trope too since it's that intelligence rather than the artificial body that makes a robot what/who they are.

Sub-Trope of Magitek, which is not limited to robots, and Science Fantasy. Also a case of Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot, being a combination of two things we consider cool, and Oxymoronic Being and/or Paradox Person, due to technology and magic mixed together.

Sister Trope to Wizards from Outer Space and Cyborg Wizard.


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    Anime & Manga 

    Comic Books 

    Films — Live-Action 

  • Worm: Despite being an artificial intelligence, Dragon was able to Trigger as a parahuman.
  • In the Discworld, HEX is a steampunk supercomputer designed to break complex spells down into their simplest possible elements and reassemble them into new forms at a rate of thousands of calculations per second. Over the stories, HEX evolves into a sentient robotic intelligence with a snarky sense of humour and is potentially the most powerful wizard at Unseen University.
  • Apprentice Adept:
    • The Oracle is an Artificial Intelligence capable of seeing the future and using a certain amount of Magitek to be able to function on Phaze, where science doesn't work.
    • Sheen has no magical ability of her own, but she's a robot and very good at following directions. When given the Book of Magic, she immediately becomes the equivalent of an Adept.
    • Mach downplays this. While he's a robot, he learns magic when crossing planes through a "Freaky Friday" Flip, which puts him in a human body. He's still referred to as the Robot Adept even before permanently merging with his other self.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In Eberron, Warforged can be wizards, sorcerers and even druids just as easily as their meatsack companions, barring any difficulties if their plating is made of metal and/or heavy enough to count as armour. In their original 3.5e incarnation they also make above-average psions and paladins, since the repair damage psionic power and the paladin's Lay on Hands are among the easiest ways to heal their semi-organic bodies.note  That said, specific character examples are hard to come by, and most of these characters are likely going to be PCs. The Lord of Blades, a warforged warlord, was statted in 3.5 as being an accomplished Artificer as well as a Fighter - Artificers being a class that don't cast spells directly, but are very good at creating and working with magic items.
  • Shindroids in Final Fantasy D20 require taking an alternate Racial Trait (Magitek Device) during character generation to be magicians, giving up Composite Plating (a trait that gives them a higher Natural Armor score than meatbags) and Part Robot (Machine Empathy).
  • Pathfinder: Androids — artificial humanoids with synthetic flesh and nanite fluid for blood, and who are created from Lost Technology automated factories rather than being born — can become spellcasters as easily as any natural race, and in fact tend to have keen interest in magic and spiritualism. The same is true in Starfinder with androids and SROs (Sentient Robotic Organisms).
  • In Promethean: The Created, the Unfleshed are a kind of Promethean (a pseudo-living creature usually created from human corpses subjected to a specific ritual) arisen from broken machines rather than dead people. These can still use magic-like Refinements, using the Divine Fire imbued into their beings.
  • Averted with the Necrons (Robotic Undead) of Warhammer 40,000: While they can do things that are considered magic by everyone else like time travel and non-Warp FTL Travel and teleportation, it's technological in nature as the Warp (the source of what everyone calls magic) is anathema to them.

    Video Games 
  • Bravely Second: The E-Type models of the Glanz Empire's Iron Man soldiers are partially built using magic charms and are capable of casting spells like Lightning, thanks to having magic stones inside them that allow them to do so.
  • Chrono Trigger: Averted with Robo (a sentient robot found in the Bad Future). While his techs can deal Shadow, Fire or Lightning damage, as well as heal, they are explicitly technological in nature; taking him to see Spekkio at the End of Time will confirm he can't use actual magic.
  • Destiny:
    • Exo Guardians started out as Ridiculously Human Robots created as the product of Brain Uploading and then resurrected by the Traveler after their demise in the Collapse. As with all Guardians, they’re magic knights who wield the paracausal Light to warp reality and cast powers, but it’s especially pronounced with Exo Warlocks, who emphasize the “magic” side of things.
    • Explicitly impossible for the Vex, self-replicating Mechanical Lifeforms who, despite the vast computing power of their Hive Mind, are incapable of comprehending or utilizing the paracausal forces of the Light and the Darkness because their physicalist models of the universe can’t account for things that defy physics. Quria is the sole exception, having been created specifically to invade a pocket universe where physical law was inseparable from the Darkness, and so could deduce how to warp reality on a limited scale in there. Only after being Taken did it gain the power to do that in regular space, causing The Night That Never Ends over the City until it was destroyed.
  • Dragalia Lost: Downplayed regarding Mega Man. He's classified as a wand user, who are known for magic-based combat, yet he utilizes his signature Mega Buster during gameplay rather being shown using whatever wand he has equipped, and his special moves are also weapons from his games. He is able to use special moves that are part of the wand he equips just like any other wand user however.
  • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's Portable: The Florian sisters in The Gears of Destiny are Ridiculously Human Robots who are just as capable of using magic as the rest of the cast. This is not the case in the Reflection/Detonation duology, as they are changed to being Human Alien girls infused with nanobots instead of robots, and their particular magic system is stated to not actually be magic in the movie continuity.
  • In Magical Starsign, Mokka is a Magitek robot and the party's designated Earth magic-user. He was even attending a Wizarding School before the events of the game.
  • Mega Man X: If you manage to find the secret capsule that contains the Hadouken powerup, Dr. Light's hologram says that the technique is powered by the soul, and X (despite being a robot) has a soul that's close to a human.
  • Might and Magic features three spellcasting androids over the course of the series, Corak, Sheltem and Escaton. Sheltem is (based on his appearance in Might and Magic: World of Xeen) technically a cyborg, but of the Terminator robot-with-skin-disguise type, and Escaton explicitly isn't one.
  • Most mages in Monolith are this.
  • In Overwatch, magic may or may not exist due to taking place in a very technologically advanced world, and a few Omnic characters happen to blur the lines enough to at least invoke this trope:
  • Persona: If one counts the use of Personas as magical, then Aigis definitely counts, as does her prototype predecessor Labrys as they were created with supernatural objects to give them personalities. Persona 5 Strikers has Sophia, an AI with the same ability.
  • Planescape: Torment had an Evil Wizard Construct in the Modron Maze.
  • Pokémon: Both Magearna and Iron Valiant are mechanical in nature but are also Fairy-type, the type most associated with magic. They also come with a high Special Attack stat which pairs well with their special Fairy-type moves.
  • Ratchet & Clank: Quest for Booty: Being a robot space pirate didn't stop Captain Darkwater from laying a curse on his treasure and binding his soul to his body. Made all the more interesting for the fact that it's one of the few examples of overtly supernatural phenomenon in the series.
  • Slay the Spire: The Defect is just as capable of using spells as any other player character.
  • In Sonic Heroes, one of the robots in Hang Castle and Mystic Mansion is the Egg Bishop, which can cast a healing spell on any robots it is near, including itself. When flipped over with a tornado jump, the Egg Bishop becomes the Egg Magician, which retains the healing spell, and also casts a spell that can drain rings from any team players within range of it.
  • In the Jedi Knight storyline of Star Wars: The Old Republic, one Jedi NPC is determined to prove that droids can use the Force. Most other NPCs just think she's nuts.
  • Steam World Quest is full of steam-powered robots, yet there are those who can explicitly cast spells. The one in your party who can do so is Copernica, Instant Runes and all.
  • In Xenogears, machines can absolutely control Ether (and most are powered by it). The prime example of this is Emeralda, a colony of nanomachines assuming the form of a Robot Girl, who is one of the party's two best mages alongside Elly.

    Web Animation 
  • RWBY: Only living things can generate Aura, which gives humans who master the power the ability to manifest their power as special abilities that can seem like superhero powers or even magic-like in function. Although Penny is a Robot Girl, she is the very first artificial creation that is capable of sustaining an Aura. In Volume 7, Penny becomes the unplanned successor to the Winter Maiden's powers when her robotic body makes her the only one capable of safely reaching Fria. Her compassion for the dying Maiden creates the intimate connection needed for the powers to pass to her, transforming her into a genuine magic-user.

    Web Comics 

    Western Animation 
  • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog: In "The Magic Hassle", Coconuts, a robotic monkey, buys a series of magic tricks from Wes Weasley to catch Sonic and get on Robotnik's good side, since Robotnik always assigns him to janitorial work, which he hates. Among the things Coconuts buys are a disappearing spell, a ghost-conjuring kit, a mastodon bone that can turn things to stone, and a bad luck emitter. Coconuts even dons a wizard's hat and cape as he performs these magic spells. At the end of the episode, Weasley forces Robotnik to pay a 359 million Mobium I.O.U. debt, and Robotnik chases him and Coconuts away with the bad luck emitter.
  • Family Guy: A Cutaway Gag in the Season 12 episode "The Most Interesting Man in the World" involves a Show Within a Show called "Wizard Robot and his less successful friend".
  • He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (2021): Ork-0 is an RK droid with a core that contained knowledge of the original ancient wizard Orko. As such, he thinks he's the actual Orko. In reality, it's his built-in tractor beams giving him abilities that he thinks are magic-based. By the third season, he would meet the actual Orko and learn magic for real.
  • The Transformers: The season 3 episode "Madman's Paradise" features as its villain a Quintesson that had been banished by his fellows as a heretic because he practiced magic. Granted, it's not clear if the Quintessons are fully Mechanical Lifeforms like Cybertronians or Cyborgs.