One day, as I walked in some random countryside, I found myself in the presence of some higher being. It's kinda blur in appearance, and I can't quite say if it's a genie in a lamp, a technologically advanced alien, a god, a Tolkien monstrosity or the Devil itself.

With motives unknown, that being offers me to grant three wishes.

I'm a daydreamer, raised with things like DnD, Lord of the rings, Naruto, Harry Potter, Avatar the last Air Bender, Eragon (not the movie, god forbids) and World of Warcraft. I'm starting to get bored by the "real world" and want to make it more "magical"

Unfortunately, I obviously can't simply say "I wish magic was real" because there would be a lot of room for interpretation and that could cause some trouble. Plus I don't now the exact intentions of that being, i.e. if it's benevolent or not.

Now my question is : What should I wish for to make magic real in the current wold, as pictured by pop culture and legends ?

I understand that this is a very wide question, as there isn't really an universal agreement on how magic should behave across different medias (ranging from energy manipulation to the use of some specific language and specific gestures or scriptures), so feel free to be inspired by any universe when building your answer. I'm interested in how one can make use of those three wishes to introduce his preferred type of magic in this cold hard world.

-------- Edit --------

I didn't specify it, but usual wish's loopholes (infinite wishes, infinite genies etc...) are uninteresting. I would also add that wishing to be all powerful and building that world yourself is outside of the scope of that question.

I'm interested in a scenario where only the wishes are used to change the world, and only the world (or the people, but not you specifically) is affected by the wishes.

-------- Edit 2 --------

This is indeed a very broad question, and I've been advised to restrict it by choosing a setting. I will choose the classic DnD Wizard, whose magic come from studying the nature of arcane energies and uses gestures, spoke words, scrolls and can imbue objects with that energy to make them magically serve a purpose.

  • $\begingroup$ Welcome to Wordlbuilding! - This isn't much different from the usual 3-wishes scenario IMO. I think you need to specify whether you are allowed to wish for more wishes, or wish yourself to be all-powerful, etc. etc. In either of those cases you would effectively be a god and you could experiment with setting up any form of magic you desire. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 9:38
  • $\begingroup$ As you state, this is indeed a very wide question, and by allowing people to choose any pop culture representation of magic this makes it too broad, as one cannot objectively declare that one person's wish about story A is better than another person's wish about story B. If you were to restrict the question to a specific interpretation of magic, this would be viable in the Stack Exchange format. $\endgroup$
    – Kyyshak
    Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 9:40
  • $\begingroup$ @chaslyfromUK thank you, I've edited my question to exclude such scenarios. $\endgroup$
    – Ellynas
    Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 9:48
  • $\begingroup$ @Kyyshak Thanks for your advice, is my edited answer more viable in the Stack Exchange format ? $\endgroup$
    – Ellynas
    Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 9:58
  • 7
    $\begingroup$ Have you considered that if you met a Genie... magic ALREADY exists in your world, super technologically advanced aliens: [insert Arthur C Clarke quote]. a god, basically religious magic exists, a Tolkien Monstrousity, usually formed by some magical means so it already exists, and the devil itself... back to the religious magic... the very fact that you have found yourself in the situation that you have this one wish option means magic already exists, so maybe you should simply wish for understanding in the already existing magic $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 10:10

2 Answers 2


Wish for very advanced technology. Because if it advanced enough it's, you know, maaaaagic.
You want to manipulate energy? Here, take this microwave to the early XIX century and amaze people with magic of heating stuff without touching stuff. (as seen in stories when Wizard zap from his fingers and people guts burst out).
You want to speak languages? Here, take this implant and put in your brain. All languages spoken. (as seen in Guardians of Galaxy)
You want to write in thin air? Here, take this LED flashlight that leave afterimage when you use it in dim rooms. (as seen in this Picasso picture where he use lightbrush).
You want to make things from thin air? Here, take this 3d printer.

Remember it's not WHAT you have but HOW you sell it. I bet you could tell people form XVIII century that epoxy casting IS magic. Well, that the plastic is magic.

  • $\begingroup$ Pretty hard to get the magic of Harry Potter, Eragon, DnD, LOTR in real life if you only have access to technology. Theres so much waste and much more useful ways to use it, not to mention that inscribing metal with runes and then give it magic powers is going to be difficult with technology. $\endgroup$
    – Demigan
    Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 11:20
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ What type of HP magic? Killing people from a thing held in hand? Gun. You can go fancy and use mobile tesla coil for sparks. LotR magic? Light from staff? Communication with visuals over distances with handheld devices? $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 11:28
  • $\begingroup$ How about making people puke slugs? Create a forcefield against spells especially? Or have this gun with fancy lights bounce the bullet right back because the target was protected by love and the one who has the bullet bounce in his face has split his soul with murder and hidden pieces allowing him to survive only by accident a piece latched on to magic love protected baby? I dont think your technology=magic system is good enough to emulate all those magic systems. $\endgroup$
    – Demigan
    Commented Mar 13, 2019 at 12:19
  • $\begingroup$ @Demigan Force fields against spells. Considering the spell is a bullet the force field is bulletproof vest. Oh love, no problem, the bullet are nanorobots sensitive to chemicals in human body. Puke slugs? Let someone drink capsule with "grown your own dinosaur" but instead of dinosaur sit slug shaped. It make you poisoned and you puke to cleanse the body. It's Clarke first law. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. I just reversed it. Any magic is just advanced technology. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 8:04
  • $\begingroup$ There are much more useful ways to use this technology, no one would use this purpose. Also I think you dont know what conservation of energy is because even if the bullet desintegrates upon contact with chemicals in the body it will still have its kinetic energy. And what about the fact that the mother felt the love, and the baby at best had extreme fear chemicals? And why wouldnt people just wear vests with the chemical sandwitched inbetween? This is why advanced technology isnt a good way to simulate HP. Sufficient tech is magic because it is useful on a scale we couldnt believe. $\endgroup$
    – Demigan
    Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 8:21

Despite it's broadness you have a few general things that are (usually) tied to the magic system. I think that you can make a template that describes how you can wish for each part of the magic, and just substitute it for whatever magic you wish.

You have energy. It is usually powered by something, from nebulous mana to direct transformation of one type of energy into something else while the magical part is the sudden transformation.

You have the requirements to unlock this energy in the form of spells or other types of manipulation. This could be movement, words or sheer thought.

You have the effects of the spells themselves, and how they'll behave depending on the energy put in and the efficiency of the movement/words/mental effort.

First wish is creating the energy system. You wish for something to create a non-existant energy form or you pick an existing energy form and save this wish. You could also wish for the energy as a catalyst to transform existing energies and matter to other forms or states.

The second wish is about hooking it up to a system. For example if you want Airbenders magic you could wish for the previously chosen energy to be unlocked by interpretive dance movements (as far as I've followed Airbenders magic rules).

The third wish you detail the effects of the spells, such as how many groupings there are (fire water etc or another system) and specifics on who can unlock this ("only people with wands", "people with this genepool"). This wish isnt going to be a simple few sentences but would need to detail a lot of specifics for your magic system, even including how you can learn the system is there and improve on it if knowledge is lost. Perhaps if you are allowed to say "I want the details from the magic system of " it could work. If you didnt use your first wish you likely can use it here.


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