Say someone has the power to generate darkness. It appears as a sort of "smog" that can cover anything, and anyone inside the "smog" can't see anything as every bit of light has been removed, except the person who caused the fog in the first place. They can also create shadows, or manipulate existing ones, that have mass and can be used for bludgeoning attacks with varying degrees of strength depending on the size of the shadow in question. The only limitations the person seems to have is that they need time to "create" more darkness from nothing and that it takes effort to form shadows into an attack.

What are the secondary powers this person would need in order for these powers to work? Also, given the limitations, what are some ways they could use this power that some people wouldn't expect?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ The shadow part sounds a bit like Shikamaru from Naruto. $\endgroup$ – user69935 May 18 '20 at 22:13
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ He was actually an inspiration for this character, just minus the ability to control another person by connecting their shadows together. $\endgroup$ – String It Together May 18 '20 at 22:14
  • $\begingroup$ oh nice, are you asking to scientifically explain the smoke and shadow effect? because asking for the applications of the power may be opinion-based. $\endgroup$ – user69935 May 18 '20 at 22:17
  • $\begingroup$ Well, I did want to get a more scientific analysis on this power, since I always found it interesting when people use powers in ways that related to real science like how the DC comics character Static uses his powers of electrokinesis and takes it to its logical conclusion. But I'm also open to more opinion based ones so long as people stick the guidelines presented in the posts and have reasonable explanations for their answers. $\endgroup$ – String It Together May 18 '20 at 22:20
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This might help powerlisting.fandom.com/wiki/Darkness_Manipulation $\endgroup$ – user69935 May 18 '20 at 22:36

Mass creation and manipulation, as well as some degree of light manipulation.

The saddest (or best for the victim) part about this cool concept is that shadows have no mass. Shadows, as well as penumbra, are simply the effect of reduced or absent light. In this case, the Control of the shadows is nothing but an intricate game of mass manipulation and light bending, with the supposed shadow absorbing most of the light that reaches it, thus giving the impression of a lack of light and the characteristic faded/black coloration. The darkness generation and an eventual blinding ability are but the reflex of bending the light so that it doesn't reach certain objects or structures (be it the floor, a wall or the human eye, thus explaining why everyone seems to go blind when the character desires), with the mass creation and manipulation kicking in immediately after.

Summing up, your character can't control shadows, that's basically impossible as a shadow is but the absence of light, BUT you character can in fact control and manipulate matter, as well as light, giving the impression of the shadows being controlled . Just be warned that maintaining the illusion of shadow manipulation will require focus from your character in order to use both abilities usually simultaneously and in a synchronized way.

Regarding potential secondary abilities: if your character makes it so all light is completely deflected from them, you'll be able to achieve invisibility (you will be functionally blind though, as no light will be reaching your eyes. You can also use the matter creation and manipulation ability to enter buildings by opening the walls, making weapons and obstacles, creating holding spots to allow them to climb buildings, potential flight (if you can make the created matter levitate at will, just look at the Manga version esdeath from akame ga kill), creation of golems/minions (you'll need to control their every movement though, as they're brainless and not alive, so it will be a mentally challenging task), blinding your opponents and influencing cancer to some degree (if you can also control the UV light spectrum). There may be many others I can't think of right now.

Sadly, neither of these 2 secondary powers can be satisfyingly explained by modern science as far as I'm aware of.


Handy sunshade, so you will never get sunburn. Also, total protection from lasers and other light-based weaponry.

By turning shadows on and off you can create a strobe effect, which can be useful as a weapon.

Control of darkness implies an ability to derail , jam or spoof any fiber-optical communication system.

It can also be used to trigger or jam anything that works with an 'electric eye' such as automatic doors, burglar sensors etc.

You can selectively alter the contents of any display screen by adding dark pixels.

If it extends into the infra-red or other spectra there are lots of other possibilities.

  • $\begingroup$ Sorry, but how exactly would shadows create a strobe effect? Or block off literal lasers and other light-type attacks? Also, thanks for responding. $\endgroup$ – String It Together May 19 '20 at 18:06
  • $\begingroup$ Shadow allows you to effectively turn lighting on and off, by shading the required area from the light source. Equally, it stops any laser or other light attack because by definition it allows you to block out light. My darkness beats your 100-megawatt laser. (You can do a lot with strobe weapons -- popularmechanics.com/military/weapons/a26253652/…) $\endgroup$ – David Hambling May 20 '20 at 10:39
  • $\begingroup$ Oh, I see. Thank you for clarifying! $\endgroup$ – String It Together May 20 '20 at 17:28

trying to creatively limit ourselves to the benefits and neat tricks made possible by controlling the shadows/darkness, and focusing on that instead of on controlling matter itself (which would make your character a God thus limitless and... slightly boring for a fiction hero who needs obstacles...) - I would say start thinking about all the things that electromagnetic radiation enables, and which your guy can block:

from solar power generation, to radio communication, to cellular/electricity and the likes.

Also - I can think of cool scenes manipulating mirrors (in a chase? creating multiple reflections or eliminating all reflections altogether?)

In concept he can also shapeshift - not by manipulating matter, but rather by manipulating the light reflections on him and how others see him (colors, shadows, surface textures etc.)

how powerful is this force? can he beam a darkness ball unto the Sun? the Moon? that would be an immense threat to the world. Can he stop Photosynthesis by casting darkness on a forest? can he trick IR remote-controls or sensors? NFC-operated payment systems or ID systems?

It really depends which kind of character you are building and how powerful/evil/Godlike you want to make him :)

Good luck!

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ What do you mean by "manipulating mirrors and reflections," afraid I'm not really seeing the connection between that and darkness manipulation. Also, thanks for responding. $\endgroup$ – String It Together May 19 '20 at 18:05
  • $\begingroup$ My thinking was if "casting darkness" physically means either annihilating the particles your "darkness beam" encounters (i.e photons in case of visible light) - then you could annihilate the light beams reflected from a mirror and prevent it from reaching another person's eyes. If you mean redirecting the light beams (achieving darkness by diverting them to other directions) - your character could also create reflections in places they shouldn't exist, by diverting the reflected light from its original trajectory to the new target location. I hope it's clearer now :) $\endgroup$ – Noam Josephides May 20 '20 at 6:24
  • $\begingroup$ So basically the ability to make mirrors no longer work, so its easier to sneak up on people, and minor illusions; manipulating the darkness so the light gets diverted in a way that makes an image appear wherever they want it to, like an image of them just walking down the street, but only if the "base" of the image already exists in reality. That sounds really cool, thank you for clarifying! $\endgroup$ – String It Together May 20 '20 at 17:28

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.