Someone has the power to manipulate and shape water from almost any source, such as condensing water in the air, with the only exception being other "living things"(for the purposes of this question, "Living things" refer to any sentient creature such as animals or other humans), though, for reasons that are unclear, they can manipulate the water in their own body. This person can change the properties of water near-instantly, such as turning it so cold it becomes ice or making it scalding hot, and if they gather enough water, they can use it to hit their enemies as either bludgeoning attacks or even pseudo-waves. The only other limitations are that it takes physical effort to gather water big enough for wave-like attacks, and the more they use their power, the more exhausted they become.

What would be the required secondary powers this person would need for their power to function as described, and what would be some creative ways they could use their powers that some people wouldn't expect?

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    $\begingroup$ They need Thermokinesis (changing state involves a LOT of heat) and Telekenesis (so they don't need to wield the huge ice-club with their hands). However, real telekinesis means they can simply pinch off blood to their enemies' brains much more easily than all that mucking about changing states of water. And Thermokinesis means they can boil their enemies' brains far more easily than all that mucking about with ice-clubs. $\endgroup$
    – user535733
    Commented May 22, 2020 at 17:17
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    $\begingroup$ Make it be just like weightlifting, heavier masses of water requires bigger muscle, faster water movements requires fast muscles and moving waters for hours or even days requires world level endurance athletes. So you could have guys who can throw a 500kg ice block in your face, people who can cut you in half with sharp and fast water jets or people how could use a thin sheet of water to fly for days, like aladin but with a water carpet. $\endgroup$
    – user75689
    Commented May 22, 2020 at 18:26
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    $\begingroup$ Also the endurance guys could use water to dig the earth and create bunkers and tunnels, even entire underground cities. $\endgroup$
    – user75689
    Commented May 22, 2020 at 18:29
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    $\begingroup$ Once a really rich guy wanted to transform the Sahara desert into an oasis by bringing icebergs there... Turns out the icebergs melted before they arrived. Your watery mages could theoretically transform any desert in a forest. $\endgroup$
    – user75689
    Commented May 22, 2020 at 18:31
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    $\begingroup$ Oh and most important super power of all..... Portable bidets for long trips.... $\endgroup$
    – user75689
    Commented May 22, 2020 at 18:33

3 Answers 3


Look up "water jet cutting". You can cut steel, glass, rock, all kinds of stuff... with water! This is much more effective with abrasives added to the water (sand, garnets, etc).

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I read a superhero book a few years ago where one of the characters had almost complete control over his body. One of his techniques was basically a blood chainsaw/whip thing with his own blood (rapidly joined by the blood of anyone hit hit with it, but he could easily filter out anything he didn't want in him when he was done).

Thermal immunity.

If they can control the temperature of their own bodily fluids, they basically can't get too hot or too cold. Sunburn, but never heat stroke, never frost bite. They need never sweat (while awake and actively controlling their temp). A sandy water umbrella would be handy. Rip the fluid out of a cactus, mix with sand to reduce transparency, tada!

Depending on just how much effort boiling water costs them, this person might be able to power a steam turbine on their own for a time. Nuclear reactors are just steam turbines with a heat source that isn't a fire.

Just how cold can they make stuff? Dropping the sweat on someone's skin/tears in their eye to absolute zero would cause Serious Harm or Death.

Ice gets harder as it gets colder.

See also "Pykrete". Water (86%) mixed with sawdust (14%) and frozen has twice the crush strength of ice, 4 times the tensile strength of ice (and twice that of concrete), and the sawdust is also an excellent insulator, slowing down melting. The US looked into building a rediculously big aircraft carrier in WWII using pykrete.

Apparently using newsprint paper instead of wood pulp makes pycrete twice as strong. (Mythbusters episode 115).

Just how hot? "I cast sweat to plasma!"

Alternatively, press a relatively small amount of water (a teaspoon maybe?) against someone, convert it all to steam... But only let the steam escape through a tiny hole in that volume pointed into the person. "Water jet" from above, only with steam.

Alternative to the alternative... whip a chip of ice into someone's chest, and then convert it to steam only now its inside them. Water expands in volume by something like x1600 when converted to steam at 1 atmosphere of pressure.

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    $\begingroup$ High pressure steam systems have to drain out any condensation or suffer what is called "water hammer" (several similar things are called water hammer... high pressure steam is important to this one). If the water blocks the entire pipe even briefly, you get a pressure difference big enough to HURL that water down the pipe, with enough force to shatter said pipe the next time it takes a sharp turn. Steam/Water hammer explosions have killed people. $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2020 at 20:30
  • $\begingroup$ Depending on how many different things they can do at once, and how fast they can get water moving without additional assistance, they could build a barrel and use steam to fire a projectile. Or create a rocket out of ice by keeping the ice-housing cold, and converting the insides to steam for propellant. $\endgroup$ Commented May 26, 2020 at 14:48

"it takes physical effort to gather water big enough for wave-like attacks" This I suppose makes a big problem.

So for starters is the ratio 1:1 as in like literary carrying the water yourself or is it completely magical, like your mana decides it, or is something in between where mana + the actual weight of the water matter? Because if the required physical strength to manipulate water is completely realistic then they have to get really creative.

Anyway to the extent I understood the question my answer is

  • Water bubble around the face. A small blob of water that surrounds the face and forces the other person to "drown" if you can manipulate the thing so that the person being attacked can't take it off. Simple but effective. Of course if they can scale the thing then the simple idea of making a huge water ball, bigger than them and drowning them in it is much cooler.
  • Steam them alive. Sounds brutal and is not very effective. But as anyone with a steam burn can tell you, it hurts. Gather a thin layer of water around the body and heat the thing for a lot of damage.
  • Video game like ice spikes, like Skyrim for example. Again effective and quite deadly. Aim at the neck for maximum damage. Also looks badass.
  • Cover them in a water layer and freeze it. Not super cool but I think it would do a lot of damage.
  • Freeze their eyes. Freeze their fingers, freeze their nose and mouth.
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    $\begingroup$ I was thinking more like "mana + weight," where the mana does most of the work, but the heavier the water is, the more difficult the strain it puts on the person's body. Also, thanks for responding, these are some neat ideas! $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2020 at 18:18

Your person's power can be broadly defined as hydrokinesis, given that its core action is to manipulate water.

Now there are two questions here and I will strive to answer them in order:

Required Secondary Powers

Disclaimer: The link is to TV Tropes. Abandon time all ye who click there.

  1. Water Sense

This might seem like an odd secondary power but follow me on this one. To be able to manipulate something, one must first know where where that something is. In this case it is water. This secondary power passively lets the user know where water is around them in order to manipulate it.

How this manifests is unknown, but perhaps it is blocked by something related to the Kingdom Animalia. It works on the use themselves specifically because it is his own power.

  1. Ability to handle/create large amounts of energy

Assuming that freezing water into ice and boiling it into steam is actually altering the temperature of the water, then the user of this ability has to be able to either pull energy from somewhere to raise the temperature, or to pull it out of water to lower it. This leads to what happens to that energy.

This secondary power does not come into play if the changes in state is caused by manipulating the molecules into a lattice (ice) or to run free (steam/mist)

  1. Personal Resistance/Immunity to temperature extremes

This one is possible, but not necessarily required. The ability to withstand the consequences of your own manipulated water -- the scalding steam and the frozen ice. Related to the second part but different, this is the specific ability to be immune to your own doings. This may or may not extend to heat/cold not manipulated by the user.

This secondary power might be the reason they can manipulate their own body -- the user is always subconsciously ensuring that all water that hits them is a specific comfortable temperature.

How to Tame Your Water

So you have some awesome hydrokinetic powers. Awesome! But what can I do with it? Well, the answer is in theory whatever you want. But there are some ideas that can be run with.

  • Water Purification: By manipulating the water, and just the water, you can pull out a lot of particulate matter and other micro-contaminants from it. Purifying, or even just desalination of water could have a lot of applications. If you have enough control, you might even be able to sterilize water just by use of this ability.

  • Controlled Processes: Assuming that your hydrokinetic can keep water at a set temperature, they are in a position to apply a constant heat to an object. This could have many applications. For a simple application at home, a double boiler uses hot water to gently heat something -- I have used it to melt chocolate for cheesecake. Distillation at a specific temperature might be another application

  • Impromptu Scuba Diving: Seallussus has already mentioned using a water bubble to drown people. Well this is the opposite! Enclose a large sphere of air in a water bubble and use it to dive while dry. The air won't last forever unless refreshed somehow, but if you can make a bubble large enough, one could hide underwater for a while.

  • Water Puppetry, Inanimate: If you don't necessarily want to just control water/ice, then soak something, then control the water around it. At a simple level, mud is just dirty water. Another idea is that the user could soak cloth, or something that can hold water, then manipulate it. Perhaps a sword with a channel that is filled with water so the user can manipulate that? Wet cloth as a whip and/or animate rope could be useful as well

  • Water Puppetry, Animate: Most living things contain water throughout its structure. So long as it is not an animal, you are capable of manipulating it as per the question at this time. Vines come to mind first, likely due to Avatar making it to Netflix recently. But fungi like mushrooms can be safely picked by manipulating the water within them carefully. Notably the deadly ones are a bit less deadly when you handle them from 10 feet away. Manipulating plants as they grow might be interesting from a decorative gardening perspective.

  • Frozen Constructs Ice is a solid can can be formed into shapes. Spikes to attack with are probably the most basic, but if you are canny enough, you can use it in a variety of ways. The correct ice can be used to harness the deadly laser that is the sun, turning your water powers into a potential death ray. Maybe not quite a death ray though. Ice might not be the most durable of materials on its own, but there are ways to strengthen it, and you can sculpt whatever you want out of said ice.

  • Torture: Don't want to be a good person? Well, ice expands as it freezes, and just because you can freeze water instantly does not mean you have to. Leave water under the fingernails, and freeze slowly for one example. If your powers allow you, force water into the lungs for a short time, then retract it -- only partially drown them. I do not know the plausibility of it, but encasing a person in ice, with a layer of warm water to keep them from freezing to death could be a rather traumatic experience.

  • Assassination: You can control water within yourself, meaning that you can, in theory, poison yourself with something and contain it within your manipulated water within yourself. When you reach the person you want to kill, transmit the poison with your water manipulation. Should you want something a bit more insidious, consider that viruses and bacteria contain water and are not covered in your animal restriction for manipulation. This might also work on things that activate when dry.

  • Personal Convenience: If you can heat your own water, you won't need a hot water heater, and all the expenses that it contains. That saves money. You can also have your own hot tub or sauna just by building the room for it and manipulating the water to the right temperature. For that matter, converting your bath into a shower is a simple manipulative action. Water your plants without moving from your seat or stopping whatever you were doing. You also have water balloons without the water.

  • SCIENCE! If the hydrokinetic can control the pressure of water, they can be instrumental in the study of exotic forms of ice by creating the temperatures and pressures needed to create said exotic forms of ice. It might be theoretically plausible to use hydrokinetic control to create the pressures needed for certain experiments. Probably not, but is something to consider

  • Space Exploration: The ability to sense, draw in, and potentially purify water means that a person like this could be very useful in a long-term space trip. There is also the idea that they could control water outside the spaceship to create an ablative layer for use as protection on a spaceship. Ablation through manipulated ice might also be a handy emergency measure.


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