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A massive flying creature made of energy, commonly a predatory bird made of fire, is a common visual metaphor for Limit Breaks, fast transportation and other special abilities. Or just making you look that much more Badass. Dragons, moths and other winged creature shapes may also be used, up to Winged Humanoid. The origin of this trope seems to come from The Phoenix.
In symbolism as applied to the wings this, just like other fire-based powers, usually given to Hot-Blooded and/or very powerful beings, whether "demonic" (Balrog), "angelic" (Archangel Gabriel) or otherwise.
Anime and Manga
- Shakugan no Shana: Shana earns a sweet pair of fire wings relatively early on.
- Saint Seiya: Phoenix Ikki almost always appears with a fiery, phoenix shaped aura. His most powerful attack always manifests as a phoenix in one shape or another.
- Science Ninja Team Gatchaman: The God Phoenix maneuver. Good for moving in a hurry. Bad if you happen to be in front of it, as many a Monster of the Week found out the hard way.
- Sailor Mars Fire Soul Bird attack.
- When the Invid leave Earth in Genesis Climber Mospeada (and of course, Robotech), they take the form of a huge energy Phoenix.
- GaoGaiGar: King J-Der's J-Quath, a bow-shaped weapon that transforms into a vaguely bird-shaped ray that pierces enemies and extracts their cores. Topped in the OVA by the J-Phoenix, in which the entire (ship-sized) robot turns into a giant, much clearer phoenix, complete with a beak/mouth and peacock plumes. "In flame, the phoenix... IS REBORN!"
The J-Phoenix also doubles as being a Dangerous Forbidden Technique, since even the villain stated that smashing your ship right into the opponent's is generally considered suicidal. Also, a variant exists in the Plasma Wing that both J-Der and King J-Der are equipped with, which gives the Humongous Mecha wings... made of plasma.
- Atomsk from FLCL.
- Rin's gemstone attack from Battle Moon Wars looks like this.
- Yu-Gi-Oh!: When the Winged Dragon of Ra goes out of mechanical-gryphon mode, it takes the form of a bird made out of fire.
- In Kannazuki no Miko, Tsubasa's mech has glowing energy wings.
- Sunred's Super Mode Firebird Form in Tentai Senshi Sunred consists of a pair of massive fiery wings.
- Signum from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha gets these when unisoned with Agito. Since she can fly already, it's mostly shorthand for the sheer amount of destruction she's about to lay down.
- Tekkaman Blade's Crush Intrude attack.
- The mature form of Saffron, the king of the bird people from Ranma ½, is a Winged Humanoid who can throw his own flaming wings to attack enemies.
- The Gundam franchize has a few of these. Most notably:
- When Fairy Tail's Natsu gets powerful enough, he can manifest giant wings made of fire, and sometimes even a dragon-shaped aura of flames.
- ShineGreymon Burst Mode in Digimon Savers and Digimon Xros Wars the Young Hunters Leaping Through Time.
- 'X-Men: Jean Grey, commonly known as Phoenix often sheaths herself in a fiery bird-shaped aura when she flies, or just really cuts loose. Rachel Summers, her daughter from an alternate future (it's even more complicated than it sounds) does the same.
- Peter David's Supergirl gained flame wings when she became an Earth-born angel.
- The Firebird from Fantasia 2000 has these, because it is made of fire.
- In the film version of The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the Phoenix on the side of La Résistance ignites itself into flames and then razes the ground to create a fiery barrier.
- In the Oriental Adventures supplement for Dungeons and Dragons, there is a spell that turns the user's arms into flaming wings, allowing them to fly.
- The 4th Edition sorcerer Arcane Wellspring Paragon Path can give a character these.
- In Magic: The Gathering, a lot of dragons and phoenixes have these, naturally, and Leap of Flame gives you them.
- In Kirby's Epic Yarn (a punny game in the first place), the phoenix boss of Hot Land is actually named Hot Wings (yet it's not the Trope Namer).
- F-Zero: Most of Captain Falcon's special attacks in the Super Smash Bros series invoke a flaming falcon. Especially the infamous "Falcon... PUNCH!"
- The Sky Attack move is portrayed this way in Pokémon Stadium. It helps a lot that the Pokemon doing the attack usually is a bird, or at least can fly.
- Don't forget that whole Ho-Oh thing mentioned above, either.
- Or Moltres, at least in one appearance.
- The move Brave Bird is also portrayed this way in the anime.
- In Touhou, the Hourai Elixir-powered Fujiwara no Mokou often uses Phoenix-shaped Danmaku, and is surrounded by a phoenix-shaped Battle Aura whenever she resurrects or uses a spellcard. She's often portrayed in fanworks with the ability to cause huge Hot Wings to blaze into existance behind her.
- The Cybuster of the Super Robot Wars series has an attack called the Akashic Buster, where it launches a bird of fire at the enemy, transforms into its own avian form and merges with the firebird, slamming into the target at high speeds.
- Likewise, its Evil Counterpart Shurouga has Ley Buster, although it doesn't create a bird-like fire, it changes into something like a bird (like Cybuster's Cybird), covered with dark power and rams the opponent and... produces several interesting revelations...
- The Angelg has a variant, called the Phantom Phoenix, which launches an energy arrow that turns into a fire bird.
- This is actually preceded by Elbulls from Super Robot Wars 64, in which it's a bird-shaped mecha, and rams the enemy, Akashic Buster style.
- And the Valhawk's Heat Edge Exploder in Super Robot Wars W.
- Also Dairaioh's Jinrai from Super Robot Wars Alpha 3, which is a hybrid of this and a Rider Kick.
- A common swordsman's or fighter's tech in the Tales (series) ("Hououtenku" in Japanese, translated to English variously with the word "Phoenix" somewhere in it) allows the combatant to jump in the air, then dive diagonally towards the enemy wreathed in a fiery, bird-shaped aura.
- Runes of Magic gives a spell to mages named Phoenix that allows them to summon a flaming bird to attack all enemies in a straight line.
- Lilith sprouts a set when her aptly-named Phoenix ability triggers in Borderlands.
- Jin's Force Max in Shining Force Feather.
- Deathwing in Cataclysm.
- In most Final Fantasy games where The Phoenix appears as a Summoned Monster, it usually just rises from the flames but has otherwise non-flaming wings. But in Final Fantasy V, where it made its first appearance, its entire body is enveloped in fire.
- Kiki from Fairy Foxes has a tendency to set her wings ablaze when she is angry, euphoric, or using her fire powers.
- Antimony from Gunnerkrigg Court, going on with her basic nature and The Phoenix metaphor of her life, during her summer in the Gillitie Wood learned to spread these. While for normal sight it's just a subtle wings-shaped blur in the air, albeit with quite impressive span, for etheric vision she can look like a Winged Humanoid... melded with firestorm.