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Mana Burn

3 sec cast

14% of base mana

Destroy 10% of the target's mana (up to a maximum of 20% of your own maximum mana). For each mana destroyed in this way, the target takes 0.5 Shadow damage.

When damage is done to a character's Mana Meter in a game, it comes in one of three forms:

  1. A Mana Burn which often deals direct damage to the Mana Meter.
  2. A Mana Drain in which the Mana is stolen from the target and given to the user.
  3. A Mana Shield in which the damage is supposed to affect the Life Meter but gets diverted.

This trope is specific to #1. Cases where the express purpose of an attack or ability is to target the Mana Meter of the victim. Other secondary effects may come in to play, but this is the ability's primary purpose.

Not to be confused with the Magic: The Gathering term, which is more of a limited Power Incontinence problem (and, as of the 2010 Core Set and accompanying revisions, is no longer a part of the game). A fighter-type character capable of this trope and well more than always capable of spamming it in a very short time will be able to remove a Squishy Wizard anytime.

Examples of Mana Burn include:

  • Multiple times in the Final Fantasy series
    • Final Fantasy VI has Rasp.
    • Magic Hammer is a reoccurring Blue Magic spell that switches between this and Mana Drain depending on the game (in Final Fantasy VII, it drains).
    • In Final Fantasy Tactics, the Bizen Boat release drains MP from surrounding enemies. Oracles may drain MP as well.
    • Final Fantasy Tactics Advance has Magic Break, Manastrike, and Soul Sphere on top of those mentioned already.
      • And Damage -> MP, which changes HP Burn into Mana Burn.
    • This is a side effect to the 'Venom' status effect in Final Fantasy IX, as well as rendering the afflicted character unable to act.
    • Manticores in Final Fantasy XI can indirectly perform a Mana Burn by using Riddle, which lowers max MP by a significant amount. You definitely don't get the MP back when it wears off.
    • Many enemies in Final Fantasy X-2 have abilities that target your party's MP, and likewise your party can do this - either by burning it or draining it. Specific examples are the Gunner's "Target MP" and "Quarter Pounder" abilities.
  • In Chrono Trigger, the party member who attacks Flea's blatant decoy has their MP set to zero, and you have to attack it to call Flea out.
    • The attack is called "MP Buster", and the false Flea is not the only one who can use it.
  • Certain baddies in The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past dungeons drain mana from your meter when they hit you.
    • Glowing floating skulls were actually introduced in Zelda II: The Adventure of Link. There, they were much worse, as Link has exactly no items, and all his extra-super powers required mana to use. In addition, the skulls did just enough damage that if you had full life to use the sword beam, you couldn't anymore. They could be killed and gave a lot of XP for early dungeon enemies, but they required a lot of hits, even with the highest attack power.
    • Wind Waker featured tentacle-hands that would grab you and drain your magic (which would gradually regrow), as well as floating skulls that when touched, prevented you from using any items. Which of course were the only thing that could kill them.
  • Earthbound: "The Mad Duck made something spin around!"
  • Flower Fuzzies in Paper Mario the Thousand Year Door suck out a few of your FP and can use them for a lightning attack.
  • Pokémon gives us Spite (which drains PP from the last move the opponent used), Grudge (drains all PP off the move that KO'd the user) and the passive ability Pressure (doubles opponent's PP use).
  • Marvel Ultimate Alliance and the X Men Legends series have enemies whose presence drains away characters' EP.
  • In World of Warcraft, Priests and some enemies have an ability called Mana Burn, which removes the target's mana and then deals damage equal to half the mana lost.
    • Hunters and Warlocks also used to be able to affect enemy mana (but the latter used a Mana Drain for it) while Human Priests had an additional ability named Feedback (based on a Warcraft 3 passive ability that causes attacks to burn some mana), but all three were eventually removed entirely.
    • In Warcraft 3 the demon hunter has the mana burn ability, which damages the target's mana and damages the target's health by the amount of mana lost, not very pleasant if the target hero is a caster or worse, a mana-based tank.
  • Diablo II has the "Mana Burn" stat that can spawn on unique monsters, which takes some of your mana when they hit you. There are also regular monsters with mana draining attacks. Encountering a monster with both Mana Burn and lightning enchanted is fun
  • In Magic: The Gathering:
    • Any ability that destroys and/or taps lands is effectively this trope; a particularly good example of this is Roiling Terrain, which destroys a land, then deals damage based on how many lands have been destroyed in total (while also punishing the use of fetch-lands, but that's a topic for another trope).
    • Closer to the true meaning of this trope, there's Mana Short, among others.
    • In Agents of Artifice, Paldor's manablade can sever mages' mana bonds, cutting them off from the source of their magic (and causing intense pain).
    • There's also the standard rule of "Mana Burn", where if you have unused mana at the end of your turn (i.e. you tapped lands but didn't cast anything with them), you take damage to your life equal to the amount of mana unused, as it "burns" you. Since the rules allow you to tap land as you need it, the mana burn rule rarely, if ever, comes up.
      • As mentioned above, dropped for being unnecessary 99% of the time and annoying the remaining 1 in the 2010 Core Set release.
  • Nethack has the anti-magic trap. Takes some mana from the player unless he's magically protected.
  • Kingdom of Loathing has countless of these.
  • Starcraft has the Science Vessel's EMP, which drains all energy and shields. Dark Archons have a feedback ability, which causes literal Mana Burn, the enemy unit takes damage equal to lost energy.
  • Fubuki's passive ability in the second Disgaea.
  • Some enemies in the first Mana Khemia game do this, implying that enemies in the earlier Atelier installments do too, but I don't know.
  • Some abilities do this in the Dragon Quest series. "Strange Dance" for example.
  • Ragnarok Online's "Soul Burn" skill depletes the enemies SP completely. If you have the skill on max level, it additionally damages the opponent with his depleted mana x2.
  • Treasure Chests in Persona 4 sometimes contained traps which halved your SP.
  • Warcraft III has the Mana Burn spell and the Feedback ability. Both destroy mana and an equal amount of health.
    • The whisp's self-destruct ability destroys mana, and can damage summoned units.
  • Many abilities in Star Ocean Till the End of Time do this in addition to causing normal damage, the reason being that you can be knocked out if you run out of magic points just the same as you can be knocked out for running out of Hit Points.
  • City of Heroes has the Sappers of the Malta Group -- a well-known annoyance, especially for Tanks and other archetypes whose strengths are based around powers that require a regular flow of Endurance and stop working once the meter's drained.
    • Players also have access to Mana Burning abilities, particularly Electric Themed Powersets. A Kinetics/Electrical Blast Defender can render enemies helpless if she knows what she's doing. An Electric/Electric Blaster is even better at it.
    • Other enemies, such as the Carnival of Shadows, have similar attacks that can drain your endurance, or stop you from regenerating it.
      • At least players with Electric Armor can get the last laugh, having gained 90% resistance to endurance draining powers by the level that the above enemies start appearing at.
  • The Elder Scrolls games tend to have mana draining and mana transfer spells but not yet anything that uses mana as hitpoints. Additionally, an interesting gameplay quirk of Daggerfall is that if you absorb too much magicka over your limit you can die.
    • However, in The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim, there's a spell called "Equilibrium" that converts your HP into MP. This is very exploitable, as it allows nigh-infinite grinding of the Restoration skill if the caster is also casting a healing spell at the same time.
  • Titan Quest has a few skills pertaining to this, along with some rare and very useful weapon bonuses that drain a portion of an enemies energy with each strike. Very useful when fighting powerful mooks. Stacking these effects from multiple items makes the energy burn deal absurd amounts of damage.
  • Guild Wars contains a few skills that match the trope examples to the letter.
  • Defense of the Ancients Nerubian Assassin has the Mana Burn nuke. Anti-Mage has a passive that drains mana with each attack. Keeper of the light has a debuff that drains mana based on distance moved. Obsidian Destroyer has a disable that steals Intelligence and his ultimate burns mana or deals damage based on the amount of Intelligence that an enemy hero has. Diffusal Blade is an item that gives the passive to any hero.
  • Heroes of Newerth Magebane has a manaburn passive attack and Nullfire Blade gives gives this passive to any hero.
  • Templars in Dragon Age Origins can drain an enemy mage's mana with each of their attacks after learning the "Righteous Strike" passive talent. Mages themselves can learn "Mana Clash", which has the double whammy of completely draining enemy mages' mana and dealing damage proportional to the amount of mana lost. It's so powerful it can kill most boss-level magic-users with one or two hits even Gaxkang.
  • Eve Online has energy destabilizers (usually called neuts) that empty some of the target's capacitor at the cost of a smaller amount of your own capacitor. Ships that specialize in this such as the Curse and certain Dominix setups can be particularly fearsome in solo/small group PVP.
    • To be more specific, there are many powerful defensive setups a player can use on his ship, but the most effective ones are completely dependent on his ship's capacitor. Using enough energy neutralizers on him will turn him from a Mighty Glacier into a very easy kill indeed.
  • A non-video game example: In Mistborn, Vin is captured and forced to burn a strange metal [1] which drained her other metal reserves.
  • In Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha As Portable The Battle of Aces, the held down version of Chrono's Struggle Bind will bring his opponent's MP down to zero in addition to restricting them.
  • Tuaparang psy grenades pretty much do this. If you're lucky, you might get one of your own to use against them.
  • Certain Charms can do this in Exalted, i.e. the Abyssals' Splinter of The Void. It can be upgraded into Mana Drain.
  • Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura uses "Fatigue" as mana. Blunt weapons, such as hammers and maces, do fatigue damage, effectively draining mana from mages while knocking them unconscious. A variety of other items have similar effects.
  • Neji's Byakugan works this way in the Naruto fighting games.
  • Certain monsters in Might and Magic have a chance of removing a character's spell points when attacking (it is actually referred to as drain if you look into the files, but the monster doesn't get the spell points).


  1. revealed to be aluminum in the second book
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