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Gerrard: But it doesn't do anything!

Hanna: No--it does nothing.

A super-power or Applied Phlebotinum device that "turns off" either all super-powers or those from a certain Meta Origin. Can also be referred to as a "power neutralizer".

This can be temporary or permanent; the temporary version is generally used as either part of a Brought Down to Normal plot or as a plot device to enable villains who normally wouldn't stand a chance against the heroes, while the permanent Depowering version is usually a way to threaten someone without trying to kill them. Tailor Made Prisons for super villains usually incorporate one into the design.

Curiously, very few people who say I Just Want to Be Normal create a modified version of these for their own personal use, even if the technology seems to be relatively available.

Related to Powers as Programs. For countering the products of those powers, see Anti-Magic. Power Limiter is a weaker version. No Sell is when a character ignores, not nullifies, another's powers. Mage Killers often weaponize this ability, as they do with Anti-Magic. See also the Kryptonite-Proof Suit, which can be used to resist Weaksauce Weaknesses.

Examples of Power Nullifier include:


Anime and Manga

  • In Bleach, it's been revealed that the reason Psychopathic Manchild Wonderweiss was created was to counter the abilities of Yamamoto.
    • Also, sekiseki, a mineral which blocks reishi sensing, Rukia's gigai, and that scientist Espada's being able to nullify abilities that he's had time to analyze.
  • Code Breaker: Sakura Sakurakouji with implied Anti-Magic abilities. All Code Breakers' abilities have been shown to be ineffective against her, and she's even displayed the ability to cancel out the effects of those powers on others. Canceling out their power's effects may or may not require full body contact, since she seems to hug people every time she does it, causing her friends to name it her "rare power hug attack."
    • The President is also a power-suppressing "Rare Kind" and Sakura's biological father.
    • The President made Inoichi with this ability in mind, although she has to bite someone to take their power rather than just touch them.
  • In Code Geass R2, Jeremiah Gottwald obtains a Geass Nullifier ability along with his second, more complete, more badass cyborgization.
  • Nana of Elfen Lied can use her vectors to temporarily disable other Diclonius's vectors.
  • Father of Fullmetal Alchemist can make alchemy stop working by stamping his foot. It's strongly implied that he's so ludicrously powerful that every time he uses it, all alchemy in the world stops working. However, this only applies to Amestrian alchemy, and alchemists using different styles are immune to his powers.
    • The eventual explanation given seems to indicate he can only stop all alchemy in the world because he activates a cushion he made between tectonic plates which blocks Amestrian alchemists from taking in the energy they need for it to work, but can't stop Xingese alchemy, which uses the Earth's magnetic fields.
      • That cushion is made of souls, and those souls only reside in Amestris, so he cant nullify all the alchemy in the world, only in Amestris.
  • Main character Mikan Sakura from Gakuen Alice has, as one of her Alices (special powers), the ability to nullify any other person's Alice.
  • Miroku of Inuyasha has one in the form of his arm beads, containing the Vortex in his hand. Since the Vortex is sometimes useful, he simply removes the beads.
    • Houriki in general, which has the ability to purify and/or seal things, especially Youki. The biggest example of this is probably Mt. Hakurei, which would instantly purify any youkai that gets too close to it except Kanna, who, as she represents nothingness, has no youki of her own. Inu Yasha was instantly turned into a human once he got too close.
  • Giorno Giovanna of Manga/Manga/JoJosBizarreAdventure gains this when he gets his new stand Gold Experience Requiem, not only does it nullify any power used on him, but infact any ACTION taken that could harm him directly or indirectly.
  • Asuna from Mahou Sensei Negima has the ability to completely negate magic. This can be very useful in combat, or very bad when it gets out of control. Especially when she's in a flying city that's being held aloft with magic.
  • In Naruto, Neji Hyuuga demonstrated his skill in closing off the chi pathways of his opponent (and cousin) Hinata. While this does not initially injure her, it prevents her from using her own ninja powers as the fight progresses.
    • And of course, sealing jutsu in general.
  • Blackbeard from One Piece has the ability to nullify Devil Fruit users' powers on touch which came with the power of the darkness-based Yami-Yami Fruit. Seastone does this as well, as Luffy and Eneru both took regular damage when being hit with seastone. Saltwater looks as though it might do this--then it turns out, no, it just renders the person incapable of moving on his or her own. That last becomes important when Luffy is stuck underwater, his neck can still stretch.
  • In Psyren, most of Haruhiko's lightning based powers prevent the target from using PSI for a short amount of time.
  • In Rurouni Kenshin, the Forest of Darkness negates a warrior's ability to sense chi.
  • Yuki Nagato is able to do this. Due to the fact that she understands things on a data-level and has the abilities to work on it, it isn't hard for her to nullify any kind of Eye Beam Haruhi makes Mikuru have, by using the right countermeasures. That includes conventional laser beams, hyper-vibration particles and even micro black holes.
  • In The Slayers, Lina at one point gets a magic-nullifying circlet stuck on her head. Only, as she points out, it's not that it nullifies magic; it's that it causes horrible feedback when she tries to use her powers, so basically all she's doing is shocking herself. Once she decides to ignore the pain, she manages to cast a spell and shock her captors by grabbing them right before she sets off the shock.
    • Cue Crowning Moment of Funny when she decided to test out the circlet with a Groin Attack on Gourry...
    • Later played more seriously when she's the victim of a curse that robs her of all of her magical powers, so she has to go seaching for a cure alongside Xellos. In the end, she had to kill the demon Mazenda, since her death was the only solution.
  • To Aru Majutsu no Index: Touma's Anti-Magic "Imagine Breaker" right hand also serves as a Power Nullifier if it is touching the person in question. He can't be teleported by Kuroko at all, either, no matter where they are touching; nor can telepaths send his brain messages.
    • Unfortunately for him, it also cancels blessings and anything else that might have granted him good fortune, leaving him with rather bad luck.
    • To Aru Kagaku no Railgun gives us "Capacity Down": it's a sound that, when played over loudspeakers, causes intense disorientation to espers as well as making them incapable of using their powers. Too bad the good guys had Saten (a Level 0) with them...
  • Mobile Suit Gundam 00 has the Trial System built into the Nadleeh/Seraphim. When it's switched on, every mobile suit connected to Veda shuts down while it's active. It doesn't sound so bad but when you realize that in season 2, Veda was controlled by the Big Bad who used it with every single mobile suit he and his underlings built, it could easily become a Story-Breaker Power. On the other hand, said bad guy's control of Veda meant that he could forcibly disengage the Trial System remotely. So naturally, it's almost never used except in the series finale where it simultaneously puts every single Mook out of commission as soon as the Big Bad no longer has access to Veda.
  • In Sekirei, Seo has the ability to nullify a Sekirei's powers if they get within a certain range of him. It was given to him by his best friend Takehito, and he's put it to good use from time to time.


Comic Books

  • In the 90s Flash series, Savitar was able to take all the power of the Speed Force for himself and his minions, with only Wally being able to resist the drain.
  • Powers, a comic series about human detectives investigating crimes involving the superpowered, has devices called "drainers" that prevent superhumans using their powers while being questioned or detained.
  • Gold Kryptonite could permanently remove the powers of Superman and other Kryptonians, and exposure to a red sun would do it temporarily, as would some varieties of Red Kryptonite.
    • Gold Kryptonite was recently brought back after 20+ years but its effects are only temporary now. This makes it less scary, but more useful as a plot device: depowering Supes forever isn't an option, but you'd be surprised how long fifteen seconds is when you're depowered and a superpowered nutjob is trying to kill you to death.
  • The X-Men had the country of Genosha's mutant-power-nullifying collars and a power-nullifying mutant named Wipeout; another mutant, Leech, had this ability as his own mutant power, and on occasion, it's been shown to work on non-mutants. He later showed up in the third X-Men movie, where he was the source of the "mutant cure." Another time, Storm was robbed of her powers temporarily by a device created by mutant inventor Forge.
    • That thing about a character who wants to be able to turn their own power off not bothering to use the technology available? We're looking at you, Rogue. With insanely brilliant scientists all over the Marvel Universe, there's really no reason Rogue couldn't get a collar modified into a stylish necklace with an on/off switch.
      • Wolverine and the X-Men has it so that long-term use of power nullifiers can cause damage, to explain why this sort of thing doesn't happen. It is limited to that continuity, though.
      • Rogue's case is Egregious because the aforementioned Forge's mutant power is explicitly "inventing stuff". Yeah, he destroyed his original power nullifier after it zapped Storm - and vowed not to make another... but what's stopping him from building one with an expiration date or a "turn back on" setting?
        • And in the X-Men: Next Dimension video game, Bastion captures Forge and outfits the Sentinels with copies of the neutralizer. In the ending, Forge hits the powerless Rogue with the device, causing her to burst into tears over getting her powers back, even though she didn't say a word to Forge asking if she could have her powers returned later. And she could just be neutralized again.
        • She does take the cure in the movie. Unfortunately the cure appears to be temporary as Magneto recovers his powers at the end of the movie.
          • What's really horrible about that setup in the movie is the way Storm lays a guilt trip on Rogue for even thinking of curing herself. In the movie, Rogue's only power is a hideous malady with extremely limited applications that prevents her from every touching another living being without harming them. Somehow, movie Storm thinks that it's Rogue's duty as a mutant to deny herself the chance to engage in human touch, the most vital of human rituals (and all that entails).[1] Apparently because trying to cure herself is... betraying... mutantkind. Somehow.
            • Of both of them. I don't remember Rogue being that much of a wimp as she was in the movies either.
              • She was notably younger in the movies than she was in the comics, without the amnesia and the permanently stolen super-duper powers that came with it. And even then, there's more than one downtime comic where Rogue's generally just sitting around moping about how much she can't ever touch anyone.
    • The Mutant Cure was developed by Dr. Kavita Rao and made available to mutants everywhere in Astonishing X-Men. As in the movie, they're so offended by it being called a "cure" that Wolverine violently attacks Beast to prevent him from taking it, out of fear he would become the poster child for mutants Blessed with Suck actually wanting to do something about their condition.
    • The Marvel Universe also contains the Ultimate Nullifier, which... nullifies pretty much anyone's power, including heavyweights like Mephisto and Galactus.
      • There's currently a rookie underground hero calling himself the Ultimate Nullifier, with pistols modeled after the famous weapon that temporarily depower anyone they hit.
    • Moreover, the Initiative made use of SPIN technology to keep its recruits in line -- and enforce the SHRA. SPIN removes any and all superhuman abilities permanently. Or, at least originally; after Komodo was dosed when she refused to go along with the corrupt Initiative of Dark Reign, they managed to develop a "cure" of sorts to restore her powers.
  • Harold Nelson, aka "The Rainmaker," from PS238, is able to do this, as well as enhance meta-powers. Suppressor devices, in the form of temporary ray weapons or permanently attached devices also appear.
  • Scrambler, a member of the Marauders super villain team in the X-Men comics, has the ability to disrupt and suppress the powers of other mutants. When he comes into contact with Rogue, their powers interact in such a fashion as to temporarily strip both of them of their superpowers.
    • Same thing happened when the comic version of the aforementioned Leech grabbed Rogue's face. Of course, the rest of the Morlocks immediately found out that someone who hangs around guys like Wolverine don't really need any powers to kick the ass of anyone who doesn't seem to have any powers beyond "looking like an extra from a Mad Max film".
  • The fourth Empowered collection introduced a villain with this power named "Wet Blanket." Not only did he nullify powers, he also nullified his fellow villains' enthusiasm with his attitude.
  • The DC Elseworlds story The Golden Age provides the 40's superheroes a Deus Exit Machina from World War II with the power-nullifying Nazi Parsifal. After several heroes were nearly killed by Parsifal, FDR ordered them to all stay out so that a superhero's death didn't hurt morale.
  • Another DC Elseworlds story JLA: Act of God had a giant cosmic storm wash over earth and permanently negated everybody's powers leaving only Badass Normal and tech-based heroes/villains to fight/commit crime (even some of the more fanciful super tech, like Green Lantern's ring, stopped working.)
  • In Ex Machina Mitchell Hundred, formerly known as The Great Machine, gave his two civilian assistants, Kremlin and Bradbury, each a device capable of nullifying his abilities. As a lifelong fan of comic books he was well aware of the danger that he could present if he ever decided to stop working for the public good, and he was also aware that many people are never accepting of the fact that they have changed and are no longer the "good guy." As such, he wanted these two men, who he alone trusted with the secret of his powers and identity, to have the capability of shutting him down if they ever thought that he could no longer be trusted. In the last arc of the series Suzanne, who has become possessed by the power and is working to destroy the world, steals Kremlin's nullifier and goes looking for Mayor Hundred... only for Mitchell to reveal that not only did the nullifier not work, but it had never worked. He knew that Bradbury and Kremlin had been nervous even if they never said so, so he gave them each a piece of junk filled with electronics in order to reassure them of his good intentions.
  • The Savage Dragon villain Negate has the ability to permanently remove the powers of anyone who acquired them through "unnatural means"(i.e. anyone who isn't an alien, supernatural entity, or born with powers). He's eventually used by the Evil Overlord Darklord as the key component in a "nega-bomb" that depowers the entire world.
  • In All Fall Down, Sophie is a walking one, and IQ Squared designed a device to do this to super-powered villains in prison... including his father.


Fan Fiction

  • In Kyon: Big Damn Hero Sasaki's power is revealed to have this effect. She controls probability in a way that, if she can observe it, anything she doesn't believe possible can't happen, including all supernatural skills and abilities.


Films

  • The titular high school in Sky High has such a device in its detention room.
    • So did the copycat Zoom's Academy.
  • Superman II allowed Superman to become "permanently" human by absorbing an extremely large dose of red solar radiation. When the Phantom Zone villains arrive on Earth, however, he regains his powers by consuming the energy stored within the Fortress of Solitude. (This is only revealed in the director's cut; the original version has a Deus Ex Machina transition between Superman staring at a crystal and reappearing fully powered).
  • Leech in X-3 could to not only nullify mutant powers but also give even the most deformed mutant a normal human appearance. His DNA was used to create the mutant "cure" which Rogue takes in order to be with Iceman. Magneto's scene seems to imply that the cure might not have been permanent, at least in people who really didn't want to be cured.
  • The Kamen Rider Double film Double Forever A-Z/The Gaia Memories of Fate had a new evil Rider named Eternal. Eternal's Maximum Drive Finishing Move initially was capable of permanently disabling any old-generation Gaia Memory, regardless of whether they were a Rider's or a Dopant's.


Literature

  • In the Dark Hunter series, the magical ability of Were Hunters to shapeshift can be stopped by metriazo collars. If they stay on, however, the Were Hunter will eventually explode from the pent-up magick.
  • Wild Cards:
    • The Trump Card virus, developed by Dr. Tachyon, is meant to cure Xenovirus Takis-A (colloquially known as the setting'S titular Wild Card). Unfortunately, it is only about 5% effective, and itself lethal in about 30% of attempts. Not surprisingly, most of those who tried it were jokers rather than aces, and even few of those would risk it. And a successful cure can also spell the death of the former wildcarder if his powers kept him alive.
    • Mai Minh, the vietnamese Ace healer, can permanently reset wildcarders back to nats. While no Aces were known to ask for healing, she would possibly reset powered jokers and joker-aces.
    • Croyd's personal strain of the Wild Card during his Typhoid Croyd period is this trope mixed with mass empowerment, being a forced reroll in the setting's Superpower Lottery. It can turn anyone to anything - nat, joker, deuce or ace to Black Queen, joker, deuce or ace.
    • The Astronomer lists the ability to suppress a psychic ace (and thus almost anyone) among his powers. When opposed by Cordelia Chaisson and Demise, he finds out that suppressing only one of them at a time isn't enough...
  • The Perry Rhodan universe has a variety of devices that counter or dampen psionic powers either on purpose or as a side effect of their normal operation, from actual traps and prisons that negate such powers inside a given area to relatively common force fields that they cannot penetrate (usually a painful experience for teleporters in particular).
  • In the Black Company books, there's the White Rose, a very mighty Power Nullifier in human form. (There are no superheroes in the books, but magic exists.)
  • In the Star Wars Expanded Universe, The Thrawn Trilogy introduced the ysalamiri, a non-sapient species of furry reptiles, with the unique ability to suppress the Force in their personal areas. This ability evolved naturally in conjunction with a local predator species, vornskrs, who evolved with the ability to use the Force for hunting. Thrawn is the first to (re)discover their ability, and puts them to various uses. He keeps one on his person, to protect him from Force attacks. He also uses them to speed-grow clones, since the presence of the Force will warp a mind that ages twenty years in a few weeks.
    • Combined with Capture the Flag in Star Wars: Jedi Outcast: one of the multiplayer modes is called "Capture the Ysalimari"; you can't use the Force while holding it, but nobody can use it on you either.
  • Used in Sword of Truth when Violet and Six strip Richard of his magic.
  • The staff at the orphanage in John C. Wright's Chronicles of Chaos have been carefully selected to nullify the abilities of each of the orphans. This allows them to impose a Restraining Bolt on each one.
  • Forcing a Mistborn (from the series of the same name) to burn aluminum causes all of their other metal reserves to be consumed almost instantaneously, leaving them as helpless as a normal human.
  • In Orson Scott Card's little-known Hart's Hope, the hero character is explicitly born as a Power Nullifier, because the Big Bad is a supremely powerful magician (having, amongst other things, enslaved the kingdom's gods).
  • In The Wheel of Time series, it's separating a channeler from the True Source. It's called "gentling" when done to a man, "stilling" when it's done to a woman; the gender-neutral term is "severing". It is possible to reverse the process, but it only works completely if the person restoring the connection is of the opposite sex of the person who was severed, otherwise their channeling strength will return at a greatly reduced capacity. More temporary 'shielding' is possible to cut channelers off, and certain places such as stedding and the city of Far Madding are permanently shielded.
  • Stationery Voyagers has Levio the Nullifier, who functions as both this and Anti-Magic. Wizards are reduced from casting spells with impunity to any number of side effects: casting spells with karmic backfire, casting from hit points, or the humiliation of a specific spell simply not working.
    • If it were not necessary for Mechanical Pencils to exist to fulfill certain prophesies, then Levio would be allowed to block the process of Artificial Reincarnation as well.
    • Whiteouts that travel to Mantith by their own means may be able to remain as Stationery beings, but attempting to use Mikloche beyond Shell 8 may lead to casting from hit points. Likewise, if a Whiteout is messed with by a wizard, the chances of them needing to cast from hit points increases exponentially. Whiteouts who travel to Mantith by supernatural means (e.g., Maurice the Ferryman) slowly become human. They can use Mikloche once human, but again, only if they cast from hit points.
      • Other Stationery beings who travel to Mantith by supernatural means simply become gradually human, except for Mechanical Pencils. Those who travel by technology remain Stationeries, but become gradually more susceptible to catching human diseases.
    • Likewise, muellexic techonlogy has allowed for phantomars to be disabled on Stationeries with the aid of certain devices, effectively serving as a sort of replacement for handcuffs in a world of creatures that don't have hands.
  • The Shapeshifter has one of these with a built in Explosive Leash implanted in the back of the COLA's skulls.
  • Grey Murphy of the Xanth series has the power to nullify magic in any target he chooses, or increase a subject's magical talents or properties through a "rebound" effect.
  • The prize-winning series "Way Home" (Дорога домой) by Vladimir Zykov (Владимир Зыков) features both magical slaves' collars and the combinations of those with this trope, using Anti-Magic, referred to as "black collars". One of the protagonists survives being put into one, manages to break it and learns to break them on others.
  • Philip K. Dick's classic novel Ubik is about employees of an entire agency of Power Nullifiers. They are a necessary service, since telepaths and other people with potentially dangerous Psychic Powers are commonplace in the setting.
  • In Shadow Ops, anyone who can use magic can Suppress another magic-user's power. This is integral to controlling magic users, and Suppressing someone in the middle of, say, flying, can have nasty consequences. While other branches of the US military actively use their magic offensively in the setting, the US Marine Corps uses "Suppression Lances" that consist of squads of magic-users whose sole job is to Suppress enemy magic-users and kill them with conventional weapons.


Live Action TV

  • In Mutant X, tags bolted into the back of the neck were used to nullify mutant powers, though it seems more to torture them when they try to use them than to truly nullify the powers.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer's 18th birthday present was to temporarily lose her powers and then be forced to fight a vampire, in a test called the cruciamentum. While she was hypnotized, her Watcher was forced to inject drugs into her that suppressed her strength.
  • In Heroes, the mysterious Haitian has, in addition to memory erasing, the power to suppress other people's powers around him. Which has to make one wonder how Peter could copy that power from him at all.
    • The Shanti virus and some pills used occasionally by the Company also suppressed powers.
      • Though it should be noted that the Shanti virus eventually killed the infected.
    • The characters captured by Nathan Petrelli's goons have a device taped to them that sprays some sort of drug into their nose. It weakened them enough to the point they couldn't focus enough to use their power.
    • The second eclipse completely nullified everybody's powers. It's apparently stronger than the Haitian's power, as it reduced Daphne to a crippled state, while she was able to walk around the Haitian. Claire also started dying of common bacteria, due to not having an immune system from her Healing Factor.
      • It also created numerous Plot Holes. For instance, Adam was shown to reduce to dust if he lost his powers, being four hundred years old. Four hundred years is a lot of eclipses, how the hell did he survive all that time? Not to mention the eclipse lasted for nearly an hour. And affected an impossibly large area. The MST3K Mantra only stretches so far.
      • Which goes to prove that it was not a normal eclipse. Hence Adam being unaffected for so long.
  • In The 4400, Jordan Collier's ability is to depower others by removing the promicin that gives them their powers.
  • In Smallville, blue kryptonite causes Kryptonian powers to disappear, but it needs skin contact to work. Red sunlight, magic, and various alien devices can also take away Clark's powers.
    • This case is notable for having a guy who DID use it to lead a normal life. It later bit him in the ass, though.
  • Stargate SG-1 has the Anti-Prior device the team cooked up against the Ori. It emits an inaudible sound that makes Priors unable to use their psychic powers; however, both Damaris and Daniel Jackson/Merlin were able to overcome it given sufficient time.
  • The Rada'Han is a collar in Legend of the Seeker used to nullify a person's magical ability. In one case, it was used to prevent a cursed person from turning into a monster. The Pristinely Ungifted are rare individuals completely unaffected by magic. When one is first introduced, she is able to walk through what is, essentially, a magical minefield as if it wasn't there.
  • In Painkiller Jane, neuros can be rendered harmless by "chipping" them with a special gun that implants a control chip into the back of their heads, counteracting their abilities. It doesn't work on advanced neuros, though.
  • The Obsidian Order had a prototype device that would prevent a Founder from returning to their natural gelatinous state, with potentially lethal results for the changeling if the device is left on for extended periods.


Tabletop Games

  • The HERO system has a power devoted explicitly to this, called Drain, which reduces the affected power temporarily (or possibly permanently). There is also Suppress, which is similar to Drain except Drain "damages" a power or characteristic and it automatically heals over time, while Suppress reduces the power only as long as the Suppress is maintained.
  • GURPS has Neutralize for this function.
  • Magic: The Gathering has a number of different Power Nullifiers depending on what exactly you want to nullify. Null Rod, quoted above, gets all artifacts; Arrest gets one particular creature; Pithing Needle turns off one particular card; Back to Basics turns off nonbasic lands...
  • In Dungeons and Dragons, spell "Mordenkhainen's Disjunction" can strip magic permanently from magic items. Also fits this trope in that, if a spellcaster successfully strips the power from an Artifact-level magic item, the caster himself permanently lose all magic related abilities and spellcasting.
  • Power Nullifiers are known as "pulsing" effects in Sen Zar, and they're even more feared than in most other games, what with Sen Zar's munchkin-friendly design and all.


Video Games

  • In City of Heroes, the Bio-Energy Feedback Inducer is a power-draining weapon used by the "Sappers." It works by draining your endurance, which all powers need to operate. EMP and electrical powers can do this as well, but not drain you completely in a single hit like a Sapper can.
  • Yukimaru's special ability in the second game of the Disgaea series is this.
    • Actually, she just has a chance to inflict the Amnesia Status, which seals specials. The cockatrice generic in Disgaea 3 Absence of Justice has this as its innate evility, but they have to stand next to the enemy to make it work.
  • A recurring boss in Fire Emblem: Blazing Sword is a Magic Seal named Kishuna. As his class name implies, he negates all magic in a 15-space radius of himself. It's all he can do, but since his speed is insane it can take some time to kill him.
    • The skill "Nihil" / "Mikiri" in the Jugdral and Tellius sagas. In the Jugdral games, it nullifies all enemy Critical Hit-based, and Special Sword skills ; in the Tellius games, it negates all enemy Battle skills. The Tellius games have in addition the Skill "Parity", which has the same effect but extended to the Skill's owner as well, and also negates both the skill's owner and his foe's support and terrain bonuses.
  • Guilty Gear has Sol's headband. It's technically a Power Limiter, but it makes him so weak his fire magic is completely nullified. Unless he compensates with an artifact that boosts specifically fire magic.
  • In Guild Wars Mesmers can drain an enemies energy, interrupt spells that are being cast and even entirely disable spells from being used for a time.
  • In World of Warcraft all classes have some form of a silence or interrupt effect. The first prevents the target from casting any spells until it expires, the other interrupts a spell that's being cast and prevents them from casting any spell of the same "school" e.g. interrupt a fireball and it stops them casting any fire spell. Due the devastating nature of being locked out like this for many classes (shadow priests until recently had zero non-shadow offensive spells) the duration of the silence or lockout is measured in a scant few seconds.
    • Anub'Rekhan is a boss notable for having an area of effect and particularly extreme Power Nullifier. When he casts it anyone near is unable to cast any spell, use any ability, or even just use a normal attack.
  • In Tokimeki Memorial 2, when Sou-Banchou, the leader of Hibikino Town's Delinquents, turns into his Giant Form, he gains the "Chou-Gankiri" (Super Insight) ability, which nullifies your Sports Club Hi-Ougi should you have one.
    • In Tokimeki Memorial 4, the Skill "Heart Unlocking Technique" / "Kokoro no Kaijoujutsu" negates the girls' negative Skills, such as Satsuki's "Noble" / "Kouki", and Tsugumi's "Tsun" Skills.
  • In Neverwinter Nights Hordes of the Underdark there is a dungeon with an artifact in it that nullifies any and all magic around it. You are reduced to physical abilities, and your fancy weapons and armor are only as useful as the materials they are made of (i.e. loosing all +X enchantments and such, but retaining their basic values such as armor class and damage dice) and your potions are just colored water. For some reason it didn't stop the spiders from growing unusually large.
  • In Blaz Blue, Hakumen's Nox, Ookami, has this ability, rendered in-game as being able to null out projectiles, and in-story as otherwise immortal characters (Namely Nu-13 and Terumi) don't want it near them.

  Terumi: Hey, Hakumen, I really don't want you touching me with your Ookami, so how about we do this...

  • In Prototype, Alex gets injected with a parasite by Specialist Cross that disables his flashiest powers, though he still has Super Strength, Super Speed and the ability to disguise himself. He then spends the next few missions working with another scientist on trying to get rid of said parasite, with the final result being that he managed to gain new powers when he comes back.
  • Pokémon contains several moves that can do this. Disable locks out the target's most recently-used move for a few rounds. Imprison locks out any moves the target shares with the user until one of them switches out. Gastro Acid completely locks out the target's ability (such as the Shadow Tag ability that makes Wobbuffet a Game Breaker) until the victim switches. Finally, Grudge is a Taking You with Me version of this trope - if the user dies the round it's used, the target loses all the use points for the attack that last connected.
  • In Dragon Age, the Qunari treat their mages (called Saarebas - "dangerous thing") even worse than humans (and that's saying something), using magic-nullifying collars to keep them in line. The collars are controlled remotely. Just in case, though, they still cover the mages' eyes and sew their mouths shut.


Webcomics


Web Original

  • In the Whateley Universe, there may not be gizmos that work as power nullifiers (yet), but some mutants (such as Negator and Damper) have that ability. It does backfire somewhat against Tennyo, however, as she actually gets more powerful with her mutant abilities suppressed; she just starts using the power of the Class X Entity contained inside her.
  • In the Global Guardians PBEM Universe, Purge has the power to turn off metahuman powers (but not magic or powers gained through technology, while Scramble can cause metahuman powers to misfire and not work properly (though they do tend to still work somehow).
  • SCP Foundation's SCP-514. Whenever in contact with the pigeons' nullifying "aura", every weapon (bombs, guns, tanks, baseball bats, knives, etc) is rendered completely useless and are even destroyed after prolonged exposure. Even objects not designed to be weaponized like pens were rendered useless if used for violent intent. In addition, the pigeons' ability can completely suppress the negative emotions and intent of all sentient beings, no matter how violent, which makes the capture of SCP-514 nearly impossible.
  • In Trinton Chronicles Elijah's power allows him to nullify a power by storing it in a crystal temporarily.


Western Animation

  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender
    • Disruptions in Elemental Powers of the series' Benders occur during temporary meteorological events. Firebenders and Waterbenders draw their power from the sun and moon, respectively. When solar or lunar eclipse occurs, the affiliated Benders lose their powers for its duration. It's also possible to stop Waterbending for good by destroying the moon through its totemic spirit, (which, while easier then it sounds in this setting, is not a good idea)
    • Badass Normal martial artist Ty Lee has learned to disable the Elemental Powers of Benders by striking Pressure Points to block the flow of chi (resulting in considerable pain for some of her victims). In the series finale "Sozin's Comet". Aang permanently does this to Ozai, using energy-bending he learned from a giant Lion Turtle.
    • In Sequel Series The Legend of Korra, Ty Lee's chi-blocking technique is employed by Anti-Bending Faction, the Equalists.
    • The leader of the Equalists, Amon, claims to be able to permanently remove bending, with it implied he uses the same technique Aang used. This may be a lie
  • There are two in Danny Phantom. The Specter Deflector wards off anything ectoplasmic, so if Danny were to turn into his ghostly Superhero counterpart, he'd get a nasty electric zap. The other is the more straightforward version of this trope: the Plasmius Maximus, designed to nullify ghost powers for a good three hours.
  • In the animated version of Legion of Super Heroes this was Nemesis Kid's power.
  • In X-Men: Evolution, Leech's power extends to more than shutting down powers: it can shut down anything. When he used it to its fullest, a good chunk of the city lost power. Like movie Leech, he can also undo physical mutations, such as Spyke's permanent bone-armor vanishing, restoring his season one appearance until the effect ended.
  • The Powerpuff Girls features Antidote X, first appearing in "Slumbering With the Enemy". Mojo Jojo threw it at the titlar superheroes in said episode to reduce them to normal little girls, though this obviously didn't affect subsequent episodes. The Movie reveals that it was initially created to get Mojo out of his One-Winged Angel form, though the girls briefly considered using it on themselves so they would be better accepted without superpowers.
  • On Buzz Lightyear of Star Command, Zurg manages to turn off Mira's powers by setting her in a box that disrupts her concentration whenever she tries to use her powers. Since concentration is required, well....
  • The title character of Generator Rex has permanent Power Nullification as one of his primary powers, though considering how powers are handed out in the Generator Rex universe, its not really that threatening except against the few EVOs with a Magneto like ideology.
    • Feekens from the episode "Deadzone" exhibits some sort of Nanite deadzone around himself. If Rex is in too close a vicinity to him, his powers don't work.
  • An indeterminate variant is used by Lex Luthor on Lord Superman at the end of the Justice League two-part episode "A Better World". What exactly happened to his powers are unknown but he's at least able to be captured and detained by conventional shackles once it's been used on him.

Notes

  1. In Real Life, it's been pretty much proven that humans need touch - we go crazy without it, even as children. We invent rituals for the purpose of allowing touch (there's a quote about that somewhere).
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