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A White Mage is a character archetype and often a gameplay archetype which focuses on healing and/or buffing magic. They may also have access to magic that causes some status effects. Modern incarnations will often be given some offensive ability, often magic of the Holy Hand Grenade variety.
Frequently, White Mages will be extremely effective against undead, either through holy magic, magic specifically designed to hurt undead, or Revive Kills Zombie.
A White Mage is almost always The Medic, although they have the addition of buffs. Female White Mages in Eastern RPGs are frequently the White Magician Girl, although they must also fit the personality requirements for that trope.
Subtrope of Support Party Member. If a character has both healing and offensive magic in relatively equal measure, they are a Red Mage, instead. If a White Mage can sling healing spells while fighting on the front lines, you've got yourself what's known as a Paladin, or Combat Medic. Contrast Black Mage. Not to be confused with White Magic, which is only sometimes the source of a White Mage's power.
- Clerics from Dungeons and Dragons, in theory, which may be the Trope Codifier, if not the Trope Maker. Although in practice, D&D Clerics tend to suck at their intended purpose in more than a few editions (damage out-grows healing ability quite quickly), but awesome through use of things that otherwise fall in Useless Useful Spell. It should be noted that unlike most White Mages, D&D Clerics could wear full-plate armor and use large shields with no penalty to their magic usage. Up until the third edition, they were also forbidden from using bladed weapons, unless their religion specifically allows this. They also had stat-buffing spells that helped their lack of a Warrior's battle prowess.
- The Trope Namer is Final Fantasy I, which provided White Mage as a starting class. It is not the Trope Codifier, however, since the concept was borrowed from clerics from tabletop RPGs. It's appeared in almost every Final Fantasy game since.
- Final Fantasy II has Minwu, a rare male example in the series.
- Final Fantasy III had White Mage as a job class.
- Final Fantasy IV had Rosa and Porom and also several White Mage NPCs.
- Final Fantasy V had a White Mage job class.
- Final Fantasy IX had Garnet dress as a White Mage, and this was her primary use for the first part of the game. Once she gets her summons back, however, she's more of a Red Mage. Eiko Carol is introduced immediately after as the party's white magic specialist.
- Final Fantasy X has Yuna, although thanks to the Sphere Grid you could customize her to be anything with a little work (and any other character to be a White Mage, by extension).
- Final Fantasy X 2 had a White Mage Dress Sphere (job class), instead.
- This is the primary function of the 'Medic' paradigm role in Final Fantasy XIII.
- Several games in the Dragon Quest series feature the Priest job class.
- Marco from Radiant Historia is almost a pure White Mage in his skillset, having almost no abilities that are not buffs or heals.
- Princess Toadstool (not named Peach yet) served this purpose in Super Mario RPG, only having one damaging special attack.
- Tales of Phantasia has Mint Adnade, who would more or less codify the "cute cleric" stereotype associated with most white mages.
- In Tales of Symphonia, we have Raine.
Massive Multiplayer Online Games
- Grand Fantasia has the Acolyte -> Priest -> Cleric -> Prophet class progression, which is a pure White Mage archetype.
- Final Fantasy Tactics, Tactics Advance, and A2 all have a White Mage job class.
- Tactics Ogre has the Cleric, Priest, and High Priest as pure White Mage classes. The Witch class is also a purely supportive spell-caster.
- The Fire Emblem series has Clerics, which use healing magic through staves. They usually promote to classes that either add holy magic or fall more under Red Mage.
- Nippon Ichi's Strategy RPGs have the Healer class, most frequently seen in the Disgaea series. Without abusing skill learning systems such as reincarnation, fusing, or the apprentice system, he or she will only naturally learn healing and support magic.
- White Mage from Eight Bit Theater. Naturally, since she and every other character is based on the job classes from Final Fantasy I.