Magicka

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Once upon a time in a generic fantasy world ... only up to four wizards had the power to make a difference.

Magicka is a Hack and Slash game for the PC, at its roots in the Gauntlet (1985 video game) gameplay we all know and love, but with plenty of quirks of its own. One to four players each control a wizard and travel the monster-infested countrysides, guided by Vlad (who is totally not a vampire) and a variety of other Simlish-speaking people. Yeah, it's that kind of game.

The main selling point of the gameplay lies within the magic system. Using eight basic elements (water, life, shield, cold, electricity, arcane, earth, fire) and two special elements (ice and steam, which are water + cold and water + fire, respectively), players craft and cast their spells at a moment's notice. For further customization, spells can be cast in a standard fashion, in a circle around the wizard, on the wizard's weapon, or on the wizard himself. There are also special spells called Magicks gained from books placed throughout the campaign that offer even more powerful abilities.

Oh, and you don't have a Mana Meter. Cast what you want, as often as you want, provided that you can get the elements up fast enough.

Out now, the first expansion: Magicka: Vietnam, on the justification that everyone else is jumping on the Vietnam bandwagon, so they might as well follow along too. Yes, really.

A second expansion, The Stars are Left, was released on November 29, 2011, with content based off of (and, of course, spoofing) the works of H.P. Lovecraft and Minecraft.

Has an entire Shout-Out page. An actual developer commentary version is freely available in Let's Play format. Not to be confused with Puella Magi Madoka Magica.


Tropes used in Magicka include:
  • Ambition Is Evil: Grimnir was initially interested in learning all Magic to create an era of peace, but his neverending lust for knowledge quickly twisted him into the monster he is today and led him to be Assatur's host.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: As of The Stars Are Left, Fairies will appear at checkpoints if you are playing in single player, and will revive you if you die.
  • Apathetic Citizens: Most NPCs don't even seem to notice you're blasting them with spells.
  • Artificial Stupidity:
    • While enemies will usually take all manner of approaches in trying to kill you, they will never, ever take notice of the Vortex spell, and will consistently march to their deaths in their attempts to get near you.
    • When they have the choice between going around a rock wall cast by a wizard and trying to smash trough the rock wall, they will generally try to smash through it which takes much, much longer.
    • Caster enemies occasionally seem to confuse their spells, hitting you with a healing spell and an ally with a fire ball. This is more prevalent with lower tier enemies such as goblin mages.
  • Ascended Glitch: This. (Apparently the development team liked it so much that it's staying.)
  • Attack Reflector: Arcane beams are one of the more powerful and frequently used spells in the game. Too bad they can bounce completely off of shields while doing very little damage to the shield itself. Against some enemies later in the game that use shields and arcane beams, keeping this in mind is very important.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Fafnir's conspicuously glowing belly.
  • Badass: The main characters can (and do) take down armies, a dragon, as well as punch out Assatur and, if they have a certain piece of DLC, Cthulhu himself.
  • Barrier Warrior:
    • Shield is a basic element. By itself, it can create a dome, half-shield, or a personal force field. All three reflect beams and block a certain amount of damage, but personal shields reduce knockdown resistance. Shields were also adjusted in a later update to deteriorate a lot faster and no longer heal from healing mines (personal shields formerly absorbed all forms of healing), making maintaining a personal shield a lot more difficult.
    • Fortunately, they also adjusted the shield + rock and shield + ice spells in this same update to allow the player to move, meaning you can form rock or ice armor that blocks physical damage, but won't stop fire or deflect arcane.
  • Battle-Interrupting Shout: Vlad intervenes in boss battles multiple times, and in one instance he stops you from killing a not-actually-evil boss by yelling "STOOOOP!"
  • Beam-O-War: If beams are of opposite elements, they explode at the point of contact... Hilarity Ensues. The wizards (and enemies) can also combine their beams (think Death Star) For Massive Damage. Sometimes to themselves. The Rule of Opposites always applies.
  • Bilingual Bonus: The omnipresent simlish is sprinkled with more-or-less genuine words. Frequently, these are (hilariously misplaced) Swedish. A shining example would be the time when a troll bursts through the encampment gate, and the captain screams in shock; "By Baldur's dong!"
  • Black Comedy: Many examples, often caused "unintentionally" by the players as they randomly murder harmless NPCs and each other. Near the beginning, an NPC wizard blows up his tower and falls to his death; some time later you travel back in time and crash into his tower, blowing it up and killing him. And at the end of the game, the players are plummeting to Earth on the remnants of the Big Bad's formerly-floating lair, and Vlad tells them to use the "Town Portal Magick" to get home. The Town Portal Magick doesn't exist...
  • Blessed Are the Cheesemakers

Shams: We already started the party and I'm afraid we're almost out of cheese...

  • Blown Across the Room: Explosive spells (and mines in general) tend to do this to anything standing nearby; it's possible to kill most enemies (with the exception of very huge ones) fairly easy via Ring Out just using mines. It also happens very easily to you if you happen to have a shield up.
  • Bond Villain Stupidity: "The Machine" boss. Complete with a Bond Shout-Out.
  • Boss Banter: Vlad does this, and unsurprisingly uses the opportunity to drop Star Wars references.
  • Boss Subtitles: Among them such names as "Fafnir, the Burninator".
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall:
    • "I'd give you some gold, but this game doesn't seem to have a proper inventory system."
    • "Now if only I could get rid of this exclamation mark that's been following me around lately..."
  • Bullet Time:
    • The Time Warp spell. Everything (including you) slows down, giving you more time to either plan out moves with your teammates or key up complicated spells.
    • The M60 and other guns are actually unaffected by Time Warp, creating a literal inversion.
  • Bullfight Boss: Khan.
  • Butt Monkey: Poor yellow. Bad things happen to him in the concept art (being frozen, caught in a tornado, etc.). Hell, there's an achievement for dying as him.
  • Button Mashing: When you get into panicked situations, it's easy to just start mashing the spell keys and Mouse 2 just to try to deal some sort of damage quickly. And instantly blow yourself and your teammates up without even scratching the enemy. There's a reason the developers call this game a Mage Suicide Simulator.
  • Camera Screw: Excessive usage of skills with high knockback (read: mines) will lead to this, because the camera attempts to center itself in between the up to four players; a player being knocked far enough away (but not dying from falling damage or from a cliff) can actually cause the camera to be centered on nothing, with none of the players visible at all.
  • Captain Obvious: The fairy following you provides cute but useless advice, such as "do something to complete the level!"
  • Cartoon Bomb: Some goblins carry a big sack of these and throw them at you. You can blow them right back or hit the goblin carrying them with fire to detonate its sack of bombs.
  • Chekhov's Gun:
    • Yes, what exactly is the M60 doing in a fantasy game? It couldn't possibly be foreshadowing the expansion, now could it?
    • R'lyeh was on the world map at the beginning of a chapter in the vanilla campaign. Guess where you go in The Stars Are Left campaign.
  • Color-Coded Multiplayer
  • Comedic Sociopathy:
    • It is a viable tactic to seal one of your fellow wizards in a bottleneck with a bunch of Orcs.
    • Miscasting Magicks with wide areas of effect don't discern between friend and foe, so giggles and pain abound.
  • Convection Shmonvection: In one of the later chapters, you'll come across vast expanses of lava... which you can cool with your Frost spell and walk on.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer: Multiplayer mode can make the later levels quite a bit easier, since your offensive powers are multiplied and you can revive each other. However, since Friendly Fireproof is averted, you will end up dying much more often than in singleplayer. As Total Biscuit put it: "When the developers said this game had Co-Op, they were lying."
  • Critical Existence Failure
  • Damage Sponge Boss: Most of them seem to be this, and indeed can be defeated via brute force alone if you so choose or don't know better, but there's usually also a less obvious strategy or trick that will do the job with minimal effort.
  • Death From Above:
    • Depending on how brave you are, and if you have a wizard in the party that has the Wizard Hat DLC, have 1-4 of you queue up the Meteor Shower Magick and cast at once...and then run for your fragile, insignificant life or lives as the Random Number God rains fiery doom of its own accord.
    • The Thunderstorm spell is a non-DLC version of this, and equally if not more powerful. Thunderbolt (single) does this one at a time, with considerably more precision.
  • Death Is Cheap:
    • Revive is quick to cast, being Life + Lightning, and constant, cheap reviving is expect in multiplayer co-op. Slightly less so of the number of ways to die that also irretrievably remove equipment: Several very powerful items are irreplaceable without replaying entire levels.
    • There's even a later spell, Summon Phoenix, which automatically revives all fallen teammates (and drops a Phoenix in to deal fire damage). Same as above but with Fire added in.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: Fornskogur Forest's name roughly translates to "Ancient-Forest Forest".
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Your puny wizards manage to banish Assatur. PLUS, in The Stars Are Left DLC, you can kill the Trope Namer himself. Yes, the final boss is CTHULHU.
  • DLC:
    • Besides the Wizard's Hat and Vietnam, there's also the Marshlands Challenge. Thankfully, Paradox was nice enough to let everybody have the Caverns Challenge for free.
    • The PvP update included several robe and map packs as well.
  • Dummied Out: See Poisoned Weapons; Poison actually used to be a legitimate element on par with the other 10 elements, but was removed. You can still create Poison elementals by wielding Poisoned Weapons, for example, and some modders have even readded it. Considering that Poison inflicted damage over time on enemies, slowed down their movements, and it could only be removed by healing, which only Elite Mooks and some bosses have, it may well have been an averted Game Breaker.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The final boss, Assatur, is a trans-dimensional being, which alone should qualify him for this trope, but Assatur is also another name for Hastur, a monster in the Cthulhu Mythos!
  • Elemental Absorption: depending on the robes that your wizard (or an enemy wizard) is wearing, or the type of element that an enemy is, getting hit by that element will result in being healed instead of damaged.
  • Elemental Powers
  • Elemental Punch:
    • You can take spells and cast them on your melee weapon to enchant it. As with regular casting spells, you can put any combination on it that you want... including a heal spell. The plus side to charging a melee is that you can always have it on hand whenever you need it, since you'll start moving slower the more elements you have keyed up in a spell, which can give you a mobility advantage, and can prevent friendly fire with more controllable arcs. And if you charge the right spell to your sword...
    • Played straight with the "Healing Hands" of the Support Wizard.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: A core part of the gameplay, especially on co-op. Although in this case, it's just as much about avoiding damaging yourself as it is getting the right combo against the enemy.
  • Epic Fail: Rock Paper Shotgun listed a few examples. More will likely happen.
  • Excalibur in the Stone: Found and usable in-game... complete with stone.
  • Exploding Barrels:
    • A variant, sometimes you will find boxes of dynamite lying around that you can blow up.
    • Goblin bombers also act as this. Kill one with a spell that contains fire, and you'll detonate its bomb satchel, causing around 2,000 damage to everything around it.
  • Fighting Your Friend: A surprising number of them, typicaly due to the wizards' non-existent social skills.
  • Final Boss Preview: The fight with Grimnir halfway through the game, which you cannot win. Also a Final Exam Boss due to his spells being either carbon copies of yours, or countered by a spell in your repitoire. Including Nullify.
  • Flaming Sword: The Blade of Surt, and really any fire element enchanted weapon.
  • For Massive Damage: Simply put, there's lots of ways to do massive amounts of damage to enemies. And teammates.
    • An arcane beam with steam and electricity will create one of the most devastating combos in the game.[1]
    • Lightning bolt, whilst only working outdoors, does 5,000 damage a pop (10k if the enemy is wet) and sends nearby enemies flying. Oh, and both Lightning Bolt and a standard Steam Beam use the exact same formula, just cast different ways.
    • Then there's the "lightsaber" or "deathblade" enchantment: take the lightning bolt formula, add a Steam to it, then charge it to your melee weapon. You will now deal around 2.8k damage to anything that stands in your way, more or less depending on resistances and if the target is wet. Anything that survives will be soaked, allowing you to follow up with double-damage lightning or frost to stop them in their tracks and give you time to follow up with something else. One massive exploitable for this enchantment is to freeze your target (soak, then frost), then unleash your melee for triple damage. It's possible to One-Hit Kill lots of enemies this way. Including bosses.
    • The Great Iceball (Earth + 4x Ice) fully charged hits for roughly 10,000 damage.
  • Flunky Boss: The wizard at the end of Chapter Four, The Aristocrats.
  • Fragile Speedster: The Rogue Robe from the Party Robes DLC. The player moves like a ninja straight out of Naruto, runs at a pace slightly slower than a normal wizard with Haste, uses a crossbow with poisoned arrows in lieu of a sword, teleports (backwards only) using Smoke Bombs to evade attacks, and is twice as squishy as any other Robe in the game. Case in point, using 1 Fire element to set yourself ablaze usually takes about 1/3 of your hit points in the average set of Robes. In the Rogue robe, the flames will quickly kill you before they run out.
  • Friendly Fireproof: Averted. You can (and will) blast your allies into a fine red paste. Sometimes even accidentally.
  • Game Breaking Bug: Given how buggy the game is (even after multiple patches), there are multiple ways of causing the game to crash or become unplayable.
    • For example, trying to cast Corporealize on Assatur in Chapter 6 can cause a crash.
    • One bug that has stuck around, though it is more of a design flaw: You are unable to pass the first tutorial while wearing the Tron robes. Why? Well, the first thing you have to do is cast Life on yourself, but the Tron robes are immune to the Life element... fortunately you can skip the tutorial, but if this is your first time playing, you might not have wanted to.[2]
  • Glass Cannon:
    • You. So very much, unless you're wearing Tank Robes (and to a lesser extent Space and Zombie robes). Most of your spells would be an instant kill on yourself. And there's Co-Op...
    • In the Vietnam DLC, there's also the RPG Goblins. They're easy to dispatch, but since you won't have a personal shield up (see the Goddamned Bats entry on the YMMV page), they're going to One-Hit Kill you if you're not careful.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: The Detective Robe from The Stars Are Left DLC features a set of Brass Knuckles.
  • Gravity Is a Harsh Mistress: Dying from falling damage nets you the "Gravity, thou art a heartless bitch" achievement.
  • Harmless Freezing: Subverted and played straight. Anything that's enclosed in a block of ice will thaw out eventually with no ill effects, but hit that block of ice with a blunt object or an arcane spell before it melts...
  • Heads I Win, Tails You Lose: The first fight against the Big Bad... doesn't go very well.
  • Healing Hands: Aside from use of the Life element, this is invoked as the weapon of the Support Robe from the Party Robes DLC.
  • Healing Shiv: All heals are this to a degree, since healing is basically attacking someone with the life element. You can make healing beams, healing weapons, even explosive healing landmines.
  • Heroic Comedic Sociopath\Sociopathic Hero: The main characters can be played either way, considering that they can kill anyone (including each other).
  • Heroic Mime: The player characters. Vlad lampshades this after three boss fights in a row caused by the players just beating people up instead of talking to them like Vlad told them to do.

"You have no social skills whatsoever!"

  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Very likely to happen in combat, both to your enemies and your friends.
    • Special mention goes to Summon Death, which summons The Grim Reaper to the battlefield to instantly kill the unit with the lowest percentage health. Be careful with using this against bosses since some of them don't count as units which means that he will target you!
    • Crash to Desktop, which summons a blue screen of death to instant kill a random creature on screen that has less than 10000 maximum HP. More often than not, this is you. Especially annoying in multiplayer since a wizard who dies from this takes all his items with him.
  • Hold the Line: Towards the end of Chapter 4 you come across a locked door that allied NPCs are attempting to blow open with boxes of dynamite. You can fight off waves of enemies while waiting for the unnecessarily long fuse to burn, but it's a lot quicker to just set the dynamite off directly with a fire spell.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: In-universe. A wizard in the starting area will give you the useful advice to not "dabble withe electricity" when wet. Then, he continues with this little gem:

"HOW SHOCKING! Hahaha... Yes, I know, that was terrible."

  • Infernal Retaliation: Most of the time, enemies will continue to attack you even when on fire, unless their panic trigger is hit (meaning they take a certain amount of damage per tick from fire damage), until they either succumb to the flames or put themselves out.
  • Interface Spoiler: The achievement names, some of which give away the names of bosses.
  • Jump Physics: The Beastmen. As the developers say:

"The jump mechanics are so broken."
"Not nearly as broken as they have been.[3]

  • Kill It with Fire:
    • By itself, fire isn't all that powerful, since the damage taken from afterburn is rather negligible. However, if combined with the Grease and/or Conflagration Magicks, it's possible to inflict damage in the hundreds or thousands per tick by keeping enemies sitting in the flames for long enough.
    • The Napalm Magick from the Vietnam expansion has a similar effect as these spell combos: wizards unfortunate enough to be caught in the friendly fire die within seconds.[4]
  • Kill It with Ice: Freezing enemies (and then smashing them or otherwise taking advantage of their disabled state) is one of the most "cost effective" methods of actually killing enemies.
  • Kill It with Water: Water itself isn't too effective, but it can serve to knock back small- to medium-sized enemies (a la riot hose) and makes them more vulnerable to Lightning and Frost.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Subverted hard in Chapter 4, where every door that you try to go through (save the ones that are already open) is locked. When you do try to open it, the game will give varying messages about how the door is locked.
  • Land Mine Goes Click: You can create fields of elementally-charged mines (even ones that heal you!). And yes, they do click when stepped on.
  • Large Ham: Vlad. Sounds even more hilarious when coupled with Speaking Simlish.
  • Lethal Joke Element: Steam by itself is a very weak spray, so new players will probably completely forget about it and continue their Lightning+Arcane+Fire spam. However, coupled with Lightning, you get a spray weapon that makes the enemies wet and electrocutes them. Furthermore, if you couple it with both Arcane and Lightning, you get a beam that wets enemies, electrocutes them and makes them explode when they die. Also usually more useful than water to set targets up for freezing, as the lack of knockback leaves them clustered to follow up with cold.
  • Let's Play:
    • An actual developer commentary version is freely available in Let's Play format.
    • Lewis and Simon of the Yogscast teamed up with fellow British gamer Total Biscuit to play the campaign. The results explore bold new frontiers in incompetence and non-teamwork, and feature the memorable (and permabanned) "ARSE mines."
  • Lightning Bruiser: The Samurai Robe. Their initial sword, the Yawarakai-te, is much faster and stronger than other starting weapons. That rope in the tutorial that takes normally 3 hits to cut? Try one.
  • Loading Screen: Tip: Did you know that tips are displayed on the loading screen?
  • Luck-Based Mission: The 'mind duel' very much so, since it's entirely possible to be instagibbed less than a second after the start of a round if the enemies happen to fire off the right spell combination. Have we mentioned there are no checkpoints between the rounds?
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Arcane beams tend to make a mess out of what they're pointed at quickly. And, yes, enemies exploding into meaty chunks do cause splash damage.
  • Magic A is Magicka: The Rule of Opposites means that if you cast the wrong (or right) spell, you're likely to cause a massive explosion that will kill you and whatever you were targeting. Although for some reason it's actually possible to combine water and lightning together when you're casting, likely a developer oversight.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Grimnir behind Khan, Assatur behind Grimnir.
  • Man On Fire: Yes, you can set yourself on fire by keying up a Fire spell and self-casting. Most of the time this has no practical applications besides drying yourself off (for the first cast only), and in some cases you'll lose control of your wizard as he runs amok in random circles while on fire. It does have the useful effect of keeping enemies like Yetis from picking you up. They can't grab you if you're on fire.
  • The MANY Deaths of You
  • Mercy Invincibility: Wizards have this immediately upon revival.
  • Mighty Glacier:
    • The Tank Robe from the Party Robes DLC. The player's movement speed is decreased significantly because of their armor (casting Haste on yourself barely allows you to move at running speed for normal Robes). Melee attacks with the initial weapon are slow and weak (it takes 6 hits to cut a rope in the tutorial, where the normal Robes take 3). However, the Tank can knock down foes by walking near them and has a glowing resistance aura to all forms of damage.
    • The Zombie Robe gives the Wizard a lot of extra health at the cost of moving about as fast as a tortoise lugging a lead weight.
  • More Dakka: The M60, a Disk One Nuke earned very early in the story by saving the villagers who are taking shelter in gunpowder storage buildings. Very nearly a Game Breaker in the later parts of the game, too. It fires several times a second, staggers enemies, tears apart mooks and has a firing cone that can hit multiple enemies with little to no effort. It also isn't affected by the turning rate limitations of other ranged attacks, meaning you can instantaneously swivel around and shoot enemies coming up behind you. Plus there's no risk of self-destruction like there is when using beams. And it can still be used as a melee weapon when elementally charged!
  • Most Definitely Not a Villain: "I am Vlad. I am not a vampire."
  • Nerf:
    • Originally, the Arcane+Steam+Lightning spell combo produced a super-deadly spell of death which so effortlessly wiped out enemies that many players, especially speedrunners, rarely used anything else. It is still this, more or less, but some enemies (like armored goblins) were changed to resist most of its damage, forcing you to use different spells on them.
    • Personal shields have also been nerfed; they now drain out after a few seconds, making them much less protective.
  • New Game+: Selecting your beaten save file will allow you to play from the beginning with all the Magicks that you learned up to that point, including Vortex (an ultra-deadly black-hole spell used by the final boss). The new game will also spawn more monsters than your first time through, so you get to experiment with lots of new ways to massacre them.
  • The Not-Secret: Vlad is a vampire.
  • Obvious Beta: As much fun as it is, its hard not to admit that it's definitely pretty rough around the edges, though its slowly getting better via patches. Hell, after the first set of major fixes, the devs released the Mea Culpa DLC for free as an official apology for the game's buggy release. It included a staff that summoned a swarm of bugs.
  • One-Hit Kill: Many.
    • Death can kill anything in one hit. Including Bosses.
    • Yetis will kill players instantly if they manage to stuff one in their mouth, a Shout-Out to Ski Free.
    • Lightning bolts are almost always instant death - there's an achievement for getting hit by one and not dying from it.
    • The Crash to Desktop spell. It only targets enemies below 10,000 HP, but it will blue-screen anything that it can target, literally. Including the caster.
    • The sword, Gram, has an ability called "Dragon Slayer". It's obtained fairly early in the game as a secret, and seems a pretty crappy weapon with no other abilities... Until you realize that In Chapter 11, the boss is Fafnir, a dragon. Killing Fafnir with Gram is a Steam achivement, but the extreme length of time between getting Gram and slaying the dragon makes it the hardest in the game.
  • Poisoned Weapons:
    • A pair of weapons of this description show up in the form of the Cursed Blade and Morgul Blade, as well as a "staff", the Scythe of Malevolence. It's easy to assume it's just a special effect tacked onto a plain weapon, but it turns out, it's actually a legit element type. Try summoning hordes of elementals and hitting them with your poisoned sword! It's fun!
    • The Party Robes DLC adds the Rogue Robe's crossbow, which rapidly fires poisoned arrows.
  • Poor Communication Kills: The entire reason why you fight pretty much all the bosses in the second half of the game.

Future Vlad: You have no social skills whatsoever!

Pop goes the Goblin, troll, spider, orc, wizard, etc.

  • Preorder Bonus: Not a strict case since the game was released on January 25, but people who bought the game before January 31 got a special hatted wizard model, start the first chapter with slightly better equipment, and Meteor Shower, a special Magick that drops meteors on random parts of the screen. The Wizard Hat DLC was later made purchaseable, so now everybody can enjoy mashing their teams with meteors.
  • Purposefully Overpowered: Vortex. You get it by beating the final boss so you can only use it in Challenge or New Game+, but for good reason: it sucks in and instantly kills anything that wanders close enough to it, and it gets bigger as it sucks in more things. Dealing with massive waves of enemies can often be solved simply by dropping a Vortex or two. Taken to ridiculous levels here. Yes, that number goes to over one hundred billion damage.
  • Ray Gun: The Frontier Robe's weapon, the Type 2 Phaser.
  • Revive Kills Zombie: Similar to how Dungeons & Dragons handles it: Life element damages undead, while arcane heals them.
  • Robe and Wizard Hat: Most wizards look like this. Also one of the game's Shout Outs.
  • Rule of Funny: The only reason why there's an M60 machine gun, not to mention a fridge in an otherwise medieval fantasy game. Word of God says this is the reason for other things such as wooden horses and cardboard-cutout sheep, aside from animator lazyness.
  • Schizo-Tech:
    • See the Rule of Funny entry above; there are also some electrical generators in the Academy and in the Járn Mines, which you can jump-start by casting lightning at them.
    • Also, the first expansion, Magicka: Vietnam, gives you all manner of guns for your wizard to use.
  • Self Deprecating Humor: The release of the game was notoriously buggy, but was made up for by the dev team releasing new patches daily for nearly two weeks. This is lampshaded in one of the first (free) content patches, which added the "Crash to Desktop" Magicka and the "Mea Culpa" robe set to the game: the robe looks like a patchwork quilt, and the default items for that wizard were a bug staff that has the Active ability "Summon Bugs" and a broken sword [1]. That's right, the wizard's buggy, patched, and broken.
  • Sequence Breaking:
  • Shout-Out/Reference Overdosed: Magicka's wiki has an entire page devoted to these. We also maintain our own page full of Shout Outs, because there are so many!
  • Shows Damage: Your wizard's robe becomes increasingly tattered depending on how much damage you've taken.
  • Sidequest: Exactly one. Completing it rewards an achievement.
  • Spam Attack: No mana bar. No cooldowns. You can cast many spells as quickly as you can key them in. It's a perfectly viable strategy to repeatedly mash in the recipe for a weak attack spell, producing a line, cone, or circle of rapid death.
  • Speaking Simlish: Doubles as a bilingual bonus for those who know Swedish, even though the language used is not proper Swedish but rather some kind of Swedish-English-faux-Old-Norse linguistic abomination, sort of like Swedish Chef Swedish. Enough words are similar for it to be hilarious, though.
  • Spell Blade: Taken Up to Eleven: you can bind entire spells to your sword, though some combinations of elements are much less useful than others, especially when just casting the spell has more or less the same result. A good way to make Healing Shivs and Flaming Swords though.
  • Squishy Wizard:
    • Unsurprisingly, the wizards are quite fragile. As noted in the article above from Rock Paper Shotgun:

You're a wizard, not a Jedi. Idiot.

Incidentally, if you cast a personal shield, Haste, and the "lightsaber" weapon enchantment (or just grab the Arcane Saber from Chapter 11), you can run around and cut through things like a Jedi. Just don't expect it to work for very long, or against certain enemies. And you'd probably be more effective just using spells anyways.
    • Thoroughly averted with the Space Marine robe, which gives you a massive health boost, gives you resistance to everything, and unlike the Zombie and Tank robes, doesn't even lower your speed!
  • Stable Time Loop
  • Standard Status Effects: Burning, chill,[5] freeze, panic, poison, wet.[6]
  • Stationary Boss: Grimnir, Fafnir, Assatur. Also The Machine and, oddly enough, several doors.
  • Stealth Pun: At one point you encounter a goblin archer wearing a green shirt and a hat straight out of the Errol Flynn film, making him of course Goblin Hood.
  • Stone Wall:
    • A literal example: You can encase yourself and your surroundings in rock or ice (and add giant glowing runes if you prefer), allowing you a brief respite to charge up a devastating area attack when mobbed by enemies. The rock/ice armor extends your HP considerably, but slows you down to a crawl.
    • The Tank Robes bear special mention as well. Tanks move very slowly (to the point where casting Haste still makes you move more slowly than normal walking speed) and their spells have reduced effectiveness, but they have twice the amount of HP as a normal wizard, and wear armor that significantly reduces the effectiveness of enemy projectiles (rock, ice, bullets, RPG rounds). Needless to say, casting rock armor and getting the Staff of War can make you a very hard target to kill.
  • Super Drowning Skills: Everyone knows that Wizards can't swim.
    • Lampshaded in the tutorial. Sure enough, you need to make ice bridges across water with the Cold element. Try not to slide off as you're walking across before they thaw out.
    • It's also a potential comedy gold mine when you have multiple wizards trying to cross the same ice bridge, all freezing each other then self-casting fire spells to thaw themselves, with the inevitable eventuality that someone accidentally tosses a fireball and collapses the bridge, instantly drowning the whole party.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Vlad consistently states that he is not a vampire. He is.
  • Tactical Suicide Boss: Fafnir, at least if you're taking him on with the brute force approach.
  • Trick Arrow: One of the prisoners in the Vietnam map will, after you release him, start shooting exploding arrows at your enemies.
  • True Final Boss: You encounter him briefly halfway through, but you won't have the spell necessary to destroy him until the end of Chapter Eleven.
  • Turns Red: Fafnir will start knocking holes in the floor, exposing the lava lake below, and using hypnosis on you to invert your controls and make you fall into them.
  • Useless Useful Spell:
    • Summon Death, which summons Death, should probably be one of these but isn't: you can trick Death into hitting bosses with his attack when he comes for you.
    • Thunder Storm, though, is. You'd think that Lightning Bolt, en masse, combined with Rain would be devastating against anything you're fighting against... but the lightning bolts land on random parts of the screen...and can hit you and your teammates. There's also its DLC equivalent, Meteor Shower. Of course, they become a lot less useless when you realise you can cast a very simple spell to make yourself immune to fire and/or lightning elements...
    • Crash to Desktop is this, sort of. Blue-screening enemies is fun, but remember that it will randomly target anything near the caster, friendlies and the caster included. If you cast it with no targets nearby, you will blue-screen yourself.
    • Nullify seems pretty useless (it mostly dispels status effects on the caster and some Magicks) but is exceptionally useful versus Grimnír; it dispels the Tornadoes he summons, can sometimes stop Conflagration blasts, eliminates the Shield he puts up, and last but not least, destroys his Mirror Images, and can be cast incredibly quickly as it requires only two elements and has a very short windup (unlike, say, Meteor Storm or Thunder Storm). On the flipside it'll wipe out all of the same effects cast by you or your teammates.
  • Time Travel: How the mages eventually "level-grinded" enough to defeat the final boss.
  • Trademark Favourite Food: Also a bit of all there in the concept art. Almost all the concept art shows the wizards wielding the Sausage On A Stick. Cheese would also seem to count, mentioned on more than one occasion by npc wizards.
  • Too Dumb to Live: The village of Dunderhaed in Chapter 3.

Agnar: "Holy crap! We're sitting ducks out here! Everybody! Quick, get into the gunpowder storage!"

"So this is Cannon Fodder meets Harry Potter then? I can live with that."

  1. (water + electricity = enemy paralyzed and taking damage at an astounding rate, and the arcane both makes it an infinite-range, sustainable beam and causes an Area of Effect explosion upon enemy death; more specifically, 2x Steam + 2x Lightning + Arcane is the most damaging ranged attack). The sequence is QFQFSAA.
  2. You can pass that part of the tutorial by simply cutting the rope with your ring. The tutorial advances normally past that. But, unless you already knew this...
  3. Apparently, Beastmen formerly rocketed into the air after a short jump, and the only thing visible is the spear as they crash down upon players.
  4. Ok, most wizards die within seconds in this game due to friendly fire. But they die even faster from just standing in the Napalm-fire.
  5. slows
  6. increases lightning damage and results in freezing when combined with cold