Physical God

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Worship me or die.
"God exists, and He's American."
Milton Glass on Dr. Manhattan, Watchmen

One step below being one of the Powers That Be. Occasionally shares space with The Great Gazoo. They usually start out as a Power That Is but gradually the plot drives them downward.

Mythology often depicted gods as "human, but bigger." Similar emotions, virtues, vices, etc. but with more power. Special effects and global story-telling exposure has expanded the concept. Gods are often humanoid (easier for actors to portray them) and have a number of powers. The difference between them and non-divine characters is they don't have to be "balanced" in terms of other characters.

Typical god powers and traits can include:

  • Nigh Invulnerability - They can get physically hit occasionally, but no real physical damage will occur without a Deus Ex Machina or a MacGuffin. (See Implacable Man.)
  • Super Strength
  • Telekinesis
  • Shoot fireballs/lightning
  • Teleportation and/or Flight
  • Power to alter reality at will, generally in limited areas or in ways relating to their attunement—see below.
  • Limited Omniscience: They can be aware of what's going on in a general area, but they have to pay attention to it. So it's possible to surprise them.
  • Attunement to Concept: e.g. Aphrodite the Goddess of Love is attuned to love, naturally (although technically the original Greek term and name was better translated more like "lust" or "attraction", "infatuation" at most). If fewer people love, then she's weakened. If she's hurt or weakened due to some plot reason, fewer people love. Not all gods have attunements, and the level of attunement depends on the writer at the time. Which may overlap with...
  • Gods Need Prayer Badly: Their power may be directly proportional to the number of worshipers they have, or to the strength of their followers' belief.
  • Complete Immortality: They usually don't age, but can be killed - although it's incredibly difficult to do so and usually takes a great deal of effort or some special item to do so. If enough people still believe in them, they may be brought back to life - although they may have lost their memories or be forced to take a new form.
  • Avatars, dropping one's HP to Zero may not be enough, because they can reform their physical selves.

Interestingly, Superman and some of the more powerful Flying Bricks fulfill most of these requirements, except possibly the worship bit. This depends on how strictly you define worship, of course, since subscribing isn't usually considered the same as tithing. (For rabid fans, subscriptions can total a lot more than 10% of your income!). Then again, Superman does shares a setting with actual Physical Gods, most of whom are still even stronger still than he (Depending on the Writer, of course).

In other fiction, characters who may not strictly be gods may get powers like these simply because, in a place where Everyone Is a Super, then the only way you can really mount a truly serious threat to a world with millions of superpowered civilians is to give the baddies even more absurdly powerful abilities.

Sometimes, a human can become a Physical God, especially if it's possible for said gods to die. These newly minted gods may choose to take up the mantle with solemnity, cackle madly that "A God Am I!", or steadfastly say "A God I Am Not" from lingering sympathy to their human origins.

The existence of a Physical God presents a superficial difficulty to a Flat Earth Atheist; however, the problem can be overcome by distinguishing a Physical God from whatever Powers That Be might or might not exist in the universe (considering the former to be "merely" ultra-powerful beings not different in principle from anybody else who happens to be Immortal and omnipotent, and applying the label "god" only to the latter. The non-trivial difficulty in determining the difference when such beings can only be viewed from a limited human scale is often brushed under the rug). Smarter Flat Earth Atheists will turn into Nay Theists instead.

Compare Anthropomorphic Personification and Deity of Human Origin. See also Our Gods Are Greater for a more general trope, and Humans Are Cthulhu, for when Puny Earthlings are this. They're usually the center of a Physical Religion. When all that power amounts to nothing, see, God's Hands Are Tied. God Job is when a mortal gets to become this.

(No this isn't about the Goddess of Exercise... Let's get Physical)

Examples of Physical God include:


Anime and Manga[edit | hide | hide all]

  • At the end of Part 2 of Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, Cars successfully uses the Red Stone of Aja on himself, making him unkillable by any means and giving him the collective abilities of all of Earth's life. Since he can't die, Joseph Joestar takes advantage of a volcanic eruption to send him hurtling into space, where he's helpless to do anything but float around and eventually lose his mind.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion: Rei Ayanami, once completely unbound. In the penultimate episodes, she sweeps aside Tabris's AT field like it was nothing, and in the movie she merges with Adam and Lilith and becomes the Mother of the human race who did... whatever happened there. Tabris himself is no slouch either, since said AT Field was the most powerful ever detected up to that point, blocking out sound, light, energy — everything except Rei herself.
    • The Rebuild of Evangelion version of Unit-01 during the Zeruel battle soooo counts. It doesn't look like much, but once it runs out of battery power... In the original, it rebounded Zeruel's attack, regrew one of its own arms with the Angel's severed tentacle then ate it. In Rebuild 2.0, it manifested the strongest-ever AT-field, it created a new arm out of energy then morphed it into an AT-cannon, Ramiel-style. Next it manifested a freakin' HALO and shot Zeruel-like EyeBeams that cannot be stopped by AT-fields, finally using a mental invasion on Zeruel to get Rei back, merging with the Angel in the process, turning into a huge white energy being and nearly extinguishing mankind just by existing. And Shinji was in control the whole time. The awesomeness is debated by fans, however.
  • The higher-ranked Gods and Goddesses from Ah! My Goddess appear to be physical gods, but this may be deceptive—their physical bodies are mere virtual projections generated by Yggdrasil, the world-computer. Furthermore, unless they wear a limiter device, their full divine power manifests so easily through these projections that they could accidentally crack a planet in half. For example, in the AMS movie Belldandy removes her limiter and takes a direct blast from Heaven's ultimate weapon—and it doesn't even muss her hair.
    • On the other hand, with their limiters on, they are quite vulnerable to being killed by something as simple as a bullet. They have been mentioned as in mortal danger from a large physical object hurling towards them.
    • Early in the series they were stated to truly exist on a very higher-dimensional plane of existence, which would make their true selves, that monitor and keep all of existence running, literally omnipotent and immune to all 3D harm. In this context the manifestation forms without limiters would simply be a very slight adjustment of how much of that power they are allowed to use for personal purposes. Later this seems to have been diverged from, or at least not mentioned, to keep them "scaled down" and relatable.
    • However, they have been portrayed as getting sick, injured, and they will die if their demon double is killed.
  • Haruhi Suzumiya. Also, Yuki Nagato fits most of the requirements. The character in that series usually referred to as a god meets far fewer, but at the very least is a Reality Warper and has above-normal speed and strength. (It's implied that she would be beyond it, to the point of being an omnipotent god, if she was aware of her power.)
    • Funnily enough, Yuki actually stole Haruhi's god-powers once, which would indeed, combined with her other game breaking abilities, make her a textbook example of a very powerful Physical God
    • Yuki has been called "Dr. Manhattan with a different design."
  • Kalutika Maybus from Rebirth is sort of a "Princess-Maker: Really Bad Ending" version, although he may have been god-like to begin with, being born from a giant floating egg from the sky. Considering the kind of story he's in, he'll probably get a Redemption Equals Death ending.
  • Mikoto from Mai-Otome. Even Mai, a Meister-level Otome and the one contracted to her, is unable to beat her in one-on-one combat. Also an example of the playful trickster spirit.
  • Hakuoro and Dii from Utawarerumono are two halves of the same god, though Hakuoro manages to put them back together at the last episode.
  • Choushin from Tenchi Muyo! are actually the second-tier Powers That Be, but mostly prefer to live in the Universe they created for various personal reasons. While living in the material world forces them to incarnate in the Physical God form, they still keep all their powers and can assume their true form at will, transcending physical world easily.
    • Then there's Tenchi himself, whose actually the avatar of the first-tier Powers That Be. Unlike a few other cases, he actually learns this fact and actively uses it when necessary like his battle against Z.
  • For all intents and purposes, Hao Asakura of Shaman King becomes like this once he reawakens as the titular king and does battle with Yoh and the other good guys in the spiritual dimension inside the Great Spirit known as the "Shaman King's Society." Yeah, it's confusing. But so, so worth it to read the Kanzenban reprints.
  • The Eight Devils of Kimon from Ninja Scroll are all this, the closest being Himuro Gemma, who can reassemble and reattach damaged body parts, making him quasi-immortal.
  • In Shin Mazinger Shougeki! Z-hen' the Greek gods were actually Humongous Mecha, controlled by the brains of the aliens who built them.
  • Manga-only villain Saffron from Ranma ½ would count here. He can make and control fire, is nearly impervious to damage, has high regeneration, can be reborn, flies, and has a nasty superiority complex.
    • Don't forget Rouge, who Jusenkyo Cursed with Awesome to transform into an Ashura, a literal goddess/demoness with multiple arms, several faces, the ability to fly, breath fire and throw lightningbolts, as well as an impressive level of physical ability. The only drawback is all those arms gives her wicked backache, so much so that she chased Pantyhose Taro all the way to Japan from China in order to retrieve the backache relievers he stole from her.
  • Many characters in The Law of Ueki (well, sort of...). Probably the best example would be whoever becomes the Supreme God.
  • Let us not forget Higurashi no Naku Koro ni which is in some ways all about gods. Not only is there a powerful local god who walks among the students but our Token Mini-Moe Rika, who is her descendant, is something of a demi-god as well.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh!, there are at least three trios of these. There are the Egyptian God Cards (which actually exist and can do magic in the real world, as LittleKuriboh is quick to point out. There are also the Wicked Gods, and the Sacred Beasts. There's also the Great Leviathan and Zorc, the Dark One.
    • Zorc is closer to a genuine god, seeing as he defeated the Egyptian Gods, Blue-Eyes Ultimate Dragon, and Exodia with very little effort.
    • Rex Godwin becomes a god in Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's. He says so.
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX Yuuki Juudai could conceivably be one, given that he holds the power of Haou, which is the Gentle Darkness that created *everything*.
    • The Crimson Dragon from Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's is an even better example.
  • In Mahou Sensei Negima, The Lifemaker is one of these, at least within Mundus Magicus. Considering that he created Mundus Magicus, it makes sense. Fate also drifts dangerously close to being one of these, although it isn't clear if he's using his own power or borrowing from his boss.
  • Bleach: Aizen's status as the villain seems to hinge on his quest to break the boundary between shinigami and divinity so he could destroy and replace the Soul King and become a god. Barragan also believed he was this to the denizens of Hueco Mundo and they certainly honoured him as a king and worshipped him as a god. There's no indication that Aizen and Barragan were genuinely gods, but they both wanted to be viewed as such.
  • The various gods in Dragon Ball fit the criteria, though the other main characters are generally stronger.
    • You could even make a reasonable argument that some of the main characters fit this trope better than the gods themselves. The most eligible candidate being Goku, whose Nigh Invulnerability and Super Strength are an integral part of his character. Thanks to the diverse uses for Ki, he's also displayed limited telekinetic abilities, the ability to teleport nearly anywhere with Instant Transmission, can tell a person's strength by sensing their Ki, is well known for shooting balls of energy from his hands, and is more likely to be found flying than walking. The gods in the series are far more vulnerable and much weaker than Goku, with their only unique ability being that they can materialize things out of thin air, and better teleportation.
  • Lord Death from Soul Eater. Characters with a soul the size of their body are considered enormously powerful, his soul is larger than a city.
    • By extension, the rest of the Great Old Ones count. Kid will also eventually become one due to being a "fragment" of Death. He's already showing beginnings of it in his strength and (briefly seen) healing abilities.
  • Almost the entire cast of The Bride of the Water God is made up of Physical Gods except for Soah, the eponymous bride, since most of the story takes place in the home of the gods.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, the ultimate goal of Father was to become a Physical God. Although he succeeded in consuming what he claimed to be a god, he requires a massive number of souls to keep it bound. It didn't end well.
    • To be fair, the problem wasn't getting that many souls, the problem was that Hohenheim sure as hell wasn't letting him keep them.
  • Lain, to an increasing extent as the series goes on, up to remaking the entire world, and Eiri.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann naturally turns this trope Up to Eleven having both the titular mecha and it's Anti-Spiral counterpart, the Grand Zamboa. The latter can summon an energy attack powered by a Big Bang. The two smaller hero mechas can also count: the Arc Gurren-Lagann PUNCHED ITS OPPONENT OUT OF THE UNIVERSE in it's debut fight.
    • The movie took this even further: when the Super TTGL launched a Giga Drill Breaker at the Super Grand Zamboa, it retaliated with a Giga Drill Breaker of it's own. The two attacks connect... and the universe collapses in on itself. And then the Gurren-Lagann charges the Super Grand Zamboa which is several trillion times bigger than itself, and wins.
    • You're talking about mechs, though. If you're gonna talk about people, it's definitely Lordgenome and Simon, post-time skip. The former is immortal, has superstrength, can bend reality, and has a beard worthy of God. The latter has infinite power and could be a god if he wanted to.
  • In Naruto the currently-stated goal of Tobi and Madara Uchiha is to become this.
    • Their role model is the Sage of Six Paths who really was one of these, if limited to a mortal lifespan. The Sage is still considered a legend and god centuries after his death and with good reason; he slew an immortal beast and took its power, with which he was able to create reality from illusions, including the bijuu and the moon.
    • Naruto himself might be approaching this. Now that he has befriended the Ninetails/Kurama, his power has increased by an insane degree, his Version 2 form after defeating Kurama was overpowered enough, now he can use Kurama's full power. Furthermore, a flashback where the Tailed Beasts recall meeting with the Sage of the Six Paths involves him telling them that they will become "together" again, and someone else will show them a more righteous path. The Tailed Beasts interpret the Sage as referring to Naruto, and if they are "together" again, that could mean Naruto will be the Ten Tails host, which is Tobi's plan for godhood.
  • Arguably, Hanma Yujiro. The guy has Super Strength, is Nigh Invulnerable, and can punch the forces of the nature in the face (the Other Wiki states it too). Also covers the point of Limited Omniscience, doesn't fly but can jump from an helicopter without parachute, and does everything just by Charles Atlas Superpower. And the full martial arts world plainly worships him as the Strongest Creature over the world. Also a Complete Monster, so maybe more of a Physical Demon. Heavens, he is called the Ogre.
  • By the end of Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Madoka herself has shades of this. She rewrites all of reality so that witches are no more and Puella Magi don't turn into them. When your powers bend reality to make it Lighter and Softer, you know you are this. Possibly disqualified on the 'physical' part at the very end, though.
  • A Certain Magical Index:
    • A person who reaches the pinnacle of magic becomes a Magic God. Magic Gods are virtually invincible as they can regenerate from any injury, and have reality-warping abilities that can affect the entire universe.
    • Level 6 espers appear to be the scientific equivalent to Magic Gods. While a full example has yet to be depicted, even partial Level 6 espers are comparable to archangels (who possess the power to instantly destroy the world).
  • In Kyouran Kazoku Nikki we have Gouyokuou and Gekka. Both are apparently ageless alien beings of great power. The former requires a Power Limiter just so he doesn't pulverize Earth into dust by complete accident. The latter has a whole set of ill-defined powers that include Mind Rape, cosmic scale teleportation, Voluntary Shapeshifting and energy blasts.
  • Type Blue Mu seem to be this at first. They not only can singlehandly destroy starships or stop beams from Planet Killer, but move in a space without any protection, affect large groups of people on a great distance, Create Life… Their lifespan is implied to be even longer than other Mu and they age much slower. Yet, it’s a subversion. They pay for this power with their fragile bodies and in some situations even a normal weapon pose a serious threat, to say nothing about Power Nullifier.
  • There are a few examples from the Nasuverse. The person who best fits the trope that has been introduced as a character is probably Arcueid, who is a spiritual being created by the Earth itself, has insane probability manipulation powers, and can recover from being sliced into seventeen pieces. Zelretch probably counts too, given that he dropped the moon on Brunestud, another physical god. Some of the servants are actual demigods. Hercules especially has crazy powerful physical abilities, and he can recover from death eleven times. And then there's Ryougi Shiki's third personality, which is an Anthropomorphic Personification of Akasha, and is effectively omnipotent.
  • Final Fantasy VII Advent Children already takes the Rule of Cool to infinity and beyond before the Final Battle, with characters with no official superpowers doing things like being thrown high into the air to kill a giant dragon god with one (lengthy) slice. This is all topped when Sephiroth, who has actually been trying to become a god and got close, comes Back from the Dead. He's able to do things like summon corrupted Lifestream to engulf the city with the wave of his hand, and make the upper section of a very large building collapse by posing in front of it and then slice the whole resulting avalanche of giant debris in half with one swing of his sword. Flight, Super Strength and Nigh Invulnerability are also included.
  • Fushigi Yuugi has the Nyan-Nyan (Lai-Lai in the manga). They are minor healer-goddesses, who normally take the form of adorable turquoise-haired little girls.
    • Suzaku and Seiryuu both appear in human forms, as well as in their animal forms
    • Arguably, Taiitsukun is this, considering that she created The Universe of the Four Gods
  • Zeus of Saint Beast has Nigh Invulnerability, Elemental Powers, Teleportation and a certain degree of reality warping and Omniscience. There were other physical gods, but he killed them all, barring the Goddess.
  • Saint Seiya is basically this trope, since the eponymous Saints battle for their very physical gods. Counting Athena, Poseidon, Ares, Hades, Artemis, Chronos... and Budah is you want to count him. Even Nike, sure she is a staff, but it's physical.
    • Not to count the Non Canon ones, of the other adaptations: Eris, Abel, Lucifer, The Other Artemis, The Twelve Titans, Pontos, Mars, and perhaps other lesser gods.


Comic Books[edit | hide]

  • Marvel Comics's gods such as Thor.
    • And Jack Kirby's Eternals were godlike immortals who supposedly inspired the myths. When they were RetConned as part of the main Marvel Universe, a conflict with the real gods had to be resolved.
    • Also by Jack Kirby, the Ancient Astronauts/"Space Gods", the Celestials, and the Cosmic not-so-horror Planet Eater, Galactus.
    • Ultimate Thor was apparently a more abstract type of god, who incarnated in human form to allow him to preach a message to humanity (a New Age pacifism that seems to be almost, but not entirely, unlike the philosophy of the Thor of Norse Mythology.) Ultimate Loki is more powerful than his mainstream counterpart, able to "reshuffle reality" at will—until Big Daddy Odin gets off his cosmic duff and makes with the spanking.
    • Some 'omega-level mutants' often look like Physical Gods.
    • The 'cosmic entities' sometimes do, too, but they tend to go a bit beyond the average scale of a Physical God.
    • And then there's the Beyonder - if there's any limit to his abilities, we've not seen it. He didn't become physical though until Secret Wars II
      • So powerful in fact that when Doom takes his powers, he has a hard time separating his thoughts from reality. Doom has been this trope a few times.
      • Although the Beyonder fooled the Illuminati into believing he is merely a particularly powerful Inhuman, he has been aknowledged as an incomplete Cosmic Cube by Kubik and the Shaper of Worlds, both former Cosmic Cubes.
    • In recent Marvel history, there's the Sentry/Void. Initially based on the idea of 'the world's greatest hero who is also the world's greatest villain', the manipulations of Norman Osborn led to the Sentry allowing the Void to do whatever he wanted. As perfectly described in Siege when the President is very accurately told that there is no limit to his power set. Word of God has told us that the only reason he hasn't come back from his most recent death is simply because he wanted to die.
    • Shuma-Gorath is a nigh-omnipotent multiversal conqueror/EldritchAbomination who has thousands of universes under his control, and he's just one of four Many-Angled Ones. The results of one of his more thorough conquerings is...unsettling, to say the least. Oh, and he's back, and very pissed.
    • Dormammu is a lesser example; while he's a fair bit below Shuma's level, he's still a staggeringly powerful extradimensional horror who, like Shuma, has conquered multiple universes and is worshipped as a deity by countless beings throughout the multiverse.
    • His sister is, in turn, somewhat less powerful, but still strong enough to kick a Sorceror Supreme's ass without much difficulty.
    • And then we have the "One Above All", also known as the author.
  • The DCU's gods, both the classic ones and the New Gods.
    • But in particular from latter is the being known as Darkseid.
  • The fairy-tale characters of the Fables comic book series. With some of them (such as Aslan or Weyland Smith) actually supposed to be gods. Others... not so much (Goldilocks).
    • Goldilocks is more of an Implacable Woman than a god. Interestingly those that do quality as Physical Gods are mystically attuned to the concept of themselves rather than traditional concepts.
  • In Captain Atom #54 to #57, Cap created and ruled his own universe. He turned out not to be very good at it, and had to destroy his universe after his own dark side took it over. Of course, it could all have been just a fever-dream he had after Shadowstorm blasted him.
  • Ever since Superman died and came back from the dead, he has had a cult of worshipers though he tries to discourage them.
    • It's probably worth pointing out that Superman did not actually "die", he was punched into a (temporary) coma. This makes the cult's reason for worshipping him quite misaimed (though he is STILL a physical god in his own right). They also appear to have turned to their attention to the deceased Superboy/Kon-El. While both were completely dead and then revived (and this is hardly anything new for comic book characters), it is canonical in the DCU that Superman's resurrection shouldn't have been possible by any means, and actually broke reality for a while. He's so much a Physical God that even things that happen in relation to him affect existence!
    • Turns out that Superman, and many seemingly dead characters who miraculously returned to life, where brought back by Nekron as part of a grand Gambit Roulette. Nekron, by the way, is a nigh-omnipotent who skirts this trope when he appears in the living world, and is regularly much more powerful in his own realm.
    • Probably what disqualifies Superman is that his powers are derived from the yellow sun, so his powers are half genetic, half circumstantial. He also doesn't have any supernatural connection which most gods, even the New Gods, do possess to some degree, and Depending on the Writer most characters classed as gods in the DCU can wipe the floor with Supes, regardless of how powerful he is.
  • Dr. Manhattan of Watchmen. He experiences time on a non linear way. He can become many people. He can watch neurons. Nothing can stop him.
    • Hell, it's even implied at the end of the comic that he leaves our universe to try his hand at creating one. You don't get much more Godlike than that.
    • Also worth noting is his recollection of how he ended the Vietnam War. The movies shows it pretty well too but the basics are that he creates multiple copies of himself each about 100 feet tall that rip through the entire Vietcong and NVA. Apparently the Vietnamese were so terrified by him that they would only surrender to him in a scene that is a cross between platitude and worship.
  • The Trinity of Hypsis in the Valerian comic series, an ironic pastiche of Christianity's Holy Trinity. They possess various powers typically associated with them in popular mythology; the Father can fling thunderbolts for example, and the Son can heal and (possibly) resurrect anybody. They do claim responsibility for creating the mankind, however, and have the power to influence Earth's timelines. They perceive their divinity as a business enterprise in which they are struggling in the brink of bankrupcy, which would strip them of their position and powers. Christian characters tend to call them frauds or ursupers.
  • While it's heavily implied that his true form is an immensely powerful Energy Being, resident Planet Eater Galactus of the Marvel Universe qualifies. While he appears in a different guise to different races, his default appearance seems to be a huge armored version of his original humanoid self Galan. His daughter Galacta (no, really) is closer to a typical Physical God in terms of power scale since she isn't quite as powerful as her father. Her unborn child the Tapeworm Cosmic (no, really, again) will probably fit the bill too.
  • The Phantom Stranger is one of the most powerful beings in the DC Universe and doesn't seem to take orders from anyone other than God. He is portrayed as a consummate master of magic that can shrug off anything thrown at him by the likes of The Spectre on his good days. The only thing that prevents him from making the DC Universe too boring by solving everything is that he won't, or can't, interfere too much in the affairs of mortals.
  • During the Power of Ion storyline Green Lantern Kyle Rayner took the powers that Parallax absorbed from the Central Power Battery, plus his own Lantern powers, the Oblivion's Energies and (possibly) The Ion Entity. That allowed him to be in more places at once, to better focus his creativity, to teletransport things, and bend reality to his will. His girlfriend Jade gets surprised when Kyle tells her this, and she even tells him that his new abilities can be compared to the ones of God. His talk with the Spectre Hal Jordan even makes clear that Kyle could alter the past and make the future go as he wanted, something that as Parallax he couldn't do at all. Rayner eventually relinquishes his power to reignite the Central Power Battery and resurrect the Guardians of the Universe.
  • Hellboy has Hecate, the Ogdru Jahad, and various creatures, monsters, and demons that have all been worshipped at one point or another. There was also a giant genocidal homunculus who declared himself a god and fought Hellboy.
  • |Hex is one, since he kind of, you know, created the whole damn universe!
  • In the Sonic The Hedgehog comics, any Echidna who absorbs enough Chaos energy becomes the immortal demigod Enerjak, and are only ever defeated by being imprisoned in an over the top way (trapped under a castle's rubble, shot into space, etc.), or having their powers mystically removed, not in physical combat. And to give an example of how strong Enerjak is in any incarnation, when Knuckles was tricked into becoming him, he ended up singlehandedly destroying Eggman's entire army and reducing his city to rubble.
    • And in an Alternate Universe, the fate of the world's people in this alternate reality is unknown - while the main cast have all had their souls ripped out by Knuckles, the only city that's seen - Enerjak's capital - is completely deserted. It is possible Knuckles-Enerjak killed them all or likewise ripped out their souls. ...or that nobody sane would choose to live within a hundred miles (if that) of the tyrant.
  • Paperinik New Adventures has Xadhoom, an alien scientist who experimented a procedure on herself and became nigh-invulnerable (meaning you can stun her with enough force to blast apart a small moon, but the only way to actually harm her is to drain away her power, and even then you have to do it faster than she can see where you hide or you're dead), capable to change her form at will, fly faster than light and fire any form of energy she knows of with enough power to shatter a planet. And she has a vendetta against the Evronians, who conquered her homeworld and enslaved her people while she got her powers.
  • The Norse Gods from Tarot: Witch of the Black Rose. They easily outstrip any other character in the series (besides the Goddess), and Hel can use a world-wide Reset Button.


Fanfic[edit | hide]

  • Takato and Rika in Digimon Fanfic, Dimensions, thanks to being the current incarnations of Chaos and Harmony respectively. Also a major case of subverted Personality Powers.
  • In With Strings Attached, George meets and talks to Ardav, one of the Dalns gods. What this genderless god's powers are is unknown, except that it can bring people to its home dimension, and that anyone who speaks to it cannot remember what it looks like.
    • At one point, thanks to the amazing mundanity surrounding the Dalns gods—their “worshipers” are more like employees and, in fact, don't even know what “worship” means—George speculates that they're actually phonies who set themselves up as gods. The various reveals about them during the book (e.g., they had a court fight over who was to control C'hou) leave the matter ambiguous, but they are definitely Jerkass Gods.
    • Given how powerful the four become, the trope could possibly apply to them.
    • Well before they get any power, John sardonically refers to the four as the gods of rock 'n' roll.
  • HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH...oh dear lord. Harry Potter can see subatomic particles by squinting, seemingly teleports across galaxies, and has destroyed entire planets for no reason at all
  • Ponies Make War: Princesses Celestia and Luna, of course, as per canon, but the story also adds their equally strong brother Prince Empyrean, and their even more powerful parents King Titan and Queen Terra. And then, near the end of the story, Twilight taps into the full power of the Elements of Harmony and becomes so powerful that only Titan himself is able beat her in a fight.


Film[edit | hide]

  • Horus from Enki Bilal's Immortal, and the comic series it was based on, along with the rest of the Egyptian pantheon in the flying pyramid fit the bill. They only demonstrate a limited range of abilities, such as possession, mind control and Eye Beams, but it's implied that they're not using more than a fraction of their actual powers. Their pyramid transport is only a mechanical ship that needs fuel and maintenance (in the comic, at least), so they're not exactly omnipotent, although the credit of Earth's creation is given to them.
  • In the Roland Emmerich universe, Ra and the God of the Pyramid. Sort of.
  • Kevin Flynn in Tron: Legacy isn't quite omnipotent, but he is the Creator of the current iteration of the Grid, and he can also not quite reshape, but bend reality around him.
  • Thor once he gets his powers back. Before that he is just Badass Normal. After...he absolutely curbstomps something that just beat up 4 of the most powerful warriors in Asgard.


Literature[edit | hide]

  • Steven Erikson's Malazan Book of the Fallen is chock full of these, called Elder Gods and Ascendants. All are implied to have physical forms even if they don't outright appear that way in the novels. At least two of them are humans who took over an attunement that was vacant.
    • They are far from omnipotent, though. In Reaper's Gale (book 7), Trull Sengar, a mortal Tiste Edur, manages to hold his own in combat against Silchas Ruin, at least for a while.
      • And at that point Trull is also far from mortal, having become the Knight of Shadow in The Bonehunters.
  • Most of the cast of Neil Gaiman's American Gods.
    • Except for the bulletproof part.
  • The Dragaeran gods’ main power is to be physically present in many places—learned through training, but also through a deep physical change. This power implies others, including immortality: if a god is killed in one place (by a sentient blade), they're still in other places. Beyond that, the gods have varied powers and forms: Steven Brust shows a dragon, a storm cloud, a black void, a female humanoid, and others. One more aspect of godhood is you can't control or summon a god. They'll help you if it suits them.
    • More precisely, the Dragaeran word translated in the books into "divinity" really means "to simultaneously live in multiple forms or aspects of reality", as opposed to, say, mortals, who can only live in one physical plane or be in one after- or between-life at once. (Normal death in this verse is simply moving a soul from one place to another, which can't be done if the soul is already at the destination.) It's explicitly stated the only difference between a "god" and "demon" is that somebody's figured out a theoretical way to bind or coerce the latter, so those classes are more changeable. (It also explains the title of "Verra, the Demon Goddess" - a former slave of the Jenoine.)
  • Lots of characters in John C. Wright's Chronicles of Chaos. They describe mortals as "cattle" but they live out The Masquerade in the human world.
  • In Jesse Hajicek's The God Eaters, people become gods through the belief of others, then make a practice of devouring each other to consolidate power.
  • The Gods from Roger Zelazny's Lord of Light are either Physical Gods or Sufficiently Advanced Aliens.
    • Neither, really, they're actually Sufficiently Advanced Humans!
    • Compare that to Creatures of Light and Darkness where some of the gods are ascended humans, some aliens, some are techno-things, and some are just, well, straight up gods.
    • And then there's the royal family in Zelazny's Amber series. Or at least Dworkin, who created the entire multiverse.
  • The Lord Ruler from Mistborn is ageless, Nigh Invulnerable and far and away the most powerful allomancer in the world, and is worshipped as king and god by The Empire. It turns out he's just a human who discovered a neat allomantic trick to make himself immortal, though he did briefly touch divinity in his Backstory. In the third book of the series, though, Vin briefly becomes the genuine article after absorbing the power of Preservation, one of the two fundamental forces of the planet.
  • Another Sanderson book, Warbreaker has the Returned, who are people who have died and been returned to life, minus any conscious memories of their previous lives, they are worshiped as gods in the kingdom of Hallandren where most of the story takes place. As it happens, they aren't quite gods, but merely infused with a portion of the power of one, as those who are familiar with Sanderson's other works, including Mistborn mentioned above, and the wilder cosmology behind them, will know.
  • Coyote in Christopher Moore's Coyote Blue and Babd, Macha and Nemain in A Dirty Job
  • The Ainur from JRR Tolkien's 'verse (most elaborated on in The Silmarillion, mentioned in Lord of the Rings) are a whole race of these. They're incorporeal beings created by the creator deity before the physical universe, and some entered it. Those can and many choose to freely clothe themselves in physical forms. Notable Ainur include Morgoth/Melkor, Varda/Elbereth, and the other Valar. Their sub-beings, the Maiar, appear more in Lord of the Rings and include Sauron, Gandalf, Saruman, and the Balrog of Moria.
    • Another good example would be Melian, a Maia, who was able to have a child with an Elf, and who used her powers to defend the kingdom of Doriath. Tolkien discussed at length the effects of being incarnated, especially where Morgoth and Sauron were concerned.
  • At the end of Dean Koontz's short story, A Darkness in My Soul, a psychic goes on a Journey to the Center of the Mind and finds God trapped in the psyche of an insane genius. He then absorbs God's powers and then takes over the universe after giving half of the power to his girlfriend. Bored with exploring the universe, they decide to start a world war back on Earth for amusement, using humans as playthings.
  • The Dresden Files has the Faerie Queens, angels and their fallen equivalents, Valkyries, the Erlking, and all sorts of old gods and the like who haven't shown up yet (Though one runs Monoc Securities). The Archive is powerful enough to match most of them, and skinwalkers hit this trope right where it meets Eldritch Abomination and dance gleefully in the ensuing rain of terrors. Yeah, conflicts in the Dresdenverse get a bit messy.
    • Six different necromancers all hit town at the same time in Dead Beat to try to become this. Cowl would have managed it, too, if Harry had been a second or two slower.
    • In addition, there's the Red King and the Lords of Outer Night, the rulers of the Red Court, who are each nearly as powerful as Odin. They are, individually, an immense powerhouse. Even so, they're not invincible, as Murphy is able to decapitate one with a single stroke of Fidelacchius, and the Leanansidhe is able to one-shot several of them when she catches them off-guard.
      • Considering that the Leanansidhe is stated to be second only to Mab in all of Winter, she probably also qualifies. And when the Knights of the Cross are working "on the clock" and doing what God wants them to do, they're all but unstoppable themselves. Michael Carpenter once killed a dragon. And when thinking of dragons in the Dresdenverse, it would be a good idea to think less "fire breathing lizard" and more "cosmic deity" in terms of firepower. One of them, Ferrovax, has been stated to be more than capable of taking down Queen Mab herself.
      • Senior Council level wizards are low level versions (technically Cowl is as well, being stronger than Ebenezar). Ebenezar McCoy, the youngest, is the master of the Colony Drop. The Merlin once held off an army of sorcerer vampires and Outsiders with one on the fly ward.
  • David Eddings loves this trope, from the seven 8 if you count both Torak and his non-evil replacement Eriond gods, and their father UL from The Belgariad, to the numerous gods and goddesses of the various races from The Elenium from the nearly elemental Troll Gods, to the sweet, adorable, non-talkative (at least at first) little girl Flute, aka the Styric goddess Aphreal
  • From The Acts of Caine, we have Pallas Ril (formerly Shanna Michaelson) and the Ascendant Ma'elKoth (formerly Hannto the Scythe).
  • In Everworld the gods of mythology are supposed to have abandoned Earth centuries ago for an alternate universe, taking a portion of their followers with them. They were later joined by gods from other worlds, too, who bear no resemblance to anything from human legend. Including one rather nasty one named Ka Anor.
  • In Mika Waltari's The Etruscan, the title character Turms is ultimately a "lucumo" or a holy king, not much short of a god, and can summon storms, can't be killed in battle and can converse with gods. For most part, though, he doesn't know it yet.
  • Valentine Michael Smith of Stranger in A Strange Land was raised by martians, some of whom were ghosts.
  • In Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian story "Shadows in The Moonlight" Olivia dreams that the statues were Taken for Granite at the hands of a Physical God, after they had tortured to death his demigod son.
  • In L. Jagi Lamplighter's Prospero's Daughter trilogy, the Greek wind gods are major characters. They are, in fact, balanced with the main characters, Prospero's children.
  • In Robert E. Howard's Kull/Bran Mak Morn story "Kings of the Night", this is one explanation put forth for Kull.
  • In John Varley's Titan series, we see the entity known as Gaea. This is essentially a living personality in an alien computer system. But Gaea is in every practical sense a deity on her little world. She is capable of shaping new forms of life, giving them intelligence and a culture of her own design. She controls the weather, the ground, and every living thing that resides on Titan.
  • The gigantic sandworm hybrid Leto II Atreides becomes in God-Emperor of Dune fits many of these requirements (invulnerability, difficult to kill—except with water—limited omniscience[1])...except for the fact that he doesn't consider himself a god. He naturally lets the people worship him (it's all part of the plan), but he never buys his own propaganda. On the other hand, it's not clear if Frank Herbert exactly meant that he wasn't a god: one of the novels' themes is the meaning of messiahdom and godhood.
  • Played with frequently in Discworld.
  • AM from I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream is a Earth-spanning computer of such power it is almost omnipotent. Unfortunately for the last five humans it is also an insanely spiteful sadist.
  • The Shrike from Hyperion. A nigh-invulnerable construct/machine/being who can manipulate/travel through time and space, he/it is the most feared entity in the universe. He has a church devoted to him (although it doesn't seem to answer prayers or supplications).
  • The Naked God from the Nights Dawn trilogy, an artificial construct with godlike powers and a benevolent personality.


Live-Action TV[edit | hide]

  • Charmed had various characters with every power listed above, some possessing them seperately, others possessing them all at once, like the Avatars.
  • The Doctor from Doctor Who could arguably considered a physical god. He is practically immortal, regenerating when he gets too old or is seriously injured, he can sense time changing around him, he can travel through all of time and space, and, according to the Ood, his song is sung throughout the universe. The description could be expanded to include all Time Lords in general, who in fact made it part of their mission to preserve timelines and prevent paradoxes.
    • In fact, into the episode The Last of the Time Lords, he actually gained further godlike powers to fly and transform matter because the entire world prayed by thinking of his name at the exact same moment.
  • Gods and Goddesses in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess often started at Powers That Be and then became Physical Gods.
  • Glory the Hellgod from the 5th season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer is an example of a former Hellgod confined to a physical form—in this case, as a punishment.
    • She's still incredibly powerful, able to move at absurd speeds and punch through force fields.
  • Illyria from Angel as well. Similarly to Glory, she had a true form, a taloned, tentacled Eldritch Abomination, but was trapped in a human body. This substantially decreased her power. Then her power had to be artifically reduced further, as it was eating through her physical form.
  • The Trickster from Supernatural. Here, a Trickster is a pagan god. He can reshape reality and mess with time. Dropped a guy into a wormhole for fun. Good times. A few other Pagan gods have also featured in the series.
    • It's been revealed that The Trickster is actually not a pagan god at all, but an Archangel, specifically Gabriel, who's hiding from his brothers.
    • And now we have Castiel. Or at least tha't what he claims.
  • Q from Star Trek, as well as the better-behaved rest of the Q Continuum. It's unsure just what Q's limits are. He does enjoy to push humans' buttons by acting like a god, in any case (including once when Picard died and Q literally appeared to him as "God") In the episode "Hide and Q" Q gives such powers to Riker. Some think Trelane is a Q, too.
    • In the novel Q-Squared, he is, and Q has to deal with him.
      • There have been several other almost god level beings that seam to be close to the same power level of the Q, (including what appears to be an old man who destroyed an entire species with a thought, or the species that ended a war between the Federation and Klingons), although a lot of them are energy beings so they may or may not count.
  • The Goa'uld in the Stargate Verse would very much like their subjects to believe this, when they're really just Sufficiently Advanced Aliens pretending to be gods. The Goa'uld Anubis and the Ori, on the other hand...
  • On Heroes, Peter Petrelli becomes this by about midway through Volume One. He's got Nigh Invulnerability, Telekinesis, Super Strength, Flight, teleportation, the ability to shoot fireballs and unleash lightning bolts, a Healing Factor that gives him Type III Immortality, and he's a Time Master. In Volume Three, he gets Nerfed by the Big Bad—his own father, Arthur Petrelli—who steals his powers and soon after was himself deemed Too Powerful to Live by the show's writers.


Tabletop Games[edit | hide]

  • During "The Time of Troubles" in the Forgotten Realms campaign setting of Dungeons & Dragons, all the gods were reduced to Physical Gods. (The novels actually gave the impression they might have been too weak to qualify.) A lot of gods get killed during this time, and one mortal kills and absorbs the portfolios of so many deities that the Overgod is forced to do some role-shuffling when the whole thing is over. Oh, and the death of the god of magic is used as an excuse for the different rules for magic in the new edition of the game. More than once.
    • All gods can send avatars to the Realms, though only a few do so regularly. The main problem with the Avatar Crisis (another name for the Time of Troubles) was that they were stuck in avatar form, and barred from leaving the Realms (the other problem was that killing them while they were in avatar form would kill them, rather than merely stripping them of the power invested in the avatar).
  • The C'tan star-gods from Warhammer 40,000.
    • Also, the Avatars of Khaine.
    • Not to forget the aptly-named God-Emperor of Man. Well, back when he was still up and walking rather than on life support. Despite his insistance he wasn't.
    • The Chaos Gods and their daemon minions, when they enter the Materium.
      • Actually, just their daemon minions, as the Gods themselves are too powerful to take a physical form.
  • From Warhammer Fantasy Battle Fantasy Sigmar, who was either the incarnation of a god or ascended to godhood after his death. To a marginally lesser extent Nagash, God of the Undead. At one point the new Lizardman god also manifested to chase out the Skaven, giving us a giant snake Physical God.
    • The snake god appeared the same day Sigmar was born. It hasn't been confirmed, but that sure seems like a connection that two races were saved from extinction by different, brand new, physical gods at the same time.
    • Also when Chaos first showed up, the elven gods gave Aenarion the power to kick so much demonic ass that the elves managed to beat back the outpourings of a fully open warp gate long enough to partially seal it off.
    • The daemonprinces has most of these powers and are usually worshiped by bands/tribes of marauders.
    • The Old Ones (aztec god-like extraterrestrials worshiped by Lizardmen). They modified the orbit of the planet, the planet's continents and tectonic plates, created the Lizardmen from actual reptilians that already existed to protect their creation and then created elves, dwarves and humans and gifted them magic. They have spaceships, too. Also, Chaos is more or less the dark side of their magic powers.
  • The tabletop RPG Scion focuses on the children of couplings between gods and mortals. In time, the characters grow so powerful that they become gods themselves.
  • In the Dungeons & Dragons core rules, deities are typically stereotypical, unreachable gods. The official Deities and Demigods book, and the unofficial (but considerably more popular) Immortal's Handbook presented the deities in a way that fits this trope perfectly, along with how to advance high-level characters to godhood.
    • Don't forget the hated Book of Immortals
    • Early editions also had a book called Deities and Demigods, and an adventure with deity rules called Wrath of the Immortals.
    • Specifically, the old boxed set/later Rules Cyclopedia version of D&D had not so much 'gods' as 'Immortals' (yes, with a capital I) taking the same role—virtually all of which were actually ascended Badass mortals who had once lived and fought in the game world. Really high-level player characters could potentially quest for and achieve the same status, using rules from either the old Immortals set or the Wrath of the Immortals box.
    • Ascension to divinity or even beyond it is still in the cards for 4th edition D&D characters with an appropriate Epic Destiny (basically the third 'class' picked at level 21 in addition to the base class and the level 11-20 'paragon path' the character will normally already have). So far this simply means retiring the character from the campaign, though.
    • Advanced D&D had the Queen Of The Demonweb Pits adventure, where the goal was to find the Drow goddess Lolth in her home dimension and kill her Deader Than Dead. Not bad for a bunch of mere mortals.
    • The aforementioned Immortal's Handbook takes this trope MUCH further than any other book mentioned. The most powerful monster in the book can punch planets to pieces, and it's a golem created by even stronger beings called time lords. Time lords are below high lords, who are below the Supreme Being (not-quite-omnipotent ruler of the omniverse), and there are things called ultrals from a level of existence higher than omniversal. Note that all of these beings (except maybe the ultrals since we don't know much) are just as physical as the other gods in D&D.
  • In Exalted, all the gods are Physical Gods. One of the Exalted's duties (when the world is running properly, which it currently isn't) is to beat wayward gods into submission so that they'll do their jobs properly.
    • In prehistory, Malfeas was called the Empyreal Chaos, and had no body. The Exalted beat him up anyway, proving that, in Exalted, even explicitly non-physical gods are still physical gods.
  • Rifts had a book called Pantheons of the Megaverse with gods that boiled down to normal stats turned up to eleven.
  • The Primal Order was a "capsystem," a set of rules that could be applied to any RPG system, that outlined how to play deities, and is often considered the best god RPG system around.
  • Player Characters in Nobilis qualify, both physically and mentally. Even the weakest Nobles can throw around small cars or catch bullets in a pinch. The more powerful ones are able to leap across the ocean, lift mountains, and reconcile quantum mechanics and general relativity with a pocket calculator.
  • The players of Magic: The Gathering are said (by the game,) to be Planeswalkers (so go some of the introductory blurbs, "You are a Planeswalker."), incredibly powerful wizards with near-godlike abilities, capable of summoning creatures, magicks and artifacts of power from numerous planes for the purpose of dueling one another. And if you don't buy that, the card-type planeswalker represents lesser mages who can be called on to fight for you, and while not as "powerful" as you, they still possess abilities that can approach Game Breaker with a little push. The red ones in particular can easily kill a full Planeswalker by themselves, though it could take them a while.
    • Since the power of a Planeswalker card in play is measured in "loyalty" counters, which can be removed by dealing damage to it, the card could be interpreted as the player calling in a favor from an ally who may get annoyed and run off after a few decent hits, or after you ask them for particularly taxing favors.
    • The New Phyrexia Planeswalker card "Karn Liberated" is a particularly powerful one; his last and most expensive ability ("ultimate" in player parlance) restarts the entire game, with only the cards he chose to exile starting in play. In context, he remakes whatever world you're currently in, in whatever image you ask him to.
      • Of course most players just surrender once Karn gets to that point. Considering you don't make use of his other ability or if he doesn't take any damage, you can win most games after 3 turns with Karn on the field.


Theater[edit | hide]

  • Oberon and Titania in A Midsummer Night's Dream.
  • The Roman gods in Thespis have ended up old, powerless and ridiculously out of touch. Apparently they still get sacrifices from Australia.


Video Games[edit | hide]

  • Mabinogi has Morrighan, Cichol and Neamhain so far, as well as a couple others who have yet to be seen physically, notably Lymilark.
    • Nuadha joined the party a while back.
  • In the canonical ending of Deus Ex, the player becomes this.
  • Raiden from the Mortal Kombat series in general, as well as Fujin, Shinnok and various others.
    • This was initially handwaved as Raiden taking a mortal form in order to compete in Shang Tsung's tournament in the first Mortal Kombat, but has since been retconned.
  • Okami is based around playing one of these (although you happen to be incarnated as a particularly doglike wolf).
  • ActRaiser also lets you play as a Physical God.
  • Sun Li and Sun Hai do their best, but the Spirit Monk can still beat them both into the ground. They are the toughest foes in the game, true, but swords and fists can still kill them.
  • Althena and Lucia of the Lunar franchise are certainly this; however, the plot of the games take pains to make them considerably less awesome when they're in your party (to wit, Althena is actually the protagonist's girlfriend, who doesn't know that she's the goddess incarnate and only has the vaguest notion of her power until the end of the game, at which point she's, uh, hostile and will utterly wreck you unless you know how to reach her heart and Lucia gets her shit wrecked about an hour into the game and spends most of the rest of the game at roughly the same level as the mortal heroes.)
  • The Sinistrals of the Lufia video game series are essentially ancient, malevolent gods, though the localizations of the games for North American audiences like to call them "super beings."
  • In most of the Breath of Fire games, Ryu's ability to turn into a dragon is considered to be either amazingly powerful or completely ignorable. For example, in Breath of Fire 2, no one seems to care about Ryu's transformations until very late in the game. However, in Breath of Fire 4, all dragons are considered to be gods called the Endless, and in Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter, Ryu is possessed by Odjn, a godly dragon, whose power is so immense that it's slowly killing Ryu, shown in game as the D-Counter.
  • In World of Warcraft almost any god is up for becoming an endgame boss at some point. So far the players have killed 1 troll blood god, 13 avatars of other troll gods, 2 Old Gods, and the blood elf Phoenix God. Also, the god of the Burning Legion, Sargeras, was killed hundreds of years before Warcraft 1.
    • Although according to canon, none of those were actually gods per se, the Old Gods are eldritch abominations, the blood god Hakkar was really a lesser Cosmic Horror that seemingly hung around with the Old Gods (or just a really mean Loa spirit), the troll Loa were animalistic nature spirits (and either way the players never killed any of them, the things the players killed were troll priests that already killed the Loa and absorbed their power, or were channeling them), Al'ar wasn't a phoenix god (though that is its title), just a powerful phoenix, and the Titans are Sufficiently Advanced Aliens. As to Sargeras, he was a Titan to begin with, and he was never the "god" of the Legion (though some demons do worship him as such), just its founder/leader, and he himself was never killed. He allowed Aegwynn to destroy an avatar of him, so he could put his spirit into her body while her defenses were down from the spell. However, he has been out of the picture since Medivh died, leaving his status ambiguous.
    • The Lich King is actually called the Death God by the vrykul. He is practically invincible and wields magic powers far beyond almost anyone else, and lets not forget the whole raising the dead thing.
    • All these beings are basically godlike, but the only confirmed, true, actual god so far is Elune. And Elune is pretty benevolent. She also has yet to make a true physical appearance, making her not an example of this trope. Though she may be the larger moon itself.
      • It has been strongly implied that there is some kind of intelligent force behind the Holy Light (beyond the naaru) that would probably qualify as this trope.
    • The Elemental Lords probably qualify. They tend to cause natural disasters when brought into the world. Ragnaros the Firelord being summoned created Blackrock Mountain and destroyed the forest all around it (creating the Burning Steppes and Searing Gorge).
  • The Composer aka Joshua from The World Ends With You.
  • In The Elder Scrolls, specifically Morrowind, the Living Gods of the Tribunal Temple are elves who stole their divinity from the Heart of Lorkhan, the literal still-beating heart of a dead god. Dagoth Ur did this as well but he did it in a way that left him insane.
    • Though, to be fair, Almalexia and Sotha Sil were pretty damn batty too.
    • The Dwemer managed to uncreate themselves forging a Physical God. Anumidium was meant to be a physical god, which would allow them to transcend mortal existence to become eternal spirits. Nobody really knows if it worked.
    • And if you play through both Morrowind and Tribunal, you wind up with three of the four of them destroyed. Then you can go back and kill the last one. Too bad nobody believes you when you tell them.
      • "Hey guys, guess what? I just killed three gods - No, four, but Hircine's aspect may not count - in less than a month! Oh, by the way, two of those gods you lot have been worshipping for thousands of years! Hows about that, eh?" Honestly, would you believe you?
    • Oblivion - The Shivering Isles expansion has the player interact with Sheogorath - the daedric Prince (Read: God) of Madness, and ruler of the Shivering Isles.
      • Then you become that Daedric Prince.
  • The Goddess in the online Flash RPG, Adventure Quest, Lorthia has no physical form, though she can manifest into her creations, usually as a female, hence the word Goddess. She also had four children, and thouse four children had four children (Each pair had two) to make the eight Elemental Lords of Lore.
    • She also had made the Devourer Uncreator The'Galin, who often manifests into people instead of making a form for himself, Though he is refered to him because he is once a human. He is also immortal.
  • The God of War from Princess Maker 2 can get the crap kicked out of him by a 10-17 year old girl.
    • That 10-17 year old girl is stated in all endings to have celestial origin as well, so its not terribly surprising. She at least has The Gift, as she learns way faster than any of her rivals, though may just be too poor to attend classes regularly, or lazy.
  • Relatively newer additions to the Touhou cast are Kanako Yasaka and Suwako Moriya. The first is a Goddess of the wind and the sky, while the second is a Goddess of mountains (and frogs). Their shrine maiden, Sanae, was also said to fall under this as well back in the human world, due to her abilities of making miracles occur.
    • There's also Shinki (from the 5th game, Mystic Square), who created Makai and all of its inhabitants.
    • Possibly Shikieiki Yamaxanadu (from the 9th game) would count to an extent. On the one hand, she's based off from the actual Yama divinity. On the other hand, she's explicitly stated to be only one of many such Yamas, each with a different area of jurisdiction (Gensokyo, in Eiki's case).
    • And there's the Aki sisters (goddess of the abundant harvest and goddess of leaf coloring) and Hina (goddess of curses). Mountain of Faith is certain a Touhou game full of goddesses.
    • And those are only the actual Gods. Yukari, Yuyuko, Flandre, Eirin, Mokou, Kaguya, Keine, Yuuka, Shiki, and even Reimu, the heroine according to some interpretations of her final spellcard, have seemingly unstoppable superpowers and/or actual immortality with 'merely' extremely dangerous superpowers.
    • There exist beings much, much powerful than gods in this setting. Including the Watatsuki sisters who use kami as Mons...
    • And then there's Mima, who tells Shinki she's the goddess of the human world for laughs. And isn't that far off, if her fanon interpretation is anything to base off of.
    • And then there is of course the Dragon.
  • Summons from the Final Fantasy series certainly qualify. The Big Bad of each game may become this as well.
  • God of War. Enough said, right?
  • Vagrant Story has several examples. Sydney is probably the weakest example in this trope, because while he starts the by taking a crossbow bolt to the heart and ripping it out, he doesn't display much sheer power in anything except summoning monsters. Guildenstern briefly ascends to this level before Ashley Riot kicks his ass. Ashley is the last one to ascend to this state, and everyone acquired this power by grafting the Blood Sin to their back.
  • Maverick Zero from Mega Man X. According to an old man, who, in Sigma's words, was like Zero's father (it hasn't been proven, but generally believed to be Dr. Wily):

"Zero is the most powerful thing in the universe, when purified by The Virus."

    • His successor/EvilCounterpart, Omega, from Mega Man Zero, thinks himself as one. Then again, everyone else does, calling him the "God of Destruction".
    • Limitless Potential, anyone? X himself was the target of many hints, some by Dr. Light's hologram itself, and let's forget that it is (or was...) X's destiny to destroy Zero if he ever unifies with The Virus.
  • In Xenogears, Fei (and possibly Elly) is a Physical God. Since he is also one of the biggest woobie of the Video Games industry, any Genre Savvy player knows where it leads.
    • There's also Deus, which is literally referred to as "god."
    • Xenogears' distant descendant, Xenoblade, has two. The characters live on one.
  • Summon Spirits from the Tales (series) qualify as well, not even getting into individual characters.
  • Overlords from Nippon Ichi games fit this trope in the story, and in the gameplay, you can create one from scratch.
  • Advent Rising is based upon the theory that all humans have the potential to become Physical Gods. Of course, this means a race of Scary Dogmatic Aliens are obsessed with wiping us out in our latent state out of sheer jealousy. By the time the game starts, they've driven us off at least two planets - and by the time it ends, they've killed all but two of us.
  • The most powerful Fal'Cie of Final Fantasy XIII could be called this, and the First Three Fal'Cie created by the God Buniberzei are considered as Gods and Goddesses by Humanity. Pulse made the Pulse Fal'Cie, Lindzei made the Cocoon Fal'Cie, and mankind was born from Etro's blood.
  • Most Legendary Pokémon fit the criteria. They officially aren't gods, just powerful and often unique, though some have been worshiped as such. Arceus, stated to have shaped the world in Heart Gold and Soul Silver, is based on a Chinese creator deity.
  • The Precursors in the Jak and Daxter series were stated from the beginning to be an ancient race as opposed to actual gods, but the second game shows that they were more than just a super-advanced people, and the third game confirms their god-like powers. And by the way, one's been sitting on Jak's shoulder since Day One.
  • Mundus of Devil May Cry is effectively the God of Demons. It's heavily implied that the reason Sparda (and later Dante) made him into Sealed Evil in a Can is because there is literally no power that can kill him.
  • From The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, we get the Fierce Deity's Mask. Evidently, if you check the Gossip Stone in Eastern Ikana Canyon, the Fierce Deity seems to be a vengeful god, bound to a mask and sent to the moon for safe keeping. Or something like that. Regardless, considering that it can rip the resident Eldritch Abomination to shreds in seconds, effectively making the challenging final boss a Curb Stomp Battle, it deserves that "Fierce" qualifier.
    • The Four Giants probably qualify as well. They're worshiped as protectors by the people of Termina, and together, they're strong enough to catch the moon.
  • as of Skyward Sword It would seem that Demise would qualify, and according to his testimony, and the existence of items called the goddess plume, it is likely true for Hylia as well.
  • In Darkstalkers, the demons of Makai are gauged by their strength (for the record, a Class C Darkstalker could solo an entire platoon of trained marines). Anyone who makes it to Class S qualifies for this trope (with a dash of Reality Warper), rivaling Galactus in terms of planet-busting destruction. As an infant, Morrigan unknowingly could create and destroy whole dimensions in her sleep. She eventually had her soul split into thirds so that she could learn to properly wield these powers... and still ended up as a powerful demoness. Jedah could create an entire realm that sucked in souls like a magnet and his plan for Makai's "salvation" was to absorb all of Makai's souls into his body and reset reality. Perhaps the best example comes from Morrigan's adopted father Belial, a Class S+. When Demitri(a class A) challenged Belial for the throne of Makai, Belial nonchalantly ripped Demitri and his castle out of reality and exiled him to the human world. And even Belial was fearful of Morrigan's powers, seeing her to have the potential to not only rule Makai, but eventually surpass him.
  • The SUGURI games feature Hime, a guardian goddess, and QP, the goddess of pudding
  • In Diablo, you have the Lord of Terror. The sequel has three of these, aptly named the Prime Evils.
    • In spanish, the world Diablo actually means the Devil.
  • The Devil Kings from the Shadow Hearts series, in particular, Amon, Astaroth, and Asmodeus
  • The Reapers from the Mass Effect series present themselves as such and honestly believe themselves to be gods. It doesn't help between the first two games how they act, how powerful they are and how other characters talk about them to portray them as anything but gods.

Sovereign: We impose order on the chaos of organic evolution. You exist because we allow it, and you will end because we demand it.
Harbinger: We are the harbinger of their perfection, prepare these humans for ascension.
Sovereign: We have no beginning, we have no end. We are infinite. Millions of years after your civilisation has been eradicated and forgotten, we will endure.
Cerberus Operative: Chandana said this ship was dead. We trusted him. He was right. But even a dead god can dream.

  • All of the Gods in Lusternia qualify, with the exception of The Soulless Gods. In descending order of power: the Elders were created by the Anthropomorphic Personification of creativity, and are immortal Reality Warpers - but they are also sterile, and can be killed. The Vernals are mortals who raised themselves up by draining a Nexus of power, becoming godlike, but significantly less powerful than an Elder. Half-formed are "baby" Elders, consigned to Pocket Dimensions that serve as "creches": with the departure of the Anthropomorphic Personification of creativity, they will never fully mature into Gods, and must remain there eternally. Ascendants are mortals who drain a portion of a Nexus of power, and are incredibly strong, but can be killed by concerted effort of even other mortals. Demigods are mortals who have fanned the spark of divinity within themselves, and are essentially ageless mortals at an olympian physical peak. (Read as "Level Grinding your way to level 100.")
  • In the F.E.A.R. games, Alma is, for all intents and purposes, an being of godly power. However, mentally she is also a child (a very screwed-up, emotionally-stunted, and completely insane child, mind you) so she doesn't extend her psycho past people who have personally hurt her, and instead focuses on other things, like protecting her children or chasing after a man she has a crush on. That latter bit is a hell of a lot more terrifying than it sounds....
  • All of the Guardian Generals from Asura's Wrath count to some degree. Despite the mixture of Buddhist Myth and Sci-fi, it turns out they are descendants of Genetically altered humans that were turned into something Akin to this.
    • Chakravartin, however, is a literal god that takes this to a much, much much much greater level than the above generals. A creator Deity that embodies the Wheel of Life and the spinner of Mantra, as well as the personification of Samsara, he allowed Said Guardian Generals to exist in the first place, due to being the embodiment of all Mantra energy in existence. He can become bigger than Galaxy clusters, throws planets, stars and meteors at you, and even Makes super noves just to defeat Asura. And this isn't even his strongest form, which becomes Humanoid Eldritch Abomination that can do all the above and more, stop time, fire Storm of Blades like no tomorrow, and literally has his own QTE's that mimic your own, just to prove that he's basically able to lean on the fourth wall.
  • Monster Girl Quest has Ilias and Alice I, the goddesses (and Anthropomorphic Personifications) of holy and dark energy, respectively. Both of them are older than the planet itself. Ilias is invulnerable to attacks not made using holy energy and can manipulate souls and even the weather itself (she's responsible for the extinction of dinosaurs). Alice I can manipulate living things, and created monsters using this power.

Webcomics[edit | hide]

  • Coyote from Gunnerkrigg Court is physical enough to be... spanked. Doing so is strongly discouraged, however.
  • The Three Avatars (Space, Time, and Mind) from Rice Boy.
  • In the webcomic Wapsi Square, Tepoztecal is the God of Alcohol, able to produce drinks—or drunks—at will. He is apparently a Golem created by the Magitek of Atlantis, then adopted as a god by the Aztecs.
  • In Problem Sleuth, Pickle Inspector's amazing skill with imagination lets him do some crazy stuff while in the imaginary world, like split into multiple copies of himself, time-travel, combine the two actions to create the subatomic particles that form all matter in the entire universe, and ascend to outright Godhood.
    • In the more recent MS Paint Adventures series, Homestuck, Becquerel and Doc Scratch both count as this, being near-omnipotent Reality Warpers who are as old as the planets they watch.
      • And now, Jack Noir, too.
      • But PM is now his equal.
      • In fact, a big part of the game is to forge its players into these, worthy of overseeing their own universe. All the human players John Egbert, Jade Harley, Rose Lalonde, and Dave Strider have completed the quests to ascend to the God Tiers, and in addition to having power over the elements the game has laid out for them, can only be killed through their own heroic actions or the just actions of another. Vriska Serket and Aradia Megido, two of the twelve trolls that created our universe, also succeded in ascending to God Tier, and earned the right to wear their God Hoods.
  • Uncle Time from Sluggy Freelance seems to be one of these.

Bun-Bun: You omnipotent or something?
Uncle Time: I'm omnitastic!


Web Original[edit | hide]

  • Most of the secondary characters in New York Magician. Malsumis, Hapy, Bobbi Bobbi. . . it's what comes when you've got a Fantasy Kitchen Sink in New York.
  • Gothmog, in the Whateley Universe. Maybe some of the more regular characters, but it's debatable. Fey, Sara, Tennyo, and Chaka have the best argument. Fey and Tennyo are bonded with insanely powerful entities, while Sara is Gothmog's kid. Fey is a 7 on the 7-point powerscale, but is capable of going HIGHER then that level. Tennyo can kill beings that cannot die, while Sara is Gothmog's kid. Chaka, however, simply has perfect control over her Ki energy. (But this means she may qualify in the sense that she perfectly embodies a concept.)
    • Yes, some of these are quite debatable. (Fey, for example, is a powerful but still Squishy Wizard at her current level of development, and while Sara has her own cult already her physical powers are basically on the level of a hypothetical super-Shoggoth.) On the other hand, Whateley is also currently including the teenage hosts of the setting's actual Greek pantheon among its students—greatly weakened by their lack of modern-day worshippers, but very much the real deal complete with their old attitudes.
  • From the Global Guardians PBEM Universe, superheroes Ganesha and Ma'at, and villains Loki, Kali and Nephthys aren't just pretending to be gods. They actually are gods. Dagon is a primordial God fused into the body of a mortal.
  • The Greek Gods of O-Cast. Though their powers have atrophied and they're living around mortals these days, they are still gods and would like to be treated as such.
  • The ADPs in Pilots are once referred to as gods tongue-in-cheek by the narrator, and in some meaningful senses they are. An interesting treatment, in that their sole power is a variant of teleportation, which is taken to its logical conclusion.
  • The Protectors of the Plot Continuum have employed Ainur and Force-users in the past; one of the latter ended up the series's most influential Big Bad. Some of the Sues/Stus they come up against also make themselves into this.
  • Trinton Chronicles features at least two true-to-life god entities and one specific to the TC universe; Isis & Hermes are prominently mentioned and one actually shows up (in a way)to help out one of her believers. The other one, Gralla, appears only in dreams and through telepathy but one gets the idea that if she manifests physically no one would be to surprised.
  • In Terramirum, they apparently used to have a whole pantheon of living gods.
  • In Shadowhunter Peril, Oblivion is this, but completely evil. He's the only character in the series to be an Ushubaen, a human with demonic energy flowing through his body, yet still manages to retain a soul that prevents him from imploding with the force of a small bomb. He is powerful enough to fight and actually injure Puriel, and angel of the Almighty himself. Nuriel, another angel, states that he once fought another Ushubaen with two of his brother angels, and that the Ushubaen completely curb-stomped the first angel to death, then killed the other one and severely wounding Nuriel before it was brought down. And since Ushubaens never stop growing in power, it's certainly possible Oblivion will grow to become an omnipotent evil being of destruction, considering how young and powerful he already is...


Western Animation[edit | hide]

  • Disney's Hercules depicted Gods and Goddesses the same way as Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess .
  • Oberon's Children (and especially Oberon himself) from Gargoyles. Really they're The Fair Folk, but due to their immense power, they were worshipped as gods. Anubis and Odin for example, but not Jesus of course.
  • Primus and Unicron in various incarnations of Transformers, the latter of whom is a space-traveling planet-sized eater of worlds and the former of whom either lives in or actually is the Transformers' home planet of Cybertron and created them to battle Unicron.
    • The Original Thirteen Transformers could count here. Vector Prime, Nexus Prime, Megatronus Prime (The Fallen), and the ones yet to be named. Each of them has some kind of god-like power.
  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender and Sequel Series The Legend of Korra Avatars are the physical incarnation of the spirit of the entire planet, and as such, the only individual capable of wielding all four Elemental Powers in the form of Supernatural Martial Arts. This is quite necessary, as they lack invulnerability and need to actively defend themselves like anyone else.
  • Amazo's animated counterpart in Justice League, more specific when he came back in Justice League Unlimited, Amazo travelled through galaxies and collected as many powers and knowlege as he could, it resulted in him being able to "think" planets out of his way and battle against all available JLU members like they were nothing. He was only stopped because JLU's reasons to fight him was all a misunderstanding, Amazo is really a good guy, put the planet back to it's place by "thinking it", then he left to play chess along with other absurd beings.
  • The Greek Gods in Class of the Titans. Especially the series Big Bad Chronus.
  • The Ninja Tribunal in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) are four humans turned gods after intensive, if unspecified, training; when we first see them in the present, they are shown to possess immortality, limited omniscience, and the ability to reshape reality, among other perks.
  • Teen Titans: Trigon the Terrible turned the world into a fiery wasteland as part of his dramatic entrance, is big enough to use the T-tower as an interimistic throne, and he reminds you that you are only an insignificant insect compared to him. Then Raven presumably kills him and establishes herself as one. For all of twenty seconds.
  • Though referred to as a "spirit," Gaia from Captain Planet qualifies. She's only physical on Hope Island, though. Her nastier counterpart, Zarm, generally doesn't have that problem, though he sometimes needs a spaceship.
  • Futurama features an odd example: a galaxy-sized space anomaly who admits it may or may not be God (it's not sure itself). It does have incredible power and apparently receives a portion of God's worship, though.
  • Princesses Celestia and Luna of My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic, in addition to ruling Equestria, have control over the sun and the moon, respectively, and are at least a thousand years old. Not to mention that they're both larger than their subjects (like full-sized horses rather than ponies) and seem to be the only two "alicorns" with both pegasus wings and unicorn horns.
    • Discord, the chaos spirit, also has similar abilities, much like Q.
    • A third "alicorn" and Celestia and Luna's niece, Cadence can control and draw power from love, so even though she isn't as powerful as her aunts, she could be a demi-goddess at least. Though it also seems she's relatively young by alicorn standards (her aunts are both over 1000 thousand years old at least) and The Power of Love is not to be underestimated in a world were The Power of Friendship is the most powerful magic in the world.
  • In the Grand Finale of Generator Rex, Rex gains the power of the united Meta-Nanites. When he ponders what he should do with his newfound power, Black Knight says "You're a god now Rex. You can do anything you want." Fortunately, Rex only uses that power once to initiate a global Cure event before ordering the Meta-Nanites to shut down. He doesn't want anyone to have access to such power again, including himself.
  • In the Grand Finale of Ben 10 Ultimate Alien, Ben possesses the powers of the Ultimatrix, Ascalon, and Diagon. Vilgax tries to corrupt him into becoming a universe conquering tyrant by pointing out that Ben could do anything, and fix everything with that much power at his fingertips. Ultimately, Ben's girlfriend Julie convinces him not to abuse the power. Ben only uses his powers to restore Earth's population back to normal before relinquishing them to Azmuth.
    • Diagon was also this, considering that he is a half-mile-wide octopus thing who can change size, mind control people, control the weather, and a few other godly things.
  1. limited because he wants it to be