Trope Workshop:Words act more than Actions

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An onomatopeia has quite the effect!

Word Act More than Actions are word based superpowers or magic where words are used for effects. The method of using this power often uses reading, writing, and speaking it. The most potent form of this power would be to have a semantic effect from its meaning. Such an ability can lead to versatility based on the user's vocabulary, but there are drawbacks.

Examples of Words act more than Actions include:

Anime and Manga

  • Echoes ACT1, from Jojo's Bizarre Adventure, can write out an onomatopoeia in Katakana on any surface or person. The sound will course through a person's mind. It can also make a sentence written in Kanji, which will echo sounds that can influence a person's state of mind.
    • As pictured above, Echoes ACT 2, the evolved form of Echoes ACT 1, can write one onomatopoeia in Katakana on any surface from its tail. Once a person touched it, it will produce an effect based on the mimesis.
  • Styles from Medaka Box are techniques the can create different effects by manipulating language. Each Style has a semantic outcome based on aspects of languages such as phrases, words, and even names.
  • Fairing, from O-Parts Hunter, is the O-Part used by Spika. It is a ring that, when sound waves pass through it, the O-Part creates a big word with characteristics related to it.
  • Solid Script, from Fairy Tail, is a form of Letter Magic that makes words in the air that have different effects.
    • Orient Solid Script is similar to Solid Script but uses Kanji instead of English words.
    • Dark Écriture is a form of magic that combines Letter and Eye magic. It utilizes writing runes through a writing utensil on a person, object, or the air. This magic creates a 'rule,' which leads to different effects based on the sentence written.
  • Ichibē Hyōsube, from Bleach, has the Zanpakuto, Ichimonji. The weapon can be used to write Kanji that can carry an effect based on its meaning. It can also disconnect the name from whatever it cuts, thus changing its meaning.
  • Hiro Okamura, from Golden Wordmaster, has the unique magic of Word Magic. It allows him to draw Kanji and bring forth its meaning as a magical effect. It is a unique magic that does have a magical attribute and is considered a cheat. He can use a different Word Magic application, which carries versatility and potency.
  • Doppo Kunikida, from Bungo Stray Dogs, has the ability, The Matchless Poet. This power allows him to write the name of an object on paper from his notebook that can bring it into existence, but it can't have more mass than the journal.
  • Manga Fukidashi, from My Hero Academia, has the Quirk, Comic. This Quirk can materialize onomatopoeia into the real world as Katakana. These words' effects are based on the sound they represent but have the weakness of his throat become sore if he uses it rapidly.
  • Kotodama Magic (or Word Soul Magic), from Black Clover, is used by the Devil, Zagred. This magic allows the user to use speech to manipulate their surrounding environment or bring physical and magical objects into reality.
  • Tadao Yokoshima, from Ghost Sweeper Mikami, gains the ability to create Monju after arduous training. Monju are pearls with a Kanji that can realize the word inscribed, which is a surprising ability for versatility and potency and how he is a rather cowardly and perverted character.

Comic Books

  • From Marvel Comics, Reader is an Inhuman that can manifest any word he reads into reality. Even with the loss of his eyes, he can still read through braille; as long as he can understand the term and concept, he can bring its effect into reality.


  • In The Kane Chronicles, Ptah can create things by speaking their names. One instance where he made the word 'platypus' for fun led to platypi's birth.

Live-Action TV

  • The Shikengers, from Samurai Sentai Shinkenger, uses ShodoPhones with a brush mode to write Kanji in the air to create different spells. They use these phones to not only transform. Still, They can also use Kanji written with them to cast various effects to combat Gedoshu.

Oral Tradition, Folklore, Myths and Legends

Video Games

  • Dragon shouts, or Thu'um, from Skyrim are words made from the dragon language. They can be used by dragons or those with a dragon soul, such as the Dragonborn, and have three power levels based on three words.

Web Animation

  • Epithets, from Epithet Erased, are special powers created by a single word attached to their soul to a person known as an Inscribed. An Epithet has two parts: the expression and the concept related to the term.

Other Media