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Character Shield

 

Disciplines > StorytellingStory Devices > Character Shield

Description | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

The Character Shield is a device that somehow protects the wearer from harm.

The device may be physical, such as some kind of armor, scientific, such as some kind of force field, or magical.

Example

A magical ring makes the hero invulnerable. (Superman doesn't need one of these, of course).

The vampire cannot be killed, except by a stake through the heart or natural sunlight.

The Starship Enterprise has shields that protect it from bombardment, though these can still be worn down by powerful weapons.

Discussion

Invulnerability can be boring and reduce the tension that stems from the fear of a major character being killed, so character shields may have flaws by which the user can potentially be harmed. An early example that gives a name to such flaws is Achilles' heel. When the protected character is killed, it has a particularly shocking effect.

Character shields are also called Plot Armor or Plot Shields  or Plot Immunity.

See also

 

 

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