forum Is my magic system to cliche? What can I do to make it better?
Started by Kylee Cammon

people_alt 79 followers

Kylee Cammon

I'm currently working on a story where people have powers based on their eye colors. Like for example people with green eyes can control nature, people born with blue eyes can control water and ice, people born with brown eyes are healers, people born with gray eyes can create storms and then there are rare ones . Like people born with golden eyes can control sunlight and then there are the really special ones, people born with eyes that look like galaxies. Their powers range from darkness manipulation to the ability to create black holes and travel through them. There are also people who's pupils are pure white, they have no powers.


I actually really like that system for magic as it sets natural boundaries and lets you know immediately what powers a child will have, and the only unknowns would be to what extent they have the powers. If you're looking for something to give it a little mystery, maybe let the extent of how well these people control their powers vary or how deeply into their powers people can go and let it differ from person to person.


I agree with these two it's a good magic system, and I actually think it's very original. But like Dusty I said, as long as the rare eye color stay rare, you're good. It can lead to trouble with the plot, if everyone's running around with Galaxy colored eyes.


i've seen this in a book that i think was called bitterblue, except the powers were given to people with heterochromia. it's not a bad idea per se, but if you wanna keep it truly original, maybe try to change the focus onto a different body part?


i really like this idea

it sets up a lot of interesting situations (like, do contact lenses exist? is it against the law to cover your eyes? are some children left behind because of their powers?). depending on the setting you could really pull this off

ive never heard of anything like this so id say its pretty original

@Yamatsu Earthbender

Ooh! What about those colored contact lenses? Those would certainly help to disguise some's powers, at least!


I love this magic system! It has a lot of potential for a very interesting story plot. Keep it up 😁


I have a few questions to help you design it.
1) Is there a way to enhance the abilities?
2) Are there conditions that enhance or mitigate the abilities?
3) Can inner iris color and outer iris color affect abilities?
4) I'm assuming the abilities are genetic so are there families with immense power?
5) Do animals have abilities corresponding with their eye color?
6) What about people with hetero-chromatic eyes?
7) Is this magic or science?
8) Does pupil dilation affect the abilities?
9) Are there milestones that you pass that can affect the ability? (If a child hits puberty, does the ability come into full power?)
10) Is there a way to train the abilities to make them stronger or unlock new powers?


What happens if a character is blinded? Do they lose their powers? Is the magic tied to their eyes or is it just a representation of their abilities? It sounds really cool! I think you could do a lot with it.


I’ve heard about how brown eyes are blue underneath. You can get lasers to get rid of the brown so you have blue eyes. How would that work for powers? Would they stay with healing, or would they change to ice? Or will they have ice powers form the start?

Deleted user

What is the story that you want to tell with this magic system, though? Why eye colors specifically?

I ask because if the story needs magic powers to be told, but it doesn't need to be associated with eye colors specifically, then…I would advise making the colors (maybe more like aura or halo colors) associated with actually activating the magic, or only changing the eye color to a "magical" one when they're ready to cast a spell.

@Tidermelon group

I would advise making the colors (maybe more like aura or halo colors) associated with actually activating the magic, or only changing the eye color to a "magical" one when they're ready to cast a spell.

Oo, kind of like (WandaVision spoilers) Monica Rambeau’s powers, when her eyes glow blue whenever she does anything with them? That’s a neat idea.


This isn't really a cliche. But often writers would make their main characters the special and rare ones. If you want to make it a challenge, make your main character have the same powers as most. It could demonstrate the idea that you don't need to be powerful or better to be amazing and special. I don't know, just an idea.

@redwood eco

I don't really know if the OP is still active, but a question I have is what about people with aniridia? Aniridia is a condition that causes the near complete or even complete failure in the formation of the eye(s). People with aniridia either have less iris than the average human, or none at all, it's completely pupil. Their pupil does not shrink like normal and whatnot.

If power is determined by iris color, and having a white pupil signifies no power, do all people with aniridia (that takes over both irises completely) always have white pupils? Or is there a special happening for them?

or do they just not exist in this universe?

Also, is there a way to only have one white pupil? Is it that the lighter your pupil is, the less powerful you are? Or is there only black pupils and white pupils? No in between values?