I'm stumped labeling a class of characters who use unconventional weapons and tactics for self-defense / combat. Since I'm looking for a title, a noun would be preferred. However, I can see utility in a fitting adjective used to describe the classification rather than a title if it’s more apt.

When I say "power user" I mean any kind of spell caster (be it magical or technological), shapeshifter (werewolf or doppelgänger), or superhero, mutant, or even the force wielding half of a Jedi.

Can anyone offer any label, title, or adjectve which could fit for any of these types of characters?

Example sentence:

When I say _______, I mean any kind of spell caster (be it magical or technological), shapeshifter (werewolf or doppelgänger), or superhero, mutant, or even the force wielding half of a Jedi.

Examples of coinciding classes:

  • Marksman: a person proficient in ranged weaponry, such as bows and guns.
  • Fighter: a person proficient in melee combat and weaponry, such as martial arts and daggers.
  • Sentinel: a person proficient with shields and deflecting stacks directed at himself and others.
  • Saboteur: a person proficient with stealth and explosives.
  • "power-user": a person proficient in the use of advanced technology, the supernatural, occult, or schools of magic.
  • What do you mean by a "technological spell caster"?
    – Laurel
    Dec 7, 2016 at 23:40
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    Seems like a better question for Arcade or Role-playing Games.
    – Hot Licks
    Dec 7, 2016 at 23:41
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    When I say "technological spell caster" I think of Marvel's Ironman. He's not really a wizard or mage in any traditional sense, but he's basically using "technology" in place of "magic" to explain away his laser bolts and flying powers. And they already booted this question from role playing games :(
    – pipknuts
    Dec 7, 2016 at 23:55
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    @k1eran: Well, your previous comment made it apparent that you were trying to salvage the question.  And of course we all hope that the OP will improve the question. But he (or she?) is a brand new user who has accepted an answer and hasn’t been active for two days, so I’m not holding my breath. Dec 10, 2016 at 15:07
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    @pipknuts: Thanks for coming back and clarifying the question. If you want a noun — I guess “wizard” is too specific?  How about “mage” (Oxford: A magician or learned person) or “magus”?  Or perhaps “transcendental”, which is defined in the dictionary as an adjective (Oxford: Relating to a spiritual realm; M-W: supernatural), but you could use as a noun if you want to. Dec 12, 2016 at 5:02

1 Answer 1


Perhaps preternatural would fit?

Penn State Press publishes a journal using that terminology.

Preternature provides an interdisciplinary, inclusive forum for the study of topics that stand in the liminal space between the known world and the inexplicable. The journal embraces a broad and dynamic definition of the preternatural that encompasses the weird and uncanny—magic, witchcraft, spiritualism, occultism, esotericism, demonology, monstrophy, and more, recognizing that the areas of magic, religion, and science are fluid and that their intersections should continue to be explored, contextualized, and challenged.

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    I really like this use of the word "preternatural" and the stated mission of the Penn State journal. I like it even more when considering the Latin meaning "beyond nature" -- from praeter, "beyond". That should be inclusive enough for magic and technology in this given usage. However, I'm inclined toward a noun to fit the OP's request. I suppose we could call someone "a preternatural", making this serve as a noun. "Preternaturalist" is a mouthful; maybe clunky by some tastes. Thoughts? Dec 8, 2016 at 1:14
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    @RandyTillman Preternaturals is indeed used by at least one author as a noun - though admittedly I can't find it in a dictionary with that usage ! See amazon.co.uk/Blood-Lust-Preternaturals-Book-1/dp/0981943608
    – k1eran
    Dec 8, 2016 at 1:32
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    That's precedent enough for me! I'm interested to hear @pipknuts weigh in. Dec 8, 2016 at 1:36
  • Preternatural... A mouthful, I agree, but apt! I may use this as a defining term for a simpler and more colloquial noun, such as "Adept". In such a case, does anyone think "adept" is too vague a representation of "preternatural"?
    – pipknuts
    Dec 8, 2016 at 2:40
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    I believe that the word adept is good, but it might be seen as too specificPiers Anthony has popularized that word as meaning, essentially, wizard or magic-user. In his stories, the adepts are all humans; werewolves and unicorns (who are also shape-shifters) are not considered adepts. Dec 12, 2016 at 5:03

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