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Many games include a spell that will allow you to negate Status Buffs that some enemies have a propensity to cast on themselves. This can even be a bonus - the enemy will frequently waste multiple turns trying to keep a status buff up, while you need only one character to disable it — conversely, one can have one character insist on keeping your own status buff up, forcing the enemy to waste several turns repeatedly dispelling it. It's most commonly known by the above moniker, Dispel.

But be warned - if a Boss has turned red, Dispel probably will fail to cancel its status buffs! See also Field Power Effect.

Examples of Status Buff Dispel include:

  • Final Fantasy: Pretty much all of them.
    • Final Fantasy X-2 relegates it to an item, the Dispel Tonic.
    • Of course, knowing the usefulness of Dispel, some games will make some buffs un-Dispellable. Zdei in particular have the ability to get Ice Spikes, the worst form of paralyze in the game, and it can't be dispelled. That's not even mentioning some endgame boss buffs, such as complete immunity to physical damage. There's also magic immunity, but since most forms of Dispel are magic...
    • Also in most Final Fantasy games, some debuffs are completely immune to regular cleansing like Esuna or Remedy, which Dispel is then needed. The thing is if the person in your party has buffs on them and is hit with a debuff that only Dispel can remove, you'll have to decide on whether to let the person suffer a little in order to keep the buffs or expose them by using Dispel and negate everything.
    • It's popular to have a boss in Final Fantasy games that tries to remove all your status buffs periodically. Sometimes, their AI will do it to the exclusion of anything else, leading to some very easy battles if you keep putting your buffs back up before their turn comes around. The first fight against Edea in Final Fantasy VIII, for example, is a cakewalk if you have Carbuncle, as she'll do absolutely nothing but dispel the Reflect effect as long as you keep casting it.
    • Dispel is of critical need against many bosses and Marks in Final Fantasy XII, since they tend to start off with assorted buffs precast. BUT. Once you reach a certain point in the game, bosses and Marks will throwing up a "Paling": bufflike shields that either entirely negate magical damage or physical damage. Or both. This means either reconfiguring gambits or just WAITING for a portion of the fight while your foe beats you up, heals, or summons mooks, and you CAN'T DO ANYTHING to the damn boss/Mark until the Paling wears off.
    • There was a boss in Final Fantasy V that used a spell called "Gravity 100" which dispelled Float status from all of your party members. If you had a character with equipment that permanently set Float status, it would use that spell exclusively.
    • Final Fantasy XIII had this ability for Saboteurs, who could cast bad status effects on enemies as well.
  • That God-damned "wave of ice" attack used exclusively by many late-game bosses in Dragon Quest games.
    • Old CRPGS like Wizardry or Might & Magic also usually have a "psychic wave" or something of that sort.
    • In Dragon Quest IV, you get to turn the tables on those bosses by using the Zenithian Sword as an item, which yields the very same buff-removing effect.
      • Same effect, different name in Dragon Quest IX. This time around the Disruptive Wave, as it's called this time, can be used by the party once learned by the late game Sage.
        • If you use claws, you get an ability that does the same thing, but does damage and only targets one enemy. Quite useful against bosses.
  • In Pokémon, the "Haze" move eliminates all stat modifications for both combatants. "Brick Break" can also be used to instantly destroy temporary shields like Reflect and Light Screen. Defog will also clear Safeguard and Mist, which prevent statuses and debuffs respectively. These moves are very important in the metagame; a strong team will very often have a "Hazer" or "pseudo-Hazer". (Pseudo-Hazers use moves like Roar to force a switch-out, which is another way to clear the opponent's buffs.)
    • In Gen III with the Colosseum games, Shadow Shed worked as a non-damaging Defog and Brick Break simultaneously, and has a single PP which never runs out. The only downsides are that [A] it's a Shadow move, and [B] it hits your group as well.
    • Gen V introducted Clear Smog which restores the stats of the target in addition to doing damage.
  • Earthbound had various shield breaking spells and items. The most direct of these is PSI Thunder, which destroys enemies' psychic shields when it zaps them.
  • Shin Megami Tensei and most of its spinoffs have Dekaja. There's also Tetra Break and Makara Break, which destroy reflecting spells. Dekunda dispels lowered statuses from your party.
  • Golden Sun had the "Break" psynergy.
    • Unfortunately the only boss that it would be really useful on, is immune to psynergy (including Break), buffs his defense, and decimates yours. Oh yeah, and he knows Break too.
    • Of course, you can always buff yourself anyway, thus giving the survivability of temporarily having those buffs, as well as forcing the boss to repeatedly Break you. When you fight Bonus Bosses that move multiple times per turn and do crazy damage, taking one less nuke every other turn can be a lifesaver.
  • The M-Gear of Ace Online has the powerful Purify skill that negates not only buffs, but also special attack modes like Siege Mode, Big Bang, and Berserker.
  • Fina is the one who has this attack in Skies of Arcadia. The last two bosses can dispel buffs to the party, as well.
  • The Final Fantasy X clone RPG Lord of the Rings The Third Age had this as a spell, even calling it Dispel.
  • The Sanctuary spell in Breath of Fire III and IV. Unfortunately, using this spell also dispels the buffs used on the party.
  • World of Warcraft 's dispel mechanics are quite complex. Most buffs and debuffs are given one or another category, with most classes having the ability to remove effects in one or two categories. For example, the priest can remove both positive and negative magic effects as well as diseases, while the druid can remove poison and curse effects. There are also effects that can't be removed at all, of course. Mages can dispel curses, and also steal beneficial magic effects and give them to allies. Shamans can learn a spell that will dispel a curse, poison, and disease effect all at once, and can also place a totem that automatically clears poison and disease from nearby allies every few seconds. Paladins have a similar spell, but they can only remove a poison, disease, and/or magic effect all at once; it doesn't work on curses. Hunters can dispel magic and rage effects by shooting their opponent.
    • Though the Cataclysm expansion is vastly altering which classes get which spell abilities. And in any attempt to make poisons and diseases actually dangerous again removing the shaman totem.
    • And inevitably, your raid's friendly neighborhood Millstone will forget to utilize this at a crucial moment and the whole group will get reduced to floor paste.
  • Warcraft III also has quite an intricate system of dispelling, with every faction having a unit with a mass-dispel ability that removes all buffs and debuffs, and damages all summoned units, in an area of effect. These can be extremely effective against most auto-casted or area-effect buff/debuff spells used by the majority of casters in the game, but they also remove your own status effect spells at the same time, if you used any. Some abilities are more precise, though, like the Dryad's Abolish Magic which automatically takes buffs off enemy units and debuffs of of yours, and the Spell Breaker's Spell Steal, which steals enemy buffs for your benefit and reflects their debuffs back on them.
  • Knights of the Old Republic has Force Suppression and the more powerful Force Breach. Darth Malak is exceptionally and annoyingly adept at using it right after you've finished using all your buffs.
    • Which makes this fight even harder that it already was for Light Side players, who tend to have to rely more on buffs than pure attack abilities.
  • Dungeons and Dragons has several spells along these lines. The basic one is dispel magic. For high-level casters, there's Mordenkainen's disjunction, which also has the ability to disenchant magic items, even artifacts.
    • Of course, that latter spell cripples your party permanently for using it, because you destroy your own treasure. Luckily a Chain Spell enhanced Dispel Magic does all the same good things, without the game ruining drawback.
      • There's a far worse possible drawback if you disjoin an artifact: Fail a Will save, and you lose your spellcasting abilities. Forever.
    • Baldur's Gate II goes to town with this. It has Dispel Magic (has a chance to dispel ANYTHING). Remove Magic (only affects enemies). A wide variety of spells that specifically target a mage's layers of protective spells. A kind of spell that removes magic resistance. Two spells that combines both of these aspects. One that works over time and gradually dispels spells... Some of the trickier bosses have overlapping immunities and protections. Bonus Boss Demogorgon, for instance, is immune to spells of 5th level and below (rendering him immune to Lower Resistance) he is however, not immune to Pierce Shield (an 8th level spell) except that he comes out of the box with Spell Immunity: Abjuration, which requires Ruby Ray of Reversal (the only Status Buff Dispel that is not of the Abjuration school) to dispel...
  • The final boss of Shadow Hearts: From The New World will instantly counter buff spells with Lost Progress, which cancels them - and then hit you with a follow-up attack. The Bonus Boss has the same trick.
  • GURPS has the Dispel Magic spell and the Neutralize advantage.
  • Ragnarok Online has Dispel, which removes almost all of buffs and debuffs. In a game, where the amount of buff you have on yourself may get around TWENTY+ this might be sometimes frightering and makes people swear in front of their screens
  • Several items in Chrono Trigger grant immunity to negative status effects. This seems to be a status in and of itself, as at least a few enemies, including the Final Boss, have techniques specifically designed to remove it. Oddly, enemies will use these techniques even if you lack status immunity.
  • Super Mario RPG has "Shredder", a boss-only attack - and the only bosses that use it are the final boss and the optional boss. The game normally doesn't emphasize status buffs too much, but anyone trying to low-level-run the game will be in for a rough ride.
  • In the Tales (series), Dispel does this for enemy powerups. Restore is the friendly version.
  • In Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords, the Druid's "Calm" spell removes any status effects from the enemy, while the Knight's "Chivalry" does this to both the player and the enemy.
  • Suikoden Tierkreis: The "Release" mark, which is not widely useful seeing as enemies rarely ever give themselves Alert or Fury, and is only learned by one character anyway.
  • In Magic: The Gathering, buffs and debuffs (called auras) can be removed with a number of spells, almost all of them in white and green. But don't stress, blue, red, and black wizards! Once whatever the aura is enchanting is gone, the aura goes away too. This is why many players don't use auras.
  • Etrian Odyssey III: The Drowned City plays with this through the Princess class. "Negotiation" gets rid of an ally's buffs, trading them for healing, while their "Inspire" skill gets rid of any debuffs and restores their TP as well. "Ad Niliho", meanwhile, weaponizes this — not only does it strip away the enemy's buffs, it deals considerable damage in the process.