With further appearances in The House of the Dead 2 and The House of the Dead 4: Special, the Magician is to date the most recurring boss in the series. In The House of the Dead III and 4, he also appears as a bonus item.
On December 18th, 1998, Curien unleashed his macabre creations upon fellow DBR researchers. While AMS agents Thomas Rogan and "G" fought through his mansion, Curien tended to the incubated Magician, who was awakened when the agents confronted Curien. However, the Magician revealed that he obeys no inferior being, and thus killed Curien.
He escaped onto the balcony, where Rogan and G fought and defeated him. The Magician warned the agents that they "...haven't...seen...anything yet!" before exploding.
The Magician was housed at the Goldman building in Venice to oversee the creation of the Emperor and safeguard it during incubation. AMS agents James Taylor and Gary Stewart arrived at the building's front plaza to stop Goldman's plot, but before entering the building, they are waylaid by the Magician, now displaying loyalty to Goldman and the Emperor. This time around, the AMS agents had the upper hand, since information about the Magician's anatomy had been established from the Curien Case. They managed to destroy him once again, allowing James and Gary to resume their mission.
The Magician himself does not appear in the third game, though he is mentioned in the flashback before the final level, and his name and picture can be seen quickly during the title sequence of the same level. He also makes a similar appearance in the intro movie, appearing in both his original THOTD version, and his more grotesque THOTD2 form.
As well as these subtle appearances, one of the extra point icons scattered throughout the game takes on the form of a golden statuette of the Magician, and even flies about in a quick manner like him, making it harder for the player to shoot it. Because of this, successfully hitting it gives the player a larger point bonus (+2000 points) than most of the other point icons. Interestingly, if one listens closely enough while this item is on-screen, they can hear him reciting, "I've been waiting for this time to come..."
- "I have been waiting for this moment for some time. Now you shall have a taste of the pain that I have endured!"
- ―The Magician to Kate Green and "G".[src]
The Magician returns in Special, resurrected as the final boss. Prior to the arrival of AMS agents G and Kate Green, the Magician resides in a large, glass chamber, presumably during the process of his resurrection. G and Kate attempted to prevent him from escaping, but were too late to stop him from coming back to life. It is unknown if this was the original or a clone, though the dialogue before the fight indicates that he recognizes them as AMS "friends", and had been waiting for some time to enact his revenge for the pain he has endured. In the Bad Ending, agents G and Kate Green are attacked by multiple clones of the Magician, implying that he is indeed the original, once again revived from death.
Here, the Magician is shown to have energy surging on his weak points instead of them pulsating, and is shown to be more powerful than his previous incarnations. He also bears a purple aura. Before actually emerging to battle the AMS agents, the Magician launches a salvo of fireballs at them from within his incubation chamber. This triggers a quick time event in which the players have to shoot all of the fireballs down to avoid taking damage. The Magician emerges after the attack's conclusion, regardless of the player's success or failure in deflecting it.
After diminishing the Magician's health, he will summon and attempt to open Pandora's Box. The player is given the chance to stop it with a grenade. If the player fails in stopping the Magician from opening the box, he will proceed to release numerous clones of himself from incubation, showing that the Magician had cloned himself. laughing evilly, implying that he will attack and overwhelm the AMS agents and then all of humanity with his clones, resulting in the Bad Ending. This ending also implies that the Magician is indeed Curien's original Magician, which had been resurrected.
In the Good Ending, the Magician is fatally wounded by a grenade and succumbs to a violent explosion once more. With his final breath, he has time to utter one final monologue - "Nothing can erase my pain".
However, after his demise, Thornheart appears at the Magician's incubation chamber. Upon entering the chamber, he remarks, "So, Pandora's box has been closed... that is if there is any hope left, the Wheel of Fate cannot be stopped."
The Magician makes an appearance as the fifth boss in The Pinball of the Dead, and retains his appearance from The House of the Dead 2. Similar to his appearances in previous games, the Magician will quickly attack the players using fireballs, blocking their pinball from moving. He will also rapidly teleport from one area of the screen to the next. However, unlike previous games, the player is not required to hit a specific spot on the Magician in order to damage him.
The Magician's voice is also used to alert the player when they have the opportunity to enter a boss battle. The player will hear the Magician say, "I have been waiting for this time to come", a line used before the Magician's battle in The House of the Dead 2. Also, when the player gets a game over, he will say "You have no future."
The Magician is an incredibly fast and dangerous adversary, and is rightfully considered the hardest boss in The House of the Dead series. His speed is unrivaled, he relies on pyrokinesis to attack, and possesses the ability to levitate and teleport, implying that he uses a revolutionary anti-gravity propulsion system to allow him to constantly veer from left to right at crushing speeds in order to confuse the player.
His weak points are listed as "UNKNOWN" in his first appearance and in THOTD4 Special, but are visually indicated by the unarmored parts of his body that glow red. This includes his lower right leg, upper left leg, lower right arm, upper left arm and the area around his right eye. The glowing effect is absent in the PC and Saturn ports of the first game, and his weak points are shown in G's File in THOTD2. Like other bosses, attacking these areas is crucial in disrupting the Magician's attacks.
In the first two games, he followed a specific fight pattern. In the first wave of the fight, he will hurl fireballs at the player while spinning. After doing this twice, he will form more fireballs from both hands, which are more difficult to shoot down. His fireballs can be shot down, and the Magician can be damaged as he attacks with them. He will repeat this wave until he has taken enough damage.
He will then change tactics and teleport rapidly to the left or right of the arena to puzzle the player. After three teleports in either or both directions, he will charge at the player with a fireball in his hand, and this fast attack can only be disrupted with a successful shot to one of his weak points. Five successful hits will stop the assault, and he will repeat his earlier attack wave, followed by another series of charge attacks when he takes enough damage once more.
His tactic will change again once he has taken 50% damage. In the first game, he will move to the middle of the arena and project a large group of fireballs in the air that will slowly rain down on the player, and must all be shot to avoid damage. The Magician can only be attacked as he charges the fireballs when the camera is focused on him.
This attack is slightly altered in The House of the Dead 2 where he hovers in mid-air and sends the fireballs straight at the player. He throws slightly fewer fireballs and they are scattered around the middle, but to compensate for those factors, this attack is faster as these fireballs don't slowly drift to the ground like they did in the House of the Dead. Furthermore, the Magician is vulnerable the entire time. He will repeat this attack until he is defeated.
In both games, the Magician's teleportation is represented by differently colored after images of him. Blue was his standard attack of throwing fireballs from a distance, while red warned the player that he would engage in his dreaded charge attack. THOTD2 added white when he engaged in his final attack, but could regularly be seen throughout the battle depending on the player's performance and difficulty level. The Magician is invulnerable while teleporting.
In THOTD4 Special, the Magician is now able to teleport in any direction on the screen. He will alternate between throwing fireballs with one hand, both hands, and his dreaded charge attack without warning. Unlike before, multiple shots on the Magician are required to disrupt this attack. At 50% health, he will gather several fireballs in his hands and attack in one of two ways: He will either charge at the player or throw the fireballs into the air to home in on the player. He will continue this until he is defeated once more.
The House of the Dead
- "Who are you? Nobody gives me instructions. I shall destroy everything."
- "You... haven't... seen.... anything... yet!!"
The House of the Dead 2
- "I've been waiting for this time to come. You have no future. Either I get you or the Emperor will. Either way, your fate is in our hands."
The House of the Dead 4: Special
- "Welcome, my AMS friends... I have been waiting for this moment for some time. Now you shall have a taste of the pain that I have endured!"
- The Magician's behavior and appearance are an allusion to Lucifer in the Bible, as both had betrayed their respective masters and became obsessed with a desire for destruction. Its demonic appearance may also allude to the Magician's synonymy with evil.
- The Magician shares similarities with classical western dragons, owing to its pyrokinetic abilities, how its body is made up of thick armored scales, and that it possesses horns.
- The Magician's concept art, as seen in THOTD's Sega Saturn manual seems to suggest that that it is some sort of android or synthetic being. It is also shown that the Magician was originally designated "Type B-1".
- Even though the Magician's weak points were determined in The House of the Dead 2, they are unknown to the PDA in House of the Dead 4: Special. This appears to be for the purpose of challenging new players to figure out what it is for themselves. Of course, in-universe, it could be simply because the Magician was heavily altered in design in this incarnation, and the PDA failed to recognize the weak points due to the extensive modification. Either that, or the PDA uses Kate's profile (which is probable given that Kate correctly identified Justice's weak point) instead of G's (the latter of which should have the new Magician's weak points determined but would not have identified Justice's weak point).
- The final bosses of the first four THOTD games appear to embody primal forces of nature; The Magician uses fire, the Emperor uses metamorphosis, the Wheel of Fate uses electricity, and the World uses ice.
- The Magician was to be included in the second series of House of the Dead action figures by Palisades. However, the line was cancelled before production.
- The only time the Magician is called by its name is in The House of the Dead 2 when playing alone as Gary, and by Curien in the flashbacks in The House of the Dead III.
- The Magician is the only final boss in the first four THOTD games whose weak point is not on the chest and also having multiple weak points (right side of its face, upper left arm, lower right arm, upper left leg and lower right leg).
- There's a graphical glitch of Magician in THOTD2. If the players are not injured by the Magician, the Magician's hallucinating movements will turn into white instead of red or blue ,and automatically fix if the Magician successfuly hit the players.