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Mako (Japanese: 魔晄, Makō; literally meaning "magic light") is a liquid substance featured throughout Final Fantasy VII. It is the condensed form of lifestream and the primary source of energy used by human beings throughout the world. It is comparable to nuclear energy. Lifestream can condense into Mako via both natural and artificial processes. The terms "Mako" and "Lifestream" are often used interchangeably because one is a derivative of the other.
Mako is the most common source of electrical power on the planet, with coal and its derivatives a distant second. The process of power generation via Mako was pioneered by the Shin-Ra Electric Power Company, based in Midgar. Mako extraction and its usage is considered environmentally unfriendly, however, and the rebel group AVALANCHE actively attacks Shin-Ra Mako reactors in hopes of deterring the program.
Mako is thought to be similar to radioactive materials in that prolonged exposure can lead to genetic mutation (although this is discovered to be false in the game), poisoning, and ultimately death. Individuals with prolonged exposure to Mako are identified by a glow in their eyes, referred to as "Mako Eyes."
Besides its electrical uses, SOLDIER is made up of operatives that are biologically augmented by Mako. Cloud and Sephiroth are examples of people with Mako enhancement. The members are also injected with Jenova cells. Together, both resources gives them far greater strength and cognitive ability than ordinary people, provided they have the mental strength to handle the Mako infusion process without suffering from Mako Poisoning.
Besides its other uses, Mako is found in weapons used by Shin-Ra. The Mako Cannon of Junon used a variety of Mako shells, and, later, as the Sister Ray, fired a beam of raw Mako energy. As materia, Mako has been employed by some of Shin-Ra's Turk operatives who wielded it in their weapons in Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII. In addition to the energy resource and weaponry allocations of Mako, the Shin-Ra Corporation was also developing a Mako-powered car for civilian purposes.
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