Summary

  • The Soul Stone’s true powers remain mysterious and speculative, but it likely plays a crucial role in the functioning of the Infinity Gauntlet.
  • While the Power Stone has immense energy manipulation abilities, other stones can achieve similar outcomes, making it less versatile than its counterparts.
  • The Mind Stone’s impact on the MCU is significant, as it grants sentience and mind control abilities, playing a vital role in creating powerful heroes.

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Ranking the MCU Infinity Stones by their power levels comes with the self-evident caveat that possession of any single one in the hands of those who know how to use them is tantamount to omnipotence. If the goal is to wipe out entire populations, every one of the stones could achieve that goal one way or another. It is just the case that it takes a while to achieve those ends, while a snap of the fingers is so much more efficient. Efficient, at least, for characters that would survive replicating the Snap.

With that being said, the Infinity Stones of the MCU have been given limited time and space in which to display their individual abilities, unlike the Infinity Stones of Marvel Comics. While it is easy to infer what each could achieve under certain circumstances, the power that was explicitly conveyed on-screen is all there is to go off. With that in mind, it appears that not all Infinity Stones were created equal.

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6 Soul Stone: The Power To Destroy, Locate, And Commune With Souls

More Of A Puzzle Piece

Thanos holds the soul stone in Avengers: Infinity War

The Soul Stone is the most enigmatic of all the stones and no doubt capable of far more than was depicted on-screen. Avengers: Infinity War established that the Soul Stone, unlike the others, came with its own bodyguard and harrowing gauntlet to run. Red Skull’s assertion that the Soul Stone held a “special place” among the Infinity Stones also carries sinister undertones that track with its locale and mode of acquisition. The fact is that the full extent of its powers is purely speculative. The Soul Stone likely chose which of the souls to eliminate in the Snap, for example, but evidently couldn’t carry out the Snap on its own.

What the Soul Stone was proved to achieve was the ability to trap souls in a “Soul World,” which looks like a purgatorial pocket dimension. While unpleasant, it isn’t too dissimilar from the pocket dimensions that a stone-less Doctor Strange could conjure up. Incidentally, the second power it was proved to display was the ability to pinpoint Doctor Strange’s soul as he attempted to overwhelm Thanos with illusory duplicates, which is a nifty feature though only under exceptionally specific circumstances.

Instead, it seems that the Soul Stone’s main power is to influence the other stones and compose an integral part of a completed Infinity Gauntlet. In What If…Ultron Won? The Guardians of the Multiverse steal the Soul Stone from Ultron and use it to power a machine designed to destroy Infinity Stones. Red Skull also said that it had a “certain wisdom,” making it seem like it holds a place of authority. Individually, however, it appears to be comparatively lacking in raw power.

5 Power Stone: Immense Energy Manipulation

Other Stones Can Bring About Similar Results

There is a reason Thanos didn’t simply Power Stone his way through the Battle of Wakanda. The Power Stone is also limited to abilities that other stones can apparently replicate to a certain degree. While the similar abilities of the other stones wouldn’t hold a candle to the scale of the Power Stone (Ronan the Accuser intended to level an entire planet with it, after all), there are myriad ways they could still achieve the same outcomes.

The Power Stone has been used to deliver immense blasts of energy, with non-superpowered individuals in the MCU prone to exploding if they handle it without protection. There does, however, appear to be a limit to the power it delivers, as Iron Man’s armor was seen taking a hit from the stone without immediately exploding. While this could be put down to Thanos limiting its power purposefully, the lack of versatility offered by the Power Stone is ultimately what makes it less powerful than others.

4 Space Stone: Absolute Control Over Space

Teleportation Is Nothing Special In The MCU – But That’s Not All It Can Do

The Space Stone is the one that received the most fanfare owing to its prominence throughout Phase 1 in the guise of the Tesseract. Due to this starring role, the Space Stone has been shown to display a plethora of powers that go beyond the manipulation of space. To name a few, it bestowed Carol Danvers with light-based powers, was used by HYDRA to power devastating weaponry, and repaired the Rainbow Bridge of Asgard. When it finally reached the hands (or gauntlet) of Thanos, however, was when the Space Stone truly demonstrated what it was capable of.

Complete manipulation of space is no joke, as Thanos showed when he crushed Rhodey’s armor, phased Bruce Banner into solid rock, and threw an entire moon onto Iron Man (with the help of the Power Stone). Thanos even created a mini black hole on Titan in his bout with Strange, showing just one way the Space Stone could replicate the power of the Power Stone through different means. Of all its abilities, however, the ability to teleport wherever the wielder pleases is kind of diminished by the presence of space-hopping spaceships and the Bifrost.

3 Mind Stone: Mind Control, Sentience And Energy Manipulation

The Mind Stone Has Impacted The MCU The Most

Though it is hinted that the other stones seem to have a semblance of sentience, the Mind Stone appears to be in a league of its own, operating as though it was a supremely intelligent sentient mind capable of communicating directly with Vision. Were it not for the fact that the Mind Stone, which granted various powers to Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, and Vision, has demonstrated powers similar to both the Power and Space Stones, it would probably sit lower in the rankings. As it stands, the Mind Stone has also demonstrated dominion over hearts and minds alike and was all Ultron needed to destroy Thanos in What If…Ultron Won?

The fact that Thanos made sure to acquire all other stones before completing the set with the Mind Stone speaks volumes. Were it not for Vision’s weakened state, a team in possession of the Mind Stone would have posed a significant threat to Thanos despite his possession of the other stones. Aside from that, the sheer impact that the Mind Stone has had on the MCU – especially for its role in creating two of its most powerful heroes (one of which can phase through matter) – is what makes the Mind Stone one of the MCU’s most powerful Infinity Stones.

2 Reality Stone: Can Reshape Reality Itself

Nearly Reshaped The Entire Universe

Thanos using the Reality Stone to create an illusion in Infinity War

The individual power of the reality stone was laid bare when it took the form of the Aether in Thor: The Dark World, in which Malekith intended to change the fabric of the entire universe with its power alone. While Thor: The Dark World may be among the worst MCU installments, it’s hard to overstate the gravity of its arch-villain’s designs, which Thanos himself intended to emulate. The frustrating questions it begs of Thanos’ motives, such as “Why not double the resources of the world?” are also directly related to the Reality Stone’s power.

While it seems the Reality Stone does not have a direct effect on life, the way it can warp surrounding circumstances can easily achieve the same ends in an instant. Thanos used the Reality Stone to negate the lethal weaponry of the Guardians by turning them into harmless substances while emulating the effects of the space stone by trapping Black Widow in a cage of stone pillars. With that in mind, it’s easy to see how the Reality Stone could be an invaluable counter to the harmful effects other stones can inflict.

1 Time Stone: Complete Control Over Time Itself

A Reset Button For All Occasions

Doctor Strange holds out the time stone in Avengers Infinity War

Like many of the stones, it really depends on which one acts first – but as long as the Time Stone is still usable, it renders all others obsolete. As Thanos painfully demonstrated in the aftermath of Wanda’s destruction of the Mind Stone, and Vision along with it, turning back time in a localized area is enough to hit the reset button on any situation. The destruction of an entire Infinity Stone is exceptionally consequential and something that the Time Stone undid in a few moments.

Not only that, but Doctor Strange, who had only recently gotten to grips with his newfound talents as a sorcerer, was able to use the Time Stone to defeat the entity that holds sway over an entire dimension. The scale of this effect can’t be overstated and leaves a lot of frustrating questions up for debate over why the Eye of Agamotto couldn’t be used to reverse the effects of many other devastating effects. Many of Thanos’ actions on Titan are perhaps the most glaring of these.

The power of control over time itself was most recently demonstrated within the TVA in Loki Season 1, where Loki witnessed multiple duplicates of the full set being used as paperweights by TVA offices, with the TVA’s MO literally comprising authority over time. Loki himself is arguably the most powerful entity in theMCU’s multiverse (for now), sitting on a throne enshrined in the green hue of his magic that is also indicative of the Time Stone. With that in mind, it is easy to see how control over time is the most powerful of all the abilities offered by the MCU‘s Infinity Stones.

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