Created By: zarpaulus on February 11, 2012 Last Edited By: Arivne on April 15, 2015

Jarring Hyperspace Transition

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
''"Jock: Does the Crazy Eddie Drive affect humans like that?"
Hardy: "Like what?"
Jock: "Disorientation. Vertigo. Inability to concentrate. Muscles out of control. Nausea. Death wish."

Even if hyperspace itself isn't too bad it's common for the crews of starships entering or exiting a jump to get a little rattled. Whether due to a sudden change in speed or a switch between dimensions or some other factor.


Examples

Film
  • Played for laughs in Spaceballs. Dark Helmet orders his ship to "Ludicrous Speed" without putting on a seatbelt. He ends up clinging to the back of his chair by his fingertips when the ship accelerates, then flying forward and smashing into a panel when the ship stops.
  • In Forbidden Planet the crew need to assume secured positions before jumping.
  • When R2-D2 gets the Millennium Falcon's hyperdrive back online in The Empire Strikes Back the sudden acceleration knocks him back into the maintenance pit.
  • In the Wing Commander film, making an FTL jump seems to suspend everything in freeze-frame for a few moments, in addition to shaking everything around. It's typical for crew members to strap themselves in. Except for Maniac, who intentionally launches himself into the air so that he can be suspended that way for a few moments before crashing back to the deck.

Literature
  • Exiting an Alderson point in the CoDominium universe is rather disorienting to crewmen and scrambles computer systems. In The Mote in God's Eye the effects are considerably worse for Moties, which helps make the Empire's blockade of their system viable
  • In C. J. Cherryh's Alliance/Union universe most oxygen-breathing species are knocked unconscious by jumping to lightspeed (if not sedated like humans and stsho prefer) and remain unconscious for the duration of the jump. Which is usually about three subjective days so crews are almost always pretty dehydrated when they come out.
  • Using Infinite Improbability Drive in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy has an annoying tendency to temporarily turn passengers into sofas.
  • In the Honor Harrington series, a 'crash translation' allows a ship to retain a much higher base velocity than normal upon leaving hyperspace, but leaves everyone on board disorientated and nauseous for several minutes, so it tends to only be done when it gives a major tactical advantage.
  • In The Stars Are Cold Toys hyperspace travel kills or drives insane any species but humans.
  • The Andre Norton novel Uncharted Stars. Murdoc Jern guides his lifeboat into the starship Wendwind's docking bay just before the ship goes into hyper. Since he was not bedded down and prepared for the transition, he is knocked unconscious and wakes up with blood in his mouth.

Live-Action TV
  • In the Stargate franchise entering or exiting hyperspace tends to knock back people who haven't had the chance to brace themselves.
  • Slipstream transitions in Andromeda are accompanied by afterimage effects.
  • The pilot miniseries of the 2003 Battlestar Galactica portrays FTL jumps as being somewhat, uncomfortable, accompanied by horizontal visual distortion. This bit was largely dropped from the series proper though.
  • In Babylon 5 The Lost Tales, the transition back and forth between Quantum Space is... unpleasant. Sheridan enjoys subjecting annoying reporters to this.

Community Feedback Replies: 27
  • February 11, 2012
    Catbert
    I think Hyperspace Is A Scary Place already covers this reasonably well. I've seen several examples of this sort of thing already listed on the page.
  • February 11, 2012
    SeptimusHeap
    I think the point is about entering/exiting hyperspace, while Hyperspace Is A Scary Place is about being in hyperspace.
  • February 11, 2012
    zarpaulus
    Yeah, half my examples aren't even listed under "Hyperspace Is Scary", Stargate hyperspace is your run of the mill empty space while Alderson drive is instantaneous.
  • February 11, 2012
    GuyIncog
    • Played for laughs in Spaceballs. Dark Helmet orders his ship to "Ludicrous Speed" without putting on a seatbelt. He ends up clinging to the back of his chair by his fingertips when the ship accelerates, then flying forward and smashing into a panel when the ship stops.
  • February 11, 2012
    Mozgwsloiku
    • In Watchmen, Silk Spectre tends to get airsick when teleported. Does this count?

  • February 11, 2012
    zarpaulus
    In Forbidden Planet, the crew has to take pre-designated positions and secure themselves because the ship's exit from hyperspace is really jarring.
  • February 12, 2012
    fulltimeD
    The first couple eps of the reimagined Battlestar Galactica play this straight, with different characters expressing discomfort when the jump drive is used.
  • February 12, 2012
    BlackMageJ
    In the Honor Harrington series, a 'crash translation' allows a ship to retain a much higher base velocity than normal upon leaving hyperspace, but leaves everyone on board disorientated and nauseous for several minutes, so it tends to only be done when it gives a major tactical advantage.
  • February 12, 2012
    LeeM
    ^^ The Forbidden Planet example relates to the extreme acceleration/deceleration that occurs when entering or leaving hyperspace. The crew have to go into stasis tubes to avoid getting turned into jam.
  • February 13, 2012
    Arivne
    Literature
    • Andre Norton novel Uncharted Stars. Murdoc Jern guides his lifeboat into the starship Wendwind's docking bay just before the ship goes into hyper. Since he was not bedded down and prepared for the transition, he is knocked unconscious and wakes up with blood in his mouth.
  • February 13, 2012
    Duncan
    There is also regular hyperspace in The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy, on the Vogon ship. Ford insists on preparing by drinking beer and eating peanuts beforehand, to lessen the shock of the jump. In the television series, Ford and Arthur also lie down and put towels under their heads, after the jump back, the towels have moved to their feet.
  • February 14, 2012
    Koveras
  • February 18, 2012
    zarpaulus
    YKTTW bump
  • February 26, 2012
    TBeholder
    Methinks, this will still have a Missing Supertrope. So why not just expand it to FTL Is Unpleasant and dump here everything that doesn't quite fit into Hyperspace Is A Scary Place, but is close to that. At least until it will accumulate examples for one more splittable subtrope.
  • February 26, 2012
    AFP
    Film example:

    • In the Wing Commander film, making an FTL jump seems to suspend everything in freeze-frame for a few moments, in addition to shaking everything around. It's typical for crewmembers to strap themselves in. Except for Maniac, who intentionally launches himself into the air so that he can be suspended that way for a few moments before crashing back to the deck.

    Live Action Television:

    • In Babylon 5 The Lost Tales, the transition back and forth between Quantum Space is... unpleasant. Sheridan enjoys subjecting annoying reporters to this.
  • February 28, 2012
    TomWalpertac2
    this might need media type groups.
  • February 28, 2012
    zarpaulus
    ^ Done.
  • March 15, 2012
    zarpaulus
    Bump
  • March 23, 2015
    DAN004
    • In Doom movie, when the Space Marines go to Mars with the warp device, they went out of the warp while vomiting.
  • March 24, 2015
    robinjohnson
    I propose this for the page quote:

    Ford: And you'd better be prepared for the jump into hyperspace. It's unpleasantly like being drunk.
    Arthur: Well, what's so unpleasant about being drunk?
    Ford: You ask a glass of water.
  • March 24, 2015
    Chabal2
    Ciaphas Cain (and by extension Warhammer 40 K): Some people unused to Warp transitions end up losing their lunch when the ship jumps. Teleportation is equally unpleasant if not worse, as it involves getting yanked through the Warp in a very small tunnel, hopefully fast enough that you don't see what's looking at you.
  • March 24, 2015
    robinjohnson
    How about Hyperspace Sickness for a shorter title?
  • March 24, 2015
    DAN004
    Wait, I just found Teleportation Sickness
  • March 24, 2015
    zarpaulus
    ^ maybe should be integrated with that.
  • March 24, 2015
    randomsurfer
    In the short story from Isaac Asimov's I Robot "Escape!" a robot brain is driven insane trying to make a hyperspace drive. Another is driven slightly quirky, but manages to survive. The reason, it turns out, is that the jump to hyperspace causes the humans in the ship to die - but they get better once the jump is over.
  • April 13, 2015
    dalek955
    • In The Stars At War, transiting a warp point causes a gravity surge that momentarily disorients people and instruments, which adds to the danger of a warp point assault since the enemy gets a couple free shots at you before your point defense recovers.
  • April 15, 2015
    Arivne

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=a20fd6598oj7ec7kymgka2rq