->''"In today's modern army, '''everyone''' is trained to do '''everything'''."''
-->-- '''Mike Nelson''' regarding ''Film/TerminatorSalvation'', ''Podcast/{{Rifftrax}}''

A soldier or similar character who constantly switches roles on the battlefield without regard to service branch or rank. He is also usually capable of handling every task he needs to do by himself. If you see one and the same soldier participating in an infantry skirmish one day, jump into the commander's seat of a tank the next, still later pilot a helicopter and finally go on a risky secret mission deep in enemy territory, then you know this trope is in effect.

A form of EconomyCast. Often a special case of TheMainCharactersDoEverything. Usually requires the character to have a UniversalDriversLicense. SisterTrope to OmnidisciplinaryScientist and OmnidisciplinaryLawyer.


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Anime/LegendOfGalacticHeroes'' does this often: In the side stories Reinhard's and Kircheis' first assignment after graduating from military school was driving a scout vehicle in the ground forces. Then an assignment as chief navigator (Reinhard) and security officer on a destroyer, a stint as military police investigators, and a cruiser captaincy for Reinhard with Kircheis tagging along as security officer again. Later, when Reinhard was a commodore commanding a flotilla of 100 vessels, he personally took to the field during a ground assault on an enemy base and captured their commander. In the main series, Reuentahl and Mittermeyer don powered armour and personally participate in the capture of Ovlesser and the station he commands, even though they were already admirals at the time.
* Quenser and Heivia of ''LightNovel/HeavyObject'' are, on paper at least, a maintenance tech and radar specialist. In practice they engage in land battles, sea battles, aquatic base invasions, infiltration of enemy bases/cities, and more. The two tend to complain about this.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* In ''Franchise/GIJoe'' it was typical to see characters doing things they shouldn't have been expected to, starting with General Hawk (the leader) doubling as the Surface-to-Air-Missile operator. Lady Jaye and the Baroness, both intelligence experts, both found themselves in the backseat of dogfighting jets at one point.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* While not a soldier as such, Film/JamesBond certainly qualifies. The only time he couldn't do everything was in ''Film/{{Goldfinger}}'', when he couldn't disarm a nuclear device. This was back before the character transcended humanity as he did in later films.
* The page quote is elicited in the ''Podcast/{{Rifftrax}}'' version of ''Film/TerminatorSalvation'' when John Connor simply starts flying an abandoned helicopter in the middle of a skirmish. This means that he has training as a chopper pilot... despite not being one of the Resistance's chopper pilots. Though, ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'' mentions that Sarah shacked up with whoever she could to learn military stuff off for John. [[CrazyPrepared Flying a helicopter could easily have been one of the skills]].
* In ''Film/WingCommander'' the hot-shot pilots are recruited to infiltrate an enemy ship, a mission that would typically be relegated to a marine detachment.
* Army Air Corps fighter jocks that survived ''Film/PearlHarbor'' are given new assignments as ''bomber'' pilots. [[{{Film/Airplane}} It's a totally different kind of flying, altogether.]]
* In ''Film/TheHurtLocker,'' Sanborn and James make a pretty good sniper/spotter team despite being EOD technicians. Both career fields require years of highly specialized training, and it's unlikely two soldiers in the same squad would be experts in both specialties. On the other hand, the film goes out of its way to avert this trope in other areas, making it obvious that James doesn't know what he's doing when he tries his hand at intelligence gathering or hunting for insurgents.
* In ''KongSkullIsland'' Packard's unit is called an assault helicopter battalion, and it operates slightly anachronistic UH-1 Hueys. Once downed, the surviving pilots and door gunners simply operate as infantry and are even geared up accordingly. In a real life Vietnam-era Air Cavalry battalion, the helicopter crews were just that, with the infantry they carried (who couldn't fly the choppers) to and from battle being a seperate formation (at least company-size) within the same battalion.

* Par for the course in Creator/GeorgeMacDonaldFraser's ''Literature/McAuslan'' series. During his two years in the 2nd Gordon Highlanders in the twilight of the British Empire, Fraser's expy Lieutenant Dand [=MacNeill=] (deep breath) commands a troop train in wartorn Palestine, catches a deserter, commands a desert outpost, stops an Arab riot, manages the battalion football team, mounts guard at Edinburgh Castle, guards a rebel leader, attends a court-martial, wins a quiz show and a golf tournament, competes in the Highland Games, digs up buried treasure, plays miniature golf with a nun, changes diapers, referees a wargame, gets lost inside a monument, acts in a play, and chases a moonshiner in the Scottish Highlands. This is on top of his normal job, which is leading ([[FatherToHisMen and parenting]]) a platoon of obstreperous Glaswegians.
-->''"[I]f I'd been ordered to redecorate the Art/SistineChapel or deliver a sermon in Finnish, I'd hardly have blinked an eyelid before running to the RSM pleading for assistance."''
* Specifically {{invoked|Trope}} in the ''Literature/XWingSeries'', as Wedge Antilles wanted pilots who could double as commandos in a pinch. Therefore when re-forming Rogue Squadron in the eponymous book, if given the choice between two pilots of equal skill, he always picked the one with useful ground-based skills as well. Done the other way around in the Wraith Squadron books, where Wedge wanted commandos who could fly fighters as well.
* In ''[[Literature/GauntsGhosts Ghostmaker]]'', the Royal Volpone Bluebloods are an elite SuperSoldier force that practices regularly with every conceivable discipline of war they might be expected to use in addition to their standard shock trooper know-how. This allows them to, for instance, storm an enemy's fortified bunker and then seize and use the artillery guns on top with pinpoint accuracy. About the one thing they can't handle is stealth, which is fortunately the specialty of their rival regiment, the eponymous Ghosts -- near to every Tanith Ghost regardless of role is accomplished at stealth, tracking, and survival. When they team up in the novel's climax, they perform a next-to-impossible feat by pushing a force of about sixty into the enemy's line in the middle of a torrential storm, running roughshod over an entire army with their interlocking skills.
* ''Literature/TheMakoSaga'': Precisely ''because'' it's meant to teach and require every possible skill a soldier could know, no one ''Mako Assault'' player '''can''' be an expert in everything so the game ''has'' to be played as a team. Similarly the Renegades do come out of their training as commandos who can also be {{Ace Pilot}}s, but they all have their own particular areas of expertise: Lee is by far the best pilot and the main strategist, Mac is the second-best pilot and the best hacker, Link is a sniper, Hamish is the demolitions guy, and Danny is an infantryman and martial artist. They're all ''competent'' in each other's skillsets, but they all lean on the others.
* In the ''Gray Death Legion Saga'', set in the Franchise/BattleTechExpandedUniverse, Grayson Carlyle engages in everything from piloting a HumongousMecha, infiltration/ex-filtration, scouting, and vehicle combat, in addition to his duties as the owner of a [[PrivateMilitaryContractors mercenary company]] employing over 300 people. Mostly averted in the rest of the series, which focuses primarily on the battlemech pilots which are often in a more structure command.
* In ''Literature/LegendsOfDune'', warship commanders also double as ground force commanders, even though those two should be entirely different skill sets. Likely a case of TheMainCharactersDoEverything. Then again, the prequels are notorious for assuming space combat and ground combat are pretty much the same.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/SpaceAboveAndBeyond'' features space fighter pilots who also double as land troops for some reason.
** {{Lampshaded}} in one episode when the 58th complain about this; Colonel [=McQueen=] justifies it with the Marine creed that every Marine is a rifleman. (This is not accurate, even in the Marines. Despite the text of the creed, in real life sending naval aviators in as infantry ''on purpose'' is a stupid risk of very expensively trained officers.)
** {{Deconstructed}} in "Sugar Dirt". The 58th are ordered to land their planes and join in ground combat, which lets their fighters be destroyed on the ground when the Chigs spring their trap.
* ''Series/BattlestarGalactica2003'' suffers from this, notably in the later seasons. Justified, in that by that point they have too few people left to split the work, but the fact that the show has no Marine among the main cast really shows in how often the main characters have to go outside their specialization.
* In Creator/KenBurns' TVDocumentary ''[[UsefulNotes/TheAmericanCivilWar The Civil War]]'' there are two soldiers -- Elisha Hunt Rhodes on the North's side and Sam Watkins on the South -- who seem to be at every major battle of the war in a variety of duties. Rhodes goes from Private to Colonel during the war. {{Justified|Trope}} inasmuch as these were real people.
* Harm from ''Series/{{JAG}}'' who, despite being a lawyer, seems to be able to perform every single job in the US Navy; from flying a fighter jet (his previous job in the Navy) to parachuting out of a helicopter with a squad of marines. He can also do every job in the Marine Corps, going undercover as a Force Recon Gunnery Sergeant, later being complimented as a "credit to the uniform". Not to mention that most of their investigations would probably be better handled by the Office of the Inspector General or {{Series/NCIS}}.
* Pollo and Vorenus on ''Series/{{Rome}}'' go from infantrymen to commanding a squad of German cavalry in-between episodes. That is quite frankly the ''most'' believable part [[TheGump about their career]].

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* More or less the point of the Dawn Caste in ''TabletopGame/{{Exalted}}'', who -- given time and the right Charms -- can be a tactical genius, Musashi-level swordsman, knife-thrower extraordinaire and kung fu master who can put an arrow through your eye from the [[WeirdMoon Silver Chair of Night]]. And that's just with their Caste abilities; when you consider their other abilities, they can also be guerrillas, ninjas, cavalrymen, sailors or even sorcerers.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'': Compared to many Space Marines, the Alpha Legion don't pick out specialists. Every Alpha Legionnaire is trained in the use of ''all'' Astartes equipment; equally capable as close assault troops, heavy weapons troops, fast attack (like speeders and bikes, etc.), trained in the use of Terminator armour, a master of stealth and black-ops warfare (yes, even the black-ops specialist Astartes have ''their own'' black-ops division), a brilliant spy and manipulator... Most importantly however, every Alpha Legionnaire is a capable leader and trainer of men whenever necessary. This means three things: 1) the Alpha Legion can use as many or few specialist marines as needed to best complete any mission at any time, 2) the Alpha Legion can employ non-Astartes soldiers and agents in vast numbers, and 3) the Alpha Legion leadership is practically impossible to decapitate, as soldiers are encouraged (and capable of) improvising and acting on their own initiative.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Averted in ''Videogame/PlanetSide 1''. A soldier can only use things he's certified in; meaning a soldier certified in driving tanks probably won't be certified in piloting bombers. Once you reach Battle Rank 25, you usually have enough certification points to do almost anything; and [=BR40=] unlocks ''everything''. ''Planetside 2'' allows soldiers to use any vehicle and class by default, though specialization requires expending certification points, which are granted every 250xp (roughly 2.5 kills); a [=BR1=] Prowler driver can use the basic tank with a HEAT cannon and 20mm gun, whereas a specialized player can utilize armor-piercing ammo, EnemyDetectingRadar, [[DualModeUnit anchored mode]] and [[RegeneratingHealth self-healing armor]], among other things.
* ''VideoGame/WingCommander'' series: In the second game Jeanette "Angel" Deveraux was a starfighter pilot, but shortly after the end of the second ExpansionPack she transferred to a special forces team doing reconnaissance on the [[MegaNeko Kilrathi]] homeworld, and was captured along with them. A milder example that affects gameplay is how the player and the other pilots constantly switch between different types of space fighters, such as interceptors or torpedo bombers, during the campaign, instead of each being assigned to a particular squadron that uses one type in order to fill a particular tactical niche.
* In the Soviet campaign of the original ''VideoGame/CallOfDuty'', you played as an infantryman, then at one point there was a tank mission justified with a blurb about lack of tank crews leading to your reassignment, and then back on foot for the finale. ''Call of Duty 2'' wisely avoided this by making it clear you played as a different character in the tank missions, then ''World at War'' did the same thing as the first, with even the ''rest'' of your tank's crew seemingly being comprised of other soldiers from the same squad as you.
** The ''VideoGame/ModernWarfare'' series tends towards this. In a lot of cases they try to justify this via ElitesAreMoreGlamorous (the first player character is in the Special Air Service), but then ''2'' ended up with you playing as an Army Ranger, Ramirez, who nevertheless still [[MemeticMutation did everything]].
* Common in games: In the ''VideoGame/{{Battlefield}}'' series, for example, the various class options only covers infantry roles, yet every character can jump into any vehicle at will and take control of them. Players are also able to easily switch classes by taking and swapping kits with a fallen player - your engineer's apparently also qualified to be a medic, he just needs the equipment on-hand for it.
** This could lead to some really strange situations when aircraft come into play. In ''[[VideoGame/BattlefieldBadCompany Bad Company 2]]'', for instance, players entering helicopters would just keep using their class skin..... so a two-seater helicopter like the Hind flown by two snipers (in ghillie suits) looked like the Wookiee Air Force. In Battlefield 3 and 4, players' skins change to a special pilot skin when they enter a plane. Occasionally, bailing out will fail to reset the skin to infantry, and so you might see pilots running around with assault rifles.
* A slightly different example from ''VideoGame/WorldInConflict'': [[NonEntityGeneral 2nd Lt. (later Lt. and Cpt.) Parker]] is originally an infantry commander, yet throughout the game, he is given command not only over infantry squads, but also armored units, AA batteries, heavy artillery batteries and even attack helicopters in one mission, and in much greater quantities than you would expect for such a junior officer. The ExpansionPack features a different PlayerCharacter but he also comes from the infantry corner, yet is on one occasion given control over ''artillery batteries''.
** Both of these examples are somewhat justified; the player character on each side is doing several people's jobs at once because their unit is [[YouAreInCommandNow desperately short-handed]] and/or a scratch-force of survivors from several units who took a hammering in the early stages of the war, so the chain of command is kind of ad-hoc.
* Averted in the original ''VideoGame/OperationFlashpoint.'' There are four characters, one infantry man, one tank commander, one pilot and one special forces soldier that does mission behind enemy lines. The only odd thing is that the pilot starts out as a helicopter pilot and ends up flying an A-10, but it [[{{Handwave}} is mentioned that they're short on people.]]
* In ''VideoGame/{{Crysis}}'', the player character's primary job is as an elite commando. He also has a UniversalDriversLicense and can competently operate everything from M1 Abrams main battle tanks to VTOL dropships.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Xenonauts}}'', as there are no character classes as such, every soldier can perform all combat roles. This is somewhat averted with the aliens, some of whom specialise in particular tasks (Harridans are snipers, Reapers are close combat specialists etc.).
* ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerGenerals'': All infantry units can commandeer disabled (read:pilot was a victim of SnipingTheCockpit) vehicles, no matter their battlefield role. This permanently removes the unit, however (including heroes), although their experience level does transfer. The basic soldier (Ranger, Rebel, Red Guard) is also the only unit capable of capturing buildings.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Despite the cast of ''Roleplay/DarwinsSoldiers'' having a [[LoadsAndLoadsOfCharacters very diverse spectrum]] of backstories and skills listed on their character sheets, in practice almost every character except Dr. Shelton did very little except kill lots of enemies in one way or another. Many objectives in the role-play boiled down to either "cover Shelton from the bad guys until he finishes whatever needs to be done," or "rescue Shelton from the bad guys so he can do what needs to be done." This is because Shelton was one of the few characters who wasn't gun-proficient, so to compensate his author always made him doing something technical or scientific or whatnot.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* In ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'', TheEngineer and former soldier Moloch von Zinzer explains that being able to do more than one job was necessary in the army just to stay alive.
--> '''Von Zinzer:''' These days, machines are more important than soldiers. If you know how to ''fix'' machines it makes you more ''valuable''.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In the ''WesternAnimation/GIJoeARealAmericanHero'' cartoons, it was typical to see Army infantrymen such as Snake-Eyes or Duke flying the Skystriker fighter jet; Snake-Eyes even had his own livery on his plane. Zap, a bazooka-man, often doubled as a helicopter pilot.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]] by Gen. Charles C. Krulak, [[SemperFi USMC]], in his article [[http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/usmc/strategic_corporal.htm The Strategic Corporal: Leadership in the Three Block War]]. In essence, General Krulak claimed that Marines would need to be highly flexible on the modern battlefield. In his hypothetical "Three Block War", a Corporal (a very junior noncomissioned officer) might need to deal with combat, humanitarian aid, and peacekeeping, all within the space of three city blocks simultaneously. Thus, [[YouAreInCommandNow junior leaders must be trained and empowered]] to make important decisions without seeking input or permission from senior leadership who may not be immediately present or available.