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[[quoteright:300:[[Film/ANewHope http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rsz_800px-starwars-sterling5_8978.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:300:[- Not a laser...-] ]]

The most prominent type of RayGun these days.

When you turn on a LaserSight, it immediately shows up on your target. This is because it's a laser and moves at the speed of light. So wouldn't you think a laser weapon would also (effectively) immediately hit the target? Logically, yes; but this is TV, where HollywoodScience rules. Thus, energy weapons move a ''lot'' slower than the speed of light (and a lot slower than bullets in the same show) and can be dodged after they are fired. Occasionally, it's [[ScotchTape explained]] by the dodger seeing the person aiming at them and going for the trigger, and moving in the split-second before they pull it. Also, don't expect the lasers to do more than make victims [[NonLethalWarfare stumble backwards a few feet]], unless of course the targets are [[WhatMeasureIsANonHuman inhuman]] or just [[RedShirt not very important]].

Speaking of knockback, an EnergyWeapon in fiction will always have knockback (which is usually [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulsed_Energy_Projectile okay]]) and [[LawOfInverseRecoil recoil]] (which makes no sense at all), in spite of the fact that light has negligible momentum. Finally, regardless of a laser's frequency and the medium it's shooting through, it will make futuristic ''zap'' noises and be visible (and [[PowerGlows glowy]]).

Most of the complaints about laser weapons not behaving like real lasers are because their primary function in TV are not to be [[RealityIsUnrealistic realistic depictions]] of how real energy-based weapons would work. They are merely [[FamilyFriendlyFirearms stand-ins for "real" guns]] to appease {{media watchdog}}s, to establish a show as [[CallARabbitASmeerp being futuristic]], or simply applying the RuleOfCool. In fact, the usual "laser bolts" effect looks a lot more like machine gun fire using tracer bullets (which was even colored according to nation, as in ''Franchise/StarWars'') and early writers' UsefulNotes/WorldWarII experiences may have inspired the effect.

There actually are "real lasers" in weapons research and development -- like the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_YAL-1 Airborne Laser]] and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tactical_High_Energy_Laser THEL]]. These lasers are supposed to burn through targets (like missiles) and cause their fuel/warhead to explode or their airframe to disintegrate when it hits, although this is also a continuous beam and requires some time to work. Solid-state pulsed lasers are also in development, which fire bursts of energy and are lighter than fluid-based lasers, but harder to cool. Last but not least, the heat from a powerful laser wouldn't just burn through clothing or make a neat, bloodless, pin-sized hole. There's a common misconception that laser beams cauterize wounds, but real laser wounds are every bit as bloody as knife wounds. It can also cause the water in the body to boil, expand and rip the surrounding tissues apart, much like a high velocity bullet impact. There are also electrolasers under development, which ionize the air so that electric current can be sent along the beam's path. Ironically, all of these characteristics make lasers far more effective as weapons than their portrayal in most fiction, which is in fact the main reason that the military is developing them in the first place. It's also probably the main reason we're not likely to see realistic laser weapons in children's shows.

For those keeping score, the title of this trope comes from an otherwise unrelated line in the first ''AustinPowers'' movie ("I want [[WeaponizedAnimal sharks with frickin laser beams on their heads!]]" - and when they appear on the third movie, they are realistic lasers instead of a RayGun). For ''really frickin '''big''''' laser beams, see WaveMotionGun. For real handguns {{Bowdlerise}}d into energy guns, see FamilyFriendlyFirearms. If it's RaygunGothic, it's probably a DeathRay. When such weapons are used [[SpamAttack excessively]], see BeamSpam. And when they track their target like missiles, see HomingLasers. Often overlaps with HandBlast for the user's convenience.

Occasionally misspelled "[[XtremeKoolLetterz lazer]]" in fiction, commonly to differentiate from actual [=LASERs=]. Frequently misspelled "lazer" in RealLife, because people don't know better, or because it's easier to trademark names that aren't real words. In reality, the name '''"L.A.S.E.R."''' is an acronym of "'''L'''ight '''A'''mplification by '''S'''timulated '''E'''mission of '''R'''adiation", since [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin that's what lasers do]]. It helps that, by happenstance, the acronym "LASER" makes for a [[RuleOfCool cool-sounding name]]. (It also sounds like an [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agentive_ending agentive]], which lets us back-form the verb "to lase", meaning "to use a laser on".)

----
!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Beam weapons in ''Franchise/{{Gundam}}'', while fast, are frequently dodged when they are fired. (First few episodes of the First Gundam, Char Aznable stated very clear that he dodges where the gun points, not the beam) This is also because the beam weapons aren't laser beams, but are made up of particles with a considerable amount of mass, called a "Mega-particle", and thus are much slower than the speed of light. See below, and also see MinovskyPhysics (the WaveMotionGun-grade weapons like the Solar Ray and Solar system ''are'' portrayed as travelling at the speed of light; fortunately, [[PsychicPowers Newtypes]] sense the shots before they fire in Gundam).
** ''Franchise/{{Gundam}}'' creator YoshiyukiTomino has commented, in later years, that he chose to use particle beam weapons over more realistic lasers for dramatic purposes, feeling that the invisibility and unerring accuracy of lasers would make for boring combat sequences.
** Actual laser weapons are briefly seen in ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing'', which otherwise uses the franchise-standard particle beams. They are depicted as hitting instantaneously and melting armor on contact. It's not explained why they aren't in more widespread use.
* {{Macross}}[=/=]Anime/{{Robotech}}. Their beam weapons are even called "lasers", even if they behave like those from Franchise/{{Gundam}}... but then, it's {{hand wave}}d as a product of [[AppliedPhlebotinum OverTechnology]].
** On occasion, the head-mounted cannons actually behave like very high-powered lasers, and are used as cutting tools.
* They are all over the place in the Mazinger series -''Anime/MazingerZ'', ''Anime/GreatMazinger'', ''Anime/UFORoboGrendizer''-. Mazinger-Z is equiped with EyeBeams, making it -again!- the TropeMaker in HumongousMecha, and Grendizer is armed with three or four kinds of different laser beams. Plenty {{Robeast}}s from all series are equipped with sundry kinds of laser beams, and the Vegans were mainly armed with ray guns or rifles. Dr. Hell also build ray guns for human use but intriguingly his minions nearly never used them. his CoDragons and {{Mook}}s [[KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter prefered guns or machine guns shot bullets]]. Both {{Humongous Mecha}}s and {{Robeast}}s are frequently seen dodging beams.
* Done right (according to real physics) in the anime ''Anime/StarshipOperators''. Beam weapons would hit the ship without warning, to the point the crew had to hide their vessel behind a large asteroid to avoid being destroyed by attacks they couldn't dodge.
** Also, the main way beam weapons destroy ships is by overheating the entire target ship past their capacity to vent (instead of causing localized damage as with all the other weapons systems) until it blows up from said heat.
* Gan Deeva, Juna's bow in ''Anime/EarthMaidenArjuna'', is an ''energy bow''.
* ''Manga/WolfsRain'' deserves a mention here. The laser-like weapons installed in the Nobles' airships fire beams that can actually ZIG-ZAG en route to their targets. (To quote [[Franchise/TheHitchHikersGuideToTheGalaxy another series]], "don't ask me how it works or I'll start to whimper".)
* ''Anime/YuGiOh'' features ''[[WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries ancient Egyptian laser beams]]''.
* You'd think that a series like ''Manga/OnePiece'' would be void of any beams of the sort, but through [[LightIsNotGood the powers of one of]] [[TheGovernment The World Government's]] [[LightIsNotGood three Marine admirals]], and technology 500 years ahead of the current time, even pirates can face off against FrickinLaserBeams.
* ''Anime/SailorMoon''
** Sailor Venus' Crescent Beam. It's described as been made of light, but moves far slower. Also in one notable occasion the Crescent Beam bounced on the enemy, regrouped as a ball on his head and then launched a dozen beams on his head (appropriately, this variant was named Crescent Beam ''Shower''), while in another Venus fired a few dozens ''curving'' beams.
** Sailor Star Fighter's "Star Serious Laser" attack. Shown as a beam of light that travels much, much slower than the real thing.
* Averted and played with in ''The Melancholy of LightNovel/HaruhiSuzumiya'' season 2: when Haruhi subconsciously gives Mikuru the ability to "shoot laser beams" for a special effects shot, the resulting beam is not cool-looking and innocuous, but invisible, instant and razor-thin. Later, Mikuru is enchanted with various other beam weapons which also adhere to the specific principles of whatever name Haruhi used.
** The laser would have hit Kyon had Nagato not caught it. [[BadassAdorable Barehanded.]] ''[[FasterThanLightTravel After it was fired.]]'' '''''[[{{HSQ}} Twice.]]'''''
* Laser weapons are used to protect space stations in ''Anime/{{Planetes}}''. [[MohsScaleOfSciFiHardness They are invisible and hit instantly. Did you really think this show would have it any other way?]]
** Another point the show got correct: even if the lasers hit instantly, they don't DESTROY instantly. Thus requiring one character to use RammingAlwaysWorks on a missile that has negated laser defense systems... just by having an erratic flight path to prevent a continuous beam.
* ''Anime/TransformersCybertron'' actually pokes fun at this in one episode by having [[TheStarscream Starscream]] open fire with his laser cannons, point out that lasers travel at the speed of light, and then having Optimus Prime promptly dodge his lasers with ease.
* ''Anime/SuperAtragon'': The enemy gigantic black cylinders' [[WaveMotionGun powerful laser shots]]; bonus points for the "gravity lens[[note]] a giant orange ring[[/note]]" that bends the lasers, aiming them at targets.
* ''Anime/CodeGeass'': [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2s_EeYBqJI Lelouch in R2 when he gets the Shinkiro]]. He even has an attack called the "Zero Beam"; which can be condensed into a single laser beam, or when he shoots his [[ViewersAreMorons diamond thing]] it can work like a mirror, and deflect several beams into dozens of enemies.
* ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' actually portrays lasers somewhat accurately. Despite coming from [[EyeBeams the eyes]] of {{Eldritch Abomination}}s, the only thing visible about the beams for the most part is the glint from excess light emanating from the source. The two exceptions are Ramiel, who has an extremely visible beam and Zeruel's beam as it [[spoiler:blows off Unit 01's left arm]] during its fight. {{Justified|Trope}} in Zeruel's case, as the place it was fighting in was being smashed by the combat, [[FridgeLogic filling the air with ample dust and smoke particles to reflect the beam or be burnt-up by it]]. This only applies to the beams themselves, not their [[CreepyCoolCrosses effects]].
* While most dragon slayers in ''Manga/FairyTail'' have a large cone of destruction for their roar attack, Sting gets a narrow beam that he can swing around.
* A very realistic portrayal of lasers shows up in the final episode of the ''Franchise/SentouYouseiYukikaze'' OVA in the form of the Free Electron Laser Unit attached to the Flip Knights. They see extensive use for the anime's final battle. The novel goes into much more detail regarding how they work: while it doesn't give a formal name to the lasers, Jack states that the lasers have a near perfect accuracy rating (unless you can outrun the speed of light), are unaffected by weather conditions, and fire in 0.7 second bursts with the cannon having a 1.95 degree turn radius. The lasers in the anime work exactly as described above, firing continuous beams in pulses with a limited swivel turret. Perhaps the only thing unrealistic is that the anime shows the lasers as visible bright blue beams of light.
* The [[AMechByAnyOtherName Martian Kataphrakt]] that lands in New Orleans in ''Anime/AldnoahZero'' uses bright red lasers as its primary weapon. In a nod to reality, the lasers hit instantly: the American F-22 squadron and Kataphrakt platoon defending New Orleans are picked off from extreme distance [[CurbStompBattle with no chance to fight back.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fanfiction]]
* There are a good amount of these in ''Fanfic/CalvinAndHobbesTheSeries''. "Thunderstorm"'s plot ''began'' because of one of these.
* Harkin's signature move, Red Rays in ''[[FanFic/MyLittleUnicorn My Brave Pony: Star Fleet Magic III]]'', also counts as a HandBlast.
* In ''FanFic/WorldwarWarOfEquals'', the Boeing YAL-1 and the US Navy's COIL laser program gets a huge increase in funding to fight the invaders. Currently only the YAL-1 has seen combat use and [[MomentOfAwesome in it's first use it takes down five alien aircraft - at 200 miles away.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* Subverted in ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'': "It's not a laser! It's a light bulb that blinks!"
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* ''Film/AustinPowers'', the TropeNamer, though it doesn't actually feature an example of sharks with "Frickin Laser Beams" until the third movie.
* The blasters of ''Franchise/StarWars'' are not actually lasers ({{retcon}}ned into plasma-casters) and neither are the [[LaserBlade lightsabers]], nor the ship-to-ship turbolasers, nor the Death Star's superlaser (though one component in the beam is a proton MASER). That said, ''Film/AttackOfTheClones'' shows off some lasers that do act like lasers, a constant beam that appears instantly.
** And that one Star Destroyer's constant-beam laser in ''Film/RevengeOfTheSith'' that breaks a Banking Clan Comm Ship (right before a bit of debris from it hits the Star Destroyer). The [[SpaceIsNoisy sound of it]] was awesome.
*** If you pause the scene you can actually see that the source of the beam is one of those walker thingies that fired the beam in ''Attack of the Clones''. According to the official site that is actually one of the ground based lasers firing from the hangar bay of the Star Destroyer; many Star Destroyer captains augmented their firepower by enlisting the help of the ground troops they carried.
** ''EmpireAtWar: [[ExpansionPack Forces Of Corruption]]'' gives the Star Wars universe "point-defense lasers" that actually work like lasers, instantly appearing and vaporizing their targets. Only works against incoming missiles, though. Just like the laser-that-acts-like-a-laser in ''Attack of the Clones'', they're color-coded a deep azure blue.
* Film/JamesBond:
** ''Film/{{Goldfinger}}'' has the famous (or infamous, depending on your perspective) "crotch-laser", which was an actual laser designed to cut gold. It was later used as part of the villain's scheme, however its initial use was far more memorable, hence the name.
*** Interestingly, real lasers of that power level tend to be in the infrared spectrum. The red beam we see is a secondary guide laser similar to a laser gunsight, not the actual damage-causing bit.
** ''Film/DiamondsAreForever'' had a KillSat with a laser that could destroy a submarine deep underwater and a missile inside its silo.
** ''Film/{{Moonraker}}'' has multiple examples: the powerful lasers in the space station and Drax's shuttle, laser equipped space suits, and the hand lasers used by Drax's security personnel on the satellite and the U.S. Marines.
** In ''Film/DieAnotherDay'', the villains try to use industrial lasers on Jinx... and [[PunnyName Mr. Kil]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-qKZJxCWKY gets them instead]].
* Not long after ''Film/{{Goldfinger}}'', the MadScientist in ''{{Help}}'' had his flunky turn a laser on the Beatles...but seconds later a fuse blows. The flunky stammers "...wrong plug. Just give me five minutes..."
* ''TheBlackHole'' consistently portrayed its laser guns firing a beam that traveled instantly.
* Another film that you wouldn't expect consistency or realism from: the guns in ''Film/LogansRun'' are lasers, but they don't use a visible beam. The characters just point at something, fire, and a single point on whatever they're aiming at bursts violently into flame.
** ...which was a complete simplification of the Sandman's Gun in the book, which was (rather than anything to with lasers) was a heavy pistol with six selectable specialized shells in a revolver-like cylinder. Including the so-called "homer" round, which could curve to follow the target. The film retained the muzzle flash, though.
** There's no mention in the film that the flameguns were supposed to be lasers of any sort. The guns didn't even have a ''name.'' (The ill-fated ''Series/LogansRun'' TV series that followed called the guns "weapons" and gave them a stun setting, but still no mention was made of lasers.)
* ''Film/ShortCircuit'' has military robots armed with shoulder-mounted "lasers" that are actually more of an explosive "pulse" than a typical Hollywood laser, needing to charge up and causing whatever it hits to blow up spectacularly immediately upon impact.
** Almost. Armored tanks explode spectacularly, but [[strike:No.5]]Johnny Five was able to defend himself quite handily with a common rock.
** Presumably the robot is able to regulate the amount of power put into the beam. In the above instance, the opposing robot was specifically trying to disable and capture, not destroy, Johnny, which would necessitate less power. Johnny also uses his laser to shoot various articles of clothing off an attacker's body at one point; given his [[ActualPacifist views on "disassembling"]], he probably wouldn't risk using a lethal charge against a human.
* The plot of ''Film/RealGenius'' involves several college engineering geniuses working on a powerful chemical laser as a school-sponsored research project, not realizing that it is intended for use as an [[KillSat orbital assassination weapon]].
* ''TheManhattanProject'' has [[ChekhovsGun Chekhov's Laser Beam]]. The Medatomics lab uses one to purify plutonium. Dr. Mathewson uses it to impress Paul by having it cut through a steel plate. Later, Paul uses it to cut a small hole in the wall to help him smuggle out the plutonium.
* ''Film/StarshipTroopers 2'' featured strobe-light weapon props because [[SpecialEffectFailure they couldn't afford real guns]]. Incidentally, [[RealityIsUnrealistic everyone complained that the guns didn't look like they were shooting "lasers"]].
* ''Film/StarTrek'' (2009) follows the "bullets of light" model: a handheld phaser shoots discrete pulses. The ''Enterprise'' itself ''shakes from recoil'' as its phasers fire.
** However, as portrayed through all Star Trek series, phasers are not actually lasers but phased particle beams (called nadions) that occasionally look like lasers. WordOfGod is that GeneRoddenberry realized shortly into TOS that people who saw the show in 20 years would say "Lasers don't do that" and retconned all weapons into phasers instead.
** In contrast to most of the rest of the franchise where phasers are presented as beam weapons that connect instantly. They still create shaking on a target when hit though... Err... those are Particle beams. The phased laser is carrying all kinds of hazardous extras for the feds.
* [[Film/GodzillaVsDestoroyah Destoroyah]] from the ''Franchise/{{Godzilla}}'' franchise is able to emit a laser beam from his horn.
** The ''Franchise/{{Godzilla}}'' franchise also sported freezing lasers. Large weapons mounted on vehicles fired blue laser beams that would lower the temperature of the target hit to several thousand degrees below 0°C, creating ice even out of thin air (presumably the water in the air freezing). This does not happen anywhere else along the laser beam, not even on the gun's muzzle. Ice crystals should be forming along the whole length of the beam, causing a a cold fog to fall along it, but this doesn't happen.
* In Disney's ''{{Condorman}}'', the hero's CoolBoat comes equipped with a small turret-mounted laser cannon. Oddly, the non-instantaneous beams it fires do indeed [[ReflectingLaser reflect off of water]] -- choppy ocean water. In order to accept it, you need to be working on RuleOfCool.
* In ''Film/IronMan2'', one of Tony's new toys is [[spoiler:a Death Blossom-like spinning multi-laser thing.]]
** It's re-used in ''Film/TheAvengers'' but has been upgraded from a one-off to a multi-use with ejectable cartridges. When Tony tries to cut through the armor of a [[spoiler:Chitauri Leviathan]], [[VoiceWithAnInternetConnection JARVIS]] informs him that the ARC reactor will run out of power before the laser can get through.
* Mostly averted in ''{{Congo}}''; the laser has no recoil, travels immediately in a straight constant beam and produces deadly amounts of heat and cutting power. It does, however, include a visible beam, appears to cauterize wounds, and is powered by an unprocessed diamond that was chipped out of a rock seconds earlier. So all the cool parts without any of the hassle or overwhelming gore.
* In ''Film/TheMatrix'' series the Sentinel robots could fire a red continuous beam laser, but only at close range.
* People on Zyrex's payroll in ''Film/{{Parasite}}'' have an access to laser weapons, and the main human antagonist uses one prominently.
* The sci-fi horror film ''Film/ChoppingMall'' has {{Killer Robot}}s that fire these. Said lasers are powerful enough to [[YourHeadASplode make someone's head explode]] with one shot.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* The Andalites in ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'' have Shredders, which the Yeerks modified into Dracon beams, which [[KickTheDog dissolve the target more slowly -- and painfully]].
* Nita in the ''YoungWizards'' series has a spell that manifests as a hand-held terawatt linear particle accelerator. Yes, a frickin' ''magical'' particle beam rifle.
* In RobertSheckley's short story "The Gun Without A Bang", an astronaut is sent to a distant jungle planet along with a new prototype laser gun he's supposed to test. Leaving his ship, he is promptly beset by a pack of dog-like predators. The gun works flawlessly, reducing dogs and wide swaths of jungle to dust, but because the gun doesn't make any noise and the beam is invisible, the "dogs" don't understand that the human is a threat and waves of them keep coming despite the fact that so many of them are being destroyed. (The man also has to worry about enormous severed tree-parts falling on him...) The man finally [[spoiler: desperately, fights his way back to his ship, only to discover the gun's beam has thoroughly Swiss-cheesed the vessel, rendering it useless. A rescue crew arrives months later, and learns the man survived by scaring off the dogs with a home-made bow and arrow, and using the butt of the gun as a hammer to build a shelter.]]
* There is a similar event in Creator/IsaacAsimov's ''Literature/{{Foundation}} and Earth'': when the heroes land on a long-forgotten planet, a pack of dogs menaces them. Their microwave laser can kill the dogs, but since it gives no indication of cause, it doesn't drive them away; they end up using a different weapon, designed simply to induce pain, to turn the dogs around.
** And similarly but oppositely in ''Literature/TheDayOfTheTriffids'', although with flamethrowers: the reason they're such effective weapons is that while a gunshot will just draw all the triffids for miles to attack the gun, with a flamethrower they don't know what to retaliate against (and occasionally catch each other on fire besides). Different enemy, different response.
* Creator/AlanDeanFoster seems to go to unreasonable lengths to avoid this trope in ''HumanxCommonwealth''. Despite sonic weapons, weapons that have explosions that make nukes look pitiful by comparison, and a planet-mounted weapon connected directly to the core that creates localized black holes, these never show up.
** A planet-mounted weapon that is controlled by psychics. Although one could wonder if the reason that they don't have these lasers is just because they would be pathetic compared to what there actually is, as Rule of Cool puts everything listed above way beyond lasers.
** Lasers are in fact mentioned as merely one of the many and varied types of advanced weaponry in the stories. They behave much as one would expect a powerful beam weapon to in real life, with instantaneous (or at least speed-of-light) travel, cutting through things, etc., and there are lasers for everything from starships to hand weapons.
** ''Flinx in Flux'' featured laser weapons in the form of Needlers, which while not high class weapons, were effective and multi-functional. They also had instant beams, even though they were visible. Flinx used one for an amputation later.
* DavidWeber handles this particularly well, especially in the ''Literature/HonorHarrington'' series (''HoratioHornblower'' InSpace, clearly acknowledged both by the author and in the series itself). There are multiple fights in the books where technologically inferior ship #1 sends out a radar pulse to try to find ship #2, which is received by ship #2 who then instantly triggers their laser weapon already targeted by their superior technology on ship #1, such that the return radar pulse is received by ship #1 immediately followed by the laser pulse which destroys them, because radar and lasers both travel at the same speed.
* In the ''Literature/HyperionCantos'', laser weapons work at the speed of light. Unfortunately, space battles take place across such great distances that the enemy ships have to watch the beam crawl across space towards them. While the time it takes for lasers to hit is realistic, unless their sensors work considerably faster than light there's no way they could notice the attack until it hit, and it raises questions about why they don't move out of the way.
* Laser weapons in ''Literature/ArtemisFowl'' are considered obsolete -- the Lower Elements Police long ago switched to the more powerful and flexible neutrino weapons (which can be used as a [[StunGuns Stun Gun]] or to make precise cuts in a material)). [[spoiler: [[RockBeatsLaser As a result, it's been years since LEP suits were made laser-proof]]... which turns out ''very bad'' when a [[TheChessmaster Chessmaster]] arms some disgruntled goblin triads with lasers and disables all neutrino weapons in Haven]]. The obsolete "softnose" lasers work by using an inhibitor to slow the beam down and increase power, justifying the trope.
* From Creator/LarryNiven's works:
** Laser flashlights can be used as weapons, but more like ranged knives than guns. If you sweep the beam across the target quickly, it will make a shallow cut. Doing so slowly makes for a deep cut. And using it on someone wearing clothing the same color as the beam is difficult, as the clothing is that color because it ''reflects that color of light''. The Ringworld can cause its sun to flare, and then turn that flare into a frickin' SUPER laser.
** In one of the earlier ''Literature/KnownSpace'' stories, humans use giant solar-powered lasers on Mercury to provide thrust to ships clear across the solar system (think solar sails, but more concentrated). When the Kzinti invade, they run into a series of "industrial accidents".
** Kzinti are slow learners: their first encounter with humans involved them trying to slowly roast a human exploration ship that the Kzinti telepaths had determined was unarmed. They weren't concerned about the communications laser. The one big enough to punch through hundreds of A.U. of solar system space and be reliably detectable even when not precisely aimed. [[ImprovisedWeapon Yeah, that one...]]
** Because the pacifist humans were actually...[[BewareTheNiceOnes not so pacifist after all]].
* The works of DaleBrown have featured anti-ballistic missile lasers on modified airliners or bombers and ground-based anti-satellite lasers that [[spoiler: prove very capable of tearing spaceplanes a new one]]. There is realism in that the lasers are instantaneous, effectively undodgeable resulting in a SurprisinglySuddenDeath, aren't instant-kill but need time to burn through armour and the Kavaznya one at least was supported by a nuclear plant. At one point the operator of a laser on a modded bomber also notes the lack of the stereotypical sound.
* Joe Haldemans TheForeverWar has 'laser-fingers' on the fighting suits, and rapid-fire 'bevawatt laser' emplacements.
* Sam in ''Literature/{{Gone}}'' seems to have this as his main [[LightEmUp light power]], although he can also make regular, non-lethal light as well.
* ''TheKingdomKeepers'': The lasers from [[DisneyThemeParks Buzz Lightyear's Space Ranger Spin]] are a lot more effective [[ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve once you cross over]].
* In ''Literature/TheMoonIsAHarshMistress'', the Loonies jury rig laser drills designed as mining tools into anti-missile defense systems. Like the Real Life example listed in the description, the operator is forced to hold the beam on the missile for several seconds, an act which requires nerves of steel as the operator is all too aware that he's trying to shoot down a nuclear warhead aimed right at him. In this case, the goal is not to detonate the warhead, but to fry the missile's sensors, rendering it incapable of detonating.
* In ''Literature/TheConquerorsTrilogy'', the Zhirrzh use lasers as their main weapons, whereas humans and other races mostly use missiles and kinetic-based weaponry. The Zhirrzh lasers are instantaneous like RealLife ones, but produce a visible beam. While they can be dodged, that relies purely on luck and reaction lag of the gunners, and only the Copperheads manage to do it regularly given the improved reaction time granted by their [[UnusualUserInterface cybernetic interface]].
* In the [[AdaptationDisplacement obscure picture book]] ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}}'', Shrek uses his microwave vision to cook a pheasant.
* In ''TheChroniclesOfProfessorJackBaling'', when Jack fires his death ray, not only can he actually see a red beam of light emit from the end of the weapon, he has time to watch it travel from the barrel to his target.
* ''Literature/TroyRising'': While technically not a laser, SAPL (Solar Array Pumped Laser, regular sunlight concentrated and directed by a series of mirrors) behaves more or less in the same way as a real laser. At one point, it's even specifically mentioned that lasers don't show the beam unless they're going through a debris field or otherwise have things to reflect off of.
* In John Birmingham's ''Literature/AxisOfTime'' trilogy, the ships of the Multinational Force use two types of [[PointDefenseless CIWS]] systems to defend against, well, anything: missiles, shells, aircraft, you name it. One of these are simply called "laser pods" (the other is [[MoreDakka MetalStorm]], a RealLife weapon system, by the way). Both of these are AI-targetted, which means that, with enough supplies, almost nothing gets through. Laser pods can be "tasked" to a specific enemy turret, which usually means that shells explode almost as soon as they leave the barrel. However, since no one in the 21st century uses standard shells on their warships, the primary use is to destroy incoming missiles. There simply aren't enough [=MetalStorm=] rounds or laser... whatever they need... to be able to fend off attacks by UsefulNotes/WorldWarTwo-era warships for long. By the third novel, the laser pods have been exhausted, forcing the MF ships to be refitted with more primitive Vulcan autocannons. Interestingly, while the beams are invisible, a number of 40s-era US Navy officers call them {{Death Ray}}s, before a junior officer corrects them (he's been reading the ''Astounding'' magazine).
* SergeyLukyanenko's ''Literature/{{Competitors}}'' has numerous sci-fi weapons used in space battles. Lasers are also present, and the protagonist sees them on the screen. He then realizes that it must be the ship's computer helpfully adding the lines on the viewscreen in order to provide a visual, as laser beams move too fast to see.
* An interesting version in Creator/WilliamShatner's ''Literature/TheQuestForTomorrow'' books. The human SpaceNavy is armed with laser ''arrays''. A single laser can fire for about 2 seconds before overheating. As such, entire batteries of lasers are aimed at a single spot with each laser firing just as the one before is shutting off to cool down. Thus, it appears (and works) as a continuous beam.
* In CreatorOrsonScottCard's ''[[Literature/EndersGame Earth Unaware]]'', AsteroidMiners use lasers to burn through the outer shell of asteroids to reach valuable ore pockets. However, the author appears to think that lasers are solid lances and what happens to the "front" of it affects the ship firing it. Specifically, the ship has to fire rockets to maintain position relative to the asteroid in order to counteract the push of the laser. That part makes sense (although you'd need the rockets to fire on a ''very'' weak setting). But when a laser beam encounters a pocket of ice, it burns through it much quicker than through rock... resulting in the laser somehow ''not'' pushing the ship backwards as if it's falling forwards. It's troubling that Card got this much detail about lasers right... and then completely fails, especially since it's completely unnecessary for the story. Then there are "gravity lasers"... and that all I'm gonna say about that.
* ''DeathLands''. Finnigan is killed by one in ''Crater Lake'', and the effects are depicted with graphic details.
* Despite lasers not having been invented yet, the ''Literature/Lensman'' series actually has one of their more realistic depictions. Spaceships fight using intense beams of highly focussed light which must be held on target and cut through things that aren't protected by forcefields. Somewhat ironically, the most unrealistic part in this case is that the lasers travel too fast, hitting instantly even when at great distance or travelling faster than light.
* Lasers are depicted very realistically in Creator/IainMBanks Culture novels, although they have long since been rendered nearly obsolete and superseded by much more powerful weapons. This is something of a plot point in the first book ''Literature/ConsiderPhlebas'', in which a group of mercenaries attack an ancient temple which is, unknown to them, built mainly out of mirrors.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* Invoked by ''Series/{{CSI}}'' in a season 10 episode. How are golf balls made more bouncy in order to cheat in a tournament? In the immortal words of Nick Stokes: "Frickin' Laser Beams!"
* Done half-properly in an episode of ''Series/VoyageToTheBottomOfTheSea'', where an enemy agent explains to the immobilized captain that an energy weapon's beam moves at the speed of light, and is therefore impossible to dodge. Given that the weapon's effect is to leave him conscious but physically frozen in mid-dodge, it's hard to tell why they bothered.
** Curiously enough (considering that the show made little pretense to scientific accuracy), ''Voyage'' did in fact originally depict the sound of a high-energy continuous beam laser (the most common type shown) correctly. Due to the way it ionizes air molecules in its path, such a laser makes a loud "screech" like a high-voltage electrical arc-over, which is exactly the sound effect the show used early on. It was later replaced by a cooler-sounding, but less accurate, electronic "whine".
* Happens in ''Series/DoctorWho'' fairly often. Cybermen sport wrist mounted lasers that can be seen flying through the air at their targets. Daleks have them as well, although In Universe these beams are described as electrical discharges that scramble the target's nervous system, rather than straight-up lasers. Even the [[SufficientlyAdvancedAliens Time Lords]], the most [[MagicFromTechnology technologically advanced]] civilization in the universe, play this trope straight, as seen in their battle with the Daleks in "Day of the Doctor".
** Annoyingly, energy weapon beams actually did travel instantaneously once, but once the special effects budget increased, RealityIsUnrealistic set in and we got the generic "energy bullets".
* ''Series/StargateSG1'' takes this over the top. The beam weapons of the Ori Motherships are so ridiculously slow that any ship can easily dodge them, but make up for it by being able to pack such a punch they tear through vessels even with Asgard shielding. Similarly, Goa'uld weaponry tends to be highly inaccurate and are designed mostly to inspire terror in less-advance races.
** The [[ManchurianAgent Zatarc]] use small weapons that fit into a palm emitting bright red beams, cutting right through flesh, meaning it's (more often than not) pointless for a bodyguard to stand in front of the mark.
** Averted entirely with Tau'ri (Human) weaponry, which follows the mantra that KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter. Ground personnel use machine guns in the field and railgun emplacements for defensive purposes, which also serves as standard armament on their various starships. Only in the final episode do they finally embrace this trope, being allowed to install Asgard beam weapons on the ''Odyssey'', due to [[spoiler: the [[DyingRace Asgard]] bequeathing all of their technology to humanity as their final act before they commit [[HeroicSuicide ritual-suicide]]]].
* Done relatively well in ''Franchise/StarTrek''. While they're called "Phasers" and they form a solid glowy line, they hit the target almost instantaneously. They are a bit slower then they should be, however, with a visible delay between firing and hitting the target. This is explained by phasers being a particle-based weapon. In the technical manual, they are stated as firing a stream of "nadion" particles. But the canon contradicts itself as to exactly ''how'' fast phaser beams travel.
** In the [[Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries TOS]] episode "The Ultimate Computer", the ''Enterprise'' engages other Federation starships at warp speed, firing the ship's phasers while on the move.
** In [[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration TNG's]] UniverseBible, however, Roddenberry explicitly states that phaser beams travel ''at'' the speed of light and therefore cannot be fired while moving at warp speed.
** In [[Film/StarTrekTheMotionPicture TMP]], during the [[spoiler:trippy wormhole scene]] right after going to warp, Kirk orders phasers to destroy an asteroid in the way (because shields and navigation weren't working) even though the ship has not slowed to subwarp speeds ([[spoiler:it wouldn't have worked, but the FTL speed wasn't cited as the reason]]).
** In "Wink of an Eye" (TOS), for people experiencing time at a really fast rate (such that TimeStandsStill), fire from a hand phaser can be [[PainfullySlowProjectile sidestepped at a leisurely pace]].
** In the first season TNG episode "Conspiracy", Riker and Picard are able to dodge a phaser beam ''after it's been fired''.
** In TNG episode "Home Soil", Data does dodge a laser drill - but he does this because he realizes it must track its target, then halt, then fire, so he dodges the moment it stops moving, just before it can fire. Earlier human victims plainly hadn't got past panicking.
* ''Series/{{V}}''. Not only are the blasts of the Visitors' sidearms slow enough to dodge, if you're in good shape you could probably ''outrun'' them.
* ''Series/BabylonFive'' warships typically use lasers (or some sort of continuous beam) as their main armament. For fighters and groundpounders, however, [=EarthForce=] usually relies on plasma weapons.
** The GROPOS (Earth ground forces) mainly use ''[[KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter firearms]]'' (extremely powerful firearms with the propellant divided between the round and the weapon, but still firearms) and [[MagneticWeapons railguns]] (usually as a tank gun, plus a devastating anti-tank rifle), PPG only get used when they have to worry about accidental damage like being on a ship or station like Babylon 5.
** Centauri warships normally use some kind of energy bullet that explodes violently on impact. Fittingly, it's treated as evidence of Centauri advanced technology, as only the Centauri have apparently figured out how to do it.
* The 1980s television show ''Series/BuckRogersInTheTwentyFifthCentury'' has the characters using hand-held laser guns that fire a visible light laser that is a continuous beam that is instantaneous...although it still makes the 'zap' sounds.
* ''{{Space 1999}}'' had what are possibly the slowest laser beams in television history. The beams had a clearly defined beginning and end.
* In the original ''Series/{{Battlestar Galactica|Classic}}'', both the hand-held guns and the viper-mounted guns were "lasers". The little [[ColorCodedForYourConvenience red or blue]] bolts they fired travelled with visible slowness.
** Interestingly enough, some episodes actually had realistic lasers on the hand-held guns. Whether it was because of an animation error or what, when they fired their guns, there was a small flash from the barrel, and an invisible laser hits the target pretty instantaneously.
** {{Averted|Trope}} [[KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter in the remake]], though most ship-based weapons use tracer rounds that look like your typical lazer bolt.
* If you dare, watch ''The Return of TheSixMillionDollarMan and Series/TheBionicWoman'', in which the newest operative of the OSI undergoes bionic augmentation. ''His'' frickin' laser beam--in his eye--can stun!
* ''Series/KnightRider'': KITT has a laser that's typically used to destroy things rather than attack people.
* A ''Series/{{Castle}}'' episode has a person murdered at a [=ComiCon=] {{expy}} by a laser. It turns out that there's a guy who makes and sells working replicas of sci-fi weapons... and that's all the explanation we get for how someone can fit a powerful laser into a small prop. When fired, it looks and sounds like a ''Franchise/StarTrek'' phaser.
** To be fair, though, we only see the weapon being used at a distance of at most a few feet. It's possible at normal gun ranges it's just a laser pointer. Plus, it's battery is likely to handle only several shots before dying. RealLife military-grade lasers require large amounts of toxic materials to function.
* The murder weapon of choice in ''Series/TheAvengers'' episode "From Venus, With Love".
* ''TakeshisCastle'' uses these in comedy sketches in one episode, each and every time "Star Wars" is played as the challenge before the final showdown (From episode 106), and in the final showdown (Starting from episode 88).
* {{Series/Firefly}} usually sticks with KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter, but laser weapons do make the occasional appearance. They're shown fairly realistically with a continuous beam that instantly hits its target, and the main reason they're not used much is that they just need too much power to run and are therefore not much use in hand-held guns. In {{Film/Serenity}}, lasers appear to be among the weapons used by spaceships.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Music]]
* "Laser Jesus" in Music/HotChip's "I Feel Better" music video.
* Japanese GirlGroup Music/{{Perfume}} has a song called "レーザービーム" [[note]] Laser Beam[[/note]]
* Subverted in {{Music/Phish}}'s "Scent of a Mule":
--> "Scent of a mule, you better watch out where you go\\
Take your laser beams away\\
Scent of a mule, you better watch out where you go\\
You better stop that laser game\\
Or you'll smell my mule"
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Other Sites]]
* Wiki/SCPFoundation
** [[http://www.scp-wiki.net/scp-2099 SCP-2099 ("Laser Shark Fetuses")]] are some deformed cycloptic baby sharks apparently engineered by Dr. Wondertainment to be demented kid's toy versions of the sharks of the TropeNamer.
** [[http://www.scp-wiki.net/scp-2099 SCP-2099 ("Brain in a Jar")]]. SCP-2099 has invented 713 different types of laser gun, all of which he keeps in a bin labeled "713 different laser guns". He has also invented a pistol that fires out highly concentrated X-rays (i.e. an X-ray laser pistol) that is powered by two AA batteries and focused by a common quartz crystal.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Pinball]]
* Used by the spaceships for their OldSchoolDogfight in ''Pinball/StellarWars''
* In ''Pinball/LaserWar'', everyone is armed with {{Ray Gun}}s shooting easily-dodgable laser beams.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* Clerics in 4e ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' like to shoot these. (Or more precisely, many of the cleric's ranged attack spells including a common at-will power inflict "radiant" damage, being essentially the divine embodiment of PowerGlows. For unrelated reasons the game also tends to encourage clerics to specialize in either melee ''or'' ranged combat instead of going the mix-and-match route, making the [[FanNickname "laser cleric"]] an actually fairly distinctive subtype in its own right.)
* In ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'', the [[RedshirtArmy Imperial Guards]]' standard "lasguns" are the ''weakest'' of all guns actively used by the series' factions, and they can blow body parts off. How realistically the weapons are portrayed varies.
** In previous editions, lasguns were actually described as firing a discrete "bullet" of laser energy, described in at least one novel (and portrayed in at least one video game) as a twinkling ball of light that moves at about the same speed as a bullet, if not slower. This has been rectified as of the third edition of the game, so that all laser weapons are now assumed to fire actual laser beams (and are portrayed doing so in ''DawnOfWar'').
** In the 40k novels, what lasguns are and how they work vary DependingOnTheWriter. Creator/DanAbnett has a sniper having to compensate for wind and gravity, with a permanent bruise from the recoil. Others have had lasguns fire normal bullets, in a bizarre inversion of FamilyFriendlyFirearms. One mistake all of them do is have the shot cauterize the wound, while in real life lasers would do the same damage as normal firearms.
** Lascannons and other larger laser weaponry are generally portrayed more realistically, although the beam is usually visible (which would only happen with lots of dust in the air -- which, granted, is a fairly common battlefield condition). They also avert the weakness of their smaller 'pew pew' cousins, and are particularly powerful anti-armour weapons.
** 40k also has plasma weapons, which are typically depicted as behaving more like the classic 'laser bullet' type device -- firing discrete bolts of magnetically contained plasma (essentially, tiny stars) at a range comparable to an assault rifle (and color-coded in ''DawnOfWar'', with blueish for imperial forces and red for Chaos). Curiously, 40k also has ''melta'' weapons, which behave closer to how a "real" plasma weapon would: they fire an short ranged 'sub atomic' heat blast, designed to melt through armored targets and vapourise softer things. In a token nod to realism, melta weapons are more common and easier to build and maintain than plasma weapons are in the Imperium whilst still being highly effective.
** The "autocauterizing laser wound" is repeatedly mentioned in Literature/CiaphasCain, usually in comparison to a slug-type weapon which would leave a gaping wound.
** Not just the humans either. The Eldar, [[OurElvesAreBetter the resident elves of the setting]], prefer to use [[FlechetteStorm shuriken weapons]], but they also use a handful of lasers too, most notably the anti-tank Brightlance, the Swooping Hawks' lasblaster, and the larger Scatter-laser mounted on their vehicles. The [[OurOrcsAreDifferent Orks]] have their own laser weapon in the appropriately named Zzap Gun, and it's variants. The mutated and corrupted forces of The Lost And The Damned use them frequently, although that's generally because traitor Guardsmen make up a good proportion of their ranks.
* In ''TabletopGame/{{Paranoia}}'', laser pistols are common, and so reflective armor is also common. The laser pistols also come in different colors (to match security clearance levels). In the first edition, higher-clearance reflec armor was multi-colored, to represent all the colors of laser that it protected against; the second edition switched to single-color reflec armor (which also protected against all lower clearances). The editors' explanation was "yes, we know physics does not work this way in real life, but this is simpler".
* In one of the SplatBooks for ''Car Wars'', lasers were described as being too useless as energy weapons due to anti-laser armour in the military... which isn't as useful on a car. There were anti-laser types of armour, although those typically cost more at the least.
* In ''TabletopGame/{{Traveller}}'', lasers are powerful but expensive, fragile and easy to defend against, with both hand-held (pistol and rifle) and ship-based versions. Plasma and fusion weapons are ''terrifying'' but even more expensive, heavy and often require the user to be wearing [[HumongousMecha power armour]]. And they're almost universally illegal for civilians.
* Lasers in ''TabletopGame/{{GURPS}}'' are represented accurately, in fact their lack of recoil is a big selling point compared to guns, but can be defended against by reflec-armor. As it happens the ''Ultra-Tech'' book has pulse lasers that ''do'' fire a "bullet" of light, albeit one that moves at the proper speed.
** ''Electro''lasers actually fire [[ShockAndAwe balls of lightning]], using the laser to make it go where you want it to. These work a lot more like conventional weapons--or blasters.
* ''TabletopGame/KillerBunniesAndTheQuestForTheMagicCarrot'' has "Sharks WFLB," which is illustrated as... sharks with frickin' laser beams on their heads.
* The board game ''Khet'' uses pieces with [[LightAndMirrorsPuzzle mirrors]] on them and laser pointers in the board. You destroy pieces by hitting a non-mirrored side with the laser, and win by destroying the King-er, I mean the "Pharaoh", because this game is Egyptian themed. That's right, this game has [[WebVideo/YugiohTheAbridgedSeries Ancient Egyptian Laser Beams!]]
* ''TabletopGame/CthulhuTech''. Being partially inspired by {{Robotech}}, it has lasers and [[RayGun Charge Beams]] all over the place. Made possible by {{Magitek}}. Ah, and it has {{Lightning Gun}}s!
* ''TabletopGame/{{Rifts}}'' does better than most in this regard. The books state in more than one instance that laser weapons do not make a sound, apart from the click of the trigger being pulled. However, they remark that many buyers ''[[RealityIsUnrealistic want]]'' [[RealityIsUnrealistic laser guns that go "pew pew,"]] so a lot of companies include sound effect-generating noisemakers in their guns, which can be turned off if the user decides. Laser guns are also more accurate than other energy weapons, presumably because they have no recoil. Rifts laser weapons are also described as being powerful enough to blow off a limb if you are hit in the elbow or upper arm if shot by a standard laser rifle. Remember that the standard equipment of an infantrymen in Rifts makes his as well armed and armored as a 20th Century IFV. Plasma weapons are also a common form of {{BFG}}, both in the classic bolt ejectors and the more realistic plasma flamethrower. Plasma is also a common warhead type for missiles.
** This trope is also played with in the regards to the "a laser can be dodged" aspect of the trope. Energy weapons can be dodged in Rifts, but at a -10 penalty. The explanation given is that the character sees the trigger being pulled, and tries to get out of the way before the shot is fired. A -10 penalty is big enough that player characters almost never bother trying to dodge the blast. One part where this trope is played completely straight is that laser blasts are visible in ''TabletopGame/{{Rifts}}''.
* The focus laser from ''TabletopGame/BattleMachines''. If it hits, it will keep on hitting, like a ranged chainsaw.
* Standard in the ''TabletopGame/BattleTech'' and ''MechWarrior'' franchise, for both infantry units and the iconic HumongousMecha. Lasers are rarer for infantry but common as dirt on a 'Mech. They are remarkably realistic for fictional laser weapons: they hit instantly and produce a ''ton'' of heat (this being their primary disadvantage to offset the fact that they have unlimited ammo), the only strange part being that they're visible. Oddly enough, the weapons as presented have range issues, which may sound odd at first until you realize that a battlefield full of particulates such as smoke and dust [[RealityIsUnrealistic would in fact limit lasers to certain ranges in similar ways.]] Not nearly half as unusual as the way ballistic and missile weapons [[ShortRangeLongRangeWeapon are treated, though.]]
* One of the five primary weapon types in ''TabletopGame/{{Mekton}}'' is the beam weapon. These tend to be bulkier than equivalent-power projectile weapons, but you don't need to buy ammunition for them.
* Munchkin has a few laser-weapons in one of its expansions, Star Munchkin, which in itself is awesome. However, if you happen to have more than one "-aser" weapon at any given time, ''you can combine them'' for a total bonus of +24. Then add in a bunch of Weapon Enhancers, and this weapon essentially becomes the most powerful weapon in the game. Heck, even at Level 1, the +24 "-aser" weapon can slay anything that isn't enhanced, even the Level 20 Plutonium Dragon!
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Toys]]
* One {{LEGO}} "Agents" set includes a villain with a bunch of [[ShoutOut sharks]] [[AustinPowers with lasers]] on their backs.
* Lazer Tag.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In the DLC of ''VideoGame/BioShock2'' Minerva's Den, the new Big Daddy "The Lancer'' uses one called an Ion Laser. You are also able to use one, as well as the security bots now use them.
* ''Franchise/MassEffect'', [[{{Reconstruction}} in keeping with the theme of the series,]] [[SubvertedTrope does not use lasers in the standard way.]] The primary weapon is the mass accelerator, essentially a projectile weapon accelerated by electromagnets rather than gas, cordite, smokeless powder, etc and enhanced in various ways by [[MinovskyPhysics mass effect fields]]. Lasers are, instead, used as point-defence weapons [[ShownTheirWork that can only fire for a limited time before overheating. They are, however, 100% accurate before this happens.]]
** Even the Reapers' main weapons, which look and sound like unscientific lasers... aren't lasers. They're actually molten ferrofluids fired at relativistic speeds.
** The Collector Particle Beam from ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' fires a continuous laser beam that ignores all shields, barriers and armour, ironically making it perfect for mowing through the Collectors themselves. They ''really'' shouldn't have [[HoistByHisOwnPetard left one lying around]] for Shepard to find.
*** [[ShownTheirWork Notably]], the collector particle beam is specifically called that rather than a laser - explaining why it behaves like one (making a humming/crackling sound in air and being visible). It also travels at nearly the speed of light, hitting the target practically immediately. The only thing that's slightly off is the fact that it's visible in space (as for sound in space, [[JustifiedTrope carefully listening to background conversations on the ''Normandy'' would reveal that starship cockpits have systems that ''simulate'' sound in space for the convenience of the pilot]])
** ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' also shows the aforementioned GARDIAN lasers in action twice. In both cases the VFX artists went with RuleOfCool in their depiction. In the first instance [[spoiler:during the battle on Horizon, Shepard activates the colony's anti-air defenses to drive off the Collector cruiser]]. Prior dialogue describes them as GARDIAN lasers, but the visuals go with the stereotypical discrete slower-than-light bolts. Much later the ''Normandy's'' point-defense lasers are shown firing [[spoiler:during the battle with the Oculus {{attack drone}}s after exiting the galactic core mass relay]]. This time, they're shown as a continuous visible beam.
* ''VideoGame/MetroidPrime 2: Echoes'' has the Light Beam, which looks like a multispectral laser and is really good at taking out the Ing. Strangely, the ChargedAttack behaves like a ReverseShrapnel shotgun. ''Metroid Prime: Hunters'' features the Imperialist, a laser sniper rifle, which strikes the target instantaneously, but creates a very visible red beam that lasts just long enough to give away the firer's position.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Halo}}'' series has plasma weapons both handheld and vehicle-mounted versions, and the famous Spartan Laser; the Covenant Scarab unleashes a lightning-like green beam at targets, possibly an electrolaser. The Forerunner's creations use actual hitscan weapons which fire glowy beams that land with a sizzling sound. The Spartan Laser, likewise, also reaches its target almost instantly, although it lands with more of a 'boom' sound and takes some time to charge. Forerunner constructs are armed with weapons that fire bolts of hard light.
** The earlier ''VideoGame/{{Marathon}}'' series also had all sorts of energy weapons which moved very slowly, and a number of typically near-hitscan bullet weapons. Since there were only one or two enemies with bullet weapons and one or two CoolButInefficient energy weapons you could use, this typically added up to you dodging lots of enemy fire and them ending up as bullet-riddled heaps of steaming entrails (when you didn't trick them into starting a fight with the other guy that was standing behind you.)
* In ''VideoGame/{{Descent}}'', the various laser weapons travel approximately at twice your ship's velocity and [[PainfullySlowProjectile can be dodged]]-however, the Vulcan Cannon, [[KineticWeaponsAreJustBetter effectively a machine gun that fires pieces of metal]], [[HitScan travels instantly and can not be dodged.]] (Now imagine the Vulcan Cannon doing much more damage per shot with an equally [[MoreDakka high rate of fire]], and you have ''VideoGame/{{Descent}} II's'' [[GameBreaker Gauss Cannon]].) Once you get the afterburner powerup, you can travel at the same speed as the laser beams.
* ''VideoGame/{{X-Com}}'' has lasers, which are slower than light and pulse, but are impossible to dodge -- on account of being in a TurnBasedStrategy game.
** ''VideoGame/{{X-Com}}: Apocalypse'' has laser sniper rifle. Of vehicle weapons available early in the game, lasers are cheap, cause less collateral damage if miss and miss less to begin with than other variants.
** ''VideoGame/XCOMEnemyUnknown'' has laser weapons that behave more realistically, producing a single burst/beam of light that cuts straight out. The visibility of said beam can be justified by the intensity/power behind the laser and atmospheric dust making the beam visible. There is also a Heavy Laser cannon for the Heavy Weapons specialist troopers that has a [[GatlingGood rotary barrel assembly]], which is probably meant to help heat dispersal, and the Precision Laser Rifle for Snipers is incredibly long and has more focusing hardware inside to help keep the beam accurate and more effective over greater distances that the Snipers need them for. Amusingly, there is also a "shotgun" style Scatter Laser cannon that has a series of prisms/lenses in the barrel to create a spread-effect like a normal ballistics shotgun, and it also has a pump-action that your Assaults will rack after each shot.
* ''UFOAlienInvasion'' has laser weapons as well, being a fanmade love-letter to X-Com. They use Deuterium-Fluoride cartridges as "ammunition" and are realistically depicted as being limited by environmental factors like smoke, fire, and scattering effects, and are very accurate while having less stopping power than advanced kinetic, plasma, or particle beam weapons.
* ''[[TabletopGame/BattleTech MechCommander]]'' featured a bizarre spin on the matter: lasers move as visible projectiles towards the target (at the same speed as ballistic projectiles), but whether they hit or not is predetermined at the moment they are fired. This results in bizarre situations where firing at a fast-moving target will cause the laser to [[{{Roboteching}} actually bend, change course]], and follow the target until impact.
** ''VideoGame/UnrealTournament'''s Shock Rifle does something similar, although the effect varies. The weapon is HitScan (another word for instant hit), but the beam is not. The result is that when you fire you see the target light up with the blast shockwave before the actual bolt reaches it.
*** [[AvertedTrope Averted]] with ''UT 2003'' onward, as the Shock Rifle now appears to shoot a typical laser beam.
** ''[=MechCommander=] 2'' and ''[=MechWarrior=] 3'' and ''4'', however, have lasers travel [[HitScan instantaneously.]] Interestingly, however, the 'Pulse Lasers' behave like (continous beam) lasers, and the 'Lasers' behave like pulse lasers.
** ''VideoGame/MechAssault'' is a step backward in this regard; pulse laser shots travel like your average "laser" projectile, while lasers shoot visibly-moving beams. Both types are, at least, as fast as bullets.
*** ''[=MechWarrior=] 2'' had projectile "lasers" well before ''[=MechAssault=]''. It's a ZigZaggingTrope as far as ''{{Battletech}}'' video game adaptations go.
*** So ZigZagged that ''[=MechWarrior=]'' Online averts this trope completely. Not only do lasers travel and hit instantly, but pulse lasers actually flicker, unlike previous games where Pulse Lasers were depicted as chained-blobs.
* The Brotherhood of Nod in ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquer'' is in ''love'' with laser weapons, with everything from laser rifles and laser tanks or their iconic Obelisk of Light. GDI, on the other hand, just uses conventional cannons--''very, very large'' conventional cannons.
** In ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerRedAlert2'' and ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerRedAlert3'', the Allies were in love with laser weapons. While many people believe the Empire loves them too, this is wrong. The Empire uses Particle Accelerators and Superheated Slugs. The only lasers in Red Alert 3 are of the LaserSight kind.
** ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerRenegade'' has perhaps one of the most realistic instances of lasers. They are instant, they fire in short pulses (with gattling lasers being able to saturate the target more), and their blooming effect causes the air to be translucent rather than opaque. Perhaps one of the few unrealistic effects of the laser is that on Easy mode, auto-aiming will cause the lasers to turn slightly from a direct line to hit targets.
* The 1998 Activision game ''VideoGame/{{Battlezone|1998}}'' has a weapon called a ''blast cannon'', on which the manual says "The Blast Cannon delivers a short but powerful laser beam burst that does tremendous damage to enemy armour". This behaves like an actual pulsed LASER beam, with the atmosphere in its path being superheated to explosive temperatures and causing both its appearance of a blinding white line and its sound of a loud thunderclap.
** Except when you use it on Europa or Earth's moon, where there is no atmosphere.
** There is also "Flash beam" weapon in Battlezone 2 (for some reason available only in mutliplayer, along with several other weapons), which fires a (nearly) constant beam of concentrated microwaves, damaging target by extreme heat.
* ''VideoGame/JediOutcast'' has a particularly infuriating version of an actual instant-hit laser being dodgeable. The Disruptor Rifle is actually hitscan on normal enemies, but force-sensitive ones will dodge out of the way in a single frame not-an-animation if you try to zap them with it.
** Handwaved in the sequel ''VideoGame/JediAcademy''. They do it with Force Sense in the short time between you decide to pull the trigger and the actual pulling. But obviously it is to force you to fight with a lightsaber against them.
** The player character is an actual Jedi ''themselves'' and [[TheComputerIsACheatingBastard can't block said shots]].
** ''Jedi Outcast'' does allow the player to dodge the Disruptor Rifle shots, if you have Force Speed. It activates Force Speed for the duration of the dodge animation, making it look cooler and drain a lot of Force Power, so the Computer is still a cheating bastard. Still, better than the Rocket Launcher Force Push hot-potato game.
** In a mission to capture Boba Fett, he is also able to insta-dodge Disruptor shots, with the same animation (maybe he learned it from Remo Williams).
* In the ''VideoGame/{{Crusader}}'' games, ''laser bolts are slower than bullets''. It's not like the speed of light was actually altered in-universe or anything, but the fact remains that bullets do hitscan damage and lasers fly through the air ''slightly'' faster than rockets.
* Space sims vary somewhat, usually for gameplay reasons more than anything else -- for shooters, players are expected to have to lead their targets in addition to lining them up, so nearly everything is a (pretty) projectile, lasers included. FourX games vary, since the player isn't the one doing the lining up and shooting.
** In the ''VideoGame/EscapeVelocity'' games, lasers, plasma, protons, and bullets all move about as fast, but a number of special weapons (like the original game's particle beam) move ''instantly'' but with a very short range. Some projectiles, though, are faster or slower in the third game: "blaster" shots are fast, with railguns and fusion pulse shots being slower. Weapons described as "lasers" like the Capacitor Pulse laser, Bio Relay laser, and the Thunderhead do hit instantly, but all had visible beams. There were also some non-laser beam weapons that hit instantly.
** In ''VideoGame/{{Freelancer}}'', everything is a projectile. The laser and photon weapons just have faster projectiles.
** The ''{{Freespace}}'' games saddle the player with lasers that fire projectiles. However, capital ships in the second game usually mount "beam" type weapons as their main guns. These are highly visible so that the player has a chance to avoid flying through them and being destroyed... assuming the player isn't in their path to begin with, as they are HitScan weapons.
** All the ''VideoGame/WingCommander'' games (you guessed it) feature projectile weapon mechanics even for the "lasers". Interestingly, the laser is universally the weakest ship-mounted weapon, even though it has a high rate of fire and is the most efficient in terms of energy usage.
** A different kind of space sim, the [[FourX 4X]] game ''VideoGame/MasterOfOrion II'' used lasers as its most basic ship-mounted beams -- big red beams. They traveled as quickly as every other beam, and only traveled instantaneously with the "continuous" upgrade, which several other weapons could also use.
* ''VideoGame/TooHuman'' avoids this, as its laser weapons shoot an immediate continuous beam, which also heats up and does more damage the longer its kept on target.
* ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}'' often has these kind of weaponry in Spell Cards. Two notable examples are the ''slow'' laser beams rampant in Keine's and Nitori's attacks (from ''Imperishable Night'' and ''Mountain of Faith'', respectively), and the laser sight to laser in Mokou's and Patchouli's attacks (from ''Imperishable Night'' and the gaiden game ''Shoot the Bullet'', respectively)
** There are also quite a few instant laser attacks, generally done by having a faint and harmless laser appear for a second or two before the opaque laser that damages you appears in the same location.
** ''Undefined Fantastic Object'' adds Shou Toramaru, whose entire ''theme'' seems to be FrickinLaserBeams. She uses her magic for such niceties as slow accelerating lasers, spinning laser crosses, ''lasers that curve in midair to hit you''...
*** Other users of curved lasers include Iku Nagae (in ''Double Spoiler'') and Seiga Kaku.
* ''VideoGame/EVEOnline'' has lasers, used primarily by the ships of the Amarr Empire. ''EVE'' lasers are visible as solid beams, but do strike the target instantly.
** It also has plasma "Blasters", though unlike other examples they lose containment quickly, making the shortest ranged weapon in the game.
* In ''VideoGame/TachyonTheFringe'', the fighter-mounted pulse lasers travel slower-than-light and are visible. Ironically, capital ship-mounted beam lasers strike the target instantly (still visible beam though). To top it off, one of the factions has a railgun weapon, which strikes the target ''instantly'' (i.e. faster than lasers).
* In ''VideoGame/CrystalQuest'', the Menace employs "laser beams" that extend and retract like measuring tape.
* ''VideoGame/{{Kirby}}'' can gain a "laser" ability (slower than light, travels in tangible lumps rather than as a continuous beam); in the words of the ability description screen, "it [[ReflectingLaser bounces off walls]], too!".
** In ''Nightmare in Dreamland'' and ''The Amazing Mirror'', the game actually gives you the acronym "Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation", in addition to telling you "And it ricochets off hills, too!"
* Even ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}'' is not free from this trope, despite all but two of the games taking place pre-scifi. Orlox and the Nova Skeletons in ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaSymphonyOfTheNight'', Joachim in ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaLamentOfInnocence'' (and how!), those wall-eyeball things in ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaBloodlines'' -- even '''Dracula''' gets in on it in ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaIIIDraculasCurse'' (with more BeamSpam for your buck in the American version than the Japanese... NintendoHard indeed) and ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaCurseOfDarkness'', and that's all before Soma gets his hands on the beam gun-type weapon in ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaAriaOfSorrow''. Wheeee!
** Soma also gets Gergoth's Soul in ''[[VideoGame/CastlevaniaDawnOfSorrow Dawn of Sorrow]]'', which allows him to fire a laserbeam as long as he has MP. It's AwesomeButImpractical and surprisingly weak. The aforementioned Nova Skeletons re-appear in ''[[VideoGame/CastlevaniaOrderOfEcclesia Order of Ecclesia]]'', where Shanoa can absorb their Glyph "Nitesco." It is a borderline GameBreaker, and easily the best attacking glyph in the game due to it's good range and multi-hit capacity. And then Death does vertical laser beams in ''Aria of Sorrow'' too. There's a fair few examples.
** ''[[VideoGame/CastlevaniaPortraitOfRuin Portrait of Ruin]]'' also features [[WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries ancient Egyptian laser beams]] as pressure-activated traps.
* ''VideoGame/StarWarsBattlefront'', being a ''Star Wars'' game, has the slower-than-light "blaster bolts" we've come to expect. However, it at the same time subverts this trope: sniper rifles and some vehicle-mounted weapons utilize a beam that travels at the speed of light. In the case of the vehicles' beam cannons, it can even be swept across an enemy front For Massive Damage.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Fallout}}'' games feature laser weaponry in the mid- to late game areas. In the first two games, they're not terribly effective since even plain metal armour reduces laser damage by 75%. On the other hand, the laser weapons family does include a [[GatlingGood Gatling Laser]].
** The ''Fallout'' games do partially avert this trope, although in a very subtle way involving the recoil: Although you can physically see them recoil back when shot, the energy weapons skill is based on your perception score, implying the recoil is so negligible that you only need to see your target to hit them. Contrast this with the small weapons skill using agility (your natural reflexes allowing you to better deal with the recoil) or heavy weapons using endurance (the recoil being so massive, you have to worry more about passing out from the shock).
*** It is less subtle in ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 2}}'', the weapon is described as slicing people apart in dialog. The critical death animation from lasers in both games is someone being cut into pieces by a beam. And in the turn based context it doesn't really matter that it's presented as a moving sprite. Actually the engine might simply not support beam weaponry.
** The third game goes further with the aversion, in having its laser weapons be true hitscan beams, while the two previous titles had them fire the more "traditional" slow-moving bolt of energy. ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas'' also continues use of the proper beam lasers.
* Most robots from the Future era in ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger'' have energy weapons as part of their arsenal ({{Robo|tBuddy}} and his "Laser Spin" technique included).
** Oddly, laser attacks in ''Chrono Trigger'' (at least the American port) deal dark-type damage; made all the more egregious by the fact that light-type attacks exist in the game too. Chalk it up to how the elements are interpreted here: Light is considered a combination of Holy and Lightning, neither of which lasers qualify for; while Shadow includes something akin to corruption - in Robo's case, technology being a lesser imitation of magic.
* In the ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' series, Mecha-type enemies throughout the series often come armed with lasers, masers, and similar beam-emitting weapons such as Atomic Ray and Heat Ray.
** One of [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII Quistis's]] {{Limit Break}}s is actually called [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Laser Eye]].
** The ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'' and ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'' incarnations of [[HumongousMecha Alexander]] use a modest, instant-beam laser to carve a line into the ground, causing a tremendous explosion afterwards.
*** Valefor does the same thing in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX''.
** One boss in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII'', [[spoiler: Barthandelus,]] likes to spam his laser beams, particularly during your second fight with him. [[spoiler: Yaag Rosch does it too when you fight him in his ''Proudclad'' mecha.]]
** [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyIII Cloud of Darkness]] in ''VideoGame/DissidiaFinalFantasy'' constantly fires off laser beams and energy blasts of various types for her attacks, but they're called "Particle Beams", not lasers. In the same game [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV Golbez]] both averts the trope and plays it straight -- Gravity System, Float System and Sector Ray fire out continuous lasers that appear instantly, but Attack System fires out a barrage of small laser projectiles.
* ''[[VideoGame/FirstEncounterAssaultRecon FEAR 2]]'' has a laser gun that averts this trope. It is a constant beam with no recoil that hits instantly. Especially annoying since the enemies can still hit you even in BulletTime.
* The Falken and Morgan superjets from the ''VideoGame/AceCombat'' series mount laser weaponry. However they act more like {{Laser Blade}}s, as a beam is "pumped" continuously for a short period that can be swept around to cut enemies up. The Excalibur superweapon mounts a similar laser "blade", only [[MemeticMutation Xbox hueg]]. The unenhanced Meson Cannon fires "pulse" lasers, whereas the MBSR-enhanced version creates what are best described as large laser tripwires.
* Several different varieties of laser are staple weapons in ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'', and like all weapons, have various stats describing how they supposedly work (aside from their flat Attack Value), including Active Medium, Type, and Burn Rate for one meter of steel. The basic laser, the first new weapon you can research in the game with AV 2, is a fiber-coupled diode laser and burns through one meter of steel in 0.76 seconds. The Singularity Laser at the end of the game, with AV 24, is a singularity induction laser using a ''temporal boundary'' as its active medium. Burn rate? Relative.
** There's also the Gatling Laser, Fusion Laser, and Quantum Laser amidst the other weapons.
* There's an arcade [[ShootEmUps shoot-em-up]] called ''{{Strikers 1945}}.'' As the title suggests, it ostensibly takes place during UsefulNotes/WorldWarII. You have a choice of six or so planes to fly against the ostensible Axis powers. Ostensibly because ''these are WWII-era planes in 1945 shooting FrickinLaserBeams at transforming HumongousMecha.''
* ''VideoGame/IWannaBeTheGuy'' has at least one room which rapidly fills up with absolutely ''huge'' laser beams coming out of nowhere to reduce you to splatter.
** It's also the attack Mecha Birdo pulls out after you destroy its antenna.
* ''VideoGame/DefenseGridTheAwakening'' partially averts this: Laser towers fire continuous beams that heat up the aliens and continue to do damage after they leave the laser's range. This heat damage is extra effective against the fast aliens, the Racer and the Rumbler. But the tower fires a laser [[LawOfChromaticSuperiority the same color as it]]: green for level 1, amber for level 2 and red for level 3; in RealLife the green laser would be the strongest and the red would be the weakest.
* [[VideoGame/MegaMan2 Quick Man's]] [[ThatOneLevel/PlatformGame stage]] [[NintendoHard says]] [[ClusterFBomb hi]].
** There are strangely few laser ''weapons'' in the Mega Man franchise. The only one from ''Classic'' is Gemini Man's Gemini Laser, representing both the 'slow moving projectile' and 'reflection' sub-tropes. ''VideoGame/MegaManLegends'' has the Shining Laser, which creates a beam of damaging light instantaneously, unrealistically limited only by range, which is the game's InfinityPlusOneSword. ''VideoGame/MegaManX'' has the Aiming Laser from ''X4'', which is also instantaneous in use, but limited by targeting range; X has to target enemies before he can use the laser, and the targeting reticule stays fairly close to himself.
* The ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClank'' series. There's just too many examples to list.
* VideoGame/RobotDinosaursThatShootBeamsWhenTheyRoar. (Yes, a description [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin seems superfluous]].)
* Its worth noting that in the game ''VideoGame/{{Scribblenauts}}'' you can create a Laser, as well as a Shark, and then put the laser on the sharks head, though it won't fire.
** Ah, but it will fire if the shark is on land. The shark will disappear eventually, though.
* In ''VideoGame/EvilGenius'', the mission to steal the giant lab laser is actually ''called'' ''Fricken' Laser''. It is a parody of the spy genre, after all...
* Several games in the ''VideoGame/NineteenFortyTwo'' series have lasers. ''In UsefulNotes/WorldWarII.''
* ''VideoGame/NinjaGaiden''. The Xbox remake plays this oddly with the apparent laser from the bone demon bird boss Paz Zuu: It traces a path, which then ignites.
* ''VideoGame/AgeOfMythology'' had light based weapons. Granted they're parabolic reflectors [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot mounted on crocodiles]] (or in the Atlanteans' case, towers), that concentrate sunlight into beams. And, yes, they DO hit instantly.
** Taken to extremes in the "O Canada" cheat which grants you a "Lazer Bear" dressed in a Canadian flag. It shoots lasers out of its eyes.
* The upcoming Cataclysm expansion for ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' features a quest requiring you to kill a giant shark with a robotic shark of your own (not surprisingly, this is in the goblin starting area.) What is the robotic shark's primary attack? A frikken laser beam. Yes, they actually include the word frikken in the attack name.
** Also as a response to one beta-tester's critique of The Maelstrom as not being epic enough, the dev team added a flying shark with a laser beam to the zone. [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot And there's a frickin' dinosaur on top of that shark manning the frickin' laser. And riding that dinosaur is an undead with a mohawk rocking out on a guitar axe.]]
* Most bosses that aren't fire-based in ''SonicTheHedgehog'' video games are laser-based.
** In ''VideoGame/SonicColors'', the Cyan Wisp can turn ''Sonic himself'' into a laser beam, able to shoot through enemies and bounce along electric coils and crystals.
* The ''VideoGame/NavalOps'' series has a number of lasers that can be mounted on warships. They fire in different patterns and colours. Sadly, BeamSpam is difficult to achieve because lasers cannot be fired in salvos like regular guns.
* The "Beam" line of powers in ''VideoGame/GoldenSun''. Available to Jenna's base class in ''The Lost Age'' and Eoleo's base class in ''Dark Dawn''.
** Also, certain weapon unleash techniques use a laser effect.
* ''VideoGame/DynastyWarriors'' - Previous to the sixth game, Zhuge Liang and Sima Yi's special moves involved them shooting [[strike: ancient Chinese lasers]] chi beams from their hands.
** Zuo Ci can also shoot chi beams from his magic paper tassels.
* ''VideoGame/SamuraiWarriors'' - Kanetsugu Naoe eventually gains the ability to shoot chi beams from his {{Onmyodo}} cards.
* The Kha'ak in the VideoGame/{{X}} series use this as their only weapons. It makes it suicidal to attack the with a smaller ship or missiles. Apart from the Kha'ak, most weapons are plasma-casters of one form or another that shoot discrete bolts.
* Averted in ''VideoGame/RaptorCallOfTheShadows''. Yes, there are three laser weapons in the game (Laser turret, DeathRay and Twin Laser). However, they are all instant-hit weapons, similar to real lasers. Your best bet was to not be in front of it when it fired: whether from you or foe, there was no real lag between fire and impact.
* [[VideoGame/SilentHill3 Heather Beam]]
* ''VideoGame/VegaStrike'' among all weapons mountable on a small ships has lasers doing the most [[DeflectorShields shield]]-piercing damage at the longest range, which makes them attractive even despite total damage being less than by other weapons for the same mounts. It also has a ShoutOut with a weak plasma weapon shooting slow red bolts named "Laser" which according to its own in-game description is "not a laser by any stretch of the imagination".
* ''VideoGame/{{Portal 2}}'' features the [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFRbGppLaUI "Thermal Discouragement Beam"]]. It behaves exactly like a real laser save for being highly visible, passes through glass, and can be redirected with "Discouragement Redirection Cubes". It's also one of only two ways (in the player's control) to actually destroy a turret, but it's surprisingly non-fatal when the player touches it -- it won't kill you but it hurts enough that you can't simply walk through it.
* ''VideoGame/LittleBigPlanet 2'' has the creatinator power-up which can fire different kinds of elemental lasers among other things.
* The July 20, 2011 patch for ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' gave the Soldier two.
** Actually, they are not. The Soldier gains something more reminiscent of plasma weaponry; one, those are clearly not light-based weapons, and two, they do not reach their target instantly.
* ''VideoGame/NightTrap'' downplays this. Sure, there are laser guns introduced at first, but only a couple characters have them, and they are still unable to win against the Augers. Also, SCAT comes into the scene with real guns, which are able to take down Augers...but not full-fledged vampires.
* [[StateSec STAG]] from ''VideoGame/SaintsRowTheThird'' use laser weaponry for both their infantry and their vehicles.
* In ''VideoGame/StealthBastard'', laser beams are one of the main obstacles. They're also fired by enemies.
* ''VideoGame/{{Shatterhand}}'' has a bot that shoots lasers.
* ''VideoGame/SwordOfTheStars'' has both the Hollywood bolt lasers and Beamers that are continuous beams.
** Interestingly, the sequel has revamped the damage system, and the pulsed lasers are no longer as weak as before. Each armor section has a pattern. That pattern is damaged differently by different weapon types. For example, mass drivers provide more damage overall but don't provide much penetration. Lasers specifically do a lot of damage to the armor in ''one spot''. If they manage to hit that spot with a laser multiple times, then the armor at that spot will be gone, and subsequent precise shots will do [[CriticalHit internal damage]].
* Kaos' Undead Spell in ''VideoGame/{{Skylanders}}: Spyro's Adventure'' summons harmless targeting beams that quickly turn dangerous if you stay in their path. Some of the Skylanders themselves also use laser beams, being either earth-types with a PowerCrystal theme or tech-types.
* ''VideoGame/{{Warzone 2100}}'' has two kinds of lasers - laser turrets and the Laser ''KillSat'', both depicted as rather slow moving - the turret lasers are depicted as projectiles (despite there being a rail gun in the game that is depicted as somewhat beam-like) and move slightly faster than machine gun bullets, but they are homing projectiles, with an 80% chance to hit, while the Laser ''KillSat'' is depicted as a cone of fire descending on it's target area.
* ''VideoGame/StarRuler'' has lasers as a weapon choice. They use continuous beams, are instant-hit and do not need ammo, unlike kinetics. It gets ridiculous when you research them to where their range is measurable in AU (~8 light-minutes/~500 light-seconds) and [[FasterThanLightTravel STILL hit instantly!]]
* One of the allied units and several enemy units in ''VideoGame/AlienHallway'' have guns that fire laser bullets.
* ''VideoGame/AquaRhapsody'', despite taking place entirely underwater.
* Each of the three sides in ''{{Earth 2150}}'' has a unique EnergyWeapon (with the Lunar Corporation having an extra one). The [[TheEmpire Eurasian Dynasty]] has lasers, which fire bright red beams that hit instantly. However, unlike a typical laser, it doesn't do any damage. Instead, it rapidly heats the target until the target's power plant or ammo stores explode. If the beam is interrupted, the target quickly cools down with no damage. Building are almost impossible to destroy with lasers, as stone has a higher melting point than metal.
** ''Earth 2160'' has ED use the bolt version of the laser that does damage on impact.
* ''SinsOfASolarEmpire'' has at least three kinds of lasers. A number of TEC and Advent frigates have pulsed lasers, a typical example of a slower-than-light bolt. The TEC ''Kol''-class battleships are also armed with heavy dark red laser beams. Pretty much all Advent capital ships BeamSpam bright blue laser beams. The ''Radiance''-class battleships can turn it UpToEleven with an incredibly powerful (and bright) laser beam the size of the battleship that pulverizes almost any target. Even Advent bombers are armed with hitscan lasers.
* In ''VideoGame/ConquestFrontierWars'', the [[PlanetTerra Terrans]] use pulsed lasers, while the [[EnergyBeing Celarions]] use both the pulsed and continuous beam versions. Interestingly, the beam version doesn't stay in one spot but keeps moving across the target, slicing it.
* ''VideoGame/NexusTheJupiterIncident'' has a few kinds of lasers. Most often, they are used for SubsystemDamage, lacking the firepower necessary to damage shields or the hull. Later on, lasers become more powerful and do inflict small amounts of damage. The [[PointDefenseless flak system]] uses thick criss-crossing laser beams pulsing (not a "pulse laser" but a laser beam pulsing) and completely automated, targetting missiles, torpedoes, and fighters. Fighters are also initially armed with lasers and can't do much beyond SubsystemDamage. Battleships are equipped with [[WaveMotionGun Siege Lasers]], which can OneHitKill most ships... if they stay in one spot for about 30 seconds necessary to charge and fire the weapon. Also, while charging and firing, the battleship and three other ships are unable to move or fire weapons, diverting most of their power into the Siege Laser, which is the only weapon capable of taking down a Fortress Shield.
* ''VideoGame/SilentHill'' had a few, each obtainable by getting the UFO Ending:
** The first game had the Hyper Blaster which could also be obtained by plugging a Konami Justifier into controller port 2. It came in three flavors, and each one was essentially a handgun, shotgun, and rifle with unlimited ammo.
** ''VideoGame/SilentHillOrigins'', which was a LethalJokeWeapon with overwhelming power and unlimited ammo, but a ridiculously poor range.
** ''VideoGame/SilentHillHomecoming'' had the laser pistol which [[GameBreaker broke the game wide open]] and could kill bosses so fast it could cause glitches.
* ''VideoGame/StarFox'': All over the place, starting with the [[SpaceFighter Arwing]]'s main weapon.
* ''VisualNovel/{{Sunrider}}'': Every single mecha and ship seems to have some form of laser-based attack.
* ''VideoGame/{{Borderlands}}'' features Eridian weaponry--most of these fire slower-than-light energy pulses of some kind (amusingly enough, averted by the sniper rifle equivalent, which is a LightningGun), but are never explicitly stated to be lasers. ''VideoGame/{{Borderlands 2}}'' brings us E-Tech weapons, however, which are described as things like lasers, particularly the Blaster range of E-Tech rifles. As expected of the trope, however, they are all fire blob-shaped energy pulses with obvious travel time, sometimes ending up even slower than standard bullets. The reason they still use up ammo (at twice the going rate even) is due to the guns somehow turning standard cartridges into energy projectiles. The saving graces of increased damage, elemental properties, and pure RuleOfCool keep them from being just novelties.
* Beam weapons in ''VideoGame/SpacePiratesAndZombies'' fire what look like variously-colored lightning bolts with limited range that hit instantly, which contrasts with the (also energy-based) cannon weapons, which fire spherical projectiles. Non-energy based cannons fire [[AbnormalAmmo various other things]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* Khrima in ''Webcomic/{{Adventurers}}'' loves laser beams.
** [[http://www.adventurers-comic.com/d/20020520.html A little bit too much...]]
*** [[http://www.adventurers-comic.com/d/20060204.html make that ''far'' too much]]
* In ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'', Riff regularly carries a laser cannon around whenever it looks like trouble might be brewing.
* Subverted in ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' as most of the characters, with the exception of Sergeant Schlock who prefers a plasma cannon, tend to use projectile weapons. The reasoning for this is explained in the footnote for [[http://www.schlockmercenary.com/d/20001029.html This comic]].
** In addition, most ship to ship combat seems to involve missiles and gravitic weapons, despite the fact that they do have lasers, as well as masers, plasma lances, and railguns.
* ''Webcomic/GunnerkriggCourt'': TwoWords: [[http://www.gunnerkrigg.com/archive_page.php?comicID=604 laser cows]] They're just like real cows. Only with lasers.
--> ''' "Elsie" 113''': Auditory response: Moo.
* A laser [[http://www.jaydenandcrusader.com/2010/02/22/page-149/ appeared]] in ''Webcomic/JaydenAndCrusader'' which moves slowly enough for one character to leap in front of it yelling a BigNo
** [[http://www.jaydenandcrusader.com/2010/05/24/page-153/ Shooting out her frickin' arm!]]
* In the future of ''Webcomic/{{SSDD}}'', buckminster fullerene armor has made conventional guns obsolete. However [[http://www.poisonedminds.com/d/20070712.html handheld lasers]] are ridiculously expensive, over 30 times as expensive as a coilgun or solvent-grenade launcher.
** And then there's the [[http://www.poisonedminds.com/d/20070713.html Black Rose Plasma cannon]], which looks like a flamethrower but fires a plasma stream that burns straight through fullerene alloys. Unfortunately it has a tendency to explode and has a reputation for killing more of its users than enemies.
* ''Webcomic/GalacticMaximum'': [[http://maximumcomic.com/?strip_id=0 The opening fight]]
* In ''Webcomic/MinionComics'' the minions are given a plan: [[http://www.meetmyminion.com/?p=621 "Run in there and shoot lasers everywhere."]]
* In ''Webcomic/BobAndGeorge'', [[http://www.bobandgeorge.com/archives/000714c the Yellow Demon can shoot lasers in some forms.]]
* [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/06/26/episode-166-good-samaritan-laws-are-crap/ The demon Baphomet]] in ''Webcomic/EightBitTheater'':
--> '''Pronteran #1:''' Look out, he's using ''laser eye beams''!\\
'''Pronteran #2:''' But we haven't ''invented'' lasers yet.\\
'''Baphomet:''' ''WE'' HAVE!
* In ''Webcomic/MassEffect3Generations'', [[TheWoobie Tali]] has suddenly gained twin combat lasers (not targeting or anything canonical) to the side of her helmet, and the quarian spider husks have cannons firing large green beams not resembling anything found in actual canon.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Web Original]]
* [[MemeticMutation Teh internets]] brings us [[BreathWeapon IM'A FIRIN' MAH LAZER!]] and [[{{Lolcats}} PEW PEW PEW]].
* At the end of ''Machinima/RedVsBlue Recreation'', [[spoiler: Epsilon Church]] discovers that his new body has this ability.
-->[[spoiler:'''Epsilon Church:''']] I am not a thing! My name is [[spoiler: Leonard Chuch]] and YOU WILL FEAR MY LASER FACE!
* WebVideo/TheNostalgiaChick shows off this ability in her Top Ten Dance Crazes list, burning her BFF Nella's shoulder.
* Website/{{Cracked}} mentions a home made laser gun[[note]] that is, buying a bench-top laser and battery pack in a $2000 USD kit, which could then probably be mounted on a rifle grip[[/note]] in their article [[http://www.cracked.com/article_18732_6-things-you-wont-believe-are-more-legal-than-marijuana.html 6 Things You Won't Believe Are More Legal Than Marijuana]] and a weaponized laser pointer in [[http://www.cracked.com/article_17127_5-deadly-sci-fi-gadgets-you-can-build-at-home.html 5 Deadly Sci-fi Gadgets You Can Build At Home.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In an episode of ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'', a villain gloats that his EnergyWeapon allows him to attack the Flash because it (obviously) moves at light speed. Flash counters by noting that his advantage is being able to also ''react'' much faster than most people.
** Also, Superman in "Kid's Stuff":
--> '''Kid''': What are you gonna do? You're just a kid.
--> '''Superboy''':(''zaps the ground by their feet with his heat vision'') I'm the kid with laser beams comin' outta his eyes. (''the kids flee in terror'')
* In ''every'' episode of ''WesternAnimation/CodeLyoko'', the monsters that XANA sends normally shoot laser beams from various parts of their bodies. Some have other type of attack, though, like Bloks (which in addition to lasers also can shoot ice beams and rings of fire).
** The only exceptions to this rule are the Scyphozoa (which use memory-draining or mind-controlling tentacles), Sharks (which shoot torpedoes in the Digital Sea), the Kalamar (which uses a drill) and the Kolossus (which can sufficiently destroy anything just by walking over it or slashing with its arm-blade).
** Also, the materialized monsters that XANA attempted on two separate occasions in Season 2 ([[spoiler:Kankrelats and later Krabes, though the latter destroyed the Scanners upon materialization due to sheer size]]) were able to shoot lasers. Unlike in Lyoko, these lasers are actually ''very'' dangerous, and almost killed a few people. Fortunately, the attack was stopped and Return to the Past'd JustInTime.
* Somewhat standard equipment in ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible'', especially in ''[[TheMovie A Sitch in Time]]'' (in a BadFuture). Due to NonLethalWarfare, it never hits anyone human. [[WhatMeasureIsAMook Drones,]] [[WhatMeasureIsANonHuman on the other hand...]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/MonsterBusterClub'' the kids have FrickinLaserBeams as well, but they don't work like conventional lasers. Instead, when hit, the enemy would then be sucked up into the gun, into a little cartridge thing the kids could remove and place in something that looks like cold storage until the authorities come to take them away.
* Parodied in ''WesternAnimation/AquaTeenHungerForce'' when the Mooninites fire laser beams at ATHF. The beams move very, very slowly.
** Frylock's EyeBeams, on the other hand, don't.
** Also parodied with the Plutonians attempted to trap Shake in a laser cage. They turned out to be harmless disco lasers.
* The BigBad in the ''JonnyQuest'' TOS episode "Mystery of the Lizard Men'' had one that could blow up a sailing ship.
** It was also visible, moving at a VERY slow speed-- so slow that the ship's captain could see and report it coming, and likewise Dr. Quest could order his crew to move a mirror to intercept it in order to reflect it back and destroy the BigBad ship.
* ''WesternAnimation/InvaderZim'':
--> '''Tallest Purple''': Why is everything lasers with you?
* ''{{Metalocalypse}}'' - Dethklok had acquired a Soviet planetarium laser light-show machine for a concert - unfortunately their adopted ward Fat Kid played with it, and it ended up cutting a philharmonic orchestra in pieces.
* Ecto-beams in ''WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom'' are Hollywood laser or plasma weapons.
* Surprisingly, laser beams did travel instantaneously in ''WesternAnimation/StreetFighter''.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/{{Superfriends}} 1973''/74 episode "The Shamon U", one of Dr. Shamon's devices is a giant laser that he uses to fuse space gold dust into gold meteors.
* ''TheHerculoids''. Used by Zok (from his [[EyeBeams eyes]] and tail), by one of the title characters in the episode "The Gladiators of Kyanite" (in the form of a laser spear), and by the title opponents in "Laser Lancers".
* ''TheNewAdventuresOfSuperman''
** "Luthor's Lethal Laser". LexLuthor uses a laser gun based on the moon to threaten to melt Earth's polar icecaps unless all of the countries on the planet surrender to him.
** ''Luminians on the Loose". Lex Luthor uses a laser telescope to bring the title creatures to Earth (and later to send them back).
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic:'' Very powerful unicorns, as well as Changelings, are capable of firing these from their horns. The next stage is a continuous beam moving at light-speed.
* ''WesternAnimation/SkysurferStrikeForce'' has a lot of lasers to go around but Bioborg Lazerette is the greatest offender.
* ''WesternAnimation/RoswellConspiracies'': The Alliance has a lot of these, thanks to all the alien technology they use.
[[/folder]]

%%[[folder:Real Life]]
%%* Scientists have created a Terawatt laser (over 1,000 gigawatts!) that can fire a beam into space... [[ForScience for scientific purposes]]. The laser is so powerful that it can only be fired for brief periods, creating a visible pulse that seems to "travel" through the atmosphere like a sci-fi "blaster" due to the ionizing effect. The ionization of the atmosphere around the beam creates a temporary plasma vacuum that allows the laser to remain coherent over much longer distances, which is what propagates as a visible pulse, hence the [[RuleOfCool glowy visible laser effect]] is actually the intended purpose.
%%* Military lasers are still research projects, for the most part, but as TechnologyMarchesOn, laser weapons '''are''' going to be increasingly prevalent.
%%** Microwave-based non-lethal "riot cannon" do exist, but given that they [[AgonyBeam cause serious physical pain without much damage]], their association with torture has left this project on the back-burner. Electroshock weapons using a laser pulse to create conductive trails (instead of wired tasers, for example) are also in the works, but are of dubious usefulness.
%%** Liquid chemical lasers exist and work. There's one mounted in a 747 intended to kill ICBMs, though it isn't quite ready for prime-time yet. A similar device has been toted for an AC-130 mounted "super sniper weapon" to perform silent, long range pinpoint kills. Ground-based systems are also being tested to shoot down incoming artillery shells and missiles.
%%** Solid state combat lasers are on their way; these can be mounted anywhere with enough power available. And if/when they become widely available on the battlefield . . . it will never be the same again. Combat aircraft will be driven out of the lower atmosphere, artillery will become almost useless (without firing hundreds of shells at the batteries just to get a few through), and missiles will become much, much less effective.
%%*** The US Navy is preparing to [[http://security.blogs.cnn.com/2013/04/08/navy-to-deploy-laser-to-destroy-drones-small-boats/?hpt=hp_t5 deploy a ship-mounted solid state laser into active service in 2014]] (original plan called for the use of megawatt-range variable frequency [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free-electron_laser free-electron laser]], but that has been pushed back to 2020s). Although it took a lot of money to develop, actually ''firing'' it is cheaper than missiles or bullets, and it has succeeded in destroying its targets in every test run. However, it does have some disadvantages: a direct line of sight is required (as it fires a straight beam, it can't arc over walls or reach beyond the horizon like conventional artillery), it needs to hold on the target for several seconds, and adverse weather conditions could lessen its effectiveness.
%%** Less destructive but highly effective microwave emmitters in the form of modern complex radar and ECM units can be used to track, blind and ''hack'' enemy radar and communication mechanisms. This was apparently used by Israeli strike craft against Syria in the recent past. The [[CoolPlane F-22's]] radar, among several other AESA systems, has been rumored to be capable of such feats as well.
%%*** One type actually based on lasers uses a piece of video software called a “glint detector” for targetting. Linked together with an appropriate laser, it allows any number of lensed devices (such as cameras… Or [[EyeScream eyeballs]]) within view for hundreds of feet to be instantly detected and burned out.
%%* The largest laser ever created, consisting of focused beams from 192 individual lasers, will be used at the National Ignition Facility in California to attempt to finally achieve break-even nuclear fusion.[[https://lasers.llnl.gov/ Details.]]
%%** If completed, the Extreme Light Infrastructure can even outperform NIF, since it can have its peak power in exawatt range, and should be powerful enough to ''[[http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/8857154/Worlds-most-powerful-laser-to-tear-apart-the-vacuum-of-space.html tear apart the vacuum of space-time itself]]''!
%%* Lawrence Livermore laboratories used to have a [[https://www.llnl.gov/str/Petawatt.html Petawatt laser]], which could produce over 10[[superscript:15]] Watts of power at the instant of its peak output. The pulse was so brief, however, it only produced about 600 Joules of total energy.
%%* Scientists have developed a [[http://intellectualventureslab.com/?p=23 mosquito-zapping laser]]. It doesn't attack humans or butterflies, according to TV reports.
%%* The [[http://www.dailytech.com/WickedLasers+Unveils+Lightsaber+Powerful+Enough+to+Set+People+on+Fire/article18681.htm Spyder III Pro Arctic]]. The world's first consumer hand-held laser weapon. Made from a cannibalised laser projector, it packs enough power to ignite flesh and cause permanent blindness instantly. The emitter also looks exactly like a lightsaber handle!
%%** [[AwesomeButImpractical Not yet effective as a weapon though]], since it takes minutes to burn through your opponent, enough for him or her to kill you by more mainstream weapons. [[ScienceMarchesOn Unless they can in the near future]] multiply the power by a factor of 10 and keep the same size and battery.
%%* In 2010 the BBC posted a story linked to the first public video of [[http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-10682693 a laser weapon]] destroying a large target.
%%* There actually are laser weapon system being actively used today, such as the [[http://defense-update.com/products/t/thor-IED.htm Thor]] and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZEUS-HLONS_(HMMWV_Laser_Ordnance_Neutralization_System) ZEUS-HLONS]], but they are primarily for explosive disposal, not for shooting people.
%%* [[http://www.laser-gadgets.com/ This guy]] makes frickin' laser beams as a hobby! The demonstrations show two pistols and what can only be considered a [[Series/DoctorWho Sonic Screwdriver]] burning through discs and sunglasses, popping balloons, and setting matches on fire from across the room. Granted, being TooDumbToLive and looking into the beam emitter directly will blind you permanently even with a welder's shield. But still, laser pistols!
%%* LaserGlo is a company that builds handheld lasers powerful enough to ignite small fires in paper and sometimes unrefined wooden targets.
%%* There was one very, very real LASER (machine-)gun produced in the 1990s. The [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZM-87 ZM-87]], a blinding neodymium LASER weapon, intended to blind by burning out eyeball corneas and digital camera CCDs with a longer range (2+ km) than an actual bullet-firing machine-gun. Now, this type of weapon is precise and [[AwesomeYetPractical extremely effective at neutralizing hostiles]], yet entirely non-lethal as the beam is not powerful enough to damage vital organs, and blinded soldiers would be forced to surrender because they cannot aim a gun nor run away. It is for that reason that this kind of weapon is actually banned by a 1995 international convention on the laws of war. Yes, '''all''' sides in an [[WarIsHell armed conflict]] [[WeHaveReserves would rather have their soldiers die from gunshots than be blinded but alive]] - [[YouHaveOutLivedYourUsefulness it costs too much money to rehabilitate blinded personnel]] and [[LeaveNoSurvivors POWs]]... which makes one realize [[WarForFunAndProfit how]] ''[[WarForFunAndProfit sinister]]'' [[WarForFunAndProfit war is]].
%%** It makes little sense in RealLife combat though, for multiple reasons: it can't fire indirectly like artillery or rocket artillery, cameras and eyeballs can be protected with welder-type goggles, which troops would deploy when they see their first-line comrades blinded and it does not harm troops under cover, inside [=APCs=] or inside buildings or bunkers. It works more like [[TortureTechnician a torture device]] to be fired at lightly-armed men on open ground than like modern explosive weapons.
%%*** A conventional LASER weapon can't be expected to fill every role on the battlefield, but no form of eye/camera protection short of a blindfold can filter out an adjustable color LASER. Otherwise, it's no worse than an anti-personnel machine-gun against vehicle armor or ferrocrete, or a [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Active_Denial_System MASER]] against unprotected flesh.
%%[[/folder]]

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