[[quoteright:350:[[Anime/MobileSuitGundam00 http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Untitled_2_5185.png]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:One guess as to what's about to happen.]]

A specific kind of EnergyWeapon consisting of two or more prongs separated by an empty space. The blast from this type of weapon is generated within the space or fired through it, often heralded by [[ShockAndAwe crackling streams of energy]] zipping between the prongs as the weapon charges.

How the energy being charged does not simply disperse into the air is never really touched upon, although, one can expect a HandWave along the lines of [[SelectiveMagnetism a magnet]] [[AWizardDidIt did it.]] Suffice to say, the audience shouldn't even feel compelled to question this logic, because it looks really freaking awesome, [[RuleOfCool to the point where things like reality just aren't very important anymore.]]

Some times a regular, less powerful weapon may be able to [[SwissArmyWeapon open up]] into one of these for a [[WaveMotionGun truly staggering blast]], which is where this trope gets its name.

Note that while most [[MagneticWeapons magnetic acceleration weapons]] (railguns) have this kind of structure internally, they do not count unless explicitly showcasing said structure in a dramatic fashion. For example, a theoretical design called a "plasma armature railgun" might be able to generate what appears to be a plasma beam than a solid projectile. Most fictional weapons with this design do away with projectiles entirely and discharge energy directly; as the energy inside the fork arcs and sparks, this is also a common design for a LightningGun.
It's also TruthInTelevision for nitrogen lasers, which excite the nitrogen in the air in order to amplify ambient light into about 200 randomly occurring powerful laser bursts per minute, which make a pretty impressive rapid fire pulse laser.
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!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Anime and Manga ]]

* The larger energy weapons in the ''{{Macross}}'' series (and by extension ''{{Robotech}}'') are of this design. Some of the ships of the titular class even used ''the arms of a HumongousMecha [[TransformingMecha mode]]'' as "prongs".
** The TropeCodifier was the original SuperDimensionFortressMacross itself , whose bow separated to form its WaveMotionGun.
*** The Zentraedi ship-mounted smaller cannon also had a sort of baby-version of this look to them.
** ''MacrossFrontier'' gives us a private military version of the SDF called the Macross Quarter. About 1/4 the size of Battle Frontier, she carries a Heavy Quantum Cannon. This tri-prong, splitting weapon of mass destruction is new in the pantheon of Macross wonder weapons that, though not as powerful as Battle Frontier's WaveMotionGun, it still has enough power to take out a Vajra battle ship half, even a little more it's own size. The beams cycle down the the "rail-gun" structure and seem to "twist" into a single beam when fired.
** Also in ''MacrossFrontier'', we have one of the most advanced VF, the VF-27 Lucifer, with a smaller version of the Heavy Quantum Cannon. The gun splits into a dual-prong energy "rail-gun" that takes a cue from its bigger brother armed on the Quarter. While not as obviously powerful, it can take out a medium sized Vajra with one shot.
*** The [[NonSerialMovie second movie]] gave the YF-29 Durandal, which has one similar to the VF-27's, only it opens vertically instead of horizontally.
**** The Quantam Cannons used in Frontier deviate from the original trope. Inside of firing a beam from between the prongs, each prong fires its own beam which then converges together into a spiraling beam.
* In ''Anime/FafnerInTheAzureDeadAggressor'' and its [[{{Prequel}} prequel movie]], a number of the energy weapons exhibit this feature, being swords that split down the middle to fire energy blasts. The practical purpose of this feature is shown by the separating halves of the blade creating a hole in an enemy's force field through which a shot can be fired.
* Raising Heart from ''LyricalNanoha'' has a "Cannon Mode", in which its half-crescent knob turns 90 degrees and extends, forming this type of weapon, while a gun grip and trigger forms on the other side. The explanation is [[AWizardDidIt simple]].
** Bureau L-class spaceships also have a tuning fork structure on the prow, and once the [[CoolShip Asura]] gets upgraded with the [[WaveMotionGun Arc-en-Ciel]], the resulting weapon can level continents.
* Done a number of times in the various Franchise/{{Gundam}} series:
** The [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamCharsCounterattack Nu Gundam's]] Fin Funnels work this way, and can also generate a [[DeflectorShield beam shield]] as needed.
** [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing Tallgeese III's]] megacannon, which has variable power modes. In maximum output mode, the form that uses the Tuning Fork, its power output is roughly equal to Wing Zero's [[WaveMotionGun Twin Buster Rifle]], but ItOnlyWorksOnce; afterwards Tallgeese is drained of power and needs assistance to get back to functional.
** [[Anime/MobileSuitGundam00 Gundam Virtue's]] GN Bazooka (pictured) would split and extend for its Full Burst Mode. Later on, the Gadessa sported a three-barrelled variant that could separate the barrels to form a weapon of this type.
*** so is Virtue's later generation, Seravee Gundam, which can launch an EnergyBall.
* ''Franchise/{{Digimon}}'' has two of these: Beelzemon's gun opens in such a manner before firing, and the lion head design on Lowemon's chest can do a fairly unusual version of it (the mouth opens, and a sphere of black energy swirls into existence between the jaws. A yellow beam is then fired from deep inside the mouth, through the black sphere, and the enemy is struck with a black-and-yellow blast. It looks a lot cooler than it sounds.)
* The Oratorio #8 KillSat in EurekaSeven.
* The wing-mounted beam cannons from the Knight Sabers' gunship in ''[[BubblegumCrisis Bubblegum Crash!]]''
* The [[KillSat Artemis]] from ''MaiHime'' uses this for its main weapon
* ''TrinityBlood'': When Abel cranks the Crusnik up to 80%, his ''wings'' act as one of these. It is awesome.
* ''TransformersCybertron'': When powered up by his Cyber Key, one of Optimus Prime's SuperMode {{BFG}}s opens up the barrel to create one of these.
* The wands in ''Anime/LittleWitchAcademia'' are of this design. The spells come out from between the prongs.
* In ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', Ichigo's second Hollow form and the artificial Hollow White charge and fire their Ceros from between their horns.

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[[folder: Film ]]

* ''Film/StarTrekNemesis'': While the Scimitar was destroyed before it could fire its thalaron weapon, the individual emitters were shown to have several booms joined together by a ring. The weapon is presumably fired from the center of the emitter.
* The Federation ''Dreadnought''-class battleship USS ''Vengeance'' in ''Film/StarTrekIntoDarkness'' mounts a pair of these which deploy from a retractable mount on the forward hull. [[spoiler: They are used to target the USS ''Enterprise.'' However, they fail to fire due to Scotty sabotaging the ''Vengeance'''s computer.]]
* The {{Stun Gun}}s used in the Battle Room in the film version of ''Film/EndersGame'' look like this.

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[[folder: Litereature ]]

* As mentioned on the [[WaveMotionGun Wave Motion Gun page]], Larry Niven's 1985 novel "Ringworld Engineers" presents an early version of this trope in the ''Wunderland Treatymaker,'' a KillSat just short of Death Star class. It fired a parallel pair of beams -- one to suppress the negative charge on sub-atomic particles such as electrons, while the other suppressed the positive charge on particles like protons. Between them they generated an ''incredible'' electrical potential, and in turn enough electrical current to melt and then vaporize rock. The only time it was used on a planet, the result of dragging its beams across the planet's surface resulted in a canyon ''twenty miles across and twelve miles deep'', and nearly two hundred long.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live-Action TV ]]

* [[ProudWarriorRaceGuy D'Argo's]] Qualta blade from ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' is a fairly well-justified example; it's a normal sword most of the time, but he can open it up, forming a gun of roughly this configuration; there's a barrel at the back end, and the "prongs" don't seem to do anything when it's a gun; seeing as they're the sword blade, they're still fairly useful.
* In a much smaller scale, the ''Series/StreetHawk'' motorcycle's nose-mounted laser.
* The GUTS Wing 2 planes from ''Series/UltramanTiga'' and ''Series/UltramanDyna''.
* ''Series/PowerRangersSamurai''/''Series/SamuraiSentaiShinkenger'': The Beetle Blaster Megazord/Kabuto Shinken-Oh's finishing move involves the Beetle's horns forming a Wave-Motion Tuning Fork that spins.

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[[folder: Tabletop games ]]

* [[ScaryDogmaticAliens Tau]] railguns in ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' look like this, but normal pulse weapons have a case around the rails.

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[[folder: Videogames ]]

* ''VideoGame/ArmoredCore 2'' has a dual ArmCannon version as a ShoutOut, but the effect is less like a WaveMotionGun and more like a barrage of plasma bolts.
** While Armored Core has had Railguns, which doesn't count for this trope, the so-called Railguns in Nexus and Last Raven does not, in fact, fire solid projectiles and in fact fire energy cannons. Models such as the arm-mounted [=YWH16HR=]-PYTHON and the back-mounted [=CR-WBW98LX=] (previously CWX-LIC-10 in 3/Silent Line). In the Python's case, the weapon is actually ''three-pronged''!
* The Covenant Plasma Rifle and Plasma Pistol as well as the Brute Plasma Rifle from the ''{{Halo}}'' series. As might be expected, their workings have raised quite a bit of speculation but one of the more prominent ones is that the prongs supercharge air molecules between them and accelerate the resulting plasma out with a magnetic field. Better to [[BellisariosMaxim just play the game]].
** The "Seldom explained" bit is justified in that the Covenant have looted the remains of the extinct Forerunner civilization for their technology. The Covenant don't understand how it works because they believe the items to be of holy origin (they worship the Forerunner as gods.) The Humans don't understand how it works because they're not anywhere near advanced enough to have anything like it.
*** ''VideoGame/{{Halo 4}}'' has the [[http://www.halopedia.org/ARC-920 Railgun]].
* Haken's HandCannon opens up like this during his LimitBreak in ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWars OG Saga: VideoGame/EndlessFrontier'' Notable in that the actual barrel of the pistol remains between the prongs.
* In ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWarsAdvance'', the Ash Saver's Halberd Launcher is a [[HumongousMecha Personal Trooper]] version of this, firing a [[BeamSpam main beam and several side beams]] at the target.
* The Van and Aerotank (and presumably the dumbed out Van Leader) enemies in PhantasyStarII have a variation on this: the large, vertical "slab" in front rotates 90 degrees, opens sideways, a crackling of energy is seen inside, and it launches an energy blast.
* The LightningGun from ''VideoGame/{{Quake}}'' and ''VideoGame/QuakeIIIArena''.
* The nose of the Vic Viper from ''{{Gradius}}'' is shaped like this, and is even used as such in some art/adaptations.
* ''VideoGame/{{Homeworld}}'' makes ''good'' use of this:
** ''Homeworld'' and ''Homeworld: Cataclysm'': the Taiidani ''Sajuuk Cor'' Ion Frigate has a forward-mounted ion cannon that sports not two but four accelerator units around its axis.
** ''Homeworld 2'': the [[spoiler:''[[LostSuperweapon Sajuuk]]'']] actually ''inverts'' this trope in that the weapon is composed of two angular trenches running across the sides of the entire ship and the vertical fork on the front which is only the muzzle. When the weapon fires, a golden-orange energy stream fills the trenches from the rear to the front; when the stream reaches the fork, anything that happens to be [[ArbitraryMaximumRange less than ten kilometres]] in front of it is [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-05M3Xt1y8 dead (unit spoiler!)]].
* In ''{{MARDEK}} 2'', the Dracelon boss monster has one as a claw. The two prongs also open out to 180 when it uses its Lightning Storm attack.
* The mass relays from ''Franchise/MassEffect'' fit the "tuning fork" description, even though they're not weapons. Though given their importance to pan-galactic travel, they could be considered a delivery system. And they are [[spoiler:an important component in the Reapers' cycle of destruction.]]
** On the other hand, they could fit this trope completely if used to deliver a nuke to destroy the mass relay on the other end. While relays are [[RagnarokProofing ridiculously tough]], if one does go up the result is [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAlO1JHylxE quite spectacular]].
*** The krogan also built ground-to-orbit cannons that are designed in this way. In ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'' a side mission is to head to [[http://masseffect.wikia.com/wiki/File:Firebase_Giant.jpg one such facility]] and secure it to prevent Cerberus using it to shoot down friendly ships.
* The BulletHell arcade game ''Videogame/{{Cyvern}}'' has the green dragon, who fires the beam from prongs on its wings.
* Warp Rifles in ''[[VideoGame/UFOAfterblank UFO: Aftershock''.
* The D-Rex boss in ''Videogame/MegaManX1'' has a weapon like this.
* In later ''VideoGame/VirtualOn'' games, the [[JackOfAllStats Temjin]] exhibits this, with its beam rifle's barrel splitting open to allow it to fire a supercharged shot. Given that [[SwissArmyWeapon the rifle is not only also its sword]], but a ''[[SkySurfing flying surfboard]]'' too, this raises one or two questions about the weapon designers in that game...
** Raiden's melee attack is something of a subversion. Its shoulder cannon is more similar to a parabolic dish, but its melee attack uses that shoulder-mounted weapons in a fork-like configuration complete with arcing electricity.
* The Tesla Cannon in ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 3}}''(Broken Steel DLC) and ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder: Webcomics ]]

* ''AMiracleOfScience'': Benjamin's [[http://www.project-apollo.net/mos/mos060.html railgun]] is a ([[HandCannon large]]) pistol-sized example. The Martian [[http://www.project-apollo.net/mos/mos104.html Cadence Lance]] is also fired from between two prongs, though they form a notch in a semicircle rather than being linear rails.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* Megatron's first transmetal form in ''WesternAnimation/BeastWars'' has him equipped with a two-pronged arm cannon. That glows purple.
* An unused concept sketch for a {{Transformers}}[=/=]GIJoe crossover was of Megatron with an alternated move of a Cobra Helicopter/tank. The vehicle's three rotors formed a ShoulderCannon in robot mode.
* Tirek, the BigBad from the ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' episode "Twilight's Kingdom", uses the space between his horns to cast magic spells and throw earth-shattering fireballs.

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[[folder: Real Life ]]

* The [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free-electron_laser Free Electron Laser]] is a piece of awesome technology that matches this trope, complete with being especially good at being tuned for various emitted frequencies of radiation. The FEL forces a stream of electrons at relativistic speeds to pass through an optical cavity (the "fork") containing alternating magnetic fields (the "wave motion" component), and depending on the strength of the alternative magnetic field (the "tunable" component), the resulting synchrotron radiation produces photons at controllable power levels and frequencies. The technology is quite versatile and has has applications in scientific research and medicine, but also as a powerful directed energy weapon for military applications.
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