All Part of the Show: the Mat/Tenchi fight in "What Was Once Benign" was confused as part of a show. Even the crowd that gathered around it was captivated. Mat and Tenchi consider humoring them further when the fight ends.
Almost Out of Oxygen: After bailing from his fighter in "Cosmic Fairytale", Mathias nearly runs out of his oxygen supply after drifting for hours. Fortunately, he's rescued.
Angst? What Angst?: Mathias and Tenchi can get over things that would normally in fiction result in Wangst. Sometimes however it does take a little push or a few words.
Anime Hair: The Preyaran race has elements of this.
Anyone Can Die: And how! Even a name and basic characterization doesn't save you from the long arm of mortality. As is written so far, there's around a 70% casualty rate for named characters. Closer to 90% for unnamed.
Arc: The series relies on this for many parts. There are even small arcs within the larger arcs.
Armor Is Useless: Subversion. Armor can and does survive small arms fire just fine in many cases.
Flak Jacket: The "helmet comes off" variety of scene plays interestingly. Anzan gets a graze on his helmet and takes it off. The guy next to him however after calling on his luck eats a shot to the head.
Asteroid Thicket: "Cosmic Fairytale" takes us to a gas giant's ring system. As expected it's dense, but the objects are rarely bigger than a basketball or other small object. Except of course for the Trojan that drifted in. See Wronski Feint below.
Baseball Episode: the beginning of the chapter "It Was A Gift" has a game of baseball played by Mat, Tenchi and Samantha.
Battle in the Rain: The final battle between Anzan and Mathias in the first book has a rainstorm beginning just before they fight. Additionally, it shows up a couple more times in the second and third books.
The third book takes this trope Up to Eleven in the second Nees (pronounced "niece") fight. Both Nees and Mathias are squaring off along an active lava flow burning its way through the nearby forest. It also serves to show just how Hot-Blooded (no pun intended) and full of rage they are for the fight itself.
The Battlestar: Preyaran, Feyline, Terran and Vyron assault carriers all qualify.
Beach Episode: in a non-Fanservicey way. The second book opens up the scene we first see the main characters on a beach while they are on rest from the events of the first book. At the end of the episode, the call comes in for them to go back to action.
Beam Spam: Minovski Particle weaponry can be described as this.
More Dakka: The alternate interpretation of how Minovski Particle weaponry works. Preyaran and Terran weaponry seems to love this idea.
Big Damn Heroes: Colonel Smith and AT:Bravo do this to Mathias and company in "The Insurgent" arc.
Blade Below the Shoulder: The melee weapons that can be equipped on M-Techs. Tungsten blades designed for cutting through armor. As you might expect, they aren't used frequently but it was designed as a last ditch weapon owing to the close distances the Preyarans fight in their versions. Some M-Tech pilots like the Preyaran Boren prefer to have these on hand either as part of their tactics or just in case.
Bullet Hell: First described in "Cosmic Fairytale". Preyaran Defensive Drones always keep their numbers in a formation and use three dimensional bullet patterns consisting of spreads, spirals, circles and other shapes to draw enemy fighters away from their parent ship or in order to wall them off from evading the parent ship's own point defenses. Colonel Roy Jansen seems to be fond of these tactics. In the third book, one of the Vyron Commanders in conjunction with the flagship of the Vyron fleet uses this against Mathias.
But for Me, It Was Tuesday: A rare heroic example. In one of the final battles in the third book, Daniel of all people delivers one to Atrexis.
The Captain: Admiral Lin of the CSS Endeavor. She cares more about her crew's lives than can possibly be shown.
Carry the One: when calculating a grid square reference in chapter 14.
"Let’s see grid square between the two lines here, carry the two…ah here we go! Grid square coordinates are two-three-four-eight-three-niner-niner-one"
Chekhov's Boomerang: No gun goes off just once. The same item can and will be used again and again. It's modeling realism in the sense that you never use something just once if you can help it.
Chekhov's Skill: the method used by Tenchi to disarm Mat in the friendly fight in "What Was Once Benign" comes back in the third book in Mat's fight against Atrexis. Only this time Mat's learned how to use it to his advantage.
Defensive Failure: Samantha pulls this against Soras. Justified in that she's a civilian at the time with no firearms experience and she just saw her (military) companion in the church get brutally slaughtered.
Doing It for the Art: This series has undergone 4 major re-works, countless redesigns of characters, weapons, plot events and more and yet is still not done. However it is shooting for the best in everything it can do or die trying.
The Empire: the Preyaran Daemonyte is an Empire, but it is by no means anywhere near malevolent or evil.
A better example emerges in Voronov's New Galactic Order (NGO) near the end of the third book.
Enemy Mine: somewhat of a case at the beginning of the Vyron's bulk attacks. The Preyarans quickly realize they cannot stand against 2 threats from both the Alliance and the Vyron alone. The Swordmaster Khornan is the first to offer his hand in friendship in fighting the Vyron invasion.
Every Japanese Sword Is a Katana: Averted. Tenchi's swords are Kodachi, intermediate swords greater in length than a dagger or other short sword, but lesser than a katana.
Explosions in Space: Frequently the "bright spherical flash" type. Other kinds however just show pulverization or disintegration or some other nasty vehicular breakup.
Fantastic Racism: The term 'elf' when used by Terran speakers towards Preyarans is not exactly a friendly moniker.
Gatling Good: Gatling weaponry shooting Minovski Particles is the standard weapon on the Talon Strike Fighter. Mounted 40mm versions as ship-board point defenses, as well as on gunships and aerial transports also exist.
Genre Throwback: The story as a whole is more reminiscent of classical sci-fi that tells a good story first such as that of Heinlein and pulp magazines than the Technobabble and Technology Fetish more modern works like.
Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: Colonel Smith delivers the almighty Bright Slap upon Mat in the immediate aftermath of the chapter "Big Brother Comes". This coupled with a nice talk and Smith's boisterous personality does lift him out of his funk.
Half-Human Hybrids: The Vyron are a genetically bred race built from Terran and Preyaran sources as part of a conspiracy led by former Terran pilot Mikhail Voronov. Mistress Bellah of the Antara Council is also in on it and may in fact hold more power over it than Voronov.
Helmet Mounted Sight: M-tech piloting helmets have these integrated into them. Helmets for piloting Talons, Valkyries and Vikings with this also exist.
He Who Fights Monsters: Jornal grows ever more into this in the second book owing to the Vyron invasion. After Jornal's death, Daniel takes up the trope more and more.
High Altitude Battle: Any duel or battle involving M-Techs and low orbit. Low orbit is about as high altitude as you can get.
Hot-Blooded: Nees. He's extremely passionate about what he does.
Humongous Mecha: M-Techs. Standing at 18 feet (~5 meters give or take) tall and wielding fairly powerful and diverse weaponry. They do not however have superior armor to tanks thus are reliant on their jump pack boosters to evade enemy fire. They are also expensive as hell and not suited for production priority over main battle tanks and gunships. But they are a popular Special Ops vehicle.
Implausible Fencing Powers: averted. Characters are skilled with swords, they just don't pull off impossible feats like deflecting particle beams with them.
Improbable Aiming Skills: Daniel has never been known to miss a shot with his Feyline-made M6 Ascendant Battle Rifle. This skill strongly suggests he's had many years of live fire practice long before ever joining the Terran military and nobody in the Terran military knows why.
Kill Sat: The SatDef system. Originally they are orbital defense satellites intended to engage enemy ships. But they are too few to make any real significant deterrent.
The Lancer: Tenchi Yamanaka. Bonus points since he's technically superior in sword skill owing to longer experience.
Luke, I Am Your Father: Mistress Bellah is Anzan's long secret mother. Despite repeated contact, Anzan never realizes this until she herself in the final battle says so. Swordmaster Khornan was in on the whole thing even knowing what Bellah was up to at his death. He tries to tell Anzan this however.
Macross Missile Massacre: A favored tactic of the Preyarans and Terrans. Rocket barrage artillery is common as are aircraft and ship weaponry designed to fire off multiple missiles in quick succession.
Made of Explodium: Vehicles and ships in general have a tendency to explode under certain conditions.
The Medic: Samantha grows to play one of these following the Tarsian Campaign. But she's not a front-line duty in most instances.
Novelization: Inverted. Originally this was going to be a Video Game. Then the author started writing stuff down and liked what came out. Thus continuing where it went from there into being a book series first.
No Warping Zone: The Hynemann Barrier is the point where safe subspace jumps become possible owing to the effects of gravity interfering with subspace jumps via Minovski radiation. Jumping inside the barrier is possible, but unreliable in its destination or safety. Which is why La Grange Points are featured as a popular warp zone by military vessels.
One-Hit Polykill: First done by Daniel in "Big Brother Comes". Overpenetration in general is fairly common.
Our Elves Are Better: Space elf variety in terms of the Preyarans. However unlike traditional elves, Preyarans are biologically more or less identical to humans. They live comparable lifespans, have comparable intellectual and physical ability, hell were it not for the ears and the exotic hair colors and styles, a Preyaran could easily be mistaken for a very curvy Terran. The Feyline note this is a very peculiar, yet amusing stellar coincidence.
Point Defenseless: Subverted. Ships' point defense weaponry is a very real danger to fighter pilots and routinely intercepts enemy missiles. Nobody is safe from them.
Proud Warrior Race Guy: The Preyaran species as a whole loves this trope. They live by honor and die by the sword. The Feyline also have learned elements of this too. Hell even at times the Terrans abide by this trope.
The Quiet One: Daniel at least towards most people. He's warmed up to Mat and Tenchi but even then doesn't say much in total.
Seinfeldian Conversation: A recurring trope/Running Gag. Many conversations in the books are little more than just talking about nothing in particular. Not about the story, not exposition, not even about the scene in question or what they are doing.
Serial Escalation: Everything that shows up tends to be topped as the series goes on.
Shout-Out: some but not that many. Some of them include...
Casablanca: "Of all the posts in all of space, you just had to land on mine" (A take on the gin joints line)
Halo: quite a few parts of Chapter 14 are a direct Homage and Shout-Out to the E3 2003 Halo 2 trailer.
Shown Their Work: Every star system in the series is located at a real star within 25-30 light years of Earth. Bladed weapons were researched for the main characters too and it shows. As is knowledge on tactics, point defenses, assorted technologies and other things.
Standard Sci-Fi Fleet: In a way sort of. Assault Carriers are among the primary means of shuttling first strike troops to anywhere and providing air and logistical support to do so. Additionally they can engage other capital ships proficiently. They are the strongest ship class in Endless Conflict. Cruisers are used as fire support for Assault Carriers and various operations or they are used for space-based interdiction of vessels traveling slower than light. Destroyers are the most numerous vessel but are mainly just escort, interdiction, and point defense roles of the bigger ships. Frigates and corvettes exist, but are mainly planetary point defense or used as a Zerg Rush.
The Stinger: Every book has a little section after the Epilogue and credits pages. In the first two books, they are effectively Sequel Hooks that wrap up or continue plotlines left lingering in reader's heads.
Tear Jerker: Near the end of the Soras/Mat fight in "Big Brother Comes". Near the end of the second book: Jornal's death at the hands of Atrexis. It's just all over the place.
Tropes For Dummies: The in-universe book Colonel Smith has titled The Complete Moron’s Guide to Squad Level Tactics 3rd Edition
Try And Follow: Mat pulls this off in Chapter 15 trying to evade a Tengu gunship. It doesn't work.
Unobtanium: The aptly named Invincium used on Tenchi's and Mathias' swords. It's all but indestructible to wear, corrosion, heat and impact and has a nice silvery blue color. But it is extremely difficult to make and work with which hampers its use. Tenchi's father Master Matsui Yamanaka is one of the few people who knows Invincium's properties extremely well and knows how to work with it.
Verbal Tic: Jameson's "yeah" seen attached to sentences.
We Have Reserves: The Vyron pay little heed to casualties unless the numbers of casualties are very significant aka huge. Even losing a single assault carrier is of little concern to them. Unfortunately this backfires when the Preyarans, Terrans and Feyline lure them into a trap that wipes out the vast bulk of their remaining forces at the time allowing them to counterattack and win the war.
Wronski Feint: Colonel Jansen pulls one of these against a Mirai fighter in "Cosmic Fairytale". The crash object in question is a Trojan Asteroid that had drifted into the nearby gas giant's ring system.
You Are Already Dead: Spoken exactly (in subtitled/translated Japanese) by Mat after delivering a Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs against a Preyaran guard in "Behind Enemy Lines". However this doesn't kill the guard, but a follow up Neck Snap quickly takes him out.
You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Preyarans are known for having wildly exotic Hair Colors. This includes colors that would seem bizarre on humans such as green, blue, silver, pink and purple. Occasionally the colors blend into another owing to age or just the person in question.
Zerg Rush: seen repeatedly throughout the series. Conservation of Ninjutsu does come into play on some times and doesn't in others. Regardless the effects and results of such tactics are shown realistically.