Light Novel: Heavy Object

Objects. Gigantic armoured weapons of war which have completely changed modern warfare. With the standard method of thinking that "Only an Object can destroy another Object", the idea that normal soldiers could do anything was laughable.

Until Quenser and Heivia, a battlefield student studying Objects and a noble enrolled in the army as a radar analyst, lose their Object and are forced to battle an Object with nothing but their wits and a handful of explosives.

By Kazuma Kamachi, the author of A Certain Magical Index, Heavy Object currently has 9 volumes released.

An anime adaptation was announced in late 2014 and will air in the Fall 2015 Anime season.

The first chapter of the first volume was adapted into a manga by Inue Shinsuke in 2009. The remaining two chapters were adapted by Saito Sakae in a manga called Heavy Object S in 2011. A third manga adaptation (also by Saito Sakae) called Heavy Object A began in 2015 to accompany the anime adaptation.

Tropes found in this series:

  • Ace Pilot: All Elites are raised as this. Burning Alpha, Ice Girl 1 and Rocket Icarus also count, being actual fighter pilots.
  • Achilles' Heel: Quenser frequently exploits these weaknesses to disable/destroy Objects.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: The Rush is equipped with one. Its designed as a possible replacement for Elites, but due to the numerous flaws in current generation A.I's, they can be a threat not only for enemies, but allies as well. Currently, pilot must manually monitor and re-code the A.I. on the fly in order to prevent it from going berserk.
  • Amazon Brigade: The Valkyrie global divine punishment unit from the Faith Organization, the Battlefield Cleanup Service PMC, the maid bodyguards of the Winchell family and the bodyguard unit for the Princess in Volume 8.
  • Anti-Air: The creation of Objects and their advanced sensors and multiple laser weapons has reduced the role of the air force outside the Northern European Restricted Zone (where Objects are forbidden by international treaties) to transporting personnel and equipment, low-altitude reconnaissance when satellites are unavailable and ceremonial acrobatics.
  • Artistic License – Biology: Froleytia's family almost always has male children. Apparently this ability also applies to Froleytia herself.
  • Awesome by Analysis: The only reason Quenser is still alive.
  • Badass Bookworm: Quenser.
  • Badass Normal: Quenser and Heivia manage to constantly defeat Objects without one on their own.
  • BFG: All Objects are covered with them, but the Break Carrier/Lisolette takes the cake, being equipped with a mass driver railgun thats bigger than the actual Object itself.
  • Bishounen: Quenser, to the point that his description includes a line saying he could appear as a man or woman depending on whether he was wearing pants or a skirt.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Quenser, Froleytia, and Heivia, and more.
  • Buxom Is Better: Oh Ho Ho and her G-cup chest. Subverted, she's actually a 10-year old girl with a flat chest.
  • The Cameo: One of the techs in the manga adaptation has a headband covered in flowers.
  • Casual Danger Dialogue: Quenser and Heivia won't stop bantering even while they're trying their best to not die.
  • Child Prodigy: The Information Alliance has a genius girl project to raise hundreds of these for the military. Aditionally, talent trafficking (kidnapping child geniuses) is an active market on the Capitalist Corporations.
    • In Volume 9 the actual group behind the novel's conflicts is revealed to be an international group of child geniuses who are fed up with the adults and the state of the world and want to enter cold sleep until humankind is over so they can create a new world order.
  • Child Soldiers: The average age of the soldiers in the military has gone down quite a bit. Froleytia is 18 and has been in the military for years, while Mariydi is 12 and a recognized ace fighter pilot. Oh Ho Ho is actually around 10 years old and using 3DCG for her idol work. It's so common that hardly anyone thinks of it as wrong.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Several times, Quensar and Heivia cold have just obeyed orders and ignore the object while letting innocent people be killed but they go out to defeat the object instead, usually meaning that they never get recognized for their accomplishments and end up punished. The worst part is that, if it were up to them, neither would be on the front-lines anymore; it's the same people who don't want them acting like heroes who are the ones who keep putting them in the position to act like one.
  • CIA: The MIB in vol 7 is heavily implied to be remnants - or at least successor - to the CIA. (What with referring to themselves as a group as "The Company" or "Langley"; each of the agents name is a state/city of USA like Nevada, Texas and D.C; and last but not least:
    They were called many different things, but they never used the three letter acronym that began with C.
    The C at the beginning of their name stood for “central”, but they currently had nothing to be at the center of. An egg would not function with only the yolk. For that reason, there would be no meaning in using their true name at the present.
  • City of Spies: Lost Angels in Volume 9 acts as a hideout for the intelligence agencies of the four world powers.
  • Civil War: Between the main Capitalist Corporations and the Mass Driver Conglomerate in volume 2.
    • The 24th Mobile Maintenance Battalion of the Legitimacy Kingdom starts one in volume 3.
    • In volume 8, another one erupts in the Island Nation (a.k.a. Japan) because of one of the Capitalist Corporations self-defense PMC.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: The Princess, though she usually hides it well behind her The Stoic face. On more than one occasion, she's pointed Baby Magnum's main guns at Quenser, which is like pointing a battleship cannon at an ant. She does quite literally cling to Quenser out of jealousy on Christmas eve, though.
  • Coincidence Magnet: Aparently the universe just wants to see how much it takes before those two idiots turn tail from an Object.
  • Cool Ship: The disguised cruiser Scarlet Princess of the Legitimacy Kingdom and the Summer Vacation, one of the Winchell family's seven armed cruise ships, both appearing in volume 8.
  • Crapsack World: Especificaly pointed by the author.
    Afterword of volume 6: As you could probably tell from reading any one volume, the world of Heavy Object is a shitty world where the good are not rewarded and the evil are not punished.
  • Crazy Enough to Work: Everything Quenser and Heivia do.
    • Quenser's action regarding Froleytia being forced into marriage? Molest her in front of her arranged suitor and tell him you're in physical relationship with her. It works.
  • Crippling Over Specialization: All Elites are genetically modified and trained to pilot a specific Object and only that type of Object.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Quenser and Heivia spend most of their time doing stupid stuff and snarking at whatever stupidity is going on around them, but when the situation arises you'll realize that they actually know their stuff.
  • Curbstomp Battle: What the battle between a side with an object and a side without an object was acknowledged to be prior to the events in the story.
  • David Versus Goliath: The premise is two guys vs 50 meter tall tanks with more fire power than a nuke. It leads to every petty dictator trying to do the same thing off-screen, with...a bit less success.
  • Determinator: Quenser and to a lesser extent Heivia.
  • Disability Superpower: Putana Highball, the Faith Organization Elite from Volume 9 has scopophobia and is practically supernaturally aware of any gaze focused on her, from living beings to cameras and drones. She can even tell if cameras are active or not. She has been trained to use this sixth sense in battle, both in and out of her Object.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: Quenser and Heivia do the impossible and regularly takes out 50 meter+ Objects armed with nothing but quick thinking and high-quality plastic explosives, yet they're treated like crap by their own military.
    • Also subverted, as the general public thinks of them as the greatest heroes on the planet, calling them "Dragon Killers". Quenser and Heivia don't much care for the title, given what they have to do to maintain it.
  • Ejection Seat: Objects have ejection seats since the Elites usually account for a tenth of an Object's cost and training a new Elite to pilot an Object takes time.
  • Emotionless Girl: The Princess.
  • Feuding Families: The Winchell and the Vanderbilt are two rival noble families of the Legitimacy Kingdom, which makes things harder for Heivia since he's engaged to the heiress of the Vanderbilt family. The rivalry apparently began centuries ago, but nobody remembers why it started.
  • Forever War: There is always some new conflict springing up due to political tensions or personal ambition. The fact that civilians and most soldiers both aren't terribly affected by it is a major driving cause.
  • Frickin' Laser Beams: Objects usually have laser weapons, commonly for anti-air and point-defense roles, though they are also used in main cannons and anti-personnel roles.
  • Gas Mask Mooks: The soldiers from the 24th Mobile Maintenance Battalion of the Legitimacy Kingdom since their role is to scatter special gas for a combination attack with their Object the Indigo Plasma.
  • Gatling Good: The Rush main cannons are two giant gatling guns, each made of five rapid fire beam cannons.
  • Genre Savvy: Quenser and Heivia are perfectly capable of realizing they'll end up being sent up against an object, regardless of how many objects they have on their side. Justified though, since the military command hates them, and using them to whack an Object is practically free in comparison to the cost of deploying a 2nd generation Object.
  • Gilded Cage: In volume 6 Quenser and Heivia are transfered to a base which has the sole purpose of isolating troublesome soldiers (whether really troublesome or just eyesores for the brass), which happens to be located on a tropical island with a wide range of amenities.
  • Groin Attack: Princess Stavia to Sonja aka Yusenlak
  • Hand Wave: The engineering tech in the series is more or less well-researched and plausible, making it one of the hardest Sci-Fi LN around, but their accomplishment is well beyond the actual, realistic result.
  • Hidden Depths: The major characters are quirky, but alas they don't always went happy-go-lucky about stuff.
  • Improbable Age: Froleytia is a bit young to actually be a superior officer to Quenser and Heivia though possibly Justified as she's been in the army for a very long time to escape her suitors, and she's from a noble family in a military that takes blood very seriously.
  • In-Series Nickname: Examples include:
    • Princess for Milinda Brantini.
    • Heivia and Quenser call the Rush's Elite "Oh ho ho".
    • The same two ofter refere to Froleytia Capistrano as their "Large-breasted commander".
    • Heivia and Quenser received the nickname "Dragon Killers" by the media.
    • The three ace pilots of the global powers: "Burning Alpha" for Staccato Raylong, "Ice Girl 1" for Mariydi Whitewitch and "Rocket Icarus" for Ramil Scofflaw.
    • There's also the "Perfect idol" in volume 6.
  • Inertial Dampening: The weight and speed of Objects make it so that only Elites, artificially enhanced humans who also use special suits, can pilot them. Technically any human who actually learns how to use the complex custom control systems of an Object can pilot one, but they wouldn't be able to move it at actual combat speed without dying and thus would be a sitting duck to any Object piloted by an Elite.
  • Jack of All Stats: The Princess's Baby Magnum. It's designed to be able to operate and fight in any environment, but doesn't excel at anything. Even its weaponry is just average, with the designers giving it 7x main cannons to compensate for the weaker firepower. Its also a 1st generation Object, with 2nd generation Objects starting to be a common sight and research being done on 3rd generation ones. This puts it at a disadvantage against more specialized Objects and requires Quenser's assistance to help even the odds.
  • Kill It with Fire: The 1st generation Object Be Ablaze's main weapon is the "Hiding Clothes in Flame", a giant anti-personel flamethrower that creates smoke and mirages to disrupt the targeting of other Objects.
  • Kill Sat: The main laser cannon of the Broad Sky Saber in volume 6 is actually in a satellite.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Most Objects are this compared to everything else in the military, since they are a combination of devastating firepower, surprising speed for their actual size and armor practically impenetrable to anything but another Object's main cannons.
  • Magnetic Weapons: Objects use both railguns and coilguns as main and secondary weapons. Special mention for the Break Carrier's main cannon, a gigantic railgun.
  • Maid Corps: The maids of the Winchell family, who double as servants for the family and a private army of bodyguards.
  • A Mech by Any Other Name: The Objects.
  • Military Mashup Machine: Most Objects are Land Battleships, though some are specialized to fight on the sea or are actually amphibious.
    • The Faith Organization had a project for a submersible aircraft carrier that was ultimately abandoned as aparently it was too big and disturbed the water too much, making it easily detectable, though there are rumors that it was scrapped because the higher ups want to keep Objects as the primary weapons of the battlefield.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Quenser and Heivia constantly defeating objects and upsetting about a half century of military tactics have had unintended consequences, a fact that shows in volume 2.
  • Noble Womans Laugh: Oh Ho Ho. This is actually the name Quenser and Heivia call her by, since they (and the readers) do not know her actual name.
  • Oblivious to Love: Quenser is completely unable to see that Princess has a massive crush on him, or his Commanding Officer's, or his tsundere childhood acquaintance's that his family saved, or an idol's whom he met during his stint in a Redshirt Army...this grates Heivia even more than the fact that so many girls are falling for him in the first place.
    • Clueless Chick Magnet: Quenser is very very dense. Heivia wanted to punch him - and goes through with it - sometimes.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Milinda's her real name, but everyone calls her The Princess.
    • The Information Alliance pilot of the Rush is unknown, but is called "Oh Ho Ho" by Quenser and Heivia.
  • Plasma Cannon: Another common weapon of Objects are low-stability plasma cannons.
  • Point Defenseless: Averted, laser weapons are incredibly effective in the interception of missiles and aircraft, since the only way to dodge a laser weapon that's locked on you would be to move at lightspeed. At low altitudes dust, dirt and other stuff in the air may make the laser miss because of refraction.
  • The Political Officer: The Black Uniforms from the Legitimacy Kingdom are an independent agency responsible of barrier duty. Although this originally meant they were in charge of preventing soldiers from retreating from battle, nowadays barrier duty means they act as third party supervisors that check that soldiers follow orders, don't commit crimes, treat prisoners well, etc...
  • Porn Stash: One of such ended up mixed with training video, becomes a relevant Brick Joke later in the story.
  • Powered Armor: Powered suits are used both by the military and civilians (in mining and construction). While powered suits are a big threat to infantry, they're no match for an Object and so are usually relegated to support roles.
  • Private Military Contractors: The Capitalist Corporations military is completely based on them. Quenser and Heivia end up meeting and hiring one called Battlefield Cleanup Service in Volume 3 which turned out to be a front for intelligence operatives from the Information Alliance.
  • Reassignment Backfire: After destroying their first Object, Quenser and Heivia were deliberately sent on special mission after special mission, in hopes that they would be killed. The reason is because they have proven that regular soldiers can take out Objects, inspiring other soldiers on not surrendering after their Object is destroyed and causing war to be more drawn out/increasing casualties. Unfortunately, the duo not only survives, but continue to add more Objects to their kill list.
    • This is made even worse when they finally get transferred to an area far off from the front-lines, since they discover a conspiracy that ultimately leads to them interfering in a succession crisis between The Evil Prince and the Fallen Princess. Ironically, the end result means that Quenser and Heivia can't be reassigned anymore, since almost every officer in the military is now too terrified by the very idea of commanding them.
  • Redshirt Army: Anyone that isn't a protagonist, elite or someone in authority.
    • In-Universe, damn near everyone that is not an Elite in their Object are this. This getting to the point that actual infantry being incompetent at doing their old job since they're way too dependent on the Objects.
  • Refuge in Audacity: More or less Quenser's hat.
  • Reporting Names: Each of the 4 main factions has a different theme for Object's codenames. Legitimacy Kingdom mainly uses English words that describe their characteristics, and since the main protagonists belong to this faction most Objects only receive this type of codename. The Capitalist Corporations go for feminine names like Charbetty, Lily Maria, except the Japanese Objects which are usually in japanese like Yuuhi or Ame-no-Uzume. Information Alliance uses a weapon name and three digits, for example Gatling 033 or Cannon 256. The Faith Organization goes for mythological names like Ratri or Sarasvati.
  • Nobles Who Actually Do Something: Heivia and Froleytia. In Heivia's case though, he really doesn't want to.
  • Self-Destruct Mechanism: Objects usually have one of these to keep the enemy from capturing an Object and/or analyzing its technology. This is actually what Quenser and Heivia take advantage of to destroy their first Object, the Water Strider.
  • Space-Filling Empire: The Legitimacy Kingdom, the Capitalist Corporation, the Information Alliance and the Faith Organization each with their own specific ideologies (based on lineage, money, information and religion respectively) and which are constantly scheming against each other. Unique in that location has no bearing on which country belongs to which group.
  • Spider Tank: Most of the objects, especially 1st generation.
    • Hover Tank: Most Objects have some sort of hover propulsion.
  • Theme Naming: All the last names in the series are names of cocktails, the one exception being Sarasa Gleamshifter whose last name is merely based on the gloom lifter cocktail. More specifically, Legitimacy Kingdom names are brandy based drinks, Information Alliance names are gin based drinks, Capitalist Corporations names are rum based drinks, and Faith Organization names are whiskey based drinks. There's also one exception to these themes: Wydine Uptown, as that was a fake name taken by an Information Alliance agent while pretending to be from the Capitalist Corporations.
  • The Straight Man: More or less Heivia to Quenser, if only because he's less insane.
  • Twenty Minutes into the Future: The second half of the twenty first century to be exact.
  • Undying Loyalty: Surprising enough, Unicorn to Princess Stavia, to the point that they commit numerous acts - some that will no doubt get them court-martialed - just to try and saver her from Prince Dmitry's plot.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Not much but sometimes hinted between Quenser and Froleytia. Especially after his crazy stunt in an attempt to 'rescue' her.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: In Volume 9 the genius kid group behind the incidents of the novel is willing to steal the resources of an already drying world, manipulate adults into helping them and kill thousands of innocents in order to escape the current world through cold sleep and create an utopia in the future.
  • Weather Control Machine: The Amaterasu global weather control weapon system in volume 8.
  • World's Most Beautiful Woman: Apparently the perfect idol is this; she's described as: "so beautiful that is boring".
  • Worthy Opponent: Maybe. There's certainly this vibe between Burning Alpha and Ice Girl 1.
  • Wretched Hive: Lost Angels in volume 9. Not only is the city controlled by four gangs, which are actually fronts for the world powers' militaries who are targeting the Faith Organisation's Object maintenance facility, but any local citizens have long since left, leaving only criminals and soldiers.
  • Yandere: Heivia is engaged to the heir of a rival family, who acts like a Princess Classic...up until Heivia complains about Quenser getting all the good oportunities (women) they meet. She warns him that while she's a tolerant woman and will let him have mistresses as a noble status simbol, he's never to put any woman above her for an instant or she'll find an use for her family's tower collection.