This will flash somewhere on your instrument panel (or will be shouted at you in dialogue by another character over your com) whenever your jet fighter, Space Fighter
, Humongous Mecha
, etc. sustains critical damage and is about to crash or come apart on you. Better hope your Ejection Seat
is working properly or you may be screwed... not like that, you pervert
. It is frequently accompanied by a loud alarm, siren, or buzzer
Outside of video games, expect to see the trope title used as a stock phrase
when the Ace Pilot
needs to bail out.
Not to be confused with the usual utterance
- Bill Engvall tells the tale of how he got to fly with the Thunderbirds, which is the U.S. Air Force's demonstration team. Bill admittedly has a bout of Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny! while being briefed for the flight. His spell is broken when the instructor pilot says, "Okay Bill, when you hear your pilot say eject, eject, eject..."
Manga and Anime
- Air Crash Investigation: Used frequently during the reenactments with standard alarms or, in more recent incidents, mechanical voice warnings of "PULL UP! PULL UP!"
- Inverted in Code Geass. The Knightmare Frames automatically eject the cockpit block when dealt crippling damage; only time we see bright flashing messages is when the pilot can't eject because of a system malfunction.
- In Wing Commander, a light labeled "EJECT" will flash accompanied by a siren sound if your ship is damaged so badly that one additional hit would most likely destroy it, prompting you to press Ctrl+E to eject from your ship. May stop flashing when your shields recharge. However, it's not uncommon to be destroyed anyway by a volley of enemy fire which destroys you faster than the EJECT warning can react, taking you from good shape to death almost instantly.
- And in Wing Commander Prophecy, doing so will get you captured by the new alien threat, leading to a caption informing you of a literal Fate Worse than Death and game over.
- Overly expensive videogame Steel Battalion combined this with a Roguelike twist. If you didn't eject in time and died with your mech, your game data was erased.
- Mechwarrior and Mech Commander series feature it often in cinematics:
1: The Hunchback
finds itself on the wrong end of a Mad Cat's
long range missiles and ER Large Lasers. With smoke rising in the cockpit and alarms sounding, the pilot gives the triple call over the comm as he straps down and hits the lever.
Mechwarrior 3: Mad Cat vs. Atlas
. Atlas winning handily
(despite missing an arm already) -but too close to survive the resulting core breach. Seeing the characteristic flash, the Atlas pilot ejects.
Mechwarrior 4: Shadow Cat vs missile launchers. She just took them out, then she sees the missiles coming. The commander tells her to eject. She doesn't make it.
Mechwarrior 5: Warhammer vs. Atlas. In a close match, the Warhammer loses. The mech computer advises ejection, and the pilot complies. Unfortunately for him, where the first two got to eject inside armored cockpit modules, he got the standard seat-only ride. This doesn't help when his 'mech explodes directly beneath him, and the fireball rises to meet him.
- The HUD for tanks and hovercraft in Living Legends flashes the warning "PROCEED TO EMERGENCY ESCAPE HATCHES◊" and "BAIL OUT", when critically damaged and when the fusion reactor is breached. The Chevalier tank will also sound off a klaxon warning when the warnings appear.
- Escape Velocity starts playing a loud klaxon sound when your ship is doomed.
- In Battlefield 2 the bots will helpfully tell you to bail out of two place aircraft if they are critically damaged. Even if the damage is survivable. It's definitely not annoying.
- More straightly, if your vehicle is at very low health, an alarm will sound. Usually it's a good idea to bail out, because your vehicle has probably caught fire and will soon explode.
- On military aircraft with more than one seat the commanding officer will in fact yell "eject" thrice to the other crew member(s) to order them to bail out. This ensures that no single utterance of the order - possibly spoken completely out of context - will result in unnecessary (and expensive) ejections, as well as to ensure the rest of the crew will eject, no matter what, if they do hear the repeated order. See here.