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[[quoteright:350:[[WesternAnimation/GIJoeARealAmericanHero http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/620fc46311e6318230604e7772b14e80.png]]]]
[-[[caption-width-right:350:ACME Laser Bullets! Military-tested, censor-approved!]]-]

->''"With Creator/{{ABC}} deleting dynamite gags from cartoons, do you find that your children are using explosives less frequently?"''
-->-- '''Mark [=LoPresti=]'''

In an example of the {{nerf}}ing of violence, almost all firearms in animated cartoons made since the late 1970s or early 1980s, if they appear at all, will be radically different from real guns, either in form or in function. [[RayGun Energy weapons]] are a popular choice.

Sometimes it gets explained -- but usually, not.

!!Several reasons for this have been theorized:
* Changes in American gun culture, akin to those that made things like [[NoSmoking smoking]] and drinking alcohol an increasingly rare phenomenon in American media.[[labelnote:†]] Despite restrictions on the ''availability'' of guns in America being loosened quite a lot since the 1970s, the proportion of the American population who actually ''own'' guns has dropped by over a third in that same period. Interestingly, the ''number'' of guns in private hands did not go down during that time period.[[/labelnote]]
* Imitability. Shooting someone with a bullet is [[DontTryThisAtHome an imitable act]] which might result in negative publicity, but a kid can't find his Dad's laser rifle and zapfry his buddy. [[TechnologyMarchesOn Yet]].
* Higher leeway on how much damage it deals and how it is portrayed. It is easy to accept an action hero getting [[FrickinLaserBeams blasted away by an energy beam and then jumping back to his feet]], but if he got shot with a bullet, then we'd have to deal with the fact that he has a physical object lodged in his chest -- or if the bullet were sufficiently powerful, that he has part of his chest lodged in a physical object behind him. Conversely, when heavy property damage is called for in a short amount of time, it's more believable to have someone blast through a brick wall with a single "laser beam" than with a single bullet.
* The TooSoon trope. Usually when a real life tragedy involving people getting killed with guns happens, American media will often edit or redo anything in which gun violence is prevalent out of respect for the victims, sometimes by banning an episode that has gun violence and most times by editing it so the guns aren't realistic.

Note that this is usually limited to bullet-firing weapons. Larger, more destructive weapons like cannons and [=RPGs=] may still be seen in works using this trope, perhaps because they are less easy to obtain in real life. In these cases, it will have [[{{BFG}} large guns]] fire actual bullets, but still no realistic small arms.

!!This trope manifests in several ways:
* When characters who would be expected to own guns -- such as policemen -- don't have them, or don't use them in cases which they would be expected to do so.
* When most or all of the guns in a particular universe are energy-based or use AbnormalAmmo, regardless of the owner or the universe's particular technological level.
* When a firearm looks and acts like a real firearm, even including parts which make sense for bullets but not for lasers, but whose ordnance still looks or sounds like lasers. Inversely, when an unrealistic-looking gun fires actual bullets.
* When a work which previously featured realistic guns is altered to make them less realistic, or eliminates them altogether.

This philosophy has sometimes extended to cartoons from previous decades or those imported from other countries. In general, most production houses have (under pressure from various {{media watchdog}}s who believed cartoon violence stimulated real violence) eliminated or altered anything and everything that looked like a real gun from their cartoons. Similarly, networks have gone back and Bowdlerized classic cartoons to remove firing guns and, in some cases, casual use of explosives. The reasoning behind these sometimes bizarre substitutions seems to be the belief that if it doesn't look like a real weapon, the poor child's psyche won't be warped and he won't have the desire to use a real weapon on someone else.

This trope is a fairly [[CyclicTrope cyclical one]], with guns going from "acceptable" to "not acceptable" and back again in the span of a handful of years, and sometimes within the same show. Whether or not it appears also depends greatly on a particular show's creator and how willing he or she is to fight for realism. A handful of exceptions seem to exist; Elmer Fudd-style double barrel shotguns and Tommy Guns seem acceptable regardless of what stage in the cycle everything else is at. Also, cartoons set in TheWildWest still use realistic looking guns because of it being a famous historical time period.

Note: if laser beam weaponry ever becomes a reality, [[InvertedTrope you're kind of screwed]]. If Cracked.com is [[http://www.cracked.com/article_18732_6-things-you-wont-believe-are-more-legal-than-marijuana.html any indication,]] however, laser weaponry [[OhCrap already exists]], and someone could get hurt or killed by such technology [[ParanoiaFuel any day now]].

Goes hand in hand with TheLethalConnotationOfGunsAndOthers. See also AbnormalAmmo, TrickArrow, InverseLawOfSharpnessAndAccuracy. Often given to a {{Badbutt}}.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Creator/FourKidsEntertainment's ''Manga/OnePiece'' dub was notorious for this:
** In the first few episodes, guns would occasionally be replaced with a sillier-looking equivalent. One scene where Helmeppo holds a flintlock pistol to Cody's head had the conventional weapon heavily edited into [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/621839602b084eb8963a12f25350bea7.jpg something that looks more like a hammerhead on a spring.]] (The weapon changed back to a gun in a long shot and a few other frames that 4Kids missed.) Simultaneously, other guns would be edited or recolored to look less realistic -- Navy soldiers' rifles were changed to resemble super-soakers, for example -- but would still explicitly shoot bullets.
** In the Krieg mini-arc, a gun that shot spikes was changed to shoot "poison suction cups". But when the spikes were flying through the air for a few frames they were unedited, and they still hit the ground with a metallic "clank".
** In the flashback to Luffy and Shanks's origin stories, Shanks is held up point blank with a gun to his temple and he casually points out that the man holding the gun is in danger of a backblast if his skull causes the bullet to shrapnel, just to show how badass he is. In the 4kids version the man is holding a popgun, although Shanks's lines remain mostly unchanged. Shanks's man shoots the would-be shooter dead and they didn't bother changing his gun, but left in a comment that it was full of blanks and that the other man simply fainted.
*** Which ironically makes the scene considerably ''less'' family friendly, as it [[FamilyUnfriendlyAesop unintentionally delivers the message]] that [[ArtisticLicenseGunSafety guns are perfectly safe to fire at people when you're firing blanks out of them]]; anyone with even a basic knowledge of gun safety can tell you that it is ''never'' safe to even pretend to fire guns at people, up to and including when they're not loaded with anything at all (As an added twist, this was actually the message that the scene was originally meant to convey, with Shanks informing the bandit threatening them that he shouldn't play around with guns unless he was prepared both to kill with one and to die by one).
** Kaya threatens Kuro with something kind of resembling Usopp's slingshot. Which makes a rattling sound suspiciously similar to a gun when she trembles.
* The dub of ''Anime/DigimonTamers'' slightly modifies the names and sound effect of Gargomon's attacks (essentially done with a Gatling gun in the original).
** Beelzemon, on the other hand, got to keep his realistic guns and CGI ''Matrix''-esque bullets, though there were still laser sound effects.
** The Japanese [[InsistentTerminology Self Defense Forces]] shown were carrying real guns (apparently the Howa 89). Again, only the firing sounds were changed. Not to mention the police officers, who also get to draw their weapons.
*** In one occasion, the police officers had [[LullDestruction added dub lines]] to assure the viewer that the guns weren't ''actually'' loaded.
** In ''[[Anime/DigimonSavers Digimon Data Squad]]'', [=RizeGreymon's=] bullet sounds were changed to laser sounds, even though he was still shooting from a gun.
*** Oddly, the name of the attack was still "Trident Revolver".
** Also in ''Digimon Data Squad'', [=BomberNanimon=], originally a giant bomb, attacked the amusement park. In the U.S., he was changed to Citramon, a giant orange, and a living {{homage}} to [[Manga/BoboboboBobobo Don Pachi]].
** An interesting example: The Digimon Revolvermon is basically a giant revolver barrel with limbs and a cowboy hat. While the English dub changed his ''name'' to Deputymon, his appearance and attacks were not altered at all (probably because, if they erased his gun, he would look more like a human than a Digimon).
*** ''[[Anime/DigimonXrosWars Digimon Fusion]]'', however, recolors him in blue. It also recolors anything looking like a gun ''with lightening sparking around it'' in the English dub.
** Puppetmon brandishes a real firearm throughout his main episode (wherein he kidnaps Takeru). It was digitally erased in the dub, with Puppetmon threatening T.K. with... nothing in particular (not that a [[OlympusMons Mega Digimon]] actually ''needs'' a gun to pose a threat to someone).
* Just like with ''Digimon Fusion'' above, the Nick dub of ''VideoGame/DanballSenki'' also recolored all guns with lightening sparking all over them.
* The [[EditedForSyndication broadcast version]] of the dub of ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamSEED'' actually has [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/4d1ff8404eac5c7818f0c700feafbad4.png ballistic weapons]] visually edited [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bc1bc5f5b7b0c4495d23e2215f082794.jpg to look like lasers.]] They missed a few shots. [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/kerai/1110048506407.jpg Click here]] to see examples. The editing got really inconsistent in the last two episodes, which were aired so late at night that Cartoon Network could get away with more than when the show was aired at 10 PM. And some of the "lasers" were ridiculous enough to undergo MemeticMutation -- search for "Disco Gun" for details.
** This was edited much less in Canada (''Gundam SEED'' aired at 9PM or later on Fridays) -- mainly editing out the over-graphic deaths had by some "extras" (such as from the radiation weapons -- swelling and popping), and toning down a bit of the (somewhat-infamous) Kira/Flay encounter.
*** One [[EpilepticTrees fan theory]] is that the gun edits were intentionally ludicrous: Bandai and CN both realized that the fans would see right through the edits, but it still had to be done, so they were made silly-looking to give viewers something to laugh at.
* Not just the broadcast version, but the English Dub period (even on the DVD) replaced the firing sounds of the head vulcans of various Gundams in ''Anime/MobileFighterGGundam'' to sound more like rapid-fire lasers. You wouldn't want kids shooting people around with their own head-mounted rotary guns.
* Both the ''Franchise/YuGiOh'' [[TabletopGame/YuGiOh card game]] and [[Anime/YuGiOh TV show]] have monsters that wield or resemble guns edited into lasers... [[MemeticMutation in]] ''[[MemeticMutation America!]]''. The most notable example of this is the monster called "Barrel Dragon", which could be described as resembling several guns welded together in Japan. An exception is the "Ancient Gear Soldier" in ''Anime/YuGiOhGX'', which uses a submachine gun-arm - it can be argued this was just because editing it would have looked ridiculous.
** Several guns are left intact however, but are slightly redesigned to look less like real guns. One particular trap card features an old fashioned flintlock, in the Japanese version, that was covered in gold ornaments for the international release.
** There's also the henchmen who had their guns removed and were considered threatening because they were ''pointing'' at someone. This was parodied several times in ''WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries'', which was made with the edited footage, where the {{Mooks}} were clearly holding edited-out guns:
--->'''Thug:''' Don't move a muscle or we'll shoot you with our invisible guns!\\
'''Tristan:''' Bakura! Don't be a hero! They've got invisible guns!
*** The {{Mooks}} even discuss it during TheStinger.
--->'''Mook:''' I told you we should've used the regular guns, but [=NOOOOooo=], we had to use the INVISIBLE guns because they're magical and ooh and ahh...
*** The Abridged Series also subverts this joke when the main characters get trapped in a 4Kids base, and wall turrets extend out of a wall. Kaiba sarcastically comments about how 4Kids is going to use magic bullets that send them to The Shadow Realm, which Joey follows up with the suggestion of harmless rubber bullets. The turrets then proceed to fire real bullets.
*** Amusingly, this once led to Seto Kaiba [[DestinationDefenestration Jumping out a window]] '''[[SuicidalGotcha over a cliff]]''' because two guys were ''pointing at him menacingly.''
** A later episode included a goon holding Grandpa at gunpoint. The editors had apparently learned their lesson from the above example: the {{Mooks}} just weren't intimidating armed with only their fingers. They hadn't learned it well enough, however, as they replaced this guy's gun with... a ''slingshot''.
** In the Japanese version of ''Yu-Gi-Oh 5Ds'', some character wield realistic-looking guns, but to remain child friendly, these guns shoot "lazer beams" in one arc, and in another arc in the next season, six-shot revolver style guns shoot "Stun Cannons". To be fair, ''[=5Ds=]'' does take place in the future, and in one scene the laser beam completely dismembered a man's arm.
* A painful example of this trope can be found in the EditedForSyndication ''Creator/{{Toonami}}'' dub of ''Manga/OutlawStar'', in which guns were edited to become lasers, but ''almost every scene'' showing Gene buying bullets ''stayed in the show''.
* ''Manga/ZatchBell'' (a.k.a. ''Gash Bell'') has bizarrely inconsistent censorship. In several episodes, automatic rifles are edited to fire lasers and feature large metal bulbs along the barrels. In others (namely, the episode "Danny Boy"), guns are not censored at all, even when they are fired at -- and ''hit'' -- Danny. However, in the ''very next episode'', a pistol is edited to look like it's made of GreenRocks and fire glowing green bullets (clearly shown as such in BulletTime) with laser sound effects, even though those particular bullets were blocked by a magical shield without hitting anyone. The only discernible reason for the inconsistency is that the latter gun ''[[WouldntHitAGirl was aimed at a girl]]''.
* ''Manga/SgtFrog'''s weapon nut Giroro is especially noticeable in that his low-ordinance weapons (e.g., his trademark ''barrelless'' handgun) don't actually seem to use bullets, despite being treated as if they do. Perhaps justified since they're not from Earth.
* In the anime version of the manga ''[[Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn Reborn]]!'', Reborn's gun is colored green and is actually a [[EquippableAlly shape-shifted form of his pet lizard]], and the [[MagicBullets special bullets]] it fires transform into energy before they can hit and power-up Tsuna (with the bleeding from the shots removed too). Similarly, Lambo's grenades are colored purple. Oddly enough, the other guns in the series remain untouched. This however was probably done in order to give the show a standard transformation sequence and the Lambo thing because [[RuleOfFunny it's funnier that way]].
** Also, instead of shooting himself with his Ten-Year Bazooka, Lambo now leaps inside of it. Kind of odd...
* An interesting reversal: in the English dub of the ''LightNovel/DirtyPair'' [=OAVs=] (the 10-episode ones) the ''lasers'' have had their sounds changed to sound like ''guns'' (specifically Kei's blaster has a sound reminiscent of a Desert Eagle). This was due to there not being a Music and Effects track to dub over, so a completely new one had to be made. They still fire laser blasts, however.
* In ''Anime/MegaManNTWarrior'' they have laser guns, and the originally-sharp laser swords were blurred from the original... sometimes. Somewhat justified, as [[EverythingIsOnline all combat takes place on the Internet with AI]].
** The names of some battlechips, the universe's weaponry, were also altered or changed entirely if they had specific words in them. Notable changes include Sword to Cyber Sword, Mini Bombs to Mini Boomer, Shotgun to Blaster and Cannon to Mega Blaster. Strangely enough, the upgraded versions of the Cannon weapon, Hi-Cannon and Mega Cannon, retained their original names.
* Several cuts were made in the English dub of ''Anime/SonicX''. For instance, several military troopers holding Sonic and his friends at gunpoint shot real bullets in the Japanese original, but were changed to lasers in the dub, while the weapons themselves still looked explicitly like real firearms.
** This becomes even less believable when lasers that were previously guns are shown being shot around in a Space Station takeover during a flashback of an event which took place fifty years previously. Because of course, they ''had'' lasers in the nineteen-fifties. And space stations.
* In ''Anime/TransformersArmada,'' Demolishor's missiles were frequently shown to ''stay in place but fire missile-shaped lasers.'' Of course, it does provide an explanation for the usual "we can see he's only got four, so how come he's been blasting away all day and never runs out?" problem that some Transformers have. Most weapons fire appears to be lasers, but Cyclonus has more than once told an enemy to "eat lead".
* In the Creator/FourKidsEntertainment broadcast of ''Anime/DragonBallKai'', [[OneSceneWonder Farmer with shotgun]] becomes Farmer with... [[FrickinLaserBeams some kind of laser shotgun]]. Raditz still manages to [[BulletCatch catch the laser]] and [[CatchAndReturn throw it back]] at the Farmer. [[FridgeLogic Somehow]].
** The first Saban dub, kept the bullet. But Contrary to popular belief he doesnt die in any version of the anime. Only in the manga
* Played literally in one episode of ''Anime/FullMetalPanicFumoffu'': when a thug explains to his boss the features of the Steyr SPP machine pistol, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F_jOS2e2y-I an ad reminiscent of the 50s or 60s plays, advertising the gun as "fun for the whole family!" while a father, mother, and two children spray bullets willy-nilly]]. (The SPP might be the civilian version of the TMP, but it's no toy.)
* In ''Manga/FairyTail'' one goon of the Naked Mummy Dark Guild is seen using a shotgun loaded with magic bullets. In the anime it was changed to a more toy-looking rifle.
* In ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'', Oficer Jennys DO have have guns, and they arent even censored most of the time.But they'd just rather have fire-spewing attack dogs tackle the bad guys, which is obviously much safer. Even when a [[CowboyCop "wild"]] Jenny appears with only a talking bird as a Pokémon, she uses...[[ImprobableWeaponUser well, pretty much bowling balls]]. The bad guys prefer to make their Pokémon do the fighting as well, [[JustifiedTrope though that's a lot cheaper and easier than using a gun]]. The one episode that had a character with a gun got [[MissingEpisode banned]] [[NoExportForYou almost worldwide]], even though no one was shot with it. However, giant mecha and battleships firing a barrage of missiles are apparently just fine, even though most Team Rocket robots fire [[AbnormalAmmo nets, energy beams or glue]] considering they want to steal and not hurt Pokémon.
** The few weapons they ''couldn't'' avoid were referred to as [[CartoonBomb blast]] [[UnusualEuphemism balls]] and [[AbnormalAmmo ice bazookas]].
* ''LightNovel/CatPlanetCuties'' both averts and plays it straight. While a lot of real guns are used, the vast majority of time the main good guys use catian weapons, which have both melee and ranged forms that are specifically designed to not harm organic matter. In both cases, getting hit with catian weapon simply causes clothing to disappear, or can apparently vaporize a tank without harming the men driving them. Lots of FanService abound when the female characters get hit with it.
* In episode 60 (54 in the Creator/DiC dubbed version) of ''Anime/SailorMoon R'', Chibi-Usa points a gun at Usagi's forehead, telling her where the Silver Crystal is. It was later revealed that it just a toy gun. This was cut out in the dubbed version.
* Double subverted in ''Manga/{{Nichijou}}'': Misato is a {{Tsundere}} of the highest order, who doesn't just punch people when she's embarrassed. She ''shoots them with several weapons'' (This is PlayedForLaughs, of course). Her arsenal is fairly realistically rendered, and actually does quite some damage, as her weapons are able to destroy the scenery around her. However, it still comes off as this trope, as the characters she does shoot are MadeOfIron, to the point that they only end up with smoke emitting from their bodies, and occasionally slight bleeding.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* When Gladstone Publishing reprinted various ''[[ComicBook/TheLifeAndTimesOfScroogeMcDuck Uncle Scrooge]]'' stories that had first been published in Europe, they had to redraw some scenes involving firearms, leading to scenes of Uncle Scrooge apparently being threatened by having a finger waved under his beak.
* While not a direct use of this trope, it is subverted in one story of ''Comicbook/ThePunisher2099''. The Punisher runs across a female copycat vigilante of him, who prefers to kill crooks using painful methods and weapons. The Punisher looks down on her for this, saying that he prefers clean kills and doesn't take pleasure in killing. She sneers at him because he uses lasers. According to her, lasers burn into flesh and boil the blood. The wound always go septic and the nerves rarely regrow. They may look nice in the "Holo-dramas", but they're just as nasty as what she uses.
* Averted all over the place in ''Comicbook/PaperinikNewAdventures'': the main enemies and the hero uses laser (justified, since their technology is way more advanced), but the normal humans all use guns with regular bullets.[[WhatDoYouMeanItsForKids And use them a lot]]. Did we mention the protagonist is WesternAnimation/DonaldDuck?
** This is typical of Italian Disney stories (one of the reasons it's the DarkerAndEdgier division of Disney), in which characters casually wields and use realistic firearms, especially in those produced in the Sixties and Seventies (where Scrooge would wield a double-barreled sawed-off shotgun, cops would shoot at criminals with .38 Special and .357 Magnum revolvers, and ''Donald Duck'' has been shown owning a Colt [=M1911=] and a double-barreled shotgun). Since then the presence of realistic guns has dimished, but you can still find numerous realistic guns in the 'classic' Paperinik stories (in fact that's where Donald's Colt comes from), the ''ComicBook/DoubleDuck'' saga (that shares most of the staff with ''Paperinik New Adventures''), ''Mickey Mouse Mystery Magazine'' (yes, ''MickeyMouse''), and ''ComicBook/{{WITCH}}'' (at least those times police officers are involved). [[ValuesDissonance And considering the Italian fans are rather cynical]], [[JustifiedTrope what would you expect?]]

[[folder:Comic Strips]]
* ''ComicStrip/{{Dilbert}}'': According to Scott Adams in his book ''Stick to Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain!'', he drew a comic that had Dogbert get a job as a police negotiator, and showed a police officer shooting a suspect that was coming out to surrender. Since the police officer was shown firing a gun, this comic got nixed by the editors. Scott Adams changed the panel to just having the "Bang" sound effect, but this didn't get past the editors either. Finally, Scott Adams said "Screw it" [[http://dilbert.com/strip/2005-08-04 and turned the gun into a donut... that fires bullets]]. This one was accepted.

[[folder:Films -- Animation]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/AllDogsGoToHeaven'', Carface's tommy gun is turned into a tommy gun... that fires red lasers. How they got advanced laser weaponry in 1939 is never explained. Oddly enough, they leave in the part where they violently gun down Charlie in front of the apple cart (and somehow miss every shot). It ''was'' billed in a previous scene as "a ComicStrip/FlashGordon thermo-atomic RayGun".
* ''[[WesternAnimation/AnAmericanTail Fievel Goes West]]'' is a mixed example. While there are some revolvers, those only get aimed at inanimate objects or [[ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy aimed so badly]] they don't come close to hitting anyone. When the cats (and one dog) have their shoot-out, it's with slingshots that use bullet and ricochet sound effects.
* The Franchise/DisneyAnimatedCanon both uses and averts this trope. Played straight in ''Disney/SaludosAmigos'', ''Disney/TheThreeCaballeros'' (Panchito's gun) and ''Disney/{{Pocahontas}}'' (plenty of people get shot, but there's no carnage in sight), but averted painfully in ''Disney/{{Tarzan}}'', ''Disney/AtlantisTheLostEmpire'', ''Disney/TreasurePlanet'' and ''Disney/HomeOnTheRange''. Not to mention the number of Disney movies in which non-advanced weaponry (swords, arrows, etc.) are used -- to ''quite'' the effect. Disney averts this trope in its films far more than it plays it straight. Guns appear in a really mind-blowing number of their animated films, even in settings where it would have made perfect sense not to have them, such as ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast'' and ''WesternAnimation/TheNightmareBeforeChristmas''.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* In the ''Franchise/StarWars'' spin-off film ''[[Film/StarWarsEwokAdventures Ewoks: The Battle for Endor]]'', the Ewoks fight goblinlike creatures that live in a {{Dark Age|Europe}}s castle, get dinosaur-looking aliens to pull their wooden wagons that use log-ends as wheels, and fight with laser pistols -- despite the fact that the [[AllThereInTheManual technical manuals]] clearly state that projectile weapons still are used in the ''Star Wars'' galaxy.
* The 20th Anniversary Edition of ''Film/ETTheExtraTerrestrial'' (in)famously replaced guns held by police with walkie-talkies. In Australia, so much was "altered" in the 20th Anniversary Edition that the studio was legally required to resubmit it for classification -- where it was given a ''harsher'' rating of PG from its original G, due to "supernatural themes". If they had simply released it without any changes, it would have retained its original G rating from 1982. So… yeah. This was parodied mercilessly in the ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' episode "Free Hat", where all of Creator/StevenSpielberg's thugs carry walkie-talkies in such a manner that suggests they were "originally" carrying guns. They cock their walkie-talkies to threaten the boys ("Hold it! Don't make me use this walkie-talkie!"), and Spielberg himself at one point steals one and threatens to "shoot". The same episode has an edited version of ''Film/SavingPrivateRyan'', featuring US soldiers being graphically killed by machine guns, while returning fire with walkie-talkies.
* The LiveActionAdaptation ''Film/GIJoeTheRiseOfCobra'' kinda uses it: while the Joes employ live ammo (including a {{Gatling|Good}} [[TheRightHandOfDoom glove]] for PoweredArmor), the Cobras instead use Concussion Rifles that fire potent beams. Then again, much is made of the fact that M.A.R.S. has been developing exotic weaponry, and the concussion rounds are extremely effective in certain situations; a near-hit will still cause a large enough impact to disable or wound an ordinary soldier.
* ''Film/{{Clockstoppers}}'' has guns that fire liquid nitrogen paintballs instead of bullets, pulling targets out of hypertime instead of killing or wounding them.
* ''Film/BugsyMalone'': The "splurge-guns" and the pies.
* ''Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger'' has the HYDRA soldiers using energy rifles powered by the Cosmic Cube. The allied soldiers do still use real guns, though for obvious reasons they are less than effective.... At the beginning, the Hydra forces use a mix (most likely they simply have not been able to make enough of the energy rifles at the time) and it is justified since it is shown while a bullet can kill a soldier, the energy weapons will VAPORIZE any person it hits.

* The Random House novelizations of ''ComicBook/XMen'' comics have an... ''odd'' view of what is or isn't to be censored. In one story, what was a bullet from a normal gun is changed to an "energy ray" from a futuristic blaster... but an alternate-future Wolverine's zapping by a Sentinel in "Days of Future Past" was described as follows:
-->[[spoiler:But even as Wolverine spend toward his target, the Sentinel reacted -- a split second faster. From his robot hand came a huge beam of blinding, deadly electricity. It zapped Wolverine in midair, and shredded the skin off his body.\\
The most fearless X-Man let out a horrendous, bloodcurdling scream and then he fell to the ground. The blast destroyed him and left behind only a smoking adamantium skeleton.\\
Wolverine was dead.]]
* Invoked and lampshaded in ''Literature/{{Divergent}}''. When war breaks out, [[ActualPacifist the Amity sector]] is not given real guns, but stun guns that can just take people down.
* Zigzagged by the Worlds of Power novelization of ''VideoGame/BionicCommando''. Guns are clearly mentioned repeatedly in the book, but the one on the cover (a copy of the game's box art) has been edited out. The hero, Jack Markson (this was before they established him as Nathan "Rad" Spencer) is shown using martial arts, bionic arm gadgets, and 'stun darts' against his human enemies, but the book has no problem with Jack gunning down robotic enemies with real bullets. At the same time, he very clearly blows up some of the story's main villains with a rocket launcher and attempting to incinerate one with a heat ray.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Franchise/PowerRangers'' almost always edits its ''Franchise/SuperSentai'' footage to turn bullets (and during the later Disney era, missiles) into lasers.
** ''Series/PowerRangersSPD'':
*** In a particularly JustForFun/{{egregious}} example, such an edit was made in a ''Series/TokusouSentaiDekaranger'' scene with the Omega Ranger ''catching'' a hail of bullets fired at him by the bad guy with his bare, supersonic-powered hand; a physical impossibility in its unedited form, it's rendered even more ridiculous afterwards when he catches ''[[{{Handwave}} laser pellets]]''.
*** Also, the red ''Dekaranger'''s personal weapon was a pair of magnum pistols, rewritten in ''SPD'' to fire laser beams. Many fans, in defiance of the RuleOfCool, insist that bullets "look cooler" than lasers, prompting suspicions that ''Power Rangers'' fans have never actually seen bullets. In their defense, the ''CGI-enhanced'' bullets in ''Dekaranger'' did look pretty cool. But not like real bullets.
*** The SPD Megazord stayed unedited for a while, but eventually we lost the shots where it was seen ejecting shell casings from its gun. The Blue Ranger's Zord eventually got lasers painted over its gunfire too.
** The edits aren't always limited to firearms. In ''Series/NinpuuSentaiHurricaneger'', the Wind Rangers had shuriken launchers built into their wrist-mounted morphers. ''Series/PowerRangersNinjaStorm'' gave them the laser edit and turned them into "ninja beams".
** The Disney era got progressively crazier about it until ''all'' weapons were getting the laser edit. In the Nick era, so far guns become red lasers and everything else gets left alone.
** The trope isn't ''always'' in play. ''Series/PowerRangersLightspeedRescue'' had a Megazord that had a giant gun that fired bullets (supersized bullets), and ''Series/PowerRangersTimeForce'' had Mooks that used "advanced machine guns" that fired bullets... which were useless against the Rangers anyway. ''Series/PowerRangersInSpace'' also had giant bullets from mecha, as did ''SPD'' once or twice... apparently, the 'less imitable' factor makes bullets from HumongousMecha more acceptable than bullets from humans (or basically human-shaped PeopleInRubberSuits).
** Even ''Series/PowerRangersRPM'' does this, in spite being DarkerAndEdgier. At least if Venjix started with a computer virus, some of the laser beams make sense.
** Episode 3 of ''Series/PowerRangersSamurai'' has the monster shoot a gun with ''no hole in the gun barrel''. There are a few, blink and you'll miss them, times when you can see there was a few bumps on the gun that were around the hole in the original ''Series/SamuraiSentaiShinkenger'' episode.
** Averted in ''Series/PowerRangersMegaforce'' season two, which uses Gokaiger footage. As of episode two, ''no'' edits to all the lead that gets slung around in Gokai.
* Probably the funniest example of this is the ''Power Rangers'' US-made [[FollowTheLeader clone/rip-off]] ''Series/TattooedTeenageAlienFightersFromBeverlyHills'' where all the protagonists sport melee weapons (e.g. sword, ax) but have to fight the monster by firing lasers from their melee weapons.
* ''Series/KamenRiderDecade'' features a very minor version. In the original ''Series/KamenRiderAgito'' G3-X's weapons fired bullets and rockets. In the ''Agito'' AlternateUniverse visited in ''Decade'' the G3's Gatling gun shoots red laser beams. Very slightly justified as well since it is an, well, ''alternate universe equivalent'' and thus not the original armor.
* Franchise/SuperSentai is odd about its use of this. Of course, we're dealing with magical/futuristic tech, and so lasers aren't as wildly out of place as in most series that use this trope. Anyway, sometimes the same weapons will shoot beams one day and bullets the next. Sometimes beams will go Matrixy and you'll ''see a bullet inside.'' Sometimes things that really, really shouldn't shoot bullets will (ancient technology, swords, claws, etc.) Sometimes the weapon will have beamless muzzle flashes and then we see the target dodge beams, or the weapon will fire beams but there will be nothing but BulletSparks when the target is shown. One time, Doggie Kruger deflects a flurry of red beams fired at him by the villain of the week, and then points down; we see he's gotten the ''bullets'' that have not looked or sounded like them for the whole two-parter to land in the shape of an X. And at one point (the ''Dekaranger'' version and ''SPD'' version are exactly the same), we get a "tink!" and BulletSparks off of a MonsterOfTheWeek's new armor. He turns to see Blue pointing at him with his weapon - which he fires again, only ''this time it's a blue beam.''
** ''Series/TokusouSentaiDekaranger'' did finally largely pull an AuthorsSavingThrow on this. One murderer used a realistic revolver, which was specifically cited as "using old-fashioned bullets"; by implication, all the futuristic weapons use some sort of "charged up" AbnormalAmmo. It's still unclear whether they can shoot a "pure" beam, though.
** Even the ''Series/KaizokuSentaiGokaiger'' Deka tribute episode gets in on the action. You know you're back in the world of Dekaranger when the ''same weapon'' can't decide what sort of ammo it'll be shooting from one shot to the next. (Elsewhere in Gokai, no such thing happens; the Gokaigers' usual pistols are always bullets except when the keys are inserted for a [[FinishingMove Final Wave]].)
* Series/KamenRiderDragonKnight has the bullets from Torque's usual gun changed to lasers (green, the color of his suit), but his finisher (which has MoreDakka, BeamSpam, and a MacrossMissileMassacre ''at once!'' ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill, after all.) remains the same as it was in Series/KamenRiderRyuki.
** [[spoiler: Possibly justified by the fact the Riders' gear were made by SufficientlyAdvancedAliens.]]
* ''Series/CaptainPowerAndTheSoldiersOfTheFuture'' use laser guns, as do their primary enemies the Dread Troopers and Bio-Dreads. Several characters also use regular firearms, though [[ImmuneToBullets they don't do a thing against Bio-Dreads]].
* A tv comedy pilot "Inside O.U.T." (a parody of ''Series/MissionImpossible''), made after the infamous year 1968, made a point to show the good guys' guns shot non-lethal tranquilizer bullets.
%%* Unusually averted in ''Series/UnnaturalHistory''.
* Series/ElChapulinColorado has the "Chipote Chillón", a very innocent hammer made out of rubber.
* ''Series/TheTribe'': The Technos have wristbands that stun people (there ''is'' a kill setting, but still no physical damage). Previously there were explosives, Danni's crossbow, and a lot of people fighting with sticks... but no guns.
* Averted on ''Series/VRTroopers'' on one occasion. Usually the guns we'd see would be this trope, but one bot called Gunslinger used a very realistic gun. This was handled by making him into a cowboy from TheWildWest that talked like Creator/ClintEastwood.

* The Wheatus single ''Teenage Dirtbag'' was mutilated like this for radio airplay. The line "Her boyfriend's a dick, he brings a gun to school'' was seriously censored to ''Her boyfriend's a {[strange scratchy noise}}, he brings {[even stranger scratching noise obscuring words}}'' .
* The music video to Naughty By Nature's Hip Hop Hooray has several men pull up in a car and point guns at another group. The guns turn out to all be water guns.
* Despite the video for the ''Music/BeastieBoys'''s "Sabotage" parodying the hell out of [=70s=] movies, the police have no guns, just empty holster. Given this the same song with an f-bomb in the first thirty second, this presumably came from a combination of ease-of-filming (as the video is set outside) and RuleOfFunny.
* Similar is the video for ''Music/JudasPriest'''s "Breaking the Law", where the band stick up bank tellers by threateningly pointing ''guitars'' at them.

* By default, ''Pinball/Terminator3RiseOfTheMachines'' ships with a gun grip and trigger to launch balls and fire at in-game targets. Operators have the option to replace the grip with a fire/launch button "for sensitive locations".
* Zig-Zagged in ''Pinball/BugsBunnysBirthdayBall''; on the playfield, Yosemite Sam's pistols [[http://vpuniverse.com/forums/files/file/2904-bugs-bunnys-birthday-ball-bally-1991/ are replaced with fireworks]]. He has his pistols on the backglass, but they're firing confetti instead of bullets.

[[folder:Puppet Shows]]
* When the Gerry Anderson series ''Series/{{Stingray|1964}}'' was turned into a movie by mashing a few episodes together, the scenes where the various craft fired torpedoes at each other were changed so that laser beams were fired instead.
* Same creator, same principle, different series: when some episodes of ''Series/CaptainScarletAndTheMysterons'' were mashed together to create a movie, the missiles fired by the Mysteron saucers were turned into lasers, and shoddy-looking ones at that. It is possible that this was simply an attempt to make them more alien, but either way it failed at whatever it was trying to do.
* ''Series/TheMrPotatoHeadShow'': The show lampshades and dances around the fact that you can't have real guns on a kid's show. For example, in a western episode, sherrif!Mr. Potato Head and outlaw!Johnny have some closeups of them that size them up head-to-toe, and you can tell that ''their holsters are empty''. And yet, when Mr. Potato Head is showing this western episode to the [[ScrewedByTheNetwork TV bosses]], seconds after these size-up camera shots, you can ''hear'' gunshots as part of the climactic shootout while seeing the bosses' reactions of horror as they tell him he can't have guns on the show.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog''
** The franchise has this - when it feels like it. Games like ''Videogame/SonicHeroes'' will have enemies fight you with bright orange laser guns, whereas ''Videogame/ShadowTheHedgehog'' has you and many of your enemies using regular old bullet-firing murder-devices.
** Forgotten character Fang the Sniper was originally meant to have a {{revolver|sAreJustBetter}} for a weapon. The revolver itself was never used in any games (despite some unused sprites of him holding it), but for his playable appearance in ''VideoGame/SonicTheFighters'' he was given a cork-shooting popgun.
** On the whole, though, many of the games have realistic firearms instead of using lasers, even though it would completely make sense (for example, many of Eggman's robots have been equipped with machineguns).
** ''VideoGame/SonicForces'' returns to this trope when the heroic Resistance are mainly armed with laser-shooting Wispon weaponry that just so happens to never hit anything on-screen. Amusingly, not only does the Avatar not actually get to use this weapon and instead have a much more strange arsenal of weapons, but Eggman's robots also fire energy shots that.. make stock bullet ping sounds when they hit objects.
* ''VideoGame/DonkeyKong64'' loves this trope. Each Kong gets their own unique firearm that all use AbnormalAmmo. Donkey Kong's gun fires coconuts, Diddy's pistols fire peanuts, Tiny's crossbow fires feathers, Lanky spits grapes out of a straw, and Chunky's bazooka fires pineapples. After the final boss fight, [[spoiler:Funky Kong finishes off King K. Rool with a bazooka that fires a boot directly at his head.]] Interestingly, in the beta of ''Donkey Kong 64'', Diddy has realistic pistols in place of his peanut popguns. Chances are they were just there as a placeholder until they came up with a cartoony weapon that was better suited to the colorful ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry'' universe, but they might have also been changed to keep an E rating.
* Franchise/CrashBandicoot's [[http://crashbandicoot.wikia.com/wiki/Fruit_Bazooka Fruit Bazooka]].
* Franchise/RatchetAndClank's weaponry is generally done in a retro sci-fi style to make the series more kid-friendly. Then of course, there's all the DenserAndWackier weapons like the Morph-o-ray, Groovitron and Mr Zurkon.
* In ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros. Brawl'', it was specifically said that [[Franchise/MetalGear Solid Snake]] could not use guns... but his rocket launcher, mortar, grenades, and land mines are all good. This may have also been for gameplay reason though, since a projectile that moves almost instantly (like Sheik's needles) that you could [[SpamAttack fire almost constantly]] would be [[GameBreaker really cheap]] (also, [[StuffBlowingUp explosions]] [[RuleOfCool are more fun]],[[RuleOfFunny more hilarious]] and much harder to imitate). Also, [[VideoGame/StarFox Fox, Falco, Wolf]], and [[Franchise/{{Metroid}} Samus]] get to use energy weapons, but that's more a matter of FrickinLaserBeams than this. The titular protagonist of ''VideoGame/{{Bayonetta}}'', showing up as a DLC character ''Super Smash Bros. For Wii U/3DS'', gets to keep her firearms, but they're [[BlingBlingBang unrealistic]] and a pretty big part of her style.
* Occurs within the {{novelization}} of ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerTiberiumWars''. Within the novel, the regular infantry of Nod (the bad guys) are armed with energy weapons. While Nod do have lasers within the game, they're limited to special forces, while the regular mooks get conventional weapons. The trope is almost invoked by one soldier wondering "Where the hell'd they get-" after seeing the lasers. The change isn't because of censorship, but as a result of a continuity error.
** In the expansion to ''Tiberium Wars'', the Black Hand subfaction can upgrade their basic {{mooks}} to use lasers. That said, they are EliteMooks, since the Black Hand has been referenced across the series as Nod's elite.
* Inverted (sort of) in ''VideoGame/OsuTatakaeOuendan''. At first the cops use real guns to fight rampaging robots which don't do anything. Then they figure out their weakness and attack with water guns instead, which are [[JustifiedTrope very effective]].
* ''Franchise/KingdomHearts'' is rather inconstant with this. Clayton’s old fashioned gun was untouched in ''Kingdom Hearts'', but in ''VideoGame/KingdomHeartsII'' the pirates’ muskets were edited to look like crossbows (but still sounded like muskets and had muzzle flashes), while the various flintlock pistols were untouched. Odder still, Xigbar's Special Attack in which he merged his two “arrowguns”, which look nothing like real guns, to create a sniper rifle, which was altered to... well, the same guns not merging.
** There is a part in ''Film/PiratesOfTheCaribbeanTheCurseOfTheBlackPearl'' when Will puts a gun to his head and threatens to kill himself if his friends are not released. In ''Kingdom Hearts II'', he leaps to the edge of the ship, just like the movie, and threatens his own life...while pointing the gun at the ground. You probably don't want to encourage children to point guns at their owns heads, but at the same time it was a bit jarring to anyone familiar with the movie.
** Oddly enough, ''358/2 Days'' is the only game where Xigbar is shown merging his arrowguns into a sniper rifle, perhaps because it’s easier to edit a cinematic attack than an in game one.
** The HD rerelease of ''Kingdom Hearts II'' and ''Birth By Sleep'' allowed Xibgar to use his sniper rifle, but kept the odd editing of the ''Pirates'''s world.
* Nintendo's Famicom Light Gun originally featured [[http://img.auctiva.com/imgdata/9/9/3/6/6/6/webimg/360013746_o.jpg a realistic revolver design in Japan]]. When it was converted into the {{UsefulNotes/NES}} Zapper overseas, [[http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/earthbound/images/9/9b/Nes_zapper.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20080517062954 it was given a "futuristic" redesign]] to comply with U.S. safety standards. Later versions of the Zapper even changed the color of the gun's coating from its original gray to orange due to revised standards. This also applies to all light gun peripherals that had been exported from Japan to the overseas market. Light guns such as Sega's Virtua Gun (renamed the Stunner overseas) and Namco's [=GunCon=] were originally sold in realistic-looking black coating in Japan but were repainted orange for the overseas market to distinguish them from real guns.
* Sort of an in-universe example: VideoGame/CommanderKeen used rayguns in his first games, the Invasion of the Vorticons trilogy (and the opening story of Keen Dreams), then switched to a Neural Stunner for the rest of his games. This was likely due to how 1.) all the Vorticons Keen slaughtered were mind-controlled instead of evil and Keen didn't want to risk ending up responsible for the annihilation of an alien race again, and 2.) stunned enemies with stars circling their heads are more amusing to look at in a game that pioneered DOS as a gaming platform.
* The early ''VideoGame/Wolfenstein3D'' clone ''VideoGame/Nitemare3D'' had you start out with a plasma gun in a modern-day haunted house setting; however, you do later get a revolver. The point of the plasma gun is probably that [[PainfullySlowProjectile its shots are slow to reach the target]], whereas [[RevolversAreJustBetter the more ammo-rationed revolver]] [[{{Hitscan}} hits its target instantly]], making it a better choice for long-range targets and enemies that can shoot back.
* ''VideoGame/ChexQuest'': The opening movie makes it clear that conventional weapons can pass right through the slime-based phlegmoids, so the protagonist must use "zorching" weapons to return enemies back to their home dimension. The opening cinematic specifies that the zorchers have been specifically modified to work this way, but their ''original'' use, and why they've been left all over Bazoik for the player to collect, is left unclear. ({{Fanon}} is that they were mining tools.)
* ''VideoGame/NightTrap''. "Weird Eddie", one of the Martin's neighbors, invented a laser gun in order to combat them and the augers. Interestingly, the SCAT team has real guns. (Though no one is shown being shot on-screen.)
* In the book and [[Film/HarryPotter film versions]] of ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheChamberOfSecrets'', Harry kills the basilisk by stabbing it through the roof of its mouth with the Sword of Gryffindor. In the [[VideoGame/HarryPotter video game]], however, the sword is not a melee weapon at all and instead fires magic lasers from its tip. How much it is this trope and how much it was to make an interesting [[RuleofFun boss battle]] is up to debate.
* ''VideoGame/KidIcarusUprising'' plays with this, with the staves resembling sniper rifles and the Flintlock Staff being a real gun with nothing done to hide it. They also have swords that shoot normal bullets because the weapon is [[AnachronismStew "Old Fashioned."]]
* In ''VideoGame/Pirate101'' the guns are [[FrothyMugsOfWater sparkthowers]]. Rather than shooting bullets they shoot balls of magic electricity that stun opponents into submission. They range from flintlock pistols to a long rifle that functions as a primitive sniper rifle to the one that is a cannon that can shoot a ball of electricity with enough force to knock back the target.
* ''VideoGame/{{Splatoon}}''
** The game more or less plays like a multiplayer deathmatch shooter game, but you use paint guns instead of normal guns. Shooting opponents simply sends them back to their team's base. And in Turf War, the main mode, shooting up opponents isn't really the main goal anyway -- it's to cover the arena with as much of your team's color of paint as possible.
** ''[[VideoGame/Splatoon2 Splatoon 2]]'''s single player trailer featured the player character using what looked like an [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FN_P90 FN P90]] as their main weapon. Of course, the final version of the weapon was heavily modified to look more toylike, in line with the other weapons in the game.
* ''VideoGame/MarioPlusRabbidsKingdomBattle'': The firearms wielded by Mario and the gang, and their Rabbid counterparts, are all colorful and toy-like, and they fire energy blasts or beams instead of ammo.

* Franchise/{{LEGO}} have typically had a "no present-day weapons" rule (this is usually understood to mean "20th century or later) -- so it's okay for Minifig swords and laser guns, but not realistic guns. However, as seen below, this is not as strict as it once was.
** This is why even ''Toys/{{Bionicle}}'', easily the most violent Lego franchise ever, is restricted to energy weapons and AbnormalAmmo. ''BIONICLE'' went so far as to use the words Murder and Thieves for one of their lines, and made it very clear that AnyoneCanDie in their post-Inika Story arcs (whereas in all other stories the characters would get comically blown to pieces, but survive nonetheless since they can just rebuild themselves). The closest they've ever gotten to a projectile weapon was the Cordak Missile Launchers, which functioned like a Gatling gun (but it only held 6 ammo rounds, possibly because they were explosive in-story) and even then it was far too comically short to be taken seriously.
** The "present day" rule actually isn't as strict as it used to be -- at first no form of realistic gunpowder weapon were allowed at all, even obviously obsolete ones. This was eventually relaxed in the 1990s for the Pirate theme (which contained 18th-century-style muskets) and the Western theme (which had pistols and rifles). Since then a number of other themes, including ''Toys/LEGOAdventurers'', ''Franchise/IndianaJones'', ''Franchise/{{Batman}}'' and ''Film/WonderWoman'', have included guns (albeit stylized ones). Nowadays it's more like "no realistic non-stylized modern weapons", not "no modern weapons period."
** The VideoGame/{{Lego Adaptation Game}}s play with this: There's an unlockable code that replaces all lasers and pistols with coffee mugs. The pistols, however, still fire lasers (or, [[Franchise/{{Batman}} in one case]], [[MonsterClown a "bang!" flag]]).
** This is the main gripe of the Technic fans, as these older consumers know full well that Lego has the ability to create realistic, working tanks and military aircraft and that they would be awesome. But because of the "no realistic modern weapons" rule [[WhyFandomCantHaveNiceThings that's unlikely]]. The only exceptions--indeed, the only realistic military vehicle models LEGO has ''ever'' produced-- were a series of [[http://www.ibrickcity.com/lego-10226-sopwith-camel/ collector's]] [[http://lego.wikia.com/wiki/10024_Red_Baron models]] featuring a Sopwith Camel and a Fokker Triplane, two World War I fighter planes released in 2002.
** It is probably for this reason that the Lego Star Wars line is considered to be their best selling line, as they can make movie-accurate guns and war machines without violating their rule. In particular the old technic lines and the larger hobbysets are much well received by the older demographic, who long for realistic tanks, but get close enough with a movie-accurate scale X-wing Fighter or Imperial Walker.
* ''Franchise/{{Transformers}}'': [[Franchise/TransformersGeneration1 G1]] Megatron's original altmode was a realistic [[http://tfwiki.net/w2/images2/d/d7/G1Megatron_toy.jpg Walther P-38]], though roughly 2/3 actual size. Subsequent releases in America had the toy partially or completely recolored with neon parts to look more like a futuristic laser (though some countries with more restrictive gun laws were not subject to this change). Future incarnations of Megatron had a combat vehicle or spaceship altmode instead, though this could be due to the main villain become an immobile object to be held by TheStarscream, of all bots, was less than awesome.
** Some states actually allow gun toys that look like real guns so long as they have the orange cap. However, Hasbro isn't going to make versions for each state and then deal with what happens when someone takes one with them on vacation, etc.
** Averted by Masterpiece Megatron, which again became a realistic [[http://tfwiki.net/wiki/Megatron_%28G1%29_toys#Masterpiece Walther P-38]], but this time about half again actual size so the resulting robot mode would be on scale with Masterpiece Convoy / 20th Anniversary Optimus Prime. However, it was a Japanese-exclusive release, and thus subject to different laws.
** Legends Class (smallest size class for non-[[Anime/TransformersArmada mini-cons]]. Car characters are about Hot Wheels size.) G1 Megs is even getting an orange cap. Apparently we're worried about squirrel cops shooting squirrel kids, because that's the scale we're dealing in. Perhaps they're deathly afraid of Legends Megatron being mistaken for a [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2mm_Kolibri Kolibri pistol]].
* {{Playmobil}} sets include firearms when appropriate ([[http://www.toplessrobot.com/2009/07/the_17_least_appropriate_playmobil_sets_for_childr.php or not, as the case may be]]) -- there used to be a Police seaplane set that included not only sidearms for the police officers, but a sniper rifle too.
* The doll for Yukon Cornelius from ''WesternAnimation/RudolphTheRedNosedReindeer'' had his pistol removed although he never used in the movie itself.
* [[Toys/NerfBrand NERF]] dart blasters are sold at retail in bright colors with bright orange or vermillion muzzles. The Vortex disc blasters have dramatically oblong barrels and a fantastic raygun motif. Amongst the color combinations Nerf uses are bright yellow with gray highlights (Classic N-Strike), Rich Blue with white and gray stripes (N-Strike Elite, the colours are inverted to white with blue stripes for Elite XD), Green or White with grey detailing and bright vermillion triggers/muzzles (Vortex), white and gray with purple and pink detailing and floral/wing patterns (Rebelle), bright red with white stripes (Elite N-Strike MEGA).

[[folder:Web Animation]]
* ''WebAnimation/HomestarRunner'': "WebAnimation/CheatCommandos", a direct parody of ''Franchise/GIJoe'', uses conventional guns that make conventional gunfire sounds but fire laser blasts. The enemy faction is actually ''named'' Blue Laser. Subverted in the Thanksgiving episode, where Gunhaver actually [[MeaningfulName has a realistic gun]].
* ''WebAnimation/BonusStage'':
** Referenced in an episode: Phil is able to tell that Joel has been possessed when he holds up a bank with a gun in his left had because [[TheKillerWasLeftHanded Joel is right-handed]]. Unfortunately, Matt Wilson accidentally drew the gun in Joel's right hand, so when he corrected it, the gun became a stupid-looking, brightly colored gun.
** Also, in the episode where Joel censors the show "to fit the burgeoning five-to-seven-year-old market", the word "gun" is overdubbed with "blaster" (although it's still clearly a real gun).
* In "Saturday Morning ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}" the criminal's gun he shoots at Nite Owl with fires lasers.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* In ''Webcomic/TheWotch'', the members of the StrawFeminist society D.O.L.L.Y. [[http://www.thewotch.com/?epDate=2006-09-08 are armed with lasers and lightsabers in spite of this kind of thing having never appeared in the comic before.]]
* Parodied by ''Webcomic/TheNonAdventuresOfWonderella'' in the comic [[http://nonadventures.com/2011/03/05/censory-overload/ CENSORY Overload]]. The comics news feed mentions the inspiration for this:
-->'''Justin Pierce:''' My comics hero, Steve Purcell, once got a cartoon deal with FOX in the '90s. He quickly learned that censors didn't dislike violence so much as they disliked accessible violence -- the sort of violence kids could easily mimic. Thus the more exaggerated it was, the safer you were. If your knife fight doesn't work, simply replace the knives with atomic bombs. It's a good rule to live by.
* ''Webcomic/AmazingSuperPowers'' explored the limits of this in [[http://www.amazingsuperpowers.com/hc/12012008/ this hidden comic]].

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Parodied in Harry Partridge's "[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZpxMyoFpds Bo-Starr]]" short. The titular character is charged at by the [[SarcasmMode ever-menacing]] Grass Man, and his companion tells him to use his laser "stun ray". Bo-Starr does so, only for [[RealityEnsues the laser to kill Grass Man in a single shot]]. He than awkwardly flicks a switch he'd forgotten to hit that switches the weapon to stun mode and [[BlackComedy pointlessly shoots it at Grass Man's corpse]].
* This trope is the reason there is an advisory for guns on ''Podcast/{{RFG}} (Radio for Gamers)''.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* The characters in ''WesternAnimation/WildWestCowboysOfMooMesa'' used pistols that fired [[AbnormalAmmo anything]] ''[[AbnormalAmmo but]]'' [[AbnormalAmmo bullets]]. Indeed, no two character's guns ever fired the same thing.
* ''WesternAnimation/GIJoeARealAmericanHero'', is probably the first example that comes to mind when thinking of this trope. While there initially existed assorted evidence that the guns weren't meant to be perceived as lasers—more-or-less realistic sound effects, boxes labelled “ammo” with visible bullets—the show eventually came to acknowledge the lasers for what they were, including details such as power settings and whatnot. This effect actually made the Joes' laser-specialist characters, Flash and Sci-Fi, utterly useless in the cartoon. That said, the lasers don't even seem to be that particularly effective, since in the [[ATeamFiring incredibly rare occasion]] someone gets hit, they tend to get back up fairly quickly.
** The same trope was used almost exactly the same way in future cartoon incarnations, such as ''WesternAnimation/GIJoeExtreme'', the CGI movies and ''WesternAnimation/GIJoeSigma6''.
** ''WesternAnimation/GIJoeRenegades'' continues the tradition, but makes it clear the lasers are something new and exotic by M.A.R.S. Industries, and that they have just recently begun to replace bullet-based guns—one episode even features Flint remarking on the difference, warning his men to “watch the recoil! These are plasma-pulse rifles, not your daddy's M16's!” Flashbacks to the Joes' early days feature them carrying regular guns, but this is an exception, as nobody else actually appears to own a firearm: when Zartan and his gang threaten a small town in his intro issue, nobody, not even the town's sheriff, appears to consider using firearms, instead resorting to improvised weaponry when the Joes train the citizens to defend themselves.
* While guns weren't all that prominent in ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfSonicTheHedgehog'', when they ''did'' show up, they would inevitably be lasers—even in episodes involving time travel or references to the wild west. The only realistic firearms in the show appeared in a particular after-show [[AndKnowingisHalftheBattle Sonic Says]] segment, which warns about the dangers of real guns.
* The short-lived ''WesternAnimation/MightyOrbots'' had an extreme example of this. In a cartoon about a futuristic CombiningMecha team battling [[AttackOfThe50FootWhatever giant monsters]] and alien {{mad scientist}}s led by an [[EnergyBeings evil energy computer]], ABC's [[ExecutiveMeddling Standards and Practices]] dictated that '''none''' of the weapons could bear any resemblance to gun-shaped objects. The end result? Battles waged with giant wedges and cones of light flashed from arms, legs, eyes, and whatever else was convenient. Writer Buzz Dixon noted that the show appeared ''more'' futuristic as a result.
* Zig-zagged in ''{{WesternAnimation/Gargoyles}}'': while the first few episodes portrayed "particle beam" weapons as being accessible only to the very rich (such as millionaire David Xanatos), everybody else carried and used real guns. However, in the episode "Deadly Force", mob boss Tony Dracon steals a shipment of these and sells several of them on the street. Thus, the writers establish that there are energy weapons available for criminals to use if they know where to look. In the end, who used what depended on which group one belonged to: members of the NYPD (including co-star Elisa Maza) would uniformly use real guns; high-end baddies such as Xanatos, Demona, and Thailog heavily favored lasers; and anyone else would use whatever the not-always-consistent animation felt like displaying.
* In ''Franchise/DCAnimatedUniverse'' cartoons:
** ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries'' usually averts this trope, as police and criminals often use firearms that shoot out actual bullets, with laser guns only being used occasionally.
** ''WesternAnimation/SupermanTheAnimatedSeries'' and ''WesternAnimation/BatmanBeyond'' both took a zig-zagged approach. Energy weapons were rarer, more expensive, and generally ''more'' threatening than ordinary guns, more so in the former than the future-set latter. Both shows suffered from inconsistencies, though; sometimes sound effects did not match the visual (both ways, not always biased towards beam weapons), sometimes the same weapon design would be recycled as both beam- and bullet-firing between episodes, and sometimes the ''exact same weapon'', carried by the same character, would do both over the course of an episode.
** ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'', like other typical DC cartoons, had both lasers and real guns being used. "Savage Time", a time-travel episode set in UsefulNotes/WorldWarII, had lots of guns and bombs going off, [[FamilyUnfriendlyViolence and a lot of soldiers are killed]] (though conveniently obscured or off-screen, [[BloodlessCarnage without any blood]] of course).
** Although ''WesternAnimation/StaticShock'' mostly plays this trope straight, exceptions were occasionally made for particularly serious episodes. Such as the pilot (where Virgil is almost goaded into joining a gang, even being given a handgun that [[DoesNotLikeGuns he immediately throws away]]), an episode dealing with school violence (a bullied kid threatens his tormentors with a stolen pistol, accidentally shooting his friend Richie in the leg), and another one dealing with his mother's death (who was shot and killed while doing emergency services during a violent riot).
** Justified at great length in ''WesternAnimation/TheZetaProject''. Two things: one, bullets strong enough to damage the protagonist Zeta (a robot) will probably destroy him, and the antagonists (a team of federal agents) have orders to capture him alive and intact, as he's a very expensive piece of equipment. Two - [[WhatTheHellHero and Agent Bennett goes off at great length on Agent West for this]] - real bullets will ricochet off of Zeta because his body is built specifically to deflect bullets, and therefore endangers {{innocent bystanders}}. Bennett, despite being a {{jerkass}} most of the time, [[EvenEvilHasStandards enforces the no bullet-firing guns rule based on this]]. The only time anyone uses a real gun is when Agent Lee goes up against a ruthless mercenary who had tried to ''kill her'' earlier. The rest of the time, they used energy-based weapons. Zeta adheres to ThouShaltNotKill so strictly that he refuses to even carry any lethal weapons.
* Justified in ''WesternAnimation/MenInBlackTheSeries''. Just like in [[Film/MenInBlack the movie]], TheMenInBlack possess a futuristic arsenal of alien weaponry in order to fight alien criminals, who may be armed the same way; including various laser guns, a FreezeRay, etc.
* Downplayed in ''WesternAnimation/JackieChanAdventures''. A few realistic-looking firearms can be seen sometimes, but these guns are rarely ever used, and obviously nobody gets hurt from them. Not that it matters, as most combat in the show involved the use of martial arts and magical weapons anyways.
* Played very straight (if also played for laughs) in one episode of ''WesternAnimation/CourageTheCowardlyDog'' ("Farmer-Hunter, Farmer-Hunted"), where Courage accompanies Eustace on a hunting trip. Eustace is armed with a laser rifle and unsuccessfully tries to shoot at deer -- [[TheHunterBecomesTheHunted one of whom also turns out to have his own laser rifle for self-defense from hunters]].
* At first, it was surprisingly averted (but later zig-zagged and played straight) in ''WesternAnimation/RegularShow'', a Creator/CartoonNetwork series of the 2010s. Police and criminals could be seen using real guns that fire real bullets. In fact two episodes involved shootouts, with [[WhatMeasureIsANonHuman robotic criminals]] getting injured and killed by the police. But later episodes played this straight -- i.e. "Guy's Night 2", where [[ItMakesSenseInContext the FBI agents pursuing Thomas]] use laser weaponry, both in the form of small arms and helicopter turrets. Some fans are convinced it's because current network management are MoralGuardians. However, it could also be because as the series progressed it took on more of a sci-fi theme, ultimately ending with the entire cast going into space.
* The 1990's ''WesternAnimation/XMen'' animated series was a serious offender. Everything shoots "lasers". Machine guns shoot lasers. Tanks shoot big red beams that somehow arc and hit the ground like heavy artillery. Also typical for this trope, the series had the anti-mutant supremacist group stockpile what were clearly regular munitions, despite constantly using laser weapons onscreen. Even sewer-dwelling edge-people have lasers! The animated version of the battle between Storm and Callisto for leadership of the Morlocks was fought with what looked like double-bladed lightsabers (in the original comic book, it was a knife fight). The one arguable exception in the season 5 episode “Old Soldiers”, in which more realistic sounds are heard when a few rounds are let loose.
* Alongside ''WesternAnimation/XMen'', ''WesternAnimation/SpiderManTheAnimatedSeries'' (known for its particularly heavy censorship and restrictions) also excessively used laser weaponry. Many realistic guns were not allowed, and no firearms could shoot bullets, so instead they fired lasers complemented by "futuristic" sound effects. This often led to preposterous scenes in which ordinary policemen wielded bizarre, futuristic pistols, and the mere ''appearances'' of realistic-looking guns (as seen in "Tombstone" and "Day of the Chameleon") were pointed out as major exceptions. The most preposterous example ''has'' to be “Secrets of the Six” where, during a WWII flashback, Comicbook/CaptainAmerica is leads a crackdown on the Red Skull's Nazi infiltrators, which, upon being discovered, promptly pull out their standard issue ''1943 model laser guns'' to shoot those pesky heroes.
* If projectile-based weaponry existed in the present-day ''WesternAnimation/XMenEvolution'', it was never used. Policemen would never draw their weapons. The army would either use non-lethal ordnance such as taser or tear gas, or escalate to laser rifles. Even civilians created their own improvised lasers when the need arose: in one episode, high-school graduate Duncan Matthews uses what is described as modified mining tools during his short lived anti-mutant terror campaign. One clear exception, mercifully, occurs during the World War II flashback sequence in “Project Rebirth”.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSpectacularSpiderMan'' has cops and common criminals use guns which are meant to be realistic ones, but which are made to sound more like lasers. While a particular subset of DVD's was meant to make them sound like real guns (among other general changes, including additional footage, and the editing of the individual episodes of an arc into a pseudo-movie), only the first story arc got this treatment before the line was discontinued. Villains higher on the tech scale, incidentally, would occasionally use what were unambiguously meant to be lasers, or some other form of AbnormalAmmo.
* Special beams aside, ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible'' would often have the police, secret agents, and other authorities be completely unarmed. The base defenders at {{Area 51}} have rifles, in one episode, but they never fire; their appearance might well be an oversight.
* An episode of the ''WesternAnimation/AttackOfTheKillerTomatoes'' cartoon, "Invasion of the Tomato Snatchers", Professor Gangreen did a bit of LampshadeHanging, where at one point he complained, "If this were prime-time, I could use real bullets!"
** In the episode "The Tomato from the Black Lagoon", Zoltan and the Gang of Five were piloting warplanes and attacking Chad, F.T., and Tara with live ammo. Chad tells Tara that kids should not use guns, have to use their fingers instead!
** In another episode, "Streets of Ketchup", after Chad and Tara gets assaulted by tomatoes, Chad reaches into a shrub, and whips out a pair of guns. [[MediaWatchdog The Censor Lady]] raises a fuss, but Chad tells her that they are ''water guns'', loaded with salt water. However, the water sprayed onto her reveals a well-delivered TakeThat:
--->'''Tara:''' A tomato!
--->'''Chad:''' Nah, a prune... now we're gonna hear from the ''Prune'' Board!
* Unlike [[WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries its predecessor]], ''WesternAnimation/TheBatman'' played this trope straight. While it's unclear what kind of ammunition the weapons used by the GCPD and other criminals used—the more-graphic movie and the series proper are somewhat inconsistent in this regard—the guns themselves were very sci-fi looking, in a way that made them look way out of place in a world that tried to remain somewhat realistic.
** Averted in ''WesternAnimation/TheBatmanVsDracula'', though - at one point, Batman is pursued by a SWAT team whose guns are quite clearly firing bullets, even though they look rather sci-fi-ish.
* ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans'' plays this trope straight, although the fact that the world established in the series appears to be different from our own in several key ways means their use is not as jarring as some other cases.
* ''WesternAnimation/GodzillaTheSeries'', is actually an interesting example of lasers being acquired ''during'' the series. In early episodes, real guns (including M16s) are used. During the "Monster Wars" story arc, the invading aliens end up leaving some of their EnergyWeapons on Earth when they retreat. Soon after that, lasers show up as military weapons, in all likelihood reverse-engineered from the alien ones—unfortunately, they prove to be as effective as the projectile weaponry.
* Everyone in the various ''WesternAnimation/{{Ben 10}}'' series uses lasers. While it make sense for characters who are connected to the numerous alien races that are a series mainstay, the fact that regular people--such as the security detail assigned to protect a to-be-released videogame--also use them without explanation can be rather off-putting, if you care about stuff like that.
* While the trope was initially in full effect (with some exceptions, such as a scene involving a wild west shoot-out) in the early episodes of ''WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles2003'', more realistic-looking guns started appearing as the series went on. The second season featured stylized guns which shot ambiguous-looking ammo which appeared to be designed for maximum plausible deniability, which evolved into more realistic automatic weaponry in the third season. It wasn't until the fourth season that handguns began appearing. While laser weapons did appear throughout the series (and far more frequently than "real" firearms), the producers attempted to justify them by showing that they were only accessible to the particularly well-funded; however, once an alien invasion left a large amount of advanced ordnance lying around, a black market was created, and street gangs began using them as well.
* The original ''[[WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles1987 Ninja Turtles]]'' cartoon, on the other hand, went in the opposite direction. While initial seasons featured characters using what where meant to be “real” firearms (although the animation, as was typical for the show, was rather inconsistent in this regard, showing what looked like lasers at the same time lines like “eat hot lead” and “the bullets aren't stopping them!” were being said) by its final season you'd have security guards using some very sci-fi-looking lasers. (Presumably, this was a side effect of [[ChannelHop switching]] from syndication to Creator/{{CBS}}, who'd presumably have tighter standards regarding such items.)
* While early episodes of ''Franchise/TransformersGeneration1'' featured humans using normal guns, the fact that the writers take steps to justify the existence of energy weapons (via the use of a short montage where Chip and leading industrialists are shown "developing weapons for humanity to combat the Decepticon threat" or some such line), which then completely replace conventional weaponry, suggest that this trope may have been an issue.
* ''WesternAnimation/TransformersPrime'' seems to zigzag with this trope at times. On one hand, Agent Fowler's helicopter is armed with what looks like a pretty accurately-modeled M230 Chaingun, and when he fires it at Laserbeak in the third episode, it clearly makes gun-like sounds and even runs out of ammo. When it appeared again in episode 17, however, the same gun fired bullets with a laser sound effect. It's even weirder with MECH's various weapons; Silas' personal chopper clearly fires some kind of energised projectile, while his goons carry futuristic assault rifles that fire both laser-sounding bullets (which are animated like normal gunfire and make obvious ricochet noises against Breakdown and Bulkhead's armour) ''and'' blue, energy-like stun blasts from a secondary barrel. Meanwhile, ordinary US troops carry normal-looking M16s, but never fire them. In ''Nemesis Prime'', we get some rather awkward scenes where said troops point their M16s at targets, but all actual gunfire comes from offscreen, and sounds like lasers; it's implied that they're firing their rifles at the eponymous MECH robot, but not once is anyone shone pulling the trigger of their weapon on-camera. The lack of projectile weapons is especially baffling given that the show has no problems with Transformers dismember eachother with blade weapons.
* ''WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom'' plays the trope straight. While the protagonists' weapons were designed to fight ghosts (who would naturally be immune to bullets) no other characters appear to carry firearms. Although it is rare for most of the scenarios to make sense for firearms to be used. Most of Danny's battles are with ghosts, and take place in a highschool. The few humans he actually fight invariably use super science and plasma based weapons.
* ''WesternAnimation/ExoSquad'''s inconsistent animation meant that EVERYTHING fired lasers, no matter what it looked like or what it fired a second ago. That grapefruit thing on the right arm of the Neosapian mook E-Frame (intended in the toys as a "[=ExoCrushing=] Mace Missile") was alternately a laser blaster, a missile, a club, or some kind of bomb depending on what the animators felt like doing. Scopes fired lasers, missile launchers fired lasers, odd pointy bits that don't really look anything like a weapon sometimes fired lasers. If it was on the arm of an E-Frame, it shot a laser at some point. However, closeup shots of weapons sometimes showed belts of linked ammunition and ejected bullet casings.
* In ''[[WesternAnimation/SamAndMaxFreelancePolice The Adventures of Sam and Max: Freelance Police]]'', the title characters never got to use their guns, but they did use all manner of [[StuffBlowingUp explosives]] and blunt instruments, and the occasional flamethrower. Even so, the roach terrorist at the end of "Bad Day On The Moon" uses a realistically-drawn AK, although it's never fired.
* ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'' toys with this. Some villains are armed with lasers and otherworldly weaponry, but soldiers and thugs still carry standard firearms.
** Played straight with Arsenal. In the comics, he has a pair of handguns and other realistic firearms, but in the show he simply uses a laser built into his [[ArtificialLimbs bionic arm]]. Of course, chances are the censors wouldn't have reacted too kindly to a teenage superhero using realistic real world firearms to begin with.
*** Deathstroke carries a very real looking pistol, but never does more with it than intercept a thrown grenade, and dramatically cock it in another character's face before it was knocked from his hand.
* Both played straight and averted in ''WesternAnimation/WolverineAndTheXMen''. Most instances of firearms tended to be cartoonish lasers, but realistic handguns were infrequently seen as well.
* Odd example in ''WesternAnimation/IronManArmoredAdventures''. Some episodes show what are clearly normal firearms (complete with bullets and discarded shell casings) but play cartoonish laser sounds when the guns actually fire.
* The American ''WesternAnimation/StreetFighter'' animated series has an episode featuring a Chinese drug cartel using laser guns. Also in the "VideoGame/FinalFight" episode, Belger uses a wheelchair equipped with missiles and lasers instead of his bowgun.
-->"You know [[DoesNotLikeGuns I hate guns]]. '''Guns are for wimps!'''"
* For some reason, the human CowboyCop reluctant ally of ''WesternAnimation/TheMightyDucks'' also has a laser pistol. Then again, criminals in this series seem to be able to get their hands on rather exotic futuristic weapons, so we can [[FanWank probably say it's]] TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture.
* This trope was completely averted by the ''WesternAnimation/RamboTheForceOfFreedom'' a cartoon based off the ''Rambo'' movies. Still. no one living was ever hit by the bullets.
* ''Franchise/RoboCop: The Animated Series'' has villains using laser weapons instead of regular guns. May be justified by ''[=RoboCop=]'' being set TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture, but certainly unfaithful to the movies. ''Alpha Commando'' likewise sees the use of laser weapons in place of conventional firearms from the movies. Murphy himself in both versions uses a laser version of [[HandCannon the Auto-9]] and packing additional laser weapons in ''Alpha Commando''.
* In ''WesternAnimation/ZorroGenerationZ'', the mayor's {{Mooks}} have weapons that look an awful lot like ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' phasers, while Diego himself uses a weapon that is a combination laser, LaserBlade and laser whip. Some of the criminals have {{Laser Blade}}s as well. Perhaps it was meant to be set TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture, but there's no other evidence of this.
* The fantasy world of Perim in ''WesternAnimation/{{Chaotic}}'' featured this trope via FantasyGunControl: while the Tribes can churn out arsenal fulls of flamethrowers, hand-held water cannons, and {{boom stick}}s powered-by the classical element air, gunpowder-based firearms appear to be completely alien to their world. Likewise, in the episode "Chaotic Crisis" featured a conflict between the creatures of Perim and real-world humans, who, instead of using the expected arsenal, instead used tanks with ''[[KillItWithFire flamethrowers]]''.
* Not-quite-a-gun example: in the cartoons based on ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfZelda'', Link couldn't kill the enemies by stabbing them with his sword like in the games. Instead, he had to defeat them by shooting them with the {{Sword Beam}}s -- which are also in the games, but are only available at full health and thus aren't used as much as regular stabbing. In one episode, Link foolishly trades his sword for a fancier one which, he discovers at a critical moment, does not shoot laser beams. It does not help that [[WreckedWeapon the sword snaps in half from one enemy attack.]]
* ''WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirls'' featured real guns during the first two seasons, with cops, robbers, commandos, and even ''Miss Bellum'' wielding threatening, bullet-firing weapons with appropriate sound-effects. One episode even points out that the girls are bullet-proof, with Blossom [[ShootingSuperman wondering why criminals even try]] as bullets bounce off of her. This changes in the third season, in an episode which shows policemen fire fully-functional pistols and machineguns which are inexplicably coloured fire-hydrant red, and eventually the trope is played straight, with a bank robber shooting at the girls with a laser pistol.
* Parodied in ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'', where George Lucas and Steven Spielberg set out to release remakes of ET and the Franchise/IndianaJones movies where all the guns have been digitally replaced with walkie-talkies. This is later taken a step further {{lampshade|Hanging}}d when the boys are being held captive by real soldiers, all armed with machine gun sized walkie-talkies.
* While ''WesternAnimation/GeneratorRex'' generally has little problem with featuring conventional firearms, these are occasionally—and inexplicably—absent in episodes where their use would actually be effective against the threat of the week, making the show an example of the first listed version of the trope. The best example probably occurs in the second episode, which involves an outbreak of humanoid E.V.O.s who are individually rather weak; Providence is initially seen trying to contain the monsters using net guns and other non-lethal weaponry, and after this proves ineffective, White Knight gives the order to escalate, skipping automatic weaponry and heading straight into weapons of mass destruction.
* In ''WesternAnimation/Dougs1stMovie'', Mr. Bluff has hired the police who are armed with high powered assault rifles and orders them to shoot the monster once it's released from the giant Valentine box, at the last minute the kids switch the monster with Roger's robot and they fire upon it but for some reason they fire lasers.
* While ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'' explicitly takes place in a fantasy setting where ElementalPowers are commonly used, the [[MugglePower Equalists]] field a variety of mostly-plausible early 20 century-styled weapons and vehicles which, at times, seem rather awkward due to their complete absence of any kind of projectile weaponry. The most shining example comes in the finale, whereupon we witness the introduction of WWI-esque biplanes; while they carry bombs and torpedoes, they conspicuously lack machine guns, and when it actually comes down to aerial combat between planes, we are treated to the bizarre sight of one of them launching ''bolas that wrap around and immobilise the opposing plane's propeller.'' Meanwhile, the friendly United Forces' battleships have what ''appear'' to be naval cannons, but are actually just tubes that amplify the power and range of Firebending attacks.
* Due to the tragic shooting incident that took place at a screening of ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'', the gun designs in ''WesternAnimation/BewareTheBatman'' will be changed to appear less realistic.[[http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118057164]] Once the show actually premiered, though, it became obvious that the change was only cosmetic-- the pistols ''look'' like futuristic blasters, but sound like normal guns and fire actual bullets. This is also shown with heavier weapons like Alfred's rifle that has the same look, but still acts like a real rifle.
* Toyed around with in the ''WesternAnimation/DisneyAfternoon'' fare:
** Realistic firearms appear in ''WesternAnimation/DarkwingDuck'', used by many criminal elements and law enforcement bodies. However Darkwing himself relies primarily on gadgets like his trademark gas gun and AbnormalAmmo on the [[CoolPlane Thunderquack]]. Laser weapons and other odd types also appear.
** Primarily averted on ''WesternAnimation/TaleSpin''. Realistic side and longarms (Colt .45-style pistols, Thompson Submachine Guns, etc) are used on the ground, Don Karnage's pirates and Cape Suzette fighter planes are armed with very realistic machine guns, and the cliff guns defending Cape Suzette from outside threats fire realistic anti aircraft artillery. And then you have the Tembrians flinging bathtubs at enemy aircraft...
** Realistic guns also appear on ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales1987'' (with also the occasional laser and other heavy fictionalized weapons).
** Police officers and (human) criminals on ''WesternAnimation/{{Bonkers}}'' carried realistic firearms. Toon criminals tended more into the ridiculous, though.
** Seeing as they're the size of, well, mice, weapons used by the [[WesternAnimation/ChipNDaleRescueRangers Rescue Rangers]] were pretty universally of the AbnormalAmmo variety. Real guns do make an appearance, however, though given the scales involved generally functioned as artillery so were much less imitable in this context.
* This trope was, ironically, averted by a bizarre case of ExecutiveMeddling in the case of ''WesternAnimation/TheAvengersEarthsMightiestHeroes''. Originally, the episodes set in World War II were supposed to actually be the Marvel Universe conception of World War II, Nazis and all. Realistic firearms were also called for. However, according to original showrunner Creator/ChristopherYost, Disney's BSP unit made them a deal -- they could ''either'' have Nazis in [=WW2=], but they had to use lasers, or they could have realistic firearms but no Nazis. Hence ComicBook/CaptainAmerica, the ComicBook/HowlingCommandos and [[ComicBook/{{Wolverine}} James Howlett]] all shoot hot lead at HYDRA, who are apparently helping unseen, unmentioned Nazis conquer Europe.
* This is ''mostly'' averted in ''WesternAnimation/CyberSix''. The [[DumbMuscle Fixed Ideas]] use rocket launchers on the titular character frequently, and in the second episode they're seen digging through a stash machine guns and heavy artillery they stole from the mafia. Detective Enrique uses an odd kind of RayGun when he's brainwashed into hunting Cyber Six, though.
* The [[WesternAnimation/ThePinkPanther ''Pink Panther'']] cartoon "Super Pink" features a scene were the Panther is shot in the face by a crook's gun, which results in the Panther getting temporary [[AshFace ash face]]. Some versions of "Super Pink" redrew the scene so the crook has a ''water pistol'', and the Panther just winds up being soaked.
* Parodied once in ''WesternAnimation/TheAmazingWorldOfGumball'' with a criminal who tries to rob a convenience store with a ''[[ImprobableWeaponUser spoon]]'', freaking out several other characters as if it were an actual firearm. The cop who ends up arresting him just finds the whole thing hilarious though.
* Most of the time, police in ''WesternAnimation/InvaderZim'' simply have no weapons at all, leading to a strange scene where Zim ran into a bank full of police officers and one can hear numerous {{Dramatic Gun Cock}}s with no visible source. They've also been shown using stranger things such as mustard bottles and a laser that looks like it's made of twisting pipes.
* In a few of episodes of ''WesternAnimation/TheNewAdventuresOfWinnieThePooh'' characters used '''[[ImprobableWeaponUser ice cream scoopers]]''' in place of guns.
* Similarly, in ''
* Done with extremely toyish-looking laser guns in the InUniverse Superman cartoon in ''WesternAnimation/SupermanVsTheElite'' as part of its StylisticSuck.
* Everybody has lasers in ''WesternAnimation/Phantom2040'', since it's the future. Surprisingly, in one episode a minor character dies on screen due to being shot by those lasers.
* ''WesternAnimation/SwatKats'' zigzags the trope: normal guns and rifles, as used by the Enforcers and assorted villains, are laser-based and generally look that way, though Commander Feral's handgun looks a little more realistic; [[EarlyInstallmentWeirdness some early episodes showed bullets being fired from guns, but with red streaks and laser noises]]. The SWAT Kats' arsenal, on the other hand, is intended to be as non-lethal as possible. Therefore, they tend to lean towards AbnormalAmmo- the varieties of missiles used in the [[CoolPlane [=TurboKat=]]] range from being able to deploy buzzsaws, to producing electrical or flame impacts. They rarely ever fired a standard missile- which was [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] when a standard was fired by a button marked "Plain Old Missile". In addition, they also had a [[GatlingGood cement gatling gun]] equipped; their ammo in their [[SuperWristGadget Glovat]][[PowerFist rixes]] and [[{{Thememobile}} other vehicles]] tended to be scaled-down versions of their [=TurboKat=] armaments.
* Very notably averted with ''WesternAnimation/{{COPS}}'': almost all characters carry and use realistic looking firearms that fire bullets and have gunfire sound effects, the one exception being Mace and his laser bazooka.
* Zigzagged in ''WesternAnimation/TheCenturions'': most characters used energy weapons or missiles, but some of the main characters' weapon loadouts included guns that consistently fired bullets.
* Its justified in ''WesternAnimation/WanderOverYonder'' due to the futuristic and heavily ''Star Wars''-inspired setting, but there are a couple instances where some alien citizens will have guns that look exactly like muskets or shotguns, but with a laser antenna sticking out of the barrel!
* This trope can be seen in ''WesternAnimation/WeBareBears'', though it's sorta justified considering that it's not really an action-adventure show, and thus actual violence is rare. Whenever police officers are seen, they're just about always unarmed. This was even lampshaded for a joke once; once when the titular Bears approached a cop for help with finding a thief, they demanded her to "use your gun", before noticing an empty waistband and asking "Where is your gun?".

[[folder:Real Life]]
* [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-lethal_weapon Non-lethal weapons]] could be considered this, in the sense that they are designed with the intention of deterring escalation of violence (e.g. riots and personal self-defense) without killing. Though it should be noted that those in law enforcement prefer the term "less lethal" than "non-lethal" as they can be misused or, under certain circumstances, cause accidental casualties (e.g. Tasers in combination with water or certain amounts of pepper spray).