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Flash Step

"I'd like [Iron Tager] to be able to cross the screen in 30 frames..."

Making use of a short burst of Super Speed that in practice gets used more like teleportation. Sometimes rather than Super Speed, a Flash Step will use actual teleportation. A standard attack, especially in any show with Charles Atlas Superpower-level martial arts. A Flash Step will cause the user to suddenly appear either right behind the opponent (often making some sort of snarky comment about how the person is Too Slow) or a short distance past the person facing away from them. One of two things may then occur—the user attacks the opponent before they have time to register their presence, or it turns out to have been a Single-Stroke Battle and the user landed the fatal hit while moving, the opponent not realizing it until the coolest / funniest moment. Some other stories have different outcomes, like the user starting to talk about how s/he has the speed advantage instead of actually attacking, or the user becomes the victim of the opponent's own Flash Step. Occasionally both users keep using Flash Step instead of actually attacking for quite a while and just exchange insults until finally one of them loses the speed fight, or someone else steps in to disrupt them.

This often comes with a bit of Art Major Physics: Very rarely do you find someone who translates the momentum of their Flash Step into the punch/kick/noogie, something done because Newton's Laws still otherwise hold in most pieces of fiction, so it doesn't get the shattered bones on both sides of such an attack you'd expect.

Also, don't expect the air or other surrounding objects to behave as though someone dashed by them at half the speed of light, nor the ground to buckle from the force (unless they're also travelling vertically), nor their shoes to slip or in any other way refuse to provide the incredible traction necessary to accelerate that much, except of course when the terrain is obviously slippery. For that matter in the other direction, if you consider their speed based on the amount of time they travel and the distance it takes, it's often questionable why they disappear from sight at all.

Often combined with Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs when used in combat. May result in Teleport Spam, but beware if Inertia Is a Cruel Mistress. When two people do this repeatedly, see No, I Am Behind You. Also often used to avoid actually animating fight scenes, which with the flash step can be a slideshow of sword clangs and a woosh sound to indicate the characters are moving so fast you can't see them. See also Offscreen Teleportation, Villain Teleportation and Doppelgänger Spin when the person is so fast they leave afterimages.

Bonus points if the user sways from side to side at first, leaving mini-afterimages.

May cause a Snap to the Side moment.


Examples:

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    Anime and Manga 
  • Bleach: The Trope Namer. Four different groups use four different forms of super-speed: Shunpounote  (Shinigami), Sonědo (Hollows), Hirenkyaku (Quincies), and Bringer Light (Fullbringers). Each of the forms function in very slightly different ways, producing different special effects. However, they all achieve the same result: super-speed.
    • Byakuya Kuchiki is fond of using it as an opening gambit in combat as it lets him look cool, aloof, efficient and effortless. If he needs to, he can take it to the next level and even Flash Step out of his captain's haori to fool his opponent. Zommari, who claimed to be the fastest of all Espada, was capable of leaving behind five illusory clones of himself, but that didn't save him from Byakuya's superior speed.
    • Yoruichi is the acknowledged "Goddess of Speed", a title her student Soifon, also famous for her speed, tried and failed to take from her. A master of the form, Yoruichi also taught Byakuya everything he knows about speed and, despite her two students great talents in speed, still remains superior to them both.
    • Kyouraku was noted by Yamamoto, himself an undisputed master of the technique, for his still rising talent in the ability. Kyouraku was able to cover a phenomenal distance in a single leap, removing his collapsed lieutenant from the front lines to a safe distance and returning in mere seconds.
    • Ichigo is naturally faster than nearly everyone, but his Bankai further grants him the ability to perform hyperspeed combat (whereas even talented captains have to consciously create speed-clones, he creates them by accident). Ichigo has only ever performed hyperspeed combat once because the force of the power he needed to use to overcome Byakuya's tremendous speed almost broke his bones from the effort. When he developed Fullbring, he mastered Bringer Light in an incredibly short space of time, much to the Fullbringers' amazement.
    • Along with Zommari, Starrk is considered to be one of the best Espada for speed, his sonidou being so effective it made it seem to both Kenpachi and Ichigo as though he'd teleported from nowhere to kidnap Orihime.
    • Uryuu has known excellence in the use of Hirenkyaku, and is able to blitz many of his opponents in battle as well as keep up with Ichigo's speed.
    • Kyouraku's Quincy opponent was so talented at Hirenkyaku, he was able to shoot a Shinigami messenger (who are famous for their tremendous speed) without looking before the messenger could even react. Even Kyouraku could barely react and permanently lost his eye and part of his ear as a result. This Quincy's speed seems to be such an innate talent that he's the only Quincy whose holy arrows manifest as bullets instead of arrows, darts or spears.
  • Dragon Ball Z does the mid-air teleport-behind-the-opponent variety. Used often in the Budokai video games. Slightly confusingly, the series has both super-speed, and teleportation proper (Instantaneous Movement). The only difference between the two in practice is that Instantaneous Movement lets you move over intergalactic distances (or even to other planes of existence; on a few occasions Goku uses it to teleport to the afterlife), which normal super-speed can't.
    • It's also the Trope Maker, as this has been in since the beginning of the show as "Zanzoken", also known as "bunshin". Zanzoken is a specific technique used to leave an afterimage, while bunshin is just quick movement so fast it looks like a teleport and nothing more.
    • It's basically the maximum exertion of their super-speed (when it's used against people as fast or faster than themselves), and they apparently can't perceive their own movement until they slow down again. Like in the Mahou Sensei Negima! example below, Goku ended up running smack into Mr. Popo's casually upraised fist when they first met, due to the vast difference in their reflexes before he trained under Popo and Kami-sama. Goku stated at one point that he actually moved faster with his super-speed than by teleporting, at least for small distances.
    • Amazingly, Hercule/Mr. Satan, the Muggle Fake Ultimate Hero, is capable of doing this. He first uses it to dodge a rocket fired at Buu, appearing to kick one of the attackers in the face (who were a sizable distance away) a few moments later. He then did it onscreen later when he was threatened by one of the gunmen. Unfortunately, the gunman panicked, fired randomly, and managed to hit him anyway, but it still saved Hercule's life by turning a certainly fatal shot into one Majin Buu could heal him from.
  • Tower of God: The use of Body Reinforcement can result in this, and Mule Love's Blue Oar technique fits as well.
    • Koon can do this as well.
    • Edin Dan too and speeders in general.
  • In Battle Angel Alita most characters only use flash step and attack just for fun or when they want to psych their opponent out. The more seasoned fighters instead mainly use attacks that are weak but come in large numbers and for the main characters, the faster the attack, the bigger windup it has. This is especially apparent in Gally's fight with Gavit of Gadokai where he effortlessly BLOCKS her when she fires off a supersonic punch noting that with a windup that she has for it, he can easily just absorb the kinetic force.
    • Caerula Sanguis, who while being much faster and stronger then a human, is physically inferior to the cyborgs of the setting, is easily able to defeat characters moving at superhuman speeds thanks to her ability to see "neural pulse flow", which effectively grants her a sort of limited precognition, letting her counter attacks before they even are thrown. Thus far the only fight she's lost is one she lost on purpose.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima! is a bit more sensible - once started, they cannot be stopped, and since they're just basically moving really fast, you can be interrupted mid-dash for a supercharged Face Fault. When first introduced, both starting point and target had to be on the ground, though stronger characters can do it whenever they like.
    • Eventually, a character finds a way to upgrade it, using a complicated lightning spell absorbed within his own body to move perform instant movement at about 150 kmps. However, it has the same weakness as the lesser version. Later in the same fight, he invents "perpetual lightning form," which speeds the mind as well as the body, eliminating that weakness (since he can now think fast enough to change direction).
    • Kaede is a respectable second. On this page, she performs a variation of this technique by kicking off the side of the building. Not only does she cover 750 meters in a second or two (a speed somewhere between Mach 1 and Mach 2, complete with sonic boom), the building she kicks off of explodes from the force.
  • Naruto has the "Body Flicker" technique. It's stated to simply be the user rushing in one direction and why this makes the user so much faster than they are otherwise isn't really explained. Except fairly early in the series, it's barely ever used in battle and Flash Stepping from then on is generally portrayed as a result of two characters having vastly different movement speeds in general.
    • Rock Lee, after removing a pair of weighted clothing hidden underneath his leg warmers, is able to literally pinball Gaara by throwing tens of attacks in mere seconds, and then takes it Up to Eleven when he opens his chakra gates, increasing his Neo-esque destructive force.
    • Sasuke starts exhibiting this in Part 1 (having used a mixture between his Sharingan and a month's worth of training to obtain the same speed as Lee, though only in brief bursts) and in Part 2 he mocks his former allies' improvement over the Time Skip by using this to get the drop on them.
    • Naruto in Sage Mode can also do this—one second he was on top of Gamakichi's head, who was on top of Gamabunta's head, several hundred meters away, the next he was slamming down a Rasengan on Asura Path's back just as it was about to kill a weakened Tsunade. He later uses his Nine-Tails Chakra Mode to punch a fleeing Kisame, and got his foot stuck in the wall due to his inexperience with this kind of speed. Further on he counters A's Lightning Armor and his speed was compared to his father's, who used a teleporation jutsu.
    • When using his Lightning Release Armor, A was able to use the technique to dodge Amaterasu, an attack that hits whatever the user is looking at; so fast that Sasuke couldn't even see him with the Super Reflexes and Combat Clairvoyance the Sharingan gave him.
    • When he wasn't actually teleporting, Minato was very good at this too, being able to grab a newborn Naruto from right in front of Obito's face before he could even move his arm slightly.
    • Naruto's speed reaches its highest point with the Biju Mode. He can move so fast he can deflect five incredibly dense and large Bijudamas with just sheer speed alone!
    • Shisui Uchiha's skill at it was so great, his title was "Shisui of Teleportation".
  • One of the applications of Homura's power in Puella Magi Madoka Magica. She's actually stopping time and sprinting. Seen clearly in Episode 6 when she is chasing after a moving truck on the highway.
  • In One Piece there's the Soru technique, part of the Rokushiki martial arts primarily used by Cypher Pol no 9.
    • There's also Kuro, whose whole fighting style relies on his speed and whose Shakushi attack moves roughly at the same speed as Soru. The difference is that Kuro can't follow his own movements when going that fast, and as a result can only attack randomly with it. Soru users on the other hand have mastered it to the point that they can clearly see their surroundings while moving at insane speed.
    • Bartholomew Kuma uses his Devil Fruit power for short-distance teleportation in battle.
    • After witnessing Soru in action (and losing to its user), Luffy figured it out and incorporated the move into his own skillset when using Gear 2nd. The technique is to kick off at least ten times rapidly enough, if you're curious.
    • There's also Admiral Kizaru, whose Devil Fruit power allows him to move at the speed of light. Literally.
    • When Shanks met up with Whitebeard, Whitebeard threw an empty bottle of sake at him, and Shanks flash stepped out of the way... while sitting down.
  • In issue 1 of Mega Man NT Warrior, Megaman pulls one off complete with Too Slow to delete Original!Torchman.
  • In Rurouni Kenshin. Kenshin flashes behind his opponent, who then calls him out on dishonorably preparing to attack from behind. This causes Kenshin to hesitate, giving the surprisingly swift guy the opportunity to eat his own words and flash behind him.
    • It's played straight more than not in the manga. Kenshin even defeats a somewhat hubristic opponent while not even drawing his sword by repeating this method: the enemy thinks he is only keeping up with Kenshin, not noticing their incrementally increasing speed. The enemy's knee gives out under their last accelerated turn, brought on by their size difference.
    • Stepford Smiler Seta Soujirou's power looks like a flash step... but at max speed, he just runs too fast for the human eye to process. (I crunched the numbers. Soujirou can pretty much sprint at the very limits of human foot power.)
    • Some effects from flash stepping do appear on the environment, though selectively and mostly for style. Kenshin once leaves a telltale stream of bent grass tracing his dash. His ultimate attack is essentially the ultimate flash step that leaves footsteps even in stone, affects the air, and bothers to transfer the momentum to attacks. While Soujiro himself cannot be seen by the naked eye, the effects of his footsteps can, resembling a volley of machine gun fire across floors and walls.
  • Falkner's Pidgeot, in the first Johto Gym Battle of Pokémon, did it to Charizard. While flying.
    • A lot of Pokémon do that - especially with moves like Agility.
      • Ninjask in particular is mentioned in its Pokedex entry as 'moving so fast that it cannot be seen'. It is also said to be able to dodge any attack due to its speed, justified somewhat due to the fact it can learn Double Team.
      • Certain no-miss moves like Aerial Ace and Faint Attack sometimes work like this in the anime. They start out as a regular charge at the opponent, until they get close, where they flash step directly to hitting the target, sometimes from different angles. However, the way these attacks work is effectively rewritten each time they show up, and sometimes the flash step part is forgotten.
  • Can be done by speedsters such as Fate and Signum, or with spells such as Sonic Move and Flash Move in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha.
  • In Azumanga Daioh, Sakaki does one of these when she hears about a kitten. She practically teleports in.
  • Inuyasha: Sesshoumaru is the strongest and fastest youkai in the story. He is capable of moving so swiftly that he sometimes appears to teleport out of and into nothingness. He can even look like a streak of lightning moving through the sky (an effect the anime particularly favours). He particularly favours appearing as if from out of thin air in front of other characters.
  • Subverted in Trigun where a villain who seemingly does Flash Step actually use mind control to create illusion of doing it. Vash counters this by causing pain to himself, which breaks the hypnosis long enough for him to fire.
    • Similarly handled in Code Geass R2, where Rolo's Geass gives him the ability to stop people's perception of time, so to them, it appears that he's moving too fast to see, when he's really moving normally.
      • This leads to a bit of Fridge Logic during the first few episodes when Rolo apparently uses his ability to escape an explosion. What, does he stop the flame's perception of time or something?
      • Maybe he just activated it right before the explosives went off.
      • Except later he is explicitly stated to not be able to effect anything but people's minds. He would have had to use it before the explosives were even activated by a human.
  • The main character of The Third: The Girl with the Blue Eye uses this periodically to dodge gunfire and destroy mecha with a single cut.
  • Sonic and Tails, along with Metal Sonic, are shown to be able to do this in Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie. The resulting fight scene between Sonic and Metal, in the air, is suitably awesome.
  • Shizu of Kino's Journey can charge fast enough to, along with his other Implausible Fencing Powers, put up a serious challenge to normal gun users. The technique is deconstructed, though; even though the man can dodge bullets, he still relies on distractions like the flash of light from a firearm or his sword blade, and someone who is fast enough can still interrupt his attacks mid-Flash Step without disappearing themselves. Kino's quick draw ability could be seen as a modified version of the Flash Step, too, taking only a couple animation frames.
  • On Blood+, Queens, Chevaliers, and the Shiff can all use a flash step-like ability which takes the appearance of bluish streaks.
  • Claymore: This is "Phantom" Miria's signature move, the "Phantom Mirage." Frequently in the manga, it looks like her opponent's blade/talons have pierced her through... only to reveal that it was an afterimage, and she's already behind them hacking their limbs off. Another Claymore uses it more offensively: her afterimages show her Telefragging her opponent.
    • Several other characters have also displayed this ability, which seems to be fairly standard, though no others appear to have mastered it to the extent of leaving afterimages.
  • The only main fighter of YuYu Hakusho that doesn't use this is Kuwabara. Because he's too slow. Hiei, in particular, uses them a lot.
    • To be fair, Kuwabara is very capable of this; he proved this in the beginning of the Rescue Yukina arc. Problem is, when it appears that the heroes, most commonly Yusuke and Hiei, are using flash steps, it's usually only because they're just that much faster/stronger. When two opponents in the series are on the same tier of speed, flash steps almost never happen. Kuwabara just happens to be unlucky enough to only fight people on his level of speed or faster.
    • Kuwabara actually does do a flash step in his fight against Rinku. Even though Rinku proves to be faster than he'd let on up to that point, he was clearly already moving too fast for an ordinary person to track, and Kuwabara was faster than even that level.
    • Hiei's speed is much more fun when you consider him cutting the enemy's arm so fast and RETURNING to where he was standing that the enemy did not even know he moved at all. Flash Stepping to your enemy's back? Beginners. Flash Stepping to hurt your enemy and then Flash Stepping back? Expert.
    • Enemies do it too, of course. A non-battle example: after Younger Toguro finishes his I Am Not Left-Handed Intimidation Demonstration for Yusuke, he finishes it off by flash stepping behind Yusuke to tell him about the Dark Tournament and give him an ultimatum to join.
  • Tsuna from Katekyo Hitman Reborn! can do this after he gets his X-Gloves, using the flames on the gloves to produce thrust.
  • Most of the combat-oriented members of Hunter × Hunter's Genei Ryodan seem to be able to do this.
  • Death the Kid demonstrates his speed by flash stepping behind Crona too fast for the swords...person to follow. He does the same to Black Star later on, using both times to attack at close range.
  • Done with massive machines in Gundam. There's a few of examples throughout the franchise, most notably with the F91 from Gundam F91 and the 00 from Gundam 00 when equipped with the 0-Raiser. The former case is explained away somewhat plausibly as thin layers of armor ablating off the machine to shed heat, combined with an almost insane speed, creating the impression of an afterimage. The latter is just ridiculous; the mecha is being reduced to elementary particles and then instantaneously reassembled in another location. It literally teleports.
    • More conceivably done by Lockon II and a heavily-damaged Cherudim in the final battle, using a half-second's worth of Trans-Am to get the jump on Revive Revival.
    • The Unicorn Gundam did this at least once in NT-D mode, although exactly how is never really explained. When NT-D is activated the Unicorn gains at least four more thrusters, so that could have something to do with it.
    • The Destiny Gundam is able to do this by activating its Voiture Lumiere for short bursts of extreme speed. Other mobile suits begin copying it in Mobile Suit Gundam Seed Astray, such as the Turn Delta Astray and the Astray Red Frame Kai.
  • Macross Frontier has the Ghost V-9s in the final battle dodging and strafing like crazy. Justified in that they're unmanned craft so G-forces are a non-issue.
  • In Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, Simon ends up inventing teleportation just to punch Rossiu in the face.
  • Sephiria Arks of Black Cat briefly demonstrates this to avoid a bunch of rapidly fired arrows at point-blank range.
  • Ginei from Rosario + Vampire is the best example. He's a Lightning Bruiser, just a bit more lightning than bruiser. Then there are Tsukune and Moka, who are more bruiser than lightning, but still occasionally manage to pull this off.
    • Inner Moka has been shown to do this fast enough to leave an afterimage for her opponents to attack.
  • Tsutomu Nihei's Abara has modified characters capable of bursts of supersonic speed. While the perspective usually follows them as they move, to everybody else it is an archetypal flash step. Notable because their surroundings actually buckle from the resulting stress and shockwaves. While speeding, all sound effects are represented by cheap, pixelated fonts since they are mostly a device to better express action. When things resume normal speed, all the actual noise catches up in a combined boom.
  • Shin Mazinger Z's Miss Okiku is a Badass Grandma who uses her super speed to do this.
  • In Freezing, this is an ability of some of the Pandora and it is called Accel Turn. They can become even faster if they can use upgraded version of this technique called Double Accel, Triple Accel, and Quadruple Accel.
  • Occasionally used in Ranma ˝ by particularly fast characters such as Ranma and Happosai. Sometimes in battle, like how Ranma did so to Tatewaki Kuno in one of their first fights, but also when messing with people such as to perform a Stealth Hi/Bye. Also Genma's Dangerous Forbidden Technique uses this, but it seems to rely on stealth as much as on speed if not more.
  • Pops up often in the Pretty Cure franchise.
  • Seems to be a generic Spirit power in Date A Live; though a rarely used one. Tohka described it as "killing the distance in front of her eyes".
  • In Gamaran, most warriors of the Ogame School can move and sprint so fast that their enemies can't even follow their movements. Also subverted with the special technique "Narugami" (Rumbling God): apparently the user moves so fast he vanishes in front of the enemy and slash him as he appears behind him. In reality, the user sidesteps out of the enemy's sight as said enemy is about to hit him.
  • Played for Laughs in The World God Only Knows (pictured above), where Keima pulls this on Ayumi. The Irony of the scene is that Ayumi is in the school's track team and is nicknamed Maijima's Human Missile.
  • Botan of Kitakubu Katsudou Kiroku does this. When she was a child, everybody avoided her because of her murderous aura. So when gym class came around, she learned to do this so fast it appeared as if she was in two places at once and she paired up with herself!
  • Minako Aino can do it, in the Sailor Moon manga. Immediately followed by a kick in the face.
  • Several characters in A Certain Magical Index, but especially Saints, have incredible speed to move in the blink of an eye. Touma Kamijou can't do this and has a very difficult time fighting these kinds of opponents.
  • In Sword Art Online, Kirito does this to Rosalia while apprehending her and her guild. Justified in that his level and therefore stats (including speed) are way above theirs.
  • Parodied in Buso Renkin with the fight between Kazuki and Shusui, which starts out with the two just getting behind each over and over until Tokiko yells at them to cut it out (in the end, they even flash step right out of the gym they were fighting in.)

    Comic Books 
  • Batgirl III has pulled this a few times, outrunning one of her own batarangs at least once. Even though she's supposed to be physically an ordinary human.
    • Batman is even able to pull this off. When under being fire he's easily able to outrun hail gunfire similar to Cassandra Cain.
  • The Flash does this often. As well, of course, as any other superhero whose primary power is teleportation or super-speed.
  • The title character in ElfQuest: Jink has this as her stock superpower. As well as moving very fast herself, it seems she can also use rapid movement to strip other people naked if she's feeling frisky.
  • Daredevil does this under writers who remember that he's supposed to be a bullet timer. In one of the more memorable examples he feels a sniper's laser marker on his forehead and literally vanishes in thin air, while the sniper is staring down the scope straight at him.
    • Black Widow does the same thing immediately after DD does it, and then proceeds to punch a guy in the face while nearly out-running a bullet shot from a pistol. Though she crossed the distance nearly instantly, she wasn't actually able to dodge the bullet itself, implying while she is absurdly fast, her reflexes have limits.
  • The mutant Selene can do this. She is capable of brief bursts of Super Speed, which she combines with telepathic hypnosis to create the illusion that she can teleport short distances.
  • In Planetary, secret agent man John Stone has this ability due to a piece of Applied Phlebotinum called a "blitzen suit".
  • In All Fall Down, the Modern Prometheus uses this to pin down and trap Siphon and the Pantheon between the 'G' and 'O' of the word "Gotcha". Simultaneously.
  • Midnighter from The Authority does this on occasion. A good example is in the second issue, when confronting a terrorist who is holding a child hostage. Midnighter casually informs him to drop the child, and that (among other things) he can "hit you without you even seeing me". Next thing you know there's a panel of the bad guy falling into a heap on the ground and Midnighter is holding the child saying "Told you so."

    Fan Works 
  • Used in A Growing Affection like in the Naruto canon, but notable because Naruto combines Body Flicker with Shadow Clones to create the 'Flash Split', allowing him to vanish from one place and reappear in three or four different ones.

    Film 
  • Used by Loz to defeat Tifa in Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children. He uses it a couple other times too, and literally flashes when he does it. It's less useful on the other times, since he's doing it for shorter ranges and against a guy who can swing a giant sword fast enough to deflect bullets.
  • This is how "the weirding way of fighting" is depicted in the Dune and Children of Dune miniseries.
    • In the novels, one character gets super-speed powers that actually have consequences on him. He's moving so fast that he cuts himself deeply on a small plastic tube that he brushes lightly against, and he burns so many calories while doing it that he can only do it for short bursts before starving to death.
  • Used in the final battle of Ninja Assassin.
  • Used by Ramirez in Highlander to teach McLeod how Too Slow a 'Crude and slow clansman' is.
  • In New Moon, the vampires use this when they fight each other.
  • In Pale Rider, The Preacher seems to be the master of Flash Step.
  • In the Underworld films, well fed vampires can do this. Much to the horror of some cops, Selene demonstrates at the beginning of Underworld Evolution.
  • Samara seems to do this in the end of The Ring to get up in her last victim's face, though it manifests more like the flickering of a TV image.
  • An early version in Superman II (1980), when both Superman and the three Kryptonian supervillains do this during their battle in the Fortress of Solitude.
  • In Man of Steel, Faora is notable for being the only character who fully masters super speed and uses flash steps. When Superman or another character uses super speed, they are still visible to the audience as a blur.
  • In Godzilla vs. Megaguirus, Megaguirus is able to do this, despite being a dragonfly the size of a building.
  • X-Men:
  • In Resident Evil: Afterlife, Albert Wesker uses this a few times in his fight against Chris and Claire Redfield.

    Literature 
  • The Shrike of the Hyperion Cantos is able to move at such speed that it appears to be in several places at once. This is accomplished through some time-bending Applied Phlebotinum, though.
    • Even better, at one point Nemes uses his phase-shift ability to nearly stop time and the Shrike still manages to Flash Step too fast for her to follow.
  • A short story by Isaac Asimov called "The Billiard Ball" has a field which allows anything which enters the field to immediately attain zero mass and hence move at the speed of light. The story has an interesting aversion to part of the physics problems — once the objects leave the light speed volume, they start to slow down but still have their full momentum and velocity. This makes them very deadly weapons.
  • Drizzt in the The Legend of Drizzt novels has used this occasionally, though only over very short distances. He attempts to justify it by explaining that he's not really moving at teleportation speed, but people don't see him by taking advantage of an optical illusion caused by the swing of someone's sword to move without being seen. Which would pretty much require someone to be waving their sword in front of their face for some reason. Drizzt at least can move at superhuman speeds due to his magical anklets, but he's taught this move to other people as well.
  • Flash-stepping is the cornerstone of combat between ghosts in The Dresden Files, since all of them have an ability Harry dubs "vanishing", where they vanish and instantly appear anywhere within 300 feet of their original position.
  • Wayne in The Alloy of Law can create a bubble around himself where time moves much faster then the rest of the world, he often uses it in combat to create this effect in order to dodge bullets, he throws up a bubble as the opponent shoots, then just walks out of the path of the bullets, from an outside point of view it looks like a Flash Step though he's moving at perfectly ordinary speeds from his point of view.
  • Jonathan Teatime in Hogfather does this a lot. Mostly it's Offscreen Teleportation, but on occasion he even moves when people are looking right at him.
  • A short story by Timothy Zahn is about a young man who finds he can teleport, but over very short distances. He initially uses it to cheat at boxing matches to dodge blows and gets depressed over the whole affair, because he could never use it on camera without it being obvious and thus could never go professional. In the end he discovers this trope and uses it to save someone's life by getting to the right place in time.
  • In the The Wheel of Time, combat between often works out this way within the World of Dreams, where an expert dreamer can teleport themself to any desired location instantly, while also summoning any weapon they imagine or even changing the environment to their will.
  • In The Vampire Chronicles vampires are able to do this. Rationalized by the fact that they are basically animated by telekinesis and their powers increase with age. Essentially they are telekinetically moving themselves from place to place with near instantaneous acceleration and deceleration.
  • Vampires can also do this in The Saga of Darren Shan - relative to humans, anyway. Their reflexes mean even half-blood / "incomplete" vampires can "jump" short distances faster than the eye can follow. Darren uses this to prove he's a vampire at least once, while his mentor likes using it to fake telekinesis.
  • Most ships in the Star Carrier series are limited in how they can use Faster-Than-Light Travel in that roughly a 40 AU radius around a star is a No Warping Zone. Not so the Slan, who can make tactical FTL jumps inside gravity wells to fulfill this trope.
  • In Please Don't Tell My Parents I'm a Supervillain, Penny invents armbands that give the wearer limited teleportation. Specifically, they (apparently) compress time so that you can cross extreme distances in the blink of an eye, with the caveat that it takes as much energy as if you had run it normally as fast as you can. She intended them for her teammate Reviled, since he has the enhanced endurance to use them, but eventually kept them for herself, since she needs the enhanced mobility more than he does.

    Live Action TV 
  • The Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers were able to do this in the ninja-themed third season, as could Ninjor (mentor type who gave new powers) and the Aquitian Rangers (also Ninjor-related.) Memorably reappears in "Forever Red", as Aurico Flash-steps into a lounging position on the ground and taunts the enemy, before (of course) doing it again before he can be fired on.
  • Flash Stepping an entire starship is the genesis of the "Picard Maneuver" in Star Trek: The Next Generation. By applying a very short warp-speed jump, Picard's Stargazer outran its own image, briefly appearing in two places at once.
  • Anybody with Super Speed can do this in Smallville. Amazingly, Brainiac was able to get behind Clark and nearly snap his neck. Clark didn't notice his approach at all, and since Clark can follow Impulse with his eyes, this means Brainiac is faster than the Flash!
    • Or, given that it's Brainiac, he just knows how to use it better (the current Flashes rarely use all of the capabilities of super speed).
    • One of the best examples ever: In Bizarro's debut episode, he chokeslams Clark so hard it leaves a crater. He looks into the hole, and then Clark attacks him from behind.
    • In one episode, Zod does this to Oliver, only to find that Oliver's crossbow bolt is tipped with kryptonite.
  • Kamen Rider:
  • Darken Rahl of Legend of the Seeker can do this.
    • He's only shown doing this a total of 2 times. Once, when he's first facing Richard (although, he leaves a magical decoy to distract Richard), and once in an alternate timeline when he regains his senses and fights the Sisters of the Dark. No other magic-user is shown doing this, though.
  • In The Flash TV series, a villain does this after making himself an exoskeleton that allows him to move as fast as the Flash. All the problems of moving at this speed are ignored for this episode (although they are plot points in others), such as needing to process visual information fast enough or preventing your body from literally burning up from the friction.
  • In Chinese Paladin, sufficiently powerful characters do this rather than do anything as undignified as walking.
  • The character Ruadan from Merlin does one of these when his daughter approaches him from behind in the middle of a forest. He uses magic to make a torch flicker and then appears at her side.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Weeping Angels have a variant of this; they turn into statues and can't move when they're being watched, but can move incredibly fast when they're not. In practice, this means that if anyone so much as blinks, or the lights flicker (which the Angels can cause), they can advance, and encounters with them usually take the form of the protagonists being forced slowly backward as the Angels Flash Step forward whenever there's a second of darkness.
    • The episode "A Town Called Mercy" has a cyborg gunslinger who can teleport, and normally uses it to advance quickly without breaking his Ominous Walk.
    • In Classic Who, "The Five Doctors", the Raston Warrior Robot is described by the Doctor as "fast as lightning", and indeed it seems to teleport from spot to spot rather than moving.
  • In Jekyll, Mr Hyde does this a lot, mainly because he finds it funny to scare people. Presumably, it's a case of him moving too fast for the eye to follow rather than any actual teleportation powers.
  • In Supernatural, the first season had the brothers going against a Wendigo. When they see it (on a video), they see it's shadow cross the side of a tent in less than ten frames. It was only by scrubbing through in extreme slo-mo that they were able to see it at all.
    • Later in the series, other monsters are able to do it as well, namely demons and angels, both of whom are quite fond of the Stealth Hi/Bye technique. A notable occasion is when Castiel uses it in a He's Back moment, appearing in front of a demon who's turned to flee from him. "I don't think running will save you."
  • Once Upon a Time: Red can apparently do this in human form, given that she was able to go about 50 yards from standing still in the time it took for Whale to step off the bridge so that she could catch him.
  • Cole, when he hyperspeeds in Tracker
  • Hyperdrives have been put to use for this on two occasions in Stargate SG-1.
    • In "Fail Safe" Sam uses the hyperdrive on a Goa'uld cargo shuttle to jump a planet-killer asteroid through Earth.
    • In "Fallen" The Plan, which is agreed by all concerned to be "absolutely insane", calls for Sam and Jack to make a short-range tactical hyperjump to get the F-302 inside Anubis' flagship's Deflector Shield. Works like a charm.

    Mythology and Religion 

    Tabletop RPG 
  • Assault Swordmages explicitly have this as an attack (or more specifically, a 'counterattack') in Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition.
    • 4E Fighters, the Lightning Bruisers of this edition, have a 15th level stance where they make an attack after shifting 5 feet.
    • And again in 4e, Eladrin can use a short-range teleport once per encounter.
    • The 4e Monk class is, or at least CAN be, built on this. Most of their standard actions (read: attacks) have a special type of move action associated, if not built into the attack itself. While some are normal movements, jumps or even flies, a healthy percentage are either shift (movements that don't trigger reactions from enemies) or outright teleportation. They even have utility powers that further boost your movements, and feats that allow even MORE movement when you hit/kill an enemy in certain ways.
    • Not to count out the assassin: an optional class feature is "shadow step," which allows you to teleport through shadows of creatures. Although a bit more situational, it otherwise works exactly the same way.
    • The battlemind has a power called lightning rush that allows you to shift up next to a enemy in range and attack them if they attack an ally. It puts you into range to follow up with a Mind Spike if they hit your ally.
  • In earlier versions of Dungeons & Dragons:
    • The Dimension Door spell allowed magic-users/wizards to do this once.
      • The monk special ability Abundant Step (essentially acts as a casting of Dimension Door) seems to be specifically invoking this trope.
    • Blink Dogs had this as a standard ability, with a 75% chance of appearing behind (and facing) an opponent's back. Unicorns could Dimension Door once per day.
    • 3E had one tactical feat, Sun School, which grants a free melee attack after teleporting next to an enemy. In the Forgotten Realms, two prestige classes— the Teflammar Shadowlord and Crinti Shadow Marauder— gained the Shadow Pounce ability, which lets them make several attacks after teleporting next to an enemy. "Multipouncer" builds used a combination of different teleportation abilities to pounce up to three times per round.
      • Dragonmarked members of House Orien could do something similar by taking levels in the Blade of Orien Prestige Class.
    • In 3e, Swordsages could use Shadow Jaunt/Stride/Blink to teleport, but those abilities are non-magical and require line of effect, making them ambiguous.
    • The psychic warrior power Dimensional Slide from the Expanded Psionics Handbook is basically a Flash Step, though it is limited by your range of vision within its own range (Which, sadly, is at most a few hundred feet, requiring being a 40th level psionic character.) If you blow the power points, it manifests as a move action. Combined with a few feats, it could be done as an immediate action. But you can't take more than 20 lbs of living matter, so no taking anyone with you.
      • In Complete Psionics, the psychic warrior can have a much more powerful version of this: Inconstant Location, which, for its duration, grants the psychic warrior ability to perform Dimensional Slide as swift action each round, so they can jump then full-attack the enemies. Can also be considered as Teleport Spam.
      • The Conjurer Immediate Magic class feature from P Layer's Handbook 2 could interrupt their opponents turn to teleport 6 squares and do it a number of times equal to their intelligence modifier.
  • Exalted has a Celestial Martial Arts style- Crystal Chameleon Style- made up of equal parts flash-stepping, unexpected attacks, and stealth by psychedelic light-shows. There's a reason the style is often referred to as Disco Ninja Style by fans.
    • High-Essence Solars also have Godspeed Steps, which allows them to flash across anywhere up to a mile in an instant. It's explicitly called-out as not being teleportation though; if the Solar comes across a barrier partway, they have to stop.
  • Legend explicitly uses teleportation to emulate these - Rogues of various typing gain teleportation to represent Flash Stepping, and a feat (Shadow Blink) allows any character to gain the same ability. It's also the Signature Move of the Iron Magi track.

    Toys 
  • BIONICLE had several characters who could use Super Speed or teleportation, but out of them only Pohatu ended up using his for flash-stepping, and even then mostly because his upgraded power could warp him through solid objects.
    • Kapura, a kinda sluggish Matoran from the online games, trained himself in the secret of "moving great distances by moving very slowly". At first he greets you atop a mountain when you flew there by bird and you might even have seen him at the bottom of it minutes ago; and then later he participates in a battle where it becomes very clear that he is actually using his ability as a Flash Step to dodge attacks.

    Video Games 
  • Tsumuji's special ability in "Shounen Kininden Tsumuji" is to quick dash anywhere.
  • This is one of Nanaya Shiki's signature abilities in Melty Blood. As of Actress Again, Tohno Shiki is also able to pull this off. Arcueid can also do this during one of the EX Skills.
  • World of Warcraft 's Rogues can, if specced a certain way, gain one of two abilities: Shadowstep, through which a Rogue can teleport directly behind a target in line-of-sight within a certain distance, and Killing Spree, which allows them to do five Shadowsteps in succession, but in a smaller area, with less control, and attacking twice each time. Mages have the Blink ability, which is a short-range teleport. Warlocks get a teleport as well, but it's tied to a beacon - the Warlock drops a green glowing point and can then teleport to that point from within 40 yards, regardless of line of sight.
    • While it may technically not be considered a Flash Step, Feral Combat druids have an ability called Feral Charge that acts the same way. This ability causes you to leap behind an enemy and daze them for a few seconds. Even if used when not stealthed, the player will still have a moment to attack before the enemy realizes the player is behind them.
      • As of Mists of Pandaria, all specializations of druid have access to a talent that blinks them forward and shifts them into cat form at the same time (an early version of the talent even allowed them to stealth.)
    • Much like a Warlock's ability to teleport to a beacon, Monks have the ability to leave a fraction of their spirit behind and swap places with it.
    • Warden heroes from Warcraft 3 can Blink as well. In fact, the highest level of said spell costs 10 mana and has a one second recharge time. Teleport Spam, anyone?
      • Against weaker enemies, Blinking into the middle of the mob, casting Fan of Knives and Blinking back out can be quite devastating.
  • Blink is also used in Starcraft II by the Protoss Stalker and Zeratul. The latter is a campaign-only special character while the former is available with the skill in either mode, but requires research to unlock in multiplayer. Both require a 10 second cooldown.
  • Hotsuma from the PS2 game Shinobi has this as one of his abilities. It gets kicked up a notch when at the second battle Aomizuchi and at the battle against Ageha your opponent can do it as well. And even more so at the final battle where he can literally warp to you during a combo.
  • Almost every boss from the Mega Man Battle Network series, due to the grid-based combat, is shown to instantly teleport from panel to panel. It's the bosses who don't do this who are the problem, as that usually implies some gimmicky form of movement that makes it harder to hit them. Bass is the most notable example of this.
    • Invoked with the Step chips (Step Sword, Step Cross, Evil Cut), which cause the user to appear two squares ahead, slash and then return to the initial position. Seeing as it's just a programming action, it's probably just teleporting.
  • Sephiroth is a master of this in pretty much everything he appears in aside from the original game. Arguably, it's his entire fighting style.
  • Defense of the Ancients: All-Stars: The Stealth Assassin character has this as one of his powers - he uses a short-range super speed move to end up right behind his target and stab said enemy in the back.
    • The Blink Dagger item gives this ability to anyone who buys it.
  • All over the place in Dissidia: Final Fantasy, where characters can teleport when using certain attacks. This includes, but is not limited to, Onion Knight's Swordshower and Guiding Swipe, Zidane's Meo Twister, Golbez's Cosmic Ray, and of course, Sephiroth is there with Oblivion, Fervent Blow and Godspeed.
    • The prequel Dissidia 012 returns all the previous examples and adds Tifa, whose entire gimmick is that she can cancel out attacks to teleport behind the opponent and attack again, and Vaan's Katana. The game also adds the Assist Chase mechanic, which let you teleport near the opponent and attack after certain Assist attacks.
  • Several members of Organization XIII in Kingdom Hearts, especially in Chain of Memories.
    • Aqua and Ven (but not Terra, as he's too slow) have a preemptive counter ability that lets them flash behind their current attacker and slash from behind. Ven just dashes very quickly around them before they can react, but Aqua teleports in a flash of light. Aqua ups this to leaving after images all over the place when she powers up to Ghost Drive mode. The command 'Time Splicer' also does this, but it actually prevents non-boss enemies from moving at all until your character decides they're done. Enemies Master Xehanort and Vanitas are also fond of it.
    • Riku's been doing this since the beginning. In 3D, one of his Link Styles is a darker version of Aqua's Ghost Drive.
    • Kingdom Hearts also has Sephiroth again, opening his boss fight in the second game with the original version of the Oblivion attack mentioned above.
    • If you fail the reaction command during the deep dive sequence during the first fight with Xemnas, he'll warp behind Sora and deliver a killing blow before you have time to react to it.
    • And then there's Xigbar, he's the organization member with the power over space/dimension, he flash steps around to fire at you in various ways (Interestingly, he had this trick before he became a nobody, as Birth By Sleep reveals). Sora can use a Reaction Command to do the same to Xigbar.
  • Almost all of the main protagonists in Star Ocean: The Last Hope are capable of this thanks to the Blindside game mechanic, that of which allows them to outflank the enemy by moving at incredible speeds (usually depicting their movements in slow motion from the player's perspective) and attack the enemy from behind. Characters like Arumat and Myuria use actual teleportation when performing their unique Blindsides. Some enemies(particularly bosses) are capable of this as well, and are even able react to (and counter) a hero's Blindside manuever with one of their own.
  • There are a lot of moves in Super Smash Brothers that work like this: Fox's Fox Illusion, Pikachu's Quick Attack, and Lucario's Double Team (which is a counter) to name a few.
  • In Super Robot Wars, this trope turns into a unit ability, wherein any allied or enemy unit carrying the "Afterimage" or "Mirror Image" ability has a 50% chance of dodging any attack. This occasionally shows up in licensed series, usually in the form of an automatic miss for the attacker. For example, in Super Robot Wars Judgment, Brains who activate their "Vital Jump" also stop using energy while moving in the air.
  • No More Heroes:
    • In the final boss battle, Jeane is capable of streaking around the battlefield in a decidedly Dragon Ball Z-esque manner. While this is likely utilized to show off just how patently nasty and tough the boss is in addition to disorienting the player, it's worth noting that you have no trouble keeping locked on to and tracking the boss's movements; Travis is capable of blocking every bullet fired from a full Uzi clip, after all.
    • Travis himself can do this by pressing a direction in the control stick right after guarding an attack. From his perspective, he just does a regular dodge in Bullet Time.
    • Henry's Dash ability in his one playable level in the sequel.
    • Jasper Batt Jr. is capable of doing flash step punches in his second form, and when he's low on health he starts shooting tornados out of his fists as well. It's easily one of the most aggravating attacks in both games.
  • Screaming Mantis in Metal Gear Solid 4 does this when she tries to attack Snake with her scythes.
    • The Ninja from the first game also does this, towards the end of the boss battle; he'll walk slowly towards Snake, do a flash step, and try and hit you with a punch.
  • Zone of the Enders brings us the Zero Shift, which is this at Humongous Mecha scale. There is some Techno Babble about using space compression powered by Metatron to move at near-lightspeed. In fact, the earlier part of The Second Runner involves Jehuty attempting to acquire this ability so that it can fight on equal footing with the already Zero Shift-capable Anubis.
  • Perfect World 's Assassin class has two skills that do this: Shadow Jump (instantly teleport to the target's location) and Shadow Teleport (same as Shadow Jump, but also stuns the opponent for 3 seconds).
  • In practice, "Extreme Speed" and "Pursuit" in Pokémon behave like this.
  • The first two Fable games have a spell that works like this - Assassin's Rush in Fable I, and the targeted version of Time Control in Fable II.
  • Sonic Unleashed gives the titular hedgehog the "Quick Step", a move that lets him "warp" instantaneously a short distance to one side or the other, allowing him to dodge obstacles or pitfalls that would take too long to circumvent normally.
    • Sonic Colors feature a similar move, though its use is limited to designated areas in a given level.
    • During Soul Surge in Sonic and the Black Knight, when in front of an enemy, Shadow/Lancelot uses Chaos Control to teleport before delivering an attack. Sonic can do the same basic thing with his speed.
  • The womanizer pirate drunkard Iaidouka Johnny from Anime-style beat 'em up series Guilty Gear features several of these moves in addition to his quick-draw sword attacks, one of which transports you across the screen, another which can be executed while holding your sword ready to strike at an indeterminable point, and one of which is a one-hit finishing move.
    • Chipp Zanuff's 236P attack (that's Down, Down Forward, Forward+Punch, for those of you who don't know fighting game lingo), the Alpha Blade, is this trope. The super version does this several times in rapid succession, and Ex Chipp can perform the Alpha Blade up to three consecutive times as part of a combo (normal Chipp can't).
  • Sho Minamimoto from The World Ends with You can Flash Step past any zetta slowpoke, in Noise form and Taboo Noise form.
    • Additionally, the pins that let Neku teleport have names that imply that this is what's going on.
  • Lars Alexandersson from Tekken 6 Bloodline Rebellion utilizes a lot of Flash Step in his attack arsenals.
    • Yoshimitsu can be thought of as a Flash Spin/Sit, since a few of his attacks involve him spinning and vanishing without even a flash or sound.
      • Badass Black Ninja Raven also can do this, even having a move that allows him to backflip through the opponent if facing them from behind. One of his intro sequences also involves him slowly walking towards the person and vanishing, causing the character to spin around and find him standing with his arms crossed.
  • Kessler in inFAMOUS frequently moves around using this method, as do the Reaper conduits.
  • Wesker in Resident Evil 5 moves around the battlefield like this - apparently Capcom wanted to represent his speed and agility like this in earlier games, but the technology didn't make it look convincing.
    • Pleasingly, if he flash steps into melee you can initiate a small QTE where you smack him down before he launches his own attack.
    • This is also a huge part of the boss battles against him (especially the first); shooting him needs to be done from around corners or from behind so he doesnt flash step out of the way.
    • Mendez and Verdugo in Resident Evil 4 also do this, although not when the player is fighting them.
  • Fire Emblem: in the GBA games, attack animations incorporate this trope for agile characters such as swordmasters and assassins.
    • In Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn, certain special moves (critical hits for swordmasters and thieves and Occult attacks for those classes) are portrayed this way as well.
  • Devil May Cry: In 3 and 4, maxing out the Trickster style gives Dante the "Air Trick" ability (which, sadly, only lets him Flash Step right up to his target's face).
    • Likewise, Vergil is a master of this, his usage approaching spamtacular levels on the higher difficulties. When playable, his range is limited, but he is capable of doing this up, down, and towards a targeted enemy.
    • 1 and 4 use this twice. Nelo Angelo has a technique which allows him to instantaneously teleport short distances, though he only ever uses it to gain distance for a different attack. The Frosts, strong ice demons appearing in both 1 and 4, have a similar ability whereby they disassemble their bodies at the molecular level, quickly move across the room using the moisture in the air as a medium and reform somewhere else.
    • Also, his Royalguard style grands a counter-move Just Release, which really looks like and acts as a Flash Punch, moving you through opponents and dealing them damage based on how much damage you have blocked prior and how perfect your timing was. Using it with an empty meter on enemy projectile attacks is the more traditional version of this trope, dubbed Running Man or Superman, depending on whether you do it whilst airborne.
    • Nero's (from 4) Table Hopper move also counts, it moves fast enough to leave a streak/after-image and is also fast enough to pass through electricity and enemy attacks.
  • In Tales of Vesperia, Yuri has an attack called "Ghost Wolf" that allows him to move lightning fast for a strike at his opponent. His ultimate attack takes this trope to ridiculous levels.
    • Shing Meteoryte's in Tales of Hearts takes it up to more ridiculous levels. By the end of the arte, he's leaving afterimages. That, or appearing for a slash before he's actually disappeared from the previous one.
    • Keroro's F.K.S. in Keroro RPG appears to be a fairly blatant homage to Shing's Shououjineizan.
    • In Tales of Xillia, if you're playing as Jude and dodge an enemy's attack by backstepping, you'll flash step behind them.
  • Played straight in Diablo II: Lord of Destruction, with the Assassin's Dragon Flight, which teleports to a target and kicks it. The Paladin's Charge attack is close, allowing a means to dance from place to place at (nearly) untrackable speed, even leaving the trail of afterimages. There's also an armor which allows any class to use the Sorceresses' teleport, which while not technically a flash step, does end up looking quite the same in duels...
  • Castlevania
    • Castlevania: Symphony of the Night's Alucard Sword has a special attack that allows Alucard to teleport across the screen, turn around, slash twice, and return, all in about a second or less. There's also atleast one katana that allows similar attacks.
    • Certain knives in Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow do the same thing, allowing Soma to open doors backwards by triggering buttons on the other side of them.
  • In League of Legends, Katarina has a flash step ability that is actually called 'Shunpo', and other champions like Talon and Warwick have similar abilities. However, some of these (like the summoner spell Flash, or Ezreal's Arcane Shift) are magical teleportation rather than just fast movement.
  • The Naruto tie-in games emphasize this more than the original show. In at least one (Clash Of Ninja 3) it's a standard move, putting you right behind your opponent so you can get in a surprise counterattack. This tends to turn into No, I Am Behind You.
  • Ibuki from the Street Fighter series has a minor version (mostly cosmetic, and ignored by players). Even so, it was kept in her SF4 transition to 3D.
    • Juni from Street Fighter Alpha 3 could do this as well.
  • Predictably the ninja from Sengoku Basara, particularly Kotaro, are capable of doing this. Mitsunari, however, takes it to the next level, possessing ridiculous speed and being able to take down small armies in a couple of seconds while all the player sees is him disappearing and reappearing. Gameplay-wise, he's very similar to Vergil of Devil May Cry 3 and he even has the ability to warp to his enemies after attacks.
  • The Bonus Boss of Bayonetta, Father Rodin, starts doing similar movements to this when his health gets lower.
  • Ryu replaces his evasive rolls with these in Ninja Gaiden 2, though he also used them in the previous game during essence attacks (to the point of Nightcrawler-esque spamming in some cases).
  • In the Dead or Alive series, Kasumi and Hayate are the only characters that can perform these.
  • Jitterskull, the ghoul from Ghouls Vs Humans that looks like a giant floating skull, moves this way: he doesn't float, he keeps teleporting several feet forward. Which makes it really annoying when you're playing as him.
  • Chester Stoddart, a particularly annoying boss in Ys III: Oath in Felghana. The Flash Steps even came with an annoying sound effect too, and when down below half-health, he'd literally spam 2, 3, 4 of these in a row while throwing projectiles all over the screen...
    • Ernst in Ys: The Ark of Napishtim also does this to some extent.
  • Jude has nanomachines in his body that allow him to 'accelerate', or in other words, to move so fast everything else slows down in comparison.
    • Exactly how this works becomes a plot point later on A certain boss does something that looks exactly the same, but he's not actually moving any faster, he's stopping time.
  • In the Korean MMO Grand Chase, each character has their own movement speed. Any character that can run can take advantage of a glitch that the community called flash stepping. It involves dashing forward, jumping into the air, dashing in mid-air, dropping to the ground, and dashing again. It's pretty tricky to pull off in rapid succession, especially with characters that can double jump, but it can make all the difference in PVP.
  • The Magician in the House of the Dead series.
    • An interesting interpretation of the flash-step was made in the Typing of the Dead game (which was essentially a creative port for House of the Dead 2, where Magician appears as the penultimate boss). Normally, Typing of the Dead has you fight zombies by typing words that appear in text boxes, and if you make a typo you get the "ping" sound and you can't type any more characters until you correctly type what you miss. Magician isn't like that. If you make a typo at all, he whacks you!
  • The Nightcrawler Elites in FEAR: Perseus Mandate, who have the same Bullet Time reflexes as you, are seen to do this.
  • Leonhardt Raglen does this in Agarest Senki 2. He never does it in the first game however.
  • Geth stalkers in Mass Effect 1 can jump around incredibly quickly. To make things worse, they jam your sensors, so you can't reliably use that to track their movements.
    • Mass Effect 2: The Vanguard class has this ability, although it's more used for slamming into enemies than anything else. Essentially, a Vanguard knows how to turn themselves into a sub-light self-projecting mass relay.
    • In Mass Effect 3, asari husks called Banshees get this ability. They can also impale you for a one hit kill. It's exactly as bad as it sounds.
    • The asari characters in multiplayer use this as their dodge ability. It's faster to perform than other dodge moves and can move the character dramatically further. Unfortunately, it will also drain a small amount of your shields every time you do it (or delay your shield regeneration if your shields are already at zero).
    • The N7 Slayer and Fury (Vanguard and Adept respectively) classes from the Earth DLC do the asari one better and actually teleport as their dodge moves and heavy melee. Best part is, it can go through walls. Also the N7 Shadow ability "Shadow Strike" teleports the player behind an enemy to deliver a fatal sword strike.
  • Alice: Madness Returns allows Alice to zip from one spot to another several yards away by turning into an ethereal swarm of butterflies during transition, known as dodging in the game.
  • The Ura of Bastion specialize in speedy movement, using multiple quick steps to approach (or, in the case of the gunmen and archers, back away from) their targets.
    • Red in the upcoming game Transistor gets the ability 'Jaunt' which is this.
  • Some enemy mages of Dragon Age II have a teleport ability that has been explained as actually being a 'burst of speed through the ground'.
    • There were actually quite a number of abilities that did this in the two Dragon Age games, but arguably the coolest was a rogue ability in Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening that allowed the rogue to target an area, then teleport behind every enemy in the area to deliver a Back Stab before returning to their starting location.
  • In Dead Space the Twitcher variant of Necromorph does this. It's explained that this is because they're Space Marines who have been infested by the virus, anbd their special combat stasis modules are malfunctioning.
  • Assassins in Aion get two of these abilities. The first is a dash to any target within 25 meters, followed by an attack, which is relatively weak but allows a stealthed assassin to seemingly come out of nowhere to initiate or join a battle. The other ability is a true teleportation right behind the target, attacking for a mild backstab that can also stun. The second one is a Stigma ability, meaning it costs money and a slot in which you could equip a different ability.
  • Heroes of Newerth has a couple of heroes that do some variation of this. Magebane has Flash, which instantly teleports him to the target location. Chronos's Time Leap speeds up time for himself as he runs to the target location in an instant. Wretched Hag has Flash of Darkness which works the same as Magebane's Flash. Swiftblade's ultimate ability allows him to perform several attacks in rapid succession with such speed that it looks like he's teleporting from one target to another. Any hero can acquire a Portal Key which allows them to instantly teleport over a limited distance.
  • Guild Wars introduced the "shadow step" gameplay mechanic with the Assassin class. Several skills and stances allow the user to immediately teleport to an enemy or ally, either on command or after a trigger.
    • It's also one of the main tricks of the Thief class in the sequel.
  • Bang Shishigami can do this as part of his Drive's special property (hit A, B, or C during the invincibility frame) or as part of one of his throws.
  • InThe Beast Legion Ginta teaches Xeus to master the Flash step, refereed to as the lightning sprint, in Issue 05.
  • In The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, the Whirlwind Sprint shout lets you do this. The Vampire Lords also have this ability, by turning into a cloud of bats.
  • Asura's Wrath
    • Several characters can do this, but Yasha is the the most proficient.
    • Imperial Assassins in Disciples 2 attack by disappearing, appearing behind the target, striking, disappearing, and then re-appearing in the original location. All in the space of 2 seconds. It's no wonder why they're more effective than archers.
  • In Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, leveling up in sorcery causes your dodge roll to become this instead.
  • In Batman: Arkham City, Nightwing's animations have the quirk of doing this.
  • Zed from Lollipop Chainsaw uses this to dodge your attacks.
  • Various enemies in Spiral Knights employ this for various reasons. Gremlins and devilites will use it to dodge your attacks. Gremlins will also use it to get close to you between attacks. Wolvers will use this to get close to you in tier 2 (upgrading to flash-digging in tier 3). Oilers will also use this very frequently to get up close and spread their fire on to you, while their much larger cousins, the giant lichen colonies, enjoy comboing this maneuver with one of their various spike attacks. You get one of your own as the second attack of the rocket hammer's combo, however.
  • Hexen: The freaky faceless floating wizards known as Dark Bishops have an ability to go transparent and move very quickly in a straight line — as the manual puts it, they "phase in and out of existence as they travel from place to place." Since they're ranged attackers, they don't use it to attack as such.
  • In Prince of Persia: Warrior Within, the Dahaka has three types of movement; striding forward slowly and impressively, jumping enormous distances, or using this to cross small distances like the countless spike pits or narrow crevices. Basically, it's a way of letting it move quickly when it doesn't have room to leap without breaking the ominousness by actually running.
  • Dishonored has "Blink" as the first ability given to Corvo by The Outsider. It's primary use is to help the player traverse the stages with relative ease. While is appears to be a teleport at first glance, you will impact any objects in your path when blinking. The Whalers (Assassins) have a similar ability, but with longer range.
  • In BlazBlue, Hazama has a Distortion Drive called Serpent's Infernal Rapture in which Hazama performs a very quick Flash Step and performs a very nasty uppercut with his foot. Arguably, Bang Shishigami has Flash Stepping as a basic move after he performs Fu Rin Ka Zan.
  • Kurugaya from Little Busters!. She mainly uses it to screw with people, and you can occasionally see her flash-stepping to catch a ball rather than diving for it like the others during batting practice.
  • A large number of robots in Custom Robo Arena have stealth-dash abilities that let them pull something functionally identical to this. It is really inconvenient when a Burning Beast that was in front of you suddenly appears to your side and opens fire.
  • In Touhou Project, many of Youmu's spell cards invoke this; most notable is Hell Realm Sword "200 Yojana In 1 Slash".
    • Also, Byakuren's dash in Hopeless Masquerade which teleports her forwards a short distance. This comes from her superhuman speed as a specialist in Magic Enhancement.
  • It's rumoured that this is how Ghirahim dodges projectile attacks from you.
  • In Fallout 3, Feral Ghoul Reavers have an infamous glitch that sometimes causes them to flash-spaz, during which most shots pass through them without causing damage.
  • Star Trek Online: Romulan warbirds' warp shadow and singularity jump powers. The one teleports the player a short distance and leaves illusory copies of the ship behind, while the other teleports the player a short distance leaves a short-lived gravity well behind. Elachi warships are also fond of short-range teleportation, which can make them rather annoying opponents.
  • In Syndicate (2012) Aspari Agent Tatsuo does this to Teleport Spam levels, moving between places so fast you can't see him move even with the Super Reflexes granted by DART Overlay.
  • The protagonist in Teslagrad acquires boots that allow him to do this fairly early on.

    Web Animation 
  • The Leet World's Ahmad combines this technique with a shotgun when he boosts his speed using HAX.
  • Bunnykill 4's Snowball, when he goes into "White Avenger" mode during the final battle with Flint, demonstrates the ability to do this.
  • The later battles of Super Mario Bros. Z feature a lot of this, but it's mostly Shadow and Mecha Sonic who pull it off.
  • In Dead Fantasy, Hayate appears to be teleporting and using forcefields to attack Tifa. In reality, he is actually just moving that fast - observing the video frame-by-frame will show his movements and blows were all animated.
    • In episode 2, Rikku pulls off a version of this, although nowhere near as fast as Hayate, when Tifa casts Hastega on Team Final Fantasy. She uses her enhanced speed to kick Ayame's ass up and down the tower.
  • All of the members of team RWBY have demonstrated this skill except Yang at one time or another, although only Blake uses it routinely in combat. Although Ruby is noted by another character specifically for having speed as her special ability, she's only used Flash Step for Stealth Hi/Bye.

    Web Comics 
  • MAG ISA — standard fare in this comic.
  • Gilgamesh Wulfenbach in Girl Genius seems capable of it, using it to taunt less threatening opponents (and in one case, leaving an empty coat in the hand of a Mecha-Mook that tried to grab him.
    • The Knights of Jove also practice this, utilizing a distraction tactic so they can sneak in, swap one thing for another, then go back to their original position with the item (or person!) in tow.
  • Homestuck: Dave's brother is a master of this technique, which he uses to move the ventriloquist dummy Lil' Cal around and screw with his brother's head. He can also take it a few steps further and make it look like you're having your ass kicked by a puppet.
    • Dave himself, likely due to being trained by his brother, can also make use of this, though nowhere near as effectively as his brother. As a baby. Later in Sburb, he effectively combines it with his time powers to form his fighting style.
    • Post-flipout, Gamzee seems to have picked up the skill, to the point that he can swap very different stuffed dolls out of Terezi's grasp and it takes her a second to notice.
      • This may be somehow inherent to Lil Cal.
    • Given that Dirk Strider is the young Bro of the scratched Earth, he's presumably just as skilled at it, if not more because of a harsh, post-apocalyptic upbringing.
  • Psycho Mantis had done this in this The Last Days of FOXHOUND strip.
  • In Errant Story, this is the Ensigerum's standard MO. They use time magic in conjunction with Training from Hell to pull it off.
  • The I-Jin of Reginald Jeeves can do this in And Shine Heaven Now.
  • Magick Chicks: This is simply one (among many) of Faith's abilities and she's so good at it that her opponents have lost sight of her, even when they're looking right AT her!
  • Lord Aterra in True Villains is able to do this, likely because he is just dang powerful.
    • After Sebastian gets his aura fixed he is able to do this in the fight against the Paladin.
  • The Dreadful: Jeanne Noelle is capable of this through ordinary movement because she's just that fast.
  • In Gunnerkrigg Court, Parley develops the etheric ability of exportation (aided and abetted by her boyfriend, who can distort probability). Several chapters later, when Parley is sparring with Robot, she specifically tells Robot to not hold back. Robot curb-stomps her. This leads to Parley having her own little Eureka Moment, where she develops a sword fighting style that incorporates teleportation into it. Specifically, she uses a longsword, which is a slower and heavier weapon, teleports into a very close, and can essentially slash and barge from functionally every close-quarter position. This leads to Parley curb-stomping Robot.
  • Sluggy Freelance: The Satanic kittens in "KITTEN" are usually never seen moving, instead tearing a human into pieces in a gory flash and appearing or returning to sit there peacefully before you can blink. "mew."

    Web Original 
  • In the Whateley Universe, there are teleporters who can do this, but the example that the writers have shown is Phase, who has density-changing powers. She does the flash step to some bullies by going intangible and running right through one of them, then going to her maximum density and hitting him. (She's taking it easy on the guy, too.)
  • Linkara could do this in Kickassia.
    [while talking to Chris Larios] For example, I'm not even in front of you. [appears behind Chris]
  • Shadowhunter Peril has Umbra Darkholme, who, in his fight with Azazel, used would Flash Step to try and take the shifter down. Unfortunately for him, Azazel shifted into Umbra and copied his powers, so they were BOTH trying to Flash Step each other into submission and it ended up going nowhere until Azazel stopped moving tried to absorb Umbra. Umbra flicked him off and proceeded to vaporize him.
  • This is one theory as to how the Slender Man gets around in lieu of Off Screen Teleportation.
    • Entry #54 of Marble Hornets shows his leg for a split second as the lights go out, implying that he was rushing into the room as the darkness hit.
    • When Noah was attacked in his house, Slender Man was seen rushing down a hallway at an alarming rate of speed, yet not moving his legs as he went.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Batman / Superman crossover episode Knight Time, Superman uses these to emulate (and in some cases outdo) Batman's trademark disappearances.
    Mad Hatter: He's not human!
  • Justice League Unlimited
    • Superman does this while fighting Darkseid, just after he gives the eponymous "World of Cardboard" Speech.
    • In another episode, Captain Atom angrily charges at Superman, who flash steps away, causing Atom to run face-first into a wall.
    • The Flash does it all the time, although he gets hit far more than someone moving as fast as he does should. Like tripping over marbles the Joker threw out in front of him. Notably, he defeats Luthor-Brainiac in a similar manner, by running around the world and punching him as he passes by.
  • Superman again in Superman vs. the Elite when showing Manchester Black exactly what happens if he decides to go down the lethal takedown route.
  • Wolverine faced up against the Silver Samurai, whose mutant power was short ranged Flash Steping in an episode of the X-Men animated cartoon. The guy not only left a significant pause beneath flash appearance and attack, he was also highly uninventive with where he would position himself and the time during which he would blink out was quite long (even after you account for the fact that the show was treating Talking Is a Free Action).
  • From The Incredibles, Dash has the superpower of speed and uses it to snatch super suits from his mom.
    • He also put a tack on his teachers chair while sitting in his seat across the room. The real kicker is that the teacher filmed the prank to prove it was happening-and Dash was so fast it didn't even show him moving. His father was impressed while his mother was definitely not.
      • There was actually an extremely faint blur of motion in 1 frame. Assuming standard NTSC recording of 30fps, and guesstimating the classroom as 15m across (it looked quite large), Dash ran 30m in 1/30s, which would be a speed of 900m/s, or roughly 2000mph. No wonder nobody saw him.
  • Superboy did this in one episode of the classic animated series to casually defeat a guy attacking him with a magic sword.
  • Young Justice:
    • In the episode "Drop Zone", Kid Flash snatches Bane's detonator so fast, Bane doesn't realize it's gone until he tries to press it. Kid Flash needed a running start to do it, though.
    • In the episode "Bloodlines, the Flash and Impulse dodge Neutron's attacks by simply moving to the side at super speed.
  • Prowl has this ability combined with incredible agility and balance as a result of his Ninja Training. In the early episodes of the show, Optimus Prime found it very annoying because of his tendency not to listen.
  • Korra's Enemy Without from The Legend of Korra, tenuously called "Evil Korra", moves like this exclusively. It's something no other bender in the entire series has been able to do.

    Real Life 
  • Bruce Lee could supposedly move so fast that special high-speed cameras were required to film some of his moves. One of his favorite party tricks was to have someone stand a few steps away from him holding a coin, and to have them close their hands around the coin before Lee could take it. When they tried to, he'd almost instantaneously jump forward and replace the coin with something else. Worth noting that unlike most fictional portrayals, Bruce Lee's training regimen was as much about strength as speed or agility and as a result, he was fantastically physically fit even by martial arts standards.
    Chuck Norris: Bruce Lee, pound for pound, might well have been the strongest man in the world, and was certainly one of the quickest.
  • While there are no known examples of real-world teleportation, a number of martial arts teach skills which make it appear as if the opponent has suddenly appeared behind them.
    • Ba Gua uses intricate footwork to give the impression that the practitioner is closer or farther than he actually is.
    • Many schools of Japanese swordsmanship attack when the opponent is beginning to inhale and his attention wavers.
    • Some Silat practitioners make contact with the opponent and rely on a momentary impression of their position to move behind.
    • Others use sophisticated understanding of distance, timing and changes of level to cause the opponent to lose track of them for a moment during which they move behind.
    • Lunge in fencing. Deep lunge particularly, allows to close 5 meters distance in a blink of an eye.
    • Grab & Strike technique in many martial arts can produce similar impression: Half-step or simple stance change gets one of the combatants in range for a grab (By the collar, shoulder, neck, head, hand or anything else), while a jolt brings him into range for a punch (MCMAP, Krav Maga), elbow strike (Thai Boxing, Krav Maga) or a throw (BBJ, SAMBO or Judo, and again, Krav Maga), never giving an opponent a chance to do any sort of counter.
  • Many small rodents, such as rats and squirrels can dash a short distance and come to a complete stop within seconds.
  • Flies, spiders, and other creepy crawlies can easily move to another spot in the time it takes to blink.
    • Tiger beetles deserve special mention. The fastest species can speed across the ground at about 9km/h, or about 5.6 mph. This may not sound like much, but if you compared relative body length to a human? It travels 22 times faster than the fastest human sprinter. Putting it another way; if that human could move as fast as a tiger beetle, it would run at a top speed of 480 miles per hour. A Bugatti Veyron's top speed is a little over half that.
  • So can hummingbirds.
  • And certain fish, especially smaller ones.
  • When filming fight scenes, directors often had to remind Wesley Snipes to slow down enough for the cameras to process his moves.
  • This story from NotAlwaysLearning.com.


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