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[[quoteright:350:[[Film/{{Avatar}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Avatar_copter_8296.jpg]]]]

You're in an unspecified future, and you need an aircraft capable of short or vertical takeoffs. Helicopters are ''so'' 20th century: they can't do all that fancy supercruising and barrel rolls that jets can do and they (probably) can't survive being dropped from orbit because well, hey, you might just need to be dropped from orbit. So you don't want a helicopter, but you also don't want anything as conventional looking as a VTOL airplane, either.

What you need is a futurecopter. These machines come in a variety of sizes, ranging from dinky sized models about the size of an RC toy, a one-man unit (with optional handholds on the sides for external passengers), through unmanned autonomous versions (best steer well clear of these) the size of a Hummer, right up to beasts the size of a civil cruiser capable of transporting dozens of fully armed troops complete with an airlifted AwesomePersonnelCarrier or a CoolTank. Size and operation aside, what they almost invariably have is ducted fans or tilting jet engines (one on each side of the fuselage, and usually independently tiltable) for lift and thrust, twin tail fins, and stubby, vestigial wings with an assortment of guns, missiles and bombs, if there were any wings at all. And, in compliance to the all-powerful RuleOfCool, you can expect the aircraft to be as fast as a jet, as agile as a helicopter and as armed as a fighter-bomber. The pilot, if present, is invariably right up front in what looks like a conventional helicopter gunship cockpit.

The probable TropeMaker, the [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bell_X-22 Bell X-22]], was a purely experimental aircraft not intended for mass production. More are being developed, however, with [[http://mashable.com/2017/10/05/airbus-cityairbus-electric-flying-taxi-2018/?utm_cid=mash-com-Tw-tech-link%23sd613jsnjlqd#JpvXohn3Cqqn a]] [[http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4291672/Airbus-capsule-taxi-picked-drone-fly.html number]] [[http://www.impactlab.net/2016/05/09/taxi-drones-take-flight of them]] approaching production status, which could potentially make this TruthInTelevision in the near future. One might also, with some imagination, consider existing tilt-rotor aircraft like the V-22 Osprey to be a very primitive version of this idea, although its rotors/propellers are firmly locked together and very much not ducted, and it has big, conventional wings. Some of the contenders for the [[UsefulNotes/YanksWithTanks US Army's]] Future Vertical Lift program have taken [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piasecki_X-49 tentative]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bell_V-280_Valor steps]] [[http://www.shephardmedia.com/news/rotorhub/quada2012-avx-team-moves-towards-flight-tests/ toward]] the idea.

For the portable version, see HelicopterPack.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* [[{{Franchise/Pokemon}} Giovanni]] used one to pick [[Anime/PokemonTheFirstMovie Mewtwo]] up from the future New Island.
* The JSSDF [=VTOLs=] from ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' have tilting jet engines.
* Vehicles like this are seen in the first episode of ''Anime/BubblegumCrisis''
* ''Franchise/GhostInTheShell'' has Tiltrotors, a dual-engine plane whose wings rotate upward 90 degrees in order to take off in standard [=VTOL=] style.
** In ''Anime/GhostInTheShellStandAloneComplex'', these are the standard method of transportation in service for Section Nine, as well as the requisite [[BlackHelicopter black choppers]]. Some civilian airports use them as well, though standard jet-engine airliners exist too.
*** They have standard single-rotor helicopters as well. Section 9 has to steal one from the Japan Ground Self Defense Force in order to resolve a conflict in the 2nd season. the JSDF also employs ''Jigabachi''-class attack helicopters, which are designed after hornets. When getting ready to attack, the helicopter rears back and aims the minigun on its abdomen towards its target. The wasp-fashioned attack helicopters make for an interesting [[AnimalMotifs animal motif]], considering that the tanks in this setting are all of the SpiderTank variety, fitting in with one standard mission of attack choppers: Tank busting.
** ''[[Anime/GhostInTheShell Innocence]]'' throws in a bird theme by featuring a tiltrotor whose wings extend outward upon takeoff, and the wings themselves are made up of numerous individual lift flaps. One scene shows the raven-like tiltrotor landing on top of a rooftop, and the individual flaps of the wings look like feathers.

[[folder:Comic books]]
* The Zorglumobile from ''ComicBook/SpirouAndFantasio'' looks like a flying saucer (especially in profile), but is actually a quad ducted-fan machine.

* The 1930's sci-fi musical ''Film/JustImagine'', everyone has a personal airplane with vertical rotor ducts in the wings enabling them to hover while they talk to other drivers or burst into song. Interestingly, it predates the Trope Maker (or indeed, most other examples of the trope) by a good three decades.
* The RDA in ''Film/{{Avatar}}'' makes use of several ducted-fan aircraft: the Scorpion, a classic assault helicopter, the Samson, used for personnel transport and heavy lifting, and the truly ''massive'', four-rotored Dragon Gunship.
* The Hunter-Killer craft from ''Film/TheTerminator'' and ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'' are of the ducted-fan VTOL type. ''Film/Terminator3RiseOfTheMachines'' features small, autonomous prototypes which pursue the heroes.
* In ''Film/{{Aliens}}'', the Colonial Marines' dropship is a fully spaceworthy version of the design.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheIncredibles'' features one flown by the {{mook}}s guarding the SupervillainLair.
* Creator/ArnoldSchwarzenegger plays a future helicopter pilot in ''Film/The6thDay''. Naturally, the copters he flies are Futurecopters, with the ability to switch to a high speed jet mode and be flown remotely using a Power Glove-like arrangement. They must be some kind of AwesomeButImpractical (or at least CoolButInefficient) novelty design in-universe however, because the ''much'' wealthier BigBad's helicopter is a much more pedestrian design that wouldn't stand out much in the present day.
* ''Film/AIArtificialIntelligence'': the amphibicopter notable not only for IfItSwimsItFlies but for lacking rotors while still serving as a helicopter.
* In ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'', the Batman is equipped with a Futurecopter known as... The Bat. [[CallBack It's available in black.]]
* ''Film/TeamAmericaWorldPolice'' have their own Futurecopter that deploys from the mouth of Abraham Lincoln on Mt. Rushmore.
* The federal police copters in ''Film/TotalRecall2012''.
* ''Film/{{Oblivion 2013}}'' : The V/TOL craft that Jack flies around, the "[[http://radicalpublishing.com/2013/04/oblivion-and-tom-cruise-a-closer-look-at-the-bubble-ship-design/ Bubble Ship]]". With guns (which can fire in any direction, even straight backwards), autopilot (and remote piloting), ejecting cockpit, voice-recognition lock, remotely-accessible surveillance cameras, storage space for a CoolBike, [[spoiler: and the capacity to fly up to space]].
* ''Film/{{Sleeper}}'' - in 2173 we'll have helicopter backpacks...but they won't work very well.
* Orbit-capable versions of these machines seem common on Earth in ''Film/{{Elysium}}'', and the main antagonist, Kruger, spends a fair proportion of the movie getting about in a particularly heavily-armed one. Oddly, however, on Elysium itself, more conventional rotorcraft seem to be preferred (probably to avoid polluting the air?).
* The Vulture suit from ''Film/SpiderManHomecoming'' has VTOL rotors in addition to wings.

* Several different versions (from supersonic gunships to massive transports) are seen in ''Literature/TheWarAgainstTheChtorr'' series, often piloted by the protagonist's LoveInterest, ColonelBadass Lizard Tirelli.
* The ''Literature/FormicWars'' novels feature a mix between this and a HoverTank. The new vehicles developed by [[MegaCorp Jukes, Ltd.]], use ArtificialGravity as their primary means of propulsion (by projecting a "gravity lens" above the craft, thus keeping it aloft). However, as backup, they include deployable rotors. Two of these are developed for and purchased by the New Zealand SAS. A certain Lieutenant [[FutureBadass Mazer Rackham]] pilots one of them. He mentions that the rotors are useless for the craft's primary purpose -- extraction under fire. The craft is supposed to fly in low, almost grazing treetops, in order to minimize its radar signature, extend an arm, grab the ground vehicle in need of extraction, fly away, and transfer the crew and/or passengers aboard, all without getting shot down. However, given how low the craft is flying, the rotors would simply not have enough time to deploy in case of "gravity lens" failure. [[spoiler:This is proven true during the [[InsectoidAliens Formic]] invasion, resulting in Mazer being the only survivor of the crew]].
* ''Literature/KnownSpace'' stories frequently mention similar craft as "cars", but their descriptions tend to be sketchy. ''Literature/AGiftFromEarth'' mentions that Plateau cars have four fans and only the upper caste is allowed to drive cars. To add some confusion, stories set later (e.g ''Literature/{{Ringworld}}'') use the word "car" for anti-gravity craft.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/BigBadBeetleborgs''[='s=] [[http://images.google.com/images?q=Red%20Striker%20AV&oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:fr:official&client=firefox-a&um=1&ie=UTF-8&source=og&sa=N&hl=xx-pirate&tab=wi ladybug aircraft]] also fit the trope.
* ''Franchise/SuperSentai'' has had a few, starting with ''Series/RescueSentaiGoGoFive'''s Green Hover, as well as the Pat-Gyrer from ''Series/TokusouSentaiDekaranger'' (whose cowlings form a set of HumongousMecha-scale handcuffs [[CombiningMecha when it combines into Dekaranger Robo]]) and the [=GouGou=] Gyro in ''Series/GoGoSentaiBoukenger''.
* The ornithopters in the 2000s miniseries adaptation of ''Series/{{Dune}}'' and [[Series/ChildrenOfDune its sequel]] appear to be this. While their wings may move up and down a little to adjust pitch, they don't flap like the 'thopters in the book and are more bug-like than bird-like in appearance. The miniseries' carryalls are of the "Future Copter" variety as well, complete with prominent ducted fans mounted on four extrusions from the hull of the craft.
* ''Series/SpaceAboveAndBeyond'' had the Inter Solar System Cargo Vessel (ISSCV), a drop ship which functioned on the show as a combination between a shuttle and a helicopter, using tilting thrusters on the wings to switch between VTOL and horizontal flight. The ISSCV was also modular, being able to switch out between different setups specialized for cargo, passengers, gunships, etc. Also, the modules could be attached or detached on the fly, allowing a ISSCV to drop off a module filled with cargo or personnel and take off to points elsewhere, while the Marines could use the module as a command post or bunker.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* ''TabletopGame/Warhammer40000'':
** The Blight Drone and the larger Foetid Bloat-Drone [[HauntedTechnology Daemon Engines]] that often accompany the forces of the Chaos God [[{{Plaguemaster}} Nurgle]] are hideous amalgams of diseased flesh and rusted metal held aloft by multiple engine fans that allow them to hover across the battlefield in imitation of the bloated flies that are the sacred animal of the Plague God.
** The Stormtalon Gunships operated by the [[SuperSoldier Adeptus Astartes]] are powered by a pair of vectored engines on either side of the hull that allow the aircraft to easily switch between high-speed flight and stable hover modes so that it can fulfil a number of different combat roles from interceptor to ground attack and direct infantry support.
** In the 2nd Edition of the ''Epic'' version of the game system, the Iron Eagle Attack Gyrocopter is the primary aircraft used by the [[OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame Squat]] Engineers Guild. The Iron Eagle has a high-powered turbofan mounted on each side of its hull which, when combined with the aircraft’s gravitic thrusters, gives the flying machine phenomenal manoeuvrability.

* Generic RPG supplement ''Booty and the Beasts''. The Whirly Chair is exactly what it says: a chair with overhead helicopter rotors. It has a maximum speed of 30 m.p.h. and a range of 300 miles on a tank of alcohol. It seats one person and has a small cargo area, enough for a small overnight bag or suitcase.
* ''Tabletopgame/BattleTech'' features several futuristic VTOL vehicles, such as the [[http://www.sarna.net/wiki/Aeron Aeron]] and [[http://www.sarna.net/wiki/Yasha Yasha]]. The massive Anhur and Karnov transport [=VTOLs=] both use tiltrotor engines like those on the V-22 Osprey.

* ''Mega Force'' (Creator/{{Kenner}} Toys)
* Many newer (post-1990) LEGO sets with a futuristic theme.
* Although he didn't turn into one in the movie (rather, he turned into ''anything he wanted to''), Laserbeak from ''Film/TransformersDarkOfTheMoon'' turned into one of these in the toyline.
* ''Franchise/GIJoe'' featured small, one-person VTOL craft as early as 1984, with the Joes' [[http://www.yojoe.com/vehicles/84/skyhawk/ Skyhawk]] and Cobra [[http://www.yojoe.com/vehicles/85/flightpod/ Flight Pod]], even as most of the vehicles at the time were at least strongly influenced by real-life versions. The Skyhawk itself looks like a sawed-off helicopter cockpit strapped to some turbines and landing skids. As the toyline began using more experimental or futuristic designs, we got vehicles such as the G.I. Joe [[http://www.yojoe.com/vehicles/88/skystorm/ Skystorm]] (a jet helicopter whose X-rotors can convert to a fixed-wing mode) and Iron Grenadiers [[http://www.yojoe.com/vehicles/88/agp/ A.G.P.]] ("anti-gravity pod", though operating on the same principles as the Skyhawk). Note that the [[http://www.yojoe.com/vehicles/86/havoc/ H.A.V.O.C.'s recon sled]] and Battleforce 2000's [[http://www.yojoe.com/vehicles/87/vindicator/ Vindicator]] also use ducted fans to generate lift, but both are designated as hovercraft, even if the Vindicator has a helicopter-style tailfin.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''Franchise/{{Halo}}'':
** The Pelican {{dropship}} is a pretty close cousin of the dropship from ''Film/{{Aliens}}'', and is similarly orbital-drop capable.
** ''{{VideoGame/Halo 3}}'' introduced a one-man aircraft called [[http://halo.bungie.org/bwu/images/hornet.jpg Hornets]], which have external handles allowing other players to hitch a ride.
** ''VideoGame/HaloWars'' introduces the Sparrowhawk, which is armed with two autocannons and a Spartan Laser, and the Vulture, a heavy gunship suspended by ducted fans that's armed with four autocannons and an insane amount of missiles. ''VideoGame/HaloWars2'' introduces the Condor Gunship, an improvised variant of the Condor transport equipped with a mini-Magnetic Accelerator Cannon and multiple pulse laser turrets.
** In ''VideoGame/HaloReach'', the Hornet is replaced by the Falcon, extremely similar to the V-22 Osprey but smaller, with [=LMGs=] on the open sides and jet engines.
** ''VideoGame/Halo5Guardians'' multiplayer has the Wasp, a light gunship with twin autocannons and missile launchers, plus recharging energy shields.
* The GDI Orca and its variants from the ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerTiberianSeries'' are ducted-rotor/jet-engine [=VTOLs=]. Some variants go as far as being a DropShip.
** Nod counterparts eventually surfaced in the second half of the entire series, and somehow turned the tables on GDI in air superiority.
* ''VideoGame/Battlefield2142'' has two futurecopters from two opposing sides of the conflict, the Talon for the EU and the Doragon for the PAC.
* ''VideoGame/StarcraftII''
** Banshee tactical strike aircraft uses ducted fans and, for some reason, a tail rotor.
** Medivac and Dropship use twin jet engines.
* One of the trailers for the ''VideoGame/BeyondGoodAndEvil'' sequel feature a craft like this.
* The Chrysalis Pod in VideoGame/MetalGearSolidPeaceWalker is an automated drone example of this.
* Combine gunships from ''VideoGame/HalfLife2'' have a single ducted fan.
* Enclave Vertibirds in the ''VideoGame/{{Fallout}}'' series are clearly inspired by the V-22 Osprey.
* The ducted fan "hovercopter" in ''VideoGame/PerfectDark'', and Killian's VTOL tilt-jet troop transport/gunship in ''Perfect Dark Zero''.
* ''VideoGame/RedFaction II'' has ducted fan gunships.
* ''VideoGame/SoldierOfFortune II'' has two boss fights with an Osprey {{expy}} gunship, although it is considerably smaller and the rotors can tilt independently unlike the real Osprey. A legitimate helicopter makes an appearance in a couple earlier missions.
* ''VideoGame/GPolice'' and its sequel feature [=VTOLs=] that eschew the idea of rotors altogether - they are powered by two jets on the sides. Why they still have the classic helicopter shape - lopsided tail included - is never explained.
* ''VideoGame/CallOfDuty: Black Ops 2'' has two very different futurecopters. The impressive-sounding MQ-27 Dragonfire is actually a small RC quadrotor with a light machine gun on board. The more boringly-named VTOL Warship, by contrast, is a huge, manned, heavily armed vehicle of comparable size to the real-world V-22 Osprey.
* ''[[Videogame/MechWarrior MechWarrior Living Legends]]'' has two DummiedOut transport [=VTOLs=], the Karnov and Anhur, both of which are massive tiltrotor craft that were originally planned to carry battlearmor and small vehicles - problems with the vehicles bouncing around in the back, [[TeleFrag crushing all the other riders then exploding the craft]], along with a aircraft physics change caused both to be put on the development backburner.
* Almost all aircraft in ''Videogame/PlanetSide 2'' operate using gimballed jet engines, which function like the tiltrotors on an Osprey. The Galaxy transport, for example, gets a pair of huge engines on its front wings and a smaller pair on its rear wings, all of which can rotate to allow the enormous aircraft to hover in place or fly. The only ones that don't use external rotating engines are the Reaver (in-line vectored engines) and the Scythe (flies using reverse-engineered [[PreCursors Vanu technology]])

[[folder: Web comics]]
* ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'' has a twin ducted-fan helicopiter... [[http://www.girlgeniusonline.com/comic.php?date=20121203 A pedal-powered one.]]

[[folder: Western Animation]]
* Global Justice field tilt-fan VTOL craft when they appear in ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible'', and when Ron briefly becomes a multi-millionaire, he buys an aircraft for Kim that resembles an Osprey with jets instead of rotors.
* Cybertron-mode [[BigBad Megatron]] from ''WesternAnimation/TransformersAnimated'' turns into a Cybertronic VTOL fighter for a split-second in the show's pilot episode. When he is rebuilt in his Earth mode at the end of Season 1, he now turns into yes, a modern V-22 Osprey helicopter. Or, more accurately, an Osprey cross-bred with a Mi-24 "Hind" gunship.
* Thrust in ''Franchise/TransformersGeneration1'' transforms into a ducted fan VTOL jet.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfTheGalaxyRangers'' episode "Bronto Bear", the Black hole gang use a futuristic copter to rile up the title RentAZilla.
* They show up quite a bit in ''WesternAnimation/GeneratorRex'', usually being used by Providence.

[[folder: RealLife]]
* Apparently, [[http://www.gizmag.com/project-zero-electric-tilt-rotor-aircraft/26561/ this lightweight tiltrotor aircraft]] that wouldn't look out of place in any TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture movie, can fly on purely electric power. While far from production, the prototype already made successful demonstration flights.
* The Bell X-22, one of the first experimental VTOL designs, featured four large duct-ed rotating propellers for flight. Since the X-22 pre-dates most of the film and TV examples mentioned above, it may well be the TropeMaker. Oddly though the aircraft was just suppose to test VTOL flight characteristics, the military never expected to use the ducted fans on operational vehicles.
* The Bell Model 65, which was built before the X-22, was essentially a futurecopter of the "tilt-jet" variety, with two jet engines that could switch between vertical and horizontal positions.
* Although it looked more like a regular airplane than most examples of this trope, the [[TheGreatPoliticsMessUp West German]] VJ-101 probably also counts, since it had the same tilting-jet VTOL as many of the above fictional examples. Unlike the X-22 and the Bell Model 65, the VJ-101 was intended to actually enter service as a fighter, but it turned out to be AwesomeButImpractical.
* [[http://www.hover-bike.com/MA/ The hoverbike]] which is a manned quadcopter. Currently in development phase.
* With the various proposals for "drone taxi" services, often using scaled-up versions of quadcopter ducted-fan drones such as [[http://mashable.com/2017/10/05/airbus-cityairbus-electric-flying-taxi-2018/?utm_cid=mash-com-Tw-tech-link%23sd613jsnjlqd#JpvXohn3Cqqn this one]], this trope is likely to become Truth in Television very soon.