->'''"An old man dies. A young girl lives. A fair trade."''
-->-- '''John Hartigan''', ''ComicBook/SinCity''

Suicide is generally considered a bad thing. Even when the person doing it [[DrivenToSuicide feels he has no other choice]], it's still [[SuicideIsShameful deemed far from heroic.]] In contrast, {{Heroic Sacrifice}}s are almost always regarded as noble, and those who perform them are held in high regard. Despite the similarities, these two things rarely overlap.

But sometimes they do.

This trope is about situations where suicide becomes heroic. Say a character discovers that he is a PersonOfMassDestruction, a crucial part of an EvilPlan, or the BigBad's SoulJar. In such situations killing oneself may be the only way to save the day.

This is a specific sub-trope of HeroicSacrifice. The difference is that in most {{Heroic Sacrifice}}s dying is merely an unfortunate by-product of a heroic act. In a Heroic Suicide, '''dying is necessary''' to perform the heroic act. Or, to put it another way, a HeroicSacrifice engages in heroic activity even though it can get them killed. '''A Heroic Suicide engages in heroic activity KNOWING it will get them killed.'''

The clearest examples are when a character personally ''will become'' the threat that endangers others, and they have to kill themselves to prevent it. Any such situation ''definitely'' counts as a Heroic Suicide. Otherwise, it ''might'' count, but be careful.

A good rule of thumb is that in most Heroic Suicides, the character's death is both ''necessary'' and ''sufficient'' to accomplishing their immediate goal. That is to say, they can't accomplish their goal ''without'' dying, but ''how'' they die doesn't matter much. To elaborate:
* '''Necessity:''' Ask yourself if there's even a theoretical possibility that the character could accomplish their goal ''without'' dying. If there is, it's probably a regular HeroicSacrifice. For example, say you [[Literature/PeterPan drink poison intended for someone else]], [[Literature/ATaleOfTwoCities trade places with a man on death row]], or [[{{Film/Star Trek}} turn your spaceship into a guided missile]]. None of those qualify, because in each case your death is only a side-effect of what you are doing. The point is to prevent the other person from drinking the poison, buy time for the man to escape, or disable the enemy ship. You would still accomplish these goals even if you discovered you were miraculously immune to poison, received a last-minute pardon, or were beamed off your ship at the moment of impact. This trope only comes into play if the character ''has to'' die to accomplish their goal. Though [[BackFromTheDead that isn't to say their death will always be permanent]].
* '''Sufficiency:''' Ask yourself how important the ''circumstances'' are under which the person dies. Do they accomplish their goal just by dying, or does it matter what they were doing when they died? For example, say you get yourself killed defusing a bomb. In that situation, it's stopping the bomb that makes your actions heroic, not the dying. You couldn't achieve the same goal just by, say, shooting yourself in the head. On the other hand, say you ''[[PersonOfMassDestruction are]]'' [[PersonOfMassDestruction the bomb]]. In that case, it doesn't matter ''how'' you die, as long as you do it quickly. Shooting yourself in the head is fine. So is getting poisoned, stabbed, or decapitated.

Compare ThanatosGambit, MyDeathIsJustTheBeginning, {{Seppuku}}, and BetterToDieThanBeKilled. See also ICannotSelfTerminate, which can be a heroic suicide by proxy. Often overlaps with CyanidePill which could be considered a sub-trope (examples go there, not here).

'''Warning: This is a DeathTrope. Expect ''lots'' of unmarked spoilers.'''

If you're thinking of killing yourself, even for an allegedly "noble" reason such as relieving others of the burden of your existence, something horrible you've done in your past, a DarkSecret, ''anything,'' please keep in mind that this trope does not exist in almost anyone's case in RealLife (and if you have a guilty enough conscience that you're ''thinking'' about it, it ''most definitely doesn't apply to you.'') The ''really'' heroic thing to do is refuse to kill yourself and choose to live. '''[[UsefulNotes/SuicidePrevention We]]''' '''''[[UsefulNotes/SuicidePrevention insist]]''''' '''[[UsefulNotes/SuicidePrevention you get help and beg you not to commit suicide. Please, talk to somebody.]]'''



[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* In ''{{Manga/Bokurano}}'', [[spoiler:it turns out that resident GiantMecha Zearth drains the life force of whoever is currently piloting it. As such, the pilots (who are [[PoweredByAForsakenChild children]]) die whenever they're finished using it. But the kids can't ''[[YouAreAlreadyDead not]]'' pilot it, because if they don't, the invading GiantMecha (all of which are also piloted by children from alternate dimensions) will destroy their universe. With this in mind, Seki, Tanaka, Ushiro, Machi, and Kana(manga only) all join ''after'' the game has started and they ''know'' they'll die if they have to pilot]]. Yeah, it's that kind of series.
** In the manga, during Komo's battle, her opponent, touched by her performance, [[SuicideByCop allows Komo's father to kill him]] [[spoiler:to prevent a tie that would destroy both universes, and allow Komo's universe to survive]]
** In the manga, [[spoiler:Misumi Tanaka]], who is also a pilot who has yet to take [[spoiler:her]] turn, finds [[spoiler:herself]] taken hostage during [[spoiler:Kana's]] battle. After all but emptying [[spoiler:her]] sidearm in a futile attempt to free [[spoiler:herself]], [[spoiler:Misumi]] fires the last round into [[spoiler:her]] own head so that [[spoiler:Kana]] will not hesitate to defeat the enemy.
* In ''Anime/DragonBallZ'': Vegeta blows himself to smithereens in a TakingYouWithMe against the FromASingleCell-regenerating villain. Both as a way to atone for his actions, and because nothing less works. [[spoiler: It's ultimately for naught, as the characters and viewers both discover that regenerative power of the villain is more along the lines of 'From A Single ''Molecule'''.]]
* In ''Franchise/{{Naruto}}'':
** The plot of the series begins with the [[spoiler: Minato "Fourth Hokage" Namikaze]] sealing the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox into Naruto, sacrificing his life to do so. [[spoiler: We later learn that one of the seals he used specifically required his death in order to work.]]
** Minato's wife and partner Kushina allowed herself to be impaled with a giant claw to protect baby!Naruto and then help Minato as much as she could to make these seals.
** Rin Nohara. The [[TurtlePower Three-Tailed Beast]] had been sealed inside her by agents of Kirigakure, and intended for Rin to return to Konoha, where the beast would break out and rampage, destroying the village. Instead, when Kakashi tried to kill one of the Mist-nin pursuing them, Rin chose to save her village from this fate by putting herself in the way of his attack, which resulted in both she and the Sanbi (temporarily, in the Sanbi's case - Tailed Beasts cannot truly die, being living chakra, though they take some time to reform after their host dies with the beast still sealed in them) dying and thwarting Mist's plan. Cue Obito undergoing a FaceHeelTurn out of grief over her death, and the rest is history.
** Shisui Uchiha, in a roundabout way. He originally intended to use his mangekyou sharingan to prevent the Uchiha Clan's coup via genjutsu. However, Danzo stole one of his eyes, ruining his plan. With that no longer a viable option, Shisui gave his other eye to Itachi and committed suicide so Itachi could gain the mangekyou sharingan and prevent the coup himself.
* Kazuki from ''Manga/BusouRenkin'' decides he must kill himself before he becomes a full Victor-Type and tries to destroy the world, since one of his alternate options failed and it seems the other won't be ready in time. Thankfully he doesn't have to go through with it in the end.
* In ''Manga/RGVeda'', Ashura's EnemyWithin took control of the body to [[OmnicidalManiac destroy everything]] but to do that it needed to kill Yasha, Ashura's most important person. So in the last moment, [[ThePowerOfLove their bond of love give Ashura enough willpower]] to re-take control and kill himself, not only saving Yasha but their whole world.
* [[spoiler: Sulia Gaudeamus]] does this in the ''VideoGame/FatalFury'' motion picture, [[spoiler:stabbing herself in the chest to use her PsychicLink with her older brother and current BigBad, Laocorn, to the group's advantage so they can de-brainwash him.]]
* [[spoiler:Ryo Urawa (Greg in the [=DiC=] dub)]] of the '90s ''Anime/SailorMoon'' anime, forewarned by his precognitive visions that the Dark Kingdom is coming to extract the Yellow Rainbow Crystal from him and transform him into one of the Seven Great Youma, plans to die to keep the Dark Kingdom from obtaining the Yellow Crystal and unleashing the youma (which his visions show will also cause the death of Sailor Mercury, the girl he likes). When Ami finds out about his plan, she's very displeased, and ultimately manages to talk him out of his plan.
** Speaking of ''Sailor Moon'', this is how [[spoiler:Makoto/Sailor Jupiter and Minako/Sailor Venus]] did their HeroicSacrifice at the ending arc of the first season. [[spoiler:In Makoto's case, after the DD Girls captured her, she attacks them with her Supreme Thunder move, which she overcharges the attack to the point that it kills 2 of them instantly knowing that the overcharge will kill her. In Minako's case, she pushes Usagi/Sailor Moon out of the way from an attacking DD Girl that drags her below the surface, in which she kills said DD Girl (and herself) with a Crescent Beam at point blank range soon afterwards.]]
* Invoked [[spoiler: and then defied]] in ''LightNovel/{{Orphen}} Revenge''. [[spoiler: Licorice is a girl [[BarrierMaiden whose life and death can determine]] how a massive gambit from an EldritchAbomination will develop or not, and both her {{Anti Villain}}ous family and her TrueCompanions are fighting it out. She then takes a piece of a broken sword and says that since they're fighting for her, ''[[ImpromptuTracheotomy she will cut her own throat]] and keep them from fighting to the death because of her''. Right when she's about to kill herself, however, Cleao's magical pet Lucky uses his powers to vanish the weapon away and undo Licorice's desperate gambit.]]
* Basically, what [[spoiler: Hokuto Sumeragi]] did at the end of ''Manga/TokyoBabylon''. [[spoiler: Knowing that Seishirou would come to kill her twin brother Subaru, [[TwinSwitch she dressed up as him]] and went to face "Sei-chan", both to get killed in Subaru's place and, as she lay dying, execute a ThanatosGambit to try helping the two.]] [[spoiler: Subverted in that Seishirou was perfectly aware of what she wanted to do, but went along with it anyway ''and used this in his own ThanatosGambit''.]]
** Similarly, the TV series has [[spoiler: Hinoto]] invoking the trope [[spoiler: by commiting the female version of {{seppuku}}, to stop the machinations of a SuperpoweredEvilSide that has [[SplitPersonalityTakeover almost completely taken over her body]]. By [[TakingYouWithMe killing both sides of her]], Hinoto manages to both release [[BashBrothers Sotara and Kamui]] who have been petrified by her Dark Self, ''and'' stop said Dark Self from continuing to manipulate both sides of the conflict to her own benefit.]]
* Cruelly weaponized by BigBadDuumvirate Dino and Yau-Si in ''Manga/BananaFish''. Yau-Si hands Ash a pistol and says if he blows his brains out right there, they'll leave Eiji, [[YaoiGenre Ash's innocent young friend]], alone for the rest of his life. [[spoiler:Ash immediately takes the pistol, puts it to his head, and pulls the trigger. It's empty. He asks for a bullet.]]
* In ''Manga/SnowWhiteAndSevenDwarfs'', this appears to have been [[spoiler:Shirayuki's intention when she attempted to kill herself after having been recaptured, as the BigBad's plans would fail without her, the LivingMacguffin / ApocalypseMaiden / etc., around and she likely felt she was running out of options. She's stopped, however, and told not to give up on [[TheHero Takeru]], who could still pull through.]]
* In ''Manhwa/ShinAngyoOnshi'' Kye Wol Hyang was a victim of a vicious sadistic choice by resident BigBad [[PhysicalGod Aji Tae]], either she got to live as a zombie and serve him while he committed untold horrors, or she killed her beloved Munsu, and Aji Tae restored her to normal. She took a third option and killed herself in front of Munsu a second time, pulling Munsu out of the HeroicBSOD he was in, causing a massive failure in the curse that Munsu was suffering, making him invincible against Aji Tae, and ensuring that in the long run, the former would bring down the later.
* In ''Manga/FairyTail'', [[spoiler:[[AnIcePerson Invel]] uses his [[MindRape mag]][[PeoplePuppets ic]] to force Gray and Juvia to [[InvoluntaryBattleToTheDeath fight to the death]], with Grey being the obvious victor. Seeing no other way out, as Invel outright states the only way they'll be free is when one dies and they can't attack him, they simultaneously muster the last of their resistance to kill themselves, Juvia in order to spare Gray from living with the sin of killing her, and Gray in order to save Juvia's life. However, both of them survive: Gray because Juvia gave him an emergency blood transfusion before collapsing, and Juvia because her and Gray's guildmate Wendy managed to heal her in time]].
* In ''Literature/FromTheNewWorld'', a character tell the story of Izumi Kutegawa, a sweet and kind young girl [[spoiler: whose Cantus goes out of control and causes fatal mutations in everything around her. The village leaders give her a batch of pills, telling her they will cure her condition. However, she soon realizes they are actually poison - but takes them anyway, since she is too dangerous to remain alive. Shun ultimately faces the same fate, except he develops an immunity to poison and apparently kills himself using his Cantus]].

[[folder:Audio Plays]]
* In ''AudioPlay/BigFinishDoctorWho'', "[[Recap/BigFinishDoctorWhoSpecialTheLastAdventure The Sixth Doctor: The Last Adventure]]" anthology's last story, sees the Doctor facing off against [[EnemyWithout the Valeyard]] as he tries to pull off [[spoiler:an AssimilationPlot on every Time Lord that has ever existed, by using the Doctor's mind as a conduit to manipulate the Matrix]]. When the Doctor discovers the Valeyard's intentions, he arranges to send his past self a misdirecting message that leads him to get fatally injured. To add more to it, the Doctor was even in doubt whether or not he would able to regenerate his way out of that situation, but he went ahead and did it any way, as he knows that the Valeyard's plan is rendered void once [[spoiler:he is either dead or has regenerated into a new incarnation, as his unique mind will either cease to exist or become brand new, both meaning that the Valeyard can no longer use him as a conduit into the Matrix]]. Fortunately though, [[spoiler:[[ForegoneConclusion the Doctor does end up regenerating into his seventh incarnation]]]].

* John Hartigan from ''ComicBook/SinCity'' kills himself so that no one will hurt Nancy to get at him.
* In the ''ComicBook/IronMan'' storyline "Execute Program", a villain remotely hijacks several of Tony's Iron Man suits, causing them to go on a rampage all over the world. Tony takes down four of the five, but is unable to defeat the last one, which is about to crush Captain America. Because the suit is controlled through software that's plugged directly into Tony's brain (long story), he realizes that he can deactivate it by killing himself. Which he does, by using his suit's power source to give himself a massive electric shock (don't worry, [[OnlyMostlyDead he gets better]]).
* [[DownerEnding At the end of the 2011 run of]] ''ComicBook/JourneyIntoMystery'', the all-powerful Fear Crown falls into Mephisto's hands and he's poised to bring all the Nine Realms under his rule in Hell. Because the Fear Crown was created from Kid Loki's worst fears, if he stops existing it will, too. Even though Kid Loki's certain there must be another way to stop Mephisto, he knows that it would take too long to figure out and billions of people would suffer and die in the meantime, so he completely annihilates himself and lets his older self return.
* To defeat Shuma-Gorath, Comicbook/DoctorStrange absorbs a portion of his power. Once Shuma-Gorath is dead, Strange knows he will become Shuma in turn, so he kills himself. (He survives, devoid of any memory or sense of self -- his ally Kaluu manages to bring him back to reality).
* ComicBook/TheDarkPhoenixSaga: Jean Grey kills herself to prevent becoming Dark Phoenix again, and to stop the Shiar from destroying the world (it depends on the interpretation of the story -- retcons make this a mess).
* At the end of ''ComicBook/SuperiorSpiderMan'', [[spoiler:Doc Ock [[HeelRealization comes to realize that, despite his incredible genius, his arrogance and overcompensation of it was why he was failing]]. He comes to realize that the true Superior Spider-Man was Peter Parker all along and, after begging him to rescue the kidnapped Anna Maria, erases his own memory, and thus taking the last bit of his life out, so Peter can go in without any distractions.]]
* ''Franchise/XMen'' - A vaccine for the deadly Legacy Virus is created by Henry [=McCoy=]. If an unaffected mutant were to inject himself with this vaccine he would die, but an anti-virus would be created and spread throughout the world, curing mutants infected with the virus, and make the rest immune. Colossus (Piotr Rasputin) makes this sacrifice. And then he got better. It should be noted that Colossus is very prone to depression - maybe even bi-polar.
* ''ComicBook/RoboCopVersusTheTerminator'' had Faxx saying that Alex Murphy didn't kill himself in part due to his upbringing and being Catholic in ''Film/RoboCop2'' become HarsherInHindsight when in the comic, Murphy learns that the very same technology that made him [=RoboCop=] would also result in [[Franchise/{{Terminator}} SkyNet's creation, it becoming self-aware, and it ultimately wiping out half of Earth's population]]--and decides to kill himself to prevent it. Sadly for Murphy, said comic also resulted in the scene of Cain's men stripping him in ''2'' also becoming harsher by having [=SkyNet=] send two Terminators back to stop him, reducing Murphy to just a head, keeping him alive, and having him help usher Judgment Day in.

* [[Series/{{Supernatural}} Dean]] does this in the fic ''[[http://amagicbeyond.tumblr.com/post/81933485147/reverse-crypt-scene-version-1-0 Reverse Crypt Scene (1-0)]]'' to prevent the demon possessing his body from getting out.
-->''Deanís eyes meet his. Thereís an apology there, and a terrible finality. Thereís so, so much more.''
-->''Dean turns the blade toward himself.''
-->''Cas isnít strong enough to stop him.''
* Chara in ''[[Fanfic/YouCanOnlyUseYourOwn someone else's fire]]'' is suicidal anyway, but they frame poisoning themself as a heroic act, enabling Asriel to gather the power necessary to break the Barrier, so that he doesn't try to stop them despite knowing full well what's going on. Subverted in that their primary motivation really is ending their own life, the Barrier breaking is just a nice bonus, and also in that Asriel eventually can't bear seeing them dying anymore and gets his parents to intervene.


* In ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'', the T-800 ally must kill himself at the end to destroy the last possible source of Terminator technology that could let people reverse-engineer Terminators and Skynet.
* ''{{Film/Constantine}}''. Angela Dodson's identical twin sister Isobel kills herself when she realizes that the BigBad plans to use her as part of a ritual to release Hell on Earth. She sends a psychic message to Angela from beyond the grave to tell her to find Constantine, and leaves a message for them so that they can stop the BigBad from performing the ritual on Angela.
** Isobel gets extra points for not just dying, but voluntarily damning herself (a highly devout Catholic who had never done anything wrong to anyone) to an eternity of pain and suffering in the process.
** Then Constantine kills himself at the climax, because he knows that the only being with both the power and the motivation to stop the ritual, Satan himself, will personally come up to claim him. After Mammon is stopped, Satan admits that he owes John a favor, which John uses not to extend his own life but instead to let Isobel get into heaven. However, because of his self-sacrifice, John's own soul is now redeemed as well. So with this one act, [[SweetAndSourGrapes he is able to save both of them]].
** FridgeLogic - "Greater love hath no man than he give his life for his friends." By killing herself ''specifically'' to prevent being used in the hell-unleashing ritual, Isobel is doing this for the whole of humanity - Heaven's gates should be wide open for her from the start, with Christ Himself rolling out the red carpet. Perhaps according to the film's view, its not even acceptable to kill yourself [[PrinciplesZealot for the sake of the entire world]]? Then again, [[ProtagonistCenteredMorality Constantine makes the same basic sacrifice for just ''one person'' and it earns him a place in heaven instead of hell.]]
*** The theology is in fact quite clear. The mortal sin of suicide lies not in the act of self murder so much as the despair that motivates it. Isabel was not motivated by despair but by the need to save others. She gets a pass.
* In ''Film/{{Alien 3}}'', Ripley falls backward into a smelter to stop the Queen Alien gestating in her from birthing and starting the whole ordeal all over again. To emphasize that she did this just in time, it actually bursts through her chest in mid-fall, but Ripley holds on to it all the way down.
* In ''Film/GranTorino'', after his previous attempts to stop a gang from harassing his neighbors failed, Walt Kowalski taunts them so that they will kill him. [[ThanatosGambit Thinking he was grabbing a weapon, they gun down an unarmed old man in front of an entire block worth of witnesses and are sent to prison.]]
* ''Film/{{Looper}}'': At the end, Joe realizes that his older self's attempts to [[SetRightWhatOnceWentWrong prevent the rise of the Rainmaker]] will instead [[NiceJobBreakingItHero lead to]] his StartOfDarkness. Left with no other way to stop Old!Joe, Young!Joe shoots himself, thus [[{{Retgone}} retgoning]] Old!Joe out of existence and presumably changing the future. Specifically, the only weapon Young!Joe has is a blunderbuss, which is a crapshoot at anything farther than about 15 feet.
--> '''Young!Joe:''' (''voiceover'') Then I saw it. I saw a Mom who would die for her son; a man who would kill for his wife; a boy, angry and alone, laid out in front of him the bad path. I saw it. And the path was a circle, round and round. So I changed it.
* In ''Film/ScannerCopII'', Sam Staziak's real mother kills herself by jumping off a balcony, to prevent Volkin from absorbing her power so he can use it against her son.
* ''Manga/DeathNote'': once your name is written in a Death Note the first occurrence takes precedence and any later instance is invalidated. In the live-action films [[spoiler:L takes advantage of this by writing his own name in the Death Note while giving himself the maximum amount of time to live, dying when the moment comes but preventing anyone else from killing him with a Death Note in the meantime]].
* ''Film/HappyDeathDay'': Protagonist Tree is stuck in a GroundhogDayLoop where she is killed on her birthday by a masked figure and comes back to life that morning; at a point when she has recently learned that she has [[ContinuingIsPainful accumulated damage from her previous loops]], suggesting that she may eventually 'run out' of second chances, she manages to get the drop on her apparent killer. However, because he just killed Carter, a boy she only met the night before the loops began, because Carter [[HeroicSacrifice tried to save her life]], Tree, despite not knowing if this will be the loop where she takes too much damage, kills herself so that she can reset the day and bring Carter back.
* ''Film/JohnQ'': John planned to shoot himself so his son could get his heart, but another was found at the last minute by his wife.
* ''Film/StarTrekIITheWrathOfKhan'': Khan implants alien creatures in Chekhov and Captain Terrell's brains that allow him to MindControl them. When Khan orders Captain Terrell to kill Captain Kirk with a phaser, Terrell manages to overcome the MindControl, vaporizing himself with it to save Kirk's life.
* In ''Film/EndOfDays'', when Jericho is possessed by Satan, he gets enough willpower to impale himself. Satan doesn't have enough time to go to another host before he is forced to return to Hell.
* ''Film/TheExorcist'': Father Karras kills himself to save Regan and get rid of Pazuzu, after getting the demon to go into him. HarsherInHindsight if you accept ''Film/TheExorcistIII'' as canon.
* ''{{Film/Fallen}}'': Realizing that Azazel will never stop tormenting him and that the demon will target Gretta and Sam next, Hobbes plots to lure Azazel to the remote cabin Milano killed himself at, then poison himself and trick Azazel into his dying body so that the demon will die, too, without any other host in the area. Although he does succeed in setting all aspects of his plan into motion, and dies thinking it worked, Azazel manages to survive by finding a cat to possess. He speculates this was what Milano wanted to do too.
* ''{{Space Battleship Yamato}}'': In the live action version of the anime (known in the US as Starblazers), the acting ship's Captain Kodai, unable to stop the Gamilas from destroying Earth because their wave motion gun is plugged - which would cause it to blow up the ship if fired - decides to do just that. He evacuates the surviving crew and flies the damaged Yamato into the center of the Gamilas super missile (while seeing visions of the other crew members who gave their lives on the mission.)
* ''Film/SevenPounds'': Tim killed himself to give the woman he loves his heart (and his other organs to different worthy people). FridgeLogic sets in, however, when you realize that his chosen method (jellyfish venom) would leave them unusable.
* ''Film/{{Doom}}'' has a character called Goat, who is bitten by a demon, which dooms him to be turned into a [[AlwaysChaoticEvil mindless demonic mook]]. Realising that he only has seconds before he turns, Goat heroically bashes his head against a wall until he dies. The heroism of this gruesome self-termination becomes more apparent later, when we discover that the virus has differential effects depending on whether someone is genetically predisposed to Good or Evil; bad people become demons, while good people become [[SuperSoldier Super Soldiers]]. Goat knew that he was genetically predisposed to be a bad person, but acted against this to sacrifice himself for the greater good.
* ''Film/TheThing1982'': {{Implied}} with Fuchs, who is found as a charred corpse. There was no reason for the Thing to kill him off instead of assimilating him, so it's safe to assume that he did it to himself in order to avoid being assimilated and thus being used to assimilate the rest.[=MacReady=], Nauls and Garry later decide to destroy the camp and themselves with it to prevent the alien infection from spreading to the rest of the world.
-->"Whether we make it or not, we can't let that thing freeze again. Maybe we'll just warm things up around here. We're not getting out of here alive... but neither is that thing."
* In ''Film/AmericaAmerica'', Stavros has been barred from America after Mr. Kebabian caught him doing the horizontal mambo with Mrs. Kebabian. Hohannes has a free pass to America due to his IndenturedServitude opportunity, but he remembers the kindnesses Stavros did for him, like giving him his shoes. He also knows that [[YourDaysAreNumbered His Days Are Numbered]] due to that IncurableCoughOfDeath he has. So Hohannes jumps off the ship to his death, within sight of Ellis Island, while leaving behind Stavros's shoes--with his ID papers inside. Stavros makes it past immigration and into America by using Hohannes's name.
* ''Film/MissionToMars'': Woody, an astronaut, is blown off his space ship too far out for retrieval. His wife tries desperately to save him, endangering herself doing so. At last he kills himself by taking off his helmet, rather than watch her make pointless attempts to save him, and possibly doom herself at the same time.
* ''Film/TheLedge'': It turns out this is Gavin's motivation be up on the eponymous ledge. He's been blackmailed by Joe into killing himself, in return for Shana living. In the end, he does.
* ''Film/CruelAndUnusual'': Edgar takes Doris' place, which spars not only her but Maylon from condemnation in the afterlife.
* ''Film/TheDevilsAdvocate'': Kevin kills himself rather than become the father of TheAntichrist. Later it's revealed to be just a dream, or possibly Satan turning back time to try another way. Or, it could be that God turned back time in order to give Kevin another chance to make the right decision.
* ''Film/{{Selfless}}'': Damien eventually stops taking his medicine and lets himself fade away so Mark can come back and be with his family.
* ''Film/TheWolfman2010'': {{Discussed}} when Lawrence asks his father why he didn't kill himself to prevent anyone else's death when he became a werewolf. However, he couldn't do it even knowing what would happen.
* ''Film/FemaleAgents'': Pierre slits his throat, preventing Heindrich taking him to Rommel for proof that the invasion will be in Normandy.
* ''{{Film/Logan}}'': Caliban gets a hold of some grenades to kill himself and his captors with at the first opportunity, which prevents him from being coerced into helping them track down the last mutants any more (it doubles as a {{suicide attack}}).
* ''{{Film/Circle}}'': A few characters volunteer to be killed to buy the others more time.
* In ''{{Film/Hellboy}} II: The Golden Army'', the elf princess kills herself to save Hellboy from her brother, since given their {{psychic link}} this kills him as well via {{synchronization}}.
* ''Film/KingArthurLegendOfTheSword'': Uther throws Excalibur up and impales himself, turning to stone in the process, so Vortigern can't have the sword.
* ''Film/AmericanAssassin'': [[spoiler:Annika]] shoots [[spoiler:herself]] in the head to deprive Ghost of his hostage, allowing Rapp to take him out. The circumstances quickly turn it into a SenselessSacrifice as far as the mission is concerned, but since the person is also heavily implied to be a DeathSeeker by that point, at least they got what they wanted.
* ''Film/CrookedHouse'': Lady Edith learns that she is dying of cancer, and decides to kill herself by driving her car off a cliff. She takes Josephine with because she knows that Josephine has committed two murders and, if not stopped, will commit more. If she is caught, Edith knows Josephine will spend her entire life in an institution. Edith leaves behind a note confessing to the murders, so that Josephine will go to her grave with her name unbesmirched.
* ''{{Film/Mythica}}'': In ''The Necromancer'', [[spoiler:Teela tells Marek to take her life energy so that Marek will have the strength to save the others from certain death]].
** The Hammer of Tek is needed for them to destroy the Darkspore. The Hammer of Tek is in the underworld. The only way to enter the underworld is to die. The Hammer is obtained.
* In ''Film/AvengersInfinityWar'', [[spoiler: Vision [[ICannotSelfTerminate tells Wanda]] to shatter the Mind Stone embedded in his forehead so [[BigBad Thanos]] can't get to it, knowing full well that this would destroy him in the process. It ends up being AllForNothing, as Thanos uses the Time Stone to reverse Vision's death, then kills him ''again'' by ripping the Mind Stone out of his skull.]]
* ''Film/ConanTheBarbarian2011'': Conan's father kills himself so that Conan will survive.

* At the climax of ''Literature/PercyJacksonAndTheOlympians'', [[spoiler: Luke]] has been irreversibly possessed by Kronos, and manages to stop fighting in order to let himself be killed.
* In ''Literature/HarryPotterAndTheDeathlyHallows'', [[spoiler:Harry]] lets Voldemort kill him after discovering that [[spoiler:he is one of the [[SoulJar Horcruxes]], and that Voldemort cannot be killed as long as he survives]]. In this case, ''how'' he dies matters a great deal and has consequences reaching far beyond the immediate aim. Since he died for others despite having a choice to flee, [[spoiler:the magic that shielded him because of his mother's sacrifice returns and effectively renders ''every single Hogwarts defender'' invulnerable to Voldemort. Whether Harry realizes this at the time is uncertain, but at least it keeps them safe from the one enemy they themselves can't kill.]]
* In the ''Literature/HeraldsOfValdemar'' novel ''Oathbreakers,'' Jadrek drugs himself asleep with the intention of dying quietly of cold rather than continue to be TheLoad to Kethry and Tarma if they're unable to find shelter from the bitter mountain winter weather they're lost in. Fortunately, they ''do'' find shelter and he sleeps the medication off without further complications, although Tarma at least suspects what he was trying to do.
* Numerous priestesses in ''Literature/ChantersOfTremaris'' poison themselves so their bodies can be sealed into the wall of ice in an attempt to stop the spread of the illness killing magicians. [[spoiler:However, they were forced by the High Priestess. It's unclear whether they would have sacrificed themselves given any actual choice in the matter.]]
* In the ''Literature/HaloEvolutions'' short story '' Midnight in the Heart of Midlothian'', Michael Baird and the AI Mo Ye need to activate the self-destruct of their ship, but can't because Mo Ye [[ThreeLawsCompliant is restricted from harming a human]]. (As a warship AI, she can usually just ignore the Three Laws, but currently she's damaged.) Thus, Baird lets an alien invader kill him so that Mo Ye is no longer restricted.
* In ''Literature/{{Warbreaker}}'', the Returned can magically heal one person at the expense of their own life, and Lightsong does so at the climax to restore Susebron's tongue, which allows him to use [[FunctionalMagic Awakening]].
* In ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'':
** [[spoiler:Lord Ingtar]] faces an enemy army alone in ''The Great Hunt'', in part to give the protagonists time to escape and in part to [[DeathSeeker atone]] for becoming a [[CardCarryingVillain Darkfriend]] and betraying his country.
** [[spoiler: Verin]] has to do this. A member of [[SecretCircleOfSecrets the Black Ajah]], she wants to become a ReverseMole, but is held by a binding oath that she "not betray [[SatanicArchetype the Great Lord]] until the hour of my death". Recognizing the [[LoopholeAbuse loophole]], she takes poison and spends her last hour giving details of the Black Ajah's membership and weaknesses.
* In ''Literature/VillainsByNecessity'', the [[HellGate Dark Gate]] requires a death to open it. Sir Pryse thus kills himself by jumping in, saving the world from destruction.
* In the Literature/KrisLongknife series, upon learning of the existence and coming into conflict with the omnicidal aliens, the crews of the human warships have a policy of blowing up their own vessels if disabled, ensuring the aliens learn as little of human technology as possible and, more importantly, cannot discover the way to human space.
* In the ''VideoGame/StarTrekOnline'' novel ''The Needs of the Many'', Geordi la Forge and the Soong Foundation are able to unlock the "Data Matrix" hidden inside his "brother" B-4 and bring Data back within B-4's body. However, Data refuses to let him replace B-4 and proceeds to write a program that would erase himself and the matrix. This is a bad thing as there's an Undine threat that needs Data and, despite Geordi giving B-4 information about what's going on, Data refuses to stop. However, B-4 realizes that [[TheNeedsOfTheMany the lives of millions are at stake and Data is needed more than he is]]. He takes over the program to delete himself so that Data can live and save the day. Data isn't happy with this.
* ''Literature/TheSwordOfTruth'': Wizard's Life Fire can be this, when done to protect another person. It requires that a wizard [[CastFromHitPoints put all of his life force]] into a spell that consumes everything surrounding them in a last act that also kills him. In the first book, Kahlan's former wizard does this to ensure that Darken Rahl cannot [[spoiler: use magic to learn who has made off with a Box of Orden]]. Zedd tastes the ashes left on the wall and notes that they are sweet, the sign that it was done to protect another person. [[spoiler: This is also the first indication they have that he was acting on some greater plan, rather than just abandoning Kahlan for the money and power of his new post.]] Zedd later attempts it to stop the chimes, but survives and is revived by Richard. In the prequel book ''Warheart'', Barracus uses Subtractive Magic to insure a war wizard will be born when a dream walker is and counter it, then kills himself to keep the secret. In ''The Pillars of Creation'' Althea poisons herself to prevent not only her husband's suicide out of grief if he found her brutally murdered instead, but chose death to begin with rather than living when this would mean the Keeper winning.
* ''Literature/SchooledInMagic'': Sergeant Harkin willingly offers himself up for death when Shadye forces Emily to choose one of the prisoners to kill to take his {{mana}}. Except he had none, since he's not a sorcerer, and this surprise distracts Shadye long enough for Emily to get the vial of her blood that [[BloodMagic he's using to control her]] from him, and save the school. It also doubles as a BatmanGambit.
* ''Literature/TheHanSoloTrilogy'': Bria and Red Hand Squadron take suicide pills to prevent the vital information they have being tortured out of them by the Imperials if they're captured.
* In "The Word of Unbinding", a short story by Creator/UrsulaKLeGuin which became part of the foundation for her ''Literature/{{Earthsea}}'' series, the good wizard Festin is entombed by the evil Voll, and after trying every means he can to escape but failing, ends his life with the titular word. This sends him into the afterlife, in which he can find Voll's corpse and seal him to it, which prevents him from harming any more of the living.
* ''Literature/ArcOfFire'': Myrren unlocks the full power of the Dark Heart to banish the senkata once and for all, knowing this will kill her in the process. [[BackFromTheDead She gets better]] thanks to Raine and Kail.
* A major plot point in the second book of ''Literature/YoungWizards'', ''Deep Wizardry''. [[SatanicArchetype The Lone Power]] once approached the ten greatest wizards of the sea, offering them gifts in exchange for allegiance to him. Three accepted it, three rejected it, and three made no decision. Rather than break the tie, the tenth threw herself to the Master Shark, binding the Lone Power. The story is known as the Song Of The Twelve, and due to recent events ten whale wizards, the Master Shark, and the Lone Power must repeat it, with [[spoiler:Nita]] taking the role of the Silent Lord who sacrifices herself. [[spoiler:It goes south, however, when the Song breaks, but the Master Shark allows himself to be killed in order to bind the Lone Power anew]].
* ''Literature/TheDarkElfTrilogy'': Pulled off by Zaknafein in order to spare Drizzt's life in ''Homeland'', and again in ''Exile'' when Matron Malice tries to possess him by [[MoreThanMindControl removing his soul from his dead body.]]
* ''Literature/TheCallistaTrilogy'': Cray and Nichos, blowing up the ''Eye''.
* ''Literature/GuardiansOfTheFlame'': Chak performs a {{suicide attack}} to detonate the enemy's powder store during a battle.
* ''Literature/InheritanceCycle'': Elven Dragon Rider Thuriel set off the [[FantasticNuke magical equivalent]] of a nuclear bomb by releasing the energy of his body, which required him to die in the process, saving dragon eggs from Galbatorix on Vroengard.
* 'Literature/JourneyToChaos'': A necro priest can kill themselves to absolve another of their Death Violations. This is part of Lord Death's mercy.
* ''Literature/TheSilerianTrilogy'': Tashinar kills herself to stop Kiloran torturing vital information from her that would endanger the rebels.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Dawn tries to pull one of these in the fifth season finale of ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'', when she realizes that [[ItMakesSenseInContext a gateway to hell can only be closed if her blood stops flowing]]. She is saved when Buffy realises [[TakeAThirdOption she can achieve the same effect by killing herself in Dawn's place]]. Buffy's death is thus also an example.
** The [[MoralGuardians Parents Television Council]] address this, claiming saving the world is not a good enough reason for a HeroicSuicide, but then again they were JumpingOffTheSlipperySlope by then.
* On ''Series/{{Angel}}'' Darla's vampire body had been able to sustain the MysticalPregnancy because AWizardDidIt, but was incapable of actually giving birth. When she realizes her fully human son will ''die'' as a result, she stakes herself, leaving behind only the infant, covered in his mother's ashes.
* ''{{Series/Heroes}}''
** Like Dawn, Peter Petrelli considers killing himself to [[PersonOfMassDestruction keep from blowing up New York]]. Also like Dawn, he is saved by the last-minute intervention of his elder sibling, though that's ''not'' an example of this trope.
** Eden also performs one when she blows her brains out to prevent Sylar from getting at them (and thus her mind control powers).
* Frequently done on ''Series/DoctorWho'', often in order to avert (or trigger) a TimeCrash:
** The Eighth Doctor committed one [[spoiler:at the end of the Big Finish audio "The Last."]] He got better, but was just a little traumatized by it.
** In "Father's Day", despite Rose's attempts to keep him in the dark and the Doctor even sacrificing himself to the [[ClockRoaches Reapers]] trying to find another solution, Pete Tyler eventually realizes that the time paradox that's destroying the world began when Rose saved him from being run over, which never happened in the original history. In the end, Pete decides to step in front of the car that was [[YouCantFightFate supposed to hit him]], sacrificing himself to restore history to normal and bring back everyone that had been consumed.
** In "The Waters of Mars", the Doctor changes history to rescue someone doomed to die, which causes him to go totally AGodAmI with megalomania. His rescuee kills herself in order to stop him, after which he snaps out of it.
** The Doctor's death in "The Wedding of River Song" fulfills the necessity condition, if not the sufficiency one. Far from avoiding his fate, he literally has to talk his assassin ''into'' killing him (in part by ''marrying'' her) in order to prevent time-breaking paradoxes. [[spoiler:It turns out he actually just fakes his death, but for a minute or two it looks like he might actually be gone for good.]]
** In "The Angels Take Manhattan," when Rory learns that his future is fixed and that he will be sent back in time by an Angel and live out his life in one of the Winter Quay rooms, he decide to jump off the building (joined by Amy, who refuses to live without him), creating a paradox that should kill all the Angels.
---> '''Amy:''' You think you'll come back?!\\
'''Rory:''' [[TheyKilledKennyAgain When don't I]]?!
* [[spoiler:Al Gough]] on ''Series/{{Flash Forward|2009}}'' learns that in the future an innocent woman will die due to his actions, so he jumps off a building so as to ScrewDestiny so it can never happen.
* In ''Series/{{Sherlock}}'' Moriarty invokes this [[spoiler:by setting up Sherlock to be "exposed" as a fraud and telling him that if he doesn't kill himself by jumping off a building, a group of assassins he's hired will kill his friends (Sherlock appears to jump, but he's revealed to still be alive at the very end).]] Also an inversion in that [[spoiler:Moriarty shoots himself to prevent Sherlock from foiling his EvilPlan by forcing him to call the assassins off.]]
* In ''Series/OnceUponATime'' [[spoiler: when Henry realizes that Regina's parting gift to Emma was an ''apple'' turnover, he grabs it and takes a bite out of it before she can, knowing full-well that the turnover is poisoned and he may never wake up.]]
* In ''{{Series/Supernatural}}'''s fifth season finale, Sam's plan to defeat TheDevil is to allow [[BigBad Lucifer]] to possess him and then [[HeroicResolve wrest back control]] of his body long enough to jump into Hell and take Lucifer with him before the gates seal behind them. [[spoiler: He initially fails, but after Lucifer kills two of Sam's close friends and starts to beat Sam's brother Dean to death, he manages to take control long enough to make the jump.]]
* In one episode of ''{{Series/Haven}}'', an OCD suffering Troubled is keeping the town trapped in a GroundhogDayLoop in an attempt to prevent a car crash, but forgets about it every time the day is reset. [[spoiler: Once Audrey explains the situation to him, he steps in front of the car himself in order to end it.]]
* Attempted by Hoshi Sato in ''Series/StarTrekEnterprise'' when the [[ReptilesAreAbhorrent Reptilian Xindi]] have captured her and pumped her full of [[{{Brainwashed}} mind-control parasites]] so she can crack the codes of the [[EarthShatteringKaboom superweapon]]. When they let their guard down, she breaks free and tries to throw herself to her death. The Reptilians grab her before she can succeed, but they are impressed by her willpower.
* ''Series/{{Misfits}}''. Three examples:
** Seth attempted this in the Nazi timeline, trying to hang himself in his cell so he couldn't give any more superpowers to Nazis.
** Curtis killed himself after becoming a zombie, to prevent himself from infecting others.
** Jess does so as part of a BatmanGambit that will undo a BadFuture and save the lives of her friends. She [[BackFromTheDead was only temporarily dead]] because of this.
* In the season 1 finale of ''Series/TheFlash2014'', [[spoiler: Eddie shoots himself, which negates the existence of Eobard Thawne, his multiple-times great grandson and the Reverse-Flash, who was in the process of killing Barry and promised to then kill all of Barry's family and loved ones.]]
* ''{{Series/Sense8}}'': Angelica shot herself to prevent Whispers from getting other sensates through her. Later [[spoiler: Riley]] almost does this as well.
* In ''Series/TheOuterLimits1995'':
** In "The Vessel", a writer goes on a shuttle flight into space, but something causes the shuttle to crash on re-entry, with the writer walking away without a scratch. He later finds out that an alien EnergyBeing is living inside his body, having entered him in orbit, as the alien's own ship suffered damage near Earth (the alien's actions also unintentionally caused the crash). When the authorities figure it out, they capture the writer and perform tests on him. They eventually determine that his body can't handle the stress of two beings living in it for too long. From what the viewers are shown, the alien appears to give the writer the means to kill it, so that he can live. The writer explains the procedure to the scientists, who perform it, and let him go. Later, one of the scientists wonders if they really destroyed the alien instead of the writer. This is confirmed by the "writer" himself, as a flashback reveals that it was the writer who wanted to allow himself to die so that the alien could live.
** In the episode "Better Luck Next Time", the two protagonists defeat two evil {{Body Surf}}ing aliens by killing the host bodies and then themselves. Too far away from any other people, the aliens die.
** "Summit" has an almost literal example when the sole survivors of a peace summit offer to kill themselves to prove their sincerity and ensure that the peace treaty they negotiated before terrorists murdered the other representative party was accepted. All but one shoot themselves, but one refuses to die by a weapon of war and electrocutes himself instead.
* ''Series/LegendOfTheSeeker'':
** The Calabrans killed themselves rather than reveal their great secret-[[spoiler: where their three Boxes of Orden were]].
** Amfortas persuaded the Confessor Viviane to kill herself so Kieran, her Seeker and lover whom she Confessed by having sex with him, would be freed so he could continue his mission in the backstory of "Revenant". This completely backfired, however, as Kieran then went off the deep end and started killing innocent people in a rage over her death. Amfortas had to kill him in the end.
** The king in "Cursed" tried to kill himself many different ways so the beast he turns into wouldn't attack his people anymore, but it doesn't work since he's immune to ordinary harm.
** Richard planned to do this after he used the power of Orden in "Fever" to make Rahl give up the cure for a plague, so that using it wouldn't turn him into a KnightTemplar. Thankfully he didn't have to though, since Jennsen showed up with the cure instead. She'd tried to do this herself earlier with a [[CyanidePill poisonous stone]] after hiding the cure, to prevent herself being taken captive and forced to tell them its location. However, it was knocked from her grasp and the D'Harans beat her severely enough to temporarily cause memory loss, so Darken Rahl almost managed to trick her into delivering it.
** Thaddicus throws himself on Cara's knife as she's become a baneling (and has to kill every day) so they'll have time to find shadow water, the cure, in "Hunger".
** An example of a villainous {{inversion}} in "Princess". Sister Portia, a Sister of the Dark, willingly gives her own life in a ritual in order to bring Nicci BackFromTheDead. For the rest of the show, [[GrandTheftMe Nicci is using Portia's body as her own, and the appearance now matches hers in the book.]]
** In "Desecrated" Cara tries to kill herself so Kahlan will have more time when they are trapped in a tomb with the air running out. Kahlan stops her though.
* ''Series/BabylonFive'' has many examples:
** '''2.17 "Knives"''': Urza Jaddo, Londo's old friend, deliberately lost a duel with Londo to save his family from disgrace, as cultural expectations required that the victor absorb his opponent's house into his own after the duel.
** '''4.20 "Endgame"''': Marcus Cole gave his life to save Ivanova using an alien machine that moves life force from one person to another.
** '''5.18 "The Fall of Centauri Prime"''': Londo told G'Kar to kill him so Sheridan could escape Centauri Prime.
* ''Series/HeroesReborn2015'': Molly Walker shoots herself to prevent Erica Kravid from committing genocide with her (unwilling) help.
* ''Series/TheWalkingDead'':
** Andrea shoots herself at the end of Season 3 after she's infected with the zombie virus rather than be a risk to others.
** In late season 7, Sasha first makes an almost certainly suicidal run on the Sanctuary in an attempt to kill Negan. She somehow survives that, but doesn't get to Negan, so later she takes Eugene's cyanide pill so Negan can't use her against her friends. She attacks Negan and kills at least one Savior after turning, and the shock allows Rick's group to briefly fight back against the Saviors and the Scavengers.
* ''Series/JessicaJones2015'': Hope punctures her own throat to stop herself being used as a hostage so Jessica can kill Kilgrave.
* ''Series/TheLeftovers'': Virgil shoots himself to enter the afterlife and be Kevin's guide there.
* ''{{Series/Defiance}}'': Irisa shoots herself to stop Irzu from making her kill. Unfortunately, the nanites Irzu placed inside her heal this.
* In ''Series/LegendsOfTomorrow'', [[spoiler:Leonard Snart]] blows himself up, so that the [[spoiler:Time Masters can't watch and alter the timestream, effectively rendering them impotent. Before Snart, Ray and then Mick attempt the same]].
* ''Series/DarkMatter'': Milo kills himself rather than be used again by the Seers to further their aims.
* ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'': In ''[[StarTrekTheNextGenerationS2E1TheChild The Child]]'', Ian wills himself to death in short order once he realizes that he is the source of the danger to the ''Enterprise''.
* ''Series/TheMagicians2016'':
** John compels Julia to kill him so she can collect his divine essence and use it against Reynard.
** The fairy queen later permits her dissection in a deal which will protect her people forever.
* ''{{Series/Travelers}}'': Gleason attempts what seems like one from his perspective, trying to shoot himself so he is not taken over and forced to set a bomb off. [[spoiler: It's actually powering a device which will save the world from disaster, but he does not know that.]] He's out of bullets though, so this fails.
* ''Series/Preacher2016'': In "On The Road", Father Mike kills himself rather than let the Saint of Killers force him to reveal where Jesse is.
* ''Series/{{Dollhouse}}'': [[spoiler:Mellie]] goes ManchurianAgent on [[spoiler:Ballard]], courtesy of [[spoiler:Boyd]], but then manages to restrain [[spoiler:her]]self long enough to put the gun to [[spoiler:her]] own head and pull the trigger. In the GrandFinale, [[spoiler:Topher]] manually detonates a bomb that sends out a pulse that [[spoiler:restores the original personalities to the millions of people across the world, who have been imprinted]]. This is also a case of RedemptionEqualsDeath, as [[spoiler:he invented the technology that made the "thoughtpocalypse" possible]].
* ''Series/OrphanBlack'': In Season 4, [[spoiler:itís revealed that Bethís suicide was this rather than despair or pressure. She got closer to the true masterminds than anyone, but they threatened her with the lives of everyone she cared about if she didnít take her own life]].
* ''Series/FutureMan'': Dr. Kronish willingly kills himself to prevent his invention being used for evil.

[[folder: Religion]]
* {{UsefulNotes/Christianity}} generally treats suicide as a sin. However, some have argued that Jesus' death is also a suicide (in the same manner as the ''Literature/HarryPotter'' [[MessianicArchetype example above]]). Being God, Jesus obviously could have saved himself from crucifixion, yet this was also necessary in Christian belief for humans' salvation. A form of heroic {{suicide by cop}}, arguably. For some it's not the act of killing oneself that is the sin but the despair that leads to it. Despair is a sin to them because it denies the goodness of God. Logically then somebody who dies not in despair but to save another, preserve the time line, protect the Earth, etc. has not sinned. However, many (for instance Catholicism) recognize that illnesses such as clinical depression can cause a despair that is not under someone's control and thus lessens or perhaps expunges any moral responsibility for suicide.

* In the backstory to ''TabletopGame/{{Eberron}}'', the elvish savant Aeren engineered the uprising and freedom of his people from the giants primarily by a kingdom-wide ritural that required the willing self-sacrifice of himself and a number of volunteers, as he had realized that the magical potential of a ''willing'' sentient's blood being shed far outweighed the power accessed by an unwilling sacrifice.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'': An ObviousRulePatch prevents the [[ThePoliticalOfficer Commissar]] from executing ''himself'', [[AndThereWasMuchRejoicing despite the undoubtedly positive effect this would have on the men's morale.]]

* ''VideoGame/{{Borderlands 2}}'' has [[spoiler:[[BigBad Handsome Jack's]] daughter, the [[PersonOfMassDestruction siren]] Angel. After spending much of the game forced to aid her tyrannical father, she defects to the side of the Vault Hunters and when finally meeting them face-to-face, asks them to kill her so that Jack can no longer abuse her powers for his own gain. Unfortunately, her death drives Jack to an [[AxCrazy even deeper level of insanity.]]]]
* ''VideoGame/PlanescapeTorment'' ends with [[spoiler:its immortal protagonist [[KilledOffForReal killing himself permanently]] because every time he "dies" and comes back to life, someone else dies in his place (and the spirits of the people who've died for him stalk and torment him).]]
* ''Franchise/FireEmblem'':
** ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemTellius Radiant Dawn]]'' has Pelleas, who partway through the story was crowned king of Daein, pulling one of these. He unwittingly signed a Blood Pact, a curse which, if invoked, will slowly kill a leader's subjects. The one at the reins of this curse is Lekain, who is using it to strongarm Pelleas into fighting a war. Pelleas eventually learns that a Blood Pact will end if the one bound is killed so... yeah, you know the rest. [[spoiler:Unfortunately, it didn't work. Pelleas received incomplete information. The way to end a Blood Pact is for either the one bound ''or'' the one in command to die, ''and'' the document itself must be destroyed on top of either of those. Thankfully, you can let Pelleas live in a NewGamePlus.]]
** ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemAwakening Awakening]]'' has [[spoiler: Emmeryn, [[ReasonableAuthorityFigure the ruler of Ylisse]] and [[TheHero Chrom]]'s older sister, who is captured on the edge of a cliff to force Chrom to make a SadisticChoice: either give up the Fire Emblem aka Ylisse's treasure, without which the world will surely come to ruin, or let her die. [[TakeAThirdOption To save him the pain of the choice, she gives a rousing speech and jumps from the cliff herself.]] Notably, her actions and final words touch even the enemy army, to the point where most of their troops decide to go ScrewThisImOuttaHere.]]
*** [[spoiler:This can be subverted if the player chooses to unlock the Spotpass chapter where you recruit her. Somehow she manages to survive the fall and ends up on a distant island, albeit with amnesia. You can recruit her in the Spotpass chapter that you meet her, if she doesn't die during the battle.]]
*** In [[spoiler: the Sacrifice ending of the game]], this happens again. [[spoiler: Because [[PlayerCharacter the Avatar]] is the perfected vessel of [[BigBad Grima]], if s/he is the one who lays the final blow to him instead of Chrom (who can only seal the Dark Dragon for a millenia before it raises again), Grima will be banished forever... '''but the Avatar will be erased from existence in exchange'''.]] [[spoiler: Subverted again: TheStinger reveals that s/he turns out to have survived too. (Or more exactly, s/he ''was'' erased, but ultimately returned to life out of his/her unbreakable will.)]]
** ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemFates Fates]]'' plays this completely straight ''twice'' in the ''Conquest''/Nohr path:
*** [[spoiler: While the Rainbow Sage [[YourDaysAreNumbered is already about to die of old age]] by the time the cast meets him, when Garon's advisor Iago sends the Avatar and his/her group a message saying that they must kill the Sage to avert anyone else to get his immense powers, the Sage simply tells the Avatar not to worry [[FaceDeathWithDignity and calmly]] [[BetterToDieThanBeKilled offs himself right there]]. And unlike the others, [[KilledOffForReal there is no way to save him]].]]
*** [[spoiler: After being defeated for the last time, Prince Ryoma of Hoshido realizes that the Avatar will be caught in a straight-up SadisticChoice where, [[IfYoureSoEvilEatThisKitten if he/she refuses to finish him off, Garon will probably kill him/her instead]]. So [[TakeAThirdOption before this happens]], Ryoma commits {{seppuku}} on the spot to both die honorably and keep the Avatar from being killed. And just like the Rainbow Sage, he [[KilledOffForReal stays dead]].]]
* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOrigins'' has a somewhat less heroic, but still important, example. Alistair reveals to the [[PlayerCharacter Warden]] early on that a Grey Warden, as a result of drinking darkspawn blood, modified or no, will eventually succumb to the taint of it. This doesn't necessarily kill the Warden, but it will cause them to lose their free will to the Darkspawn - or even worse, the Archdemon leader, if one is active at the time. This gets worse if your Warden is female, and you've played through the Deep Roads section: [[spoiler: If your character were to lose her will to the Darkspawn, they'd bring her down to the depths, mutating and raping her until she became a Broodmother, which is what gives birth to new Darkspawn in the first place.]] The final burden of being a Grey Warden is kind of a mix of HeroicSuicide and HeroicSacrifice - [[spoiler: a Grey Warden must be closer to the current Archdemon as it's slain than any Darkspawn (usually meaning the Grey Warden has to do the slaying themselves) otherwise the Archdemon's soul will jump into the Darkspawn, and it'll regenerate in its original form - a massive freaking dragon. The soul will then instead jump to the Warden - which kills them both]].
* [[spoiler: The PlayerCharacter]] ultimately does this in the true ending of ''VideoGame/DragonsDogma''. It turns out there is a cycle going on in the gameworld. It basically is that the Seneschal (this game's equivalent to God) wants to quit with his job and needs to find a successor. To find someone worthy of such a position, the Seneschal sends down a huge dragon to terrorize the land. The one who manages to slay it is worthy to become the new Seneschal. It turns out that the previous Seneschals were all humans once, who walked the same path. After [[spoiler:the PlayerCharacter]] becomes the new Seneschal, he kills himself, breaking the cycle and freeing humanity from the dragons.
* The [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5T67QfECoM&t=6m44s destruction]] of the [[ProudMerchantRace Bentusi]] upon encountering [[TheVirus the Beast]] in ''VideoGame/HomeworldCataclysm''. Although considering the Beast is somne kind of nanotech GreyGoo with a side of weapons-grade BodyHorror, there's a strong element of BetterToDieThanBeKilled in there too.
* ''VideoGame/{{Mother 3}}'' has an utterly [[TearJerker heartbreaking]] example. [[spoiler:Your main character, Lucas, has a twin brother named Claus. The two of them were the best of friends, until, shortly after the game starts, he goes missing in an attempt to avenge the death of his mother. [[DownerBeginning It's these events that kick off the game's plot]]. Three years later, Lucas starts on his adventure [[CosmicKeystones to pull seven "needles" scattered all over his home island in order to save the world]]. Porky, the BigBad happens to be after them as well, [[OmnicidalManiac in order to ''destroy'' the world]], and is using the [[TheDragon mysterious, masked commander of his army to do so]]. Many, many hours of gameplay later, after the BigBad has been [[SealedEvilInACan sealed away for all eternity]], Lucas and the Masked Man face each other in front of the final needle. The Masked Man is revealed to actually be Claus, [[BrainwashedAndCrazy with no memories or sense of identity, under the command of Porky]]. After one of the most painful [[IKnowYoureInThereSomewhereFight "I Know You're In There Somewhere" Fights]] in all of fiction, Claus slowly remembers who he is and electrocutes himself]]. The worst part is that we ''don't know for sure'' if this was a HeroicSuicide or not. While it's very possible he did it to free himself from [[spoiler:Porky]]'s control, it's also equally possible he simply did it [[DrivenToSuicide because he realized all the wrong he's done against his will]].
* At the end of ''VideoGame/{{RefleX}}'', the ZODIAC Ophiuchus takes the cores of the other 12 ZODIAC units and activates its seal program, shutting itself down in order to bring about a peaceful future safe from ZODIAC harm.
* In ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV''[='=]s Law ending, you and Merkabah reach the Yamato Perpetual Reactor one last time and activate it to have Tokyo obliterated once and for all, as the citizens of Tokyo, known as "Unclean Ones", are deemed unworthy of existence. Merkabah points out that you and him also must die, because they have been affected by the "Filth" of Tokyo. Indeed, you both perish in order to secure the utopian future of the Eastern Kingdom of Mikado: a kingdom where Filth and sin are not known and the peace lasts for all of eternity.
* In ''{{VideoGame/Persona 3}}'', [[spoiler:Shinjiro Aragaki's]] HeroicSacrifice bleeds into this; while he did shield [[AdorablyPrecociousChild Ken]] from being shot by Takaya, he was also, for a long period of time, taking Persona-suppressing drugs that have [[IllBoy degraded his immune system]], combined with an IncurableCoughOfDeath, to the point that even had he ''not'' been shot, he likely would have died not long after. The suicide portion, aside from the suppressants, also draws from the fact that the date of his death [[spoiler:(October 4)]] is the same day that he accidentally murdered Ken's mother via losing control of his Persona, and he [[TheAtoner wanted to atone]] for it.
** It even extends to gameplay: [[spoiler:He won't join you for the October Full Moon Operation, and after his funeral]], you can find his equipment in his room.
* In ''VideoGame/SandsOfDestruction'', Kyrie is a PersonOfMassDestruction with some pretty bad PowerIncontinence. Naturally, this makes it dangerous for others to be around him, and when he both accepts that [[WhereIWasBornAndRazed he's the one who's caused the death of everyone in his home town]] and that he can't be rid of these powers, [[ICanNotSelfTerminate he asks Naja to kill him]]. [[spoiler:It doesn't work, though: as the Destruct, even if he's killed, he can be resurrected. Morte sets out to do just that, and happens to unlock the key to controlling his powers in the process.]]
* ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeonExplorers'' [[GettingCrapPastTheRadar brings this up without flat out saying it]]. [[spoiler: After the world is saved from time freezing to a stand-still which created a BadFuture thanks to the protagonists, Azuril goes through an nightmare that he can't wake up from which Cressila states is caused by the space-time distortions that are created by the heroes who dabbled with time to save the world. She says that they must "[[NeverSayDie disappear]]" to stop the distortions which would end up destroying the world; the partner character was beginning to wonder if they should do as she said, but the player character convinces them to think of another way out. It eventually turns out that "Cressila" was actually a disguised Darkrai who was lying to them about the distortions and planned on the heroes dying to get themselves out of the way of its plan to puts the world's inhabitants into an eternal nightmare.]]
* ''VideoGame/TreeOfSavior'': In Kalejimas Prison, you find that Zanas [[spoiler: willingly killed himself so he can continue to protect the Revelation as a spirit.]]
* ''VideoGame/DragonsCrown'' has the revelation that the Phantom Knight [[spoiler:(who is actually the late King of Hydeland)]] did this to [[spoiler:prevent the Morneon cult from capturing him and fulfilling the requirement of a sacrificed king for releasing the Ancient Dragon.]]

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* In ''VisualNovel/LittleBusters'', [[spoiler:Kyousuke pulls off a successful non-permanent one in order to help Riki and Rin save the victims of the bus crash. In the fake world he created to build up Riki and Rin's strength, whenever he sleeps he finds himself at the moment of the crash and desperately tries to drag himself over to the oil leak so he can block it with his body before it catches fire and explodes, killing everyone. However, whenever he wakes up his position is reset. The day he finally reaches the leak, he realises what he has to do: reset his starting position. Since that is based on the moment he died, he needs to kill himself here so when he wakes up the next time he'll start there and be able to block it, saving everyone. He does it without hesitating, and it works.]]
* This is how [[spoiler: Sakura Ogami]] from ''VisualNovel/{{Danganronpa}}'' died. [[spoiler: She chose committing suicide over murdering other students (which would emotionally wreck her as she's very lawful and honorable ''and'' one of the students is her best friend Aoi) or letting her beloved dojo be destroyed (since Monokuma is forcing her to be TheMole by threatening said dojo).]]
* ''VideoGame/NewDanganronpaV3'' has [[spoiler: Kokichi, who kills himself in chapter 5 to create an unsolvable murder by faking evidence to make it seem equally as likely that Kaito is the victim, and making it impossible to tell if the poison killed the victim or the hydraulic press did, where the killer would be either Maki or Kaito/Kokichi, depending on who the actual victim is. If not even the mastermind knows who the true killer and victim are, then the killing game could be unable to continue. Subverted by Shuichi solving the case anyways.]]
* Defied in ''VisualNovel/ZeroTimeDilemma''. [[spoiler: When Phi gets infected with [[ThePlague Radical-6]] she demands to be killed and her body burned to make sure the virus won't get out. Diana then tazes her and gets her and Sigma out]] which leads to the events of ''VisualNovel/VirtuesLastReward''.

* In ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'' this is one way of reaching God Tier, which is the highest level a player can reach. For a player to achieve God Tier, they must [[spoiler:die on their quest bed]]. Obviously, a player usually chooses to reach god tier in pursuit of a heroic goal, and since this is one of the ways to go about it, it counts as a Heroic Suicide. It's implied that it's meant to test the player by challenging them to accept and overcome the fear of their own demise. So far, the only character we've seen knowingly attempt this is [[spoiler:Dave Strider.]] However, [[spoiler:he finds himself unable to go through with it]].
* In ''Webcomic/TheBeastLegion'' Njora sacrifices [[http://www.thebeastlegion.com/issue-09-page-20-a-heros-fall/ himself to his serpent transformed daughter]] so that Xeus can concentrate on saving Fyre.
* In ''Webcomic/DarwinCarmichaelIsGoingToHell'', [[spoiler: Darwin lets himself be killed to prevent TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt. Even though it would result in himself being sent to hell. The huge boost in Karma from this action makes it so he gets into Heaven anyway.]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In the final episode of ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsTheCloneWars''[='=] Mortis Trilogy, because The Son of Mortis was basically curb-stomping Anakin, Obi-Wan, and Ahsoka, The Father of Mortis had no other choice except to Force-grab the Dagger of Mortis from the Son, and stab himself with it to take away his power, and make the Son vulnerable to being stabbed in the back (literally) by Anakin Skywalker.