If we do happen to tread on a mine, sir, what do we do? Capt. Blackadder:
Normal procedure, Lieutenant, is to jump two hundred feet in the air and scatter oneself over a large area
Land mines. Hundreds of thousands of them buried and forgotten around the world. One of the most dangerous and easy to deploy weapons of war, they can effectively deny an area from use for any purpose until they're cleared. They were considered so dangerous in World War II
that the armies used special tanks equipped with massive rollers and chain whips
to detonate them away from the tank's hull and clear a path through the field. Modern armies deploy everything from explosive counter-charges to remote-controlled robots to deal with the things.
Thus, it's no surprise that mines turn up a lot in fiction. With any luck, they will be announced. But there is a major difference.
In Real Life
, you probably won't know somebody stepped on a mine until they blow up.
In fiction, however, the squad will hear a tiny "click" as someone steps on the first mine, and we will have a tense moment while their friends try to figure out how to get the poor guy off of it without killing him. This usually involves finding a nice big rock to hold the button down
while everybody runs for cover.
Another variant is to have a redshirt
, a mook
, or an otherwise expendable character step on one and have it detonate immediately, killing them. This is often followed by the survivors getting down on their hands and knees and carefully making their way out, probing the ground ahead with sticks and knives (especially in war stories). This is derived from Real Life
military training on how to extract yourself from a minefield - except the part about using knives (or anything made of steel/iron): some of the larger (antitank) mines have magnetic-proximity triggers.
Very occasionally, you'll get both. It'll give an audible warning that it's been triggered, but that's no help to the victim — all he has time for
is an Oh, Crap
reaction before he's paté.
Many video games feature land mines with serious
design problems, so it's quick and easy for a single main character to avoid or disarm them, unlike in real life. Such land mines might even feature flashing lights and beep a few seconds before they go off, which rather defeats the purpose.
In reality, most personnel mines will go off whether or not you release the button. Which makes sense, if you consider that a pressure-release trigger would be more complicated and more prone to failure. Also, the only benefit from a mine following this trope is that a group of soldiers are delayed trying to help their friend. If the landmine simply blows the poor guy's leg off, The Squad
still has to tend to him, only now the explosion has tipped off any nearby defenders to intruders. That said, if the mine is a Bouncing Betty
, the most effective thing to do is dive and duck immediately to receive minimum damage from the shrapnel, as it mainly spreads horizontally.
Also applies to all manner of similar explosive boobytraps involving pressure plates, trip wires and other triggering mechanisms.
A recent variation is a 'claymore' or directional mine. Rather than just blow up and hope someone's over it, these consist of a mounting plate, the explosive charge, and the soon-to-be shrapnel. The charge is set up so that the explosion fans shrapnel out in an arc in front of the mine, similar to a shotgun blast, rather than a general disorganized kaboom. It is important that the right side is facing the enemy
, thus American versions have a large 'FRONT - TOWARD ENEMY' label printed on them. These are usually set off by wired remote-trigger (which really does go 'click') in the hands of someone a safe distance away from the mine - so chances are, surviving the blast still leaves you in a gunfight with whoever just decided to try and blow you up...
Note that certain kind of land mines are now prohibited by an international treaty
signed by many countries, notably not including the USA, Russia, China or India.
Subtrope of Kinetic Clicking
, related to Dramatic Gun Cock
. The non-Redshirt
who hears the click under them will do whatever they can to invoke Where's the Kaboom?
. Almost never comes up when dealing with a Sea Mine
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Anime and Manga
- Macross Zero demonstrates an odd if potentially realistic example. One character steps on a mine, only for career soldier Roy Fokker to notice just in time to tell her not to take another step. He then carefully digs away the dirt surrounding the mine and, over the course of several stressful minutes, disarms its detonator. He then proves himself to be a total jerk by pulling his companion into a kiss, to which she freaks out and demands how long the mine's been disarmed. "A while."
- Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu has a prime example of this. In the Hot Springs Episode, when Kurz and the guys are trying to get peeks of the naked girls, one of them steps on a landmine planted by Sousuke. Kurz immediately throws himself to the ground and unearths the mine, and picking up a big rock, tells the would-be victim to slowly shift his foot as he slides the rock on the mine. The procedure is almost finished... When our victim sneezes. Naturally, Hilarity Ensues as everyone is sent flying.
- Once upon a time, a boy named Kuro Hazama and his mother were walking on a beach. They found a mine, the boy approached it and his mom tried to stop him... then it went BOOM, seriously injuring both of them. Mrs. Hazama died in the hospital, her child survived and became the greatest surgeon in the world, Black Jack.
- Used humorously in Gintama - the Yorozuya and Shinsengumi team up to capture a panty-thief, bury landmines around the bait... and promptly forget where the mines are set. Explosive Hilarity Ensues.
- Hellsing plays this completely straight, with the Wild Geese surrounding Hellsing Manor with mines to fend off the charging Nazi vampires.
- Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex pulls this off in one episode. Due to a combination of corruption and ineffectual robbers, Chief Aramaki gets trapped in a hostage situation where the SWAT team would just as soon shoot everyone on sight. Capturing one of the would-be rescuers, he rigs a fake explosive device and props the unconscious guy on top of a "pressure sensor" to buy some time for escape; the mine is only noticed when they try to move the guy and the SWAT team pauses a while trying to disarm it. The strategy doesn't buy a lot of time but it does work.
- In Honoo No Alpen Rose, this happened to Friederich Brandel aka Jeudi's Disappeared Dad. He's grievously injured yet lives enough to be taken to a friend's home for safety... but only for a few days. Enough time to re-meet his estranged daughter and then die in her arms
- In Eden: It's an Endless World! a military officer is clearing a newly mined road by forcing local villagers to walk through one by one. After a young girl steps on a mine and freezes, officer comments that she's smart, as mines only blow up when you step off. Then he shoots her in the leg to make her fall.
- In Sgt. Rock: Between Hell and a Hard Place, Ice Cream Soldier is patrolling with New Meat Rin Tin Tin when Tinny realizes he's stepped on a landmine. Ice tries to keep him calm and dig it out from under him, but ultimately he's forced to get to cover as the thing goes off, taking Tinny with it.
- The Punisher seems to carry a few Claymore mines with him at all times, they come in handy. Woman: "What does Front Towards Enemy mean?" (Massive explosion that kills most of the sewer-dwelling cannibals that were chasing them) Punisher: "That's what it means."
- Batman: Death of Innocents: the Horror of Landmines was a "landmine awareness" and "humanitarian comic book" published by DC Comics in 1996. The purpose for publishing this particular Batman comic book was to teach the people of the United States regarding the dangers and consequences of landmines worldwide, left active in countries that had been under war.
- Lethal Weapon 2 has one such moment, only it's not a land mine, but a toilet mine. Murtaugh sits on his toilet, only to find out the seat's been wired to a bomb that will blow if he gets up. Murtaugh and Riggs survive through the assistance of a Bombproof Appliance (in this case, the bathtub).
- In Blown Away, a co-worker of the lead protagonist character, Anthony Franklin (Forrest Whitaker) hears the click of the trigger for an explosive trap planted by Ryan Gaerity (Tommy Lee Jones) as he sits down. Franklin survives, courtesy of a phone call made by using his foot to dial 911 on the telephone that was just beyond his reach.
- There's also several other variations on this. In an early scene where the bomb disposal expert is teaching a class, Franklin is being overly cocky, so the instructor tells him to come up to the front of the class to demonstrate how to disarm a Bouncing Betty. As he's walking, he steps on one with a click, and the instructor tells him there's no way of disarming it when it's already active. Franklin tries away, figures out the explosive payload is just paint, and sets it off by walking away. Later in the film, this becomes relevant when the protagonist, confronting Gaerity, is caught standing on a real Bouncing Betty land mine. He steps off, using the explosion to help him take out Gaerity and getting injured himself.
- The 2001 film No Man's Land had a particularly horrific example: a Serbian soldier moves the corpse of a Bosniak soldier on top of a landmine so that when the enemy collects the body, the mine will go off and the enemy killed or injured. It turns out that the enemy soldier is still alive, but unconscious. Eventually, UN forces are more or less browbeaten into coming to help, only to have the munitions expert learn what kind of explosive it is, and say that he can't disable it. The browbeating is done by the press, so when they see a person being rapidly stretchered away they are annoyed with the anticlimactic ending and leave, not bothering to take one last look at the site. We see the wounded soldier left alone on the bomb to either die of his wounds, starve to death, or get up off the bomb and die. This film was, incidentally, presented in part as a comedy. Bosnians don't mess around with jokes.
- The movie Behind Enemy Lines has this happen to the colonel who along with a sniper was tasked to find the main character. The sniper notices it, steps past it, and doesn't warn the colonel (rivalry in a war zone is a bitch). The colonel steps on it and pleads for help, but the sniper takes a glance, then tells him to remain still and keeps walking. A few seconds later, we hear the boom from the main character's POV.
- That was actually the colonel's fault. They knew they were in a minefield, but only the sniper was actually paying attention to where he was walking.
- In Beyond Borders, there's a minor character who lost his leg to a landmine. He discusses this trope, saying that there's really no way out, but he got lucky. Later, at the climax of the film Angelina Jolie steps on a mine while being chased through the woods by bad guys. She stands there while the hero yells at her to keep running, tearfully gesturing to him that she has to stay where she is and he should keep going. When he starts running back for her, she steps off and is consumed by a fireball.
- Tropic Thunder uses this trope in an unexpected and hilarious way. The director, wanting to get his actors in the "real deep shit" to optimize their performance, takes them into the dense jungles of southeast Asia planning to leave them there while filming with hidden cameras. After giving a rousing speech about making the greatest war movie ever, he starts to walk off to prepare to film, steps on a landmine with an audible 'click', looks down, and explodes into many pieces. Despite this, Tugg Speedman still thought it was an act.
- The 1979 Australian Vietnam war film The Odd Angry Shot uses this trope too. The unfortunate soldier who ends up on the mine eventually can't take it any longer after about 8 hours or so, when several efforts and ideas to save him have failed, and he just steps off to his doom.
- Kellys Heroes, a World War II comedy film, features a dramatic sequence where the squad is marching through a freshly plowed field, which happens to be... you guessed it. When one guy gets blown to bits, the others are all forced to work their way out by probing for the mines with knives and sticks, prompting a hilarious exchange between Crapgame and Big Joe.
"Hey hey hey! I found one!" Big Joe: (calmly)
"What kind is it?" Crapgame:
"The kind that blows up! How the hell do I know what kind it is?"
- Near the end of The General's Daughter, Paul Brenner partially depresses the trigger on a Bouncing Betty mine that the Big Bad has set, but apparently not enough to detonate it. Then the Big Bad sets off the mine in an attempt to take Paul and Sarah with him, but only succeeds in killing himself.
- In Bad Boys II, the final showdown against the BigBad and The Dragon happen on a minefield outside Guantanamo Bay, but no one actually steps on a mine. Syd throws her empty gun a mine right in front of the Dragon, causing it leap into the air and kill him. Marcus shoots the Big Bad in the head, and his corpse then lands on a mine causing his head to explode spectacularly.
- Averted in the fourth Rambo film. The mines never go click, they just explode.
- While The Monuments Men are searching a burnt Nazi art depository, one of them calls out for his commander, who discovers he's stepped on a mine. His fellow soldiers stack bricks on it in the hope of making up his weight. When he steps off the detonator goes off but not the explosive; the mine having been damaged by the earlier fire.
- Double Team features a coliseum filled with landmines that work this way. And a tiger. Guess how the bad guy dies!
- Averted in the Dresden Files novel Blood Rites. Harry, Murphy and Kincaid are breaking into the lair of a scourge of Black Court vampires, and when they discover a landmine blocking their way, Harry suggests that they disarm it with the classic "nice big rock to hold the button down" trick. Kincaid, who unlike Harry is a professional weapons expert, comments that that's an excellent idea, assuming your enemies are using equipment from World War II.
- In his autobiography About Face David Hackworth tells of an incident in Korea when he accidentally triggered a mine, but didn't hear the click due to his shell-damaged hearing. Everyone except Hackworth dove for cover, then looked up in amazement to see their commanding officer miraculously unharmed. Hackworth added to his Bad Ass reputation by growling at them for not clearing the minefield properly, then striding off to find a place where he could quietly go into shock.
- In both the book and documentary Blood from a Stone, author/adventurer Yaron Svoray recounts stepping on a mine while trying to locate a foxhole with a packet of diamonds buried inside. As with virtually all other real life examples of this trope, the mine was a dud.
Live Action TV
- In the Doctor Who serial "Genesis of the Daleks", the Doctor steps on a partially-buried mine in the rubble of Skaro, and his companion Harry has to wedge rocks under the mine so that he can lift his foot off it without it going off.
- Played straight on JAG in episode "In Country", and then averted in the very next episode. While in Afghanistan, Harm and Mac end up wrecking their Humvee amidst a minefield, and Harm ends up stepping on the Hollywood click-and-wait variety of mine. Mac takes cover on the other side of the Humvee while Harm prepares to drop a weight on the mine and leap away, barely escaping in the process (along with landing on Mac in quite the Ship Tease arrangement).
- In the next episode, Lieutenant Bud Roberts steps on a mine, and this one goes off immediately, leaving him severely wounded just before the credits roll.
- In an early episode of M*A*S*H, Trapper — guided by shouted directions from map-reading Hawkeye, Radar and Henry — has to inch his way through a minefield to rescue a child who has wandered innocently into it. Their flawed guidance unfortunately leaves him stranded holding the child with (untripped) mines six inches from him on all sides, requiring a helicopter to pick them up and lift them directly out of the field (even though in real life, this would be inadvisable, as the down pressure from the helicopter may very well set off mines. The best way to get out of a minefield is the hard, slow way).
- "And now you're in the middle of downtown Berlin!"
- A later one showed a farmer using his daughters to clear a minefield. It goes wrong, of course. Radar runs over to the stricken girl and carries her to safety, and then is reminded that he ran through an unmarked but recently verified minefield.
- A third episode featured a woman who, while thinking of the romance in her life, took a walk. Now to figure out who put a minefield next to a hospital.
- As mentioned now and again in the show, "M" stands for "Mobile." While there is only one set for the run of the series, it is implied to have moved several times. Now ask who put a hospital next to a minefield, or who goes for a midnight stroll in a war zone
- MacGyver once finds himself with a foot on a mine, and manages a daring escape, but, in jumping free, he's landed on another mine (which turns out to be a dud). There's also a slight variation in one episode where Mac finds himself having to prop up a rickety shelf that's holding several cases of unstable old dynamite. If he lets go, he'll go boom.
- And there was another episode where Murdoc was first introduced: Though the device wasn't explicitly called a mine, it worked on the Bouncing Betty principle. Mac sat down on his bed and that armed the bomb planted in it. Pete told him that it would only detonate when he got off the bed but the blast would be directed mainly upwards so if he jumped away fast enough he'd be safe. This is one of those serious Fridge Logic moments. If the bomb only explodes upwards and detonates only when you get off the bed... how is that supposed to kill you again?
- It would kill you because normally, your ass would still be lingering above the mattress for a brief second while you are standing up. The blast could very well incinerate your behind and leave you bleeding to death.
- Yet another one took place in a snowy cave in which all Mac had to do was dig the snow out from the side and shove a metal bar into conveniently sized holes to stop the "platform" from springing up.
- In Sherlock, when Dr. Frankland is running from Dewer's Hollow with the others hot on his heels, he ends up sprinting straight into the Grimpen minefield and steps on a landmine, which behind to beep ominously. He decides to step off and get blown up rather than be caught by Sherlock and co.
- An episode of CSI: Miami had the Victim of the Week blown up on a beach covered with mines. This trope played out when one of the cast stood on a mine by accident. Slightly more realistically it was removed by burning the explosive away with thermite (this would work as most explosives are designed to burn unless they are set off by a smaller explosion).
- The Flash TV show used a similar device. A criminal had set up a pressure-sensitive plate as a trap; when Lt. Garfield stepped on it, a tape recording informed him he'd activated a bomb which would blow up in 60 seconds or when he stepped off, whichever came first. The Flash arrived just in time to take Garfield's place, then escape at super-speed once he was clear of the building.
- The Professionals. Bodie dials the first number of his phone and suddenly realises it's booby trapped. Fortunately he's got his radio to call Doyle for help, who disarms it with their usual exchange of banter (though somewhat more terse).
- Due South, episode "The Edge".
- Seen twice in an episode of The Pretender. In the Vietnam War, a US soldier is looking for a mole in the jungle when he and his guide hears a click. His guide, a young boy, had his foot on the mine and the soldier knew he wouldn't last long so she was able to switch his foot with the boy's by carefully shifting the boy's foot off and his on to keep constant pressure. It worked. Then the mole shows up, knowing the soldier could stand there until people came looking shoots the guy from a distance and framed him as the mole. Jared, in his usual Laser-Guided Karma methods, punishes the mole, who is still evil but now helping drug lords, by getting him to step on a mine with the same click. It's a dud but the mole didn't know that.
- A Cylon variant of the S-Bomb ("Bouncing Betty") appears in Battlestar Galactica. Not only it is done realistically in terms of the "click" but it also results with the death of a prominent secondary character, Elosha.
- Played straight with the "dragon mines" in Legend of the Seeker, including using a rock to hold the weight of a person. Also, one of the Mooks chasing them steps on a mine and is immediately blown up.
- In Flashpoint, one of the team accidentally steps on a mine and cannot move (with a Lampshade Hanging on how few mines don't immediately go off). The rest of the team, especially his good friend Spike, does everything they could to get him out. When the trapped character realizes Spike is more likely to blow himself up also than succeed in disarming the device, he deliberately lifts his foot to set the thing off rather that let his friend die with him.
- Primeval has a whole minefield. Unusually for this trope, they actually notice the minefield a while before using it to blow up a phorusrachid.
- A living minefield variant on Tremors: The Series consisted of mutated plant roots that squirted acid when disturbed. No clicking, but it played this trope straight in that the swollen acid-sacs in the roots made icky squelching noises prior to cutting loose with their spray. The gag of someone obliviously walking right through the field without being harmed was also used.
- Used twice on Eureka, when a time-shift plunked a two characters who were scanning for temporal disruptions in a present day meadow into a 1940s-era security minefield. Like the Macgyver example above, it's rescuing a girl from the first mine that lands Fargo on top of the second one.
- The better part of an episode of the The Unit is spent in a minefield the characters and the diplomatic workers they were evacuating wander into.
- The Alcatraz episode "Paxton Petty" is all about this, as Petty uses land mines as his primary weapon. Hauser steps on a mine Petty planted on the beach, hears it go click, and has to stand there for several hours until Rebecca and Soto realise that he is missing.
- In Night Man, the villain-of-the-week is capable of astral projection. For some reason, the projection is physical until he chooses to get back to his own body, at which point it disappears. He uses this trick to lure the titular hero to a rooftop where he has set up a pressure-sensitive mine. He gets Night Man to step on it, smiles, and fades away. Then Night Man fades away. Turns out he used one of his handy gadgets to create a hologram. It's not entirely clear how a hologram could have triggered a pressure sensor.
- A sociopathic bomber rigs one up under the floor of his own hotel room in a Castle episode, and Kate Beckett steps on it. If she moves or even shifts her weight while standing the mine goes off. If she remains where she is, the mine, which is on a timer, blows up anyway. To help fight fatigue Castle helps keep Beckett's mind occupied in a series of flashbacks about their very complicated relationship.
- Arrow: In a flashback to the island in "The Odyssey", Oliver steps on a Japanese landmine left over from World War II, which goes click. Oliver is forced to stand immobile while Slade kills a group of patrolling soldiers around him. Slade frees Oliver by pushing the body of one of the soldiers on to the mine to take his place. In "City of Heroes" in the present day this is called back to when Diggle and Felicity go to Lian Yu to bring Ollie out of his 10-Minute Retirement. This time it's Felicity who steps on a mine, but Ollie rescues her with a well-timed Vine Swing.
- Wally in the comic Funky Winkerbean dealt with the issue of a landmine while in Afghanistan, and later appeared to deal with it again in Iraq until it was revealed to actually be a videogame. The videogame incident generated some controversy that later warranted an apology from the creator.
- A second example in the comic has Wally step on a Bouncing Betty while trying to take a picture. While he initially yells at Khan to leave without him, Khan stays behind to try to disable the bomb, but finds he can't because the fuse is on the bottom. He then tries another method, using a plank as a baseball bat to WHACK AWAY THE BOMB. It's a significant event for the two considering their original meeting years prior had Khan trying to kill Wally.
- Car Wars featured these in two main flavors, normal and 'Spear 1000', which primarily shot up rather than spread out. Both were primarily meant to take down the titular cars and similar; walking through a mine counter was perfectly safe. Splatbooks of course offered antipersonnel mines, as well as the minesweeper mentioned above that can get mounted on a convenient tank.
- These were given their own sidebar in Cyberpunk 2020, referring to sneaky things you can do. Like wiring up one to an enemy's bed, or lining your escape route with claymore mines.
- In Warhammer 40,000, the Imperial Guard loves using massive minefields, and various optional books allow most races to use minefields as defensive measures.
- They also love clearing them - by force marching Conscripts through them.
- The spin-off game Aeronautica Imperialis gives the Tau fields of aerial homing mines.
- BattleTech offers (advanced) rules covering a variety of mines with differing triggers and effects; whether or not entering a hex that contains mines will set them off can depend on unit type, movement mode used, and of course the ever-popular whim of the dice. The example playing the trope the straightest are probably "vibrabombs", which can only be set off by BattleMechs because their triggers are sensitive to the specific vibrations caused by their steps, and can even be set to ignore 'Mechs lighter than a desired target weight.
- In Mage: The Awakening, mixing wards with other spells fill the magical role of "land mines". Since they DON'T actually go "click", a clever mage expecting more than one foe will set the condition for "when an enemy leaves the area" rather than "when an enemy enters the area" in order to try to peg the lot at once with the requisite magical nastiness. Since the people most capable of detecting those kinds of traps tend to not be the bruisers at the front of the battle-line, it's not uncommon for the technical mage to notice the ward only after it's been "primed", leading to the famous "hold down the button" situation.
- Which, since the idea is usually "slow enemies down while you run away" in Mage, is actually a better result than the spell going off from the trap-layer's perspective. Every minute dedicated to figuring out your spell and unraveling it is a minute you can spend jumping out a window and dashing madly for the car.
- Minesweeper. What more need be said?
- Very much averted in the multiplayer shootout modes in Banjo Tooie. The landmines are a dark grey, rather small, don't make noise, don't give off any warnings or lights, and they can instantly kill you. Oh, and just like in real life, they're equal opportunity weapons; they'll explode for anybody who gets too close, so you'd better remember where you put all those mines!
- Travis Touchdown from No More Heroes encounters a lot of these during the beach mission. Since he perpetually carries the Idiot Ball, this results in him stepping on several mines in-cutscene, resulting in the "click," then getting blown up. Luckily, he's strangely unharmed. The last one makes fun of this, as he sees the mine, steps over it with a chuckle... and steps on a buried one. "FUUUUUUUUUUUUU-" BOOM.
- Metroid Prime 3 used two different mines and both were in plain sight and were easy to shoot from a distance if you didn't rush into the room. One mine was a standard proximity mine that blew up if you got too close. The other mine type was similar to the bouncing betty one mentioned in the top of the page; if you got too close, the mine would jump up, fire a laser in 360 degrees, then explode.
- Metal Gear Solid had Claymore mines, special mines using fiber optic technology that would render itself invisible. They would explode if the player stepped into its field of "vision." Claymores can show up on the radar as yellow dots and cones if the player as a mine detector, but using a thermal visor would let you physically see the mines. Crawling over a Claymore would let you pick it up and add it to your inventory. Of course, they can be shot out as well.
- Knights of the Old Republic and the sequel feature mines with transparent red bubbles around them indicating their trigger radius once you spot them, which takes maybe one rank in the Awareness skill.
- Call of Duty 4 claymores do go click when you arm them, and when someone triggers them. Unfortunately for non-sniping players, it explodes right after.
- Earlier Call of Duty games enforced map boundaries with minefields; if you got a little too adventurous, you'd have less than a second after the "click" to jump back to safety. And not even that in 2.
- Then there's the Bouncing Betty ambush in Modern Warfare 2- the game actually enforces the "go low to avoid the shrapnel" rule.
- The mines in Fallout 3 "beep", instead of "click", giving the player just enough time to either try and disarm them, or get the heck off. Disarming mines does make them go "click" though.
- The longest mission in the game ("The Wasteland Suvival Guide") has a segment where you go to an entire town filled with landmines and explosive cars, and a man is shooting at you with a sniper rifle in an attempt to get you to kill yourself spectacularly. The entire area seems to be a meta-reference to Hideo Kojima games, coincidentally.
- Fallout 3 offers four types of mines: basic frag mines, stronger plasma mines and anti-electronic pulse mines, The home-built bottlecap mines are technically IEDs but they are massively powerful. As an amusing example of Videogame Cruelty Potential, you can arm a mine and put it into your opponent's inventory for a quick and clean kill (clean, as in mines have more concentrated explosions than grenades so the chance of collateral damage is smaller; as for the target, it's very messy).
- Subverted by the "Hidden Mines" in Fallout: New Vegas which are only visible by discolorations on the floor or putting your mouse cursor over them, do not beep, and will explode instantly if stepped on. They are often found in dark areas to make them even more difficult to spot.
- Also subverted by the Satchel Charge mines in the Lonesome Road DLC, which are hard to see, have short fuses that may prevent you from disarming them before they detonate, and are more lethal than the standard mines.
- Both 3 and New Vegas play with this trope by having many of the standard frag mines placed in ways that hides the glowing light, such as stuffing them under traffic cones or placing them lit-side-down. There are also a few cases of mines being used as Schmuck Bait, by placing one mine very prominently in the open with a second mine near enough to it that anyone trying to disarm the first mine will trigger the second one.
- Mines in earlier Fallout titles are triggered by Pressure Plates that look very similar to the surrounding floor, detonate immediately and require a Traps skill check to spot.
- Likewise, LAMs in Deus Ex beep before exploding, so the player has a chance to disarm them. They also blink bright red LED borders. When they start hiding the damn things behind your head as you reach the top of a ladder, this becomes more of an Oh, Crap moment.
- They can also be hurled through the air and used as a grenade.
- Mines also beep before exploding in Human Revolution; however, the beep is so short, its main purpose is to let you know you're about to die via mine. They still constantly flash a color appropriate the the type of mine and beep faintly, though, and it's possible to get up close enough to disarm them and pick them up by moving very slowly (you have to crouch and switch to walking instead of running). Also you can set off your own mines (which are made by sticking a grenade into a mine template), which are activated a couple seconds after being set.
- Half-Life 2 has mines that beep and flash if a target so much as gets near them, followed by a distinctive sound if the player gets close enough to trigger it. The player then has a whole second to jump out of the way as the mine is launched to eye level (similar to a Bouncing Betty) or grab it in midair.
- You're supposed to use the gravity gun to pull it out of the ground, then toss it into a convenient enemy or somewhere where it won't hurt you when it explodes.
- Or re-set it on the ground so that it will blow up on your enemies...
- Half-Life had laser-controlled claymores. Once placed, the mine will release a warning whine for a few seconds then emit a faint blue laser (it's visible to the naked eye but only one type of NPC actually takes notice). If you break the laser, the mine will instantly explode without warning; even if you have full health and armor, the mine WILL kill you. They cannot be disarmed, only prematurely detonated via gunfire or explosions; on the other hand, they stick to the wall hard enough to hold your weight so you can stand on top of the mine. Some singleplayer maps (hint: exterior of the infamous ordinance warehouse level, A.K.A. mine maze) also sported conventional landmines which were invisible but explosives could be used for impromptu minesweeping.
- Valkyria Chronicles uses comic-book style onomatopoeia as part of its visual style, so the land mines not only click when you step on them, but the word "click" appears. The good news: They don't actually explode until you move off them, so if you heal yourself or have another unit disarm it first you could easily survive.
- Instantly making it vastly superior to Red Alert's method (see below), which is just step SPROING "Where the hell did my tanks/soldiers go?" At least VC has a counter, Red Alert requires Mine-Stompers (Which can get expensive to use $950 Heavy Tanks to clean out a Minefield).
- These turn up as surprises in Wasteland, a future RPG. You could avoid them with sufficient Perception skill from your leader.
- These can end up being unfortunate surprises in Command & Conquer, starting in Red Alert.
- It's a subversion in Command & Conquer, seeing as how your only warning is a SPROING! when the mine goes off (at which point, it is too late). Quite annoying, since the game has mine LAYERS, but not mine DETECTORS.
- In Command & Conquer: Generals, the Chinese can equip every structure with (for enemies) hidden land mines and (in ZH) neutron mines, which kill infantry, even in vehicles, which you then can proceed to capture. They can also airdrop mine fields. Likewise, GLA demotraps are hidden barrels with TNT and stealth. They take a second to bleep a mean sound and then proceed to explode, taking your unfortunate tanks with them.
- Nod in Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars also has a mine drop but it's less useful than in Generals as most enemy that detects them will automatically shoot them dead, though it is a good tactic to envelope an onslaughting armour columns with it.
- Unhidden things to avoid in Front Line, a shoot-em-up from Taito back in the early 1980s. Of course, if you can get the enemy to wander into them, all the more fun.
- And something to avoid in both Smash TV and Total Carnage.
- Halo 3 - Trip mines beep loudly and glow, they are not hard to find at all. However, their explosive radius and damage is quite impressive, so if you hide them well or place them at opportune moments, they can be very deadly. It's also possible to actually walk over the mines without setting them off. You just have to crouch while walking by them. It doesn't work all the time though.
- What results in the most mine kills is that the maps which feature vehicles and landmines often have rather rough terrain, which means that it's quite possible to die because you never got a chance to correct your course.
- There are also landmines which serve as Border Patrol in sandtrap. They're like a bouncing betty that will go off no matter what you do. You can avoid them by either flying or by driving a vehicle so that you are outside of the damage radius by the time they go off.
- Played straight in Gears of War 2 and 3. You can punch surfaces with your grenades to set traps. This was a gamebreaker at the beginning of 2's multiplayer, because everyone spawned with one smoke grenade. This smoke grenade released smoke as a byproduct of what was apparently an omnidirectional force wave. This not only obscured the screen, but it also threw players up into the air, dropped them onto their backs, and then stunned them for several seconds before they could get back up and do anything. It also made people drop the meatflag, meatshields, and boomshields. Fortunately, this was nerfed so that all that happened was that you'd be stunned for a moment, drop the meatflag or a meatshield, or lose your boomshield if you weren't covering behind it.
- Resistance: Whoever decided to place a land mine that behaves like a bouncing betty directly next to one that behaves in a traditional manner is a maniacal genius of tactical warfare.
- Return to Castle Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory has landmines hiss when you step on them, and detonate if you step off. An engineer can disarm them, or if they're spotted by covert ops, can be detonated by explosives.
- The Glukkons of Odd World liberally seed their factories and industrial complexes with mines for no very good reason. As well as the surrounding countryside. And their transportation hubs. Indeed, it often seems like Abe would be better off finding out who is manufacturing them and shutting them down first, because whoever it is is making an absolute killing. The common type gives off a healthy red glow and beeps when it explodes. Another type blinks red and green in sequence, requiring you to tap it when it is green to deactivate it.
- StarCraft - the Terran Vulture hovercycles can lay down Spider Mines. These not only give a loud "click" of a warning, they actively chase down their targets.
- In Dawn of War, the Space Marines, Chaos, Orks, Eldar, and Imperial Guard all employ minefields that can only be detected by certain units, and do heavy damage to infantry, but only light damage to vehicles. The Sisters of Battle combine this with Kill It with Fire by deploying powerful incendiary mines.
- Turok 2 has the Proximity Fragmentation Mine Layer. A mine has a flashing green light and when set off, it turns red, goes "beep" and jumps up, Bouncing Betty style, before exploding and cutting the enemy in half.
- In the Worms series, land mines always make a noise and light when activated. Except for the first game, where the only beep a few times without a light before exploding. Either way, this extra time does not help you get away from them, as the blast radius is larger than the detection radius, but a quick player may be able to position their worm so the explosion doesn't throw it into water.
- In some games you can attack a landmine and have it go flying. Some games even have achievements for offing an opponent like this. It's also practical, since in most games you're given limited ammo, but you can prod or whack a mine with baseball bats or your finger, which are generally set to Unlimited.
- Laser trip mines in Duke Nukem 3D. "Bing!" "Kaboom!"
- In the Geneforge series, mines are Magitek artificial life forms. Trap mines, which can be disarmed, will go click and have a short pause between triggering and detonation. Spore mines, on the other hand, will go off as soon as a target is close enough. There's also a scene in the fourth game in which a servile has stepped on a spore mine not targeted at serviles and irritated it enough that it's ready to go off anyway. The player can either help the poor guy and disable the mine, or let him panic and trigger it.
- The Super Smash Bros. series has the Motion-Sensor Bomb (Proximity Mine in the PAL version). This trope is actually averted, in that the bomb does not click, but explodes instantaneously, dealing somewhere around 25% damage. However, the things are fairly easy to disarm. God help you though if there's a bomb that someone managed to stick to the side of the stage.
- FEAR has mines with obvious flashing lights on them, this does not stop the enemy stepping on them. The do beep, but only while jumping two foot in the air and exploding.
- TNK III and its NES adaptation, Iron Tank, feature blinking and beeping anti-tank mines. Instantly fatal to touch.
- Averted in Medal of Honor, land mines instantly kill you if you step beyond the signs. In one of Allied Assault's expansion packs, you have to probe your way through a minefield with a mine detector.
- Action Doom 2: Urban Brawl has the forest level, which is filled with landmines visible (barely) as vague gray patches on the brown ground in the darkness of dusk. The first time you step on one, it's always a dud, but the game isn't as merciful the next time.
- Secret Agent has flashing, obvious landmines all over most of the levels. These kill you instantly as opposed to just knocking down your health and, infuriatingly, their hitboxes are a little bigger than their sprites, meaning that it's very easy to blow yourself up on them. If they're on the stairs, then it's impossible to clear them without a very skillful exploitation of Jump Physics.
- Enemy Territory Quake Wars has fairly subtle mines, no beeping or lights, but when activated they emit a very loud CLICK before exploding a second later. It's quite possible to trip them and escape their blast zone before they go off.
- Minecraft: TNT + pressure plate = landmine. And if you want to get complicated, you can even rig trees so that they set off TNT when cut down.
- Blaster Master has the traditional flashing and beeping mines.
- Time Shift mines have a very short delay before going off, thankfully you have time powers.
- Strogg landmines in Quake IV are ridiculously conspicuous.
- Newly added in Mass Effect 3, mines make a distinctive click and give the player enough time to dodge roll out of the way before they go off. Unless the evil, evil level designers put a shiny new weapon right next to the mine, in which case the same button for "jump out of the way" instead performs the "pick up the weapon" command, resulting in the mine blowing Shepard up once you dismiss the resulting pick up menu. There are also several PC controlled land mines, as well. Garrus and several Multiplayer characters have the Proximity Mine, a small explosive that sticks to the wall, floor, or ceiling and detonates when an enemy walks near it. The Volus Engineer adds the Recon Mine, which emits a wide scanning field that alerts you to enemies that are near it and only goes off when you issue a command for it (leaving a Mushroom Cloud), while the Talon Mercenary Engineer packs the brutal Cane Trip Mine, a massive bomb that uses a tripwire laser to detect an enemy's presence.
- Assassin's Creed: Revelations adds custom landmines to the game along with grenades, and they're the dangerous, indiscriminate, non-clicking type. Since their power and conspicuousness applies to AI too, placing a mine will most often lead to a guard spotting you planting something and running over to shove you, detonating the just-planted mine and severely injuring you both.
- In Resident Evil 4, the dynamite tripwires have highly visible red lights, and even then the Ganados can't help walking into them.
- The BioShock series has Proximity Mines that can be launched from the Grenade Launcher, with obvious pulsing red lights, and which also explode on contact like normal grenades, as well as sticking onto walls.
- In the Dark Forces Saga, Kyle can both encounter and use land mines in the form of the I.M. mine from the first Dark Forces, the sequencer charges in Jedi Knight, and the laser trip mine from Jedi Outcast and Jedi Academy. The laser trip mines had blatantly obvious beams, and thus no audio cues. However, triggering a sequencer charge mine had the stereotypical short beeps, followed by a massive explosion. Most curious, however, was the I.M. mine from the first game, because those things actually had a distinctive ringing chime when triggered that sounded like nothing else in the game. It was a handy way to know you had about a second to figure out which was the right direction to run if you wanted to take only a tenth of your health in damage versus being blown to Tatooine.
- Star Wars: Republic Commando: besides the fact that the keypad on the top has illuminated buttons, the land mines actually have a quite smart design... it's their users who are stupid beyond belief. The mines are "smart mines" that can distinguish between friend and foe, and the default "foe" setting is "anything taller than a Trandosian"note . Now, a player character on his knees isn't taller than a Trandosian, so you can just hold the crouch button and disarm them at your leisure.
- Playstation All Stars Battle Royale uses this as a trap in several characters' move-set, to help deny a ground approach, used by Sly Cooper (Explosive Hat Technique), Sweet Tooth and Isaac Clarke.
- Risk of Rain has lots of ways to lay them down, be it through items or through the engineer's abilities. Combining them all tends to turn a whole area into a deathtrap. For your enemies, as this is the future, and mines are smarter now. Still, you're advised to still keep out of the blast radius, as "the laws of physics don't pick sides". And don't worry about conventions being violated; you're fighting a bunch of crazed aliens and the god who crashed your ship, they don't have laws and customs of war.
- PlanetSide 2 features two types of mines; anti-infantry (unique for each faction) and anti-tank. Vanu Sovereignty Proximity Mines have flashing blue lights on them and produce an audible noise as it charges up its capacitor to detonate. New Conglomerate Bouncing Betty mines have a flashing hexagon on their top, and loudly jump into the air when triggered. Terran Republic Claymores have a limited arc and are the tallest of the mines, but deal more damage and have no warning when detonating. Annoyingly, you're generally doomed as soon as you hear a mine trigger - the only class (without flak armor upgrades) who can survive are the Heavy Assaults by triggering their overshield. The Nanite Systems Anti-Tank mines do not click and deal huge amounts of damage to vehicles, but only trigger from gunfire or vehicles passing over them, and are huge and easily seen.
- In 7 Days to Die, an Air Filter Landmine can be crafted for defensive purposes or offensive, depending on your creativity. The area surrounding a military camp will most likely be stuffed with them. Not that it helped against the zombies, but they're still dumb enough to walk into them.
- In the Splinter Cell series, as with Metal Gear Solid, landmines are silent and can only be seen through the thermal goggles. Unlike MGS, you can't disarm them.
- Dishonored's Springrazors behave similar to Bouncing Betty mines, cutting their victim off at the knees.
- ASDF Movie 5 first shows off ... Mine Turtle! He's so cute and adorable as he says 'hello'. And has a button on his shell ...
- Gags involving mine fields were very common on Looney Tunes. Usually it involved one character setting up the mines for another character but ending up in the middle of the field and having to slowly make his way back to safety. Since the mines were easily detectable under conspicuous mounds of dirt, the character manages to escape without a scratch... until he unwittingly steps on that one mine he hid too well.
- A Speedy Gonzales & Daffy Duck episode comes to mind. For some reason, Daffy lays a minefield with all the locations marked. Daffy loses the map, but Speedy winds up with it and offers to tell Daffy where the mines are. Daffy takes a step... <Boom!> "There's one!" <Boom> "There's another!" <Boom> "What do you mean you don't know where they are? You haven't missed one yet!"
- And if it's a Roadrunner and Coyote cartoon, Roadrunner runs through all the mines without setting them off, and when Coyote goes to check what's wrong, they all blow up in his face. He also has a habit of being tossed into ones unrelated to his current plan when his Acme Products inevitably backfire.
- A example of this trope happens in the series Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles where one of the main characters (the cameraman that supposedly is "documenting" the actions of the titular squad) runs into a minefield while trying to escape from the enemy. A big minefield. With accompanying Loud Click, and the reveal that lifting his foot would detonate not only the mine, but the entire minefield through the explosion of the first mine. The squad has a robotic member that they are in the process of field-testing - the robot makes a Heroic Sacrifice after running out of ammo. He runs in, replaces our main character's foot with his own, and literally throws him clear of the minefield. The robot then waits for the enemy to get real close to him (the enemy naturally not setting off any of the mines on their way), then lifts his foot. Afterward, the troopers deliver a Aesop while ruminating on the sacrifice.
- A member of Easy Company steps on a landmine and hears it go click in The Teaser to the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "The Plague of the Prototypes". G.I. Robot saves him by Jumping on a Grenade.
- There have been several cases where this trope has caused people to think that they've stepped on a landmine (obviously all cases involved completely unrelated bits of scrap metal or no longer functional mines).
- Pressure release triggers are known to be used in some mine designs, as an anti-handling device (booby-trap) to protect a bigger mine from being disarmed. The action of lifting this sort of mine up after it's set will trigger it - which doesn't help you if you've already stepped on it, though...
- Pressure release IE Ds have been encountered in Iraq & Afghanistan - although they do not go 'click', and are usually pre-counterweighted, so that removing the counterweight, not stepping off the device, is what causes detonation...
- The Swedish ambassador once remonstrated the Finnish for using landmines. Whereupon the Finnish ambassador replied, "Finland is your land mine".
- Unexploded Ordnance (bombs and shells that never exploded) is often effectively a land mine. Worse, in a way, as unlike land mines, no one has any reason to want them there— they're often left over from a war that ended decades ago (as far back as World War I), and are only there because no one ever got around to clearing them out.
- The largest non-nuclear explosives in history were dropped all across Europe during WW2. About 20 or so of them have not detonated. One was recently triggered by a cow who got struck with lightning (the electricity apparently setting off the fuse to the landmine).
- Especially common in Germany. A few undetonated bombs are found every year, normally during building construction.
- France as well. For all intents and purposes it was the western front in WWI, and thirty years later it got bombed, shelled and fought over again. Unsurprisingly, they're still digging up unexploded ordnance almost a century after the first war and seventy years after the fighting stopped.
- A brief note on the scale of the problem in France. The French démineurs (UXO specialists) recover about 900 tons of munitions from the area around Verdun each year alone. Areas have been evacuated during clearing operations due to the high risk of badly corroded chemical munitions going off.
- We can add Hong Kong to that list as well.
- World War era torpedoes that were set to contact-fuses often had a one second delay between impact and detonation, so anyone inside the vessel near the point of impact would hear a distinct click right before the explosion.
- Chilean ambassdador and politician Luis Winter lost both legs in the Chilean-Peruvian border due to this.
- Organizations such as APOPO have trained rats (specifically, the Gambian pouched rat) to detect land mines in Africa for just this reason. The rats' noses are sensitive enough to detect explosives like dogs do, but rats are also small enough that they can walk directly over a mine without triggering it. Having proven themselves in their native land, mine-detecting rats are now exported to Southeast Asia as well.