[[quoteright:300:[[Anime/CowboyBebop http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/bebop03-2.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:300:[[ThomasTheTankEngine His ship is our dear]] ''Bebop'', and she's seen better days.]]

->''"After the Earth was used up, we found a new solar system and hundreds of new Earths were terraformed and colonized [...] Out here, people struggled to get by with the most basic technologies. A ship would bring you work. A gun would help you keep it."''
-->--'''Shepherd Book''', ''Series/{{Firefly}}''

Some SpeculativeFictionSeries focus on a CoolStarship or two that's [[ShinyLookingSpaceships shiny and new]] and full of all the latest AppliedPhlebotinum. The shows are all about idealistic and well-funded explorers or warriors, boldly going where angels fear to tread.

Shows on the other end of the SlidingScaleOfShinyVersusGritty treat the future as a place where real people live, and where spaceships look dirty, dingy, and used, like heavy equipment that one might find at a lonely truck stop in the middle of the night right now. The ships are old junk heaps run on a shoestring by hard-bitten characters on the edge, seemingly held together with two pieces of string, chewing gum, and the will of God -- the SF equivalent of the struggling FilmNoir private eye, in other words. This is the Used Future, and it's home to {{Space Trucker}}s, renegades, regular working stiffs, and anyone on the "cynical" end of the SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism. Think of it as DieselPunk [[AC:InSpace!]]

Sometimes, there will be ShinyLookingSpaceships alongside dingier ones; usually these new, [[AsceticAesthetic ascetic and shiny ships]] will belong to the [[TheEmpire Galactic Military]] which has access to constantly churning shipyards and the newest heights of technology while the heroes must survive on surplus gear and homegrown repairs. These shiny looking spaceships, however, can denote that the crew piloting these über-ships is formed of [[ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy completely green recruits]] with no real combat experience, often led by a [[TheNeidermeyer pompous noble]], while the battered ships are piloted by grizzled veterans who can fly circles around them.

The original ''Franchise/StarWars'' [[TropeCodifier popularised the concept]] (although arguably ''Film/MoonZeroTwo'' (1969), ''Film/SilentRunning'' (1972), and ''Film/DarkStar'' (1974) [[TropeMaker led the way]].) For contrast, the prequels, set in a more civilized time, [[CrystalSpiresAndTogas are correspondingly shinier]]. (''Star Wars'' is a rare example on the "idealism" end of the above-mentioned scale.)

Interestingly, portraying this in CG effects is actually more difficult, but sometimes the audience won't accept things [[DirtForcefield not looking dirty enough]]. Which can be ironic because many spaceship exteriors are actually perpetually shiny in real life (due to the scarcity of dirt, grime and oxidizing agents in space)--unless they have to endure high-velocity atmospheric reentry.

On the other hand ships using a layered-ablative-standoff-armor setup like the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whipple_shield Whipple Shield]] which takes advantage of the tendency of small objects moving at comically-high speeds to shatter on impact, and lets the first armor layer shatter the junk (which makes a very tidy hole through the outer layer), and the second layer absorbs the (much less dangerous) spray of components without having any holes in it. This would have a scarred and pitted look after a while, and if the ship's owner didn't have money to replace sections of the shield as necessary, it could be this trope to a T.

Contrast ShinyLookingSpaceships, CrystalSpiresAndTogas.

See Also: ScavengerWorld

Usually more of a [[MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness Hard Science Fiction]] trope.
----
!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* {{Vandread}} mostly has ShinyLookingSpaceships, but a notable example of this trope occurs when the crew visits a space station filled with refugees from the Harvest.
* While we are mostly given a worm's-eye-view of the ''Anime/ArmoredTrooperVOTOMS'' universe, this does apply, when the fact that a century-long galaxy-wide conflict has just ended.
* The only ships that appear pristine in the ''Anime/CowboyBebop'' world are, cynically, those belonging to the bad guys. The ''Bebop'', as well as the characters' personal ships, are all rendered with realistic levels of rust, grime and plenty of wingdings from daily usage. Not to mention Jet's Hammerhead is just a futuristic tow-truck and Spike's much-prided ''Swordfish'' is some sort of out-of-date ([[InvincibleClassicCar classic?]]) personalized space race car so neither of them are meant to be shot at. The ''Bebop'' itself is converted fishing trawler with an excusably large outer deck.
* The vehicle in ''Manga/OutlawStar'' deteriorates gradually from [[ShinyLookingSpaceships Shiny Looking Spaceship]] to Used Future, mainly because the characters do so much traveling in it.
* ''{{Patlabor}}'', with giant robots replacing spaceships.
* ''Anime/{{Planetes}}'' focuses entirely on the blue collar workers whose job it is to clean up space junk that endangers flights.
* ''Anime/MobileSuitGundamThe08thMSTeam'' has a bunch of Gundam Ground Types that are basically a pile of spare-parts for the original Gundam that are put together and armed with a couple of large rifles. Maintenance is done quite frequently, to the extent that when a Gundam isn't being piloted, someone is doing maintenance on it, to make sure they work. In fact, the main character arrives at the EFF-base, while his Gundam is being tuned. Most repairs are done simply by taking functional parts from other Mobile Suits and stuffing them on the Gundams, which results in one of the 08th MS Team pilots being referred to as "GM-head" because her Gundam's head gets replaced by that of a mass-produced GM's head after the original head was punched off. On the Zeon side, we got to see a single Zaku Tank, which is basically a Zaku torso with arms and head, stuffed on top of a Magella-class attack tank. We never saw it in action, but one can only assume it was a make-shift repair to a Zaku II that had lost its legs in battle.
** ExpandedUniverse sources indicate that Zaku Tanks are common ways to make use of wrecked Zakus, but the use of one for actual combat is quite rare. Normally they're converted for construction/combat engineer work.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* Graphic novel example: anything drawn by Jean Girard, aka Creator/{{Moebius}}, will usually incorporate elements of both Used Future and ShinyLookingSpaceships.
* ''ComicBook/IgnitionCity'' by WarrenEllis. The titular city is a spaceport constructed from rusted spaceships that has a lot of expies of classic sci-fi heroes as its residents.
* In ComicBook/FearAgent it is hard to keep your ship and jetpack shiny when you are the last survivor of a monster-hunting group from Texas with alcohol problems.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* ''WesternAnimation/TitanAE'', focusing as it does on the refugee remnants of humanity AfterTheEnd of an EarthShatteringKaboom.
* ''WesternAnimation/WallE'' pretty much embodies this trope, especially when WALL-E is compared to the sleek, shiny, futuristic EVE. Note that this is literally due to use; they were actually designed and built at about the same time, but WALL-E has been in continuous use while EVE has spent most of the time in storage.
* The Harry Canyon segment of the film ''WesternAnimation/HeavyMetal''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* Of course ''Franchise/StarWars'' more or less defines this trope, where every ship is covered with dings and scratches and epitomized by the ''Millennium Falcon'', which looks like it is almost [[WhatAPieceOfJunk ready to fall apart]]. This extends to the [[SpaceIsNoisy sound design]] as well, apparently Creator/GeorgeLucas's instructions were that he wanted to hear every loose bolt in the engines. This said, the ships used by the Empire often look a bit more swish. It helps that the Rebel ships are held together with space duct tape and TheForce, while the Galactic Empire has the full might of...[[CaptainObvious a galactic empire]] behind its military. The Rebels are still able to gain access to real formidable ships that can rival the Empires Star Destroyers, thanks to the support of many worlds who are also against the Empire, such as the Mon Calamari Cruisers, but most of their smaller vessels and fighters are obsolete or cast-off craft that no other galactic navy wanted.
** In the Prequels most of the early tech look aesthetic and functioned well, but when the Empire took over all of it was now redesigned to follow the Empires standards.
* The ''Nostromo'' in Creator/RidleyScott's ''Film/{{Alien}}'' set the benchmark for all Used Future depictions to come, taking the worn, lived-in aesthetic from ''Star Wars'' and adding on a thick layer of industrial grime. This even extends to the occupation of the protagonists--they're ''truck drivers'', hardly a glamorous job.
* A notable exception to the Rebels' rule of cast-off fighters is the X-wing; the fighter's company Incom originally designed it for the Empire as a state-of-the-art fighter, but the ''entire design team'' defected to the alliance, and brought the X-wing along with them. As a result, the X-wing is used almost exclusively by the Rebels. While it isn't the most modern fighter on the block, it's still more than enough to go up against the Empire's TIEs.
* Apparently Dan O'Bannon had a thing for working on films involving this sort of thing. Prior to doing special effects work for ''Franchise/StarWars'' and writing the screenplay for ''Film/{{Alien}}'', he was involved with the production of a low-budget college short-turned-feature called ''Film/DarkStar'' which centered around four guys who have been stuck for 20 years on a spaceship which is riddled with malfunctions since nobody wants to do any maintenance. This includes but is not limited to the sleeping quarters being blown away (forcing the men to sleep on improvised mattresses in a food storage room), storage areas self-destructing on their own, a faulty seat which has already killed the original commander, and an elevator that moves up and down at random (with an emergency hatch too small for a person to fit through and an emergency phone that is offline). Incidentally, Dan O'Bannon partially adapted his script for ''Film/{{Alien}}'' from this film, making it OlderThanTheyThink.
* ''Film/BladeRunner'': Decorators just overdid their aversion of ShinyLookingSpaceships with [[CyberpunkWithAChanceOfRain cloudy, polluted skies]], graffiti everywhere and trash blowing in the wind. Creator/RidleyScott actually said "The future is not new. It's old". And because of that it looks amazing.
* The Terry Gilliam film ''Film/{{Brazil}}'' takes place in a highly-stylized Used Future -- and, while we're at it, more or less a CrapsackWorld that simultaneously resembles TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture ("sometime in the 20th century") and DieselPunk. Everything is so used in this future, in fact, that it rarely functions properly, including but not limited to the entire bureaucracy-based system of government.
* The real world in ''Franchise/TheMatrix'', where humans have astounding technology but (having lost the RobotWar) must scrounge a living in a cramped, dirty underground city among {{Absurdly Spacious Sewer}}s and caves.
* ''Film/{{Outland}}'' the underrated RecycledInSpace 1981 version of ''HighNoon'' replaces the old west mining town with a mining "colony" on Io that is as dirty, cramped, overcrowded and "used" as the crummiest oil-rig of today. The hero and the leading lady are middle-aged, unattractive (by movie standards) and cynical. The bad guys are not aliens or galactic emperors, but drug-dealers, corrupt cops and venal businessmen. The weapons are shotguns and rifles. It takes a year for spaceships to travel from Earth to Io.
* In ''Film/TheAmericanAstronaut'', the space is pretty much dominated by roughnecks and manual laborers.
* Given the genre it's parodying, it's probably not surprising that this trope gets a {{lampshade}} hung on it in ''Film/{{Spaceballs}}''.
-->'''Dark Helmet''': Fuck! Even in the future nothing works!
* While the ''Discovery'' itself is [[ShinyLookingSpaceships bright and clean]] in ''Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey'', in the sequel ''[[Film/TwoThousandTenTheYearWeMakeContact 2010]]'' it's decidedly less so, with dust having collected on it thanks to hanging in orbit around Io for 9 years without any humans to maintain it. The ''Alexi Leonov'' doesn't look particularly shiny, either.
** It's interesting to note that the Leonov is brand new-- it was build specifically to recover Discovery after contact was lost. Then again, it's also designed to survive aerobraking.
* Every future sequence in the ''Franchise/{{Terminator}}'' franchise, with ''Salvation'' being an entire movie of this. Of course, it helps that the future the movies feature is [[AfterTheEnd set after a major nuclear holocaust]].
* In a weird example of people expecting spaceships to look like this, the visual effects people who made ''Film/{{Apollo 13}}'' said they had to make the Saturn V rocket look dirtier than it actually was at liftoff, just because people [[TheCoconutEffect wanted it that way]].
* ''Film/KinDzaDza'', 1986 Soviet CultClassic sci-fi dystopian comedy.
* ''Film/PacificRim'' has shades of it. Computers are holographic but they need huge tapes/disks for information, Jaegers are often rusty and dented and society is on the verge of collapsing with ration for work programs.
** Cherno Alpha embodies this trope the best, being the oldest working jaeger (and boy does it show among the newer, shinier ones).
* All the alien technology in ''Film/{{District 9}}'' looks quite used and gritty. The spaceship is itself a wreck that barely managed to reach Earth rather than falling apart into oblivion. The whole point of the movie is to portrait an [[FantasticRacism Apartheid-like regime]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* ''Franchise/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy'': Arthur is taken aback by the squalor of the Vogon ship, and notes that the much shinier Heart of Gold is more in line with what he expects of a space ship -- of course, the ''Heart of Gold'' is only clean because it's so new that it still has the protective film on.
* Before anything listed, [[Creator/RobertAHeinlein Robert Heinlein]] had already led the way with {{Used Future}}s in many books. Here are several books and stories.
** ''The Man Who Sold The Moon'', 1951
** ''Literature/CitizenOfTheGalaxy'', 1957
** ''Literature/FarnhamsFreehold'', 1965
** ''Literature/TheMoonIsAHarshMistress'', 1966
** ''Literature/IWillFearNoEvil'', 1970
** Even ''Literature/TheRollingStones'', 1952
* E. M. Forster wrote a science fiction short story called "The Machine Stops" (1909) about a future civilization that has grown dependent upon automation. (When the titular machine deteriorates and dies, so does the civilization.)
* OlderThanRadio: Creator/HGWells' ''TheTimeMachine''. When the Time Traveller visits the distant future, everything is older than the dust that covers it and the inhabitants make use of the technology only out of habit or instinct.
* The ''Literature/RevelationSpace'' universe from Creator/AlastairReynolds. The first ship described is about 3-4 kilometers long and has ''5 people'' running it. Vast swathes of it are described as "flooded with coolant...others were infested with rogue janitor-rats...patrolled by defense drogues which had gone berserk...filled with toxic gas, or vacuum, or too much high-rad." Amazingly, ''it gets worse''.
** A few stories take place during the earlier "Belle Epoque" age when everything was shiny, back when the Rust Belt around Yellowstone was known as the Glitter Band. Then a nanotech virus called [[BodyHorror The Melding Plague]] arrived and ruined everything.
* Everything Peter Watts ever wrote. ''Everything''. Well, no, that's not strictly true; some of his stories are set in futures [[AfterTheEnd so used they've fallen apart]]; but the rest of them are [[JustBeforeTheEnd just severely used]]. The prime example of this trope is, of course, the ''Literature/RiftersTrilogy'', particularly Lenie Clarke's cross-country tour-o-death in ''Maelstrom''.
* Philip K. Dick's "Literature/DoAndroidsDreamOfElectricSheep" has "kipple" - the accumulation of society's junk and litter, which seems to grow spontaneously whenever you're not looking. The Earth of the story had been largely abandoned in favor of space colonies, leaving many empty and unmaintained sections of the city to rot and accumulate random garbage. Appropriate, as it's the book that ''{{Film/Bladerunner}}'' is based on.
* Asimov's ''{{Foundation}}'' series. After the fall of the Galactic Empire, various factions use the remnants of the technology to live as best they can. This ranges from wealthy technicians maintaining machines they can no longer understand to agrarian societies who mine the vast abandoned cities for ready-made steel.
* ''BookOfTheNewSun'' [[WordOfGod describes the future where humanity just sits at home and waits for the money to run out.]] The central character grows up in the hulk of a former starship which still has a couple of operating devices, if you can round up enough apprentices to hand-crank them. Miners dig up old machines rather than raw materials, which were exhausted a long time ago (indeed one of their measures of time, the "age," starts when one resource is exhausted and ends when the next runs out.) The very rich have access to advanced technology, which they appear to get by trading slaves to aliens.
* ''Literature/TalesOfPirxThePilot'' by Creator/StanislawLem.
* This trope is pretty much a requirement for any {{Cyberpunk}} story.
* In MichaelFlynn's ''[[Literature/SpiralArm The January Dancer]]'', the ''New Angeles'' finds the artifact because it broke down and they had to mine on an uninhabited planet just to repair it.
* One of the novelisations of the original ''Franchise/BattlestarGalactica'' series mentions that the titular vessel has been in service for ''500 years!'' The small observation dome on top, where courting couples go to gaze at the stars, was originally used to take navigational fixes.
* ''[[Literature/TheBooksOfEmber The City of Ember]]'' portrayed a city driven by a huge dilapidated generator that was well beyond its expected life and the impending failure of the generator drives the events of the plot.
* ''[[Literature/TheExpanse The Expanse]]'' matches this trope exactly. Much of the solar system has been settled, and colonists in the asteroid belt are the furthest from Earth and the poorest around, surviving mainly off of ice found in the Belt and processed fungi. Many make their livings as [[SpaceTrucker space truckers]] in blocky, beat-up "ice haulers." Military ships are often blocky on the outside as well, but their interiors are usually shiny as hell.
* While mostly averted in ''Literature/TheLostFleet'' in the beginning (ships are consistently described as sleek and "shark-like"), the later novels make it clear that TheAlliance is straining under the pressure of a [[ForeverWar nonstop hundred-year war]] with a horrendous casualty rate. In Geary's time, ships were built to last 100 years, 150 with a refit. Now, most ships are destroyed in battle before their ''first'' year of service, so no one bothers to build them to last over ''3'' years. Since Geary is so successful in keeping most of his ships alive (by virtue of not being a moron in terms of fleet tactics, which are pretty much nonexistent in this time), the fleet's engineers now have to scramble to replace parts (such as power conduits) that start to fail with a startling regularity. When the fleet finally returns to Alliance space, he is given several of the new ''Adroit''-class battlecruisers. Geary takes one look at their specs and gives a massive WTF. It's about half the size of the previous battlecruiser class, has less weapons and defense systems, and its sensor package is completely useless for its primary role. When Geary actually visits the ''Adroit'', he is startled to see that the ship hasn't even been properly finished and that its engineers are trying to finish up on-the-fly with plenty of exposed bulkheads, wires, and conduits.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Almost all the ships in ''Series/{{Andromeda}}'', except the ''Andromeda Ascendant'' herself, which was a time-shifted relic of a bygone era of cleanliness. The series is really about injecting old-fashioned heroics into the Used Future. More Old Commonwealth ships are later recovered to become the core of the New Commonwealth's SpaceNavy, [[spoiler:only to be ambushed and wiped out]].
* ''Series/BabylonFive'' went so far as to prominently feature a station that had acquired Used Future levels of grime ''before it opened''.
** Not to mention homeless people and illegal drugs.
** The relatively advanced Minbari and Vorlon stuff, on the other hand, is plenty shiny. When it comes to ships and space stations, it seems that human manufacturers have had a decades-long preference for dingy-looking, mostly unpainted metal paneling with no easily discernible regular pattern. Ultimately, this aesthetic is not reflected in the ''Victory'' class produced [[Recap/BabylonFiveFilm04ACallToArms a few years after the series proper ended]], but [[spoiler: since only one prototype is left and its spacedock is busted]], Earthforce is gonna stay looking that way for a while longer.
* ''Franchise/BattlestarGalactica'', both versions. The ''Galactica'' is even called "The Old Bucket" by its crew.
** The Battlestar ''Pegasus'' is included in the series pretty much just to show how a Battlestar actually fit for battle is supposed to look.
** Just to rub in how much more advanced the Cylons are, once we get episodes set inside a Basestar in the second season we find out they're tastefully and futuristically decorated with curved, minimalist passageways with lights set in square sconces, [[UnusualUserInterface flowing streams of water serving as user interfaces]], bands of [[CyberCyclops cyclopic red]], MatrixRainingCode holograms in the bridge, and ''Victorian furniture''.[[note]]And that's ignoring the gooey LivingShip hanger bays and [[InstantOracleJustAddWater main computer]].[[/note]]
* In the ''Series/{{CSI}}'' episode about ''Star Trek'' fans -- all right, ''Astro Quest'' fans -- the sample clip of the proposed DarkerAndEdgier revival of the old sci-fi program has a definite Used Future look to the set, costumes, and characters.
* The new ''Series/DoctorWho'', although it's extremely soft sci-fi. In "The Long Game", the worn look is actually the point. Averted by the shiny Mars base in "The Waters of Mars", though that makes sense, since it's a fairly recent outpost with a tiny population.
** The TARDIS is practically the embodiment of this trope. It's a clapped out old relic locked into one appearance, the last of a model which was junked by its creators centuries ago, and which is in places held together with paper clips and hope. Nevertheless, it still manages to be the most powerful ship in the universe.
*** On the outside it remains as pristine as the shiniest of ShinyLookingSpaceships, except for the time it got graffitied. [[spoiler:And that was really done by Rose Tyler using the time vortex anyway]]. Travelling anywhere in it does seem to clean the outside, as seen in [[Recap/DoctorWhoS31E10VincentAndTheDoctor Vincent And The Doctor]], where a layer of posters the TARDIS has acquired is burnt away after a short journey.
*** The TARDIS seems to be a kind of EmpathicShapeshifter with regards to this - it's almost always quite shiny, but when we're shown the TARDIS belonging to the War Doctor, it's absolutely battered and covered in stains and flaking paint, both outside and in. This reflects the War Doctor's been-through-it-all, weary personality.
* ''Series/{{Firefly}}'', though there is a deliberate contrast between the ShinyLookingSpaceships of the Alliance and the used, battered craft on the border regions, as well as the SpaceWestern design of the outer planets compared with the CrystalSpiresAndTogas look of the central planets.
** Even Lampshaded in the episode "Heart of Gold", where the rich guy who runs the world is deliberately keeping the world rustic so he can "play cowboy."
** In "Ariel" the crew salvages an old air ambulance (that's still a pretty well-advanced piece of technology itself) from a junkyard as part of their scheme to rob the pharmacy of an Alliance hospital.
** In "Out of Gas" it's revealed that Mal bought Serenity from a literal [[HonestJohnsDealership used spaceship lot.]]
* Used in the shortlived ''Series/HomeboysInOuterSpace''.
* ''Series/RedDwarf''. It got much softer as time went on, due to the remaining crew members moving into the more luxurious officer's sleeping quarters (At least while still on Red Dwarf).
** The titular Red Dwarf itself was a mining ship, and other than the command deck, really looked the part. (An early plot point revolves around changing the interior color from ocean grey to military grey.) The exterior as well, until the ship was re-built in the later seasons, looks correspondingly used. Plus the "nothing ever works" aspect applies, many episodes revolve around various malfunctions. (Service robot screwing with the wiring, docking bay doors that don't open, etc.)
** The series also includes ''characters'' who are products of the Used Future, in the form of a defective hologram, a senile computer, a neurotic service droid and the way the sassy Scutters seem to have almost developed 'personality' over the millions of years they've been left unattended.
** The novelisation describes the Red Dwarf as having old, out of date technology even when Lister first got on it.
* The Traveler ships from ''Series/StargateAtlantis'' are jury-rigged to hell, the result of having to keep them going for decades on anything that comes to hand. They're still pretty badass though, given that just one of these manages to beat 3 rogue Asgard ships and then save the ''Daedalus''.
* Somehow preventing the ''Destiny'' (over 50 million years old) from breaking apart is one of the constant main concerns of the characters in ''Series/StargateUniverse''.
* In ''Franchise/StarTrek'' it shows that minor races that lack the Federation's technology and resources are filthy. The interiors of Romulan, Cardassian, Dominion, Ferengi, Hirogen, Vulcans, etc are all quite clean, and neither the Borg nor the Klingons care.
** The Klingon military is said to ''like'' keeping their ships as spartan and utilitarian as possible, viewing Starfleet's creature comforts as "soft". With the Ferengi, it's down to their extreme predatory capitalism making even properly functioning essentials come with extravagantly extortionate price tags.
** The titular space station Deep Space Nine was like this early on, as the Cardassians had stripped and/or sabotaged everything of value and importance and then some. A running flavour detail in the first couple seasons was O'Brien's constant efforts to make the station ''livable''.
** In an interesting reversal, the further they go into the future it depicts even more streamlined Federation ships. The further into the past shows the Federation ships as being fairly rough looking. The 2009 Film/StarTrek movie redesigns the ''Enterprise'' and even shows the rougher USS ''Kelvin'', making it interesting to look at the aesthetics of ''Series/StarTrekEnterprise'', the movie, and ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' eras.
* What we see of the mid 22nd century in ''Series/TerraNova'' seems to be this.
* The ''Tulip'' in ''Series/{{Starhunter}}'' is extremely old and beat-up, with huge sections of the exterior hull missing and suffering frequent mechanical problems. Doesn't help that she's been through at least two retrofits, starting out as a luxury passenger liner, then converted to a troopship, then surplussed out and turned into a bounty hunting vessel. Most of the locations visited are similarly dark and dingy.
* The Ark in ''The100'' has an air of this having been cobbled together from a dozen disparate space stations nearly a hundred years previous to the series opening. The ship they send down to Earth literally starts falling apart during entry.
* Main/GerryAnderson shows, from puppets to live-action, loved this trope. Virtually every building and vehicle exterior would feature some variant of rust, paint chipping, burn marks, lubricant stains, dirt streaks and mismatched panels. Although the ''interiors'' were usually fairly pristine.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* As with the Literature example above, any game with a cyberpunk setting will have this trope in effect by default.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Battletech}}'' plays this trope straight, especially in the beginning. With the technology for most high tech weaponry lost, the best weapons are also the oldest. And in most cases, they have been used all the time. Of course, this was only a plot device to rediscover better technology later on, and to introduce stronger units into the game.
* ''TabletopGame/TranshumanSpace'': A lot of the tech is new and shiny, but where it's used and shabby, the fact is acknowledged. The ''[[http://www.sjgames.com/transhuman/brokendreams/ Broken Dreams]]'' supplement discusses the topic in detail.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Traveller}}'' has both. There are {{Cool Ship}}s -- for instance private yachts or large ships of the [[SpaceNavy Imperial Navy]] or a Megacorporation. And then there are used ships which do meat and potatoes jobs like Free Traders, the IISS, or the Sworld Worlder's [[SpacePolice Confederation Patrol]]. Though in a potential subversion, even Free Traders are major investments; it's worth a guess that even on a small ship, the bridge (if not the hold) will look like a library or an office, rather than like a {{Series/Firefly}} or Millenium Falcon.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' plays with this trope, depending on the factions involved.
** The [[MachineCult Tech-Priests]] of [[TheEmpire the Imperium]] are quite suspicious of any technology that [[NewTechnologyIsEvil hasn't proved its worth for several millennia]], while some specific vehicles or pieces of equipment have been lovingly-maintained for ten thousand years, and are often quite battered underneath the [[BlingOfWar gold leaf and religious iconography]].
** All the [[OurOrcsAreDifferent Orks]]' technology looks like scrapyard metal haphazardly bolted and welded together, but that's what it looked like ''new''.
** Other alien races avert this, though. The [[OurElvesAreDifferent Eldar's]] equipment and armour is always [[TheAestheticsOfTechnology sleek and immaculate]], despite being older than mankind's, while the Tau were [[{{Animesque}} specifically designed]] to avert the trope in contrast to its near-ubiquity among humans.
** The Necrons' artifacts have a frightening timeless quality despite belonging to the [[TimeAbyss oldest faction in the setting]], and the [[MechaMooks metal skeletons]] residing in some Tomb Worlds are exactly as shiny now as they were eons ago. Only rarely are most Necrons portrayed as shiny, though; it takes a lucky tomb world to have survived the long sleep hardly touched by time and their living natives or neighbors ... and even then their base color-scheme might not even be "shiny". It is far more common for them to look as ancient as they are. However, Necron technology is so much more advanced despite the age (and with a large part of said technology applied to repairs of the inorganic race), they'll never appear "used" as it relates to this trope. Dirty yes, ancient definitely, but not used.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* One would be hard-pressed to call the ''USG Ishimura'' of ''VideoGame/DeadSpace'' a "[[NoOSHACompliance nice workplace]]", even if one ignores the ravenous, nightmarish [[OurZombiesAreDifferent Necromorphs]].
** It doesn't look like it looked much better even before the infection. It's all rugged-edged metal and screeching doors, hence the developers calling it "an oil rig [[RecycledInSpace in space]]".
** Depending on the section, the Sprawl of ''VideoGame/DeadSpace2'' averts and plays this straight. Sections like the residence halls, Church of [[ReligionOfEvil Unitology]], shopping center, and school are well maintained, while sections like the mining decks are quite reminiscent of the Ishimura.
** ''VideoGame/DeadSpace3'' continues the theme, being set on a series of spaceships as well as a colony on an alien planet that are all over 200 years old. One wonders how much of the ''Franchise/DeadSpace'' universe ''isn't'' covered in rust.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Doom}}'' games makes use of this. This is especially noticeable in Doom 3's 'mars city' The well maintained sections look pretty rough, the seldom used sections are dilapidated, then the forces of hell turn up...
* ''EveOnline'' the MMORPG features the Minmatar Republic, a race of former slaves whose ships are often mocked for being "Flying Junkyards", and the Minmatar pilots often iterate their sacred adage "In Rust We Trust". The trope is avoided in the game by ships belonging to the other factions, most notably and appropriately those of the Amarr Empire, the Minmatar's former enslavers, whose ships are covered in [[ShinyLookingSpaceships pristine gold plating]].
* ''{{Freelancer}}'' has this in spades. The lawful factions mostly have ShinyLookingSpaceships (with the exception of Bretonia, whose ships are dingy brown and ugly as sin), while the pirates have to get around in filthy junk heaps. The starter ship, the Starflier, is a heap of rubbish whose one advantage is its manoeuvrability, bases are often simply carved out of asteroids, most of the bars on space stations look like dingy, seedy dives, and the Leeds system is so filthy and polluted that it has smog clouds. Smog clouds ''in space.''
** Ironically the best ship the player can have is a powerful custom pirate ship.
* ''GearsOfWar'' pretty much runs rampant with this, especially the "used" part. Anywhere outside of Jacinto, and even a lot of places inside of it, are battered, damaged, run-down, and barely functional.
** Although it should be noted that most of their earth was {{KillSat}}ed by their own government, to attempt to slow down their enemies and rob them of any spoils. Those places also tend not to be inhabited by the only remaining formal government's citizens.
** From the bits seen in Jacinto that were actually in somewhat decent if disheveled shape and the backstory provided in bonus materials it's learned that these locations were at one time exceptionally pretty and opulant but after ninety seven years of total war on a planetary scale first between various human nations and then against the locust has pretty much ruined them all. Scrubbing away the grime or mowing the grass just isn't as high a priority as fending off the hulking xenocidal alien monsters.
** It gets worse by the time of ''Gears of War 3'' where humanity has lost all of its cities and all humans now exist as self-defending tribes. Everything has predictably become dirtier and more desperate. Less Used Future and more ScavengerWorld.
* ''VideoGame/InfinityTheQuestForEarth'' has the StarFold Confederacy, who are essentially a breakaway faction of industrialists and super-capitalists who don't care about the aesthetics of their ships.
* The ''JakAndDaxter'' series as of the second game takes place in a CrapsackWorld TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture.
* ''Franchise/MassEffect'' both averts and plays the trope straight. [[TheFederation The Council]] (including humanity) invariably have [[ShinyLookingSpaceships shiny looking spaceships and space stations]]. However, as you begin to explore the galaxy, visit remote colonies and the lawless Terminus Systems, this trope comes further and further into play. The difference between the Citadel ([[CrystalSpiresAndTogas the capital of the Citadel Council]]) and Omega ([[WretchedHive the "capital" of the Terminus]]) is quite striking.
** The quarian fleet is a good example of an entire fleet of ships that have been constantly patched up for the last 300 years. Makes sense considering the entirety of the quarian race (after they were driven off their homeworld by the geth) lives aboard the Migrant Fleet. Centuries of maintenance have turned most quarians into engineering geniuses. Young quarians on their Pilgrimage try to find a ship, any ship, even one that every other race would write off as a wreck, fix it up and get it flying again.
** The ''Normandy'' SR-2 has some of this in ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'' thanks to being on the tail end of a refit when [[AllYourBaseAreBelongToUs all Hell broke loose]] on Earth. Several rooms have access panels missing, cables draped across the floor, et cetera. It's still perfectly spaceworthy, just not as pretty inside as it used to be.
* TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture ''VideoGame/PokemonColosseum'' features Pyrite Town, a dirty, patchwork city full of thugs that uses banged up versions of the technology found in the game.
* ''SinsOfASolarEmpire'' makes some use of this trope for many of the TEC's craft, understandable given that the bulk of them are repurposed civilian vessels. They by and large go for the utilitarian look, but aren't all wrecked up. They do feel a lot like this trope compared to the Vasari, or especially the Advent, where ''everything'' is shiny, ironic because they're the rebel-like faction.
** The pirates ARE this trope. There are spikes on their spaceships. Why? Because most of them are refitted TEC ships and [[RuleOfCool heck yea]]!
* The Terrans from ''VideoGame/{{Starcraft}}'', sometimes portrayed as a futuristic version of the DeepSouth. The art book for ''VideoGame/StarcraftII'' describes them as the "junkyard dogs" of the setting.
* ''Videogame/WingCommander'', especially ''Privateer''. Not quite so much with ''Prophecy'', and the TCS ''Concordia'' from ''Wing Commander II''. Given that the former ''is'' "fresh from spacedock" on its shakedown cruise, and Tolwyn is using the ''Concordia'' as his flagship, though, this isn't surprising.
** The sleeping chamber from Wing Commander I even has water dripping from the ceiling into a metal bucket standing in the metal-plated floor.
* The Teladi ships in ''[[VideoGame/{{X}} X3: Terran Conflict]]'' are basically flying rust buckets, assembled in sweatshop shipyards. [[MightyGlacier They sure can take a beating, though.]] The [[SpacePirates Pirate]] and [[{{Yakuza}} Yaki]] factions have old, repainted and modified versions of the [[TheAlliance Commonwealth]] ships, and capital ships assembled from the rusting ([[YouFailPhysicsForever in space]]) remains of old cargo ships, welded together. The Argon ships also have some shades of this, at least on their fighters - the ships shown visible signs of wear, rust, and bad welds.
** The ''Albion Skunk'' of ''VideoGame/XRebirth'' is kinda like the ''Millennium Falcon'' or ''Serenity'' in that it is extremely old and beat-up.
* ''{{Metroid}}'' loves this. Most of the games consists of tracking through [[SceneryGorn partially ruined]] technology of all kinds of aesthetics, with rusty crashed spaceships and half-ruined bases mixed with wilderness. Then again, the technology levels range from OrganicTechnology to {{Magitek}}.
* ''VideoGame/VegaStrike'' firmly stands here. Humans use both cheap fairly good fighters and ShinyLookingSpaceships at 10-20 times their cost made by an elitist faction, cargo is hauled by {{Space Trucker}}s on ships looking like [[http://forums.vega-strike.org/cpg/displayimage.php?album=13&pid=1294 a box with thrusters and cabin welded on]] or [[http://forums.vega-strike.org/cpg/displayimage.php?album=13&pid=1381 a bundle of cans]]. [[note]]Design of some ships (Plowshare, Dodo, [[http://wiki.vega-strike.org/Vessel:Thales Thales]]) is clearly inspired by ''Film/StarshipTroopers'' ([[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y07I_KER5fE see trailer]])[[/note]] The same applies to some aliens -- one of NPC [[WelcomeToCorneria random phrases]] is a joking advice to keep the distance because ''"They say paint job is a structural component"''. Most space stations has pretty rough-and-tumble design style too.
* ''TachyonTheFringe'', both played straight and averted: the Bora rebels use large, heavy fighters that look like they've been put together with pieces of several ships and haphazardly patched up many times, while the [=GalSpan=] corporation has nimble, sleek fighters that look like they've just come out of the factory. The former is a mining guild which saw no need for dedicated warships (save for occasional pirate raids) until the [=GalSpan=] incursion, while the latter is the largest and most powerful MegaCorp in known space likely the only one able to field a StandardSciFiFleet. For game balance, Bora ships are slow, bulky things with thick hulls and powerful weapons (repurposed mining equipment). [=GalSpan=] ships are fast, maneuverable, but fairly weak in terms of hull strength and firepower. Also averted by [[SpacePolice Star Patrol]], whose Enforcer fighters are what happens when you take a [[Series/BabylonFive StarFury]], paint it white, and smooth out some of the lines.
* ''VideoGame/DeusEx'' has this in spades, but the sequel, ''VideoGame/DeusExInvisibleWar'' and the prequel, ''VideoGame/DeusExHumanRevolution'', have more equal measures of shine and grit.
** Timeline-wise, ''Human Revolution'' takes place during a Golden Age of technology and BioAugmentation but also with significant portions of society being left behind and clear urban decay wherever augmentation hasn't helped. The original ''Deus Ex'' takes place after a major backlash against augmentation, several high-profile terrorist attacks, and a plague that is threatening to wipe out a large number of people. ''Invisible War'' takes place after the Collapse, but with society slowly recovering.
** In ''VideoGame/DeusExMankindDivided'', taking place shortly after ''Human Revolution'' but before the original game, shows the transition from the "Golden Age" to this trope, with a huge social backlash against anyone with augmentations. The fact that some augmented extremists are perfectly willing to use terror tactics in retaliation only adds to the feeling. Compare Adam's mostly sleek-looking augs to the leader of the augmented extremists, whose augs are rough-looking and bulky.
* Naturally, the ''VideoGame/{{Fallout}}'' series' future is used, broken, jury-rigged back together, and then used some more. Particularly notable examples are the [[AllegedCar Highwayman]] of ''Fallout 2'', with its lack of hood or trunk cover (and don't even think about paint), the tragically damaged AI M.A.R.Go.T. (who states herself to be operating at 14% capacity), and the duct-tape-heavy skins of the Hunting Rifle in every last game.
* ''VideoGame/{{Marathon}}'', especially in the first game.
* Both ''VideoGame/{{Portal}}'' games bring this trope into effect. The second half of the first game and the first half of the second game.
* The ''VideoGame/HalfLife'' games showed a bit of this in the old, abandoned segments of Black Mesa but really cranked this trope up in ''VideoGame/HalfLife2'' which simply screams {{cyberpunk}} and {{dystopia}}. Every lab belonging to the Resistance is full of visibly old mainframes and CRT monitors, despite the fact that the second game is supposed to take place somewhere in the 2020s. Justified in that there's a VichyEarth situation going on so there's no way to get your hands on shiny, brand-new technology without stealing it from the [[TheEmpire Combine]].
** One of the best in-game examples for this trope is the Gravity Gun: it's the wet dream of every physicist, yet it looks rusted and ready to fall apart at a moment's notice.
* ''VideoGame/TheLongestJourney'' and ''VideoGame/DreamfallTheLongestJourney'' have this with Stark, the world of science. While the wealthy live in shiny high-rises and travel in {{Flying Car}}s, the majority of humanity lives in lower levels with slums, ghettos, and [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking art schools]]. It's no wonder that, when April first ravels to Arcadia, the magical world stuck in MedievalStasis, she's awed by its beauty and simplicity (being an art student helps). Naturally, she decides to stay in Arcadia after the events of the game. Things get only worse in Stark after that. The Collapse results in society going back to older technology, and interstellar space flight is no longer a possibility (not that life in the colonies was a picnic). Notably, things in Arcadia have also taken a turn for the worse but for a different reason.
** Life in the colonies may have been worse before the Collapse, but after the Collapse they may be dying out. It's heavily implied that the colonies were deliberately kept from being self-sufficient, so they'd always be reliant on Earth for supplies.
* Both played straight and averted in ''VideoGame/StarWarsTheOldRepublic'' in regards to personal starships. The Sith and Jedi have sleek-looking craft, the Imperial Agent has an elaborate cruiser and the Republic Trooper has a military drop ship, while the Smuggler has a well worn-in freighter and the Bounty Hunter's (stolen) assault craft is [[TheAllegedCar a rust-bucket]].
* The futuristic, steam-punk world of ''{{VideoGame/Machinarium}}'' looks extremely rusty and worn out.
* Low wealth and possibly mid wealth sims living in the cities of tomorrow in ''VideoGame/SimCity'' have their choice of either retro-fitting their ranch homes and brownstones with clunky machinery and laser lights or shacking it up in a massive, bulky, and bleak mega-tower. [[MegaCorp OmegaCo]] is considerably much grungier than its Academy counterpart, to the point that even the corporate headquarters is just a black tower with neon lights.
* {{Invoked|Trope}} by the developers of ''VideoGame/AlienIsolation''. [[ShownTheirWork Keeping consistent with the original film]], everything has a sort of "what looked advanced in TheSeventies" feel, and the ship interiors have a very worn, "lived in" look.
* VideoGame/WasteLand was fairly shiny. Fifteen years later in ''VideoGame/WasteLand2,'' the Apocalypse has meant it's tough to make anything new, proper maintanance is reserved for the most important things, and everything is getting kind of rusty. One of your jobs as the Desert Rangers is to help people repair things (explained by how the original Rangers were Army Engineers).
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* ''Webcomic/{{Freefall}}'' takes place on a colony still undergoing terraforming. The ''Savage Chicken'' in particular is still rather less than pristine even after Florence starts to work on fixing it.
* In Webcomic/{{Runners}} the usedness varies from "well-lived in" to [[IronicName Free]] [[WretchedHive Kespa]].
* ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' plays this [[http://www.schlockmercenary.com/2012-04-27 now]] and [[http://www.schlockmercenary.com/2011-01-09 then]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Originals]]
* ''AHDotComTheSeries'', thanks to the ship being a battered old ex-battleship kept running by a fraction of its proper crew.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'' if taken as its own universe rather than pure parody presents a very lived-in future where things do go wrong and break down.
** Particularly notable is the part of the opening sequence where two {{Zeerust}} rocket ships get into a fender-bender.
*** Not to mention the third one which smashes into a billboard at the end of the intro.
* WesternAnimation/TheVentureBrothers is very fond of juxtaposing the dreams of the 50's and 60's (especially the projects of Jonas Venture Sr.) with the ruins that they became in the present.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
* While technically not the future, the Space Shuttle is still a very high tech and futuristic looking vehicle even by 2011 standards. Despite this however the Space Shuttles have apparently [[http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39872790/ns/technology_and_science-space/ gotten quite dirty and banged up over the past few years]].
** And a credit to NASA's engineers as well. Most equipment built ''now'' wouldn't survive half of what those babies can.
*** [[FunnyAneurysmMoment Two of them didn't.]] Reportedly some expert warned NASA that the chances of a shuttle being destroyed in flight were 1 in 50. There were 135 flights, and 2 shuttles destroyed with all crew lost.
* The International Space Station (and other modern space stations) tend towards a bleached version of this rather than the I-pod like designs one'd expect, with exposed wires all over the place, and it's for the large part, cramped and many fixes are standard "Duct tape and Hope", as getting spare parts involves putting them into orbit.
* Compare what people in the 1950's [[IWantMyJetpack thought today would look like to what actually exists]]... It's a lot dirtier and less planned than they thought, not to mention the lack of flying cars and the like.
* Factory Robots like mechanical arms look advanced by today's standards. That said, most of them have been through some serious use and look scuffed and greased stained.
* Anyone who has been to CERN in Switzerland can attest that it feels like this trope - instead of being a shiny place for high-tech physics research, it is better described as 'urban decay and sprawl', 'general disorganized clutter', and 'mostly abandoned offices'. It's been around since the 50s, after all.
** That said, some of the newer buildings are shinier.
** Any actually ''working'' laboratory (not the unused showpieces) looks like this. It might be spotless clean (where it's required by the needs of the experiment), but it ''will'' look like "general disorganized clutter", because the main reason for a lab's existence is for people to ''tinker'' with stuff, not organize it neatly.
* Take any car made within the last ten years and crawl up under it, and you'll find some really scary stuff. All that dirt, oil, dust and grime builds up over time. Older vehicles tend to show this more apparently, especially those that haven't been brought in for periodic maintenance, but any mechanic can tell you there's a good reason why used car salesmen don't show you the underside of the car.
[[/folder]]

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