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Grappling-Hook Pistol

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"Ah, here we are. Kevlar utility harness. Gas-powered magnetic grapple gun. The three hundred and fifty pound test monofilament."
Lucius Fox, Batman Begins

The Grappling-Hook Pistol is an essential item for any aspiring Badass Normal, Cape, or secret agent. This handy bit of Applied Phlebotinum can deploy a grappling hook with laser-guided precision to a secure holding point at the top of any tall building, allowing its user to climb with ease. Particularly spiffy examples are equipped with motors, and can function as field-expedient elevators as their users hold on for dear life. It can also be used to implement the Building Swing, though its primary function is usually just for climbing. It also lends itself to You Will Not Evade Me when shot directly at someone.

In settings that predate firearms the alternative is the grappling arrow used by bow wielding protagonists. While it can be an arrow with a grappling hook more often it's just a standard arrow with a rope tied to it.

The Grappling-Hook Pistol is generally a fairly bulky item for a handheld pistol, though unreasonably small for the length of line and hook firing charge that it contains. Its limited utility makes it a special-purpose item that the hero is unlikely to carry... but it generally conveniently appears from hammerspace when it is needed.

The hooks themselves are Plot-Sensitive Items, capable of all three variants of Instant Knots - latching onto, wrapping the cable around, or piercing their target, depending on the needs of the script. The wrap-around cable is a strange effect, as it always attaches to the anchor point snugly enough to support whatever is on the other end of the cable on the first try. If the cord can automatically retract, the person can just hold on with one hand with inhuman strength to get pulled up; this is especially dramatic if they're holding someone else with their other arm. It's also very handy when you find yourself or an innocent civilian falling, but let's hope the cord has some elasticity.

Grappling guns actually exist (see "Real Life" below), but the real ones are somewhat larger than depicted on screen, especially if not base-fired only (though recent designs allow more compact systems). As in "pneumatic Grenade Launcher of load-bearing design with built-in reel of strong rope" — though strong crossbow could work too. Hook is massive, rope adds a lot of drag, so the launcher's power (and recoil) should be considerable. See also Harpoon Gun.

Partially busted by the MythBusters in 2007. (Because the aforementioned size makes them too large to be carried around on a superhero belt.) An ascension device was built that essentially fit the size, but including the launching mechanism would have made it simply too bulky. Also, they couldn't get the grapple to consistently attach itself to the intended target.

A variation — also partially busted by the Mythbusters — has the grappling hook attached to the hero's (or villain's) car, for turning corners at high speed. There is no line capable of withstanding the sheer force that goes into a car turning at high speeds — yet.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Arachnid: Alice's weapon of choice is the "Kumoito", or "Spider's Thread", a length of spider-silk with a hooked blade on the end that works rather like a cross between Razor Floss and a Grappling-Hook Pistol.
  • The 3D Maneuver Gear from Attack on Titan is a form of this, albeit worn as a bulky belt-mounted apparatus. A bit more realistic than most, since it's depicted as having a large reel mechanism to house the cables and a pair of fairly large gas cannisters, acting as both the propellant for firing and retracting the hook as well as a way to add forward momentum to help push people along. The hooks are also occasionally seen to fail to latch to their targets, and running out of gas is a clear concern. Later into the manga, a version of the maneuver gear is seen having proper grappling hook pistols used by the Military Police's Central 1st Brigade.
  • The Big O, which took inspiration from Batman, has a set of Grappling Hook cannons on its waist, which are used to pull things around, pierce enemies, hoist gigantic robots hundreds of feet into the air supported by a thin latticework, and anchor it into the ground before using its ultimate cannon attack. Roger Smith also possesses a Grappling Hook Pistol in his watch that makes an appearance nearly every time his feet leave the ground.
  • In Chrono Crusade, Rosette has a grapnel gun built into her pistol that gets used once.
  • The Knightmare Frames in Code Geass are usually equipped with one or more grapples called Slash Harkens, including flying versions. The Lancelot has one that can act like a pole to boost itself into the air before it gets a flight module.
  • Hei in Darker than Black uses it (even with retractor) frequently on buildings and people alike, but with snap hooks on a thin metallic cable, not grappling hooks. And in two cases when he really needed to shoot some grapple far, he used a crossbow. Hei's grapple line thing also seems to be anchored at one foot and at his waist on the same side, so there's no super-human arm strength involved.
  • Digimon Adventure: (2020) has Gokumon, a mechanical skeleton that has one of these for a hand. It fires the grappling-hook hand to reel MetalGreymon in preparation for a firenado attack.
  • Doraemon: Nobita's Treasure Island: The pirate mooks led by Vivi and Gaga use grappling launchers to force their way aboard Doraemon's ship in their first encounter.
  • Gasaraki has Mini-Mecha equipped with a pair of these in the shoulders. The pilot activates them with a brief voice command and the Tactical Armor automatically adjusts angle and power to land on rooftops and hopefully latch onto something, then winches the machine up to the top. Part of the reasoning for this is to allow the TA to get to the rooftop where it can get a good vantage on things like tanks, which would have trouble firing back. As one character observes, this allows them to use infantry tactics with armor-grade weaponry.
  • Gundam
    • The MS-07 B-3 Gouf Custom, seen in Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team, exchanges the Heat Rod of the original model for an electrified grappling line. In the suit's first appearance, the pilot uses it to swing from enemy jets in flight. Note that the jets aren't good for much afterwards.
    • The EB-05s Schwalbe Graze seen in Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans possesses a GR-Es02 Wire Claw that is mounted on the units left forearm that is specifically designed to launch a dual-pronged claw mounted to a several kilometer long metal cable that is used for the purpose of latching the unit onto a ship or an enemy Mobile Suit in order to restrain them. Gaelio Bauduin ended up losing his Mobile Suits' Wire Claw in combat with the ASW-G-08 Gundam Barbatos in Mars' lower orbit; who would take the Wire Claw to replace the left gauntlet armor it had lost in the same battle. The Mobile Suits' pilot Mikazuki Augus would use his newly-acquired Wire Claw to restrain and drag in Lafters' STH-14s Hyakuri during Tekkadans' brief sortie with Teiwaz.
  • Kill la Kill: In her next battle with Jakuzure, Ryuko uses miniature grappling hooks from Senketsu to anchor her on the platform so Jakuzure's sound blasts can't move her.
  • From My Hero Academia, Sero's tape dispenser elbows can essentially work like this as the tape he shoots out from them can be rolled back in order to pull himself up (or pull other people towards him).
  • Tiana in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS has a magical Grappling-Hook Pistol as part of her gun device.
  • One Piece: Usopp, being a sometime Gadgeteer Genius, debuted something along these lines in the Skypiea arc: it fired from his belt, enabling him (in theory) to swing from tree to tree. It was called something along the lines of "Usopp AaahAahAahAahAahAah!" In practice, he didn't figure a good way to detach, which kept him from actually getting anywhere.
  • Inexplicably, Hibari from Reborn! (2004) has one inside his tonfas.
  • Joe the Condor's sidearm in Science Ninja Team Gatchaman. Not only can it fire bullets or a hookline from the front, but also has a large weighted hook on the back and the gun can fire backwards. Joe will often use this to hit enemies that sneak up behind him. In one instance, he tricks someone who knocks him down, steals his gun, and tries to use it against him to kill himself by switching the triggers beforehand. Ryu the Owl carries a much smaller, normal one as well.
  • Steam Detectives has the Wire Gun attachment for Narutaki's revolver.

    Comic Books 
  • Batman: Batman and all adaptations based on him - his grappling hook gun is the one gun that he's willing to use. Note that in his case, the line - often called "silken rope" in older stories - is a lot older than the launch mechanism; in those olden days, he and Robin would frequently just tie it around a Batarang and launch it with brute muscle power.
    • Batman's sidekicks (Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, Tim Drake, Cassandra Cain and Damian Wayne) and extended Batfamily all use the same tech or variations on it to get around Gotham at night.
    • Batman also inspired Nighthawk from the Squadron Supreme in its many incarnations. Particularly in the "Supreme" series, in his own mini he uses it to blast through his analogue of the Joker, Whiteface, to create an anchor as he jumps after a baby he threw off. Then proceeds to kill him (Whiteface, not the baby!) by ripping out his guts with it.
    • In The Dark Knight Returns, Batman opts for a grappling-hook rifle. Of course, that was made before Batman's grappling gun was standard fare.
  • Darkhawk: Darkhawk has one built into his armor.
  • Deadpool: Hilariously and realistically used in one issue. Yes, he has the gun. But using it to go up 90 floors of a building takes forever.
  • Deff Skwadron: Killboy has one built into his bionik arm, which he uses to hijack a plane (while it's still flying).
  • El Marvo: Knuckle Duster uses one of these in the first issue to descend an elevator shaft.
  • Night Raven: Night Raven wields one of these.
  • PS238: Moonshadow's costume includes a built-in grapple gun. He is getting better at using it.
  • Sandman Mystery Theatre: In the 1940s, the Sandman had one called a "wirepoon gun". His successor, Sand, has used it as a weapon a couple of times. As a younger hero once pointed out: "Wirepoon. Sounds kinda dirty."
  • The Scorpion: the title character uses a grappling hook crossbow.
  • Spider-Man: Spider-Man's webshooters are similar, but it uses a special strong adhesive chemical called "web-fluid" instead. The Spider-Man Trilogy replaces the web fluid with "natural" spider webs, akin to his time after the Other. The Amazing Spider-Man goes back to the webshooters. It's called web-fluid due to the fact that it has a tensile strength, appearance, and many physical properties similar to actual spider-webs. Given that it's essentially malleable fluid duct-tape, it's about as versatile as it gets, regarding this trope. The web-launchers are also really tiny, mostly because they're gas powered and most of the power comes from the web fluid expanding on contact with air.
    • Spider-Man's ally and ex-girlfriend, the Black Cat, has grappling hook launchers built into her gloves and is a straighter example of this trope.
  • Tomorrow Stories: Greyshirt's Classy Cane doubles as one, and he’s not above weaponizing it.
  • Watchmen: Rorschach has a Grappling-Hook Pistol that operates on compressed carbon dioxide gas; not only is it his trademark tool, he actually shoots someone with it at one point. It's also quite big, nearly lifesize to the real versions. Rorschach was actually given the grappling hook by Nite Owl, a Crime Fighting With Cash, gadgets galore type of hero who ends up appearing very similar to Batman — even though he's actually a Captain Ersatz for the second Blue Beetle. Rorschach's gun is a lot more realistic than Batman's. It's much bigger, and it also doesn't have a motor in it to elevate him.
  • Marshal Holly Day uses one to make her way across Tombstone in Wynonna Earp: Home on the Strange.

    Fan Works 
  • Calvin and Hobbes, emulating Batman in a Crossover with him, use these in Calvin & Hobbes: The Series.
  • In Light and Dark The Adventures of Dark Yagami, it's mentioned at one point that a helicopter the heroes use has "grapple guns like in BATMAN" in storage. They're used to enter Yotsuba's house from a distance, as well as blowing up the front door, somehow.
  • Here Comes The New Boss: Taylor builds a pair of grappling hook launchers into the arms of her Powered Armor. They don't quite attach fast enough for a proper Building Swing — the impact triggers either deploying barbs from the head, or drilling into the surface, depending on how it struck — but they can get her around faster than walking, and she finds combat uses for them, too, such as slowing down Rune's floating platform by anchoring herself to the platform and the ground.
  • I'm a Marvel... And I'm a DC: Batman in The Randomverse.
  • The Secret Return of Alex Mack: Hanna gets a pair of grappling hook pistols from Batman, and the Building Swing quickly becomes her favourite way of traveling around. She doesn't have his level of experience with them, but her genetic enhancements give her exceptional hand-eye coordination and upper body strength.
  • This Bites!: Cross takes possession of the "Usopp AaahAahAahAahAahAah!" device from canon, though only after telling Usopp to actually add a release mechanism to it, and makes use of it on several occasions.

    Film — Animation 
  • The Bad Guys (2022): When cornered at the museum, Mr. Wolf tries to use a grappling gun to pull himself and his cohorts to the ceiling to escape. All it does, however, is pull off his pants, leaving him in his underwear.
  • Batman Ninja: Having time-travelled to feudal Japan, Batman throws down a smoke bomb to hide himself from advancing samurai, draws his grappling gun... and realizes that it won't work as there aren't any tall buildings in the village, so he has to run away on foot.
  • Early on in The Castle of Cagliostro, Lupin uses this tool to save Clarisse from falling off the cliff, they end up in a Literal Cliffhanger.
  • In Robin Hood (1973), Robin and Little John would fire rope arrows to set up escape paths to move themselves and money. Unlike Batman's sidekick Robin, this Robin does it with a bit of realism, in that once the arrow was fired, somebody on the other end had to tie it off, instead of relying on the arrow to support the weight.
  • In Sherlock Gnomes, Watson's cane doubles as a grappling-hook gun.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Alien: Ripley uses one to send the Alien out the shuttle's airlock.
  • In the climax of The Assignment (1997), KGB commandos use crossbows firing grappling hooks when assaulting the safehouse of Carlos the Jackal.
  • Batman:
    • Batman (1989) was the first to give Batman an actual grapple gun, as opposed to the batarang with a rope tied to it he relied on before. In the film, Batman asks Vicki Vale her weight to find out if his device will be able to hoist both of them off the ground. She lies about her weight, and the device malfunctions halfway up. In another instance, he uses one that fires hooks in two opposite directions. Instead of lifting him off the ground, this allows for rapid horizontal movement by acting as a zip line. It has continued all the way into the re-imagined franchise.
    • In Batman Returns, Batman has weaponized the grappling hook gun, and makes use of it in that capacity against a Red Triangle thug holding a woman hostage. Batman fires at the goon and seemingly missed, hitting the wall behind his head. After the thug taunts Batman, the Dark Knight pulls on the rope, ripping out a piece of the wall to hit the thug in the back of the head.
    • In Batman Begins, the titular character's wonderful toy allows him to latch onto a monorail car as it makes its way towards Wayne Tower in the finale of the film. It also established a bit of slightly more realistic tech to the gun; the gun fires the projectile but it is anchored to the suit and the belt has a motor for the ascension. Since his costume is likely built with a harness that means it isn't reliant on his physical strength to hold on and allows him to snatch mooks and pull them to the ceiling.
    • The Joker's men use one in the opening bank robbery in The Dark Knight, though it is the size of a grenade launcher instead of a pistol because they're not as cool as Batman. This is also because the current film franchise is doing its best to be realistic, and the Joker's thugs don't have the benefit of Bruce Wayne's company providing them with innovative technological solutions (read: superscience); they have to go with the tools they can snag off the black market or build themselves.
  • In Charlie's Angels (2000), Alex uses a grappling hook bow repeatedly throughout the movie, most notably at the end when she hooks it into the fuselage of an airborne helicopter with enough force that it can hold all three of the girls.
    Alex: Let's see if I can win the teddyyyy beaarrrrrrr!!!!
  • DC Extended Universe:
    • In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Batman's grappling pistol sees a fair bit of use both during the fight against Luthor's mooks at the warehouse and during the final battle with Doomsday, with Batman using it to evade Doomday's heat vision.
    • In Zack Snyder's Justice League, Batman also uses it against the Parademons and to navigate shafts in the tunnels of Gotham Harbor and inside the nuclear plant serving as Steppenwolf's base.
    • In The Suicide Squad, Bloodsport's bracers include an extensible cable apparatus that he uses to help climbing, notably when trying to infiltrate the palace. He also uses it when Jotunheim is crumbling around the Squad to break his fall, although he still gets slammed into a wall, and the steel tip embedded in concrete can't support his weight for long.
  • A helicopter is brought down with one in Far Cry. Valerie accidentally fires a grappling-hook at the helicopter that is flying above the car that the main character Jack is driving. The helicopter then starts carrying the car when it goes over a cliff, and once the cable holding them together is cut, it flies up on the helicopter's main rotor and sends it crashing down.
  • In G.I. Joe: Retaliation, the ninjas use these to chase Snake-Eyes and Jinx across the mountain after they kidnap Storm Shadow.
  • Data's "Pinchers of Peril" in The Goonies. This gadget appears to be made from wind-up teeth and a Slinky and turns out to be useful not only in saving him from a fall, but also for a later Groin Attack against the Fratellis.
  • A realistic version is used in Grand Slam when the Caper Crew use a line thrower to string a cable from the clock tower of the school to the diaond company across the street.
  • The martial arts film Heroes of Sung has a low-tech version, being the main villain's weapon; an Epic Flail that ends with a bronze claw fist. He can hurl this weapon to claw his opponents or to steal objects without being noticed by the heroes, which he repeatedly demonstrates throughout the film.
  • Hobo With a Shotgun gives us an interesting variant used by Grinder, one half of The Plague. Instead of using it to scale walls, however, it's used as a kind of gallows-gun, the rope ending in a noose and not attached to the gun.
  • In Like Flint: Derek Flint has such a device in his trick cigarette lighter - the grappler is the size of a small fishhook and the line as thin as dental floss, but he can still tightrope walk on it.
  • James Bond:
    • The World Is Not Enough has Bond utilizing one built into his wristwatch.
    • And earlier than that, he uses one that's inside his belt (although it fires pitons instead of a grappling hook) in GoldenEye.
    • At the start of GoldenEye when he bungee jumps off the dam, he uses a grappling hook pistol to pull himself to the bottom.
    • Even earlier was Diamonds Are Forever, where he uses an almost plausible gun that fires pitons. How it's able to pierce the building when it travels as relatively slow as it does and support Bond's weight is anybody's guess.
  • Mallrats explicitly references not just the trope, not just its most famous practitioner, but one of the most famous scenes using it, when, chased by LaFours (the best security guard in the mall), Silent Bob pulls out a grappling hook pistol and hauls himself and Jay up to safety; LaFours rounds the corner and doesn't see where they've gone. Then, at the top of the line:
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Captain America: The Winter Soldier:
      • Black Widow uses one to swing under a bridge in order to escape from the Winter Soldier and his goons.
      • The Winter Soldier is similarly equipped, and during the climactic battle he uses it to catch Falcon mid-flight and bring him down.
    • Avengers: Endgame:
      • Black Widow uses her grappling-hook apparatus on Vormir to catch Hawkeye as he tries to jump from the cliff and stop his fall, allowing her to sacrifice herself in his stead.
      • Later, in the tunnels under the Avenger Compound's ruins, Hawkeye uses his own grappling-hook arrow to escape the pursuing Outriders up a well, cutting up the climbers still going after him with his katana.
    • In Werewolf by Night (2022), Elsa finds a grappling hook pistol within the maze and uses it twice: first grabbing the Bloodstone on Ted's back and yanking it off as he's running into the forest, and later snagging Vanessa's back to save Jack and force her to drop the Bloodstone.
  • In The Naked Gun 2½, Drebin shoots a bulky grappling hook gun to get to the top of a building, but it hits the side of the building and falls. On his second try, the grapnel snags the collar of an angry guard dog, which then chases him around the roof.
  • Chodaboy has a sex toy variant in Orgazmo.
  • The evil Marines from The Rock use a grappling hook rifle to set up ziplines, in order to infiltrate and steal the Chemical Weapons.
  • In the movie of A Series of Unfortunate Events, Klaus makes one out of an umbrella. Just to clarify: the wonderful device which can't take the strain of being folded up, being opened, being rained on, or being in any kind of slight breeze, can apparently take the weight of a fourteen-year-old boy who uses it to climb up a tower. And that's not the stupidest part. In the book, it was Violet who made the hook, and it wasn't in the pistol. The movie made Klaus a bit of an Adaptational Badass.
  • Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004). Sky Captain's modified Curtiss P-40 can fire wires tipped with spiked-grapnels, either as trip-wires for Humongous Mecha, or to enable him to fly round very tight corners.
  • In Sky High (2005), the Sidekick Hero Support training includes learning to use one of these; as with the Batman Begins example, the whole mechanism is built into the Utility Belt, which acts as a harness. It also has the option to launch a net or an inflatable raft rather than a line.
  • In the opening of the sci-fi movie Slipstream (1989), a Bounty Hunter played by Mark Hamill uses one to capture wanted fugitive Byron, who is standing on the rocks above. The grapple spike goes right through his arm and the bounty hunter just yanks on the rope, pulling Byron off the rocks.
  • So Close: Lynn has a grappling-hook launcher on her belt buckle, which she used to escape from the high building. Later, her sister, Sue, also has one and uses it in the final scene to great effect swinging around avoiding mooks, and even uses said weapon to drag a mook over a set of railings to his death. She ends up killing the main villain using this weapon as well.
  • Star Wars:
    • The "ascension guns" in The Phantom Menace, which seem to be an attachment to the security forces' blaster pistols. The size of the rope, at least, is hand waved by its being "liquid cable".
    • Revenge of the Sith: General Grievous has one integrated in his cyborg body. He uses it after being spaced out by the windows of the bridge shattering, anchoring to the ship so as to not drift into space.
    • Averted in A New Hope. When Luke and Leia are trapped by a chasm in the Death Star, Luke discovers one of the compartments of his Stormtrooper utility belt contains a grappling hook and line, but no launcher. He tosses the line so that the hook snags on some overhead piping, allowing he and Leia to swing to safety.
    • The Empire Strikes Back:
      • The BFG versions are mounted on the snowspeeders, proof that a properly utilized grappling hook can be the bane of any Humongous Mecha. It was retroactively justified by saying that the speeders were used to tow cargo containers, thus the name tow cable.
      • The same movie has Luke fires one on the belly of an AT-AT, showing that the tip is sticking through magnetism and not a grapple. He then uses it to get high enough to reach the underbelly of the machine, open a latch with his lightsaber and toss in a bomb.
    • BB-8, being a spherical droid that's limited to rolling down surfaces with navigable inclines, has four grappling hooks built into his chassis, allowing him to pull himself over steep obstacles or out of holes.
  • In Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen, freaking DEVASTATOR has them, the better to scale a pyramid to get at the doomsday machine. You wouldn't think a robot so humongazoid that he towers over the standard Humongous Mecha even more than they do above humans would do much climbing, but he can and it is awesome.
  • Van Helsing used one to escape from Dr. Frankenstein's castle. In the 1800's.
  • Silent Bob has a grappling hook pistol in the The View Askewniverse films. Don't ask why.
  • A realistic version in When Eight Bells Toll. The secret agent played by Anthony Hopkins uses a line thrower to climb the cliff, with the line playing out from a large container at his feet rather than being attached to the launcher. There's also a moment of tension when it looks like the grappel might come loose as he's climbing.
    "Well this always works in those World War 2 movies!"

  • Batman: Inferno, among other non-graphic-novel, non-kids'-illustrated-storybooks. The grappling gun also shows up in the novelisation of Batman: No Man's Land.
  • A grappling-hook arrow was used to enter a building in one of the Heralds of Valdemar novels. Telekinesis was used to ensure it made it to the target.
  • Played straight in In the Courts of the Crimson Kings by S. M. Stirling, thanks to Bio Punk. A Martian 'grappeling hook' is a genetically-engineered octopoid creature that grabs onto the nearest object once it lands, thus avoiding all these problems.
  • During the siege on a town in The Malloreon, they use catapults to launch grappling hooks over the city walls. Of course instead of using them to scale the walls, they use them to pull them down. But not before Belgarion and Durnik soak the ground good by magically creating a spring under it and turn the foundation to mud. Still, very cool.
  • In Relativity, Black Torrent gives one to Dark Flame (Sara), because he knows that she doesn't have the resources to create (or buy) high-tech crimefighting gear like he does. She takes it as a display of affection.
    Sara: He gave me a grappling hook.
    Madge: That's not the same as giving you a ring, Sara.
  • Lawman and magic user Waxillium from Shadows of Self asks weaponsmith Ranette to make one for him. The first version is simply an iron hook on a rope, but since Wax is able to Push on any metals, sending them flying away from the centre of his body, it works very well. The second version is even more complicated, because the hooks are hidden within a metal sphere and can be activated and retracted remotely.
  • The "Armalite MH-12 Maghook" features heavily in Matthew Reilly's Shane Schofield books. The amount of times Scarecrow and the other protagonists have had their bacon saved by the timely application of a Maghook would fill a small book by themselves. It's also started appearing in his other books. One scene in Ice Station also has the protagonists realize the potential of them as offensive weapons: all the force required to launch the hooks the required distance means they could potentially crush a man's ribcage at close range. Useful if you're in a highly flammable atmosphere and can't use guns because they'd cause an explosion.
  • The Kouriers in Snow Crash couldn't work if they weren't able to grab onto passing cars with their magnetic "'poons".
  • In the Star Trek: Typhon Pact novel Zero-Sum Game, Bashir and Sarina Douglas have "bolt-launchers" which resemble tiny harpoon-guns trailing monofiliment wire. They can also be set for zero-recoil for use in space, although at one point Bashir intentionally doesn't do this to use it as a low-power personal thruster.
  • Generator (Jade Sinclair) at the Super Hero School Whateley Academy in the Whateley Universe has one in an arm bracer. But she can cheat. She can cast a psychokinetic copy of herself into objects, so she can always make the "grappler" end do what she wants.
  • Justified with Flechette of Worm, who has a tinker made chain fabrication machine installed in her arbalest, which when combined with her power to make a projectile ignore gravity, allows her to overcome the difficulties inherent in this trope.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Andromeda's Eureka Maru used nigh-unbreakable Fullerene "buckycables" to collect anything not nailed down salvage. And the force lances could be rigged for grapple-launching as well (Though it doesn't quite qualify as a "pistol" since the lance is extended for grapple-launching.)
  • Spoofed in the Angel episode "Lonely Hearts" when our hero tries to use a grappling hook gun to get himself and Detective Kate Lockley (prompting the response "...who are you?") out of a room they are trapped in, but the wooden beam the wire attaches to crumbles under their weight. The device does get used once more in "She", but Angel prefers to use his powers rather than gadgets, so Wesley (being a Badass Normal and British) starts using it in Season 5 once he Took a Level in Badass.
  • Arrow uses a slightly more plausible variant with the line attached to an arrow and the vigilante either ziplining on his bow or using some kind of portable winch to rapidly ascend to the tops of buildings. No explanation as to where he's keeping all that rope.
  • The '60s Batman features a grappling hook mortar in one episode. In fact, "rope climbing up a building that looks suspiciously like the camera was set on its side" is one of the hallmark TV Batman scenes (bonus points for surprise pop-up celebrity cameos).
  • Batwoman. Naturally this is one of several "Bat-gadgets" that Kate Kane inherits from her cousin Bruce Wayne.
    • In "Down Down Down", Kate picks up a twin hook launcher invented by Bruce Wayne that naturally turns out to be just what she needs to stop a falling elevator in that same episode.
    • At the start of Season 2, Ryan Wilder finds the Batsuit and puts it on without any idea of how to use it. On firing the grapple gun to escape from a couple of thugs, she ends up swinging back-and-forth above their heads while they shoot at her — fortunately the Batsuit is bulletproof.
  • One of the realistic prop gadgets Jett has on the set is a compact grappling hook, which is used to rescue his best friend who's trapped in a well in the pilot episode of The Famous Jett Jackson.
  • One of the gadgets used by Kamen Rider Double protagonist Shotaro is the Spider Shock, a wristwatch that can turn into a robot spider and has this as one of its functions.
  • As mentioned in the trope description, tested by the MythBusters, and partially busted. The ascension system worked fine (powered by a battery on Jaime's belt) but the propulsion system to launch the hook (or, specifically, a harpoon able to embed itself securely in concrete to make a zipline) makes it far bigger than hand-held. The main thing to consider, and something they point out themselves, is that while they are skilled engineers and have access to some of the top quality materials in the business, they are still working with a limited time frame. It can be considered that if they spent years of R&D they might create something even more compact and capable of doing both things without issue.
  • Delta Runner Two in Power Rangers S.P.D. has a magnetic grappler. The Power Rangers Operation Overdrive were also equipped with "OO zip shooters".
  • Star Trek: Enterprise was equipped with the Grappler — not a primitive tractor beam, as you might expect, but twin starship-hauling-sized grappling hooks.
  • Ultra Series: A good-sized number of the Ultramen's opponents have built-in versions of these, notably Barabas from Ultraman Ace, Tyrant from Ultraman Taro (which is actually that of Barabas), Alien Babalou from Ultraman Leo, and Alien Reflect from Ultraman Mebius''.
  • H.G. Wells' Grappler in Warehouse 13. Strangely, it's put into the Warehouse after she gives it to Myka. It's hard to believe a grappling gun would be a dangerous Artifact, especially since it would be fairly easy to check for its "Artifact-ness" (simply dunk it into the purple liquid they use; if there's a flash, it's an Artifact). On the other hand, some of the items kept in the Warehouse are not Artifacts per se but simply ingenious inventions that some Warehouse agent has decided not to give to the world (the Tesla, for example, would be extremely useful for crowd control or hostage rescue; and the Farnsworth would make cell phones obsolete; then there's the electric car that can be powered by a person's bio-electricity). It is lost in Season 3 when used by Myka to temporarily keep an elevator from falling. The rope snaps a few seconds later, and the Grappler is, presumably, destroyed when the elevator crashes.
  • James West not only uses one routinely in The Wild Wild West, but also manages to have it imperceptibly hidden up his sleeve on a mechanism that would shove it into his hand on demand. He is also able to produce various other devices as needed by the plot, including guns, knives, and, most improbably, a flare launcher.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In Batman: The Animated Series - Shadow of the Bat, the grappling gun is a disposable gadget card, that lets Batman and the Bat Family move any distance in any direction across the board, and even to grab an ally and reposition them anywhere along their path in a straight line. It's useful for maneuvering and rescues.
  • The one in the Cash 'n Guns Team Spirit expansion gives the option to damage another player or steal one of their loot cards, if a "Bang" card is used successfully.
  • Dungeons & Dragons introduced the Rod of Ropes in Complete Scoundrel, which allows wielders to use it as a grapple gun, a zip-line, or as a rope dispenser.
  • There is a grappling hook coil gun in GURPS: Ultra-Tech. Rather than a pistol it's counted as a form of grenade launcher. You can use it to play Batman.
  • Legend System gives these out to Rangers as part of the Professional Soldier track. In addition to the usual wall scaling duties it lets you make a short range attack that knock opponents down and drags them over to you.
  • In Necromunda the Grapnel Launchernote  is a magnetic grappling hook that can be purchased at a trading post. The 1st and 2nd Edition versions were Rare Items of wargear that allowed a model to winch themselves up and down levels instead of moving normally and could also be used as weak Improvised Weapon. The 3rd Edition version meanwhile is a Common Item what allows the user to move in any direction by using a special action but cannot be used as a weapon.
  • Pathfinder includes some Trick Arrows serving this purpose, such as barbed arrows that grapple a foe and grappling arrows that are just small grappling hooks. In a slight nod toward realism, these arrows have a greatly reduced range compared to normal arrows. There are also grappling bolts and hand crossbows for the closest low-tech equivalent to this trope. The Technology Guide gives us an autograpnel as a two-handed gun.
  • Rocket Age features the grappler, a lightweight rifle sized grapnel launcher with a magnetic head and vise-like claws. They're usually used by asteroid belt miners who'd rather not drift off into the deep black.
  • Shadowrun features grappling hook guns, along with rules for use as weapons (dealing stun damage) and implantation as cyberware.
  • In Warhammer 40,000 the Primaris Marine Reivers can be equipped with grapnel launchers in order to scale buildings and ruins as part of their infiltrations. In the 8th Edition of the game, these launchers allow Reivers to ignore vertical distances when moving, something all other infantry models must factor into their movement.

    Video Games 
  • A Hat in Time: Hat Kid's umbrella eventually gets an upgrade from a hat badge that allows the player to grapple towards certain points.
  • The bonus levels of the first Aliens vs. Predator game on the PC gave a grappling hook to the marine to allow him to traverse the Alien levels.
  • Arumana no Kiseki (Miracle of Almana), a side-scrolling platformer by Konami released exclusively in Japan for the Family Computer Disk System, features an Indiana Jones-like adventurer who navigates a cave by grappling hook.
  • Assassin's Creed Syndicate adds these to the Assassins' armaments. They can be used to quickly ascend, or create a zip-line at variable angles that can be ridden up or down.
  • Atelier Ryza 2: Lost Legends & the Secret Fairy: The Emerald Band isn't exactly a pistol, but it's close enough: it's a bracelet which uses alchemy to launch a magical string which Ryza can use to swing across pits like Tarzan.
  • Batman: Arkham Asylum has three, the regular one to climb (he can even use it to stop himself from falling in Bottomless Pits.), a Burton-Bats style zipline launcher, and the Batclaw, a weaponized variant used to pull things around rather than for climbing.
  • Batman: Arkham City: You can even upgrade it with a version equipped with a more powerful motor that not only elevates him, but launches him in the air.
  • The Batman Forever game for the Super NES. The Angry Video Game Nerd comments on how Batman's "grappling dick" (since he shoots it out of his crotch) is activated by the freaking Select button.
  • The Special Forces expansion pack for Battlefield 2 gives some classes a crossbow that fires a cable that can be used as a zipline. Grappling hooks are also available to some classes, though they're the old-school hand-thrown variety.
  • Functionally, this was the main power of the main character in the NES game Bionic Commando. Unique in how the writers recognized the inhuman strength required and explained that he had to be a cyborg with the grappling hook built in with hydraulics for this to work. Not only that, but Radd couldn't jump. In an NES platformer. The programmers took a huge leap of faith here, but it paid off. Although the NES game doesn't show the main character (Ladd or Radd depending on which version you're playing) being of any particular build, and looking entirely human in all respects, the Playstation 3/Xbox 360/PC remake and sequel establish that the bionic arm is freaking huge, literally half the size of the titular bionic commando. As an added bonus, it allows him to pull off feats of super-human strength, though in the trailers, that strength is only applied directly to his arm, not the rest of him.
  • In Blaster Master Overdrive, the S.O.P.H.I.A. can acquire a grappling hook attachment to allow it to zip up toward certain ceilings.
  • Hazama/Terumi from BlazBlue can use his Ouroboros Drive in this manner to pull himself to his opponents.
  • Boogie Wings have your Cool Plane equipped with one of these, called the Skyhook, attached to it's underbelly. You can use it to snatch enemy vehicles and lift them before dropping them on enemies, and it's effective even when used on tanks and enemy jets the same size as yours.
  • Section has one on his Data Glove Paired in Call of Duty: Black Ops II.
  • Trilby, of the Chzo Mythos, uses a Grappling Hook umbrella, and it works.
  • Dark Messiah gives you the Rope Bow, a magic bow that upon hitting something made of wood spits out a bit of rope for you to swing/climb on.
  • DC Universe Online allows any character who chooses the "Acrobatics" travel power set to utilize Batman Style grappling hooks. It comes in two varieties: A vertical shot to ascend buildings and a horizontal shot to head towards climbable walls. It's the fastest way to ascend vertically, but limited by the need for a wall to climb.
  • Dead Cells:
    • The Heavy Crossbow is a Short-Range Shotgun with a harpoon launcher that yanks enemies into its opimum range.
    • The Tentacle does the opposite. It lassos an enemy and drags the Beheaded into melee range.
    • The Grappling Hook (which the Catcher enemy uses) can also lasso enemies, but drags them instead. It stuns, but doesn't hurt like the other two.
  • Two variations in Deep Rock Galactic: the Grappling Hook can pull a Scout across a cave with ease, or the Scout can release it halfway to ride the momentum in an arc, or they can even pull themselves into the ground to negate all fall damage. However, the Scout can't carry any large objects with them. Alternately, the Gunner can set up Zip-Lines, which can be used multiple times, by multiple characters, riding up or down, but he has a limited supply of them and they can only be fired within certain angles (i.e. not too steep).
  • Devil May Cry:
    • In Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Kalina Ann has a Gunslinger move that impales and grapples the enemy with its bayonet.
    • The Devil Bringer's functions in Devil May Cry 4 include "Snatch" and "Hell Bound", two abilities that allow Nero to pull enemies toward him or fling himself towards them respectively by extending a spectral arm. Certain objects in the environment can also be gripped, allowing him to reach distant areas or grab collectibles that are normally out of reach. Nero later replicates these functions in Devil May Cry 5 via his prosthetic arm's "Wire Snatch", although he recovers the original spectral arm variant at the end of the game, which can be used in New Game Plus playthroughs.
    • In the Special Edition of Devil May Cry 4, Lady's Kalina Ann has a bayonet that can be fired to perform similar grappling hook functions that allow her to rappel towards objects in the environment, though she tends to use it to fling enemies into the air rather than pull them closer.
    • In DmC: Devil May Cry, Dante can acquire Ophion, a form of the Rebellion that's effectively a grappling hook capable of either pulling targets toward him (labeled in-game as Demon Pull), or vice-versa, letting Dante hook himself to the target (labeled in-game as Angel Lift). Most platforming sections mandate the use of this tool while interacting with environmental obstacles.
  • In Doom Eternal, the Super Shotgun gets a "Meathook" attachment that pulls the player towards any demon it latches on to. Combine it with the Air Control (and Chrono Strike) rune and you can pull off some crazy mid-air maneuvers. It can even be upgraded to set demons on fire.
  • Earth Defense Force: Iron Rain has the Prowl Rider PA Gear, which — taking a page from Attack on Titan — comes with waist-mounted grappling hooks to propel the player through the air.
  • Earthworm Jim parodies this by using himself as a grappling hook for his Powered Armour. And his nemesis Psy-Crow uses a grappling fishhook gun as his weapon to try and pry Jim out of his suit.
  • Jessica from Endless Nightmare: Shrine is an Intrepid Merchant who uses her grappling hook-launcher to bypass mummies and Anubians, easily staying one step ahead of the player. Should the player try robbing her, she'll effortlessly launch her hook and lift herself out the area.
  • One of the upgrades in Environmental Station Alpha is the Hookshot and much of the game's platforming centers around careful use of the it to swing towards high places.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Various characters in Final Fantasy VII Remake use the grappling hook guns in-game as well as in-story. One chapter even allows players to aim the gun to places where they need to go.
    • Following the popular trend in open-world games, Final Fantasy XV's Episode Ignis gives Ignis a grappling-hook pistol that lets him quickly climb up the tall building and lampposts of Altissia from the very bottom of its canals. It can also be used to start special finishing moves against large enemies.
    • Final Fantasy Mystic Quest has the Dragon Claw for this purpose.
  • In Freedom Wars, Sinners are equipped with the Ibara Hookshot/Thorn, a thorny vine-like whip that runs on Will'O energy. The Thorns are used for zipping across the battlefield, clinging onto walls or Abductors, grabbing resources from a distance, reviving allies, and dragging drones and Abductors down to the ground. Depending on the Thorn type, the Thorn can either stun enemies, heal allies, or build protective barriers.
  • The protagonist of Frost Bite, a would-be mountain climber, uses this as both her only mountain-climbing equipment and her primary defense against yetis and the like.
  • Ganryu grants you a hooked flail made of iron claws to swing across pits and climb ledges.
  • Ghost of Tsushima has a low-tech variant in the Iron Hook, a "Ghost" tool consisting of an iron hook attached to a sturdy rope that is thrown rather than fired. With it, Jin Sakai can scale walls and sheer cliffs, as well as swing from certain vantage points.
  • Jack from Ghostrunner can shoot out an electric blue cord that can pull him towards any loose hooks or platforms within range. This is a core part of the game's platforming, allowing you to pull yourself from one side of an arena to the other to juke your enemies or to ascend up a massive room filled with lasers one hook at a time.
  • God of War: Starting from the second game, Kratos has the ability to use his Blades akin to a pair of grappling hooks.
  • Goof Troop has this as one of the most useful items. Doubles as a way to defeat small enemies or stun big ones, and as a way to make a rope bridge.
  • Grapple Dog's core gameplay centers around a dog with a grappling hook, which is used to navigate the game's platforming.
  • The Half-Life: Opposing Force expansion features a grappling hook weapon, although not a pistol. Rather, it's an alien barnacle that's been detached and that can be used on some maps to latch onto biological outcroppings. And in Freeman's Mind, Gordon Freeman's Internal Monologue continually laments that his HEV suit doesn't have one.
  • Hangzo allows your ninja hero to release a clawed hook mid-jump, for you to grab on ledges and swing across pits or climb walls.
  • Hardspace: Shipbreaker: The Grapple you get can double as this when dealing with bigger objects. If it can't pull it to you, it'll pull you to it instead, letting you swing on its beam for faster speeds. It's useful for getting around without spending fuel, just keep a hand on the brakes if you don't want to smack into something too fast and crack your helmet.
  • Hellgate: London: These appear as a Crusader weapon. However, instead of being used for anything remotely plausible, they're used to grab enemies and drag them to you.. Why? Because it's cool.
  • In Henry Stickmin: Fleeing the Complex, Henry can try using a hookshot to reach up an area. Unfortunately, the shot ends up missing its mark and causes Henry to bash his head into a door.
  • Batman uses it again in Injustice: Gods Among Us. This time, he can shoot it either forward or upward (to intercept the opponent if he or she is jumping). Along with making a Mortal Kombat Shout-Out.
    Batman: Get down here!
  • Hidden Dragon: Legend have one called The Claw, which you conveniently obtain in the basement of the Taiyuan Pagoda, since the same stage requires you to scale the pagoda's rooftops with it. You'll use the claw to snatch ledges and platforms for several climbing-based missions, too, besides using them to take down the pesky Flying Puppets from ground-level.
  • James Bond:
    • In Agent Under Fire and NightFire, Bond actually has one of these inside his cell phone!
    • In James Bond 007: Everything or Nothing, Bond carried a variant of this, called a "rappel gun", which functioned like a GHP, but he had to walk up a wall in order to retract it (!).
    • In The World Is Not Enough, Bond gets a watch with several functions, including a grappling hook. Of course, in single player you had to aim for a large yellow and black block on the ceiling, after which a rope would "fall down" for Bond to climb.
    • 007: From Russia with Love featured the "Rappel Belt." True to the '60s flair of the game, this was a hook that detached from Bond's belt and had to be thrown onto ledges, and climbing would retract it. It was a little more flexible than Eon's rappel gun in that Bond could swing across ledges with it.
  • Jet Island: The player has two mounted to the wrists. They end up being the main way to get around quickly.
  • Balthazar, a pirate boss from Jitsu Squad, wields an anchors as his weapon, which contains a hidden chain-launcher that turns his anchor into an impromptu grappling hook gun. He'll repeatedly use his anchor-on-a-chain swing around the arena during battle.
  • Just Cause and its sequels. Used not only to hijack planes and helicopters, but also to glide while being towed by a car. The sequel also allows the player to hook a mook to a vehicle and drag him around, while 3 amps up the destructive potential by letting both ends, attached to different objects/people, retract at high speed, turning the grappling hook into an excellent building wrecker. In the first game, it was an actual pistol, which meant equipping it restricted you to one other one-handed weapon, while later games turned into an gauntlet that was always available and never limited your weapons.
  • Justice League Heroes puts an interesting twist on the usual usage. Since there's little to no platforming in the game, Batman's GHP instead is used in an attack: He shoots it at an enemy, and the GHP pulls him into the enemy for a kick.
  • League of Legends has a few variations of the concept:
    • Nautilus does this with an anchor on a rope, pulling him to things it collides with. He can use it on terrain to get the distance to escape or engage, and if he hits an enemy with it, they both slam into each other in the middle.
    • Blitzcrank mixes this with a Rocket Punch, where he launches off his right hand to grab an enemy and pull them back to him. It's a simple, and incredibly effective way to doom an important target (like, say, the squishy enemy carry) to the mercy of Blitzcrank and his team.
    • Camille has a pair of hookshots built into her huge cybernetic murder legs, and fit into a more traditional example since they do no direct damage to enemies, functioning instead to pull her towards a wall. Once there though, it's divekick time.
    • Akshan has a magic, light-firing, ally-resurrecting gun called the Absolver that he also attached a grappling hook onto to fit his fighting style. Making use of both the "grappling hook" and "pistol" components, he can swing around terrain and blast apart evildoers with the same device.
  • The Legend of Tian-ding has the titular character using a spiderwire, a grappling hook on a fine chain for snatching ledges in mid-air to reach higher areas. One stage even allows him to perform Stepping Stones in the Sky by using the wire to snatch flying eagles.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past: The series-classic Hookshot made its debut in this game and has appeared, in some form or another, in nearly every game in the series afterwards. It is a Schizo Tech-tastic item that shoots out a Variable-Length Chain that latches on to wooden objects or specialized targets. In this game specifically, it is the flagship item of the Swamp Palace.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time: The game has both the basic Hookshot and the upgraded Longshot, which, obviously, is quite a bit longer. Only Adult Link can use them, since his Child form already has the Boomerang for long-range stunning attacks.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask: Link, who is always a child in this game, can now find and use the Hookshot in his current age, namely a version whose range is average between the two Ocarina versions. None of his alternate versions (Deku, Goron, Zora, Fierce Deity) are suited to use it.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages: The Switch Hook, rather than pulling Link toward an object, makes him switch places with it. It can also be upgraded into the Long Hook, which is about twice the length.
    • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker: There's a regular old Grappling Hook, used to allow Link to traverse pitfalls or reach higher places with the help of special wooden setpieces that the Hook can be attached to. However, the classic Hookshot is present as well, only it appears much later than in other games, namely in the penultimate dungeon, so the Grappling Hook won't be superseded for a while (especially since it has other uses anyway, such as acting as a salvage crane to retrieve underwater treasure and being used to steal enemy items).
    • The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess: Found in the Lakebed Temple, the Clawshot has a few unique differences from the Hookshot (which by itself is absent this time): If you're latched onto a ceiling, you can adjust the chain's extension to go up or down; also, Link remains attached to the targeted object until the Clawshot is put away. Rather than getting a length upgrade, you get second one later on in the City in the Sky, allowing Link to Building Swing with the best of them.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass: Being the direct sequel to The Wind Waker, the game brings back the Grappling Hook, which works differently to take advantage of the game's touch controls. Any wooden pole can be reached to as soon as Link shoots the hook at it. If the item is used between two poles, the rope will serve as a tightrope for Link to cross over or as a giant slingshot to launch him across gaps.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks: Byrne wears what amounts to a really big Hookshot as an Artificial Limb over his left arm.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword: The Dual Clawshots return in this game, and unlike in Twilight Princess they're collected together after completing the Lanayru Silent Realm challenge. It can now be used to latch onto vines, though it's important to keep an eye on Link's stamina. Due to its place of obtainment, it is implied that, like the Beetle and the Gust Bellows, it's an invention by the Ancient Robots.
    • The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds: The hookshot, in its default form, returns in this game. It is usable in eight directions rather than four like in A Link to the Past. It can also be upgraded to work faster and inflict damage, whereas in ALttP it would only stun enemies that weren't specifically programmed to die from it.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes: The game features the Gripshot, where it can be used to grapple onto your own teammates to traverse ledges when nothing else is available to grapple onto.
    • In Super Smash Bros., Link and his clones can use the Hookshot to latch onto edges to avoid falling from the battle stage. The Twilight Princess incarnation of Link uses the Clawshots instead. By Ultimate, normal Link averts this as he's based on his The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild version, who doesn't have a Hookshot. (Young Link and Toon Link still have their Hookshots, though.)
  • LEGO Adaptation Game:
    • The LEGO Batman games naturally have Batman and other members of the Bat-Family wield grappling hook pistols as the only form of "gun" in their arsenals.
    • The LEGO Star Wars games allow any character with a blaster to connect it to a grappling hook. The "blaster" category includes all varieties of pistols, as well as Chewbacca's crossbow and the Ewok's slingshot.
  • Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name sees Kiryu, as the government agent "Joryu", given a special wristwatch capable of firing grappling wires called the "Spider". In addition to being shown in cutscenes letting Kiryu swing through the air, it can also be used to pull in enemies and any weapons lying around. Outside of combat he can use it to grab items from out-of-reach places such as trees or boats.
  • One of the new power-ups introduced in LittleBigPlanet 2 is the Grappling Hook. It basically works like a ranged version of the regular grab, plus the mobility of a Grappling Hook, of course.
  • Loopmancer sees you using one to snatch surfaces, where onscreen targets you can cling on are marked with indicators. It's very useful in areas loaded with platforming elements.
  • The sci-fi third-person shooter Lost Planet allows the protagonist to grapple up objects among other things with his Anchor. Note that the protagonist does not need a special weapon in order to grapple, but he must be on the ground to use it.
  • Meatgrinder grants you grappling-hook boots, with the barb shooting out the heel. You use it to latch on mooks and drag them to their deaths.
  • Mercenaries 2: World in Flames has a grappling hook used exclusively for the purpose of hijacking helicopters midair.
  • Mega Man:
    • The Wire Adapter from Mega Man 4 can only be fired straight up, but otherwise follows the trope. The Rockman 4 Minus ∞ ROM Hack upgrades the Wire Adapter by expanding its range and allowing it to damage enemies.
    • The Thunder Claw in Mega Man 8 a Grappling Hook Pistol that doubles as a weapon. It extends its normal firing range if a grabbable object is nearby.
    • Mega Man X2 has the Strike Chain, which is a horizontal-only variant. Charging the weapon with the X-Buster upgrade extends its range.
    • The Chain Rod in Mega Man Zero 2 is perhaps the most versatile. It can be fired horizontally, vertically or diagonally and let you grapple from nearly any surface. It can also be used to pull crates, and occasionally, enemies around.
  • Metroid:
    • Super Metroid: The Grapple Beam makes its debut in this game. It's an electric gadget that allows Samus to latch onto certain objects so she can swing around.
    • Metroid Prime Trilogy: In both the first Metroid Prime and in Echoes, the beam when acquired takes the form of a literal gun that clips under Samus' left arm. In Corruption it takes the form of a disc attachment to the back of Samus' left hand — but adds being able to latch onto and yank away certain obstacles like metal bars, plates, enemy deflector shields, etc. Later in Corruption, Samus gets the Grapple Voltage device which augments the functionality further by allowing her to siphon energy from her tanks into another device to power it up, or siphon it away from a device or enemy to recharge her own reserves. A Phazon-based version allows her to dump Phazon into the target; she can use this to prolong her purity on Phaaze as well.
    • The Grapple Beam also appears in the Super Smash Bros. series, where it can work as a long-distance enemy grab, or let you grab stage edges to recover from falls. In Brawl, the emergency pistol Samus wields in armorless ("Zero Suit") form includes grapple functionality as well.
  • The fishing pole in Minecraft isn't meant for this purpose, but it has the ability to stick to mobs and when you yank the reel back, the mob is dragged to you, making it extremely handy to drag flying mobs like Ghasts and Blazes to you so you can whack them with your sword, or hook the line to a mob across a cliff and yank the line to make them fall in the abyss or even a lava pit.
  • Mavado from Mortal Kombat uses a pair of grappling hooks to maneuver across the battle field, either evading the enemy's attacks or closing the distance.
  • Mother 3: Duster uses Rope Snake as a living version of this, allowing him to swing across gaps in a dilapidated castle. In a later chapter, the entire party has to hang onto the snake while it hangs from the Pig Army's main aircraft, but it can't support their combined weight. Having thus dishonored its ancestors, it changes its name to Snake Rope and mopes. Lucas gains Rope Snake as part of his moveset in Super Smash Bros., where he can use him as a grab to prevent himself from falling into pits or off ledges.
  • In Mystery Trackers 2: Raincliff, you end up using a bow and grappling-hook arrow to climb a palace balcony at one point.
  • Nexuiz and its Spiritual Successor Xonotic both have their own version of the Grappling Hook.
  • Rachel from Ninja Gaiden has a device on her arm that fires a grappling line.
  • Swaine's pistol in Ni no Kuni is a variation; it fires multiple wires that are too weak to be used for climbing, but it can be used to pick locks and open treasure chests that would otherwise be out of the party's reach.
  • In the first No One Lives Forever game, one of the bonus items Cate Archer can get is a grappling hook hidden inside her belt buckle used primarily to reach secret areas.
  • One of the brush techniques in Ōkami allows Amaterasu to let the vine of a hovering flower platform attach her to reach previously inaccessible spots.
  • Owlboy: Twig can use his web to grapple on objects and pull the team towards it.
  • Painkiller has the titular grappling hook-type weapon that is used to pierce enemies and pull their now-lifeless corpses to you, as well as being able to destroy/collapse items, usually in a single shot. You never use it for climbing though, seeing as how the cord/rope is a frickin' laser that's used to incinerate enemies.
  • The Oraclos chain in Pandora's Tower can be used this way. For extra precision, the chain's aim (provided by the Wiimote) has an augmented zoom around the desired target.
  • Alex Mercer from [PROTOTYPE] does not really need a grapple device, being an excellent traceur. However, his upgraded Whipfist does allow him to reach out and snag stuff to either pull to him or, if it's bigger, pull himself to it.
  • Quake:
  • Rapid Reload have the players using a grappling-hook gun in several areas, to grab on overhead ledges either to avoid boss' attacks or to access hidden secrets.
  • The Swingshot in the Ratchet & Clank series. It allows Ratchet to latch on to floating Versa-Targets and swing across gaps, and has appeared in every game in the franchise to date. The Hypershot in Up Your Arsenal marks the switch from a metal cable to a light-based one, and combines the Dynamo functionality from Going Commando, allowing Ratchet to activate floating platforms with it as well. The second game also exclusively has blue Versa-Targets that let Ratchet pull objects towards him.
  • In Remnants of Skystone, one of the character classes has shooting out grappling hooks willy-nilly as their special ability.
  • Resident Evil:
    • Ada Wong frequently uses one in Resident Evil 4, Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles, and Resident Evil 6. And Leon uses a grapple belt to escape one of The Dragon's traps in 4.
    • In Resident Evil 0, the player characters periodically had to make use of a grappling hook gun to access certain areas. However, it was a closer in size to a rifle than a pistol, taking up a 2/6 inventory blocks at one time. And it realistically can only hold 150 pounds max, which means only the lighter Rebecca Chambers can use it to pull herself up.
  • The Loader in Risk of Rain can launch their Hydraulic Gauntlet to cover great horizontal distance by grappling an enemy or wall. In Risk of Rain 2, the Grapple Fist lets them swing around the stage, which helps build momentum to deliver a stronger Megaton Punch. The alternate skill weaponizes it to deal damage and pull small enemies.
  • Rocket Jockey gives each rocket bike two grappling hooks-mostly for better turning, but the two cables can also be joined together, creating clotheslines and attaching objects to each other. The greatest uses for them are on other jockeys, of course!
  • Inputting "Grapple" in Scribblenauts gives you one of these. It's very useful.
  • In Shadow Complex, Jason can acquire a wrist-mounted Hookshot, which allows him to not only latch onto most walls and ceilings, it can also be used to yank certain objects away.
  • Sipho: The Grabber zooid is an organic grappling hook, able to be used to both pull in mobile objects and be pulled towards immobile ones.
  • In Strife this is used against you by a boss. It doesn't do much damage on its own but he likely throws you off high ledges in the process.
  • Steel Assault: You start off with two-way grappling hook-gun as your equipment, firing a long wire with a hook on each end (either horizontally or vertically) to help you cling on structures. You seems to have an infinite amount of hooks as well, necessary in levels requiring plenty of climbing or navigating over pits.
  • Sundered has the Grappling Hook, which is mounted on Eshe’s belt. When fired at one of the floating metal rings found in certain areas (or at a boss’s Elder Shard fragments), the Grappling Hook will latch onto the ring and quickly reel Eshe in, flinging her past the ring like a slingshot.
  • In Super Mario Galaxy 2, Yoshi's tongue can be used this way when floating flower-shaped hooks are nearby.
  • Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror has one that allows Logan to latch onto wires and use them as zip lines.
  • The extremely useful grappling hook from the Tenchu series of Ninja Stealth Based Games is apparently an ordinary, hand-swung version — but nonetheless shares all of the features of the Grappling-Hook Pistol, including the ability to almost instantly pull you to the anchoring point. Must be a ninja thing.
  • The first and second Thief games play the arrow-with-rope (and arrow-with-vine) version completely straight - rope arrows and vine arrows are part of your fairly wide arsenal of trick arrows. In certain missions, using them is often the only solution to access otherwise inaccessible and plot-relevant areas. Rope arrows were taken out of the third game due to technical difficulties and replaced with climbing gloves. The fourth game reintroduces them and also adds a small grappling hook pistol in addition to the bow-fired trick arrows. Said grappling hook is able to stick to surfaces that are inaccessible to rope arrows. (Hence why the player will have to use both the pistol and the arrows for different climbing challenges and puzzles.)
  • Time Crisis: Marcus's gun has a grappling hook on it, which allows him to swing all over the place during the boss battle making him harder to hit.
  • In Tomb Raider, Lara Croft uses them. A grappling hook was used in the beginning cinematic in the original Tomb Raider game but never used again; however, in the remake Lara actually used her grappling hook Magnetic Grapple. Lara's grappling gun seems more like a replacement for her super long jumps she used to have in the older games because beginning with Legend, Lara's jumps became "bunny hops". Her current magnetic grapple is small, but workable with Phlebotinum. Chronicles is the first time you could use a grappling gun. Unlike the newer one, or even Anniversary, this grappling gun was much closer in size to a real one and you actually had to be precise with your aim. In the newer games, all you have to do is position the camera and Lara in the general direction of a ring to successfully use your grapple.
  • In the Toy Story 2 Licensed Game, in the "Elevator Hop" level, Buzz can unlock the Grappling Hook by finding Mr. Potato Head’s foot and bringing it to him. To use it, Buzz can lock onto special targets in the visor view.
  • Jazz and Swindle in Transformers: Fall of Cybertron have an energy based variant, used for both climbing and pulling away wreckage.
  • Tribes: Vengeance (A game set in the Starsiege universe) has a grappling hook pistol, which shoots out a hook at extremely fast speeds and latches onto any surface except for players. You can use the grappling hook to pull extremely fast turns when flying down mountains, use it to latch onto vehicles, and if you have insanely good aim, grab weapons and ammo off the ground while moving.
  • Variant in Triggerheart Exelica: Exelica and Crueltear use the grappling hook cannon-like Anchor Shot to, rather than travel, grab and pull enemies toward them, and spin them around as a shield, or toss them at an enemy hammerthrow-style.
  • ULTRAKILL: The Whiplash is a green arm that is unlocked by killing V2 in Greed. It allows V1 to hook onto beacons, grab items from afar, pull light enemies towards them, or pull themself towards heavy enemies. However, using the Whiplash builds up 50 points of Hard Damage whenever it's used (unless V1 is underwater), so players either wait it out, risk it, or get a higher style rank to quickly get rid of the Hard Damage.
  • In Umihara Kawase, the main character's rubber fishing line works like this.
  • Wario World has a skeletal pirate boss named Captain Skull. He uses his extendable Hook Hand to quickly move around the two halves of a wrecked ship that serve as his battle arena.
  • Jack van Burace of Wild ARMs and its remake, Wild Arms Alter Code: F, gains one of these in the course of the game. It's mostly used to get through otherwise-unpassable sections of the dungeons. Given the kind of acceleration the thing has, it's a wonder it doesn't rip his arms off or pull itself out of his grasp. Full stop to full speed in roughly zero time.
  • Wolfenstein: The New Order has a hand-cranked, grenade-launcher variant.
  • The Worms series of games feature a "ninja rope" that can be lengthened and retracted at will, plus released and re-fired while in midair over and over to replicate Spider-Man's method of travel. Mastery of the ninja rope is necessary to become a true worm warrior.
  • XCOM
    • The Skeleton Suit and Ghost Armor in XCOM: Enemy Unknown have a built-in grapple hook gauntlet on the left arm that costs one action point to use. "Throwing the hook", as the soldiers sometimes say, has several advantages: for one, it can put the soldier in high ground that would be much harder or outright impossible to reach otherwise unless you have the Muscle Fiber Density gene mod; two, it sometimes allows the soldier to move even farther than they would by dashing, while only costing one action point; three, it doesn't trigger reaction fire, bypassing Overwatch and Suppression; four, unlike the Archangel Armor, the hook has infinite uses, so it pairs well with more mobile classes like Assaults; and five, in Enemy Within, a soldier with Mimetic Skin that makes a move starting where an enemy can see them will only be revealed after reaching the grapple point, instead of before like when moving by other means. The Skeleton Suit is ideal for snipers to get to high ground quickly before you get the Archangel Armor, and synergizes extremely well with any soldier that has the Damn Good Ground perk; Ghost Armor works much the same, only losing out to Archangel Armor in the case of a Squadsight Sniper, who optimally should depend the least on natural high ground.
    • Spider and Wraith Suits from XCOM 2 both have built-in grappling hooks. The Serpent Suit in the Alien Hunters DLC has a single-use freeze ability by tossing the hook at a target. Skirmishers in the War of the Chosen DLC have a hook by default, and can use it to pull humanoid enemies in with Justice (or pull themselves to an enemynote  with Wrath) and deliver a melee attack. In all cases, when used for movement purposes, Grapple is a free action but has a 3-turn cooldown.
  • Rex, the protagonist of Xenoblade Chronicles 2, has one of these built into the left arm of his salvager outfit, ostensibly to help him navigate the cloud sea and pull himself out of it. He can use it in battle to dig small health potions out of the target, and later learns how to use it to topple enemies as part of a Driver combo.
  • In XIII the character has a grappling hook launcher that attaches to hooks placed around the environment. while the launching mechanism is so small that it's hidden by the player characters hand while he's using it, it appears to attach to a harness the player wears.
  • One of the main mechanics in Yo! Noid 2: Enter the Void is a yo-yo that can attach itself to some parts of the scenery and let the player swing and pull items.

    Web Animation 
  • DSBT InsaniT: Frog gets one as a prize at the end of 'VRcade'.
  • Homestar Runner: The Cheat Commandos use one to get to the supermarket the evil Blue Laser are all shopping at in "Shopping for Danger."
  • In Red vs. Blue S9, Agent Carolina. Apparently, grappling a turret and then pulling can be hilarious. Not for the user.
  • In Volume 7 of RWBY, Lie Ren gets an upgrade to his guns StormFlower. The long blades on the gun can aim forward and be fired off with long cables. With the blades making two anchor points, Ren can then launch himself forward with a powerful kick.

    Web Comics 

    Web Videos 
  • Pirates SMP: The Grappling Squok from Alex's Mobs, which is made from three Giant Squid tentacles (among other things). It's a crossbow which can shoot up to four tentacles as grappling hooks, which are strong enough to resist the pull of a lasso when all four are in use. Scott uses his to speed up travel around the Faction Isles rather than just walking places, as well as for occasional trolling.
  • Fishing rods get used as such by the SMPLive characters — frequently being utilized to grab and throw other players instead of for their intended purpose.

    Western Animation 
  • Æon Flux can convert her standard gun into one with the simple expedience of replacing the magazine with a pressurized gas reservoir and cramming the hook down the barrel.
  • Avatar:
    • Avatar: The Last Airbender featured both low and high tech versions: the Yu-Yan Archers fired ropes tied to arrows, enhancing their capacity to give chase. And, as seen in "The Northern Air Temple," the Fire Nation's all-terrain tanks have grappling-hook-tipped chains they fire to ascend shear surfaces. Notable in that both examples are in use by the same society in the same era.
    • In The Legend of Korra, the Metalbending Police Force uses what could best be described as steel Grappling Hook whips, which are equally useful in snaring crooks as they are in swinging from building to building.
  • Batman: The Animated Series, Justice League, Super Friends, The Batman (where he once used his Grappling-Hook Pistol to apparently hook onto the sky), Batman: Gotham Knight, and especially Batman: The Brave and the Bold. Also, Harley Quinn attempted to use her own device for that. It didn't have enough punch to throw the hook high enough, but turned out useful for knocking people out.
  • Gadget from Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers uses something similar in the pilot "To the Rescue"; however, instead of a grappling hook, it uses a suction cup (as do most of her inventions). In other episodes, she uses a self-made crossbow with the same function.
  • Shnitzel has one in the Chowder episode "Weekend at Shnitzel's" that he uses when he abducts Senorita Mesquite.
  • Detective Yashimoto of Cybersix has the Grappling Hook rifle thing that he carries around his back.
  • This is one of the most commonly used attachments for Darkwing Duck's all-purpose "gas gun."
  • DuckTales (2017): Webby carries a Grappling-Hook Pistol on the team's various adventures.
  • In Ed, Edd n Eddy, Ed uses a grappling hook gun made out of kitchen utensils and a hairdryer to crash Jimmy's birthday party. He crashes straight into the wall instead. He does this while ziplining on his tongue, might we add.
  • Parodied in The Fairly Oddparents when Adam West guest stars as part of a Crimson Chin movie being made. He gets around primarily with one, and tells everyone else "You need to get one of these."
  • In a clear parody, the Futurama episode "A Head In The Polls" has Leela using a grappling hook rifle. On landing, it walked over to a pipe like a spider, grabbed on, and tugged twice on the rope to tell her it was anchored. Yay for the year 3000.
  • Alpine from G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero. Even his toy comes equipped with one.
  • In the first episode of Gravity Falls, Great Uncle 'Grunkle' Stan Pines allows his niece and nephew Mabel and Dipper to take whatever they want from the Mystery Shack gift shop. While Dipper chooses a hat with a pine tree emblem, Mabel pulls out a GRAPPLING HOOK! It actually comes in handy in the season one finale.
  • One of the functions of the goop shooters in Grossology.
  • In Justice League Action, Batman tells (and shows) Blue Beetle why he built his Grappling-Hook Gun when they see a younger Batman attempt to scale a building with just a normal grappling hook and rope — he ends up missing his first attempt and making sure no one saw him as he went from attempt 2.
  • Kim Possible has one of these. It's shaped like a hair dryer. Her use of Shoe Phone tech is probably based more on fashion sense than stealth, though, because everyone knows she's a superhero.
  • Although not named, it's in fairly common usage in Max Steel: The titular character has a gun version in hammer-space, while one of his partners, Kat Ryan, has a small version built in to her watch.
  • Polly Pocket often uses a gun that shoots a suction cup attached to a rope.
  • In Welcome to the Wayne Olly has one called the "Grapvine" that has corks stuck in the hooks, which he uses frequently to go around and to fight.

    Real Life 
  • This is a common component in Batman cosplays.
  • Plumett Ltd. — several variants, shoulder fired one is 47kg. 45m horizontal:30m vertical or 55m h 15m v trajectory. Sadly, it is too bulky for Batman's utility belt.
  • REBS Launcher — up to 50 m upwards or 80 m horizontally. A version of this weapon was used during the D-Day landings to fire grapnels with climbing ropes attached up cliff faces on the French coast, enabling Royal Marine Commandos and US Rangers to storm German positions on the heights. The weapon itself was too large to be man-portable, though, and certainly not a pistol.
  • The Russian 6.27 gauge KS-23 shotgun can fire a grappling hook with blank rounds equipped. Again, not a pistol, but still man-portable.
  • In 2015, inventor Colin Furze made his own grappling hook based on the ones in Assassin's Creed Syndicate.
  • In December 2019, as part of a "Maker Secret Santa" project (in which six teams of YouTube Gadgeteer Geniuses/Mad Scientists made one-of-a-kind gifts for each other, with the videos of their construction being accompanied with humorous skits), Allen Pan made a grappling hook swing set as his gift to Colin Furze.
  • The Hacksmith went and made a Batman-themed grappling hook gun. They later improved on the design and, by hiding away all of the electronics in a backpack, made a version small enough to be wrist-mounted as part of their Mandalorian armor series.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Grappling Hook Gun, Grappling Gun


Codename: "Joryu"

As an agent of the Daidoji government faction, Kiryu infiltrates a criminal palace.

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