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Helicopter Pack

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An alternative to the Jet Pack, basically an Awesome Backpack with helicopter blades.

There are two basic varieties:

1) The "rotor variant", which features (usually just one) helicopter rotor, usually sticking right out of the top of the pack, centered over the user's head. Tend to appear in Steam Punk settings, in the hands of the Gadgeteer Genius, and in other situations where the author wants a more primitive-looking or whimsical design.

2) The "jet variant", which features (usually two) ducted fans or small jet engines, often stuck on the ends of long poles or wings. These tend to appear in more futuristic settings, or when the author wants a more realistic or military feel.

Compared to the Jet Pack, both varieties tend to be more maneuverable but slower (and there's no Toasted Buns issue).


A Sub-Trope of Flight and Awesome Backpack. See also Helicopter Hair, Heli-Critter (the biological versions of the rotor variant), and Future Copter (the vehicular version of the jet variant).


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     Anime & Manga  

     Comic Books  

  • Sleeper: Miles tries to escape from the police by donning a helicopter pack and flying away. It doesn't work very well.
  • The Whisperer in Darkness (2011): the aliens wear an engine pack with vibrating wings to pursue the protagonist in his biplane.
  • Agent Cody Banks: Cody uses the Solotrek XFV (below), although the scenes in the movie were produced by special effects.

  • Robert A. Heinlein novel The Star Beast: both John Thomas Stuart and Betty Sorenson use one of these (called a "flight harness" in the book). The cover of the 1954 edition.
  • At the end of The Last Hero, Leonard of Quirm is shown with a Da Vinci aerial screw strapped to his back.
  • Bernard Wolfe's science-fiction novel Limbo had a society where people willingly amputate their own limbs and replace them with artificial ones. In one scene, a group of such cyborgs fly into a jungle clearing, using contra-rotating helicopter blades attached to an extended Artificial Limb.
  • Black Man's Burden, by Mack Reynolds: One character uses a heliohopper to impress the natives with his ability to fly, as it's basically this trope. On landing, it can be collapsed into a 75-pound pack.

     Live Action TV  
  • The MythBusters built one in season four, but couldn't get it to lift off.

     Tabletop Games  
  • Fate Accelerated Edition sample character Dr. Bethesda Flushing's mobility-enhancing Experimental Helo Pack stunt, as prominently seen in her image on the back cover.

  • Hero Factory: Rotor
  • In the UK in the 1970s, the Palitoy Action Man (the equivalent of GI Joe for Americans) had the highly desirable TurboCopter backpack.
  • The G.I. Joe "Adventure Team" line had one. This was part of a shared "power-pack" accessory: you got the battery-powered pack, and you could attach things like the helicopter as well as drills and saws (for rescues), signal lights, etc. The Adventure Team also featured a character called "Mike Power: Atomic Man" (a Captain Ersatz of The Six Million Dollar Man), who could fly with helicopter blades attached to his bionic hand.
    • The Real American Hero line has had a couple of these as well.
  • Transformers: Action Masters Bumblebee came with a helicopter pack (appropriately named "Heli-Pack") that transformed into a cannon.
  • Egon Spengler, of The Real Ghostbusters, had one within the "Power Pack Heroes" line.
  • The Police Academy toyline had a thief named Claw (no, not that one) who used one of these in his getaways. The Joker later got this accessory when Kenner made their "Batman: The Dark Knight Collection" line.

     Video Games  

  • Girl Genius has a steampunk-version hybrid between this and Jet Pack, referred to as 'The Flight Raiment of King Darius the Incandescent'. Mk 2, of course. Used by Zola to escape from Castle Heterodyne.

     Western Animation  
  • Inspector Gadget has one of these on his head.
  • In The Tick, the quartet of Swiss thieves wore giant Swiss army knives on their backs, with deployable helicopter blades for flight.
  • Jack Spicer from Xiaolin Showdown has a helicopter pack; he got it as a present when he turned evil.
  • The Venture Bros.: in the episode "Hate Floats" Brock Sampson and Phantom Limb try out a couple of these.
  • As pictured, in Generator Rex one of Rex's mechanical constructs is the Boogie Pack which is capable of using part of its turbine to attack or grab an enemy. And was even enhanced with rocket launchers by Upgrade in the crossover with Ben 10.
    • Black Knight eventually gains a similar version near the end of the series.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Rainbow Dash's pet tortoise Tank is fitted with one at the end of "May The Best Pet Win".
  • The Rahaga in BIONICLE 3: Web of Shadows. It's non-canon, but the filmmakers thought it would look cooler than having them climb everywhere. Their toys use these "packs" (actually Rhotuka spinners) as projectiles, so they're not really part of their anatomy.
  • The Kopterpack from Spiral Zone.
  • Airwave, the Communications Officer from C.O.P.S., used one. Vowels, a character from the canceled third wave of the action figure line, would have had one too.
  • Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness. After the defeat of his Humongous Mecha in "Sticky Situation", Taotie produces his Simple Staff from which blades appear and spin menacingly. Rather than attack Po however, he just holds it up in the air and takes off promising We Will Meet Again...until his improvised helicopter crashes because his slacker son forgot to grease the mechanism.

     Real Life  
  • An Austrian inventor worked on the concept during World War II with the Heliofly I and Heliofly III. One of the Awesome, but Impractical weapons covered in My Tank is Fight by Zack Parsons.
  • The Martin Jetpack. It's claimed as first practical Helicopter Backpack in history and it's near-production (for the past decade).
  • The Solotrek XFV. Showed up on the big screen in Agent Cody Banks, and it would have flown for real in the movie, but an incident during testing grounded it.


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