A grappling hook is a hook attached to a rope, designed to be thrown or projected a distance, where its hooks will engage with the target. Grappling hooks were originally used in naval warfare to catch the rigging of an enemy ship so that it could be drawn in and boarded. Later, grappling hooks were also used in rescue work or to assist in scaling walls.
The most common design consists of a central shaft with a hole at the base of the shaft, called an "eye" to attach the rope, and three equally spaced hooks at the end of the shaft, so arranged that at least one is likely to catch on some protuberance of the target. Some modern designs feature folding hooks to resist unwanted attachment. Most grappling hooks are thrown by hand, but some used in rescue work are propelled by compressed air or a rocket.
Grappling hooks are currently used by combat engineers breaching tactical obstacles. The grappling hook is launched over the open ground in front of the obstacle and dragged backwards in an attempt to detonate trip-wire-fused land mines, and can be hooked onto wire obstacles and pulled to set off any booby traps on the wire. A tool available for this purpose is the rifle-launched grapnel, a single-use grappling hook placed on the end of an M4/M16 rifle. A grapnel can clear up to 99 percent of the trip-wires in a single pass.
In certain games and movies, elaborate fictional versions appear, often referred to as a grappling gun. This usually consists of a launcher (sometimes resembling a gun), a small electric motor, and a rope cartridge with hook. The motor enables the hero to pull himself up (by wheeling the rope back to the launcher, while the hook is caught onto a solid anchor) or to drag and people.
The grappling hook became popular as a video game mechanism after the release of the Quake CTF (Capture the Flag) modification on October 2, 1996. This addition to Quake allowed players to fire "the grapple" at any surface. Once embedded in that surface, the grappling hook pulled players to that location. This mechanism allowed players to reach areas of the game level that would otherwise be inaccessible. The huge popularity of this "mod" resulted in the inclusion of both CTF modes and grappling hooks in many future games.
It usually consists of a grappling hook launched from a gun-like firearm. The hooked end can catch onto a stable edge and then the user can "reel in" the line, though this sometimes is an automated feature. The hookshot has appeared in many video games, though is best known for its use in the Legend of Zelda series of videogames.
In The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, the grappling hook is a versatile new addition to the hero Link's arsenal of weaponry. Simply a rope with a tridentate metal claw at the end, it is primarily used to latch onto horizontal posts jutting out of cliffsides or walls in order to swing across large gaps. When latched onto these posts, the player can also climb the rope and stand on top of the post, offering a rugged method of ascending walls. While on a boat out at sea, the grappling hook becomes a crane used to haul treasure up from the ocean depths. In battle, the grappling hook can usefully snatch up key and restorative items held by one's enemies.
Moreover, a fictional variant of the grappling hook called the hookshot makes appearances in several The Legend of Zelda series games. This device is usually held in one hand, comprised of a coiled chain with a hook at its end, which most often takes the appearance of a tapered wedge. The chain can expand and retract, and when the hook latches onto various materials such as wood it either pulls the user towards the object or vice versa, depending on anchorage and differences in weight.
In Bionic Commando, a grappling hook replaced the ability to jump from standard platform games. This led to an unusual but highly popular gameplay style.
In the movie Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach, a jewel thief gang uses a grappling hook to get to a museum with diamonds.
In "The Simpsons game" Bartman can use grappling hook.
In Midway's Mortal Kombat fighting games, the character Mavado uses a pair of elastic ropes with hooks at the end, which are called "Grappling Hooks," for movement or attacks. Scorpion is quite famous for his similar device, though he uses a kunai attached to a rope, instead. In the essence of a grappling hook, it is essentially the same as he uses it to pull in enemies.
Green Arrow had a "Grappling Arrow"
The "Ratchet & Clank" series has both a laser-based grapple hook, and a more traditional spring loaded one.
One of the most important tools used by the main character in the game Tenchu is a grappling hook, which he uses to climb onto such objects as palace roofs, walls, or trees.
In Carmen Sandeigo ThinkQuick Challenge, Snarla Swing uses a grappling hook to try to escape from her temple.