Elevator to Another Reality

by Cowboy Bob Sorensen 

Games of one sort or another have always been popular, and are even more so nowadays. There are things called Alternate Reality (AR) games that are set in the real world but with their own twists. When shopping for a computer and peripherals, I see criteria on how they are suitable for gaming. Some are specifically designed for it.

There are also low-tech paranormal games such as summoning Bloody Mary, and others that are considered dangerous. The Elevator Game has several names, and it is intriguing — enhanced by dark associations.

There is a creepy ritual game where people can supposedly take an elevator to another reality. We can look at it and use our reasoning skills.
Unsplash / Kirk Lai
It has been around for a few years. Some say the Elevator to Another World game originated in Korea, but others find mentions of it from Japan, where a fatal elevator accident may have been the inspiration. Also, the modern multiverse myth seems to be an influence. It may also have evolved with influence from the popularity of AR games.

The Elevator to Another World probably became more famous due to the mysterious death of Elisa Lam in 2013. Her body was found in the hotel's water tower tank on the roof, and the death remains unsolved. Security footage in an elevator shows that she was acting erratically and pushing many buttons. Because she was looking out the door and appearing to speak to someone, there were speculations that she was playing the Elevator Game. The footage showed that she did not push them in the right order.

Follow the Rules

To play this game and try to reach another reality, there are several rules that must be followed exactly. The way the steps of the ritual are presented adds to the spookiness.
  • In most listing of rules, you must be alone in the elevator.
  • The building is at least ten stories tall and the elevator must go to all ten. Adjust for different numbering conventions; i.e., in some places, the ground floor is the first floor, others begin with the ground floor and then the first floor, etc.
  • Press buttons for floors in the exact order. Up to the fourth, stop, down to the second, stop, and so forth in the pattern.
  • If someone else gets on with you, end the ritual. Go straight home and speak to no one.
  • A young woman may (or may not) get on with you at the fifth floor. Do not speak to her or look at her, but she may try to trick you into doing so.
  • At the end, the button for a lower floor is pressed but the elevator rises to the tenth floor and you have succeeded. (If it descends, it didn't work and you must go straight home without speaking to anyone.) The tenth floor at this point is another world that looks mostly like ours, but it is dark. You will be alone. Stories about whether or not electronic devices will operate are conflicting. It is said that there may or may not be a red cross glowing in the distance.
  • The return trip also has specific steps, and must be followed precisely so you can return.


FreeDigitalPhotos / kietisak51
The woman from the fifth floor may be with you in the other world, but nothing is said if she even gets off the elevator. Nor is anything said if she presents a real danger if she follows you out. It is not even safe to enter the other reality.

If you lose consciousness and wake up in your own home, make sure it's really your home. The greatest danger that I can see is you may never return, and nobody in the real world will know how or why you disappeared — they may have a clue if you told them what you are going to undertake, however.

If you get off the elevator into the other world, you must use the same car to successfully return. Keep close track of it, but you may feel disoriented, which makes it more difficult to find the right one.

Using Reasoning Skills

You didn't think I was going to simply write something for the sake of spooky entertainment, did you? Nosiree! As it is with Darwinism, politics, and many aspects of everyday life, we can utilize our critical thinking skills — and ask questions.

How does anyone know...

  • ...why the woman on the fifth floor ("she is not what she seems") is harmful if you speak, make eye contact, or acknowledge her at all?
  • ...electronic equipment will not work, and why do the stories conflict on this?
  • ...if someone explores the other world, why they are in danger?
  • ...what happens to people who have passed out and awakened at home, but it's not really their home in the real world?
  • ...who came up with this ritual in the first place, what they hoped to accomplish, and how they know all those details?
  • ...the reason for not speaking to anyone if the ritual is canceled or fails?

Other things to consider

While people have heard of various divination "games" such as the Ouija board (and there are numerous reports of people having bad experiences during and afterward), the Elevator Game is far more obscure. That could be from the difficulty in performing the ritual correctly. Something I consider a strong possibility is that people give up because they simply come back down to the first floor and nothing has happened. Not much to talk about and fuel the legend, is there?

For that matter, any "verification" of these things sounds like the hands at the Darwin Ranch trying to scare each other around a campfire.

A psychological component exists because many people fear elevators, whether it's from watching movies where a cable snaps and it plummets (there is more than one cable, and safety contingencies are in place), fear of confinement and the unknown, and more. People are often fascinated by things they fear. Indeed, many paranormal "games" have an ultimate basis in fear and superstitions.

There is no plausible evidence of this actually being successfully conducted. Accounts of people completing the steps and reaching another universe were posted at Reddit and other places. They were unconvincing, and one read like an extremely profane horror story where something followed the guy back to the real world and commenced to tormenting him. There was no compelling to believe this story, and it lacked credibility as it progressed. I stopped reading.

Again, the origins of the Elevator Game are vague and even conflicting. For that matter, the Bloody Mary thing also has contradictory procedures and expected results. (The Elevator Game is comparatively recent. In stark contrast, the biblical records are far older, most of the authors are known, were from disparate walks of life, over a span of many years — and wrote with unity. Study on that a spell.) We're warned, but don't know how anyone has the knowledge that someone could be stuck over there forever, how or why they could wake up in a world that is somehow wrong, and more.

Feelings of Unreality

Christians know that this world is not our final home, we're just a-passin' through. God has made it beautiful for us to inhabit. But do you ever get feelings that something is...not right, that you don't belong here? It could be that you belong in a very similar parallel universe, so that's why things don't feel right. You were in the other world of the Elevator Game, but all memory of that experience vanished after awakening in the not-right world.

Actually, I was doing another set-up. A bonus, if you will. Suppose you did get a feeling that things are wrong somehow. Stop and think about physiological reasons, since many things affect emotional states and our thinking.
  • How's your blood glucose? Eating right can have a stabilizing effect, and using alcohol and recreational drugs can contribute to odd feelings. (I was a mite hypoglycemic one of the mornings I was writing this because I had to go in for fasting blood work, and I felt a bit disoriented.) For that matter, even our intestinal microorganisms can affect our moods and even cause depression.
  • What about your medication? It should be taken consistently, at the same time every day.
  • Did you do something wrong? Feelings of guilt may contribute to a feeling of not belonging, and it could be a kind of escape mechanism.
  • Have you been getting enough quality sleep? I've had poor sleep and felt like I was in a haze the next day.
  • There could be a psychological component, since derealization is associated with anxiety, panic, post-traumatic stress disorder, and more.
  • Getting enough, if any, exercise? That also plays a part. Look it up.
The feeling that "things are not quite right" that I'm discussing can usually be sorted out by reestablishing your regimen and getting food, medications, sleep, and so on back on track. Give it time. Guilt, however, needs to be sorted out with God and quite possibly with a biblical counselor. The same applies to psychological difficulties.

Why it Matters

No, the Elevator Game itself doesn't matter. The important thing is that we use the minds God gave us and use our critical thinking skills. As I said before, they apply to many areas, not just a few. (Similarly, see "Detective Work on a Vile Attack.) Take things slow, don't react with just emotions, and cognate a spell.

Oh, and those "games" that involve summoning spirits, provided they're listening to all those people demanding their attention at the same time? While I think those things are malarkey, they're also a manner of provoking demonic entities. I won't go into the dangers of playing with the occult and opening spiritual doors (there are plenty of biblical sites that can explain better than me, such as this article for starters), but just...don't. Besides, we have far more important things upon which we should spend our time and thoughts (Philippians 4:8).

A major source for material here (it contains many links to additional information) is "The Elevator Game: How To Play It & (Maybe) Go To Another World." I went down many rabbit holes. Also of interest is at Creepypasta, "The Elevator Game."

As I write this, there are feature-length films in the works. Here is a short video inspired by the Elevator to Another World game: