In several video games the player can make the water in a level rise or fall unrealistically quickly, just by pressing a button or standing on a pressure plate. However this is more often than not used purposefully to save time for the player, instead of watching the water disappear at a tedious rate. This not only happens in video games and can also occur in children's cartoons for a comedic effect, such as one character draining a swimming pool or lake extremely quickly.
- Banjo-Kazooie has flooded sections outside of the world levels which must be raised or lowered to reach further parts of the game. The water level is changed in this instance by switches.
- Super Mario 64 in Wet-Dry World the water level can be changed by pressing the switches, necessary to attain all stars.
- The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has a very good and frustrating example of this in the Water Temple where the water level changes when a certain ocarina song is played in front of specific places to further explore the temple.
- In Twilight Princess, the Lakebed Temple does this, though drainage systems are required to be activated for it to work.
- And in Oracle of Ages, Jabu-Jabu's Belly has a room with three floor switches that controls the water level.
- In a variant, there's a chamber in Myst III: Exile which can be filled or emptied of lava in a matter of seconds. When drained, no residue of magma or even of heat is left behind.
- In one of the levels of Mystery Of Time And Space you have to activate locks in "Flood Control" to get a boat onto the river. The water level apparently shifts instantaneously.
- The RPG StoneKeep had levels with this mechanic.
- The Glaciated Cavern in Tales of Phantasia has water pools deep enough for characters to submerge in if they would. Pressing a switch causes these pools to dry up in mere seconds, while checking two chambers after dropping water level reveals an even larger pool.
- In the Ghana level in Tomb Raider Legend the player must make the water level rise to turn a wheel discovered earlier in the level, once a gate has been opened by unlocking the two arms of a statue and pulling its center, the water immediately fills up and starts the wheel moving.
- Sonic Adventure 2's Aquatic Mine stage has switches that instantly raise or lower the water level.
- In the third Hector: Badge of Carnage game, Hector is trapped in a septic tank Death Trap. If he stops running on a treadmill, the tank will fill up with sewage. If he starts running again, the sewage will drain away. You have to stop and resume running multiple times to get out of the trap and each time the tank fills up to chest height almost immediately and then drains just as fast.
- Golden Sun does this a lot. Even in the Sand Is Water levels, where stopping the flow from one pipe allows the sand to be drained a lot faster than when there were four pipes flowing.