[[quoteright:320:[[VideoGame/IndianaJonesAndTheFateOfAtlantis http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/crate.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:320:Maybe [[Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk the Ark]] is in there somewhere...]]
%% Caption selected per Caption Repair Thread: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/posts.php?discussion=1404492079030138900
%% Please do not replace or remove without further discussion in that thread.

->''"Ah, the crate. As seen in everything."''
-->-- '''Comic Book Guy''', ''VideoGame/TheSimpsonsGame''

The crate is [[http://www.arminbwagner.com/crates_and_barrels/crates.html extremely common]] in video games, even if you rarely see them in real life. Some games have entire warehouse levels filled with these crates. And for a good reason: they're so convenient and multipurpose they are literally [[{{Pun}} building blocks]] for lots of gameplay elements and even entire genres.

Crates may allow players to hide from patrolling {{Mooks}} or [[ConcealmentEqualsCover shelter from enemy fire]].

Crates can often be [[RewardingVandalism broken open to reveal]] a PowerUp or treasure, though usually only one per crate and much smaller than the crate itself. (It's a mystery why even small objects get a whole crate and surprising that most of the items manage to stay at the center of the crate. It is never explained why the item is always in perfect condition no matter how fragile it is and how violently you smashed open the crate.) Finding money and items in a nearby crate can help defuse the MoneySpider problem: players wonder why the giant spider was carrying 31 gold pieces, lacking such amenities as pockets, but are often happy to loot the crate in its lair.

Crates are sometimes filled with explosive, blowing up in the face of players conditioned to [[CrowbarCombatant bash everything breakable with a crowbar]]. Such crates can be quite helpful, however, [[ExplodingBarrels if shot while an enemy is standing next to them]].

Crates are often arrayed to form a ContainerMaze, or feature in {{Block Puzzle}}s, where they must be slid or carried into place, to hold switches down or to form a staircase to otherwise inaccessible areas. WreakingHavok often involves throwing crates around.

Crates are easy to render in 3D: six flat sides that can take a flat texture without causing too much comment (their simplicity also makes them one of the first objects 3D modelers-in-training learn to make, if not the first). When standing up, crates are likewise easy to create in 2D graphics: their proportions can be scaled to a predetermined tile size, and hit detection is simple for rectangular objects. This adds to their popularity with game developers since the earliest days of computer gaming. They are generally popular with players, too, who are willing to overlook such things as big crates behind small doors and a general absence of pallets and forklifts. Plus, it gives them something to [[CrowbarCombatant smack around with their melee weapon]] besides enemies.

In some games (particularly {{pirate}}-themed ones), rectilinear crates are replaced with old-fashioned wooden barrels. The curvature of barrels makes them a bit less space-filling and more amenable to being rolled than being pushed around, but they're just as good for containing items, [[ExplodingBarrels loading with explosives]] or [[ThrowABarrelAtIt tossing at enemies]].

In short, crates satisfy three of our basic monkey drives: climbing, finding things to eat, and breaking things. They are so widely used that humor website Website/OldManMurray coined the term "Start-to-Crate", [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin referring to the length of time between starting a game and encountering the first crate or barrel]] - most games don't rate especially high. TropesAreTools: crates have too many gameplay uses to ever [[UndeadHorseTrope die]].

See also DieChairDie, InexplicableTreasureChests, or RewardingVandalism.



[[folder: Action Adventure ]]
* Crates in ''VideoGame/StarFoxAdventures'' tend to be of the "contains one food item" variety. A couple are completely empty.
* ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'': This series mostly splits the crate trope into two parts. Breakable spheroid pots containing health, money, or ammo are ubiquitious in almost every game; dungeons often contain cubical objects for {{Block Puzzle}}s, which are usually made of unbreakable stone. But there are a few straight examples.
** Link comes across randomly located crates in ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'', which he can destroy with his sword (or, if you're a wolf, your claws) to reveal hearts and Rupees. These crates are found all over the place; there are even crates, for no discernible in-game reason, on small islands in the middle of Lake Hylia.
** In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'', one crate in Kakariko contains a Cucco. And then there's the boxes [[WombLevel inside Lord Jabu Jabu]] (the giant whale-god of the Zoras) that you can break open to get hearts and other items.
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'' notably contains crates (with Triforce logos) in the [[spoiler:Tower of the Gods]] dungeon. It makes you wonder if the Hyrulean gods are really the executives of a shipping company.
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaBreathOfTheWild'' has them scattered throughout the enormous [[TheOverworld overworld]]. While usually found next to enemy camps, they're also occasionally inside ruins or near [=NPC=]s, and are a good source of arrows and apples.
* ''VideoGame/BeyondGoodAndEvil'' has crates employed in various uses: broken to get money, pushed into mines to destroy them, used to block lasers, etc.
* ''VideoGame/ShadowComplex'' uses these from time to time. Most contain health, but a few do not, and a select few also cannot be aimed at without large amounts of luck. Excluding the prologue mission, the [=StC=] is pretty high, though.
* Skip the fancy book opening animation and moody cutscenes at the start of ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaLordsOfShadow'', and you'll be whipping boxes within two minutes of game start.

[[folder: Action Game ]]
* ''VideoGame/HaloZero'' has many crates, all with a use. Namely, jumping on them.
* [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in VideoGame/TheMatrixPathOfNeo during a training level in which Neo remarks: "Crates, how original".
* ''VideoGame/{{Madworld}}'' has crates all over the place. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] by the commentators often.
--> Howard: ''Y'know, for something designed to hold stuff, these crates sure break apart easily.''\\
Kreese: ''Actually, they're designed like that, so that weaker contestants feel good about themselves that they can break stuff.''
* In the ''Franchise/TombRaider'' games crates get pushed, used as weights, used as platforms to climb on, and broken open for fun and profit. In ''VideoGame/TombRaiderLegend'' you can even launch a crate into the air!
* In ''[[VideoGame/BatmanSunsoft Batman: Return of the Joker]]'' for the NES, you see your first crate as soon as you enter the first level. Crates in that game contain powerups.
* The main objective of ''VideoGame/SuperCrateBox'' is to collect wooden crates.
* ''Thunder Fox'' is full of wooden crates, which can be destroyed for points, and metal crates, which are indestructible.

[[folder: Adventure Game ]]
* In ''VideoGame/StrongBadsCoolGameForAttractivePeople'', Episode Five: Eight-Bit Is Enough'', Marzipan goes totally Lady Crate-Ape and starts throwing crates around. In the next screen over, there's a whole pile of crates, one of which you have to smash to get at a plot-critical item. Later, if you smash it again, there's that same plot-critical item you already have. Strong Bad rejects it on the basis that he has the original, and doesn't need any lousy respawned copy version.
* Deftly justified in ''VideoGame/DiscworldNoir'', where [[PrivateInvestigator the protagonist]] is looking for a MacGuffin that has been smuggled on a ship, hence the many possible crates to check.
* The picture is from ''VideoGame/IndianaJonesAndTheFateOfAtlantis''. Indy goes behind a theater which has several crates stacked behind it for an unexplained reason. Indy uses them to hide from someone.

[[folder: Beat Em Up ]]
* ''Burning Fight'' includes crates, whose name on the StatusLine is "Wooden Box."
* ''VideoGame/DoubleDragonII'' has crates in the background at the very start of the game, and soon after an enemy picks up a different crate and throws it.
* ''VideoGame/GodHand'': Like most games there are vases and other breakables but crates are the first you run into. Amusing because the game is in a desert.

[[folder: Fighting Game ]]
* Crates in the ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros'' series show up in order to be broken to get the items inside (or to throw at the other players). One must be careful though as some of them explode. Also in ''Brawl'' the crates and barrels are themed to the level and some come with wheels. Brawl also has a specific explosion crate that can be triggered early by fire attacks. Fire-based characters might want to keep their distance.

[[folder: First Person Shooter ]]
* The ''VideoGame/HalfLife'' series features several crates, mostly empty, although some have items. As of ''VideoGame/HalfLife2'', the ones containing stuff have a distinct appearance (and are much smaller), and both kinds (among other items) can also be [[WreakingHavok thrown at enemies with the Gravity Gun]], not to mention be used as platforms to float on. Thanks, Source engine!\\
''Half-Life'''s copious amounts of crates make sense, considering the game's signature weapon is a crowbar. Which you use to ''bludgeon'' the crates open, Gordon being a busy man. Interestingly, ''Half-Life 2'' also features a lot of pallets, but the crates are never actually placed ''on'' the pallets - suggesting the designers realize crates and pallets have something to do with each other, but aren't familiar with their exact relationship.
* Ridiculously parodied in ''[[http://www.moddb.com/mods/too-many-crates Too Many Crates!]]'', wherein a warehouse has become "dangerously infested" with crates... but only one man in this city owns a crowbar.
* Parodied in ''VideoGame/NoOneLivesForever 2'', which featured as enemies "Man-Crates", enemy {{Mooks}} who have been [[CoolAndUnusualPunishment pressed into crate-shaped form]] for [[BadBoss displeasing their boss]]. Their attacks consist simply of awkwardly rolling towards you and trying to bite you, while begging you to kill them.
* About two-fifths of [[http://doom.wikia.com/wiki/E2M2:_Containment_Area_%28Doom%29 Episode 2 Map 2]] of ''VideoGame/{{Doom}}'' is a maze made of crates. And if you abuse the Doom engine, you can go Crate-Jesus and run along the tops of them as if they were side by side. The multiplayer sourceport Skulltag has a skin which ''is'' a crate.
* ''VideoGame/SystemShock2'' has high-tech looking crates. Fairly reasonable, since supplies have to be stored somewhere on a starship. In an arguably pleasant turn of events, however, the region of the game with the highest crate-density is one of the tensest, most terrifying, and generally survival-horror oriented in the game. (Especially if you didn't already activate the bio-reconstructor on the engineering bridge.)
* ''VideoGame/{{Quake}}'' has a Time To Crate of zero since every episode begins next to a pile of crates. There's also a GameMod for Quake that replaces all the player models with crates.
* ''[[VideoGame/GoldenEye1997 GoldenEye 007]]'' has towering piles of crates MadeOfExplodium. Sometimes there were guns inside. Usually it was way fun blowing them. But if you must [[EscortMission escort]] someone...
** Special mention goes to the crate on the penultimate level which holds a smaller crate... which breaks open to reveal an even smaller crate... which can then be broken to find an even ''smaller'' crate... [[SerialEscalation which holds a TV that's larger than the previous crate itself... and inside the TV is the only pair of dual-wieldable assault rifles in the entire game.]]
* ''VideoGame/DeusEx'' features both supply crates and climbable crates, with some of the latter becoming useful only later in the game, depending upon how you choose your nano-augmentations. Go for extra arm strength, and you can move and position crates that would otherwise be too heavy to lift. Augment your legs, and you can leap onto crates that would otherwise be [[InsurmountableWaistHighFence too high to climb]].
** ''VideoGame/DeusExHumanRevolution'' features crates and boxes of various sizes throughout the game, though they're all empty. They can be very useful as makeshift walkways, staircases, and for blocking the view of security cameras and guards while hacking. If you upgrade your arm prosthesis, you can even toss heavy ones to take out enemies.
* [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in ''[[VideoGame/SiN SiN Episodes]]'' with signs in industrial areas reading: ''"When in doubt, use crates." "An overuse of crates can lead to anger."'' and ''"Pipes: The new crate."''
* The second ''VideoGame/StarTrekEliteForce'' game features a secret area with a Boss Monster. Made of crates.
* ''VideoGame/EscapeFromButcherBay'' has very noticeable crates. The STC time is very short, but the crates themselves are not real. The first level, the obligatory training level, is a dream and, of course, so are the crates. Since the game is fictional, the crates are doubly not real. Oooh, now my head is spinning.
* Parodied in ''VideoGame/SeriousSamTheSecondEncounter'', in which Sam's starship crash-lands after being hit by a crate transport ship. Later on, the player can find the crashed crate-bus as an EasterEgg in the first level, which will cause Sam to announce [[LampshadeHanging how much he hates crates]]. Aside from using crates as a joke, the games are suprisingly barren of them otherwise, and Old Man Murray, the website that coined the term Start to Crate, was one of Croteam's few vocal supporters during the game's development. Early in First Encounter, there is a secret area containing a massive 'pyramid' made of crates.
** ''Serious Sam II'' plays the trope more straight with wooden and metal crates found in lots of places and majority of them containing an item or a monster.
* The ''VideoGame/MetroidPrimeTrilogy'' has crates in areas occupied by space pirates or the galactic federation. They're not wood though but metal. And they contain ammo and health. Other areas have non-crate storage items with these and a few offer justification when scanned as to why they don't always have items inside. There are also forms of "living crates", which are plants, cocoons, or even balls of premature nightmare monsters, which act exactly the same as crates except for the fact that they're not cubes.
* ''VideoGame/RedSteel2'' has enough crates for the protagonist to be called the second coming of [[VideoGame/HalfLife Gordon Freeman]].
* In ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'', Supply Crates that contain a random weapon or item drop sometimes for players randomly. You need a key to open these crates, and frustratingly enough the keys can only be bought from the [[RevenueEnhancingDevices Mann Co. Store]] for $2.49 a pop (Frustrating because unlike any of the items that are potentially inside the crates, the keys cannot be acquired from the random drop system or crafted). Of course in the normal game itself, there are also plenty of crates and boxes visible in the official maps, most of which are just a part of the scenery.

[[folder: Hack And Slash ]]
* Both the ''VideoGame/DynastyWarriors'' and ''VideoGame/SamuraiWarriors'' series hide money, powerups, and weapons in crates. Which are often just standing in the middle of an open field or mountain path for no apparent reason.
* ''VideoGame/DiabloII'' is unique in the gaming world for having precisely one real interactive crate in its entire length - in the Countess' Tower Cellar, in the left-hand treasure trove, at the base of the tower, lies a single, lonely, breakable treasure crate. There are plenty of other crate-type objects in the game, including several dozen that are simple environment objects, but only one real crate. Crates will also rarely spawn in the Barracks.
* ''VideoGame/DantesInferno'' (from the LetsPlay):
-->Also, what is this bullshit right here? Are you ser-- there are crates to break even in Hell? Really?
-->It's how they get the souls around. An unholy soul-shipping company.

[[folder: [=MMORPG's=]]]
* Most villain lair types in ''VideoGame/CityOfHeroes'' come liberally furnished with crates, the style of which inevitably matches the flavor of the lair (high-tech, warehouse, neo-Fascist base...). The default MacGuffin when on a "find X" mission is a [[NoticeThis glowing crate]] most of the time, at least at the lower levels. Unlike their counterparts in many other games, though, COH crates are invulnerable to all damage and superglued to the floor. ''City of Heroes'' used to give several {{Cosmetic Award}}s depending on the number of times a character [[NoticeThis clicked on]] or [[RewardingVandalism destroyed]] a glowing crate (or barrel, or computer, etc) in its [[GameMod Mission Architect]]. As of issue 15, this was downgraded to giving one badge per type of action (clicking/destroying).
* [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in ''VideoGame/KingdomOfLoathing'', with a reference to the Start-to-Crate review system. One of the first areas encountered by a new player, Noob Cave, is a zone full of "combats" with crates for you to smash (while they do count as combats, the crates can't touch you, since they're, well, crates):
-->''You're a little nervous about encountering a crate this early in the game.''
* Crates are a staple of the browser based game ''The Nethernet''. They're the main tool of one of the six player classes, with various upgrades available.
* In ''VideoGame/SecondLife'' the default primitive is a cube with a wood texture on it--not precisely a crate, but close enough. Also, in the all-water sim ANWR, there is an oil rig that produces the wood cubes.
* In ''VideoGame/TheSecretWorld'', there are several different crate models with very distinctive logos. However, since this is a game about occult conspiracies, the crates [[DevelopersForesight can actually be important hints as to game lore]]. Once you break the way other games have trained you to ignore crates, you can end up going to the other extreme and driving yourself insane trying to figure out all the connections suggested by crate placement.

[[folder: Miscellaneous Games ]]
* ''VideoGame/GliderPRO'' has milk crates, but being furniture they do nothing good for paper airplanes.
* ''VideoGame/SpeedRunners'' utilizes crates along with various other props such as barrels and even old [=TVs=] as tripping hazards. They don't actually contain anything useful though.

[[folder: Platform Game ]]
* All of the games in the ''Franchise/RatchetAndClank'' series had dozens of crates that were usually there to be broken for [[GlobalCurrency bolts]]. The game also featured red exploding crates, that counted down when Ratchet so much as touched them, ammo crates that were full of ammo, Nanotech crates that contained health, and metal crates, which could only be broken by explosives (or the Walloper). The third game introduced the multiplier crate, which for a short while doubled the amount of bolts Ratchet got from other crates, enemies, and the environment in general, and the Inferno crate, which turned Ratchet into an unstoppable dual-wrench-wielding engine of destruction. In ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClankFutureACrackInTime'', there's the camo crate, which was almost invisible, and had more bolts than average crates. It should be noted that crates went through a huge graphical update during the transfer to HD, especially the rubble they leave around, so this is hardly due to laziness on the part of the graphic developers. This trope is given a huge lampshading in ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClankAll4One'', when the main characters come across a crate factory in their travels. As the MissionControl says, "They have to come from somewhere!"
* ''VideoGame/CrashBandicoot1996'' not only saw levels filled with crates, but destroying all of them in all levels are required to reach the full HundredPercentCompletion. Though they were actually added late in the original game's development as a cheap way to break up dull stretches, crashing through crates became one of the series' defining gameplay elements, as well as the origin of the protagonist's name.
* ''VideoGame/JakAndDaxter'', from the same developers as the early ''Franchise/CrashBandicoot'' titles also make use of crates.
--> ''It looks like Scout Flies are only in red boxes!''
* ''Franchise/SuperMarioBros'':
** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros3'' has crates stored on some of the airships, many times larger than Mario. They can be jumped on, and run in front of.
** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioSunshine'' has a fair few crates. They can be broken with a ground pound. Two of the game's 120 Shines require the player to break an arrangement of crates within a time limit (and both Shines are acquired through the exact same minigame, but in the second play there are more and have a more difficult arrangement as well).
** ''VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy'' and [[VideoGame/SuperMarioGalaxy2 its sequel]] both have crates in several levels, which can be broken up with spin attacks or fireballs (via Fire Mario). In the first game, there are two minigames in which Mario has to detonate them with bombs. In the second, he uses fireballs instead.
* From the 8-bit, 2-D era, the ''VideoGame/ChipNDaleRescueRangers'' NES game had crates as a primary means of defeating enemies (either by throwing them, or hiding inside and waiting for an enemy to trip over it). They came in two varieties-- disposable wooden crates and stackable metal ones. All small enough for a chipmunk to lift.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Spelunky}}'', supply crates are the most reliable way of getting useful items throughout the game, as shop prices are exorbitant and [[ShopliftAndDie their owners are well-armed crack shots]].
* A fair few ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog'' games from ''VideoGame/SonicAdventure2'' through to ''VideoGame/SonicTheHedgehog2006'' have crates. In ''Sonic Adventure 2'' you can get power ups to be able to break metal crates, and in VideoGame/SonicHeroes only the power formation can break the metal crates. ''Sonic The Hedgehog (2006)'' is the worst offender though as they are everywhere, usually used for Silver's physics puzzles. The crates are even 200 years in the future, in Crisis City and Flame Core, both ravaged by Iblis's flames. Made even funnier when objects such as robots and ancient stone towers can be taken down with a simple wooden crate. Even ''VideoGame/SonicAdventure'' had some. There were a few at the very beginning of Red Mountain, though they weren't really used for anything other than somewhere to put a couple of [[MechaMook robot monkeys]].
* ''VideoGame/TheSimpsonsGame'' as part of its mission to {{lampshade}} every gaming cliche going, supplies you with plentiful crates of various types and designs to destroy, while giving you cliche points for using them.
* ''VideoGame/BanjoKazooie'' has a living crate as a ''boss''. It's an AsteroidsMonster to boot.
* ''VideoGame/{{Trine}}'' goes so far as to have ''a spell to summon crates''. They don't contain anything, but they're useful to step on, and if you're feeling violent you can drop them on the baddies' heads.
* ''VideoGame/HammerinHarry'' features many crates that you can smash with your hammer or throw against enemies to kill them. One level, the docks, is partially set inside a warehouse full of them and with a couple of forklifts. There are also enemies disguised as crates.
* The ''VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry'' games have barrels everywhere, but they're still not without crates. Every game in the series has crates containing [[PowerUpMount animal friends]], but [[VideoGame/DonkeyKongCountry2DiddysKongQuest the second game]] also has throwable crates.
* ''The Jetsons: Cogswell's Caper'' sort of justifies this by setting its first level in a "Packing Factory," but crates are prevalent throughout the game, and throwing them is your principal attack.
* In ''Videogame/TeslaTheWeatherMan'', crates seem to be conveniently common around the game's various secluded mountains, lakes, and deserts.
* ''{{Videogame/Iji}}'' has crates that are mostly just used for cover. They can be broken, but, as the beginning tutorial explicitly states, there's never anything in them.
* In ''VideoGame/EarthwormJim'', the very first BossBattle involves knocking dropped crates back at the boss. Unusually, they have fully animated sprites.
* In ''VideoGame/MickeyMania'', the first level, which takes place on a dock, involves much climbing over crates and riding moving crates, as well as avoiding falling crates and things falling out of crates.
* In ''VideoGame/LittleBigPlanet'', depending on how you built your crates in LevelEditor, what material it's made and what it's contained, you can play this straight, subvert or avert this trope.
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{Animaniacs}}'' for the UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis, crates appear early and often as pushable and pullable stepping stones for the Warners.
* ''VideoGame/NinjaFiveO'' has crates all over the place, but they're just obstacles to jump over.
* ''VideoGame/{{Nihilumbra}}'': There's crates in places you really wouldn't expect one, like in the middle of icy wastelands or just by a lava floe. They make decent button-pushers.
* In ''VideoGame/Gamer2'', crates are among the falling debris Hailey must dodge during the falling level.

[[folder: Puzzle Game ]]
* ''[=CrateMaster=]'' was a puzzle game available on the Website/OldManMurray website. The purpose was to score points by clearing horizontal row of crates. In addition, crates could be stacked on top of each other.
* ''VideoGame/{{Scribblenauts}}'' has a merit called "Old School." The requirement to get it is to make an object commonly used in classic video games. Its icon is a crate.
* The test chambers of ''VideoGame/{{Portal}}'' usually had dispensers to give you crates as you needed them for {{Block Puzzle}}s, though the game's love of {{Expospeak Gag}}s meant that these weren't just crates but "Aperture Science Weighted Storage Cubes". This particular Valve hero didn't get a crowbar, so we don't know what what was in them - except that [[CompanionCube one of them]] was probably full of love for you.
** The sequel's cooperative play ups the ante with the "Aperture Science Edgeless Safety Cube", which the untrained observer might mistake for [[spoiler:a sphere]].
* ''VideoGame/{{Ballance}}'' involves crates in its puzzles often. For one, your ball cannot push crates while it is in the Paper form. Also, there's the puzzle where you have to push a crate from under a raised block so that it drops, but keep your ball from going all the way under the block lest you get stuck on the other side.
* ''VideoGame/{{Limbo}}'' has quite a few crates. Mostly for climbing on.
* ''VideoGame/{{Sokoban}}''[='s=] gameplay is entirely based on crates. The title, after all, is "warehouse keeper" in Japanese.
* ''VideoGame/WonderlandAdventures'' contains some barrels.
* ''Videogame/{{Quadrax}}'' comes close with the stone blocks, which are main element manipulated in the game. They come in different variants, from daily classic, obligatory [[FrictionlessIce ice blocks]] and blocks that shatter upon impact to levitating ones and blocks that fall ''up''. Some games even introduce a teleport that can change their type to more convenient one.

[[folder: Real Time Strategy ]]
* In ''VideoGame/{{Achron}}'' the resources are kept in highly advanced containment devices that can safely store materials which should by rights destroy the continent by a teleporter mechanism that [[TechnoBabble continuously teleports its contents back into the center of the container faster than they can leak out]]. [[OurWeaponsWillBeBoxyInTheFuture They still look like crates though]].
* Crates are a mainstay in ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquer'', although they aren't very common. When moving a unit over it, the owner receives money or bonus units, or other effects such as improving the units speed, defense or level (after ''Tiberian Sun''). However, there is also a chance for them to explode.\\
The crates got a sci-fi redesign in ''[[VideoGame/CommandAndConquerTiberianSun Tiberian Sun]]'' and are also seen in ''[[VideoGame/CommandAndConquerTiberiumWars Tiberium Wars]]''; they also made it possible to select a crate and tell what it would give you. However, ''[[VideoGame/CommandAndConquerRedAlert3 Red Alert 3]]'' not only reverted the design to a more classic look, it also made it easy to tell what type of crate it was at a simple glance, and made it so you had to specifically order a unit to grab a crate.
** ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerGenerals'' does not have these "powerup" crates, but the ''main'' resource of the game were crates. The game never details what's in those crates, the content directly translates into money. It also had crates that had U.N. stamped on them that represented foreign aid supplies that gave you a nice cash boost. One of the funner [[TerroristsWithoutACause GLA]] missions had you attacking towns being supplied by U.N. convoys to reach a certain amount of money; you're specifically told to kill the people and destroy their houses to get the supplies hidden there.
** The GLA also adhere more to this trope than expected: destroyed enemy vehicles leave crates behind, which can be looted to upgrade your own vehicles with better weapons. This mechanic was then applied to more units in the ExpansionPack ''Zero Hour''.
* Stacking and smashing crates is one of the main gameplay elements in ''VideoGame/TeamBuddies.''
* ''[[VideoGame/DawnOfWar Dawn Of War 2]]'' has crates that if shot at with highly penetrating and explosive bolts by the heroes reveal supplies of bombs, grenades, mines and other munition.

[[folder: Roguelike ]]
* ''VideoGame/DwarfFortress''. You get barrels and bags with items you buy in the expedition planner, or just get barrels for the sake of getting barrels, and part of the game's [[RefiningResources recursive]] InventoryManagementPuzzle involves the construction of barrels, bins, and bags to organize the endless clutter you will produce. Crates and bins are simply very useful, but barrels are ''essential'' for a fortress. Any player who does not take getting barrels [[SeriousBusiness seriously]] is in for a world of [[GameOver Fun]]. Without enough barrels, no excess food will be stockpiled, and no [[BoozeBasedBuff alcohol can be brewed]]. A lack of either can literally mean the death of your fortress. The player can save on the wood that would be needed to make barrels by making stone pots (which can also contain food and booze) instead. After all, if you're in a biome with few trees, you'll need the wood to make beds, as your dwarves apparently can't make beds from anything else.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Cataclysm}}: Dark Days Ahead'', this trope is ZigZagged depending on where you found the crate. In the back room of certain shops, you might find crates packed with useful items, but in basement shelters the crates simply serve as an improvised barricade made by the previous inhabitant of the house.

[[folder: Role Playing Game ]]
* ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind'' doesn't give you time to orient yourself before you see your first crate; you wake up in a ship's cargo hold. The game also [[ButThouMust But Thou Musts]] you into interacting with a barrel just a few seconds later.
** The Market District of ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'''s Imperial City is ''packed'' with crates.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' is full of them too. Every building seems to have a basement filled to the brim with crates and barrels full of vegetables. Inverted during the Thieves' Guild quest, when you get to kill someone by placing poisoned fruit in a barrel.
*** There is a mod that allows you to assemble simple chests, ornate chests, drawers, closets, barrels, safes... And crates. While all of these allow you to store items, crates can be stacked and then used as ladders.
** The ''Elder Scrolls'' games actually avert the standard format of this trope in several ways: crates are never breakable or mobile, can be used for storing realistic amounts of stuff, and you can put things into them as well as take them out. They're also not usually very useful for platforming. Despite this for some reason they're still visually presented as the classic sealed packing crate (how you open and reseal them is a mystery for the ages), perhaps so players recognise them on sight.
* ''Creator/FromSoftware''
** Subverted in ''VideoGame/DarkSouls'', there are various crates in Undead Burg, but breaking them wouldn't net you anything good unless a [[UniqueEnemy Vagrant]] is hidden within them. Although some PvP invaders would use Chameleon spell to disguise themselves as those crate, smashing everything that breaks is the best way to reveal them.
** Smashing crates becomes much more meaningless in ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsII'', while Chameleon spell still exist, Vagrants can no longer be found in Drangleic.
** By the time of ''VideoGame/{{Bloodborne}}'', the Chameleon spell is replaced by Messenger's Gift, which only has one disguise as Messengers. Crate smashing is completely meaningless.
* Subverted and lampshaded in ''VideoGame/FableII'': smashable crates and barrels are everywhere, but are invariably empty. (About halfway through the game you do start seeing the occasional {{Exploding Barrel|s}} of gunpowder, but they're rare.) One of the loading screen's earliest helpful hints is (approximately):
-->Smashing crates and barrels is good fun, but you don't seriously think people would keep anything valuable inside, do you?
* Common in ''[[VideoGame/TalesSeries Tales]]'' games. Crates are used to make paths, [[BlockPuzzle press buttons]], destroy obstacles, etc. Typical video game stuff. There are also mini-game warehouses that have you re-arrange crates.
* The various ''Franchise/KingdomHearts'' games contain crates, of the jump-upon and break-for-lootz varieties. The level that gives the strongest FridgeLogic is [[{{Disney/Pinocchio}} Monstro]], set inside the giant whale himself. Monstro has intact crates strewn through all of his major organs. Having intact ones in his stomach is even a stretch.
** ''Kingdom Hearts Coded'' and ''Re: Coded'' are particular examples in that pretty much everything breakable is a crate. Some bosses even require crate breakage to be beaten.
** Oddly, the wooden crates blocking paths in ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts3D'''s version of Traverse Town ''can't'' be broken by attacking them in a conventional fashion, instead having to launch something at them with a reality shift.
** There are also a lot of wooden barrels in Olympus Coliseum. Breaking them is part of a timed obstacle course, and you also have to throw them at Hercules when you're fighting him.
* A typical ''VideoGame/MightAndMagic'' game is loaded with crates. Most of them are usually booby-trapped, as well.
* In ''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights'' you can freely hack open any crate, rendering lockpicking mostly useless. In the second game though you can break the items inside.
* ''VideoGame/GoldenSun'' has crates and barrels. Everywhere.
* ''VideoGame/VagrantStory'', so much. There are half a dozen different types used in the {{Block Puzzle}}s, ranging from standard wooden crates to magnetic cubes which attract or repel each other.
* The ''Franchise/MassEffect'' series is part RPG and part [[TakeCover cover-based shooter]], so it's full of both lootable crates and inexplicably bulletproof chest-high crates, with a few "fragile" (i.e., breakable; one {{sidequest}} in ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' has some of the quest items you have to obtain in crates you have to break) and [[ExplodingBarrels explosive]] ones thrown in to mix things up.
* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOrigins'' has crates everywhere (as well as barrels). Usually they're just there as scenery (in storehouses, warehouses, caravans, etc.) but sometimes they're lootable. They may serve as cover against missiles, but they aren't climbable or movable.
* Several ''VideoGame/PokemonXD'' areas have them as roadblocks and you need to push them around to navigate. One level has you push them onto symbols to open a door.
* In the second ''VideoGame/EndlessOcean'' game, you frequently dig up crates while diving for treasure. The appraiser lady tells you what's inside.
* In ''VideoGame/RavenswordShadowlands'', here and there you can run into breakable crates, though they only contain small amounts of gold.

[[folder: Shoot Em Up ]]
* Crates, barrels, containers, ''VideoGame/GIJoe'' is just littered with them throughout each stage usually stocked with [[PowerUp power-ups]].

[[folder: Simulation Game ]]
* The standardized crates from ''VideoGame/{{Startopia}}''. All the same size and shape, but their texture maps indicate their contents. Their complete interchangeability is important when it comes to animation and game mechanics, since it's about as big as a Scuzzer droid could hope to carry, and fills one slot in the standard cargo hold.
* ''VideoGame/NavalOps'' - Crates containing ship parts, cash, or ammunition may float up from sunken enemy ships. Other drops are also generally crate-like in appearance.
* Crates turn up in a few missions in ''VideoGame/ArmoredCore 3'' (and maybe other titles in the series). They generally contain nothing the player can use, but your employers may pay a bounty for destruction.
* Crates in ''VideoGame/MySimsAgents'' come in two varieties: the kind that you open (for clothes, paints, objects, and so on), and the kind that are useful for climbing, especially when you get a piece of equipment that allows you to move them around in certain places. The former ''could'' be seen really early if you go behind the restaurant you start in; in fact, opening one of them is necessary to solving the very first case.
* In ''VideoGame/VisceraCleanupDetail'' crates and barrels are scattered around every level. The player can earn bonus points on their evaluation by storing them in marked cargo zones. Some levels have crates or barrels themed after the level, such as medical waste containers.

[[folder: Survival Horror ]]
* ''VideoGame/DeadSpace'': Lying around the Ishimura are glowing metal boxes filled with goodies great for healing or blasting necromorph ass. Unfortunately, the [[VideoGame/DeadSpaceExtraction Extraction]] version doesn't give the player enough time to use his levitating weapons to break all the boxes.
* In ''{{VideoGame/Unturned}}'', crates are not as common as in other games. However there are a still a few inexplicable crates in the sparse towns of PEI. Rewarding Vandalism is averted as the crates are unbreakable. The crate is the first and simplest container a player can craft, so it's up to you to fill the world with wooden boxes of loot.
* Present in the ''VideoGame/{{STALKER}}'' titles. They'll absorb a few rounds before they break (which obviously can be useful during firefights), and in the first game the standard wooden box will occasionally have some goodies inside, but you're more likely to find useful gear in indestructible lockers or boxes. There are also metal boxes that almost always have ammo or healing items inside, but they're more rare. You can't pick up any of them or move them around except by running into them, though.
* ''VideoGame/ResidentEvilRevelations:'' You open crates by attacking them with your melée weapon. This usually means stabbing them.
* ''VideoGame/TheLongDark'' features small crates that can be broken apart for a small amount of firewood.

[[folder: Third Person Shooter ]]
* The first level of ''VideoGame/{{Oni}}'' takes place in a warehouse full of crates.
* Used and [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]], of course, in ''VideoGame/EatLeadTheReturnOfMattHazard''. Later in the game, you even go to the warehouse where they make the crates.
* The first ''VideoGame/DestroyAllHumans'' video game had crates appear quite late into the game, and if you have the opportunity to read the mind of a dockworker, one might be thinking, "I hate my job! Climb crates, push crates, jump on crates, destroy crates...that's not fun!"
* ''VideoGame/FiftyCentBloodOnTheSand'' has crates crammed full of bling (money). The crates are even ColorCodedForYourConvenience to indicate how much money a crate contains.

[[folder: Turn Based Tactics ]]
* Crates are parachuted into the battleground in the ''VideoGame/{{Worms}}'' games, presumably by the same air force responsible for the air strikes, napalm strikes, mail strikes and concrete donkeys. They can give weapons, tools or health, and [[MadeOfExplodium explode if you shoot them]]. Also, depending on the game, if there's an animal inside a weapon crate, destroying it might also release a sheep, [[BaaBomb which will also explode if it touches solid ground.]]
* ''VideoGame/{{Odium}}'' has a lot of small crates strewn around the city, which usually inexplicably contain military-grade weaponry. Big, unopenable crates are also sometimes found on battlefields and can be used as cover; they can also be moved around, one square at a time, but it's a waste of turns usually.
* Russian Aid in ''VideoGame/ShatteredUnion''. Either boost units, is a trap, or gives player a random Russian unit.
* ''VideoGame/JaggedAlliance 2'' has a few scattered around, but subverts the trope by requiring the player to spend action points forcing them open rather than shooting or smashing them apart. A crowbar helps, but unlike Gordon Freeman you have to use it for its intended purpose.
* These have been present in the ''Disgaea'' series starting from the third game. They're most frequently used to make steps to get over walls with, but they can also be attacked and destroyed for the purpose of filling the bonus gauge. The Thief class is able to generate them at will to be used for either purpose.

[[folder: Wide Open Sandbox ]]
* In ''VideoGame/TheGodfather: The Game'' you have both destructible and indestructible crates lying around, as well as [[ExplodingBarrels explosive-filled ones]]. Sometimes the destructible ones may contain cash.

!!Non-video game examples:

* ''Film/{{Doomsday}}'' has an underground bunker full of crates. Fortunately, there's also a checklist of what's inside all of them. One particularly large crate holds [[spoiler: a perfectly preserved and road-ready [[ProductPlacement 2007 Bentley Continental GT Speed]], which the protagonist proceeds to use in the [[Film/MadMax Mad Max-eque]] car chase/ battle sequence climax.]] One of the characters even comments on the amount of boxes they find:
-->'''Dr. Ben Stirling''': Jesus. What've they got in here, the lost ark?
* ''Film/FulltimeKiller'': Tok stocks a warehouse with crates containing weapons for his final confrontation with O, obviously intending to live out a real-life game of ''VideoGame/MetalSlug''. O, in spite of himself, is appreciative.
* Averted in ''Film/FutureWar'', but the production's [[TroubledProduction budget troubles]] likely precluded the use of crates. Plenty of cardboard boxes though...
-->'''[[Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000 Crow T. Robot]]''': [[ShoutOut Just call me]] [[Creator/BruceBoxleitner Bruce Box-Liker!]]

[[folder: Literature ]]
* ''The Amateur'' by Robert Littell. The protagonist's best friend in the CIA is a "crateologist", whose job it is to study photographs of crates and work out what's in them. At one point he deduces that a well-guarded stash of crates contain a shipment of black-market condoms, and is unamused when the protagonist suggests the Soviets are shipping classified material in condom crates.
* ''Literature/DeathLands''. The group find some sealed crates in a secret government stockpile and J.D. starts going into GunPorn detail over what exotic weapons might be in them. Everyone (except J.D.) bursts out laughing when the crates turn out to be full of thousands of plastic zippers.
* In ''Literature/JohnDiesAtTheEnd'', John predicts that a warehouse they must enter will be stocked with crates containing weapon powerups, along with other video game cliches.

[[folder: Web Comics ]]
* In ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'' there's [[http://www.sluggy.com/comics/archives/daily/030421 this comment]] from the hungry hungry alien Aylee:
-->I'm just here to eat the background crates.
* In ''Webcomic/{{Adventurers}}'', Karn, trying to solve a PressurePlate puzzle, [[http://adventurers.keenspot.com/d/0384.html suggests pushing a crate on top of it]].
-->'''Ardam''': For the ''last time'', there ''are no crates!''\\
'''Karn''': There are ''always'' crates.
* Lampshaded in TheRant under [[http://www.project-apollo.net/mos/mos059.html this panel]] of ''Webcomic/AMiracleOfScience'' when a chase sequence takes the protagonists into a loading dock, complete with a nod to Website/OldManMurray.
-->'''Mark Sachs''': "''A Miracle of Science'''s start-to-crate ratio: 59 pages. Not bad." ([[JustifiedTrope And in a place where crates would logically be, as well!]])

[[folder: Web Original ]]
* ''Website/TheOnion'' has an article about the fictional video game ''[[http://www.theonion.com/articles/new-video-game-designed-to-have-no-influence-on-ki,1857/ Crate Stacker]]'', which is designed to have no impact whatsoever on kids' behavior. Gameplay is entirely limited to stacking crates in an otherwise featureless room.
* As discussed under the ''VideoGame/SeriousSam'' example, Website/OldManMurray considered crates to be lazy game design, and created "[[http://www.oldmanmurray.com/features/39.html Start to Crate]]" as an unbiased review method. The longer one went before seeing the game's first crate meant the more ideas the designers actually had.
* Done with boxes instead, but the first battle between the WebVideo/AngryVideoGameNerd and the WebVideo/NostalgiaCritic mocks this.

[[folder: Western Animation ]]
* ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsTheCloneWars'' uses distinctive crates as set dressing in many episodes. They have a circular indentation in each side -- unless the rendering team forgot to flip the (CPU-intensive) "round" switch, in which case they're ''hexagonal'' indentations.
* "[[TropeNamer Crate Expectations]]" was the title of an episode of ''The Completely Mental Misadventures Of Ed Grimley'' (Hanna-Barbera, 1988). Ed accidentally gets crated up while searching for a birthday present for Miss Malone.

[[folder: RealLife]]
* If you've ever been to a warehouse, you know these things are there somewhere; just not in the amount usually depicted in media.
** No one in their right mind would keep money in them either.