Boss Corridor

A Boss Room or other especially challenging room is preceded by a perfectly straight empty corridor. This dead space serves as a pacing device to build anticipation for the upcoming challenge, and to physically separate it from the stage proper.

A Dangerously Genre Savvy Boss is likely to ambush there or set up Death Trap or Stuff Blowing Up to take you down for good.

It may also double as a Check Point or Save Point or provide free Healing Potions.

A Sub-Trope of Foreboding Architecture.


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  • Used throughout all of the No More Heroes games. The hallways usually have a full battery and health container (and a wrestling mask in the original game) as well as a convenient save point to help prepare for the upcoming battle. Played more straight in the first game, as there are long corridors that lead up to the fight, as opposed to the shorter boss corridors in Desperate Struggle.
  • A long enemy-free room loaded with nothing but health and ammo appears before every major boss fight in Jet Force Gemini. If the boss kills you you'll be dropped back into the Boss Corridor so you can quickly top up on supplies and immediately try again.
  • Shadows of the Empire has a small corridor at the end of Xizor's Palace, which is a few rooms after planting the Glyph Mines to collapse the building. This corridor leads to an elevator that requires two consecutive switches to be activated in order to go up it (one outside the elevator to bring it down, and another inside to send it back up). Taking the elevator to the top pits Dash against Xizor's deadly Gladiator Droid, which has three phases and is the last foot fight in the game.

    Action Adventure 
  • These show up often in Metroid games.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has several, such as the one before the Deku Tree boss, the one before the Spirit Temple boss, the one before the Forest Temple boss, the one before the Water Temple boss (which is sloped and has three bladetraps), and the stairs in the final dungeon, especially the final stairway with stained-glass windows and a carpet, which is right before Ganondorf.
    • In both The Wind Waker and Twilight Princess, the fight against Ganondorf is preceded by a long, decrepit upstairs corridor. The former game gradually mutes the background music to hype the upcoming battle via Quieter Than Silence, while the latter game gradually replaces the Hyrule Castle theme with Ganondorf's Leitmotif.
  • Castlevania games frequently have one before Dracula (or whoever is in the throne room), often to collect more hearts and whatnot. Rondo of Blood has one for every boss, complete with its own music.
  • Demons Souls has lots of minor ones, but the one leading to the Dragon God clearly stands out and tells you it's leading to something big.
  • The path leading to Psycho Mantis in Metal Gear Solid is a good example. When you got the key to open the door, even the rest of the building seems entirely deserted, warning you that something is about to happen.
  • At the endgame of Metal Gear Solid 4, you have to cross a long corridor to the control room where the world controlling supercomputer is located. While the corridor is technically empty, the walls are covered in microwave radiation generators that almost bake Snake alive as he struggles to reach the other end.
  • Landstalker has a winding corridor and a very large staircase leading to the penultimate final boss battle with King Nole, all while this haunting music plays in the background.
  • The bosses of the first, third, and fourth areas of Luigi's Mansion each have a long, dark corridor just before the rooms they are hiding in.

    First Person Shooter 
  • Borderlands has one of these before the Boss Fight with Sledge.
  • id/Raven FPS games have a few examples:
    • Doom levels E1M8, "Phobos Anomaly", and E3M8, "Dis", both take this form.
    • Hexen has the Dark Crucible, in which a rickety bridge leads towards Korax's inner sanctum.
    • Quake IV has one of these leading up to the Makron fight.
  • Turok:
    • Turok: Dinosaur Hunter has three. The first one is at the end of the Ancient City level after entering this level's exit portal, before the boss fight with the Longhunter and his two Humvees. The second is at the end of The Final Confrontation level, before the sub-boss encounter with Thunder, the Campaigner's mechanically modified pet T-Rex. The final boss corridor is right after the T-Rex battle, and it leads to the endgame battle with The Campaigner himself. You also get a resupply for everything in this last corridor, as well as the final piece for the game's own BFG-type weapon.
    • The sequel, Turok II: Seeds of Evil, has two. The first is in the Lair of the Blind Ones after completing that level and defending its Energy Totem, and it leads to the Blind One boss fight (you pick up a plasma rifle in this corridor). The second is at the end of the Primagen's Lightship, and it leads to the level's exit portal, which takes you to the Mother boss fight. Like the Campaigner, this corridor is lined with a resupply for your weapons.

  • A staple of the 2D Mega Man games. Even long past the point where Capcom knew they didn't actually need them anymorenote , they were kept in as tradition (much like the Resident Evil series' door loading screens). Note that The first game's corridors has several enemies and traps in them, making it the only game in the series to put something other than powerups in a boss corridor.
  • Almost every boss level of Yoshi's Island has a corridor leading to the boss fight. In fact, in one boss level (the one pitting you against Naval Piranha), you can even kill that boss (before she is even transformed by Kamek) while you are still in that corridor by pelting her with a single egg within a certain angle so that you won't have to fight her!
    Kamek: Oh, my!
  • A long corridor leads to each of the Bowser courses in Super Mario 64. In addition, one of the missions in Shifting Sand Land ends with Mario going down a red-block passageway inside the course's pyramid, which goes to the dual hand boss and the Star they are holding.
  • One of these corridors precedes each of the world-end bosses in the New Super Mario Bros. games, and each of the Boom-Boom fights in Super Mario Bros. 3.
  • Purple has a corridor for each boss, between the ominous gate and boss chamber, and with boss mugshot right before the chamber to boot.
  • A miniboss corridor appears in Bug! for the only Mini-Boss in the game. Funnily, at the start of the corridor, you see a sign stating "Beware! Giant Ants!", and then you face off against three tiny ants that run away from you. Until you reach the end, confirming the sign's statement.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog does this with many bosses, and always does with the final ones.
  • Obani Draco of Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal is a Boss Corridor. It's only purpose is to serve as a corridor towards the boss battle with Courtney Gears at the end. It is also one of only two places in the game (the other being Blackwater City) without a Titanium Bolt.

    Puzzle Games 
  • Portal: The room right before GLaDOS is a long hallway, where some ominous ambiance and music is heard just before you pass through the particle barrier leading into her room.

    Role Playing Games 
  • Chrono Trigger has one right before Magus in the depths of his castle: a dark, suddenly quiet path where torches light up on either side of you as you walk by.
  • Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door feature these in the final dungeon - one before the last boss, and one before Gloomtail (which later transforms into a heavily defended staircase to the lower levels).
  • The original Paper Mario has 3 separate corridors with Hyper Goombas before reaching Tubba-Blubba's heart, the walkway to the Lava Piranha, the hallway with the fake Peach (4 Duplighost enemies) at the end of Bowser's Castle, before the third and final room with a Bowser head door, where you fight Jr Troopa for the final time after he wipes out the Koopa Bros., and finally, the upper halls of Peach's Castle, which lead to Bowser himself (these same halls are traversed in the game's prologue).
  • Pokémon:
    • The Elite Four battles are often segued with staircases to the next zone in between. The one between the last Elite Four member and the Champion is always longer (except for the first generation games, where the corridor between the third and fourth Elite Four trainers is the longest, and the Champion, who happens to be The Rival, is in a smaller room past the door that is right behind the final Elite Four opponent).
    • There are also straight corridors in the overworld sometimes, such as before dungeon bosses such as the criminal team leaders (an example is the hall on the top floor of Silph Co. before the second battle with Giovanni in the company's boardroom) and the Legendary Pokemon (the corridor on the top floor of Ho'oh's tower in the second generation, which leads to said Pokemon.) A Boss Corridor also precedes the second generation games' True Final Boss, the player character from the first generation games, in Mt. Silver.
  • Star Ocean The Last Hope has before the final boss a long corridor, staircase and a single landing before another staircase, which includes giant torches at the sides lighting as the player walks forward.
  • In all story modes of Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep, the Point of No Return leading to the Final Boss is marked by a long, narrow, jagged-walled corridor. It is one of the most foreboding things in the entire series to date.
  • There are a few boss corridors in the original Kingdom Hearts, such as the two caves in Atlantica that each lead to the two separate phases of the Ursula boss battle, but the big one is after slaying Maleficent in Hollow Bastion. Upon returning to the castle chapel, a hole appears behind the room's save point, and it leads to the elevator shaft and then the actual Boss Corridor, the Grand Hall where the Princesses of Heart are kept in stasis. This room is the last chance to explore a rather easy overworld (and do a few sidequests), as once you pass through this corridor and make it to the stairway at the other end, a cutscene starts that takes Sora into the boss fight against the Ansem/Xehanort possessed Riku, and all hell breaks loose after this fight that makes the game much harder from this point.
  • The Final Fantasy series makes use of this sometimes, and often has a corridor or bridge right before a game's final boss or Point of No Return.
    • Final Fantasy VII has the first two boss fights of the game preceded by a walkway with a Save Point before it.
      • The last segment of the motorcycle chase that concludes the Midgar areas of the game takes place inside a tunnel, and halfway through this tunnel, all enemy bikers on the screen drop back as the Motor Ball boss barrels in from behind. You fight the boss in a standard battle right after this.
      • A small rock ledge comes right before a sinister face at the end of the Cave of the GI. Approaching the face brings it to life, turns it into the GI Nattak boss, and forces you to fight it.
      • The last major room in the Temple Of The Ancients is a long hall with murals of Meteor. This is the goal room, as Sephiroth is inside. He locks you in when you enter, and following him to the end of the room, where the Black Materia is, starts a conversation about his plans and brings a Red Dragon down on AVALANCHE when he disappears. A second Boss Corridor follows this one to the temple exit, where a stronger boss, the Demon's Gate, blocks the door out (This boss is the last boss fight that Aerith participates in, as she leaves the party afterwards to face Sephiroth by herself and is Killed Off for Real shortly afterward.)
      • A long cave follows a Save Point and healing pool at the top of the Gaea's Cliff, and an American addition to the game, Schizo, ambushes the team when they proceed down this hall.
      • Like the beginning of the game, a walkway precedes the Carry Armor boss in the Underwater Reactor.
      • The return to Midgar has short tunnels and walkways before each of it's bosses (the Turks as a whole, which is optional if you did the Wutai sidequest, the Proud Clod, and the three forms of Hojo, in that order.)
    • Final Fantasy VIII:
      • The bridge to Ultimecia's throne room at the end of the game.
      • The hall in the President's Palace, which goes into the Commencement Room where Rinoa is under attack. Halls also precede each of the boss fights in the Lunatic Pandora and the time compression trip that comes after it (except for the first of these fights.)
    • Final Fantasy X:
      • There's a corridor behind the final Save Sphere that leads to the "Tower Of The Dead'', aka, the game's POTN. Entering the warp at the end of the hallway takes the pilgrimage into a crystal catching mini-game and then the platform with the last loseable boss fight of the game, Braska's Final Aeon, aka, Jecht, Tidus's estranged father.
      • A long corridor also comes before the battles with Seymour, as well as the Aeon boss fight with Issaru and the rematch with Evrae.
    • A hallway precedes the door to Orphan's Narthex at the end of Final Fantasy XIII, and entering the door and descending the steps behind it starts the very long endgame cinematic with 3 boss fights against Dysley and then Orphan sprinkled in.
  • Two Worlds II: The corridor leading to the final boss has lots and lots of potions along the walls.
  • Fallout 1 has the "Corridor Of Revulsion" before the Master's room, covered in living flesh. It actually serves a purpose: you get Mind Raped by the Master's Psychic Powers here unless you have the Psychic Nullifier item or the Mental Block perk. Once the fight actually begins, the corridor spawns reinforcements for the Master.
  • Mass Effect 3 ends with a long straight corridor on the Citadel, that leads to the big bad. The first half of it is filled with human corpses.
  • In Faria, all tower bosses but the final one lie on the top floor at the end of longish corridors, usually with one-way doors, running straight upward.

    Shoot Em Up 
  • Deae Tonosama Appare Ichiban has a strange example: you can get to the boss stage on the level map without completing the other stages that are there, but in doing so you'll have to fight the bosses of the stages you skipped before the level boss. However, if you complete all the stages, the boss stage will become just an empty corridor leading to your enemy.
  • Star Fox 64 has this before the battle with the fake Andross on Venom if you came from Bolse (the penultimate boss, Golemech, is also fought in a corridor, but since it's running away and its "attacks" involve causing the corridor to become more crowded so that you crash into stuff, it doesn't count as this trope). If you come from Area 6, the single straight corridor is replaced by a branching group of corridors where you get different power-ups depending on which direction you choose to go at each branch. The optimal route will get you the exact same group of power-ups that would be found in the straight corridor in the from Bolse version—two laser upgrades, three shield rings, and a bomb.note 

    Survival Horror 
  • Happens in Fatal Frame. What's worse is that there's a bend in the middle of the corridor, and anything could be lurking behind there. It gets really irritating in the second game, where the Boss Corridor is absurdly long. If you lose, you have go through the tunnel all over again.
  • Happens in the Silent Hill series:
    • In Silent Hill 2, the only way to leave the Abandoned Hospital is through a long, twisted, dark corridor leading to an elevator. You encounter recurring boss Pyramid Head in this corridor. Except that in this case, he appears right behind you and is invincible. Played straight for other bosses, such as the hall lined with newspapers before the Abstract Daddy, and the hanging cages before the final boss. The Flesh Lips has no build up, though, so can come as a surprise when you're tossed into a fight out of nowhere.
    • In Silent Hill 3, in the same hospital, Heather has to run down an incredibly long, creepy and empty corridor with no music but the sound of metal grates closing behind her in order to reach the boss Leonard.
  • The 3rd Birthday: There is one before the Final Boss fight against Hyde. It's a white space out-of-time with blood floating in the atmosphere.