->''"The four elements, like man alone, are weak. But together they form the strong fifth element: boron."''
-->-- '''Brother Silence''', master of {{metaphorgotten}}, ''Film/TheGamersDorknessRising''

The four classical ElementalPowers of [[DishingOutDirt Earth]], [[PlayingWithFire Fire]], [[MakingASplash Water]], and [[BlowYouAway Air/Wind]] usually appear simultaneously inside the same setting. It is tacitly acknowledged these are ''the'' four forces of nature, and so naturally, there is some form of magical ability associated with each of them. Sometimes mages are restricted to only one school.

But wait - what's all this talk about a mysterious fifth element? That's right, boys and girls, turns out there's actually another element on top of these that is so incredibly badass, it defies the normal classification system. Magic of this element is about as strong as the other four put together. Where a wind mage has control of, in general, wind, this element controls pretty much everything. It will have very few restrictions, but it will also be quite difficult to use. If the normal magic system is defined in term of ElementalRockPaperScissors, Element Number Five will usually exist outside of it. Sometimes it will actually be the source of all the other elements in the first place, making it more of a Zero-th element or if you prefer, the ''element'' of ''the elements''.

Another common variation is for this to be some kind of mental, spiritual, or [[PureEnergy energy]]-related {{foil}} to the physical elements; ThePowerOfLove, MindControl, and LightEmUp are all common choices. The above rules may still apply (especially if the hero or the villain are the ones using it), but non-omniscient powers are equally likely to be balanced as not. The InverseLawOfComplexityToPower often favors ElementNumberFive since it doesn't always fit the same system as the rest.

Is most commonly used as a distinguishing feature from fantasy work to fantasy work. In order to combat the relative commonality of this fifth element its nature will often vary, to the point that this trope can often turn into [[OurTropesAreDifferent Our Fifth Element Is Different]].

In spite of the name, this trope can also be another number- the Chinese elemental system, for example, normally contains five elements (Earth, Fire, Water, Metal, and Wood), so in works based on that mythology this will be Element Number Six. This trope occurs naturally in the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aether_(classical_element) Greek]], [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B%C3%B6n#Elements Tibetan]], [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classical_element#Classical_elements_in_Babylonia Babylonian]] and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_elements_%28Japanese_philosophy%29 Japanese]] elemental systems, where Aether, Space, Sky and [[PowerOfTheVoid Void]] fulfill the narrative role of this trope - note that these four are essentially the same thing.

Not to be confused with [[DoingInTheWizard Boron]], the fifth element in the RealLife periodic table; ''Film/TheFifthElement'', which uses this trope as its eponymous PlotDevice; or ''Discworld/TheFifthElephant'', which has nothing to do with any of this but is [[JustForPun rather a cheap pun]].

See InfinityPlusOneElement for the gameplay ramifications of this trope occurring in VideoGames.



[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* ''LightNovel/TheFamiliarOfZero'' features Void, an element about which the general population knows nothing but that is nonetheless incredibly powerful. Void users are very rare, and only appear once every several centuries. The easiest way to identify one is apparently they always summon a human as their familiar
* The ''Rokumon'' (Six Gates) franchise already has six elements as part of its premise, with the fifth and sixth being light/holy and dark/curse. The anime ''Anime/MonColleKnights'' introduces a seventh. This element is called Time, but seems to work more like existence itself. It has no specific form, and exists in everything. Messing with it causes the physical universe to start falling apart very quickly.
* In ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'', there are five regular elements who have a cyclical ElementalRockPaperScissors dynamic (Fire, Wind, Lightning, Earth, Water) and advanced elements (which are combinations of the other five and behave the same in the RPS cycle). The other type of chakra is Yin and/or Yang release, which is/are responsible for everything that's not elemental.
* Astral Shamanistic magic, to go along with the classic [[PlayingWithFire fire,]] [[MakingASplash water,]] [[DishingOutDirt earth,]] and [[BlowYouAway wind]] shamanistic magic in ''LightNovel/{{Slayers}}''. Astral magic is unique insofar as it can damage a person's "astral body" (something of a spiritual form) instead of their physical body. There are various elements used in the series' line of BlackMagic and Holy Magic as well.
* The second movie of ''Manga/CardcaptorSakura'' had "The Nothing", an extremely powerful card created by Clow which is as strong as the other fifty-two put together, and which functions by destroying localized fabrics of reality. [[spoiler:Sakura defeats it in the end by turning it into "The Hope".]]
* Ordinarily, the ''Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn'' universe uses the seven Elements of the Sky: Sun, Rain, Storm, Cloud, Lightning, Mist, and Sky. Each one is associated with an Element of the Earth. But the best example of this would be the eighth element: [[spoiler: Night, which is fueled by the PowerOfHate.]]
* In ''Manga/MajinTanteiNougamiNeuro'', the New Bloodline's six major members each have an element. The five fingers cover the four basic ones and threw in plants, while Sicks [[spoiler:can not only use them all but also control Metal as his element.]] In sense, a sixth element.
* Sailor Moon in [[Franchise/SailorMoon BSSM]]. Mercury is Water/Ice, Mars is Fire, Jupiter is Electricity/Wood, and Venus is Metal. There are plots points about her not actually having powers but it's actually [[HeartIsAnAwesomePower Healing]]. Monsters are obliterated with her purifying effects and humans are restored to their natural state. More impressively she befriends and converts villains just by talking to them.
** However, the elements of the main Senshi are simply tied to the element represented by their planet's name in Japanese which is in turn based on the Chinese elemental system (Mercury: Water, Venus: Metal, Mars: Fire, Jupiter: Wood, [and Saturn: Earth]).

* ''Film/TheFifthElement'' uses this trope as a central plot point, as the title implies. However, it's not until the very end that this is explained.
* Parodied in ''Film/TheGamers'', as seen in the page quote.

* In ''Literature/TheSecretsOfTheImmortalNicholasFlamel'', there is a fifth element hinted at throughout the series. [[spoiler:It's Aether, or the magic of Time.]]
* ''Literature/TheSovereignStone'' trilogy uses Void as its fifth element.
* ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'':
** The fifth element is [[IncrediblyLamePun the element of Surprise]].
** Referenced in the title of one of the novels, ''Discworld/TheFifthElephant''.
* ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' is an interesting example - magic flows from the mind, so no single elemental system totally encapsulates it. We've seen wizards use fire, water, ice, electricity, wind, earth, and even particle beams, but none of these are more mystical than the others, and every mage uses his or her own different system. However, Angels and Fallen Angels possess Soulfire and Hellfire respectively (and can grant it to others), which are shown to be solidly this trope, even when actual numbering is impossible.
** Harry himself claims his pentacle amulet represents fire, air, earth, water, and spirit, all bound and controlled by will. However, he calls these the five ''forces'' of magic, not the five elements.
* In the ''VideoGame/{{Diablo}}'' novels by Richard Knaak, the necromancers consider Time to be the fifth element.
* Garrett, DeadpanSnarker protagonist of the ''Literature/GarrettPI'' series, has claimed that ''stupid'' is the fifth element of creation, and the most common. Either that, or it's magnetically attracted to his home city, given how many stupid people he runs into.
* ''TheKaneChronicles'' parodies this with the element of cheese. It's been mentioned repeatedly, but never explained or demonstrated, and the most said about a battle with cheese demons is "[[YouDoNotWantToKnow don't ask]]."
* In ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'', the One Power is channeled in its most basic form as "threads" of Air, Earth, Fire, Water, and Spirit. The way they are arranged determines their effects, but Spirit is generally associated with life and the mind, most commonly for healing.
* In ''Literature/VampireAcademy'', Lissa discovers she's a spirit user, which puts her outside the regular elemental magic-set.
* In Zarathan, the setting of ''Literature/TheBalancedSword'', there are said to be five elements -- Air, Earth, Fire, Water, and Spirit -- with magic based on Spirit being particularly rare and powerful.
* In ''[[Literature/JWWellsAndCo Earth, Air, Fire and Custard]]'', the fifth element is, as you might guess, custard. Or a substance virtually indistinguishable from custard, except for its magical properties. It was created by the powerful wizard, Professor Van Spee.
* In ''Literature/TheWitchlands'', in addition to four classical elements, there is an Origin Well dedicated to Aether, which bestows powers related to the mind. There's also element number ''six'', the Void, which is a darker counterpart to the Aether and thought mythical.

* Seen often in ''Series/SuperSentai'' and ''Series/PowerRangers'', where ElementalPowers are frequent. First you have to come up with a fifth "normal" element to round out the FiveManBand, then you have to have one that's genuinely outside the system for the SixthRanger.
** ''Series/NinjaSentaiKakuranger'' and ''Series/SamuraiSentaiShinkenger''/''Series/PowerRangersSamurai'' get us to five by adding wood to the usual set of fire, water, earth, and air. ''Kakuranger'' didn't have a SixthRanger, but in ''Shinkenger''/''Samurai'' the Sixth's element is light.
** ''Series/SeijuuSentaiGingaman'' and ''Series/MahouSentaiMagiranger''/''Series/PowerRangersMysticForce'' use wood in place of earth, and add lightning as the fifth Ranger's power. ''Gingaman''[='s=] SixthRanger lacked an elemental theme, but the one in ''Magiranger''/''Mystic Force'' has the PowerOfTheSun. The latter also has other elements used by side characters such as Moon and Snow. (These aspects were downplayed in ''Gingaman''[='s=] adaptation ''Series/PowerRangersLostGalaxy''.)
** ''Series/RescueSentaiGoGoFive''/''PowerRangersLightspeedRescue'' plays with this theme by having mecha based on a fire engine (fire), a tanker truck (water), a jet (air), a hazardous rescue vehicle (earth), and an ambulance (life?). ''[=GoGoFive=]'' lacked a SixthRanger but ''Lightspeed Rescue'' had one who personally had a metal theme and whose mecha/zord had the sun element as a solar-powered spacecraft.
** ''Series/NinpuuSentaiHurricaneger''/''Series/PowerRangersNinjaStorm'' starts with three: LandSeaSky. Of the season's multiple {{Sixth Ranger}}s, the first duo has thunder and the third gets his powers from a different source and isn't bound to any of the elements, though there ''is'' fire reflected in his helmet during his SuperMode TransformationSequence.
** ''Series/TensouSentaiGoseiger''/''Series/PowerRangersMegaforce'' averts this, sticking to LandSeaSky for the main team and the SixthRanger gets AllYourPowersCombined instead of a different element.
** In ''Series/ShurikenSentaiNinninger''/''Series/PowerRangersNinjaSteel'', the core team can all use the Chinese set of elements (fire, water, earth, wood, and metal); the SixthRanger goes outside the system and uses wind and lightning.
** ''Series/DoubutsuSentaiZyuohger'' drops air and instead uses a set of fire, water, earth, lightning, and snow; the SixthRanger has shadow based on the fact that his powerset was made by the villains.
* ''Series/TheMysticKnightsOfTirNaNog'' were a four-man band representing the four main elements. In the episode "The Fifth Knight," they meet Garrett, who is ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin, and he's revealed to be the Knight of Forest.

[[folder:Mythology and Religion]]
* Void was the traditional fifth element in Myth/JapaneseMythology.
** Void, as element number five, also appears in ''TabletopGame/LegendOfTheFiveRings'', a role playing game whose setting is Japan (and China) [[FantasyCounterpartCulture with the]] SerialNumbersFiledOff.
* Myth/GreekMythology is the basis of the Four Elements, with the often forgotten fifth element "Aether" or Quintessence, often translated as "spirit". There is really nothing much about this element in that it is the only element outside the sphere of Earth and is the "stuff" that planets float in.
** This is why the traditional [[GeometricMagic magic circle]] has a pentagram, one spike for each element (at least, this is the Wiccan reason, satanists insist that the pentagram is the emblem of the human will reordering the universe to its liking).
* Chinese alchemy has five elements; earth, water, fire, '''wood''' and metal. Notice how air is not included as in the Western system.
* Hindu tatwas are elemental symbols for five elements; Earth, Air, Water, Fire and Spirit.

[[folder:Tabletop Gaming]]
* In ''MagicTheGathering'', the Eldrazi are a good example. They were the first non-artifact spells to be colorless and contain some of the most expensive and powerful creatures in the game. They are also effective against all colors through spells like [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/pages/card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=193658 All is Dust]] or [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=193452 Emrakul's]] protection from colored spells, showing that they defy the usual [[ElementalRockPaperScissors Rock Paper Scissors]] system.
** Out of the five colors of mana, White, Blue, Red, and Green can all be modeled to the four classic elements, wind, water, fire, and earth. That leaves Black to fulfill this role, usually with powers of life and death. But one can also interpret Blue as water and air and Red as earth and fire, leaving three other colors without element and averting this trope.
** During development of the Planar Chaos set, there was almost an actual sixth color of magic: [[http://archive.wizards.com/Magic/magazine/article.aspx?x=mtgcom/feature/386 purple]]. The element would represent cities and urbanization, and would be situated between blue and black, opposite of green. Its mechanics would have included counterspells which only delay rather than cancel, among other things. Somewhat subverted in that it would have been presented as equal to the other colors, having always been there (the theme of the set was "alternate realities").
* ''TabletopGame/MageTheAscension'' featured Quintessence as "the power source behind all spellcasting, the stuff of magic itself."
* One of the more interesting ideas of this was featured in a ''TabletopGame/{{Shadowrun}}'' novel, where an Indian magical theorist worked out a different ElementNumberFive than the usual Chinese translation. Specifically, he found that while Fire, Earth, and Water matched up to their standard concepts, the literal translations for Wood and Metal were "Wood that burns" and "Metal that gleams" respectively. "Wood that burns" would be perhaps one of the only ways to visualize Air (as smoke), so perhaps it also wasn't the Metal ancient Chinese mages were referring to... but the gleam. Then he summons a Light elemental which he designates as a "Farohad," it incinerates him, and escapes, then begins making hit-and-run attacks on the Matrix (the futuristic, VR-based internet) to destroy all traces of itself. Unfortunately, since the scientist's project was called "The Lucifer Project," this ends up creating lots of collateral damage to places like churches, seminaries, and an unfortunate woman named Lucille Ferraro.
** With the advent of the fourth edition, ''TabletopGame/{{Shadowrun}}'' has a definitive fifth element. When conjuring, magicians can summon up spirits of Earth, Fire, Air, Water, and/or Man.
* In ''TabletopGame/PrometheanTheCreated'', Frankensteins are Fire, Tammuz are Earth, Galateids are Air, and Osirans are Water. Ulgans, the fifth Lineage? Ectoplasm. (They're deeply connected to the spirit world.) Later, we get a Sixth Element - ''Radiation''. Poor, miserable Zeka...
* The Tau in ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' have a FantasticCasteSystem thematically based on the elements: The Fire caste are warriors, Water are politicians and bureaucrats, Air are the SpaceNavy, and Earth are manual labourers and artisans. The rare and mysterious ruling caste are "Ethereals".
* TabletopGame/{{Warhammer}}'s magic system is based on the eight "Winds of Magic" - each wind being an elemental force in its own right. The eight winds are the lores of Light, Metal, Life, Heavens, Shadow, Death, Fire and Beasts, and human wizards can learn to manipulate only one of these elements due to their limited magical capacities. High Elf wizards, on the other hand (and the ancient Slann) can manipulate all eight winds at once, leading to "High Magic" - somewhat analogous to a fifth element, though really just the perfected ordering of all the rest together. Dark Elves and some Chaos Sorcerers use "Dark Magic", a disorganised, roiling, chaotic mixture of the eight winds, which is likewise more powerful than the individual elemental winds, but far riskier and less controlled than High Magic. The setting also has Rune magic, Waaagh! magic, and Gut magic (which don't seem to work off the winds at all) and several flavors of Necromancy (uses Dark Magic as a power source but operates on it's own rules) as more traditional "fifth" elements.
* Classic ''Advanced TableTopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' started with the four elemental planes of water, air, fire, and earth. And added the two energy planes, positive and negative. And the para-elemental planes, where the elemental planes touch: smoke, ice, magma, and ooze. And, ''also,'' the quasi-elemental planes, where the elemental planes touch the energy planes: lightning, minerals, radiance, and steam on the positive side; vacuum, dust, ash, and salt on the negative side.
** Conversely, the old Basic/Expert/etc D&D game's cosmology acknowledged five "Spheres" of spiritual force, each with a corresponding element. These five Spheres are: Energy/Fire, Matter/Earth, Thought/Air, Time/Water, and Death/Entropy.
** Gamers always being quick to spot patterns and fill in gaps, it's been [[http://mimir.net/mapinfinity/quasi.html suggested]] that there should also be para-quasi-elemental plains. Spark, crystal, obsidian and clay where the para-elements touch positive energy; fumes, frost, pumice and silt on the negative side. However, these quasi-para-elemental planes strongly contradict established Dark Sun Planescape canon from 2nd edition.
** In the Planescape book The Inner Planes, an equivalent of quasi-para-elemental planes is given in the form of border regions between the planes that characters can visit. However, they do not seem to contain a quasi-para-element of their own, only a combination of quasi-elements and para-elements.
** There are also combinations of elements that are not the result of planes touching each other. Darklights are undead creatures that escaped from the negative energy plane through a gate to the plane of radiance, where they should normally be destroyed but for some reason adapt to the plane instead, mixing fire, positive and negative energy into their form. The Dark Sun campaign setting also has its own twist on elemental combinations, since the para-elemental planes are canonically different from their Planescape counterpart and appear to have been mixed with positive energy: rain replaces ice, silt replaces ooze, and sun replaces smoke. Also from Dark Sun, the backstory of one of the setting's regions (the Deadlands) heavily suggests that obsidian can be created by blending the four traditional elements with negative energy, which could explain its use as a magical catalyst (since magic is fuelled by positive energy in the setting, and negative and positive energy have been shown to have strong interactions).
* ''TableTopGame/{{Pathfinder}}'' naturally introduced the four "Classic" elementalists in the Advanced Player's Guide as wizard archetypes, then followed up with the Chinese-inspired Metal and Wood elementalists in Ultimate Magic.
* The now-defunct trading card game ''Anachronism'' merged traditional western elements with eastern ones, since both were covered by the game. Fire, water, wind, and earth were represented, as were wood, metal, and aether. For whatever reason, a single Norseman was all seven.
* TableTopGame/{{Exalted}} uses wood for its fifth element; or, depending on how you look at it, it uses the Chinese element system with Metal swapped out for Air.
* ''TableTopGame/RuneQuest'' has [[TheSacredDarkness Darkness]] as a fifth element, and the Red Goddess recently added [[{{Lunacy}} Moon]] as a sixth.

* ''Toys/{{Bionicle}}'' started with six elements: Fire, Water, Earth, Air, Stone, and Ice. Then Light was introduced as the SixthRanger. Though in this case it's not necessarily ''stronger'' than the other six, just rarer and more effective against the villain's Shadow powers. There's also a bunch of additional elements acknowledged in the ExpandedUniverse, such as Iron, Sonics, Psionics, Lightning, Gravity, Plant Life, etc.; but they're way less prominent than the main ones. The elements that do fulfill the "rarer ''and'' more powerful" part of the trope are Time, Life, and Creation.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''VideoGame/KingdomOfLoathing'' has five elements to begin with (similar to the Chinese element system, which uses earth, water, metal, wood, and fire), but adds a sixth element, cute, in an arc that blatantly parodies ''Film/TheFifthElement''. There's only one item that provides Cute Resistance, though, and there's no way to dish out or receive Cute Damage.
** For reference, the five elements are [[PlayingWithFire Hot]], [[AnIcePerson Cold]], Spooky, Stench, and Sleaze.
** There's also slime, shadow, and bad spelling, but those only show up in the [[BonusDungeon Slime Tube]], the [[TheVeryDefinitelyFinalDungeon Naughty Sorceress's Tower]] and the Orc Chasm, respectively. You can't equip items that are resistant to these elements (except Slime, [[EasyModeMockery but this is generally not beneficial]]), nor can you wield them yourself. These don't really count as elements because their weaknesses are usually specific items. [[spoiler:Slime deals a status effect which can be removed with a chamoix, shadow is vulnerable [[ReviveKillsZombie to healing items]] and bad spelling is vulnerable to dictionaries.]]
* Five classic elements are powered by six [[WeirdMoon colored moons]] in ''VideoGame/SkiesOfArcadia'' (although on a technical level, there are six, as both [[MakingASplash water]] and [[BlowYouAway wind]] elements are drawn from the Blue Moon; the other five have one element). The sixth element, drawn from the Silver Moon, is [[YinYangBomb life and death]] - spells that [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin either kill opponents instantly or resurrect your allies]] (or cure status ailments). [[SquishyWizard Fina]], as a member of the civilization that once lied under the Silver Moon's orbit, learns this magic the fastest.
* The four elements of magic spells in the ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' games are [[PlayingWithFire Fire]], [[AnIcePerson Ice]], [[BlowYouAway Wind/Force]], and [[ShockAndAwe Electric]], with "Almighty" as the fifth, ultimate element. Nothing is weak to it, but usually nothing resists or nullifies Almighty either. It's a double-edged sword, as it gives both bosses and players a method to deal damage regardless of immunities.
** Interestingly enough, Almighty is not necessarily a literal FIFTH element per se, as there are other elements which could qualify as a fifth and sixth element. Most of the games in the Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei universe include {{Light|EmUp}} and [[CastingAShadow Dark]] elemental spells in the form of "Hama" and "Mudo", who, despite the fact that they function as [[OneHitKO instant kill]] spells, are still classed as Elements since enemies can be weak to these spells. ''VideoGame/DigitalDevilSaga'' even includes the [[DishingOutDirt Earth]] element ([[StandardStatusEffects Ailments]] are also treated like an element there).
** The early ''VideoGame/{{Persona}}'' games also have water, earth and NUCLEAR as additional elements. ''VideoGame/Persona5'' brings back Nuclear and adds Psychic.
* ''VideoGame/TwoWorlds'' has Earth, Fire, and Water. Death was added when the orc god died.
* In the ''VideoGame/QuestForGlory'' series, the fifth element is Pizza, which researchers describe as representing the well-roundedness and wholeness of the world. That, and it tastes good. In the fan-made remake of the second game, there's even a Pizza Elemental as a BonusBoss.
** Some researchers believe there are only ''four'' elements, but most are in agreement that [[BaitAndSwitchComparison fire]] ''[[BaitAndSwitchComparison is]]'' [[BaitAndSwitchComparison an element.]]
* ''VideoGame/BahamutLagoon'' features no fewer than three extra elements. (Actually a sixth, seventh and eighth. The classical elements are represented, but there are four nonstandard elements;) Earth, Light and Dark aren't visible in your dragons' stats. Earth is the first extra element, a dragon who knows Fire, Ice and Lightning magic can use Earth at the same level as its worst element. Then, a dragon with maxed out Earth, Healing, Poison, Strength and Defense will gain access to the Light and Dark elements. Very few monsters resist these elements, and finishing off enemies with them gives a chance to drop the best items in the game. Unfortunately, they also cost a lot of MP to cast.
* The MatchThreeGame ''[[http://www.ritual.com/games/Elements Elements]]'' is about distilling the four classical elements (Earth, Fire, Air and Water) and the sub-elements they create as you follow the story of Luca Pacioli's research on the same thing you're doing. The fifth element eventually reveals itself to be [[spoiler:Cosmos]], and you'll have to distill the sub-elements that result from it and the other four elements.
* An alchemist in the ''Shivering Isles'' expansion of ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion'' theorises that each of the four classical elements corresponds to a part of the body (fire is meat, earth is bone, water is blood and air is breath), and that these elements when brought together create the fifth element, Flesh.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Klonoa}} 2: Lunatea's Veil,'' there are four bells Tranquility, Joy, Discord and Indecision but it is revealed there is a fifth: [[spoiler:Sorrow. In this case, it does exist within the ElementalRockPaperScissors scheme, but it's been suppressed.]]
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'', there are five elements, but you see the fifth (Holy) only extremely rarely, with the other four being much more common working in opposite pairs (Fire/Ice and Lightning/Water).
** Other ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' games also tend to have elements more obscure than the "main" ones. The four western elements (earth, fire, air and water) are [[FourElementEnsemble standard set]] for the crystals and the elemental archfiends, but the magic system is more complicated. While the standard three elements for spells are [[FireIceLightning fire, ice and lightning]], there are quite a few spells and special attacks with other elements or element-like properties, including air, water, earth, poison, holy, darkness, healing, gravity, as well as non-elemental spells.
* In ''LuminousArc2'', [[spoiler:[[CoolBigSis Ayano]], [[TheDragon Bharva]] and [[FinalBoss the Mage Queen]], [[WellIntentionedExtremist Elicia]]]] possess the [[AntiMagic Silver element,]] which is resistant to all other elements. In particular, [[spoiler:[[GlassCannon Ayano]]]] can use it to the point that [[spoiler:she]] can efectively nullify all magical damage for a turn.
* Has started cropping up in the ''VideoGame/GoldenSun'' series with the release of [[VideoGame/GoldenSunDarkDawn Dark Dawn]]. Before there were the classic four, with some hints that a joint combination of those four as the eponymous Sun being a possible fifth. However, in Dark Dawn there are a large number of monsters with a Darkness element from the midpoint on that seems to be largely independent of the ElementalRockPaperScissors and radically more powerful. Their presence is unnatural and is interfering with the state of the world.
** Then it's revealed at the end that [[spoiler:Chalis and Blados]] are [[CastingAShadow Dark Adepts.]] And it appears that [[spoiler:we now have a Sixth Element in the form of [[LightEmUp Light Adepts.]]]]
* [[MysteriousWaif Lucia]], the sole citizen of the Blue Star, wields a sixth special element in ''VideoGame/LunarEternalBlue''. It is meteor/star-based, and this is more or less {{justified|Trope}} because it's thought that she has access to a higher power.
* In the ''VideoGame/MysteryCaseFiles'' game ''Dire Grove,'' items representing the five elements have to be inserted into an underground ice shrine in order to defeat the BigBad at the end. They represent the fifth element with [[spoiler:mercury]].
* ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' has elementals, items which are the elements in a tangible form that are used for advanced crafting recipes. Originally there were more than four, but with each expansion the extra elements have been phased out; as of Cataclysm, there are five such elementals called Volatiles: Fire, Water, Earth, Air and Life.
* The relatively obscure puzzle game ''Water and Wind Puzzle Battles'' has Fire, Water, Metal, Wood, and Earth as the main elements; it also has Wind (yellow) and Void (pink/purple). Combining three Water and one Wind into a valid combo removes all Water blocks from the board. Surrounding Void with one of each element (including Wind) creates a special "Void Clear" and removes ''every single block'' from the board. Technically a black 'Null' element also exists, but is only used in special puzzle modes and demonstrations, and cannot be chained or otherwise combined.
* ''VideoGame/{{OFF}}'' lists the four elements as "smoke", "metal", "plastic", and "meat". In keeping with the game's motif of [[ArcNumber "four and one"]], Zone 3 introduces an artificial element, Sugar, made through rather macabre means: [[spoiler:burning corpses, and filtering the smoke the right way]].
* ''VideoGame/EternalDarkness'' substitutes the three Ancients, Xel'lotath (representing sanity, or lack thereof,) Chattur'gha (representing brute force and health) and Ulyaoth (representing the mind and mana) for the four elements, their respective runes being used to power spells and trumping each other in the standard ElementalRockPaperScissors style. There's also the fourth Ancient, Mantorok, [[spoiler: who is conspiring to destroy the other three Ancients]], and whose rune trumps all the others. WordOfGod states that there's also a fifth Ancient that is never seen, but does have a few enemies with its color coding who appear.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'' has ''eight'' standard elements (fire, ice, earth, wind, water, electricity, light and darkness,) each one represented by its own summon spirit. While there's technically no ninth element, there ''is'' a ninth major summon spirit, Origin, who's called the Summon Spirit of All Things and uses a variety of spells of different elements, as well as Maxwell, the Summon Spirit of Birth, who uses the non-elemental Meteor Storm.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss'' is an unusual example. Elements are called fonons, and there are the four classic elements of Earth, Wind, Water and Fire, as well as two more, Dark and Light, both of which also cover two of the classic elements and thus could be considered more powerful (or at least more useful) and so fit this trope. However there's an even greater one introduced very early in the game, the Seventh Fonon. It's considered the most powerful and most dangerous element in the game, and only people born with the ability to control it can do so, and even then, they aren't able to do it themselves (until the point the game takes place). The reason why it's so powerful? The Seventh Fonon's element is Sound, which is what all other Fonons are made of (fonons are just vibrations of particles, which is exactly what sound is) and are what allow matter to be distinguished, making anyone who can control The Seventh Fonon a borderline reality warper. Its power is purely in terms of plot, however, as it never pops up in gameplay (a few special attacks notwithstanding, that are considered non-elemental anyway, plus being a requirement for using [[HealingHands healing spells]]) unless you count it as being an InUniverse justification for Save Points.
* In ''VideoGame/UltimaVIII'', which is based heavily on the four elements, the fifth element is Aether, which even has its own ElementalPlane outside the actual world. This element powers the fifth school of magic, Thaumaturgy, but does not have an actual Titan representing it.
* In ''The Little Mermaid and the Purple Tide,'' the eighth installment of the ''VideoGame/DarkParables'', the king of Prasino needs to acquire five elemental orbs in order to undo the curse which transformed himself and his daughters into aquatic mutations. In this instance, the fifth element is represented as Wood.
* ''VideoGame/PathOfExile'' has a fourth non-standard element called Chaos. Chaos damage is different from the [[FireIceLightning other three elements]] in that it's not considered "Elemental Damage" and while it doesn't have a status effect associated with it, has a special property of bypassing [[DeflectorShield Energy Shields]]. Despite not being considered an element, your character receives a Chaos resistance penalty in higher difficulties like the other 3 elements and while only a small number of enemies use them, it's harder to find chaos resistance and damage in general and those rare enemies that ''do'' deal chaos damage are going to be dangerous.
* The ''VideoGame/LegacyOfKain'' series has two different versions of this, the first from ''Blood Omen'' and the second only fully realised in ''Defiance'':
** The original game introduced the Pillars of Nosgoth, each aligned with a different (rather non-classical) element, with eight of them arranged in a semi-circle. The ninth Pillar, representing Balance, stood apart from the others in the center.
** ''Defiance'' introduced the full range of ElementalPowers for Raziel's Soul Reaver: the four classics plus Light and Darkness to juxtapose each other. The seventh and most powerful was Spirit, which permanently replaced the non-elemental Reaver to signify its newfound purity.

* At the end of the original run of ''Webcomic/IrregularWebcomic'', the "Fantasy" theme ended with the wizard Kyros initiating a new quest in which he seeks ''The Quintessential Fifth Elementalist'', an eldritch tome that would allow him to master all that remains after the four classical elements. Natrually, this plot thread was picked up when the webcomic returned in 2015.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Captain Planet|and the Planeteers}}'' featured the element of Heart, which was described as important, and indeed, [[HeartIsAnAwesomePower has pretty powerful abilities]] [[FridgeLogic when you think about it]], [[WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway but ended up a source of derision in pop culture writ]] [[MisappliedPhlebotinum largely because of how poorly utilized it was.]]
* Appears [[EleventhHourSuperpower late]] in ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender''. [[spoiler:Spiritbending (also referred to as Energybending)]] can actually be considered generally weaker than the other elements, as it is typically only used on oneself and using it on another is incredibly risky. [[spoiler:Even if it can permanently disable Bending.]] They never really go into what [[spoiler:Spiritbending]] can do besides [[spoiler:disable or restore someone else's bending abilities]] either.
* In The SequelSeries, ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'', it appears it can also be used to [[spoiler:do the reverse, and ''restore'' someone's bending.]]
** Having named one season after each of the four physical elements (Water, Earth, Fire, and Air), the second season of ''Korra'' was named "Spirits."
** A previous-life flashback revealed that [[spoiler: spiritbending was the original source of the the other four bending abilities in humans, as well as the Avatar cycle itself.]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{WITCH}}'', the girls have powers based on the four elements, with Will being [[WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway the heart]]. [[PlayingWithATrope Instead of getting this fifth element later, she gets a]] ''power-up'' that lets her use Quintessence, an [[ShockAndAwe electrical power]] that could bring appliances and golem-like beings to life, summon ghosts from the site of their deaths and [[LightningCanDoAnything a whole lot of other applications]].
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{Trollz}}'', amber is the fifth element and is the source of all troll magic.
* Parodied, as usual, in ''WesternAnimation/CodenameKidsNextDoor''. In one episode, Numbuh 5 speaks of ice cream flavors (chocolate, vanilla and strawberry) in the same vein as elements, and mentions that there's a legendary fourth flavor hidden somewhere in the world.
* Each of the original planets in ''ShadowRaiders'' correspond to an element; Planet Water [[spoiler:gets destroyed in the first episode]], Planet Rock (the earth), Planet Fire (ask CaptainObvious), Planet Ice (a very cold windy place, may represent Air, but in some media Ice is an element on itself) and a fifth planet called Planet Bone. Of course, the main antagonist of the series is an errant PlanetEater world named Planet Beast made of "beast matter". A seventh "element" can be Tek Planet (made of... technology).

[[folder:Real Life]]
* RealLife alchemists sometimes talked of such a concept - also called ''Quintessence'' ([[AltumVidetur Latin]], roughly, for [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin "Element Number Five"]]). Common ideas were "Aether" and "vital essence" (essentially life itself). It was thought that the heavens were made of pure quintessence, and the imperfect Earth of the lesser elements. The extraction of quintessence was considered one of the fundamental goals of alchemy.
* The ''Goethe-Gymnasium'' in Berlin-Wilmersdorf was built a few years before World War I in a historicist style. On the side facing Uhlandstraße are carved representations of the five elements - fire, earth, air, water and ''electricity''.
** Though note that, in Wuxing, electricity falls under Metal, so it being an element has historical precedent.
* If you consider the four classical elements to refer to the four states of matter: solid, liquid, gas and plasma, then the fifth is the Bose-Einstein Condensate.
** Actually, at least according to TheOtherWiki, there are at least ''seven'' other states of matter, meaning that, under certain interpretations, there are up to twelve elements in RealLife.
* There a four elementary gauge bosons in the Standard Model of particle physics, which are responsible for the transmittal of the electromagnetic, strong nuclear, and weak nuclear forces. A fifth elementary ''scalar'' boson is also included and, until recently, was undiscovered: the Higgs.
* For the literal minded: Boron.