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[[quoteright:350:[[WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/DPGhostZone_1851.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:His parents built a very strange machine; it was [[AnotherDimension designed to view a world unseen]].]]

[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzlG28B-R8Y *eerie music*]]

AnotherDimension where a cast can have adventures and epic battles ''without'' generally affecting any place outside of this dimension or vice versa (although that possibility might crop up as a multi-part arc). It's a different story for anyone ''inside'' of course.

This also allows said battles to be InvisibleToNormals.

The laws of physics may not apply in this space, and characters might have powers they wouldn't normally possess.

Hurling a bad guy into an alternate dimension is a great way to provide a bloodless "death" for a BigBad, or just set up his return because you never know when he might pop back out of that alternate dimension to ruin your day. If animated shows for young kids ever require a villain to be KilledOffForReal, they'll usually throw him in a PhantomZone and then lock the door behind him; he's not really dead, but he's also never coming back. Of course, this can also be the setup for SealedEvilInACan via a TailorMadePrison.

The name comes from an alternate dimension in {{the DCU}}, where Krypton sent its condemned criminals; they didn't die, but they were almost completely unable to influence the world outside. [[SentencedToDownunder Much like]] {{UsefulNotes/Australia}}.

In video games, this is sometimes the justification for the AmazingTechnicolorBattlefield. See also CrystalPrison for a common cage.

May be related to the VoidBetweenTheWorlds.

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!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* An interesting version occurs in ''Manga/{{Bleach}}''. The local MadScientist rigged up an entire town, sent it to the afterlife, and created an exact copy of the town, and set it up where the original was, in order to attempt to fool the BigBad, and also to prevent people from dying while the Shinigami and Hollows are fighting each other. How the scientist prepared for people trying to enter/leave the town while this switch is in place is never explained.
** Leaving is no problem - the inhabitants are all asleep (even the spiritually powerful ones, except maybe Kurosaki Sr. Entering... well, maybe [[HandWave it's a Sunday]].
*** Soul Society has devices that can alter memories so who's to say they don't have a people repellant device.
* In one episode of the OVER arc in ''Manga/BoboboboBobobo'', Bo-bobo, Don Patchi, and Tokoro Tennosuke [[FusionDance combine]] into "Bobopatchnosuke" to defeat a trio of oddball ninjas. He does so by pulling them into an alternate dimension called "Majide Time" ("Maji de?" roughly translates as "seriously?" in Japanese), where he performs attacks that are even more bizarre than normal, growing more powerful as his thoroughly confused opponents repeatedly shout "Maji de?!"
* Subverted in the {{Deconstruction}} of the mecha genre that is ''{{Bokurano}}''. The fights between the giant robots cause exactly as much damage as one would imagine. Cities are destroyed, thousands of innocents are crushed, etc.
* Minor example in ''Anime/DigimonTamers'': Rika's Renamon had the ability to talk to her in a pocket dimension where no time passed in the outside world. They could even enter it in a crowd of people, and when they got out again, nobody noticed.
* The Room of Spirit and Time (aka Hyperbolic Time Chamber in the FUNImation dub) from ''DragonBallZ'' fits the trope.
** More applicable version would be the Dead Zone.
* The Red Night in ''ElevenEyes''. While the space of the battles is confined to inside the city, the place gets severely wrecked up and, thankfully, none of the property damage that occurs within transfers back to the real world.
* The Class Cards in ''Manga/FateKaleidLinerPrismaIllya'' hide in darkened replicas of portions of the real world, much like Closed Space in ''LightNovel/HaruhiSuzumiya'', which collapse and vanish shortly after the card is captured. It's a good thing the collateral damage isn't transferred to reality, because some of the fights cause extreme environmental devastation.
* Rider's Reality Marble in ''LightNovel/FateZero'' generates these. [[spoiler:[[AchillesHeel Ultimately leads to his own destruction]], as it allows Archer to use his world-destroying weapon without damaging the real world.]]
* Gluttony's stomach in the ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' manga and ''Brotherhood'' anime is literally an unending bloodsoaked void with no exit in which Ed, Ling, and Envy get trapped.
* ''GaoGaiGar'''s Dividing Driver created a pocket dimension where the HumongousMecha could fight the MonsterOfTheWeek without the property damage usually associated.
* Invoked by the protagonists of ''HaiyoreNyarukoSan''. Nyaruko even lampshades it in the first episode as a "convenient barrier", ''twice'', explaining it as "[[MediumAwareness important information]]", complete with an AsideGlance.
* Battles in ''Anime/IlSolePenetraLeIllusioni'' happen in the "Astralux," which is something like a collective subconscious.
* [[KagihimeMonogatari The Merveille Space in Kagihime]]. [[spoiler: It becomes a plot point because Aruto is the second male to be able to enter it apart from Alternate L. Takion.]]
* A fox spirit in LightNovel/{{Kanokon}} uses these to provide privacy when she attempts to have sex with the show's protagonist. At one point the zone breaks down, returning them both to the middle of a crowded street in front of about fifty of their schoolmates.
* The HumongousMecha of ''[[MachineRobo Sortie! Machine Robo Rescue]]'' have the ability to create special fields known simply as Zones to contain any enemies or obstacles that might get in the way of their rescue efforts.
* Similarly, the Barriers in ''MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha'', which works by displacing magic users into a contained Phantom Zone, though damages to the environment are still retained and need to be fixed by TheFederation afterwards. Useful in the first two seasons where the setting was the non-magical earth, so only the magical heroes would be trapped with the current threat. Nigh useless in the third season and beyond, where the setting is Mid-Childa [[EveryoneIsASuper where everyone is a magic-user]], including the {{Innocent Bystander}}s.
* In ''MahouSenseiNegima'', Evangeline is able to create one of these with her magic, transporting herself and the victim to her special resort. Naturally, [[YearInsideHourOutside only seconds actually pass while this is happening]].
** Later, [[spoiler: we meet two of [[ThePsychoRangers Fate's minions]], Koyomi, who has some power over time and Tamaki, who has some power over space, by combining their abilities can create one of these which they can trap enemies in. Its' AchillesHeel was physical contact with the user, so it didn't last ([[DefeatByModesty one can't become distracted when using magic]])]].
** There's also one contained in Eva's BlackMagic scroll.
* In ''{{Pretear}}'', Shin, who is too young to fight anyway, has the job of setting up the zone where the outside world can't be influenced or damaged and then watching as the grown-ups take care of business.
* The witches of ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica'' hang out in bizarre "barriers"[[note]]"sealed space" would be a more accurate translation, but "barrier" is what everyone uses...[[/note]] that are only accessible in a small area, and the entrance is InvisibleToNormals. But normal people can still get sucked into them, usually to their doom. [[spoiler:Walpurgisnacht is so powerful that it doesn't need a barrier, so it rips the city to bits instead.]]
* The [[ThereCanBeOnlyOne Alice Game]] in ''RozenMaiden'' is fought in ''N-space'', while the series otherwise takes place primarily in a single BuildingOfAdventure.
* Seal of Suppression (Fuzetsu) from ''ShakuganNoShana''. Stains everything red, everyone outside forgets that the sealed area exists and avoids it subconsciously, and lets the Flame Hazes and Denizens wreak as much havoc as necessary within its limits.
* Zero Time in ''StarDriver''.
* Closed Space in ''SuzumiyaHaruhi'', where giant ethereal beings known as Celestials rampage about destroying everything. No damage is reflected in the real world, but the Celestials still need to be destroyed in order to destroy the Closed Space and prevent TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt.
* ''ToAruMajutsuNoIndex'' - One technique simply creates an area where people are somehow absent; another employs a "sides of a coin" metaphor that prevents people on one side (like magicians) from interfering with those on another (those who aren't involved).
** The distortion created from the clash between various supernatural powers in Baggage City produces one of these, which drew in the people involved in the battle and also made tragedy more likely to occur. It was engineered by GREMLIN as an experiment into Holism and its existence proven when it was shattered by the [[AntiMagic Imagine Breaker]] with Touma's appearance.
* The Kekkai Fields in ''[[{{X1999}} X/1999]]''. An interesting thing about this example is that if a "good" character wins a battle in a Kekkai, all the destruction is undone...but if the "evil" character wins, the destruction becomes reality.
** Wasn't it if the field's ''creator'' (who tended to be the good guy anyway)was killed the damage became real?
* Aversion: The dream world of ''{{Yumeria}}'' looks like a PhantomZone, but as Mone's appearance in the real world at the end of the first episode attests, there's a very real connection between the two.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''ComicBook/AstroCity'''s Samaritan has access to such a dimesion, but rather than use it for criminals or epic battles, he uses it as... [[MundaneUtility a storage closet]], mainly holding all the awards and plaques he regularly receives. It's also a convenient place to change his clothes when no phone booth is available.
* The Creator/GrantMorrison ''Marvel Boy'' series had the "pocket battlefield", a small cube that essentially does to physical space what the "incoming games" did to Mainframe on ''WesternAnimation/{{Reboot}}''; impose a virtual yet tangible interactive environment on the local reality, but the twist being that said environment gives anyone in it ''except'' the designated user a major case of the heebie-jeebies, giving him an advantage over his foes.
* ''{{Supreme}}'' (the good Creator/AlanMoore version) has Looking-Glass Land, literally the [[LiteraryAgentHypothesis same world visited by Alice]], but on a different continent of that planet, used to exile the criminals no normal jail could hold.
* We may as well put the trope namer in here. The Phantom Zone from the ''{{Superman}}'' comics, the harsh dimension to which Kryptonian criminals are banished. [[SealedEvilInACan Sometimes they don't stay]].
** Creator/GrantMorrison's ''{{JLA}}'' introduces the Still Zone, where the League battle the White Martians and, later, Prometheus. According to these stories, the Still Zone (or, as Prometheus calls it, the Ghost Zone), which the White Martians use in place of {{Hyperspace}}, is both the Phantom Zone and (according to the angel Zauriel) Limbo...and probably also the Stasis Zone that was at the time standing in for the Phantom Zone in [[ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}} M'Onel's]] origin and the Buffer Zone that [[IntangibleMan Bgzltians phase into]]. A later story adds [[TimeMaster Epoch's]] "timeless void" and ComicBook/DCOneMillion's "tesseract space" to the list.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fanfic]]
* The Dimension of Darkness/Dark Planet in ''Fanfic/MyLittleUnicorn''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* In ''Film/{{Superman}}'', General Zod, Ursa and Non are imprisoned in the Phantom Zone by Jor-El. In ''SupermanII'', the Phantom Zone is shattered when Jor-El's son Kal-El (a.k.a. Superman) sends a terrorist hydrogen bomb into space to explode harmlessly, and the three Kryptonian super-criminals are freed to wreak havoc upon Earth.
** The ''{{Supergirl}}'' movie has the title character thrown into the Phantom Zone by her nemesis Selena using the power of the Omegahedron, which strips her of her powers in the process. Zaltar, who came to the Phantom Zone as a self-imposed exile for losing the Omegahedron in the first place, pulls a HeroicSacrifice to allow her to escape and regain her powers.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* The NeverNever in ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles''
* The Twilight in ''Literature/NightWatch''.
* The Dreamlands in Creator/HPLovecraft's stories are a subversion of this -- humans are ''still'' rather insignificant, but they are insignificant in a mythical if dark fantasy land that people in the Waking World are unaware exists.
* Scott Corbett wrote a series about ghost detectives, that had ghosts almost completely unable to affect the living world.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* Battles in ''Series/KamenRiderRyuki'' take place in a "Mirror Dimension" that is populated by ravenous monsters. This dimension can be accessed through any kind of reflective surface.
** The Americanized version, ''Series/KamenRiderDragonKnight,'' has this element, but the mirror dimension is a ParallelUniverse named Ventara that was once populated until the BigBad came to town, and the monsters (except for the ones the Riders are contracted to) all belong to him. There's also a Phantom Zone in the true Superman-form: for NeverSayDie purposes, defeated Riders don't die, but are sucked into the "advent void," never to return.
*** [[spoiler:It's not just NeverSayDie, as it becomes a plot point that getting sent there is ''not'' permanent]]
* ''Series/UltramanNexus''. Ultraman creates a so-called "Metafield" that surrounds him and the MonsterOfTheWeek, creating a pocket dimension with a weird-colored sky and a rocky, craggy ground. In an interesting twist, the evil counterparts of Ultraman, [[SarcasmMode subtly]] named Faust and Mephisto, can transform this Metafield into the "Dark Field," a pocket dimension with a darker sky (natch!) that weakens Ultraman slightly. Also, when the battles do threaten a real-world city, it becomes a major plot point.
* ''Series/VRTroopers'' had the Battle Grid for when they wanted to deal with [[{{Mooks}} the Skugs]] in relative privacy. For the actual MonsterOfTheWeek, the usual MO was for JB to return them to {{Cyberspace}}, which had a suspicious resemblance to ''SuperSentai's'' BBCQuarry (''every time'').
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Multiple Media]]
* The Field of Shadow, also known as Zone of Darkness in ''Franchise/{{Bionicle}}''. It's a featureless, normally empty and pitch-dark pocket dimension attached to the Matoran Universe, but the [[BrotherhoodOfEvil Brotherhood of Makuta]] uses it to store away the [[{{Kaiju}} Zivon]] when they don't need it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The [[HyperspaceIsAScaryPlace Warp]] of ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}''. Although the Warp is [[DeathWorld far more dangerous]] than most such examples; sending a foe there ''is'' generally a death sentence (or a FateWorseThanDeath sentence).
** [[LikeABadassOutOfHell But when it's not...]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Purgatorio in ''VideoGame/{{Bayonetta}}'' has some elements of this. Anyone in it is InvisibleToNormals, but it ''does'' allow people in it (such as the title character) to interact with the real world to some degree. In fact, it's the only place where the demons of Inferno and the angels of Paradiso can interact with the mortal world.
* Your final battle against Lavos in ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger'' happens in one of these, with backgrounds from various eras overlayed with a lightshow.
** Also, when you enter Lavos's shell, if you save, it has "???" as the time period. Fights with the Mammon Machine and Lavos's Shell also happen in some kind of a lightshow.
* Item World from ''{{Disgaea}}'' series qualifies to a certain degree. While having somewhat realistic battlefields (with grass and trees and blocks and ''even graveyards'') and inhabitants (whom you fight, uh), these locations still float in colorful space and can only be quitted upon completing each ten floors or with the help of a specific item. ..Come on, it's up to a hundred floors of various sizes that exist ''inside'' equipable or non-equipable items! All the destuctions that take place (remember Laharl's meteor skill) are unseen and undamaging for anyone outside said worlds.
** ..As if it wasn't the same for any other location in ''{{Disgaea}}''.
* The boss battle with Giygas in ''Earthbound''.
* The Void from ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyV'', especially when you factor in Gilgamesh (yes, [[Literature/TheEpicOfGilgamesh that one.]]) He's been able to join in and have fun in all sorts of [[Franchise/FinalFantasy dimensions.]] The best part? ''It's all canon.''
* Another example would be the optional fight against Diablos in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII'', which takes place inside of the Magic Lamp Cid gives you.
* The final track in ''VideoGame/{{F-Zero}} GX'''s Story Mode, as well as [[ThatOneLevel the final track in the Diamond Cup Grand Prix]] (same setting, different layout).
* In ''GuildWars'', the [[CrystalDragonJesus crystal dragon Glint]] hides inside a grain of sand... ''in the middle of a desert''. It just so happens this magical grain of sand contains a PhantomZone where Glint makes her home. The place is pretty huge and includes six areas, one of which houses Glint herself. You can even optionally fight Glint as a BonusBoss. She's arguably tougher than most endgame bosses.
* The Midnight Channel in ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' is a spooky, fog-filled dimension that exists inside televisions. ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'' has a Phantom ''Time'' in the form of the Dark Hour, 60 extra minutes between one day and the next that most people can't perceive.
* The ''Distortion World'' in ''{{Pokemon}}''. You can ''[[DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu fight]]'' a giant, ultra powerful, legendary Pokemon, [[OlympusMons capture]] it, and make it [[KidWithTheRemoteControl fight]]. Nothing else really, except run around.
** Subverted in the anime equivalent,the ''Reverse World''. Whatever you destroy in this world, affects the "real world" [[EndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt greatly]].
* The Bydo home dimension in [[RType R-Type]] is a PhantomZone of sorts, and, what with being inhabited by the Embodiment of Evil (the Bydo), is a very scary place. Often, the final levels of the games would take place in that dimension, which could get downright ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QYdOZ-b0Zw disturbing]]''.
* Eternity Space in ''VideoGame/StarOceanTheSecondStory'' more or less works this way, though it's technically already not involved in the story any more by the time the game begins.
* The entire plot of ''[[VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Subspace Emissary]]'' revolves around the titular subspace.
* The Noise Plane and Imaginary Plane in ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou''.
* The Domains in VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV are labyrinths Demons construct to entrap their prey, and you go through a fair few of them on your quest. [[spoiler: The Monochrome Forest also counts.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Webcomics]]
* The webcomic ''[[http://www.captainsnes.com Captain SNES]]'' shows "What a RPG battle looks like from outside".
* A nameless, [[CosmicHorror Lovecraftian]] dimension exists in ''WebComic/DominicDeegan'' that has, so far, been used as a convenient way to get rid of villains so they can return later. Although the indiscriminate infiltration of tentacles into their various orifices seems to be a bad side effect of staying in this dimension for too long.
* ''WebComic/DragonBallMultiverse'': Universe Zero, chosen because life never formed there.
* The timestream serves as this for [[spoiler: rogue time traveler Scarlett]] in the WebComic ''[[http://www.tru-lifeadventures.com TRU-Life Adventures]]''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* The Null Void in ''WesternAnimation/{{Ben 10}}''. Unusual in that things were let ''out'' before the viewer was let in on it.
* The Ghost Zone from ''WesternAnimation/DannyPhantom'' (pictured); also served as SealedEvilInACan.
* ''WesternAnimation/HomeMovies'' - in Brendon's sci-fi epic "Starboy and the Captain of Outer Space'', the Triumvirate of Evil are hurled into space in a Phantom Zone parallelogram (owing to a low-budget, actually a Polaroid picture)
* A slightly ironic use in ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'', where Franchise/{{Batman}} becomes disgruntled with Franchise/{{Superman}} after he sends Doomsday into the literal Phantom Zone. The plot really isn't trying to cover up the fact Batman's anger is treating it as giving someone an actual death sentence.
** Before that it appears numerous time throughout ''WesternAnimation/SupermanTheAnimatedSeries''. Jor-El originally planned to use the zone to save all life on Krypton, as they would place the population of the planet into the zone and, using the ship he had built, fly to a new home and retrieve the people. Though the Kryptonian government refused this plan, Jor-El's ship still had a Phantom Zone projector which Superman would use on Earth to parole Kryptonian criminals who had served their sentence, and also to help human research progress in the area of inter-dimensional travel and observation.
* The Phantom Zone makes an appearance in an episode of the ''WesternAnimation/LegionOfSuperHeroes'' where a much younger Superman releases a Kryptonian boy born/created by some of his old enemies to, naturally, kill Superman. He should really stop messing with the Phantom Zone projector.
[[/folder]]
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