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Endless Corridor

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"This is the Endless Corridor. A path that goes on forever."
La-Mulana, grail tablet for the Endless Corridor.

A corridor is very, very long. No, longer than that. No, longer than that.

This is used to make a place seem bigger than it either should or could possibly be, or just to save budget money. Sometimes it can be a desert or an ocean or, even more rarely, a forest.

Sometimes a clever boss will set his Boss Corridor up as one to fool any intruders.

Subtrope of Bizarrchitecture. Sometimes found in Eldritch Locations with Alien Geometries. See also Absurdly Long Stairway. Compare with Scooby-Dooby Doors and games with looping world/nation/kingdom maps. May be an Unnaturally Looping Location.


Hallway variety

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    Anime & Manga 
  • The Virtual World in Yu-Gi-Oh! has Honda and Otogi trapped in one of these. They then break the wall to escape the endless hallway.
  • The hell-banishment scene from the fifth episode of Hell Girl ends with the Villain of the Week being pursued down an endless version of her old apartment building by Ai, the titular Hell Girl, before being sent to Hell proper.
  • In YuYu Hakusho when Yusuke and Botan enter Spirit World for the first time to meet Prince Koenma they walk through a giant hallway. It's even lampshaded as looking like a giant throat.

    Comic Books 
  • Vanishing Point, the place where Superman and Waverider of Armageddon 2001 first visit in "Time And Time Again Again" from the Time and Time Again collected edition, first appears as an endless corridor that somehow warps Superman's telescopic vision so that he sees the both of them from behind.

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • When Sarah enters the eponymous Labyrinth, she first finds herself in an endless corridor, before a worm shows her the invisible side exit. Unfortunately, the exit offers two paths, and it tells her to avoid the one which would take her directly to the castle, believing she would not want to go there, when in fact, she does.
  • Grave Encounters. The service tunnels are supposed to have turn-offs going to various buildings, and be only about a quarter-mile long. Towards the end, there's nothing but a single, long corridor that the protagonists walk along for days.
  • The massive office building where Sam Lowry works in Brazil is presented as having these.
  • One exists in The Matrix, and contains every door (or a connection thereto) in that artificial world.
  • Hellraiser: Inferno. When Joseph visits the hospital, reality turns nightmarish and the hallway briefly extends out before him indefinitely.
  • Occurs twice inside the spaceship from Galaxy Quest. Once when the bridge crew visits the seemingly endless living quarters and again when Jason and Gwen head down an extremely long stretch of corridor.

  • In The Wheel of Time, an alternate world has a tower (or two) full of these. They also seem to loop the same section of corridor, passing the same rooms and windows. Mat is lead through one of these for several hours, going nowhere.
  • In The Phantom Tollbooth, there are two ways to get to the land of Infinity. One is a hallway that must be followed "forever" and then turned left at the end; the other is a stairway which is, predictably, also infinite.
  • Appears in House of Leaves, but begins with the 'Five and a Half Minute hallway' and soon becomes an Endless Everything or not, considering the house sort of changes depending upon the mindset of the person in its labyrinth.
  • The eponymous Fourth Dimension from Sonic the Hedgehog in the Fourth Dimension is this. It's literally nothing but rows and rows of endless corridors on-top of endless layers of floors of similar looking corridors.
  • In Deltora Quest, one of the cabins on a Ghost Ship is like this, so that it is necessary to gamble to escape.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Angel episode "Waiting in the Wings", (the one in which Summer Glau guest-stars as a ballerina) contains endless corridors in the basement of a dance house.
  • Charmed: There's one in Hogwa-err, the Magic School.
  • The TARDIS in Doctor Who is implied to have these, due to being Bigger on the Inside. In the tie-in adventure game, "TARDIS", when giving directions to his private study, the Doctor mentions that Amy would have to walk for about two miles before she reached it.
  • In Supernatural, after Crowley becomes the new Lord of Hell, he decides to get rid of the fire and brimstone. Instead, he turn it into an endless corridor where people are forced to queue forever, but never get to the front of the line.
  • Space: 1999: in the episode "Mission of the Darians", Morrow finds himself in a very long corridor aboard the Darian's 20-mile-long space ship. He starts to run... The special effects don't quite stand up to high-definition screencaps, but it can be seen here.
  • In the live-action version of Goosebumps "Haunted House Game", the protagonists have to escape the haunted house itself to win the game with their lives. The corridor to the front door stretches out into infinity before them, requiring them to pull it towards them with a fishing rod.
  • In the pilot episode of The Starlost, this is the first thing Devon sees when he steps through the sealed door that takes him outside the biosphere he's spent his entire life in, unaware that he's actually on a vast Generation Ship. He takes a tentative step into the corridor only for Artificial Gravity to pick him up and hurl him, flailing helplessly, down the corridor to be deposited harmlessly at the other end. After his initial terror, he comes to enjoy the experience.
  • In the pilot episode of Star Trek: Voyager, Captain Janeway and her crew find themselves looking into a corridor so long it vanishes into the distance, lined with people suspended in mid-air—beings who have been abducted from all over the galaxy by the Caretaker. Next moment they're transported there themselves, helpless to move as a surgical probe is pushed down into their chest.

  • Many, many, many screensavers, including those that simulate Star Trek-style warpspace. Other designs include texture-mapped tunnels, wormholes, randomly-generated terrain, and even one for XScreenSaver that does a flythrough of the "data stream" graphics from The Matrix.

    Theme Parks 
  • The Haunted Mansion in the Disney theme parks uses mirrors to create the impression of one of these.

    Video Games 
  • In the early days of home computing, graphical games featuring sequences in dungeons, mazes, even outdoors often visually invoked this effect to depict distance. A few examples of this include Ratrun (an early game the Commodore PET from the point of view of a rat in a maze), Escape (for the Apple II Plus) and the original Akalabeth and Ultima games.
  • During most of ALTER EGO (2018), you wander through a pitch black corridor that never seems to end. While doing so, you read books and tap on thought bubbles.
  • In Dark Souls Gwyndolin magically creates one to fight you in. He teleports down it while shooting magic at you.
  • In The Dreamhold, a spell has been placed on one hallway to go on forever unless the right dispell is known.
  • Doom: Although the original Doom actually helped break first-person gaming out of the "straight corridor" mode, there are still many locations in the first game and its sequels where the endless corridor effect is invoked.
  • Everhood has one in Green Mage's castle; they'll point out directly that the corridor is extremely long if not infinite; they made it, after all, because they needed space for all the tally marks of the passing years. It's not actually endless, but it does take two hours to navigate.
  • In Just More Doors, you can find yourself in one after a specific sequence of actions. Complete with the door behind you backing away until you can't reach it anymore.
  • Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time has a looong stairway towards the end, descending this time. It's part of some kind of spiritual magic-induced dream sequence that culminates with The Prince making love to Farah.
  • No More Heroes: The path to the Rank 5 fight is literally a long, long, long hallway.
  • La-Mulana's aptly-named Endless Corridor. It contains four iterations of this trope (five technically, but there's a wall in the middle of the last one).
  • The hallways of Eientei in Touhou Eiyashou ~ Imperishable Night were made this way through either eternity manipulation or inducing madness on the protagonists (depending on the stage). The ones made by the former do end, but only because the one who created it decided to just screw it already. It isn't known whether the latter would have been infinite, as the player characters go through an open door.
  • The hallway before the final battle in Silent Hill 2 is intended to invoke this, although it's not as long as most examples if the player chooses to run to the end (although they will miss most of the heartbreaking disembodied conversation that plays during the trek). Even walking the length and exiting straight away cuts off a very crucial part of the conversation that James wasn't there to hear the first time around.
    • This is also incorporated into both the gameplay and plot — if you run to the end of the corridor and pass through the door without waiting for the end of the conversation it functions as a flag that directs you more towards the 'Maria' ending, because it serves as a bitter reminder to James of how Mary's mood swings hurt him, with her angrily barking at him to get lost after he came to bring her flowers. Likewise, if you listen to the whole conversation it flags you towards the 'Mary' ending, because it allows him to hear how after he'd left, she started crying and begging him to stay and comfort her.
    • In Silent Hill 4, if you don't get rid of the house key in the Forest World, a few screens after appear foggy and repeat endlessly. Though the game pretty much tells you it's coming.
  • A slight outdoor variation of this exists in the original Bard's Tale game, aptly named the Endless Byway. This street in the southeastern corner of the city would seem to go on forever by invisibly teleporting you back a few squares as you went down it. Turning around and leaving put you back in the city proper after a few steps.
  • Ultima VII Part II featured one as a trap in a certain dungeon. Unlike other hallways, this one became endless in either direction. The exit is an invisible side-passage.
  • Eversion: The final level of one version dispenses with the random eversions of the previous games' final level and throws you into a series of looping corridors, starting with Layer 8 and having to find eversion points after in order to progress through the level until you reach Layer 1. If you missed an eversion point along the way, the part of the level you're currently on loops until you can find it and move on to the next part.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
    • Super Mario Bros.: Taking the wrong path in the castle of World 4 will send you back to an earlier point in the level, effectively duplicating the level until you find the correct path. This also happens inthe respective castles of Worlds 7 and 8, with the latter requiring you to enter the right Warp Pipes instead.
    • Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels: In addition to having endless corridors in some castles, the game also does this with some of its overworld levels, e.g. 7-2 and 8-2. In the former, you take a pipe to get out, in the latter, you have to climb a hard-to-reach beanstalk.
    • Super Mario 64: If you don't have enough stars to face Bowser in the final battle, you'll be doomed to walk up forever; there is a bug, however, where you can reach the end of the stairs without enough stars if you can boost Mario's speed high enough. Strangely enough, no matter how far up you go, walking back down is always a very short trip.
  • Max Payne: The first dream sequence has a repeating hallway maze.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog: There are several sections in the games that endlessly loop or Wrap Around until you find the correct path out, e.g., the Endless Waterfall in Labyrinth Zone Act 3, and part of Sandopolis Zone Act 2. There's also one in the Dummied Out Hidden Palace Zone.
  • Dragon Quest: If you take the wrong stairway in Charlock Castle, you end up in the infamous Infinitely Repeating Hallway. Luckily, you only need to go up the stairs once to get out of it.
  • Leisure Suit Larry 5: Passionate Patti Does a Little Undercover Work: Atlantic City's boardwalk is infinitely long (supposedly), and it will take you the same time to get back as it did to get out there.
  • Mickey Mousecapade: The Woods level consists of looping corridors where you must shoot the trees to find the secret door to the next section, and in the Winter area, the true door doesn't appear until you loop at least once.
  • Police Quest III has a Game-Breaking Bug that can cause you to get stuck on an endless highway.
  • The Path has a few examples. First, you can try running away from the house, but each time you pass the telephone, you are somehow pulled back. In the the house, there are two corridors that appear to be short, but suddenly extend when you enter.
  • Jade Cocoon has the Eternal Corridor which you can keep playing until Corridor 255 at which the game freezes.
  • Quest for Glory II features a Wizarding School where a magic using hero will be tested with a number of trials while walking along an endless, narrow pathway.
  • During the tutorial level of Assault on Dark Athena, Riddick enters a seemingly endless hallway after he's killed all the enemies and goes through the last door. Walking towards the end makes all the lights progressively go out as Riddick notes how the dark doesn't scare him.
  • The Bad Place is represented like this in Fur Fighters; where each person has their own personal torment and to travel between them you must traverse an endless hotel-like corridor.
  • In Dragon Slayer II: Xanadu, the first part of the underground, like the mazes in the Mario and Zelda examples, is an infinite loop until you follow the proper directions, which involves a few counterintuitive maneuvers.
  • Luna Game 3 endlessly loops until you take the only other option: suicide by Bottomless Pit.
  • Spooky's Jump Scare Mansion has one as one of its many random rooms. It's pure Shmuck Bait, since the walls close in as you traverse it; go far enough down the hall and eventually you'll reach a point where they are so close together that you cannot move forward or back, trapping you. At this point, Specimen 9 comes at you from the other end of the hall and gives you a Non Standard Game Over..
  • When in Faerieland in Neopets: The Darkest Faerie, you have to go down an endless stairway. It seems like it goes on forever, until you realise the fact the statues point the way to the exit.
  • The Eternal Corridor in Castlevania: Circle of the Moon attempts to evoke this feel, as five long, identical rooms filled with extremely similar enemies connect the two halves of Castle Dracula.
  • Zork Grand Inquisitor: When you first enter GUE Tech, the hallways to the classrooms appear to be endless. To make them finite, you have to remove the first bit of the "Infinite Corridor" sign above the entrance.
  • The setting of Jetpack Joyride, a laboratory named "Legitimate Research", is a one extremely long hallway. Since this is an Endless Running Game, the best you can do is to aim for the highest score possible.

  • Irrelevator: In this comic, there's an endless staircase that they get ironically stuck in.

    Web Original 
  • The SCP Foundation entry, SCP-087 is a dark staircase that seems to go on forever, with what sounds to be a crying child coming at the bottom. Despite this, explorers can never get any closer to the source of the crying and typically tend to run afoul of whatever is scurrying around in the darkness instead.
  • Kilian Experience: In “I Found The Final Secrets Of Minecraft”, Kilian stumbles upon one of these in Herobrine’s mansion and wonders if the contractors who built it were “paid by the meter.”

    Western Animation 
  • The Simpsons:
    • In the dental plan episode, Homer is visiting Burns' mansion and has to use the bathroom, so he asks and is told it's the 23rd door on the left.
    • There's also a Couch Gag where they chase the couch as it disappears to infinity down one of these.
  • At the end of Donald in Mathmagic Land, Donald Duck is shown a long corridor of doors, each one representing a scientific discovery. He goes through each one until he finds the doors locked, representing the discoveries to come.

    Real Life 
  • MIT has an architectural feature known as the Infinite Corridor. Well, no, it's not actually infinite, and only about a quarter mile long, but it is a long hallway located right at the center of campus. Bonus points since, for one or a few days every semester, the sun will shine directly down the entire length of the hallway, an effect known as "MITHenge".
  • Similar to MIT, the University of Leeds in the UK has the "Red Route", known as the longest corridor in Europe. It's around a fifth of a mile long, all on one level, and acts as one of the main thoroughfares on campus for students. The university even offers audio tours for people interested in the history of the route and the buildings it passes through...
  • The Vasari Corridor in Florence puts them to shame. This is a kilometre long elevated corridor built in 1564 over the roofs of houses and across a river to connect the royal residence of Cosimo I de' Medici to the government palace, so he didn't have to walk through the streets.
  • The address of Apple Computer headquarters is 1, Infinite Loop. Said street is technically infinite since it loops onto itself.

Desert variety

    Video Games 
  • In Cuboy: Back to the Cubeture, Cuboy can only go through the desert if he navigates in a certain series of directions.
  • The Endless Desert variety occurs in King's Quest V, even noted in the official (?) hint book that trying to explore said desert may end up ruining your PC, if Graham doesn't die of exhaustion first. Specifically, after going about fifteen screens in one direction, the desert becomes truly endless, in that Graham cannot leave. There is, of course, no indication of when this happens.
    • King's Quest III has one of these as well. If you go 2 screens west into the desert, you can go east for quite a long time before going out (it's random). Setting the walking speed to fastest will probably get you out eventually. There is also an ocean, but if you swim in it too long you'll die.
  • Subverted in Quest for Glory II; the desert is massive, but you can in fact walk from the City of Adventure to the one in which the endgame occurs if you have adequate water and don't mind spending a LOT of time doing so.
  • Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas: Unlike the other GTA games, which stopped players from leaving the designated zone with an Invisible Wall, leaving the island (via boat plane or even swimming) would lead you through an endless zone of sea and sky. You can fly in one direction for an hour straight trying to get to Liberty City; it will also took you an hour to get back to land.
    • Subtly lampshaded in that one particular airplane mission happens a significant distance away from the map.
    • Actually subverted in GTA 4. If you travel far enough you get a message asking you nicely to "Go back to the game map, or get blown up". If you continue you get blown up.
    • And after going out a certain distance, you can't get back to land except by crashing or restoring the game.
  • Halo: Combat Evolved has an endless ocean on "The Silent Cartographer". In subsequent Halo games, going into the ocean will generally kill you, or you'll run into an Invisible Wall while flying.
  • Towards the end of the official multiplayer map for the first Dungeon Siege the players find themselves in an oasis at the edge of a desert that just goes on, and on, and on... Made even more frustrating by the fact that one of the NPC's met in the oasis gives a hint about crossing the desert to find The Very Definitely Final Dungeon. It's possible reach it after an approximately 5-minute run, but if you get your heading wrong by just a few end up at a very dull-looking wall of cliffs.
  • All outdoor environments outside the city walls in The Elder Scrolls: Arena extend infinitely. They are procedurally generated on-the-spot, but are surprisingly detailed.
  • The second region of Secret of Evermore contained the Desert of Doom, a textbook wasteland dotted with spiders, rocks, and the occasional tumbleweed. You could fork over a rare Amulet of Annihilation for a quick ride across, but it was an awful long trip on foot.
    • Of course, just for sadism's sake, the Amulet of Annihilation is hard to get and expensive, and that's just after you cross the desert. You can purchase a "Chocobo's Egg" before and the seller will throw in a Amulet out of pity, but it's far more expensive than you'd likely have the funds for at the beginning - in other words, you have to run across the desert at least once. It takes about four minutes of real-time.
  • The Desert of Death in Breath of Fire III was literally endless, and you could only get anywhere by carefully looking at the stars and following directions. Get it wrong and you'll just run out of water and have to start over.
    • Made particularly evil by the fact that a) there are false stars, and b) you're given the directions verbally, and then given a note with the directions to take with you. The written directions are wrong, and unless you're paying attention, you'll never notice. Finally, the desert is not an enemy-free zone, and every battle screws up your direction.
  • Used in this xkcd strip.
  • The Legend of Zelda contains two areas which constantly repeat: The Lost Woods and the Lost Hills. You can only get out of them by going in the correct directions (typically something like up, left, up, right, up). The Lost Woods have become somewhat of a series staple and appear in subsequent games as well.
    • The final dungeon in The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening: To clear the final dungeon, you need to either figure out (or simply guess) the proper route to the final boss, or complete an otherwise optional Chain of Deals to get a Magnifying Glass that lets you read a book in Mabe Village's library and take note of the route there.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons:
      • The final dungeon. Avoiding the enemies and running straight through the room will cause you to re-enter the same room. To advance you must kill every enemy in each room (there are only 3 or so rooms).
      • There's also Tarm Ruins, where there are two possible ways through - one leads to a dungeon, the other to a sword upgrade. Both not only involve direction, but changing the season as well, making it even more frustrating. Not knowing that secret (both paths involve the temperature rising - winter, fall, spring, summer) can get you stuck.
    • The dungeon you unlock by beating an Oracle of Seasons/Ages linked game is also like this. If you don't know what you're doing you'll end up wandering the halls forever (unless you're damn lucky). To proceed you need to go through the door that none of the eyes look at (it makes sense when you actually see it).
    • The desert in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time keeps sending you back to the start unless you follow the path of the Phantom Guide. Same for the murky Great Bay in The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask.
  • The forest mazes in the NES Metal Gear. And there are no hints anywhere in the game for the correct paths, Guide Dang It!! The scorpion-infested desert after exiting Building 2 in both the MSX and NES versions also infinitely loops unless you have the Compass.
  • One dungeon in Final Fantasy has an area that feels infinite if you don't know the trick (imagine the area as a grid, go two junctions horizontally and two vertically).
  • If you try to pass through the Sleeping Forest without first excavating the Lunar Harp in Final Fantasy VII, the first screen repeats endlessly whenever you try to move forward.
  • Akandia in DROD: Gunthro and the Epic Blunder. To progress, you need to find a clue in another level telling you how many rooms west and south to move; get the number wrong and you get stuck in an infinite loop.
  • Shining the Holy Ark features another dimension where the pious escaped to in an ancient war. There is only one village, surrounding it is one temple and an endless stretch of featureless desert. Probably wouldn't be so bad if not for the fact time has no meaning in that dimension so those people have been stuck there for thousands of years with no change at all (still has an inn though).


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Corridor Chase


The Endless Hallway

In Diane's exhausted state, her children's bedroom door first appears to be miles away, then never seems to get any closer.

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