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File:Container-maze doom 5069.png

Our heroes find themselves at the docks. The baddie or monster is lurking somewhere nearby; unfortunately, there's a whole mess of shipping containers piled up everywhere, forming an environment like a maze. The containers all look similar, so searching for the target is confusing for both the heroes and the audience. There could be anything lurking around any corner, or in any of the containers...

Any environment with a large quantity of similar-looking stackable items is a great candidate for one of these, e.g. packing crates in a warehouse, or cardboard boxes in a storeroom.

Not to be confused with a maze that's meant to contain something (Labyrinth of Crete).

Examples of Container Maze include:


  • One of the BMW Films The Hire short films features a brief car chase in one of these. The hero tries first to hide in between the containers by turning off his engine and lights (presumably to demonstrate how easy it is to turn on and off the headlights), only for the bad guys to spot them and a chase to re-ensue.


  Tom Servo: Joe, I'm in one of these boxes. Find me!


  • In The Quillian Games Bobby is attacked by quigs and chased by Dados through one of these.
  • Done intentionally in The Zombie Survival Guide. A zombie attack takes place on a crowded dock. The workers make a maze of packing containers to stop (or squash) the zombies.

Live Action TV

Video Games

  • The second level of episode two of Doom, "Containment Area", has a rather famous crate maze filled with imps.
  • Lots of the levels in the original Half Life (and its expansions) are this trope. Warehouses full of crates, yards full of shipping containers... Half-Life 2 has at least one.
  • At the end of Heavy Rain, the Origami Killer can chase Madison through one of these.
  • Max Payne, there's also the giant cranes and forklifts to contend with, making it somewhat mobile in spots.
  • In Metal Gear the fight versus Raven, you have to hide between the crates that all look alike and take him down by firing at his back.
  • One of the later levels on Resident Evil 5 is like this.
  • A number of ship and warehouse maps in City of Heroes. Also shows up in Independence Port.
  • In In Famous the Dust Men have basically constructed a fortress out of shipping containers in the Warren, with the flat sided sides preventing Cole from being able to clamber up them as he can with regular buildings, forcing him to fight his way through the maze until he can reach a ladder up on top of the crates which he then has to navigate without falling.
  • A big part of the open sandbox game Total Overdose
  • The second Army Of Darkness tie in games. Those damned mouth-portals...
  • In one mission of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories, you have to remove explosive crates from a burning warehouse maze, with paths becoming blocked as the fire rages.
  • Parts of the Factory and Control Center in Winback, also occasionally using Mobile Maze elements.
  • Metroid: Other M contains a Boss Battle in a location like this.
  • Two secret levels from Super Mario Galaxy 2 involve helping a Gearmo burn crates in order to obtain a Power Star.
  • Dead Space 2 features a locking dock chock full of shipping containers. Oh, and a dozen or so raptor-like necromorphs.
  • Golden Eye 1997 has a few levels like this, notably "Depot" and "Train".
  • Perfect Dark has "Area 51: Rescue" as well as a multiplayer level based on the same ("Warehouse").
  • Icirrus City's Cold Storage in Pokémon Black and White. Made extremely frustrating by all the Frictionless Ice you have to navigate to get through it.

Western Animation

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