Elevator Action

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Elevator Action
Elevator Action.png
Arcade flyer featuring screenshots and the cocktail table version of the game


Micronics (FC/NES)
Publisher(s) Taito Corporation
Composer(s) Yoshio Imamura
Platform(s) Arcade, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, FM-7, Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, Microsoft Windows, Mobile phone, MSX, NES, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PSP, Sega Saturn, SG-1000, X1, ZX Spectrum, Windows 95, Wii, Xbox
Release 1983
Genre(s) Action, platformer, puzzle, shooter
Mode(s) Up to 2 players
Cabinet Upright
Display Raster, standard resolution 256×224 (Horizontal), 64 colors

Elevator Action (エレベーターアクション, Erebētā Akushon) is a 1983 arcade game by Taito Corporation.[1] It has a mix of the action, platformer, puzzle and shooter genres.[2]

The player assumes the role of a spy infiltrating a 30-story building filled with elevators. The player is pursued by enemy agents who appear from behind closed doors. These agents must be dealt with via force or evasion. Successful completion of a level involves collecting all the secret documents and traversing the building from top to bottom. In the lower floors of the building, the elevator systems can be complex enough that puzzle-solving skills are needed. The controls consist of a four-way joystick and two buttons, one to shoot and the other for jumping and kicking.

Elevator Action was followed by the arcade game Elevator Action Returns in 1994 (released as Elevator Action II in North America) and Elevator Action EX for the Game Boy in 2000.

A remake of the game by Square Enix, titled Elevator Action Deluxe, was released on PlayStation Network on August 31, 2011. It contains single player and multiplayer modes, as well as the original arcade version.[3]


Screenshot of the first level of Elevator Action

The player assumes the role of Agent 17, codename: "Otto", a secret agent for an unspecified organization or government.[4] Otto enters a 30-story building at roof level and must work his way down to the basement, collecting secret documents whose locations are marked by red doors. Along the way, he must use the building's elevator and escalator systems to move from floor to floor and avoid or kill the enemy agents trying to stop him. After picking up all the documents, Otto can escape to the basement and drive away in a waiting car to end the level.

The player controls consist of a four-position joystick and separate buttons to control jumping and firing. Otto can move left and right, jump, duck, and fire up to three shots at a time from his pistol. While Otto is in an elevator, the player can push up or down to send him to a higher or lower floor; however, Otto cannot duck as long as he is inside. He can run or jump across an empty shaft as long as the elevator is above him, and can ride on its roof but not control its motion or cross to the other side. The player can push up or down to make Otto ride an escalator.

If Otto tries to leave the building without collecting all the documents, he will be transported to the highest floor that still has an unopened red door and must work his way back down. In addition, if he takes too long to clear a level, an alarm will sound; the enemy agents then become more aggressive, and the elevators will be slower to respond to the player's joystick movements.

Each building contains a section in which the lights are out, making it harder to see approaching enemies. On other floors, Otto can temporarily disable the lights by shooting one of the overhead fixtures. Otto can kill enemy agents by shooting them, jump-kicking them at close range, dropping a light fixture on their heads, or crushing them with an elevator. If he is shot or crushed, or if he falls down an open shaft, the player loses one life.

The background music is the same for all levels and only changes when the hidden time limit expires. And as Otto lands on the first building's rooftop at the start of the game, Chopin's Piano Sonata No. 2, popularly known as Funeral March, is briefly heard.

A port to the original Game Boy includes the ability to acquire different weapons, such as a machine gun that fires more rapidly.


A port was planned for the Atari 2600, but never released. However, a prototype of the game was illegally published by CGE Services Corp. and sold at Classic Gaming Expo 2001.[5]

Sony published mobile version in 2002.

Game Boy port added the feature to acquire different weapons, including a shotgun, a machine gun, and grenades. Due to the lack of color, doors containing documents are signified by an exclamation mark instead of a red door, while doors marked with question mark provide one random weapon. The small screen size requires you to move left and right to explore the more maze-like building. The game is generally easier. It added the health, allowed the player to cross elevator cables, and permitted a one floor drop without damage.

The original Elevator Action game has been included in various games and compilations:


  • 1983 - Elevator Action (Arcade, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, FM-7, Game Boy, Game Boy Advance, Microsoft Windows, Mobile phone, MSX, NES, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PSP, Sega Saturn, SG-1000, X1, ZX Spectrum, Windows 95, Wii, Xbox)
  • 2006 - Elevator Action (Mobile phone)
  • 2006 - Elevator Action 3D (Mobile phone)
  • 2009 - Elevator Action: Death Parade (Arcade)
  • 2011 - Elevator Action Deluxe (PlayStation Network)


Impossible Mission (1984) has gameplay inspired by Elevator Action.

Misison Elevator (1986) has gameplay inspired by Elevator Action.

Xenophobe (1987) has gameplay inspired by Elevator Action.

Dexter's Laboratory: Robot Rampage (2000) is a graphically redesigned version of Elevator Action EX.

Agent Z (2001) and Agent Z 2 (2002) on Palm OS have gameplay inspired by Elevator Action.[6] [7]

"ElePaper Action" (2005) is a Beat 'em up game which name is a parody of Elevator Action. It has a credits mini-game based on Elevator Action.

Elevator Action DS is a cancelled Elevator Action game for Nintendo DS game.[8]

Elevator Action Episode-ZERO (エレベーターアクション Episode-ZERO) was released for mobile phones in 2009 in Japan.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


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