Creepypasta Wiki
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The definition of creepypasta has changed over time. In the early days of the internet, the term was used to refer to a type of horror story written anonymously on places like 4chan, that was then passed around through other forums and websites to disturb, frighten, and entertain readers.

The name "creepypasta" (coined in 2007) comes from the word "copypasta", a modern slang term for a portion of text that gets copied and pasted over and over again in online circles, typically for comedic and light-hearted purposes rather than to scare. This is how people shared creepypasta before the stories were collected and consolidated on sites like this one.

Creepypastas are sometimes supplemented with pictures, audio, and/or video footage related to the story, usually with gory, distorted, or otherwise unnerving content. Many of the most famous creepypastas incorporate some kind of accompanying media.

Nowadays, the term has broadened to the extent that any horror story uploaded to the internet can be a creepypasta. But while creepypasta today can vary greatly in length, topic, and presentation, older ones tend to be short and follow one of the following set of formulas. These tropes are what most people imagine when they think of the genre:

  • Anecdotes: the narrator remarking about a scary legend, news story, or event from their own past. Often personal and designed to be believable, upping the scare factor. You can find these stories in bulk on r/nosleep.
  • Rituals: a list of instructions for the reader, claiming that if they go to a certain place at a certain time and perform specific actions, something remarkable and/or horrifying will happen. The Holders series is a good example of this. Many of its entries can be found on the site under this category.
  • The Lost Episode: the story of a never-before-seen episode or scene from a famous TV show (typically a comedy or children's cartoon) where the audio and video are heavily altered and characters begin acting strangely or violently, sometimes with anomalous effects. Can be viewed as a play on the anecdotal style, as these stories are mostly told from the point of view of a traumatised individual who has stumbled upon whatever "episode" is being recounted. This style of creepypasta has fallen out of favor nowadays, as it is seen as clichéd, ridiculous, and unscary.

Examples of Notable Creepypastas

Down below are some of the most noteworthy creepypastas, both on our site and elsewhere (spoilers). They can all be found in our Historical Archive category.

  • Squidward's Suicide
    Probably the most famous "Lost Episode" ever made. This story is told from the perspective of an intern who unexpectedly watches an extremely dark and disturbing episode of Spongebob Squarepants behind-the-scenes. The episode is ominous, suspenseful, and cryptic, starting with Squidward Tentacles failing another clarinet recital. After getting booed (with even Spongebob jeering him) and some more creepy footage, he is eventually showing killing himself with a shotgun. Like with many stories of its ilk, the creator/s of the episode and how it came to be are left a mystery.
  • BEN Drowned
    The story of a Majora's Mask cartridge that has been "haunted" by Ben, its previous owner. It is broken up into 4 chapters, each with their own video, and tells of pseudo-paranormal events that occur to the cartridge's new owner, a sophomore at an undisclosed college. Upon receiving a second-hand Nintendo 64 from a friend and buying the nondescript cartridge from an eclectic old man, the narrator begins to notice seizure-like graphics and strange connections to a boy named Ben, who was said to have drowned as a child in a lake, from within the game.
  • Smile Dog
    A picture of a dog apparently causes its unfortunate viewers to become tormented and kill themselves. The image first originated on a blog post about a somewhat unknown user finding an unfortunate female viewer who killed herself after looking at it. The user followed the dog's advice of 'spreading the word' to avoid suffering by posting the image virally.
  • Slenderman
    Not so much a story as it is a creepypasta-based character/meme. Originally conceived as a part of a Photoshop contest on the Something Awful Forums around 2009, the Slenderman is depicted as an abnormally tall and thin faceless entity with a gentleman's suit, who abducts his victims (typically children) for reasons unknown. Though he has inspired many works, the Marble Hornets series is one of the earliest and most well-known narrativizations of the character.
  • Username: 666
    A video pasta about an alternate, demonic version of YouTube that can be accessed via an account simply called '666'. It was made by a Japanese video artist and actually became accessible in a similar way to the video for a short period of time. The page also has a story about one person's experience with the video, translated from Japanese.
  • Suicidemouse.avi
    A very early example of a Lost Episode creepypasta. Considered one of the forefathers of the genre (along with Squidward's Suicide, Candle Cove, and Dead Bart - more on them later). The story revolves around a strange video which depicts a saddened Mickey Mouse walking down a poorly drawn, never-ending street with odd music. Eventually, the video becomes corrupted and distorted in numerous dark ways, culminating in a final, unseen clip that induces its only viewer to commit suicide.
  • Herobrine
    An entity in the video game Minecraft (supposedly the creator Notch's dead brother) who works like a superstition, often sighted as a pupilless copy of the default player character who tries to entrap and/or kill players in order to steal their items & destroy their creations.
  • Dead Bart
    Another example of a famous lost episode. It involves the details of the oddly disturbing Simpsons episode Matt Groening apparently produced and then tried to cover up, about Bart's death from being sucked out of an airplane window. The end of the story also has a set of disturbing real-life implications.
  • Candle Cove
    This creepypasta is told in the form of a forum thread in which members discuss a disturbing children's show called "Candle Cove", which supposedly aired sometime in the 70s. They talk about its strange characters and plot, and how it scared some of them. At the end of the thread, one of the members reveals something that implies that the show was not real, but rather, some kind of mass hallucination.
  • Mereana Mordegard Glesgorv
    This pasta is centered around a video which supposedly made over a hundred people mail their eyeballs to YouTube Headquarters and then kill themselves. The video consists of an image of an unknown man in front of a background with a red hue. The unseen full video, which contains the noise of "a high-pitched drill", has unknown content which incurred severe psychological damage to its sole viewer. Its true nature is never revealed.
  • So ur wid yo honi and ur makin out wen the phone ringz. U ansr it n da voice sayz "wut r u doin wit ma daughter?" u tel ur girl n she say "ma dad is ded." THEN WHO WAS PHONE?

  • Pokémon Lost Silver
    This famous Pokémon story is about an unknown person who buys a Pokémon Silver game and realizes it is much more than meets the eye. The player is constantly stalked by the previous unnamed owner, who causes weird things to happen, such as most of the captured Pokémon being Unown that spell out mysteriously horrifying words, and the player sometimes being trapped in dark rooms.
  • Zalgo
    A trend of images, often comics, which are edited in dark ways to signify the appearance of "Zalgo", an eldritch being whose presence has a corrupting effect. Oftentimes, involved characters will be given disturbing appearances, such as warped facial features, and repeat the name 'Zalgo' in speech bubbles. Like Slenderman, this is really more of a creepypasta-based meme than a creepypasta in of itself.
  • The Grifter
    An alleged video that was first mentioned somewhere on /x/'s imageboard. Watching it is said to be a soul-rending experience, far more horrible than anything one could imagine. The few that have done so were apparently killed, a strange doll hidden somewhere within their homes.
  • Polybius
    A supposed arcade game. According to the story, it was released to the public in 1981 and caused players to go insane, suffering from intense stress, horrific nightmares, and even suicidal tendencies. A short time after its release, it supposedly disappeared without a trace. Named after Polybius the Greek historian, who, among his other writings, was known for his works in relation to cryptography and for developing the Polybius square.

What Isn't Creepypasta?

  • Creepy Chain Mail: essentially a precursor to creepypasta, having peaked in popularity some years earlier. These took the form of emails with a described legend said to cause harm to the recipient unless the message was sent to more people. Carmen Winstead is one of the most well-known examples.
  • The SCP Foundation: arose anonymously on the internet at the same time as creepypasta but falls distinctly under its own self-governing, in-universe rules, canon, and mythos. Essentially an offshoot of creepypasta.
  • Trollpasta: comedic stories meant to satirize aspects of creepypasta, or, more traditionally, an apparently serious creepypasta that reveals itself as a joke in its climax or ending, deceiving the reader. Collated on the Trollpasta Wiki, which also hosts many unintentionally bad creepypastas.
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