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Paranormal Games: The Midnight Man

by Waylon Jordan
Midnight Man

Welcome back to another edition of Paranormal Games at iHorror. The Midnight Man, for me, is creepier than our last entry–The Three Kings Ritual–mostly because rather than sitting down and asking questions, this game puts your squarely on the run from an entity you willingly invite into your home for over three hours.

The Midnight Man‘s murky origins seem to date back to a Creepypasta that emerged sometime before 2010, which is where I found one of the earliest dated entries online for it. Of course, as these things go, they claim that it was based on an old pagan ritual used to punish law-breakers.

Whether you believe that or not, I’ll leave up to you. Regardless, the story has worked its way into the realm of urban legends and has spawned multiple film adaptations including one starring Lin Shaye and Robert Englund.

Also, unlike the previous games we’ve mentioned which are made for only one or two, players, The Midnight Man or The Midnight Game depending upon your source can be played by as many people as you want. In fact, given the objective of the game, it would actually be a good idea to have multiple players to keep the Midnight Man’s focus divided.

Take a look at the instructions below and decide if you’re ready to face The Midnight Man.

Supplies, Instructions, and Warnings for The Midnight Man


  1. Candle
  2. Lighter or book of matches
  3. A writing implement
  4. A piece of paper
  5. A wooden door, closed
  6. Salt (enough to make a decent-sized circle around yourself)

Supply Note: Each player will need each of the items listed for themselves save for the door. Different sites say different things, but there seems to be a consensus that you can all use the same door and do that part of the ritual together. However, if you have multiple wooden doors available and there’s enough for all your players, by all means, split up!


Write your full name (first, middle, last) on your piece of paper and then, using the pin, prick your finger and place one drop of your blood on the paper allowing it to soak in.

You will want to play the game inside a house/building where you have plenty of room to spread out and move around. You must break away from each other when the game begins so you’ll want room to move about without constantly being in each other’s way.

Turn off all the lights inside wherever you are playing.

When midnight approaches, set your piece of paper in front of the door, light your candle, and set it atop of the piece of paper.

Now, here’s the tricky part of initiating the game. You must knock on the wooden door 22 times and the final knock must take place at the moment the clock strikes midnight, otherwise the game will not work. This is actually a good reason to use multiple doors. One of you is bound to hit the door at the stroke of midnight.

After the 22nd knock, open the door, blow out your candle, then close the door again.


Assuming you have followed all the rules, the Midnight Man is now in your home, and your job is to avoid him at all costs until 3:33 am.

You should begin to walk around inside your home. You’re allowed to go anywhere except outside but do not stop moving for any reason. You have become prey for the Midnight Man, and he won’t stop stalking you until the game ends.

According to the entries about him on various websites, he can see inside your mind and dig out your deepest fears trapping you inside a hallucination that will last until the game ends.

Other sites also mention that he may remove your organs one at a time. You will be sentient but unable to stop him from doing so. You will also be unable to cry out for help from your fellow players.

If your candle goes out, you have ten seconds to relight its flame. If you’re successful, keep moving. If you fail to do so, you should immediately make a circle of salt around you large enough for you to sit down within its borders and stay there until the game ends at 3:33 am.

Should you feel a sudden drop in temperatures, hear phantom whispers, or see a dark, shadowy figure, the Midnight Man is near. Again, keep moving and protect your candle’s flame.

At 3:33, the game is ended and you may now, turn on the lights in your home.


Do NOT turn the lights on during the game.

Do NOT substitute a flashlight for the candle.

Do NOT allow yourself to fall asleep once the game has begun.

Do NOT use someone else’s blood on your paper. (That’s cheating!)

Do NOT try to provoke the Midnight Man in any way during the game. Your job is stay on the run, not stage a confrontation with the beast.

And finally, and perhaps the most creepy of the bunch, don’t assume that just because the game is over the Midnight Man has left. Some say once you’ve played, he never truly leaves. He’s always watching. Even now…while you’re reading this.

Now this is 2020, so of course there are YouTube videos of people playing the game. I’ll include one below, but let us know if you’ve ever played The Midnight Man in the comments and tell us about your experiences!


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