The Most Dangerous Games: The Dead Poet’s Game

Wine glasses

Previously: The Shoebox Telephone.

I found the instructions for the Dead Poet’s Game wrapped up in a mediocre creepypasta; as such, I can’t vouch for the efficacy of the ritual. It does, however, appear to be one of the more dangerous games out there, largely due to the locked room required for it and its failsafe situation. If ever there was a game that shouldn’t be played this one is it.

[Like what you read? Consider supporting The Ghost In My Machine on Patreon!]

But if you do take that chance?… Let’s just say that I can’t be held accountable for anything that might befall you.


  • 1 principal


  • 1 table
  • 2 chairs
  • 1 candle
  • 1 lighter or book of matches
  • 2 wine glasses
  • 1 bottle of wine
  • 1 empty room.


The Prelude:

  1. Begin at night. Draw the curtains of your empty room, ensuring that no light from the outside bleeds into it.
  2. Set the table up in the center of the room and place the chairs on either side of it, opposite each other.
  3. Set one wine glass in front of each chair. Place the candle in the center of the table with the wine bottle beside it.
  4. Light the candle with your lighter or matches.
  5. Turn out the lights.
  6. Lock the door.

The Main Event:

  1. Pick up the bottle of wine from the table and pour a full measure into each glass.
  2. Replace the bottle, sit in the “head” chair, and pick up your own glass. Raise it and make a silent toast; then take a sip.
  3. If you have done this correctly, there will be a presence in the chair opposite you after you lower you glass. Remain calm; do not jump, start, or otherwise provoke the presence in any way. If the chair opposite you remains empty, blow out the candle, turn on the lights, and leave the room. Lock the door. Do not reenter the room until morning.
  4. Say aloud the words, “I wish to start a match.” If the presence agrees, you must now choose to be either Player A or Player B. Once you have chosen your letter, say aloud, “I strip you of the letter [Your Letter].”
  5. Now, ask a question. After you receive your answer, take a sip of wine. After you finish your sip, you will now become Player B.
  6. Listen closely. If Player A asks you a question, answer it. Then take a sip of your wine.
  7. Continue in this fashion, alternating between being Player A and Player B, until one or both glasses are empty. Do NOT touch any glass other than your own.

The Ending:

  1. Whoever is Player A when the wine runs out automatically wins the game.
  • If you are Player A, the presence will depart; remain seated until it has done so. Blow out the candle, turn on the lights, and exit the room.
  • If you are Player B, do not blow out the candle; that is for Player A to do. Once the candle has gone out, turn on the lights. From now on, be careful in dark spaces. If you see something out of the corner of your eye, turn to face it. If you spot something behind you in a mirror, turn around. Do NOT, under ANY circumstances, EVER say these words: “This soul is yours. It is yours to do business with.”

Additional Notes:

This game MUST be played in room where a poet has died. The deceased does not have to have been a literal poet; someone said to have had “the soul of a poet” will suffice. When setting up the space, one of the chairs should ideally be situated where the poet’s head was upon being found; the other should sit at the poet’s feet.

You MUST perform this ritual alone. No other people, animals, or other living creatures may be present.

Keep the room free of any type of technology—phones, laptops, the lot.

You must answer each question truthfully; however, you do not have to answer each question freely or completely. Guard your secrets, for giving them up could result in disaster.

Concerning Failsafes:

There are no failsafes.

The Dead Poet’s Game: FAQ.


Support The Ghost In My Machine on Patreon for behind-the-scenes access and other bonus content. You can also follow on Twitter @GhostMachine13 and on Facebook @TheGhostInMyMachine.

[Photo via]


26 thoughts on “The Most Dangerous Games: The Dead Poet’s Game

  1. I would really like to play this game and an enemy of mine is a good poet… Hm, I can both get rid of him AND play this game…

    1. I’d just like to ask a question…do REALLY think it’s wise to summon the supernatural presence of an enemy? Especially one (Judging by your comment) you may have killed?

      I’d imagine they’d like to return the favor.

    1. If there is another living creature then there are two possibilities-
      A. There will be no presence. You blow out the candle. Turn on the lights and leave the room. Lock it and never return. Not even the next morning.
      B. The presence will come, bind your soul into that creature and bind his into your body. It cannot be undone.
      Sidenote : Good luck living as a bacteria

  2. I am unclear as to at which point you become Player A. If you’ve just answered a question, you are Player B, but become Player A as soon as you take your sip of wine. So would it then be a winning condition to finish your wine after answering a question or after asking one? Because it’s pretty easy to take a sip that drains your glass at just the right time.

    1. I can think of two things:

      1.) They may have the same idea.

      2.) If you do it too early the presence may consider it cheating. Many times cheating at a game results in automatic loss/disqualification.

      My suggestion is not to play a game with the supernatural. You never know exactly with whom you’ve started the game. And even if you did, you won’t know until the die is cast.

    1. Then, if it wishes to do so, have a conversation and get to know each other over some wine. I presume that the spirit is a poet so, it should make for some intellectual and/or deeper conversations than with some other spiritual beings. If you are respectful, you may gain a friend and someone to have SPIRITED debates with. Whatever you do don’t make a ghost pun though…

  3. “Do NOT, under ANY circumstances, EVER say these words: “This soul is yours. It is yours to do business with.”” What if we say it?

    1. Maybe it’s just a thing people just know that you shouldn’t do, like Don’t break a glass with chocolate milk and cut your grandmas throat with the broken glass while singing YMCA.

  4. If the poet was someone who was close to you, such a relative or good friend, would that up your chances of safety?

    1. I doubt that would happen. You’re dealing with an ENTITY HERE! I doubt a close relative or something like that would be what you do this ritual with.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s