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WARNING: This entry contains spoilers for The Empire Strikes Back

A spoiler is the premature divulgence of an important plot point, thus "spoiling" the experience for an individual who would have preferred to learn that detail in the context in which the author of the work in question deemed appropriate.

A spoiler reveals part of a game's plot or how to solve a puzzle. Walkthroughs and reviews can contain spoilers.


  • The year is 1980; it is Friday afternoon, one day after the premiere of The Empire Strikes Back. A sixth-grader plans to see the movie after school. Some jerkwad kid whose parents must have let him skip school to wait in line the previous day bursts into a crowded locker room, shouting, "Hey, everybody! Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker's father!" (I'm still a little bitter about that, by the way.)

A "spoiler alert" is a courteous warning that the discussion that follows will give away details that may lessen the impact for those people who enjoy surprises.

While the study of literature is, from start to finish, a veritable carnival of spoilers, some online communities take spoilers very seriously.