|This article is about the current version of DF.|
A hatch cover (also called a floor hatch or just hatch) is, in effect, a door, but controlling the passage between Z-levels instead of along the same Z-level. They can be placed over stairs or ramps, or open space as long as they are supported by an adjacent floor tile.
Like doors, they can be linked with mechanisms, or locked, or kept tightly closed to keep out water, pets and foes alike. They can be set as internal, but as rooms cannot occupy multiple Z-levels, this has no effect.
When closed, hatches appear as
¢; they are not visible when open. A hatch cover's color is determined by the material it is made from.
A dwarf falling down stairs will be stopped by a closed floor hatch. A dwarf standing on a floor hatch over stairs will not start falling if the hatch is opened. A dwarf standing on a floor hatch above a ramp or open space will start falling if the hatch is opened.
If a hatch cover is placed over a hole (natural or channeled), a garbage dump designated on the hatch will cause items to be dumped in a pile on top of the hatch. If the hatch is subsequently opened (by means of a triggered mechanism), the items will fall into the hole. If the hatch is opened at the time of dumping, the items will be thrown directly into the hole.
If a garbage dump is designated next to a hole with a hatch cover on it, the behavior depends on the state of the hatch cover. If the hatch cover is not linked to a mechanism at all, items will be piled on the hatch cover. If the hatch cover is linked and opened, the items will be thrown directly into the hole. If the hatch cover is linked and closed, the items will be piled on the ground (in the garbage dump tile).
 Adventurer mode
Hatch covers are common building elements in generated dungeons, lairs, and other structures. When placed above stairs, adventurers can use the ordinary stair-climbing commands and to traverse them. On the other hand, when placed above ramps—as is typical of lairs and towers in keeps and dark pits—the player must instead use -direction while standing adjacent to or directly under a hatch cover in order to pass through it. (Alternately, -direction and -direction may be used when above or below a hatch cover, respectively, as well.)
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