DF2014:Pit trap

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This article is about the current version of DF.

A pit trap is a type of large and extremely effective trap. In essence, a pit trap is a multiple z-level drop with optional nasty surprises waiting at the bottom. Retracting bridges can be used to drop enemies to their doom; raising bridges can lob them in from afar. Fluid flow can wash your enemies into your pit, while weapon traps and marksdwarves can convince enemies to dodge right on in. A barrage of minecarts can also motivate your foes to experience the wonders at the bottom of your trap.

Pit traps are sadly ineffective against flying enemies, and "large" enemies are immune to bridge-traps (but can still be pitted by other means).

Although you can just leave a captured foe as is, it's much more fun and dwarfy to turn them into something useful. A pitted goblin siege or titan can be used in a large variety of ways, all of them violent. Note that this is a distinct idea from mass pitting, although one can certainly lead into the other.

The nature of a pit trap means that you can simply keep dropping more visitors in. Any current occupants may suffer injury from falling arrivals; the new arrivals, meanwhile, suffer the falling damage. When you combine different enemy forces, the survivors will likely fight to be lord of the pit.

You can also use it for organic waste disposal. Your own dwarves will gleefully march across bridges and along precarious drops. If your pit trap should happen to engage while a noble is leading a group of legendary cheese makers across, just consider it an in-depth inspection.

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A simple pit trap

[edit] Improvements

Once your visitors have graciously volunteered to enter your pit, you'll want to have some fun surprises for them. Lining the floor of your pit with the heaviest material you can find will maximize falling damage; if your pit is deep enough creatures may explode upon impact. Pit traps naturally make great drowning chambers, but, if you've got some spare magma, why not entomb your enemies in obsidian? Install some lever-operated spikes and perforate your captives. Add some raising bridges and fling your enemies around. Drop in some spare socks and crack some skulls. Install flammable floor grates and light the floor on fire. Add syndrome-inducing creatures or extracts. Add a necromancer on a balcony and watch siegers battle their departed kin. Or introduce your captives to the denizens of the deepest depths.

A pit with fortifications constructed or dug into its sides can be used for training your marksdwarves on live targets, provided whatever is inside doesn't have a ranged attack of its own. Simply order them to move in behind the fortifications, and they will render whatever is inside into bloody pincushions. If it's something really big, even better; you may want to temporarily ban your military from metal bolts, as weaker wooden and bone bolts means more shots are needed to kill and thus more experience. Because the crossbow skill cannot be trained with danger rooms, a pitted stone or metal titan is a blessing to a properly equipped fortress, as they can be pelted with wooden bolts for eternity without suffering any ill effects.

A pit with fortifications constructed or dug into the sides can also be used to train your siege operators. This works much like marksdwarf training, except that it slower and less effective. It does work against ranged attackers, though, since siege equipment has a longer reach, and is thus (usually) safe to use against enemy bowmen and the like from a good distance away.

All of these design ideas can be combined to build one truly all-purpose trap!


Warning!

Use care when combining a pit trap that has fortifications with a drowning chamber. It might be obvious to some, but sometimes players overlook this kind of detail, resulting in a very aquatic fun experience.


"Pit trap" in other Languages Books-aj.svg aj ashton 01.svg
Dwarven: gor ïggal
Elvish: nimo abola
Goblin: slömod stoslo
Human: uta losric
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