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A pit ^ is a hole in the ground that does not lead to the next level. This type of trap opens up and becomes visible when you walk over it. Falling into it causes 1-6 damage and will also abuse strength and dexterity. They require 3-7 turns to "climb to the edge" and escape. While in the pit, any light source you are carrying will not travel beyond the walls of the pit. There is a to-hit bonus when attacking trapped monsters and a malus for trapped attackers. Flying or levitation can be used to cross a pit without falling in it. Falling into a pit as a pit fiend or a pit viper will generate YAFM.

Some pits are actually spiked pits. Each time you or a monster falls into a spiked pit, there is an independent chance the spikes at the bottom will poison you.

Dropping a boulder while in a pit will cause your foot to become stuck.

Generation: May be randomly generated at any dungeon level. Cannot be generated beneath a boulder. You can dig down with a pick-axe (or zap a wand of digging down on a non-diggable floor) to create a pit (never spiked). This does not destroy an altar. Applying a wand of digging or a charged drum of earthquake are the only way of creating pits on tiles the hero is not on, destroying altars if applicable. Monsters that die from your pits will earn you experience (and break pacifist) only if you create a pit right under them with the last two methods or you diplace them in. The Minetown watch will get angry if they fall into your pits.

To remove: Push a boulder into it. Any item the boulder covers will remain undisturbed by monsters until you dig it up again.

Untrapping monsters in pitsEdit

There is an extended command, "#untrap", that lets you reach for monsters trapped in pits and try to rescue it from the pit. If successful, lawfuls have a chance (5-15%) the monster is made peaceful. Some monsters may be too heavy to rescue from a pit, but the attempt may still calm down the trapped monster.

"The dwarf falls into a pit!"
"You reach for the dwarf. The dwarf is grateful!"
"The ogre lord is too heavy for you to lift.  The ogre lord thinks it was nice of you to try."


Pits can be useful for hunting unicorns, for controlling aligned priest and shopkeeper movement even if angry‚ and to make Fort Ludios soldiers easier to kill right at the choke point.

Pits can be deadly, especially for little dogs and kittens.

Pits and boulders aren't a good stashing method because boulders are in limited supply, and organic items left underground will rot (completely rots away like a corpse rather than normal erosion),[1] including large boxes and chests.

You probably want to leave monsters trapped in the pit, but you can use "#untrap" to rescue your own pets from pits. If the pet "backs away skeptically", try repeating "#untrap" several times. Beware: If your pet cannot go anywhere for lack of space, such as Sokoban pits, the game will think you displaced it into the trap. This angers your god and breaks pacifist conduct if applicable.

Items lost in pits represent a real problem for SLASH'EM vampires: due to their innate flying ability, the cannot simply pick them up. One solution is to wear a ring of levitation and to apply a bullwhip down.

Pits and stairs down are the prime reason why you always levitate while wielding cockatrice corpses.

Encyclopedia entry Edit

Amid the thought of the fiery destruction that impended, the
idea of the coolness of the well came over my soul like balm.
I rushed to its deadly brink. I threw my straining vision
below. The glare from the enkindled roof illumined its inmost
recesses. Yet, for a wild moment, did my spirit refuse to
comprehend the meaning of what I saw. At length it forced --
it wrestled its way into my soul -- it burned itself in upon my
shuddering reason. Oh! for a voice to speak! -- oh! horror! --
oh! any horror but this!

[ The Pit and the Pendulum, by Edgar Allan Poe ]


  1. Source:Dig.c#line1324
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