->''"You fell into a pitfall! This was your first pitfall in the Schwarzwelt, wasn't it? How did it feel as you fell? Anyway You've been introduced to the typical cheap trap. Be very careful from this point on."''
-->-- '''Achievement description''', ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney''

A hole in the ground that's somehow covered up so as to blend in with the surrounding terrain. Sometimes it's hidden beneath a TrapDoor. Related to but not to be confused with BottomlessPit. If it's not hidden, it's not a pit trap.

A standard subversion is where character A sets up a pitfall for character B, B walks straight over the covered pit and doesn't fall in, and then character A tries to cross (possibly preceded by tentative testing first) and ''does'' fall in, Wile E. Coyote-style.

PlatformHell titles ''will'' have these, usually with no indication at all that it's a trap.

Oftentimes it is a ConspicuouslyLightPatch. If there's an angry creature waiting at the bottom, you may have run into an AntlionMonster.

May have something nasty at the bottom to do additional damage on impact, such as SpikesOfDoom (possibly poisoned).



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* A spike-filled one is one of the traps found in the grounds of the Iga ninja dogs in ''Manga/GingaNagareboshiGin''. It is used by Hayato to kill one of the Koga dogs [[spoiler:as well as himself, as he literally [[TakingYouWithMe took the enemy with him.]] ]]
* Team Rocket in the ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'' anime use these so often that they're practically the {{Trope Codifier}}s. They often mess up ''a la'' the standard subversion.
** They were very effective in the episode "The Stolen Stones".
** Used against "the twerps" in the episode "Here's Looking At You".
** One is used in an attempt to capture a Rhydon in "Right on, Rhydon!" It captures Jessie's Wobuffet instead.
* In an episode of ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'' Kai, Satoko sets these. Rika falls down one, though Satoko was trying to trap Keiichi.
* Used and [[LampshadeHanging lampshade-hung]] in the anime of ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'', in the episode that introduces Gosunkugi.
* ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima''
** In the Kyoto Arc the BigBad sets one up that's filled with frogs in a temple that Negi's class visits. [[GenkiGirl Makie]] and [[ClassRepresentative Ayaka]] fall into it.
** Negi's father also used one full of onions and garlic [[MundaneSolution to defeat Evangeline]].
* Used to no effect (unless you count it working on Natsu, Gray, and Erza) by Lucy in ''Manga/FairyTail''.
* In ''Manga/ExcelSaga'', Il Palazzo has a PitTrap under the TrapDoor in his underground headquarters. Excel falls into it almost every time she sees Il Palazzo, and is aware of its existence, so it's not really a trap.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}'' manga, ''Manga/InabaOfTheMoonAndInabaOfTheEarth'' has this as [[ScrewySquirrel Tewi's]] most common prank, with [[ButtMonkey Reisen]] being the traps' most common victim. One of it actually [[{{Mundangerous}} managed to knock out]] the infamously powerful Yorihime.
* ''Anime/YuGiOhCapsuleMonsters'' just ''loves'' this trope.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* ''WesternAnimation/BarbieAsRapunzel'': Two kingdoms are at war. King Wilhelm has his men create a pit trap with spikes on the bottom in King Fredrick's territory. Little Princess Katrina falls in, but she grabs the edge in time. Rapunzel shows up and grabs her hand, but when she almost loses her balance, Prince Stefan grabs her and pulls them both to safety.
* ''Disney/TheLionKingOneAndAHalf'': Timon and Pumbaa defeat the hyenas by luring them all into a large pit they dug while Simba is still fighting Scar.
* ''Disney/TheRescuersDownUnder'': [[BigBad Percival]] [[EvilPoacher McLeach]] does this to Cody in order to force him to give up [[GiantFlyer the eagle Marahute]], with Joanna waiting at the bottom to make him her lunch.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* In ''Film/{{Chang}}'', the natives construct these to trap wildlife. When they catch a baby elephant, they fish it out and try to tame it so they can put it to work. When they catch a leopard, they shoot it.
* Seen as a plot twist in the comedy film ''Film/ThreeAmigos''. It took out three mooks.
* In Disney's ''Film/SwissFamilyRobinson'' Francis builds one of these and successfully catches a tiger, then uses the pit and tiger to trap some pirates.
* One forms a central part of the rather dark plot of ''Film/{{Onibaba}}''.
* ''Film/MadMaxFuryRoad''. Hidden under the sand, it takes out one of the War Rig's escort vehicles. Furiosa has to turn her BigBadassRig sharply to avoid it.
* In ''Film/DragonBallEvolution'', Yamcha the Desert Bandit traps unsuspecting travelers this way, then offers to throw down a rope in exchange for them surrendering their valuables. While the hole is too deep for Goku to jump out, Master Roshi does it with ease.

* Used straight in ''Literature/TheMostDangerousGame.''
* In the Literature/KateDaniels book ''Magic Strikes'', Kate arranges a blanket and pillow over a sunken cage to look like a makeshift bed. She then kicks a shapeshifter into the cage and slams it shut.
* In the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'', Granny Weatherwax triggers one of these. She drops into a pit in which there is already a disgruntled bear. The bear's day, already disrupted, is completely spoilt by this, and it tries to get as far away from the enraged witch as it can. The Dwarf hunters who set the trap consider filling it in would be the ideal solution, but are soon disabused of this notion.
** In ''Discworld/GoingPostal'', those convicted criminals offered an Angel by Lord Vetinari are perfectly at liberty to refuse and can walk out of the room by that door over there.[[note]]Which in these circumstances opens onto a very deep hole in the ground[[/note]].
** Identifying Common Traps is a specific course module at the Assassins' Guild School. It is presumed that anyone who cannot identify a pit trap in time is Failed from the course. One way or the other.
* In Creator/TomSharpe's satirical farce ''Literature/RiotousAssembly'', the insane BOSS secret policeman Liutnant Verkramp falls foul of one of these, when out on a mission against a white houseowner paranoid against the possibility the blacks are about to rise in revolt, who has taken extreme precautions in defending his property.

[[folder:Other Sites]]
* ''Wiki/SCPFoundation'', [[http://www.scp-wiki.net/scp-1341 SCP-1341 ("JUNGLE IN A JAR")]]. SCP-1341 is soil that causes jungle-like plants to grow from it that eventually produce ape-like creatures. During an experiment with SCP-1341, one of the researchers is killed by falling into a pit trap (lined with stakes) dug by the creatures.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' adventures uses them all the time in underground areas, often with SpikesOfDoom on the bottom to impale victims.
* ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'' has this as [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=25657 an artifact]] and [[http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?multiverseid=197533 a spell]]. Both are used to kill any attacking creature that couldn't fly.
* ''TabletopGame/{{Rolemaster}}'' ''Arms Companion''. Has a "spiked bottom" type similar to the ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' example above.
* ''TabletopGame/CallOfCthulhu''. In ''Worlds of Cthulhu'' magazine #3, the adventure "The Golden Scorpion" has some (with SpikesOfDoom) in the underground temple area.
* ''TabletopGame/Warhammer40000''. Catachan Jungle Fighters are said to use these. Makes sense, since they're basically an army of {{Rambo}}es, and their planet is basically a sentient jungle that actively hates all non-indigenous life.
* ''Arduin'' RPG, ''The Compleat Arduin Book 2: Resources''. Table 76: Random Traps - Floor has many of these, filled with a variety of contents: SpikesOfDoom, monsters, pools of acid, a 1,000 foot drop (Splat!), mechanical grinders, molten lava, boiling mud, quicklime and dragon dung.
* ''TabletopGame/YuGiOh'' has the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Trap Hole]][[note]]"Pitfall" in Japan[[/note]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Trap_Hole_%28archetype%29 archetype]] of trap cards, which are supported by the [[TrapMaster Traptrix]] [[AntlionMonster monster]] [[http://yugioh.wikia.com/wiki/Traptrix archetype]].

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Available as an item in ''VideoGame/AnimalCrossing''. Said item is also in ''[[VideoGameSuperSmashBros Super Smash Bros. Brawl]]'' and is actually called the pitfall.
* In ''[[VideoGame/TheLegendofZeldaPhantomHourglass The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass]]'', the 8th floor of the Temple of the Ocean King has a fake safe zone only distinguishable by the fact that all the other safe zones have animations, while this one is static. And by, you know, [[CaptainObvious falling into it]].
* One level in ''VideoGame/{{Kirby}} 64: The Crystal Shards'' has numerous pitfalls scattered across its first stretches. Some of them contain helpful items, but some contain nasty spikes. The trick is to trigger them and then jump ''very'' quickly.
* ''VideoGame/NetHack'' has them. Some of them contain spikes. [[spoiler:And if those spikes are poisoned, it's a potential [[OneHitKill instadeath]] if you're not poison resistant.]]
* One of ''VideoGame/{{Pitfall}}'''s trademarks.
* At one point in Creator/{{Infocom}}'s ''VideoGame/LeatherGoddessesOfPhobos'', the player can construct one of these to stop a giant mobile [[ManEatingPlant Venus Flytrap]].
* The ''Franchise/MetalGear'' series is full of these. They are apparently programmed so that only Snake can trigger them. And the enemies can even walk over them when they're open.
* ''VideoGame/SpaceQuest II'' has a partially concealed pit trap death early in the game, and an AcidPool pit trap towards the end. Amusingly, if you use a command to look at the pit trap the narrator will call you paranoid.
* [[DiscussedTrope Discussed]] in ''VideoGame/Persona3''. This is what Elizabeth thinks a manhole is intended to be.
-->'''Elizabeth''': A clever snare. It goes against the common notion that a pitfall must be hidden. Signs placed all around boldy proclaim "Do Not Enter." Humans frequently desire that which is forbidden to them.
* Some ''VideoGame/SuperMarioWorld'' hacks do this, especially with reverse P-switches (coins are safe to walk on).
* These are present throughout the ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeon'' series in the later dungeons. If the team's leader falls in one, they simply take a minimal amount of damage and move to the next floor. However, if anyone else on the team falls in one, they're removed from the party for the duration of the dungeon. This can be a large source of frustration if you're doing an EscortMission or if you recruited a rare Pokemon.
* Usable by the player in ''VideoGame/MonsterHunter''. While it takes quite long to set up, any monster that plunges into the trap will be helpless for a lengthy period as it struggles to escape. This allows players to heal up, get in a few free hits, or tranquilize the monster if it's been weakened enough. It does have a few {{Logical Weakness}}es, however, such as being unusable in certain environments, and is also [[NoSell ineffective]] against most monsters that can rapidly burrow into the ground.
* Wily Stage 4 in ''VideoGame/MegaMan2'' has this. The first set only makes you go back, the second set is above SpikesOfDoom. Hint: Use the Bubble Lead to see where the holes are.
* [[PlatformHell Tribulation]] mode in ''VideoGame/GuildWars2'''s [[GameWithinAGame Super Adventure Box]] has, among its many screw-you's, lava pit traps. These tend to be very large and only some of them have visible markings on the ground where the terrain is actually solid.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* Unsurprisingly the castle from ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'' contains a large number of pit traps of various types, at least one of which is full of spikes.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes'':
** In the [[WesternAnimation/WileECoyoteAndTheRoadRunner Road Runner]] short ''Stop! Look! And Hasten!'', Wile. E. Coyote tries to capture the Road Runner with one of these, which he makes from a book titled "How To Build A Burmese Tiger Trap." What he captures instead is a Burmese tiger (''Surprisibus surprisibus'').
** In ''Stork Naked'', Daffy makes a pit under his welcome mat leading to a tank full of crocodiles for the DeliveryStork. The stork (who is a little tipsy) sidesteps the mat, and an exasperated Daffy drags him back outside and falls into the pit himself.
** A similar gag was used in ''From Hare to Heir'', when Yosemite Sam cuts a hole in the floor above a moat and covers it with a rug, then tells Bugs to step out of his bathroom. When Bugs won't come out, Sam tries to push him out and he falls through instead. When Sam makes it back upstairs, he tries to charge at Bugs, only to fall down ''again''.
* The CMC pull this in ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic''.
* In the [[WesternAnimation/SupermanTheatricalCartoons Superman cartoon]] ''"Showdown"'', a mob tricks Superman into a Pit Trap through a TrapDoor made of reinforced steel. The mobster and his henchman then place a heavy desk over the TrapDoor. This... mildly inconveniences Superman.
* In the 1980s ''WesternAnimation/{{Thundercats}}'', Lion-O first meets the Berbils when he falls into one of their concealed pit traps. [[note]]The gentle Berbils having such a trap is explained by some of their neighbors.[[/note]] Later, Safari Joe puts one just outside the Thundercat's front door, and Lion-O falls in. He wonders how in the world Safari Joe dug that hole without anyone noticing.
* ''WesternAnimation/TotalDramaIsland''. Duncan and Owen use a pit trap to steal the survival gear off Gwen and Heather in "Are We There, Yeti?".
* ''WesternAnimation/DangerMouse'': The 'regulation pit traps' become a RunningGag in "Quark Games", with just about every character falling (or being knocked) into one at some point.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* The notorious pit-traps used in the Vietnamese jungle against American troops. Often with a courtesy detail of poisoned punji spikes at the bottom.