Traps are obstacles in the dungeons and wilderness areas, either directly placed by the quest designer, or generated in a random location that can damage or kill an unwary adventurer unless disabled or carefully bypassed.
Types of traps
A trap can be either mechanical or magic in nature.
- Mechanical traps include pits, arrow traps, falling blocks, water-filled rooms, whirling blades, and anything else that depends on a mechanism to operate.
- Magic traps are further divided into spell traps and magic device traps. Magic device traps initiate spell effects when activated, just as wands, rods, rings, and other magic items do. Spell traps are simply spells that themselves function as traps.
- Any character (or even some hirelings) with high Spot skill can detect the presence of a trap.
- Any character (or Rogue hirelings) can activate Search skill to pinpoint a non-magical trap (including a control box used for disabling), if their Search is high enough.
- Characters with the Trapfinding class feature (or Rogue hirelings) who succeeds on the Search check can pinpoint also magical traps.
Only characters with the Trapfinding class feature (or Rogue hirelings) can disable traps. First they have to successfully find the control box, then they can disable it. Some traps cannot be disabled. Some traps have more than one control box. Some types of traps don't have a control box - they can be disabled by targeting the trap directly.
Mitigating trap damage
With quest foreknowledge, characters can run/tumble through many traps before they fire or jump around them. Many traps can be also timed, i.e. they trigger in a pattern and with careful timing you can bypass them.
Characters who find themselves in a trap are often allowed a saving throw to avoid or mitigate the damage.
- High reflex save helps against most mechanical traps and many damaging magical traps.
- Characters with Evasion can avoid the damage completely.
- Armor class can help versus some mechanical traps.
- Magic / spell traps may require a different saving throw.
- Some traps offer no saving throw.
- PRR and MRR often reduce the damage of a trap.
Spell Ward is a magic trap added with Update 14. Originally they could be found in Forgotten Realms quests and wilderness areas. Just like normal traps, spell wards can be detected via Spot, located via Search, and disabled via Disable Device. Unlike normal traps:
- No control boxes. Searching reveals the trap. Select the trap directly to disable it.
- Some spells can disable or reduce the power of spell wards.
- If you can survive and heal through the spell ward damage, you can simply run into the trap to find it; the search skill is not necessary.
- Can be disabled from much larger distance than conventional traps.
- Many (all?) spell wards slow you down dramatically. This slow effect is not prevented by Freedom of Movement spell and cannot be dispelled by Haste or any other means.
- Spell Absorption effects will prevent the slow part of a spell ward (as a level 1 spell), but not the damage.
Booby traps are favored by NPC rogues, for example in Wheloon area. Enemy rogues like to set them up at their feet, so that when you approach them, the trap explodes into your face. If you don't trigger them, booby traps can be disabled and may (small %) add to your number of disabled traps.
Bear traps are non-magic traps introduced with the expansion into Forgotten Realms. Characters caught into a bear trap are hurt and held in spot (Reflex and/or Strength check negates). Just like Spell Ward traps, Bear traps have no control boxes and you must select the traps directly to disable them. Rolling a 'Critical Failure' when trying to disarm them; sets off the trap's jaws. If you stand far enough back when disarming; it's unlikely to trap you, even on a failed disable attempt. Unlike with "Critically Failed"; blown control boxes; 'Critical Failure' rolls for Bear traps doesn't prevent further disarm attempts (the trap functions until disabled).
Traps by player characters
- Some classes have a class special ability that allows the placement of traps to use against NPC's. See Trapmaking for more info.
- Some spells, such as Symbol of Persuasion can be cast before combat and act as a trap, i.e. spell's effect triggers when an enemy enters the warded area.