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|“||Roy: There always seem to be traps where legendary weapons lie.
Elphin: ...Perhaps they are meant to keep the unworthy from wielding them.
Roy: Maybe so... But the traps are so intricate. I feel there must be something more to them than that.
— Roy and Elphin
Occasionally, a map will include a hazard where the terrain or architecture of a map itself can cause harm to the units participating in a battle. Hazards effectively trigger themselves independent of what either participating army wants, often at random or in a pattern, and have a variety of effects which range from simple damage to inflicting status conditions.
Examples of hazards
These were introduced in Fire Emblem: Thracia 776 and appear only in it and Fates. Warp traps look like completely ordinary ground tiles at first, but if a unit ends their turn on one of these tiles, they will be involuntarily warped to a certain point on the map. In Thracia 776 they remain invisible no matter how many times they are triggered, but in Fates they instead become visible when triggered once, making them somewhat less frustrating than their Thracia 776 incarnation.
The following maps features warp traps:
These are a hazard present in volcanic locations, and were introduced in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade. Geysers are normal ground terrain tiles which can be crossed as usual by any unit, but are distinguished with a red pattern. At the end of each enemy phase, any geysers which are currently being stood upon by a unit of any affiliation will erupt and inflict 10 damage.
The following maps feature lava geysers:
- Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade: Chapter 8x
- Fire Emblem: Chapter 28E
- Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones: Chapter 18, subsequent skirmishes at Neleras Peak, Lagdou Ruins level 9
- Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn: Part 3 Chapter 8
- Fire Emblem Awakening: Chapter 18 has a variation on this hazard, where portions of the map will collapse and start to sink into the lava every few turns, transforming them into lava geyser-like terrain which inflicts 10 damage on any unit standing on them at the start of player phase.
Poison jets were introduced in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade and are a feature of maps set in dank caverns. These protrude from the walls of these caverns, and at the end of the enemy phase, one random poison jet will go off and blast poisonous gas in a straight line of three tiles. Any units who are hit with a jet will sustain poison status.
The following maps feature poison jets:
- Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade: Chapter 12x
- Fire Emblem: Chapter 30H
- Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones: Lagdou Ruins level 5
The Heavenly Arrows were introduced in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade as a minor plot element in the Aureola sidequest. At the end of each turn, a Heavenly Arrow will rain down the length of the map in a straight line one tile wide, inflicting 10 damage on every unit in its path. Each turn will have its Heavenly Arrow descend from a different point across the top of the map.
The following maps feature Heavenly Arrows:
These simple traps in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade are single-use hazards which are invisible and indistinguishable from ordinary terrain. When a mine trap is passed through, it will explode, cause 10 damage to the unit who treads on it and. However, Thieves will automatically disarm the trap before it explodes if they are the ones to step on it. If a non-Thief infantry or cavalry unit crosses a mine trap while attempting to reach some other tile, it will trigger and halt their movement, but flying units will only trigger mines if they specifically wait on the trapped tile. While pre-set mine traps do not return in subsequent games, the Mine item behaves identically when set in the latter two Game Boy Advance games.
The following map features mine traps:
These traps in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade are built into the walls of narrow corridors. If a unit waits next to a trapped wall, a spear will shoot out of the wall and injure them, inflicting a base 10 physical damage; unlike other traps, the trap's damage can be protected against by the victim's defense stat, and can even be completely nullified if the victim has 10 or higher defense. Unlike mine traps, spike traps will only be triggered if a unit specifically waits in the trap's range, and not if they pass through it. Thieves will automatically disarm the trap before it activates if they are the ones to step into it.
The following map features spike traps:
Pitfalls were introduced in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and in both appearances are used only on the same location: Oribes Bridge, in Daein. Pitfall tiles are scattered across the respective maps, completely unmarked, and when a unit of either affiliation steps on one they will fall into it and sustain stun status for a single turn. Triggering a pitfall turns that tile into uncrossable hole terrain, and while the unit who triggered the trap is able to move out of the hole after the stun wears off, nobody can stand on it afterward; non-flying units cannot pass the hole at all, and flying units are not allowed to stand on it.
Untriggered pitfalls can be avoided entirely if a flying unit is stationed on top of the trap's location. Flying units will never trigger pitfalls, so if they wait on top of a pitfall, non-flying units will be able to harmlessly cross the terrain without triggering the trap.
In Radiant Dawn, holes act like a lower plane of altitude while a unit is still in them, so anybody attacking a unit trapped in a pitfall gains the standard height-advantage bonuses on top of the pitfall victim's inability to retaliate.
The following maps feature pitfalls:
This hazard appears only in a single DLC episode in Fire Emblem Awakening, where most of the map's terrain is lined with distinct spiked tiles. At the end of each enemy phase, a dark explosion occurs that instantly reduces the HP of all units standing on the spiked floor to 1, regardless of affiliation; units who stand on the proper ground surrounding the spikes are unharmed.
The following map features spiked floors:
- ghast et al., Do hallway traps exist in FE7?, Fire Emblem Universe, Published: 2016-04-05, Retrieved: 2016-04-07