Distinguishing features: Deadly void-ishness
Likes: Instantly killing heroes at full health
Dislikes: Cheat codes; double jump boots; Jugem’s Cloud
Notable Appearances: Every platformer ever (various)
Weaknesses: None; they are implacable killers

Profile by Jeremy Parish? | April 3, 2011


Heroes Speak Out on Gaming’s Hottest Issues

Today’s Topic: Are pits deadly killers, or are the hazards they represent simply overstated?

M. Mario (29, Brooklyn):
“I tell you, it’s a-no picnic traveling through the Mushroom Kingdom. Sure, it looks all cheerful and surreal on the surface, with smiling hills and happy clouds that look exactly like the happy bushes except green, but the real problem is that there’s a-so little actual surface! Most of the land is broken up by yawning chasms. I can jump a-like nobody’s business, but one slip and it’s all a-over for me. And let me tell you something: As joyful as the surface seems, the world below, down in the pits, is as terrifying as the world above is upbeat. I tell-a you what, if those clouds could see what’s down there, it would wipe the grin right off-a their fluffy faces in a hurry.”

S. Belmont. (623, Wallachia):
“Vampire hunting is serious business, and I approach it with the appropriate gravity. I consider each step carefully, never rush things, and when I jump I commit to that jump. I have to, because evil is lurking everywhere, eager to knock me into a pit. Now, I’m a well-trained warrior, athletic to a fault, and you never hear me complaining about the long trek up a castle to seal away the undead. But I tell you this -- I come to the precipice of a pit and I get cold sweats. I just know there’s a skeleton waiting nearby ready to nail me with a loose bone, or a demon crow hiding in the statuary just out of sight, or a mad hunchbacked midget about to spring. It’s not that pits themselves are dangerous; I could leap from the highest heights of a towering castle and land safely in the dungeons far below if I put my mind to it! But where you find pits, you find ambushes. Or worse, medusa heads. Gods. Medusa heads....”

D. Togo (42, no home given):

A. Kidd (8, Shinobi World):
“Pits are, like, the worstest! I can janken my way past any bad guys I meet. I can clobber ‘em with my big ol’ fist! But pits will just swallow me whole. I don’t understand why they’re so mean.”

R. Hayabusa (21, Tokyo):
“I simply came to New York City to find my father, but what I found instead were bottomless pits and horrible ninja-seeking birds determined to knock me into them. You Americans are savages, and it’s a wonder any of you live past adolescence.”

M. Man (3, Monsteropolis):
“I don’t really like pits, but fortunately Dr. Light is really good about giving me ways to circumvent them! Magnet Beams, Item-2, the Rush Jet... I can even have someone hold down some buttons on controller two to let me super-jump out of a pit. The only time I don’t like pits is when they’re underneath a bunch of disappearing blocks. But even then, I don’t mind pits nearly as much as those spikes Dr. Wily puts all over the place. Those things aren’t safe! He should rethink his fortress architecture, because someone could get hurt.”

“Pit” (12, Angel Land):
“Look, I don’t even want to talk about it.”

Agent Bang (20, Demonhead):
“You ask me, the dangers of pits are overrated. You hear heroes bellyachin’ about them all the time, but the things aren’t that much trouble! An inconvenience at most. You miss a jump, you fall into a pit, you climb out of the cavern below and try again. Sure, it ticks me right off when a monkey in a porkpie hat knocks me off a moving platform 20 times in a row, but that’s just the sort of hazard that comes with the territory. You wanna be a hero, you gotta take your licks.”

S. Snake (28, Alaska):
“I don’t take pride in my work as a government killer, but I won’t deny I’m good at it. It’s kill or be killed, and I take the proactive approach. Even with pits: A quick press of the Select button and those pitfall traps go from fatal to defanged. That’s right. I can even kill the scenery. Don’t cross me, little man.”

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