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The Windhelm Pit (sometimes referred to simply as The Pit) is an unused cell intended to have been placed in the city of Windhelm, and can only be accessed through the console by typing
If arrested in the Hold of Eastmarch, one was evidently supposed to have been sent to the Pit to fight their way out of prison rather than simply waiting out their time in their jail cell. Huki Seven-Swords, the jailkeeper in the Pit, informs the Dragonborn of the nature of the Pit and how one can use it to their advantage; ultimately to get out of jail:
What do I have to do?: "We don't just let people rot in cells until they've served their time. Here, you fight. If you win, you go free. If you lose, well, you'll know the freedom of Sovngarde if you're lucky."
The Pit was intended to be used as a way to get out of prison in Windhelm, but it was not included in the final release of the game, and thus cannot be accessed through normal means. To successfully be released from prison in Windhelm, it seems that one would have had to defeat the other Pit Fighters in a series of duels, one of which may have been a fight against Alain Dufont, depending on how far one was in the quest "Mourning Never Comes" at the time of incarceration.
There is little to actually interact with, but by typing
tcl in the console and going to the arena, one can see that there are cage doors where prisoners would apparently have been released from. Twelve Pit Fans stand around the arena, but they have no unique dialogue. There are doors leading out of the area, and although they can be partially opened, they cannot be stepped through as they were intended to have led to other cells.
Most of the fighters in the Pit have been fighting there for years, and are quite adept at the skill. Those who manage the Pit are not all completely law-abiding; one of those people, Benkum, is notably corrupt, even taking bribes from fighters. The following is a list of characters that can be found in the Pit:
- It is apparent that the Pit was made to be a form of entertainment to the citizens of Windhelm, as numerous Pit Fans are stationed along the edge of the arena, where they would have been observing the many fights between prisoners that took place there.
- The Windhelm Pit appears in the Saves section of the Menu simply as "The Pit," if one has made a save here. Additionally, most characters refer to it as "The Pit" rather than the "Windhelm Pit."
- Not all traces of The Pit were removed from the final release. When confronting Wuunferth in "Blood on the Ice," the guard refers to the prison as "the bloodworks." Bloodworks is a term used in Oblivion for example to describe the area of an arena where the fighters prepare or are kept.