FCD#3, late 8th/early 9th century:
                    control panel buttons
                    tentacled denizens in reservoir
                    plants in reservoir

       FCD#3, 948 GUE:
                    (A) / (B)(C1) / (C2) / (D)
                    dam base
                    dam lobby
                    maintenance room
       FCD#3 1067 GUE:
                    Subway Station: Node (1) / (2)
                    Souvenir Zorkmid Press (A) / (B) / (C)
                    back-up panel
                    destruction of dam gates
                    bridge over dam
                    high-resolution (A) / (B)

       FCD#3, GMU:  
            Dam Exterior (A)

       FCD#3, 1647 GUE:
           Image: (A)(B)(C)(D) / (E)
           Art: (1A) / (1B) / (2) / (3) / (4) / (5) / (6) / (7) / (8)


The underground Flood Control Dam #3 is a staggering engineering feat that must be seen to be believed. It was constructed in year 783 of the Great Underground Empire to harness the mighty destructive power of the Frigid River. This work was supported by a grant of 37 million zorkmids from the Central Bureaucracy and the local omnipotent tyrant of the era, Lord Dimwit Flathead the Excessive. This impressive structure is composed of 370,000 cubic feet of concrete, is 256 feet tall at the center, and 193 feet wide at the top. The huge reservoir created behind the dam has a volume of 1.7 billion cubic feet (an ancient document, perhaps in error, records that the volume of the reservoir is 37 billion cubic feet), an area of 12 million square feet, and a shore line of 36 thousand feet (an alternate dam guide book found in 1067 GUE states that the shore line is only 35 thousand feet).

The construction of Flood Control Dam #3 took 112 days from ground breaking to the dedication. It required a work force of 384 slaves, 34 slave drivers, 12 engineers, 2 turtle doves, and a partridge in a pear tree. The work was managed by a command team composed of 2345 bureaucrats, 2347 secretaries (at least two of whom can type), 12,256 paper shufflers, 52,469 rubber stampers, 245,193 red tape processors, and nearly one million dead trees.

The source of the dam's water is a stream which is the runoff of an ancient underground glacier. The Lake of Tears is the reservoir, its spillover the dam being the origin of the Frigid River, which flows eastward from the dam, curves to the south, flows past the White Cliffs Beach, before emerging into the world of the sun from a gaping opening and pouring over the Aragain Falls. A zig-zagging staircase climbs the southern side of the dam from base to top. Those who have attempted to go over the dam have met their doom among the rocks at the base. 

The dam contained a lobby, once used as a waiting room for tourist groups, and a maintenance room where the sluice gates and other electrical systems of the dam are operated from. Portions of  the maintenance room and lobby have been demolished since its construction (see below).

Flood Control Dam #3 is 1 bloit south (GUH-95), 4 bloits east (GUH-90) of Flatheadia, and 13 bloits east of Port Foozle. Lying at the northeastern edge of the Dungeon of Zork, several tunnels lead from the dam into this underground region and the massive reservoir divides the first level of the dungeon.

It was during the inspection of the Royal Museum in 776 GUE when Dimwit Flathead proposed his grandoise project to Lord Feepness. This popular legend indicates that Lord Dimwit had originally intended to name the dam Flood Control Dam #2, an entirely random designation, since there were no other such dams in existence:

"I've been thinking and what we need is a dam, a tremendous dam to control the Frigid River, with thousands of gates. Yes! I can see it now. We shall call it ... Flood Control Dam #2. No, not quite right. Aha! It will be Flood Control Dam #3."

In 777 GUE, after the completion of the Royal Museum, the Frobozz Magic Cave Company moved to increase its staff as the well-publicized dam project moved into full gear, although the actual construction of the dam did not begin until Mumberbur 11th, 782 GUE. On that date, ground was finally broken for the construction of Flood Control Dam #3. Dedicated on Estuary 30th, 783 GUE, the dam afterward became one of the most famous tourist attractions in all of Zork. On the first day of every summer before the fall of the Great Underground Empire in 883 GUE, crowds would line the banks of the Frigid River for the annual opening of its floodgates.

It had been said that this is the greatest engineering feat in the history of the Great Underground Empire, as well as the most nonsensical and expensive. This mammoth edifice was hotly criticized by many since its founding as having virtually no useful purpose, since it never rains underground. But neither this concern, nor its extravagant cost would diminish its magnificence, although the economy of the Great Underground Empire suffered as a result.  While there was never a Flood Control Dam #1 or #2, others would follow, including #7 and #678.

Though only four of the fourteen hundred sluice doors proposed by His Lordly Excessiveness were ever actually constructed, these four doors seemed to adequately regulate water pressure in the dam, with the exception of one historical occasion (precise date unknown), when a lesser Dam Engineer, having troubles at home, fell asleep at the control panel and allowed all four sluices to close at once. The dam burst, the Frigid River flooded, and all power in the neighboring town of Port Foozle was cut off for eleven weeks. Since the underground shares one predominant irrigation system, students as far away as the Eastlands Campus of GUE Tech were flooded for an entire semester, causing the course in Magic Potions 101 to become Magic Kayaking 101, and subsequently rendering a term's worth of cheat notes utterly useless. The sluice doors and damage done to the dam were repaired, and the controls were modified to prevent all four sluice gates from being closed simultaneously. Part of this renovation included a back-up panel overlooking the dam from the eastern side.

In fear of the dreaded Curse Day of 883 GUE, the floodgates of the great Flood Control Dam #3 were left unmanned for the first time in history. It would remain virtually abandoned for many years. At the end of the ninth/early tenth century, the forces of Syovar battled the forces of Krill at Flood Control Dam #3. Following this battle, Bivotar and Juranda entered the maintenance room, opened the floodgates, and due to a malfunction, caused pipes to burst which broke open a hollow in the walls, where the three Palantirs of Zork had been hidden.

Following the imprisonment of the evil wizard Malifestro at the beginning of the tenth century, the dam became the famous tourist spot that it had been at the height of the empire, but only for several years before before it once again was neglected.

               Battle of FCD#3: Stage 1 / 2 / 3

One of the most famous battles of the early tenth century (c.920~923) was the Battle of Flood Control Dam #3 when the barbarian uprising was put to an end. Thaddeus Kaine, using his enemy’s prime weakness against them, decided he needed a distraction to allow him to carry out his final solution plan. He sent a party of troops to a high mountain northeast of the dam where they made considerable noise, bewildering the barbarians as to the intent of the exercise. While the barbarians were conveniently enthralled with the noise, Kaine prepared for their destruction lining the inside of his forces with matchsticks he found in a lobby of the dam. That night, when the barbarians attacked, Kaine ordered his center to fall back against his flanks. The barbarian army poured through the gap in his lines. Kaine then lit his prepared matches, illuminating the center of his horseshoe position. Too late, the barbarians tried to retreat, only to be trapped against the dam and destroyed by the light.

Sometime shortly before 966 GUE, the Great Underground Subway was installed. One of its destinations was the back-up panel for Flood Control Dam #3 which was converted into a small tourist station (complete with Souvenir Zorkmid Press).

Despite the security measures put in place by the former closing of all four sluice gates at once, the Flood Control Dam #3 was once again destroyed, this time the destruction was irreversible. On Frobuary 34 of 1067, AFGNCAAP (the Fourth Dungeon Master), managed to find a loophole in the system by REZROVing one of the gates. Once all four were shut, the top portion of the dam burst open and water flowed through new, unexpected, yet enormously relevant areas of the Great Underground Empire. Power to the surrounding regions was impeded for at least a day, forcing the Steppinthrax Monastery totemizing to temporarily be suspended until auxiliary power was found. In the process, this adventurer left a new bridge over the dam.

The wounds done to Flood Control Dam #3 were torn down and reconstructed with a much less scenic look (horrifically dull). The floodgates were never replaced. All that remains of the dam today is a neglected concrete wall with a steady flow of water spilling over the top. There are rumors of an invisible door located at the dam's base, behind its waterfall.

Chin-Ming Bastidas captured the breathing taking splendor of this engineering marvel in a rendering for a postcard.