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Drafting is RimWorld's primary combat mode, an immediate call to action for any capable pawn to begin fighting. It also allows you to direct a pawn to a specific tile.

How to

Draft gizmo.

To draft a colonist, select them, and press the toolbar gizmo marked with two crossed swords or press the R button.

Capable colonists, even those incapable of violence or unarmed, slavesContent added by the Ideology DLC, and friendly mechanoidsContent added by the Biotech DLC are able to draft instantly on command. Those who are downed, otherwise incapable of movment, or under a mental break are unable to be drafted. While a pawn lit on fire will still be drafted, the player will lose some control of them during the panic.


Drafted pawns are able to be ordered to a precise location. Select a pawn, and right click the desired location. A group of pawns can be sent to one location (simple right click), or ordered to create a line (right click & drag). Multiple orders can be assigned sequentially by holding shift (ex. move to place A then place B). Drafted pawns will remain at their assigned place, ignoring their needs entirely. This overrides both zone restrictions and the threat response setting.

Pawns with ranged weapons will attack enemies so long as Fire at Will remains enabled, and will take cover from adjacent buildings. You can also direct pawns to attack a specific target, structure, and for explosives, a tile. Any pawn capable of violence will begin melee with enemies 1 tile away. In addition, they will enter a state of collision, if they haven't already. During collision, pawns cannot pass over each other. If they were already on top of each other, pawns will radiate outside, even bypassing walls in extreme circumstances.

If left alone for 10,000 ticks (2.78 mins) without any threats or orders, then drafting will automatically end. Mental breaks and downing will also immediately end the draft state.


Gizmo for dropping a carried creature.

Other than move and fight, drafted pawns can:

  • Arrest colonists, slaves, and allied/neutral guests.
  • Douse adjacent fires, even if outside of the home area.
  • Carry and/or rescue downed pawns, even if incapable of Hauling, and place them at a specific location.
  • Tend pawns anywhere, with or without medicine, even if not assigned to Doctoring.
    • Medicine must be carried in the inventory to be available.

Many abilities, such as the smokepop pack, firefoam pop pack, and most psycastsContent added by the Royalty DLC, can only be used while drafted.

Drafted pawns are also able to:

  • Drop any item in the inventory where you want it.
  • Equip weapons, apparel, and pick up medicine or drugs.
    • Consume food and take drugs directly.
  • Repair damaged buildings.

By exclusion, this means that drafted pawns can't haul, construct new objects, etc.

Work interruption

If a pawn currently performing any action, drafting will immediately interrupt their action, and will immediately wake them up. Any work progress they've made that is represented by a yellow progress bar will be lost, while pausable work such as crafting and construction will not. Work priorities will be re-assessed after the pawn is undrafted.

Pawns will drop any held items and pawns they were carrying, to make use of their weapon. BabiesContent added by the Biotech DLC are a special exception: the first draft will consider a held baby a draft-carried baby, and give a warning. If undrafted, the second draft thereafter will drop the baby.


The effects of fire take precedence over drafting. Whilst on fire, the ignited pawn to run around wildly instead of fighting, without collision. Drafted pawns can still be given commands, but they will go to their intended location first (which is often water, to douse the fire).


Friendly mechanoids can only be drafted if their mechanitor is not in a mental break, downed, or in a different map. From there, there is a 25-tile radius from the mechanitor which mechs are allowed to move to, and which mechs must be currently inside in order to give combat commands. Mechs can still be drafted outside of this radius, and will follow their last command.


Animals that have been trained in Guard can be assigned to follow an assigned master whenever drafted. The animal will ignore zone restrictions to do so, and will attack nearby aggressors.


Watch out for drafted pawns needs, as mood can quickly diminish as they starve or get tired, which can cause a deadly mental break. Even minor breaks like sad wander an food binge can get a pawn out of position, and promptly shot. This is exacerbated by witnessing death, or being near corpses.

Non-combat uses

  • Update a colonist's work tasks, by drafting and undrafting.
  • Delay certain actions, such as to prevent Ate Raw Food just as a meal is cooking.
  • Send pawns to extinguish fires outside of the home zone.
  • Move pawns to a safe location, such as a warm building to avoid frostbite, or to tell pawns where to run away to.
  • Gain access to Tend (without medicine), which can heal minor bruises that don't need it, or stabilize a pawn desperately bleeding out.
  • Control rescuers where to go.

For more long-term control of where you want your pawns to go (such as "indoors" during a toxic fallout), you may want to set a zone instead.

See Also

Version history

  • 1.1.0 - Interface now reports the chance of a successful arrest before you try to make it.
  • 1.3.3066 - Drafted pawns can tend to others in the field, and carry/drop downed pawns anywhere. Added ability to "drag" groups into a line.