If your web browser formats this page incorrectly, try viewing the page source. In netscape 4, click the view menu, then click page source. this is a spoiler for the game of nethack. This is mainly information which I did not see in other people's spoilers. GETTING STARTED Start nethack with "nethack -X". You will begin with a wand of wishing with three wishes. Wish for "3 blessed scrolls of charging", "blessed +3 gray dragon scale mail", and "blessed rustproof +3 long sword named Frost Brand". Use one of the scrolls of charging to recharge the wand of wishing, and wish for "blessed fireproof +3 speed boots" and "blessed rustproof +3 gauntlets of power" Whenever you are not sure what to do, save and exit. Then run "nethack", and choose to keep the save file. Try something. If whatever you tried did not work, quit or die. Do not save; if you save, you will overwrite the old save file. When you quit or die, nethack will identify the stuff you are carrying and your attributes. Run "nethack" again, and you will be back at where you last saved, and you can try something different this time, and use the information about your stuff and attributes. This is cheating, but this is the best way to learn how to play nethack. Learning to play nethack without cheating is no fun because it is too difficult. After you have learned how to play nethack you can try playing nethack without cheating. At the very beginning of nethack, if you stay on the first dungeon level where the monsters are few and weak, you will probably starve to death. If you go down to lower dungeon levels in search of food, the more powerful monsters will probably kill you. The solution is to stay on the first dungeon level, and let your god feed you. Do not eat any of your food. Let your pet eat most monster corpses. When you are weak or fainting from hunger, pray. When attacked by multiple monsters, retreat into a hallway so only one monster can attack you at a time. ASTRAL PLANE There are three high altars on the astral plane. One is on the left, one is on the right, and one is in the middle. You do not know which high alter belongs to your god until you stand on top of the alter and look. Other spoilers say you cannot convert a high alter. Wands of death and spells of finger of death are not effective against the priests and angels, but the priests and angels can be teleported away. Death, Pestilence, and Famine cannot be teleported away. Wands of death and spells of finger of death are effective against Pestilence and Famine, but not against Death. Wands and spells of death make Death stronger. Hitting Death/Pestilence/Famine with a cockatrice corpse has little effect. A +7 bow and +7 arrows and expert skill level in bow is effective against Death, and allows you to kill Death before Death can get close enough to hurt you. The problem with Death, Pestilence, and Famine is that they come back to life a few turns after you kill them, like trolls. If you just want to get to the high alter of your god and end the game, that is not a problem. But if you want to clear the level, then you should be prepared for Death, Pestilence, and Famine to come back to life. If you attempt to pick up, polymorph, teleport, tin, or roll a boulder over the corpse of Death, Pestilence, or Famine; then they come back to life right away. If you attempt to eat the corpses of Death, Pestilence, or Famine; then you die unless you are wearing an amulet of life saving, and they come back to life right away. You cannot sacrifice the corpses of Death, Pestilence, or Famine because you cannot sacrifice anything on the high alter without picking it up. You cannot lock Death, Pestilence, and Famine in a room because Death, Pestilence, and Famine can open locked doors. If you go into another room after killing Death/Pestilence/Famine, so that Death/Pestilence/Famine is not in your line of sight, then Death/Pestilence/Famine will probably not follow you. But if you are clearing a room or defending a doorway, then you probably do not want to go into another room, and Death/Pestilence/Famine will come back to life right beside you. You can trap Death/Pestilence/Famine with boulders. But scrolls of earth do not work on the astral plane, so the only way to get a boulder is from a giant. You cannot move the corpse of Death/Pestilence/Famine; so you must lure them into the trap, then kill them, then push the boulders into position. Usually the other mosters get in your way. And there is no guarantee that some other monster will not move the boulders and release Death/Pestilence/Famine. You may be able to use nonmoving monsters like trappers in place of boulders, but nonmoving monsters will move once in a while. If you only have one boulder, you can go into a room; wait for Death/Pestilence/Famine to follow you in; kill them; leave the room; and block the door with a boulder. But new monsters may appear in the room, and you will have to get past Death/Pestilence/Famine if you want to go back in the room and kill the new monsters. If you have two boulders, you can trap Death/Pestilence/Famine in the alley behind a temple. Push the first boulder into position, lead Death/Pestilence/Famine into the trap, kill Death/Pestilence/Famine, move out of the trap, push the second boulder into position, push the second boulder into Death/Pestilence/Famine so that Death/Pestilence/Famine comes back to life, wait for Death/Pestilence/Famine to move back, then push the second boulder further in. If you can push the second boulder all the way in, so that Death/Pestilence/Famine has no empty spaces to move to, then no new monsters will appear in the trap because there are no empty spaces in the trap. And you may be able to use the second boulder in the trap as the first boulder in a second trap. If you drop a scroll of scare monster and push a boulder over the scroll of scare monster, would the scroll of scare monster keep monsters from moving the boulder? You can use a boulder to help defend a doorway. Push the boulder onto the space on your side of the doorway. Stand beside the boulder so that you are diagonal to the doorway. Kill any monster which moves into the doorway. If the monster is especially dangerous, move back and kill the monster with a distance weapon. After you have killed several monsters in the doorway, push the boulder to the side, move into the doorway, pick up the stuff, then move back and push the boulder back. When you get to the astral plane, you get a guardian angel for a pet. You guardian angel has a shield of reflection and a long sword. Maybe you should give your guardian angel more armor, or maybe angels cannot wear more armor. If you put on a ring of conflict, the guardian angel is replaced with four avenging angels, which you have to kill. I think a ring of conflict is not helpful on the astral plane. If you are in a hurry, teleport the monsters out of your way. If you are trying for a high score, kill all the monsters yourself so you can gain more points. It is easy to stand behind a doorway and fight monsters one at a time as the monsters come through the doorway, and prevent many monsters from attacking you at the same time. No holes can be dug in the walls, even by umber hulks. Doors can be broken, and you can repair broken doors with wand of locking or spell of wizard lock. When you are ready to sacrifice the amulet of yendor, you do not drop the amulet of yendor on the high alter like a monster sacrifice on an ordinary alter. If you want to sacrifice something on the high alter, you must hold it up. If you want to sacrifice a monster on the high alter, you must pick up the monster corpse. Leave the amulet of yendor in your backpack, and #offer, nethack will ask what you want to offer, and you select the amulet of yendor. You get more points for more pets, so you might want to do the spell of create familar to create more pets just before you sacrifice the amulet of yendor. ENDGAME The endgame consists of these levels, in this order: plane of earth, plane of air, plane of fire, plane of water, astral plane. When you go up from level one to the endgame, you can not return to get more stuff, so you need to make sure you have all your stuff before you go up to the endgame. You can increase your score by bringing gold, gems, named weapons, quest objects, the book of the dead, the candelabra of invocation, the bell of opening, and pets. I suggest blessing your luckstone and unicorn horn before going to the endgame because monsters will have more difficulty cursing them. As you go to each plane, you can not return to the previous plane. You should bring some blessed scrolls of remove curse in case your unicorn horn becomes cursed, because you cannot use a spell of remove curse to uncurse a unicorn horn, because a spell of remove curse only uncursed worn and wielded items, and if you wield a cursed unicorn horn, you will not have any free hands to cast the spell. Magic mapping is useless in the endgame. Scrolls of teleportation are useless in the endgame. Teleport control is useless in the endgame. You cannot teleport, but you can teleport monsters away from you. The amulet of yendor makes spells more difficult, but you can evade that by dropping the amulet of yendor, making your spell, and then picking up the amulet of yendor. Or you can drop the amulet of yendor somewhere, and leave the amulet of yendor there until you are ready to leave that plane. A monster may pick up the amulet of yendor, and then you will have to kill the monster to get the amulet of yendor back, but this is not a big problem. Make sure you do not accidently walk into the magic portal before you are ready to go the next plane. You can prevent yourself from accidently walking into the magic portal by dropping the amulet of yendor. There are many monsters on the planes, and the monsters are hard to kill, but you probably have enough armor class and hit points that the monsters can not hurt you much. So you may want to ignore the monsters and move straight to the magic portal to the next plane. Use wands of teleportation to teleport monsters out of your way. If you want a high score, you should stay in the endgame a long time and kill as many monsters as possible, because the monsters in the endgame are worth a lot of points. If you want to clear a level in the endgame, you probably want to gather up the stuff from the dead monsters to prevent other monsters from picking the stuff up and using the stuff against you, but the stuff is heavy to carry around, and you are probably carrying a lot of stuff already. So you should probably drop your bag of holding as soon as you come to the plane, and kill all the nearby monsters, stash the stuff in your bag of holding, locate the magic portal, pick up your bag of holding, move to a space beside the magic portal, drop the bag of holding, and then finish clearing the level. There are five ways to find the magic portal. You can move around and search for the magic portal. This is slow. You can use a crystal ball to detect traps. But a crystal ball is heavy. You can use a blessed or uncursed scroll of gold detection while confused. You can use a cursed scroll of gold detection. This marks all traps as gold. If there are multiple traps, you have to figure out which is the magic portal. The gold symbols disappear as soon as you can see that there is no gold there, so you must remember where the gold symbols were. You can watch for monsters to accidently walk into the magic portal. When nethack says some monster suddenly disappeared, and if you can remember where that monster was, then that is where the magic portal is. Some spoilers say a wand of secret door detection or spell of detect unseen will detect traps, but in my experience this is wrong. FOUNTAIN before using a fountain, become powerful enough to fight sucubus/incubus, stash gold, stash anything which you do not want to become cursed, be poison resistant, and be lucky. Drop everything except your armor a safe distance away. quaff from the fountain until you get a message other than "The cool draught refreshes you." Pick up all your stuff except your gold. Dip things like scrolls, potions, and cursed objects in the fountain until the fountain disappears. LAMP When you find a lamp, call it lamp1. When you find a lamp which is not lamp1, call it lamp2. When you find a lamp, apply the lamp. If the lamp flickers and goes out, apply the lamp again. If the lamp runs out of oil after a while, the lamp is an oil lamp. If you have many of one kind of lamp and very few of the other kind of lamp, the common type of lamp is oil lamp. The other kind of lamp is magic lamp. When you have a magic lamp, make the magic lamp blessed, then #rub the magic lamp. MONSTERS getting intrinsics from eating monsters cold resistance "You feel full of hot air" spoilers: Asmodeus,baby white dragon,black pudding,blue jelly,brown mold, brown pudding,demilich,flesh golem,freezing sphere,frost giant, gelatinous cube,ice troll,lich,master lich,valkyrie,white dragon, winter wolf,xorn,yeti confirmed: blue jelly, gelatinous cube, yeti disintregation resistance spoilers: baby black dragon,black dragon confirmed: black dragon fire resistance "You feel a momentary chill" spoilers: Asmodeus,Baalzebub,baby red dragon,balrog,barbed devil,bone devil, Cerberus,fire ant,fire giant,flesh golem,gelatinous cube,hell hound, hell hound pup,master lich,red dragon,red mold,red naga, red naga hatchling,Wizard of Yendor,xorn confirmed: fire ant,gelatinous cube phase spoilers: xorn confirmed: I do not think that you can get intrinic phase by eating xorns. poison resistance "You feel healthy" spoilers: air elemental,baby green dragon,barbarian,barrow wight,black naga, black naga hatchling,black pudding,black unicorn,blue jelly,brown mold, brown pudding,cave spider,cobra,flesh golem,giant beetle,giant spider, golden naga,golden naga hatchling,gray ooze,gray unicorn,green dragon, guardian naga,guardian naga hatchling,healer,homunculus,killer bee, kobold zombie,Medusa,nurse,pit viper,python,quasit,quivering blob, red mold,red naga,red naga hatchling,snake,soldier ant,tengu, violet fungus,water moccasin,white unicorn,Wizard of Yendor,wraith,xan, yellow mold confirmed: gray ooze,brown mold,white unicorn, soldier ant shock resistance "Your health currently feels amplified" spoilers: baby blue dragon,black pudding,blue dragon,brown pudding, electric eel,flesh golem,gelatinous cube,temple priest,temple priestess confirmed: black pudding,flesh golem,brown pudding,gelatinous cube sleep resistance "You feel wide awake" spoilers: acid blob,baby orange dragon,elf,elf-lord,Elvenking, gelatinous cube,Green-elf,Grey-elf,homunculus,orange dragon, Woodland-elf confirmed: grey elf,homunculus, green elf telepathy spoilers: floating eye confirmed: floating eye teleport spoilers: leprechaun,mountain nymph,quantum mechanic,tengu, water nymph,Wizard of Yendor,wood nymph confirmed: tengu,leprechaun,nymph teleport control spoilers: tengu,Wizard of Yendor confirmed: tengu Monster corpses rot at random. Fresh monster corpses are less likely to be rotten than old monster corpses, but fresh monster corpses may be rotten and old monster corpses may be not rotten. So you should try to eat fresh monster corpses instead of old monster corpses, but you can eat old monster corpses if you need to. You cannot completely avoid eating rotten monster corpses because there is no way to determine if a monster corpse is rotten or not except by eating the monster corpse. If you eat a rotten monster corpse, you may lose hit points, become blind, become confused, become stunned, or become unconcious. These are temporary; you should rest and you will recover, unless you are attacked by another monster before you recover. The worst thing that can happen when you eat a rotten monster corpse is that you might get food poisoning. Food poisoning means you will die in a few turns. If you want to live, you must cure the food poisoning. A unicorn horn or potion of extra healing will cure food poisoning. Food rations may also be rotten. If you eat something rotten, and stop eating because it is rotten, then eat the rest of it because often the rest of it is not rotten. A food ration has more nutrition than most monster corpses. Thus you can gain nutrition by polymorphing monster corpses into food rations. Or tin monster corpses and polymorph the pile of tins into food rations. The only types of monster corpses which have more nutrition than food rations are adult dragons and krakens. dont eat: kobold, yellow mold, homunculus, killer bee, soldier ant, giant beetle. These are poisonous, and you will lose 1-30 hit points and 0-5 strength. If your hit points are low, you might lose enough hit points to kill you. If your hit points are high, losing hit points is not a problem because your hit points will soon regenerate. If you have intrinsic poison resistance or a ring or amulet of poison resistance, poison is not a problem. If you have a unicorn horn, losing strength is not a problem. You can regain lost strength by applying a unicorn horn. If you have gauntlets of power, losing strength is not a problem. If you do not have poison resistance, a unicorn horn, or gauntlets of power, then you should not eat poisonous monster corpses. Usually you need to avoid poisonous monster corpses in the beginning of nethack, until you acquire poison resistance. There are other poisonous monsters, but usually you have acquired poison resistance by the time you meet them. dont eat: kitten, housecat, cat, large cat, small dog, dog, large dog. You will gain intrinsic aggravate monster. dont eat chameleons. You will polymorph. If you are lawful or neutral, do not kill peaceful monsters which are the same species as you, or you will lose telepathy, luck, and alignment. Shokeepers, temple priests, and minetown watchmen are humans, so it is easier to kill shopkeepers, temple priests, and minetown watchmen if you are nonhuman. Orcs and cavemen might be exempt from this rule because they are cannibals. You can evade this rule by making yourself chaotic by putting on a helm of opposite alignment, by polymorphing the monster into a different species, by allowing your pet to kill the monster, or by inducing a different monster to kill the monster by using a ring of conflict. You cannot evade this rule by making the monster angry first, including making a monster angry by attacking or throwing things at it, making a shopkeeper angy by robbing the shop, or making a temple priest angry by converting the alter. You cannot evade this rule by polymorphing yourself into a different kind of monster. Do not eat your own species, including similar species, because eating your own species is cannibalism. Nethack displays a message saying you cannibal, you will regret this, but I am not sure what the penalty is. You can evade this rule by polymorphing the corpse into a food ration, or by allowing your pet to eat the corpse. Or you can pick the corpse up and drop the corpse again, and then if a monster eats the corpse, the monster will become your pet. Cavemen and orcs are allowed to be cannibals. Shopkeepers, temple priests, the oracle, watchmen, soldiers, keystone kops, human zombies, and nurses are humans. I think you cannot evade this rule by polymorphing yourself into a different kind of monster. Do not sacrifice your own species, including similar species, because sacrificing your own species is sacrilege. Sacrilege will make your god very angry and a major demon will appear and attack you. Wererats, werejackals, werewolves, and dopplegangers are human. It is sacrilege for a human to sacrifice wererats, werejackals, werewolves, and dopplegangers. However, it is not cannibalism for a human to eat wererats, werejackals, and werewolves (but it will give you lycanthropy, which is also bad). I am not sure if it is cannibalism to for a human to eat a doppleganger (but I think it will cause you to polymorph). The list of monsters which you should not sacrifice is similar but not identical to the list of monsters which you should not eat. & succubus attack A succubus will seduce a male player character, and steal stuff. A succbus will not seduce a female player character. make sure there are no other monsters nearby. hide gold. if male, hide rings of adornment. if female, wear rings of adornment. if you have a weapon which protects against level drain, wield it. if you have something which protects with magic cancellation, get rid of it. if the succubus does not try to seduce you, #chat with the succubus. allow the succubus to remove cloak, suit of armor, and shirt. Hopefully you gain experience or stats. If you lost stats, use unicorn horn to restore. If you lost experience, kill anything to restore. If the succubus is magically canceled, the succubus is worthless; kill the succubus. If the succubus has a temporary headache, go away for a while. otherwise, play with the succubus again. You may gain or lose an experience level by succubus. So succubus is best later in the game, when each experience level is worth more. Also it is best if you recently gained an experience level, so losing one experience level is few experience points. & demon prince Demon princes resist wands of death and polymorph. When the hit points of a demon prince get low, the demon prince will teleport to the up stairs, wait for hit points to regenerate, then teleport back to you and attack again, even on a no teleport level. If the demon prince is already on the up stairs, the demon prince will go up the stairs to the next dungeon level. So to kill a demon prince you need to be on the up stairs to prevent the demon prince from escaping. When you come down to a new dungeon level, if there is a demon prince on that level, wait on the up stairs for the demon prince to come attack you. However, most demon princes are peaceful until you come near, so you will probably have to first go near the demon prince, then go back to the up stair, then wait for the demon prince to attack you. Or you could use a weapon which can kill in one blow, like vorpal blade or a cockatrice corpse. So you have first go to the demon prince's room to annoy the demon prince, then go to the up stairs to block the demon prince's retreat, and then fight and kill the demon prince. Start at the top and work your way down through the dungeon. When you come to a level with a demon prince, dig a hole and go down to the level below. Go to the up stairs and go up to the demon prince's room to annoy the demon prince, then continue going down. When you are sure you are below all demon princes, with all demon princes annoyed, level teleport back up to above all demon princes, and start down again. When you come to a level with a demon prince, wait at the upstairs for the annoyed demon prince to come attack you. B giant bat attack If you eat a giant bat, you will be stunned. c cockatrice attack If a cockatrice touches you, not much happens. If a cockatrice bites you, you will turn to stone and die very soon. Hints say you can stop yourself from turning to stone by eating a lizard corpse, or by eating something acid, like an acid blob corpse. Prayer may also work. What about a unicorn horn? If you are bitten by a cockatrice, you need to stop whatever you are doing and immediately do something to stop yourself from turning to stone. But if you stop attacking the cockatrice, what will keep the cockatrice from biting you again? If you try to escape from the cockatrice, by teleporting or engraving Elbereth, or try to kill the cockatrice, before you eat some acid, then you will probably be unable to eat acid soon enough to keep yourself from turning to stone. The best way to fight a cockatrice is to attack the cockatrice with distance weapons, and kill the cockatrice before the cockatrice comes close enough to bite you. If a cockatrice attacks you, maybe you should escape to a distance before attacking the cockatrice. If you eat a cockatrice, you will turn to stone and die. If you pick up a cockatrice corpse without gloves, you will turn to stone and die. If you tin a cockatrice corpse without gloves, you will immediately turn to stone and die. There is a hint that a cockatrice corpse is useful for clearing a zoo, but how? Throwing a cockatrice does little. A cockatrice corpse rots away as fast as any other corpse, so it is hard to save a cockatrice corpse for later. I tried wielding a cockatrice corpse and attacking a jelly, but the cockatrice corpse was not an effective weapon. If you polymorph into a dragon and bite a cockatrice, you will turn to stone, and the cockatrice will not be killed. chameleon if you eat a chameleon, you are polymorphed e floating eye defend If you attack a floating eye, it will stare at you and paralyze you for a few turns. This does not hurt you, but some other monster may attack and kill you while you are paralyzed. If you eat a floating eye, you will gain telepathy. This is very useful. If you are blind or blindfolded, the floating eye cannot do anything to you. If you attack with thrown weapons, like darts or arrows, the floating eye will not do anything to you, even if you are in the adjacent space. If you apply a mirror to a floating eye, the floating eye will stare at and paralyze itself; the floating eye might or might not be paralyzed for long enough for you to kill it. The best way to fight a floating eye is to put on a blindfold and attack the floating eye with your sword. The second best way to fight a floating eye is to stand beside the floating eye and throw arrows at the floating eye. The third best way to fight a floating eye is to let your pet attack the floating eye, and then try to eat the floating eye corpse before your pet does. Floating eyes follow you slowly. If you are ignoring a floating eye, but the floating eye is blocking your way, move back slowly and lead the floating eye to a place which is wide enough to pass. Or you can wait and eventually the floating eye will move back. You can lose the floating eye by moving quickly. j blue jelly defend A blue jelly attacks with cold. Armour is no protection. A blue jelly does not move. If you ignore a blue jelly, the blue jelly will ignore you. If you have cold resistance, you can attack a blue jelly with your sword. If you do not have cold resistance, attack a blue jelly with a distance weapon from at least one space away. If you have neither cold resistance nor a distance weapon, then ignore blue jellies. j spotted jelly defend A spotted jelly attacks with acid. A spotted jelly does not move. If you ignore a spotted jelly, the spotted jelly will ignore you. Attack a spotted jelly with a distance weapon from at least one space away. j ochre jelly attack An ochre jelly will move, which is different than a blue jelly or a spotted jelly. An ochre jelly cannot be detected with telepathy. An ochre jelly attacks with cold. Armour is no protection. An ochre jelly may engulf you and burn you with acid, and this will cost you a lot of hit points. You might want to carry a wand of digging with you at all times so you can dig your way out of an ochre jelly. You can teleport out of an ochre jelly. K big kobold attack like a small kobold (k), but bigger. k kobold attack Kobolds are poisonous. If you eat a kobold, you will lose something like 10 hit points, but will gain resistance to poison. Do not eat kobolds if your hit points are low, because you might die. Do eat kobolds if your hit points are high, because it is good to be resistant to poison. L lich Liches will curse objects which you are carrying and reduce your experience level. But liches need to be next to you to do these things, so you should try to kill liches at a distance. n nymph attack Nymphs attack by seducing and robbing you. Nymphs do not injure you, but may steal your weapons and armor, and then something else may attack you. Nymphs usually steal one item, then teleport to somewhere else on the same dungeon level. Nymphs seduce both male and female player characters. If you eat a nymph corpse, you may acquire random uncontrolled teleportation. This is useful but risky because you might teleport into a zoo. It is safer to avoid teleportation until after you have acquired teleportation control. You can attack nymphs, but it may take several hits to kill a nymph, and usually nymphs rob you and teleport before you can do more than one hit. Then you have to search the current level for the nymph, and you may have to attack by kicking if the nymph stole your sword. If you apply a mirror to a nymph, the nymph will steal the mirror and teleport away. This is better than losing your sword. If you can teleport, then you might want to teleport away before the nymph can seduce you. Teleport a short distance away to where you can throw daggers at the nymph. Nymphs are much easier to fight if you have telepathy and a blindfold, because you know where the nymphs are. You can choose to avoid the nymphs. You can choose a good position to attack a nymph. If the nymph is in a dark room or hallway, you can throw daggers at the nymph from a distance. If the nymph is in a room, you can go around to the far side of the room to throw daggers at the nymph from a distance. When a nymph teleports, you know where the nymph teleported to. If you have nothing to steal, nymphs avoid you. Nymphs often do not move and do not notice you, so you may be able to ignore nymphs. The best way to fight nymphs is go to a space several spaces from the nymph and throw daggers at the nymph. Or you could use a sword powerful enough to kill a nymph in one hit. Go to one space away from the nymph, and wait for the nymph to move to a space beside you, and kill the nymph before the nymph can rob you. Or you can use speed boots, or speed yourself, or slow the nymph. Wait for the nymph to move beside you, hit the nymph, retreat one space, wait for the nymph to move beside you, hit the nymph, retreat one space, etc. Or you can let your pet fight the nymph. You can use nymphs to remove cursed weapons and armor. Move towards the nymph until you are a few spaces away. Take off and drop everything except the cursed object. Move beside the nymph. If the nymph is asleep, kick the nymph. The nymph will seduce you, steal the cursed object, and teleport away. Go back to the stuff you took off and dropped, and pick up and put on everything. The only problem with this is that you might be attacked by another monster before you recover your stuff. p iron piercer attack An iron piercer hides in the ceiling and usually does nothing. An iron piercer which is hidden in the ceiling is invisible unless you have telepathy. If you walk under an iron piercer, the iron piercer will drop on you, land beside you, and attack you. If you do not walk under or attack an iron piercer, the iron piercer will probably do nothing. There is a very small chance that an iron piercer will move towards you and attack you, even if you have not disturbed the iron piercer and are far away. If you leave an iron piercer, the iron piercer will probably hide in the ceiling and become invisible. Sometimes an iron piercer will eat a metal object and create a gem. I tried use an iron piercer to convert my surplus metal objects into gems. I used telepathy to find an iron piercer. I disturbed the iron piercer. I dropped a metal object and retreated, and waited for the iron piercer to move towards me and eat the metal object. After the iron piercer moved towards me, I dropped another metal object and retreated again. This did not work. The iron piercer did not want to chase me. The iron piercer mostly ignored me and kept going back into the ceiling. The iron piercer did not eat any of my metal objects. Maybe this would have worked better if I had a ring of aggravate monster, and had killed all other monsters on that level first. R rust monster attack A rust monster rusts your weapons and armor, but otherwise does not hurt you. If you have nothing that can rust, then a rust monster cannot hurt you. If you hit a rust monster with your sword, your sword will rust. Weapons and armor will become rusty, and will work less well, but will still work. Weapons and armor will not rust away completely. Rust can be removed by reading a scroll of enchant weapon/armor while you are confused. Rust monsters are fast. You cannot run away from a rust monster unless you have speed boots. The best way to fight a rust monster is to remove all your metal weapons and armor. Use a nonmetal weapon like a unicorn horn. You can fight a rust monster with no weapons or armor at all. But be careful that some other monster does not attack you while you are fighting the rust monster. The second best way to fight a rust monster is to kill the rust monster from a distance. I tried using a rust monster to remove cursed armor. When I met the rust monster, I teleported away. I removed and dropped everything except the cursed armor. I went back to the rust monster and waited. The rust monster rusted the cursed armor until the cursed armor was completely rusty, but the armor was still cursed and still could not be removed. PLANE OF EARTH The plane of earth is rock with a few caves, with no tunnels connecting the caves. You start in one cave and need to dig tunnels or phase to move to the magic portal. You start in the same cave as the wizard of yendor with a spellbook of dig, and a monster with a pickax. And if you dig to another cave, you will probably find a monster with a wand of digging. And if you wait long enough, monsters will dig tunnels to you. So you can do the plane of earth even if you forget to bring digging stuff. If you dig with a pickax, tunnels may collapse on you, and the rubble may come to life. If you dig with a wand or spell of digging, tunnels will not collapse on you and the rubble will not come to life. Once you have finished the plane of earth, you can leave your digging stuff behind, because there is nothing on the other planes which you can dig (you could break doors or boulders on the astral plane, but there is no need). PLANE OF AIR On the plane of air, you need to levitate. If you cannot levitate, you do not fall, but most attempts to move fail. You can pick up stuff while you are levitating on the plane of air, unlike everywhere else in the dungeon. You cannot use thrown weapons like arrows or spears on the plane of air. You cannot move away from air elementals which attack you because the air elementals engulf you. A wand of teleportation or a spell of teleportation will teleport air elementals away from you even if you are engulfed. Drop your load and speed yourself up before fighting an air elemental. A wand or spell of sleep is effective against an air elemental. PLANE OF FIRE The plane of fire has a lot of lava. You will fall in the lava if you try to walk on the lava, and it will take you several turns to pull yourself out of the lava, and then you will fall in the lava in the next space. So you probably want to levitate over the lava. Or you can walk around the lava. A cursed scroll of gold detection is useless for finding the magic portal on the plane of fire because there are many fire traps on the plane of fire. A cursed scroll of gold detection finds all the traps, but you have no idea which is the magic portal. And the gold symbols soon disappear, because you can easily see there is no gold there. PLANE OF WATER There are three ways to move around in the plane of water. You can levitate over the water. You can use an amulet of magical breathing and move through the water. You can walk inside the bubble; the bubble and the magic portal move randomly, so the magic portal will be inside the bubble sometime, but you may have to wait a long time. The magic portal moves, and the map symbol will disappear if the new location is not in sight. So you might not want to find the magic portal until you are ready to go to the next plane. Anything you drop will probably get wet and will move, so you will have trouble finding dropped stuff again. If you use an amulet of magical breathing to move through the water, the stuff you carry will get wet. Wet stuff will rust/erase/dilute, so you may want to put your bag of holding inside an oilskin bag to keep stuff dry. POLYMOPRH If you are polymorphed into a monster, and if you acquire an intrinsic like aggravate monster or teleportitis, you will keep the intrinsic when you return to your normal species. If you are polymorphed into a monster, it is cannibalism if you eat your normal species, and it is not cannibalism if you eat the species which you are polymorphed into. If you polymorph into your normal form, then the polymorphing is permanent. You will never return to your previous form. You will get slightly different stats and experience levels, maybe better than before, maybe worse than before. POLYPILE If you are using a wand of polymorph, try six piles in a row. Polymorph from one end, then from the other end, then from the first end, then from the other end, etc. If you are using a spell of polymorph, try twelve piles. A spell of polymorph seems to polymorph more piles than a wand of polymorph. If you polypile a set of items, the number of items may be reduced. You will lose fewer items if you never polypile multiple items. If you want to polypile a set of blessed scrolls of blank paper, name the scrolls a, drop one scroll, name the scrolls b, drop one scroll, etc. If you are polypiling rocks, try dropping two rocks at a time, because that is less work than dropping one rock at a time, and it is not a problem if you lose rocks, and dropping more than two rocks at a time seems to result in fewer gems. Try two screens of armor and weapons, half a screen of amulets and rings, half a screen of food, half a screen of potions, half a screen of scrolls and spellbooks, half a screen of wands, two screens of tools, two screens of rocks. A screen is as much as can be displayed on the computer display screen, which is something like 22. POTIONS The number is the number of zorkmids which a shopkeeper will offer you. This is different from most spoilers, which give the base price from the source code, which is twice as much as my numbers. This chart starts with the price, then says what types of potions it could be. 25 booze, fruit juice, see invisible, sickness 50 confusion, extra healing, hallucination, healing, restore ability, sleeping, water 75 blindness, gain energy, invisibility, monster detection, object detection 100 enlightenment, full healing, levitation, polymorph, speed 125 acid, oil 150 gain ability, gain level, paralysis clear potions are water potions in the gnome king's wine cellar are booze potions from nymphs are usually object detection 125 potions which do not cancel to water are oil 25 potions which do not cancel and which other potions cancel to instead of to water are fruit juice other 25 potions which do not cancel are booze The most useful potions are uncursed and blessed gain energy, blessed gain ability, blessed extra healing, uncursed and blessed full healing, and all gain level. Cursed gain level potions should be saved until the end of the game, to be used to rapidly ascend with the amulet of yendor, especially on no-teleport levels. But if you are not in a hurry to ascend, then cursed potions of gain level are not useful. Uncursed and blessed potions of gain level should be saved at the beginning of the game, because they give you more experience points if you already have high experience. Once you have reached experience level 14-16 and have given all your gold to a priest for protection, wait until you gain another experience level, then quaff all uncursed potions of gain level, then quaff one blessed potion of gain level. Save the rest of your blessed potions of gain level until you are experience level 30. Apply a unicorn horn several times before quaffing blessed potions of gain ability. Quaff blessed potions of gain ability until your dexterity, intelligence, and wisdom are 18. You can increase your strength by eating giant corpses. You can increase your charisma by playing with magic traps. Constitution and charisma are less important and do not need to be 18. Additional potions of gain ability are useless. Uncursed and blessed potions of gain energy should be quaffed immediately. Or you could save uncursed potions of gain energy until you have many, #dip in a potion of holy water, and then quaff. Blessed and uncursed potions of full healing, and blessed potions of extra healing should be saved until your hit points are at maximum, then quaffed. Or you could save up uncursed potions of extra healing and full healing until you have many, #dip into a potion of holy water, and then quaff. gather potions until you have a wand of cancellation and a wand of polymorph. When convenient, check the price of every type of potion, and drop every potion on an alter to find out blessed/uncursed/cursed. Use scrolls of identify to identify gain ability, gain level, extra healing, full healing, and gain energy. Save all potions of gain level, cursed potions of water, and uncursed potions of full healing. Put other uncursed and cursed potions in a pile. Zap with a wand of cancellation. Identify the booze, oil, and fruit juice potions which did not cancel to water. You can save these for later, polymorph them into other potions which will cancel, or dip them into fountains until they are uncursed or cursed potions of water. Pick up the uncursed potions of water and drop them on an alter to your god. Pray. Polymorph the blessed potions of water and your other nonuseful blessed potions into various blessed potions. Pick up the useful blessed potions and polymorph the others again. When you polymorph potions, you lose some potions. So if you try to polymorph a potion into a better potion, you might get a better potion, and you might get nothing. What are the odds? I do not know. For example, if you have an uncursed potion of gain level, you could cancel, bless, and polymorph the potion and hope to get a blessed potion of gain level. I guess the probability of losing the potion is greater than the probability of getting a better potion. My guess is that uncursed potions of gain level, uncursed potions of full healing, and blessed potions of extra healing should not be polymorphed into better potions, and that uncursed potions of extra healing, uncursed potions of healing, and blessed potions of healing should be polymorphed into better potions. But my guess might be wrong. Vapor test: This will help you identify potions if a monster throws a potion at you, if fire causes a potion to explode, if you kick a potion and the potion breaks, or if you stand next to a wall and throw the potion at the wall. Note if your stats (strength, etc), hit points, or magic power points change. "For an instant you could see through yourself!" potion is invisibility "It suddenly gets dark." potion is blindness "Something seems to be holding you." potion is paralysis "Ulch! That potion smells terrible!" potion is cursed gain ability or cursed restore ability "You feel somewhat dizzy" potion is booze or confusion "You have a momentary vision" potion is hallucination "You have a vision for a moment." potion is hallucination "Your knees seem more flexible now." potion is speed "You smell a peculiar odor" and no other message, potion is anything other than the above (probably all potions except water have a peculiar oder) if you are temporarily blinded, the potion is blindness if you are temporarily confused, the potion is confusion or booze if you are temporarily paralyzed, the potion is paralysis if your hit points increase by one, the potion is healing or extra healing if one stat (strength, etc) increases by one, the potion is blessed or uncursed restore or gain ability. if several stats increase by one, the potion is blessed gain or restore ability if hit points decline, potion is sickness if you move faster, potion is speed if magic power points increase, potion is gain energy if magic power points decrease, potion is cursed gain energy if nothing happens: if hit points are one, potion may be sickness if no stats (strength, etc) are below maximum, potion may be restore ability Quaffing unknown potions: Note if your stats (strength, etc), hit points, or magic power points change when you quaff the unknown potion. "A cloud of darkness falls upon you." potion is blindness "Bummer! Everything is dark! Help!" potion is blindness (if hallucinating) "Gee! All of a sudden you can't see yourself." potion is invisibility "Far out, man! You can see right through yourself!" potion is invisibility (if hallucinating) "For some reason, you feel your presence is known." potion is cursed invisibilility "Huh, What? Where am I?" potion is confusion" "Magical energies course through your body." potion is gain energy "Ooph! This tastes like liquid fire!" potion is booze "Ooph! This tastes like furniture polish!" potion is booze (if hallucinating) "Oh wow! Everything looks so cosmic!" potion is hallucination "That was smooth!" potion is oil "This tastes like 10% real [fruit] juice all-natural beverage." potion is fruit juice or see invisible (if hallucinating) "This tastes like [fruit] juice." potion is fruit juice or see invisible "Ulch! That potion tasted foul!" potion is cursed gain ability "Ulch! This makes you feel mediocre!" potion is cursed restore ability "Yecch! This tastes overripe." potion is fruit juice or see invisible (if hallucinating) "Yecch! This tastes rotten." potion is cursed fruit juice or cursed see invisible "Yech! This stuff tastes like poison." potion is sickness "Yech! This stuff tastes like poison. But in fact it was mildly stale [fruit] juice." potion is blessed sickness "You are motionlessly suspended." potion is paralysis (if levitating) "You are shocked back to your senses." potion is sickness (if hallucinating) "You are suddenly moving much faster." potion is speed "You begin to feel better." potion is healing "You detect the presence of objects" potion is object detection "You feel lackluster." potion is cursed gain energy "You feel more experienced." potion is gain level "You feel much better." potion is extra healing "You feel rather airy." potion is invisibility "You feel self-knowledgeable..." potion is enlightenment "You feel threatened." potion is monster detection, with no monsters to detect "You have an uneasy feeling." potion is cursed enlightenment; but if you are on level one or have the amulet of yendor, then the potion might be cursed gain level "You have a strange feeling." potion is object detection "You pass out. You awake with a headache." potion is cursed booze "You rise up, through the ceiling!" potion is cursed gain level "You sense the presence of monsters." potion is monster detection "You sense the presence of objects." potion is object detection "You're floating in the air!" potion is levitation (if hallucinating) "Your feet are frozen to the floor!" potion is paralysis "Your legs gain new energy." potion is speed "What a trippy feeling!" potion is confusion (if hallucinating) "Wow! This stuff makes you feel good!" potion is uncursed restore ability "Wow! This stuff makes you feel great!" potion is blessed restore ability if quaffing had no effect, potion may be blessed potion of booze or confusion, or cursed potion of healing or extra healing If quaffing the unknown potion had no effect and the unknown potion was blessed, the unknown potion was probably harmful. If quaffing the unknown potion had no effect and the unknown potion was cursed, the unknown potion was probably beneficial. RINGS ? meat ring 50 AdorHungProtShapSteaSustWarn: adornment, hunger, protection, protection from shape changers, stealth, sustain ability, warning 75 AggrColdConsStreAccuDamInviPoiSeeShoc: aggravate monster, cold resistance, gain constitution, gain strength, increase accuracy, increase damage, invisibility, poison resistance, see invisible, shock resistance 100 FireFreeLevRegSearSlowTel: fire resistance, free action, levitation, regeneration, searching, slow digestion, teleportation 150 ConfPolPconTcon: conflict, polymorph, polymorph control, teleport control 50 adornment: auto hunger: a cursed 50 ring is often hunger. protection: auto protection from shape changers: test with mimic stealth: sustain ability: warning: noticeable 75 aggravate monster: test with peaceful monster, including temple priest, not shopkeeper. A cursed 75 ring is often aggravate monster. cold resistance: test with blue jelly gain constitution: gain strength: auto increase accuracy: increase damage: invisibility: auto. rings acquired from nazguls are often invisibility poison resistance: see invisible: test with anything invisible shock resistance: test with grid bug 100 fire resistance: test with red mold or fire ant free action: test with floating eyes or gelatinous cubes levitation: auto regeneration: test when hit points low searching: if you are sure it is searching or slow digestion, drop the ring in a sink. "You thought your ring got lost in the sink, but there it is!" is searching, "The ring is regurgitated!" is slow digestion. slow digestion: teleportation: noticeable. A cursed 100 ring is often teleportation. 150 conflict: noticeable. storekeepers attack you. polymorph: noticeable, but remove your armor before trying a ring which might be polymorph. a cursed 150 ring is often polymorph polymorph control: test with polymorph trap or ring of polymorph teleport control: test with teleport trap or ring of teleportation SCROLLS 0 mail 10 identify 25 light 30 blank paper, enchant weapon 40 enchant armor, remove curse 50 confuse monster, destroy armor, fire, food detection, gold detection, magic mapping, scare monster, teleportation 100 amnesia, create monster, earth, taming 150 charging, genocide, punishment, stinking cloud An unlabeled scroll is blank paper. a stamped scroll is mail If a scroll crumbles to dust when you pick up the scroll, the scroll is scare monster. 2 scrolls on adjacent spots in the first level of sokoban are earth blessed,uncursed, and cursed scrolls of genocide cannot be used on golems. blessed scroll of genocide will eliminate all L, all V except vlad the impaler, all ;, no ', all H except titans, no A, all Z except skeletons, all D, all h SINK Before using a sink, be powerful enough to fight sucubus/incubus and black pudding. kick sink until sink produces one black pudding, one sucubus/incubus, and one ring. Now prepare to quaff unknown potions: have a unicorn horn in case of confusion or sickness, put on amulet of unchanging or ring of polymorph control in case of polymorph. quaff from sink until sink turns into fountain. STORES To buy an object from a store, go into the store, pick up the object you want, and netack will tell you how much gold the storekeeper wants for the object. If you want to buy, pay; if you do not want to buy, drop the object. To sell an object to a store, carry the object into the store, drop the object, and nethack will tell you much gold the storekeeper is offering you for the object. If you want to sell, say yes; if you do not want to sell, say no and pick the object up. A store is also a source of information. The information is not very useful. You can learn the prices of unknown objects. Usually better objects have higher prices than worse objects, but not always, so the price is not much help in figuring out what the unknown objects are. Also, minor weapons and armor in stores are identified by name, while minor weapons and armor found outside stores are identified by description. So you can learn the name of a minor weapon or armor by looking at it in a store, or by selling it to a store. This does not work with major pieces of armor or weapons. For example, suppose you have an object listed as visored helmet. You sell the visored helmet to a store. The object is now listed as helmet. This means the name of the object is helmet, and the description of the object is visored helmet. Since the name of the object is helmet, the object is not a helm of telepathy. If the visored helmet was still listed as visored helmet after you sold the visored helmet to the store, then the visored helmet might be a helm of telepathy; maybe you should have tested the visored helmet before you sold the visored helmet to the store. If you go into a store, pick up some stuff, do not pay, and teleport out of the store; the the storekeeper becomes angry, the keystone kops appear, the storekeeper leaves the store and moves to your location and attacks you. If you pay the storekeeper, the storekeeper becomes peaceful again and the keystone kops disappear. I tried to tunnel into a store with a pickax, but the rock was too hard. I tunneled in with a wand of digging, and the storekeeper attacked me. I stood outside the door to a store, and kicked the door until the door broke. The storekeeper became angry and attacked me. I piled up the stuff in a store and zapped the pile with a wand of teleportation. The storekeeper did not become angry. The storekeeper charged me for the stuff. With stuff unpaid, I threw a dart at the storekeeper. The storekeeper did not move from the space in front of the door. The dart missed. I attacked a storekeeper in a mall. The mall guards attacked me. No keystone kops appeared. I entered a store through a tunnel which a monster had made. The storekeeper asked me to leave my pickax outside. I did NOT leave my pickax outside. The storekeeper stood in front of the normal entrance and did not seem concerned that I had a pickax. I was going to try to carry unpaid goods out through the tunnel, but the tunnel closed. I did not try digging out or down. I left the store through the main entrance, with my pickax, with no unpaid goods. When you find something, nethack gives you a description of the object. If you pick up the object and drop it in a store, nethack gives you a name for the object. For example, a curved sword becomes a scimitar. This works for weapons, some armor, and some tools; but not for potions, scrolls, gems, rings, or wands. If you quaff or break a potion in a store, you have to pay for the potion. I applied a bag of tricks in a store, and the storekeeper said I had to pay for sampling. So probably you have to pay for any use of stuff in a store. But in an older version of nethack, I engraved with a wand in a store, and the storekeeper said nothing. So maybe in older versions of nethack you could use stuff in stores without paying. If a monster follows you into a store and you kill the monster, the corpse belongs to the storekeeper. If you eat the corpse, you have to pay for the corpse. If you really want to eat the corpse, leave the store before killing the monster, the monster will probably follow you out, then kill and eat the monster outside the store. I carried a pickax into a store in a bag and the storekeeper did not object. I took the pickax out of the bag and dropped the pickax, and the storekeeper paid me for the pickax. I went into a store, and threw rocks and darts at the storekeeper. The storekeeper moved, every throw missed, the storekeeper did not become angry. A dwarf, rock mole, or other tunneling creature may tunnel into a store. These tunnels close up after a few turns. As an invisible neutral wizard, I teleported into a store. The storekeeper said that invisible customers were not welcome. The storekeeper did not become angry and did not attack me. The storekeeper remained in the spot in front of the door. I could buy and sell things normally. I had to teleport to leave the store because the storekeeper would not move from the space in front of the door. STRATEGY Wait on the first levels. Type n999[space] to wait. When you are weak or fainting from hunger, #pray. If you are chaotic and have a helm of opposite alignment, put on the helm of opposite alignment to make yourself lawful so that you can pray more frequently. Wait some more. Save any potions of gain level, and try to avoid incubuses/succubuses and wraiths. When you think you are strong enough, go down into the mines to minetown, and see if there is anything worth buying in the stores. Use your pet to rob stores. Go back up to the main dungeon, and go down to sokoban, and do sokoban. Finish the mines. Explore the dungeon down to medusa. If you are not already chaotic, use a helm of opposite alignment to make yourself chaotic. Teleport out of stores with unpaid stuff, kill keystone kops, storekeepers, minetown guards, other peaceful monsters but not temple priests. Remove helm of opposite alignment. Gather up as much gold as you can. Go to a temple of an alignment other than your own. Give gold to priest of different alignment to acquire divine protection, convert the alter, kill the priest, get your gold back. Repeat for each priest of a different alignment. When there are no more priests of different alignments, give your gold to a priest of the same alignment. Kill and eat the wraiths, and flirt with the incubuses/succubuses. Do the quest. Go down and do the rest of the dungeon. TEMPLES If you go into a temple and attack the priest, the god will attack you. If you convert the altar first, the god will not attack you, but the priest will become angry and will attack you. If you stand outside a temple and attack the priest with distance weapons, the god will not attack you. The priest will become angry and will fight back, but the priest will not leave the temple. The priest will probably curse you and summon monsters. If you stand outside a temple and polymorph the priest into a monster, you can then go into the temple and attack the monster, and the god will not attack you. But if you are lawful or neutral, it might be bad to attack a peaceful priest, and would probably be better to convert the alter first. Maybe the consequences of killing a peaceful priest are less severe if you are nonhuman. If you are going to attack a priest from outside the temple, it will be easier if you dig some holes in the walls first. But you cannot dig holes in the walls of temples with high altars (one in the bottom of the dungeon and three on the astral plane). If you stand outside the temple door, the priest will not move into your line of fire. So you need to stand near the door, wait for the priest to move to a space which can be attacked from outside the door, move to where you can attack the priest, and attack the priest before the priest can retreat to a safe space. If the priest does move to a safe space, you must move back and wait again. Meanwhile the priest will probably curse you and summon monsters. You need to move and attack before the priest moves, so you need to be fast. You can give gold to a priest, acquire divine protection, kill the priest, get your gold back, go to another temple, give the gold to that priest, and get more divine protection. If you kill the priest, the temple becomes haunted, but that is not a big problem. THRONES Before using on a throne, stash your gold and have a unicorn horn. maybe you should also be lucky, able to teleport, shock resistant, able to remove a curse, and able to pray. maybe you should stash any object which you do not want to become cursed. Then kick the throne until you get some gold, then sit on the throne until the throne disappears. WANDS 50 light, nothing 75 digging, enlightenment, locking, magic missile, make invisible, opening, probing, secret door detection, slow monster, speed monster, striking, undead turning 90 cold, fire, lightning, sleep 100 cancellation, create monster, polymorph, teleportation 250 death, wishing If you zap a peaceful monster with a wand of probing, the peaceful monster will not become angry. If you zap a peaceful monster with a wand of polymorph or teleportation, the peaceful monster will become angry.