Elven mithril-coat

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[   elven mithril-coat   Elven mithril-coat.png
Appearance elven mithril-coat
Slot body armor
AC 5
Base price 240 zm
Weight 150
Material mithril

An elven mithril-coat is a type of body armor that appears in NetHack. It is made of mithril.


In addition to random generation, general stores, used armor dealerships and antique weapon outlets can sell elven mithril-coats.

Live elves have an effective 14 chance of being generated with an elven mithril-coat.[1] Hobbits have a 110 chance of generating with an elven mithril-coat.[2]

Player monster barbarians, knights, priests, and valkyries have an effective 3124 chance (roughly ~2.42%) of forcing an elven mithril-coat in place of their initial body armor.[3][4][5][6]


While worn, an elven mithril-coat confers 5 base AC and MC2. Wearing or removing an elven mithril-coat takes only 1 turn.[7]

Elven mithril-coats can safely be enchanted with a scroll of enchant armor from +5 like other elven armor.


Elven-mithril coats are among the best available body armor after dragon scale mail - obtaining one is often a major goal for early game characters due to its high AC. They also weigh much less than the various types of plate mail (including bronze plate mail and crystal plate mail) in return for slightly less base AC, which is especially ideal for early characters with low strength and no bag of holding. Characters in spellcasting roles can occasionally make use of a mithril-coat to boost AC, only removing it to cast as needed: the 1 turn to wear/remove mithril-coats is also more convenient for them, versus 5 turns for most other body armor.

Though the dwarvish mithril-coat has one more point of base AC, an elven mithril-coat can be safely boosted to a higher enchantment, and is somewhat easier to obtain earlier in the game if a lucky character can grab one off a hobbit. Barring a wish, an elven mithril-coat can easily last as a character's primary armor throughout the mid-game or until their desired set of dragon scales becomes available, whichever occurs first. The coat's material protects it from erosion while worn, though it still breaks if a polymorph trap turns the character into a large enough monster.


Hack 1.21, which is based on Jay Fenlason's Hack, features an ancestor to the elven mithril-coat in the form of elfin chain mail, which also appears in NetHack 1.3d. Elfin chain mail has most of the same qualities: it is a light form of body armor that is fairly rare, provides 5 AC and MC3 when worn, and takes a near-minimum amount of time to put on or remove. In NetHack 3.0.0, elfin chain mail is replaced by the elven mithril-coat in its current form - from this version to NetHack 3.4.3, including variants based on those versions, it still grants MC3 when worn.

The Elf role will always start the game with elfin chain mail (or an elven mithril-coat in NetHack 3.0.0 and later versions) if the TOLKIEN compile-time option is enabled.


Variants based on NetHack 3.4.3 and earlier versions may retain the MC3 granted by wearing an elven mithril-coat, while variants that employ object materials may replace the elven mithril-coat with a similar item that can be made of mithril.

Some variants give elves an AC bonus for wearing an elven mithril-coat or equivalent armor, including elven player characters.


In SLASH'EM, the elven mithril-coat grants MC3 while worn.

Upgrading an elven mithril-coat produces a dark elven mithril-coat, and vice versa.


In UnNetHack, elven mithril-coats grant +1 AC to elven monsters that wear them, including elven players.


In dNetHack, the elven mithril-coat grants 3 AC, 2 DR and MC3 while worn, and its weight is lowered to 20 aum.

The Web of Lolth is an intelligent chaotic artifact whose base item is a silvered elven mithril-coat, and acts as the chaotic crowning gift for female drow Priests, Rangers, Rogues, and Wizards. While carried, it grants magic resistance, and while worn it also grants drain resistance, warning of elves (including other drow) and doubles the damage of that character's beam and ray spells. Invoking the Web of Lolth refills energy.


In xNetHack, elven mithril-coats are replaced with elven ring mail, which has a base material of copper and grants 2 AC - a mithril set of elven ring mail behaves identically to an elven mithril-coat, since mithril body armor will always grant at least MC2. Hobbits have the same chance of generating with elven ring mail, which will always be mithril.


In SpliceHack, elven mithril-coats are also replaced with elven ring mail, similar to xNetHack.


In EvilHack, elven mithril-coats are replaced with elven chain mail. Elven chain mail grants 5 AC while worn and has a base material of copper, and grants +1 AC to elven monsters that wear them, including elven players - when made of mithril, it behaves similarly to an improved elven mithril-coat, and grants two more points of base AC and MC2 (or MC3 for elves).


In Hack'EM, elven mithril-coats are also replaced with elven chain mail, which behaves as in EvilHack.

Encyclopedia entry

_Mithril_! All folk desired it. It could be beaten like
copper, and polished like glass; and the Dwarves could make
of it a metal, light and yet harder than tempered steel.
Its beauty was like to that of common silver, but the beauty
of _mithril_ did not tarnish or grow dim.

[ The Fellowship of the Ring, by J.R.R. Tolkien ]


  1. src/makemon.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 225: Default equipment for elves
  2. src/makemon.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 364
  3. src/mplayer.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 174: 12 for barbarians and other mentioned roles to get random body armor within the range of objects from plate mail to chain mail in objects.c, using normal generation odds
  4. src/mplayer.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 201: body armor for knights
  5. src/mplayer.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 215: body armor for priests
  6. src/mplayer.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 242: body armor for valkyries
  7. src/objects.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 417