Fire resistance

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Fire resistance is a property in NetHack that protects you against most sources of fire damage.


Fire resistance nullifies any fire damage that you or a monster take from monster attacks and wands, but will not prevent fire damage from boiling potions or burning scrolls and spellbooks, nor will it prevent burning of non-fireproof armor. A character falling in lava with fire resistance still incurs damage, but the resistance prevents it from being immediately lethal, providing a limited amount of turns to escape it before they sink beneath its surface and die. Being splashed from a boulder falling into lava deals d6 damage to a character with fire resistance (before half physical damage is applied) and 3d6 damage otherwise.

Monsters that have fire resistance include fire-element monsters, some golems and most major demons. Monsters that are resistant to fire but not to cold are considered vulnerable to cold, and take about 57% more damage from rays of cold (+1d3 for each 1d6) as well as double damage from frosty explosions.[1][2] This is not applied to you, even while polymorphed into such a monster.



Intrinsic fire resistance can be obtained by crowning like all other resistance properties. Monks gain intrinsic fire resistance at experience level 11, and Priests obtain fire resistance at XL 20.[3][4]

The intrinsic can also be gained by from polymorphing into the following monsters or eating their corpses or globs:

Monster Conduct Difficulty Chance Notes
red mold vegan 2 3%
gray ooze vegetarian 4 7% acidic
gelatinous cube vegan 6 10% acidic
red naga hatchling meaty 4 10%
flesh golem meaty 10 12%
Chromatic Dragon meaty 23 17% poisonous, Caveman quest nemesis, nopoly
fire ant meaty 6 20% abundant on the Valkyrie quest
pyrolisk meaty 8 20%
red naga meaty 8 20%
Wizard of Yendor meaty 34 25% cannibalism for humans, nopoly
fire giant meaty 11 30% abundant on the Valkyrie quest
hell hound pup meaty 9 47%
Lord Surtur meaty 19 50% Valkyrie quest nemesis, nopoly
salamander meaty 12 53% poisonous
hell hound meaty 14 80%
red dragon meaty 20 100%
Ixoth meaty 22 100% Knight quest nemesis, nopoly

Eating a ring of fire resistance also has a 13 chance of conveying the intrinsic.


Extrinsic fire resistance is granted by the following items:


Fire resistance is a must-have before hitting Gehennom, as fire traps are prevalent there and capable of reducing your maximum hit points otherwise.


Fire resistance as a property is present in Hack 1.21 and Hack for PDP-11, which are based on Jay Fenlason's Hack, and is also present in Hack 1.0.

From Hack 1.0.2 to NetHack 3.0.10, fire resistance is required to enter Hell, which will instantly burn you to a crisp otherwise.


You feel a momentary chill.
You gained intrinsic fire resistance by eating a corpse or tin.
You be chillin'.
As above, while hallucinating.
You feel cool!
You gained intrinsic fire resistance through reaching a certain experience level.
You feel warmer!
You lost intrinsic fire resistance due to level drain or a gremlin attack.
You feel mildly warm.
You were hit by fire, but suffered no damage due to fire resistance.


Variants often introduce additional sources of fire resistance; object properties systems also have fire resistance as one of the many possible extrinsics that worn armor can convey.


In SLASH'EM, the Flame Mage role always starts with intrinsic fire resistance.

The ward against flame technique confers temporary fire resistance when used. This is the Monk's primary source of fire resistance, available at experience level 11, and was converted to intrinsic fire resistance when the role was ported to NetHack.


In dNetHack, fire resistance gained from eating corpses is temporary, as with most other resistance properties; the duration depends on the corpse eaten.


In FIQHack, extrinsic fire resistance prevents items you carry from burning as well.


In xNetHack, extrinsic fire resistance completely protects your open inventory from fire damage.


In EvilHack, the Infidel role starts with intrinsic fire resistance.


In SlashTHEM, the fire helmet and asbestos jacket each provide fire resistance when worn. The Firefighter role starts with both of these items, and gains intrinsic fire resistance at experience level 15.

Trolls are a playable race who are uniquely incapable of obtaining fire resistance from any source at all, including polymorphing.