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Ice, ., is formed when a pool is frozen by a spell, wand of cold, frost horn, or breath attack, and is naturally found in a few places such as the Valkyrie quest.

Ice is slippery, and walking on it often causes you to fumble, the same way as when wearing gauntlets of fumbling or fumble boots. Fumbling can be prevented by wearing snow boots or being naturally cold resistant (e.g., being a valkyrie or polymorphing into a winter wolf). Intrinsic cold resistance gained from eating a corpse will not prevent this fumbling. If snow boots are fumble boots, you will continue to suffer from the effects, but for a different reason.)

Beware fire-breathing monsters, wands of fire, fire traps (many of these are present on the Valkyrie quest), and other sources of fire if you are on ice; these will melt it and cause you to fall into the newly created pool. You will normally be able to climb out, but your inventory will get wet, and as with falling into normal water it is possible to drown under the wrong circumstances.

Corpses rot half as fast if they're on ice.

Items on ice will slide further when kicked ("Whee! A/n <item> slides across the ice.")

In NetHack 3.6.0, ice created by a spell or breath attack has a chance of melting after between 50-2000 turns[1]. Naturally occuring ice will always be permanent, and newly created ice has a chance of becoming permanent as well. Thawing ice that is hit with another spell or breath will increase the duration, and has another chance of becoming permanent. Players with warning will be informed if they are standing on ice that is about to break in under 15 turns.


The ice seems very soft and slushy.
You have warning and are standing on ice that will melt in under 15 turns.
You feel the ice shift beneath you!
As above, but in under 10 turns.
The ice, is gonna BREAK!
As above, but in under 5 turns.

See Also


  1. src/zap.c in NetHack 3.6.0, line 4105