Sleep resistance

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Sleep resistance is an intrinsic which prevents you from being put to sleep by wands of sleep, potions of sleeping, sleeping gas traps, and orange dragon's breath attack, or when wearing an amulet of restful sleep. When you acquire the sleep resistance intrinsic, you get the message "You feel (wide) awake!" It can be acquired by:

  • Playing a Monk, or an Elf of level 4 or higher
  • Eating a monster which confers the intrinsic (e.g. elves of all kinds, homunculi, gelatinous cubes)
  • Being polymorphed into a naturally sleep-resistant monster


Sleeping gas traps are plentiful in Gehennom, so sleep resistance is a high priority. However, elves are quite common in the upper dungeon, and can be safely eaten by anyone but an elf player, who gains intrinsic sleep resistance anyways, so getting sleep resistance is not difficult.


Different monsters have the ability to confer this instrinsic upon eating. The full list is below. The percent chance refers to the chance of gaining this instrinsic upon completely eating the corpse. Only the gelatinous cube is safe for vegetarians or vegans. Some of the corpses may be hazardous to eat; the possible danger is noted in the Danger column.

Monster Nutrition Danger Percent chance
Chromatic Dragon 1700 Poisonous 17%
elf 350 Cannibalism (for elves);

food poisoning (these corpses usually come from undead monsters)

elf-lord 350 Cannibalism (for elves) 53%
Elvenking 350 Cannibalism (for elves) 60%
flesh golem 600 12%
gelatinous cube 150 Acidic 10%
Green-elf 350 Cannibalism (for elves) 33%
Grey-elf 350 Cannibalism (for elves) 40%
homunculus 100 Poisonous 7%
orange dragon 1500 100%
Woodland-elf 350 Cannibalism (for elves) 27%


The following messages are associated with sleep resistance:

"You feel wide awake."
You gained sleep resistance by eating a corpse or tin.
"You feel awake!"
You gained sleep resistance by reaching level 4 as an elf.
"You feel tired!"
You lost sleep resistance through level drain (gremlins cannot steal this one).
"You yawn", "You don't feel sleepy."
You were hit by a sleep-inducing attack, but did not fall asleep because you have sleep resistance.
"You are enveloped in a cloud of gas!"
You stepped on a sleeping gas trap, but did not fall asleep because you have sleep resistance.

This page may need to be updated for NetHack 3.6.1.

It may contain text specific to NetHack 3.4.3. Information on this page may be out of date.

Editors: After reviewing this page and making necessary edits, please change the {{nethack-343}} tag to {{nethack-360}} or {{noversion}} as appropriate.