The game contains many vaults, most of which are fixed in their layout and design, and often follow a theme. A few of them have been described below.
Main article: Special room
A re-occuring rectangular room without doors which contains a group of monsters with a theme:
- Kobold lair (D:7-14, Orc:1-3): kobolds and kobold brigands.
- Orc lair (D:9-, Orc:1-3, Elf, Vaults): orcs, orc warriors, orc priests, and beyond.
- Beehive (D:9-16, Lair, Orc:1-3, Spider): Many killer bees and a queen bee.
- Morgue (D:16-, Crypt, Dis, Tar, Coc, Geh): Many types of undead monsters.
- Jelly pit (D:18-, Lair:8, Slime): jellies, endoplasms, brown oozes, death oozes, azure jellies and acid blobs.
- Mythical zoo (D:14-, Lair:4-, Elf): fire drake, basilisk, hippogriff, wyvern, hell hound, griffon, hydra, manticore. In Depths or Elf, harpy, dragon, sphinx.
This vault is in the shape of a cross outlined with translucent walls. An angel or daeva resides inside, guarding either an altar to the Shining One, Zin or Elyvilon or a portal to a ziggurat. The angel will not harm you, so long as you don't dig the vault open. The angel may sneer at you, however, if you are a low piety worshipper of the Shining One, Zin, or Elyvilon, or salute you if you are a high level worshipper. Occassionally there will be two angels in the vault, fighting each other to the death. If you are a priest of Beogh, you can grab some good experience by smiting the loser.
"The Bear's Den"
"The Insect Den"
This circular shaped vault has a radius of about 6-7 tiles. The vault may be filled with such low level creatures as rats and worms, although a pack of giant ants can easily overwhelm a low level character. Occassionally, a moth of wrath will be enclosed in a translucent-walled box in the center of the vault. While the Moth of Wrath is unable to attack you, it can berserk the other enemies with deadly results.
This vault is square in shape, usually 3x3. Upon opening the door you will find it filled with 8-9 various mammalian simulacra, varying from rats and jackals to yaks and bears. These give good and easy experience (and piety for worshippers of The Shining One) as long as you have some degree of cold resistance.
This amusing vault is a large square or rectangular open room, usually with a tunnel leading into it of about 1 or 2 tiles thick. Inside, there are humans, sheep, hounds, and sometimes yaks. Think of it as a farmer and his sheepdog rounding up the livestock.
Hall of Rats
This vault is a looping tunnel with many doors along the inside. Behind each door is a 1-tile room with a rat inside it. One, however, has a different enemy behind the door, standing on a pile of gold.
Each god has their own set of unique vaults that may or may not be used in the random generation of their altars. Especially early on, several different altars can appear in small rooms or islands, behind moats of lava or deep water.
Trog's altars are commonly found lying in relatively small squareish rooms, although they can also be found in the open. Most of the time one can find an uncursed, +0,+0 knife and an uncursed +0 animal skin on the altar, presumably the sacrifice of some beast. Trog altar vaults are also sometimes led up to by a long narrow corridor, with a spellbook at the end. Upon getting close (or entering LOS), the book bursts into a dangerous flame cloud. A dangerous example is a single moth of wrath locked in transparent walls, surrounded by weak monsters which berserk as you approach.
Another vault for Trog's altar lies in a room made of stone walls, with the altar near the entrance and a 3-by-3 "jail cell" made of stone walls and an iron grate lies further in, with a frightened wizard inside it. Upon nearing the altar, Trog ignites the frightened wizard from the inside, killing him. Trog then roars with satisfaction.
Fedhas' altars are often found tucked behind a barrier of various plants. These may need to be cleared to reach the altar, but there may be a path, similar to Crazy Yiuf's hut. The larger versions of Fedhas's "garden" usually have fruit scattered around, but often have an Oklob plant or two in the corner. Fedhas altars may just be out in the open, with four plants on the diagonal corners. Yet another, far more dangerous variation is a large desert of sand with the altar in the middle. However, with each turn after the player enters LOS, plants will begin to grow, some of which may become Oklob saplings, and even Oklob plants.
Xom altar vaults are undeniably the most noticeable. They consist of a large rectangular room filled with random wall tiles, water, etc., blocking easy access. Any ground that is exposed is a random color and likely trapped. Littered throughout the vault are many items and monsters, usually rats or packs of gnolls. What makes these vaults dangerous is that the gnoll packs are often overwhelming to young adventurers, and may spawn with chaos branded spears and clubs.
Elyvilon's altars are often found in the Cross Vaults (see above). They may also appear out in the open, guarded by butterflies and friendly fish, decorated with symmetrical plants and lakes.
The Shining One's vaults are usually found in the Cross Vaults (see above) or in square stone rooms guarded by a walled in angel.
Zin's altar generation patterns are mostly nondescript, although sometimes they generate in a tiny, closed, metal-walled room with an angel locked behind a glass wall.
Vehumet's altars are often located out in the open, but often have various clouds (usually flaming or freezing) bursting around them. Reaching these can be suicidal for the unprepared. Vehumet's altars may also spawn beside a statue in a rectangular room of green crystal.
Sif Muna's altars vaults resemble temples, with a long rectangular room with blue floor and granite statues lining it at appropriate intervals. At the end of the long room is a closed door, behind which is a 1-tile room with the altar.
Jiyva rarely has major vaults, but its dungeon altars are frequently guarded by four jellies.
Yredelemnul's vault consists of an altar inside a room made up of translucent rocks. This room has no entrances, however. Nearby is a "house" made of stone and a door, with a neutral human living inside. Killing the human makes Yredelemnul happy, as well as removes one of the translucent rock tiles, allowing you access to the altar.