Spikes are a basic yet deadly trap commonly seen in the Mines and the Jungle, but can also appear in the Ice Caves underneath Idols.
They are a stationary hazard, and will kill anything that free-falls onto them from above. It is possible to survive a Spike fall if a player manages to get more than 99 Health. However the player must strafe quickly away from the Spikes after taking the damage as the Spikes will do more damage as the player slides down on them. Here is proof.
Spikes in Spelunky are less dangerous than video games have taught players to believe. Only the tips of the Spikes are deadly, so touching them from the side and walking through them is harmless.
DisarmingSpikes can be destroyed by removing the block below them, with either a mattock or a bomb.
Spikes are a dangerous environmental hazard that can be found in all areas of the caves, and can be mounted on the ceiling in ceiling traps.
They are perfectly safe to walk through from the side, but landing on spikes from above will result in instant death. The only way to safely drop down on to spikes is via use of a rope or the cape, parachute, or by performing a flip-hang directly into the spikes.
Spikes are a reason not to blindly drop into a pit, no matter how close you may be to the goal.
Area 2 Spikes
A common and deadly feature of The Jungle are the Spike pits, which are inhabited by Monkeys and have an overgrowth of vines. You must jump your way across the vines, all the while, avoiding the wrath of several Monkeys who are hell-bent on relieving you of your inventory or worse, stunning you above the pit of spikes, causing you to fall to your death. An easy way to deal with these monkeys is to get their attention, then retreat back to solid ground when they attach and whip them. They can also fall to their deaths if you stay high on the vines while they jump to you.
It is important to note that while the spikes themselves are not treated as a destructible objects in the environment (eg: rock walls, grey blocks), if you destroy the floor that they rest on (whether using bombs or a mattock), the spikes will usually disappear. To deal with spike pits in Area 2, it is also possible to destroy the wall on either side of the pit, allowing you to simply walk into and through the spikes. This can cost two bombs though, and enemies on the ground can get you more easily. Using a cape or jetpack to float or fly across the spikes produces adequate results, but monkeys can still stun you.
Area 3 Spikes
Spikes in The Ice Caves come in the form of Golden Idols sitting on thin ice. Retrieving this Idol is fairly easy if you have a cape or a jetpack, as you could simply throw a rope up to the platform and float back to the ground (if there is any) or fly to the nearest ground area without a second thought. If you don't have either of those, then there are two ways that come to mind. (Check for UFOs before attempting taking the Idol, as they could ruin any of these "perfect" plans.)
The Rope Method
This method is riskier than the bomb method.
- Make sure you have a rope in your inventory. You're going to need one. (Hence the name.)
- Throw a rope up to the platform, and then climb up it. Note: Do not skip this step (if you've found higher ground you can get to it from), you're going to need the rope later.
- Grab the Idol - Do not loiter!
- Jump off of the platform as fast as you can.
- Grab the rope as you're falling
The Bomb Method
If you've never taken the Idol before, this is method is a bit safer than the rope method if done correctly. (Although the chances of it working are slim due to the enviornment of Area 3.)
- Make sure you have either really, really, really amazing aim and enough luck to win you the jackpot in Mega Millions ($15 million as of 3/27/15) and two bombs or two bombs and a rope in your inventory.
- Throw a rope up to the platform. Do not climb up.
- Bomb the spikes, and climb up the rope so that you don't die doing it.
- Bomb the platform (unless your bombs blew clear through the floor, in which case you'll need to check for platforms underneath)* and climb back down the rope so that you don't die doing it.
- Your Idol should be waiting for you on the ground*.
- If there aren't any platforms in sight (or, if you see The Abyss), then revert to the rope method.