The Mines is the first area of the caves in Spelunky, and is accessed from the main gateway in the lobby.
Upon entering the Start door for the first time, the Spelunker will enter the tutorial area and after successfully completing this level will enter a newly generated mines level.
The Mines normally consists of narrow passageways through rocky terrain. Treasure will be found in the walls if the walls are destroyed, with either bombs or a mattock. The Mines contain many ladders and man-made structures with treasure chests inside. There are some pushable blocks and many spider webs.
- The Shopkeeper will attack you if you hurt him or try to steal something from him.
- You can avoid getting hit by Monsters that come out of Monster Pots by attacking them with the Whip or other melee weapons instead of throwing Pots away from you.
Altars appear on certain levels of every area. You can sacrifice dead or knocked out creatures by dropping them onto the Altar. Depending on your sacrifice, she may or may not give you a gift, which consist of random items, the Kapala, and lives. If you destroy the Altar, she will be displeased with you and spawn a group of spiders on you, even if the destruction was by another creature. If you destroy two, she will attach a heavy ball on a chain to you, and three or more will make the entire level dark and the ghost will appear immediately.
A Golden Idol may appear randomly on any of the levels in the game, except for the last. Trying to pick up the idol will cause the boulder trap to trigger, which can easily be avoided by climbing a pre-placed rope or by jumping to two or more squares above the place where the idol was.
There will be a large snake pit generated in the level, and the pit will be full of snakes and treasure. You should bring rope before hopping in. Sometimes a damsel may generate in one of the cubbyholes lining the pit.
- The quote "I hear snakes, I hate snakes!" is a reference to a quote in Indiana Jones.