Monster spell spoiler

Compiled for NetHack 3.4.2 by David Corbett
Last updated for 3.4.3 on 13 February, 2004.

This spoiler details the spells cast by monsters, and minion summoning.


Casting magical or clerical spells

The type of spell cast depends on the circumstance.

A number from 0 to ML-1 is selected, where ML is the monster's level.
A spell is chosen according to the number picked: Magical spells, Clerical spells. Directed spells are marked with (!).

The following spells will not be used:

The spell always fails if the monster is cancelled.
When a monster successfully casts a magical or clerical spell, it is prevented from casting spells for 10-ML or 2 turns, whichever is larger. Any spell attempted by the monster in this time will fail.
The spell is fumbled (has no effect) if d(10*ML) <= 20 (100 if confused).
"The air crackles around <monster>."

Messages for failed spells:

"<monster> points all around, then curses." (undirected spell)
"<monster> points at you, then curses." (directed spell)
"<monster> points and curses in your general direction." (invisible)
"<monster> points and curses at your displaced image." (displaced)
"You hear a mumbled curse." (monster is unseen by you)

Messages for misdirected spells:

"<monster> casts a spell at thin air!" (directed spell cast at the wrong place)
"<monster> casts a spell at empty water!" (if the monster aimed over water)
"<monster> casts a spell at a spot near you!" (invisible)
"<monster> casts a spell at your displaced image!" (displaced)
"Something" if you can't see the monster.

Note on monster levels:

The base level is the normal level of the monster when generated. The actual level may be higher or lower depending on the dungeon level and your experience level. The Wizard of Yendor gains one level each time he is generated, up to a mximum of 49.

Monsters can normally reach a maximum level of 3/2 times their base level but by drinking potions of gain level or eating wraith corpses, a monster may reach level 49. Demon lords and princes may reach level 50.

Magical spells

Number Magical spell
0, 23+ (!)Psi Bolt
1Cure Self
2Haste Self
3 (!)Stun
6-7 (!)Drain Strength
8-9 (!)Destroy Armor
10-12 (!)Curse Items
15-17Summon Nasties
20-22 (!)Touch of Death

Directed spells are marked with (!).

The following monsters can cast magical spells:

Monster name Base level Monster name Base level Monster name Base level
kobold shaman 2 titan 16 Ixoth 15
orc shaman 3 master lich 17 Minion of Huhetotl 16
gnomish wizard 3 Archon 19 Thoth Amon 16
barrow wight 3 arch-lich 25 Chromatic Dragon 16
golden naga 10 Wizard of Yendor 30 Nalzok 16
nalfeshnee 11 Orcus 30 Neferet the Green 20
lich 11 Dispater 36 guide 5
demilich 14 Demogorgon 50 apprentice 5
ki-rin 16 Dark One 15

Spell effects:

Psi Bolt

Cure Self

Haste Self



Drain Strength

Destroy Armor

Curse Items


Summon Nasties


Touch of Death

NOTE: Death's touch attack is not magical and is unrelated.

Clerical spells

Number Clerical spell
0, 14+ (!)Open Wounds
1Cure Self
2-3 (!)Confusion
4-5 (!)Paralyze
6-7 (!)Blind
8Summon Insects
9-10 (!)Curse Items
11 (!)Lightning
12 (!)Pillar of Fire
13 (!)Geyser

Directed spells are marked with (!).

Clerical spells may be cast by:

Monster name Base level
aligned priest 12
high priest 25
Master Kaen 25
Arch Priest 25
Grand Master 25
abbot 5
acolyte 5

Spell effects:

Open Wounds

Cure Self




Summon Insects

Curse Items


Pillar of Fire


Other magic attacks:


Cast by Asmodeus (base level 49).

Normal attack: Distance attack:

Magic missiles:

Cast by Angels (base level 14), Yeenoghu (base level 25).

Normal attack: Distance attack:

There is a 2/3 chance a monster with a cold or magic missile magic attack will attack you from distance if in line with you.
They will not use such attacks if cancelled.

The Wizard of Yendor:

If you have killed the Wizard of Yendor, or have performed the invocation ritual, every 51 to 250 turns one of the following will happen with equal probability:
If on the Astral Plane one of the following will occur:

Minion summoning:

Demons (except balrogs, incubi and succubi) have a 1-in-13 chance of summoning a minion each turn, unless they are cancelled. All demons summoned will be of the same alignment as the summoner.
When spellcasters, including the Wizard of Yendor, summon minions with the Summon Nasties spell, they do so as demon princes, except that they may summon demons of any alignment. (+) There is a 25% chance that two will be summoned instead of one.

Half spell damage:

For several spells, having half spell damage reduces the spell's effects. Half spell damage is obtained by carrying one of the following artifacts: (*) If you have half spell damage, this number becomes (x+1)/2.


Dylan O'Donnell's spoilers
J. Ali Harlow's Monster Manual
Kate Nepveu's Demogorgon FAQ

Correction and clarifications provided by David Gale, Dylan O'Donnell, Seraphim.

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