A monster spell is a category of spells that only spell-casting monsters can make use of. Some are unique to this category, while others share properties with other magical items or spells available to the player.

Monsters can only cast spells if they are not cancelled and at least level one, and can only cast once every (10 - (monster's level)) turns to a minimum of two turns[1]; they will attempt to cast spells if these conditions are not met, producing a "curse" message[2]. Even with these conditions satisfied, there is a 2 in (monster's level) chance of the spell failing (with five times that chance if the monster is confused)[3].


Message Meaning
Foo points at you, then curses. The monster attempted to cast a spell before they were able to do so.
Foo points all around, then curses.
Foo points and curses in your general direction. As above, but the monster cannot see you.
Foo points and curses at your displaced image. As above, but you are displaced.
You hear a mumbled curse. As above, but you cannot see the monster.
The air crackles around foo. The monster cast a spell when able to do so, but the spell failed.
Foo casts a spell! The monster successfully cast a spell.
Foo casts a spell at you!
Foo casts a spell at a spot near you! As above, but the monster cannot see you.
Foo casts a spell at your displaced image! As above, but you are displaced.


There are three different categories of spells that monsters can cast. These are Ray-type spells, Mage spells, and Clerical spells. In the table below, Min. base level refers to the minimum base level required for the monster to be able to cast that spell. There is also a spell usable only by the Wizard of Yendor, Double Trouble. No creature is able to cast spells in more than one category.

Mage Spells Edit

Spell Min. base level Monsters
Psi bolt 1
Cure self 2 kobold shaman
Haste self 3 barrow wight, orc shaman, gnomish wizard
Stun 4
Disappear 5 guide, apprentice
Drain strength 7
Destroy armor 9 golden naga, any lich
Curse items 11

golden naga, lich, nalfeshnee

Create Pool(SLASH'EM) 13
Call Undead(SLASH'EM) 10


Aggravate 14 demilich, Ixoth, Dark One
Summon nasties 16 ki-rin, titan, master lich, Archon, Minion of Huhetotl, Thoth Amon, Chromatic Dragon, Nalzok, Neferet the Green
Touch of death 21 arch-lich, Wizard of Yendor, Orcus, Dispater, Demogorgon
Double Trouble unique

Wizard of Yendor

Clerical Spells Edit

Spell Min. base level Monsters
Open wounds 1
Cure self 2
Confuse (monster spell) 3
Paralyze (monster spell) 5 abbot, acolyte
Blind (monster spell) 6
Summon insects 9
Curse items 10
Lightning 12 aligned priest
Fire pillar 13
Geyser 14 high priest, Grand Master, Master Kaen, Arch Priest

Ray-type spells Edit

Ray-type spells come in three varieties[4] (though only two are in use). They can be cast from afar, and when used this way, act the same as wands or breath weapons. When cast from an adjoining square, they act as melee attacks and cannot be reflected, but the appropriate resistance will still nullify them.

  • Three creatures use magic missile: Angels, Yeenoghu and the Oracle (the Oracle's version is passive and will only occur in response to a melee attack). Magic resistance is proof against this attack. The message is, "You are hit by a shower of missiles!" "The missiles bounce off!" if you have magic resistance.
  • Asmodeus, and no one else, has a cold attack. "You are covered in frost" when hit by this attack. Cold resistance nullifies it.
  • The source code also supports a fire attack. "You are enveloped in flames" when hit by this attack, and fire resistance nullifies it. No monster has this attack.

See alsoEdit


  1. mcastu.c, line 214
  2. mcastu.c, line 208
  3. mcastu.c, line 232
  4. mcastu.c, line 270
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