Provided by: crawl_0.4.5-0ubuntu2_i386
crawl - play the roguelike game of crawl
crawl [-name <string>] [-race <letter>] [-class <letter>] [-pizza
<string>] [-plain] [-dir <path>] [-rc <file>] [-scores [N]] [-scorefile
Crawl is a fun game in the grand tradition of games like Rogue, Hack,
and Moria. Your objective is to travel deep into a subterranean cave
complex and retrieve the Orb of Zot, which is guarded by many horrible
and hideous creatures.
This file contains detailed instructions for playing Crawl. If you are
completely new to this kind of game, it may be worth your while to read
at least part (although it will probably confuse you somewhat),
otherwise you should probably just dive into the game and use the ’?’
command to give a list of keys to use.
set character name
-plain don’t use IBM extended characters (needed when playing in a
directory for crawl macro file
init file name
show highscore list [first N entries]
scorefile name. If used without -scores, converts the scorefile
to Crawl’s native format and writes it to stdout (useful to
convert logfiles from previous releases). If the filename is -,
reads the scorefile on stdin.
You have a number of different character races to choose from. This
affects several characteristics including: Your choice of classes; Your
initial attributes (strength etc); Occasional extra points added to
some abilities; The amount of hit points and magic you get as you
increase in level; Your initial equipment; Your rate of level
advancement; Your rate of skill advancement.
Humans are the most versatile race. Humans advance quickly in levels
and have equal abilities in all skills. Humans can also be of any
Elves have good intelligence and dexterity, but suffer a bit in
strength. They have slightly less hp and slightly more magic than
humans, and advance in experience a bit more slowly as well. They are
especially good at fighting with short and long swords, although not so
good at other weapons, and are adept at bows and darts. Their quickness
makes them good at dodging, and they possess natural elven stealth as
well. Their nature also gives them proficiency with magic, especially
enchantments, but they are poor at using necromancy.
There are also a number of related types of elves:
High elves are a powerful elven race who advance in levels very slowly
- requiring half again as much experience as do humans. They are
similar to common elves in most respects, but their strengths and
weaknesses tend to be greater.
Grey elves also advance slowly, but more quickly than high elves. They
are generally poor at fighting - although they are still good at short
and long swords and bows - but are excellent at all forms of magic
except for necromancy.
Deep elves are poor at fighting but excellent at bows, crossbows,
darts, and especially magic. They are the only elven subtype who are
skilled at using necromancy and earth magic, and are particularly good
at enchantment magic. They advance in levels at the same rate as grey
elves. Deep elves are not physically robust, but have great reserves of
Sludge elves are a bit like common elves, but are not quite as good at
most things while being better at necromancy and some elemental magics.
They advance in level slightly faster, though.
Elven armour is unusually light, and does not affect the dodging or
stealth of its wearer to the extent that other armours do. Elven cloaks
and boots are particularly useful to those who wish to be stealthy, and
elven bows are particularly effective in conjunction with elven arrows.
Elves are especially dangerous when using elven weapons.
All elves are good at using air elemental magic, and are okay at fire
and ice magic. They are also poor at earth magic with the exceptions of
deep and sludge elves, who can use earth magic well.
Hill dwarves are extremely robust but are poor at using magic. They are
excellent at hand combat, especially favouring axes, and are good at
using armour and shields, but are poor at missile combat or at using
polearms (which are usually too big for them to wield comfortably). The
only forms of magic which they can use with any aptitude are earth,
fire and conjurations, but they are worse than humans at the
conjurations skill. They advance in levels at a similar rate to common
Mountain dwarves are almost as robust as hill dwarves and have similar
aptitudes, but are slightly better at the things that hill dwarves
don’t do very well, and slightly worse at the things that hill dwarves
are good at. They advance in levels at a rate between that of elves
Dwarven weapons and armours are very durable, and do not rust or
corrode easily. Dwarves are especially effective when using dwarven
Halflings are very small and, with deep elves and kobolds, are the
least robust of any character race. Although fair to poor at most
fighting skills, they can use short blades well and are good at all
forms of missile combat. They are also very stealthy and good at
dodging and stabbing, but are poor at most types of magic (except
enchantments and translocations). They advance in levels as rapidly as
humans. Halflings cannot wield large weapons.
Hill orcs are orcs from the upper world who, jealous of the riches
which their cousins, the cave orcs, possess below the ground, descend
in search of plunder and adventure. They are as robust as the hill
dwarves, but have very low reserves of magical energy. Their forte is
fighting, and they are skilled at using most hand weapons (with the
exception of short blades, at which they are only fair, and missile
weapons, at which they are not particularly good). They are poor at
using most types of magic with the exception of conjurations and
necromancy. They advance as quickly as humans.
Orcish bows/crossbows are particularly effective in combination with
orcish arrows/bolts. Orcs are especially good at using orcish weapons.
Orcs are poor at using air elemental magic, but okay at other kinds
(and good at earth magic).
Kobolds are small, ugly creatures with few redeeming features. They
have poor abilities and have similar aptitudes to halflings, without
the excellent agility. However, they are slightly better than halflings
at using some types of magic, particularly summonings and necromancy.
They often live as scavengers, surviving on carrion, but are
carnivorous and can only eat meat. They advance in levels as quickly
Mummies are undead creatures who travel into the depths in search of
revenge, redemption, or just because they want to. Being undead, they
are immune to poisons and negative energy, have little warmth left to
be affected by cold, and are not susceptible to reductions in their
physical or mental abilities. However, their dessicated bodies are
highly flammable. They also do not need to eat or drink, and in any
case are unable to.
Mummies progress very slowly in level (as slow as High Elves) and in
all skills except fighting, spellcasting and necromancy. As they
increase in level they become increasingly in touch with the powers of
death, but cannot use some types of necromancy which only affect living
creatures (if they are unable to use a spell, they will usually be
unable to memorise it). The side effects of necromantic magic tend to
be relatively harmless to mummies.
Naga are a race of hybrids; humanoid from the waist up, with a large
snake tail instead of legs. They are reasonably good at most things and
advance in experience levels at a decent rate. They are naturally
immune to poisons, can see invisible creatures, and have tough skin,
but their tails are relatively slow and cannot move them around as
quickly as can other creatures’ legs (this only affects their movement
rate; all other actions are at normal speed). Their body shape also
prevents them from gaining full protection from most armour. Every now
and then, a naga can spit poison; the range, accuracy and damage of
this poison increases with the naga’s experience level.
Gnomes are an underground-dwelling race of creatures, related to the
dwarves but even more closely in touch with the earth. They are quite
small, and share many of their characteristics with halflings (except
for the great agility), although they advance slightly more slowly in
experience levels. They are okay at most skills, but excellent at earth
elemental magic and very poor at air magic. Occasionally they can use
their empathy with the earth to sense their surroundings; this ability
increases in power as they gain experience levels.
Ogres are huge, chunky creatures related to orcs. They have great
physical strength, but are bad at almost everything except fighting.
Because of their large size they can only wear loose robes, cloaks and
animal skins. They learn quite slowly. Although ogres can eat almost
anything, their size means that they need to.
Trolls are like ogres, but even nastier. They can rip creatures apart
with their claws, and regenerate very quickly from even the most
terrible wounds. They learn very slowly indeed - even more slowly than
high elves - and need a great amount of food to survive.
Ogre-mages are a separate race of ogres who are unique among the
beefier races in their ability to use magic, especially enchantments.
Although slighter than their common ogre relatives they nevertheless
have great strength and can survive a lot of punishment. They advance
in level as slowly as high elves.
Draconians are a race of human-dragon hybrids; humanoid in form and
approximately human-sized, with wings, tails and scaly skins.
Draconians start out in an immature form with brown scales, but as they
grow in power they take on a variety of colours. Some types of
draconians have breath weapons. Because of their decidedly non-human
shapes, draconians cannot wear most armours. Draconians advance very
slowly in level, but are reasonably good at most skills (except missile
weapons and armour).
Centaurs are another race of hybrid creatures: horses with a human
torso. Centaurs can move very quickly on their four legs, and are
excellent with bows and other missile weapons; they are also reasonable
at the Fighting skill while being slow learners at specific weapon
skills. They advance quite slowly in experience level and are rather
sub-average at using magic. Due to their large bulk, they need a little
extra food to survive.
Demigods are mortals (humans, orcs or elves, for example) with some
divine ancestry, however distant; they can be created by a number of
processes including magical experiments and the time-honoured practice
of interplanar miscegenation. Demigods look more or less like members
of their mortal part’s race, but have excellent abilities (strength,
int, dex) and are extremely robust; they also have great supplies of
magical energy. On the downside they advance very slowly in experience,
gain skills slightly less quickly than humans, and cannot worship the
various Gods and Powers available to the other races.
Spriggans are small magical creatures distantly related to elves. They
are poor fighters with anything other than a dagger or a shortsword,
have little physical resilience, and are terrible at destructive magic
- conjurations, summonings, necromancy and elemental spells. On the
other hand, they are excellent at other forms of magic and are very
good at moving silently and quickly. So great is their speed that a
spriggan can keep pace with a centaur.
Minotaurs are yet another hybrid - a human body with a bovine head.
Minotaurs are extremely good at all forms of physical combat, but are
awful at using any type of magic. They can wear all armour except for
Demonspawn are horrible half-mortal, half-infernal creatures - the flip
side of the Demigods. Demonspawn can be created in any number of ways -
magical experiments, breeding, unholy pacts, etc. Although many
demonspawn may be indistinguishable from those of pure mortal stock,
they often grow horns, scales or other unusual features. Powerful
members of this class of beings also develop a range of unholy
abilities, which are listed as mutations (and can sometimes be
activated with the ’a’ command).
Demonspawn advance very slowly in experience and learn most skills at
about the same rate as do Demigods. However, they are a little better
at fighting and much better at conjurations, summonings, necromancy and
Ghouls are horrible undead creatures, slowly rotting away. Although
ghouls can sleep in their graves for years on end, when they rise to
walk among the living they must eat flesh to survive. Raw flesh is
preferred, especially rotting or tainted meat, and ghouls gain strength
from consuming it.
As undead, Ghouls are naturally immune to poison, cold and negative
energy. They aren’t very good at doing most things, although they make
decent fighters and can use ice and earth magic without too many
Kenku are an ancient and feared race of bird-people with a legendary
propensity for violence. They are experts at all forms of fighting,
including the magical arts of combat (conjurations, summonings and, to
a lesser extent, necromancy). However, their light avian bodies cannot
sustain a great deal of injury.
Basically humanoid with bird-like heads and clawed feet, the kenku can
wear all types of armour except helmets and boots. Despite their lack
of wings, powerful kenku can fly and very powerful members of this race
can stay in the air permanently. They are good at air and fire
elemental magic, but poor at ice and earth magic. Kenku do not
appreciate any form of servitude, and so are poor at using invocations.
Some species have special abilities which can be accessed by the ’a’
abilities menu. Some also have physical characteristics which allow
them to make extra attacks using the Unarmed Combat skill.
In your quest, you play as one of a number of different types of
characters. Although each has its own strengths and weaknesses, some
are definitely easier than others, at least to begin with. The best
classes for a beginner are probably Gladiators, fighters and
Berserkers; if you really want to play a magician, try a Conjurer. Each
class starts out with a different set of skills and items, but from
there you can shape them as you will.
Fighters start with a decent weapon, a suit of armour and a shield.
They have a good general grounding in the arts of fighting.
Priests serve either Zin, the ancient and revered God of Law, or the
rather less pleasant Death-God Yredelemnul. Although priests enter the
dungeon with a mace (as well as a priestly robe and a few healing
potions), this is purely the result of an archaic tradition the reason
for which has been lost in the mists of time; Priests are not in any
way restricted in their choice of weapon skills.
The Thief is one of the trickiest classes to play. Thieves start out
with a large variety of useful skills, and need to use all of them to
survive. Thieves start with a short sword, some throwing darts, and
The magician is the best at using magic. Magicians start with a dagger,
a robe, and a book of spells which should see them through the first
several levels. There are various kinds of magicians:
The Wizard is a magician who does not specialise in any area of magic.
Wizards start with a variety of magical skills and the magic dart spell
The Conjurer specialises in the violent and destructive magic of
conjuration spells. Like the Wizard, the Conjurer starts with the magic
The Enchanter specialises in the more subtle area of enchantment magic.
Although not as directly powerful as conjurations, high-level
enchantments offer a wide range of very handy effects. As there are no
useful enchantment spells of the first level, the Enchanter begins with
a random attack spell and has a magic wand to help survive until he or
she can start learning to use the craft properly, and is equipped with
lightly enchanted weapons and armour.
The Summoner specialises in calling creatures from this and other
worlds to give assistance. Although they can at first summon only very
wimpy creatures, the more advanced summoning spells allow summoners to
call on such powers as elementals and demons.
The Necromancer is a magician who specialises in the less pleasant side
of magic. Necromantic spells are a varied bunch, but many involve some
degree of risk or harm to the caster.
Elementalists are magicians who specialise in one of the four types of
Venom mages specialise in poison magic, which is extremely useful in
the shallower levels of the dungeon where few creatures are immune to
it. Poison magic is especially effective when used against insects.
Transmuters specialise in transmigrations, and can cause strange
changes in themselves and others.
Warpers specialise in translocations, and are experts in travelling
long distances and positioning themselves precisely.
The Paladin is a servant of the Shining One, and has many of the
abilities of the Fighter and the Priest. He or she enters the dungeon
with a sword, a shield, a robe, and a healing potion.
The Gladiator is well trained in the art of fighting but is not so good
at other things. In fact, Gladiators are pretty terrible at anything
except bashing monsters with heavy things. They start with a nasty
weapon, a small shield, and armour.
The Berserker is a hardy warrior who fights well with many weapons.
Berserkers worship Trog the Wrathful, from whom they get the power to
go berserk (as well as a number of other powers should they prove
worthy) but who forbids the use of spell magic. They enter the dungeon
with an axe, some spears, and a set of leather armour.
The Ranger is a fighter who specialises in missile weapons. A Ranger
starts with a bow and some arrows, as well as a hunting knife and a set
An Assassin is a thief who is especially good at killing. Assassins are
like thieves in most respects, but begin more skilled at hand combat.
The Crusader is a decent fighter who also has some aptitude in the
magical arts. Crusaders start out with a book of martial spells.
The Death Knight is a fighter who aligns him or herself with the powers
of death. There are two types of Death Knights: those who worship and
draw their abilities from the Demon-God Yredelemnul, and those who
study the fearsome arts of necromancy.
The Chaos knight is a fighter who chooses to serve one of the fearsome
and unpredictable Gods of Chaos. He or she has two choices: Xom or
Makhleb. Xom is a very unpredictable (and possibly psychotic) creature
who rewards or punishes according to whim. Makhleb the Destroyer is a
more purposeful God, who appreciates destruction and offers a variety
of very violent powers to the faithful.
The Healer is a priest of Elyvilon. Healers begin with minor healing
powers, but can gain far greater abilities in the long run.
The Reaver is a warrior who has some aptitude with the magic of
The stalker is an assassin who has some aptitude in the use of poison
The Monk is a type of fighter specialising in unarmed combat. Monks
start with very little equipment, but can survive without the weighty
weapons and spellbooks needed by other classes.
When you kill monsters, you gain experience points (xp) (you also
receive one half experience for monsters killed by friendly creatures).
When you get enough xp, you gain an experience level, making your
character more powerful. As they gain levels, characters gain more hit
points, magic points, and spell levels.
Your character has a number of skills which affect his or her ability
to perform certain tasks. You can see your character’s skills by
pressing the ’m’ key; the higher the skill level of a skill, the better
you are at it. Every time your character gains experience points, those
points become available to increase skills. You convert experience
points into skill levels by practising the skill in question (eg fight
with a certain type of weapon, cast a certain type of spell, or walk
around wearing light armour to practise stealth). The amount of
unassigned experience points is shown on the skills screen, and the
number in blue next to each skill counts down from 9 to 0 as you get
closer to increasing that skill.
You can elect not to practise a particular skill by selecting it in the
skill screen (making it turn dark grey). This means that you will be
less likely to increase that skill when you practise it (and will also
not spend as many experience points on it).
The race you have chosen for your character has a significant effect on
your rate of advancement in each skill. Some races are very good at
some skills and poor at others. If your character’s race is good at a
skill, they will require less experience and take less time to advance
in it; being bad at a skill has the opposite result.
There are a few different types of skills:
Fighting is the basic skill used in hand-to-hand combat, and applies no
matter which weapon your character is wielding (if any). It is also the
skill which determines the number of hit points your character gets as
they increase in level (note that this is calculated so that you don’t
get a long run advantage by starting out with a high fighting skill).
In addition, there are a number of weapon skills which affect your
ability to fight with specific weapons. If you are already good at a
weapon, say a long sword, and you practise for a while with similar
weapon such as a short sword, your practise will be speeded up (and
will require less experience) until both skills are equal.
Similar types of weapons include:
- All sword skills
- Maces & flails and Axes
- Polearms and Axes
- Staves and Polearms
Being good at a specific weapon improves the speed with which you can
use it by about 10% every two skill levels. Although lighter weapons
are easier to use initially, as they strike quickly and accurately,
heavier weapons increase in damage potential very quickly as you
improve your skill with them.
Unarmed Combat is a special fighting skill. It allows your character to
make a powerful attack when unarmed and also to make special secondary
attacks (and increases the power of those attacks for characters who
get them anyway). You can practise Unarmed Combat by attacking empty-
handed, and it is also exercised when you make a secondary attack (a
kick, punch etc). Unarmed combat is particularly difficult to use in
combination with heavy armour, and characters wearing a shield or
wielding a two-handed weapon other than a staff lose the powerful punch
Throwing is the basic skill used when throwing things, and there are a
number of individual weapon skills for missile weapons as well.
Spellcasting is the basic skill for magic use, and affects your
reserves of magical energy in the same way that Fighting affects your
hit points. Every time you increase your spellcasting skill you gain
some magic points and spell levels. Spellcasting is a very difficult
skill to learn, and requires a large amount of practice and experience.
Only those characters with at least one magic skill at level one or
above can learn magical spells. If your character has no magic skills,
he or she can learn the basic principles of the hermetic arts by
reading and reciting the spells inscribed on magical scrolls (this
stops being useful once you reach level one in Spellcasting).
There are also individual skills for each different type of magic; the
higher the skill, the more powerful the spell. Multidisciplinary spells
use an average of the two or three skills.
Elemental magic is a special case here. When you practise an elemental
magic skill (fire, ice, air or earth magic) you will improve much less
quickly than normal if you already have one or more elemental magic
skills higher than the one you are practising. This is especially true
if those skills are ’opposed’ to the one you’re practising: fire and
ice are mutually opposed, as are earth and air. Say you have level 2
fire magic, level 4 ice magic, and level 1 air magic. Practising ice
magic won’t be a problem. Practising air magic will be a bit slow, as
you have other elemental skills at higher levels. Practising fire magic
will be very slow, as you have a higher level in ice magic. Right?
This includes a variety of skills:
Armour: Having a high armour skill means that you are used to wearing
heavy armour, so you gain more AC from it and lose less evasion while
Dodging: When you are wearing light armour, a high dodging skill
increases your evasion score.
Stealth: Helps you avoid being noticed. Try not to wear heavy armour
(or be encumbered) if you want to be stealthy.
Stabbing: Lets you make a very powerful first strike against a
sleeping/resting monster who hasn’t noticed you yet. This is most
effective with a dagger, slightly less effective with a short sword,
and less useful (although by no means of negligible effect) with any
Shields: affects the amount of protection you gain by using a shield.
Traps & doors: affects your ability to notice hidden traps and doors
and to disarm traps when you find them. With this skill at a high level
you will often find hidden things without actively looking for them.
Invocations: an easy-to-learn skill which affects your ability to call
on your God for aid. Those skilled at invoking have reduced fail rates
and produce more powerful effects. The Invocations skill affects your
supply of magic in a similar way to the Spellcasting skill and to a
greater extent, but the two are not cumulative - whichever gives the
greater increase is used. Some Gods (such as Trog) do not require
followers to learn this skill.
If your character does not have a particular skill, they can gain it by
practising as above.
Your character is further defined by his or her abilities, which
initially vary according to class and species.
Strength affects the amount of damage you do in combat, as well as how
much stuff you can carry.
Intelligence affects how well you can cast spells as well as your
ability to use some magical items.
Dexterity affects your accuracy in combat, your general effectiveness
with missile weapons, and your ability to dodge attacks aimed at you.
Although your dexterity does not affect your evasion score (Ev)
directly, any calculation involving your Ev score also takes account of
AC: This stands for Armour Class. When you something injures you, your
AC reduces the amount of damage you suffer. The number next to your AC
is a measure of how good your shield (if any) is at blocking attacks.
EV: This is your evasion score. It helps you to avoid being hit by
Gold: This is how much money you’re carrying. Money adds to your final
score, and can be used to purchase items in shops.
Magic Resistance affects your ability to resist the effects of
enchantments and similar magic directed at you. Although your magic
resistance increases with your level to an extent determined by your
character’s race, the creatures you will meet deeper in the dungeon are
better at casting spells and are more likely to be able to affect you.
MR is an internal variable, so you can’t see what yours is.
Sometimes characters will be able to use special abilities, for example
the Naga’s ability to spit poison or the magical power to turn
invisible granted by a ring. These are accessed through the ’a’
There are a number of Gods, Demons and other assorted Powers who will
accept your character’s worship, and sometimes give out favours in
exchange. You can use the ’^’ command to check the requirements of
whoever it is that you worship, and if you find religion to be an
inconvenience you can always renounce your faith (use the ’a’ command -
but some Gods resent being scorned!).
The ’p’ command lets you pray to your God. Anything you do while
praying, you do in your God’s name - this is how you dedicate your
kills or corpse- sacrifices (’D’ command) to your God, for example.
Praying also gives you a sense of what your God thinks of you, and can
be used to sacrifice things at altars.
To use any powers which your God deems you fit for, access the
abilities menu with the ’a’ command; God-given abilities are listed as
Some classes start out religious; others have to pray at an altar to
dedicate themselves to a life of servitude. There are altars scattered
all over the dungeon, and your character has heard rumours of a special
temple somewhere near the surface.
Although it would doubtless be a nice thing if you could remain
genetically pure, there are too many toxic wastes and mutagenic
radiations in the Dungeon for that to be possible. If your character is
so affected by these that he or she undergoes physiological change, you
can use the ’A’ command to see how much of a freak they’ve become and
the ’a’ command to activate any mutations which can be controlled.
You can also become mutated by overusing certain powerful enchantments,
particularly Haste (not the kind you get from being berserk) and
Invisibility, as your system absorbs too much magical energy - but you
would have to spend almost all of your time hasted or invisible to be
affected. However, some powerful items radiate dangerous levels of
magical energy. More often than not, the mutations caused by magical
radiations express harmfully.
Any demonic powers your character may have are listed in red; these are
permanent and can never be removed. If one of your powers has been
augmented by a mutation, it is displayed in a lighter red colour.
EXPLORING THE DUNGEON
You can make your character walk around with the numeric keypad (turn
numlock off) or the "Rogue" keys (hjklbnyu). If this is too slow, you
can make your character walk repeatedly by typing shift and a
direction. They will walk in that direction until any of a number of
things happen: a hostile monster is visible on the screen, a message is
sent to the message window for any reason, you type a key, or you are
about to step on anything other than normal floor or an undiscovered
trap and it is not your first move of the long walk. Note that this is
functionally equivalent to just pressing the direction key several
If you press shift and ’5’ on the numeric keypad (or just the number
’5’ on the keyboard) you rest for 100 turns or until your hit points or
magic return to full, whichever is sooner. You can rest for just one
turn by pressing ’.’, delete, ’s’, or ’5’ on the keypad. Whenever you
are resting, you are assumed to be observing your surroundings, so you
have a chance of detecting any traps or secret doors adjacent to you.
The section of the viewing window which is coloured (with the ’@’
representing you at the centre) is what you can see around you. The
dark grey around it is the parts of the level which you have visited,
but cannot currently see. The ’x’ command lets you move the cursor
around to get a description of the various dungeon features, and typing
’?’ when the cursor is over a monster brings up a short description of
that monster (these are all rather sketchy; I’ll write better
descriptions when I have time). You can get a map of the whole level
(which shows where you’ve already been) by typing the ’X’ key. This
map specially colour-codes stairs and known traps, even if something is
on top of them.
You can make your way between levels by using staircases, which appear
as ’>’ (down) and ’<’ (up), by pressing the ’>’ or ’<’ keys. If you
ascend an up staircase on level one, you will leave the dungeon
forever; if you are carrying the magical Orb of Zot, you win the game
by doing this.
Occasionally you will find an archway; these lead to special places
like shops, magical labyrinths, and Hell. Depending on which type of
archway it is, you can enter it by typing ’<’ or ’>’.
Doors can be opened with the ’o’ command and closed with the ’c’
command. Pressing control plus a direction also opens doors. If there
is no closed door in the indicated space, you will attempt to attack
any monster which may be standing there (this is the only way to attack
a friendly creature hand-to- hand). If there is no creature there, you
will attempt to disarm any trap in the target square. If there is
apparently nothing there you will still attack it, just in case there’s
something invisible lurking around.
A variety of dangerous and irritating traps are hidden around the
dungeon. Traps look like normal floor until discovered (usually by
activating them). A discovered trap can be disarmed with the control-
direction commands, although not all traps can be affected in this way.
When you are in a shop, you are given a list of the shopkeeper’s stock
from which to choose, and a list of instructions. You can leave the
shop and even the level and come back later if you want. Unfortunately
the shopkeepers all have an enterprise bargaining agreement with the
dungeon teamsters union which prevents them using non-union labour to
obtain stock, so you can’t sell anything in a shop (but what shopkeeper
would trust a scummy adventurer like you, anyway?).
You goal is to locate the Orb of Zot, which is held somewhere deep
beneath the world’s surface. The Orb is an ancient and incredibly
powerful artefact, and the legends promise great things for anyone
brave enough to extract it from the fearsome Dungeon. Some believe it
will grant immortality or even godhood to the one who carries it into
the sunlight; many undead creatures seek it in the hope that it will
restore them to life. Good luck!
A full list of the commands available to you can be accessed by typing
’?’ (question mark). If you don’t like them, they can be changed by
the use of:
You can change the keys used to perform specific functions by editing
the macro.txt file (or creating a new one). The K: line indicates a
key, and the A: line assigns another key to that key’s function.
You can also redefine keys in-game with the ‘ key, and save them with
the ~ key.
(Thanks to Juho Snellman for this patch)
In the dungeons of Crawl there are many different kinds of normal and
magical artefacts to be found and used. Some of them are useful, some
are nasty, and some give you great power, but at a price. Some items
are unique; these have interesting properties which can make your life
rather bizarre for a while. They all fall into several classes of
items, each of which is used in a different way. Here is a general list
of what you might find in the course of your adventures:
These are rather important. You will find a variety of weapons in the
dungeon, ranging from small and quick daggers to huge, cumbersome
battleaxes and pole- arms. Each type of weapon does a differing amount
of damage, has a different chance of hitting its target, and takes a
different amount of time to swing. You should choose your weapons
carefully; trying to hit a bat with a greatsword is about as clever as
bashing a dragon with a club. For this reason it is wise to have a good
mixture of weapon skills. Skills affect damage, accuracy and speed.
Weapons can be enchanted; when they are identified, they have values
which tell you how much more effective they are than an unenchanted
version. The first number is the enchantment to-hit, which affects the
weapon’s accuracy, and the second is its damage enchantment; weapons
which are not enchanted are simply ’+0’. Some weapons also have special
magical effects which make them very effective in certain situations.
Some types of hand weapon (especially daggers, spears and hand axes)
are quite effective when thrown. You can wield weapons with the ’w’
command, which is a very quick action. If for some reason you want to
go bare-handed, type ’w’ followed by a hyphen (’-’). Note that weapons
are not the only class of item which you can wield.
The ’ key is a shortcut which automatically wields item a. If item a is
being wielded, it causes you to wield item b instead, if possible. Try
assigning the letter a to your primary weapon, and b to your bow or
something else you need to wield only sometimes. Note that this is just
a typing shortcut and is not functionally different to wielding these
If you would rather pick off monsters from a safe distance, you will
need ammunition for your sling or bow. Darts are effective when simply
thrown; other kinds of ammunition require you to wield an appropriate
device to inflict worthwhile damage. Ammunition has only one "plus"
value, which affects both accuracy and damage. If you have ammunition
suitable for what you are wielding, the ’f’ command will choose the
first lot in your inventory, or you can use the ’t’ command to throw
anything. If you are using the right kind of hand weapon, you will
"shoot" the ammunition, otherwise you "throw" it.
When throwing something, you are asked for a direction. You can either
enter one of the directions on your keypad, or type ’*’ and move the
cursor over your target if they are not in a direct line with you. When
the cursor is on them, press ’.’ (period) or delete to target them (you
can also target an empty space if you want). If you press ’>’ instead
of ’.’, the missile will stop at that space even if it misses, and if
the target space is water, it may hit anything which might be lurking
beneath the surface (which would otherwise be missed completely). If
you type ’.’ (or del) instead of a direction or ’*’, or if you target
yourself as described above, you throw whatever it is at yourself (this
can be useful when zapping some wands; see later). Also, if you type
’p’ instead of a direction or ’*’, you will target your previous target
(if still possible).
This is also rather important. When worn, most armour improves your
Armour Class, which decreases the amount of damage you take when
something injures you. Unfortunately the heavier types of armour also
hamper your movement, making it easier for monsters to hit you (ie
reducing your evasion score) and making it harder for you to hit
monsters. These effect can be mitigated by a high Armour skill. Wearing
heavy armour also increases your chances of miscasting spells, an
effect which is not reduced by your Armour skill.
A Shield normally affects neither your AC or your evasion, but it lets
you block some of the attacks aimed at you and absorbs some of the
damage you would otherwise receive from things like dragon breath and
lightning bolts. Wearing a shield (especially a large shield) makes
you less effective in hand combat.
Some magical armours have special powers. These powers are sometimes
automatic, affecting you whenever you wear the armour, and sometimes
must be activated with the ’a’ command.
You can wear armour with the ’W’ command, and take it off with the ’T’
This is extremely important. You can find many different kinds of food
in the dungeon. If you don’t eat when you get hungry, you will
eventually die of starvation. Fighting, carrying heavy loads, casting
spells, and using some magical items will make you hungry. When you are
starving you fight less effectively as well. You can eat food with the
Scrolls have many different magical spells enscribed on them, some good
and some bad. One of the most useful scrolls is the scroll of identify,
which will tell you the function of any item you have in your
inventory; save these up for the more powerful and inscrutable magic
items, like rings. You can read scrolls (and by doing so invoke their
magic) with the ’r’ command.
While scrolls tend to affect your equipment or your environment, most
potions affect your character in some way. The most common type is the
simple healing potion, which restores some hit points, but there are
many other varieties of potions to be found. Try to avoid drinking
poisonous potions! Potions can be quaffed (drunk) with the ’q’ command.
Sometimes you will be lucky enough to find a stick which contains
stored magical energies. Wands each have a certain amount of charges,
and a wand will cease to function when its charges run out. You must
identify a wand to find out how many uses it has left. Wands are aimed
in the same way as missile weapons, and you can invoke the power of a
wand by ’z’apping it.
Magical rings are among the most useful of the items you will find in
the dungeon, but can also be some of the most hazardous. They transfer
various magical abilities onto their wearer, but powerful rings like
rings of regeneration or invisibility make you hunger very quickly when
activated. You can put on rings with the ’P’ command, and remove them
by typing ’R’. You can wear up to two rings simultaneously, one on each
hand; which hand you put a ring on is immaterial to its function. Some
rings function automatically, while others require activation (the ’a’
Amulets are similar to rings, but have a different range of effects
(which tend to be more subtle). Amulets are worn around the neck, and
you can wear only one at a time.
There are a number of types of magical staves. Some enhance your
general spellcasting ability, while some greatly increase the power of
a certain class of spells (and possibly reduce your effectiveness with
others). Some are spell staves, and hold spells which you can cast
without having to memorise them first, and also without consuming food.
You must wield a staff like a weapon in order to gain from its power,
and magical staves are as effective as +0 quarterstaves in combat.
Spell staves can be Invoked with the ’I’ command while you are wielding
Books contain magical spells which your character may be able to learn.
You can read a book with the ’r’ command, which lets you access a
description of each spell, or memorise spells from it with the ’M’
command. Some books have other special effects, and some powerful
spellbooks have been known to punish the attentions of incompetent
If you manage to kill a monster delicately enough to avoid scattering
bits of it around the room, it may leave a corpse behind for you to
play with. Despite the fact that corpses are represented by the same
’%’ sign as food, you can’t eat them without first cutting them into
pieces with the ’D’ command, and being extremely hungry helps as well.
Even then, you should choose your homemade food with great care.
These are items which don’t fall into any other category. You can use
many of them by wielding and ’I’nvoking them. You can also use some
other special items (such as some weapons) by invoking them in this
You pick items up with the ’,’ (comma) command and drop them with the
’d’rop command. When you are given a prompt like "drop which item?" or
"pick up <x>?", if you type a number before either the letter of the
item, or ’y’ or ’n’ for yes or no, you will drop or get that quantity
of the item.
Typing ’i’ gives you an inventory of what you are carrying. When you
are given a prompt like "Throw [or wield, wear, etc] which item?", you
can type the letter of the item, or you can type ’?’ or ’*’ to get an
inventory list. ’?’ lists all appropriate items, while ’*’ lists all
items, appropriate or not. When the inventory screen is showing
"-more-", to show you that there is another page of items, you can type
the letter of the item you want instead of space or enter.
You can use the adjust command (the ’=’ key) to change the letters to
which your possessions are assigned. This command can be used to change
spell letters as well.
Some items can be stickycursed, in which case they weld themselves to
your body when you use them. Such items usually carry some kind of
disadvantage: a weapon or armour may be damaged or negatively
enchanted, while rings can have all manner of unpleasant effects on
you. If you are lucky, you might find magic which can rid you of cursed
Items like scrolls, potions and some other types each have a
characteristic, like a label or a colour, which will let you tell them
apart on the basis of their function. However, these characteristics
change between each game, so while in one game every potion of healing
may be yellow, in another game they might all be purple and bubbly.
Once you have discovered the function of such an item, you will
remember it for the rest of the current game. You can access your item
discoveries with the ’´ key.
A very useful command is the ’V’ key, which gives you a description of
what an item does. This is particularly useful when comparing different
types of weapons, but don’t expect too much information from examining
Magical spells are a very important part of surviving in the dungeon.
Every character class can make use of magical spells, although those
who enter the dungeon without magical skills must practise by reading
scrolls before they can attempt spellcasting.
Spells are stored in books, which you will occasionally find in the
dungeon. Each spell has a Level, which denotes the amount of skill
required to use it as well as indicating how powerful it may be. You
can only memorise a certain number of levels of spells; type ’M’ to
find out how many. When you gain experience levels, you can memorise
more, and you will need to save up for several levels to memorise the
more powerful spells. When you cast a spell, you temporarily expend
some of your magical energy as well as becoming hungrier (although more
powerful spellcasters hunger less quickly from using magic).
High level spells are difficult to cast, and you may miscast them every
once in a while (resulting in a waste of magic and possibly dangerous
side- effects). Your chance of failing to cast a spell properly depends
on your your skills, your intelligence, the level of the spell and
whether you are wearing heavy armour. Failing to cast a spell exercises
your spell skills, but not by as much as casting it successfully.
Many of the more powerful spells carry disadvantages or risks; you
should read the spell description (obtained by reading the spellbook in
which you found the spell) before casting anything.
Some spells are directional, and require you to enter a direction in
the same way as you would when shooting a missile or zapping a wand.
Some spells require the proper materials to be present before they will
work; for example, to animate a skeleton with the necromantic spell,
you must stand on a space where a skeleton is on the top of the stack
Be careful of magic-using enemies! Some of them can use magic just as
well as you, if not better, and often use it intelligently.
In the caverns of Crawl, you will find a great variety of creatures,
many of whom would very much like to eat you. To stop them doing this,
you will need to fight. To attack a monster, stand next to it and move
in its direction; this makes you attack it with your wielded weapon. Of
course, some monsters are just too nasty to beat, and you will find
that discretion is often the better part of valour.
Some monsters can be friendly; friendly monsters will follow you around
and fight on your behalf (you gain 1/2 the normal experience points for
any kills they make). You can command your allies using the ’!’ key,
which lets you either shout to attract them or tell them who to attack.
Default name for your character.
Your favourite pizza topping.
The directory where your macros and character dumps are stored.
A pointer to the file containing your default settings.
The bones files.
The high score list.
The macro resource file.
A character dump of your last death.
$CRAWL_RC, $CRAWL_DIR/init.txt, $HOME/.crawlrc
Avoid the labyrinth... you may not be able to get out.
Copyright 1997, 1998, 1999 Linley Henzell
02 April 2001 crawl(6)