ADOM Guidebook


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Spells - Learning mechanics - Spells table - Writing scrolls - Mindcraft - Confusion blast - Mindcraft abbreviations

Spells and Mindcraft - description and usefulness

0.5.1 Spells

There is a description of available spells except Wish in the ADOM Manual. The range and damage information has been removed from the manual in ADOM 1.1.x+. Accordingly they are tabulated below.

Wizards, Priests, Druids, and Necromancers are 10 times more likely to find spellbooks. Paladins 2,5 times.

0.5.1.1 Casting

Note that spells become more costly to cast (in terms of PP) as the number of available castings decreases. Thus a spell will increase in cost as the number of available castings decreases below 100 or so, becoming very noticeable as the number drops below about 30. This is class dependent but will affect all classes to differing extents. Note also that the number of available castings is not a simple "decrement by one each time the spell is cast" type of formula. Again depending on class, the difficulty of casting the spell and probably other factors this will vary. For example, casting Light with 1000 castings available to a level 40 Wizard may decrease the available castings by one, while casting Death Ray with 20 castings available with a level 30 Archer may reduce the available castings to zero. These are purely hypothetical examples but should give an idea of the trends.

0.5.1.2 Ball spells

Ball spells are extraordinarily useful since no monsters shrug them off. They are wonderful when the PC is surrounded, of course. It is worth switching to Coward tactics and waiting to be completely surrounded before casting. Since they are relatively costly in terms of PP, it is useful to destroy the maximum number of enemies with each casting. Fire magic is particularly effective against cold-based creatures and undead including mummies. Cold magic is particularly effective against fire-based creatures. The diameter of ball spells is dependent upon Willpower / 8. However, this diameter only increases as a multiple of sixteen since ball spells radiate symmetrically; the minimum diameter is two. Therefore getting Willpower to 24, for instance, does not increase the diameter. Willpower must be increased to 32 for the diameter to increase to four, 48 for the diameter to increase to six, 64 for the diameter to increase to eight, 80 for diameter of 10, and 96 for diameter of 12.

0.5.1.3 Wish

Wish is a unique spell. It is very difficult to learn, probably impossible if the PC has teleportitis. Such PC's must travel to a location where teleportation is impossible, such as the the Assassin's Guild, the Tomb of the High Kings or the elemental temples (the desirability is in that order due to background corruption in all of those locations). Furthermore, PC's will usually reach Starving! status while attempting to learn Wish. Tactics to deal with this include eating a blessed stomfillia to become Bloated, waiting just until the PC returns to Satiated, then eating another blessed stomfillia. It may be necessary to drink additional satiating potions, such as potions of toughness or potential toughness, even when the double blessed stomafillia tactic is used. Alternatively, PC's without teleportitis can use a room that has the "rich flavour" special effect, where PC's will never become hungry. Wish is extraordinarly expensive to cast and also drains a random stat by -10 when cast. If the PC must cast it, be prepared for the stat drain. Plan to cast it in a special room that lowers spell costs, and on Silvernight or Darknight, if possible, according to the PC's alignment.

0.5.1.4 Other spells

Bless damages undead. Healing spells can be cast at monsters including companions (but don't use them on slaves!). Lightning, Magic Missile, Stun Ray and Death Ray bolts will bounce off the walls, but not doors. Nothing is resistant to a Magic Missile. Magic Lock will close and lock a door in one turn. Anywhere Earthquake generates rocks will be turned into a normal ground tile - this can be used to destroy water tiles and make them passable. Some spell durations stack. Bless, Strength of Atlas, Invisibility and Farsight all stack. Calm Monster doesn't work on monsters generated in tension rooms, threat rooms and vaults. It just results in "The [monster] ignores your spell". In addition, arena opponents and Keethrax' animals won't be affected by the Calm Monster spell.

0.5.1.5 Learning spells mechanics

Book charges

Books start with 2d3 charges and disappear when it reaches 0. The number charges left is hidden to the player. Successfully reading a book deducts one charge.

Learning spells

Reading a spellbook takes 3 + Cost turns, succeed or fail. "Shelves of books" room effect halves this time. There are 11 possible bonuses to learning a spell:

  1. We start off with class. Priests and Wizards have +30, Mindcrafters -40, other classes in between.
  2. Learning is counted in next; +1/8*Le for Barbarians, +3*Le for Wizards, and in between for others.
  3. Next comes the difficulty based on the specific spellbook (Darkness and Light are lowest with +6, Wish is highest -100)
  4. Pure spellcasters (except Elementalists) attempting to learn purely arcane spells get -10, other combinations get +10.
  5. You are penalized -1 per remaining turn of drunkenness.
  6. You are rewarded +20 for a blessed book and penalized -20 for cursed.
  7. You are rewarded for your level. Pure spellcasters get +Min(75,2*level). All other non-Mindcrafter non-trolls get +1*level. Mindcrafters and Troll non-casters get nothing.
  8. +Concentration/5.
  9. +Literacy/10.
  10. Druids and Necromancers receive +40 for their specific starting book, lightning bolt and frost bolt, respectively.
  11. Characters born under Book receive +20.

All of this combines together for some kind of BaseValue. Now you choose whether to cast or read the book. If you read it, there's a straight up Literacy roll. Basically, your Literacy skill is a percentage chance of successfully reading the book. If you fail the check, you 'cannot decipher the runes' and nothing else happens (even with 100 Literacy there is 1% chance of automatic failure). Now if BaseValue > 1d100 you succeed in learning the spell. Otherwise, you fail. SuccessMargin = BaseValue-1d100 previously rolled.

On success

You gain castings and train Learning. Learning training is 2*Cost, or Cost/2 if you had some castings already.

If ExistingCastings < 30, then CastingsGained = Min(200 + Le*4, Max(20, Max(5, SuccessMargin - ExistingCastings) * Max(1, Le/4))); else CastingsGained = Max(5, Max(1, Le/8) * SuccessMargin).

CastingsGained is then reduced by ExistingCastings and level - CastingsGained *= (100 - 3 * (ExistingCastings/50 + lvl/3)) / 100. Reduction is never worse than 25% of previous value and never reduces CastingsGained below 1.

Next, Cup is +20% CastingsGained, Good and Great Book Learner talents are each +10%.

On failure

If you fail to read the book successfully, it depends on SuccessMargin (negative in this case) plus a base value for each class (shown below) your chances of the book doing something nasty versus your chances to just not learning anything.

If the value is now positive, nothing happens. Otherwise, you get a random penalty from the 11 equally probable effects:

Failed spellbook reading
#MessageEffect
1The spellbook is suddenly gone! spellbook dissappears
2The spellbook bursts into flames and is destroyed!
3You are stunned by the power of the runes! stunned for 4d(Cost/2) turns
4You suddenly feel very confused. confused for 5dCost turns
5Your eyes refuse to further concentrate on this spellbook! blinded for 2dCost turns
6The magical energies drain your healh! -1 To
7The power of the spell partially drains your life force! 1dCost damage
8The spellbook explodes into a ball of fire! fireball - 4d(Cost/4) fire damage to PC, equipment and inventory; spellbook is destroyed
9Suddenly you stand somewhere else.teleportation
You feel dizzy.would have teleported, but the dungeon level doesn't allow it - so confuse for 5d5 turns instead
10Your feel your power draining away! reduce PP by 2*Cost
You feel hollow. would have reduced PP, but PP is already 0, so no effect
11Suddenly a pit opens beneath your feet. You fall into it! pit is created [1]; some HP might be lost during the fall
The ground suddenly rumbles! would have created a pit, but the dungeon level doesn't allow it (wilderness); no effect

[1] If you're standing on a grave, it'll dig the grave. Gravedigging is always a chaotic act though, even when done in this way.

Summary

To sum up, chance of successfuly learning a spell predominantly depends on class (pretty self explanatory to the extent spellcasters read better). Also birthsign (Book helps), whether you're drunk, the difficulty of the spellbook, whether you're a Mindcrafter/Troll, B/U/C status of the spellbook, Learning, Concentration, Literacy, and the PC's level factor in - the higher of these the better.

0.5.1.6 Spell list

Notation for spells:

For Darkness, Light, and ball spells, "Range" means "Diameter". Chance is relative probability of a spellbook to be generated. It also hints at spell difficulty.

Spells
SpellBase costRangeDamageDurationChance
Acid Ball / Rain Of Sorrow (A)35 M{2, W / 8}M{3, L / 4 + 2}d9 + L + E  40
Acid Bolt (A,C)15 W / 4 + L / 4 + 2 M{4, (L + E) / 3}d8 + r 40
Bless (C)8   1d{W} + (M + E) * 2 40
Burning Hands / Baptism of Fire (A,C)8   m{15, L}d3 + L + E 100
Calm Monster (A,C)8    100
Create Item / Divine Favour (A,C)250    4
Cure Critical Wounds (C)15  cures 4d8 + 4 + E 20
Cure Disease (C)8    40
Cure Light Wounds (C)5  cures 1d8 + 1 + E 100
Cure Serious Wounds (C)10  cures 2d10 + 2 + E 20
Darkness (A,C)4 1 + M{4, (W + E) / 4} / 2   300
Death Ray / Greater Divine Touch (A,C)100 M{2, m{16, (W + E) / 8}}   20
Destroy Undead / Dispel Undead (C)8  {L + 1}d6 + W + E  20
Disarm Trap (C)10    40
Earthquake (C)80    4
Farsight (A,C)17   (M + E) * 1040
Fire Bolt / Hellish Flames (A,C)10 W / 4 + L / 4 + 2M{4, (L + E) / 3}d6 + r 100
Fireball / Major Punishment (A)20 M{2, W / 8} M{3, L / 4 + 2}d6 + L + E 40
Frost Bolt / Nether Bolt (A,C)12 W / 4 + L / 4 + 2 M{4, (L + E) / 3}d6 + r 100
Greater Identify / Greater Enlightment (A,C)100    4
Heal (C)40  cures 10d6 + 10 + E 4
Ice Ball / Freezing Fury (A)25 M{2, W / 8} M{3, L / 4 + 2}d7 + L + E 40
Identify / Enlightenment (A,C)75    4
Improved Fireball / Invoked Devastation (A)30 M{2, W / 8}{2 + (L + E) / 5}d8 + L 20
Invisibility / Veil Of The Gods (A)10   {L + E + 3}d6 100
Knock / Divine Key (A)12    200
Know Alignment (C)10    40
Light (A,C)3 1 + M{4, (W + E) / 4} / 2   300
Lightning Ball / Heavenly Fury (A)30 M{2, W / 8} M{3, L / 4 + 2}d8 + L + E  40
Lightning Bolt / Divine Wrath (A,C)13 W / 4 + L / 4 + 2 M{4, (L + E) / 3}d6 + r  100
Magic Lock / Seal of the Spheres (A)8    100
Magic Map / Knowledge of the Ancients (A,C)40    40
Magic Missile / Minor Punishment (A)8 W / 4 + L / 4 + 2 M{2, (L + E) / 3}d4 + r  200
Mystic Shovel / Divine Digger (A,C)100 M{2, m{10, (W + E) / 5}}  20
Neutralize Poison (C)10    40
Petrification (C)120    4
Remove Curse (A,C)50    40
Revelation (C)33    40
Scare Monster / Holy Awe (A,C)12   (L)d4 + E40
Slow Monster (A)7   3d{W + E} 200
Slow Poison (C)6    100
Strength Of Atlas / Lordly Might (A) [1]10   (W + E) * 20100
Stun Ray / Lesser Divine Touch (A,C)8 M{3, m{12, (W + E) / 4}}  100
Summon Monsters (A,C)30    20
Teleportation / Ethereal Bridge (A)22    100
Web (A)12 M{3, m{12, (W + E) / 4}}  100
Wish / Divine Intervention (A,C)3000    1

[1] Increases carrying capacity by Mana * 1000.

0.5.2 Writing scrolls

Scrolls can be written if the PC is literate, has seen an example of the scroll, has a magical writing set and a blank scroll to write on. Blank scrolls can be found in the dungeons (usually an unlabeled scroll, although this is not guaranteed), or they can be created by dipping other scrolls into *normal* water - not holy water or unholy water. Be aware that the cost for writing scrolls of chaos resistance is high - there is a permanent loss of two or three Mana points for *Wizards*, apparently depending on the blessed vs uncursed status of the magical writing set. The Mana cost for non-wizards is significantly higher, ten Mana points is typical. In addition, any combination of a blessed MWS with an uncursed blank scroll or an uncursed MWS with a blessed or uncursed blank scroll will result in a loss of hitpoints. This loss ranged from 70 to 145 HP with a WADOMF'd experience level one Wizard PC. The HP loss may go down with increasing experience level for Wizards, but this has not been tested. The HP consequences for non-wizards may be more dramatic (i.e. deadly).

Writing other scrolls does not have such drastic consequences, though the exact effects have yet to be worked out. Scrolls which are particularly hard to write (in order of decreasing difficulty) include: scroll of chaos resistance (*10 Mana cost), scroll of education (*7), scroll of protection/defense (*6), scroll of increase melee accuracy/damage (*5), scroll of item creation (*4). Monks don't lose Mana when creating scrolls.

0.5.3 Mindcraft

ADOM Manual has a section describing Mindcraft. Malte Helmert contributed the following table regarding Mindcraft PP cost.

Mindcraft
Level TPC COB COW MBL MSH MWV TBL EOM GMB GTB REG TPS TPO GMW
1 N/A 8
2 N/A 8
3 N/A 7 24
4 N/A 7 24
5 N/A 7 24
6 N/A 6 23 18
7 N/A 6 23 18
8 N/A 6 23 18
9 N/A 5 22 17 5/T
10 N/A 5 22 17 4/T
11 N/A 5 22 17 4/T
12 N/A 4 21 16 4/T
13 N/A 4 21 16 4/T 47
14 N/A 4 21 16 4/T 46
15 N/A 3 20 15 3/T 45 30
16 N/A 3 20 15 3/T 44 28
17 N/A 3 20 15 3/T 43 26
18 N/A 3 19 14 3/T 42 24 6
19 N/A 3 19 14 3/T 41 22 6
20 N/A 3 19 14 2/T 40 20 6
21 N/A 3 18 13 2/T 39 18 5
22 N/A 3 18 13 2/T 38 18 5
23 N/A 3 18 13 2/T 37 18 5
24 N/A 3 17 12 2/T 36 18 4
25 N/A 3 17 12 2/T 35 18 4 27
26 N/A 3 17 12 2/T 34 18 4 27
27 N/A 3 16 11 2/T 33 18 3 26
28 N/A 3 16 11 2/T 32 18 3 26
29 N/A 3 16 11 2/T 31 18 3 26
30 N/A 3 15 10 2/T 30 18 3 25 60
31 N/A 3 15 10 2/T 29 18 3 25 58
32 N/A 3 15 10 2/T 28 18 3 25 56
33 N/A 3 14 9 2/T 27 18 3 24 54
34 N/A 3 14 9 2/T 26 18 3 24 52
35 N/A 3 14 9 2/T 25 18 3 24 50 5/T
36 N/A 3 13 8 2/T 24 18 3 23 48 5/T
37 N/A 3 13 8 2/T 23 18 3 23 46 5/T
38 N/A 3 13 8 2/T 22 18 3 23 44 5/T
39 N/A 3 12 7 2/T 21 18 3 22 42 5/T
40 N/A 3 12 7 2/T 20 18 3 22 40 4/T 35
41 N/A 3 12 7 2/T 19 18 3 22 38 4/T 35
42 N/A 3 11 6 2/T 18 18 3 21 36 4/T 35
43 N/A 3 11 6 2/T 17 18 3 21 34 4/T 35
44 N/A 3 11 6 2/T 16 18 3 21 32 4/T 35
45 N/A 3 10 5 2/T 15 18 3 20 30 4/T 35 35
46 N/A 3 10 5 2/T 15 18 3 20 28 4/T 35 35
47 N/A 3 10 5 2/T 15 18 3 20 26 4/T 35 35
48 N/A 3 9 5 2/T 15 18 3 19 25 4/T 35 35
49 N/A 3 9 5 2/T 15 18 3 19 25 4/T 35 35
50 N/A 3 9 5 2/T 15 18 3 19 25 3/T 35 35 50

N/A: this is for free
x/T: x per turn

0.5.3.1 Confusion blast

Note that Confusion Blast, available to experience level one Mindcrafters, works analogously to Ventriloquism (see section 0.4). It confuses a monster who then does not alert other monsters on the level. It has a range of 3 + (Willpower + Level) / 8 squares. If it hits an undead monster, the PC takes 4d4 damage (4d4/2 at level 50) and no further effect. Mindless monsters, including insects and the Eternal Guardian, are immune, as are all unlife. Corrupting monsters will corrupt the PC as for a single melee hit (divided by 4 at level 32); however they ARE affected normally. The monster will not be affected if it passes a spell resistance save with an attack power of Level. If it is affected, it will be confused for Level + 1dWi-1 turns.

0.5.3.2 Mindcraft abbreviations
AbbrMeaning
TPC Teleport Control
COB Confusion Blast
COW Confusion Wave
MBL Mind Blast
MSH Mental Shield
MWV Mind Wave
TBL Telekinetic Blast
EOM Eyes of the Mind
GMB Greater Mental Blast
GTB Greater Telekinetic Blast
REG Regeneration
TPS Teleport Self
TPO Teleport Other
GMW Greater Mental Wave


Please note that this is an unofficial and unauthorised copy of Andy William's ADOM Guidebook. For further information on the legal and moral challenges raised against this Improved ADOM Guidebook please see rec.games.roguelike.adom.
Updated April 14th, 2010