Elven spear

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) Elven spear.png
Name elven spear
Appearance runed spear
Damage vs. small 1d7
Damage vs. large 1d8
To-hit bonus +0
Weapon skill spear
Size one-handed
Base price 3 zm
Weight 30
Material wood

An elven spear is a type of weapon that appears in NetHack. It is a stackable one-handed weapon that uses the spear skill and is made of wood, and appears as a runed spear when unidentified.


Elven characters start the game with knowledge of the elven spear. Any elven character that would start the game with a spear will start with an elven spear instead - currently, there are no applicable roles where this substitution occurs.[1]

Elven spears make up about 1% of randomly generated weapons. In addition to random generation, weapon shops and general stores can stock elven spears.

Non-undead elves have an effective 16 chance of being generated with an elven spear.[2]

Player monsters, including those generated on the Astral Plane, have a 1116 chance (just below 1%) of being generated with a stack of 1-4 elven spears as their initial weapon before role-based replacements.[3][4]

The following information pertains to an upcoming version (3.7.0). If this version is now released, please verify that it is still accurate, then update the page to incorporate this information.

Per commit e5c73d0, wood golems have a chance of also dropping elven spears among other wooden items when destroyed.


Despite being made of wood, the elven spear has the same weight as a standard spear or orcish spear, but deals slightly more damage against smaller monsters without being susceptible to rusting - this makes one of the more ideal spear types to use against monsters, unless a character is facing a fiery monster or a brown pudding.


The elven spear first appears in NetHack 3.0.0.



In dNetHack, elven spears deal 1d9 damage to all monsters, with a +2 bonus to hit, and its weight is lowered to 10 aum.

Elven Nobles start each game with a +2 elven spear, while elven Binders start each game with a burnt +0 elven spear.

The Rod of the Elvish Lords is an artifact weapon that can be invoked to shift it to the form of an elven spear.


In EvilHack, elven soldiers and watchmen have an effective 13 chance of generating with a stack of elven spears.

An elven spear can be created at a forge by combining 2 elven arrows and an elven dagger.


In Hack'EM, successfully untrapping a spear trap has a chance of generating an intact spear.

Upgrading an elven spear will produce a dwarvish spear, and upgrading a spear will produce an elven spear.

In addition to EvilHack forging recipes, an elven spear can be combined with a flail to create an aklys.


  1. src/u_init.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 205: Race-based substitutions for initial orc inventory
  2. src/makemon.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 248
  3. src/mplayer.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 155: 12 to get a random weapon - the designated range of objects covers weapons from the spear to the bullwhip inclusively in objects.c, and uses normal generation odds
  4. src/u_init.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 275: stackable weapons for player monsters