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gems-343.txt  Last edited 2006-05-03 for NetHack 3.4.3
Gems, stones, and luck in NetHack 3.4
Compiled for 3.2.2 by Kevin Hugo.
Updated for 3.4.3 by Dylan O'Donnell <>.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ : ~~~~  ~~~  ~~~~  : ~~~~  ~~~~~~
Valuable gems           :                  :
  dilithium crystal     :$4500    1   27*  : soft  white
  diamond               : 4000    1   24*  : hard  white
  ruby                  : 3500    1   21*  : hard  red
  jacinth               : 3250    1   18*  : hard  orange
  sapphire              : 3000    1   15*  : hard  blue
  black opal            : 2500    1   12*  : hard  black
  emerald               : 2500    1    9*  : hard  green
  turquoise             : 2000    1    6*  : soft  green, blue
  aquamarine            : 1500    1    1*  : hard  green, blue
  citrine               : 1500    1    3*  : soft  yellow
  amber                 : 1000    1    1*  : soft  yellowish brown
  topaz                 :  900    1    1*  : hard  yellowish brown
  jet                   :  850    1    1*  : soft  black
  opal                  :  800    1    1*  : soft  white
  chrysoberyl           :  700    1    1*  : soft  yellow
  garnet                :  700    1    1*  : soft  red
  amethyst              :  600    1    1*  : soft  violet
  jasper                :  500    1    1*  : soft  red
  fluorite              :  400    1    1*  : soft  green, blue, white, violet
  jade                  :  300    1    1*  : soft  green
  agate                 :  200    1    1*  : soft  orange
  obsidian              :  200    1    1*  : soft  black
Worthless gems          :                  :
  black glass           :    0    1   76   : soft  black
  blue glass            :    0    1   77   : soft  blue
  green glass           :    0    1   77   : soft  green
  orange glass          :    0    1   76   : soft  orange
  red glass             :    0    1   77   : soft  red
  violet glass          :    0    1   77   : soft  violet
  white glass           :    0    1   77   : soft  white
  yellow glass          :    0    1   77   : soft  yellow
  yellowish brown glass :    0    1   77   : soft  yellowish brown
Stones                  :                  :
  luckstone             :   60   10   10   : soft  gray stone
  touchstone            :   45   10    8   : soft  gray stone
  flintstone            :    1   10   10   : soft  gray stone
  loadstone             :    1  500   10   : soft  gray stone
  rock                  :    0   10  100   : soft  rock

Gems and stones are listed above by category, then by decreasing price.
The COST field denotes the base price of each item.  WGT specifies the
weight (100 zorkmids weighs 1).

Gems comprise 8% of all randomly-generated items in the main dungeon,
18% in containers, 0% on the Rogue level, and 10% in hell.  PROB
is the relative probability of each subtype, except for those marked
with an asterisk (valuable gems); the figures so marked instead
represent the first level on which the gems can occur (this limitation
only applying to the main dungeon, and these restrictions are only
reviewed when creating a new level).  Permissible valuable gems have
roughly equal probabilities of being generated among themselves, always
set such that the total for the category as a whole is 171.

Loadstones are always generated cursed (except potentially in containers),
all others are uncursed.  Rocks appear in piles of 6 to 11.  Valuable gems,
worthless gems, touchstones, and flint stones have a 1/6 chance of appearing
in a pile of 2.

The ENGR field denotes how the gem appears when you attempt to engrave
with it (see below).  COLORS specifies the possible appearance of the
gem.  If more than one color is possible, then one will be randomly
chosen for the appearance.

Identifying stones

There are five different types of non-gem stones, and four of them
are indistinguishably gray.

  Rocks are immediately identified on examination, and pose little
  difficulty or challenge to the adventurer. They make a cheap and usually
  plentiful source of ammunition, should you lack or wish to conserve other
  ranged attacks. ("Good ol' rock. Nothing beats that." -- Bart Simpson)

  Touchstones are most readily distinguished by their effect when rubbed
  with something hard, such as an iron weapon; they will make a "scritch,
  scritch" sound. Their primary use is rubbing them with other gems and
  stones (and, once identified, this is all they _can_ be used for); if
  blessed (or also if uncursed, for Archeologists and gnomes), the object
  rubbed with will be identified. The complete table of results that
  distinguish them is as follows:

  GRAY STONE        GEM       GLASS     HARD     RING
  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~  ~~~~
  good touchstone   ID        ID        scritch  streak
  bad touchstone    streak    scratch   scritch  streak
  other gray stone  cscratch  cscratch  scratch  cscratch

  where "streak" denotes coloured streaks, "scratch" uncoloured scratch
  marks, "cscratch" coloured scratch marks, and "scritch" the sound
  "scritch scritch".

  Other types of object may produce coloured streaks or scratches, but
  will not provide any further useful information.

  Note that being rubbed on a cursed touchstone may shatter gems or rocks
  (but not other gray stones).

  Luckstones can be identified by their effect (see "Luck" below) with the
  help of enlightenment, by their valuation by shopkeepers, or by the
  presence of the guaranteed luckstone at the top of a gems cache in the
  Gnome King's Wine Cellar version of the bottom level of the Gnomish Mines.
  (Or, indeed, by the Heart of Ahriman being one).

  As noted above, loadstones are almost always generated cursed; furthermore,
  they autocurse on being dropped or otherwise leaving the main inventory,
  and a cursed loadstone cannot be let go of. It is therefore best to
  identify them while they lie on the ground; kicking them will usually
  elicit a "Thump!" rather than movement across the floor, but being
  extremely strong (at least 22 strength; 18/** is not sufficient) while
  wearing kicking boots or being a Samurai or Monk may allow some movement
  (watch how far it goes).
flint stone
  These exist primarily to make it hard to identify touchstones, loadstones
  and luckstones, and are best identified by elimination of the other three.
  They have few special properties, but do inflict somewhat more damage than
  other stones or gems when used as sling ammunition.

Identifying gems
(Quoted in part from the spoiler "gems" by Bryan Butler.)

    "I shall, with cultured taste,
     Distinguish gems from paste..."
         -- Reginald Bunthorne, in Gilbert and Sullivan's "Patience"

There are now nine methods to identify gems: engraving, throwing at
unicorns, killing glass golems, spell of stone to flesh, collecting a
large number, scrolls or spells of identify, a touchstone, dipping
an amethyst in potions of booze, and finding pre-placed gems.

1.  Engraving with gems

If a gem is listed as "hard" above, then you will see the following
message when you attempt to (E)ngrave with the gem:
    "You engrave in the <floor> with the <gem>."
where <gem> is the appearance of the gem.  All hard gems are valuable,
although some colors may have more than one possible identity.

If the gem is "soft," you will see this message:
    "You write in the dust with the <gem>."
Soft gems may be valuable or worthless, so you will need an additional
method to identify these gems.

In either case, you can abort the engraving process by pressing Escape.
If you choose to write a message, it will take one turn per character
to engrave.  Not all types of floor can be engraved upon.  You may choose
to #name a gem once you know its hardness (e.g., "soft blue").

2.  Throwing gems at unicorns

Throwing a gem to a non-tame unicorn can change your luck in one of several
ways, depending on whether the gem is worthless or valuable, whether you
are the same alignment as the unicorn (white = lawful, gray = neutral,
and black = chaotic), and whether the gem type is already identified or

  ~~~~~  ~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~~~~
  glass  other  unknown     graciously         0
  glass  other  named       (see below*)       0
  glass  other  identified  (see below*)       0
  glass  same   unknown     graciously         0
  glass  same   named       (see below*)       0
  glass  same   identified  (see below*)       0
   gem   other  unknown     hesitatingly   -1 to +1
   gem   other  named       hesitatingly   -1 to +1
   gem   other  identified  hesitatingly   -3 to +3
   gem   same   unknown     gratefully        +1
   gem   same   named       gratefully        +2
   gem   same   identified  gratefully        +5

In most cases, the message sequence is as follows:
    "The <unicorn> neighs!  The <unicorn> catches the <gem>."
    "The <unicorn> <ADVERB> accepts your gift."
where the color of the unicorn and the color of the gem are appropriate
for the situation. <ADVERB> comes from the table above, except where
the column has a *, in which case there is a different message sequence:
    "The <unicorn> neighs!"
    "The <unicorn> catches the <glass>."
    "The <unicorn> is not interested in your junk."
after which the unicorn will promptly drop the "gem".

3. Killing glass golems

When a glass golem is destroyed, it leaves behind 2 to 8 worthless
pieces of glass (each of which can be any of the colours), and
never gems.

4. Spell of stone to flesh

The spell of stone to flesh will turn gemstones into meatballs, but
leave worthless pieces of glass intact; #name a gem 'valuable' or
similar before zapping the spell at it (and rename it afterwards should
it be proven untrue), since it won't be around to #name after.

5.  Collecting a large number of gems

If you wait long enough, you'll accumulate a large number of gems.
Since the probabilities of getting worthless pieces of glass are so
much higher than getting true gems, you'll acquire them much faster
than other gems. So, if you just wait long enough, and look at all of
the gems of a certain color that you have, more often than not the gem
of which you have the most is the worthless piece of glass. This is a
bit risky, and usually takes much more time than other methods.

6. Scrolls and spells of identify

You can always use a scroll or spell of identify to determine whether a
gem is valuable.  You will then recognize all gems of that same type,
although you can lose this knowledge from a scroll of amnesia or (master)
mind flayer attack. Shopkeepers will buy identified gems
based on their full price; this is a good way to get money.

7.  Rubbing on a touchstone

Being rubbed on a blessed touchstone (or also uncursed for Archeologists,
who start with one, and gnomes) will immediately identify any gem, as
detailed under "touchstones" above.

8.  Dipping amethysts into potions of booze

When you dip an amethyst into a potion(s) of booze, the potion will turn
into fruit juice ("a-methyst" means not intoxicated).  You can use this
very special case to identify this type of soft violet gems.

9.  Pre-placed gems

Certain levels are guaranteed to be generated with diamonds, rubies,
emeralds, and amethysts in well-defined positions.  Two versions of
the bottom level of the Gnomish Mines (the Wine Cellar version and the
Mimic of the Mines version) contain concealed chambers with these four
types of gems and a guaranteed luckstone, together with assorted other
* to confuse identification; the third version's are randomly
scattered across the level.  The four corner rooms of Fort Ludios (if
it is reachable in your game) each contain one of these four types of
valuable gems.  Other levels may also be generated with piles of gems,
but their type is not guaranteed, so these levels are not helpful in
determining the identity of gems.

Luck is included here because of luckstones.

Your luck affects many aspects of the game (too many to mention here),
and is actually the sum of two components.  Base luck changes with events
in the game, and may slowly return to a "baseline" level.  Bonus luck, on
the other hand, is determined by what kind of luckstone (and certain
artifacts) you are carrying.  Only a rough idea of your luck is given
in the enlightenment list; the meaning of the messages is as follows:
  ~~~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    <= -10    extremely unlucky
   -9 to -5   very unlucky
   -4 to -1   unlucky
       0      luck is zero (debug mode only)
    1 to 4    lucky
    5 to 9    very lucky
    >= 10     extremely lucky

Your bonus luck -- and whether your base luck will return to its baseline
level -- is controlled by luckstones and certain Quest Artifacts.  The
effect of these "luckitems" depends on the number in your main inventory
that are blessed, uncursed, and cursed (see table below).  Note that you
can't do any better than one blessed luckitem, so you might as well keep
any others in a bag (where they have no effect) as spares in case your
main one is cursed.
  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~   ~~~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~~~~~~
  None                         Times out   Times out   0 (no message)
  More cursed than blessed     No timeout  Times out
  Equal cursed and blessed     No timeout  No timeout
  More blessed than cursed     Times out   No timeout
  More cursed than non-cursed                          -3 "reduced luck"
  Equal cursed and non-cursed                          +3 "extra luck"
  More non-cursed than cursed                          +3 "extra luck"
When you are enlightened about your luck, you are also told if you have
bonus luck and if good/bad luck will not time out.

Base luck is adjusted by each of the events described below.  It cannot
be reduced below -10 or increased above +10 beyond the baseline.  In
addition, every 600 turns (or 300 if you have the Amulet of Yendor or have
angered your god), your luck will increase by one if it is less than your
baseline luck and bad luck times out, and your luck will decrease by one if
your luck is greater than your baseline luck and good luck times out.  Your
baseline luck is +1 if you started or restored the game during a full moon,
-1 if started/restored on Friday the 13th, and 0 if neither or both.
  ~~~~~~~~  ~~~~~
     +1     Starting or restoring a game during a full moon.
      0     Starting or restoring a game during a new moon.
     -1     Starting or restoring a game on Friday the 13th.
            NOTE: The above three are reversed before saving.
     -2     Break a mirror.
     -n     Breaking n eggs laid by you (at worst -5).
     +1     Sitting on a throne (sometimes).
      0     Throwing a worthless gem at a unicorn.
  -3 to +3  Throwing valuable gem at cross-aligned unicorn.
     +1     Throwing unknown valuable gem at co-aligned unicorn.
     +2     Throwing named valuable gem at co-aligned unicorn.
     +5     Throwing identified valuable gem at co-aligned unicorn.
     -1     Hitting a blind floating eye (1 in 500 chance).
     -1     Jumping in Sokoban.
     -1     Breaking a boulder in Sokoban.
     -1     Casting stone-to-flesh on a Sokoban boulder.
     -1     Polymorphing a Sokoban boulder.
     -1     Reading a scroll of earth in Sokoban.
     -1     Being pulled by a thrown iron ball in Sokoban.
     -1     Hurtling through the air in Sokoban due to Newton's 3rd Law.
     -1     Walking (as a giant) or squeezing past a Sokoban boulder.
     -1     Killing a tame or peaceful (sometimes) monster.
     -2     Killing a peaceful human, and you are not chaotic.
     -5     Killing a co-aligned unicorn.
  -5 to -2  Cannibalism (eating your own species), unless an orc.
  Set to 0  Praying with negative base luck (sometimes: "golden glow" boon).
     -3     Praying on wrong altar.
     -3     Praying before your prayer timeout has expired.
     -5     A sacrifice (not your own race) on Moloch's altars in Gehennom.
     -3     Being converted by trying to convert an altar.
     -1     Otherwise unsuccessful at converting altar.
     +1     Successfully converting an altar.
     -1     Desecrating another god's altar.
     +2     Sacrificing your own race on your own chaotic altar.
     -2     Sacrificing your own race on Moloch's altar.
     -5     Sacrificing your own race, you aren't chaotic.
     -1     Sacrificing an unidentified fake Amulet of Yendor.
     -3     Sacrificing an identified fake Amulet of Yendor.
     +1     Sacrificing, slightly mollifying your god, negative luck.
  Set to 0  Sacrificing, mollifying your god, negative luck.
     +1     Sacrificing, having a hopeful feeling, negative luck.
  Set to 0  Sacrificing, reconciling, negative luck.
   0 to +5  Sacrificing, god happy.

Thanks to Bruce Cox for proofreading the original version of this file.
Further corrections and clarifications provided by David Damerell,
Michael Deutschmann, Rob Ellwood, Yair Friedman, David Grabiner, Adam Kao,
Nick Number, and Donald Welsh.

This page is based on a spoiler by Dylan O'Donnell. The original license is:

Redistribution, copying, and editing of these spoilers, with or without modification, are permitted provided that the following conditions are met:

  1. The original contributors to any spoiler must continue to be credited.
  2. Any modifications to the spoiler must be acknowledged and credited.