From NetHackWiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This article is about SLASH'EM. For pets in vanilla NetHack, see pet.

Pets in SLASH'EM are much like pets in vanilla. They fight on your side, they eat (or starve), they bring objects to you, they respond to whistles and track abuse.

SLASH'EM provides more domestic monsters to tame, more varieties of food to tame them with, and they appear in the dungeon more frequently.

What is a pet?

SLASH'EM provides two other types of tame monsters, the tame minion and the spell being. Gods dispatch tame minions, the spells of flame sphere and freeze sphere create spell beings. To be consistent with Eva Myers' spoiler, this article applies the term "pet" to the exclusion of tame minions and spell beings.

All other sources of tame monsters provide pets. You start the game with a pet, the spell of create familiar creates a pet, a monster made tame through feeding becomes a pet, etc.

In the source code, pets have an attached struct edog (identical to that of vanilla NetHack, defined at edog.h).

Basic features of pets

(These features are almost the same as those for vanilla pets...)

  1. Attacking in melee - A pet may use its melee attacks against a hostile or peaceful monster.
    • Most pets have some discretion and will not attack if the target monster has at least two more monster levels than the pet.[1]
    • If the pet's attack hits and both parties survive, and if the target monster has not moved this turn, then there is a 3/4 chance that the target monster retaliates with melee attacks against the pet.[2]
  2. Interacting with objects - A pet will seek objects, either to eat them, or to bring them to you.
    • A pet will rank all of the objects within a rectangle of radius 5 around the pet. It will prefer the object with the highest rank, and break ties by choosing the closer object. Then it will decide whether to seek this goal object or follow the player.[3]
    • You may feed treats to your pet to encourage it to bring objects closer to you.[4] The effect of the reward will diminish as the pet drops more objects.[5]
  3. Avoiding objects of wrong beatitude - Most pets will avoid cursed objects. Pet demons and pet undead will instead avoid squares that contain blessed objects. A pet will normally not seek or enter squares that contain such objects.[6] However, a pet may enter that square to eat if the pet is hungry[7] or to eat a treat[8] or "reluctantly" if the square blocks the pet's path.[9] Even so, a pet will not pick up the cursed (blessed) objects on that square.[10]

There exists a port of the pet ranged patch (by D. Shaligram, ported by Jean-Yves Moyen) that would allow pets to also attack with ranged attacks.


SLASH'EM adds the M3_TRAITOR monster flag that denotes monsters that have a chance of spontaneously rebelling against the player when tame and becoming hostile. The M3_TRAITOR flag has no effect on peaceful monsters, just tame ones. Increasing the pet's tameness and not abusing the pet will decrease the chance of the pet rebelling, but will not eliminate the chance of it occuring. If a monster turns traitor you will receive the message "<Monster> turns on you!" or "You feel uneasy about <Monster>" if you cannot see the former pet. Monsters that turn on you will additionally have the text "traitor" added when examined with a stethoscope or wand of probing.

The check for betrayal occurs whenever you abuse the pet or with a 1 in 850 chance on every move.[11] The betrayal check will always fail if the pet is a spell being, is further than 3 squares away, is mindless, or if you have more hit points than the pet. If those checks pass, then there is a (21-tameness)(abuse+1)/66(abuse+2) chance that the pet will turn traitor.[12]

Food for pets

For any tame monster in NetHack or Slash'EM, the food it will sometimes eat falls into four categories:

  • Treats, which can be used to train it.
  • Good food which it will eat when not hungry.
  • Acceptable food which it will only eat when hungry.
  • Food which it will only eat when starving.

Any food in the "acceptable" category or above can be used to tame a domestic animal, except for eggs because they go splat when thrown.

For carnivores, tripe rations and meat created with stone to flesh are treats, meaty corpses and eggs are good food, and "people food" (fortune cookies, candy bars, cream pies, pancakes, royal jellies, sandwiches, tortillas, cheeses, C-rations, K-rations, cram rations, food rations, lembas wafers and holy wafers) is acceptable food. Carnivores will eat fruits and vegetables when starving.

For herbivores, apples and carrots are treats, vegan corpses are good food, and other fruits and vegetables are acceptable food. Herbivores will eat "people food" when starving.

Domestic monsters

These monsters have the M2_DOMESTIC flag. You may domesticate (tame) these monsters by throwing acceptable food at them. If you throw the wrong kind of food, then these monsters become peaceful.

The table also contains the monster level and monster frequency (in the L:F column), and some basic stats about each monster. Remember that lower AC is better. As for speed, a koala (4) has one move per three turns, a lamb (12) has one move per one turn, a warhorse (24) has two moves per one turn.[13]

Monster L:F Speed [AC] Attacks Diet
c chicken 2:1 15 [8] bite 1d3 herbivore
c cockatoo 3:1 15 [6] bite 1d4 herbivore
c parrot 7:1 15 [6] bite 2d6 herbivore
d little dog 2:7 18 [6] bite 1d6 carnivore
d dog 4:7 16 [5] bite 1d6 carnivore
d large dog 6:7 15 [4] bite 2d4 carnivore
d pit bull 11:1 15 [4] bite 4d4 carnivore
f kitten 2:7 18 [6] bite 1d6 carnivore
f housecat 4:7 16 [5] bite 1d6 carnivore
f large cat 6:7 15 [4] bite 2d4 carnivore
q lamb 1:2 12 [10] butt 1d2, kick 1d2 herbivore
q sheep 3:2 12 [8] butt 1d4, kick 1d3 herbivore
q goat 4:1 12 [6] butt 2d4, kick 1d4, kick 1d4 herbivore
q cow 7:2 9 [7] butt 1d8, kick 2d4 herbivore
q bull 10:1 15 [5] butt 2d8, kick 2d4 herbivore
u pony 3:2 16 [6] kick 1d6, bite 1d2 herbivore
u horse 5:2 20 [5] kick 1d8, bite 1d3 herbivore
u warhorse 7:2 24 [4] kick 1d10, bite 1d4 herbivore
z koala 7:2 4 [9] touch (calm) 0d0 eucalyptus leaf
z wombat 5:1 12 [5] kick 1d6, bite 1d6 herbivore

Monsters that want specific food

These monsters want a specific food item. If you throw that item to them, then they become tame. Otherwise, nothing happens (and the monster does not become peaceful).[14] Once the monster is tame, it reverts to a normal carnivorous or herbivorous diet, except that the specific food item counts as a treat.

The specific food item will be a cheese (for rats), a carrot (for rabbits) or a banana (for primates). There are four types of rat on this list; cheese will not tame a rabid rat, a hellrat or the Rat King. Yes, rabid rabbits are on this list.

Monster L:F Speed [AC] Attacks Diet
r sewer rat 0:1 12 [7] bite 1d3 carnivore, wants cheese
r black rat 0:0 15 [7] bite 1d3 carnivore, wants cheese
r giant rat 1:2 10 [7] bite 1d3 carnivore, wants cheese
r pack rat 0:0 12 [7] bite 1d3, touch (steals item) 1d1 carnivore, wants cheese
r rabbit 0:2 15 [7] bite 1d3 herbivore, wants carrot
r rabid rabbit 3:1 18 [7] bite 2d4 herbivore, wants carrot
Y monkey 2:1 12 [6] claw (steals item) 0d0, bite 1d3 omnivore, wants banana
Y ape 4:2 12 [6] claw 1d3, claw 1d3, bite 1d6 omnivore, wants banana
Y yeti 5:2 15 [6] claw 1d6, claw 1d6, bite 1d4 carnivore, wants banana
Y carnivorous ape 6:1 12 [6] claw 1d4, claw 1d4, crushing bearhug 1d8 carnivore, wants banana
Y sasquatch 7:1 15 [6] claw 1d6, claw 1d6, kick 1d8 omnivore, wants banana
Y zruty 9:2 8 [3] claw 3d4, claw 3d4, bite 3d6 carnivore, wants banana

Good Pets

Given the preponderance of stronger monsters in SLASH'EM, it is not surprising that the best pets are almost a completely different set. In terms of sheer strength, there are three monsters which stand out: the giant shoggoth, the Solar, and the crystal golem.


Probably the best choice for a pet, these are essentially stronger Archons. They do immense amounts of damage, wield weapons, can heal themselves, resist almost every type of elemental damage, and are guaranteed a shield of reflection. Also, the game will always attempt to convert a Solar's long sword into Demonbane or Sunsword. In acquiring them as pets, lawfuls have a significant advantage, for they can receive them as minions from sacrifice and possibly prayer. Note that a minion will not pick up items at all; in particular, this means that disarming it will leave it permanently weaponless. Note that Solars are not resistant to level drain, and thus can be hurt by wands of draining. Fortunately, monsters will not aim for them, but may hit them when aiming for you.

Giant shoggoths

Giant shoggoths are capable of doing somewhat more damage than Solars, and are also slightly faster. In addition, they are also resistant to stoning. Also, they are the only one of the three pets to eat anything, meaning that it is easier to keep their tameness high. Unfortunately, they are "capable of treachery," meaning they can spontaneously rebel, even if their tameness is not reduced to zero. Note that they enjoy hiding, so you may need to apply a magic whistle to keep them fighting.

Crystal golem

Crystal golems are the slowest of the above monsters, and also only have one weapon attack. It is admittedly very strong, doing 8d12 damage, but it does make their damage somewhat more variable than the above two. However, they are guaranteed to have 300 hit points, which is more than either a Solar or a giant shoggoth starts with. Also, their bodies have innate reflection and magic resistance. The latter property is quite useful, as it prevents them from being turned into a weak monster by a polymorph trap. This is a significant advantage, although somewhat less so than in vanilla, as polymorphed monsters in SLASH'EM eventually revert to their original form.

Good Steeds


As in vanilla, the Ki-rin is a formidable flying, intelligent, steed capable of wearing amulets and (some) armor, but since it does not eat it may be harder to keep tame (especially since non-knights riding decreases tameness).

Vorpal Jabberwock

In contrast to the Ki-rin, the Vorpal Jabberwock eats and so its tameness can be increased, but its speed is slower than that of the ki-rin.