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Reflection is a property which causes magical rays, such as cold, fire, sleep, lightning, death and disintegration to bounce back. It also protects you from Medusa's stoning gaze and the floating eye's paralysis attack. It does not, however, protect against beams. Reflection is normally obtained extrinsically through various items, although polymorphing into a silver dragon gives you the property intrinsically.

Reflection can be acquired extrinsically from the following sources:

It cannot be acquired by crystal plate mail, the Magic Mirror of Merlin, wielding or applying a mirror, or other silver items. However, you can kill Medusa with a mirror.

The top level of Sokoban has a 50% chance of containing an uncursed amulet of reflection. In the titan version of Medusa's Island, the statue of Perseus has a 75% chance of containing a cursed +0 shield of reflection. In the other version the chance is 25%.

Not only the player character and monsters can be reflective, but walls also bounce magical rays.


Reflection is a high priority in the early game. Usually the first time a player may ever get it is by wishing for a silver dragon scale mail (SDSM) when you get a magic lamp from the Gnomish Mines. Silver dragon scale mail is especially good if your character can do two-weapon combat because then you will have both hands for your weapons, compared to wearing a shield of reflection. Some weapons, such as Cleaver, are also used with two hands, preventing the use of a shield at the same time. Also, a shield will increase spell failure rates to the point spellcasting is usually unavailable.

Reflection is especially important because of high-damage wand and breath attacks. A black dragon's disintegration breath can kill you instantly, unless you have reflection or disintegration resistance. It is very hard to gain disintegration resistance without killing a black dragon first, so reflection is the best option.

Later in the game, reflection's protective use is superseded from obtaining all elemental resistances and magic resistance, however, it is still an important property because it prevents inventory damage from attack wands and breath weapons. Without reflection, keeping wands and rings in open inventory is much more dangerous.

Staying out of monsters' line of fire is not a viable alternative because monsters can move and zap at the same time. However, in melee range, breath attacks are impossible and wand usage much decreased, so movement tactics and an Elbereth cage can double for reflection in special circumstances.


A user has suggested improving this page or section as follows:

"This doesn't list all reflection messages yet."

But it reflects from your <foo>!
A ray hitting you was reflected.
For some reason you are not affected.
As above, while you are blind.
But it reflects from <monster>'s <foo>!
A ray hitting a monster was reflected.
It reflects from your <foo>!
A lightning bolt from an angry god was reflected.
For some reason you're unaffected.
As above, while you are blind.
<Monster>'s gaze is reflected by your <foo>.
A reflectable gaze attack against you was reflected.
Medusa doesn't seem to notice that her gaze was reflected.
Medusa's reflected gaze attack had no effect because she can't see the reflection.
The gaze is reflected away by <its> <foo>!
A reflectable gaze attack against a monster was reflected.



SporkHack introduces a spellbook of reflection.


Nighthorn will grant reflection when wielded.