Scroll of confuse monster

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? Scroll.png
Name confuse monster
Appearance random
Base price 100 zm
Weight 5
Ink to write 6-11
Monster use Will not be used by monsters.

The scroll of confuse monster can confuse a monster or yourself.


Reading the scroll normally grants you the ability to confuse monsters when you hit them in melee.

An uncursed scroll will grant one use of this ability, while a blessed scroll will grant 2–9 uses. Additional readings of uncursed or blessed scrolls will grant additional uses, until 40 or more uses are stored, at which point an uncursed or blessed scroll will only grant one additional use.[1] Your attacks will not always confuse targets with monster magic resistance; a failed attempt will still consume a use. Hitting a monster that is already confused does not attempt to confuse it again and does not consume a use.[2] Enlightenment will reveal the message "You are going to confuse monsters."

Effects of confusion on monsters include a chance of failure when casting spells, moving erratically, and possibly attacking adjacent targets to it.

If you read a cursed scroll of confuse monster, or read an uncursed or cursed scroll while confused, you will instead be confused yourself for 1–100 (additional) turns. You will see the message "Your hands begin to glow purple" if the scroll is uncursed, or no message at all if it is cursed. If you read a blessed scroll while confused, the scroll will instead cure your confusion.

Reading this scroll while polymorphed into any non-@ monster form (regardless of the scroll's beatitude and whether you are confused) will instead confuse you for 1–100 (additional) turns. If your polymorphed form has no hands, you will not be able to apply the confuse monster effect to targets.

Casting the spell of confuse monster has the same effect as reading the scroll, with beatitude effects depending on your spell-casting skill level.


If a message references "tingling" it means that you are currently blind. If you are hallucinating "red" or "purple" will be changed to various other adjectives. Since you can only successfully gain the ability in a non-monster humanoid form, and can only discharge a use by having hands, "hands" or "head" never change.

Your hands begin to glow red.
You have read an uncursed scroll, and gained a use of the ability.
Your hands begin to tingle.
You are blind and read an uncursed scroll. If you were confused, you became more confused (see above), otherwise, you gained a use of the ability.
Your hands glow a brilliant red.
Your hands tingle very sharply.
You read a blessed scroll and gained uses of the confuse monster ability.
Your hands begin to glow red even more.
Your hands tingle even more.
You have read an uncursed scroll, have existing confuse monster uses, and have gained another use of the ability.
Your hands glow an even more brilliant red.
Your hands tingle even more sharply.
You have read a blessed scroll, have existing confuse monster uses, and have gained more uses of the ability.
Your hands no longer glow so brightly red.
The tingling in your hands lessens.
You have discharged one use of the confuse monster ability.
Your hands stop glowing red.
Your hands stop tingling.
You have expended the last use of the confuse monster ability.
<target> appears confused.
You have confused the target of your melee attack.
You feel confused.
You read a cursed scroll, or a scroll of any beatitude when polymorphed to a monster form.
Your hands begin to glow purple.
You read an uncursed scroll while confused.
A red glow surrounds your head.
You read a blessed scroll while confused and became unconfused.
A faint buzz surrounds your head.
You read a blessed scroll while confused and became unconfused, while blind.


Confuse monster is a poor man's conflict.

Confusing a monster can be a helpful ability in some cases - confused monsters can't cast spells properly and will get unexpected results when using scrolls. They can also attack other monsters and move erratically, so they will not be continually attacking you when confused. However, confused monsters are still unpredictable and will use ranged abilities on you. Since the attack is subject to monster magic resistance, as you progress in the dungeon the confusion attack will become less effective against many monsters.

A cursed scroll of confusion, or if you are polymorphed any scroll of confusion, can be used to confuse yourself to gain beneficial effects from confused scroll reading if a potion of booze, potion of confusion, or forgotten spell is unavailable. The blessed scroll's confusion-removal effect is only situationally helpful, since a unicorn horn can perform the same task without consuming a scroll; however, using a blessed scroll is certain to remove confusion, whereas even a blessed unicorn horn has some chance of failing. In general, the scroll is useful at earlier levels, but later in the game it is a good candidate for blanking.


  1. read.c in NetHack 3.6.0, line 1177: after a while, repeated uses become less effective
  2. src/uhitm.c in NetHack 3.6.1, line 2788

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It may contain text specific to NetHack 3.6.0. Information on this page may be out of date.

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