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.

A scroll of confuse monster is a type of scroll that appears in NetHack.


5.3% of all randomly generated scrolls will be a scroll of confuse monster.

Writing a scroll of confuse monster with a magic marker takes up 6 to 11 charges.


Reading a non-cursed scroll of confuse monster causes your hands to glow red, signifying that that your next non-lethal hit will confuse the target monster unless you are in a form that lacks hands, and will prompt you to name the scroll - the effect stacks with other non-cursed scrolls as well as casts of the spell of confuse monster (depending on your skill level in enchantment spells), with the intensity of the glow representing how many uses of the ability you have. A blessed scroll adds 2-9 more uses, or only one more use if you have at least 40 stored, while an uncursed scroll adds one more use.[1]

Reading a cursed scroll of confuse monster will instead confuse you for up to 100 more turns, and the same occurs if you read a non-blessed scroll while already confused; reading a blessed scroll while confused will instead cure your confusion. If you are polymorphed into any non-@ monster form, reading a scroll of any beatitude will also confuse you for up to 100 more turns.

Upon hitting a monster with your hands or a wielded weapon while "charges" of confuse monster are stored, a use is consumed and the monster must pass a check against its magic resistance, becoming confused if they fail the check. This does not occur if the target monster is already confused.[2]

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.

As of commit 13ad956, reading an uncursed scroll of confuse monster adds 3 charges if you do not currently have any.


The scroll of confuse monster can be a decent early-game supplement: confused monsters will fail to cast spells properly, move erratically, and may even attack other hostile monsters nearby; they will also experience alternate effects from reading scrolls. Confusing a monster generally makes it much less likely to attack you directly, and ranged abilities will often fire in the wrong direction, but a confused monster should not be taken lightly, especially if the confusion expires without you noticing.

The scroll typically sees very limited use after that point, especially in the late game: The monster magic resistance of hostile monsters generally increases as you progress, making them generally less effective, and while it can still be somewhat useful, confusion usually takes a backseat to other incapacitating spells and effects. A cursed scroll (or any scroll for non-@ polyforms) can still serve as a source of confusion if you lack potions of booze, confusion or a forgotten spell. Conversely, the confusion-removal effect of a blessed scroll that is read while confused is situational at best, and is often superseded by a unicorn horn; non-cursed scrolls are thus good candidates for blanking.


The scroll of confuse monster first appears in Hack 1.21, a variant of Jay Fenlason's Hack, and is included in the initial item list for Hack 1.0.


Your hands begin to glow red <even more>.
You read an uncursed scroll of confuse monster, with the latter appended if you already have uses stored.
Your hands begin to tingle <even more>.
As above, while blind; this also applies if you are blind and confused.
You are going to confuse monsters.
You are viewing the status gained from reading a non-cursed scroll via enlightenment.
Your hands glow a brilliant red.
You read a blessed scroll of confuse monster.
Your hands tingle very sharply.
As above, while blind.
Your hands glow an even more brilliant red.
You read a blessed scroll with at least one use in store.
Your hands tingle even more.
As above, while blind.
Your hands no longer glow so brightly red.
You hit a monster in melee and consumed a usage of the ability, and you still have uses remaining.
The tingling in your hands lessens.
As above, while blind.
Your hands stop glowing red.
You hit a monster in melee and consumed your remaining use of the ability.
Your hands stop tingling.
As above, while blind.
<target> appears confused.
Your attack successfully confused the hit monster.
You feel confused.
You read a cursed scroll of confusion, or a scroll of any beatitude when polymorphed into a non-@ 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 cured your confusion.
A faint buzz surrounds your head.
As above, while blind.


  1. src/read.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 1231: a comment above notes "after a while, repeated uses become less effective"
  2. src/uhitm.c in NetHack 3.6.7, line 3090