Spellbook of magic missile

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spellbook of
+   magic missile   Light green spellbook.png
Appearance random
Abundance 4.58%
Base price 200 zm
Weight 50
Turns to read 2
Ink to write 10–19
Spell type attack
Level 2
Power cost 10 Pw
Direction ray
Equivalent wand of magic missile
Special for wizard

Allows you to learn the magic missile spell.

The magic missile ray does ((xplev/2)+1)d6 damage, so higher-level spellcasters can deal significant damage with this spell. A level 30 character deals 16d6 damage with magic missile, averaging 56 damage per hit. The damage can be doubled by using walls to reflect the ray again to the target, hitting it twice. This spell's damage is doubled for Knights by carrying the Magic Mirror of Merlin.

Note that this is different from the wand of magic missile, whose damage is a fixed 2d6.


For low-level Wizards, the starting force bolt spell is usually a better attacking method than magic missile, as force bolt costs 5 Pw and does 2d12 damage. Magic missile does slightly more damage at experience level 6 (doubled if hitting twice), but costs 10 Pw points. Advanced Wizards armed with the Eye of the Aethiopica can rely on magic missile as their primary attack. It being their special spell, wizards get a bonus toward their success rate with magic missile. Often a wizard can wear metal armor and still get an acceptably low failure rate with magic missile.

This spell can be used to kill enemies behind boulders without breaking the boulder, making it invaluable in Sokoban.

This page may need to be updated for NetHack 3.6.0.

It may contain text specific to NetHack 3.4.3. Information on this page may be out of date.

Editors: After reviewing this page and making necessary edits, please change the {{nethack-343}} tag to {{nethack-360}} or {{noversion}} as appropriate.