Scroll of taming

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? Scroll.png
Name taming
Appearance random
Base price 200 zm
Weight 5
Ink to write 10-19
Monster use Will not be used by monsters.

The scroll of taming is a scroll that appears in NetHack.


Reading a non-cursed scroll of taming will affect monsters adjacent to you if the scroll overcomes their monster magic resistance. Tameable monsters will be tamed, similar to the spell of charm monster;[1] the standard restrictions for pets apply. Untameable monsters that were formerly peaceful, such as shopkeepers, aligned priests, quest guardians, and your quest leader, will be made peaceful again. Reading a cursed scroll will instead turn peaceful monsters adjacent to you hostile.

Reading the scroll while confused increases the range of the effects above to within 5 squares of your location (i.e. an 11×11 area), including beyond walls. If the scroll is read and no monsters are affected, "nothing interesting" happens, and you will be prompted to type-name the scroll afterward.

In all cases, if you are engulfed, the effects will only be applied to the engulfing monster, as opposed to any other nearby monsters.


Distinguishing this scroll from other 200zm scrolls can be somewhat tricky with price identification - the other scrolls are the scroll of amnesia, scroll of create monster and scroll of earth. Formal identification of these scrolls is recommended; the guaranteed scrolls of earth in Sokoban can help narrow the process down, and of the four, monsters will not read amnesia or taming. Of note is that, while reading the scroll of taming does not auto-identify it, it is the only scroll that produces the associated messages.

Non-cursed scrolls of taming are a useful "escape" item for dire situations, e.g. being cornered by powerful nasties such as 0 MR minotaurs and 10 MR dragons - at minimum, it can stop some powerful monsters attacking you and even provide temporary allies that can help dispose of a summoner and/or other hostiles. While it can also work for other situations that may take multiple attempts, particularly involving shopkeepers or watchmen, the spell of charm monster may be more ideal.

Non-cursed scrolls of taming are also useful for pacifying important monsters that are generated peaceful but then stop being peaceful. For example, consider the hapless Barbarian visiting their quest leader while wielding Stormbringer, a literally God-given weapon. Just because the Barbarian jabs a nearby bugbear, Pelias gets all unpeaceful. A scroll of taming is called for here. However, the scroll still has to overcome Pelias' MR.

Unlike the spell, the ranged effect from a confused reading is relatively unique - only the magic harp has a similar effect, and its range is dependent on level. This can be used to handle "one vs. many" situations similar to conflict, provided you have a means to inflict confusion on demand and cure it.


The scroll of taming first appears in Hack 1.0.

In NetHack 3.4.3 and earlier versions, along with some variants based on them, no messages are given if the scroll does not tame or pacify monsters, or else no monsters are in range; you are still prompted to type-name the scroll. This allows for easier informal identification like later versions, as it is the only scroll to do so.


Nothing interesting happens.
You read a scroll of taming with no monsters in range.
Nothing interesting seems to happen.
You read a scroll of taming with monsters in range that were not tamed or angered.
The neighborhood <is/seems> friendlier.
You tamed at least one monster with a scroll of taming, with "seems" swapped for "is" if you cannot see the results.
The neighborhood <is/seems> unfriendlier.
As above, but you read a cursed scroll.