Wand of lightning

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Name lightning
Appearance random
Abundance 4%
Base price 175 zm
Weight 7
Type ray
Maximum charges 8
Monster use May be used offensively by monsters.

The wand of lightning is a wand that appears in NetHack.


Zapping the wand in a given direction shoots a ray of lightning, dealing 6d6 damage to non-shock resistant targets; it also blinds targets in its line of fire for d50 (more) turns with a cap of 127,[1] and may destroy any rings, wands or amulets in their inventory unless they have reflection. The ray bounces when it hits walls or targets with reflection; being hit by a rebound will blind you for (ulevel/2+1)d50 (more) turns.[1]

Only the ring of shock resistance and the wand of lightning itself are immune to destruction by shock damage,[2] e.g. chest traps, a returning Mjollnir, energy vortices or electric eels.

Like a wand of fire, engraving with a wand of lightning will burn text into the ground and auto-identify it; however, doing so will blind you for d50 (more) turns.[1] You can avoid this by cancelling the prompt when asked what to engrave.

In the event you zap yourself with a wand of lightning, you are blinded for 0-99 (more) turns.[1]

Applying a wand of lightning to break it creates an explosion that deals quadruple the normal damage of applying other wands[3] to yourself and all monsters surrounding squares. Your inventory is subject to the same effects as though you were zapped with the wand, i.e. your rings and wands may explode.


Wands of lightning are a powerful offensive item since they few monsters resist shock; however, it is especially annoying when a soldier or another monster surprises you with a bolt that destroys your only ring of slow digestion. Reflection is naturally the best defense against monsters with wands of lightning, but it also helps to have a means of curing blindness (e.g. a unicorn horn), as well as a means to safely stash your magical items.

You should avoid breaking these wands as a form of crowd-control unless you have no valuable rings or wands in your open inventory, or are otherwise going to die next turn anyway.


You are blinded by the flash!
You were blinded by a bolt of lightning.
Your arm tingles.
While blinded, a bolt of lightning was fired at you and missed.


This page may need to be updated for the current version of NetHack.

It may contain text specific to NetHack 3.6.4. Information on this page may be out of date.

Editors: After reviewing this page and making necessary edits, please change the {{nethack-364}} tag to the current version's tag or {{noversion}} as appropriate.