Wand of slow monster

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Name slow monster
Appearance random
Abundance 5%
Base price 150 zm
Weight 7
Type beam
Maximum charges 8
Spell slow monster
Monster use Will not be used by monsters.

A wand of slow monster is a type of wand that appears in NetHack.


Zapping a wand of slow monster in a given direction will produce a beam that causes monsters in its path to slow down, with a chance for affected monsters to resist based on their MR score (using the equation MR112 − difficulty - monsters with intrinsic speed will instead return to normal speed. Monsters will not zap this wand. Slowed monsters move at 23 of their normal movement speed; slowing down any monster or returning them to normal speed with the wand will auto-identify it.

If zapped while you are engulfed by a whirly monster (e.g. a vortex or air elemental), you will disrupt the monster and be released.

If you zap yourself with a wand of slow monster while you have intrinsic speed, you will lose that intrinsic and abuse dexterity - otherwise, nothing happens.

Engraving with the wand will cause the bugs on the floor to slow down; while this is a unique message, it will not auto-identify the wand.


Whirly monsters are immune to the wand of digging, making the wand a valuable escape item when engulfed by them. Slowing whirly monsters such as an energy vortex can let a faster player (e.g. with speed boots) build up valuable distance to attack them at range, and many whirly monsters have an MR score of 30 at most - the fog cloud has an even lower score at 0, and will never resist the wand. Air elementals are the most worrisome whirlies by far, and still move at twice a player's normal speed even when slowed; the wand still provides a valuable escape from being engulfed and pummeled with debris for several turns.

For other monsters, the wand of slow monster is best used at range against faster low-MR threats such as soldier ants, leocrottas or winged gargoyles. More powerful threats usually have a much higher MR score and are better handled through other means such as scaring or paralysis; spellcasters are likely to re-haste themselves after some amount of turns.

A wand of slow monster is trivial to identify via engraving, since no other wand will produce the same message.


The wand of slow monster has been present in the game since hack121, a variant of Jay Fenlason's Hack.


The bugs on the <floor> slow down!
You engraved with a charged wand of slow monster. This is a unique message, however the wand is not auto-identified.
<Monster> seems to be moving slower.
You zapped a monster which did not resist.
You disrupt <monster>! A huge hole opens up...
You zapped a whirly monster that you were engulfed in, and were expelled.
You slow down.
You lost the speed intrinsic by zapping yourself with a wand of slow monster.
Your quickness feels less natural.
As above, but you still have extrinsic speed from wearing speed boots.



In FIQHack, free action prevents you or a monster from being slowed with the wand or other sources 23 of the time. Blue dragon scale mail also grants full protection from slowing effects such as being zapped with the wand.

See also