Ranged weapon

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Version 0.28: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.

Ranged weapons include all weapons capable of attacking any target within your line of sight. All of these require ammunition to function, and most of them require you to wield a launcher. The ability to attack distant foes is very helpful, particularly for characters with fast movement speed (see kiting). However, ranged weapons are not without their drawbacks. Running out of ammo renders a ranged weapon nearly useless, and melee weapons tend to have better overall stats.

Weapon attributes

The following is a table of all ranged weapons in Crawl. Below is a short explanation of each field:

Name The name of the item as it appears in Crawl.
Damage The base amount of damage the weapon does, before various bonuses and adjustments.
Hit To hit modifier for the weapon, before any other adjustments.
Speed This is actually the attack delay, which is multiplied by 10 to get the "percentages" you see in-game. (That is, attack delay 10 shows as 100%.) Every 2 levels of weapon skill lowers the delay by 1 unit. A weapon's minimum delay is half of its base delay (rounded down) or 7, whichever is lower (hand crossbows, arbalests, and triple crossbows all have a hard-coded minimum delay of 10). The speed brand and haste cut delay by one third (round randomly up or down). These effects stack, after the base cap, but there's an absolute cap of 2 for attack delay.
Skill Which skill is required to effectively use this weapon.
One-hand min. size Minimum size required to be able to use the weapon with one hand. The order is little, small, medium, large, big.
Two-hand min. size Minimum size required to be able to use the weapon with two hands. When the player's size is equal or greater than 'Two-handed min. size', but less than 'One-handed min. size', the weapon cannot be used with a shield.
Missile The sort of ammo needed to use this weapon
Prob A larger number indicates higher probability of acquiring through scrolls of acquirement.


Thrown weapons are unique among ranged weapons in that they do not require you to wield a launcher to use them; you simply hurl them without even needing a free hand (don't ask how). This means you don't have to waste time in combat swapping weapons, keeping a shield, saving turns, and reducing frustration. Additionally, many throwing weapons have inherent properties that change how the projectile works or adds an additional effect. Unfortunately, most throwing weapons are among the weaker ranged options, and none of them have any inherent bonus to accuracy.

Name Dam Hit Speed Skill Min. size Prob Notes
Dart 0 0 10 Throwing Little 0 Deals no damage, but inflicts status effects
Throwing net 0 0 10 Throwing Little 0 Deals no damage, but inflicts the Held status effect
Stone 2 0 11 Throwing Little 0 Weak, but plentiful; can be launched from slings for more damage
Boomerang 6 0 13 Throwing Little 0 Inherent returning property
Javelin 10 0 15 Throwing Medium 0 Inherent penetration property
Large rock 20 0 20 Throwing Large 0


Slings are ranged weapons which hurl sling bullets (or stones in a pinch) with great force. They are one-handed weapons for all characters and require much less skill than most other weapons to reach minimum delay, but they are significantly less powerful than their slower, more cumbersome alternatives.

Name Dam Hit Speed Skill One-handed min. size Two-handed min. size Missile Prob Notes
Hunting sling 5 +2 12 Slings Little Little Stone /
Sling bullet
Fustibalus 8 -1 14 Slings Little Little Stone /
Sling bullet


Bows are a fairly plain, but powerful ranged weapons. They fire arrows at your opponents to deadly effect. They are universally more powerful than slings, and require only a reasonable skill investment to fire quickly. However, both kinds of bow require two hands to wield, and longbows are too large for smaller-than-average characters to use.

Name Dam Hit Speed Skill One-handed min. size Two-handed min. size Missile Prob Notes
Shortbow 9 +2 13 Bows - Little Arrow 10
Longbow 15 0 17 Bows - Medium Arrow 10


If you want a ranged weapon that tears into foes with the strength of a melee weapon, consider getting a crossbow. These contraptions are the largest, slowest ranged weapons available, but they launch their bolts with unparalleled force. Unfortunately, they require the most skill of all ranged weapons to attack quickly, particularly in the case of the super-heavy triple crossbow. Their mindelay is also set at 1.0, higher than any other weapon in the game. And with the exception of the tiny hand crossbow, crossbows are two-handed weapons. Both crossbows and their bolts aren't extremely common until you get to the Vaults branch.

Name Dam Hit Speed Skill One-handed min. size Two-handed min. size Missile Prob Notes
Hand crossbow 12 +5 15 Crossbows Little Little Bolt 10
Arbalest 18 +2 19 Crossbows - Little Bolt 10
Triple crossbow 22 0 23 Crossbows - Little Bolt 2


Ranged weapon launchers and thrown ammunition are capable of carrying a selection of brands which can greatly increase your lethality when used correctly:

Launcher Brands

Throwing Weapon Brands

Retired Weapons

Over the years, a few ranged weapons have been retired or reworked into new forms:

See also


  • In 0.27, monsters with ranged attacks got unlimited ammunition (except nets). Throwing ammo was reduced as a result.
  • In 0.24, throwing weapons were streamlined. Darts replaced blowguns/needles, boomerangs replaced tomahawks and brands were simplified.
  • Prior to 0.18, each weapon had a strength weight percentage that determined how the weapon would benefit from your strength and dexterity. Additionally, more types of ammunition could have brands of their own.
  • Prior to 0.15, ranged combat was significantly more complicated; among other differences, min delay was heavily influenced by your stats. Additionally, 0.15 introduced greatslings (later called fustibali), hand crossbows, and triple crossbows, and removed the old version of darts.
  • Prior to 0.14, daggers, spears, hand axes, and clubs could be thrown.
  • Prior to 0.11, ammunition could have its own enchantment bonuses.
  • Prior to 0.6, darts could be fired from an early version of hand crossbows instead of being thrown by hand.