Auxiliary attack

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Version 0.31: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.

Auxiliary attacks (aux attacks) are additional attacks that you can perform in melee combat.

Useful Info

Whenever you make a melee attack, you have a chance to perform an auxiliary attack, taking no time in the process. If your character has multiple valid attacks, each has a separate chance to trigger.

Aux attacks have a base damage dependent on the aux attack and its relevant mutations; e.g. higher levels of Talons increases kick damage. They are affected by strength, slaying and the Might effect as normal. Fighting affects aux attacks, but at a reduced effectiveness.[1] They do not scale with weapon damage (though swinging faster means you perform aux attacks more often). Other than the "offhand punch" or equivalent, Unarmed Combat skill has no influence on them.

Reaching weapons don't make aux attacks when attacking from a distance. When cleaving, you only make aux attacks on the main target. Quick blades make 2 sets of aux attacks per action, but Gyre and Gimble still only make 2 sets of aux attacks (despite attacking four times).

Chance to Trigger

In order to make an auxiliary attack, you must succeed 2 separate chances at the same time:

1. A chance based on XL, (30 + XL) / 59.[2] This is equal to to 52.5% at XL 1, and 96.6% at XL 27. A few attacks ignore this check:
  • Constriction, Demonic Touch, and Maw Form bite completely ignore this check.
  • The off-hand punch replaces it with chance = (3 + UC_skill) / 60 .[3] That's 5% at 0 skill, and 50% at 27 skill.
2. A % chance based on the auxiliary attack itself. For example, Bite has a 40% chance to pass only if the XL-based check above succeeds. See below for a list of attacks and their chances of success.

In addition, the body part related to the attack must be free. You must have your offhand free (no shield or two-handed weapon) to make an offhand punch, you cannot be wearing boots to kick with Talons, and so on.

List of Auxiliary Attacks

Condition Damage Chance Special
Offhand Punch 5 + UC/2 100% Negated by wielding a shield / two-handed weapon, or being in Flux / Serpent Form
Offhand Punch w/ Claws {5 + UC/2} + 1d3 × (Claws ranks) 100% Also negated by Blade Hands or by wearing gloves
Offhand Punch w/ Blade Hands {5 + UC/2} + 6 100% Negates claws
Headbutt 5 + 3 × (Horns ranks) 66% Minotaurs occasionally counter enemy attacks that miss with this
Peck 6 66% -
Kick w/ Hooves 5 + (5/3) × (Hooves ranks) 100% -
Kick w/ Talons 6 + (Talons ranks) 100% Wearing boots negates this
Tail Slap 6 50% Grey Draconians in deep water can push back their enemies
Tail Slap w/ Armoured Tail 10 50% -
Tail Slap w/ Stinger {6 or 10} + (2 * Stinger ranks) - 1 50% Venom. 6 base damage, or 10 w. Armoured Tail
Bite w/ Fangs 2 × (Fangs ranks) + 1 40% Bloodless Vampires have a vampiric bite
Bite w/ Acidic Bite {2 × (Fangs ranks) + 1} + 4 + 2d4 acid splash 40% Corrosion
Bite w/ Antimagic Bite {2 × (Fangs ranks) + 1} + XL/3 100% Antimagic, Vine Stalker only
Pseudopods 4 × (Pseudopods rank) 66% -
Tentacle Spike 5 + (Tentacle Spike rank) 100% -
Tentacle Slap 5 + UC/2 100% Octopodes' equivalent to the offhand punch (can be done even if offhand is occupied)
Tentacles (squeeze) 12 66% -
Constriction 0 100% Constriction
Touch w/ Demonic touch 6 + 4 × (Demonic Touch ranks) 40% Negated by wielding a shield / two-handed weapon. At three ranks, applies Vulnerability. Deals a minimum of 6 damage and does not benefit from Str, slay, or any skill or buff. Ignores AC.


  • In 0.32, offhand punches will be limited to UC attacks only.
  • Prior to 0.28, aux attacks other than the offhand punch required an initial pass of 1 + str + dex > 1d50, and the offhand punch required to pass all three of UC >= 1d20, 2 >= 1dAdjusted Body Armour Penalty, and a 33% chance. Octopodes also had an extra chance to do an offhand tentacle slap. Also, Bite had an extra +1 damage for every 5 STR beyond 10.
  • Prior to 0.17, headbutts had a chance to stun, hooves partially bypassed AC, and claws caused bleeding.
  • In earlier versions of Crawl, all auxiliary attacks were more effective if you had a high Unarmed Combat skill, making it a valuable skill for any character designed for melee combat.


  1. For auxiliary attacks, Fighting skill multiplies damage by 1 + uniform(Fighting)/40, where uniform(x) = 1d(x+1)-1, or a roll from 0 to x, inclusive; see (0.31.0)
  2. (0.31.0)
  3. (0.31.0)