Throwing net

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Version 0.26: This article may not be up to date for the latest stable release of Crawl.
Name Throwing net
Launcher throwing
Base damage 0
A mesh of ropes knotted together with weights around the edge. Originally used by hunters to entangle and entrap prey, it soon found obvious application in battle and gladiatorial arenas. Struggling victims can eventually destroy the net and break free, if they live long enough.

"The look of a scared thing
Sitting in a net!"

-Edna St. Vincent Millay, "When the Year Grows Old". 1917.

Throwing nets are Throwing weapons which deal no damage directly, but which can be used to temporarily disable foes and render them susceptible to powerful stabbing attacks. Anything that fails to evade a throwing net becomes entangled and loses the ability to move or make most attacks (spellcasting is unaffected, but all other attacks automatically fail). Because stabbing attacks can deal phenomenal amounts of damage, throwing nets can be useful for quickly subduing even powerful uniques in a few turns. This is usually done from fairly close range, giving you time to reach the enemy in melee and finish them off before they escape. Alternatively, you can net an opponent at the edge of your line of sight that you don't want to deal with, then walk away. This allows you to escape from fast opponents that could normally catch up to you. Be aware that throwing nets are ineffective against monsters that are giant-size or larger or insubstantial monsters.

A throwing net's effect lasts until the victim manages to destroy the net. Each time the victim is prevented from acting due to the net, it attempts to escape. When the entangled monster escapes or dies, there is a chance that the throwing net will mulch.

Gladiators begin play with a stack of throwing nets, and they can be found as random loot throughout the Dungeon. Hunters and Arcane Marksmen can start with 2 nets and throwing items. Also, enemy gnolls and merfolk occasionally generate with throwing nets, though they usually use them as soon as you enter their line of sight, giving you plenty of time to escape.

Throwing net
Throwing net.png


  • Prior to 0.19, the mechanics of escaping nets were more complicated. A creature caught in a net could escape it by either ripping the net or slipping out of it. Being small, evasive and dexterous (player only) made slipping out of nets more likely. On the other hand, big, strong, and berserking creatures were more likely to rip the net. Nearby creatures were adding tension, which sped up both escaping and destroying nets for the player. Cutting weapons, especially flaming and vorpal ones, as well as claws, were good for shredding nets. Also, confused creatures, including the player, had a chance to struggle in a net without any result.
  • Prior to 0.15, any flying creature had an additional 66.6% chance to avoid any nets thrown at it, separate from the normal miss chance.
  • Prior to 0.14, flying opponents were completely immune to throwing nets, and instead of simply mulching, throwing nets would go through an elaborate deterioration process before finally falling apart entirely. Also, only medium or larger characters were able to use them.
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Short Blades DaggerQuick bladeRapierShort sword
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Throwing BoomerangDartJavelinLarge rockStoneThrowing net