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Version 0.30: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.
Agony.png Agony
Level 5
School1 Necromancy
Source(s) Book of Necromancy
Book of the Senses
Casting noise 4
Spell noise 0
Power Cap 100
Range 1
Hated By Elyvilon
The Shining One
Flags Wl check, Dir or target, Needs tracer, Not self
Cuts the health of an adjacent creature in half. This damage is never directly lethal.

“Unbearable, isn't it? The suffering of strangers, the agony of friends. There
is a secret song at the center of the world, Joey, and its sound is like
razors through flesh.”
-Pinhead, _Hellraiser 3: Hell on Earth_. 1992.

Agony is a level 5 Necromancy spell which functions as torment against a single, adjacent target. If it succeeds against the target's willpower, it cuts their HP by half, never lethal. Like torment, negative energy resistance provides protection (players: -5% HP per rN+, monsters: having any rN+ gives total immunity).

Agony has an enchantment power multiplier of x5, which makes it much harder to resist than the usual hex.


Agony deals considerable damage. It isn't directly lethal, but it can quickly soften up powerful, uninjured targets like hydras or giants.

However, it can only be used in melee range. The caster must be able to survive a few turns at close range to take full advantage of it. Don't skimp on the evasion, and prepare a safe line of retreat if things go sour. If you haven't branched into other magic schools, Borgnjor's Vile Clutch is a good choice for either an escape tool or a finishing blow.

Monster Version

Most monsters have access to a ranged version of Agony (named, fittingly enough, Agony Range) that can affect any target within the caster's LOS. See that page for details.

The following monster can cast the regular, 1-tile version of Agony:


  • Prior to 0.25, this spell was identical to Agony Range (i.e, it had LOS range).