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Version 0.31: This article is up to date for the latest stable release of Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup.
Name Arbalest
Skill Crossbows
Damage 16
Accuracy -2
Base delay (%) 19 (190%)
Min delay 10 at 18 skill
Hands 2H
Size Medium
Ranged? Yes
A large piece of machinery used for firing bolts, braced with steel and cranked with a windlass. It takes some time to load and fire.

"(TELL enters with his crossbow)
My precious jewel now, -my chiefest treasure-
A mark I'll set thee, which the cry of grief
Could never penetrate,-but thou shalt pierce it-
And thou, my trusty bowstring, that so oft
For sport hath served me faithfully and well
Desert me not in this dread hour of need,-
Only be true this once, my own good cord,
That hast so often wing'd the biting shaft:-
For shouldst thou fly successless from my hand,
I have no second to send after thee."

-Friedrich Schiller, _Wilhelm Tell_, IV, iii. 1804.
trans. Sir Theodore Martin, 1898.

This weapon falls into the 'Ranged Weapons' category. It is a two-handed weapon.

Arbalests are moderately powerful ranged weapons. They have a high damage per hit, but fire slowly, with a mindelay of 1.0 turn (rather than 0.7 turn of most weapons).


Arbalests are a mid-game ranged weapon. They are occasionally found on orcs and naga sharpshooters, and often found on yaktaurs inside the Vaults.

Longbows, due to their faster fire rate, will generally beat arbalests for damage per turn. If you want to go heavier, triple crossbows are your end goal. If you want more defenses, hand cannons are just as strong, but allow the use of a shield.

Mundane Arbalest1.png
Magical Arbalest2.png
Artifact Arbalest3.png
Damnation Urand damnation.png


Axes BattleaxeBroad axeExecutioner's axeHand axeWar axe
Maces & Flails ClubDemon whipDire flailEveningstarFlailGiant clubGiant spiked clubGreat maceMace (Hammer) • MorningstarSacred scourgeWhip
Long Blades Demon bladeDouble swordEudemon bladeFalchionGreat swordLong swordScimitarTriple sword
Polearms BardicheDemon tridentGlaiveHalberd (Scythe) • SpearTridentTrishula
Ranged Weapons ArbalestHand cannonLongbowOrcbowShortbowSlingTriple crossbow
Short Blades DaggerQuick bladeRapierShort sword
Staves LajatangMagical staffQuarterstaff
Throwing BoomerangDartJavelinLarge rockStoneThrowing net