Hit dice

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

"HD" redirects here. For the obsolete player race, see Hill Dwarf

Hit dice (HD) is roughly equivalent to a monster's experience level; it is not the same as hit points.

Useful Info

Each monster has a set HD value. It has an effect on the following:

  • Monster accuracy. Melee to-hit equals 18 + HD * 1.5, or 18 + HD * 2.5 with the Fighter flag. Beam to-hit is 12 * HD.
  • Monster spell power. The more HD, the stronger the spell. The exact effect depends on the spell in question.
  • Some attack flavours are modified by HD. For example, the "cold" attack flavour deals more damage if the attacker has more HD.
  • Certain player effects, like Dazzling Flash, Mephitic Cloud, and atropa / datura darts, check the target's HD directly. The way HD is checked depends on the effect itself.

Maximum HP and willpower are also determined by HD in an indirect way. Monsters have a predefined HP/will value, independent from their HD (e.g. two monsters with the same HD can have different will). However, lowering HD will lower a monster's HP/will, while increasing HD has the opposite effect.

Some examples: hobgoblins and most other D:1 monsters have 1 HD, ogres have 5, ancient liches have 27. Cerebov only has 21, despite its fearsome spells. The highest-HD monsters are orbs of fire, at 30: this is why they deal so much damage with their spells.


The player can temporarily reduce monsters' HD by draining them (weapons of draining, certain other negative energy-based attacks), or by malmutating them (such as from Irradiate).

For Summonings spells, you can increase HD of your summons by increasing spell power.