Orb of Zot

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Version 0.30: This article may not be up to date for the latest stable release of Crawl.

This page is about the object of your quest. For the type of equippable item, see orb.

Once you have escaped to the surface with this invaluable artefact, your quest is complete.

Orb of Zot.png The Orb of Zot is located in a vault on Zot:5, the deepest floor of the Realm of Zot, guarded by terrible monsters (including Orb Guardians and orbs of fire) and surrounded by indestructible walls. Acquiring the Orb and escaping back to the surface is the final step to win the game. Doing so without fighting your way past its guardians is very difficult, as the entire Realm of Zot impedes teleportation.

The Orb actively resists the Apportation spell; 1 out of every 3 attempts will fail, and each attempt will create a loud noise.

Picking up or successfully apporting the Orb (even if you haven't picked it up) means all Pandemonium breaks loose.


Once the Orb is in your possession, you merely have to carry it out of the Dungeon to win the game. Unfortunately, once the Orb has been moved in any way, the various entities guarding it are alerted to your theft and will begin chasing you down en masse; this part of the game is often referred to as the orb run. During the orb run, numerous terrible things happen:

  • The Translocation-hampering effects you've experienced throughout the Realm of Zot become permanent. Almost all teleports take 5 to 9 turns longer to kick in, and Passage of Golubria behaves more wildly. Teleport traps still function immediately, however, and can often be found near the Orb.
  • The Orb itself emits strange energy, reducing your stealth.

Monster Spawns

All floors throughout the entire Dungeon will also begin spawning a wide variety of monsters. Most of these will generate just beyond your line of sight. Every 5 turns, there is a 28% chance to create a monster; for followers of Cheibriados the chance is halved. The list of monsters are below: [1]

These monster spawns are suppressed in the Abyss.

In addition, the Zot clock stops permanently once you pick up the Orb.


Your goal after picking up the Orb is to get out of the Dungeon as quickly as possible. Use auto-travel (Shift + G) to make the game calculate the fastest route out possible; picking D:0 as your destination plots a course straight for the exit. The only enemies that matter once you have the Orb are the ones that get in your way. Ignore those who can't catch up or seriously damage you. If there are monsters in the way, press x then < to find the physically closest upstair.

Don't be afraid to use up your consumable items at this point. Scrolls of blinking, potions of haste, scrolls of teleportation, and all manner of restoratives should be used as needed to clear a path to the exit as quickly as possible. If you've got a wand of digging, feel free to create impromptu tunnels to get away from nasty opponents or clear up a floor even faster. If you're feeling paranoid (and why shouldn't you be?), consider creating those pathways before you grab the Orb.

You don't need to pick up the Orb of Zot as soon as you reach it. If you want a higher score, you should clear out the extended end-game and collect as many of the 15 runes as you can before beginning the ascent. But are you finding Dungeon Crawl too easy? For an added challenge, try avoiding the Tomb, Pandemonium, or the branches of Hell until you're already on your Orb run.

Tips & Tricks

  • Quaffing a potion of haste and casting Swiftness lets you outrun very fast threats, but only for a short stretch. Use this to get that one space of distance between you and your pursuers while running towards the stairs.
  • Summoning a minion may cause your pursuer to spend a turn killing it. Also this may give you just the one space distance you need to leave the level without company. Even Call Imp can do the trick.
  • Even with the delay on teleportation, it's worth considering as an escape option. If you find yourself cornered by enemies or a long way away from the next staircase up, activate a teleport and hold out until it kicks in. Teleport traps still function instantly, by the way.
    • Since the Orb's location is always far away from any staircases, a teleport is likely to send you closer. You can use a scroll of teleportation, wait 8 turns, and then pick it up. And, as mentioned, you can use a nearby teleport trap to the same effect.
  • The Abyss is unique in that its monster generation rate and makeup are unaffected once you pick up the Orb. If you're cornered and could use a chance to heal up in (relative) safety, zipping off to the Abyss will give you the time you need. Of course, unless you're a Lugonu follower, convenient access to the Abyss is rarely available... but wielding and unwielding a distortion weapon may send you there in a pinch (or teleport you next to monsters!).
  • Using Apportation on the Orb of Zot WILL start the Orb run. Previously it was advisable to apport the orb to the nearest stairs, but now using Apportation will begin the ascension. Plan accordingly.

Zot Defence

In the Zot Defence mini-game, you are instead charged with guarding the Orb from wave after wave of random enemies. Only after you've fought off enough enemies to earn 15 runes are you allowed to grab the Orb and escape. This minigame was removed from offical builds from 0.16.


The Orb's origin
The Orb of Zot originally comes from an old text-based DOS game called The Wizard's Castle, in which the player was an adventurer on a quest to retrieve it, much as in Dungeon Crawl.


  • Prior to 0.28, the Orb caused magic contamination to last longer. Also, non-Zot Orbs were introduced in this version.
  • Prior to 0.26, scrolls of blinking and the removed Controlled Blink spell behaved like a random blink when under the influence of Zot. Passage of Golubria was also totally uncastable.
  • Prior to 0.23, monsters spawned more frequently, but were weaker, with reduced chances for threatening monsters and a chance for the occasional Tier-5 demon.
  • Prior to 0.17, the orb run only started when you had physically picked up the orb -- Apportation was only difficult, and generated noise. Also, controlled blinks were not made random.
  • Zot Defense was removed from official builds starting in 0.16.
  • Prior to 0.14, grabbing the Orb sealed the portals to Abyss/Pan/Hell, and it counted as an inventory item.
  • In 0.13, the monsters you faced while ascending were made deadlier (fewer weak demons, plus the addition of Orb Guardians).
  • Prior to 0.13, possession of the Orb caused a teleportation delay of 5-9 turns only 50% of the time.
  • Prior to 0.12, the player could drop the Orb after it had been picked up. Also, the Apportation failure rate was only 1 in every 6 attempts.
  • Prior to 0.10, the Orb did not have any penalties to stealth or magic contamination.
  • Prior to 0.9, the orb didn't apply -cTele while it was in your possession, and instead removed -cTele from Zot:5. Also, the Orb's weight was only 30 aum.
  • Prior to 0.8, the Orb wouldn't resist Apportation attempts.