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Version 0.30: This article may not be up to date for the latest stable release of Crawl.
It is very cumbersome, thus slowing your movement.

Ponderousness is an ego which raises your movement delay by +0.1 decaAut (most species have 1.0 by default).

It is very occasionally found on chain mail and plate armour, where it will be accompanied by a high enchantment to make the item not purely bad. The Hat of Pondering and the Black Knight's barding also have the ponderousness ego, but have a number of other properties to compensate.


Generally, an armour of ponderousness is not worth wearing. For a regular speed character, ponderousness means that enemies like ogres and hydras will outrun you. Having a few extra AC often isn't worth the consumables you'll need to escape these situations. However, ponderousness armour can have some merit.

  • In the early-game, having another +10 AC can really help with overall combat. As attacks of opportunity prevent you from easily resetting fights, being able to win fights is important.
  • In the 4 Lair branches (Spider / Snake, Swamp / Shoals), most enemies are either faster or slower than the average species. Ponderous doesn't change that fact - moving 10% slower won't make you slower than a naga, and moving 10% faster won't help you outrun a redback.

For fast / slow characters, the slower movement is less impactful. Spriggans remain faster than average (though are now slower than hasted creatures), while Barachim, Nagas, and Cheibriados worshippers are still slower than usual. However, even a worshipper of Cheibriados will eventually prefer some sort of resistance in the body armour slot.

Remember that any time you take an action above 1.0 decaAut, you risk normal speed enemies getting a double-turn on you. Moving once with ponderousness can mean getting 2 crystal spears in the face.


  • Prior to 0.30, this ego could not appear on chain mail.
  • Prior to 0.14, the movement delay penalty was 2.
  • Prior to 0.10, Cheibriados granted an ability to convert any piece of armour into an artefact, maintaining all its former properties but adding ponderousness. In exchange, Cheibriados would greatly increase your stats and provide some resistances, not to mention making the armour immune to acidic corrosion (as well as to further attempts to enchant it!).