Spellbooks are the main source of spells in Elona. Reading a spellbook checks the difficulty of the book against your literacy skill (which can temporarily be boosted by the Divine Wisdom spell or a scroll of knowledge). If the check succeeds, you increase your spell stock in the spell, with the increase being boosted by your memorization skill and lowered by the amount of stock you already have. If the check fails it may cause the player to randomly teleport, to lose MP and possibly die as a result of magic reaction, or to summon monsters. Because of the possibility of summoning monsters, it is recommended that you read difficult spellbooks in the wilderness, a portable shelter or the Puppy Cave, rather than in a town or your home (though in Elona+ the monsters will eventually disappear from towns (but still remain in your home)). Further, since draining your MP to negative numbers causes damage, it is recommended that when reading difficult spellbooks that you est until your MP is full.
All spellbooks have a number after them that tells the maximum times the spellbook may be read; when the number reaches zero, the spellbook falls apart. This number can only be seen after the spellbook has been identified. The number can be increased by using a scroll of recharge or the Fill Charge on the spellbook. However, this has the chance of exploding the spellbook.
If you've joined the Mages' Guild then you can "reserve" any book which you've successfully read at a special shop, which will cause that shop to stock multiples of the reserved spellbook.
Use of spellbook reading failureEdit
It should be noted that the third result of reading spellbooks may be used in both good and bad ways. Because artifacts have a chance to drop if the NPC carrying them dies, spellbook failures may be use to intentionally kill high level NPCs to retrieve their artifacts. Any players interested in attempting this should however be warned that NPCs, notably adventurers, are surprisingly more powerful than they should be. Any damage the player causes through spellbooks will be automatically repaired in a few days time, as well as any NPCs killed respawning. The worse that can happen to the player by doing this is dying to the monsters and not being able to return to town for a few days if the monsters are not killed. Note that monsters that can split or summon other monsters can be especially dangerous, as they can overwhelm the NPCs more easily and possibly make part of the city unusable. It is recommended to do this in a well-guarded city such as Palmia, where guards can kill the monsters more easily if they go out of control.
List of SpellbooksEdit
Spellbook listing by a rough order of difficulty in reading them. This list is not complete. The number after them is the number of turns it takes to read the spellbook.
The number of turns it takes to read a spellbook is dependent on your literacy skill and maybe other things. Books that take about 10 turns or less are books your character can comfortably read with few failures. Books that take over 12 will begin to have high failure rates. You can record the number of turns by looking at your character sheet before and after reading a book.
Literacy skill gained seems to depend only on number of turns; blessed books read in the same amount of time.
Note: Some spellbooks have names different than the spells they grant upon reading; I have listed some of the spell names next to their corresponding spellbooks. (This list is incomplete; please verify, add, or correct as needed.)
- 4-Dimensional Pocket
- Holy shield
- Magic arrow [gives Magic Dart spell]
- Minor teleportation [gives Short Teleport spell]
- Make door [gives Door Creation spell]
- Darkness arrow [gives Dark Eye spell]
- Lightning bolt
- Fire bolt
- Ice bolt
- Detect objects [gives Sense Object spell]
- Wall creation
- Summon monster
- Weakness [gives Mist of Frailness spell]
- Cure critical
- Knowledge [gives Divine Wisdom spell]
- Illusion eye
- Cure critical wound [gives Heal Critical spell]
- Nether eye [gives Nether Arrow spell]
- Healing hands
- Nerve eye [gives Nerve Arrow spell]
- Holy light
- Healing hand
- Holy Veil
- Fire ball
- Ice ball
- Acid ground
- Magic mapping
- Acid ground
- Healing rain
- Holy rain
- Illusion beam [gives Mind Bolt spell]
- Darkness beam [gives Darkness Bolt spell]
- Chaos eye
- Weaken resistance
- Fire wall
- Sound ball [gives Raging Roar]
- Cure <Eris>
- Elemental Scar
- Magic laser [gives Crystal Spear spell]
- Heal minor wound (gives Heal Light)
Spellbooks and ancient books in Elona+Edit
The reading difficulty of ancient books is 20 + 10GP + 20GP2, where GP is the guild points that it yields in the mages' guild quest. A second Apocalypse ancient book was added in Elona+ ('True Apocalypse'), but it is unfortunately named the same as the 15-point book.
If the book is blessed, then difficulty = base difficulty / 1.2
If cursed, then it is base difficulty * 1.5
When reading a book, it rolls (Literacy sum * 4 + 250) against (difficulty + 1) to check if the player has enough literacy to read the book. (Please confirm?)
If the roll is lost, then you have a 1/7 chance to fail during each reading turn. Hence, a book will require (difficulty - 250)/4 literacy to read at a 100% chance..
If the player passes the 1/7 test, but 10 * literacy < difficulty, then it rolls
(literacy * 10 + 1) against (difficulty + 1) to try to fail the reading attempt again.
And if the above test still didn't fail, the game will perform two more similar checks if you have 20 times or 30 times less literacy than the difficulty of the book.
Turns to read is base difficulty / ( literacy + 2 ) + 1
If in a reading party, then turns to read is 1.5 * [ base difficulty / (literacy + 2 ) + 1 ] + 5. In other words, it takes 1.5 times as many turns +5.
Note that turns to read is calculated with base difficulty, and not with difficulty, so cursed and blessed books will read in the same number of turns, as stated above.
Base reading difficulty of spellbooks is also the cast difficulty of their respective spells, except for Wish and Harvest, which adds additional casting difficulty based on their spell levels. See the Elona+ Spells (Technical) page for details.