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Fighting enemies takes up the majority of a players time while playing Heroes of Hammerwatch, and as such there are many aspects to it one must become familiar with in order to become adept at progressing through floors with efficiency and picking the most effective items.


Upgrades and items have two main ways of enhancing your damage: base damage (Attack/Skill Effects) and power scaling (Attack/Skill Power, bonus damage%, multipliers).

To calculate primary attack damage, convert percentages to decimal then use the following:

(phys_base + phys_damage_add) * (1 + (0.02 * AP)) * MULTIPLIER * DMG_INCREASE * Enemy_Physical_Reduction +
(mage_base + mage_damage_add) * (1 + (0.02 * AP)) * MULTIPLIER * DMG_INCREASE * Enemy_Magical_Reduction

To do the same for skill damage, change AP to SP and swap in the base damage for the skill and other effects that apply to skills for the ones that apply for primary.

Enemy defenses
Enemy Physical reduction: 1/(1 + (enemy_base_armor*(1-physical_pierce)/50)
Enemy Magical reduction: 1/(1 + (enemy_base_resistance*(1-magical_pierce)/50)
Pierce % is calculated by multiplying the amounts not pierced by each other, then subtracting that value from 1. ex: 2 20% pierce = 0.8*0.8 = 0.64 = 36% pierce.
Shieldbreaker and Magebane count as 75% pierce when their effect is active.
  • DMG_INCREASE = ∑ ∀ +damage% and damage% increase from crits.
  • MULTIPLIER = Incredible Strength(2x) * Corrupted(2x) * Talisman of Decay (1.2x) * Gladiator's Crippling Net (variable). Corrupted is from the Spreading Corruption rare item from the Pyramid of Prophecy DLC.
∑ is the symbol for adding one after another to a total sum
∀ means "for all", "for each" or "for any"

Damage Calculator

Damage Types

Items that increase base damage (physical or magical), attack power, or mentions that it is applied to primary attacks exclusively increase the strength of your primary attack.

Items that increase skill power, skill crit chance, skill crit multiplier increase the damage of EVERY OTHER damage source. This will even enhance the base damage of reflected damage or passives such as Paladin Juggernaut and Priest Celestial Orbs.

Armor penetration and magic penetration is specific to the damage type of your skill or primary attack. Note that hybrid damage does half physical and half magical damage so primaries and skills will only receive 50% effective benefit out of any penetration items/buffs.


The player has a % chance to do a critical hit on any given attack. The chance and amount depends on the item obtained, what drinks were taken from the Tavern, and what upgrades the player has gotten in town.
Each critical chance instance is rolled separately. For example a Heartseeker(12.5%) and an Assassin's Dagger(7.5%) do not make a 20% crit chance. Instead, there is one 12.5% roll for a crit and regardless of its outcome, another 7.5% crit roll is made. That means there's a 19.05% chance for at least 1 crit on any given hit, and about a 1% chance for a "double crit," in which the damage is multiplied by the Critical Damage modifier twice.
Equation : [DMG * (Crit_multiplier * crits)].
Critical damage is a general damage modifier added onto other damage modifiers, and as such does not multiply its own damage. The player can still hit well over 10K damage with multiple crit hits on a single attack, thus crits are a significant source of DPS so items and drinks that improve the damage or chance of crits are sought after in most runs.

A positive Luck value will increase the chance of getting a critical hit.

Status Effects

There are many different status effects the player and enemies can encounter in HoH. They are applied by different enemies and weapons, traps and buffs, and can help or hinder the player depending who is getting which effects applied to them.

Act bosses are immune to these status effects: Armor break, Resistance break, confusion, slowness and frozen, corruption, and bleeding(?).

Damage over time effects (DoTs) will hit the player 5 times before going away. (10 if using the Mind Control drink)

Poison is the first status effect you will encounter, as the Maggots in Act 1 will apply it to the player when they are hit with their projectile. Things afflicted with the poison effect will have their movement slowed by 50%(?), including immune enemies.
Poison deals 4 magical damage to the player, and the poisoned arrow traps in hallways deal 8 magical damage.
Enemies the player poisons take 16 magical damage, however a few Undead and many Constructs are immune to poison damage.
Burn damage is applied by many traps throughout the game and various late game enemies.
Burn damage deals 5 magical damage to the player, and Wisps, the Watcher's orbs, and all traps on Act 5 deal 10 magical damage.
Enemies the player ignites take 4 magical damage, however no enemy is immune except for Red Wisps.
Stunned enemies are unable to move or attack while affected.
The Thief's Smoke Bomb skill, the Blackjack item apply stun, and enemies that hit the player while under the slowness inflicted by Meduas's Charm are stunned for 6 seconds. Constructs and ghosts are immune to this status.
Thundersnow's stomp will stun the player for half a second on NG+++.
Disarmed enemies are unable to attack the player while affected, but are still able to move.
The Gladiator's Net, Gladiator's Crippling Net, and Defender's Halberd apply disarm to enemies. Constructs are immune.
Bloodlust is an effect given to enemies by bannermen and banners of the same name. Affected enemies are turned red and gain a circle around their feet. Affected enemies are 50%(?) faster and increases their damage by 100% (doubling it).
Protection is an effect given to enemies by bannermen and banners of the same name. Affected enemies are turned gray and have a square under them. While affected they take 50% less damage. Fallen Priest's also give protection to nearby enemies.
Confusion will reverse the players aim and movement directions, completely inverting the controls. This effect lasts varying amounts of time depending on the source.
The player can make themselves immune to confusion by drinking the Mind Control drink, however other status effects last twice as long.
Enemies that find themselves confused will wander around in snaking lines and aim erratically.
Slowness will reduce the affected individual's movement speed by 50%. Enemies that apply slowness are Fallen Priests, Frost Liches, and the poison effect.
The player can become immune to slowness by obtaining the Boots of Freedom.
Darkness will make the player's screen almost entirely black for a few seconds. The only part still visible is the nearest 3 tiles in any direction. The map overlay is also obscured by darkness, but can allow the player to navigate the floor while being "blind".
Enemies that apply darkness are the Arch Liches when the player steps on their diamonds they place on the ground and the magenta tile obstacles found on Act 5.
Stab in the Dark gives the player 1.5 seconds of darkness every time they use their primary attack, but gives a 50% primary crit chance.
Mana drain
The player loses 2.5%(?) of their maximum mana every half second they have this effect.
Enemies that apply mana drain are the the Arch Lich's placed diamonds, Nerys, and the magenta tile obstacles in Act 5. This effect lasts as long as the player has the darkness effect from the same sources. Stab in the dark does not apply this effect.
The player loses 5% of their current HP every time they move 1 tile while under this effect.
Bleeding is applied by the Vampire Lord's blood wave attack and the black orbs from NerysPoP.png.
Bleeding applied by the player works on enemies the same way, which means they need to move to take damage.
The player can bleed the enemies by using the Duelist's Edge or by taking the rare Tavern drink "Spilled Blood".
Armor break
Armor break reduces the affected target's armor by 75%.
The Shieldbreaker item, the mummy minibosses in act 2 of the pyramid, and Nerys's arena mist apply this effect.
Thundersnow has a similar effect on his stomp attack, where it will pierce 66% of the player's armor.
Resistance break
Resistance break reduces the affected target's resistance by 75%.
The Magebane item and Nerys's arena mist apply this effect.
Frozen is an effect that only the Sorcerer has. His Biting Chill skill allows slowed enemies to be frozen in place for a few seconds.
Afflicted enemies cannot move at all and are unable to attack while affected. This status can be activated 100% of the time when attacking with Comet, or a 7.5% chance on all primary attacks when using Ewran
Corruption is an effect that makes the afflicted target take double damage from all sources. It is exclusive to the Pyramid of Plunder DLC.
Enemies that apply corruption are Big Mummies when the player is nearby. (others?)
The player can apply curse to an enemy, one at a time, with the Spreading Corruption item. This effect is most useful for taking out minibosses or elite enemies that take many hits to kill.
Curse is an effect that the player carries with them while going through the Pyramid_of_Prophecy. The player has a % chance to miss any hit of damage that they would deal to enemies including reflect, DoTs, and bleed damage. Additionally, enemies have the same % chance to crit the player for (200+curse)% damage.
Enemies that apply curse are Big Mummies, Queen Iris, the sarcophagi when the player takes and item, the cursed circles that Big Mummies leave on NG+ or are just naturally on the ground, and cursed tiles in the pyramid itself.
To reduce player curse amounts, see here.
Vertigo is an effect applied only by the Mad Proposal tavern drink. It gives the player a massive +400% damage bonus but gives the player perpetual vertigo.
Vertigo will drift the player's aim and movement axis over time, but not at a constant rate or necessarily in the same direction as previous moments. Many players find this effect makes playing impossible and avoid the drink entirely because of it, but others say that it's worth the time to learn how to deal with it for the extra damage bonus.
Some players find that a controller allows for easier movement, as the player isn't restricted to just 8 movement directions like on a keyboard but it is not impossible to master vertigo with a keyboard.


The player is not without their methods of defense from all of these effects! The following is a breakdown of the different ways the player can prevent their untimely deaths.

There are no immunity frames for the player, and they are able to take hits on back to back frames. If enemy projectiles stack on top of each other and hit the player all at once, it is possible to go from full health to 0 in a fraction of a second, leaving no time for the player to use a potion to save themselves.

Armor and Resistance

The player will gather armor and resistance while playing through items, character upgrades, class titles, or from temporary effects. Having a strong defense is critical the survival of the player and the completion of a run. If the player is unable to deal with the damage they are taking, the will inevitably fall.

Armor reduces the physical damage taken, resistance reduces the magical.
To calculate how much damage your armor and resistance is protecting you from, see the section below.

When the player's armor is negative(from NG+, drinks, or both), they will take increased damage from monsters. Unlike having a high positive defense, where new points do less and less for the player, increased negative defensive stats will always increase damage taken by 2% per negative amount.

Damage Reduction

The damage reduction formula from armor and resistance is very simple, both use the same equation of: 1 - 1/(1+defense/50)

Items, drinks, and traits that reduce damage taken are applied multiplicatively, one after another. So even if you have 80% damage reduction from armor, the Priest's Divine Protection (max 50% damage reduction when you have mana), and the Last Stand Tavern drink (-30% damage taken while standing still) you will still take 7% of the incoming damage. (100 * 0.2 * 0.5 * 0.7 = 7)


Damage that is stated as being blocked by an item will reduce that amount from the attack's base damage. This will significantly reduce the damage the player takes in higher NGs as an arrow that may do 100 damage normally because the player has a very negative armor value, could be turned into a 0 hit by the Reinforced Gloves as the arrows base damage may be 30, but because Reinforced Gloves block 50 damage, they will block the entirety of the base hit, leaving nothing to increase the damage of resulting in 0 damage being taken.

Blocking is the first thing that happens in the damage taken calculation.


Evasion is calculated similarly to crit chance, where each source of evasion is multiplicative. Each evasion source rolls independently to evade the attack and if any one of them rolls a positive outcome, all damage will be nullified. The player is also immune to all incoming damage for the "duration" of the evade, which is about 1/4 of a second or the duration of the character changing color and the sound effect indicating a successful evasion.

You can still reflect damage even when you evade an attack.

DoTs like poison and burn damage cannot be evaded. However the AoE effects like the Fallen Priest's Consecrated Ground and the Counselor of Wisdom's AoE can be evaded.
The fireballs and poison shots/arrows can be evaded, but you will still have a burning/poison DoT placed on you. Spikes can also be evaded.

The Thief class, as well as Trickster's Ensemble items and set, and The Groovy Ghost bonuses give evasion :

Source Evasion bonus % (0 luck) Evasion bonus % (10 luck)
Thief Sidestep 5 25 ~43,8
Trickster's Ensemble Sandals of Switft 3 ~5,9
Slippery Cloak 6 ~11,6
Rapier of Retaliation 5 ~9,8
Duelist's Edge 8 ~15,4
(3 items) 5 ~9,8
Trickster's Ensemble (Total combined) ~24,3 ~42,7
Trickster's Ensemble (Total combined, all attuned) ~39,7 ~63,6
Sidestep 5 and Trickster's Ensemble (Total combined) ~43,2 ~67,8
Sidestep 5 and Trickster's Ensemble (Total combined, all attuned) ~54,8 ~79,5
The Groovy Ghost 8 ~15,4
Sidestep 5 and The Groovy Ghost 31 ~52,4
Sidestep 5 and The Groovy Ghost and Trickster's Ensemble (Total combined) ~47,8 ~72,7
Sidestep 5 and The Groovy Ghost and Trickster's Ensemble (Total combined, all attuned) ~58,4 ~82,7


Health and Mana

There are many different ways to regain health and mana, most often innate regeneration is the largest portion in mid to late-game play.
Other methods of regaining health is to have lifesteal. The player can acquire lifesteal from items like the Bloodthirst Ring, from the Tier 3 Chapel blessing "Symbol of Essence", or the rare Tavern drink "Crimson Death".
The player can also gain mana by manasealing. They can acquire manasteal by playing as the Warlock and using Soul Consumption, which scales with primary damage. Mana can also be regained by taking the rare Tavern drink Kinetic Kiss.

However you can design a character to regain health from lifestealing instead with the or the Other methods of gaining health are via class traits or by getting healed by the Priest or Paladin.


Another way to regain health in a more instantaneous fashion would be to pick up food or mana crystals that appear on the floor.
There are 4 health pickups and 3 mana pickups. Their base recovery amounts are as follows:

  • Health
    • Apple: 10 HP
    • Orange: 25 HP
    • Cheese: 50 HP
    • Steak: 150 HP
    • PoP.pngMT.pngFish: 150 HP
  • Mana
    • Small crystal: 15 MP
    • Medium crystal: 45 MP
    • Mana Orb: 90 MP

All Pickups can have their values increased by the Apothecary, the Exceptional Consumables fortune, or by the Priest's Remedy skill.


The player is equipped with a potion that they can drink by pressing R or Spacebar by default. The potion will heal the player by an amount determined by their upgrades to it from the Apothecary.

The Apothecarys Implements set items will give the player extra bonuses when drinking a potion. A key effect is from the Mortar and Pestle which gives the player 50% more armor and resistance for 5 seconds after drinking a potion. The player can preempt a difficult fight by drinking a potion, even if it's not a dire situation, to gain a temporary defense bonus to aid survival during the fight.

If the player has beaten the Pyramid of Prophecy DLC campaign, they will be rewarded with the dijnn Nimbus residing within the player's potion. He will come out and help you fight dealing 60 magical damage and sticking around 30 seconds. The damage and duration increases by 10 and 2 respectively per NG level beaten on the pyramid.

The epic item Phoenix FeatherPoP.png will automatically use the player's potion should they take a hit that would kill them. This effect can occur as many times as the player has potion doses. Currently the player will still be killed if the damage taken exceeds the player's maximum health, but it is going to be changed to save the player from hits up to (player health pool + amount healed from potion) in a future update.

You can get up to 4 potions with the Apothecary. You can increase this number by 2 via using the Fountain's Bigger Bottle. Additionally, with the Apothecarys Implements set, you can increase by up to 3 (1 Apothecary's Flask, +1 if attuned, +1 when 2 pieces of Apothecarys Implements). Altogether you'd reach 9 potions.

Other Effects



Luck is a stat that was added in version 93 with the release of the Pyramid of Prophecy DLC, but is not exclusive to the DLC.

Luck is a valuable stat because it curves the rolls of all combat related chance effects. For example, it affects the activation chances for Evasion, Critical hits, Drinks, Items, Statues, Curses, and character skills like freezing an enemy with the Sorcerer. Positive and negative luck will choose the best or the worst roll as the outcome.

Prior to Version 99, the equation to calculate the new chance was as follows: Chance/0.95^Luck

In Version 99, luck got reworked to be more consistent, and uses this new formula: 1-(1-p)^(2^(luck/10)).

This means that every point of luck you obtain adds to an exponential increase in the number of re-rolls and therefore probability for an item or event to happen. Between 1-10 the percent increase per point of luck is between 7.2% to 13.4%. At 10 luck you have a 100% chance for 1 re-roll. Between 11-20 luck the percent increase per point of luck is between 14.4% to 26.8%. At 16 luck you have a 203% percent chance to re-roll meaning you are guaranteed 2 re-rolls with a 3% chance for a third. At 20 luck you have a 300% chance to re-roll meaning you will re-roll 3 times. You can see how luck affects probabilities using this link: Desmos HoH Luck Calculator

Luck currently has 7 sources; two negative and five positive.

Image Name Effect
The Safe Bet -5 Luck +20 Armor & Resistance
It's Not Your Lucky Day -3 Luck
It's Your Lucky Day +2 Luck
Lucky Charm +1 Luck +10% Gold Gain
Lucky Horseshoe +2 Luck +0.1 Movement Speed
Lucky Hat +4 Luck
Fortuitous Events +5 Luck

If you have every positive boost and all items are attuned, you will have 21 luck. 16, all but the monolith buff, is a more reasonable number to expect to obtain on any given run.

The chart to the right displays selected proc chances and how each luck value affect them.


The orb after beating a Red Room

Combo can be unlocked by picking up the combo sphere in your first Red Room which can be found after defeating the first boss. Combo is unlocked for all characters permanently once the orb is picked up.

A player gets in combo by killing 10 enemies in quick succession (before the magenta bar above the player or to the right of the HP/MP bars on the bottom left depletes). The combo will be maintained for as long as you keep rapidly killing enemies or as long as items activating combo keep procing like the Tricksters set effect. During this time you will be surrounded by a magenta sphere denoting your combo state along with a sound being played.

Being in combo will give the player increased movement speed and allow them to do attacks that would otherwise pin them in place such as the Wizard's Meteor Shower or using a primary attack.

Items Enhancing Combo

The Spheres of Power item set gives buffs while in combo, adding to your HP and MP regen as well as a significant damage buff for the Sphere of Champions. The set bonus also radiates projectiles (6,10,14,18 depending on the nova tier) while you are in combo, increasing your damage output even further.

As an added set effect, having an odd number of combo spheres (excluding 1) will give the player a +25% damage boost while in combo. This caps at +100% damage.

Apothecary's Sphere will cause you to enter combo when using a potion.

Amulet of Vengeance gives a 10% chance to enter combo when taking damage.

The Trickster's Ensemble four piece set will put you in combo whenever an attack is dodged.

The Sphere of Heroes legendary will fire off a large projectile in the directing you're using your primary while in combo.

The rare drink Wicked Sickness will add 200% damage to your attacks while in combo, but give -50% damage while out of combo.

The rare drink Perpetual Desire puts the player into combo whenever they pick up a coin, ore, food, or mana crystal.

The rare drink Frenetic Eruption has a 5% chance to put the player in a combo state when they score a critical hit. However the player takes 20% more damage when out of combo.

NG+ Scaling

For every New Game Plus level the player embarks on, the game will put a bigger and bigger reduction on player's armor and resistance.
The formula for calculating the reduction is:

  • Armor: 60*NG_lvl0.77
  • Resistance: 50*NG_lvl0.77

NG+ also increases enemy stats as follows:

  • HP: (Base + (NG*15)) * (1 + (NG*2.75))
  • Armor/Resistance: (Base + (NG*5)) * ((NG+1)^(1/3))