Terraria – Luck Explained Guide (Journey’s End / Update 1.4)

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Confused or Outraged about the new Luck stat? I think I can explain it. I will advice you on how to avoid this and just play the game as normal.

Guide to Luck


Luck is a new hidded stat that affect drop rates and spawns. Unfortunately the only way to keep track of it is the Wizard.

This fact blew up hard. People are not happy, and then someone asked the Devs about it who gave a bad/funny answer which was obviously spread everywhere and just made everything worse.

So I’m here to try to clear some things up about Luck.

But overall, try to see this as a way to gain the system rather than a penalty. We know the facts, we can use it to our advantage now.

Note: So far I have no way to confirm this or anything like that since it is a hidden stat and therefore hard to keep track on.

Note: From 1.4.3 onwards, the Negative aspect of this was removed.

This makes the Luck system basically pointless now unfortunately as the only way to decrease your Luck now is to Kill Ladybugs or NPCs.

The Basics

Let’s start in the right end: Why should you care?

When an enemy is killed or an object is broken and that entity has a loot table, chances are calculated with a randomizer to see what you get.

Same with enemy spawn, time passes, something is supposed to spawn. Where and what is determined by chance.

And these things, the chance based things, is what Luck affects. Not the chance directly. But by adding a chance before the actual “roll” to either double or halve that “roll”.

What does it affect?

  • In most cases, the player performing the roll influences the luck.
  • All material drop rates from enemies.
  • All unique item drop rates from bosses (with some exceptions).
  • Players with high luck have better coin drop rates and chance of Coin Portals from Pots.
  • Chances of enemies dropping Hearts and Mana Stars. And dropping more than 1.
  • Chances of Food dropping from enemies and trees.
  • Chances of items appearing in the Travelling Merchant and Skeleton Merchant inventory (Based on the player with highest luck).
  • Chances of spawning special enemies and critters.
  • Chances of a Hardmode Dungeon enemy spawning outside their wall type.
  • Chances of the NPCs spawning underground (the ones you need to find).
  • Chances of Fairies spawning underground.
  • Damage calculations, positive luck generates 2 random numbers and pick the highest. Negative the opposite.

What is the Luck stat?

Luck is a hidden stat with a value between -1 and 1. This is also translated to a chance for things to be doubled or halved. Having a positive score of 1 means 100%, having a positive score of 0.2 = 20%, 0.6= 60% etc.

How to increase it:

  • Ladybug Luck -Touching Ladybug +0.2 (critters) effect lasts 12min.
  • Garden Gnomes +0.2 (assumed range is within 170 tiles).
  • Lantern Nights +0.3 (random “weather effect”).
  • Luck Potions, up to +0.3 (explained later).
  • Having the right Torch nearby, up to +0.2 (more on that later).

How to decrease it:

  • Bad Ladybug Luck – Killing Ladybugs -0.2 (critters) effect lasts 3min.
  • Having the wrong Torch nearby, up to -0.3 (more on that later).
  • Halfshell Cat: Killing guide also gives Ladybug Luck, killing other NPCs give Bad Ladybug Luck.

How does it work?

First of all, Luck is calculated from all the sources:

Ladybugs + Torch Score + Lucky Potions + Lantern Night + Garden Gnome = Luck Stat.

  • If the player’s luck is greater than 0, then there is a (100 * luck)% chance that the chance is doubled.
  • If the player’s luck is less than 0, then there is a (-100 * luck)% chance that the chance is halved.
  • If the player’s luck is 0, the chance will be the base value.


Before any of the “rolls” for the chance (in the previously mentioned affected things happen). You have a chance to double or halve that chance.


A Hook has a 4% chance to drop from Skeletons.

  • If your luck is above 0 it gives you that many percent of the chance being doubled.
  • So if your current luck value is 0.2 you get a 20% chance to double the 4% drop rate to 8%.
  • in 80% of the times, the drop rate is still 4%.

  • If your luck is below 0 it gives you that many percent of the chance being halved.
  • If you luck is -0.2 if gives you a 20% risk to halve the 4% chance to 2%.
  • In 80% of the times, the drop rate is still 4%.

The Big Torch Debate

The strangest thing to affect Luck is the type of torches placed near you (42 tiles) depending on the biome you are in (it’s the same range as a Water Candle/Peace Candle. So a bit larger than what you can see on your screen). More than one of the same type of Torch does not affect the score.

Note: From 1.4.3 onwards, thee Negative aspect of this was removed. Link[terraria.gamepedia.com]

This system adds a new layer of complexity

  • Torches give positive and negative “scores” depending on where you use them. These are two different values Positive Score and Negative Score.
  • The total scores in turn gives you + or – to your luck stat in the end.
  • If P score is equal to or greater than 1: +0.2 Luck.
  • If P score is between 0 and 1: +0.1 Luck.
  • If N score is between 0 and 1: -0.1 Luck.
  • If N Score is equal to or greater than 1 but less than 2 :, -0.2 Luck.
  • If N Score is equal to or greater than 2: -0.3 Luck.
  • Then the total of those two are added together.

  • So if you use the right Torch 1+ P Score, and a bad Torch 1+ N Score your total luck is 0.2 – 0.2 = +0 Luck.
  • If you only use the right Torch 1+ P Score, your total luck is 0.2 +0 = +0.2 Luck.

“Safe” Torches

In most cases, the torch thing is straight forward. Use the torch from the same biome for a positive buff but nowhere else. Ice Torch gives bonus in Snow Biome but penalty everywhere else. Craft Ice Torches by combining 3 Torches with any Ice Block. The materials needed for the biome torches are gained from that biome alone.

But here comes a list of all the Torches that doesn’t have a Negative Score:

  • Purple Torch
  • Yellow Torch
  • Blue Torch
  • Green Torch
  • Red Torch
  • Orange Torch
  • White Torch
  • Pink Torch
  • Bone Torch
  • Demon Torch
  • Rainbow Torch
  • Ultrabright Torch
  • Cursed Torch
  • Ichor Torch

Gem torches are mady by combining any gem with 10 torches. You can now also combine 1 gem with an acorn to make a Gem Tree that grows and drops gems.

  • Bone Torches are sold by the Skeleton Merchant.
  • Demon Torches are found in the Underworld.
  • Rainbow Torches are crafted with 10 torches and a Rainbow Brick (which drops from Rainbow Slimes in Hallow).
  • Ultrabright Torches are sold by the Travelling Merchant.
  • Cursed Torch are made from 33 Torches and 1 Cursed Flame, dropping in underground Corruption in hardmode.
  • Ichor Torchare made from 33 Torches and 1 Ichor, dropping in underground Crimson in hardmode.

Potions, Gnomes and Ladybugs

Luck Potions

The Lucky Buff gives + Luck depending on the time remaining. Therefore the 3 different potions give the same Lucky Buff but have different durations.

  • Lesser Luck Potion lasts 3min.
  • Bottled water, Water Leaf, Ladybug, White Pearl.

  • Luck Potion lasts 5 min.
  • Bottled water, Water Leaf, Ladybug, Black Pearl.

  • Greater Luck Potion lasts 10min.
  • Bottled water, Water Leaf, Ladybug, Pink Pearl.

They are all crafted at a Table with Bottles or Alchemy Stations.

  • Bottled Water: Craft with a Bottle while near water.
  • Waterleaf: Found in Deserts
  • Ladybug: Critters spawning in Forest biome during Windy Day events.
  • White/Black/Pink Pearls:From Oysters, fishing reward from Oasis, Ocean/


The Luck bonus is based on the remaining minutes of the buff:

  • If minutes left is 5 or greater: +0.3 Luck.
  • If minutes left is 3 or greater: +0.2 Luck.
  • If minutes left is less than 3: +0.1 Luck.

Garden Gnomes

+0.2 Luck.

Garden Gnome is a placeable furniture. However, to get one you need to lure a Gnome enemy into sunlight, true to the folklore.

Gnomes (the enemy) is a random spawn on the Surface (where there is background so below gorund), making them petrify counts as kills.


The Ladybug grants the player “Ladybug Luck” or “Bad Ladybug Luck”.

  • Touching one gives +0.2 Luck for 12 min.
  • Touching a Gold Ladybug gives +0.2 Luck for 24 min.
  • Killing one or using as bait gives -0.2 Luck for 3min.

These states cancel each other out.

Ladybugs spawn during Windy Day weather in the Forest Biome. Increase spawn rate with Water Candles and Battle Potions.

You can capture them and release them, touch them and then capture them again. Use the Zoologist Critter protection book to avoid killing them.

Lantern Nights

+0.3 Luck.

  • A random weather effect that can take place when no other weather or events are taking place.
  • It also occurs after defeating a boss (need to check if this is 100%, any boss, any number of times).
  • No idea about the chance of it showing up but easy to see as the background fills up with what resembles Chinese Lanterns, or if you will – the lanterns from Tangled.

Other Luck affecting stuff:

Halfshell Cat: Killing guide also gives Ladybug Luck, killing other NPCs give Bad Ladybug Luck.

Knowing Your Luck

Not gonna paste it all in. But talking to the Wizard NPC (in hardmode) is currently the only known way to know your luck.

Halfshell Cat’s Words of Wisdom

PSA: How to avoid luck mechanics for those that want to.

Too many topics about luck so hopefully this will help.

Luck gives a hit to damage and drop rate from placing the wrong torches.

Avoid it using:

  • Colored torches made from gems.
  • Ultrabrights or bone torches sold by special merchants.
  • Cursed/ ichor torches.
  • Other “special” neutral torches like Rainbow torches.

If you want a bonus then you can place the correct torch in the correct biome. This is helpful if fighting a boss you have trouble with.

Early on you want to look for amethyst or topaz to make torches from. You can even make them on the spot. Once you have 100 gem torches you can safely ignore this mechanic for the rest of the game as long as you occasionally dig up gems.

I’d appreciate it if others helped spread this knowledge so that people can just have fun playing until someone fixes it. Even if the devs don’t we can likely expect mods to alter it. Its not the end of the world guys, its just a little crafting.

Also kill the guide, touch a ladybug, place a garden gnome nearby or drinking a luck potion will all offset most torch luck penalties. So if you really want to use regular torches then just set up the guide to die whenever he spawns and his luck boost will last for 12 min.

More Math

For example, a Hook has a drop rate of 4% on killing an Skeleton but .

If you kill that enemy 1000 times you would expect 40 Hooks to drop (Very simplified, this is what is called a “statistical average”. It is probable but unlikely that you end up with 10 or 200 as well).

If your luck is 0.7 after all the buffs there is a 70% that the 4% drop chance is doubled to 8% when you kill a Skeleton. This results in a situation where our chances are sometimes increased which gives us a new Statistical Average

But it’s too late and my head hurts from writing the guide. So I will add actual calculations later.

About the damage

So everytime you deal damage the damage is set to a value of 0.85-1.15 of the final number.

So reaching 15dmg after all buffs and calculations and such gives the true damage somewhere between 12.75 and 17.25. This has always been the case.

200 damage may become anything between 170 and 230

But with negative luck there is a chance that the roll is made twice and the lowest one is chosen. With positive luck there is a chance that the roll is made twice but the highest is chosen.

Written by prpl_mage


  1. I wouldn’t know if the update was worth it or not because I only began Terraria on the PC only a Month before the update and it seems fine to me. But i Do feel like that not stating the Torch Mechanic is kinda shitty

  2. The wizard for me doesn’t say any of the luck quotes I found on the wiki(and I know I’m in hardmode)and he just doesn’t tell me my luck, it was mainly this that brought up my skepticism

  3. Well luck still seems to not work for the wizard for me , and I wonder what Red was thinking when he thought to not even tell people about it or implement bad torch luck anyways

  4. This is just weird. I could’ve played through terraria without knowing this, but now i do. It kind of hurts.

  5. Luck DIDN’T get removed, just “negative torch points”. Every other part of this guide is still valid.

  6. Just going to clear up how lantern nights work a little bit. They’ll happen the night after you kill a boss or clear an event specifically for the first time. However, there is not a limited number of lantern nights possible in a world, since they can happen randomly after Moon Lord is defeated.

  7. I… Really don’t give a shite about this torch debate. It wouldn’t be the first time something was poorly (or not at all) explained in the game. In a way torch luck kinda makes sense given the idea of Fung shai (I don’t know the exact spelling). I feel that the real reason got pissed off about it isn’t because of negative luck, but because it wasn’t properly explained.

  8. Yes, bad torch luck is NOT completely removed. Only, specifically, if the overall torch luck modifier is below zero, it gets set to zero. “Incorrect” torch placement – including just holding an “incorrect” torch in your hands – can still lower your torch score and prevent you from giving a luck boost.

    Honestly, they should just entirely remove the whole torch bit, or at least get rid of all penalties with it, especially if the reason that I’ve seen for including it in the first place is true. (Long story short: Redigit was being really petty about how people use torches.)

    Blizzard learned this a long, long time ago so that other companies didn’t need to: you don’t punish “improper” play, you reward “proper” play.

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