Ballista sentry summons

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Desktop/Console/Mobile-Only Content: This information applies only to the Desktop, Console, and Mobile versions of Terraria.
Ballista sentry summons
  • Ballista Rod.png Ballista Cane.png Ballista Staff.png
Stack digit 1.png
Statistics
Type
Damage(Varies each tier) (Summon)
Knockback4.7 (Average)
Use time30 (Average)
Velocity1
TooltipSummons a sentry
A slow but high damage tower that shoots piercing bolts
Costs 10 Etherian Mana per use while defending an Eternia Crystal
Research1 required

The Ballista Rod, Cane, and Staff are special sentry summon weapons. They can summon the Ballista sentry, which lasts for 10 minutes, remains stationary, and does not count against the player's minion capacity. Each Ballista sentry is a large automated crossbow device on the ground that fires Ballista Shot projectiles at approaching enemies, piercing up to three of them, and deals high damage but has rather slow firing speed. The Rod is sold by the Tavernkeep for 50000*5 Defender Medal, the Cane for 150000*15 Defender Medal, and the Staff for 600000*60 Defender Medal.

The Rod is always available. The Cane becomes available after defeating one mechanical boss, and the Staff becomes available after defeating Golem. The three different versions cause an identical effect, but with varying statistics, with the Staff being the most expensive and the most powerful.

These weapons cannot be used outside of the Old One's Army event until the event has been successfully completed. Completing the event on any difficulty allows Rods, Canes, and Staves alike to be used outside of the event.

During the Old One's Army event, Etherian Mana can be collected, which allows the placement of multiple Ballistas that remain permanently until the event is over. Etherian Mana cannot be used outside the event.

Ballista sentries are boosted by the Squire armor and Valhalla Knight armor set bonuses, which increase the velocity of the Ballista Shot projectiles and allow them to pierce up to three more enemies, for a maximum of six.[1] In addition, they grant the Ballista Panic! buff for 5 seconds when the player takes damage[2], which increases the sentries' fire rate. The Valhalla Knight armor also greatly increases the fire rate.

For the rod, its best modifiers are Mythical, Furious, or Godly. Rounding reveals that these modifiers provide the same increase to damage as the Ruthless modifier, increasing it from 30 to 35.

For the cane and staff, their best modifier is Ruthless. The Mythical modifier provides the widest array of stat bonuses, but these primarily affect the initial summon rather than the resulting sentry. Additionally, sentries cannot deal critical hits. The only lasting advantage a Mythical Ballista has over a Ruthless one is knockback.

Tiers

Ballista RodTier 1
  • Ballista Rod item sprite
Stack digit 1.png
Statistics
Type
Damage30 (Summon)
Knockback4.7 (Average)
Mana5
Use time30 (Average)
Velocity1
TooltipSummons a sentry
A slow but high damage tower that shoots piercing bolts
Costs 10 Etherian Mana per use while defending an Eternia Crystal
RarityRarity level: 3
Buy50000*5 Defender Medal
Sell1 GC
Research1 required
Projectiles created
  • Ballista (tier 1)
    Ballista (tier 1)
  • Ballista Shot
    Ballista Shot
Ballista CaneTier 2
  • Ballista Cane item sprite
Stack digit 1.png
Statistics
Type
Damage74 (Summon)
Knockback4.7 (Average)
Mana10
Use time30 (Average)
Velocity1
TooltipSummons a sentry
A slow but high damage tower that shoots piercing bolts
Costs 10 Etherian Mana per use while defending an Eternia Crystal
RarityRarity level: 5
Buy150000*15 Defender Medal
Sell5 GC
Research1 required
Projectiles created
  • Ballista (tier 2)
    Ballista (tier 2)
  • Ballista Shot
    Ballista Shot
Ballista StaffTier 3
  • Ballista Staff item sprite
Stack digit 1.png
Statistics
Type
Damage156 (Summon)
Knockback4.7 (Average)
Mana15
Use time30 (Average)
Velocity1
TooltipSummons a sentry
A slow but high damage tower that shoots piercing bolts
Costs 10 Etherian Mana per use while defending an Eternia Crystal
RarityRarity level: 8
Buy600000*60 Defender Medal
Sell15 GC
Research1 required
Projectiles created
  • Ballista (tier 3)
    Ballista (tier 3)
  • Ballista Shot
    Ballista Shot

Crafting

Recipes

ResultIngredientsCrafting station
Ballista CaneBallista Cane(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)ShimmerShimmer Transmutation(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)
Ballista RodBallista Rod(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)
Ballista StaffBallista Staff(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)

Used in

ResultIngredientsCrafting station
Explosive Trap CaneExplosive Trap Cane(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)ShimmerShimmer Transmutation(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)
Explosive Trap RodExplosive Trap Rod(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)
Explosive Trap StaffExplosive Trap Staff(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)

Notes

  • Completing the Old One's Army event on any difficulty sets a hidden attribute for both the world it was completed on and the character who completed it. Any characters, including newly made ones, who visit that world may then use Rods, Canes, and Staves on any world. The character who completed the event may also use Rods, Canes, and Staves on any world.
  • The Ballista has a cooldown of 3 seconds after attacking. If the player is wearing the Valhalla Knight armor, this cooldown is reduced to 1.67 seconds. With the Ballista Panic! buff active, it is reduced to 1 second. If the buff is active and the player is wearing Valhalla Knight armor, the cooldown is reduced even further to 0.5 seconds.[3]

Tips

  • Unlike many piercing weapons, Ballista shots inflict local immunity frames, meaning that they will not interfere with other projectiles, nor with each other.
  • The Ballista is slower than the rest of the Tavernkeep's sentry summons, but its damage, range, and piercing capability make it one of the best sentries in the game, especially at higher levels. When combined with the boosts and healing power of the Valhalla Knight armor and an arena with good positioning, they can tear through bosses even up to the Moon Lord.
  • An effective strategy against the Old One's Army is to set up Lightning Aura sentries near the Mysterious Portals and Ballistas closer to the center.
  • Ballistas are often inaccurate against fast-moving targets.
    • In addition, flying enemies during Old One's Army may cause the placed summon to aim up to attack them, usually missing due to travel time and wasting shots that could be used on incoming enemies. To counter this, place a few Ballistas behind the Mysterious Portal so Ballista Shots land within the path of incoming enemies.

Gallery

The Ballista Rod in action.
The Ballista Cane in action.
The Ballista Staff in action.

See also

History

  • Desktop 1.4.4:
    • Reduced Cane and Staff costs from 25 to 15 and 100 to 60 Defender Medals, respectively.
    • Damage increased from 27/67/140 to 30/74/156.
    • Attack delay reduced from 180 to 160.
    • Knockback increased from 4.5 to 4.7.
    • Now has a short delay on firing after being summoned.
    • Ballista sentry summons are now used to craft Explosive Trap sentry summons of their respective tier via shimmer.

References

  1. Information taken from the Desktop version Desktop 1.4.3.6 source code, method NewProjectile() in Terraria.Projectile.cs. There may be inaccuracies, as the current Desktop version Desktop version is 1.4.4.9.
  2. Information taken from the Desktop version Desktop 1.4.3.6 source code, method Hurt() in Terraria.Player.cs. There may be inaccuracies, as the current Desktop version Desktop version is 1.4.4.9.
  3. Information taken from the Desktop version Desktop 1.4.3.6 source code, method AI_134_Ballista() in Terraria.Projectile.cs. There may be inaccuracies, as the current Desktop version Desktop version is 1.4.4.9.