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Desktop/Console/Mobile-Only Content: This information applies only to the Desktop, Console, and Mobile versions of Terraria.
This article is about the event. For the items, see Sandstorm in a Balloon and Sandstorm in a Bottle.
The flying sand effect of a sandstorm.

The Sandstorm is an event specific to the Desert, and occurs in all Deserts at the same time. While this event is active, the Mighty Wind debuff will be continuously inflicted upon the player. This can be counteracted by standing in front of a background wall. The Weather Radio and its upgrades will switch between "Sandstorm" and its standard display while a Sandstorm is occurring.

During a Sandstorm, many particles of sand can be seen flying across the screen. The color of these particles will depend on whether the Desert is pure, Corrupt, Crimson, or Hallow. Vision is also limited. While the effects are amplified with Color and White lighting, which may be resource-intensive on some devices, using the Retro or Trippy setting will remove much of the effects.

The player squints their eyes while they are in a Sandstorm.

Certain enemies often found in the Underground Desert will spawn on the surface, including several new and dangerous enemies.


A Sandstorm can not be initiated manually. In order for a Sandstorm to occur, the following criteria must be met:[1]

  • The wind speed must be not less than 30 mph.

After meeting the criteria, a Sandstorm has a 1/64800 chance to occur per tick[2]. During Hardmode, this chance is increased to 1/43200.

When a Sandstorm occurs, its length will be randomly determined between 28800 and 86400 ticks (from 8 minutes to 24 minutes).

If the wind speed drops below the criteria during a Sandstorm, the remaining time of the Sandstorm will be consumed at 15 times the normal rate. For example, if a Sandstorm has 15 minutes remaining, the wind speed drops below 30 mph and does not reach 30 mph again, the Sandstorm will only last 1 minute.


Unique Drops
  • NachosNachos(Desktop, Console and Mobile versions)


  • No status messages are displayed when a Sandstorm starts and ends, so if one wants to experience it from start to finish, the Desert will have to be checked frequently. Alternatively, the player can use the Weather Radio and its upgrades to see if there is a Sandstorm currently happening.
  • Sandstorms are one of the few events that do not restrict other enemy spawns.


  • In theory, once the condition for wind speed is met, there is a good chance for a Sandstorm to occur within 18 real-world minutes (12 minutes if in Hardmode)[3], providing the condition stays constant. This means that the wind speed in game must be at 30 mph for an 18/12-minute period on average in order for a Sandstorm to occur.
  • Since the Sandstorm only occurs in the Desert biome and on the surface layer, one can simply fly over the biome or go underground to avoid it.
  • One way to dodge attacks from enemies like the Angry Tumbler is to use movement accessories, e.g. Dunerider Boots or Lightning Boots.
  • The Basilisk Mount or similar high-speed mounts are resistant to the Mighty Wind debuff when the player is in motion. This can ease the player's task of crossing the Desert during this event. However, the Mighty Wind will still push the player around when standing still.
  • Placing walls in the middle tile of where the player walks will stop the Mighty Wind debuff, making movement normal.
  • The effects of the Mighty Wind can lead to the player falling and getting stuck in one of the entrances to the Underground Desert. This can be avoided by blocking off all entrances, e.g. with platforms.


  • The Sandstorm is similar to the Blizzard event in that it reduces visibility and spawns new enemies, however unlike the Blizzard (and some real-life sandstorms), it is not tied to rain in any way. It is also similar in that it happens simultaneously with another event – in this case, the Windy Day.
  • The wind direction is related with the pushing direction of the Mighty Wind debuff.
    • When the Weather Radio indicates that the wind is moving at 0 mph, the Sandstorm pushes the player west (left).


  • Desktop 1.4.4: When a Sandstorm is active, the Weather Radio info accessory will display it, alternating between it and the standard weather display.
  • Desktop 1.4.1: Increased Sandstorm chances by 2× in Hardmode, and by 1.33× pre-Hardmode.
  • Desktop
    • Sandstorms only occur when wind speed is above 30 mph.
    • Sandstorms are now significantly less common in pre-Hardmode.


  1. Information taken from the Desktop version Desktop source code, class Sandstorm in Terraria.GameContent.Events.cs.
  2. A tick is a time unit countable by the software. Most of Terraria's updating logic happens every tick. A tick has the length of 1/60th of a second, hence there are 60 ticks in a second and 3600 ticks in a minute.
  3. 64800/3600 = 18 minutes, 43200/3600 = 12 minutes