The Bow is one of four ranged weapons in Spelunky Classic.
It can be bought from shops or found in crates. Bows bought in shops cost $900 +100, making them the cheapest item in the game.

The Bow shoots arrows much farther and straighter than the Spelunker can throw them, and can be combined with bombs to make explosive projectiles.


The Bow, with an arrow fully drawn

The Bow shoots arrows, six of which come with the Bow when it is picked up. Extra arrows can be collected by picking up the arrows launched from arrow traps.

For maximum shot distance, the Bow must be drawn back by holding the action key for a few seconds. Simply tapping the button will shoot arrows but they will have almost no range, making it difficult to do damage with them. Arrows shot from the Bow break if they hit an enemy, but otherwise can be picked up and re-used.

Because of the long delay between shots as the Bow is drawn and the limited projectiles that are extremely rare in the Jungle and the Ice Caves, the bow and arrow are the least effective of the ranged weapons.

Bomb Arrows in action

However, the bow also has a powerful additional function that makes up for this: Bomb arrows.
To release one, you must hold the attack button until an arrow is fully drawn, then press the bomb hotkey (Default: "A").
This will attach a primed bomb to the arrowhead, ready to be launched.

The bomb arrow can stick to walls and thereby duplicate some of the effects of sticky bombs, in addition to having the accurate trajectory and range of the Bow.
Bomb arrows that strike enemies will instantly detonate with all the force of a normal bomb, making it an instant kill on any enemy except the final boss - Just be sure to release the bomb arrow before it detonates in your hands.

Bomb Arrow Bug

Although Bomb arrows require you to have both a bomb and an arrow in your inventory, shooting a bomb arrow only removes the arrow - not the bomb.

This is almost certainly a programming bug.
Until this is fixed, it is almost guaranteed that you can make back the money it costs to buy a Bow (with a sizeable profit) just by mining with it - The Bow costs less than half the price of a bag of bombs and can act like at least half a dozen sticky bombs.

Arrows as Equipment

Arrows in the 'quiver', shown on the HUD

When a Bow is picked up, it also comes with a 'quiver' full of six arrows, stored on the HUD, allowing the Spelunker to carry more arrows than usual.
Walking over an arrow on the floor will add it to your inventory.

The quiver remains even when the Bow is dropped (although it will be invisible and new arrows will not be added to it). Picking up a second Bow will add another 6 arrows on top of the arrows left in the quiver.
This trick can be utilized to safely steal arrows from shops.

The equipment arrows in your inventory cannot be used without being shot from a Bow, so become effectively useless if the Bow is lost.


Bomb Arrows are possibly a reference to Zelda: Link's Awakening, where it was possible to launch bomb arrows in a similar manner.

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