Forum:A bit disappointed with 3.6.0, anyone?

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Who here doesn't like some of the things they've done with 3.6.0?

I don't like that, for some reason, I can't use #kick anymore. I play NAO on a laptop without a numberpad, so when I find a locked door and I don't have an axe or pick, I literally have to turn numberpad on, kick the door down with "k", then turn it back off so I can move. It's ridiculous!

Also, it seems like they added a lot of features just for the sake of adding stuff. I haven't seen anything that improves playability! #Terrain is a cool feature, and it might be kinda helpful later in the game, but it seems like it would fit better in a game like Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup than in Nethack.

And #tip, which empties a container onto the floor, seems like a broken feature: having both hands stuck to a cursed weapon is something you have to be very careful to avoid in the late game. Now, you can get items out of sacks without using your hands, severely reducing the challenge there. The same goes for making the vibrating square a trap.

On the other hand, Elbereth is now broken! It no longer does half of the things we counted on it doing. Magic resistance is now more rare, farming is nerfed, and lord knows what else!

Part of what made 3.4.3 truly great was the carefully tuned difficulty level! You can't just change things randomly and expect it to be as good as the last version!

Anyone have any thoughts they'd like to add to this? Any experience playing the new version?

JMarieStanton (talk) 17:21, 18 December 2015 (UTC)

For what it's worth, you can used ctrl-D to kick; #kick was a relatively recent patch on NAO only anyway; it's not part of vanilla AFAIK. Wooble (talk) 17:28, 18 December 2015 (UTC)
Didn't know that. Thanks! JMarieStanton (talk) 18:58, 18 December 2015 (UTC)

I actually really liked most of the changes. #Terrain is great for finding a staircase hidden by a dart some kobold threw at you. And the two-handed curse always felt crueler to me than it had to be. Some artifact weapons are much more sensible choices in the late game because of this.

Magic cancellation is better as it is now as well, forcing you to sacrifice displacement or MC cloak for a previously useless cloak of protection.

Finding the vibrating square was never difficult, just tedious. Once I forgot to find it before killing the wizard and that made things a tiny bit more interesting perhaps.

Elbereth was always a bit game breaking for me as it was, which is why I wanted to compile it out. Now it is far less of a universal solution, and more like one last attempt before you are killed. This feels less like cheating to me than it did in 3.4.3. And scrolls of scare monster are more useful.

Farming did not need to be fixed in my opinion, the tediousness of doing it was punishment enough.

Alchemy has been nerfed to my surprise as well. Now only 3 of a stack are converted. I feel this is understandable, but I'm not convinced this is for the better. Probably won't use it as much in the mid to late game.

Another great command is #overview, when you are looking for an altar or a store but can't remember which exact floor it was on, it is really helpful, especially when returning to a game after a few days.

I think what made 3.4.3 great is still all there, but some of it will take some chewing. It is hard to see something change, when you have spent so many hours learning about how every little detail works. --Dtarnish (talk) 19:40, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

Yes, #overview (^O) is really nice. As is the ability to add custom level annotations (^N). I'm always worried when I make my first stash (e.g. dropping off wizard spellbooks) that I'll forget where I put it, but this takes care of that perfectly. --ManaUser (talk) 18:37, 27 December 2015 (UTC)
Yes, these things are nice, but they were already in most variants because they're pretty much essential features that should have been in the game already. I'm disappointed with 3.6.0 because the changes didn't justify 10 years of development time and the tight-lipped silence of the dev team. There are some bug fixes and balance tweaks, but the only dramatic change is Elbereth. I like the addition of #tip and the changes to #name, which were badly needed. The MC change makes MC *even more confusing* without spoilers, and narrows down viable ascension kits even more, which is why I consider that change a step backwards. NeonKow (talk) 22:37, 28 December 2015 (UTC)

When I tried it on NAO, there was no curses interface option. I've grown quite accustomed to this, and I find it's extremely helpful to use it, especially on a laggy connection where I can easily just look back to see recent messages instead of doing ^P. However that really is just a cosmetic issue, I am supposed to get an upgrade to my internet soon which would mean a lot less lag, and I suspect that something like that could easily work its way into 3.6.0 at some point in the future, so it isn't something I'll fret over.

Just the same, I'll wait for that new, less laggy internet connection before I try out 3.6.0 on NAO. I might compile a copy on my home machine to try it out in the meantime, but I've been too lazy to do this thus far.

greeter (talk) 00:26, 24 December 2015 (UTC)

Well, the DT is probably going to incorporate in all the NAO changes before the 4.0 series comes out, so hold your horses on that one. Elronnd(talk) 00:35, 24 December 2015 (UTC)
You mean like the hit-point bar? I'd love to have a copy on my home computer that has that feature. That's good news, at least! -JMarieStanton (talk) 21:19, 26 December 2015 (UTC)

I am liking a lot of the changes, but I am really getting frustrated by pets now only being able to pick up 1 item at a time. Quite strange. Why was this done? Is this an attempt to stop credit cloning and make stealing from shops in general a bit more difficult? Or, is it a trying make things a bit more realistic, as most pets would have difficulty picking up multiple items in real-life situations?

The downside is the dungeon becomes absolutely _littered_ with rocks all over the place. Not much of a problem with items such as arrows, daggers or darts as I tend to use or sell those. It does however create a minor annoyance of pets picking up my loot piles at stairs, having to pick up individual darts, etc.

--User (talk) 19:13, 21 January 2016 (UTC)

Being the first time I use 3.0.6, the main change I noticed is the difficulty to get food. The chances of getting a mold or magic eye corpse seem to have been reduced. Sparing 30+ arrows to kill a magic eye just to see there is no corpse left is a hard thing. ---Gargarismo (talk) 17:12, 26 March 2016 (UTC)
Another weird thing I discovered later. After using a stethoscope in a one-square corridor, I was teleported to a vault. It never happened to me before. I use to play healers because of stethoscope and healing spells. Also, In nethack 3.6.0 it seems magic traps make you deaf and blind, so you can't use your stethoscope to find enemies. ---19:56, 26 March 2016 (UTC)
Yeah, my perception is that one fairly tight-knit team of developers developed the 3.4.x version, paying careful attention to game balance and playability, and a substantially different, younger devteam built 3.6.0 off of it in a few months, with no unified direction and not a whole lot of forethought. The changes to Elbereth and the Floating Eye corpse rate are particularly egregious, and they make me think that the current devteam's main priority is making nethack look more like Slash'em. I know I'm too young to be that cynical... JMarieStanton (talk) 00:40, 28 March 2016 (UTC)

The one thing that bugs me about 3.6.0 is that it's no longer possible to coax a demon prince into killing the Sanctum priest for you. That's removing fine _strategy_ in favor of mindless slashing, the exact opposite of what NetHack should encourage. Anyone making it to the Sanctum is surely able to clear its graveyard and tackle those priests, it just takes a bit of work. And someone clever enough and making the effort of luring e.g. Orcus down there and relieve him of the Amulet afterwards deserved skipping that bit of work as a reward for employing good strategy. Even though an unintended shortcut, things like this add variation and fun to the game without unbalancing it and should be kept.

Other than that, similar to Dtarnish above, I like most of 3.6.0. They crippled Elbereth badly, but they plan to fix in 3.6.1. I find the MC changes harsh, especially as I like wizards (starting MR cloak: 2%→70% attacks succeed), but I can understand why they're doing it: what's the point in programming lots of cool monster attacks and strategy like stoning→lizard/acid and sliming→fire/"oUnchange if everyone is 98% safe anyway, many even from the start. The credit cloning change hit me - well, that means the early game has become even harder, I'll have to cope. But I wholeheartedly agree with them blocking farming. And I love #overview and all those many user interface improvements.

I only hope they release 3.6.1 very soon fixing the inferior Statuscolors and bugs like Rodney waking early, unkillable wolves, Vorpal Blade and self-genocide. --Luna (talk) 14:46, 10 December 2017 (UTC)

Is "reduced chance of e corpses" really a thing?? I haven't checked the source, but I didn't notice anything unusual during play when it comes to %. --Luna (talk) 15:34, 12 December 2017 (UTC)

My two cents on all this discussion:

  • Lots of the things people are complaining about not existing have been added to vanilla 3.6.1. #kick exists as part of the commands refactor (as do all the other commands - you can now #teleport if you can't hit Ctrl-T because you're playing in-browser, for example). Hit point bar and better status hilites are in 3.6.1 too. Curses interface is not, but they're working on making it a separate windowport (which is the cleaner option).
  • Many things were nerfed in 3.6, but they pretty much all at least intended to improve game balance. Based mostly on players' reactions to 3.6.0, my opinion is that a developer (for vanilla or a variant) straight up cannot nerf things for the sake of balance without providing corresponding buffs or at least something like better user interface features, or else their players will stop playing. With regards to Elbereth specifically, I consider it to be very overpowered in 3.4.3, and not a carefully fine-tuned part of game balance. I also am interested in what people think of its 3.6.1 form, which is a buff compared to 3.6.0 but a nerf compared to 3.4.3, and in my opinion is the best balanced of them all.
  • Not sure why people think the changes in 3.6 make it more like SLASH'EM. The purpose of SLASH'EM is to add lots of stuff (i.e. objects, monsters, traps, branches, roles) to the game with only a token amount of concern for the resulting balance. 3.6.0 didn't really add anything tangibly new to the game itself (besides a few levels, I guess), only interface features (like overview and terrain).
  • The devteam shouldn't be blamed for failing to live up to expectations that they would have 12 years' worth of development in their released game. It's pretty clear that vanilla development outright stalled for most of that time period.
  • The devteam is also doing a MUCH better job at not being silent about progress than they have in the past. We can see and discuss and playtest changes as soon as they make them, with the public Github repository (part of the reason 3.6.0 has these annoying bugs is because there weren't people trying to play it before release). Some of the new members like Ais523 and Paxed are frequently on IRC, should you want to talk to them without waiting for an email response.
  • Some of the things mentioned on this page, like floating eye corpse chances being reduced, are confirmation bias or variant paranoia (if that can be used to describe vanilla). I checked the relevant code in 3.4.3 and 3.6.0 and no change was made to the corpse-drop formula.

Overall, I think 3.6.0 is doomed to be regarded as worse than both 3.4.3 and 3.6.1, but I strongly feel that the overall trend of the game is improving. Saying that it peaked at 3.4.3 and can never really get better than that is silly (and a self-fulfilling prophecy, if you refuse to play 3.6). --Phol ende wodan (talk) 18:54, 12 December 2017 (UTC)

Technical note: The curses interface actually already is a separate windowport. It does not use the TTY code at all. --Karl (talk) 20:03, 18 March 2018 (UTC)

For me, the 3.6 and later versions will always be variants of the vanilla 3.4.3. NetHack. I can't understand how and why the old DevTeam was taken over by the new hacks (pun intended, kind of) and why they were allowed to sabotage the game. Saltman (talk) 14:35, 5 August 2020 (UTC)