Backstab

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Backstab refers to the extra damage done by Rogues on fleeing monsters. It is calculated as 1dxplevel.[1]

Before 3.6.0, any weapon's damage against a fleeing monster while not wielding two weapons would qualify for the backstab bonus, including thrown objects such as daggers. As of 3.6.0, only melee attacks count toward backstab damage, with the combined bonuses of multiple flying daggers seen as too powerful.[2]

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  1. uhitm.c in NetHack 3.6.0, line 652
  2. uhitm.c in NetHack 3.6.0, line 648