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The Firefighter is a role that first appeared in NetHack-- 3.0.10. It was dropped from the code at the time the Quest branch was ported over; the code can still be found within SLASH'EM, and in SlashTHEM the role reappears with a proper quest.

Firefighters can be lawful or neutral, and play as a human, dwarf, gnome, hobbit, or giant.


NetHack-- 3.0.10 was based on NetHack 3.0.10, which predated the skill system, so Firefighters could use any weapons.

SLASHTHEM adjusts some of the Firefighter's weapon skills (notably restricting long sword, dagger, and knife):

Firefighter skills
Max Skills

The Firefighter's special spell is teleport away. Spell success is determined by intelligence.

  • SlashTHEM u_init.c line 1288 in v. 0.8


Starting equipment

Firefighters start with a pet little dog.

Rank titles

  • XL 1-2: Water Boy/Girl
  • XL 3-5: Fire Cadet
  • XL 6-9: Rookie
  • XL 10-13: Extinguisher
  • XL 14-17: Smokeeater
  • XL 18-21: Fire Captain
  • XL 22-25: Platoon Chief
  • XL 26-29: Division Commander
  • XL 30: Fire Chief

SlashTHEM role.c line 511


Main article: Quest

The Firefighter quest sees the Firefighter fighting Eddie the Pyro for the Fire Chief Helmet, a lawful fire helmet which grants half spell damage and half physical damage while carried, and protection and warning while worn. It also can be invoked to summon a tame water elemental. The maps are copied from the defunct Elf Quest.

  • SlashTHEM artilist.h line 621


The Firefighter's gods all relate to fire:

  • Lawful: Prometheus
  • Neutral: Thor
  • Chaotic: Arson


The Firefighter's first appearance was in SLASH'EM precursor NetHack-- 3.0.10, as one of nine new roles in addition to the twelve in the contemporary version of NetHack. The discussion thread in which the authors first announced the variant suggests that some of the new roles were taken from a list proposing a role for every letter of the alphabet. See here for the relevant post.

After the release of NetHack 3.1.3 in 1993, NetHack-- was updated to NetHack-- 3.1.3 by porting some of the changes from NetHack-- 3.0.10 into a patch for the newest version. Due to some changes in the vanilla code, however, some content was removed to improve compatibility with NetHack; most significantly, NetHack 3.1 had seen the addition of the Quest branch. To avoid the challenge of fitting in full-length quests for the roles that had been added in NetHack-- 3.0.10, those roles were simply left out.

There is some evidence that the developer(s) of SLASH may have wanted to bring back some of the roles, including the Firefighter, as the DAT folder for SLASH 6 contains unused maps for quest levels for this and other roles that are not actually present in the version. The quest leader would have been "Chief", the nemesis a unique elemental named Fire, and the quest artifact a fire helmet called the Fire Chief Helmet. The code for the maps indicates that the quest would feature numerous salamanders and efreeti.

The Firefighter role, along with the other eight new roles in NetHack-- 3.0.10, was carried over with some tweaks into SlashTHEM.


  • NetHack-- 3.0.10 attrib.c line 58
  • NetHack-- 3.0.10 u_init.c line 222