Ninja (role)

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This article is about the role that appears in SLASHTHEM. For the monster, see Ninja.
For the role whose rank title for male characters from experience levels 6 to 9 is "Ninja", see Samurai#Rank title.

The Ninja is a role that appears in SlashTHEM. The role draws on two earlier Ninja roles - one is a defunct feature in NetHack which was eventually replaced by the Rogue, and the other originated from NetHack-- 3.0.10, an ancestor of SLASH'EM. Female Ninja are referred to as Kunoichi by the game.

In NetHack, "Ninja" and "Kunoichi" are the male and female rank titles of a Samurai from experience levels 6 to 9. In SlashTHEM, the equivalent rank title is "Kumigashira" (which translates roughly to "squad leader").

Ninja are always chaotic and can be a doppelgänger, human, incantifier, elf, vampire, kobold, or orc.


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

SLASHTHEM gives the Ninja a skill set reminiscent of both the Rogue and Samurai:

Ninja skills
Max Skills

The Ninja's special spell is enchant weapon. Spell success is determined by intelligence.

  • SLASHTHEM u_init.c line 2081 in v. 0.8


Ninja gain these techniques in SLASHTHEM:

SLASHTHEM tech.c 152


SLASHTHEM attrib.c line 71

Starting equipment

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"rn1(9,6) shuriken"

The Ninja starts with a pet little dog.

The SlashTHEM Ninja will know the starting shuriken as "hira-shuriken" (flat shuriken), as part of an expanded list of Japanese item names. This reflects the fact that the term "shuriken" was historically also used to refer to other thrown (and sometimes wielded) weapons, not only the star-shaped projectiles associated with the term in Western culture. Darts are known as "bo-shuriken" (stick shuriken).

Item names

Like the Samurai, the Ninja has alternate names for items that follow a Japanese theme.

Rank titles

SLASHTHEM has a different set of rank titles:

  • XL 1-2: Kukkyu
  • XL 3-5: Hakkyu
  • XL 6-9: Nanakyu
  • XL 10-13: Rokkyu
  • XL 14-17: Gokyu
  • XL 18-21: Yonkyu
  • XL 22-25: Sankyu
  • XL 26-29: Nikyu
  • XL 30: Ikkyu

SlashTHEM role.c line 1005


The quest sees the Ninja fighting Jaquio for Fuma-itto no Ken, a chaotic ninja-to (broadsword) which adds +8 to-hit and +8 to damage, grants drain resistance while carried, and can be invoked to create a stack of hira-shuriken. This weapon was adapted from an artifact of the same name from dNetHack. The maps are cloned from the Samurai quest.

  • SLASHTHEM 0.9.7 artilist.h, line 663


The SlashTHEM pantheon is taken from the tale of Jiraiya Goketsu Monogatari:

  • Lawful: Jiraiya
  • Neutral: Tsunade
  • Chaotic: Orochimaru


The Ninja of vanilla NetHack was a role that existed from NetHack 1.3d to NetHack 2.3e, and was replaced in NetHack 3.0.0 by the Rogue, making it a defunct feature; this Ninja had a much simpler starting inventory in comparison to the Rogue, consisting of a katana, +1 leather armor, and up to 25 shuriken.[1]

NetHack-- 3.0.10, a variant of NetHack 3.0.10 and precursor of SLASH'EM, included a revived Ninja role alongside the Rogue as one of nine new roles - 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.[2] 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, but the Ninja and the other eight new roles were left out. This was due to some changes in the vanilla code, which meant that some content was removed to improve compatibility with NetHack - most significantly, the NetHack 3.1 had seen the addition of the Quest branch. To avoid the challenge of fitting full-length quests for the roles that had been added in NetHack-- 3.0.10 into the patch code, those roles were simply left out of the patch.

The Ninja role, along with the other eight roles from NetHack-- 3.0.10, appeared in Slash'EM Extended and then in SlashTHEM. SlashTHEM adjusted the overall role and their quest, and tailored their starting inventory to be closer to their NetHack-- incarnation by adding a wakizashi, potions of sickness and invisibility, a lock pick, and intrinsic stealth.


  • NetHack-- 3.0.10 attrib.c line 80
  • NetHack-- 3.0.10 u_init.c line 257