Sling bullet

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A sling bullet is a defunct object that formerly appears in NetHack as late as NetHack 2.3e, and is used as ammunition for slings. Sling bullets deal 1d6+1 damage versus small monsters and 1d4+1 versus large monsters, the same as crossbow bolts.[1][2]


Hack121 and Hack for PDP-11, which are based on Jay Fenlason's Hack, use various types of sling bullets - interestingly, rocks did not exist as objects until Andries Brouwer's Hack 1.0. From these versions to Hack 1.0.3, sling bullets have their base damage values against large and small monsters reversed.[3] As the weapons and armor are derived from Dungeons & Dragons, this reversal is likely unintentional, and NetHack 1.3d adjusts the sling bullet's damage values to match that of the source material.


Bullets of clay and stone

Sling bullets and their damage values are derived from the 1st Advanced Edition of Dungeons & Dragons, where they deal 1d4 base damage.[4]

The sling is a widespread weapon dating back to Neolithic cultures (if not still-older ones), and sling-bullets and similar objects used as sling ammunition are common archeological finds. The size of a sling-bullet varies greatly from no larger than a mere pebble to fist-sized stones weighing a pound or more, and in the hands of a skilled slinger could be hurled upwards of 450 meters (1500 feet) at speeds over 250 miles per hour.[5]

Rocks used as sling ammunition are frequently salvaged from river depths, where the rushing water would slowly shape the stone round. Bullets are also purpose-made from various materials such as clay - in Classical times, lead-cast bullets were considered the most efficient and best-quality ammunition. Symbols such as stylized lightning bolts, snakes and scorpions have often been found molded into lead sling-bullets from around this time; others have had holes drilled into them that produce a whooshing sound in flight. Slinging as a sport is still practiced in the Balearic Islands (where slinging is a tradition) and elsewhere, and slings also see use as weapons for hobby purposes.


Sling bullets return as items in EvilHack, introduced in version 0.7.1. Their default object material is iron, and they appear as shiny stones when unidentified. They deal 1d6 damage versus small monsters and 1d8 versus large monsters. Cavepeople of all types start each game with sling bullets.

3-4 sling bullets can be created at a forge by combining 3 rocks and a dart.

Hobbits and hobbit pickpockets generated with a sling have a 13 chance of additionally carrying 5-10 sling bullets, while cavefolk player monsters always generate with sling bullets.