Source:NetHack 3.6.0/dat/history

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Below is the full text to dat/history from NetHack 3.6.0.

See also Game history.

NetHack History file for release 3.6

Behold, mortal, the origins of NetHack...

Jay Fenlason wrote the original Hack with help from Kenny Woodland,
Mike Thome, and Jon Payne.

Andries Brouwer did a major re-write, transforming Hack into a very different
game, and published (at least) three versions (1.0.1, 1.0.2, and 1.0.3) for
UNIX(tm) machines to the Usenet.

Don G. Kneller ported Hack 1.0.3 to Microsoft(tm) C and MS-DOS(tm), producing
PC HACK 1.01e, added support for DEC Rainbow graphics in version 1.03g, and
went on to produce at least four more versions (3.0, 3.2, 3.51, and 3.6;
note that these are old Hack version numbers, not contemporary NetHack ones).

R. Black ported PC HACK 3.51 to Lattice(tm) C and the Atari 520/1040ST,
producing ST Hack 1.03.

Mike Stephenson merged these various versions back together, incorporating
many of the added features, and produced NetHack version 1.4 in 1987.  He
then coordinated a cast of thousands in enhancing and debugging NetHack 1.4
and released NetHack versions 2.2 and 2.3.

Later, Mike coordinated a major rewrite of the game, heading a team which
included Ken Arromdee, Jean-Christophe Collet, Steve Creps, Eric Hendrickson,
Izchak Miller, Eric S. Raymond, John Rupley, Mike Threepoint, and Janet Walz,
to produce NetHack 3.0c.  The same group subsequently released ten patch-
level revisions and updates of 3.0.

NetHack 3.0 was ported to the Atari by Eric R. Smith, to OS/2 by Timo
Hakulinen, and to VMS by David Gentzel.  The three of them and Kevin Darcy
later joined the main development team to produce subsequent revisions of

Olaf Seibert ported NetHack 2.3 and 3.0 to the Amiga.  Norm Meluch, Stephen
Spackman and Pierre Martineau designed overlay code for PC NetHack 3.0.
Johnny Lee ported NetHack 3.0 to the Macintosh.  Along with various other
Dungeoneers, they continued to enhance the PC, Macintosh, and Amiga ports
through the later revisions of 3.0.

Headed by Mike Stephenson and coordinated by Izchak Miller and Janet Walz,
the development team which now included Ken Arromdee, David Cohrs,
Jean-Christophe Collet, Kevin Darcy, Matt Day, Timo Hakulinen, Steve Linhart,
Dean Luick, Pat Rankin, Eric Raymond, and Eric Smith undertook a radical
revision of 3.0.  They re-structured the game's design, and re-wrote major
parts of the code.  They added multiple dungeons, a new display, special
individual character quests, a new endgame and many other new features, and
produced NetHack 3.1.

Ken Lorber, Gregg Wonderly and Greg Olson, with help from Richard Addison,
Mike Passaretti, and Olaf Seibert, developed NetHack 3.1 for the Amiga.

Norm Meluch and Kevin Smolkowski, with help from Carl Schelin, Stephen
Spackman, Steve VanDevender, and Paul Winner, ported NetHack 3.1 to the PC.

Jon W{tte and Hao-yang Wang, with help from Ross Brown, Mike Engber, David
Hairston, Michael Hamel, Jonathan Handler, Johnny Lee, Tim Lennan, Rob Menke,
and Andy Swanson developed NetHack 3.1 for the Macintosh, porting it for
MPW.  Building on their development, Barton House added a Think C port.

Timo Hakulinen ported NetHack 3.1 to OS/2.  Eric Smith ported NetHack 3.1
to the Atari.  Pat Rankin, with help from Joshua Delahunty, is responsible
for the VMS version of NetHack 3.1.  Michael Allison ported NetHack 3.1 to
Windows NT.

Dean Luick, with help from David Cohrs, developed NetHack 3.1 for X11.
Warwick Allison wrote a tiled version of NetHack for the Atari;
he later contributed the tiles to the DevTeam and tile support was
then added to other platforms.

The 3.2 development team, comprised of Michael Allison, Ken Arromdee, David
Cohrs, Jessie Collet, Steve Creps, Kevin Darcy, Timo Hakulinen, Steve
Linhart, Dean Luick, Pat Rankin, Eric Smith, Mike Stephenson, Janet Walz, and
Paul Winner, released version 3.2 in April of 1996.

Version 3.2 marked the tenth anniversary of the formation of the development
team.  In a testament to their dedication to the game, all thirteen members
of the original development team remained on the team at the start of work
on that release.  During the interval between the release of 3.1.3 and 3.2,
one of the founding members of the development team, Dr. Izchak Miller,
passed away.  That release of the game was dedicated to him by the
development and porting teams.

Version 3.2 proved to be more stable than previous versions.  Many bugs
were fixed, abuses eliminated, and game features tuned for better game

During the lifespan of NetHack 3.1 and 3.2, several enthusiasts of the game
added their own modifications to the game and made these "variants" publicly

Tom Proudfoot and Yuval Oren created NetHack++, which was quickly renamed
NetHack--.  Working independently, Stephen White wrote NetHack Plus.
Tom Proudfoot later merged NetHack Plus and his own NetHack-- to produce
SLASH.  Larry Stewart-Zerba and Warwick Allison improved the spellcasting
system with the Wizard Patch.  Warwick Allison also ported NetHack to use
the Qt interface.

Warren Cheung combined SLASH with the Wizard Patch to produce Slash'em, and
with the help of Kevin Hugo, added more features.  Kevin later joined the
DevTeam and incorporated the best of these ideas in NetHack 3.3.

The final update to 3.2 was the bug fix release 3.2.3, which was released
simultaneously with 3.3.0 in December 1999 just in time for the Year 2000.

The 3.3 development team, consisting of Michael Allison, Ken Arromdee,
David Cohrs, Jessie Collet, Steve Creps, Kevin Darcy, Timo Hakulinen,
Kevin Hugo, Steve Linhart, Ken Lorber, Dean Luick, Pat Rankin, Eric Smith,
Mike Stephenson, Janet Walz, and Paul Winner, released 3.3.0 in
December 1999 and 3.3.1 in August of 2000.

Version 3.3 offered many firsts. It was the first version to separate race
and profession. The Elf class was removed in preference to an elf race,
and the races of dwarves, gnomes, and orcs made their first appearance in
the game alongside the familiar human race.  Monk and Ranger roles joined
Archeologists, Barbarians, Cavemen, Healers, Knights, Priests, Rogues,
Samurai, Tourists, Valkyries and of course, Wizards.  It was also the first
version to allow you to ride a steed, and was the first version to have a
publicly available web-site listing all the bugs that had been discovered.
Despite that constantly growing bug list, 3.3 proved stable enough to last
for more than a year and a half.

The 3.4 development team initially consisted of Michael Allison, Ken Arromdee,
David Cohrs, Jessie Collet, Kevin Hugo, Ken Lorber, Dean Luick, Pat Rankin,
Mike Stephenson, Janet Walz, and Paul Winner, with Warwick Allison joining
just before the release of NetHack 3.4.0 in March 2002.

As with version 3.3, various people contributed to the game as a whole as
well as supporting ports on the different platforms that NetHack runs on:

Pat Rankin maintained 3.4 for VMS.

Michael Allison maintained NetHack 3.4 for the MS-DOS platform.
Paul Winner and Yitzhak Sapir provided encouragement.

Dean Luick, Mark Modrall, and Kevin Hugo maintained and enhanced the
Macintosh port of 3.4.

Michael Allison, David Cohrs, Alex Kompel, Dion Nicolaas, and Yitzhak Sapir
maintained and enhanced 3.4 for the Microsoft Windows platform.  Alex Kompel
contributed a new graphical interface for the Windows port.  Alex Kompel also
contributed a Windows CE port for 3.4.1.

Ron Van Iwaarden maintained 3.4 for OS/2.

Janne Salmijarvi and Teemu Suikki maintained and enhanced the
Amiga port of 3.5 after Janne Salmijarvi resurrected it for 3.3.1.

Christian `Marvin' Bressler maintained 3.5 for the Atari after he
resurrected it for 3.3.1.

The release of NetHack 3.4.3 in December 2003 marked the beginning of a
long release hiatus.  3.4.3 proved to be a remarkably stable version that
provided continued enjoyment by the community for more than a decade.  The
devteam slowly and quietly continued to work on the game behind the scenes
during the tenure of 3.4.3.  It was during that same period that several
new variants emerged within the NetHack community.  Notably sporkhack by
Derek S. Ray, unnethack by Patric Mueller, nitrohack and its successors
originally by Daniel Thaler and then by Alex Smith, and
Dynahack by Tung Nguyen.  Some of those variants continue to be developed,
maintained, and enjoyed by the community to this day.

In September 2014, an interim snapshot of the code under development was
released publicly by other parties.  Since that code was a work-in-progress
and had not gone through a period of debugging, it was decided that the
version numbers present on that code snapshot would be retired and never
used in an official NetHack release.  An announcement was posted on the
devteam's official website to that effect, stating that there
would never be a 3.4.4, 3.5, or 3.5.0 official release version.

In January 2015, preparation began for the release of NetHack 3.6.

At the beginning of development for what would eventually get released
as 3.6.0, the development team consisted of Michael Allison,
Warwick Allison, Ken Arromdee, David Cohrs, Jessie Collet, Ken Lorber,
Dean Luick, Pat Rankin, Mike Stephenson, Janet Walz, and Paul Winner.
Leading up to the release of 3.6.0 in early 2015, new members Sean Hunt,
Pasi Kallinen, and Derek S. Ray joined the NetHack development team.

In January 2015, preparation began for the release of NetHack 3.6.  The 3.6
version merges work done by the development team since the previous release
with some of the beloved community patches.  Many bugs were fixed and some
code was restructured.

The development team, as well as Steve VanDevender and Kevin Smolkowski
ensured that NetHack 3.6.0 continued to operate on various Unix flavors
as well as maintaining the X11 interface.

Ken Lorber, Haoyang Wang, Pat Rankin, and Dean Luick maintained the port
of NetHack 3.6.0 for Mac.

Michael Allison, Derek S. Ray, Yitzhak Sapir, Alex Kompel, Dion Nicolaas,
and David Cohrs maintained the port of NetHack 3.6.0 for Microsoft Windows.

Pat Rankin attempted to keep the VMS port running for NetHack 3.6.0,
hindered by limited access.  Kevin Smolkowski has updated and tested it
for the most recent version of OpenVMS (V8.4 as of this writing) on Alpha
and Integrity (aka Itanium aka IA64) but not VAX.

This version of the game is special in a particular way.  Near the end of
the development of 3.6, one of the significant inspirations for many of
the humorous and fun features found in the game, author Terry Pratchett,
passed away.  This version of the game includes a tribute to him.

An official NetHack web site continues to be maintained by Ken Lorber at


The devteam would like to give a special "shout-out" to thank the generous
people primarily responsible for the public NetHack servers available for
playing the game at and  In addition to
providing a way for the public to play a game of NetHack from almost
anywhere, they have hosted annual NetHack tournaments for many, many years.

On behalf of the NetHack community, thank you very much to
M. Drew Streib, Pasi Kallinen and Robin Bandy.

                           - - - - - - - - - -

From time to time, some depraved individual out there in netland sends a
particularly intriguing modification to help out with the game.  The Gods of
the Dungeon sometimes make note of the names of the worst of these miscreants
in this, the list of Dungeoneers:

    Adam Aronow               Janet Walz                Nathan Eady
    Alex Kompel               Janne Salmijarvi          Norm Meluch
    Andreas Dorn              Jean-Christophe Collet    Olaf Seibert
    Andy Church               Jeff Bailey               Pasi Kallinen
    Andy Swanson              Jochen Erwied             Pat Rankin
    Ari Huttunen              John Kallen               Paul Winner
    Barton House              John Rupley               Pierre Martineau
    Benson I. Margulies       John S. Bien              Ralf Brown
    Bill Dyer                 Johnny Lee                Ray Chason
    Boudewijn Waijers         Jon W{tte                 Richard Addison
    Bruce Cox                 Jonathan Handler          Richard Beigel
    Bruce Holloway            Joshua Delahunty          Richard P. Hughey
    Bruce Mewborne            Keizo Yamamoto            Rob Menke
    Carl Schelin              Ken Arnold                Robin Bandy
    Chris Russo               Ken Arromdee              Robin Johnson
    David Cohrs               Ken Lorber                Roderick Schertler
    David Damerell            Ken Washikita             Roland McGrath
    David Gentzel             Kevin Darcy               Ron Van Iwaarden
    David Hairston            Kevin Hugo                Ronnen Miller
    Dean Luick                Kevin Sitze               Ross Brown
    Del Lamb                  Kevin Smolkowski          Sascha Wostmann
    Derek S. Ray              Kevin Sweet               Scott Bigham
    Deron Meranda             Lars Huttar               Scott R. Turner
    Dion Nicolaas             Leon Arnott               Sean Hunt
    Dylan O'Donnell           M. Drew Streib            Stephen Spackman
    Eric Backus               Malcolm Ryan              Stefan Thielscher
    Eric Hendrickson          Mark Gooderum             Stephen White
    Eric R. Smith             Mark Modrall              Steve Creps
    Eric S. Raymond           Marvin Bressler           Steve Linhart
    Erik Andersen             Matthew Day               Steve VanDevender
    Frederick Roeber          Merlyn LeRoy              Teemu Suikki
    Gil Neiger                Michael Allison           Tim Lennan
    Greg Laskin               Michael Feir              Timo Hakulinen
    Greg Olson                Michael Hamel             Tom Almy
    Gregg Wonderly            Michael Sokolov           Tom West
    Hao-yang Wang             Mike Engber               Warren Cheung
    Helge Hafting             Mike Gallop               Warwick Allison
    Irina Rempt-Drijfhout     Mike Passaretti           Yitzhak Sapir
    Izchak Miller             Mike Stephenson
    J. Ali Harlow             Mikko Juola

This page may need to be updated for the current version of NetHack.

It may contain text specific to NetHack 3.6.0. Information on this page may be out of date.

Editors: After reviewing this page and making necessary edits, please change the {{nethack-360}} tag to the current version's tag or {{noversion}} as appropriate.