- 1 The difference between nethack and real life:
- 2 Who Am I? 24601!
- 3 Various YANI, will post as I think of them
The difference between nethack and real life:
<Man walks into a shop>
Shopkeeper: Aloha, Igby! Welcome to Upernavik's general store.
Tourist: Aloha! Hey, stand still a sec, I wanna take your picture.
<Tourist snaps picture with bright flash on, temporarily blinding unready shopkeeper>
So what happens next?
Shopkeeper: Hey! Careful with that, or I'll have you banned from the store!
Shopkeeper: Yeargh! Die! <whips out wand of striking, or shotgun in SLASH'EM>
Tourist: Ow! Ah! What the... AAAAAAAGH! I'll have you tried for murder!
<Tourist attempts to blind shopkeeper again with camera in desperate attempt to get away>
Shopkeeper: Have I ever mentioned how much I dislike rude customers?
<Shopkeeper zaps wand again. Tourist is now a greasy smear on the wall>
Who Am I? 24601!
I have ascended every class in vanilla nethack (first ascension was in 2008, started the game in late 2006), and then moved on to SLASH'EM. There, I have ascended multiple Valkyries (several genocideless), a couple Rogues (including a human one), an atheist Priest, a Barbarian, and a wishless Caveman. Since that, however, I have honestly mostly moved on to Crawl, although a return to SLASH'EM is far from impossible. I do still occasionally fool around in wizard mode, mostly to test things for the wiki, and I know enough programming to reasonably well source dive.
Some of my own preferred conducts for playing SLASH'EM or nethack (some do coincide with tracked conducts):
- Never change form - In order of priority: Never polymorph into another monster, never eat mimic corpses, never polymorph into the same form, never start turning to stone/slime, never be infected with lycanthropy. As only the first is included in polyselfless conduct, this is in general stricter than that. It also makes magic resistance a definitively higher priority than reflection for me.
- Never use pets - I don't mind if I incidentally acquire some, either as minions or because it was that or death, but in general I don't use them. Occasionally if Grayswandir is generated in a shop I might coerce a kitten into stealing it for me, but I never like to use pets for combat assistance.
- Survive or die - I never use amulets of life saving; this kind of falls under the "never change form" conduct, admittedly.
- Getting crowned is "not" bad - For my neutrals and chaotics, I find Stormbringer or Vorpal Blade (remember, in SLASH'EM it beheads 10% of the time) and the resistances to be well worth the increased prayer timeout. Particularly, it's worth it when you've already gotten 5 or so useless artifacts from sacrificing, and are very unlikely to get another. For lawfuls, I don't care that much either way if I get crowned; it's a minor inconvenience at worst.
- On a more real-world note, I use the ASCII version, but use the mouse to move around primarily. This is occasionally annoying, as the shortest path algorithm nethack uses sometimes gets locked in loops, particularly in Sokoban.
- Roleplaying lawful - If I'm lawful or neutral, I really, really try to never attack peaceful monsters.
Observations about Crawl:
- The interface is much, much better than nethack's. It works more quickly, has a five-line display so you are less likely to miss critical messages. Pressing ^p brings up a full-screen display of your latest messages, instead of one by one. The autotravel, autoexplore and autopickup greatly speed up playing the game. The only downside I see is that the inventory system is less intuitive, and picking items up doesn't work quite as smoothly as in nethack.
- It definitely encourages much more reckless behavior in relation to items. The worst that can happen from reading a scroll early in the game is your weapon or armor being cursed, easily undone with the very common scroll of remove curse. More care is required later on, but still, about the worst scroll seems to be the scroll of immolation, which only does maybe 20 points of damage. For comparison, a fighter-type would have 100, a mage 50 by the point where one would likely encounter scrolls of immolation. That leads me to the next observation...
- Items are all leveled. You are not going to find a +5, +7 longsword of draining or a scroll of acquirement (Crawl's poor man's version of the wand of wishing) on the first level, or even before the 7th or so. You can still find good/useful items, but things like the early wand of wishing simply don't happen in Crawl.
- Instadeath is much rarer. At least, in a literal sense, meaning that your character dies without your HP being dropped to zero. You can drown or burn in lava, but Crawl won't let you just walk into them: you have to stop levitating over them. The only other instadeath is statdeath, but even that has been made into a delayed instadeath (which can serve as a cruel punishment if you have no way to restore the lost stat).
- Getting one- or two-shotted is much more common. The ogre, which starts appearing around level 4, can wipe out any starting character in 2 hits, and there are many more monsters like it. Gradually you learn what monsters can knock you off so quickly, and it is more consistent than nethack (where you might have bad luck with a goblin and a +5 short sword), but there are a lot of monsters able to hit very, very hard.
- Much less is absolute in Crawl. Elemental resistances are all leveled, and even the max (level 3) only provides 90% protection. Poison resistance is absolute, but even for that, there are some spells that can partially ignore it. A cloak of magic resistance is no magic bullet against magical attacks, since MR is also on a spectrum.
- You can learn anything in Crawl. Any character can learn any skill, and aptitude for learning it is race-dependent, not class-dependent. Of course, one has to be careful not to spread oneself too thin, as this leads to many skills not advanced enough to be viable, but on the whole it is very useful, for example, to let my mage character learn to use a bow, to keep away from annoyingly resistant monsters (which are very likely to hit very hard, see above).
- You are never safe: A nethack character with a full complement of resistances and AC of -30 or so is effectively invulnerable; the Riders and Demogorgon are the only real threats. Not so in Crawl: a few monsters hit hard enough to get past any AC, unless you are undead you can never fully resist torment, and no player can ever resist hellfire.
Various YANI, will post as I think of them
Various firearm YANI's
- Artifact firearm: Ole Painless, the classic movie machine gun that never runs out of ammo. Base item: Assault rifle, provides +1d6 to hit, +1d6 to damage, +1 multishot. In melee, it does 1d5 damage against small, 1d4 against large monsters. Firing it aggravates monsters for a second. Alignment: Neutral; Can be invoked to create 15-30 bullets (much like the Longbow of Diana). Would probably be a quest artifact for some sort of soldier-type class
- Artifact firearm: Vampirebane, lawful pistol. All shots fired from Vampirebane count as +4 for enchantment resistance, and do silver damage against silver-haters. Would be a good sacrifice gift for Undead Slayers, helping a lot in the early game but losing its potency later on (as a pistol can't really do enough damage fast enough)
- Bayonets: Base item uses the dagger skill, doing 1d5 damage against small and 1d4 against large, and being made of (rustproof) metal. Can be (a)pplied to attach it to a rifle or assault rifle. Such a bayoneted (assault) rifle would do 1d7 damage versus small and 1d8 versus large in hand-to-hand combat, with the damage modified by the enchantment of the attached bayonet. Should be a very, very rarely generated item (on a par with a silver dagger).
This would be a class whose concept is that of a modern soldier. New items I would have for them specifically:
- Machete: Uses short sword skill, is made of metal, and does 1d6 damage versus small and 1d4 against large.
- Combat helmet: 2 base AC, made of iron, can be safely enchanted by a soldier up to +7
And their starting inventory would be:
- A +1 machete
- A +0 submachine gun
- 40-69 +0 bullets
- +2 leather jacket
- +0 combat helmet
- +0 high boots
- 1-2 C-rations
- 0-1 K-rations
- A rustproof +1 knife
- 10% chance of a +0 pick-axe
Skills would be as follows, generally pretty restricted:
- Expert: firearms, knife, bare hands
- Skilled: crossbow, bow, two weapon combat, short sword
- Basic: club, dart, riding, dagger
Note the complete absence of any magic skills. Soldiers would also have a very high base spellcasting penalty. The idea is a very worldly character class, not at all in touch with the arcane arts.
Soldiers would be able to be of any alignment, being lawful soldiers of a nation, neutral mercenaries or chaotic guerrillas. Their quest artifact would be the above mentioned Ole Painless, the classic Rambo machine gun.
Add a little spice to the game
Have several slightly different messages for each outcome of eating things. For example, instead of just "This gnomish wizard corpse tastes terrible!", have it choose randomly between that and "What a putrid a gnomish wizard corpse!", "That gnomish wizard corpse could have been worse...", etc. An idea inspired by both Crawl and the original Rogue, this is just cosmetic, and makes the game a little more funny and interesting.
Balancing magic whistles
In my opinion, these are ever so slightly overpowered; I think the best way to balance them would be to give them a small (5-10%) chance to reduce tameness of affected pets by one each time they're used. This would in particular balance the early wish of a pet Archon (or Solar, in SLASH'EM), since it wouldn't actually be that hard to untame one of those then.
Weight limit on stealing things
Monsters can't steal something that weighs more than them; this is mostly relevant to SLASH'EM, where Tiny pixies and quicklings like to steal your shield of reflection, a rather unrealistic sight if you think about it. Oh yes, did I mention I hate nymphs and didn't think they needed the expansion they got in SLASH'EM?
Assault rifles are two handed
Sorry folks, they are...
The "Killed by something while blind" is just stupid. I'm dead, you can tell me what the hell killed me. Trust me, I won't be able to misuse that information.