NetHackWiki:Community Portal

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Welcome! Use this page to discuss general topics with NetHackWiki members. If you want to discuss a topic that is specifically about NetHack, please consider discussing it at the forum. Purely technical issues (bugs, feature requests, etc.) may be reported at Technical issues.

Another way to contact NetHackWiki is to leave comments on the talk pages of individual users.

Other NetHack communities include:

Archives of this page: 1, 2, 3, 4

Start a new section on the bottom of this page for each topic.

Post a new section

Watchlists missing on new wiki[edit]

If you just came here from Wikia, you may have noticed that your watchlist is empty. Apparently, the MediaWikiAuth extension doesn't import it automatically. However, you can fix the problem easily:

  1. Go to Special:Watchlist/raw at Wikia. If you're logged in, you should see a textbox listing the contents of your watchlist on the old wiki. Select it all and copy it to your clipboard.
  2. Go to the corresponding page on the new wiki and paste in what you just copied. Then click "Update watchlist".

Happy hacking! --Ilmari Karonen 01:08, 10 November 2010 (UTC)

PS. It looks like user preferences don't get imported either, even though the documentation says they should be. Alas, I know of no such easy shortcut to fixing that. --Ilmari Karonen 01:18, 10 November 2010 (UTC)


Logo suggestion by Ilmari Karonen

Since we're no longer at Wikia, the current logo (which spells "wiki@") seems a bit inappropriate. We should pick a new one. To kick things off, here's my quick suggestion based on the old idea (monsters spelling out the name of the site). There's also an SVG version, although the SVG renderer here makes an awful mess of it. --Ilmari Karonen 02:12, 10 November 2010 (UTC)

Looking good! :) Could be a bit less rainbow'ish, though, but that's just my opinion. —ZeroOne (talk / @) 09:05, 10 November 2010 (UTC)
I think it's pretty much perfect. Looks like happy and colourful and ... oh my god they're tearing me apart, help help! --paxed 10:42, 10 November 2010 (UTC)
Don't worry. It's just a dwarf king. :) Kynde 06:00, 2 May 2011 (UTC)

Problems on this Wiki[edit]

Section moved to NetHackWiki:Technical issues. --Ilmari Karonen 16:57, 1 December 2010 (UTC)

Move announcements at various places[edit]

Done: rgrn and most nethack forums.

Done: LiveJournal NetHack community. --paxed 16:17, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

Most places in [1] still need announcement postings:

Adom Forum: Angband forum: Dwarf Fortress forum: Kingdom of Loathing forum: Temple of Roguelikes: dplusplus's blog: Forum:

Done: FaceBook: (The NetHack Rules! -group with 860+ members)

I'm growing a bit wary of administrivia. Feel free to beat me to the task.Tjr 15:19, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

Unified login (in the remote future)[edit]

Each of several major NetHack sites has its own user namespace (this wiki, the old wiki, NAO, freenode, NAO forums, other gameservers). In a long term perspective, some form of unified login would be great. Users would benefit from less signup hassle (and less chance of impersonation). For the wiki, it's a great marketing ploy. Especially as we're competing against ourselves at Wikia. Silly as it seems, each signup act drives away visitors.

I realize this is pie-in-the-sky right now, and we have more pressing chores due to The Move.

Colliding usernames will make unified login difficult. We could let Wikiuser play as w:Wikiuser, and Naoplayer edit as n:Naoplayer until people can merge their accounts themselves. Freenode requires some thought. As a first step, I propose adding a warning "You are about to create a username that already exists on NAO/the wiki/freenode/... Please consider choosing a different name unless you are the same person."

See also:

The CentralAuth extension, which Wikimedia uses, has been designed to address just those username collision issues. (That's why it's so complicated; if starting from scratch, it would be much easier to just share the user table between wikis.) However, it's been designed with the assumption that all the wikis are running on the same server(s). I haven't really looked at the code to see if there might be any way to relax that assumption. --Ilmari Karonen 21:29, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
Ah, scratch that, I misread what the issue was. Still, looking at how CentralAuth handles username conflicts might be useful. --Ilmari Karonen 21:31, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

Announcing edits on IRC?[edit]

MediaWiki can be set up to report edits on IRC. It would be kind of nice to have Rodney announce whenever someone edits the wiki, although some checks would probably have to be set up to avoid flooding the channel if someone makes lots of edits in a short time. (Just having it not report edits marked as minor might be a good start.) --Ilmari Karonen 21:53, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

Please try it out. The usage data will be valueable, if nothing else. (Personally, I'm too old-fashioned to find value in Twitter.)
Speaking from RSS/Atom experience, Special:RecentChanges isn't the right thing to broadcast - too much traffic. At the very least, offer some filtering. E.g. keywords: I expect a Crawl person will want to follow all Crawl-related changes, and so on. Tjr 15:17, 13 November 2010 (UTC)
Rodney will now announce edits in #nethackwiki. --paxed 18:23, 16 November 2010 (UTC)

16px This issue has been resolved.

Google and optimization[edit]

Google was by far the largest source of traffic to the old site, so our Google ranking is very important. How can we raise it?

  • Original and fresh content. When two sites offer identical content, one of them is downranked as copycat. We need to be different from Wikia, and we should offer Googlebot fresh stuff. Can we please have something like Special:AncientPages, except that it shows only pages that have not been modified since Google spidered it, with (by humans) most visited pages sorted first?
  • Why did our main page see 1722 hits already, but all other articles go virtually unread? The page view counts were much closer on the old wiki. Special:PopularPages, w:c:nethack:Special:Mostvisitedpages. I propose adding a box to our main page that explains briefly what NetHack is, aimed at people stumbling into the wiki.

--Tjr 22:03, 11 November 2010 (UTC)

The special page idea sounds interesting. I suspect one reason for the main page being so far ahead here is that all the move announcements link to it. People get curious, click the link, go "oh, it's just like the old wiki, just a different skin" and leave. Things ought to even out once the idly curious folks are replaced by people actually interested in looking something up. --Ilmari Karonen 22:26, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
BTW, I think the reason - ranks so high is because MediaWiki uses it as a dummy page name for loading some site JS and CSS code. Although the fact that those hits get counted at all could be considered a bug. (At least, I hope that's it. The other possibility is that there are some broken links somewhere actually sending people to that page.) --Ilmari Karonen 22:32, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
There are broken links, see above near http://domain/article. Tjr 22:40, 11 November 2010 (UTC)
Just to make it clear: Those broken links have been taken care of. Also: - is indeed used as a dummy page name by MW. --paxed 15:22, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
Don't Panic! Most of the visitors right now are those who already know the wiki, but have seen the move announcement in RGRN, LJ, whatever. They just pop in, put the new link in their bookmarks, and go on with their lives. --paxed 07:37, 12 November 2010 (UTC)
On 22 October 2015, the moon is at first quarter.
Agreed. It does suggest the possibility that a well timed main page redesign might encourage those visitors to look around a bit more. We might as well do it anyway, seeing as the current design was optimized for Wikia. One idea I had was that we might borrow the idea of a Did you know? section from Wikipedia (probably starting off without any age or length limits, basically just a regularly updated list of curious NetHack trivia). It shouldn't be hard to manage, and should serve as a nice hook to lure casual visitors in.
Ps. I already made some small tweaks to the main page, including greeting logged-in users by name and notifying them of full/new moon like the game does. I also wrote a quick little template for displaying moon phases like NAO does (although my version so far only has one image for each of the 8 phases nethack uses internally). --Ilmari Karonen 08:25, 12 November 2010 (UTC)
Moon phase does not show up for me.Tjr 17:14, 12 November 2010 (UTC)
You mean on the main page or at Template:Moon phase? The version I put on the main page only says anything when the moon is new or full, just like in the game. I was thinking of putting (something like) {{moon phase}} on the main page too, but hadn't got around to the that yet. --Ilmari Karonen 19:32, 13 November 2010 (UTC)
  • rel="nofollow". I changed most high-ranking incoming links, but virtually all wikis make external links useless. This is the reason for our abysmal Google rank. (Forums fare better.) The only solution I can see is to ask the respective admins to add us to their interwiki table, and then to make those links interwiki links. Of course, we have to link to them with a "good" link first... --Tjr 03:51, 14 November 2010 (UTC)
The list of incoming links. Admins go to "view deleted". Our former wikihost should not see this.
  • SEO stuff
    • valid html. errors on main page.
      • If MediaWiki generates non-valid html, bring it up with MediaWiki devels. Trying to patch those myself would be futile. --paxed 14:40, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
    • Robots.txt needs a sitemap: "Sitemap:"
      • See mw:Manual:GenerateSitemap.php. This should probably be run from cron or something. --Ilmari Karonen 10:14, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
        • Sitemap is now done, and will be generated once a week. --paxed 15:22, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
          • It doesn't work. Google thinks the sitemap says http://sitemap-wikihackdb-ns_0-0.xml.gz. --Tjr 02:49, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
    • Perhaps control how we appear in Google results. Example to improve upon: <meta name="description" content="NetHackWiki is about NetHack, the roguelike game, and its variants.">
    • The main page should not link to unrelated wikis in the footer.
    • Make it easy to link to us. Example, see the sidebar or the end of the text:, linktous.
    • Duplicate content should be removed. Article on that.
      • now redirects to
  • broken internal links
    • Template:Timeline_of_NetHack generates
      • Looks like the EasyTimeline extension was broken before, and some of the broken imagemaps are still cached. Bumping $wgTimelineSettings->epochTimestamp should fix it. --Ilmari Karonen 13:02, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
        • Fixed. --paxed 14:35, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
    •$1 is linked from 43 pages as Googlebot sees them, e.g.
      • Huh? google:link:$1 says "Your search - link:$1 - did not match any documents." to me. --Ilmari Karonen 13:19, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
        • It shows up in the Google Webmaster Tools. I've requested a "show as the Googlebot sees it". Please tell me your Google account, and I'll add you to webtools. --Tjr 14:03, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
          • shows the offending page. -Tjr 06:55, 20 November 2010 (UTC)
            • The only /wiki/$1 in there is wgArticlePath, and that we cannot change, it's a MediaWiki variable which has to be like that. --paxed 08:39, 20 November 2010 (UTC)</s>
    • top really non-existant: forum:help, NetHackWiki:Privacy_policy
    • Forums are excluded by robots.txt. Just look at the links in Forum:Watercooler.
  • I've bought Google Adwords as a stop-gap measure. Please let me know if you see a way to improve the ads. --Tjr 20:31, 23 November 2010 (UTC)
    • Unrelated to the ads, but I just noticed that the main page of this wiki is currently on the seventh position of first page the Google search "nethack wiki". :) —ZeroOne (talk / @) 13:22, 26 November 2010 (UTC)
      • Amateurgeek even blogged about the move. I our Google rank sticks even after the various blog updates loose freshness. --Tjr 17:23, 26 November 2010 (UTC)
        • At the moment this site is at position 7 after 2 en wikipedia articles and 5 old site entries. At the moment we appear to be our one worst enemy shouldn't we start considering removing the old wiki?--IngerAlHaosului 19:57, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
If I could, I would. --Tjr 20:48, 12 December 2010 (UTC)

Source code syntax highlighting?[edit]

As we can now highlight syntax for several programming languages (Thanks to an extension using geshi), should we change the source code pages to use that? For a short test, see User:Paxed/src geshi test. --paxed 08:48, 17 November 2010 (UTC)

Yes. --Ilmari Karonen 10:02, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

How would we link to the function definitions in the source files? Geshi only knows the function name, so the links would have to be something like, which would redirect to the correct place in the Source namespace. I already have a list of the functions at User:Paxed/Source Functions, but what would be best format for the function redirects? Source/function_name, or Src/nh343/function_name or what? --paxed 17:35, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

You mean the text the human user will see? Why not [[Src/feel_cockatrice]]? BTW, your list of source functions is incomplete, and macros are excluded entirely. ---Tjr 20:32, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
Yes, I know it's incomplete, it's automatically generated from the src-directory, and macros aren't as easy. --paxed 20:50, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
I think something like Source:function_name() (or Source:Nethack 3.4.3/function_name()) might make sense for redirects. --Ilmari Karonen 00:06, 19 November 2010 (UTC)
BTW, I wonder if it would be better to keep the line numbers hardcoded and somehow kluge GeSHi to skip over them? One nice thing about the way the source files are currently marked up is that adding annotations is really easy and idiot-proof; you can't mess up the line numbering without spending some effort on it. --Ilmari Karonen 00:06, 19 November 2010 (UTC)
I'm kinda leery about the parenthesis there. Maybe SourceRef:function_name? Also, I've hacked on the hilight extension, see how it looks at User:Paxed/src geshi test2. Biggest problem with it: It currently makes editing page sections impossible. --paxed 08:44, 20 November 2010 (UTC)
I solved the problem that prevented editing page sections, and I've changed all of the 3.4.3 source files to use this new syntax coloring. --paxed 19:21, 20 November 2010 (UTC)
Currently the function names link to Source:Ref/function_name, is that good? Comments? If no objections, I'll run a bot to add the redirects... --paxed 15:41, 21 November 2010 (UTC)
Fine. --Tjr 16:34, 21 November 2010 (UTC)
Added the source reference redirects. --paxed 20:57, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

Has anyone else noticed that the highlighting seems to make spaces and underscores indistinguishable? I'm using the old MonoBook skin, so that might have something to do with it. -Ion frigate 03:25, 25 November 2010 (UTC)

Indistinguishable? In what way? I don't see such a thing, even if I switch to monobook. Screenshot? --paxed 21:02, 25 November 2010 (UTC)
Or rather, underscores seem to show up as spaces; I uploaded a screenshot as
. -Ion frigate 04:02, 26 November 2010 (UTC)
Sorry, all I can say is that it Works For Me... --paxed 07:11, 26 November 2010 (UTC)
Perhaps what you're typing in the firefox search field isn't an underscore? Try entering the underscore via the Windows alt-code (underscore is 95). --paxed 07:26, 26 November 2010 (UTC)
I can replicate the bug if I change the style #line .de1, #line .de2 { font: 1em/1.2em monospace; } to font: 1em/1em monospace;. This causes the lowest few pixels of all characters to be cut off, making underscores look like spaces. Perhaps on your browser even the 1.2em line height isn't enough? It might be safer to set the line height to something larger, say 1.4em or more, and, if desired, use negative margins to tighten up the line spacing instead. (For example, #line .de1, #line .de2 { font: 1em/2em monospace; margin: -0.8em 0; } looks identical to the current style for me, but avoids any risk of characters being cut off.) --Ilmari Karonen 09:55, 26 November 2010 (UTC)
Apologies if this is a stupid question, but how do I change the font style? My knowledge of firefox/mediawiki is somewhat lacking. -Ion frigate 04:25, 27 November 2010 (UTC)
Edit User:Ion frigate/vector.css (assuming you're using the Vector skin. You can find the link to each of the skin specific css files in your Preferences -> Appearance -> Custom CSS) put something what Ilmari suggested above. (I tested this with #line .de1, #line .de2 { font: 1em/1.4em monospace !important; }) --paxed 09:28, 27 November 2010 (UTC)
Cool, that fixed it. Thanks! -Ion frigate 19:38, 27 November 2010 (UTC)
Actually, I was talking more about putting that style in MediaWiki:Common.css so it applies to everybody. Which I've just done. --Ilmari Karonen 18:41, 1 December 2010 (UTC)

A lot of geishi links seem to point nowhere. I've put the list of 404 found by Googlebot at [[NetHackWiki:Community_Portal/geishi404]]. --Tjr

Fixed. --Tjr 18:14, 4 December 2010 (UTC)

16px This issue has been resolved.

Site name "NetHack Wiki" or "NetHackWiki", important for Google search[edit]

People overwhelmingly search for "nethack" or "nethack wiki", and don't find us. Google has us keyworded and well-ranked for "nethackwiki". There seems to be no connection between "nethackwiki" and either "nethack wiki" or "nethack". (I'm sorry, I was not aware of this disconnect ahead of time.) This is a real problem because Google was the main referrer on the old wiki.

Monthly searches on Google: 60,500 for "nethack", 165,000 for "net+hack", 2,900 for "nethack+wiki", surprisingly same for "wikihack", negligible for "nethackwiki". Source

Our keywords are, as reported by Google Webmaster Tools: nethackwiki 100%, edit 63%, nethack 36%, monster 35%, navigate 33%, search 31%.

The goal is to make us relevant for "nethack", and for "nethack+wiki".

IMHO things can still be fixed at this time, and should be. Global on-site replacement is easy with Special:ReplaceText. I can edit the various other wikis myself. Most visitors won't even notice. But I would hate to annoy those helpful individuals who switched external links with another requested change. (Not very many have done so using NetHackWiki as anchor text.) I don't know how bad the mis-match between link anchor text + domain "nethackwiki" versus page title + contents "nethack wiki" is.

What are your opinions? --Tjr 14:45, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

1) "net+hack" we can ignore, they're not looking for us. "nethackwiki" doesn't get more searches because there hasn't been a "nethackwiki". (the old site was called "wikihack", remember?) I'm sure "nethackwiki" will get more searches in the future when people realize that's our name. IMO, using extra spaces will just annoy, maybe create problems/annoyances with some things (category rename, text renames, etc). And most of the links that link to us from reputable roguelike sites will be either "NetHackWiki" or "NetHack Wiki", so eventually google will start ranking us higher than the old site. (domain name match!) --paxed 14:54, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
Google has already reacted, but we're not nethack (wiki) to them. --Tjr 15:07, 18 November 2010 (UTC)
Edit: current keywords + goal. --Tjr 15:28, 18 November 2010 (UTC)

Too many forums?[edit]

Do we really need a "Help Desk" forum and the Talk forum? I'm thinking maybe we could get rid of the help desk one... Would require moving the articles in the other one into the Talk forum. --paxed 15:30, 24 November 2010 (UTC)

Good idea. --Tjr 15:53, 24 November 2010 (UTC)
I'm moving them. The trick is to replace {{Forumheader|Help desk}} with {{Forumheader|Watercooler}} in all articles in the Forum category. --Tjr 21:23, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
Done using Special:ReplaceText; however, Special:Statistics shows the commands just sitting in the Manual:job queue. --Tjr 21:32, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
The runJobs-script runs every 3 hours. --paxed 21:35, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
It might be worth speeding that up a bit. Every 5 minutes or so could be fine, or even every minute: it's really quite fast if there are no jobs to run. Use the --maxjobs option to make sure it won't run too long if there are lots of jobs. --Ilmari Karonen 15:34, 7 December 2010 (UTC)
OK, changed that to run every 6 minutes, and limited the number of jobs. --paxed 16:02, 7 December 2010 (UTC)

16px This issue has been resolved.

Let's audit advice[edit]

The wiki seems to contain a lot of bad advice. Most of its bad reputation is due to that. Advice should make clear its assumptions on player skill, conducts, and available in-game resources.

Let's audit all pages for junk.

I suggest starting with special:popularpages, and adding [[Category:AdviceAuditedBy|YourUsername]] to pages that you have checked.

Thoughts? Better ideas? --Tjr 00:50, 29 November 2010 (UTC)

From a technical viewpoint, a template (e.g. {{Audited|YourUsername|~~~~~}}) would seem better. --Ilmari Karonen 01:06, 29 November 2010 (UTC)
Good point. Especially if several people review the same page to minimize play style bias. BTW, is there a way to find all (popular) pages that are not in a given category? --Tjr 01:10, 29 November 2010 (UTC)
Not in stock MediaWiki, but I think the DynamicPageList extension should let you do that. --Ilmari Karonen 13:16, 2 December 2010 (UTC)
While I think it's a great idea for us to have a concerted effort to audit advice found in this wiki, I don't think it's a good idea to have a "Audited by user X" sticker prominently shown on the page, since that has very little meaning to a reader unless he knows exactly who user X is and trusts his opinion. Also, anybody can change that advice, making that "audited sticker" practically worthless once the advice has changed. Of course, the reader can look at the history and see what changes have been made to the advice since it was lasted audited, but he might as well just go back and see who originally wrote the advice if he's going to bother looking that deep into the history of the article.
IMO, a more low profile list of who audited what that is mainly visible only to the auditors would be a better way of organizing this effort, since it would reduce the chance of the readers having a false confidence in the advice given in the audited article. A simpler way of saying it: Even though an article has been audited, it's still an article on a wiki.
--Dptr1988 21:07, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Privacy policy[edit]

The footer on all of our pages carries a link to NetHackWiki:Privacy policy, but there's currently no page there. Should we

a) remove the link, or
b) write a privacy policy, perhaps based on Wikia's or Wikimedia's policies?

--Ilmari Karonen 13:11, 2 December 2010 (UTC)

It might be better to have some boilerplate. I don't see the need for a privacy policy, but I'm not a lawyer. (Still, why plaster the entire place with those footer links? Wouldn't links to key navigation pages be better, such as strategy etc?) --Tjr 13:21, 2 December 2010 (UTC)

Printed Nethack Guidebook[edit]

What would it take to get a comprehensive printed guide to nethack based on this wiki?

A 500 page tome of all nethack sounds like just about the best book you could ever own. -- 19:16, 2 December 2010 (UTC)

It looks like it takes only mediawikiwiki:Extension:Collection and the tool to make a custom book. In practical terms, you'd likely want to make the auditing advice project finish first. Also, I'm not sure how much would be lost if links aren't handled gracefully. --Tjr 21:53, 4 December 2010 (UTC)

Help update incoming links[edit]

Please help me checking and updating/contacting web sites that link to the old wiki. (I've done some 250 URLs.)

Progress list. Url cut in pieces to foil address harvesters 0AjD-idYyWZBQdHRVZHlWTnF udjJCY1VUQjB1MjFzdFE&auth key=CL-Qmc4J&hl=en#gid=0


  1. Find out who is in charge of the site, and check they haven't been bugged before.
  2. Find all pages linking to the old wiki
  3. Email them once, politely asking them to update. Append a complete list bad links.
  4. Mark the site(s) in the progress list above.
  5. Thank them if they do update.

Tell them who you are, what the wiki has that is relevant to site's audience, where they can find that relevant content, and why it's relevant to their visitors. Use your own judgement. I usually write:

  • The wiki moved here,
  • Please update,
  • List of affected URLs,
  • The old site is a trap to surfers, we can't do anything about it,
  • Really appreciate sending people to the active wiki (and Google ranking)
  • Why the move
  • Who you are (I say "Tjr, admin at the wiki")

More resources: Yahoo site explorer (please don't bug somebody repeatedly!), and link-building howtos 1, 2.

--Tjr 21:53, 4 December 2010 (UTC)

Talk page signature checker[edit]

I've added a script to warn users if they edit a talk page or a forum without signing their edit with --~~~~. You may need to clear your cache before it starts working. Logged-in users can turn it off in their preferences (under "Gadgets") if they find it more annoying than useful. Any feedback or bug reports are very much appreciated.

One known bug is that the script doesn't work on pages in the NetHackWiki namespace, such as here on the Community Portal. The problem is that this namespace contains both discussion and content pages, and it's not trivial to tell them apart. One possible solution would be to simply hardcode a list of pages that should be treated as talk pages. A better one might be to query the MediaWiki API to tell if the page contains __NEWSECTIONLINK__. --Ilmari Karonen 22:01, 7 December 2010 (UTC)

OK, I think I've made it work right on NetHackWiki pages too. The tricky case is when editing an existing section on such a page, since then an API query is needed to load the complete text of the page. --Ilmari Karonen 00:15, 8 December 2010 (UTC)

16px This issue has been resolved.

Renaming the old site back to Wikihack[edit]

I've thought about it again, and I think Bhaak is right. It's too confusing to have two identically branded sites. And I'm not sure if renaming it to anything else except Wikihack wouldn't get reverted. My original motivation why I introduced NetHackWiki was to gently prepare readers for the move, without really thinking through what would happen if Google kept ranking the old site first. With the move notices gone, this point is moot now.

We can't win the fight for the keyword "wikihack" anyway. (We're on position 58.) Let's win "nethackwiki". --Tjr 03:28, 10 December 2010 (UTC)

Why not suggest it on the Community Portal there? If nobody objects in a week or so, you can assume it has consensus. :) --Ilmari Karonen 04:19, 10 December 2010 (UTC)
+1, what he said. Competing for "WikiHack" also doesn't make sense as pmostly only those already knowing it will look for it. I guess all others will google for "nethack wiki". --Bhaak 13:53, 10 December 2010 (UTC)

Better "Welcome" logo?[edit]

Current "Welcome" logo

The current "Welcome" logo should be redone. It's got ugly edges, and it could match the wiki logo better... --paxed 16:28, 13 December 2010 (UTC)

Proposition: new "Welcome" logo
OK, I have created an image called File:Welcoming party.png, presented at right. How about that? :) —ZeroOne (talk / @) 23:53, 13 December 2010 (UTC)
I like the one with the heart better :-). Should the font be the same as the one from the nethackwiki logo? Seems to be from the bitstream vera family. --Bhaak 09:33, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
I like the new one better because it's easier to read. Also, I'd prefer to keep the automated welcome message short. The occupies the entire screen - that's a bad example. --Tjr 19:48, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
Bhaak, the font probably should be the same but I think only User:Ilmari Karonen can make it look the same as he is the one who made the current logo and thus knows the correct settings. But let's not rush as no decisions have been made yet. The current version can be considered just a mock-up if you wish.
Tjr, we can discuss the message contents at Template talk:Welcome.
ZeroOne (talk / @) 20:22, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
The image also gobbles up space, that's why I'm mentioning it here. --Tjr 22:03, 14 December 2010 (UTC)
There's an editable SVG version of the site logo at File:Nethackwiki-logo.svg. The font is DejaVu Sans Mono, which I think is indeed basically identical to Bitstream Vera Sans Mono. I didn't have any particular reason for picking it, except that it happened to be the nicest looking monospaced font I had installed. (Also, the colors I used are a bit different from the standard CGA colors used in the site CSS; you can see them on the third line of this page. In particular, I made the yellow in the logo fairly dark so that the c wouldn't stand out too much, and brightened the blue to make the e more visible.)
As for the proposed logos, I think both the original design and ZeroOne's new version are nice. If anyone wants to see the original heart design redone in SVG, I could certainly do that, but I think a new design might be a welcome (pun not intended) change. --Ilmari Karonen 13:24, 15 December 2010 (UTC)

People have trouble with our captchas[edit]

Reading s:w:awa:Talk:Moved_wikis#wikis_which_need_to_maybe_reconsider_login_procedures, it seems a reasonable fraction of all visitors have problems with the captchas. As a quick fix, I propose rewording it as "Which symbol represents a wand in-game". --Tjr 04:04, 21 December 2010 (UTC)

I think that a new system using FancyCaptcha with a mix of English words and NetHack terms would be better. Andrew 04:53, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
...or perhaps even "Which symbol represents a wand in NetHack?" --Ilmari Karonen 06:40, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
This is a NetHackWiki after all, so what other symbols would we be asking? Also, it's really really simple to actually look up the symbols on the wiki itself... --paxed 06:55, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
...even on the Main Page, in fact. But I do think adding "in NetHack" to the questions would still be a good idea, not so much because there should be any ambiguity without it, but simply because it sounds better IMO. --Ilmari Karonen 07:01, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Added "in NetHack" --paxed 08:10, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
What about "bad behavior"? It promises to reduce spam without inconveniencing users at all, by filtering on the user agent http info. --Tjr 14:46, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
That can't combat spam created by actual humans (such as spam bids via Amazon's Mechanical Turk). Our captcha doesn't inconvenience people who know anything at all about the subject. And if you know nothing about NetHack, you should be good enough to be able to look the information up on the wiki. Also, no captcha after registering. Frankly, I don't want to remove the captcha, as I believe this has been an overblown reaction by someone who just was bitching because he didn't know the answer and was too lazy to look it up himself. --paxed 15:05, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
Sorry. I thought of an additional line of defence.
I think it's an overblown reaction with a small grain of truth in it. --Tjr 15:16, 21 December 2010 (UTC)

16px This issue has been resolved.

Standard format for the "Messages" section.[edit]

I've noticed a variety of different formats used for lists nethack messages, but haven't found standard format. Is there a standard format that I have missed? If not, is there a good place to discuss this issue?

Most places where I've seen messages being listed, they are usually in a table or "definition list" type of format, both of which are, IMO, interchangeable without losing any information or ease of use. I prefer the "definition list" way of doing it, since it appears to be a little more flexible, the messages stand out more and there is space for a bigger description of the message.

Also would there be any benefit for using templates to list individual messages? Not only would that allow for a standard representation of messages, it could also allow for easily cross-referencing messages that appear on multiple pages or some other type of automated features with messages. IMO, it would be nice to have a since source for messages dedicated to listing all types of messages and fully explaining them. And then having other pages referring to those messages to prevent unnecessary duplication.

--Dptr1988 20:54, 24 December 2010 (UTC)

Yes, a standard format for messages would be nice. I also like the definition list format, even if it has some minor disadvantages (like the fact that colons in messages can mess it up unless encoded). It would also be nice if we could automatically generate anchors for messages (like MediaWiki generates for section headings) so that one could link to them; I suppose a template could be made to do that. I could look into it a bit later. --Ilmari Karonen 09:51, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

Wikia Links[edit]

There are many links that point to help pages and community central pages on Wikia such as the links in NetHackWiki:Policy and NetHackWiki:Administrators. Is this intentional or just temporary? -- 08:36, 25 December 2010 (UTC)

The latter, mostly. We should fix them to point to corresponding pages here, or rewrite the text they're in so that they're not needed. --Ilmari Karonen 08:52, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
I removed the Wikia links from NetHackWiki:Administrators, and edited NetHackWiki:Policy to clarify that we're no longer part of Wikia (but left the links in for now, since they still describe sensible wiki behavior rules). --Ilmari Karonen 09:39, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
A full list of pages with Wikia interwiki links ("[[w:c:something:article]]") other than user and user talk pages is: Ancient_Domains_of_Mystery, Dogley_Dimension, Douglas_Adams, Freenode, Vi, Talk:Main_Page/Archive1, Talk:Role_difficulty, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal/Archive2, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal/Archive4, Forum:Main_page_and_skin_changes.
Ordinary link syntax can be found with Special:Linksearch. --Tjr 19:33, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
And the string "": Curses_interface, Freenode, Graphical_user_interface, Internet_Relay_Chat, Talk:Default_tileset_scaled_to_32x32, Talk:Main_Page/Archive1,, NetHackWiki:About, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal/Archive1, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal/Archive3, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal/Archive4, NetHackWiki:Community_Portal/Archive4, NetHackWiki:Technical_issues, NetHackWiki_talk:Featured_articles, MediaWiki:Monobook.js, MediaWiki_talk:Common.js, Template:Gameinfo, Template_talk:PD, Template_talk:Wikipedia, Source_talk:Qt_xpms.h, Forum:Main_page_and_skin_changes, Forum:Number_of_articles. --Tjr 20:39, 27 January 2011 (UTC)
Most pages on that list are either corrected, extremely old, or legitimately linking to Wikia. An exception are the Forum pages - I'm not sure about the best solution. Perhaps deleting them outright? --Tjr 22:21, 27 January 2011 (UTC)

"Did you know" section[edit]

Ilmari Karonen suggested a did you know section, as Wikipedia has it. I think that's a good idea. What would it take to implement it? -Tjr

The only complaint I can see is that people would not want the main page to spoil them on topics they did not specifically look up. -- 20:57, 27 December 2010 (UTC)
I think we should be able to minimize that issue by choosing what to show and how to phrase it. The idea isn't to plaster blatant spoilers on the main page, but more just to entice readers to look deeper if they want. So, for example, not "Did you know that eating a lizard corpse can cure stoning?", but "Did you know that there are dozens of ways to be killed by a cockatrice?". --Ilmari Karonen 18:53, 1 January 2011 (UTC)
Anyway, I went and started collecting possible hooks at NetHackWiki:Did you know?. Please add more. Once we have a bunch, we can start putting them on the main page. --Ilmari Karonen 20:40, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Incorrect title on left menu[edit]

It seems the correct title of this wiki is NetHackWiki without a space. It is used in that form throughout the wiki, but on the left menu, the link to the main page lists the title as NetHack Wiki with a space. -- 20:38, 27 December 2010 (UTC)

Maybe the link should be "Main page". That is more descriptive anyway. -- 02:27, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

Hmm, the mis-link was an attempt to gain more Google relevance for the keyword phrase "nethack+wiki". A lot more people search for that than for "nehackwiki". Ideally, we'd move the Main page to nethack_wiki and have some link to it on each page, using "nethack wiki" as anchor text. --Tjr

Merge "Ask an expert" with Forum?[edit]

I think the "Ask an expert" -page is kinda useless; maybe we should get the intro from that page and merge it with the Forum? --paxed 09:11, 2 January 2011 (UTC)

I agree it should be done. But I don't quite see how without flooding the forum with bumped-up 4-year-old threads. This goes especially for the 4 archive pages. --Tjr 11:37, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Stuff in the Ask an expert -page could be left as it is, with a note pointing towards the forums... --paxed 14:58, 2 January 2011 (UTC)
Done. -Tjr 16:07, 3 January 2011 (UTC)

16px This issue has been resolved.

Encyclopedia entries[edit]

The same encyclopedia entries are used on several pages. I think it would make sense to put the individual encyclopedia entries in one place, eg. under the encyclopedia template (for example, Template:encyclopedia/ant, and then you could just use {{encyclopedia|ant}} to get it. (Similar to how Template:Monsym works) --paxed 13:07, 8 January 2011 (UTC)

Yes, I think this would be a good idea. {{Encyclopedia-redirect}} also appears to address the same problem, but I think that in this case transclusion ( like you suggested ) is much better than redirection, especially given the way redirection was handled in {{Encyclopedia-redirect}}.
--Dptr1988 16:21, 8 January 2011 (UTC)
Agreed. A special case is jabberwock - I propose we keep the complete poem. --Tjr 13:07, 12 January 2011 (UTC)

Improving the special level maps[edit]

Currently all the special level maps (eg. in Ranger quest, Sokoban) are nothing but <pre>-blocks. I suggest we use the User:Paxed/ReplaceCharsBlock-extension to give them some color, making it easier to see the map features. --paxed 21:14, 8 January 2011 (UTC)

That's an excellent idea. --Tjr 13:07, 12 January 2011 (UTC)
There's only one problem: Apparently altar (underscore) will be hidden due to css line-height and such stuff. The same problem as with the c source syntax highlighting had. But the same solution doesn't apply... --paxed 15:05, 16 January 2011 (UTC)
Problem fixed, check out Barbarian quest. Not all articles have been updated to use that yet. --paxed 20:26, 2 February 2011 (UTC)

Improving our click-through rate[edit]

Now that the wiki is running well, we need to focus on how fast newbies find us. Google consistently puts us on the first page for the most important query (nethack wiki). Overwhelmingly, we're positions 6-10 with a click through rate of 7%. The market average CTR in these positions ranges from 13% to 7%.

That means there is a lot of room for improvement, and we need to do some testing and tuning. What do you suggest to put in MediaWiki:Description and MediaWiki:Pagetitle-view-mainpage? --Tjr 00:18, 13 January 2011 (UTC)

I have a suspicion that the main page title, while possibly helpful for our ranking, may also be hurting our click-through rate precisely because it looks like the kind of "keyword spam" that people have learned to semi-consciously ignore. Something short and simple might be better. Maybe just "NetHackWiki, the NetHack wiki"? --Ilmari Karonen 00:50, 13 January 2011 (UTC)
Done. Let's see if the CTR changes. -Tjr 01:28, 14 January 2011 (UTC)

That backfired -- only 5% CTR and 18% less clicks. Any other suggestions? --Tjr 12:34, 26 January 2011 (UTC)

Neat ideas to copy[edit]

Opinions, anybody? --Tjr 18:38, 26 January 2011 (UTC)

Those chat boxes tend to be filled with profanities and other excrement. wikipedia:Sturgeon's_Law applies. Maybe just make the IRC channel link more prominent. (And I totally forgot about the cgi-irc gateway I was going to check out...)
I like the tmbw main page, but if we do something like that, it would be best to create a whole new skin for our mediawiki. (And allow users to switch back to whatever skin they prefer)
If I understand correctly, the semantic MW is a bit too involved a patch; it's closer to a MW fork, so might be more work than worth.
No idea about meatball TourBus, I haven't heard of it (nor meatball) before.
I'm neutral about the clustrmap.
--paxed 17:29, 27 January 2011 (UTC)

Collapsable sidebar?[edit]

How about adding a collapsable sidebar to replace the menus Wikia killed? See an example.

I'd like to add the browser tabs I always keep open. Right now I have: Wand, Weapon, Potion, Ring, Minetown#Maps, Magic_marker#Ink_and_charges, Shopkeeper#Shopkeeper_names, armor (with probabilities added), Tool (with prob. added), Passtune solver, Gem#By_color, and a table of good polyforms stating carrying capacity. –Tjr 13:29, 18 May 2011 (UTC)

Default font used in nethack?[edit]

All over the wiki (most apparent in the homepage screen shot), the font is much smoother than the one found in my terminal. I was wondering if someone can please tell me the name of this font? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Matt493 (talkcontribs) 00:35, 9 April 2012‎.

It is Courier New. -- 02:47, 9 April 2012 (UTC)
It varies based on which platform you view the page from; if you're viewing from Windows, it's most likely Courier New. The font used in the logo is DejaVu Sans Mono (incidentally, my preferred font for playing NetHack with), which is a likely choice on Linux. Ais523 11:28, 9 April 2012 (UTC)

Nethack welcome box:[edit]

The welcome box on the main menu that displays a welcome message and a rumor seems to be broken (or this feature has not been implemented, if that is the case I would like to propose that this be done then). The rumor from what I have seen is always the same "Acid blobs should be attacked bare-handed." Maybe we can fix it so it can use some of the hooks from the Project:Did you know? page, and some generic rumors that aren't too big on spoilers from the oracle. Not only would it bring a fresh change to recurring visitors, but it will hopefully spark the curiosity in the wiki/game from new visitors as well. Matt493 22:54, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

Template:Random true rumor mentions in a comment that the acid blob rumor is the default if the javascript fails. Looking at the javascript though, I'm not seeing anything to do with the rumor. So it does look more like "never implemented" than broken. -- Qazmlpok 23:19, 10 April 2012 (UTC)

Role articles[edit]

I know this has been said for a while, but the role articles could use some substantial work. They're not bad as they are, but they could be a lot more useful.

In particular, the Strategy section should be split into a couple sections, like Early Game, Midgame, and Late Game. Each section should consider things like weapon choice, general gameplay, and so on.

Should quest information be discussed on the role page, the quest page, or the quest nemesis page? I think we have some of each right now. The others should just link to there.

Other ideas? If we agree on what to actually do, I'd be willing to do some restructuring work. Scorchgeek (talk) 01:23, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

I think that's a good idea. (The sections might be named "Early game" etc. though for capitalization consistent with the other parts of the wiki.) Strategy can vary quite much between different stages of the game, obviously.
On quest information - I think it'd make sense for nemesis-specific information to be on the nemesis page, perhaps with a short note on the quest page. Other quest information ("there are many vampire bats in the wizard quest", etc.) should be on the main quest page. The role page might mention the quest (something similar to Wizard#Quest, maybe with a note about its difficulty), using {{main}} to link to the quest page for the role in case readers want to know more things about the quest (thus keeping duplication of content to a minimum while still giving the most basic information).
The strategy sections should probably mention when to do the quest, too, though details about how to do it are probably best placed on the quest page (or nemesis page in the case of nemesis strategy). This can then be linked to.
In some cases, the Strategy sections might need to mention different strategies; I don't think we should only specify one of them, especially in cases where all of them are rather common (I'm thinking mostly of wizards here – some people prefer using metal armor early and throwing daggers while others try not to use metal armor at all, instead preferring high spellcasting success rates for all of the game).
A section about how the respective role is "different" from other roles might also be nice – wizards, for example, are different in that they can use magic markers more easily (and other things). --Bcode (talk) 11:24, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

I'm trying it out on Valkyrie. Scorchgeek (talk) 04:19, 2 December 2012 (UTC)

I'm going to start revamping role articles to include better information on how the roles work in SLASH'EM, which is often significantly different than Vanilla. I've tried it out on Rogue#SLASH'EM, any feedback would be appreciated. --Prometheus77 (talk) 15:23, 23 April 2013 (UTC)

Thank you, that's clearly a gap you're filling. (Sadly, I'm totally unqualified wrt slashem, so I can't say anything substantial about the content.) --Tjr (talk) 18:10, 23 April 2013 (UTC)
Hi, new guy here. Been looking at the wiki for quite some time, decided to help. About the role articles, can we have a set formatting throughout all the articles? I propose the one on Arcs. --ASnail (talk 7:30, a7/10/2013 (UTC) +0

Password issues[edit]

I used to be a member of the old wiki as Kahran042. So I tried to log in, but it wouldn't let me. I tried getting a new password on Wikia, but that didn't help. Can someone pleas help me? -- 05:35, 29 December 2012 (UTC)

Did you try the reset password option here? Scorchgeek (talk) 16:30, 29 December 2012 (UTC)

Yes, but it claimed that I didn't have an e-mail address recorded. -- 01:27, 30 December 2012 (UTC)

In that case, is there a reason you can't just create a new account? Scorchgeek (talk) 01:35, 30 December 2012 (UTC)

I just did, but would I be allowed to transfer the stuff on my old user page to a new user page? --Kahran042 R (talk) 07:30, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

Sure, if you're the same person (and there's no reason to assume you're not), just move your old user page to your new one. This will keep the history intact and create a redirect from your old user page to your new one. You might want to edit your new user page after that to clarify this.
Alternatively, from Template:News: "30th March 2012 - PSA: Wiki login problems? Cannot reset your password? EMail paxed at alt dot org"
(used to be on the Main Page, but as new items were added, it moved "below the fold".) —bcode talk | mail 08:05, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

Putting alternate tilesets in articles[edit]

Conversation moved to Template_talk:Alternate_tilesets

Handling monster color changes in UnNetHack[edit]

Version 5.0 of UnNetHack changes color of multiple monsters (r1455). My suggested method of handling this in monsym templates is to it like it is done with Cthulhu (different symbols in UnNetHack and SLASH'EM)

Is there anybody with a better method of handling this change? Second question - when this mass edit should be done? UnNetHack 5.0 will be used during Junethack and released after tournament Bulwersator (talk) 15:32, 29 May 2013 (UTC)

I think something like Template:Monsym/master mind flayer/UnNetHack/5.0 and Template:Monsym/master mind flayer/NetHack/3.4.3 would be even better, actually. That'd involve some work, but it should be not too difficult to automate.
Template:Monsym would take a variant parameter and use that variant; it'd also take a version number. I'm not completely sure how to avoid having a duplicated page for every version released, but there's probably some way I could think of.
Something like mw:Extension:Variables would help avoid specifying all the parameters everytime Template:Monsym is used on a page. Perhaps it could be combined with a modification of the templates suggested on NetHackWiki:Next version, too: have a template that marks individual sections as specific to e.g. UnNetHack 5.0 or vanilla 3.4.3, then have that automatically set the variable. (I've tested something remotely similar to that on a local test installation of MediaWiki once, FWIW.) —bcode talk | mail 15:52, 29 May 2013 (UTC)
Template:Monsymlink already takes parameters Bulwersator (talk) 15:57, 29 May 2013 (UTC)
It doesn't use them the way I'd like, though; see my description above. It also doesn't take a version parameter and asking for e.g. the UnNetHack symbol for a giant ant will not work (as that never changed from vanilla; making this work without duplication or at least redirects will probably involve some work). (I know rather well that Template:Monsymlink takes a variant parameter; I added it. It's more of a simple hack currently, though, just appending the variant name in parentheses.) —bcode talk | mail 16:06, 29 May 2013 (UTC)


Can we have the YouTubePlayer template? Also, since this website is not part of wikia, do we have a .CSS page? -WaveDivisionMultiplexer (talk) 05:22, 12 January 2014 (UTC)

The Front Page - Can we have the Table of Content section back?[edit]

There used to be a front page that had a sort of "top" TOC with links to Roles/Items/In-Depth/Monsters, etc. What happened to that?

Here is what I mean:

As it is, the front page isn't very useful other than as a welcome page - you have to search for everything which is rather painful. --Raindog308 (talk) 04:56, 11 January 2015 (UTC)

I added it back :-) Raindog308 (talk) 02:52, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

Medica Ossium[edit]


I didn't find a way to send a message to someone who could help, so I'm gonna write here. Sorry for that.

I'm here just to tell you I find a creature who wasn't cataloged in this website. I tried to create a new page for it myself, but I've failed.

The creature is named "medica ossium" (same name of the healer's rank).

"Status of the medica ossium (neutral): Level 14 HP 65(65) AC 10."

I took a couple of screenshots of it. [2] [3]

PS: Feel free to send me to hell for doing this. Bye :D

It's a player monster (or most likely, a doppelganger pretending to be one). Ais523 (talk) 19:48, 9 March 2015 (UTC)

New page please: Command line arguments[edit]

Uh-oh! The Style Guide says not to create a missing page and just stick {-{stub}-} in it. I'm real busy this week ... maybe someone else has time to put the command line arguments supported by the NetHack binary into Wiki-ese? Netzhack (talk) 08:23, 24 April 2015 (UTC)


I've noticed that a lot of people have been able to upload tiles, but they're only available in the source code as the little "color by letter" 16x16 squares. How would I go about getting the tiles for the defunct quest monsters for the SLASH'EM racial quests onto the wiki? --Kahran042 (talk) 13:09, 18 June 2015 (UTC)

I want to play on a tournament or server that uses tiles but I can't find one. help?[edit]