The term Yendor was introduced to Rogue and then appeared in Hack and NetHack. The word is "Rodney" spelled backwards, which probably is the original derivation, but it also feels linguistically appropriate to a fantasy game. This is doubtlessly due to Tolkien's created languages of Sindarin and Quenya, in which the suffix "-(n)dor" corresponds to English "-land," as in Gondor ("stone land"), Mordor ("black land"), and many others. In the sincerest form of flattery, place-names ending in "-(n)dor" can be found throughout fantasy and science fiction, such as "the forest moon of Endor" in the film Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. The word Yendor might also be a nod to the text-based adventure game series Zork, where the land in which the games took place was called Quendor. Notably, the currency of both Yendor and Quendor is the same, the Zorkmid.
The following names in NetHack contain Yendor:
- Amulet of Yendor, the goal, and its cheap imitation
- Wizard of Yendor (aka Rodney), annoying wizard
- Platinum Yendorian Express Card, the Tourist quest artifact
- If applying an unpaid potion of oil, you will get the message, "That will cost you (n) zorkmids (Yendorian Fuel Tax)."
- The soldiers and officers of the Yendorian Army. Though identified primarily as "soldier," "sergeant," etc., the encyclopedia entry for them identifies them as Yendorian soldiers.