Sunday, March 30, 2008

.nethackrc and you

After playing NetHack and Slash'Em for a while, I have discovered what many other players have discovered: the helpfulness of having a good .nethackrc file.

.nethackrc is the user config file for NetHack and its many-flavored offspring. Under Windows, the file is called defaults.nh and should be in your NetHack directory. Under *NIX, it's either in your home directory or somewhere else; I found mine in /etc/Nethack. On Mac, it's just called Nethack Defaults.

In this file, you can set a number of options for the game, from what character set the game uses to items you can pick up just by walking over them. Many of these options can be set in-game by typing a capital O, but they will be set back to their defaults when you exit. Anything set in your config file will remain that way when you start the game.

As an example, here's my .nethackrc file from the Slash'Em server on Pallas:

# .nethackrc file for JackOClubs on Pallas
# Borrowed heavily from Kernigh, esp. menucolors
#----------GAME ENVIRONMENT----------
#----------CUSTOM ENVIRONMENT----------
#----------MENU COLORS----------

Anything after a # is commented out; this is nice if you want to put in labels or have options you don't always want to use, like the character options I have above.

Setting boulders to a character like 0 or 8, simple as it sounds, can actually save a lot of headaches, both in Sokoban and elsewhere in the dungeon. 0 is just a much easier character to see than '.

The menu color options are really nice also; they can help you see, at a glance, if you have blessed/cursed items in your inventory. You could also set them to highlight things like holy water or other potions, certain artifacts, useful tools that you want to be able to find quickly, etc.

WikiHack has a list of all of the options and what they do; they should also be in the NetHack user manual.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

NetHack: Second Ascension!

26 days after ascending once, I do it again. Awesome.

The screenshot is basically my points list. I had a bunch of artifacts (I used the Sceptre of Might for most of the game), a ton of gems and amulets (notice the last one, worth nothing) and a pet skeleton to add to my score.

A few of the other worthwhile items in my bag:
-A tin of Medusa meat
-A tin of Wizard of Yendor meat
-6 of the 9 rings of the Nazg├╗l
-5 wands of death
-A towel
-A t-shirt that said "Yendorian Military Soldiers Do It In Large Groups" (worn, enchanted to +4)

I was also crowned this time. Basically, all it gives you is another title to display when you ascend, escape or die.

Notable folks slain:
-The Wizard of Yendor (8 times)
-Death (thrice)
-Pestilence (twice)
-Famine (twice)
-Tiamat, the Chromatic Dragon
-Vlad the Impaler
-119 soldiers
-10 hobbits

I had a beautifully-stocked icebox for the Demigod Bar once I reached the end, and wouldn't you know I left it on the altar when I ascended. Perhaps someone will come by and enjoy all that booze and pudding I gathered.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Beat My Score: Clu Clu Land

116,220 points. Let's see you top it.