• Stupid Stormbringer

    From Klaus Kassner@21:1/5 to All on Sat Mar 20 19:44:35 2021
    After a pause of several years, I started a new nethack game. My first
    one in version 3.6.6. Last time I posted here, I used to be a slashem
    player (and Janis Papanagnou still played NH 3.4.3), but I never
    developed the ambition to ascend all character classes in slashem (as I
    had done in nethack before) and have resumed roguelike games now mainly
    to experience the new features of NH 3.6 vs NH 3.4.3.

    Assuming my reflexes to be a bit rusty, I decided to play something
    simple, i.e. a barbarian, but an orcish one for a change. I learned that Cleaver has become a bit more powerful by not just hitting the attacked
    monster but also the ones to the left and right of it. That cost me a
    pet, and since I am not sufficiently attentive to this new feature, I
    also accidentally attacked the peaceful Yeenoghu whom I had summoned by sacrificing an orc. (I just wanted to continue sacrificing and he stood
    too close.) That was a bit scary, because he paralyzed me and my hit
    points went down to 2/3 of the maximum. But then he escaped upstairs and
    next time I met him, I wore a ring of free action...

    Also I kept confusing item properties of slashem with those of NH. For
    example, I blessed a set of scrolls of teleportation just to relearn
    that they still don't give you controlled teleport, so I had wasted a
    potion of holy water. I whistled my pet purple worm onto a chameleon
    corpse so it ate it, thinking this would give him a higher survivability against accidental hits with Stormbringer. It did, because he was a
    giant mimic then, so running accidentally into him after having left him
    for a while just made me realize he was my pet, not an item. But my
    expectation that he would return to purple worm form eventually was of
    course completely wrong... On the other hand, the permanent polymorph of non-player monsters makes a wand of polymorph a useful weapon against disenchanters (which it is not in slashem, unless you avoid killing the monster). They seem to always hit, contrary to wands of lightning or fire.

    However, the anecdote I wanted to report, is about illogical behaviour
    of Stormbringer. On the castle level, a number of gremlins had spawned,
    all peaceful, and I wanted to get rid of them, so they would not later
    block my ascension run. Since Stormbringer attacks without warning, I
    thought it was o.k. to just kill them. It was Stormbringer's
    responsibility to make them angry, not mine... However, later in the
    game, I noticed that Stormbringer kept blasting me after I rewielded it, unwielding my pick-axe. Since that had never happened to me before with
    a chaotic character, I decided to investigate. Obviously, my alignment
    had gone down due to killing many peaceful monsters. A stethoscope
    applied to myself revealed that I was "insufficiently chaotic". Now Stormbringer is called an "intelligent" artifact. But is it intelligent
    to blame the character for killings initiated by the bloodthirsty blade
    itself? And to blast him as a reward for having the blade have its will?
    I would call that stupid rather than intelligent. :-)

    In fact, I would consider it more in line with the internal logic of the
    game and this particular artifact, if attacking peacefuls with
    Stormbringer would not incur an alignment penalty. Also what would be
    more chaotic than attacking everything with a blade that is
    bloodthirsty? How can this make you "insufficiently chaotic" rather than "piously chaotic"?

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to Klaus Kassner on Sun Mar 21 01:23:05 2021
    On 20.03.2021 19:44, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    After a pause of several years, I started a new nethack game.

    Welcome back!

    My first
    one in version 3.6.6. Last time I posted here, I used to be a slashem
    player (and Janis Papanagnou still played NH 3.4.3),

    Meanwhile, since a couple years now, I'm playing Slashem.

    but I never
    developed the ambition to ascend all character classes in slashem

    That would really be a challenge. Too many combinations for my taste,
    too much time necessary, and some combinations (also specific roles
    and races) I just don't like to play.


    Assuming my reflexes to be a bit rusty, I decided to play something
    simple, i.e. a barbarian, but an orcish one for a change. I learned that Cleaver has become a bit more powerful by not just hitting the attacked monster but also the ones to the left and right of it.

    Yeah, players have been warned.


    Also I kept confusing item properties of slashem with those of NH. For example, I blessed a set of scrolls of teleportation just to relearn
    that they still don't give you controlled teleport

    What? - Blessed teleport let you do a controlled teleport in Slashem?
    (I'm playing quite some time now but that evaded my attention yet.)

    I'm used to cursed scrolls for guaranteed level teleports, or confused
    teleport scrolls for unreliable level-teleport. Blessed scrolls always
    kept me within the same level. IIRC, it may ask for a confirmation to
    teleport. (And I thought Nethack-343 and Slashem behave similar here.)

    I am confused.


    However, the anecdote I wanted to report, is about illogical behaviour
    of Stormbringer. On the castle level, a number of gremlins had spawned,
    all peaceful, and I wanted to get rid of them, so they would not later
    block my ascension run. Since Stormbringer attacks without warning, I
    thought it was o.k. to just kill them. It was Stormbringer's
    responsibility to make them angry, not mine... However, later in the
    game, I noticed that Stormbringer kept blasting me after I rewielded it, unwielding my pick-axe.

    I have no clear memory about the effects in Nethack and Slashem; I
    recall to have observed exactly such a gremlin case in one or the other
    game. OTOH I seem to recall that killing a peaceful as Chaotic character
    won't affect you with bad effects. But probably alignment is decreased
    in any case and just other bad effects only applied to non-chaotics?

    Since that had never happened to me before with
    a chaotic character, I decided to investigate. Obviously, my alignment
    had gone down due to killing many peaceful monsters. A stethoscope
    applied to myself revealed that I was "insufficiently chaotic". Now Stormbringer is called an "intelligent" artifact. But is it intelligent
    to blame the character for killings initiated by the bloodthirsty blade itself? And to blast him as a reward for having the blade have its will?
    I would call that stupid rather than intelligent. :-)

    Either your barbarian orc character or the blade wasn't-intelligent. :-)
    One is free to choose and use another weapon.


    In fact, I would consider it more in line with the internal logic of the
    game and this particular artifact, if attacking peacefuls with
    Stormbringer would not incur an alignment penalty. Also what would be
    more chaotic than attacking everything with a blade that is
    bloodthirsty? How can this make you "insufficiently chaotic" rather than "piously chaotic"?

    Bad (generic) wording for a special case? But "piously chaotic" seems
    also not quite right. ;-)

    Janis

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to Klaus Kassner on Sun Mar 21 18:04:30 2021
    On 21.03.2021 17:21, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    Am 21.03.2021 um 01:23 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:
    On 20.03.2021 19:44, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    After a pause of several years, I started a new nethack game.

    Thanks. I was surprised that there were still some of the names around
    that I knew.

    Traffic decreased dramatically. Not sure about the reasons, but I can
    think of a couple. Maybe a change of the medium/forum? Maybe the long
    time where nothing got released? Maybe the (IMO) insignificant changes
    to the game in the 36x releases - nothing interesting to talk about?
    The dinosaur generation amongst the players slowly vanishing? Modern
    and innovative games with more depth available as alternatives?

    Blessed teleport let you do a controlled teleport in Slashem?

    Yes. It makes blessing the scrolls useful, as long as you do not yet
    have teleport control.

    Have to keep that in mind.

    Slashem usually has more different ways to
    achieve the same thing than NH. Three ways for controlled teleport in Slashem, only two in NH.

    Yes, that seems to generally be a design aspect in Slashem.

    Specifically also the more attacks/defenses/items without support
    of new slots (amulets/rings/armor/weapons) make the decisions not
    as easy as in NH.

    Since it's much more difficult than NH I'd wish it would still get
    developed further. (Message and stat colors would certainly have
    saved me from quite some unnecessary deaths.)


    I don't know what else should have decreased my alignment. Also, the
    nethack wiki says that killing peacefuls will decrease alignment, and it
    does not make an exception for chaotics.

    Yep, that's what I meant.

    [ handling hordes of peaceful gremlins ]
    One is free to choose and use another weapon.

    That would not have changed the bad alignment effects. But with another weapon, it is clearly the character's fault, because he is asked whether
    he really wants to attack the peaceful monster. With Stormbringer, the
    attack simply happens, because it is a "bloodthirsty blade". So the responsibility (in game) should shift to the blade.

    I don't think so; it would make that restriction of an overpowered
    artifact an advantage. From a moral point of view it might be better
    but balance-wise I think it would be worse. As it is now one has to
    develop solutions or workarounds.

    I tried a couple things in the past, almost none worked reliably...
    * let a powerful horde of pets kill them (difficult especially in NH)
    * conflict to let them kill each other - doesn't work @Medusa/Juiblex
    * genocide - works without penalty(?), but may be considered a waste
    * digging holes to lure them to non-watery levels (not quite sure)

    Janis

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  • From Klaus Kassner@21:1/5 to All on Sun Mar 21 17:21:29 2021
    Am 21.03.2021 um 01:23 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:
    On 20.03.2021 19:44, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    After a pause of several years, I started a new nethack game.

    Welcome back!

    Thanks. I was surprised that there were still some of the names around
    that I knew.



    Also I kept confusing item properties of slashem with those of NH. For
    example, I blessed a set of scrolls of teleportation just to relearn
    that they still don't give you controlled teleport

    What? - Blessed teleport let you do a controlled teleport in Slashem?

    Yes. It makes blessing the scrolls useful, as long as you do not yet
    have teleport control. Slashem usually has more different ways to
    achieve the same thing than NH. Three ways for controlled teleport in
    Slashem, only two in NH.



    However, the anecdote I wanted to report, is about illogical behaviour
    of Stormbringer. On the castle level, a number of gremlins had spawned,
    all peaceful, and I wanted to get rid of them, so they would not later
    block my ascension run. Since Stormbringer attacks without warning, I
    thought it was o.k. to just kill them. It was Stormbringer's
    responsibility to make them angry, not mine... However, later in the
    game, I noticed that Stormbringer kept blasting me after I rewielded it,
    unwielding my pick-axe.

    I have no clear memory about the effects in Nethack and Slashem; I
    recall to have observed exactly such a gremlin case in one or the other
    game. OTOH I seem to recall that killing a peaceful as Chaotic character won't affect you with bad effects. But probably alignment is decreased
    in any case and just other bad effects only applied to non-chaotics?

    I don't know what else should have decreased my alignment. Also, the
    nethack wiki says that killing peacefuls will decrease alignment, and it
    does not make an exception for chaotics.

    Since that had never happened to me before with
    a chaotic character, I decided to investigate. Obviously, my alignment
    had gone down due to killing many peaceful monsters. A stethoscope
    applied to myself revealed that I was "insufficiently chaotic". Now
    Stormbringer is called an "intelligent" artifact. But is it intelligent
    to blame the character for killings initiated by the bloodthirsty blade
    itself? And to blast him as a reward for having the blade have its will?
    I would call that stupid rather than intelligent. :-)

    Either your barbarian orc character or the blade wasn't-intelligent. :-)

    The character had already Int 18 at the time, wearing a +2 helm of
    brilliance.

    One is free to choose and use another weapon.

    That would not have changed the bad alignment effects. But with another
    weapon, it is clearly the character's fault, because he is asked whether
    he really wants to attack the peaceful monster. With Stormbringer, the
    attack simply happens, because it is a "bloodthirsty blade". So the responsibility (in game) should shift to the blade. (Of course, I as the
    player knew what I was doing, and maybe my character could have been
    suspected to know it after the second or third gremlin at least.)


    In fact, I would consider it more in line with the internal logic of the
    game and this particular artifact, if attacking peacefuls with
    Stormbringer would not incur an alignment penalty. Also what would be
    more chaotic than attacking everything with a blade that is
    bloodthirsty? How can this make you "insufficiently chaotic" rather than
    "piously chaotic"?

    Bad (generic) wording for a special case? But "piously chaotic" seems
    also not quite right. ;-)

    These are the messages that you get when applying a stethoscope to
    yourself. "Insufficiently chaotic" if your alignment is negative.
    "Chaotic" (I believe) if it is zero. If it is slightly positive, you
    become "fervently chaotic", then "stridently chaotic" (I may interchange
    the sequence, not knowing whether fervently or stridently is the
    stronger adjective.) And finally, you get "piously chaotic", which
    corresponds to the best level of chaoticity. Of course, you can also be
    piously neutral or piously lawful, with the appropriate character.

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to Janis Papanagnou on Mon Mar 22 02:06:27 2021
    On 21.03.2021 18:04, Janis Papanagnou wrote:
    On 21.03.2021 17:21, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    Am 21.03.2021 um 01:23 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:

    Blessed teleport let you do a controlled teleport in Slashem?

    Yes. It makes blessing the scrolls useful, as long as you do not yet
    have teleport control.

    Have to keep that in mind.

    Just tried it...

    You have much trouble removing W - a blessed scroll of teleportation {5}.
    Do you wish to put something in? [ynq] (n)
    What do you want to read? [FIJW or ?*]
    As you read the scroll, it disappears.
    To what position do you want to be teleported?
    (For instructions type a ?)

    ...and it didn't work as you describe. It just lets me decide whether
    or not I want to make a teleport on the same level.

    (I am playing Unix SlashEM Version 0.0.7E7F3.)

    Janis

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  • From RecRanger@21:1/5 to Janis on Sun Mar 21 19:18:29 2021
    On Sunday, March 21, 2021 at 9:06:29 PM UTC-4, Janis wrote:
    On 21.03.2021 18:04, Janis Papanagnou wrote:
    On 21.03.2021 17:21, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    Am 21.03.2021 um 01:23 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:

    Blessed teleport let you do a controlled teleport in Slashem?

    Yes. It makes blessing the scrolls useful, as long as you do not yet
    have teleport control.

    Have to keep that in mind.
    Just tried it...

    You have much trouble removing W - a blessed scroll of teleportation {5}.
    Do you wish to put something in? [ynq] (n)
    What do you want to read? [FIJW or ?*]
    As you read the scroll, it disappears.
    To what position do you want to be teleported?
    (For instructions type a ?)

    ...and it didn't work as you describe. It just lets me decide whether
    or not I want to make a teleport on the same level.

    (I am playing Unix SlashEM Version 0.0.7E7F3.)

    Janis

    This is odd. Blessed scroll of teleportation has always worked for me as
    Klaus states. Acts as if you have teleport control.


    ---

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to RecRanger on Mon Mar 22 04:34:47 2021
    On 22.03.2021 03:18, RecRanger wrote:
    On Sunday, March 21, 2021 at 9:06:29 PM UTC-4, Janis wrote:
    On 21.03.2021 18:04, Janis Papanagnou wrote:
    On 21.03.2021 17:21, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    Am 21.03.2021 um 01:23 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:

    Blessed teleport let you do a controlled teleport in Slashem?

    Yes. It makes blessing the scrolls useful, as long as you do not yet
    have teleport control.

    Have to keep that in mind.
    Just tried it...

    You have much trouble removing W - a blessed scroll of teleportation {5}.
    Do you wish to put something in? [ynq] (n)
    What do you want to read? [FIJW or ?*]
    As you read the scroll, it disappears.
    To what position do you want to be teleported?
    (For instructions type a ?)

    ...and it didn't work as you describe. It just lets me decide whether
    or not I want to make a teleport on the same level.

    (I am playing Unix SlashEM Version 0.0.7E7F3.)

    Janis

    This is odd. Blessed scroll of teleportation has always worked for me as Klaus states. Acts as if you have teleport control.

    I have only extrinsic teleport by using a ring, and I removed the ring
    before I read the scroll. I also read a cursed scroll to levelport and
    had (by accident) not worn my ring with the result that I got a random levelport. - And I repeated that test just now. In addition I zapped a
    wand of enlightenment to confirm that I have no teleport control. The
    only somewhat related thing is that I have teleportitis (uncontrolled
    random teleports), but that should not matter for levelports (AFAIK).

    And here's the source code, where I also don't see the behavior as you
    describe it:

    case SCR_TELEPORTATION:
    if(confused || sobj->cursed) level_tele();
    else {
    if (sobj->blessed && !Teleport_control) {
    known = TRUE;
    HTeleport_control = 2;
    /* if (yn("Do you wish to teleport?")=='n')
    * break;
    */
    }
    tele();
    if(Teleport_control || !couldsee(u.ux0, u.uy0) ||
    (distu(u.ux0, u.uy0) >= 16))
    known = TRUE;
    }
    break;


    What version are you playing?

    Janis

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  • From Klaus Kassner@21:1/5 to All on Mon Mar 22 14:58:20 2021
    Am 21.03.2021 um 18:04 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:
    On 21.03.2021 17:21, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    Am 21.03.2021 um 01:23 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:
    On 20.03.2021 19:44, Klaus Kassner wrote:

    Yes, that seems to generally be a design aspect in Slashem.

    Specifically also the more attacks/defenses/items without support
    of new slots (amulets/rings/armor/weapons) make the decisions not
    as easy as in NH.

    Right. You need reflection and either flying or water walking, because
    of the damned spells of create pool. Which means that I usually
    renounced on permanent speed using potions and the haste self spell to
    have it at least temporarily. Then I could have the amulet of reflection
    and water walking boots. Level drain resistance may be necessary at
    least temporarily, suggesting to either switch with the amulet of
    reflection, if someone with a wand of draining appears, which is a bit dangerous as then reflection is gone for a while, or to have deep dragon
    scale mail plus a cloak of magic resistance. Or silver dragon scale
    mail, the cloak and an amulet of drain resistance. The downside is of
    course that with amulets of reflection or drain resistance worn you
    don't have the slot for flying available, which would allow you to wear
    speed boots. A shield of reflection is not a good option if you want to
    have spells... If you forgo drain resistance, then you can have flying,
    the silver mail, cloak of magic resistance and speed boots. You may
    still have to switch with the amulet of drain resistance from time to
    time and then the spell of create pool may be deadly...

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  • From Klaus Kassner@21:1/5 to All on Mon Mar 22 15:08:43 2021
    Am 22.03.2021 um 02:06 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:
    On 21.03.2021 18:04, Janis Papanagnou wrote:
    On 21.03.2021 17:21, Klaus Kassner wrote:
    Am 21.03.2021 um 01:23 schrieb Janis Papanagnou:

    Blessed teleport let you do a controlled teleport in Slashem?

    Yes. It makes blessing the scrolls useful, as long as you do not yet
    have teleport control.

    Have to keep that in mind.

    Just tried it...

    You have much trouble removing W - a blessed scroll of teleportation {5}.
    Do you wish to put something in? [ynq] (n)
    What do you want to read? [FIJW or ?*]
    As you read the scroll, it disappears.
    To what position do you want to be teleported?
    (For instructions type a ?)

    ...and it didn't work as you describe. It just lets me decide whether
    or not I want to make a teleport on the same level.

    Since it asked you to what position you want to be teleported, all you
    needed to do is to indicate a position in the usual way. Of course you
    cannot teleport to a different level, but you can teleport inside the
    level to every non-trap or non-wall spot (I don't know whether moats
    will be avoided, if you indicate a moat position, in order to drown
    yourself :-)).

    If you don't give a position, e.g. by typing escape, I assume you will
    be randomly teleported.


    (I am playing Unix SlashEM Version 0.0.7E7F3.)

    Which is precisely the last version I was using. Under Cygwin, i.e. a
    Linux emulation on a laptop.

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to Klaus Kassner on Mon Mar 22 15:40:30 2021
    On 22.03.2021 15:08, Klaus Kassner wrote:

    Since it asked you to what position you want to be teleported, all you
    needed to do is to indicate a position in the usual way. Of course you
    cannot teleport to a different level, but you can teleport inside the
    level to every non-trap or non-wall spot

    Ah, I misread your post. You wrote "controlled teleport" and I read
    it to mean "teleport control". Right, you get the former but not the
    latter.

    (I don't know whether moats
    will be avoided, if you indicate a moat position, in order to drown
    yourself :-)).

    Typically there's a safe-spot test, so I'd expect you shouldn't land
    there and drown.

    And yes, sometimes drowning seems to lead quicker to the same result
    with less pain than, say, an 'A' summon storm at the Plane of Air. ;-)

    Janis

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  • From David Damerell@21:1/5 to All on Mon Mar 22 18:23:01 2021
    Quoting Janis Papanagnou <janis_papanagnou@hotmail.com>:
    Traffic decreased dramatically. Not sure about the reasons, but I can
    think of a couple. Maybe a change of the medium/forum? Maybe the long
    time where nothing got released? Maybe the (IMO) insignificant changes
    to the game in the 36x releases - nothing interesting to talk about?
    The dinosaur generation amongst the players slowly vanishing? Modern
    and innovative games with more depth available as alternatives?

    I think I might steer clear of expressions like "modern and innovative",
    but since around 2016 I have been playing Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup, and
    then our Stoat Soup variant. DCSS is a distant relative of NetHack (Linley Henzell's original Crawl is full of unexamined NetHack-isms). I find it
    hard to imagine going back to playing NetHack seriously now, although I
    did win a Valk in Junethack 2018 (and die in the Sanctum in Sporkhack).
    --
    David Damerell <damerell@chiark.greenend.org.uk> Kill the tomato!
    Today is Second Leicesterday, March.
    Tomorrow will be Second Brieday, March.

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to David Damerell on Mon Mar 22 20:18:38 2021
    On 22.03.2021 19:23, David Damerell wrote:
    Quoting Janis Papanagnou <janis_papanagnou@hotmail.com>:
    Traffic decreased dramatically. Not sure about the reasons, but I can
    think of a couple. Maybe a change of the medium/forum? Maybe the long
    time where nothing got released? Maybe the (IMO) insignificant changes
    to the game in the 36x releases - nothing interesting to talk about?
    The dinosaur generation amongst the players slowly vanishing? Modern
    and innovative games with more depth available as alternatives?

    I think I might steer clear of expressions like "modern and innovative"

    Usually I put marketing-typical phrases like these in quotes (or avoid
    them completely). Though since I'm still playing a decades old type of
    game I thought it was yet a fair characterization.

    Janis

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  • From Pat Rankin@21:1/5 to Janis on Tue Mar 23 08:20:12 2021
    On Sunday, March 21, 2021 at 10:04:32 AM UTC-7, Janis wrote:
    Traffic decreased dramatically. Not sure about the reasons, but I can
    think of a couple. Maybe a change of the medium/forum? [...]

    The majority of internet users today have never even heard of
    Usenet news. Whether that's true of nethack players is harder
    to judge but I think it's likely to apply to them too. As to why
    most old timers have given up on this newsgroup, I can't say.
    The old user base of students sharing a university computer
    is long gone.

    I've no doubt that fragmenting the player base with variants
    contributes to reduced traffic. (There are too many for me to
    keep track of these days.)

    People looking for tips and spoilers probably end up at
    nethackwiki.com rather than come here.

    Many people play by connecting to NAO (nethack.alt.org) or
    hardfought.com and apparently interact with each other via IRC.
    There's a separate channel primarily for variant developers.

    reddit.com/r/nethack probably gets a few new posts, often
    about variants, and a couple dozen replies per day. There
    seems to be a tendency to ask repetitive questions instead of
    digging up answers from posts even a week or two old.

    Some people post 'issues' and 'pull requests' (patches they
    want to see be installed) to github.com/NetHack/NetHack.
    Traffic is low and does not veer off into variants. It isn't really
    intended for back-and-forth discussion but some traffic which
    would have come here in the old days ends up there.

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to Pat Rankin on Tue Mar 23 17:44:58 2021
    On 23.03.2021 16:20, Pat Rankin wrote:

    I've no doubt that fragmenting the player base with variants
    contributes to reduced traffic. (There are too many for me to
    keep track of these days.)

    In the farther past users of some NH-based variants also
    posted here. But all of them vanished together with most
    of the NH community. (Singular exceptions disregarded.)

    Janis

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  • From Klaus Kassner@21:1/5 to All on Wed Mar 24 20:33:06 2021
    Am 23.03.2021 um 16:20 schrieb Pat Rankin:
    On Sunday, March 21, 2021 at 10:04:32 AM UTC-7, Janis wrote:
    Traffic decreased dramatically. Not sure about the reasons, but I can
    think of a couple. Maybe a change of the medium/forum? [...]

    The majority of internet users today have never even heard of
    Usenet news.

    Yes, there are other new-fangled social media nowadays. Some of which I
    never tried out and have no intention to...

    Whether that's true of nethack players is harder
    to judge but I think it's likely to apply to them too.

    To the younger ones, certainly.

    As to why most old timers have given up on this newsgroup, I can't say.

    Some of them may simply have stopped playing after some years. I did so
    after having achieved certain game-related goals. NH 3.6 came up only
    after I had already switched to slash'em and I found it difficult to
    switch back then, given that slash'em has so many more options for
    creativity. You will not as easily get stuck before the Castle, because
    you are missing an important ingredient to attack it (such as magic resistance). There are so many more branches and items in the game that
    a bad-tempered RNG will not necessarily harm your game (if you survive,
    say, down to level 15), because the more items exist, the closer their
    number will be to the expectation value, and so you will eventually also
    get the rarer items. Moreover, there are more guaranteed ways to get
    certain things. (There are cursed -9 gray dragon scales in the lawful
    quest, protected by an arch lich trap statue, but if you can genocide
    arch lichs, there you have a guaranteed source of magic resistance. A
    wand of cancellation is of course very helpful here.)

    Now, after a pause of several years, it is rather easy to start with NH
    again, which is interesting, because I would like to learn about the
    changes with respect to the latest version I played before (NH 3.4.3). I
    find the game still pretty addictive, so I will probably stop playing
    again after a few ascensions -- when I think I can play it as well as I
    did before. (At present, I am still making many mistakes, partially
    because I confuse slash'em behaviour with nethack one, partially,
    because of the changes between the NH versions.)


    The old user base of students sharing a university computer
    is long gone.

    Yes.


    People looking for tips and spoilers probably end up at
    nethackwiki.com rather than come here.

    Right. This way I learned why Cleaver behaves differently in NH 3.6 than
    in NH 3.4.

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  • From Pat Rankin@21:1/5 to Janis on Wed Mar 24 17:43:24 2021
    On Monday, March 22, 2021 at 7:40:32 AM UTC-7, Janis wrote:
    Ah, I misread your post. You wrote "controlled teleport" and I read
    it to mean "teleport control". Right, you get the former but not the
    latter.

    The code snippet you posted shows HTeleport_control = 2 which
    should provide timed control lasting for 2 turns. The current turn
    would use up 1 of them, but it looks like reading a blessed scroll
    to teleport within the current level and then immediately reading a
    cursed one (assuming you aren't burdened or poly'd into something
    too slow to move every turn) would allow a one-shot controlled
    level teleport.

    NetHack's to-be-3.7 has controlled teleport within level for a
    blessed scroll (which I think might have been an explore mode
    feature a long time ago), but it doesn't confer any sort of temporary
    intrinsic in the process.

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  • From Janis Papanagnou@21:1/5 to Pat Rankin on Thu Mar 25 13:06:32 2021
    On 25.03.2021 01:43, Pat Rankin wrote:
    On Monday, March 22, 2021 at 7:40:32 AM UTC-7, Janis wrote:
    Ah, I misread your post. You wrote "controlled teleport" and I read
    it to mean "teleport control". Right, you get the former but not the
    latter.

    The code snippet you posted shows HTeleport_control = 2 which
    should provide timed control lasting for 2 turns.

    When I had looked that up I thought that this variable was a flag
    (not a number/count), given that is is somewhere used as flag like 'HTeleport_control |= FROMOUTSIDE', but I may misinterpreted that.

    Janis

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  • From Klaus Kassner@21:1/5 to All on Thu Mar 25 15:50:19 2021
    Am 25.03.2021 um 01:43 schrieb Pat Rankin:
    On Monday, March 22, 2021 at 7:40:32 AM UTC-7, Janis wrote:
    Ah, I misread your post. You wrote "controlled teleport" and I read
    it to mean "teleport control". Right, you get the former but not the
    latter.

    The code snippet you posted shows HTeleport_control = 2 which
    should provide timed control lasting for 2 turns. The current turn
    would use up 1 of them, but it looks like reading a blessed scroll
    to teleport within the current level and then immediately reading a
    cursed one (assuming you aren't burdened or poly'd into something
    too slow to move every turn) would allow a one-shot controlled
    level teleport.

    That is something I never realized! I mean, controlled teleport within a
    level is useful enough and makes it worthwhile blessing a scroll of
    teleport in early game (gives you essentially a certain escape from a
    tight situation on ordinary levels, whereas uncontrolled teleport may
    take you not far enough away from the pack surrounding you).

    However, I do not really see how one can put in an action after reading
    the blessed scroll before it does the teleport, so probably one will
    first have to teleport within the level and then, on immediate reading
    of a cursed scroll one might get to choose the level...

    NetHack's to-be-3.7 has controlled teleport within level for a
    blessed scroll (which I think might have been an explore mode
    feature a long time ago), but it doesn't confer any sort of temporary intrinsic in the process.

    In any case, it is a good thing to make blessed scrolls more useful than uncursed ones. (Which they aren't really with the choice of not
    teleporting, given to the reader right now. After having identified the
    scroll, there is no reason to ever read a blessed scroll, if you do not
    want to teleport...)

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  • From Jukka Lahtinen@21:1/5 to Klaus Kassner on Thu Mar 25 23:17:32 2021
    Klaus Kassner <Klaus.Kassner@gmx.de> writes:

    In any case, it is a good thing to make blessed scrolls more useful
    than uncursed ones. (Which they aren't really with the choice of not teleporting, given to the reader right now. After having identified
    the scroll, there is no reason to ever read a blessed scroll, if you
    do not want to teleport...)

    Maybe to reduce the weight of your inventory without giving any monsters
    a chance to read the scroll, when there are no containers around?
    (Yeah, a corner case..)

    --
    Jukka Lahtinen

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  • From Pat Rankin@21:1/5 to Janis on Thu Mar 25 15:59:22 2021
    On Thursday, March 25, 2021 at 5:06:35 AM UTC-7, Janis wrote:
    On 25.03.2021 01:43, Pat Rankin wrote:
    The code snippet you posted shows HTeleport_control = 2 which
    should provide timed control lasting for 2 turns.

    When I had looked that up I thought that this variable was a flag
    (not a number/count), given that is is somewhere used as flag like 'HTeleport_control |= FROMOUTSIDE', but I may misinterpreted that.

    It is, but the lowest bits are where the timeout is stored. You'll
    find places that use (Hsomething & TIMEOUT) to get an intrinsic's
    timeout value with FROMOUTSIDE and so forth stripped away
    and Hsomething = ((Hsomething & ~TIMEOUT) | newtimeout)
    to replace a timeout without disturbing FROMOUTSIDE and such.

    Setting it to 2 instead of using the second expression above would
    clobber any current value, but execution won't reach that code
    unless the value is 0 so there aren't any other active bits to clobber.
    It has a side-effect, probably intentional, of preventing the reading
    of a set of blessed scrolls on turn after turn from accumulating a
    larger timeout. It will always be decremented to 1 at the start of
    the next turn--possibly move, I'm not sure offhand--and then to 0
    and no longer effective on the turn--or move--after that.

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  • From Klaus Kassner@21:1/5 to All on Fri Mar 26 15:06:03 2021
    Am 25.03.2021 um 22:17 schrieb Jukka Lahtinen:
    Klaus Kassner <Klaus.Kassner@gmx.de> writes:

    In any case, it is a good thing to make blessed scrolls more useful
    than uncursed ones. (Which they aren't really with the choice of not
    teleporting, given to the reader right now. After having identified
    the scroll, there is no reason to ever read a blessed scroll, if you
    do not want to teleport...)

    Maybe to reduce the weight of your inventory without giving any monsters
    a chance to read the scroll, when there are no containers around?
    (Yeah, a corner case..)


    Sure, but then I might risk teleporting closer to monsters I want to
    avoid. Also, if I don't want the scroll for myself (to use it later with teleport control) and am strong enough to deal with any single monster,
    I would not care too much, if a monster read the scroll for escape purposes.

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