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Messages - Man of Letters

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A showcase of shooting down explosives. Small font. A couple were shot down close enough to enemies to harm them. Others exploded closer to our party members and took out of the air the projectiles that would otherwise harm them.

This is a semi-automatic stealthy speedrun of the escape scenario. The enemy gang has a huge numerical and equipment superiority. Our team loots the area on auto-pilot until the first foe is spotted. Then they scout out enemy positions. Then hero 1 draws enemies and unfortunately enemy fire as well, which is when he valiantly shoots down explosives to avoid the worst damage. Then heroine 2 sneaks behind enemy lines to reach the remaining treasure. That accomplished, the captain signals retreat and leaves for the next area (the zoo).

Trying out explosives and firecrackers in a nearby cave, with friends. Brainstorm here:

Thank you very much for your generous contributions, feedback and help in bugfixing. As a fruit of your labour, let me present to you

v0.7.1.0 of both Allure of the Stars and LambdaHack!!!

with the following changes:
- add amazing cave and item (actor, blast, organ) descriptions by Peritract
- package for Windows as an installer and also as zip archives
- fix a crash from SDL frontend under some OpenGL drivers (no thread-safety)
- add WWW address to the Main Menu, for other sites that may run our JS blob

Keep it coming!

Allure of the Stars v0.7.0.0 and LambdaHack v0.7.0.0 are out!

This release is dedicated to our recent and future contributors. We need you! Also, hacking a game in Haskell is even more fun than playing games! :)
But there are also gameplay tweaks and fixes in the release. In particular, the high drama of getting from 0HP back to life is quite possible and even common now, if you can pull if off. See the changelog in the post above. Gameplay feedback and any kind of advice are very appreciated.

Some of the places where hacking help is needed are described as github issues:
Please write on the issue that you consider implementing it and I will add to it more info, we will discuss things and that will benefit the project even if you eventually pick another issue, e.g., created especially for you.

See also the post above about the grand plan of "breaking through the eternal 80x25 characters barrier".
You are, as always, welcome to create your own game using the engine and the assets of the existing games.
Help from (ASCII-)artists and from literary minded English speakers would be invaluable.

Whether you just enjoy coding games or wish to polish your Haskell on a single easy task, don't hesitate, give it a try, there is a lot to gain for all involved, even just by random two-way feedback.
The Haskell code of the engine is large, but elementary. We don't use lens nor advanced type-level programming. The focus is on architecture and modularization, so there is relatively little entanglement among individual tasks. Consequently, the easy tasks should really be easy, while there are extremely difficult tasks as well. You are welcome.

Edited: Allure github issues, etc.

Release candidate (v0.7.0.0-rc) is now tagged on github. You can find windows binaries at

The game engine API for is hereby frozen. Quite a few changes for 0.7.* are planned (e.g., the big dungeons, if they fit), but they will not break the API any more. The game will now be tested for a few weeks or months (please contribute feedback) and then will be released, including the browser versions.

Here is the changelog (only the first few changes are visible to a player or a game creator, though some minor ones are not included in the changelog):

- decouple tile searching from tile alteration
- refrain from identifying items that are not randomized
- switch away from incapacitated leader to let others revive him
- make rescue easier by not going into negative HP the first time
- fix crowd of friends on another level slowing even actors that melee
- fix missing report about items underneath an actor when changing levels
- API breakage: change the syntax of dice in content
- API addition: introduce cave descriptions
- keep all client states in the server and optimize communication with clients
- improve item choice for identification and item polymorphing
- reset embedded items when altering tile
- replace atomic command filtering with exception catching
- reimplement dice as symbolic expressions inducing multiple RNG calls
- switch to optparse-applicative and rewrite cli handling
- add stack and cabal new-build project files
- improve haddocks across the codebase

Have fun!

Edit: changelog has been extended; web-browser versions are already updated to v0.7.0.0 (but may still be hot-fixed before the official release).

Hot! Plans for the next year!

* [UI] This is a big one. We are breaking through the eternal 80x25 characters barrier! The game window will be resizable and dungeon level viewport will be scrollable. Help needed, including brainstorming. In particular, I have no idea whether the view should always centre on the squad leader or only until any area outside the level is visible or yet something different, e.g., auto-scrolling so that the messages that overlap viewport from the top don't obscure the leader. See.
* [Gameplay] As soon as this is implemented, levels will have awesomely different sizes! But then we suddenly don't know how to align them vertically and it matters, because a single staircase is located at the same position on each level it passes through and so the relative distance of staircases needs to be preserved (even if we rotate levels, which I don't think we are loony enough to implement). Assuming there are no story-wise constraints, should the levels just align with their geometrical centres or is it too boring? Or top-left corner? Or centre of the top line? Also, what to do if a staircase passes through a void outside the level? See

News! (Also Hot)

* [Engine] Veronika Romashkina have just overhauled and sanitized our commandline support, using the optparse-applicative library. Commandline messages now look much spiffier and adding new options for testing and debugging will now be a breeze.
* [Engine] We switched to a new notation for specifying dice rolls in content. Where before you'd write "3 * d 4 - 2 |*| 5" now you enter "(3 `d` 4 - 2) * 5". BTW, it's just pure Haskell (hence the backquotes for infix function application) so you can include arbitrary expressions. e.g., to make sure that when you change base die for a weapon it changes for all weapons of the same class. If you are writing your own game or modding an existing one, please switch to the current master branch and write your dice in the new format to save your effort. Let me know and I will speed up release so that you can get your game/mod out without delay.

Keep the feedback coming! Cheers!

Please give your feedback on the Early Dev thread:

- make fireworks slower and so easier to spot
- make rattlesnake deeper but more common
- announce no effect of activation
- describe original and current faction of an actor
- highlight dominated actors
- mark organs with comma instead of percent and gems with dollar
- make the healing cave dangerous to prevent camping
- slightly balance various content
- by default move item the same as last time
- often spawn between heroes and stairs going deeper
- fix totalUsefulness computation for negative effects
- fix abandoning distant enemy target despite no alternatives
- fix slow pushing of actors
- fix a crash when many actors run towards stairs
- hotfix: Pass zoom keys through to the browser
- help players find the info about changing the font size
- depend on GHC >= 8.0 and new vector
- specialize client code already in SampleMonadClient.hs
- enable StrictData in all modules
- replace 'failure' with 'error' that now shows call stack


Hi! Two ASCII squad-based roguelikes for your enjoyment, built using the same Haskell engine. Both can be played in the browser or you can download binaries (less lag, especially in AI vs AI mode). I'm grateful for any feedback.

Here is the Sci-fi one, with survival elements (these will be more pronounced in the future, including building, crafting and story-telling; but there is already a robust tactical framework for improvised item throwing, dynamic lights for stealth and scouting, with fleeing/chasing/taunting/avoiding unnecessary combat, and more, including attempts by AI to best the player in all of that). It has multiple scenarios, in most of them you control a party of characters; the main scenario is a long crawl through an abandoned spaceship, in which the happily looting heroes suddenly find themselves unfairly trapped and stranded. The game ASCII UI follows the Angband/Moria visual tradition. (alternatively:

And here is the low Fantasy one, Cthulhu/MathPunk, much less serious, not as varied content, but may be more palatable if you don't like (near-future) Sci-fi. It is bundled together with the free software Haskell game engine. Feel free to to build your own game with it or mod an existing one. The game follows the Nethack visual tradition.

Have fun and please drop me a line!

Temple of the Roguelike / Re: Issues with forum / blog? Post here!
« on: October 10, 2017, 10:41:53 AM »
When clicking on "Show new replies to your posts" I'm repeatedly getting this:

Database Error
Please try again. If you come back to this error screen, report the error to an administrator.

12 Windows/Linux/Source/Browser

Have fun! :)

- fix redrawing after window minimized and restored
- hack around vanishing texture on Windows
- hack around SDL backends not thread-safe on Windows
- the only breaking API change: specify font directory in game rules content
- let the game use its own fonts, not fonts from the sample game in library
- tweak some item creation to occur in character's pack, not on the ground
- slightly balance various content
- make sure the 'resolution' effect is not a drawback
- make artifact weapon rarities more regular
- avoid creating lit, open dungeon at the bottom, where foes have ranged weapons
- number scenarios in user descriptions
- correct, add and modify some in-game messages
- let player hear unseen summonings performed by other actors
- don't let actors hear blasts hitting walls, as opposed to hitting actors
- when moving item out of shared stash, reset its timeouts
- when ascending, shift timeouts of inventory as well
- when creating item not on the ground, discover it
- when dominating, auto-discover only if the item can't be discovered by use
- let henchmen take into account their targets, as described in
- let only walkable tiles be explorable, for clear walls inside solid blocks
- move to API 2.0.0 of sdl2-ttf and depend on corrected sdl2 (builds on Windows)
- simplify code thanks to the new sdl2-ttf API
- tweak travis scripts and building docs in README

Yep! And I will be hacking at the game at ZuriHack (Haskell Hackathon in Zurich, Switzerland), so please free to join me if you live nearby:

Announcements / Re: Unangband (now at v0.6.4c)
« on: September 04, 2015, 01:33:15 PM »

Programming / Re: LambdaHack and new content
« on: August 05, 2015, 02:30:10 PM »
v0.5.0.0 is out ( The content API is unchanged vs v0.4.101.1 and it's now frozen and will be supported for a longer time in this form.

I'm looking for OSX binaries for the example LambdaHack game and for Allure of the Stars, as well as for any success reports and links to games defined with v0.5.0.0 content API.

Have fun and feel free to ask any questions!

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