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Let me start by apologizing for making another recommendation thread...

I'm a long time D&D player and RPG gamer. I've also played several MUDs. What I'm looking for in a roguelike:

  • Secrets, secret areas
  • Puzzles, quests that require more than just murder
  • Interesting high-fantasy setting
  • Deep character development
  • Tactical combat (I'm sure most have this)
  • Unique / one-of-a-kind items or weapons ("artifacts")
  • A story / main quest, an ending

Now I know this is asking a lot, and that there likely isn't any roguelike that fully meets all these criteria. I'd love to recapture the magic and atmosphere of epic AD&D 2.0 modules or games like Ultima 7: The Black Gate. I love Tolkein's world with its history and legends, dark secrets, ancient powers, and epic artifact items.

The descriptions I've heard of Nethack gameplay appeal to me a lot, but I realize it's less Tolkein-esque. Is there a version of Angband (or Moria or something) that leans more towards Nethack in its puzzles and inventive playstyle? It would also be cool to have NPCs and/or an overworld - which I realize many dungeon roguelikes don't have.

Some games I've seen that I'm not all that interested in are Incursion and Sil. I've played ToME but wouldn't say it fits these criteria.

I've heard of ADOM but never really hear it compared outright to Nethack or Angband. Is it a less deep experience?

Some games that have caught my attention in my research are DCSS, IVAN, UnAngband, and Umoria. I'm sure there are other variants of Angband that I don't know about. ZAngband sounds kind of cool, but I know it's not Tolkein-based. Though it kind of sounds like I might enjoy the gameplay of Nethack significantly more than Angband... I'm sure I'll give many of these a chance in the future, but today is my day off and I really want to dive in!

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