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Messages - elwin

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Development Process & non-technical / Re: Online social roguelike
« on: January 29, 2015, 07:53:43 PM »
That's a neat idea. It would make it a lot simpler to talk about playing, without needing to jump back and forth from game window to IRC to ttyrec viewer.

If the "overworld" didn't affect the play, it might be possible to integrate it with existing roguelikes without unbalancing them. But if it did, the games could be more interesting, if they were designed properly.

I run an SSH server at It has the original Rogue. That's not a small FOV game, but I just upgraded and I'm thinking of adding more games. I agree, DCSS is best for small FOV.

Classic Roguelikes / Re: Bug in Rogue v1.1 for DOS?
« on: August 12, 2013, 05:41:19 PM »
I took a close look at this.  Between Unix Rogue versions 3 and 4, the developers added the behavior where a +4 to-hit bonus is given to an attack on something with the ISRUN flag not set.  The ISRUN flag was originally set only for sleeping/held monsters, so the effect is that the player gets a bonus to hit sleeping monsters and the monsters get a bonus to hit the player all the time.

You're correct that the player's flags are initialized by default.  This isn't actually a bug because the player's attributes are global variables, which are guaranteed to be set to 0 if not explicitly initialized.  The Rogue devs used that fact a lot.

However, the player's ISRUN flag does get set to true in one circumstance: when the player wakes up from some kind of sleep.  I'm not sure why this is done.  I suspect the devs were trying to reuse the ISRUN flag for whether the player is allowed to move, as part of a rewrite of the turn system that never happened.  I verified that the flag does get set in Unix Rogue 5.4, and monsters did seem to hit the player less frequently.  But the flag doesn't stay set for long.  Several events, such as getting hungry, will unset it.

Monsters getting a bonus is probably not a bug.  The Rogue devs extensively tested the game, and I doubt they accidentally made it substantially harder than they intended.  I think setting the player's flag to true in some versions is a bug.  There's no sensible reason why the player should be harder to hit after reading a scroll of sleep, but only until getting hungry.  In fact, when Epyx made DOS Rogue 1.1, they deleted the line that sets the flag.

I probably will delete it from the versions I maintain too.  Thanks for pointing this out.

Traditional Roguelikes (Turn Based) / Advanced Rogue on (ARRP)
« on: September 15, 2012, 06:18:29 PM »
Advanced Rogue is one of the original Rogue variants, released in 1985.  @Play has a good article on it.  It introduced several new ideas, including using the same letter for multiple monsters, a choice of character classes, and a world outside the dungeon.  Thanks to the Roguelike Restoration Project, it supports arrow keys.

You can now play online at, either over SSH or through the Web app.  I've fixed a bug that caused lots of crashes in shops, and some others that drew prompt messages on top of the map.

There's still at least one crash-causing bug that I haven't been able to reproduce, so please report any crashes.

Have fun, and happy Roguelike Release Party.

Could be some variant of Larn... Larn is indeed quite old and it has two locations (dungeons and volcano).

Larn doesn't have character classes.

Other Announcements / Re: Roguelike Player Development
« on: August 01, 2012, 05:45:01 PM »
I've had the most success introducing people to DCSS.  It's straightforward enough for them to figure out the basics and then learn on their own.

Other Announcements / Re: Rogue tournament
« on: August 01, 2012, 05:39:21 PM »
I think I've got it working now, at least for browsers that support WebSockets.  There are a few more features and fixes to add, so I'm thinking of redoing the tournament in September.

Other Announcements / Re: Rogue tournament
« on: July 12, 2012, 05:38:24 PM »
I've done some updates, which may improve things a little.

I've figured out what the real problem is: when your keypress reaches the server, it responds before Rogue is done processing.  The output from Rogue isn't sent until your next request.  I think I'm going to give up on doing polling cleverly and just switch to WebSockets.

Sorry the tournament turned out badly, maybe I should have waited another month or two.

Other Announcements / Re: Rogue tournament
« on: July 07, 2012, 04:24:38 PM »
A whole second?  Something's definitely wrong.

Try running "ping" from the command line.  If you get more than 200 milliseconds, it's probably the network.

Your browser might make a difference too.  Chromium feels a little faster than Firefox, I'm not sure about IE yet.  Is redrawing the whole screen, like when you check your inventory, significantly slower than just making a single move?

I'm also planning to rewrite some of the server, which should speed response times up, but not by more than 50 milliseconds.

Other Announcements / Re: Rogue tournament
« on: July 07, 2012, 04:55:20 AM »
Sorry for not making things clearer.

I tried that link, tried to log in. Nothing.

dgamelaunch does that sometimes.  That's one reason I'm trying to replace it with the Web player.

I cannot seem to go back into a game in progress after having closed my just sits their idle and I cannot start a new game of that version...

After being idle for an hour, the game will be automatically saved, and you can restart it.  I'm working on a way to let you back in, but for now, saving the game before closing the browser prevents getting stuck.

EDIT2: Other versions are having some major slowdown problems. I'll try again later.

How much latency were you getting?

Other Announcements / Re: Rogue tournament
« on: June 30, 2012, 05:10:49 PM »
Actually my secret shame is that I've never even touched Rogue :P

Really? You should. You will be amazed at the purity of it all.

Indeed, it's surprising how many of the features that later roguelikes added are unnecessary.

I generally go for depth not gold.

I've thought of redesigning the scoreboard to rank by depth instead of gold, but it likely won't be done in time for the tournament.

EDIT: Just fixed a bug that was keeping new accounts from being created.

Other Announcements / Rogue tournament
« on: June 28, 2012, 09:16:10 PM »
To celebrate the 32nd anniversary of Rogue and the genre it created, is holding a tournament. is a dgamelaunch server, like or, but it offers the original Rogue and other early roguelikes.  Currently available are three versions of UNIX Rogue, along with Super-Rogue, one of the first variants.

The newest feature is a Web interface that will let you play in your browser instead of over SSH.

The tournament is scheduled to begin at midnight UTC on July 1 and last two weeks, until midnight UTC on July 15.  All games which begin and end during this time period count toward the tournament.

It's known that Rogue is a harder game than NetHack or Crawl, but I'm hoping to find out how much harder, by analyzing the statistics of a lot of players.  I also hope the tournament will help bug-test the new web player, and that someone will knock me off the high-score lists.

So if you're looking for a challenge or just want to play the original game in something like its original environment, try it!  Rogue is quick, simple, and particularly replayable.

Does anyone know if there are other places where tournaments like this are announced?

Programming / Re: Shadow over Innsmouth (Hide and Seek)
« on: October 21, 2011, 12:27:16 AM »
This sounds like a neat idea.  There's some amount of hiding and sneaking in most roguelikes, even if it's just trying to avoid monsters while you recover. DCSS does it well with stealthy characters. But I can't think of any roguelikes that make it the central focus.

Would I play it again after beating it?  If it's a well-done roguelike, it should be just as fun the second time.

Other Announcements / Re: Greetings and Inquiries!
« on: January 27, 2011, 02:24:29 AM »
I don't really dislike Angband, I just like Crawl much better.  So I rarely play Angband anymore.

Other Announcements / Re: Greetings and Inquiries!
« on: January 25, 2011, 09:41:48 PM »
Everyone loves variants, especially Angband.

I hate Angband, but I especially hate variants that don't bring anything better in the sucky gameplay of Angband.

I should have known making an unqualified hyperbolic statement was a bad idea.  Now that I think about it, I'm not much of an Angband fan either.

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