Not logged in, Join Here! or Log In Below:  
News Articles Search    

 Home / Game Design & Programming / Nethack or Rogue-like game design research: any ideas ? Account Manager
Archive Notice: This thread is old and no longer active. It is here for reference purposes. This thread was created on an older version of the flipcode forums, before the site closed in 2005. Please keep that in mind as you view this thread, as many of the topics and opinions may be outdated.

April 07, 2005, 11:40 AM

Since my first days in front of a PC I took a deep liking in Rogue and later Nethack.

Recently I worked my way through the Nethack source code. If you ever had a look into it, you'll remember that the entire game is a deeply nested and intermingeled bunch of flags, state variables and conditional actions.

I'm wondering whether anybody has heard of a different approach to this genre of games. I imagined some rule-based system which defines environment, creatures, objects, their states, along with events and handlers to implement the behaviour.

I'd like to hear your rants and comments on this.

Please note that I'm not saying I'm going to implement this next week, as well as I'm not saying I could implement Nethack in a nicer or cleaner fashion than it currently is.

I deeply appreciate it, and am fully aware that Nethack is an achievment of many distinguished people, a product of many years of development, and that it isn't easy or even obvious how to roll such a thing again.

This question is more of academic interest, I'd just like to share thoughts. Maybe someone can point me to some resources or (failed) attempts. I once heard of a Roguelike engine called "OGER" or something similar (not Ogre 3D), but didn't manage to find anything related.

Best regards,


April 07, 2005, 04:23 PM



April 07, 2005, 09:31 PM

I used to play a game called Angband on the 486 - before that, Moria on the Acorn. I don't know how well these rogue-like games have been implemented, but it might be a start.


April 08, 2005, 09:55 AM

Yes, Brian, I know that. I usually appreciate your straight-to-the-matter style, but I feel this particular answer is below your own standards. Or maybe it's just because this time it's me who got targeted.

I looked at Moria, Angband, Hack, Nethack, ZAngband, Slash'em, Rogue, whatever.
The all forked from Rogue or Hack, or based their coding on these games.

As I mentioned before, I'm looking for alternative design ideas, not necessarily working implementations. Feel free to just write down your random thoughts.

Or ... do you all feel that these console-based dungeoneer games are out of style and fashion ?


April 08, 2005, 10:21 AM

There was a ~very~ primitive roguelike as a minigame for system shock 2, don't know if that counts, though ;)

Also there was a game for the Sega Genesis console, called Fatal Labyrinth,
also along the lines of a roguelike.

- Wernaeh

Dan Royer

April 25, 2005, 12:11 PM

Having source dived a few times myself, I'd say that a good 10% of the mess in there is code to make sure the english grammar is correct. A good number of flags and variables have cryptic names. I think it would be interesting to compare Rogue with, say, a MUD, to see if there are ideas that might help each other.

This thread contains 6 messages.
Hosting by Solid Eight Studios, maker of PhotoTangler Collage Maker.