Category Archives: roguelike

Is the iPad a viable Roguelike platform?

I was very excited yesterday about the release of the iPad (and had been for a while). While at first quite underwhelmed, I can think of a couple of killer-apps for the platform.

One genre I’m not quite so sure of is Roguelikes. After all, a decent desktop port can be played quite well on a laptop. But while still hunting for bugs and implementing new features for the new Slash’EM port, I realize that an iPad port would eliminate most of the difficulties I had so far while tailoring it to the small device (assuming a UI with minimal keyboard use).

Since most readers here are roguelike players (I guess), here’s my question: Will you buy an iPad? Please vote on the main page!

SlashEM 0.0.7E7F3 distribution for Mac OS X (tty)

When I felt the need to step through the original SlashEM tty version to get a feel for some seemingly changed behavior for add_menu, and intrigued by Patric’s comment on my Mac OS X SlashEM compile, I thought a native Mac OS X tty version that you don’t need to install, easily debuggable (sort of) from xcode would not be a bad idea. You can download the end result from here. I compiled it for 10.5/i386. Would be interesting to know whether it runs on 10.4 (I guess not but I don’t have that SDK anymore) and on older Intels (like those core duo ‘1’s or whatever they were named). Just unzip the dist and double click SlashEM and it should run in a terminal. As you can see I had to change very little from the original sources (macosx now has its own sys subdirectory, but uses a patched unixmain.c), and this is probably very easy to do with other variants and NetHack itself (leave a comment if you are interested). I have yet to integrate the Makefiles and xcode nicely so everything is built from scratch with one make / press of a button. And beware, there might still be some dat files missing (for quests etc.), and I have yet to do some more extensive wizard testing. Creating fully graphical ports that are as easy to use as any other native app on Mac OS X is of course the goal, but this might take some more time and effort (and the SlashEM iPhone port has priority).

Slash’EM for the iPhone queued for a possible Q1 2010 release

That’s what I’ve been working on since iNetHack 1.3 hit the app store.

I’m rewriting the window engine from scratch, taking only general purpose classes and header stubs from iNetHack. The goal is to make it much more modular, maintainable, reusable etc. (attributes which quite frankly weren’t on the top of my design goals for iNetHack). This will also leed to some UI experiments in collaboration with the test team and hopefully come back as the base for the next iNetHack and more to come.

iNetHack Development Fund

iNetHack is free, and always will be. Developing and maintaining it takes a lot of time, and being an iPhone developer doesn’t come free either. My license will expire in less than a month, and it’s only a small part of the costs to cover for serious development. There is absolutely no lack of cool future features for iNetHack, in a sense this is a mere foundation for things to come.

I currently don’t have any other games with which to sort of cross-fund iNetHack development, so I’m asking you to consider a financial contribution. Encouragement (through mails, comments etc.) is of course welcome as well (and often needed), as is beta testing.

So if you feel like contributing to a free game that is based on open source principles, please feel free to do so:

Happy thanksgiving to those who celebrate it 🙂

iNetHack Hearse Support in Beta Now

As of this writing iNetHack 1.3-beta2 is being tested, which contains Hearse support and many bugfixes and UI changes. If you are an active iNetHack player and enjoy playing on the bleeding edge (plus dying a lot so to leave lots of bones), head over to the NetHack iPhone project page, sign up for the mailing list and follow the instructions. The more bones the merrier 🙂

Coming soon: iNetHack Hearse Support

After iNetHack 1.1 I slacked a little (apart from a failed 7drl, cough cough). Ok, I slacked a lot. But I’m back on track and iNetHack 1.3 (don’t fixate on the exact version though) is making progress. Apart from some UI improvements (I put some time into improving the message system so no message can be missed easily) and internal changes you (hopefully) won’t even notice, I was just able to upload my first bones file to the hearse server 🙂

Hearse support will be limited to iNetHack, so no bones exchange with other systems. As the iPhone is a big-endian platform it wouldn’t be compatible with the major NetHack platforms anyway (with the assumption that ‘major’ equals Win32, MacOSX and Intel-based Linuxes). You will be able to recycle your hearse ID though if you already use it on other systems.

I hope to be able to kick off the beta end of next week, and I’m expecting quite some time spent fixing bugs.

My first Seven Day Roguelike, with Zombies

With iNetHack 1.1 out of the door, still being a little burnt out, I decided to take another week off from iNethack.

And what’s better to chill than to write on of those seven day roguelikes? With lots of zombies, very little background story, just hack and slash whack and shoot?

The result will be published in the app store no matter what 🙂

Update 09/14: The game is obviously not finished, so it failed as a 7drl. That doesn’t mean I won’t continue developing it 🙂