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Provided by: nethack-common_3.4.3-10ubuntu2_i386



        nethack - Exploring The Mazes of Menace


        nethack [ -d directory ] [ -n ] [ -p profession (role) ] [ -r race ] [
        -[DX] ] [ -u playername ] [ -dec ] [ -ibm ]
        nethack [ -d directory ] -s [ -v ] [ -p profession (role) ] [ -r race ]
        [ playernames ]


        NetHack  is a display oriented Dungeons & Dragons(tm) - like game.  The
        standard tty display and command structure resemble rogue.
        Other, more graphical display options exist if you are using  either  a
        PC, or an X11 interface.
        To  get started you really only need to know two commands.  The command
        ?  will give you a list of the available commands  (as  well  as  other
        information)  and the command / will identify the things you see on the
        To win the game (as opposed to merely playing to  beat  other  people’s
        high  scores)  you  must locate the Amulet of Yendor which is somewhere
        below the 20th level of  the  dungeon  and  get  it  out.   Nobody  has
        achieved this yet; anybody who does will probably go down in history as
        a hero among heros.
        When the game ends, whether by your dying, quitting, or  escaping  from
        the  caves, NetHack will give you (a fragment of) the list of top scor‐
        ers.  The scoring is based on many aspects  of  your  behavior,  but  a
        rough estimate is obtained by taking the amount of gold you’ve found in
        the cave plus four times your (real) experience.  Precious  stones  may
        be  worth  a  lot  of  gold  when  brought to the exit.  There is a 10%
        penalty for getting yourself killed.
        The environment variable NETHACKOPTIONS can be used to initialize  many
        run-time  options.   The  ?  command  provides  a  description of these
        options and syntax.  (The -dec and -ibm command line options are equiv‐
        alent  to  the  decgraphics  and ibmgraphics run-time options described
        there, and are provided purely for convenience  on  systems  supporting
        multiple types of terminals.)
        Because  the option list can be very long (particularly when specifying
        graphics characters), options may also be included in  a  configuration
        file.   The  default  is  located  in  your  home  directory  and named
        .nethackrc on Unix systems.  On Debian  systems,  use  .nethackrc.gnome
        for  the Gnome windowing port, use .nethackrc.x11 for the X11 windowing
        port, and use .nethackrc.qt for the QT windowing  port.   You  can  use
        .nethackrc.tty for the non-graphical version.  The configuration file’s
        location may be specified by setting NETHACKOPTIONS to  a  string  con‐
        sisting of an @ character followed by the filename.
        The  -u  playername option supplies the answer to the question "Who are
        you?".  It overrides any name from the options or  configuration  file,
        USER,  LOGNAME,  or getlogin(), which will otherwise be tried in order.
        If none of these provides a useful name, the player will be  asked  for
        one.  Player names (in conjunction with uids) are used to identify save
        files, so you can have several saved games under different names.  Con‐
        versely,  you  must  use the appropriate player name to restore a saved
        A playername suffix can be used to specify the profession, race, align‐
        ment and/or gender of the character.  The full syntax of the playername
        that includes a suffix is "name-ppp-rrr-aaa-ggg".  "ppp" are  at  least
        the  first  three letters of the profession (this can also be specified
        using a separate -p profession option).  "rrr" are at least  the  first
        three letters of the character’s race (this can also be specified using
        a separate -r race option).  "aaa" are at last the first three  letters
        of  the  character’s  alignment, and "ggg" are at least the first three
        letters of the character’s gender.  Any of the parts of the suffix  may
        be left out.
        -p  profession  can  be  used to determine the character role.  You can
        specify either the male or female name for the character role,  or  the
        first  three  characters of the role as an abbreviation.  -p @ has been
        retained to explicitly request that a random role be  chosen.   It  may
        need  to  be  quoted with a backslash (\@) if @ is the "kill" character
        (see "stty") for the terminal, in order to prevent  the  current  input
        line from being cleared.
        Likewise, -r race can be used to explicitly request that a race be cho‐
        Leaving out any of these  characteristics  will  result  in  you  being
        prompted during the game startup for the information.
        The  -s option alone will print out the list of your scores on the cur‐
        rent version.  An immediately following  -v  reports  on  all  versions
        present in the score file.  The -s may also be followed by arguments -p
        and -r to print the scores of particular roles and races only.  It  may
        also be followed by one or more player names to print the scores of the
        players mentioned, by ’all’ to print out all scores, or by a number  to
        print that many top scores.
        The -n option suppresses printing of any news from the game administra‐
        The -D or -X option will start the game in a special  non-scoring  dis‐
        covery  mode.   -D will, if the player is the game administrator, start
        in debugging (wizard) mode instead.
        The -d option, which must be the first argument if it appears, supplies
        a  directory  which  is  to  serve as the playground.  It overrides the
        value from NETHACKDIR, HACKDIR, or the directory specified by the  game
        administrator   during  compilation  (usually  /usr/lib/games/nethack).
        This option is usually only useful  to  the  game  administrator.   The
        playground must contain several auxiliary files such as help files, the
        list of top scorers, and a subdirectory save where games are saved.


        Jay Fenlason (+ Kenny Woodland, Mike Thome and  Jon  Payne)  wrote  the
        original hack, very much like rogue (but full of bugs).
        Andries  Brouwer  continuously  deformed their sources into an entirely
        different game.
        Mike Stephenson has continued the perversion of sources, adding various
        warped  character  classes  and  sadistic  traps  with the help of many
        strange people who reside in that place between the worlds, the  Usenet
        Zone.   A number of these miscreants are immortalized in the historical
        roll of dishonor and various other places.
        The resulting mess is now called NetHack, to denote its development  by
        the Usenet.  Andries Brouwer has made this request for the distinction,
        as he may eventually release a new version of his own.


        All files are in the playground, normally  /usr/lib/games/nethack.   If
        DLB  was  defined during the compile, the data files and special levels
        will be inside a larger file, normally nhdat, instead of being separate
        nethack                     The program itself.
        data, oracles, rumors       Data files used by NetHack.
        options, quest.dat          More data files.
        help, hh                    Help data files.
        cmdhelp, opthelp, wizhelp   More help data files.
        *.lev                       Predefined special levels.
        dungeon                     Control file for special levels.
        history                     A short history of NetHack.
        license                     Rules governing redistribution.
        record                      The list of top scorers.
        logfile                     An extended list of games
        xlock.nnn                   Description of a dungeon level.
        perm                        Lock file for xlock.dd.
        bonesDD.nn                  Descriptions of the ghost and
                                    belongings of a deceased
        save                        A subdirectory containing the
                                    saved games.


        USER or LOGNAME      Your login name.
        HOME                 Your home directory.
        SHELL                Your shell.
        TERM                 The type of your terminal.
        HACKPAGER or PAGER   Replacement for default pager.
        MAIL                 Mailbox file.
        MAILREADER           Replacement for default reader
                             (probably /usr/bin/mail).
        NETHACKDIR           Playground.
        NETHACKOPTIONS       String predefining several NetHack
        In addition, SHOPTYPE is used in debugging (wizard) mode.


        Probably infinite.
        Dungeons & Dragons is a Trademark of Wizards of the Coast, Inc.


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