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Revision as of 16:37, 24 May 2008


NetHack is a single player dungeon exploration game that runs on a wide variety of computer systems, with a variety of graphical and text interfaces all using the same game engine.

Unlike many other Dungeons & Dragons-inspired games, the emphasis in NetHack is on discovering the detail of the dungeon and not simply killing everything in sight - in fact, killing everything in sight is a good way to die quickly.

Each game presents a different landscape - the random number generator provides an essentially unlimited number of variations of the dungeon and its denizens to be discovered by the player in one of a number of characters: you can pick your race, your role, and your gender.

Installation instructions


nethack can be started using the desktop icons. You can also start it from the command line using the nethack command. The nethack(6) manpage describes the limited command line options available. Online help is available by typing '?' after starting the game.


The environment variable NETHACKOPTIONS can be used to configure many runtime aspects of the game. Options can also be placed in $HOME/.nethackrc. After starting the game type '?' followed by 'f' to see a list of options and how they are used with NETHACKOPTIONS and $HOME/.nethackrc.