classical roguelike ASCII graphics computer game released in 1987

NetHack is a three-player roguelike game originally released in 1987.


  • After the Creation, the cruel god Moloch rebelled against the authority of Marduk the Creator. Moloch stole from Marduk the most powerful of all the artifacts of the gods, the Amulet of Yendor, and he hid it in the dark cavities of Gehennom, the Under World, where he now lurks, and bides his time.
    • Introduction to the game.

Yet Another Stupid Death

  • You fall into a pit! How pitiful. Isn't that the pits? You land on a set of sharp iron spikes! --More--
    The spikes were poisoned! The poison was deadly... --More--
    Do you want your possessions identified?"
    • Upon falling into a pit, if the character is polymorphed into a pit fiend or pit viper, has lost poison resistance, and is wearing an amulet of unchanging.

Physical impossibilities

  • That is a potion bottle, not a Klein bottle!
    • On attempting to dip a potion into itself.
  • That would be an interesting topological exercise.
    • On attempting to put a bag inside itself.


  • You fall down the stairs.
    • On descending stairs while burdened (can hurt or even kill the character).
  • Talking to yourself is a bad habit for a dungeoneer.
    • On attempting to chat with oneself.
  • You decide not to force the issue.
    • On canceling an attempt to force open a lock.
  • You identify this as an identify scroll.
    • On reading a scroll of identify while confused.
  • The shrieker shrieks.
    • A shrieker is a monster which possesses no attacks but shrieks to aggravate other monsters.
  • The biggest obstacle in NetHack is perhaps your mind.
    • Sometimes received as an engraving.
  • You feel that eating the kitten was a bad idea.
    • Received after eating a kitten corpse.