Arthur J. O'Dwyer

Monster Ring Patch v2.1

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Vanilla Nethack (as of version 3.4.3) does not let non-player monsters put on rings, or benefit from their effects. In fact, non-tame monsters won't even pick up rings they find lying around the dungeon. By allowing monsters to pick up and use rings, we allow for new, more evil player-monster interactions.

This patch allows monsters to pick up and use certain kinds of rings. The rings affected by the patch are:


Future directions

More monsters should be generated with rings; in particular, I'm thinking that hobbits should get an extra chance at gold rings (a Lord of the Rings reference), and nymphs should get rings of adornment.

Rings of levitation should be implemented. I'm not sure how big a change that would be. At the moment, monster levitation is not implemented at all (but flying is); that's open bug C343-184.

It would be nice to add polymorph, free action, searching, and polymorph control to the list of rings available for monsters' use. (The problem with polymorph control: There would have to be logic dictating what a gnome, say, would do with a controlled polymorph. It might lead to a lot of titans wandering around DLvl 4!)

Also reasonable, but much less interesting in terms of gameplay, would be gain strength, gain constitution, and possibly stealth. The remaining rings, among them protection from shape changers, warning, and conflict, don't have any obvious application to non-player monsters.

In vanilla Nethack 3.4.3, digesting a monster leaves its possessions neatly in a heap on the floor. It might be be more sensible to destroy (some of?) those items, as if they had been eaten by the player, with the associated intrinsic gains. That might be too powerful, though; I'm not sure. Also, digestion behavior is tangential to the main point of this patch, which is to allow monsters to use rings.

This page was last updated    31 March 2011
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