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Rogue variants / Roguelikes

Group Description

Games deriving gameplay and appearance from the 1980 mainframe game Rogue, later published for home microcomputers by Epyx and inspiring a long legacy of Hack derivatives, etc.

While there are some debates as to what constitutes a Rogue-like, the following three features are considered crucial among the community:
  1. Dungeon crawl with randomized dungeons, where maps, items, and monsters are generated anew with each new game.
  2. Perma-Death: You have only one save game and it is deleted upon death. If you die, you have to start a new game.
  3. Automapping: The dungeon is unexplored, entering a new room or section will reveal the room and will be permanently recorded.
The following additional features are also often found in rogue-likes, especially traditional ones:
  1. Turn-based gameplay, especially single-action-per-turn.
  2. Single player character game.
  3. A 2D top-down ASCII text graphics, with text symbols representing players, monsters, items, walls, (modern rogue-likes allows opportunity to replace them by graphical 2D tile sets or even isometric graphics), etc.
  4. Rogue-like games are traditionally freeware and often open source.
  5. Unidentified items: weapons, armor, scrolls, and other objects. Identifying them may require a scroll of identification (and its variations) or acquire the services from a storekeeper.
  6. The ability to throw any object (including non-weapons) and damage enemies with them.
These features are not necessarily required to be included in the game, but at least two or more of them should be present.

A bordering case that is hotly disputed in the Roguelike community is Diablo, a game inspired by Roguelikes, which added real-time game-play and isometric graphics. These games should not be added here as it only has one of these additional features (single character play); also perma-death is not implemented by default (optionally added as Hardcore mode in Diablo II).

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Selected Covers

Rogue Clone iPhone Front Cover
Front cover for Rogue Clone
NetHack iPhone Front Cover
Front cover for NetHack
Dungeon Hack DOS Front Cover
Front cover for Dungeon Hack
Ragnarok DOS Front Cover
Front cover for Ragnarok

Selected Screenshots

Beginning a new Game. (Oliver Richman's 1998 version, release 2)
Screenshot from Rogue Clone
Nethack on Linux
Screenshot from NetHack
The character creation system is pretty powerful for a dungeon crawl.
Screenshot from Dungeon Hack
Title screen
Screenshot from Omega
The title / intro screen
Screenshot from Larn