CDI is Now Official and CKO is Going Offline

Greetings Dungeon Crawlers! The official server, also known as CKO, is going offline tomorrow. Many thanks to floraline for generously hosting what was often our busiest crawl server since 2018! Additionally, floraline contributed several aspects to WebTiles configuration that continue to be used by other official servers to this day. Your CKO game records will of course continue to be available in Sequell and CAO scoring. We also have a new long-term home for your CKO morgue files. Those should become accessible at the new host in the next couple weeks, after which Sequell and CAO scoring will point to the new morgue URLs for all past CKO games.

Speaking of official servers, I’m upgrading the development server aka CDI to become official! We’re using the aka CBR2 account db as the starting db for CDI’s accounts. Players who were already registered on CBR2 as of Friday March 30 can log into CDI with their CBR2 credentials, otherwise please register a new account on CDI. Users migrating from CKO should see very similar latency, since CDI is hosted in the same New York City data center where CKO was located.

Finally, I’ve set up a Patreon to help cover hosting costs for CDI. Head over there for more details, and thanks for any support you can provide! Observant gizmo inventors might notice qw trying out the new Coglin species in trunk on CDI at some point soon. And who knows what kind of memes one might eventually find on our newest server? As always, happy crawling!

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0.31 Tournament Results

The 0.31 tournament is over. On behalf of the Dev Team, many thanks to all the server admins, outside contributors, bug reporters, and to the many DCSS players who made the 0.31 release and tournament possible!

For 16 days, players could compete for tournament points and banners by playing 0.31 games on the public servers. The only major rule changes compared to the 0.30 tournament were the addition of a Gem Collection category, making Uskayaw’s banner be based on gems, and allowing Felids to win the Ruthless Efficiency banner.

Congratulations to Sergey,  for once again taking first place in the individual competition, with 115,521 points and 16 wins! Sergey got the most points for combos won, with species high scores for HO and Hu, and class scores for Hu and Wn, won the most pacific game (a SpEn with only 421 kills), achieved an 8 win streak (3rd best overall), a 64M HuEE high score (3rd best overall), collected 17 tier 3 banners, and won 6 Nemelex’s Choice combos.

Other big winners:

  • Wizard1ke: 2nd place overall with 106,191 points and 28 wins. Wizard1ke was the only player to collect all 24 tier 3 banners, and had the most points in the piety category, reaching max piety with 21 gods and winning with 21 gods. They also got the second most points for combos won, including the Te, Dj, and On species high scores, and won 13 Nemelex Choice combos.
  • Flugkiller: 3rd place overall with 99,209 points and 13 wins. He got a 0:25:20 realtime MiFi win (2nd overall), collected 19 tier 3 banners (2nd overall), won a TrFi in only 14,063 turns (3rd overall), got a 7 win streak, and won 6 Nemelex Choice combos.
  • TheMeInTeam: Longest win streak with 19 wins and highest in the winrate category (won 22 of 23 games played).
  • Sapher: Highest scoring win at 91M points with an OpEE.
  • EnegeticOcto: Fastest realtime win with a 0:22:48 MiFi.
  • qw: Fastest realtime win by a bot with a 0:10:50 DjHu. qw won 3 games this tournament, including first ever wins of Dj and Dg (with DgHu). It also got 3 runes twice this tournament with SpHu.
  • zran: Lowest turncount win with an AtCj winning in 10,274 turns.
  • bookman: 23 Nemelex’s Choice wins, the most in the tournament.
  • The first three wins of the tournament were by FlugKiller (a MiFi in 0:46:25), ShadowRider38 (a MiFi in 0:41:59), and p0werm0de (a MiFi in 0:27:52; 3rd fastest realtime win overall!).
  • The last win of the tournament was by sewnkin, an OnEE that ascended 14 seconds before the end of tournament.

The clan competition was won by Retired Ogres Bocce Club (captained by EnegeticOcto) with 132,494 points. They bested the 2nd place clan in the Combo High Scores (1st overall), Best High Score (1st overall), Fastest Realtime Win (1st overall), Most Pacific Win (1st overall), Fastest Realtime (1st overall), Low Turncount (1st overall), Banner Collection (tied for 1st overall), and Piety (1st overall) categories. In 2nd place was The TeAM in MeEE-Cosplay(captained by TheMeInTeam) with 102,015 points, and first place in the Streak Length category, and 2nd place in the Piety and Nemelex Choice categories. Not far behind in 3rd place was Harold and a Few Mara Go to Wight Castle (captained by Wizard1ke) with 98,358 points, and 2nd place in the Combo High Scores, Best High Score, Low Turncount Win, and Most Pacific Win categories.

To close out, here are some overall tournament statistics (with the 0.30 numbers in brackets for comparison). 2,817 non-bot players started a game at some point during the tournament; of those 2,728 completed a game without quitting or leaving the dungeon sadly orbless. This definition of “player” (players who completed a non-boring game) is used for subsequent calculations and was used for the 0.30 statistics.

  • Players: 2,728 (0.30: 2,708)
  • Total player time: 30,498 hrs (0.30: 30,426 hrs)
  • Average player time: 11.18 hrs (0.30: 11.24 hrs)
  • Games played: 71,851 (0.30: 69,571)
  • Players who got a rune: 861 (0.30: 926)
  • 454 winners and 1367 wins (0.30: 454 winners and 1433 wins)
  • Win rate: 1.90% (0.30: 2.06%)
  • WebTiles win rate: 1.85% (0.30: 1.94%). Console win rate: 3.59% (0.30: 6.18%)

Thanks to you all for playing! Many thanks as well to server admins, developers, and contributors who made the 0.31 release and tournament possible!

The 0.32 season has begun, and changes are already in motion. We have two online experimental branches that implement a new Steel Elf species and redesigns the gods Beogh and Yredelemnul. The Legends Say that Watch this space for further information as the 0.32 trunk update posts begin to flow. Until next time, happy crawling!

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0.31 “The Alchemy of Forms”

We are pleased to announce the release of Dungeon Crawl: Stone Soup 0.31 “The Alchemy of Forms”!

DCSS 0.31 features some major spell school and starting background changes, a variety of new spells, many dangerous new monsters, and some major species changes.

The Transmutations forms spells have been moved into talisman items, which allow permanently shifting into forms based on the new Shapeshifting skill. The remaining Transmutations spells and the Poison Magic spells have been merged into a new Alchemy school. The Shapeshifter and Alchemist starting backgrounds replace Transmuter and Venom Mage, respectively. To support these changes, this release adds 4 new spells, sees 7 spells reworked into improved replacements, and has many tweaks to the levels and schools. In fact it’s a bit too much for me to write up as we’re getting ready for tournament! So please check out the “Spells” section of the release for full details.

The new Oni species replaces Ogres. Oni love a good drunken brawl, gaining double effect when drinking any potion that restore HP or MP, and also perform an immediate cleaving melee attack. They are otherwise similar to Ogres, but also have horns and some increased apts. Starting at XL 7, Armataurs now regenerate HP and MP while rampaging. They also lose their double potion effect, and no longer read scrolls slowly. Felids now have an extra life at XL 1 and don’t lose XLs when dying. Tengu have an inherent acrobat effect (like the amulet) at XL 1, and gain 4 EV at XL 7 instead of gaining an EV bonus and fast movement. Humans gain the exploration healing effect formerly found on Meteorans, which are no more. Instead, players of any species can now rush to find gems stashed at the end of many branches as achievement items.

Download DCSS 0.31 here or play it online on one of many servers across the world! Packages for Windows, OS X, and Linux are available now. See the full list of changes on the release page here.

The tournament starts on Friday January 19th 8pm UTC and runs through Sunday February 4th 8pm UTC, with all online 0.31 games counting towards your score. See the tournament page for more details, including how to join or setup a clan. Clans membership can be changed until Friday January 26th 8pm UTC.

Many thanks to all those who have contributed to DCSS over the years. Thanks especially to the DCSS development team, whose contributions made 0.31 possible, and to the admins who run and maintain the official servers. A special thanks to the following community members who contributed to 0.31 and a warm welcome to the first-time contributors. (Let us know if someone is missing, this data is tricky to collect in bulk!)

910rd, aedyr, AlexanderPosch, Aliscans, Alvin, Anabel, Antal Spector-Zabusky, CipHuK, cureja, DevJac, geekosaur, Jared Miller, kippig, laserbat, MainiacJoe, mgdelmonte, Monkooky, Nephila Hirsch Oliveira, NormalPerson7, orjb1, Perren Yang, Quinten Konyn, Roadster Tracker, Rosstin Murphy, RypoFalem, Rytis Petronis, sandertyu, sdynet, Sean Dewar, Sebastian Zivota, Skrybe, yrdzrfxndfvh, Zhang Kai

0.31 Tournament Page

Hello crawlers! We’re letting you know that the official 0.31 tournament page is online! The will run from Friday January 19th, 8pm UTC to Sunday February 4th, 8pm UTC. Please bookmark the 0.31 tournament page and use this page to track your progress throughout the tournament. We have some rule changes planned and will update the tournament page with any changes. As we test the tournament scripts, you may see summaries of test data in the “Overview” page taken from recent 0.31 beta games. Don’t worry, we’ll reset everything before the tournament starts.

The 0.31 release which will be made and announced either this Thursday or Friday. In the meantime, the 0.31 branch is being rolled out to our online servers. Servers CBR2, CKO, and LLD all have it available, with more to come soon! You can configure your tournament clan in your RC files right now on one of those three servers, or simply wait until your favorite official server has 0.31 installed. Finally, we’re finishing up one last belated Trunk Update to fill you in on the torrent of changes we had in December. So stay tuned, and good luck in the tournament!

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Trunk Updates 11 December 2023 and Tournament Announcement

Hello crawlers, and welcome to the ultimate trunk update of the year! The 0.31 development cycle is (finally!) nearing a close, and we are pleased to announce a tentative tournament start date of Friday, Jan 19, 2024, at 20:00 UTC for the sixteen day 0.31 Release tournament. We’ll shift towards bug fixes and balance as we get closer to 0.31′s release, sometime before the start of the tournament. More details about the tournament, including a tournament website and rules changes, will be available here!

A heads-up also that will be shutting down after the tournament. Many thanks to Floraline for their years of hard work maintaining the server! We’ll have news on a replacement server sometime in the coming few months.

Looks like we somehow have not even posted one trunk update since 0.30 released (!), so to fit all the major changes in, this post will be a little more condensed than usual. I’ll still try to sneak in one or two fun things, and the changelog has more details on some things.

  • Shapeshifting and Transmuting:
    • Form spells have turned into a new type of item, ‘talismans’.
    • Talismans are very rare items that, when used, transform the user into a corresponding form until they choose to leave it.
    • A new skill, Shapeshifting, governs use of talismans. Like Spellcasting, the ‘default’ (human) aptitude for this is -1.
    • Form changes:
      • Beastly Appendage has been replaced by Beast Form, provides innate Slaying but melds all auxiliary armour.
      • Spider Form has been replaced by Flux Form, which causes melee attacks to magically contaminate and explode victims. It melds weapons, shields, and body armour.
      • Ice Form has been replaced by Serpent Form, which transforms the user into a massive, foe-crushing python.
      • New form: Maw, which opens a horrible, foe-devouring second mouth in the user’s chest. It grants an auxiliary bite attack and sometimes heals the user when they kill foes in melee, in exchange for melding body armour.
      • Lich Form has been replaced by Death Form, which severely debilitates foes struck in melee and grants an active ‘Siphon Essence’ ability that torments nearby foes to heal the player. It’s otherwise similar.
      • All forms have had their stats adjusted and scaling rebalanced.
    • A new background, Shapeshifter, replaces the Transmuter start. Shapeshifters start out with two talismans, Beast and Flux.
    • The Transmutations skill continues to support use of the ~ten remaining Transmutations spells. There are no current plans to remove it.
    • You can read more about the motivation for these changes here and here. Note that many of the implementation details have changed since those were written.
  • Hexslingers:
    • Hexslingers have had their starting spell set vigorously reworked.
    • New L2 Hex spell: Jinxbite. Deals additional Will-checking damage to foes attacked while its duration lasts, but also halves the caster’s will. Lots of faerie laughter is involved.
    • New L3 Hex spell: Sigil of Binding. Creates two magical traps nearby, which temporarily bind hapless victims in place. Don’t step in these yourself!
    • New L4 Hex spell: Dimensional Bullseye (replacing Portal Projectile). Targets a foe and teleports all shots fired at other foes to also hit the chosen unfortunate.
    • Inner Flame and Cause Fear are still included. Slow is no longer in the starting spell set.
  • Uniques:
    • New: Jeremiah, a peaceful barachi trapped between sleep and waking. Their dreams leak into reality in a stream of beautiful butterflies.
    • Returned and revamped: Norris, a death cultist who surfs into battle with a gang of skysharks.
    • Maurice is now a vine stalker, with high regen and antimagic bites.
    • Erica is now an octopode, with constriction and a more focused spell set.
    • Frederick has a new spell set.
  • Other monsters:
    • New and returning:
      • Kobold blastminers, who blast enemies with alchemical cannons and get sent flying backwards by the recoil.
      • Brain worms, which eat magic and minds alike
      • Glass eyes (replacing floating eyes), which vitrify victims to make them fragile as glass.
      • Formless jellyfish, which constrict and sting for single-turn paralysis.
      • Arcanists, a kind of fairly dangerous vitrifying wizard.
      • Crocodiles, which drag victims backward.
    • Alligators and reapers are now somewhat weaker, but drag victims backward.
    • Ufetubi and tengu warriors now slip behind their foe before meleeing.
    • Tengu reavers now have rMsl.
    • ‘Wizard’ has been renamed to ‘occulist’ and is now somewhat stronger.
    • Great orbs of eyes have a new spell set, and are slightly stronger.
    • Deep Elf Elementalists now cast LRD instead of Awaken Earth.
    • Red very ugly things now do direct fire damage instead of sticky flame.
    • Abominations’ speed is no longer randomized. (Did you know it was..?)
    • Behavioral changes:
      • Attacks of opportunity have been reworked. Previously, whenever players moved away from a same-speed-or-faster monster, the monster had a 1/3 chance of launching a free melee attack. Now, they launch such attacks only if they move to follow the player, and there’s a chance for the attack to cost a small amount of their time (so they can fall behind). The old ‘random energy’ effect, causing monsters to have a chance of gaining or losing a small amount of time when moving, has returned specifically when monsters are pursuing the player. Some discussion of the reasoning for these changes: A, B, and C. The last of those describes an experimental ‘hot pursuit’ section which has since been removed, but ‘history’ section remains applicable.
      • Giant monsters can now be ensnared by webs and nets.
      • Jellies can no longer be netted or constricted.
      • Allied undead no longer become angry when damaged.
      • Monsters no longer use up charges when zapping wands.
      • Monsters can no longer use scrolls or potions.
      • Some monsters now have special dialogue after killing the player.
  • Other species changes:
    • At XL 7, Armataurs now gain temporary regeneration when they roll (rampage) toward foes. Their base health has been decreased to compensate.
    • Felids now get an extra life at XL 1, don’t lose XLs on dying, and have somewhat more base health. They no longer have fast movement – see here.
    • Tengu now have inherent Acrobat (+15 EV after moving/waiting) at XL 1, and gain +4 EV at XL7 instead of a 20% EV bonus.
    • Mummies now get their first necromancy enhancer at XL 1, not 3.
    • Vine Stalkers now get regeneration at XL 1, not 4.
    • Djinn now use all magic skills, instead of only Spellcasting. Djinn can only choose to train all magic skills or none. This is pretty similar to how they worked before, but means that e.g. they can now use skill manuals, do elemental staff or pain brand damage, and care about other types of Ashenzari skill curses.
    • Ghouls start with an additional +4 Int, to encourage more variety in playstyles.
    • Formicids can no longer be involuntarily shafted.
  • Items:
    • An old favorite returns: sack of spiders, an XP-charged evoker which webs foes and summons creepy-crawlies. Alternates with boxes of beasts.
    • Changes to ranged weapons:
      • New weapon: orcbow, between a shortbow and an arbalest in strength.
      • Hand crossbows are now hand cannons, alchemically belching smoke and death. (See here for why.)
      • New unrand: Mule, a +7 flaming hand cannon which sometimes knocks the user backwards when fired.
    • Potions of flight replaced with potions of enlightenment, which also give Will+.
    • Scrolls of magic mapping replaced with scrolls of revelation, which also give X-ray vision and sInv for one turn.
    • Quick blades now hit twice for every swing, with a higher attack delay. Gyre & Gimble hits four times.
    • Artefact staves can now enhance other schools of magic, even those which don’t have corresponding base enhancer staff types.
    • The dreamshard necklace now has Acrobat, but only restores the player to 1 HP when they’d otherwise die, rather than healing 50-100% of their max HP.
    • To simplify, shields no longer degrade in effectiveness with each hit taken per-turn. Instead, they now have a limit on per-turn blocks, based on shield type – bucklers give 2, kites give 3, towers give 4.
  • Spells:
    • New: Brom’s Barrelling Boulder (L4 Earth/Conj). Creates a boulder, which crushed and knocks back foes until it’s broken or it hits a wall. (In the latter case, it explodes!)
    • Arcjolt now initially arcs to foes within two tiles of the caster.
    • Static Discharge now does more damage, but checks half AC instead of none.
    • Borgnjor’s Vile Clutch (and Fastroot) now work on invisible enemies, but the former now does less damage.
    • Hailstorm does more damage at low power and less at high power.
    • Swiftness now works in water. (Did you know it didn’t?)
  • Other Notes:
    • The Slime Pits now have many possible endings, instead of one fixed pre-designed one. Many thanks to long-time contributor nicolae for his work on this one!
    • Monsters with unusual items (e.g. distortion) are now highlit in purple by default.
    • Okawaru now gives exactly one weapon gift and one armour gift as a capstone (chosen by the player), rather than giving many random gifts.
    • Nemelex’s Cloud, Elements and Swarm cards have been changed to scale more appropriately with power.
    • The Ecumenical Temple is now fully mapped on entry. This saves time for some of the really big temples, and also lets us add really silly stuff like a labyrinth-themed temple. Not that we’d ever actually add one of those, of course…

Many thanks also to Sastreii and CanOfWorms for contributing many new tiles over this period, including spell icons, artefact art, cat dragons, and more. In particular, thanks to CanOfWorms for commissioning this lovely new splash screen.

Thanks also to all the community members who’ve contributed over the last year, who I am too tired to credit in full. Crawl wouldn’t be Stone Soup without you.

Happy crawling, and happy holidays!

0.30 Tournament Results

The 0.30 tournament is over. On behalf of the Dev Team, many thanks to all the server admins, outside contributors, bug reporters, and to the many DCSS players who made the 0.30 release and tournament possible!

For 16 days, players could compete for tournament points and banners by playing 0.30 games on the public servers. This was the fourth tournament held after the major revision of the tournament rules done for 0.25. There were changes based on previous input, and once again we’ve collected the feedback posted on tavern and reddit.

Congratulations to Sergey (aka yegreS),  for once again taking first place in the individual competition, with 87,793 points! Over the course of the tournament, Sergey won all 11 games he played (!), the 3rd longest win streak overall. He also achieved an 86M MeIE high score (5th highest overall), a 0:30:53 realtime win (6th best overall), collected 14 tier 3 banners, got a species and a background high score (from a 45M score GnEE), won 4 Nemelex’s Choice combos, got 4 combo high scores, and completed 27 ziggurats.

This is the first time someone has won the tournament with 100% winrate since theglow won all 18 of their games in the 0.11 tournament in 2012. elliptic (27th(!) overall) notes that there have been 24 tournaments with the 16-day format, and in the first 12 of them there were 15 distinct players who won at least 18 games in a single tournament, while in the second 12 of them there were 66 such players. Despite this trend, Sergey, who also took 1st place in the previous 0.29 tournament, took 1st place in this tournament with 14 fewer wins (11 vs 25 in 0.29) and played over 3 hours less per day on average (4:43:25 vs 7:58:28 in 0.29)!

Other big winners:

  • kuniqs: 2nd place overall (82,079 points, 19 wins), with a 96M MeEE high score (2nd overall), a 0:29:35 realtime win (4th overall), 18 tier 3 banners (4th most overall), a 5 win streak, 7 Nemelex’s Choice wins, two combo high scores, and 28 Ziggurats cleared.
  • ShadowRider38: 3rd place overall (77,239 points, 21 wins), with a 0:35:02 realtime win (7th overall), a 17,829 turns MeFi win (8th lowest overall), 15 tier 3 banners (5th most overall), 8 Nemelex’s Choice wins (9th overall), 11 combo high scores, a 5 win streak, and 27 Ziggurats cleared.
  • narz: Highest scoring win at 132M with MeEE and the most pacific win with a SpEn that killed only 186 monsters.
  • FlugKiller: Fastest realtime win at 00:21:48 with a MiFi.
  • TheMeInTeam: Longest win streak with 15 wins.
  • Wizard1ke: The only person to collect all 24 tier 3 banners.
  • removed: 30 Nemelex’s Choice wins.
  • FizzleGong: Lowest turncount win with a MeEE winning in 5,881 turns.
  • SnakkuSnakku7: 3 species (At, Gh, HO) and 3 background (Ar, CK, Hs) high scores, and 1st in the Combo High Scores category.
  • The first three wins of the tournament were by EnegeticOcto (a MiFi in 0:56:35), ShadowRider38 (a MiFi in 1:08:58), and hihot (a MiFi in 1:31:43).
  • The last win of the tournament was by RailBird80, a HuFE that ascended 16 minutes before the end of tournament yet took over 4 days to win.

The clan competition was won by Heavy Weight Lifting Club (captained by EnegeticOcto) with 112,811 points. They sealed their victory by besting the 2nd place clan in the Combo High Scores (1st overall), Most Pacific Win (1st overall), Fastest Realtime (1st overall), Piety, Nemelex’s Choice, and Streak categories. In a close 2nd place was Uncle Xoms Tabbin (captained by themargong) with 104,283 points, and first place in the High Score and Lowest Turncount Win categories. They tied for 1st place with Heavy Weight Lifting Club in the banners category, together collecting all 24 tier 3 banners. 3rd place was held by My Boolean is Binary (captained by TheMeInTeam) with 93,023 points, and 1st place in the Nemelex’s Choice and Streak categories.

To close out, here are some overall tournament statistics (with the 0.29 numbers in brackets for comparison). 2,765 players started a game at some point during the tournament; of those 2,711 completed a game without quitting or leaving the dungeon sadly orbless. This definition of “player” (players who completed a non-boring game) is used for subsequent calculations and was used for the 0.29 statistics.

  • Players: 2,711 (0.29: 2,573)
  • Total player time: 30,408 hrs (0.29: 27,360 hrs)
  • Average player time: 11.2 hrs (0.29: 10.6 hrs)
  • Games played: 69,601 (0.29: 64,339)
  • Players who got a rune: 926 (0.29: 759)
  • 454 winners and 1433 wins (0.29: 368 winners and 1183 wins)
  • Win rate: 2.06% (0.29: 1.84%)
  • Proportion of players using WebTiles: 97.1% (0.29: 96.9%)

Thanks to you all for playing! Many thanks as well to server admins, developers, and contributors who made the 0.30 release and tournament possible!

The 0.31 season has begun, and changes are already in motion. Watch this space for further information as the 0.31 trunk update posts begin to flow. Until next time, happy crawling!

0.30: “The Reavers Return”

We are pleased to announce the release of Dungeon Crawl: Stone Soup 0.30 “The Reavers Return”!

DCSS 0.30 features the return of the legendary Reaver background. These warrior-mages start with two new powerful yet situational spells: Kiss of Death and Momentum Strike. They also start with the Hailstorm spell, which has been moved down to level 3 yet can sometimes miss.

The new Armataur species replaces Palentongas, who have rolled peacefully off into the sunset. Armataurs are large, scaly mammals that wear bardings, but instead of rolling and curling, they have innate rampage and a long tongue mutation that doubles potion effects and slows down scroll reading.

A grand total of 7 new spells have been added! Two we’ve already mentioned for Reaver, with two more being likewise new designs and three replacing existing spells:

- Kiss of Death (L1 Conj/Necro): does high draining damage to an adjacent enemy, at the cost of significant max HP drain to the caster.
- Momentum Strike (L2 Conj/Tloc). Redirects the caster’s momentum for a damaging attack that doesn’t require line of fire, but locks the caster in place for some turns after a hit (and cannot be recast until this expires).
- Cigotuvi’s Dreadful Rot (L2 Necro/Air/Pois). Rots away the caster’s flesh to create a cloud of deadly miasma on their tile. Replaces Corpse Rot.
- Volatile Blastmotes (L3 Fire/Tloc). Creates an explosive cloud on the caster’s tile, usable as a land mine or tricky tool. Replaces Conjure Flame.
- Vhi’s Electric Charge (L3 Tloc/Air). Launches the caster at a nearby foe and launches a crackling melee attack, phasing through creatures en route.
- Arcjolt (L5 Air/Conj). Electrocutes everything adjacent to the caster, everything adjacent to those creatures, etc, etc, in a chain. Replaces Lightning Bolt.
- Plasma Beam (L6 Fire/Air): Fires a bolt of lightning and another bolt of fire, both at the most distant foe.

We’ve added 6 new unrands and made changes to 11 existing ones. Additionally you can now find randart orbs, scarves, and magical staves!

Finally, Lugonu has been mutated into a new form. Banishment is available at 2* piety (instead of 3*) and mutates foes that resist getting banished. To encourage adventurers to abandon their current god, Lugonu helpfully banishes some hostile monsters whenever other gods act with their wrath. There are also now more Lugonu altars in the Abyss, and more piety is awarded for conversions in the Abyss.

Download DCSS 0.30 here or play it online on one of many servers across the world! Packages for Windows and OS X are available now. Linux debs are coming soon. See the full list of changes on the release page here.

The tournament starts on Friday May 5th 8pm UTC and runs through Sunday May 21st 8pm UTC, with all online 0.30 games counting towards your score. See the tournament page for more details, including how to join or setup a clan. Clans membership can be changed until Friday May 12th 8pm UTC.

Many thanks to all those who have contributed to DCSS over the years. Thanks especially to the DCSS development team, whose contributions made 0.30 possible, and to the admins who run and maintain the official servers. A special thanks to the following community members who contributed to 0.30 and a warm welcome to the first-time contributors, listed in italics. (Let us know if someone is missing, this data is tricky to collect in bulk!)

Aliscans, Ernest Antanishin, Antern, bfaires, Josh Braendel, Marcelo Henrique Cerri, Perry Fraser, greenscarf, Duong Hoang, Alex Jurkiewicz, kippig, kd7uiy, mainiacjoe, Monkooky, Michael Del Monte, pdpol, Brian Power, Roadster Tracker, Rypofalem, Rytis Petronis, Aleksando Sansan, sdynet, Skrybe, Antal Spector-Zabuskyspiros, Sergio Thompson, Samantha Tobias, Benjamin S Wolf, yrdzrfxndfvh, Zhang Kai

Trunk Updates 1 April 2023 and Tournament Announcement

Hello crawlers, and welcome to the most completely serious and truthful trunk update of the year! The 0.30 development cycle is (finally!) nearing a close, and we are pleased to announce a tentative tournament start date of Friday, May 5, 2023, at 20:00 UTC for the sixteen day 0.30 Release tournament. We’ll shift towards bug fixes and balance as we get closer to 0.30′s release, sometime before the start of the tournament. More details about the tournament, including a tournament website and rules changes, will be available here!

We’d also like to celebrate the addition of two (!) new devs to the team. Félix Medrano (née robertxgray) and Implojin have both more than proven themselves by their work so far, with Félix specializing on the Crawl Android port and Implojin contributing great designs like Rampage and the toga of Victory. We’re very happy to have them onboard!

Anyway, let’s get some very real and serious changes headed your way.

  • Branches and Environments:
    • You can now enter the Vaults without holding a rune. However… you can never leave! Unless you get a rune while you’re inside.
    • Slime walls now corrode instead of dealing damage. Unless you use Oozemancy, in which case they still do damage. Also, they don’t corrode monsters. Unless the monsters take Oozemancy damage. It’s all pretty straightforward.
    • Thunderstorms now do much more damage. If you were in the habit of standing in the middle of thunderstorms before… this might be a good time to break the habit.
    • Zigsprint now lets you start with orbs of guile or mayhem. But why would you not use Gong? It’s Gong!
    • By overwhelming popular demand, you can now place up to 100 waypoints. We know you, the players, were suffocating under the previous 10 waypoint limit. Now you are freed. Go forth!
  • Characters:
    • Harm now stacks. This is a game changer.
    • Channeling effects (from Wucad Mu or orbs of energy) no longer backlash and no longer scale with Evocations. They just give -Wiz and have a flat chance of refunding spell costs. We’ve reworked this mechanic about four times this year and I’m sure it’s going to stick at some point.
    • The acidic bite mutation works again, for the first time since 2016. Oops.
    • Armataurs no longer claim to drink ten potions at once. Their tongues are long, but they aren’t actually that long.
  • Gods:
    • Piety costs are now shown more clearly for invocations. Did you know that Enter the Abyss costs Piety——-? Sort of unclear what that means, but it seems like an awful lot of -s, huh?
    • Kikubaaqudgha’s second gift is now a little less predictable. It could be anything. It’s probably about four Necromancy spells… but what if it’s not?
    • Good gods will no longer get mad when you generate negative energy clouds with a condenser vane. Instead, they’ll get even. They put their metaphysical foot down and squash the evil clouds – just like that!
    • Hepliaklqana’s Knights are now as good at attacking as ogres, or at least as slow as them.
    • Xom is no longer fixated on giving you a few different mutations.
    • Ashenzari’s trap detection ability is now only available at 4* of piety. Except that traps are always revealed these days, so this is more of a malevolence suppression ability. The world is so cruel…
    • Ashenzari’s skill boost is a little less boosted.
    • For Gozag’s gold distraction aura duration, size really doesn’t matter. (Anymore.)
    • Ru can no longer redirect butterflies’ attacks.
    • Flame Tongue is removed.
  • Unrands:
    • New unrand: the toga ‘Victory’. Gives +AC, Int, and Slay if you kill scary stuff while wearing a toga. If you drink or read anything while foes are in sight, though, you are a coward and a fool, and the toga will revert to its primal state. Victory!
    • New unrand: the Consecrated Labrys. It’s like the obsidian axe, but it’s good instead of evil, and it gets more enchanted the more scary enemies are in sight. As with the obsidian axe, we strongly recommend charging headfirst at every group of enemies while holding this.
    • New unrand: the Storm Queen’s Shield. You have probably never in your life thought “I would like to be a shock serpent”, but that’s how powerful this shield is: it will grant a wish you didn’t even know you had.
    • The Staff of Dispater is now an orb. It has +AC and *Corrode. Much to ponder…
    • The Slick Slippers are even slicker and slipperier than before. Also, they’ll no longer hustle you around when your feet are already occupied climbing stairs.
    • Majin-Bo’s spell-vamprisim now can suck up blood from a Polar Vortex. It all just flies right into the middle, it’s kinda gross.
    • Many unrands now have helpful inscriptions for their special effects, like EVERVAMP, MEGAVAMP, and probably some other things that don’t involve VAMP.
    • Morg has been removed. Actually, for all you know, it might have been removed years ago. Would you have even noticed?
  • Items:
    • Orbs, scarfs, and even magical staffs can now all generate as random artefacts. Finally, you can find the orb of “Zot” of rage!
    • Randarts are very slightly, ever so imperceptibly, worse. Yes, that is why your best character splatted the other day. How did you know?
    • Hyperinflation has hit throwing weapons, causing javelins, boomerangs, darts, and even large rocks to skyrocket in price.
    • Tremorstones and condenser vanes are now in a set: you only get one of the two per game. Star-crossed lovers…
    • When throwing weapons break, they now deal extra damage. It’s a considerate thing. They’re very sorry that you can’t throw them around anymore and they’d like to offer you a little parting gift as they go.
    • Spectral weapons now deal damage as if you were launching an extra attack, rather than using a secret and inscrutable set of spectral weapon monster stats. They’re also not allowed to attack themselves anymore, since that was really creeping us out.
    • Longbows, arbalests, and hand crossbows have all had their stats shuffled around a little.
  • Spells:
    • New spell: Plasma Beam (L5 Fire/Air), which shoots a bolt of lightning AND a bolt of fire at the most distant foe around. My first email address involved both “fire” and “plasma” so I’m very excited about this.
    • Lesser Beckoning is now level 2 (was level 3). This gives more potential design space for Greater Beckoning, to say nothing of the long-awaited Greatest Beckoning.
    • Battlespheres now fire when you cast any destructive spell, matching Vehumet. Vehumet says that a god can’t be matched by a mere L5 spell, but I’m unconvinced.
    • Arcjolt can now hit any monster in sight, as long as there are a continuous chain of other monsters between you and that monster.
    • Irradiate now only malmutates monsters sometimes. Try saying ‘pretty please’ before casting it for best effects.
    • Lightning Bolt is gone. Amazing it lasted this long, really. Not really famous for their longevity, lightning bolts.
  • Monsters:
    • New monster: sleepcaps. If they hit you, their spores might put you to sleep. If they put you to sleep, the next thing that hits you will get a big stabbing damage multiplier. And if you lose all your hit points? That’s right: you die in real life.
    • New monster: skysharks, cutting through the air (as sharks are known to). If they bite you and draw blood, somehow they’re the ones that get mad about it? And that makes them bite even harder? Seems very unfair, frankly.
    • Smitten monsters now wake up, but they’re not happy about it.
    • Giant fish zombies have been removed.
    • Endotherms have been removed.
  • Webtiles:
    • You can now enter explore mode online! Hit + to explore freely… without any fear of death. You are immortal. You are a god!
    • You can now block trolls. They cannot regenerate from this. (Not yet enabled on every server: this will roll out to servers next time they restart webtiles.)
  • Crawl has, somehow, become even more Australian.
  • We fixed a typo in which we wrote “entire the” instead of “the entire”. Not really a big deal, honestly… except that this text has been in every single morgue since 2007! Shouldn’t someone have told us? We’re so embarrassed right now.
  • Last but not least, we rewrote maybe_bool to be, arguably, better. See below for
    motivation, but here are the practical notes up front:

    * `maybe_bool` becomes a class rather than an enum.
    * After this commit, nearly anywhere you would write MB_FALSE or
      MB_TRUE you would simply write `false` or `true`.
    * Where you would write MB_MAYBE you now should write
    * Comparison to `true` or `false` is safe and will do exact
      comparison. (The latter may appear surprising, but it is because
      comparison will cause a bool to be cast to maybe_bool, rather than a
      maybe_bool to be cast down to bool.)
    * Semantics change: `maybe_bool::maybe` does not convert to true by
      default under any circumstance.
    * In cases where you would have previously written `mb == MB_TRUE` you
      can just rely on a bool cast (`maybe` does not convert to `true`). In
      cases where you would write `mb == MB_FALSE` you can write `!mb`.
    * frombool and tobool are replaced respectively by constructors and
      the class method maybe_bool::to_bool (as well as an explicit bool
    * While bool explicit operators have weird rules and can be used
      implicitly in some cases, there are still times when you'll need
      to do the cast. In particular, if a function returns a bool, to
      return a maybe_bool you'll need to explicitly cast.
    * Mixing bools and maybe_bools in logical expressions generally requires
      an explicit cast. (If you write a condition that just uses !, that
      doesn't need one.)
    Old `maybe_bool` had the advantage of simplicity: it was just an enum
    and as long as these enum values are used consistently, it is pretty
    simple to use and as efficient as any integer-based type, with
    effectively no implementation code.
    However, there are a few complaints about it. First, the naming scheme
    was quite ad hoc across the enum values and various functions that used
    them.  Second, and more importantly in my mind, the enum-based
    implementation led in a very non-clean way to implicit int and bool
    casts, and a very ad hoc semantics for this type, especially in its
    interaction with boolean expressions. Taken as a three-valued logic, it
    is very weird. The law of the excluded middle *is* valid (in the sense
    that `p || !p` is always true), but double negation elimination is *not*
    valid (i.e. `!!p != p`); the weaker double negation inference `!!!p ==
    !p` does hold conceivably classing it with some paraconsistent logics,
    though I haven't found an exact analogue (see [1], though this logic
    doesn't much resemble L8 there, which has the same double negation
    pattern). At a practical level this ad hoc nature made mixing with bools
    in both directions weird and somewhat error prone; aside from the above
    concerns (which essentially result from MB_MAYBE implicitly casting to
    `true`), `true` would cast to the enum value MB_MAYBE, leading to clunky
    conversion code in a lot of places, needing to always use MB
    constants, and error-prone comparison with regular bools.
    This commit tries to systematize things more cleanly, albeit with a much
    more complicated implementation. The underlying data type does still
    amount to a fancy enum (now an enum class), but it's wrapped with a more
    clearly defined class, largely inspired by boost's logic::tribool.  (I
    considered whether importing one of the various "`optional` but for
    c++11" packages out there might be a solution, but ultimately rejected
    this, because these classes tend to have an even weirder, for a
    bool-based type, set of implicit conversions to bool). A `bool`
    constructor is provided making it generally safe to use `true` and
    `false` as e.g. return values, and an explicit cast to bool is provided
    that has a better default than MB_MAYBE->true. (In some cases, this may
    be the desired semantics, of course, but this is still doable via
    `to_bool` or direct checks against false.) The operator semantics is
    based on the standard "Strong Kleene" three-valued logic operators,
    which provide a (imo) very sensible set of defaults for a three-valued
    logic. Note that because of the existence of the bool operator, this
    won't let you mix `maybe_bool`s in logical expressions together with
    bools without some explicit casting one way or the other.  The
    implementation is nearly (but not quite) purely header-based.
    As part of this commit, I have implemented everything as a
    back-compatibility layer and purely just tried to clarify the semantics
    of various instances of maybe_bool in cases where it did get an implicit
    conversion. The bulk of this is around `can_wear_item` which does tend
    to treat its maybe return as truth-y.  A future commit will convert
    MB_TRUE etc into their `maybe_bool::t` etc equivalents.
    [1] Kamide 2013, A Hierarchy of Weak Double Negations, Studia Logica 101.6

Many thanks also to Sastreii and CanOfWorms for contributing many new tiles over this period, including spell icons, artefact art, Shrek, and more.

Thanks also to all the community members who’ve contributed over the last few months, who I am too tired to credit in full. In particular, check out what SpinningBird sent us!

Happy crawling! Stay serious out there.

Trunk Updates 11 Jan 2023

Happy new year, crawlers! It’s been a little longer than usual since the last updates post, so this post will be a little longer than usual, too. To get you started, here’s a cool new splash screen from PhilosopherOpposite:

An Armataur Paladin, by PhilosopherOpposite.

And off we go!

  • New background: Reaver.
    • Reavers are warrior-mages, primarily focused on melee combat but with
      situational Conjurations for tough situations.
    • New starting spell: Kiss of Death (L1 Conj/Necro). Does high draining damage to an adjacent enemy, at the cost of significant max HP drain to the caster.
    • New starting spell: Momentum Strike (L2 Conj/Tloc). Redirects the caster’s momentum for a damaging attack that doesn’t require line of fire, but locks the caster in place for some turns after a hit. (It cannot be recast until this effect expires.)
    • Reavers also start with Hailstorm, which is now L3 (formerly L4) and can now miss. Ice Elementalists lose Hailstorm, but get Summon Ice Beast in exchange.
  • Species rework: Palentongas have become Armataurs.
    • Like Palentongas, Armataurs are large, scaled mammals, wearing bardings
      instead of boots.
    • New species innate: Long Tongue, which doubles the effects of drinking potions, but makes reading scrolls take 50% longer.
    • New species innate: Rolling (innate Rampage – extra movement when moving toward enemies).
    • Rolling Charge is now a spell, Vhi’s Electric Charge (L3 Tloc/Air). It sends the caster charging toward a nearby foe to deliver an electrified strike, phasing through targets in the way. Warpers now start with Vhi’s Electric Charge instead of Gell’s Gravitas.
    • Armataurs lose the Rolling Charge and Curl abilities.
    • Armataurs’ aptitude have been adjusted across the board.
    • See these commits for more explanation of the reasoning behind the changes.
  • God rework: Lugonu has been substantially revised, with the goal of being a much more tempting pick for players unlucky enough to have been banished to the Abyss.
    • The Banishment ability is now available at ** piety (was ***). It fails less often, and when it is resisted, the victim will be malmutated instead, making them more vulnerable in future. (This does not apply to other sources of banishment, such as the monster spell or weapons of distortion.)
    • When another god’s wrath descends upon a worshipper, Lugonu now scornfully responds by banishing several nearby foes.
    • Altars to Lugonu are more than three times as common in the Abyss.
    • Converting to Lugonu in the Abyss now gives even more bonus piety.
    • The Abyssal Knight background and the Bend Space ability have been removed. (For more explanation of why, see these commits.)
  • New brand: Heavy.
    • Heavy weapons have +80% base damage and +50% attack delay. (This has proven to be pretty strong, so don’t be surprised if this gets toned down slightly before release.)
    • Both melee and ranged weapons can be Heavy.
    • The Vorpal brand has been removed. It simply wasn’t very exciting. Flaming and Freezing remain as very simple damage multiplier brands.
    • The Dark Maul and Sniper are both now Heavy instead of Vorpal, and have had various stat adjustments. (Sniper is now +27.) Other formerly Vorpal unrands have changed or lost brands and gained enchantment as needed.
  • New unrands:
    • The Hermit’s Pendant, an amulet of faith that sets the wearer’s Invocations skill to 14 and their Evocations skill to 0. (Only for as long as you continue wearing the amulet, of course.)
    • The Force Lance, a Heavy +5 lance (a spear with +2 base damage, like Wyrmbane). When it lands a damaging hit, there’s a 1/3 chance of the target being knocked back, suffering extra damage if it collides with anything.
    • The Slick Slippers, which make all damaging melee attacks trample their wearer backward. They also provide immunity to constriction, engulfing, webbing and netting!
  • New spells:
    • Cigotuvi’s Dreadful Rot (L2 Necro/Air/Pois). Rots away the caster’s flesh to create a cloud of deadly miasma on their tile. Great for escapes, but also very fun with effects like Lesser Beckoning and potions of attraction! Replaces Conjure Flame in the Hedge Wizard starting spell set.
    • Kindle Blastsparks (L3 Fire/Air/Tloc). Creates a cloud of ‘blastsparks’ on the caster’s tile, which explode when any creature moves into them or when they are hit by fire damage. Usable as a land mine, as a way to create distance from enemies, or for other fun tricks. Replaces Conjure Flame in the Fire Elementalist starting spell set.
    • Arcjolt (L5 Conj/Air). Electrocutes everything adjacent to the caster, everything adjacent to those creatures, etc, etc, in a chain.
    • (And of course Reavers’ Kiss of Death and Momentum Strike are both new, too – see above!)
  • Further item-related changes:
    • The Mad Mage’s Maulers have been reworked. They lose Int-3 and RegenMP and gain -Cast and MPVamp, causing the wearer to gain MP when they strike foes in melee. They now add as much damage when spending MP in melee, matching the normal infusion ego’s ratio of MP to bonus damage.
    • Rings of evasion are now +5 instead of +4, to be closer in value to other rings (eg AC/Dexterity). The Ring of the Hare, accordingly, goes from +8 to +10.
    • Majin-Bo is now a one-handed staff instead of a two-handed quarterstaff. (The HP vamp and not being able to wield an enhancer staff is plenty of drawback.)
    • Scrolls of butterflies now create dramatically more butterflies. They now alternate with scrolls of summoning instead of scrolls of fog, since the latter have a more unique and irreplacable effect. Watch this space!
    • All ranged weapons can now generate with electrocution, antimagic, and draining brands. Venom ranged weapons no longer appear.
    • Short sword attack delay reduced.
    • Evocable invisibilty and blink no longer have an MP cost.
    • Spells have been reshuffled between books, and a new Maxwell’s Memoranda book has been added.
    • Hand crossbows are very slightly weaker and slower.
    • The Lochaber Axe now causes temporary HP drain on unequip.
  • Further character-related changes:
    • Arcane Marksmen (Markspersons?) have been renamed to Hexslingers, for stylistic and pun reasons.
    • Base regeneration increased by 0.2 HP/turn, to make resting faster in the early game.
    • Mummies have innate Faith, giving extra piety gain.
    • Reaching the end of the Zot clock now causes a smaller amount of permanent max HP loss (similar to Borgnjor’s Revivication), rather than temp HP drain. The Zot clock can no longer directly kill the player. (This change is intended to simplify the mechanic and to move away from a weird/nonstandard use of HP draining.)
    • Large species move at normal speed through shallow water.
    • rF- and rC- are added to the ‘bad mutations’ pool.
    • Will is now capped at +++++. (When affected by the Will/2 status, the cap is applied before halving.)
    • Pale draconians’ breath is no longer usable twice as often as others’.
    • Formicids can now shaft themselves in the Tomb of the Ancients.
  • Further god-related changes:
    • When worshipping at a faded altar, the player is given a preview of three gods the altar might belong to. (Then you can back out if you don’t like the options, without suffering wrath.) Care to take a gamble on that altar to Sif Muna, Vehumet, or Trog?
    • Gozag’s corpse-to-gold effect now blocks enemies from creating simulacra.
    • Fedhas protects trees from being set on fire by the player.
    • Okawaru’s Heroism and Finesse abilities cost more piety.
    • Removed Ashenzari’s Astral Vision (automatically seeing through walls). It was very annoying for autotravel/resting/etc, had a surprising number of bugs, and Ashenzari was quite strong enough without it. Maybe we’ll try to add a fixed version back in someday as a potion or such.
  • Further monster-related changes:
    • Demonic Crawlers lose their Warning Cry ability, their omni-elemental resistances, and some Willpower. In exchange, they get higher damage and very fast regeneration. This is intended to make Spider overall easier (by making it easier to sneak around), to reduce overlap with Swamp’s Bunyips (and their Warning Cry), and to experiment more with fast regenerating monsters.
    • Doom Hounds’ Howl is now resistable by Will.
    • Many monsters (boulder beetles, two-headed ogres, various orcs…) do less damage.
    • Walking Tomes are now unable to cast while silenced.
    • Ironbound Frosthearts’ Creeping Frost spell is now fully resistable by rC.
  • Further spell-related changes:
    • Manifold Assault moved to L4 (from L5) and does half as many attacks with UC as with a weapon. This is intended to make it a viable choice for more characters. Lowering its level makes it more viable for weapon-using characters to grab, and reducing its effectiveness for UC characters is compensation, since Manifold Assault was already very good for them.
    • Ozocubu’s Refrigeration’s damage has been increased.
    • Lesser Beckoning is now better at low power.
    • Slow no longer has bonus hex power.
    • The Simulacrum and Static Discharge spells have been weakened.
    • Conjure Flame and Corpse Rot have been removed. Neither were beloved by players, despite having gone through many rounds of revisions and (at least in the former case) being fairly strong; Kindle Blastsparks and Dreadful Rot are the next generation.
  • Interface-related changes:
    • Damage ratings are now shown in @. That includes ratings for unarmed combat, which were previously unavailable.
    • Bumping a foe while holding a ranged weapon now automatically shoots instead of asking if you want to hit the foe over the head with your bow.
    • Unrands have a distinct colour (teal) by default.
    • The % screen no longer shows .s for Stealth values, in an attempt to avoid misleading players into believing that there was a ‘maximum stealth’ value that could be achieved. (That is, it now shows “Stealth: +++” instead of “Stealth: +++…….”.)
    • Spells’ maximum damage is now displayed in their descriptions, in an attempt to make it a little easier to understand how spellpower relates to spell damage
    • Many weapon brands now provide more quantitative damage information.
    • New show_blood option allows disabling blood spatters and bloody corpses.
  • Notable bugfixes:
    • Various webtiles spectator issues have been fixed.
    • The Autumn Katana no longer claims to be vorpal. (Vorpal no longer exists, but also, the Autumn Katana hadn’t *actually* been vorpal since 0.27.)
    • It’s probably no longer possible to generate an Orc:1 with zero monsters.
    • Monsters are no longer described as being both resistant and immune to blinding.
    • Monsters with ‘see invisible’ no longer pretend to be unable to see invisible players while casting spells.
    • Monsters no longer get huge SH from orbs.
    • Monsters can no longer riposte when the player blocks their attacks.
    • Guardian golems and ironbound preservers no longer protect orbs of destruction.
    • Fsim (the wizmode fight simulator) once again works with ranged weapons.
    • Targeting a mirror cloned monster with Vampiric Draining will no longer give away its secret.
    • Jiyva’s missile-eating jelly mutation now works, for (possibly) the first time since 2014.
    • Remove Wu Jian’s secret ability to pick up mimic runes and shop at mimic shops.
    • Felids can no longer throw javelins.
    • Trees can no longer drown.
  • Many thanks also to Sastreii for contributing many new tiles over this period, including spell icons, artefact art, new draconian sprites, and more.

    Thanks to all the community members who’ve contributed over the last 6 months: robertxgray, Zhang Kai, Monkooky, 张凯, pdpol, Roadster Tracker, Rytis Petronis, Perry Fraser, scarf, bfaires, Aliscans, mainiacjoe, Benjamin S Wolf, Ernest Antanishinm, yrdzrfxndfvh, Alex, RypoFalem, Samantha Tobias, Michael Del Monte, Marcelo Henrique Cerri, Josh Braendel, Duong Hoang, and kd7uiy.

    To send you off, here’s another new splash screen, this one from Micah C:

    Ereshkigal, by Micah C.

    Happy crawling!

    0.29 “Shooting Stars”

    We are pleased to announce the release of Dungeon Crawl: Stone Soup 0.29 “Shooting Stars”!

    DCSS 0.29 features a sweeping rework of Necromancy, streamlining and upgrading many of its spells, along with similar improvements to the necromantic god Kikubaaqudgha. Ranged weapons have likewise been streamlined and reworked to be more satisfying to use.

    For those seeking a special challenge, we’ve also added a new Meteoran species that heals when seeing new terrain and has great skills and attributes. However, Meteorans have to move fast, with only one-tenth the normal time per floor before they suffer heavy draining.

    Many backgrounds now start with extra scrolls, potions, or other consumables, allowing more tactical options when faced with a sticky situation. Speaking of sticky situations, characters cast into the Abyss will find that monsters there once again give experience and piety, and an ultra-dangerous ‘deep abyss’ is now accessible…

    Many new item types have been added, like scrolls of poison and wands of quicksilver. Some of these ‘alternate’, with only one type of item from a set being generated in any given game. We’ve also added many exciting new unique monsters, from Amaemon the Diabolical Poisoner to the alt-timeline troll Parghit the Mighty.

    Launchers, long blades and short blades all now use dexterity instead of strength when calculating damage, allowing new evasive playstyles. Monsters no longer gain and lose ‘random energy’, and can instead launch opportunistic attacks on fleeing players. As always, there are many more changes small and large alike!

    Download DCSS 0.29 here or play it online on one of many servers across the world! Packages for Windows and OS X are available now. Linux debs are coming soon. See the full list of changes on the release page here.

    The tournament starts on Friday August 26th 8pm UTC and runs through Sunday September 11th 8pm UTC, with all online 0.29 games counting towards your score. See the tournament page for more details, including how to join or setup a clan. Clans membership can be changed until Friday September 2nd 8pm UTC.

    Many thanks to all those who have contributed to DCSS over the years. Thanks especially to the DCSS development team, whose contributions made 0.29 possible, and to the admins who run and maintain the official servers. A special thanks to the following community members who contributed to 0.29 and a warm welcome to the first-time contributors, listed in italics. (Let us know if someone is missing, this data is tricky to collect in bulk!)

    4Hooves2Appendages, Aliscans, Ernest Antanishin, Spencer Baugh, Elliott Bernstein, David Damerell, DreamDust, dilly, Diego Essaya, Perry Fraser, Goratrix, Implojin, Alex Jurkiewicz,  Nikolai Lavsky, neo-bop, Oleksiy Pavlikovsky, Rytris Petronis, Brian Power, Reono, riverfiend, robertxgray, Rosstin Murphy, ruxi, sdynet, Jeffery Stager, Cebolla Sunbeam

    Trunk Updates 14 August 2022 and Tournament Announcement

    You hear the tinkle of a tiny bell. The trunk updates and a butterfly come into view!

    Hello crawlers! Welcome to the last trunk update of the 0.29 cycle. We’ll be branching off the 0.29 beta branch and rolling it out to the servers soon, in anticipation of an upcoming release and tournament starting Friday, August 26, 2022, at 8:00pm UTC. Watch this space for the tournament website soon!

    As we’ve been in feature freeze for part of the time since the last update post there’s not much to report, but here’s the latest on what will round out the version. Expect to see a few more new vaults and tweaks before the beta, and don’t hesitate to report any bugs you’ve noticed. Community contributor nlavsky has continued the stream of bug fixes; riverfiend did a deep dive in god wraths and did a lot of sanity checks, big thanks to them both! Here are the rest of the changes:

    • A new scroll of butterflies summons some insectoid cover, alternating in a set with the scroll of fog
    • Sastrei has been hard at work drawing a slew of new tiles
    • Some spell balance tweaks:
      • Irradiate now applies more contamination
      • Flame wave and sticky flame do more damage
      • Sandblast is more accurate
      • Frozen Ramparts and Ozocubu’s Refrigeration now check AC.
      • Ozocubu’s Refigeration no longer applies -Potion, does more damage, but significantly reduced damage to monsters adjacent to each other (they huddle for warmth, cute!).
    • Arcane Markspersons starting sling is now +1, and they trade the scroll of vulnerability for a scroll of poison.
    • The roll attack of Palentonga is now quieter, and they gain +2 strength.
    • A lot of behind-the-scenes work in key code handling and UI menus has been done by advil; the work has payed dividends in making new menu shortcut features easy to implement, visible in the use an item menu (toggle between wear/takeoff with !). Look forward to more of this in the next version.

    Along with these gameplay changes have been a host of bug fixes as we get the next version ready for launch. Get amped for the tournament, and until next time, happy crawling!

    The butterfly can only feel hate for you!

    Trunk Updates 18 July 2022

    The trunk updates twirl on the spot.

    Hello crawlers, and welcome to the latest trunk updates! It’s a hot summer here in Gehenna, where the devil’s team is toiling away. Before we dive into the latest diabolical ways to die, mark your calendars. The tentative dates for the 0.29 release tournament are 26 August 2022 to 11 September. Watch this space for more information as the 0.29 development cycle winds down and we ready the new version for release.

    We’ve got a big trunk update for you. Since last time we’ve added community contributions from nlavsky, robertxgray, Goratrix, Zhang Joke, Cebolla Sunbeam, chequers, perryprog, amcnicky, nikheizen, Brian Power, Aliscans, David Damerell as well as welcomed first-time contributors 4Hooves2Appendages, catern, Sentei, Reono, ruxi, and Rosstin Murphy. Some of these are bug fixes, grammar tweaks, quotations and dialog, and vaults, the little stuff that all together gives crawl its polish, but there are also some bigger-ticket items in the round up. If you’re interested in helping out with the effort to make crawl, click here for more information!

    With that said, let’s dive into what’s been shaking in trunk.

    First up, a new monster: the starflower, contributed by Cebolla Sunbeam. A stationary plant/tentacle hybrid monster with harpoon shot, reach 3 distortion melee, reach 2 melee, and an additional distortion melee attack. Meant as a vault-placed monster for abyssal vaults, guarding an exit or a rune or what have you, as a threat that’s dangerous to be close to, but can be neutralized if the harpoon shot can be blocked or avoided somehow.

    Sentei adjusted the -Scroll and -Potion mutations. They are now 2-tier mutations in the regular bad mutation pool. The Ru sacrifice corresponds to the 2nd tier. Follwing up on Senti’s work, teleportits and berserkitis are also now two tiers.

    nikheizen sent us a design to reflavour and re-mechanic gnoll shamen, turning them into gnoll bouda. They have a new spell set: Weakening Gaze, Hunting Call (like battlecry but gives swiftness instead of might), and heal other. The name bouda is a nod to the bouda of Northeast African folklore: shapeshifters that turn into jackals. They have the power of the Evil Eye which curses others with spectacular misfortune.

    Temples are adjusted to place six to twenty-one altars, with a distribution that lightly favors the center of that range. On a one percent chance, a rare temple is selected instead. Rare temples are to Lugonu, Jiyva, or Ignis, or have a particularly extreme number of altars. Designing a Temple map is a great way to start contributing: there’s a particular need for Temples that support 7-8, 11, 17, 19, or 20 altars. Read more about map making for crawl here!

    Support for item reskins has been added. Crazy Yiuf’s has his hammers once more. Sigmund and Reapers’ scythes are now reskinned halberds (so you can actually use them if you want, instead of trap items), and all scythes except unrand scythes are removed.

    The Bows, Crossbows, and Slings skills are combined into a single Ranged Combat skill. Fustibali are removed. Hunting slings are renamed to slings. Launcher stats and spawn rates and locations are adjusted to give the ranged skill greater strategic depth.

    Continuing to build on the item rotation concept, there is a new item: wand of roots, appears in item rotation with iceblast. Roots fires a 3×3 fireball-sized effect which constricts its victims (like BVC), with a duration scaling with wand power.

    And a grab bag of slightly smaller changes:

    • a new silent ossuary map
    • Jiyva altars now place 2/3rds of the time at the entrance to Slime
    • Hex miscasts now only slow the player, instead of also cancelling effects
    • Lair now 5 floors
    • Ijyb’s wand power is nerfed.

    That’s all for now. Expect the changes to slow down as we arrive into feature freeze in August and get ready for the release. Until next time, happy crawling!

    Which is more difficult, to awaken one who sleeps or to awaken one who, awake, dreams that he is awake?

    Trunk Updates 19 June 2022

    Kikubaaqudgha calls the trunk updates from the earth!

    Hello crawlers, and welcome back to Trunk Updates. While I’ve been away in a far corner of Pandemonium, my fellow devils have slacked off and left this space blank! Well, not slacked exactly, because they’ve been hard at work in Tar:7, as the length of this post portends. There have been several big moves, in the direction of item sets, a necromancy overhaul, and a new species, as well as balance adjustments following the opportunity attacks change and of course a wild grab bag of other changes. Before we dive into those, let’s mention community contributions since we last wrote: dilly sent in several new guarded unrand vaults, sdynet tweaked the rings of the Octopus King, and Aliscans, chequers, nlavsky, perryprog, and spicyCebolla each sent in various fixes and adjustments. I know there’s a big backlog of pull requests on the GitHub right now, but with luck we’ll bring in a bunch more new community work in the next month. Until then, let’s look at the rest of the changes!

    Item sets

    In an effort to increase run-to-run variation, experiment with new interesting item effects, while not increasing item pressure, the new notion of an item set is introduced. Only one type of item from a set can generate normally in a given game (though certain special situations, like rare vaults or shops, or perhaps a forgotten god, might bend this rule). Currently there are two item sets:

    • The hex wand set: alternating between Paralysis and Charming.
    • The bolt wand set: alternating between Acid, and two new wands: Light and quicksilver.
      • wands of light fire a bolt of blinding light, checking AC and EV but no resists. The beam blinds what it hits, and deals  damage identical to an acid wand.
      • wands of quicksilver fires a quicksilver bolt, dispelling the magical effects of targets it hits. Does slightly more damage than acid.

    Watch this space for future exciting item sets!

    Corpseless necromancy

    As foreshadowed in the last post, hellmonk and PleasingFungus have been hard at work on overhauling Necromancy to not use corpses directly, as well as make Necromancy less awkward to use and give Kikubaaqudagh some bone polish. Their efforts have paid off, and crawl’s Necromantic magic now deals directly in the shadow between life and death, instead of meddling with the long-dead.

    • Kikubaaqudgha is buffed:
      • The pain brand can be applied to ranged weapons.
      • Torment no longer requires a corpse sacrifice.
      • Corpse Delivery is removed and replaced with Unearth Wretches, which summons some paralysed, 1 HP, 0 will monsters that die in a few turns, to use Necromancy spells on.
    • Animate Dead now gives a duration, and for the duration killed monsters with corpses have a power-dependent chance to become zombies. The zombies are permanent as long as the player is on the level, and are destroyed by a subsequent cast of Animate Dead.
    • Simulacrum is now a smite-targeted spell that gives an irresistable status. Monsters that die with this status spawn a power-dependent number of simulacra.
    • Death Channel cannot be re-cast while active.
    • Corpse Rot is now Level 4 Necromancy/Poison/Air. When cast it produces miasma for each corpse-producing monster killed in sight, scaling with power.
    • New Spell: Necrotize (L1 Necromancy). Necrotize deals damage identically to the old Pain spell, but additionally gives the monster a short-lived status that causes it to animate as a skeleton on death (if it has a skeleton). It replaces Animate Skeleton and Pain in all player usable places.
    • The spells Animate Skeleton, Pain, and Excruciating Wounds are removed.


    The roiling success of hellmonk’s April fools Mayflytaurs’s mechanic comes back in a modified form. Welcome Meteorae!

    Meteorae have an exciting variety of bonuses – great attributes and aptitudes across the board, passive mapping, and exploration healing, regaining HP and MP when viewing new territory. In exchange, they have one big downside: instead of getting 6,000 turns of Zot clock for each floor, they get 600! Meteorae are humanoid beings. (In the night sky, they look like dots because they’re very far up.) Hat tip to Neil Gaiman’s Stardust. They also glow in the dark, with permanent backlit status (not halo!), that they can’t escape by transmuting (Dithmenos can hide them, though!).

    Along with their introduction comes a softening of the Zot clock, a slight move away from “instant death”. The Zot clock now applies very heavy draining the first time it trips, and gives the player an additional set of turns. Only at very low max HP will it outright kill the player.

    Balance adjustments

    The introduction of attacks of opportunity was a significant shift, and there have been several follow up changes to adjust balance while keeping the tighter tactics they introduce.

    • Some early game monsters are nerfed a bit in terms of base damage.
    • Consumable generation is increased.
    • Monsters slower than the player don’t get opportunity attacks.
    • The maximum duration of paralysis a monster can inflict is reduced to 5 turns.
    • Dungeon shafts attempt to send the player to a location outside of LOS of monsters.
    • Using all un-explored stairs and hatches is now fast.

    The rest

    Of course, this wouldn’t be a trunk updates post without a potpourri of other assorted changes. First of all, advil has done a host of behind the scenes work, improving the shopping menu, the plumbing of various bits of UI and save handling. And of course, Sastreii’s artistic endeavors continue to beautify the dungeon as well as clarify UI elements: you might have noticed the flashy new status icons for various status effects that are applied to monsters. Read on for the rest:

    • Timed hell effects no longer apply on a timer, and instead have a chance to apply on each level entry.
    • Hunter‘s starting dexterity is increased.
    • Positive stat mutations now give +4 to the primary stat and -1 to the other two.
    • Formicids’ base dexterity is increased by 3.
    • Formicids  can now wield giant (spiked) clubs.
    • Demonspawn demonic touch damage is doubled.
    • Uskayaw grants piety for ally damage.
    • Lugonu’s Bend Space is adjusted. It no longer does damage, and makes a better effort to blink monsters away from the destination.
    • Stones always mulch when thrown.
    • Shadow dragon scales AC increased
    • Weapon descriptions now display a “damage rating“, describing the contributions to weapon damage from various sources.
    • New item: scroll of poison. When read the scroll of poison fills every unoccupied space on the screen with poison clouds for 10-20 turns.
    • +MP items remove MP when they are taken off.
    • New unrand: the +8 trishula “Condemnation” {holy, Anguish Fly rN+}. Inflicts 4-8 turns of the Anguish status on targets it hits.
    • New unrand: the +3 mountain boots {rDislodge, rC+}. Prevent the player from being involuntarily moved by physical means (trampling, shafts, tentacles, etc.).
    • The amulet of Vitality now gives two pips each of Regen and RegenMP, and is now evil (Borgnjor is said to have made or used it or been involved in it somehow).
    • Scrolls of holy word are removed
    • Animated Armour now flies.
    • Sandblast no longer uses stones as ammo. Instead it takes twice as long to cast as a normal spell, and has its range increased by one.
    • Airstrike’s bonus from empty space is doubled.
    • Finally, Deep Dwarves are removed.

    Wow! It’s been a few months since we last wrote and a lot has happened. Still more is on the horizon, though through the haze what exactly remains as mercurial as a quicksilver elemental. So, until next time, happy crawling!

    Whisper “Farewell” when you leave, Dimli…

    Trunk updates 6 March 2022

    The trunk updates gesture, and weapons take to the air!

    Hello crawlers, and welcome to the first trunk update post of the 0.29 development cycle. The dust has settled from the 0.28 tournament, and a bug fix release for 0.28 will appear soon. Meanwhile, trunk development has taken off as various members of the team and the community get to work on new exciting projects. First off we have several new vaults by community contributors DreamDust, and spicyCebolla, as well as tweaks, fixes, and text from Antern, chequers, CipHuk, Elliot Bernstein, Diego Essaya, Implojin, perryprog, and robertxgray. Many thanks to the community contributors that keep crawl alive and healthy! Now let’s turn to the gameplay changes since 0.28.

    Launcher ammo is removed

    You read that correctly: player launchers now have unlimited ammo. Along with this are changes and tweaks to bring balance in this new, free firing world:

    • ranged weapons have had their stats adjusted downward
    • the Hunter background no longer starts with a short sword and no longer has a throwing option
    • Kobolds now have +3 crossbows aptitude
    • Armour penalties apply to ranged weapon attack delay
    • Launcher damage scales with dex instead of str
    • Spriggans can no longer wield triple crossbows, and fustibali are 2-handed.

    Several new Uniques stalk the dungeon

    • Parghit the Mighty. Following the example of Maggie/Margery, Parghit is an “alt-timeline” version of Pargi. Parghit appears in late Depths, Zot, Crypt and Tomb, and sports high-enchantment golden dragon scales (with a 1% chance of wearing the Dragon King) and an astonishing 27 HP regenerated per turn. He’s definitely killable, but best not underestimated.
    • Josephina the Ice-Lich. As one more “alt-timeline” unique, Josephina is an upgraded version of Josephine. She appears in late Vaults, Depths, Crypt, Tomb, and Zot, and borrows Wendigo Seracfall (turning simulacrula into 3d33 bombs) to add to her classic Ghostly Fireball. She comes with a guaranteed randart ring of ice.
    • Amaemon the Diabolical Poisoner. Crawl’s first demonspawn unique, appearing in mid-D, early Lair and Orc:1. Alongside his orange demon companion, Amaemon summons scorpions (the classic returns!) and casts Concentrate Venom, upgrading his allies’ poison into curare. To encourage players to try to kill him, he wields a demon whip of venom, with 1% chance of the unique Snakebite.
    • Lodul the Thundrous. Lodul is an ironbound thunderhulk who’s been sent to patrol outside the Vaults, in late D. He’s got a weaker version of Call Down Lightning and a big band of ogres and two-headed ogres to help him keep distance from the player. Defensively, he looks a lot like Erolcha.
    • Vv the Exile. Vv is a combination of ironbound frosthearts (Creeping Frost) and Salamander Tyrants (Eruption/Pyroclastic Surge), appearing in Depths, Zot, Crypt, and Tomb. She’s themed as a new species, the Stoneborn, sentient earth elementals. She also has strong defenses and both flaming and cold melee.
    • Zenata, Seeker of Sheza. Zenata is another late-game unique (appearing in Depths, Zot &c), borrowing a bit from the Desolation of Salt and putting a twist on it. She’s taken the ragged hierophants’ “Resonance Strike”, which is like airstrike that gets bonus damage from adjacent constructs instead of from open spaces, and uses it in conjuction with a new “Sheza’s Dance” spell, which summons 2-4 dancing weapons. She comes with a high-tier weapon with some plusses already on it.

    Monster energy and attacks of opportunity

    A major mechanical change has landed in trunk. “Random energy” was introduced long ago in Stone Soup’s history as an attempt at deterring tedious-but-optimal levels of pillar dancing and luring, while permitting shorter trips. It has not been successful in that role, and additionally offered a “get out of jail free-ish” card in many fights against certain monsters. The spirit that motivated it also motivated previous devteam attempts to meet the problem with a better solution, such as the dynamic-monsters experimental during the 0.17 cycle. This time around we’re tinkering with the mechanic again, in the following form:

    • Monster move energy is no longer randomized.
    • Monsters adjacent to the player gain a 1/3 chance to gain a free* attack if the player moves away from them. Wu Jian martial attacks & rampaging give immunity, and monsters that don’t move fast enough to follow you can’t attack. *Terms and conditions apply: the monster must have sufficient energy to be able to move the next turn (monsters slower than the player don’t get this chance on the turn they fall behind), and monsters that attack slowly don’t get a full refund on the energy used for the attack, only the amount of a normal turn.
    • Ogres, 2-headed Ogres, Ogre magi, and Thunderhulks attack more slowly in melee.
    • Early D spawns are nerfed a bit, with top killers less common and Harold moved later.

    In addition to the direct tuning changes above, backgrounds have their starting kits improved a bit with extra consumables, to increase tactical options in the very early game. See the next section.

    Expanded starting kits

    Many backgrounds get improved starting kits with a new consumable or two to help with the very earliest moments of the game when tactical options are limited.

    • All ‘mages’ (‘pure casters’) start with a potion of magic.
    • Gladiators get a throwing weapon (one); a javelin, large rock, or boomerang.
    • Monks get a potion of ambrosia.
    • Hunters get a scroll of immolation.
    • Brigands get an additional poisoned & curare dart.
    • Artificers trade their chesspiece for nine charges of iceblast.
    • Wanderers get an additional random potion or scroll.
    • Abyssal Knights start at 60 piety (just over 2*) instead of 38 (just over 1*). This should allow them to use Bend Space if needed.
    • Chaos Knights get Artificer’s xom chesspiece.
    • Transmuters get a potion of lignification.
    • Warpers get more boomerangs of dispersal.
    • Arkane Markspersons get a scroll of vulnerability.
    • Enchanters get another potion of invisibility.

    Everything else

    Along with big-ticket changes there’s the usual froth and fizz of trunk development, with little tweaks and small features all over.

    • Unrand tweaks:
      • the Glaive of the Guard is reduced to +5
      • the arbalest “Dammnation” is reduced to firing 2d14 explosions
      • Gyre & Gimble are now +12
      • the Woodcutter’s axe is now a battleaxe
    • Long and short blade damage scales with Dexterity instead of Strength.
    • Merfolk’s polearms aptitude is reduced to +3, with long blades increased to +2
    • Mummy necromancy enhancers now appear at XL 3 and 13
    • Most zombies and skeletons are removed from Dungeon generation.

    That’s all for now! The team is still getting organized around 0.29 priorities, so through the haze of Gehenna it’s hard to make out what’s coming. One big project is an overhaul of Necromancy, particularly the corpse exploitation spells; it’s still in the early phases so keep an eye out to see what sort of dark abomination comes out of the work. Until next time, happy crawling!

    The trunk updates hit you as you move away! Ouch! That really hurt!!! You die…



    0.28 Tournament Results

    The 0.28 tournament is over. On behalf of the Dev Team, many thanks to all the server admins, outside contributors, bug reporters, and to the many DCSS players who made the 0.28 release and tournament possible!

    For 16 days, players could compete for tournament points and banners by playing 0.28 games on the public servers. This was the fourth tournament held after the major revision of the tournament rules done for 0.25. There were changes based on previous input, and once again we’ve collected the feedback posted on tavern and reddit.

    Congratulations to Yermak, perennial champion, for once again taking first place in the individual competition, with a spectacular 111,412 points! Over the course of the tournament, Yermak won 43 games, including a streak of 13 games (second-best in tournament), an 76M high score run (first in tournament), 30 Nemelex’ Choice combos, 4 species high scores, 3 background high scores, and 19 tier 3 banners.

    Other big winners:

    • Acrobat2: 2nd place overall (101,150 points, 34 wins), longest streak (18 games), 4 species high scores & 1 background high score, tied for lowest XL win at 16, all level 3 banners completed.
    • Fagentul: 3rd place overall (89,909 points, 21 wins), 5 species and background high scores, tied for lowest XL win at 16, 16 level 3 banners completed, 8-win streak.
    • p0werm0de: Fastest realtime win (an auspicious 27 minutes 44 seconds), 2nd place low turncount, 8th place overall.
    • Caminho: Lowest turncount win in a scanty 8,492 turns.
    • sweetandcool: A third tie for lowest XL win at XL 16; 14th place overall.
    • Lici The Crawler (alias Borgnjor’s Vile Crotch): First win of the tournament.
    • Ge0ff, RubberyChicken and NoScrollMutBadDesign all tied for most ziggurats completed at 27 apiece.

    The clan competition was won by Gozig or Gozag (captained by Ge0ff) with 105,656 points, sealing their victory by winning 40 Nemelex Choice combos to second place’s 30. In a close 2nd place was That felt unstrangely rewarding (captained by acrobat2) with 98,434 points, and first place in the Clan Combo Highscores and Streak Length leaderboards. 3rd place was held by Team Splat (captained by shummie) with 85,513, following up on last year’s 2nd place ranking by maxing out the Clan Low Turncount Win leaderboard.

    Thank you to everyone for playing! I hope you all had fun.

    To close out, here are some overall tournament statistics (with the 0.27 numbers in brackets for comparison). 2,559 players started a game at some point during the tournament; of those 2,504 completed a game without quitting or leaving the dungeon sadly orbless. This definition of “player” (players who completed a non-boring game) is used for subsequent calculations and was used for the 0.27 statistics.

    • Players: 2,504 (0.27: 2,474)
    • Total player time: 28,008 hrs (0.27: 27,502 hrs)
    • Average player time: 11.2 hrs (0.27: 11.2 hrs)
    • Games played: 69,201 (0.27: 67,203)
    • Players who got a rune: 742 (0.27: 734)
    • 357 winners and 1160 wins (0.27: 404 winners and 1571 wins)
    • Win rate: 1.68% (0.27: 2.34%)
    • Proportion of players using WebTiles: 96.6% (0.27: 94.4%)

    The 0.29 season has begun, and changes are already in motion. Watch this space for further information as the 0.29 trunk update posts begin to flow. Until next time, happy crawling!

    0.28 “The Rise and Fall of Ignis Zotdust and the Spiders from Hell”

    We are pleased to announce the release of Dungeon Crawl: Stone Soup 0.28 “The Rise and Fall of Ignis Zotdust and the Spiders from Hell”!

    DCSS 0.28 features a new Cinder Acolyte zealot background that begins the game worshiping a new god, Ignis, the Dying Flame. Cinder Acolytes start with the new Scorch spell, a -1 flaming branded weapon of choice, and five stars of piety. Ignis worshipers cannot gain piety, losing it only when using Ignis’ abilities. The abilities are Fiery Armour, which grants AC and retaliation flame damage, Foxfire Swarm, which summons many foxfires, and Rising Flame, a one-time ability sends the player one level above. Once all piety is spent, players will typically abandon for another god, and Ignis dies forever when wrath is over.

    The Hell branches have been revised to offer substantially more challenge. Each branch features a distinct and persistent negative effects that applies while in the branch along with timed effects common to all Hells. The branches all have revised monster set with many new monsters and smaller layouts for the first six levels, each of which has only one downward staircase. The Spider branch has likewise been retooled with a roster of new creepy-crawlies, new and revised end maps, and updates to the existing layouts and vaults.

    A new magical orb item type exists for the shield slot. Each orb type grants an ego with a powerful passive effect, such as a 3-radius halo or a reduction of monster willpower at the expense of your own. The god Yredelemnul has been completely redesigned, granting passive reaping and accepting the reaped zombies as payment for its dark abilities. Okawaru and Jiyva have also seen significant, though not quite as sweeping, changes.

    A batch of new spells have been added, As always, there are dozens of new deadly vaults, and many more changes small and large alike!

    Download DCSS 0.28 here or play it online on one of many servers across the world! Packages for Windows and OS X are available now. Linux debs are coming soon. See the full list of changes on the release page here.

    The tournament starts on Friday February 4th 8pm UTC and runs through Sunday February 20th 8pm UTC, with all online 0.28 games counting towards your score. See the tournament page for more details, including how to join or setup a clan. Clans membership can be changed until Friday February 11th 8pm UTC.

    Many thanks to all those who have contributed to DCSS over the years. Thanks especially to the DCSS development team, whose contributions made 0.28 possible, and to the admins who run and maintain the official servers. A special thanks to the following community members who contributed to 0.28 and a warm welcome to the first-time contributors, listed in italics. (Let us know if someone is missing, this data is tricky to collect in bulk!)

    AdamPG, Alex Jurkiewicz, Aliscans, ArmiesAndCastles, Brian Power, Chris Landry, Justin Clark Ong, David Damerell, DreamDust, Ed Dewey, Elliott Bernstein, Gopall, Goratrix, Implojin, Jonathan Klabunde Tomer, Kiëd Llaentenn, MainiacJoe, Hurricos, Matthew Daley, Monkooky, Nikolai Lavsky, Oneirical, Perry Fraser, RojjaCebolla, Santiago Acosta, Zachary Chandler, Zhang Kai, amcnicky, dilly, floraline, John Stahara, Beargit, mgdelmonte, Nikolai Lavsky, Robert Gray, Paul Pollack, sdynet

    0.28 Tournament Page and Schedule

    Hello crawlers! We’ve finalized the schedule for the 0.28 tournament, which will run from Friday February 4th, 8pm UTC to Sunday February 20th, 8pm UTC. Please bookmark the official 0.28 tournament page and use this page to track your progress throughout the tournament. We’ll continue to update this page with any rules changes. In coming days you may see summaries of test data in the “Overview” page taken from recent 0.28 beta games. Don’t worry, we’ll reset everything before the tournament starts.

    We’re in the process of finalizing the 0.28 release which will appear in the next couple of days, and 0.28 is being rolled out to our online servers.

    Trunk Updates 17 January 2022 and Tournament Announcement

    The trunk updates are haunted by guilt!

    Hello crawlers, and welcome to the first trunk update of the new year! As hinted in the previous update, the 0.28 development cycle is nearing a close, and with that we are pleased to announce a tentative tournament start date of Friday, February 4, 2022, at 20:00 UTC for the sixteen day 0.28 Release tournament. We are chilling trunk into a feature freeze and will be focusing on bug fixes and balance in the coming three weeks, and plan to release 0.28 before the start of the tournament. More details about the tournament, including a tournament website and rules changes, will be available here soon!

    With that announced, let’s dive into the 215 commits that have arrived in trunk since the start of the year (more or less). These commits included community contributions from Aliscans, DreamDust, Zhang Kai, perryprog, nlavsky, Goratrix, and a new rare Temple layout featuring Ignis by pdpol. In total, in these commits were 72 bug fixes spread among GitHub issues, Mantis issues, reports directly to the devteam, and community contributions to fix a bug the fixer noticed. Along side the polish and gameplay balance, UI improvements are always something we’re happy to include, and team member advil has done extensive work to make arrow keys and menu help more consistently available across the UI.

    The last “big ticket” block of changes to land was to the Abyss, let’s open with that suite of changes:

    • Random items no longer generate in the abyss.
    • Kills in the abyss grant no reward (experience and piety), though Uskayaw still rewards damage and Yred still grants zombies.
    • Exploring no longer grants piety in the abyss.
    • The chance of plunging deeper into the abyss on teleport is increased.
    • Wretched stars only apply a single temporary mutation per use of corrupting pulse, and use it less often.
    • The abyssal rune, staircases, and exits are more common.
    • On collecting the abyssal rune, the player gains two potions of experience worth of experience.

    With two-hundred commits there’s still a lot of churn, and although at this stage we’re much more focused on balance, there’s also a new goody or two. Let’s dive in!

    • New spell: Anguish (L4 Hex/Necromancy). Gives monsters in sight that fail a Will check the anguished status. Whenever an anguished monster deals damage it also takes the same amount of damage.
    • Shield penalties now work more like armour skill; the penalty scales down as skill is increased from 0 up to 27, based on a shield encumbrance rating and species factor. Skill 27 is required to completely remove the penalty, regardless of size.
    • Spider is no longer quiet, and completely open level layouts are much rarer
    • Ghost moths toned down in melee
    • orbs of mayhem are now disliekd by Cheibriados, and energy disliked by Trog
    • the robe of Misfortune loses its unequip penalties
    • Ashenzari’s skill boost is turned down
    • Wendigo’s seracfall damage is reduced
    • To-hit penalties from armour and shields are removed
    • Aux attack chance and damage is now based on XL instead of attribute for all aux attacks.
    • Offhand punch chance now starts at 5% chance and scales with unarmed combat skill to 50% at max skill.
    • Dragon form gets 2 extra levels of fangs.
    • The UI for interacting with frenzied monsters is greatly improved.
    • The player gets XP for kills by and of frenzied monsters.
    • Jiyva no longer grants piety for exploring the slime pits
    • The poison dart generation rate is dropped
    • Assorted tweaks to Spider monster band mixes and sizes

    Well, that’s all for now! If you’re interested in helping in the release effort, drop us a line in #crawl-dev on, check out the open issues on GitHub, or just keep playing and discussing trunk as the balance and tuning come in.

    On the horizon, well, I opened with it. There’s the 0.28 Release and Tournament! The team is going to be focusing on getting release-ready in the next 3 weeks. Until next time, happy crawling!

    The trunk update hits you! The trunk update is wracked by anguish!!! The trunk update dies!

    Trunk Updates 28 December 2021

    The broodmother hits you!!! A trunk update bursts forth from the wound!

    A ho ho ho from Santaeus here in the icy expanse of Cocytus the North Pole! Welcome to the last trunk update of 2021. The frenzied pace of trunk development continues, with 150 commits since we last wrote. One big chunk of commits was some behind the scenes web tiles modernization, with some help from CKO admin and community contributor floraline. There are three big headliner sets of changes: a new set of Spider monsters, a variety of new early-game appearing unrands, and a new type of item to carry in your offhand instead of a shield. Before we get to those three change sets, let’s check out the rest of the trunk changes:

    • The glaive of Prune now turns you into a prune when paralysed, petrified, or put to sleep, causing you to take half damage until the effect ends.
    • If Jiyva dies Dissolution‘s summon eyeballs is replaced with a cantrip.
    • Sewer maps have been updated and re-vamped, plus two new sewer maps.
    • Bailey maps have been updated and re-vamped, plus three new baileys.
    • New Spell: Enfeeble (L7 Hexes). Enfeeble irresistibly applies weakness and antimagic to a single foe. Additionally the target is also dazed and blinded if they fail a willpower check.
    • Formicids now dig at normal movement speed, and each cell dug causes draining.
    • Centaur warriors replace centaurs in Shoals.

    New and updated Spider monsters

    • Pharaoh ants are an undead spider that drains and when killed binds the souls of all nearby monsters.
    • Steelbarb worms are fast, regenerative, fire-resistant worms that apply barbs in melee.
    • Jorogumo are tough ensnaring monsters with bolt of draining and hornet poison melee.
    • Broodmothers summon spiders and bite to summon spiders.
    • Culicivora are healing spiders, with heal other and a vampiric bite, appearing in spider packs.
    • Sun moths are holy moths with a single tile halo, sticky flame, and energy bolt.
    • Radroaches are armoured roaches that cast irradiate, which contaminates the player a lot (not a direct malmutation).
    • Demonic crawlers gain warning cry.
    • Emperor scorpions are less tough but faster.
    • Ghost moths no longer poison but their stat draining is much more intense.

    Early Game Artefacts

    Artefacts can now generate on D:2-3. Additionally, several new unrandarts specifically designed to be interesting early and then fall off are added:

    • Delatra’s gloves heal the wearer for drinking unknown potions and restore MP for reading unknown scrolls.
    • The woodcutter’s axe is a vorpal +8 war axe that always swings at 10 aut, regardless of skill, shield penalty, slow or haste, etc.
    • The staff of the Meek is a +7 quarterstaff of protection with an extra protective bonus AC when below 55 HP.
    • Throatcutter is a +7 long sword of draining with a 1/3 chance to instantly kill foes that are below 21 HP.
    Along with the new early-game unrandarts, several existing unrandarts have been given “early-game” status and weighted to be very likely early and unlikely later: Morg, Devastator, the Ratskin Cloak, Kryia’s mail coat, the trident of the Octopus King, the robe of Augmentation, and Lear’s Hauberk (reduced to +18).

    Orbs to ponder

    This round of updates brings a new item type: orbs. A shield-slot analog of scarves that give no SH and no penalty. Several new armour egos are added that appear only on orbs:

    • light: a radius 3 halo.
    • wrath: gives *Rage (20% berserk chance).
    • mayhem: when the wearer kills something, it has a chance to send a monster that saw the kill into a frenzy.
    • guile: reduces the will of the wearer’s target by 3 pips, while reducing the wearer’s will by 2 pips.
    • energy: gives a source of passive channeling: a chance to power a spell instead of using the wearer’s MP, with a chance to backfire and drain int or cause confusion. The success chance goes up with each source of passive channeling, and the backfire effect triggers if each source backfires. The staff of Wucad Mu now counts as two sources of channeling (so it stacks with an orb of energy in addition to being buffed!).

    That’s all for now. This development cycle is coming to a downslope, most of the big ideas for 0.28 have reached trunk, but of course there are always surprises in Santaeus’ sleigh. So I don’t have horizon prognostication for you about what might appear next beyond the polish, balance tweaks, and bug fixing that make up the later end of the release cycle. Until next time, happy crawling!

    The energy of discovery flows out of the trunk update and into your fingertips!

    Trunk Updates 18 December 2021

    You begin with the following items: a +0 vorpal quarterstaff, a piece from Xom’s chessboard (15/15), a +0 cloak, a +0 leather armour, and a trunk update…

    Hello crawlers! We’re getting back to a more regular trunk updates post schedule, but this comes hand in hand with a continued feverish pace of change. Since we last wrote there have been 186 commits to trunk. Unlike last time a much larger fraction of these are fixes, tweaks, and technical behind the scenes work that enable the headliner items.

    First, a big congratulations and thank you to longtime community contributor nlavsky and team member advil for initiating and seeing through to completion the implementation of a consumable panel for web tiles, similar to the inventory pane of local tiles. This has been an outstanding feature request for almost a decade, and is the number one reason offline players cite for why they don’t play online. So if you’re a long-time offline player and you don’t mind playing trunk, come check it out; otherwise, we look forward to you trying it during the 0.28 release! In addition to this panel, advil has been doing a lot of work expanding the web tiles mouse support, the second most requested online feature. Try it out!

    Since we last wrote, we also had community contributors Aliscans, ArmiesAndCastles, Brian Power, EdDewey, Gopall, Goratrix, Jonathan Klabunde Tomer, Oneirical, Perry Fraser, aMcNicky, mgdelmonte, Zachary Chandler, and sdynet send in various tweaks, fixes, new items, lua api improvements (mgdelmonte is a big driver of these), and other assorted changes. As always, a big thank you to the community for participating in development.

    On the gameplay side, the two big headline changes are the Yredelemnul overhaul and a revision of the Wanderer background start. Let’s dive in.

    Carry the Black Torch!

    Last post I mentioned an experimental overhaul of Yredelemnul looking for playtesting feedback. This overhaul has arrived in trunk, after a set of balance tweaks and bug fixes thanks to your feedback. Here’s what Yredelemnul now offers, instead of permanent ally gifts.

    • At 0* Yredelemnul grants passive reaping of living and demonic creatures, as well as recall, and immunity to umbra and spectral mist clouds. Things with a corpse come up as zombies, things without as spectrals (including those poor souls whose corpse was exploded). These reaped creatures stick around until the player leaves the level.
    • Piety is proportional to the total strength of reaped dead in the player’s LOS.
    • At 2* grants the Dark Bargain active, which trades some zombies/specters for a long-duration undead servant summon. Summon quality scales with piety, and the summon list now covers all (non-harmful) ghoul, skeleton, vampire, and wraith genus monsters (except Vampire magi who belong to Kiku); for console players that’s monsters on glyphs n, z, V, and W.
    • At 4* grants Drain Life. Same as old drain life, but now costs zombies/specters as well as mp.
    • At 5* grants Bind Soul. Same as old enslave soul, but also costs zombies and has been renamed. Bound souls can follow the player between levels, retain the spells and weapons they had when alive, and are tougher than before.

    Wandering About

    hellmonk took the charge in re-designing the random generation process of the Wanderer background. I won’t bore you with the old creation model, Wanderer players will know that the bad rolls could just be absolutely nonsensically awful. The new generation model picks three skills in an apt-weighted way: a “good” skill and two “decent” skills. Using these choices it hands out starting gear, “good” stuff for the good skill and “decent” stuff for the decent skill. Finally it assigns stats and skill points based on these choices, again in an apt-weighted way. The result is more lopsided and more likely to align with the gifted items, though it is not guaranteed to be that way. Along with a change to the random model, the possible items have been expanded, with some carried over from the old model. To entice you to check it out, here’s the possible list:

    • “good fighting” selects a weapon and gives the good weapon instead. “decent fighting” gives an extra plus to a weapon if one was already given, or a decent potion or scroll otherwise.
    • “good weapon” gives a +2 weapon, an upgraded base type or a vorpal branded starting weapon (hunting slings with sling bullets are now possible). “decent weapon” just gives a plain weapon.
    • “good unarmed” gives two random good potions or scrolls. “decent unarmed” gives a single decent potion or scroll.
    • “good armour” gives either +2 scale, chain, or acid scales to weirdly shaped wanderers. “decent armour” gives either plain scale or ring mail, or aux armour to weirdly shaped wanderers.
    • “good shield” can give either a +2 buckler or a +0 buckler of protection (upgraded to a kite shield for species that can’t use a buckler). “decent shield” gives a +0 buckler.
    • “good magic school” gives a 3-spell randbook (capped at level 4) from that school. “decent magic school” gives a 2 spell book totaling 4 levels from that school.
    • “good spellcasting” gives a 4-spell randbook (capped at level 3), picking spells from any school. “decent spellcasting” gives a 2 spell book totaling 4 levels from any school.
    • “good stealth” gives either a +2 dagger and a good consumable or a +0 dagger and atropa and datura darts. “decent stealth” gives a piece of aux armour.
    • “good throwing” gives a +2 dagger and curare darts. “decent throwing” gives either boomerangs or poison darts.
    • “good dodging” gives either a +2 leather armour or a +0 leather armour and some nets (oddly shaped wanderers get an aux armour instead of leather). “decent dodging” gives a piece of aux armour.
    • “good evocations” gives either a wand (weighted towards the stronger wands) with a good number charges or an XP evoker other than the chess piece. “decent evocations” gives a handful of flame or polymorph charges or a piece from Xom’s chessboard.
    • The possible range of starting consumables is expanded.
    • If starting with the sandblast spell, a wanderer also receives stones.

    Trunk Updates

    Of course, with 184 commits, even with all of the User Interface work there are plenty of other gameplay changes around. Read on for the mix

    • New Unrand: the dreamshard necklace. Concept and initial implementation by community contributor aMcNicky, the dreamshard necklace is an amulet an amulet of nothing that for the most part does nothing. However, on a lethal or near-leathal blow the necklace shatters, absorbing the blow and releasing protective dreams of healing (a big heal, between half and full HP), friendship (shadow creatures), and clouds (fog).
    • The ring of the Mage loses Will++ and Int+3 and trades them for Archmagi. Multiple sources of Archmagi now stack, so have fun blasting!
    • The autumn katana loses Clarity and trades it for a chance to cast Manifold Assault on hit, slicing through space because it is too sharp. This unrand refresh by community contributor sdynet.
    • The monster mix in Dis and Cocytus is adjusted to bring them closer in line with Gehenna and Tartarus threat levels.
    • Okawaru’s Duel ability is more expensive, and the post-duel grace period shorter.
    • Quazlal abilities have had their costs balanced: Upheaval is cheaper in MP and Piety, Elemental Force cheaper in MP, and Disaster Area more expensive in MP.
    • Chain Lightning damage now falls off more quickly with range.
    • Yara’s Violent Unravelling can now unravel summons in addition to enchantments. When targeting a summon it causes the summon to explode, killing it instantly. Additionally, it is now smite targeted.
    • The briar patch monster now blocks all non-aligned beams, shielding its allies from all hostile fire, while allowing allied beams to fire through them. Bushes allow all beams to pass through, regardless of alignment.
    • The infusion ego is buffed, now costing only one MP per hit.

    There’s still a lot more brewing on the horizon this trunk season, with a Spider refresh and a lot of new and updated vaults on the way. So until next time, happy crawling!

    You go downstairs. The trunk update is left behind to rot!