I’ve been chipping away at Rook since the end of the 7DRL challenge, but I haven’t put together a package with the simple bugfix it needed. Today you can get the bugfix version, which is still a legitimate 7DRL, or the first post-7DRL version. Unless you’re judging this for the challenge, get the post-7DRL version. It adds a few new features like restarting the game, dropping items, and getting to see what happens after you’re in checkmate, and tweaks the sot AI to make them stupid in a more interesting way.
It was a close call — I’m writing this post a minute after my deadline, and items went in about an hour ago. The checkmate gimmick works and is a lot of fun. I hope to flesh it out more in the coming weeks, but for now it’s playable and there’s a victory condition. What more can you ask? Head to the right, find the king (the K) and kill him. Easy enough. Press Q to quit.
As long as you’re wearing the orb of the Turk, you can’t die a stupid death — every move you can make has to kill you. If you take it off, you’re playing a traditional roguelike. The ring of vulnerability will save you from losing any hitpoints, because every hit you take will kill you, which is forbidden by the orb. Along the way you’ll find potions of healing and scrolls of teleport, opium sots, drunkards, hounds, and the royal couple themselves, out for a stroll in the woods. Apparently they’re bad guys. Probably tyrants, or something. Kill them.
Download rook.tar.gz. It includes a linux 32-bit executable and everything you need to build your own 32-bit executable for linux. For Windows, get rook-7drl.zip. For the bugfix version or the post-7DRL version, see the Rook Post-7drl Release.
It’s not the most ambitious plan out there, but I’ve always liked the connection between permadeath in Roguelikes and checkmate in Chess. It’s easy to think of check as a restriction, but it isn’t: failure to respond would lead to the king’s death. By forbidding stupid deaths, more interesting outcomes emerge, on average.
So why not implement check and checkmate in a Roguelike?
For every valid player move, the game can save state and run until the next player turn; if the rogue ends up dead, the move is checked. The rogue cannot quaff an unidentified potion of Death. The rogue cannot step into Medusa’s gaze, even when she remains undetected. The rogue cannot, in poor health, step on a hidden trap of Impaling.
Major enemies can be drawn from any of the games in the Chaturanga family, and the rogue himself moves just like a king.