Linley's Dungeon Crawl
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|Linley's Dungeon Crawl|
Linley HenzellCrawl devteam
|Release date(s)||2 October 1997|
Linley's Dungeon Crawl (or just Dungeon Crawl or Crawl) is a roguelike computer game originally programmed by Linley Henzell in 1995, and first released to the general public on October 2, 1997. Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup, a branch of Dungeon Crawl currently in development, is one of the most popular roguelikes being played today. The original game has been licensed under a quirky license based on Bison's license and the NetHack License; Stone Soup has contacted every past contributor and relicensed to GPLv2+.
Crawl starts with the player's choice of one of over twenty races: several different types of elves, dwarves, humans, ogres, tengu, centaurs, merfolk, and other fantasy beings. Racial selection sets base attributes, future skill advancement, and physical characteristics such as movement, resistances, and special abilities.
Subject to racial exclusions, the player next chooses a character class from among over twenty selections. Classes include the traditional roles of fighter, wizard, and thief as well as specialty roles, among them monks, berserkers, assassins, crusaders, and elemental spellcasters. Wanderers represent an atypical option and receive a random skill set. Together, class and race determine base equipment and skill training, though characters may later attempt to acquire any in-game skill.
The Crawl skill system covers many abilities, including the ability to move freely in armor or silently, mount effective attacks with different categories of weapons (polearms, long or short blades, maces, axes, and staves), master spells from different magical colleges (the elements, necromancy, conjuration, enchantments, summoning, etc.), utilize magical artifacts, and pray to divinities. Training occurs through repetition of skill-related actions (e.g., hitting a monster with a longsword trains long blades and fighting skills), using experience from a pool refilled as the player defeats monsters.
John Harris, in his "@Play" column states that the experience pool system "deftly avoids the many problems of a skill-based development system", mainly praising the need to move on through the course of the game to further improve a PC's skills. In the same article, John Harris states that this experience system "is probably the best skill system yet seen in any roguelike; it could make a claim at being one of the best in any CRPG."
Religion within Crawl is a central game mechanic. Its diverse pantheon of gods reward character conformance to particular codes of conduct. Trog, the berserker god, expects abstinence from casting spells and offers aid in battle, whereas Sif Muna expects frequent spellcraft in exchange for magical assistance and gifts of spellbooks. Some deities campaign against evil, matched by a god of death who revels in indiscriminate killing, while others prove unpredictable objects of worship. Xom, an example of the latter, toys with followers, meting out punishments and showering gifts on inscrutable whims.
The goal of Crawl is to recover the "Orb of Zot" hidden deep within a dungeon complex. To achieve this objective, characters must visit various dungeon branches, such as the Orcish Mines or The Lair, which often branch further in to additional areas, like the Elven Halls or The Swamp, and obtain at least three "Runes of Zot" with which to gain access to the Orb. Fifteen different runes can be obtained in any particular game, and obtaining all of them is generally considered an extra feat. While all the possible 654 race/class combinations have been won on the online servers, only 186 of them were ever played online as an all-rune win (as of 2010-08-24). Dungeon maps in Crawl persist, as in NetHack.
Typical Dungeon Crawl screen
Edia the Stabber ∙∙ High Elf ∙∙∙ #### HP: 5/16 #∙∙[ ##g∙∙ ## Magic: 2/2 #∙∙∙∙ ∙∙∙ ∙∙# AC: 2 (0) ##∙∙∙∙####∙##∙[# EV: 11 #∙∙∙∙∙∙#∙∙<∙∙∙∙# Str: 11 #∙∙∙∙∙∙#∙∙>∙∙∙#### Int: 13 #∙∙∙∙<∙∙∙@∙∙∙%∙# Dex: 16 #####∙∙∙∙##### # Gold: 131 #∙∙#∙∙∙∙ Experience: 2/16 (2) #∙##∙## Level 2 of the Dungeon #∙ ∙∙# # a) +0 elf short sword ###### Encumbered
The last official versions of Linley's Dungeon Crawl were 4.0.0 beta 26, from March 24, 2003, and a later alpha release, version 4.1.0, dating from July 2005.
Version 400b26e070t, a popular last community release, includes the 2003-2004 Patches (Darshan Shaligram) and updates the game to the standard tile version (M. Itakura, Denzi, Alex Korol, Nullpodoh).
The game has been ported to the Nintendo DS as DSCrawl.
- First post about new release at groups.google.com
- "GameSetWatch - COLUMN: @Play: Crawlapalooza, Part 1: Skills & Advancement". Retrieved 2010-05-06.
- "God - CrawlWiki". Retrieved 2009-05-06.
- "Linley's Dungeon Crawl - News". Retrieved 2009-01-23.