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Dark February 17, 2012 20:25

Low vision Nethack

I was just trying Nethack, wondering if it would work the way angband does. unfortunately, even as I was just about to say "hurrah for large tyles" I suddenly realized something dire.

No! look curser!

Okay, I wasn't expecting the awsome targiting and list stuff Angband has, but at least I thought a look curser I could move around and identify stuff with?

Sadly not, sinse the / identify help curser doesn't seem to work on everything as it should, that is I hit /, asnwered yes, moved the curser to an object and hit space, but got no response, ---- pluss this is a rather long winded way of screen review.

After totally failing with adom unfrotunately (due to no tyles and a font that's really too small with all the wandering monsters), I was rather hoping Nethack would at least behave slightly like angband, --- -but sadly not.

Sorry for the thread, but the forum would't let me delete it.

hope everyone is geting on fine and enjoying dungeon diving as usuall.

all the best,


ekolis February 17, 2012 22:26

I think you have to hit the period key, not the space key. Nethack is weird that way :rolleyes:

Dark February 18, 2012 08:36

Thanks for letting me know. I'll try that, ---- but being as how much i use the look curser it'll still be a bit time consuming.

What I actually wrote this topic to ask was about messages, sinse for some reason I only get them auto read in nethack when I use an ascii map, and there aren't really any ascii maps big enough.

When I select the tyles (of whatever size), the message are there, but I physically have to go and read them myself, which is od, and I couldn't find a nethack option to fix this, though if you have any suggestions that would be great.

to be honest I'm coming to the conclusion that other roguelikes just don't have the access features Angband does, ---- indeed it's nearly, ie, nearly! possible to play angband with no reference to the actual screen just using the list monster, list artifact commands and look curser, messages and status commands, though I do still like the big tyles in the game.

Mikko Lehtinen February 18, 2012 09:07

Have you tried Brogue? It has a very good interface and interesting gameplay.

Dark February 18, 2012 10:18

That's actually not one I've heard of, but i'll be glad to try anything, where would I find it?

To be playable it'd probably need large graphic tyles, and probably a decent look curser function as well.

Thus far, other than angband the only roguelikes I've tried have been nethack, adom and windows port of original rogue, which was very problematic.

It's an odd situation actually. Sinse a screen reader reads the underlying windows graphical toolkit to speak text, only games that use it can be read. Thus, if I play an emulated or graphical game, no speech (this sadly also goes for dosbox).

however, obviously if I could see enough to read normal text, i'd not be using a screen reader in the first place, thus meaning ascii graphics, unless they could be made very large (at least 16 x24), probably won't be visible, and even if visible I'd need some way of identifying what was what, thus meaning graphic tyles, especially large, high contrasting ones like Angbands' are probably needed too.

This is a really odd combination I admit, but then again in some ways low vision access is a lot harder to defign than acces for someone who's completely blind, sinse in that case your just! talking about text and as much of it as possible, though roguelikes don't tend to be accessible in that vane sinse a screen reading program that is meant for reading lines of text doesn't do well with ascii graphics and hereing a line of hash hash hash hash at hash hash dash dash isn't too informate.

I have heard some completely blind people have managed roguelikes with braille display devices, but those are A, ridiculously! expensive (your talking 1500 dollars for a 40 character, single line display), and B, quite a pain sinse they only display a single line which you then have to do huge amounts of roaming around the screen with.

I have heard of methods in developement to create larger and cheaper versions based rather on plastic that alters it's shape according to a current going through it rather than small, motorized pins on a board, ---- indeed I do know one slightly crazy fellow who's in process of creating one hwich he says would retail for about 50 usd and display almost a screen's worth of info, but such things are still in the pipeline rather than readily available.
Oh, though now it must be said there is a completely audio roguelike too, or at least an audio rpg (one of not many), that randomly generates dungeon maps, items, monsters etc, though there combat is entirely turn based and not positional, and you control three characters in a party rather than one alone, each of which have two jobs. it does have a rather cool damage and targiting system though where by attacks can be directed at different body parts, ---- you can quite legitimately send heads flying or shatter an enemy's hand making them drop their weapon.

either way getting back on track, if you could please post the linke for brogue I'd be glad to give it a go.

Mikko Lehtinen February 18, 2012 10:42

You'll find Brogue here:

Brogue uses ASCII in a very beautiful way but it does not have graphical tiles. I think you can change the font size.

Are you aware of Falcon's Eye? It's a graphical version of Nethack:

I did some googling and stumbled upon Necklace of the Eye, which might or might not be of interest to you. I haven't tried it.

"Necklace of the Eye (NotEye in short) is an frontend to modify the output of console and libtcod roguelikes. (That is, roguelikes which use one of two most popular methods to draw the stuff: system console (aka terminal or curses) or libtcod."

buzzkill February 18, 2012 22:16

Allow me to second the recommendation for Brogue, if for no other reason than you need to see what what can be accomplished with just ASCII. It's got a couple of things going for it that might be of benefit to you.

It's a lot simpler. Less items, less stats, less monsters, less to have to look at and learn about but don't let that fool you. You won't really miss what's not there.
It's a much shorter game.
Looking isn't keyboard based. Just hover with the mouse and learn about an item.
Also there's a couple auto-explore options and also click-to-move.
It doesn't have tiles, but it does have very distinctive and beautiful (not quite) ASCII.
If you've got Windows 7, it plays nicely with the built in Magnifier (have I ranted about how vastly superior Windows 7 is to Vista yet. It is.)

PowerWyrm February 20, 2012 12:50

Try ToME4. Huge tiles, mouse-based UI with tile-based activable talents/skills.

Dark February 24, 2012 14:28


Thanks for the recommendations people, I'll look over some of these, especially ToMe, sinse being at least related to Angband it'll have some of the nice features like the handy look curser and as you said, nice big tyles.

As far as features go, mouse based stuff is actually not quite as helpful as it might seem. Like most visually impared computer users, I don't use a mouse at all, this is because when you can't see easily where your pointing it, the click and overview of a mouse really isn't a bennifit.

My screen reading program can perform all the usual functions of a mouse very quickly through a variety of keyboard shortcuts and it's own virtual curser. I'll still give brogue a try though, and the graphical nethack, ---- though there it might be the case that if the windows graphic toolkit hasn't been used to draw the text my screen reader won't interact with it, still it's likely worth a go.

ekolis February 25, 2012 00:46


Originally Posted by Dark (Post 67071)
As far as features go, mouse based stuff is actually not quite as helpful as it might seem. Like most visually impared computer users, I don't use a mouse at all, this is because when you can't see easily where your pointing it, the click and overview of a mouse really isn't a bennifit.

ToME 4 has a VERY large and prominent mouse cursor... :D

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