Wrap-up of Junethack 2017

By K2 on July 10th, 2017 at 7:38 pm EST

About ten days late on this, but oh well ;)

Junethack 2017 has come and gone, This years tournament was much more cutthroat than previous years. Teamsplat (the team I play with) came in 2nd place overall, ending our 1st place reign from the last few summers. A new clan, Order of the Cockatrice, came out of left field and dominated the tournament at about the half-way mark. Clan Dislexiapater took an early commanding lead, with two of their members tying for 1st place in overall individual trophies, but wound up taking 3rd place overall as a team.

Lots of new talent compared to what I’ve seen in the past. Much tighter race to the top, which I believe all playing were happy to see. Had a lot of fun, and am already looking forward to next summers tournament.

Server bits – the Hardfought NetHack server saw a significant amount of use during the tourney, and in my mind, we’ve proven that we’re a legitimate, quality NetHack server that the community enjoys playing on. Received a good amount of constructive feedback, so improvements are in the works to make what we have here even better. SporkHack is now hosted here, and we’ve been fixing some bugs and adding functionality to that variant, with more fixes to come. Tangles also just recently pushed a significant fix for curses interface across multiple variants, greatly reducing the lag experienced when using that interface.

Thanks to all for the games, the banter, and the competition. Looking forward to the same next year!


Junethack 2017

By K2 on May 30th, 2017 at 12:35 am EST

The Junethack NetHack + variants tournament for 2017 is about to begin. Registration was opened up about 24 hours ago, and the month-long tourney will start at midnight (UTC) on June 1st. Hardfought’s NetHack server has been approved as an official server for the tournament – you’ll see Hardfought as an option when assigning servers/variants to your profile. Very excited, and looking forward to seeing how our server holds up. If you’re playing this year and use Hardfought as one of your server choices, be sure to join #hardfought on irc (freenode.net) – the bot will announce games, and if you have any issues, being in the channel will be the best way to get help.

I earned a few trophies last year, will see if I can double that number this go-around ;) Happy hacking all, and good luck in the tournament!


Hardfought NetHack server updates

By K2 on April 29th, 2017 at 12:55 am EST

Lots of updates here over the last 4-5 weeks, plenty to share…

NetHack variants – we’ve added a few more games to the mix, those being NetHack Fourk 4.3.0.4, FIQhack 4.3.0, and dNetHack 3.14.0. The authors for both Fourk (jonadab) and FIQhack (FIQ) have been very proactive to fixing bugs and tweaking gameplay in preparation for this summers’ Junethack tournament, so if you’re interested in playing the latest and greatest versions of these, we’re the place to do it. There have been regular updates to NetHack 3.6.1-dev as well as GruntHack, and Tangles has been busy fixing the curses interface across a variety of variants, along with squashing bugs as we find them.

Scoreboard – thanks to dtype, we now have scoreboard functionality like what NAO has (top scores and Z-scores). All seven variants now have their scores and Z-scores tracked, with links to each games’ dumplog (Fourk and FIQhack dumplog links are currently broken, it’s on the list of things to do now working). It checks the xlogfile of each variant every few minutes. As long as you score 1000 points or better, you’ll show up. You can reach the scoreboard via the top menu under ‘NetHack’.

Miscellaneous – I’ve upgraded the servers hardware, and have added a real-time server status panel that displays CPU load, memory and bandwidth usage as well as a couple other bits (see ‘Server Status’ in the top menu). I’ve also added a web-based IRC module that allows connection to our IRC channel on freenode.net. There’s also a web-based hterm process that allows playing NetHack and any of the variants we host, through our website. If you’re keen on saying ‘screw it’ to productivity at work, you now have the means to do so.

More to come as we near the Junethack tournament, so stay tuned.


Website revamp (again)

By K2 on March 23rd, 2017 at 12:05 am EST

It’s about that time again. The bridge plugin (WP-United) I have been using here for years to integrate WordPress and phpBB 3.0.x had been abandoned years ago. WordPress kept updating, and luckily it did not break the plugin. The messageboard however, could not be upgraded any further. And as more WordPress updates kept coming out, the more sloppy patches I’d have to cobble together to keep the site running normally. I’m tired of fixing errors only to have more crop up to take their place, and I want to bring the theme up to something that’s inline with current standards (mobile friendly being a big one).

So right now, WP-United is gone. In it’s place is BridgeDD Pro, and it’s doing its job nicely so far. Cross-posts and user integration appears to have transitions seamlessly. This post will be the first test after the fact, verifying a lot of different functionality. The debug log so far is empty, which is good… haven’t seen an empty one in years ;) The WordPress portion of the site looks fine, although the sidebar widgets could use some work. The messageboard, while functional, needs some serious attention theme-wise. And eventually I’ll upgrade it to 3.1.x some point soon.

Lots to do…

EDIT – forums look much better now. This new bridge basically disables how the forum parses its theme and template files. You’re forced to hand-jam a few files to tell it where to look. Still some work to do, but we’re in a much better place.

EDIT #2 – forum has been updated to phpBB 3.1.10, which fixed a lot of other back-end issues not outwardly visible. I’ve also identified a small issue with why replying to a comment via WP to a cross-posted post wasn’t working. I’ve been hanging on to this theme *forever* which is causing the issues, it’s time to find a modern theme and edit it the way I want it to be. Still lots to do ;)


ssh nethack@hardfought.org

By K2 on March 12th, 2017 at 10:34 am EST

ssh nethack@hardfought.org… what does that mean exactly? It’s how you’d connect to Hardfought’s new NetHack game server using your preferred terminal. Yes, we have a game server again, and this time I’m hosting one of my all-time favorite games.

Details – the NetHack game server is being ran off of the same box that powers the website (see last news post right before this one). The resources needed to power such a server are orders of magnitude lower than what are needed to power an FPS-based game server such as what we’ve done in the past. Logging into the server using the credentials above starts dgamelaunch, which in turns allows you to register an account, and then gives you options to play several different variants that are being hosted. Current variants are:

  • NetHack 3.4.3 (NAO version)
  • NetHack 3.6.1-dev (bleeding edge, will be updated regularly)
  • GruntHack 0.2.0 (various bugs fixed and some new functionality added vs. original)
  • UnNetHack 5.3.1

More variants will be added soon, most notably NetHack 3.6.0 (stable), Fourk and FIQHack. You can view dumplogs, ttyrecs and player configs by going to the /userdata folder on this site. Games played are also tracked by the NetHack Scoreboard, and the server has just recently been approved for use in this years upcoming Junethack tournament.

Special note concerning GruntHack – I love this variant, I’ve been hooked on it since the Junethack tourney from last year. It’s a lot harder than vanilla NetHack, and the changes to the game are just *fun*. Unfortunately, this variant had all but been abandoned by the original author – they still host a server for it, but there haven’t been any updates in nearly five years, and there are some serious show-stopping bugs. The version I’m hosting has fixed the two biggest bugs (the spit/splash venom bug and the vibrating square portal being drawn off the map) that would cause a fatal crash. It also includes some added functionality vs. the original, such as hilite object piles/covered stairs option, custom monstercolors and autoopen doors. More to follow on this bit in the near future.

NONE of this would have been possible without the help from my friends from #teamsplat – specifically Tangles, our resident master programmer and bug-fixing guru, who showed me how to put all of this together and get it running. Also jonadab, who has provided extra content to our GruntHack variant, and elenmirie, raisse, Mandevil and oh6 who have play-tested and provided much-needed feedback and insights. Shout out also to Elronnd, kerio, dtype (who made the nao-server build available), FIQ and others in the community for their help and suggestions.

Come and play! All are welcome to join us in channel #hardfought on freenode.net, best place to find us should you have any questions/issues or just want to hang out and chat. See ya there.