Kerkerkruip 9 released

The Kerkerkruip team is happy to announce the release of Kerkerkruip 9, by far the most extensive update of the game ever made. Kerkerkruip is a short-form roguelike in the interactive fiction medium, featuring meaningful tactical and strategic depth, innovative game play, zero grinding, and a sword & sorcery setting that does not rehash tired clichés.

With over 700 commits to the code repository, the changes made in Kerkerkruip 9 are far too numerous to mention here. But the highlights are:

  • Original theme music for the main menu, composed and produced by Wade Clarke.
  • An entirely reworked reaction system allows you to dodge, block, parry and roll away from incoming attacks. Successful reactions increase your offensive or defensive flow, adding a new layer of tactical depth to combat.
  • An entirely reworked religion system allows you to sacrifice absorbed powers to the gods. Worshipping gods grants lasting benefits, including divine interventions on your behalf; but losing absorbed powers makes you weaker in the short term. Religion thus becomes an important aspect of the player’s overall strategy.
  • Grenades can now be thrown into adjacent rooms, opening up new tactical options. However, your enemies may sometimes manage to throw them back to you!
  • A powerful new grenade is the Morphean grenade, which puts people to sleep. If you become its victim, you’ll find yourself drawn into one of several dream sequences: weird and dangerous adventures that have an effect on the real world.
  • The hiding system has been streamlined, boosted and made far more transparent. Stealth has now become a viable option.
  • The player now starts out with one of several starting kits, necessitating different approaches to the dungeon.
  • New content includes the angel of compassion, a radiant being that loses its lustre as people die around it; Israfel, a terrible angel that can split into two smaller beings for increased combat effectiveness before reuniting to heal; and the Arena of the Gods, where you can defend your god’s honour against other divine champions.
  • A new Menu implementation which is both screen reader friendly and hyperlink enabled.

We are now also offering stand-alone installers for specific operating systems. While it’s still possible to download the game file and run it in your favourite Glulx interpreter, there are also installers for Windows and Debian/Ubuntu. We will be supporting OS X in the near future.

Finally, we have a new website at That’s where you should go for downloads, more information about the game and how to contribute, and a link to the wiki.

Kerkerkruip is presented to you by the Kerkerkruip team: Victor Gijsbers, Mike Ciul, Dannii Willis, Erik Temple and Remko van der Pluijm. We hope you enjoy the new version. If you’ve got any comments, or if you’d like to contribute to this free software project, please go the website for details and contact us!

Click here for an in-game screen shot.

Well done you! I’ve tried Kerkerkruip for the first time a few days ago. It’s bloody addictive and no mistake.

Actually, it’s bloody AND addictive.

I feel like I’m a pretty bad player most of the time, but at least I know I keep dying because I’m not thinking things through properly, and I feel I’m getting better. This game gets more tactical thinking out of me than any - ANY - other RL I’ve played. In fact, it’s definitely more IF than RL - I’m using my problem-solving skills more than my RL skills.

And now for the bad news…

Doesn’t work on iFrotz anymore. 8.2 did. It’s now showing:

“*** fatal error: Reference to nonexistent Glk object. ***”


A minor thing: in the new web site both links that say Github on the contribute page actually lead to the Roguelike forums.


Thanks for pointing that out, I fixed it immediately.


Thanks for the heads up! I’m not sure what’s happening with iFrotz, but it could perhaps be either the music or the hyperlinks. Hm. Dannii or Erik might have better insight into it than I have.

Peter, is iFrotz using Git or Glulxe? I suspect it’s hyperlink stuff… I had trouble running it in the 2010 version of Gargoyle.

I don’t know if it uses Git or Glulxe, I do know that I can run the desktop version on either Git or GLulx without any problems.

Hyperlinks… I’m not too sure, because iFrotz partially supports them, i.e., they show up. The problem is that when you click on them, they don’t do what they should. But until you click on an hyperlink, it’s all fine.

Music… Possibly. Normally iFrotz doesn’t complain, merely prints “[Playing (…)]” and moves along, because it doesn’t play sound at all. I suppose if it were trying to print that before any major image-work was done it could possibly conflict somewhere, because it might not have anywhere valid to print that message to. I’m guesstimating a lot, though.

I suspect it has to do with images, because it’s not dissimilar to a problem that a prev version of Kerkerkruip had in iFrotz, the problem being that it wouldn’t display the map on the grounds that “This interpreter does not support graphics”, which was untrue. I brought it up, and Erik was able to whip up a patched version that actually displayed the map (it was unwieldy in such a small device, but that’s my problem, not the authors, of course, and could do in a pinch).

So I believe that it’ll have something to do with this. Somewhere along the line, in previous versions, Kerkerkruip (or an image-wielding extension) reported the interpreter couldn’t display graphics, and it can. I suspect this new error is somehow related.

Of course, any information/testing I can do to shed light on the issue, please let me know.

When does the error come up? Are you able to delete the KerkerkruipSaves file?

I am, and I did (iFrotz is pretty nifty that way). I erased all those files that KKK (ouch, nasty acronym) (EDIT - Kruip it is. It’s heaps better, yeah!) creates on its own, although in iFrotz it only ever has the chance to create “KerkerkruipStorage”. If it matters, that file only says:

  • //AC0DAF65-F40F-4A41-A4E4-50414F836E14//
    ! Table of Data Storage (1)
    8 -1

I also made sure to delete any possible automatic saved games iFrotz might be creating, but I needn’t have worried - it doesn’t load far enough to create any.

This error happens before the screen changes to white background, incidently, and before it asks whether I want the graphics menu. So it’s before anything that’s visible on any other interpreter.

The official acronym is “kruip”. :wink: Some people use “kerk”, but that is Dutch for “church” so it sounds weird to me.

Is that an insight into the origins of the name Kerkerkruip? :wink: “Church of Kruip”? It’s certainly achieved cult status.

The fact that it manages to create the storage file will give a good indication of where the bug is. I’ll take a look tomorrow.

Actually, “kerker” is Dutch for “dungeon”, and “kruip” is the stem of “kruipen”, “to crawl”.

However, the words “kerk” and “kerker” do both feature in a famous Dutch word: “lekkerkerkerkerkerkerkerker”. :wink:

So Kerkerkruip literally means… dungeon crawl? Sounds delightfully exotic when you don’t know Dutch.

As for the rest: … rk_twains/

So there. :slight_smile:

And Dannii, glad I could assist and please let me know if you need anything tested or something.

What connotations does kerker have in Dutch? It sounds like it comes from the Latin carcer, which specifically refers to a place where people are imprisoned, whereas the English word “dungeon” is now used to refer to any type of underground area (although it’s usually negative).

Yes, it’s definitely an underground prison, probably dark, cramped and cold. But surely, that’s also what an English dictionary would give as primary meaning for “dungeon”?

The word only has this connotation within the specific context of D&D-descended fantasy. Which, admittedly, is of broader influence now than ever. But the primary sense remains ‘an underground place of imprisonment or torture.’

Peter, I don’t think I’m going to get anywhere with your bug unfortunately. That error comes from somewhere inside the nightmare that is GGRecoverObjects(). I think our only hope will be that someone will find the bug on another interpreter which will be easier to debug with.

Edit: Actually I have one possible idea… I’ll email you a file soon.

But isn’t the term “dungeon crawl” also only used within that specific context?
I’m asking because carcer doesn’t really have the connotation of being underground, only of imprisonment. It could be applied to any prison or jail. (I didn’t make that clear in my last post, sorry.)

Dannii, it works! Thank you, the game is now fully playable! Without the PANELS, due to the size of my device, but I knew that would happen.

It’s still lying and saying the interpreter doesn’t support graphics, which I think probably counts as a bug not in Kerkerkruip but in the underlying graphic system it uses…

…but who cares, it runs on my mobile device! Hurray for you!

Excellent! We’ll probably wait a bit longer and group a few fixes together before putting out 9.0.1.