TDTTOE is a common saying on Rec.games.roguelike.Nethack. The acronym means The DevTeam Thinks of Everything. The Devteam of Nethack is a very skilled group of people who have programmed Nethack to reach astronomical proportions. While they built the game they also work on interaction between character, items and objects.
When TDTTOE is used it refers to the fact that the Devteam has done everything possible with everything. A great example is the cockatrice corpse.
- You can wield a cockatrice corpse to stone monsters
- When stumbling over a corpse you will get stoned from kicking it's beak
- wielding the same cockatrice corpse with out gloves will stone you instantly.
- Eating a cockatrice egg will stone you almost immediately
- falling while wielding a cockatrice corpse will kill you immediately.
- Sacrificing the cockatrice corpse with out gloves is yet another death.
- Throwing the eggs is actually useful also for stoning enemies.
While that example is just of one object, some other combinations are
- Tossing a piece of gold up in the air will hit the ceiling and you.
- A spider can walk through a spider's web easily
- Applying a bull whip downwards while levitating if something is on the ground
- Killing most undead and trying to eat them results in rotten food.
- Pestilence, a demon of illness, drinking a potion of sickness will get healed
- Grabbing Mjollnir, a hammer of the lightning type, will sometimes make your hair stand on end.
- In a pinch, putting on a towel is the same as wearing a blindfold, this is of course useful when confronting medusa.
Of course there are a hundred things that people could say TDTTOE, and the nicest fact of this is that most people can think their way out of a situation. For instance a cat ready to kill you will probably be happy with a fish corpse or a tripe ration, while a rust monster would get pretty mad with the same offering.
In addition this extends to polymorphisms. If you are facing a xan, which can seriously hurt the strength of the player by attacking a character's feet, the player can turn into something without feet to avoid that ability.
Overall there is a large amount of extra stuff that is programmed into the game which is only found in obscure situations.
Thanks to JerboaKolinowski for pointing out about throwing eggs and sacrificing cockatrice corpses