In Dwarf Fortress, knowledge is a very useful tool.
Once you realise that failing is part of the game, Dwarf Fortress will reward your patience with knowledge and your persistence with success. There is a lot to learn before you can call yourself a master, but each new trick will get you closer to being a real dwarf handler. If you can make it through the first 12 hours of Dwarf Fortress game, you’ll find that the simulation has a lot more to offer.
As a new player, you might have heard things like “cat population control” and “atom smashers” for the first time. Once you know how things work, you can learn new tricks to make your castle better.
Sound Is Three Dimensional
Dwarf Fortress has more in common with real life than you might think. Have you ever been trying to sleep and a loud neighbour, child, or flatmate just wouldn’t stop being annoyingly loud? The same is true for dwarfs. If you do building work next to or a floor above bedrooms, the sound of clanking metal actually gets into their rooms.
This also applies to things like cutting wood, and nothing wakes you up more than the sound of huge pieces of wood hitting the ground. To stop this from happening, build your bedrooms, prisons, and hospitals at least eight levels below the ground. Noise moves along all axes and spreads out from whatever is making the noise. Your dwarfs will be able to sleep well if you build their sleeping places far away from loud noises.
Dwarven Atom Smashers are tools for getting rid of trash that completely destroy almost everything in the area where they are used. It sounds pretty high-tech, but in fact it’s just a way to use the way drawbridges work. All you have to do is build a drawbridge that drops onto a single tile of ground. Raise the drawbridge, put things or enemies you don’t want in the tile, and then lower the bridge. Poof, whatever was in the smashing zone is now gone.
Atom smashers are a great way to make more room in your castle, and setting up a place to dump them under the bridge is a key part of the process. Only a few big things, like a metal colossus or an elephant, are too big for the atom smasher to handle.
Don’t Fear Magma
As you might expect, using magma carelessly can be very dangerous. And the fear of being burned alive might keep you from trying to use its raw power. But if it is used safely, magma can be a source of industrial fuel and obsidian for as long as the Earth is around. Furnaces, kilns, and forges can be powered by directing magma to them. It is a fuel that will never run out and will make coal obsolete. If you mix it with the flow of water, you can make obsidian farms that produce the useful mineral indefinitely.
Using lava also gets you on good terms with the elves. Who hate it when people cut down trees to make things like coal. At the very least, magma is a handy way to get rid of trash, even if it is dangerous.
Cats can cause a lot of trouble for your fortress, which some newer players might not know. They tend to have a lot of babies, and if nothing is done, there will be a “catsplosion.” This event has to do with a cat community that has grown so big. That it slows down the way your Flappy Bird game works. The good news is that this disaster can be avoided by taking a simple step.
Gelding is a hard job that dwarves can do to keep male cats from having babies. If done quickly, it can successfully stop the problem of overpopulation before it starts. Just keep in mind that less skilled gelders can get hurt by the cats in question while they are doing their jobs. After all, cats do have sharp teeth.
The economy in Dwarf Fortress is based on bartering, and merchants will often come to your fortress to trade things. If you have a lot of money, there is an interesting strategy you might want to try. If you overpay for things all the time. It will actually make sellers make their goods better and sell more of them. People will start carrying more things in their carts, and elves will start bringing big animals that can be trained.
When you add more coins to the economy, it actually changes what things you can trade for. It takes some time and effort, but in the end, your patience will pay off.
The Power Of Eggs
Setting up the machinery for crop farming can take a lot of time. And sometimes more important things, like hunting goblins, come first. Eggs, a common staple food that is often overlooked, will come to your help. Dwarf settlers trying to get their feet on the ground can get a lot of energy from the eggs of birds like turkeys and chickens. They also don’t require much work to keep up.
Your bird friends won’t take long to start laying dozens of tasty eggs. So you only need a few of them to feed your whole group of starting dwarves. When you start out with a rooster or turkey gobbler, things are even easier. Because they can fertilise the eggs to make more chicks.
Taking into account the Z-plane is important for maximising efficiency and letting dwarfs spend more time working instead of doing exercise. Since Dwarf Fortress is played from the top down. It makes sense to only think in the X and Y planes. So, on your first few runs, your castles may be big and spread out in many directions. A better way to speed things up is to use more than one floor.
For instance, production chains can be made more efficient by putting each step of production one on top of the other. Bedrooms can also be stacked in blocks so that people don’t have to walk as much. Also, if you’re feeling artistic, you can use z-levels to set up many interesting traps that would not be possible without them.