Monday, September 27, 2010

Dwarf Fortress 101 Tips

So I decided to give the freeware god game Dwarf Fortress a try. While there are a number of handy Dwarf Fortress tutorials out there for this freeware Sims-like game (like CaptnDuck's Dwarf Fortress Video Tutorial series and TinyPirate's The Complete and Utter Newby Tutorial for Dwarf Fortress), I decided to make a list of questions I've puzzled over as a DFort newbie. Hopefully, someone will find this guide made for Dwarf Fortress beginners useful.

CapnDuck's Part 2 of his Dwarf Fortress Video Tutorial series

The list after the jump.

Dwarf Fortress is like a free-to-play Dungeon Keeper. While I've never played that other sim god game, both games involve you constructing underground strongholds, providing the inhabitants with decent accommodations, and laying down traps for invading hordes. This observation barely scratches Dwarf Fortress but I'll soon make a review of this freeware strategy sims-like game if it proves addicting.

Q: The tilesets are great! They greatly imoprove the UI. However, while I can make out the dwarves and bodies of water, I can't make heads and tails out of some of the in-game objects and symbols. Is there a helpful list showing the tilesets' symbols and what they mean?

A: On the game's main menu, press "k." You will see an X appear. Move this over the object you want to identify and the info screen will show you what it is.

>>>More free-to-play PC strategy games HERE

Q: How do I quickly designate rectangular areas to be dug out?

A: Press "d" for designations (the game pauses at this point) then press "d" again for the "mine" task. An X will appear. Move the X to one of the corners of the area you want to mine. Press enter. Move the X away from the square you just designated as the "start point." You should see a flashing icon appear. Move X to the opposite (farthest) corner of the area you want your dwarves to dig out. Press Enter again. Press Escape to go back to the main menu. Press Space to unpause the game and you should see a dwarf go to the designated section.

KaleGotRice's video about Stonesense, a Dwarf Fortress utility that enables players to see an isometric view of their dwarven strongholds

Q: I want to make an underground farm but I can't seem to find mud. How do I make an underground farm without mud?

A: Dig around. You're sure to find underground rivers or pools of water. (Unconfirmed but it's what DFort forum veterans say. Kudos to Laurin!)

Q: How do I construct a wall? According to the wiki, I have to press "b" then "c" to go to the construction menu but the button presses lead me to a different menu.

A: The menu is case-sensitive. It says "b" then "C", not "b" then "c."

Q: I can't seem to rename my fortress and/or my group of dwarves. How do I do this?

See above. Press "F" and/or "G." (For the Fortress and the Group respectively.)

This is all for now. Will add more as I play.