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Saucy times again!

At the time of pre-writing, I have been playing Dwarf Fortress non-stop since I sent out my first expedition. This despite the fact that I rebooted my Company of Heroes campaign. Anyone who has tried Company of Heroes will know that it’s a great game. Awsome in fact.

(Pro-writer tip No.1: Cursive writing makes words seem more  important)

And yet I have been playing this ascii game for all of my free time. Today I managed to force myself to stop playing sometime at midnight. Though I have to admit I played for just a little bit more to build a brewery and assign a brewer. Dwarf Fortress is a veritable black hole of time draining. When I was putting pizzas into the oven earlier today I set the timer to 13 minutes. These 13 pizza minutes usually feel fairly long. Meaning I have time to do some serious internet browsing. But when I sat down to play DF while waiting it felt like it took only a heartbeat before the alarm went off. I thought to myself “What the fuck? I just set the timer..?” But no, I was just consumed with trying to keep the goblin thief from kidnapping one of the babies.

I well enough understand that most people will look at this game and only see the interface. A block of grass, a block of stone, a block of stone, a block of dwarf, a block of armored dwarf, etc. It’s a shame. Because when you begin to scratch the surface of this complex, unforgiving, fantastic game, you realize that it’s one of the best games ever. Fully knowing how subjectively fucking insane that sounds I hold firm to this notion. Dwarf Fortress is an amazing game. The tag-line is “losing is fun”. Partly because there is no winning. And partly because you’ll fail. And you just have to be able to find the fun in failing. Here’s something I ripped from the DF wiki to illustrate this:

“A free dwarf will get assigned the job of pulling the lever. This dwarf might be a long way away, and the delay in pulling the lever can result in fun.”

“There is no built-in indication of what a lever does, and pulling them to see what will happen can be immensely fun.”

What I’m getting at is, if you can’t see the hilarity of accidentally flooding your fortress and wiping out fifty lives, then you’re probably not very good company on a desert island.  These things that tend to happen are kind of part of how a Dwarf Fortress game characterizes itself. The very infrastructure of DF is one that doesn’t give you any clear-cut goals to pursue, but provides probably the most amazing framework ever for making  its own stories. Like the one where Kol Tsungerush went mad after having locked himself in his craftsworkshop. Or the one where the fortress broker tried to sell crafted goods to the merchant without the merchant having a chance to make a profit, resulting in an insulted merchant and a dwarf settlement without their much needed anvil. Or the one where the militia commander started hoarding various random items from the public storage in his own room, and calling them his personal belongings.

They weren’t his personal belongings. And as I resume the pre-writing of this post he has filled the hallway with his personal belongings. He is now also the proud commander of 9 dwarven defenders. All fitted with steel armor and weapons. They’re currently hard at work training in the barracks. To spice up the training I decided to steal an idea from off of the internets. Training in Dwarf Fortress is mainly done by repeating tasks. I.E if you’re an armorsmith you will train your armorsmithing skills by making armor. Armor-usage and dodging is trained in a similar fashion where the dwarves have to be put in situations where they get hit and have to dodge. Hence I made their barracks into a danger-room with spike-traps emerging from the floor. To operate these traps I have assigned a jobless dyer to pull a lever constantly to make sure the militia is properly harassed. I just wish that the militia personnel don’t get any funny ideas like having children or getting pets. Because if they bring the children or the pets inside the danger room it will result in fun


Fun happened in the danger room after writing the previous paragraph

Dwarf Fortress has a nigh perfect formula. But I guess it requires a lot from the player. It’s not mainstream and it probably won’t ever be. But it’s a game that simulates a dwarf fortress to perfection. My next plan is to capture live elephants and make them into war elephants. I have a feeling that the goblins will be knocking on my gates soon. And in a proper paranoid fashion I’ve made ballistas and directed them at the main fortress entrance. After this fortress is in so much fun that I’ll have to abandon it I think I’m gonna make a dwarven scouting expedition in Goblin territory. That way I’ll be in for a lot of fun. You should go ahead and have some fun too. Dwarf Fortress is free.


One Comment

  1. I love you, dick face

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