Buildings, Furniture and Booze
This is technically part 3 of a beginners tutorial on Dwarf Fortress, it follows on from Dwarf Fortress! – Your first game, however this will specifically focus on building orders, using a manager and building furniture.
In my previous post I had placed a carpenters and a masons workshop. I also begin to hollow out some more rooms for my fortress.
This is the current state of affairs in my game. Most of the designated mining areas are nearly done and my two buildings have been built. Sadly the area at the top which I had hoped would be clay (a little optimistically to be fair) has turned out to be a mix of the two. Now I hate to have a farm plot that only takes up part of a room so I will keep this for another use another day. Lets quickly get a farm plot setup outside until I have time to dig down (I have checked and the level below has alot more clay, perfect for my farming exploits).
To refresh your memories in case you have forgotten, press b to bring up the building menu and now press p to build a farm plot. This is slightly different to the previous workshops we placed. This once has to have a defined height and width before you place it by using u and k to make it higher and wider and h and m to make it shorter and thinner. Have a look outside your fortress but near your entrance for a reasonably sized area for a farm with no obstructions such as plants or trees. I would want at least a minimum of 18 tiles in size farm. This can be a long plot, a fat plot or a square plot. You want to do it so it fits in nicely outside as a formed square or rectangle as per the following screenshot;
The area inside the yellow circle is how a farm plot looks. This should be flashing whilst it is awaiting construction by a farmer. Finally before we un-pause lets build a still. You may find if you press z you are out of drink or close to it by now. This is bad! When you have little drink your dwarves loose performance when performing tasks and their working days get shorter, they can eventually die of thirst (especially as we don’t have any buckets yet!). To brew beer you need to build a still via the workshop menu, to help you out press b then w then l. As with the previous two workshops you need a 3×3 clear area.
Whilst we wait for that to be built lets queue up some activity on our two buildings, press q and move the yellow cross over the masons workshop. Once there you will see the frame on the right change to the mason workshop view, here press a to add items to the build queue. Each item in a queue is built in order and only one dwarf can work the workshop at a time, bear this in mind later on when you may need to re-prioritise build queues dependant on your needs. To scroll down the list hold shift++ (Thats shift and the plus key), to move back up the list just press the – key (the minus key).
In time you will begin to remember the key assignments for common furniture items. For now I will give you a hand, from this menu press c to add a Throne, if you build a chair at a masons it is called a throne. If you build a chair at a carpenters workshop it is called a chair, they are still effectively identical items (bar their worth). However as I and you will find we will have an excess of stone so it doesn’t hurt to build this style of furniture from stone. You will now see this pop up on the queue, to quickly add another 3 Thrones press a then c three more times. Now to build corresponding tables press a then t four times. At this point we should hopefully have four tables and four chairs queued up. Your queue can hold 10 items so for good measure lets add two doors by pressing a then d twice.
Press ESC then q and move to the carpenters workshop. From here press a then v. This will add a barrel to the queue, do this five times. Then press a then b five times, this will add five beds to the queue. Beds can only be built at a carpenters workshop as they are always and only made of wood. The barrels will be used by the still to brew drinks into.
Speaking of which your still should hopefully now be built. As above, press q and move the cross over the still. Press a then b to add the brew drink option to the queue. As you currently have a small fortress (even if you have received a migration by now) just adding this 3-4 times will be plenty, if you have run out of drink before you start to brew your first drinks then add this at least 6-7 times, be sure to add more barrels to the carpenters queue however or your brewer won’t be able to brew into anything and it will fail! Make sure the game is un-paused and watch it continue.
So, hopefully you’ve let a fairly short time pass and you have some furniture built. Lets build our beds! Although they are technically furniture objects they are still positioned by using the build menu. When you open the build menu although it lists alot of furniture you can only “build” (or rather position) them once they have been built at a workshop or purchased from a trader. To build our beds press b and then b again. The yellow cross will then turn to either a red or green cross depending on where it is currently placed. When red you cannot place the furniture, when green the furniture can be placed. In my screenshot above you can see in the south room I have placed the beds along the far wall and then 2 columns in, allowing for walking space. This has used all of the beds available from my build queue. Each time you place one press b to select another bed, you will be given the message, “Needs bed” in the right frame when you have run out of beds to place. If this happens just press ESC twice to move back to the map only view. Add a few more beds to the carpenters build queue once you have exhausted your supply of them, make sure you keep at least one of them back for my next step in the tutorial.
At this point in the tutorial I am going to become more vague when it comes to building furniture, I am sure you can recall the previous instructions. If not have a look back to refresh yourselves. By now we should have enough furniture to build two doors across the opening of our fortress, to build a table and chair in the front room of what will be the managers quarters and a bed in the back room as per the below screenshot.
The above screenshot displays the final placement of the doors, table chair and bed in the managers quarters. Lets add 5 doors to the mason workshops job queue for future use and check if we need to start brewing any drink by pressing z. If it is below 10 then you should add brew drink to the queue and queue some barrels in the carpenters workshop. Don’t fill the workshop queue with barrels though, add a few buckets (once hovering over the carpenters with q press a to add items and e to add a bucket) to the list for emergency use if you happen to run out of booze again or just for general future use.
By this point you should have a fairly good idea of how to place certain buildings and how to add items to the queues. It will take time to learn the many many items you can build and which workshops can produce them but this will come in time. In the next post I will cover what migrants are, dwarf skills and how I like to use Dwarf Therapist to help manage my dwarves.