motivating line of the section: Try, try and try again!

If your workshops are built, then we can go on to making the essentials of a dwarf fortress.

Building items from a workshop works the same in every type of workshop. First, hit “q” to enter the building tasks/preferences mode. Move the cursor over to one of the carpenter’s workshops.

Now, hit, “a” for add new task. This brings you to a list of items which that workshop can construct. We want some beds, because tired dwarfs are unproductive dwarfs, so either scroll down to “construct bed” using “alt+down” or press “b” for bed. This will set the order to construct one bed. But we have seven dwarfs, and soon we will have lots more, so order a few more beds to be built.


6.1 – Bedrooms


While we wait for those to be built, let’s build the area where we will put our beds. Some people may put lots of beds in a room, while others will build separate rooms for each bed. We will be doing the latter, because we want our dwarfs to feel special.

Remember that dwarfs don’t want to sleep anywhere near the workshops because of all the noise, so we’re going to build a longer hallway and branch the living area off of that.

Go ahead and dig this out. I’ll explain the design next.

The good thing about this design is that it is capable of ever-expanding. You can build on to it left-wards and build parallel living halls. But again, when you start doing this yourself, the sky’s the limit. There is no right or wrong when it comes to dwarf fortress. The only thing that is absolute in this game is that eventually your fortress will crumble.

Ok, when the miners dig that out, we’re going to place the beds. We may have some beds built, but for now, they’re just sitting there. We need to build them on the spot where we want them to be placed. Press “b” for bulid, and then select “bed”. Move the cursor the the spot you want it to be placed, in this case, the bottom-left corner of each room. Keep placing beds until you don’t have any more beds to place (if you can’t place beds, you’ll have to wait for the carpenter to build one first).

While you do the next section, set some doors, beds, tables and chairs to be built. Right now, we don’t have any rock we can build with, so you can only use the carpenter’s workshop. We’ll get some rock soon, and lots of it.

Before we go on to stockpiles, we’re going to build one of the more important rooms of the fortress.


6.2 – Dining Hall


The dining hall serves as both a place to eat, and a meeting area for dwarfs who have nothing to do. Right now, our dwarfs are meeting outside at our caravan, which is ok, but it is open to attack, and it just doesn’t make sense. We want to create a dining hall.

Let’s start by digging out the room. Dig out the following.

Notice how I left a tile “un-dug” to provide support so as to prevent a cave-in (which happens). Do this by cancelling one tile’s dig designation by going to the designation menu and pressing “x” to cancel a designation. This will leave one support. **EDIT – newer version of DF don’t have cave-ins (maybe old ones didn’t either, and I just assumed they did), so supports are unnecessary. So build away without any supports!

Now, when you have at least one table built, build a table somewhere in the dining room. You can place chairs next to the tables too so the dwarfs can sit while they eat. Finally, we should build a door at the entrance to show that this is a room. When you’re done the room may look something like this.

Now we have to set it as a dining room, as it isn’t done automatically. Hit up “q” and move the cursor to one of the tables. Press “r” for “make dining room”. This will bring up flashing x’s to represent the area that will be considered the dining room. We want this to be the entire room, so adjust the size of the area with “alt+down”. Our door will stop the dining room area from flowing out into the hallway. Press enter, and finally press “h” to make this our meeting hall, meaning all dwarfs who are idle or on break will meet here (also some meetings later on will occur here).

Our idlers aren’t moving here yet because we still have that stupid caravan. We have to remove it. Press “q”, move the cursor over the caravan (it is the 3×3 thing right outside) and press “x” to remove.

A carpenter will then remove it and dwarfs will start heading into our dining hall.

For me, at least, some plump helmets are starting to sprout, but we have no where to put them! Let’s deal with stockpiles.

continue on to 7.0 – Stockpiles