In Fortress mode, there are only 7 weapons* that dwarves can make for themselves and are considered "standard", but there are about a dozen other weapons that can be recovered from slain enemies who no longer have any use for them. Dwarves can use some of these, but not all, for melee combat, and each that is usable is associated with a standard military weapon skill. In Fortress Mode, no other missile weapons are usable by dwarves in combat, but all weapons are usable in weapons traps.
- (* These are the battle axe, mace, pick, short sword, spear, and war hammer for melee combat, and the crossbow, which can be used for both ranged attacks and, if/when necessary, melee combat as well.)
 Other weapons: statistics & comparison
For a comparison of all weapons side by side, see Weapons: Weapon statistics.
(Note - dwarves can not use these in fortress mode unless marked with an *)
|Name||Damage||Damage Type||Skill Used||Crit. Boost|
|Long sword* †||120||Slash||Sword||1|
† Dwarves wield weapon two-handed (set number of weapons to 2 in fort mode (
‡ Dwarves cannot wield weapon (too large)
* Can be used by dwarves in fortress mode
Basically a small tube out of which you blow "deadly" darts.
No main race has this weapon, unless you mod it in. A dwarf can make a blowgun in a bowyer's workshop after being struck by a Strange mood. These weapons are extremely rare to find. Unfortunately in Fortress Mode you cannot create darts for use, and any dwarf wielding the blowgun will use it as a melee weapon.
A bow works the same way as a crossbow, and does identical damage, except that it uses arrows instead of bolts. Dwarves cannot equip bows (stubby fingers), and the interface is such that they still cannot be wielded in Fortress Mode at all*, even with modding (though memory hacking will permit it). They can still be used in weapon traps, although you can't make arrows and so will be dependent on spoils of war to supply trap reloads.
- In the raw\objects\item_weapon.txt file, you can replace this line of the bow "[RANGED:BOW:ARROW]" by "[RANGED:CROSSBOW:ARROW]" to make bows equipable and usable, they will be considered like crossbow and use the crossbow skill but still shoot arrows.
An arrow is just like a bolt but for bows. Dwarves can't handle bows, so they don't need arrows. But in adventurer mode, humans and elves can use bows, so they will need arrows if they choose to use one.
Arrows can also be thrown in adventurer mode for about the same results, except that it uses the thrower skill.
 Large dagger
In Dwarf Fortress, any dagger is "large". Large daggers are wielded by Kobold and Goblin thieves only. They do small slashing damage, but have a critical bonus, which means they usually are not anything to worry about, but occasionally get brutally lucky.
In adventurer mode, no other race has them or can even start with one. If an adventurer finds one of these weapons, they can train with them. Those who use daggers always do slashing damage with them, there is no stabbing for piercing damage. In this game they are basically small swords, as they can sever limbs as well on a lucky hit.
These weapons use the Knife user skill.
A weapon comprised of one or more chains with a spiked ball or metal-studded bar at one end and a handle at the other. Does slightly more damage (8.3%) than the Morningstar, and uses the same skill, maceman. Goblins are known to wield these weapons.
 Great axe
The Great axe is a large version of the battle axe, doing 36% more damage. Too large for a dwarf to use.
In fact, this weapon is too large to be used by most races, even though two handed (Invaders tend to ignore this restriction).
A halberd is a long axe or a short pole-arm weapon, doing 27% more damage than a dwarven battle axe. It is two-handed for a human-sized character, but too large for a dwarf to use.
 Long sword
A typical human-sized weapon. 20% more damage than a short sword. Dwarves can wield them using two hands.
The Maul is a large heavy hammer and is the highest damaging melee weapon in the game, despite being a bludgeoning weapon. It can only be wielded by a human, and even then it requires both hands. It does 33% more damage than a hammer.
It uses the hammerman skill.
Uses the Maceman skill. Dwarves can equip it.
For unknown reasons, all two-handed weapons, including pikes, can be used one-handed by invaders, even by creatures who are smaller than the minimum size needed to use the weapon two-handed.
The Scimitar is a sword with a heavy curved blade. Its statistics are identical to the short sword, but it cannot be made of rock, and dwarves cannot make it at all. They can however use it one handed just fine.
Uses the Swordsman skill.
The scourge is a slightly more deadly version of a whip. Although still doing weak damage, it causes gore damage, which can cause massive bleeding or pain. Effective against living, unarmored creatures. Very weak against non-living creatures.
 Two-handed sword
Big sword with high damage, 40% more than a short sword. Too large for a dwarf to use.
A whip is a weapon that does weak damage, but it causes gore damage, which can cause massive bleeding or pain. Effective against living, preferably small, unarmored creatures. Very weak against undead creatures. Whips are unusable by dwarves, but goblins use them sometimes. A better version of a whip is called a scourge.
It uses the lasher skill.