DF2014:Raw file

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This article is about the current version of DF.

Raw files are text files found in the raw/objects/ subdirectory of Dwarf Fortress (used for world generation), as well as inside the saved game folder (data/save/<region name>/raw/objects/) for already generated worlds. These files can be looked through to discover various specifics of game items, materials, and creatures, and can be changed to alter how the game behaves. They are sometimes referred to by players as just "the raws".

The raw/graphics subfolder of Dwarf Fortress is used to store user-customizable graphics sets. The raw/interaction examples folder is absolutely useless and completely ignored by Dwarf Fortress.

Dwarf Fortress is not an open source program, so most modding of the game is limited to altering the raws or doing memory hacking.

Duplicating the raw files can cause strange, difficult-to-diagnose problems, and even crashes in some cases.

[edit] Syntax of raw files

filename

[OBJECT:TYPE]

[TYPE:ID] 
<...contents...>

ID is a unique identificator for your type to use (i.e. [CREATURE:DOG], ID=DOG or [ITEM:ITEM_WEAPON_SWORD], ID=ITEM_WEAPON_SWORD).

[edit] Types of content

  • BODY — body parts and structures.
  • BODY_DETAIL_PLAN — similar to CREATURE_VARIATION, but used for defining tokens related to body parts (specifically materials, tissues, the assignment thereof, and body part positions, relative sizes, etc.)
  • BUILDING — custom workshops and smelters.
  • CREATURE — creatures.
  • CREATURE_VARIATION — variations that can be applied to creatures (e.g., making them giants, or anthropomorphic). Technically a series of tokens that are added to or removed from the creature (essentially a set of templated changes).
  • DESCRIPTOR_COLOR (tag is COLOR) — named colours for use with DESCRIPTOR_PATTERN objects (other purposes unknown)
  • DESCRIPTOR_PATTERN (tag is COLOR_PATTERN) — patterns with colour combinations for use with creatures.
  • DESCRIPTOR_SHAPE (tag is SHAPE) — shapes with descriptions and variations. These are used for engravings.
  • ENTITY — civilization types, with assigned race, language, culture, ethics, and social structure.
  • GRAPHICS — graphic tiles for creatures. These are not found inside the raw/objects folder.
  • INTERACTION — interaction definitions.
  • INORGANIC — inorganic material definitions.
  • ITEM — items ranging from ammunition to food types, has secondary types for the purposes of [TYPE:ID].
    • ITEM_AMMO — ammunition for ranged weapons.
    • ITEM_ARMOR — body clothing, including armour.
    • ITEM_FOOD — prepared food definitions.
    • ITEM_GLOVES — hand clothing, including armour.
    • ITEM_HELM — head clothing, including armour.
    • ITEM_INSTRUMENT — instrument definitions.
    • ITEM_PANTS — lower body clothing, including armour.
    • ITEM_SHIELD — shields.
    • ITEM_SHOES — foot clothing, including armour.
    • ITEM_SIEGEAMMO — ammunition for siege weapons that ballistae fire.
    • ITEM_TOOL — multi-purpose items that can serve as a weapon, food storage container, etc.
    • ITEM_TOY — toy definitions.
    • ITEM_TRAPCOMP — components that can be used in weapon traps (two special tags define trapcomps that can be used in other constructions: IS_SCREW and IS_SPIKE).
    • ITEM_WEAPON — weapons that are used by soldiers, as well as digging tools.
  • LANGUAGE — word definitions for the languages used by ENTITY objects.
    • Entries beginning with [SYMBOL:ID] sort words into symbolic/poetic groups to be referenced by ENTITY preferences.
    • Entries beginning with [WORD:ID] define words and their alternate forms (in English).
  • MATERIAL_TEMPLATE — definitions of information common to groups of materials (referenced all over the place).
  • PLANT — definitions of plants, their materials, and their derivatives.
  • REACTION — reactions/custom workshop jobs (turn items into other items through dwarven or adventurer effort).
  • TISSUE_TEMPLATE — defines templated tissues for use with BODY_DETAIL_PLAN objects or in creatures.

Usually empty lines are used to divide different types of structures like the file name and [OBJECT:] or different entries, however everything which is not a token besides the 1st string (which is the filename) is understood as comments and is not considered.

The tokens are enclosed in square brackets ([TOKEN:VALUES]).

When a world is generated, the raw files are copied from <game folder>/raw/ to <game folder>/data/save/REGION/raw/. It is currently unknown how much these can then be changed without breaking the save.

A list of tokens can be seen at Category:Tokens.

[edit] Parsing

The order that Dwarf Fortress parses raw files is determined by the first line of the raw file (not necessarily the filename). This parsing order is important for certain tags such as [COPY_TAGS_FROM], but not for most other tags.

The load order (recorded by logging DF 0.44.09 file activity in Windows 10) follows the following pattern:

language_*
descriptor_shape_*
descriptor_color_*
descriptor_pattern_*
material_template_*
inorganic_*
plant_*
tissue_template_*
item_*
building_*
b_detail_plan_*
body_*
c_variation_*
creature_*
entity_*
reaction_*
interaction_*

Therefore, vanilla DF 0.44.09 loads RAW files in the following order:

language_DWARF.txt
language_ELF.txt
language_GOBLIN.txt
language_HUMAN.txt
language_SYM.txt
language_words.txt
descriptor_shape_standard.txt
descriptor_color_standard.txt
descriptor_pattern_iris_eye.txt
descriptor_pattern_pupil_eye.txt
descriptor_pattern_special.txt
material_template_default.txt
inorganic_metal.txt
inorganic_other.txt
inorganic_stone_gem.txt
inorganic_stone_layer.txt
inorganic_stone_mineral.txt
inorganic_stone_soil.txt
plant_crops.txt
plant_garden.txt
plant_grasses.txt
plant_new_trees.txt
plant_standard.txt
tissue_template_default.txt
item_ammo.txt
item_armor.txt
item_food.txt
item_gloves.txt
item_helm.txt
item_pants.txt
item_shield.txt
item_shoes.txt
item_siegeammo.txt
item_tool.txt
item_toy.txt
item_trapcomp.txt
item_weapon.txt
building_custom.txt
b_detail_plan_default.txt
body_default.txt
body_rcp.txt
c_variation_default.txt
creature_amphibians.txt
creature_annelids.txt
creature_birds.txt
creature_birds_new.txt
creature_bug_slug_new.txt
creature_desert_new.txt
creature_domestic.txt
creature_equipment.txt
creature_fanciful.txt
creature_insects.txt
creature_large_mountain.txt
creature_large_ocean.txt
creature_large_riverlake.txt
creature_large_temperate.txt
creature_large_tropical.txt
creature_large_tundra.txt
creature_mountain_new.txt
creature_next_underground.txt
creature_ocean_new.txt
creature_other.txt
creature_reptiles.txt
creature_riverlakepool_new.txt
creature_small_mammals.txt
creature_small_mammal_new.txt
creature_small_ocean.txt
creature_small_riverlake.txt
creature_standard.txt
creature_subterranean.txt
creature_temperate_new.txt
creature_tropical_new.txt
creature_tundra_taiga_new.txt
entity_default.txt
reaction_adv_carpenter.txt
reaction_other.txt
reaction_smelter.txt
interaction_standard.txt
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