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From Dwarf Fortress Wiki
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This article is about an older version of DF.

This is a list of Controls, or keyboard shortcuts, used in the game. Their function can change depending on what game mode you are using and what screen you are at. Menu specific controls are usually listed on the bottom of each screen or next to the respective option when you have opened a menu. Arrows are shown on the edges of the screen if more options are available beyond the screen. Use the Interface keys to scroll through the list of options.

This document contains a list of the default controls for Dwarf Fortress as of version v0.40.24. Controls may be customized to use a different key sequence through the use of the EscEnter menu or by editing the file interface.txt, but this is not recommended for new players.

For purposes of the game, note that any key designated in uppercase means to hold Shift while tapping that key. For instance, V means to press Shift+v. Also, pressing a key with Caps Lock turned on will work similar to pressing the key while holding shift. For example, if you want to press C then you could do it by pressing Shift+c or by pressing Caps Lock and then pressing c.


  • + - Next option / Increase quantity
  • - - Previous option / Decrease quantity
  • * - Next page
  • / - Previous page
  • - Next option
  • - Previous option
  • - Next column
  • - Previous column
  • PgUp - Next page/screen
  • PgDn - Previous page/screen

When it is possible to scroll the map while a menu is open, the arrow keys cannot be used to select menu options; instead, the +, -, *, and / keys are repurposed to allow selection from menus.

  • F11 - Toggle Fullscreen
  • F1 - Save World Parameters from creation screen
  • F6 - Load World Parameters from creation screen
  • F1-F9 - Toggle selected biome while on embark map
  • F9 - Exit certain text menus (Fortress naming, Trade goods menu, ...)
  • ShiftF1-ShiftF8 - Jump to bookmarked map point (Set via Hotkeys menu)

  • ? - Help
  • ; - Movies / Stop Recording
  • ;l - Load a Moving Record
  • ;p - Play the Active Moving Record
  • ;r - Start Recording (overwrites active record)
  • ;s - Save the Active Moving Record
  • Tab - Change mode (useful for enlarging Unreadable menus)
  • Esc - Options

  • Esc - Cancel
  • Enter - Select

World Map[edit]

Move cursor / scroll map or with the numeric keypad:





Hold Shift while pressing the above keys to move the cursor very rapidly. Note that some users may experience "stuck keys" and other glitches unless Num Lock is off.

  • > - Down a level (Z-Axis)
  • < - Up a level (Z-Axis)
  • Ctrl5 - Down a level (Z-Axis)
  • Shift5 - Up a level (Z-Axis)

Adventure Mode[edit]

The following shortcuts are for Adventure mode (see also Adventure mode quick reference)

Key Function
a View announcements
Shift+a Attack an adjacent creature / Change mode to wrestle
b Build / create site
c View companions
Shift+c Combat preferences
d Drop an item
Shift+d Date/time
e Eat or drink something
f Fire a projectile
g Pick up an item
h Hold or hang from something (to climb)
i Inventory
Shift+i Interact with an object in an advanced way
j Jump. Sprint in movement options S to run and jump
k Talk to somebody
Shift+k Display nearby tracks
Alt+k Display information for freshest track
l Look around
L Search the nearby area very carefully
m Change movement preferences (e.g. swimming)
o Show strongest odor
Key Function
Shift+o Display odor information
p Put an item in a container
Shift+p Temperature
q Holster/Unholster held weapons or items
Shift+q Adventure log
r Remove an item you are wearing or from a container
s Stand or lie down
Shift+s Sneak/speed
t Throw an item
Shift+t Travel
u Interact with a building, furniture or mechanism
v Center screen on adventurer
w Wear an item
Shift+w Weather
x Create an object or butcher a corpse
y Yield
z Status
Shift+z Sleep
Enter Advance/clear messages
. Wait for ten instants (a normal step)
, Wait for one instant


Key Function
< > Move into/out of tunnel.
c Start/stop cloud viewing
d Visit location
h Display/hide instructions
m Display/hide map
Key Function
shift+k Display tracks/odor
shift+q Adventure log
s Sneak
shift+z Sleep

Fortress Mode[edit]

The following shortcuts work in the Main Play Screen, in Fortress mode:

Key Function
a View Announcements
b Site a Building
c View Civilizations
d Designations
Shift+d Trade depot access (appears when depot is built)
h Hauling
Shift+h Hotkeys
i Zones
j Job List
k Look Around
l Locations and Occupations
Shift+l Artifacts (and written codices/scrolls) *
m Military
n Nobles and Administrators
Key Function
o Set Orders and Options
p Stockpiles
q Set Building Tasks/Prefs
r View Reports
Shift+r View Rooms/Buildings
t View Items in Buildings
u Units list
v View Units
w Burrows
x Squads
z Status
Space Toggle Pause/Resume
. Advance time by one-step (while paused)
Tab Move Menu/Map

* not available until an artifact is made or a codex/scroll is written in the fortress.

Building List[edit]

Key Function
a Armor stand
A Archery target
b Bed
B Vertical bars
Alt+b Floor bars
c Seat
d Door
D Trade depot
f Cabinet (personal clothing storage)
g Bridge
G Floor grate
h Container (personal objects storage)
H Wall grate
j Cage
k Kennels
l Well
m Animal trap
n Burial receptacle
o Paved road
O Dirt road
p Farm plot
r Weapon rack
s Statue
S Support
t Table
v Restraint
x Floodgate
y Glass window
Y Gem window
Key Function
e Furnaces
eg Glass furnace
ek Kiln
es Smelter
ew Wood furnace
w Workshops
wa Alchemist's laboratory
wb Bowyer's workshop
wc Carpenter's workshop
wd Dyer's shop
we Leather works
wf Metalsmith's forge
wh Fishery
wj Jeweler's workshop
wk Clothier's shop
wl Still
wm Mason's workshop
wM Millstone
wn Tanner's shop
wo Loom
wq Quern
wr Craftsdwarf's workshop
ws Siege workshop
wt Mechanic's workshop
wu Butcher's shop
ww Farmer's workshop
wy Ashery
wz Kitchen
W Wall grate
Key Function
C Wall/Floor/Stairs (Construction, "Rewall")
Cd Down stair
Cf Floor
CF Fortification
Cr Ramp
CT Track
Cu Up stair
Cw Wall
Cx Up/down stair
i Siege engines
ib Ballista
ic Catapult
M Machine components
Mg Gear assembly
Mh Horizontal axle
Mm Windmill
Ms Screw pump
Mv Vertical axle
Mw Water wheel
T Traps/Levers
Tc Cage trap
Tl Lever
Tp Pressure plate
Ts Stone-fall trap
TS Upright spear/spike
Tw Weapon trap

Building Placement[edit]


Increase height
North orientation
Decrease width
West orientation
Increase width
East orientation
Decrease height
South orientation

Orientation (Bridge)

Raises ↑
Raises ←
Raises →
Raises ↓

Designation List[edit]

Key Function
a Carve fortifications
bc Reclaim items/buildings
bf Forbid items/buildings
bm Melt Items
bM Remove Melt
bd Dump Items
bD Remove Dump
bh Hide items/buildings
bH Unhide items/buildings
d Mine
e Engrave stone
h Channel
i Up/down stairway
j Downward stairway
n Remove construction
o Set traffic areas
p Gather plants
r Upward ramp
s Smooth stone
t Chop down trees
T Carve tracks
u Upward stairway
v Toggle engravings
x Remove designation
z Remove up stairs/ramps


Main article: Mouse control

Some screens also support the mouse, allowing you to use the left button to select options:

Use the left button to select and place designations, right button to position cursor without designation.
Nobles and Administrators
Status > Stone
Music and Sound
Name Fortress
Name Group
Move Goods to/from Depot

See Also[edit]

"Controls" in other Languages Books-aj.svg aj ashton 01.svg
Dwarven: egul
Elvish: ade
Goblin: ngure
Human: kas