|This article is about the current version of DF.|
Note that some content may still need to be updated.
A rumor is a certain piece of information regarding a specific historical event. Rumors originally come from witnesses of the original event, but can then be spread to others who can, after having heard the rumor, spread it themselves.
In the current version, no false rumors will ever spread, barring those regarding events including individuals with secret identities, in which case the only misinformation will be regarding the true identity of those individuals.
Sites have invisible messages about artifacts to mimic the game's conversation system for your adventurer. There are various sorts -- families seeking heirlooms, scholars seeking books from ruined libraries, and so on.
There are six levels of knowing the current location of a held artifact from rumors:
- having it yourself
- seeing somebody else holding it at a location with your own eyes
- hearing from somebody that 'so-and-so was holding it at a location recently'
- hearing from somebody that somebody has it (but not where)
- generally knowing in some legends-y fashion that it is said to be held by somebody
- not having any idea.
The knowledge fades over the course of weeks and years while maintaining longer-term reputation effects, and it also has to constantly work in any new information and so forth according to their time stamps (at the individual, site gov, site culture and civ levels).
Rumors in fortress mode
Rumors can become known to your fort either by word of the outpost liaison, who will arrive with the caravan once each year, by diplomats, or by visitors in the tavern when served a drink by an assigned tavern keeper.
The outpost liaison will tell you about several rumors to none, depending on the time that has gone by since your last meeting and eventfulness of it. Visitors will usually only tell you one at a time, occasionally a few. All rumors told by visitors are marked with a light blue notice.
The notices when a visitor tells you one or more rumors:
”[name] has shared a rumor from abroad” ”[name] has shared a few rumors”
Rumors can be looked at in the ivilization and world info-screen, by selecting "News and Rumors"() after entering the initial screen. Rumors are then marked on the map, with red A:s indicating rumors about armies, yellow A:s indicating rumors about artifacts, and green P:s indicating rumors about position changes. If there are multiple rumors regarding the same site, the icon will be one corresponding to the latest rumor.
Rumors in adventure mode
Your adventurer can easily spread rumors by bringing up incidents in conversations, or bragging about some feat in front of witnesses. Summarizing incidents seems to be more effective than simply bragging. The rumor will start spreading as you leave the site and it offloads.
It should be noted that anyone you encounter that wasn't a historical figure already, is going to be a complete blank slate with almost no knowledge of anything, e.g. they won't know about any of the enemies or beast you've slain if you don't tell them about it, or even the most basic animals such as cats and dogs. This leaves the impression that no one cares about your achievements you brag about - they would if they had any idea who you were talking about.
This means NPCs don't actually remember the event when they tell you troubles, they only remember so when you retell them the event, they then get a fresh copy of said event and react to that. So if you, say, rescue a child, then bring up the fact that the kid got kidnapped (even though, technically, you rescued them) they will bring up the event that the person was kidnapped again. This goes for dead characters, as no one knows if they are really dead or not and react based on the info given to them, or if they have seen the body. This also goes for if they have seen the person before or know their name, as you kinda hope the person you're talking to had bad history with the person you murdered.
This makes fame a game of talking up yourself and the folks you went and slaughtered, and specifically all the bad stuff so it seems like it was justified for their death, and furthermore, what type of creature they are, as the NPCs you are talking to have little to no bestiary knowledge and are just hearing 'unknown creature murdered another unknown creature'.
To spread a rumor about yourself killing a creature, for example, you must talk to someone and Bring up specific incident or rumor and find the You slew 'soandso' message.
There are many different kinds of rumors you can spread, rumors about the presence of people in places, rumors about site takeovers and succession, rumors about beasts, basically; any rumor an NPC can spread, you can spread as well, which leads to a rather messy screen when you choose to spread a rumor. Luckily, this screen is limited by what your character actually knows, and you can Filter the list with and there are ways around using it, listed below.
You can also spread rumors via ->begin performance->Tell a story and find the death of the creature you killed, usually under sites, this would be the lair of the creature or the place you killed it. It can also be found in the "region" section if it was in no specific place. A third method is to show someone part of the corpse, eg; its head, and simply rop it in front of the person you wish to tell.
Brag about your past violent acts also works to a lesser extent, but spreading the rumor and telling the story are agreed to be more reliable.
Once someone in a village knows of your deeds, the news will start spreading throughout the village, then to other nearby villages and then to places farther away (depending on how "important" the news is considered to be) sometimes it takes a day or two for everyone in the nearby area to know, sometimes it takes a week - it can vary quite a bit - so it is best to simply tell everyone you want to tell directly.
Avoiding rumor spread
Rumors begin to spread off-screen when a person who knows of the rumor is offloaded (or if they were never loaded, such is the case with people spreading rumors of wars, ransacking etc.)
In order to prevent word spreading of, say, a murder you committed, you need to kill all witnesses or at least get them off-site before they are offloaded, and ideally get rid of the corpses, in, for example, a nearby river, or via burning. However, as long as the corpses are offsite and hard to locate, you should be good (people could see them if they are loaded when you just happen to walk by, so hide them as well as possible to be sure). This procedure is the same for theft and other crimes you committed, and for any other rumor. If you told someone you killed a monster and for some reason you decided 'maybe NPCs shouldn't know that', you will have to kill them as well.