Tutorial:Powerplay Guide

From Dwarf Fortress Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

This is an intermediate guide for Adventurer Mode. For a beginner's tutorial see the Adventure Mode Quickstart Guide. See Adventure Mode quick reference to look up key commands.

Updated to DF 0.44.02. Work in progress!

This guide focuses on powerplay: that is, building the most powerful combat-oriented character and achieving goals that can be considered "winning the game". Yet, fun is a priority, so there will be no glitch/bug abuse to get an advantage. For the most part, it's tailored towards players with some adventure mode experience, as there will be no explanation of basic gameplay elements, such as Fast [T]ravelling, [R]emoving an item, [W]earing an armour or [S]tanding up, and familiarity with fortress mode to the point of being able to make at least steel weapons/armor.

However, this does not mean that less experienced players will not benefit from this guide. All the combat mechanics, decisions and picks will be explained thoroughly without missing any steps. As long as one is familiar with hotkeys, he/she is all set for reading this. And don't forget about spoilers!

Generating the world[edit]

Example of a well-balanced world for an adventure game

Use the following settings:

  • World Size: Smaller
  • History: Short
  • Number of Civilizations: High
  • Max. Number of Sites: High
  • Number of Beasts: Medium (Default)
  • Natural Savagery: Medium (Default)

While technically, every world is suitable for adventure mode, any player looking for a decent game should start in a world that has at least the following features:

Optional features:

You can check whether your world has a certain feature by starting the world in Legends mode.

  • A "Smaller" world size drastically reduces updating times, shortens the distance you will have to travel on foot and makes it more likely to explore more of the world. Don't get confused - even at this degree the generated world is much bigger than you would think, and is more than enough for a lengthy game while still preserving the features from bigger worlds.
  • A "Short" history setting will make the world 125 years old. This is done to ensure that goblin settlements (a.k.a dark pits) are not too abundant. It also prevents a lot of takeover wars, so it is less likely to end up with dead civilization(s) or human towns populated by elves (or more likely, goblins).
  • A "High" number of civilizations provides increased chances of Towers and dark fortresses appearing. Same applies to the "High" Number of Sites, only that it also influences the amount of creature lairs and encampments in the wild.
  • Number of Beasts determines how many megabeasts will roam the world. It is affected by the world size (e.g. Smaller), so it is left at default value. Same applies to Natural Savagery and Mineral occurrence.

IMPORTANT: As of 0.43.05, after creating the desirable world, you have two options:

Option 1 - start a fortress mode game immediately (preferably, at the 2-tiles-away island mentioned above) and play until you create the following masterwork or artifact weapons: Axe(steel/adam), Spear(steel,adam), War Hammer (silver/platinum). Optionally, capture a Forgotten Beast and have the weapons coated with its flesh-eating seizure-inducing paralyzing dust. Optionally, produce a masterwork nether cap shield, a couple of masterwork stacks of steel bolts and a suit of adamantine armor. Retire the fort afterwards. You will return to your fort later on in the adventure mode game to reclaim the weapons for your character's use. Starting on an isle will guarantee safety from being besieged. It also provides an exciting challenge for your adventurer, who has to swim across the long strait (possibly filled with sea lampreys, bull sharks, giant orcas and other wondrous creatures).

Option 2 - proceed with adventurer mode and play until you have earned some fame. Then retire the adventurer, enter fort mode, create a starting party, embark, carve basic rooms for dwarves, appoint a militia commander and one soldier. Then retire the fort. Next, go back to adventurer mode, unretire, travel to the location of your newly created fort and speak to the militia commander. Bring up your heroic deeds of valor (through "Bring up specific incident" menu). Then, ask the commander to be made a militiaman. Since you've already impressed him, the militia commander will make you a squad member, effectively granting you fort citizenship on the spot. Retire at the fort location, but ensure you do not have any lordships, or the adventurer will just travel back to their holding in the two weeks before fortress generation.

Afterwards, unretire the new fort. Option two makes your adventurer playable in fortress mode, which is much more engaging than simply visiting the fort to collect the items. The adventurer is now a full part of the fort, able to be assigned labors and noble ranks, just like any dwarf could! You're now a new human commander of the fort (regardless of who holds the expedition leader title). Stand tall, lead your dwarves to create a burgeoning colony, and be directly interwoven in all its affairs! Feel the relevance of your newly-made weapons that were forged under your adventurer's firsthand guidance! Master the intricate craft of cheesemaking! And of course, make sieges personal by fighting alongside dwarven militia!

Don't forget that time flies MUCH quicker in fort mode, and human lifespan is half that of dwarves - make sure your adventurer is aging-proof before taking option 2. Also, you will be subject to skill and attribute rust, which can be severe in the case of the Reader skill (make sure your fort has enough books to read). Remember - you're a part of the clan, just as mortal as any other denizen of the fort... And obviously, should your adventurer die in fort mode for whatever reason out of millions possible, he or she will be gone for good.

Character Creation[edit]

The character creation follows the same order as it appears in-game: Race/Civ/Status ->Starting Attributes/Skills->Background->Appearance -> Mental attributes.

Race and Civilization[edit]

Human or Dwarf - besides armour and clothing size, the only considerable gameplay difference is that dwarves can see in the dark. Some may argue that dwarves have an advantage due to being able to wear better armour, made in a player fortress. However, as of 0.43.05 it is possible to set the size of armor to be crafted to "Large", giving humans (and many other larger/smaller races) access to any armor a dwarf can wear. Moreover, later on you will realize that masterwork armour is just as useful as standard quality. More on this will be explained in "Armour" section. As for the dwarven "Battle Trance" - it will not activate against megabeasts, generally doesn't benefit much to a legendarily skilled adventurer, moreover, this guide emphasizes on NOT finding yourself alone and surrounded most of the time. Hence, battle influence on race choice is negligible.

As of 0.43.05, it is now possible to play as one of the many animal people, who have their own ups and downs that are numerous, and best discussed elsewhere.

Human will be used for this guide as the most accessible and reasonably challenging option.


  • Peasant: 15 attribute, 35 skill
  • Hero: 35 attribute, 95 skill
  • Demigod: 105 attribute, 161 skill

Peasant, Hero and Demigod look completely different, with demigod seemingly holding the most advantage. However, all three are mortal, and all three are capable of becoming unstoppable. The key difference is in starting stats/skills (with Demigod beginning with most, Peasant with least) and stats cap (maximum attainable value).

Simply put, the higher the starting stat (e.g. Strength), the higher it can be increased over the course of the game. Hence, demigods can have the highest stats in the end by simply having more to start with. Yet, even a Peasant adventurer is capable of killing a Demon or Dragon in the endgame, so at the end of the day all the status does is determine how easy and how fast your starting game will be.

"Hero" is suitable for most players. Pick Demigod for an easier early game. For the purposes of this guide, "Peasant" will be used to demonstrate that these instructions are applicable to every single status.

Starting Attributes and Skills[edit]

Body Attributes[edit]

As of 0.43.05, all these stat distributions will leave no points wasted.


  • High Strength (20)
  • High Agility (20)
  • Very Low Recuperation (1)
  • Very Low Disease Resistance (1)
  • Very Low Creativity (1)
  • Very Low Musicality (1)
  • Very Low Empathy (1)
  • Everything else: Average (5)


  • High Strength (20)
  • Superior Agility (--)
  • Very Low Recuperation (1)
  • Very Low Disease Resistance (1)
  • Very Low Creativity (1)
  • Very Low Musicality (1)
  • Very Low Empathy (1)
  • Everything else: Average (5)


  • Superior Strength (--)
  • Superior Agility (--)
  • Superior Memory (--)
  • High Intuition (20)
  • Very Low Recuperation (1)
  • Very Low Disease Resistance (1)
  • Very Low Creativity (1)
  • Very Low Musicality (1)
  • Very Low Empathy (1)
  • Everything else: Average (5)

Since your character is combat-based, attributes such as Creativity, Empathy and Musicality are absolutely useless, and must be kept low. As for recuperation and disease resistance, they only kick in when you're hurt, and if there is something that I stress in this guide it is "DON'T get hit". Besides, resting heals all injuries regardless of Recuperation value. This renders those stats useless. Agility and Strength are the MOST important as they affect move speed of the character, and that really matters. Memory is a convenient addition, as it lets you memorize the areas you've been to and keep those areas free from fog of war. However, leave it at average unless playing as a demigod.

The concept of pain was revised in 0.43.05, with thresholds significantly buffed for most creatures. Now a high willpower/toughness can and will prevent your adventurer (and enemy alike) from passing out due to broken pinky finger. Investing starting points in those stats is still a waste, however, as they are leveled relatively quickly, and do not need to be "Superior" or "Superhuman" to be effective. Endurance can be increased easily by sprinting, swimming or practicing melee skills. And while it matters at first, later on your character will have unlimited stamina, so don't put anything above average here. With average Social Awareness you can recruit two companions. Increasing your fighting skills and kill list will let you recruit more later. Seeing as it is very tedious to manage 3 and above companions (you have to give out orders one by one), this attribute is better left at average (more on Social Awareness will be explained in "Companions" section).

Finally, Intuition lets you see more detailed information on which part of your body the enemy is targeting. It is quickly leveled through any means of close combat, and hence, should be kept on average unless you play as a demigod.

Starting skills[edit]

All the distributions below have 1 to 4 leftover points. This is nothing to worry about, as skills can be easily improved and have no cap.


  • Adequate Swimmer (7)
  • Competent dodger (8)
  • Novice reader (6)


  • Competent Swimmer (8)
  • Expert dodger (13)
  • Novice reader (6)


  • Skilled Swimmer (9)
  • Master dodger (17)
  • Novice reader (6)

Dodge skill is a must take at character creation, as it is one of the skills that cannot be leveled without putting yourself in harm's way. Same goes for Swimming. Any weapon skills are trainable in absolute safety, as will be described in the "Training" section. Reading, on the other hand, cannot be improved during regular play, and is only available for learning at starting skill selection screen, and must be taken in order to read books containing the secrets of Life and Death. Novice level reading skill allows you to read anything, there is no point in increasing it further.

Background and Gender[edit]

It is advised to start as a hearthperson, since your character will begin inside of a human fortress, close to weapons and armor stockpiles. Gender and deity worshiped are insignificant beyond aesthetics and roleplay. Of course, when building a killing machine of a character you'd most likely want them to worship a deity of war (or similar). But if you play as an antman, gender is important.


Visual facial features (e.g. long hair, lobed ears, etc.) bear little significance, and are there just for show. The physical constitution is what really matters - your character might be described as "tall", "having a broad body" or "corpulent/fat/having great sacks of lard" (common when starting as a peasant). Fat does not slow down, and will be burnt away as your character does anything that involves sweating (sprinting or fighting to name a few). Broad body allows wielding of 2-handed weapons in one hand.

However, avoid "tall" or "having a broad body" traits. In my experience, adventurers with these tend to get hit more often than ones with an average build, and two-handed weapons are slow to ever use anyway. Press "r" or "f" to re-roll your character's appearance until it becomes to your liking.

Values and Personality[edit]

Values and Emotions

In DF2017, adventure mode has now implemented a complex personality system, akin to that of fortress mode. All those perks and traits that you've seen in Fortress mode (e.g. "He is prone to anger") are now present. This means your character will now have desires that need satisfying besides eating or sleeping. Just as fortress mode units do, adventurers will now want to think abstractly, need to socialize, desire to pray to deity, etc, all according to their (fully customizable) values and emotions (represented in green and teal respectively at character creation screen).

Though it is not necessary to satisfy the aforementioned needs, meeting most of them applies the "Focused" status. A focused character will receive noticeable bonuses to all skill rolls, so it is definitely worth the effort. Additionally, satisfying ALL of the needs will grant "Focused!" status, that increases the bonuses even further.

Furthermore, your character will have their own dream listed, based on the values you have specified. It is unknown at the moment what benefit fulfilling the dream will provide. Dreams can be easily changed (re-rolled) by simply pressing full customization "f" key, then immediately pressing it again.

Your warlike adventurers naturally value (+++) (in order of appearance): power, truth, cunning, independence, stoicism, self-control, craftsmanship, martial prowess, skill, competition, perseverance and knowledge. At the same time, they despise (---) (also in order of appearance): nature, romance and peace while being mostly indifferent (N/A) to everything else. They dream of ruling the world (or becoming a legendary warrior).

On the emotional plane, they never fall in love or lust, hate easily though not prone to anger, never give in to feelings of sadness or anxiety, impervious to stress, have calm demeanor, modest, strive for perfection, sometimes cruel, relentless, private to the point of paranoia, do not go out of their way to help others and fear nothing.

The values and emotions from the screenshot above will provide your character with the following mindset:


As seen in the above image, your warmongering adventurer will have a strong desire for crafting, training, practicing, learning, and staying busy. This is where the advantage of picking values and emotions according to the instructions above start to show up: fighting anything will simultaneously satisfy four major needs (training, learning, battling, practicing) while crafting can be easily fulfilled by knapping (make sharp rock). This mindset is also optimized to eliminate almost-impossible or hard-to-satisfy needs, like "Eat good meal" and "Help somebody", allowing you to reach the "Focused!" state easily. More on satisfying character needs will be explained in the "Needs and Focus" section.

Take into account that you will not be able to EVER see this description (except list of needs) again during regular gameplay. It is only available during the character creation stage, so it is in your interests to make a screenshot and save it.

Finalizing the character[edit]

The Values and personality screen is the last obstacle that separates you from starting the game. Press Enter to begin the adventure.

Early Game[edit]

If you have followed all the instructions so far, your character will begin inside the human fortress. His/her starting items will depend on the civilization you've chosen, however, all adventurers start with:

Immediate actions[edit]

The moment you spawn in the world, the following must be carried out immediately: [R]emove your starting waterskin and [D]rop it. I cannot stress this enough - it is absolutely, astonishingly useless, being able to fit only 3 units of water when your character needs to drink every 2-3 hours. Next, look around for soldiers of the fortress and recruit one of them as a companion. Afterwards, search around the fortress and pick up the following items:

  • Any 2 bags (chuck out anything that might have been inside)
  • Full set of armor (Helm, mail shirt, breastplate, gauntlets, greaves, high boots, shield/buckler. These can be of any material for the time being).
  • An axe and a warhammer. These can be of any material or 2-handed for the time being. If there are training versions of axe or spear, take those as well.
  • A pike and a whip/scourge (optionally, if there are any available)
  • 5-10 copper or silver bolts

Some fortresses might be under-stocked and lack some items from the list. In this case, fast travel to another fort and search again.

Berry bags are common in human villages

After you got your gear together, equip the armor and a spear (without shield), then travel to the nearest river and fill (I) one of your empty bags with water, resulting in a container with 100 water units - more than enough for a long journey, even though you will be amazed how fast it will disappear.

To follow up, go to the nearby village and search in the peasants' houses for fisher/prickle berry/strawberry bags. All human civs start with fisher berries, so a village is guaranteed to have some. Usually, these bags contain multiple stacks of 20-100 berries. As soon as you've found one, drop your starting [5]stack food and pick the largest stack of berries. [P]ut it inside of your second bag.

Your inventory should look similar to what is shown on the image below:

All set, with a lucky find!

Now you are armored and armed, alongside a companion, with plenty of food and drink. While still quite far from being combat-worthy, your character is now ready for training.


At this stage, you are going to train your character's offensive and defensive skills. Even though they can be trained in any order, I suggest that you learn how to defend yourself first. However, it is completely up to you, and whatever training "facilities" you might have. When training, ask your companion to wait nearby - he/she will not interfere with your training. This way, you will have a backup handy. However, waiting companions will not defend you if training gets out of control or something hostile comes your way. You must ask the companion to follow you for him/her to help you in fights again.

It is very important that you don't train while Tired. Otherwise, what seemed like a mock fight can take a wrong turn and lead to injury, missing teeth, or worse. If at any point of training your character becomes tired, drop whatever you were doing, retreat, rest, and only then continue.

NOTE: Subsequent instructions include a lot of tedious button presses. To make your training experience more comfortable, it is advised that you install the amazing key shortcut tool "AutoHotkey", available free of charge. It is a wonderful utility that will make a lengthy combination into a matter of a single key press, which counts when typing Aa*gzua repeated 30 times, for example. Quickstart guide for AutoHotkey (along with an example script) can be found under "Tools" section. I personally do not consider this cheating in any way - it is a simple timesaver. By sticking to "hardcore style" button mashing you are not raising the challenge - you're introducing a handicap.

Defensive training[edit]

The Defensive skill tree is comprised of Dodging and Shield User. These two are crucial to survival, they protect better than any armor, as both completely nullify ANY incoming damage, while armor does not. Armor user skill simply reduces speed penalty associated with wearing armor and is considered quasi-defensive.

  • Any attack except breath/webs/dust attacks can be dodged. On a successful dodge all damage is nullified.
  • Any attack except dust/webs/wrestling grabs can be blocked. On a successful block all damage is nullified.

A punch from a bronze colossus that can turn any armored human into paste is rendered completely harmless when blocked or dodged. Considering that around the middle stages of the game you will encounter enemies much more fearsome than a colossus, this makes Dodging and Shield User invaluable.


  • 1.Find a small animal
  • 2.Grab it
  • 3.Let it attack you
  • 4.Train until Legendary


Make sure you have a weapon and a shield drawn. Prepare by placing your weapon in a backpack, then remove the said backpack and drop it somewhere you can remember. This will free you of unnecessary load. Begin by finding a small animal - a cavy makes a good choice, as do horseshoe crabs, ducks, peacocks, turkeys, etc. Catch up to the animal and grab it with your free hand. Now, simply spam the "Wait 10 ticks" button [.] and you will gain dodging/armor user/shield user experience as the animal you're holding attacks you. To gain shield user experience faster, manually block the incoming attacks with the shield. If the animal passes out from exhaustion, simply wait, then repeat the above routine. Repeat until Legendary in all three skills.

Be aware that though your "animal training companion" is small, even a cat or a duck possesses enough force to scratch teeth out or stun with a well-placed bite to the head, right through the helmet! Make sure your character is not tired prior to training.

  • AUTOHOTKEY: Using *1::Send, . script will let you hold down [1] to continuously wait, instead of spamming the [.] wait button
  • AUTOHOTKEY: Using *2::Send, Aca script will make you instantly block an attack with your shield the moment you press [2]. Combined with [.], you can spam these two keys one after another to level Shield User very quickly.

Offensive training[edit]

Every skill that directly harms the enemy is a part of the Offensive skill tree. This includes: any weapon mastery, Improvised weapons skill (misc. object user), wrestling and throwing. The majority of your targets will be dispatched with weapon strikes, some with unarmed strikes and wrestling and in certain cases, by having a heavy/sharp object flung at them. Hence, your character must learn to handle 3 weapon types (at least), punching/kicking, wrestling and throwing. Optionally, misc. object user is recommended, as this skill determines the hit rate (and damage) when bashing with a shield.

By this time, you should have the gear as instructed earlier in "Immediate Actions" section. Make no mistake, ensure you have all the necessary equipment! The method of training is as such:

  • 1.Find a horse
  • 2.Knock it unconscious
  • 3.Blind it
  • 4.Wait for it to regain consciousness
  • 5.Train until Legendary


Fast travel map with pastures highlighted

  • Similar to the defensive training, you will have to find an "animal training companion" first. Any human village has special "Pasture" areas around it. They are distinctively marked as green squares on the fast travel map. Roam around these until you find some with cattle present. Horses make one of the best animals to train your weapon skills on, as they are common around pastures and can take a lot of damage. Sometimes, there will be llamas or cows present - those suffice as well.
  • As you have found a pasture spot with animals, memorize its location on the fast travel map. Remove your backpack and drop it there - it will be your training location for quite some time.

Next, take out the axe or a spear you have. Enter the [S]neaking mode and approach a horse. Use [A]ttacking menu and look for an Easy/Solid strike on legs/tail of the horse. You might have to approach it from multiple sides to find one. As soon as you have found an opening, stab the horse in the leg. If your strike connects, the horse will now have reduced movespeed, allowing to easily pursue it and stab another leg to bring the horse to the ground.

Sometimes even wooden weapons are dangerous
  • From now on, you have to disable the horse, so it cannot move or attack (when enraged). An Enraged horse will make quick work of an inexperienced adventurer, often biting (or wrestling!) the unfortunate to death by breaking all their bones. Hence, proceed to bashing both of its eyes with the shaft (or flat of the axe), then punch the teeth out. Finally,chop off all hooves. Wait around until horse regains consciousness if it passed out. Use [S]neak mode to confirm that it has been blinded - if the usual cone of vision is not shown, it has. A blind animal cannot see you (obviously), and it does not run away from what it cannot see. Also, it stops the horse from attacking you when enraged, but only when you are not standing on the same tile as the enraged horse.
  • After all of the above has been done, you will have a blind, immobile but resilient live training dummy to practice weapon skills on. Target its lower body to reduce the chance of lung damage and suffocation. Wooden (training) weapons are perfect, as they do little to no harm. If you have no training weapons, use less lethal attacks, such as "Slap flat" for axe or "Shaft bash" for spear.
  • AUTOHOTKEY: Use (w/o quotes) "5::Send, Aaba" to repeatedly attack lower body with whatever you have equipped in your right hand

In the same manner, target the hooves to level punching and kicking without risk of killing the horse prematurely, as all punches and kicks will glance off. Wrestling is skilled by grabbing/releasing or pinching, and unlike other combat skills, your training dummy doesn't have to be conscious! So you can as well practice your chokeholds and locks on a knocked-out horse.

  • Warhammer training is a bit tricky, as there are no training versions, and the weapon itself has only one attack (bash), which is deadly. A solution is to repeatedly bash the eye or mouth of your training dummy - doing so will provide experience without killing your "training companion", and it works with all other weapons too. Sometimes, your character might accidentally hit the horse's head when targeting the eye due to lack of skill. If the outcome is lethal, simply make another horse into the training dummy and repeat. Horses do respawn at pastures when you wait, sleep or leave the area in fast travel. This means, if you accidentally happened to kill all the animals, simply leave and return for a new batch. Alternatively, use a wooden crossbow. For the purpose of melee, crossbows qualify as hammers.

Training misc. object user is, perhaps, the easiest. Take out one unit of food that you have (e.g. 'Fisher berry'). Then repeatedly strike the training dummy with the said food unit - the attacks are 100% non-lethal yet yield misc. object user experience. If you feel that berry-bashing is not in the spirit of shield-bashing you're going to use this skill for, feel free to find any other round lightweight object that is not a weapon and use it instead. Wooden buckets, crutches and splints are all perfect for this role.

Throwing experience doesn't require a training dummy and can be gained by throwing dirt or small stones. It's an essential skill that MUST be at legendary. Find a square that has "Small Rock" available in the [G]et menu, then use AutoHotkey to pick up stones and [T]hrow them instantly:

  • AUTOHOTKEY: Use (w/o quotes) "3::Send, g<letter of stone pickup>" to pick the stone up. Your inventory must be completely empty of other throwables and you must not be wearing a backpack.
  • AUTOHOTKEY: Use (w/o quotes) "4::Send,t<letter of stone in your inventory>{Up}{Enter}" to throw the stone north.

Crucial concepts[edit]

An attack in Adventure Mode consists of three stages: 1 - Starting 2 - Hit 3 - Recovery time. Just like in real life, a swing with a weapon in DF has a wind-up time, the moment of actual contact with the target and an afterswing recovery. Therefore, attack speed is defined by these (except Hit stage, which seems to always be 1 tick long). The shorter the Starting and Recovery times, the faster the attack speed.

  • Tick - 1 second of in-game time, equivalent of one press of the [,] key. To draw parallels with in-game actions, standing up/lying down takes almost 1 full tick.
  • Starting - - the amount of time (in ticks) a character is effectively shut down when winding up for any combat action (striking, shooting, wrestling, throwing, blocking, dodging). You cannot control the character during starting time. Needless to say, it gives an opponent time to evade the attack or even sneak in his own strike, and must be minimized at all costs. Precise and Heavy attack types have huge starting times, while Quick attacks have very short amount.
  • Hit - the moment attack connects or misses the target. Always 1 tick long (fully discrete).
  • Recovery Time - the amount of time (in ticks) a character is effectively shut down after any combat action (striking, shooting, wrestling, throwing, blocking, dodging). You cannot control the character during recovery time. Needless to say, it leaves you completely at the mercy of the opponent, and must be minimized at all costs. Ranged weapons (bows, crossbows) have HUGE recovery time after firing, so avoid like plague. Any and all entities capable of attacking have recovery time associated, indicated by "Recovering from attacking X' when targeted.
  • Quick wait - the [,] key. Waits for one tick, as opposed to normal wait [.], that takes 10 ticks. Allows you to better manage the timings of battle against fast opponents.
  • Enrage - sometimes a combatant might become enraged after getting hit (indicated by flashing red exclamation mark). This is equivalent to the berserking in fort mode, but not permanent. Any enraged creature will have its strength, pain threshold and resolve boosted, which removes any fear/shock status and sends it into relentless melee. You might find, that weaker foes who flee at the first signs of combat can be transformed into killing machines by Enrage, so avoid Enraged enemies if possible until they calm down.

Attack modes and when to use them[edit]

Quick, Heavy, Wild, Precise, Charge and Multi-attack.

Attack modes
  • Quick attack - use all the time, as it greatly reduces recovery time. Strength gain of your adventurer will minimize the damage losses to the meaningless minimum in no time.
  • Using the "multi-attack" [z] option in the menu effectively lets you strike on the move, hitting enemy while simultaneously evading his attack, or even an attack from another combatant. After selecting the attack type, enter the [A]ttack menu again, then Dodge away from the target. This technique is invaluable when fighting a crowd or a dangerous/prone to charge opponent. Always use vs. wrestlers. Press the quick wait [,] button to perform actions instead of regular wait to minimize recovery time. "Float like a butterfly, sting like a megabeast".
  • Heavy attack, Wild Attack, Charge attack - Never use on their own. This means NEVER. Both heavy and wild have ridiculous recovery times and dubious benefits, and charging is best performed by moving into your opponent while having your [C]ombat preference set to "Always Charge". However, Heavy attack has a use when combined with the next attack type: the Precise attack.
  • Precise attack - at first glance, it might seem to belong in the above category of "never use". After all, the legendary weapon skill results in one-hit kill most of the times. That is until you come upon huge, extremely well armored, thick-skinned and legendary dodger enemies (and you will). Those adversaries will dodge well above 80% of your attacks, and those that land will either glance off, or cut skin/fat at best. This is where precise attack comes into play, and will win otherwise hopeless battle. It has the same enormous recovery time, so before striking make sure enemy is preoccupied with something else (attacking your companion for example). Then deliver Heavy Precise stab to the head with your best spear.

Finishing off the unconscious[edit]

Many times a situation will come, where an opponent you've just fought has passed out and you have other enemies around to fight. Finishing off the armored or thick-skinned with a headshot can require more than one strike, and sometimes you just can't afford it. Note, that even with the heavy spine and lung damage tough enemies still have a good chance of waking up and crawling after you.

In this case, target the throat. Torn major artery will guarantee the victim will bleed out before regaining consciousness, thus letting you move on to next target immediately. It's in your best interest to make sure that they die while unconscious.

Finishing off unconscious armored opponents: [Q]uick kick the throat. Kick bypasses the armor protection. Alternatively, [Q]uick strike with blunt weapon. Finishing off unconscious thick-skinned opponents: [Q]uick stab the throat.

On Charging[edit]

A Charge attack, when successful, will result in a prone and stunned opponent, a failed charge will stun the attacker instead.

Needless to say, charging is a great crowd control tool and will turn the tide of the battle. Hence,mastering it is crucial. Execute charges by first changing the [C]ombat preference to "Always charge", then moving into your opponent. Do NOT use "charge attack" mode from [A]ttack menu! After knocking down the enemy, deliver a quick blow to the vitals or legs to keep it down and charge down another enemy in case you are outnumbered. This way, you will control the mob and prevent yourself from being overrun. Don't forget to change [C]ombat preference back to "Never charge" after a fight.

Size matters! Charging an elephant is as bad of an idea as it is in real life. Charging targets of the same size is a gamble, but odds generally favour the charger. Consider charging enemies with lower size and, preferably, lower strength. If you were following the guide so far, your adventurer will have no problem trampling most human/dwarf sized opponent in the world.

  • Charge liberally vs: bandits, wolves, goblin raiders and elves.
  • Charge carefully: enemies of your race/size marked as being "Tall" or "Muscular" (e.g. "Muscular bandit).
  • Never charge: ANY undead, inorganic monsters, creatures of the night and anything larger than yourself. If it has "giant" in its name, it probably is.

Remember, charging is best performed by moving into your opponent while having your [C]ombat preference set to "Always Charge".


In brief: your core weapons of choice must invariably be Spear, Axe and Warhammer.

Weapons you must have[edit]

Any adventurer worth his dwarfbuck MUST master Spear, Axe and Warhammer. All creatures in the game can be killed by at least one of these weapons.


  • Best vs: Wild animals, organic megabeasts, organic humanoids
  • Worst vs: inorganic enemies

High armor and tissue penetration values, fast speed, widespread availability. Stab attacks are lethal to any organic enemy: be it a goblin or a dragon, a pierced brain is a sure death. It is the weapon of choice of the beasthunter and demonslayer alike, a first weapon of choice for fighting huge organic enemies (except blobs). Against humanoids, it is capable of piercing breastplates and chipping bones, which leads to unconsciousness due to pain (that is an instant death sentence). Stabs against armor or an enemy made out of superior material (e.g. copper spear vs steel) glance off harmlessly most of the time, so material is crucial to the performance of the spear. It also tends to get stuck in the body of the target quite often.

However, a spear is ineffective against targets with little or no vital organs (i.e. blobs, sponges) and is useless against inorganic enemies (i.e. made out of stone, metal, glass), as those have no organs whatsoever. For those situations, use the next weapon on the list, the axe.


  • Best vs: Wild animals, humanoids, night creatures, undead, inorganic enemies.
  • Worst vs: Large animals, Megabeasts or enemies of comparable size.

A truly universal weapon, an axe is amazingly effective against most foes, organic or not. The ultimate strength of the "hack" attack comes in its ability to incapacitate and kill targets immune to pain or organ damage, lop off limbs, and even cleave entire bodies asunder. A swift hack to the feet will bring down kobold and bronze colossus alike, creating an opening for a strike to the head. The best weapon against zombies, the axe also has a "slap flat" blunt crushing attack to finish a grounded zombie off without switching to the warhammer. As with the spear, the material an axe is made out of is crucial to its performance.

Otherwise, the effectiveness of the axe diminishes as the target's size increases. Against large animals (such as a rhino or elephant) hacking only cuts fat/skin/muscle without doing lethal damage. The limbs of huge enemies are much thicker, and hence are much harder to chop off, often requiring way too many strikes. Against better-armored or clothed gigantic targets (i.e. demons) an axe is worthless. Use the spear should you encounter these.


  • Best vs: Humanoids and armored targets.
  • Worst vs: Inorganic large creatures.

Unanimously considered the deadliest weapon against humanoids, the warhammer becomes an even more viable choice with the ability to pulp, crush (and the bleeding from pulping) of body parts. Your adversary might wear a full artifact adamantine armor set, and it will not save him from having bones broken right through it by the "bash" attack. A warhammer ignores any and all armor foes might wear. Additionally, the pulping damage stacks, so with some patience, it is possible to maul even the (organic) megabeasts to death. The warhammer is also the easiest weapon to make, with copper being one of the best materials for production, due to its density.

Unfortunately, the warhammer suffers from the same problem as the battle axe - reduced combat yields against large targets. Also, attacks will glance off inorganic enemies made out of high-grade materials (e.g. steel colossus).

Optional weapons[edit]


  • Best vs: Wild animals, organic megabeasts, humanoids.
  • Worst vs: Inorganic enemies

A buffed spear on steroids, pike has even greater penetration value, meaning it pierces armour and thick tissues like paper. Undoubtedly the best weapon against large animals (elephant, rhino, hippo) and a good pick against organic megabeasts. However, as any 2handed weapon it is slower than spear, meaning your enemy might sneak in an attack before you do, which limits its use for predominantly hunting big game.

The biggest drawback of the pike is its inability to be manufactured by dwarves in fortress mode. This limits your selection to whatever you can find in the world. Though, with enough luck you might be able to come across masterwork iron pike, however, this is as good as it can get - steel (and better) pikes are nonexistent in vanilla game.

If you happen to be born under a particularly lucky star, a moody dwarf can sometimes produce an artifact pike from whatever metals you might have in the fort, including adamantine. But if that is the case, what are you doing here? Get to those lottery tickets numbers pronto!


  • Best vs: Wild animals, humanoids, night creatures, undead, inorganic enemies.
  • Worst vs: Large animals, Megabeasts or enemies of comparable size.

Halberds are essentially hybrid version of the axe with much greater slashing potential (in fact greatest of all weapons), as well as an additional stab attack. This makes halberds fare better against enemies axe is weak against, as well as making bisecting easy. However, it is still ill-advised to use it versus extremely large creatures.

The downsides come in a form of halberds being 2-handed, as well as being foreign weapons, meaning dwarves cannot manufacture them. As any 2handed weapon it is slower than its 1h equivalent, meaning your enemy might sneak in an attack before you do. Inability to equip a shield can be a serious downside, though not as serious as lack of high-quality halberds. Thus, your selection is limited to whatever you can find in human fortresses. Bandit ringleaders sometimes wield masterwork weapons, which can turn out to be a halberd.

If you happen to be born under a particularly lucky star, a moody dwarf can sometimes produce an artifact-quality halberd from whatever metals you might have in the fort, including adamantine. But if that is the case, what are you doing here? Get to the scratching cards pronto!

Whip and Scourge

  • Best vs: Everything
  • Worst vs: Nothing

Whip and Scourge are examples of one of the many bugs of Dwarf fortress. Basically, these act as blunt weapons, but have penetration values that of a lightsaber, being able to slice through any armor or thickness of flesh. A copper whip can chip a bone through steel, adamantine, demon skin and dragon scale. Altogether. It is also effective against inorganic enemies, chipping their body material and accumulating the damage that will eventually bring down anything.

In the preamble to this guide I have mentioned not abusing glitches, and this is one of them. Do not use these weapons if you are looking for a reasonable challenge. Though it can be argued, that whips are somewhat less effective against enemies immune to pain.


This is a list of the best weapons you can possibly have (without exploiting) to give you something to aspire to. While some are impractically difficult to acquire, it is possible to manufacture them in fortress mode with creative resource management.

  • AXE: Artifact-quality adamantine battle axe, coated with paralyzing FB dust.
  • SPEAR: Artifact-quality adamantine spear, coated with paralyzing FB dust.
  • WARHAMMER: Artifact-quality platinum warhammer, coated with necrosis inducing FB dust. Best blunt weapon you can ever get, period.


  • PIKE: Artifact-quality adamantine pike, coated with paralyzing FB dust. Best piercing weapon you can ever get, period.
  • HALBERD: Artifact-quality adamantine halberd coated with paralyzing FB dust. Best slashing weapon you can ever get, period.
  • WHIP Artifact-quality platinum whip, coated with necrosis-inducing FB dust. Absolutely the cheesiest weapon, period.

Weapons to avoid[edit]

  • Mace - warhammer is better in almost every aspect
  • Sword - Lower penetration value than spear, less limb-hacking potential than axe and astonishingly useless slap attack, more fit to squishing mosquitoes. But adamantine and/or artifact can be useful, if you have no better spear and axe.
  • Most of 2h weapons - these are slower, come in poor quality and rob you of opportunity to use shield (which is huge). Broad body adventurers can equip them in one hand, but unless you have an artifact produced by your fortress, 2-handed weapons' quality and material will be way below their 1-handed counterparts.
  • Ranged weapons - Some weapons are simply least effective, some are plain bad, but none are actually as dangerous to their user as bow and crossbow get. After taking a shot (which, by the way, cannot be aimed at a particular body part), your character will be stuck in place for about 20-40 ticks, unable to move, fight or in fact, unable to do anything. Maybe it was implemented to simulate reloading, but in any case, it leaves you vulnerable, very vulnerable. To add insult to injury, ammunition is dreadfully heavy, with as much as 10 bolts enough to slow down "high" strength character. And 10 is rarely enough to bring anything substantial down. If you want a ranged attack, throw bolts/arrows instead.


Having a weapon in each hand does not allow you to strike with both at the same time, not even when using multi-attack (attacks are executed consecutively, one after another). At most, it will spare you the effort of one key press if one of those weapons will get stuck in target's body. This gimmick comes with a huge cost of not being able to block. As such, dual-wielding is near useless.


The q key lets you strap your weapon and/or shield to your back. Use it to free your hands for wrestling, climbing or equipping a different weapon/shield. You can have an infinite amount of items sheathed. [r]emove key can be used to retrieve sheathed items.

Unarmed combat[edit]

Kisat Dur: http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=148015.0 A lot of the techniques described there are applicable to armed combat as well. Just don't try taking down bronze colossus with it.

Stamina management[edit]

Any combat action (including dodging) consumes stamina. Prolonged fighting can lead to your character getting tired, while further pushing the tired character will lead to exhaustion and passing out.

A tired adventurer has ALL skill levels cut in half, as well as suffering a movespeed penalty. In a major fight, this means imminent death without other options.

To avoid getting tired:

  • 1. Control your movespeed. The faster your current movespeed is, the faster your character will react, which simply means less overall recovery time. While undoubtedly useful, this trades stamina for speed, and must be carefully considered. The stamina drain depends not on the gait type (walk, jog, sprint), but on the actual speed your character is moving. E.g. a human sprinting at 4.000 speed will get tired much faster than dwarf sprinting at 2.000 speed. Use sprint to quickly close in on a nearby target, then use Run if you need to chase further. Avoid chases with sprint mid-fight, when there are other opponents around.
  • 2. Drop your backpack before running into fights, even if it doesn't slow you down. Once tired, the small movespeed penalties caused by extra weight will take full effect. These are so small, they are not even visible on the speedometer for fresh characters, but will show up on tired ones.
  • 3. If you need to move 1 cell away from your opponent, use the "Dodge" option from the combat interface. It will drain MUCH less stamina than sprinting for 1 cell.
  • 4. You can jump to restore your stamina. Note, that jumping is much slower than running, and your enemy will likely catch up.
  • 5. Avoid tiring yourself by swinging too much. If you cannot pierce enemy armour, either find ways around it (blows to the neck, blunt weapons, wrestling, pikes) or retreat.
  • 5. Once you've achieved legendary in all necessary skills and superior in all attributes, you can become Necromancer to receive unlimited stamina.

Needs and Focus[edit]

You've honed your character's body. It is essential that you hone their spirit next. Any adventurer will benefit from a Focused mind, therefore, you must learn how to reach this state, or at least avoid being Distracted. Since it is done to prepare for battles, reaching "Focused!" state will be referred to as "Pre- battle Meditation" in this guide from now on.

If you have followed the instruction from "Values and personality" section, your character would now have the following needs:

  • 1. Stay occupied - fulfilled by knapping or bone carving, both can be easily performed from [X] menu. You will need any sharp object to carve bone, bolts are the best for this.
  • 2. Excitement - fulfilled by fighting or brawling. It does not matter what you fight, hence, all you need is to find a cat and kick it once.
  • 3. Cause trouble - fulfilled by pressing an argument. Talk to anyone friendly, pick "state your values" from dialogue options, and state some nuances that will prompt an argument (e.g. "Nuances of law"). Press the argument once, and you will have the need satisfied, alongside the "Argue" need.
  • 4. Learn something - fulfilled by practicing any skill/craft or reading a book concerning something (E.g. Essay concerning the hamlet Braidedgrasped) or on a scientific subject (e.g. Essay on Fluid statics). These books are commonly found in the world, being held by scholars who are willing to trade them away.
  • 5. Craft object - fulfilled by knapping or bone carving, both can be easily performed from [X] menu. You will need any sharp object to carve bone, bolts are the best for this. Doing this also fulfills 'be creative' and 'stay occupied' .
  • 6. Martial training - fulfilled by practicing any combat skill. Easily satisfied by shooting a bow/crossbow once or yet again, kicking a cat. Note, that Thrower and Misc. Object user do not count as combat skills for this purpose.
  • 7. Be creative - - fulfilled by knapping or bone carving, both can be easily performed from [X] menu. You will need any sharp object to carve bone, bolts are the best for this.
  • 8. Fight - fulfilled by fighting or brawling. It does not matter what you fight, hence, all you need is to find a cat and kick it once.
  • 9. Argue - fulfilled by pressing an argument. Talk to anyone friendly, pick "state your values" from dialogue options, and state some nuances that will prompt an argument (e.g. "Nuances of law"). Press the argument once, and you will have the need satisfied, alongside the "Cause trouble" need.
  • 10. Think abstractly - fulfilled by reading ANY book or scroll. These are commonly found in the world, being held by scholars or, in case of scrolls, sometimes lying around at fortresses.
  • 11. Hear eloquence - fulfilled by reciting a poem. Begin a performance and recite any poem your character knows. If you do not know any (highly unlikely), you can learn poems by reading books (containing poetry), or listening to bards at taverns, but the odds of the character knowing no poems at all are slim.
  • 12. Practice skill - fulfilled by practicing ANY skill, but easier to satisfy by knapping or bone carving.

Some of the needs are impossible, or very hard to fulfill. Avoid at all costs:

  • Eat good meal - cannot be satisfied, period.
  • Help somebody - fulfilled only by rescuing children from dark fortresses. Aside from being excruciatingly tedious, it will hog all your play time due to massive FPS slowdown that occurs at goblin sites.
  • Make romance - cannot be fulfilled for adventurers, period.
  • Acquire object - very tedious to fulfill, as you will need to trade (not barter!) or demand an item (never ends well).
  • Being with family/Being with friends - cannot be satisfied, period.
  • Take it easy - cannot be satisfied, period.
  • See a great beast - cannot be satisfied, period.

Therefore, your average "Pre-combat meditation" will consist of knapping, reciting a poem, arguing with a friend, reading, and kicking a small animal.


  • Q:Best starting weapon? A: Battleaxe, Spear, Warhammer. Must be legendary in all three.
  • Q:Can I dual wield? It sounds cool, but is it practical? A: Dual-wielding is useless compared to weapon+shield combo. Do not dual-wield.
  • Q:How do I fight a crowd? A: Step one: bring 2+ companions. Step two: Fight one foe at a time, use charge attacks when applicable. Step three: Target the least armored first. Watch your stamina.
  • Q:Can I charge X? What is the rule of thumb for charging? A:Is it bigger than yourself? Yes: Do not charge. No: charge!
  • Q:Who do I target first in a fight vs. multiple opponents. A: Single out the least skilled/armed/armored opponent (e.g. Bandit recruit) and focus on him. Besides having one less enemy, chances are, after seeing him die, others will have their morale broken.
  • Q:What part of an enemy do I target first in combat? A: Prioritize feet/legs unless you are absolutely sure you can deliver a one-hit kill blow to the head.
  • Q:Enemy armour deflects my blows to the head, what do I do? A: Cripple the enemy with a blow to the legs, then target neck. Neck often has lesser protection when compared to the head. Using blunt weapon will improve your chances.
  • Q:Best weapon for maiming opponents? A: Battleaxe and spear will do best in 95% of cases, target feet. Use warhammer against heavy armour.
  • Q:I have ran out of stamina amidst a fight, and is tired/exert. what to do? A: [J]ump away from combat and let your companions hold while you regain your breath. Jumping does not consume stamina.
  • Q:I am attacked by a night creature, how do I fight? A: As with many other humanoids, target the legs (and wings, if it has any). After hitting the ground, the night creature cannot charge you, making the battle significantly easier. Note that many of the night creatures are almost as fast on the ground as they are on their feet.
  • Q:My companions run at the very sight of an enemy! How do I make them fight? A: As any other creature, companions are affected by Discipline skill. The only way to raise it is to fight more, or train the companions beforehand, though even high-discipline NPCs might flee before megabeasts or night creatures.
  • Q: I have accidentally hit my companion and he/she turned against me! How do I win him/her back? A:If enemies are around, let it go and don't help the rebel until enemies are no more or you have fled. Otherwise, using wrestling, grab their throat. Choke until companion passes out. Take away their weapon, gouge both eyes out and wait for them to wake up. Afterwards, start grabbing limbs in a lock and breaking them. Gouge cheeks/lips to further drive the point that you want to make peace. After a few rounds of wrestling torture, the insubordinate will break, and attempt to run. This is where you [T]alk to the rebel wannabe and ask to cease the hostilities. With a very high chance, he/she will agree and become benign. Speak to the ex-companion again and recruit back. Eyes and limbs will fully heal after rest.
  • Q:I ended up on the ground, what do I do? A: Granted you can still walk, change your [S]peed to "Scramble" and then [s]tand up.
  • Q: Odds are not in my favour. How do I escape? A: [D]rop the heavy items and flee at top speed - life is dearer than *Iron spear*. Run just enough to lose sight of the enemy, then fast travel away.

Finalizing the training[edit]

Repeat the training process until legendary in all necessary disciplines: Dodging, Shield user, Armor user, Axe, Spear, Warhammer, Pike, Wrestling, Striking, Kicking, Throwing. Additionally, you will end up with legendary Fighter-Archer skills as well as greatly increased strength, agility, endurance, focus and willpower.

At this point, you have the gear, body and skills to shift the battle scales heavily in your favor. Now, it is time to venture onward and leave a mark in the world!

Mid Game[edit]

The majority of your character's life, adventures and heroic deeds will happen here, in the mid-game.

First steps in a big world[edit]

You've finalized your training. Now, you have to finalize your gear. If all you have at the moment is copper, you must travel around and visit every fortress in the human settlements until you have at least full set of bronze armour, bronze battle axe, bronze spear and copper/silver warhammer. Shields, however, are best left copper due to copper's higher density and hence, higher weight behind a shield bash. Besides, it is much easier to find masterwork copper buckler/shield than it is to find masterwork iron.

  • Dwarves residing in hillocks or human towns sometimes possess steel equipment (albeit of low quality). If there's a town or many dwarven settlements around, it is worth your time to travel to the largest ones and [L]ook at dwarves' inventories. Dwarf militiamen have a chance to have steel weapons, and are willing to part with them for a wealth of other items in exchange. This is the only way to obtain steel gear at this point of your career without starting a dwarf fortress yourself. To trade with non-merchants, use "Exchange personal items" talk menu.

Ensure you have a full set (armor+weapons) of bronze or above. Next, recruit another companion for a total of two. Now your adventurer is ready for questing.

Early quests[edit]

(The method below utilizes the "rumors" system, which allows you to be a freewheeling adventurer who lets the stories of your renown build your reputation through word-of-mouth. If you prefer the more traditional RPG model of getting a specific quest assignment from a leader whom you can report back to, see the Agreements section of the quest page for more information.)

Travel to any human fortress and look for a lord/lady. Talk to the noble, introduce yourself and inquire about troubles, choosing "Tell me about bandits" option. With almost 100% chance, you will be told of a bandits' camp nearby. Note that it has to be stopped with violent force and ask for directions there. At that moment, you will have the location of the camp added to your [Q]uest journal under "Sites" tab.

Make your way to the campsite. As ringleaders are always notable figures, look for a bandit with a flashing icon. Once located, swiftly dispatch the brigand leader with the techniques you've practiced during training. You will most likely be able to cripple the legs and behead in two [Q]uick hacks with an axe. Seeing their chief die, most other bandits will become demoralized and either run or freeze in fear. With help from your companions, dispatching the rest won't be difficult.

Rinse, repeat. Complete at least 3 bandit hunt quests, make sure to report (turn in) your success, and you will be revered as a brave protector of the defenseless. These are but the first steps in building your reputation.


Make sure to get a trophy from your significant kills! If the target was decapitated, take the head. If not (e.g. pierced brain), butcher the corpse and take the skull/chitin. This will let you remember the name of the kill when you turn it in to the quest giver as well as being (in case of megabeast skulls) a great adornment for pedestals. Additionally, bite ears off any bandits that you are about to kill, Diablo 2 style. It will add to satisfaction much more than just mere numbers and listings of the kill counter. Remember: attempting to cut ears off might result in premature lethal hit, and as such, being unable to get the ear.

Human-sized heads and ears can be stored in any container and even put in cages - press [P] while standing near the cage. It makes sense to cage skulls of slain named animals, trolls, bogeymen or the like. Take into account the weight of the trophy - the larger the enemy, the heavier the trophy.

Turning in quests[edit]

Now that you've wiped the bandits out, it is time to report your success to the quest giver. In fact, you can report your success to anyone in any settlement. However, returning to the original quest giver will allow you to store the spoils of war in the same location instead of hauling it every time, as well as allow you to put your trophies onto pedestals for everyone to admire.

You will need to install the Rumor System UI improvement script (DFhack is required) by 1337G4mer: Link. Otherwise, finding the needed kill in the long list of useless rumours will be next to impossible.

Copy the CODE section to any text document, save it as rumors.lua (remember to change the file extension), and copy the resulting .lua file into your \hack\scripts directory. The script can now be used by typing "rumors" (without quotes) into DFhack console window whenever you are at the rumor selection list, then typing "slew" in the rumour filter (in the Dwarf Fortress window). This will display all your kills in an easy to browse and select list.

Unfortunately, in version 0.44.02 the "unknown creature" bug prevents you from turning in kills. Here's a workaround: Report a kill (e.g. "Not a day ago, I slew Ettin"). You will receive "Unknown creature was struck" response. Then, choose the "Ask about somebody" option and ask about the creature you've killed (e.g. "What can you tell me about Ettin?"). You will receive a correct "Ettin is dead" response. Finally, go back to "spread rumour" and report the kill again (e.g. "Not a day ago, I slew Ettin"). This time, the NPC will say "unknown creature attacked unknown creature", but despite this, you will receive the credit and reputation for the kill.

Road to fame[edit]


  • Q: How do I trade with the merchants? A: Don't, it's a fruitless endeavour. None of the merchants will ever have anything useful for sale. However, dwarves at hillocks sometimes have steel equipment, and are willing to part with it for a worthy offer. To trade with other NPC's, use "Exchange personal items" talk menu.
  • Q: What enemies I should avoid at all costs at any point of the game? A: Web-slingers and deadly-dust users. Those two attacks cannot be avoided AT ALL, except by staying as far away as possible.
  • Q: How to earn fame in 0.44.02? The "unknown creature" bug prevents me from turning in kills! A:Here's a workaround: Report a kill (e.g. "Not a day ago, I slew Ettin"). You will receive "Unknown creature was struck" response. Then, choose the "Ask about somebody" option and ask about the creature you've killed (e.g. "What can you tell me about Ettin?"). You will receive a correct "Ettin is dead" response. Finally, go back to "spread rumour" and report the kill again (e.g. "Not a day ago, I slew Ettin"). This time, the NPC will say "unknown creature attacked unknown creature", but despite this, you will receive the credit and reputation for the kill.

General FAQ[edit]

Main article: Adventure mode

See Also[edit]

A glimpse into the Future[edit]

D4Dwarf.png This article or section has been rated D for Dwarf. It may include witty humour, not-so-witty humour, bad humour, in-jokes, pop culture references, and references to the Bay12 forums. Don't believe everything you read, and if you miss some of the references, don't worry. It was inevitable.

  • Passage from "Shooting for the sky", the giant toad bone bound book by Nefil Blackbone the human necromancer:

... While seemingly absurd, the practice of ones abilities with a ranged weapon can be furthered by directing said weapon towards the sky. After all, during day time the sky has one giant target that might even seem so large that it's impossible to miss, and the night sky has many smaller ones. It has been well documented that hitting the target may not be necessary to achieve improvement in ones skill with said arms, thus it is reasonable to expect every subsequent shot after the first will hit a tad closer to it's intended target, this has further lead me to believe in the possibility of sky exploration, for with this logic at some point the projectile will actually hit it's target and could subsequently be replaced with a test dummy to further resolve survival issues and empty ones guest accommodations in one go. Finally with said preparations accomplished it would be possible to explore whatever is beyond that great blue/black border above. However some skeptical dwarven scholars suggest this to be impossible and rather place their bets on the tried and tested dwarven launch system, while notable human scholars propose using bigger armaments to accomplish the goal.

This is how the great space race between the Elves, Dwarves and Humans began, which would later on lead to massive intergalactic conflicts, space goblin invasions, immortal human emperors, elven space gates, interplanetary clown-storms all under the name of the humble dwarven hammer of war ...