v0.34:Keeping your dwarves happy

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This article is about an older version of DF.

Some tips on how to keep your dwarves happy, thus reducing the chances of tantruming and tantrum spirals:

Food and Drink[edit]

  • Make the community dining room your non-noble dwarves dine in high quality. You can increase its quality by making the room bigger, putting in more chairs and thrones, smoothing and engraving it, and putting in valuable furniture like gold statues.
  • Embark with or train up a cook, so your dwarves can enjoy high quality meals.
  • Make sure you never run out of booze, since a sober dwarf is an unhappy dwarf.
    • Make sure to have at least two different kinds of booze on hand, since dwarves will get bored if there's no variety in their drinks.
    • Try to have all different varieties of booze on hand, since dwarves get a happy thought when they drink their preferred booze.

Living Quarters[edit]

  • Give your dwarves individual bedrooms rather than making them live in a communal dormitory. Not only will they get a good thought from sleeping in their own bedroom, but they'll also get good thoughts from admiring the furniture they own.
    • In the beginning, you may want to not spend time doing this until you have a self-sustaining fort established, and keep this for later.
  • Improve the bedrooms by making them of respectable size, smoothing/engraving the ground, and adding basic furniture such as coffers and cabinets.
  • If you still wish to use a communal bedroom to protect your dwarves from vampires, designate each bed as a room itself. This way dwarves can keep an eye on each other and have their own rooms.
    • Overlapping the bedrooms will reduce the overall value of each "room" but a high enough overall room value can overcome this.
    • You can also make the shared suites large enough that the bedroom designations do not overlap.
    • Overlapping won't create an additional reduction in value after a certain point; it is quite easy to give everyone a royal-bedroom this way.

Fortress Improvements[edit]

  • Place highly valuable furniture, if possible artifacts, in a high traffic area of your fort, since dwarves get a happy thought if they pass right next to or over expensive furniture.
  • Dwarves who spend most of their time underground will get an unhappy thought when exposed to sunlight. If the dwarves who need to work outside aren't already regularly exposed to sunlight, put some combination of these high traffic areas on the surface:
    • Meeting area or Statue garden - Won't catch dwarves that never idle.
    • Dining room - Will need to ensure nobles that have private dining rooms have another means.
    • Booze stockpile - Requires a custom stockpile but otherwise very reliable.
  • Keep at least a few cats around to hunt down irritating vermin. Pasture some in with your food stockpiles.
  • Put a cage in a high traffic area (like the meeting area) and stuff it full of (non-grazing) tame animals so your dwarves can enjoy seeing their favorite type of animal.
  • Create a waterfall in a location all dwarves frequent regularly. This can be done by making a mist generator
  • Keep your fortress clean and avoid miasma, or at least confine it to your refuse stockpile if it is underground.


  • Keep your dwarves clothed. A naked dwarf is an unhappy dwarf. Furthermore, a dwarf's base happiness will be boosted according to the value of all owned items, so high-quality clothes will make them even happier.
  • If a dwarf dies, bury him or engrave a memorial in his name. This will prevent more unhappy thoughts for his friends, and ghosts to haunt your dwarves or your FPS.
  • Pasture all dwarf pets somewhere safe. Wandering pets are likely to die from goblins or construction accidents.