Dwarf Fortress takes this idea very seriously by providing players multiple means to gather seeds and keep their dwarves content.
Players can brew plants at a still, receiving seeds at every step. Players can also mill plants on a quern or millstone before processing them at a Farmer’s Workshop.
Brewing at a Still
Dwarf Fortress offers abundant resources for players to sift through, from plants and timber to cave rocks and minerals that play an integral part in crafting many essential structures, widgets, and pieces of gear in the game. But just as crucial is ensuring your dwarves have enough to drink; without it, they won’t work effectively. Luckily, multiple methods are available in Dwarf Fortress that enable them to do this efficiently.
Dwarf Fortress provides two primary drinking methods: still and barrel/pot brewing. A still requires an empty barrel/pot, plus one dwarf with Brewer labor enabled, to produce five units of alcohol from plants or honey per stack grown – making it simple to maintain an ongoing supply of drinks in Dwarf Fortress.
Farmer workshops produce milk and wool gathered from animals, while Millstone or Querns grind plants into flour, sugar, dyes, and seeds. Dwarves may pick and consume uncooked plants or fruits as an additional source of seeds – though this method often results in angry dwarfs!
Magma in the game can also fuel forges, melt items for smelting and smithing processes, suffocate enemies, and provide fuel for furnaces. While producing it may prove challenging at times, it can most often be found in potentially risky corners of a fortress.
Reorganizing all this material may seem a daunting task for new players, so it is wise to familiarize yourself with all the different workshops in Dwarf Fortress: the Bookkeeper, Manager, and Broker workshops provide an easy way to assign jobs automatically for every dwarf; Farmer’s Workshop allows players to cultivate crops like plump helmet mushrooms used for making wine; while Trade Workshop provides access to goods from around your mountain home.
Eating Raw Plants
Dwarf Fortress places its only absolute limit on food production for dwarves: soil. Suppose they only have limited land available for farming. In that case, players should make the most of every resource to help get through crisis times – including using forage commands to send dwarves out onto the surface to collect plant life without seeds – expanding your options beyond what can be grown underground.
Players can harvest animal corpses to provide sustenance for their dwarf army. As meat quickly spoils, having enough stockpile space is essential. Players can use forage and hunt commands to assign specific Dwarves this task, which they will automatically begin once posted.
If the fortress is at risk from other civilizations, it would be prudent to stockpile as much food for your dwarves as possible in anticipation of an attack from different cultures. As well as this strategy for food storage, setting traps to stop invaders as they try to gain entry and digging wells so the dwarves can access fresh water can also help.
Once the fortress is supplied with food and water, a player can switch their focus to other tasks such as building and mining. A fortress should provide safe accommodation for its dwarven inhabitants with plenty of storage space and working areas; additionally, it should incorporate defense measures like an armory with plenty of ammunition or easily defendable tunnel entrances in case of siege attacks.
Dwarves can collect and preserve wild plants and animals that will later be useful in food and medicine preparation. At the same time, their fortress provides ample room for brewing and food preparation, including an automatic millstone for making bread, flour, and other staple foods. They may also collect minerals from their surroundings in the wilderness to trade with caravans that come through throughout the year.
Milling at a Quern or Millstone
Querns (millstones) are essential pieces of technology in any dwarf-run fortress, transforming raw plant materials into edible forms that can be baked, brewed, and transformed into all sorts of items for baking, brewing, and crafting. Their simple yet fascinating milling system adds depth and dimension to dwarven society.
Querns can also produce other valuable components of fabric production, including fiber threads. Rope reeds, cotton, ramie, and kenaf can all be milled to produce plant fiber thread, which can then be spun into cloth at the loom. Wool or animal hair (sheared from butchered animals) can also be turned into yarn, eventually turning into fabric by pivoting at the loom.
Dwarf Fortress relies heavily on seeds as an essential resource, enabling plants to flourish and be harvested for harvesting. Unfortunately, the game doesn’t offer unlimited sources; once an initial supply has run out, finding reliable ways to replenish it may be challenging.
Dwarves can acquire seeds through trading, brewing beverages at a still, eating uncooked plants or fruit raw, milling at a quern or millstone, and milling on a quern/millstone. Milling can provide seeds without dealing with goblins and other risks of trading.
A millstone is a circular stone that rotates over a central hub to grind raw plants into flour or other grains, unlike its counterpart, the quern. Additionally, the millstone produces more grain per minute and thus makes an ideal choice for larger farms.
Millstones can take up valuable floor space in your fortress and must be protected with sturdy walls to prevent them from being misused by unsavory dwarfs.
Small fortresses can be constructed using querns and millstones as their primary source of plant material. Still, it is essential to remember the necessity of fresh water for Dwarves as they cannot consume stagnant waters. Therefore, ensure your fortress can access clean drinking water by digging wells or creating rivers or lakes nearby.
Dwarf Fortress is home to abundant resources ranging from plants and animals, minerals, cave rocks, and structures that form structures, such as buildings or gadgets, gear, or even weapons. All these materials serve as building blocks for creating various structures or equipment.
Food and beverages are essential for survival; other supplies can be traded with neighboring civilizations for new equipment or technologies. Trading is an integral component of the game, and requiring an experienced caravan headed by a Dwarven trader can make all the difference when buying new gear and technologies.
Exploration can yield some valuable items, like plump helmet seeds and the booze they can produce through a brewery workshop, though these items tend to come in limited supply; to increase chances of finding these supplies, building one at the start of their game experience would be wiser.
Crafting items at workshops isn’t the only way to secure additional seeds: Dwarven trade caravans offer another excellent source. Each year, they travel from their homeland and bring seeds and other valuable goods that could prove highly fruitful, provided your fortress is adequately equipped to receive them.
In particular, the fortress should include adequate storage space, a brewing workshop, and a well-stocked kitchen. Dwarves must have high-quality clothing as being unclothed will cause them to feel inferior or intolerant of cold climates.
Animal bones and refuse are classified as waste in the fortress, while animal corpses can be processed into meat that can then be stockpiled. To ensure dwarves don’t work too hard and have time for rest and recreation, it is wise to designate some as hunters through the labor menu (press y) so they can hunt animals themselves.
A fortress must also employ a bookkeeper, manager, and broker (press F). A bookkeeper maintains records on every item within its walls while tracking wealth; meanwhile, the manager auto-assigns jobs while dealing with trading caravans; the broker manages caravan trading operations.