Smells Like Dwarf Fortress, Part Three: Winter is Coming

09 Dec

Skipping ahead now…

Mid Autumn, in the Year of the Forks 405

The snow has yet to stop. For nearly six months straight, nothing but blizzard after blizzard. Another Blizzard Man comes. Dent, dent, dent, dent, dent, dent dent dent dent dent dent.

I think the fog is creeping into my mind.

Speaking of fog; what should come shambling down from the heights of the Scintillating Ash and it’s glaciers? A yeti!


Though many take the Yeti to be violent, demented beasts, some have been tamed (with great difficulty) and even integrated into Dwarven society. This can be attributed to their joyful and cheery nature; often they can be seen playfully tipping over workshops and accidentally crushing anyone working within. Many dwarves admire this warped sense of humour and the Yeti’s obvious love of beer, wine and spirits.

WARNING: The above may be misleading.


Ice Wolves are devastating. Blizzard Men are hilariously inept – the Feral Walls simply beat the Blizzard Man about the head and neck until he starves to death.

But this? Fuck me! Get everyone inside the fortress now!

I really need some swords!

With that goal in mind, it is time to set up some forges. Though the farms are not yet ready, we at least have food. Alcohol, on the other hand, is running dangerously short. Damn it Adrian! Get to work down there!

What’s that you say? A Giant Cave Spider.


Yeti’s above. Giant spiders below. Bromgev Foley has surely led us to our doom.

Some might fear this place. Some might suggest flight, leaving this blasted glacier and its demon-spawn creatures. What are we, Elves? So cowardly we would flee, huddle and weep like babies? To the dissenters, I say we must remember Ulteg Umrek, Dragonslayer, the very Dwarf whose legacy we carry!

In the meantime, LAVA! A Dwarfs best friend!

Here it is, seeping down the tunnel I dug. Soon, it will be below the furnaces and forges, powering Zaskidet industry! Then it will be time to sword, and sword good. I am also moving the meeting area down here. Perhaps standing next to a lava flow will keep my Dwarves warm.

Late Autumn, in the Year of the Forks 405

Aaron Small, whom some of you may remember as my bookkeeper, has, for most of the year, been digging calculations into the stone walls of his room. Finally he has tallied everything in the fort. He won’t stop muttering dark words, and the shivers that run through his body tell of a far deeper cold than that of the ice and snow. He refuses to enter his room anymore.

As I creak open the heavy obsidian door to investigate a wave of air washes over me, like the fetid breath of a great slavering beast. The numbers, carved layer upon layer over themselves, drip with the blood of the poor bookkeeper’s torn fingers. In all the Ice Wolf commotion, I never did get him paper and pen. I look at numbers that seem to delve into the future, peering through the eyes of time. Even the date of Bookkeeper Small’s death is written here, yet still the numbers continue, cataloguing goods we haven’t even made yet. I hear a voice from beyond the walls, speaking of promised souls and damnation everlasting.

What has Aaron done?

(Fun fact: Once your bookkeeper has “done enough work” and stops working completely, even if he dies you’ll never need another one again as the books stay perfectly updated forever. Aaron has done such good work, he knows what stocks will be in the future, and can even take into account his own death. Smells like Dwarf Fortress.)

So far, both the Yeti and the Giant Cave Spider have stayed away from us.  Still, if they don’t bring Zaskidet to its knees, thirst will. Ice Wolf meat, while stringy and unsatisfying, keep starvation at bay, but without any strong farming underway, there is nothing to brew. Our alcohol-dependent little beardies are constantly ‘taking breaks’ as their blood-acohol level drops dangerously low. Soon, it will drop below the dreaded 2.2, and they won’t be able to work at all. To distract them from their impending sobriety, I draft a few more into the Feral Walls and arm them with the copper woodcutting axes I so pointlessly brought with me. At the very least, they might be able to fend off the terrifying Yeti should it tear down the fledgling walls about the Pit.

Thus far, the beast has stayed its wrathful hand. Instead, it pulls a Calvin and stares at the gates, hilariously inept.

Things are getting absolutely desperate on the alcohol front.

Early Winter, in the Year of the Forks 405

If you measure success by the amount of Dwarven blood coating everything, then this month has been hilarious. The Yeti finally decided to make use of his Building Destroyer 2 tag and tear down my gates. Tuvorn, Hildybritches, Jimmy Breau, Justin Currie, Adrian King and Jeff Copp have all died charging the Yeti. There are seven dead Dwarves, but over twenty separate chunks of Dwarf-parts. I locked the Yeti out with quickly-constructed walls. Unlike mechanic Jamie Gib, who nearly let a horde of Troglodytes in from the caverns with his sloth, mason Robyn Cross managed to build up a temporary wall; enough to send the blood-lusting Yeti – once white of fur, but now decked in scarlet red – wandering elsewhere. He’s still up there, snarling and shambling, scaring the Yaks.


Bob Normoyle and Andrew Osborne have died of thirst. It seems the lack of water is a problem on this glacier. You’d think someone would lick the walls or something, but no.

Death Count: 10

 I am shitting my Dwarven pantaloons as the first of the brewable items is brought up from the caverns. I assign a Brew Drink job.

And all my barrels are full of Ice Wolf meat – no self-respecting Dwarf would put alcohol in anything else, and thus, they refuse, even unto their own demise.

We fought Ice Wolves. We fought Blizzard Men and Troglodytes. We’ve fought Yeti and seen giant spiders. We’ve survived a snowstorm that never ends, even in the height of Summer. All this, only to be undone by thirst.We’ve run out of coffins in which to place our deceased brothers and sisters. Even as I write this, my hands shake and stutter, my eyes grow droopy. Dwarves have taken to opening veins and drinking their own blood. I don’t know if that will work or not, but anything is better than nothing. Goodbye my friends.

Wait, what’s this? Bromgev Foley herself has moved to the still! I quickly assign the Cook Lavish Meal job from the kitchen; waste as much meat as you can, cook! FREE SOME FUCKING BARRELS!



The first barrel of alcohol does not even make it out of the still before being consumed, but holy shit that was so close oh my fucking God-of-Forks!


To celebrate, one of the Yaks gave birth. Yay.

Sadly, it was too late for Chris Picard, who stripped himself naked and ran raving through the halls of Zaskidet. I’ll have what remains of the Feral Walls keep him under watch.

Hah! Mr. Picard wandered into the room of the (now deceased) Aaron Small. Let his madness gaze upon the eldritch writings of our late bookkeeper!

MIGRANTS! Not enough to repopulate, but migrants all the same! I might just survive!

Death Count: 12 (Two migrants ran into the yeti)


Progress is slow.

Next time: Crawling out of the ass-pit I’ve dug myself.

(Yes, I realize I am probably playing Dwarf Fortress all wrong. I haven’t touched the game in almost eight months, and everything is VERY different from what I remember. For one, I’ve never run out of booze so fast, and I made sure to embark with extra.  I chose an all-evil, all-savage biome to start from. Without trees. Or water. I set myself up for an ass kicking. But it is so much !!FUN!!)


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2 responses to “Smells Like Dwarf Fortress, Part Three: Winter is Coming

  1. Justin

    December 9, 2011 at 7:59 PM

    God damnit I have died twice -_-


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