What is it all about and why it is made like this (ASCII instead of 3D) and difficult to understand (need to read so much)?
Camera shutter speed synced to helicopter`s rotor
Ohh_Yeah: **Long response incoming because I love this game.**
>why it is made like this
Dwarf Fortress is made by one person (Toady), with some help from his brother. Simply put, in Dwarf Fortress you embark with a small band of dwarves, which you carefully manage as you construct a suitable fortress. The fortress will be attacked by unpredictable, randomly-generated monsters, and your dwarves will start problems too. They might refuse to work when their friends die, sabotage things when they’re upset, or even attack other dwarves.
Toady’s explicit goal with making Dwarf Fortress is to create an incredibly detailed game that tells unique stories every time. This means that all of his development effort (which he does for free) goes towards detail and emergent story-telling, not graphics. There are mods that replace the ASCII with “graphics,” so it’s not his concern. When the game is simulating combat down to each individual finger and randomly generating so many things, modern visuals aren’t viable.
**In fact it’s so complex that not even Toady can predict what will happen**. There used to be a famous bug where Toady couldn’t determine why cats were constantly getting drunk. It turned out that they were walking around the beer-soaked dining halls, recognizing that their paws were dirty, and licking them. The bug was that these cats were getting a full “dose” of beer from their paws each time rather than just a little bit.
> and difficult to understand
Dwarf Fortress is hard to learn because of both the UI and aforementioned level of detail. Not only are the menus covered in dozens of hotkeys that have to be memorized, but there’s also a lot of detail in management. You can’t just tell the Dwarves “make food here” — you have to specify which crops to grow each season, where to store the seeds and produce, which Dwarf should be in charge of farming, etc. People get discouraged because there’s a lot of work that goes into learning the basics, **plus** you’ve got all the random bad stuff happening. You’re trying to figure out hotkeys and how to create a basic farm layout, but your designated farmer is now throwing a tantrum and starving himself to death because he hates the job he’s best suited for.
DF actually isn’t very difficult once you get over that learning cliff, but most people don’t make it. It’s a game that requires numerous failed attempts just to learn the basics. Even once you’ve learned how to play effectively, you’re still going to lose a lot — only now in spectacular fashion.
Shock_Lionheart: Dwarf Fortress can essentially be boiled down to:
“Here’s 7 manic-depressive alcoholic idiots with little common sense. Build a thriving civilization.”