is a deceptive little gem. After hearing all sorts of crazy stuff about it, I decided to give it a try... And, to be honest, I thought it was a joke. The UI was absolutely impenetrable and, due to the ASCII display, it took me an hour just to figure out what the hell I was looking at.
One glorious, Fun-laden year later, I am looking back at that first attempt and laughing my ass off.
Dwarf Fortress thrives on its depth. While most games boast about "100 hours of play time!", that is not depth. That is merely length
. This game absolutely bowled me over with its sheer complexity — While the basic premise is childishly simple (Build a dwarven fortress!
), there are many equally valid ways to go about building your
fortress, and there are so many variables (Climate! Terrain! Megabeast attacks! Et cetera!) that no two embarks are ever quite the same; Each fortress develops a character and narrative of its own, and the game's extreme customisability only adds to the rich variety.
So, is this game for everyone? Oh, HELL
no. I cannot stress this point enough. The interface is utterly incomprehensible for the first few days, some features don't quite work the way they should
, and quite a bit of patience and micromanaging is required while you watch your fortress blossom. Furthermore, Dwarf Fortress comes with absolutely no predetermined goals — while some people like setting their own goals, others just won't find this game very satisfying. Also, this game requires a lot of processing power, and on less-powerful computers can run so slowly as to be virtually unplayable.
is hit-or-miss — you will either love it or hate it passionately, and I myself thought the game was a waste of time until I found the wiki and had it explained to me. If you're unsure, try reading the various Lets Plays
, particularly the infamous Boatmurdered; it'll help you get a good idea of whether this is a game you would enjoy.
Overall, this is certainly worth a look, although it may not be your cup of tea.