You probably heard about it, but Dwarf Fortress is officially releasing on Steam on December 6th. What started as a free colony sim game now comes with a complete visual redux and a paid release. Dwarf Fortress began development in 2002 where you build a settlement of tiny dwarves underground while encountering multiple intrusions from a plethora of creatures.
The brilliant gameplay offers a deep and intriguing storyline that overshadows the incoherent ASCII text-based graphics and time-consuming learning curves. However, Dwarf Fortress has served to be the inspiration for multiple simulation games from Minecraft to Banished. The intricate gameplay, deep lore, and strategic tactics are what outshines the rest. Fans of Dwarf Fortress have their fair share of victories and demise, due to the numerous ways your fortress would be explicitly destroyed. At most times, it may even be entertaining to watch.
There are numerous ways to horrifyingly fail in your attempt to build the perfect settlement. Leaving your defenses wide open will ensure death by invasion, or a bunch of your dwarves is just out to sow discord among yourselves and chaos will ensue. Creatures lurk in every corner and there is a literal tunnel to hell just right beneath your tiny feet – among other chaotic events, characters, and yes, unexpected deaths in the colony. There is a lot of fun to be found in creating your settlements, understanding their histories, and engaging with your dwarves. Such activities range from celebrating festivities to worshiping skeletal gods, and just about everything in between.
The upcoming Steam version includes a 15-track soundtrack, some of which are also available in the Dwarvish language. It also has pixel art graphics, including tile set mod packs from the Dwarf Fortress community. There will be an in-depth tutorial that was recently added to the original free Dwarf Fortress.
Dwarf Fortress was created by Tarn Adams and his brother, who collectively runs Bay 12 Games, an indie games company. The Alpha version was released in 2006 and attracted a cult following with donations from Dwarf Fortress fans via Patreon. The upcoming Steam release is a collaboration with popular indie game publisher Kitfox, best known for its involvement in Pupperazzi and Boyfriend Dungeon.
The new release of Dwarf Fortress will be available on Steam and itch.io on December 6th. The developers of Bay 12 Games have stated they have no intentions to stop making content for Dwarf Fortress. While we wait for the release, check out the free version over here.