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Author Topic: DFHowTo Tutorial Series  (Read 3544 times)

WanderingKid

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DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« on: October 13, 2016, 07:36:19 pm »

Heya everyone,

I'm finally happy with the first couple of episodes for DFHowTo and I'm going to let them loose into the wild.  For those who aren't familiar with this little project of mine, I decided that what DF really needed was a tutorial series that's tightly built on individual topics and does its best not to meander around for a single topic.  Target is 5-6 minutes in length, except for supplementals where I'll dive deep into a topic.  Supplementals are also going to end up with my opinions laced through them so YMMV, but at least they'll give you a head start.

Bluntly, they're painstaking to produce so this won't be too quick, and I want them reviewed by a few people for content and style before they get sent out into the world, so they will probably be appearing at a rate of 1 or 2 per week, depending.

Opinions, discussion, and criticism are all welcome.  I have a request, though.  These take a long time to build, so if you are going to be critical, please have a reason WHY it sucks.  It can suck, that's fine, but tell me why so I can try to fix the problem.

Completed and available:
What is Dwarf Fortress and DFHowTo?
Creating a New World
Site Selection Basics
Embark Screen Mechanics
Supplemental: Choosing Dwarf Skills at Embark

Scheduled for release:

Under Review:
Site Selection Biomes - Editing occurring, to be posted later.

Currently Drafting:
Supplemental: Choosing Goods at Embark
Fortress Mode Interface - Overview and Interrogation commands
Fortress Mode Interface - Global Report commands
Fortress Mode Interface - The Rest?
LNP settings
Affects of Global Orders

Suggested topics (To Be Drafted/done once I get through my initial outline of topics):
Minecarts.  Oh gods, the Minecarts.  Yes, they're on the list, it's going to be 5-8 episodes long to get all the details straight.  Storage, hauling, mechanics, weaponizing, yes, I know.  Everyone wants minecarts. :)

Aquifers: Piercing them, using them, and abusing them.  Piercing may take two or three episodes to do cleanly for each method's description and examples.  Also, when an aquifer uses different rules (!!science!! needed).  This mostly occurs near oceans.

Time: What each component of time does and means.

Glaciers and ice: How they behave.

Cave-Ins: How to attempt to NOT kill your drunken, bearded Darwin award winners.

Mechanics and power: How to provide it and how to apply it.

Pressure Plates, signals, and delays: What they mean and how to use/abuse them.

Imagination Land: Megaprojects of joy and wonder.

taptap

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2016, 04:51:15 am »

Hi, a few topic suggestions (channeling back to my beginner times), tried to make them short to be suitable for the format and about topics I did wonder about:

Inside <-> Outside, Light <-> Dark, Above <-> Sub:

* How do tiles end up with these properties, what does it affect?

Ice series:

* Melting ice and freezing water: when and what side effects? (still wondering sometimes about it)
* Oddities on a glacier. (Lowest z-level - building with ice.)
* How to make water on a glacier?
* Breaking an aquifer in freezing/cold weather
* How to make an igloo? (Ice casting)

Cave-in series (Dwarvin awards* - think this could work great on youtube):

* How to control miner positioning?
* Channeling cave-ins
* Deconstruction cave-ins
* Tree cave-ins
* Casting cave-ins
* Caving in ice

Engineering:

* Building and connecting a windmill
* How does a screwpump work and five uses for it? (pumping water, pumping magma, training pump operators, propagating power (through an impassable tile) - is that five?)
* Mechanical power
...
* Signals and delays
* How to build multiple links to furniture? (e.g. link a door to two pressure plate, not really intuitive at first, I remember wondering about this at start)
...
* Wonders of Engineering (make a short sightseeing tour of a working computer, clock, ... to stir up the imagination of new players, probably not HowTo anymore)

Time:

* Ticks / days / months / seasons / years
« Last Edit: October 18, 2016, 05:25:35 am by taptap »
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WanderingKid

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2016, 05:09:13 am »

Awesome, thanks for the requests taptap!  In no particular order:

Inside <-> Outside, Light <-> Dark, Above <-> Sub:
* How do tiles end up with these properties, what does it affect?
I intend to do this in the Farming discussion.

Quote
Ice series:
* Melting ice and freezing water: when and what side effects? (still wondering sometimes about it)
* Oddities on a glacier. (Lowest z-level - building with ice.)
* How to make an igloo? (Ice casting)
Hmmm.  Not something I'd thought of.  A bit of science would be involved before I can do this, but it's certainly possible.  Igloo is most easily done with a bucket brigade from an underground aquifer, just FYI, and lowest Z-level is the highest outside square that's exposed that's not part of the permafrost.

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* Breaking an aquifer in freezing/cold weather
Aquifer series.

Quote
Cave-in series (Dwarvin awards* - think this could work great on youtube):
* How to control miner positioning?
* Channeling cave-ins
* Deconstruction cave-ins
* Tree cave-ins
* Casting cave-ins
* Caving in ice
* How to make water on a glacier?
Cave ins I can certainly do... Tree cave-ins?  Um, wha?  You'll need to be a bit more specific unless you're talking about walls that are anchored to tree branches after a tree-cutting.

Quote
Engineering:
* Building and connecting a windmill
* How does a screwpump work and five uses for it?
* Mechanical power
...
* Signals and delays
* How to build multiple links to furniture?
Yes, Five?, Yes, Yes, what?!

Quote
...
* Wonders of Engineering (make a short sightseeing tour of a working computer, clock, ... to stir up the imagination of new players, probably not HowTo anymore)
I'm going to point people at Larix's threads for this one.  That's minecart mastery and he's one of the best at it.  Imagination stirring I can certainly aim for, but a lot of that is minecart mathematics, which are incredibly intricate.

Quote
Time:
* Ticks / days / months / seasons / years
Sure, sounds solid.

Blue_Dwarf

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2016, 12:15:52 pm »

They are looking good so far.

I'm not sure if you actually installed the Phoebus set before recording. The worldgen looked vanilla.
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Crafting Statistics 42.06Farming Statistics

Blue Dwarf has been happy lately. He did some !!science!! recently. He admired a fine forum post lately. He was enraged by a forum troll recently. He was upset by the delayed release of the new version of Dwarf Fortress lately. He took joy in planning a noble's death recently.

WanderingKid

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2016, 01:00:58 pm »

WorldGen always looks vanilla if you have TWBT on.  I assure you, it's on. :)

Fleeting Frames

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2016, 02:50:44 pm »

Quote
Tree cave-ins?
I'd guess taptap means that when you cave in a tree (rather than cutting it down) it will keep causing cave-ins on that empty space.

Minecarts...While intricate clock and AI things don't really fit in 5 minutes, lot of simple and useful stuff does. The exact velocity of unladen minecart on a ramp bouncer to kill thieves doesn't matter much - just knowing it won't derail is more than required. Velocity and acceleration don't really come into play for any guided or (semi-)stationary application.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2016, 02:57:10 pm by Fleeting Frames »
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WanderingKid

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2016, 03:56:43 pm »

First, #3 was issued, see first post.

Quote
Tree cave-ins?
I'd guess taptap means that when you cave in a tree (rather than cutting it down) it will keep causing cave-ins on that empty space.
Oh, you mean bugs that are relatively new and I hope are going to be fixed?  Um, yeah, maybe?  I'm trying to avoid doing those unless they're long standing concerns that just aren't on Toady's list of things to fix for a while.

Quote
Minecarts...While intricate clock and AI things don't really fit in 5 minutes, lot of simple and useful stuff does. The exact velocity of unladen minecart on a ramp bouncer to kill thieves doesn't matter much - just knowing it won't derail is more than required. Velocity and acceleration don't really come into play for any guided or (semi-)stationary application.

Oh, absolutely.  That's a whole different world than clocks and stuff though. :)  I expect I'll end up doing 5-8 episodes on Minecarts alone and that's just for the intro stuff, like dragging one around to put magma pits upstairs and using them as battering rams and water cannons.

WanderingKid

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2016, 12:41:10 pm »

Biome information during Site Selection is released.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nes6MBxF_AE

On a side note, I could still use a few more experienced reviewers for new content for pre-release reviews.  Content, sound, flow, and clarity are all items I'm looking for a reviewer to comment on and hopefully catch anything glaring I miss before release.  Please PM me if interested.

Thatotherguy23

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2016, 06:06:20 pm »

I don't think cutting a tree one level above your fortress and it causing cave-ins every open level down is a bug if that's what you're talking about. Sort of makes sense since the dwarves remove stump and roots that it'd all fall inwards. Just means you'll need to be aware of what trees you're cutting or build road above open areas so trees don't grow. Also should mention (repetition) that since each of those tiles were exposed to the sun they are considered outside tiles and certain things can't be done with them any more.
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Fleeting Frames

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #11 on: October 26, 2016, 10:25:50 pm »

Yay subs! Since I like biomes, reviewing.

That video really doesn't talk about embarking on multiple biomes at the same time, i.e.

0:37 "Mountains and water sites are only sites that are unavailable to embark on"

Shouldn't that be "embark on by themselves", perhaps?

Air biomes also going unmentioned, though they're usually not that big of a deal as ground biomes, only useful for unusual animals, farm plot areas or as source of sand/clay.



You can't farm aboveground on biomes which do not match NOT_FREEZING, but those are mountain, glacier and ocean, not any indication against Freezing grassland. (Tundra and Taiga only have 3 berries, with the latter having 1 tree, but still can.)

0:54 "If it is freezing, assume you can't farm there."

Shouldn't that be then "If it is freezing, assume surface water is frozen year-round there."


Only applies to the selected area - this shows up most often in regards to aquifers only being part of a biome.

2:10 "The list of items below this information will tell you what's available for a particular biome."

Also, sand indicator is dfhack only, of course, so that might be worth a mention - not sure if you mentioned it at the start of first episode.



Might want to adjust wording so that it is clear sedimentary layer isn't always present, even if you don't handle the whole volcanism thing.

2:54: "Iron, coal and flux are almost all in Sedimentary layer, which is shallow."

i.e. ", which is sometimes present near surface."



Drainage can be used to distinguish between swamp and forest with high rainfall, or marsh and shrubland with moderate, and sand desert and badlands with lowest rainfall. That's about it.

Though swamp/marsh in dwarf fortress is far dryer than in reality, so I'm not sure if it is worth mentioning.



@thatotherguy23: Cutting trees one level above your fortress typically only leaves holes, not caveins, but either way I'm not talking about that, but actually caving in the trees without cutting them down - they'll try to regrow, and spam caveins on that spot.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2016, 10:29:03 pm by Fleeting Frames »
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WanderingKid

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2016, 03:35:51 am »

That video really doesn't talk about embarking on multiple biomes at the same time, i.e.
0:37 "Mountains and water sites are only sites that are unavailable to embark on"
Shouldn't that be "embark on by themselves", perhaps?
Yes, it probably should be, however the actual line is:  Mountains and water only sites are unavailable to embark on.
I will have to make that clearer.

Quote
Air biomes also going unmentioned, though they're usually not that big of a deal as ground biomes, only useful for unusual animals, farm plot areas or as source of sand/clay.
WTH is an Air Biome?

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You can't farm aboveground on biomes which do not match NOT_FREEZING, but those are mountain, glacier and ocean, not any indication against Freezing grassland. (Tundra and Taiga only have 3 berries, with the latter having 1 tree, but still can.)
0:54 "If it is freezing, assume you can't farm there."
Shouldn't that be then "If it is freezing, assume surface water is frozen year-round there."
You're absolutely correct.  A freezing grassland is a Tundra, however, and bilberries need to be traded for if at all available.  Taiga is the exception here, and it's a relatively rare biome.  I had originally had a piece in the video describing the differences but cut it for time and a much simpler rule of thumb.

Quote
Only applies to the selected area - this shows up most often in regards to aquifers only being part of a biome.
2:10 "The list of items below this information will tell you what's available for a particular biome."
I'm not sure what you're describing here.  F1/F2/F3 etc are the biome change indicators, and you default to F1's biome for what is seen.  Can you clarify?

Quote
Also, sand indicator is dfhack only, of course, so that might be worth a mention - not sure if you mentioned it at the start of first episode.
Discussed this in the last episode about the DFHack add-ons available via 's'.

Quote
Might want to adjust wording so that it is clear sedimentary layer isn't always present, even if you don't handle the whole volcanism thing.
2:54: "Iron, coal and flux are almost all in Sedimentary layer, which is shallow."
i.e. ", which is sometimes present near surface."
Yeah, I don't want to try to touch on volcanism in this episode, that's a pretty unique case.  However, you're right in that I should mention that it can be exchanged with Igneous Extrusive on occasion if there's volcanos, especially since Native Copper and Galena can throw off the Shallow Metals indicator.  Good call.

Quote
Drainage can be used to distinguish between swamp and forest with high rainfall, or marsh and shrubland with moderate, and sand desert and badlands with lowest rainfall. That's about it.
Though swamp/marsh in dwarf fortress is far dryer than in reality, so I'm not sure if it is worth mentioning.
Not in the case of using the find mechanic unless they're getting into wiki-land worth of information.  One of the concerns I'm running into is keeping the episodes down to reasonable lengths.  My original draft of the controls for Fortress Mode probably would have ran 25 minutes long, and that was without explanative details.  For some of these items I'm glossing over them because they're mostly unused or inconsequential.

Can I talk you into being one of my pre-release reviewers?  This type of criticism is something I need a lot more of.

Fleeting Frames

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #13 on: October 27, 2016, 09:28:24 am »

What is air biome:

Air is divided into 16x16 floor tile blocks of contiguous biomes when above the embark square's highest elevation point.

The biome used is drawn on embark semi-randomly from current or any of the 8 adjacent region tiles, differing when re-embarking in same area. In addition, on edge cases the tropicality may get swapped.

They have their own soil types, and when obsidian is cast and dug away such soil is revealed.

As they're part of actual biomes, building a stair up to map edge will let air biome-appropriate animals enter, even if those biomes are not present on ground level.

The most obvious indicators of them are usually snow-laden treetops or evil rain, clouds or flying undead when embark isn't that cold or evil. With a bit more work, they can be checked with farm plots.

There is a longer, more in-depth discussion in showbiomes dfhack script thread, and the Q&A thread it sprang from.

A freezing grassland isn't tundra, a freezing grassland just has temperature below 0 but above -5. Ex:



Tundra happens when temperature is below -5 and is typically after it towards the pole.


But yeah, I didn't really consider compactness.

As for the F1-F2-F3 thing, try moving around with 1x1 embark on a single contigious biome with aquifer - you'll see that only some spots have it. Embarking on an overlap area can be jarring when the aquifer stops at embark tile boundary. I think metals can also vary, but not so sure about sand or clay.

I might pre-review a few if you PM me, depending on topic. This was much better than I expected, and not needing spoken english to understand was nice for me, personally, given me being crap at it.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2016, 09:33:15 am by Fleeting Frames »
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WanderingKid

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Re: DFHowTo Tutorial Series
« Reply #14 on: October 27, 2016, 01:07:27 pm »

What is air biome:

Air is divided into 16x16 floor tile blocks of contiguous biomes when above the embark square's highest elevation point.

The biome used is drawn on embark semi-randomly from current or any of the 8 adjacent region tiles, differing when re-embarking in same area. In addition, on edge cases the tropicality may get swapped.
Okay, I can't speak to that quickly, I've got some reading to do.  Thanks for the links.

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A freezing grassland isn't tundra, a freezing grassland just has temperature below 0 but above -5.
Well, the wiki lied to me on that one...
http://dwarffortresswiki.org/index.php/DF2014:Tundra
Tundras are essentially a freezing grassland, with no above ground flora of any kind, and no above ground water sources. 

There are a few exceptions listed, but I didn't dig into the links deep enough apparently.  That was subtle, I thought there were only bilberries.

Quote
But yeah, I didn't really consider compactness.
That's really making me pick and choose my battles here.  I'm trying to create a flowing walkthrough to get people enough knowledge to get themselves going and understanding what they're seeing without becoming a video encyclopedia of the wiki.  I need to be more obvious about when I'm skipping things for brevity though, so they know that at some point they may want to go digging.

Quote
As for the F1-F2-F3 thing, try moving around with 1x1 embark on a single contigious biome with aquifer - you'll see that only some spots have it. Embarking on an overlap area can be jarring when the aquifer stops at embark tile boundary. I think metals can also vary, but not so sure about sand or clay.
Ah, okay, I know what you're talking about.  That can be caused by a number of factors.  The one I've ran into the most is near oceans.  It's listed as an aquifer and behaves (kind of) like one, but isn't biome consistent because it's caused by the nearby water and eventually you can get deep enough inland that it won't affect the biome.  Those aquifers typically behave strangely, and I'm still doing some !!science!! to figure out why they do.

Quote
I might pre-review a few if you PM me, depending on topic. This was much better than I expected, and not needing spoken english to understand was nice for me, personally, given me being crap at it.
  One of the things I've been doing for this series, which is both adding time and making it a lot more coherent, is writing scripts for the episodes.  I'm glad to know that's helping on the other side, too. :)
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