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Author Topic: Returning to DF  (Read 2488 times)

orius

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Returning to DF
« on: November 25, 2020, 12:17:52 pm »

So I've picked up DF again recently after being away from some time.  The last version I played was 34.11 when the computer I was using stopped working properly.  After coming back, I played a few games of 34.11 to relearn how to play the game instead of jumping into a completely new version altogether.  While there was a lot of stuff I did remember, there was also a lot of stuff I'd forgotten, and some of the results weren't pretty.  The first fortress accidentally breached an aquifer, and I managed to lose another fort to a tantrum spiral, which was the first time that actually happened to me.

I'm running an older computer here, so I don't know exactly how much of the newer stuff it can handle.  The wiki unfortunately treats everything from 40.01 to 47.04 as a single version of the game, which seems to be related to save compatibility or something.  It doesn't help either when I'm looking up information that it has everything from 40.01 to 47.04 as one version.  However, there's been eight years worth of changes and I don't want to try learning all of that at once, and as I said, I want to see what the computer can handle.  In particular, I don't know if it can handle the 64-bit stuff, so I'm going to test different releases, though the newer stuff does have 32 bit versions too.  From what I can tell, there's at least 4 different versions of the game: 40.25, 44.12, and 47.04 all seem like discrete versions of the game. I'm not sure about 42.x and 43.x though.  There's only about 7 months difference between 42.01 and 43.05 so it's possible they're really just all one version of DF with the little additions and bugfixes, but 43.05 is where the jump to 64-bit goes.  I don't know if I should go all the way to 43.05 after 40.25 or go to 42.06 or some other intermediate release first.

Also, the legacy releases of the LNP doesn't support every single release, which is fine because because some of the releases do have a lot of bugs and stability problems.  Also, I'm not really sure how much of this newer stuff I want to deal with, some of it sounds very complicated, but then like I said, there's about 4 or 5 versions of the game for me to catch up with here.  By comparison, when I first played there were only 3 versions of DF.

I've been running a pair of forts in 40.25 to test the first newer (to me anyway) version of DF.  In general, I'm mostly enjoying this version of DF.  It's still pretty similar to 34.11 but with some new features which are mostly positive.

First, there's the active world.  With this, I don't really have to lose a game ever again, I can get the fort to a certain point, retire and start fresh.  Instead of playing a fortress, I can play a whole dwarf civilization and build up its holdings around the world, though my understanding is that later versions play that aspect even more strongly, like sending out armies to conquer other sites and stuff.  I can sort of set a personal victory condition for my fort, like getting the monarch to arrive or something, and then retire or keep playing until I hit FPS death.  It's possible I might hit FPS death before that but instead of just abandoning a fort that's slowed to an unplayable crawl, I can at least retire it and see how long it can last on its own.

I like the trees.  They provide a nice amount of timber, and I don't have to clear cut my maps any more for wood.  I just have to watch out for digging through roots, or big ass mushrooms growing and wrecking my fort.  The new crops and such are interesting, though a number of them are bugged.  Tree fruits are good for making booze, but the seeds are a pain in the ass.  I can't plant fresh tress, so they're useless, and I can't find a way to sell them individually out of bags.  I suppose I could set up a stockpile for just tree seeds so I can sell them out of the bags.  I think I'm going to autodump them with DFHack under my atom smasher to get rid of them instead though.  I can edit the raws to remove the seeds entirely though, right?  Probably just comment out a [SEED] tag on the trees?

I like the additions to the designation menu, particularly for mining.  It took a bit of getting used to at first, but marking off spots because getting ready to dig really helps with the planning, and mining priorities are a huge improvement.  I found some old mining designation macros I'd set up and they work even better in 40.25.  I can put the exploratory mining pattern and mine shafts in marker mode to set things up in an organized fashion.  The housing block macro works great with prioritization -- I can set the priority for the whole thing up at 4 or 5 and then when I'm digging out the initial stuff I can mark stuff I need right now like starting work shops, sleeping areas and small dining rooms to a 1 or a 2.  Then the stuff I need right away gets dug out first, and the miners go back to digging out the rest in the background while I'm setting up the fort's basics.  Before, I'd run the macro and remove designations to just mine what I needed now, but this is much more convenient.  The automining is another good feature, I just hope it stops when the miners hit damp or hot stone.  I'll need to be careful using it around the caverns, but I read that marker mode designations will stop automining.

Sporing's gone.  Well, that's not too much of a problem since it give me more control over animal breeding.  There's gelding too but I really don't need that too much with sporing gone.  I'm less happy about animals that aren't receptive to breeding though.  In one of my forts, if I'm reading the information in Therapist correctly, I've got a pig and a sheep that don't want to breed and they're my starting livestock.  Unfortunately, that means I have to wait to buy fresh stock to get those industries up and running.  I did just have the first human caravan stop by, and I bought fresh stock, so hopefully that'll fix the problem.  At least my starting dogs, cats, and turkeys are breeding.  I don't care one way or other about dwarf breeding, I keep the child cap low and the migrants bring so many kids with them that nobody's having babies in my fort anyway.

I'm kind of mixed on the new stress system.  It doesn't look too different from the older happiness system, and my setup which kept my dwarves very happy is also apparently good at stress relief.  But I was less than thrilled about the dwarves getting horrified over killing goblins.    I think I'm going to switch to a a cage heavy trap system and use my old pitting strategy to harden them against anti-goblin atrocities.  The approach was simple: after stripping them of armor and weapon, I drop them down a 6 or 7 z-level shaft where my soldiers wait to kill them.  The fall isn't enough to kill them unless they land on their heads, and usually they break 2 or 3 limbs which makes it harder to fight back.

I'm not overly pleased with FPS either.  The first 40.25 fort has slowed to 10 FPS and I'm only in my third year.  I think some of it's population related, I set the population cap at 150, and that's far too many dwarves.  There's too many kids and idlers, and I don't really need that many dwarves either.  The FPS counter seemed to take some hits every time I got a new migration wave, but I also don't know how much digging and production is affecting things either.  I'm testing a new fort at a 100 cap to see how well that works.  I honestly don't need a lot of dwarves to run things comfortably, so I think a cap from 80 - 100 will probably suffice.  I was doing some reading up on topics from around the release of 40.x and everyone seemed to be having FPS problems at first though.  Some of it is likely from an active world and unavoidable.  Other problems might have been fixed through code optimization during the different releases of 40.x  Again, this is one of the things I'm testing by trying different versions of the game to see what version of DF this computer can handle.

I need some information on how to set up tree fruit gathering, since the wiki isn't being helpful.  I know I need to set up a plant gathering zone for the dwarves to pick fruit.  Do I need one for each individual tree, or can I have one central zone?

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Dunamisdeos

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #1 on: November 25, 2020, 07:27:22 pm »

Nah you can just set a zone and they will gather fruit from it. You need stepladders for them to use.
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orius

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #2 on: November 25, 2020, 07:42:48 pm »

So just one zone, and they'll go around picking from trees?  I had a zone set up near some sand pear and peach trees that were rigth outside my entrance, and made of course made sure to make a ladder.  That looked like it worked right.  I also had some apples in my storage and none of the apple trees were anywhere near the zone I set.  I wasn't sure if the dwarves were picking them off the ground or harvesting them from the trees.
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Dunamisdeos

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2020, 07:45:39 pm »

You know, I'm not sure if they recover them from the ground. I don't do fruit often.

My impression was that they will only gather from trees using stepladders. Someone else might weigh in and correct me. However, 5-6 stepladders in action is usually enough to gather from a large area pretty quick.
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Uthimienure

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #4 on: November 25, 2020, 09:39:20 pm »

You can set the gathering options  t, s, f (defaults are "on").
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Thisfox

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #5 on: November 25, 2020, 09:58:13 pm »

On seeds: I have a seed stockpile that won't take barrels/containers, just bags. I then sell the bags of tree fruit seeds and buy the same number of empty bags back. The original bag is gone, the number of bags remains the same. I actually really enjoy selling tree seeds to elves, as roleplaywise, it just amuses me. They don't sell bags, but humans do, so I buy them from the humans when they arrive. I've always got a floating supply of bags for my glassworks industry anyhow. They're very cheap to make from leather.

On FPS: I found my machine runs the more recent versions of DF better than the older versions. It feels like there used to be more overhead, and now my FPS has sorted itself out with the latest (leap day) version. My machine has not changed in any way. I don't use any of those extras like Therapist or LNP or whatever though. Perhaps they eat into your FPS?

On animals: If my beasts don't breed, I slaughter them and buy more. Humans and Dwarfs are both able to deliver pigs and sheep if you ask them, and might even do so by chance. And animal meat for roasts with bonus leather for more bags is always nice. Make sure you have a tanner on duty ready to go though!

Also, welcome back to DF.
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orius

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #6 on: November 26, 2020, 10:04:55 am »

I suppose I could set up a stockpile for tree seeds only, no barrels, and trade them away, but I'm stingy with bags.  I always need bags, but they're not hard to produce either.  Modifying the raws might be better long term though since I don't need the seeds and reducing the amount of stuff the game produces is supposed to help FPS over the long term.

I'm largely testing stuff to see what performance I get from it.  I'm aware of the different things that are supposed to impact FPS, though there's been some amount of disagreement on the causes as well.  40.x+ is calculating more stuff which will slow things down, but it did feel like some things were running soother than in earlier versions.  Like I said above, I'm going to go with a lower population cap.  I might mod stuff to remove caverns 2 and 3, and put their biota up in cavern 1.  An embark that's 100-150 levels deep is overkill and I've never been able to exploit all that.  But I don't want to hit the first cavern early either, since my standard fort design goes down 7 levels, and I like at least 2 levels below that for drainage channels and other bits of infrastructure.  I know how to play around with world generation to tweak caverns.

As for the extras, I checked Soundsense, and turning that off didn't seem to impact anything.  Therapist, I'm not sure, but I usually only use that when the game is paused, and sometimes close it when I'm not using it.  The only other thing that's running alongside DF is DFHack, but I'd imagine that thing is optimized as much as possible.  I'll run Stonesense occasionally to take a look at things, usually outside, but that's run while the game is paused.  The only other extras I run from the LNP aren't that useful during Fortress mode anyway.

With animals, I've largely stuck with female stock in the past and used males for meat.  With pigs and sheep, I get milk, and birds will give eggs.  So breeding issues aren't too serious here since I was always keeping only 1 or 2 males as studs anyway.  Without spores, I have to tweak a few things here and there but it was no big deal.  Sheep need less space now, which is good, and I'm setting up about 3 double sized pastures for breeding.  Other animals I can easily pasture side by side.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2020, 10:31:37 am by orius »
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anewaname

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #7 on: November 26, 2020, 11:38:23 am »

Regarding gathering fruit and nuts.... you will collect plenty by having the zone set to gather the fruit from the ground, but when you gather from the tree, there are a couple of buggy situations that can develop that seem to happen eventually (multiple dwarfs stuck in the same tree tile, trying and failing to pick fruit in that tile. This seems to happen when your dwarfs are using stepladders and when using stairs to get into the trees). Because of the bug, I only use fruit collection from the ground.

Also, fruit seems to always be seasonal and there will be none until autumn.
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orius

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2020, 02:43:10 pm »

Well, the trees at this fort seem to bear fruit around mid to late summer.  I've only used one dwarf to gather, but I'm not too impressed by it, especially since it's only once a year.  Still it's a new feature to me, so I want to experiment with it a bit.

And...gah!



Okay, I know you've just arrived at my fort by why the hell are you socializing with the elves?!?  What kind of self repecting dorf are you?  You don't even like elves for their grace!  Just because she's named Cacame doesn't mean she's worth anything, after all there is only ONE Immortal Onslaught.

Speaking of elves, I see they've lost their bins and bins of cloth from 40.x onwards.  That's not cool, I relied on that cloth for my clothing industry, and the bins came in handy afterwards.  You had one job, elf and now you're not even doing that.   Now your only use is whatever interesting animals you bring along that I might be able to breed.  They brought a python this year, and unfortunately it was male.  I bought it anyway since it was one of the only interesting things on the caravan, and maybe they'll bring a female I can breed in the future.  They can't be used for war, but python eggs and leather might be fun to produce.

I am feeling some urges to dunk the elves in the magma.
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orius

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2020, 06:16:14 pm »

Reducing the fortress population to 100 improved the FPS a little, but only a little.  It's maybe 10 fps better. 

Anyway, I'm going to move up to the next version of DF, the LNP has it final 32-bit release as 43.03 so I'll go with that.  From what I've been reading the new stuff to learn here is:

  • Taverns
  • Temples
  • Libraries
  • Useless crap finally gets a use

I've been sort of looking forward to trying out the taverns.  From what I understand, they can overlap dining rooms and I think my dining room layout should work fairly well with it:



It's the same layout for the standardized fort design I came up with when I was running 34.x, with some tweaking.  For example, I found that the big food storage area was much more than I really needed so I divided it in two with food on one side and booze on the other.  For taverns, I can probably put a little 3x2 room in between the two sections there to stash mugs and goblets. 

Up in the upper right is a storage area for clothes.  My original thoughts when I planned the dining room area would be that the stuff across from the water reservoir would be for stores and stuff when the economy got reactivated.  Well, the economy isn't back yet, that stuff was pretty well broken from what I understand, but that part of the fortress I'll use for the libraries, temples, and other social areas.

My plans for preventing cave adaptation with the dining room did not work unfortunately, as I have a good number of barfy dorfs.  So I'll probably have to set up a small sculpture garden on the surface or something.  The military squads will have some outside patrols too.  The main upside to that is that digging out the dining hall from the surface then flooring it over was pretty time consuming, so I can skip that.

Children start playing with toys now, so I guess that gives me a use for all that lead I keep digging up on my maps.   :P

Dorfs bling themselves out with jewelry now, I guess I can put some of that stuff with the clothes and the instruments get used in the tavern too.

Job materials can be specified, so I don't need to use DF Hack for that, and there's been some improvements to work orders, so that might remove some of the job suspension kludges I've been relying on, but I'll have to see how things really work out in game.
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Dunamisdeos

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2020, 07:15:15 pm »

Tavernkeepers will either A) Be totally fine, or B) Kill half your dwarves with alcohol poisoning.

I have experienced both.
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orius

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #11 on: December 01, 2020, 09:49:36 pm »

It's all part of the learning process.
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That is an insane and dangerous plan.  I approve wholeheartedly. 


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Dunamisdeos

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #12 on: December 01, 2020, 09:57:55 pm »

Dwarf: Dies of alcohol poisoning

Other Dwarves:

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FACT III: "All life begins with Post-it notes and ends with Post-it notes. This is the truth! This is my belief!...At least for now."
FACT IV: SPEECHO THE TRUSTWORM IS YOUR FRIEND or BEHOLD: THE FRUIT ENGINE 3.0

Thisfox

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2020, 03:08:33 am »

Odd tileset.

The storage area for clothes looks suspiciously like it is full of bins. The problems with bins are uncountable, but I found my dorfs were less pissed off and far more clothed when I just made a big clothes storage area binless so they could access clothing as they wanted, instead of only access it "when no one else is thinking about the bin 80 z-levels away" which appears to be the most annoying thing about bins. Two dorfs want a hat, and even though they want a completely different hat to each other, both hats were in the same bin, so they just make rude gestures at each other over the bin for half an hour of play time while bringing FPS to a crawl, then walked away to have a drink and pray. Great work guys. Thanks heaps. So yeah, my recommendation is to start looking at binless storage for clothes.

What are all the staple-looking red-and-white things, bottom left south of the reservoir?
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Eric Blank

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Re: Returning to DF
« Reply #14 on: December 02, 2020, 04:42:00 am »

Looks like bones/body parts almost.
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