Bay 12 Games Forum

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  
Pages: [1] 2

Author Topic: Ideas for adding challenge to farming  (Read 984 times)

Hans Lemurson

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« on: September 12, 2021, 11:01:43 pm »

Not pointless restrictions to make it frustrating.

Farming is currently very easy in Dwarf Fortress, to the point of having to ACTIVELY AVOID growing excessive surplusses of food.

Does anybody have any good ideas on ways make Agriculture require more dwarven resources so that it's actually a meaningful consideration in your fortress?

Here's what I'm trying right now:
-All crops must be grown on the surface
-Farms cannot be sealed off from world (sieges cut you off from food).
-Only one farming season
-Farm Plots must be 1xN strips that cannot touch each other

This should in theory increase my agricultural land by 8x, and require me to have large stockpiles of food to withstand sieges, but I worry that it's still going to be too easy.

Does anybody have any other ideas for reasonable farming restrictions that won't be a pain in the butt to actually implement?
Logged
Foolprooof way to penetrate aquifers of unlimited depth.  (Make sure to import at least 10 stones for mechanisms)
Toughen Dwarves by dropping stuff on them.  (Nothing too heavy though, and make sure to wear armor.)
Quote
"Urist had a little lamb
whose feet tracked blighted soot.
And into every face he saw
his sooty foot he put."

DwarfStar

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #1 on: September 12, 2021, 11:46:20 pm »

Are you planning to do this partly via mods? With a mod, you could complicate the production of seeds. You could mod in a greenhouse workshop, and require all seeds to pass through there to convert them into a viable seed form. For example, the plants would produce something like "ungerminated seed" that you'd have to process with a germinate reaction at the greenhouse. You could then make that as expensive and difficult as you wish, requiring potash, or water, or managing a bunch of buckets or whathaveyou.
Logged

Hans Lemurson

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2021, 12:11:59 am »

I'm not trying to complicate the management of farms (DF is already complicated enough to manage as is), just make them more "expensive" in terms of land, labor, and security. 

My motivation is that I'm dissatisfied with being able to feed a whole city from a small mushroom patch under a hill.  I want growing food to be more work for the Dwarves, not for me.
Logged
Foolprooof way to penetrate aquifers of unlimited depth.  (Make sure to import at least 10 stones for mechanisms)
Toughen Dwarves by dropping stuff on them.  (Nothing too heavy though, and make sure to wear armor.)
Quote
"Urist had a little lamb
whose feet tracked blighted soot.
And into every face he saw
his sooty foot he put."

Mobbstar

  • Bay Watcher
  • aka Mossbird
    • View Profile
    • my Invisible, Inc. mods
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2021, 12:29:40 am »

How about farms must be watered on occasion?  This wouldn't make fields bigger, but it would have your farmers run around with buckets, meaning more work to keep that mushroom patch alive.

For making fields bigger, sowing (and the suggested watering) would have to become more efficient.  Something of the scale of human towns would easily require the whole fort population to cultivate.  Perhaps a difference between a carefully tended "garden" where every crop yields, and a mass-producing "field" where a few individual plants fail?

As for spacing fields out and far away from each other, a parasite or blight of any kind could encourage that.  Its spread to other plants must take time according to the distance, jumping open 1-tile gaps with relative ease but struggling to reach the other side of the cavern.
Logged

Hans Lemurson

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2021, 12:39:38 am »

This isn't the modding section, I'm not trying to reinvent the DF farming system.

I'm asking about ideas for easy ways of changing how the player uses farms to make them less efficient in dwarven time and labor. 
Logged
Foolprooof way to penetrate aquifers of unlimited depth.  (Make sure to import at least 10 stones for mechanisms)
Toughen Dwarves by dropping stuff on them.  (Nothing too heavy though, and make sure to wear armor.)
Quote
"Urist had a little lamb
whose feet tracked blighted soot.
And into every face he saw
his sooty foot he put."

delphonso

  • Bay Watcher
  • menaces with spikes of pine
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2021, 12:48:28 am »

Migrants could arrive hungry - like a swarm of locusts that wipe out your stockpiled food.

I expect food is meant to rot more often, considering how much you get. Basically it only rots in the workshops now, but stockpiles - even sun-exposed surface stockpiles - basically preserve food forever.

Ulfarr

  • Bay Watcher
  • Going on a pilgrimage to Mars
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2021, 01:16:07 am »

Use gathering zones instead of farming.

Above ground:
- Find an area with fruit bearing trees and set zones around each tree that you want to gather from. Small (3x3) zones centered around the tree work well.
- If you want to use ladders, remove them from your stockpiles, so your dwarves won't waste time moving them around. They will just leave them near the trees when they are done with the job.
- Instead of walling the area off, train your herbalists in combat and have them double as scouts against incoming enemies.

Below ground:
- If there are soil layers, you could dig a couple of rooms and set gathering zones in them once you breach the caverns and fungi start spawning around. Unless you go way overboard, they won't produce any large quantities of mushrroms but they will add some variety.
- Do it in the caverns.

anewaname

  • Bay Watcher
  • The mattock... My choice for problem solving.
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2021, 06:07:42 am »

This isn't the modding section, I'm not trying to reinvent the DF farming system.

I'm asking about ideas for easy ways of changing how the player uses farms to make them less efficient in dwarven time and labor.
You could decrease efficiency by increasing the hauling distance of grown food and seeds, but dwarfs will still gain Grower skill, causing increased work speed and greater food output. Consider a "Spring has arrived!" overseer task, where you reassign all skilled Growers to non-farming work and assign new ones. Using low-skilled Growers will cut production significantly.
Logged
How did I manage to successfully apply the lessons of The Screwtape Letters to my perceptions of big grocery stores?

Salmeuk

  • Bay Watcher
  • The Happy Hermit
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2021, 05:42:45 pm »

only farm 4 tiles per dedicated farmer.. nerf yourself and your labor.
mod plants to only grow in certain seasons (you can't ask a question like this without considering modding, as it's fairly easy)
don't farm at all is also an option. gathering and butchering only.

I mean, I agree that farming is needlessly easy, but I also tend to find the 'feed the fortress' gameplay tedious after a point, when there are more interesting things about.

only farm on the surface. Only farm in tiles that are adjacent to a water channel (irrigation).
Logged

Metruption

  • Bay Watcher
  • They/Them
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2021, 08:17:50 pm »

You could dig a long and twisting passage to some far off room and put your farms there, it wouldn't be outside but if you constrain all of your civilians to a burrow that doesn't include it during a siege (which you probably should do anyway if you don't already) it will be equivalent to those pesky invaders not allowing you to reach our outdoor fields. Also by being further away it requires more walking.

Think -> main stair down to magma forge -> new stair up to shallow area with soil -> very far away farms
Add zigging and zagging to your heart's content
Logged

Immortal-D

  • Bay Watcher
  • [Not_A_Tree]
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2021, 10:03:26 pm »

Food decay has been my go-to solution.  A large part of the farming's ease also comes from the yield relative to skill, so decreasing that would also make farming more challenging without complexity.

Hans Lemurson

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2021, 06:52:32 am »

Hmm...I suppose excessively long paths to the farms does mimic the increased labor I want, but it still feels wrong somehow.

I wonder why I have a problem with wasting dwarven time, but not with using farms sub-optimally by only letting them be active once a season.

Food decay has been my go-to solution.  A large part of the farming's ease also comes from the yield relative to skill, so decreasing that would also make farming more challenging without complexity.
  What setup do you use to induce food decay?  Is it just as simple as a stockpile with no barrels?

I've been thinking about ways to reduce farming yields, but I keep running into the hard limit that you can't really go below 1 plant per tile per season, and 1 plant = 1 food.

I'm now considering modding ideas, and one thought I had was to perhaps just increase the dwarven appetite.  If a dwarf eats 10 food in a sitting, maybe that would demand the large farms I seem to desire.
Logged
Foolprooof way to penetrate aquifers of unlimited depth.  (Make sure to import at least 10 stones for mechanisms)
Toughen Dwarves by dropping stuff on them.  (Nothing too heavy though, and make sure to wear armor.)
Quote
"Urist had a little lamb
whose feet tracked blighted soot.
And into every face he saw
his sooty foot he put."

PatrikLundell

  • Bay Watcher
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2021, 07:41:40 am »

If you go into modding, you might consider extending the growth time of your crops such that you'd only get a single harvest per "season" by setting the growth time to 90 or even 180 days (to follow the most common pattern of sowing in the spring and harvest in the autumn, although there are places with crops that get multiple harvests in a year). Since the harvesting would happen in a season where they wouldn't be eligible for planting (assuming you implement such a strategy), they wouldn't be able to plant a second round.

Note that I don't know if DF really supports growth times longer than a season for crops, and I've got bad memories of some bugger who made mod with realistic growth times that was promised to be supported for a long time, but the buggy mess was abandoned after a month or so...
Logged

Immortal-D

  • Bay Watcher
  • [Not_A_Tree]
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #13 on: September 14, 2021, 07:38:37 pm »

What setup do you use to induce food decay?  Is it just as simple as a stockpile with no barrels?
There are a few mods which make food poof away after a set amount of time.  I'll see if I can dig them up.

Saiko Kila

  • Bay Watcher
  • Dwarven alchemist
    • View Profile
Re: Ideas for adding challenge to farming
« Reply #14 on: September 15, 2021, 01:49:37 am »

Does anybody have any good ideas on ways make Agriculture require more dwarven resources so that it's actually a meaningful consideration in your fortress?

You could introduce blights, like in RimWorld. That could cause famine, if you do not manage it properly. You could base probability of infection on distance to already infected crops; track what crops were planted in a specific plot (real life blights are usually species-specific), so they have to differentiate; make bigger plots more susceptible.
Logged
Pages: [1] 2