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Author Topic: On the nature of artifact value  (Read 370 times)


  • Escaped Lunatic
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On the nature of artifact value
« on: August 22, 2023, 06:06:43 pm »

Recently, a dwarf made a native gold quern artifact (without any intervention on my part; a rather pleasant surprise) worth 134400 bucks. It's about 10% of the entire wealth in my fort, and almost certainly the most expensive item in my fort. Which inspires some questions:
Since caravans (at least, in the little of DF I've experienced so far) don't really get above maybe 20,000 bucks (as a liberal estimate) worth in goods, is there really a use in making expensive artifacts to sell? Do polities attempt to trade specifically for an artifact they desire (say, with an artifact of their own)?
Is there a use in making more expensive artifacts to keep? If my dwarves use this native gold quern (for example), will the boost to happiness be much greater than if they just used a masterpiece gold quern? Is it better used just for display?


  • Bay Watcher
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Re: On the nature of artifact value
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2023, 01:32:35 pm »

Ironically I think displaying the quern in a high-traffic area like a meeting hall/tavern would increase happiness more than building it and using it. Idea being that dwarves will walk past it and get short-term memories about the happy thought received from seeing it quite frequently, while dwarves who use it would be restricted to dwarves set with the Milling labor. Additionally, if you put the furniture on display in a dining room that isn't legendary it might bump it up higher to there, meaning that dwarves who eat in the dining room might get happy thoughts from viewing the item and eating near it. See this wiki page if you haven't already.

The value might be generally egregious for most caravans, but trading it away might be the easiest way to prevent the thieves coming to take it. It might let you buy out an entire elvish caravan if you care enough to build that sort of relationship with them, rather than just stabbing every knife-ear you see (which might also let you chop down more trees every year).
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