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Author Topic: Dwarven Express  (Read 3707 times)

Sanctume

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #15 on: June 06, 2017, 01:14:11 pm »

I can just imagine a building destroyer toppling windmills and rollers. 

Then I can't wait for adventurers to be able to rebuild those broken tracks.

hun

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #16 on: June 06, 2017, 06:57:12 pm »

It was my fear as well. But that actually seems to be quite a rare occassion. I don't think that buildings can be destroyed when site is offloaded, and dwarves can easily repair if something happened while you are still building the sector. It also may happen during adventurer's trip I guess, but so far I cannot remember such instances (there was one strange case, when a track-stop accidently switched to the highest friction afterwards, it is still a mystery for me; I had to reclaim the sector again to repair).

And by the way, an adventurer has a lot of freedom while riding. He can freely accelerate/decelerate by pushing the minecart in required direction. So, in the worst case you can take velocity control under your full control! I've killed a bunch of adventurers in such a manner when were playing around with the system...

hun

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #17 on: June 08, 2017, 10:40:56 pm »

First test and Sector 2 preparations

One morning, the  Administration's employee Tobul Kilrudtat shown up at the surface fortifications of Rackmassive. The bright sun was already out in the skies, but the wind blowing from the southeast was surprisingly cold. Tobuls involuntarily shrieved and moved out outside of the walls toward Sector 1. Unlike most of the Rackmassive population, he didn't have cave adaptation, which likely was the reason to choose him for the mission; he wasn't a big fan of fresh air though. Well, the business is the business.

One hour later he already was greeting the workers of Sector 1, many of whom were his long-time acquaintances. He could not miss the opportunity to drink a couple of mugs of nice localy produced rice beer in the (truly modest) tavern and to have some small talks. Yet another hour later he finally got to the depot. There was a row of simple wooden carts on the rails; Tobul sat inside the first one and tried to accommodate himself as comfortable as possible, then pushed himself off. After ten meters or about, the cart was picked up by the rollers, and it rushed forward, toward the slowly rising sun.

Even taking into account Tobuls' neutrally-negative attitude to the surface, he could not help but to release a satisfied sigh, when the minecart, after a couple of tunnels, rolled along the hill slope, and the marvellous sight of awakening savanna was laying on the left-hand. Besides, the feeling of fast movement was really good. "Yes, travellers surely may fork out for that, " -- Tobul mumbled to himself, -- "and what if to offer them luxorious gold carts with on-board drinks and meals!" -- Tobul's eyes glowed with greed for a moment.

Spoiler: On A Rail (click to show/hide)

Before coming to the bridge the cart almost hit one of the sector's miners, but he managed to jump off at the last moment with the kobold's agility. Tobul broke out with the swearing, but before he finished the cart hit to death two dogs, one after another. This brought little inconvenience to Tobul, and the cart didn't slow down much, but the dwarf was enraged. Before official completion of a sector -- lock all the animals in cages!!! -- he scribbled in his notebook. "Would be great to do the same for the builders as well" -- he thought, but didn't write.

For the rest of the sector, no problems arose. After passing the end of the rails at the eastmost end of the sector, the cart rolled some distance on the dirt, before stopping and plunging partially into the soft soil. Tobul jumped off in advance and got off with dirty pants. Sector 1: testing done successfully -- he wrote in the notebook. Then he looked around and saw several felled and sawn into parts tree trunks nearby (left by the Sector 1 workers). He used a couple of middle-sized logs to mark the correct position for rails on future Sector 2 territory.

According to the instructions, he had as well to walk along the whole Sector 2 to gather some secondary information for the Administration and the building group. However, the primary reconnaissance have shown nothing suspicious, so no surprises were expected. Tobul scratched the back of his head, and looked with doubts to the significant uphill rise, beginning to the east. After couple of minutes of hesitation, he finally gave up, shrugged and went off back to the depot (leaving the cart in the dirt). A couple of additional hours in the tavern looked a way more attractive alternative, after all.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2017, 11:04:55 pm by hun »
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hun

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #18 on: June 11, 2017, 02:26:55 pm »

Sector 2 (221 - 224)

In case of the second sector, the remains of diplomatic influence of Rackmassive worked at the maximum power. Coupled with rumors about the great project, started to circulate among all dwarven civilizations of the world, this allowed The Railway Administration to contract The Brass Seal, a mighty northern dwarven country, as the builders of Sector 2. They agreed very easily, partially hoping to gather some valuable information for their own engineering researches, partially wanting to strengthen connections and political influence on The Steel of Compating. Finally, it was a good chance to do some scouting in the middle continent, which mostly was an unexplored mystery to The Brass Seal.

And so, seven volunteers from The Brass Seal arrived at The Administration in Rackmassive, ready to take over the Sector 2 of The Railway. In such a way, The Railway became the international dwarven project, almost at the very beginning of its development. Although, of course, Rackmassive and The Steel of Combating still had full authority over the management and planning. The supplies for Sector 2 construction were also provided by The Administration.

The second sector was longer and narrower than the first one (1x16 versus 2x10). At the westmost end of the sector was gentle upward slope toward the east, ending with a plateau. A river crossed the sector almost exactly in the middle. The surroundings were quite hot and non-freezing in the winter just as before, but the tropical savanna partly turned into the temperate one.

Soon after the embark, a similar settlement as the previous one was established. There were more comfortable single bedrooms instead of the dormitory this time, but otherwise it was the same level of ascetical minimalism.

The construction of Sector 2 went smooth and without any particular troubles. Connection of the rails was done properly according to the signs left by Tobul. Part of the rails on the west end were raised above ground by a low bridge with wooden supports, then rails went uphill, equiped with all required rollers by well-studied by that time technology, and finally, the flat part of the sector. It required digging a couple of channels to prevent unnecessary elevation change of the railway (there were a couple of small hills -- too low ones to dig the tunnels). Unlike the first sector, the rails went straight, without any horizontal turns.


There was an interesting case of cultural exchange between two dwarven civilizations. Coordinator from the Administration who came one day to check things out accidently notice a curious musical instrument in the corner of the dinner hall called kulal, which was consisting of a single stone block. A musician literally forces the stone to sing by powerful blows.

Spoiler: Kulal (click to show/hide)

The best kulal performers are typically the strongest miners, haulers, masons, although there were a whole lot of subtle techniques to learn, for making the best sound possible. Tough "dwarfness" of this instrument deeply amazed the coordinator: The Steel of Combating have never invented anything similar. He immediately asked the builders to prepare a number of masterpiece kulals for the tavern of Rackmassive. A small storage room was prepared for finihsed kulals nearby the railway, and one of the initial seven, Accomplished Mason by that time, had wasted tons of stone in order to produce around twenty masterpiece kulals. All instruments of worse quality had been sold to human and elven caravans (although nobody among them, for sure, would learn how to play this wonderful instrument). Later on, kulals could be easily transported to Rackmassive using the railway.

Talking about other interesting incidents of Sector 2, one could mention giant land tortoises. There were plenty of them wandering around. One day an expedition leader had noticed fruitless attempts of a bit stupid hunter, who was wasting one wooden bolts pack after another with no visible harm to a rigid shell of the animal. Even hunting dogs were completely useless.
At the end, the dwarves found the way to use motionlessness of a scared tortoise. They were simply putting the cage trap under the animal. Sometimes a tortoise could evade this trick, but a lot of them were trapped. More than twenty of these tortoises were captured and tamed, which made a good addition to the food industry of the sector and in the same time, greatly increased the biological knowledge of The Brass Seal. It also helped to increase the safety of The Railway: one time during the railway tests a minecart with a dwarf on it hit a tortoise, which lead to the full stop of the minecart without any impulse to the animal! The dwarf was lucky to get off with only light injuries.

Due to the significant amount of experience, gathered by Sector 1 builders and carefully passed to the next building group, all the main labors were done in 2 years. After which, while waiting for completion of the kulals order, it was decided to construct an auxiliary depot above the rails.


The purpose of this construction was an easy start for an adventurer, who would want to begin his travel from Sector 2. That could be done just by taking the cart and pushing off in the needed direction. In the same time, all minecarts, passing on the main railway 1 level below, were completely unaffected by this construction. It could hardly be called a fully functional station, of course, but the usefullness of this unplanned structure, initiative of the builders and valuable engineering experience for the sake of all dwarves were highly appreciated at the head office in Rackmassive.

The building group of Sector 2 was given special thanks by The Administration, all the builders could also freely get citizenship in The Steel of Combating now.

During last several weeks, a dwarf was sent by The Administration to test everything and to perform usual marking task for the next region.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The time for Sector 3 has come.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2017, 11:16:33 am by hun »
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hun

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2017, 12:05:02 pm »

I ended up realizing, that literal translation of the original posts is way too time-consuming. And those post are mainly boring anyway.
However, I still have 7 more sectors done, and also I have vague plans to continue the project. So I want to give at least some very brief summary of what have been done.

First of all, I spent some time and prepared a stylized map of The Great Railway and surroundigs. It is still a bit unfinished, I will continue work on it. Also
I didn't put all the rivers on the map, only those close enough to the railway.
Spoiler: Map (click to show/hide)

Sector 3 (224-227)
Terrain: From west to east, starts with small downslope, then almost flat plain, with the river from north to south, almost exactly on the middle of the sector. West half is covered with savanna, both temperate abd tropical; east half is covered with marshes and tropical forest.

Constractions: Straight railways, as usual, and a minecart warehouse. The warehouse was loaded with cargo minecarts: around 1500 of quartzite blocks for future sectors and one minecart full of soap, made of various plant oils, to be delivered later in Rackmassive.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Brief log, incidents, etc: There were several langur attacks, one attack of weregekkon (a couple of dwarves died), and strange lack of immigrants (the sector had less than 40 builders by the end).

Sector 4 (227-233)
Terrain: From west to east, a very mild slope (3-4z). Sector covered with marshes and tropical forests. Partial aquifer.

Constractions: Straight railways, plus the main feature of the sector, an uninhabited railway station. The building of the station contains a waiting hall, stockpiles with food, drinks, few sets of simple armor, weapons and ammo. Two rooms allowing for temporal accomodaton of 4 travellers. Also, a well and a minecart warehouse. Near the building the sculptural composition is located; it depicts a dwarf and a train of 5 minecarts. The railways in front of the station are equipped with mechanisms for launching and stopping of multiple-minecart trains.
Spoiler: Station (click to show/hide)
Spoiler: Station (click to show/hide)
Spoiler: Station (click to show/hide)

Brief log, incidents, etc: During the construction, 7 dwarves died due to two werebeast attacks, and 2 dwarves died due to construction/testing incidents.
This video happened right after completing of Sector 4. It demonstrates transportation of numerous cargo from Sector 4 to Sector 1, using 4-minecarts train. The process is not really easy, you need to be careful in adjusting the velocity of the leading minecart, try to remove safely (with crossbow or temporal acceleration of the leding minecart) all living obstacles and so on. But it is very fun. I should repeat it later with more sectors. The cargo that were transported for later use in Rackmassive contained 250 bars of steel, 800 good cotton cloths, 700 papirus sheets, 500 cut gems. Minecarts were made of platinum.

Sector 5 (233-242)
Terrain: The sector contains a really great canyon, 37z levels, with a river at the bottom. The river and the canyon located closer to the west edge of the sector. Vegetation is still tropical.

Constractions: The main costruction is the bridge over the canyon. It is made out of approximately 9000 quartzite blocks and has total of 15 supporting columns with arcs between them. The arc over the river is slightly wider than the rest. The bridge is named after Thikut - the name of the first train driver.
Spoiler: Bridge (click to show/hide)
Spoiler: Bridge (click to show/hide)
There is a sign on each enter to the bridge, alerting users of potential danger.
Spoiler: Sign (click to show/hide)

Brief log, incidents, etc: Due to a longer construction period, the sector had a military guard of 2 dwarves, and also a library, where a legendary mechanic, a veteran of Sector 4, Litast led engineering researches. During all time, 17 dwarves died - mostly due to werebeast attacks, a couple of construction accidents and a few failed strange moods. 14 artifacts were made, including two axes and a bunch of trinkets.

Sector 6 (242-245)
Terrain: Almost flat plain, covered with tropical marshes and shrublands. Small brook in the middle of the sector.

Constractions: Just straight rails with usual markers, no other constructions.

Brief log, incidents, etc: A dwarf-werebeast caused a loyalty cascade during the last year; it was a chaos, dwarves started to kill each other. There were massive casualties (around 20) and the sector had to be abandoned and reclaimed right after that to finish construction.

Sector 7 (245-250)
Terrain: Plain with very mild shills (1-2z), covered with tropical marshes and, to the east, savanna. Wide aquifer layers (but not covering an entire sector)

Constractions: Straight railway and a railway T-junction, allowing on-the-fly switch to/from the south from both directions.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
User on a minecart simply need to pull the lever (one of those rigth on the rails) to alternate direction, without stopping the movement. The system is based on opening/closing hatches, and was later proved to be fully usable in adventure mode (requires careful use of "." to not miss the lever). It also perfectly works multiple-minecart trains.
Junction were needed since there were plans to locate small Sector 8 to the south, and Sector 9 again to the east; also to develop and test the technology.

Brief log, incidents, etc: Around 10 dwarves died due to werecamel attack. One dwarf were cursed and sent to explore the caverns.

Sector 8 (250-254)
Terrain: Small rectangular (3x2) sector to the south of Sector 7. Tropical marshes and shrublands, almost no slopes.

Constractions: The main purpose of the sector is to maintain tavern (and temple) a bit aside from the main Railway. The tavern is named "The Paddle of Friends" and has all basic tavern services. The building is deliberately dwarf-styled: geometrically quite simple and made solely of diorite. There is a small, but comfortable salon, which also has all musical instruments known to The Steel of Combating. The second floor has 10 rooms for visitors, and the room of tavern master Monom (who was also the leader of sector working group). The tavern serves numerous dishes and drinks (including fruit wine, rice and wheat beer). For the emergencies, there is a storeroom with some military equipment. Outside the tavern, there are a small pyramidal temple and a minecarts warehouse.
Spoiler: Salon floor (click to show/hide)
Spoiler: Rooms floor (click to show/hide)
Spoiler: General view (click to show/hide)

Brief log, incidents, etc: 1 dwarf died in a railway testing accident. After completing the tavern, the sector was not abandoned as usual, but all 19 dwarves stayed as maintenance personnel.

Sector 9 (254-257)
Terrain: The sector is located to the east to Sector 7, again of usual size (1x16). Tropical shrublands and savanna, and a small brook with slight slopes toward it. First sector that contains a continuous aquifer layer.

Constractions: A regular straight railway with usual markers, no other constructions.

Brief log, incidents, etc: Because of the aquifer, the main settlement was located in soil layers. Later aquifer was successfully pierced, and some workshops were placed in rhe stone layers. 6 dwarves died as a result of werebeast attacks. One was infected, but this time he was isolated in a relatively comfortable room and worked on medical researches (gained 3 grades in suturing)
Spoiler: Room of weredwarf (click to show/hide)

-----------------------------
And now, that is the point where I'm actually stand now.
The next move I'm planning to do is to go back to Rackmassive and Sector 1. Firstly, I want to make Rackmassive a really great city, while it is now quite messy, especially due to 40 years without my control. I want also to build an appropriate Main Station there, and the Railway must start from it, not from Sector 1.
Let's see when I'm going to have time for this.

« Last Edit: September 24, 2017, 12:07:52 pm by hun »
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Timeless Bob

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #20 on: September 24, 2017, 02:02:23 pm »

Those arches are BEAUTIFUL! 
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Skullsploder

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #21 on: September 24, 2017, 02:30:46 pm »

Those arches are BEAUTIFUL!

Agreed. That bridge constitutes a megaproject on it's own! 9000 blocks of quartzite is no joke, especially when arranged so spectacularly. How long did that take? I also love the station in sector 4. Very cozy-looking!
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pikachu17

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #22 on: September 26, 2017, 09:10:40 pm »

PTW
Also, I think a save would be awesome! At very least, post the save if you abandon the project, so people can continue to enjoy your work.

Bearskie

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #23 on: September 27, 2017, 05:45:39 am »

Just chiming in to say your architecture is pretty cool, like many have said.

Detros

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #24 on: October 02, 2017, 04:44:26 am »

PTW
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hun

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #25 on: April 06, 2018, 04:18:10 pm »

I have some time and desire to play a bit, and so let's get back on the rails !

Sector 1 Revision (257-258)

The first sector was reclaimed under the direct control of Railway Administration to do some (relatively minor) tweaks. We had to fix some inefficient rollers, and prolong the rails to the border with Rackmassive.

There were numerous advances to a military tactics in the dwarven world last years, and some inventions were heard in The Steel of Combating. Soon the Administration informed that raids of small squads can be used to attack enemy locations. By a lucky chance, Sector 1 was the only one that had a significant forces - 10 legendary hammerdwarves, constantly training for the last 30 years.
They started to raid the south realms of The Poison of Shins, trying to be annoticed. First raids didn't bring any interesting: those sites were almost empty, nobody was met, and the squad were bringing a bit of cheap equipment and apparel as trophies.

Starting feeling more confident, the sector's leader ordered to attack openly quite populated dark pits Pimplehatred.
The attack went awry.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Two dwarves of the squad were captured by the goblins, although one of them gave a truly heroical fight and almost killed an enemy commander.

It was not nice, but still not as catastrophic as this:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Goblins brought a full-fledged siege, never seen before at any sector, for a revenge, just few weeks after the failed pillage!

The sector didn't have any traps-based defense. There was an option to barricade in underground settlement, but this could delay the process by many months, if not years. And so it was decided to give a fight, with just 8 (but legendary) warriors.

Beak dogs and trolls were going a bit ahead, and so the squad had wiped out almost all of them by the time goblins caught up (rangers fired some ammo at them, though). The rest of the battle was far worse for the dwarves. All of them were killed, and they managed to kill not much more than one goblin per every dwarf. However, this was enough to force the siege retreat.
Taking this into account, for any later sectors (except Rackmassive itself) the Administration strictly forbids sector's leaders to lead any open attacks on populated goblin fortresses, to avoid detrimental counter-attacks.

Apart from that, there was a werelizard incident: one of the random merchants, sitting around, turned out to be cursed.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
After he killed a human and one of the nobility, a newly organized militia were forced to kill the elf.

By summer of year 258, the rollers were renewed, the small depot replanned, and the rails prolonged.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Apart from that, some goods (remember steel, soap, cloth and gems from sector 4?) were ready to be sent to Rackmassive.

The Administration were looking forward for the next chapter of the Dwarven Railway history: the Great Reconstraction of Rackmassive!
« Last Edit: April 06, 2018, 04:20:05 pm by hun »
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Garfunkel

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #26 on: May 25, 2018, 04:52:23 pm »

Hot damn, this is awesome! Good luck with the Main Station and hopefully you can keep working on the remaining sectors to finish this, a true gigaproject!

I hadn't even considered the retire/reclaim process to keep working the same world like this. Fantastic!
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hun

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #27 on: May 29, 2018, 07:56:05 pm »

Great to see that you enjoyed it!

I am actually planning to continue soon after 44.11 is released.

Since it is gonna be 10-15 years of relatively normal fort (because I am not only plan to buil The Main Station, but make Rackmassive better in any other sence!), you can ask for dorfings. Remember - after this arc I will continue bulding railway sectors, and citizens of Rackamassive (and some of your dorfs) are likely to show up there.

For now, let's see what we have and what we plan (feel free to suggest!).
-----------------------------

I live here for a long time. Almost 50 years in Rackmassive! And most of them I served as a broker, bookeeper and manager. A lot of my memories - sad, funny or frightnening - are connected with this place. I still walking on a crutch - my leg was crippled during terrible War of Coyote in 210-211.
I truly love this place - one of the reasons that I didn't join any sector building groups last few decades.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I reached highs in trading skill, I know how everything works and organized in this fortress - that's why, probably, I am assigned to a position of Fortess Planner. I couldn't hope for a higher honor!

Today 14th Sandstone, 258 - the day we officially start The Great Reconstraction of Rackmassive!

Last 40 years of life here can be characterized entirely by a single word - STAGNATION. Let's see what we still have here from the good old times.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
It is hard to call us rich. And food stocks are almost zero - that's gonna be our first worry for sure. Population  - Nobles and Farmers, mostly. Well, many of the nobles are just old retired militia chiefs and researchers. Both groups are valuable for the future of Rackmassive!

But THERE ARE some nobles, still residing here from the times when Rackmassive was an official Capital of The Steel of Combating.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Also, the fortress has several elf citizens and a group of elves and humans of dubious intentions. Unless they are going to ask for citizenship, we will need to eradicate them.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Ground level of the fortress - walls, farms, pasturies, barracks for 2 squads. The defense need some refresh, but overall design is acceptably solid - walls, gates, good defensive positions. We even possess 3 ballistas with ammo at the gatetower! Microcline tower - is the infamous Math Building, unfinished due to the king's death.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Level -1: some furniture stockpiles, terribly cluttered with junk; farms, pen and related workshops.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Level -2: Graveyard, corpses stockpile. Yes, Rackmassive has seen some deaths...
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Level -3: Main living floor. Tavern, library, food workshops and food stockpiles; ~80 quarters.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Level -4: Temples. Requiers expanding and more decorations!
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Level -5: Metal and gem workplaces.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Below there are mostly only mines, with several mason's workshops here and there (they were used for blocks production). At the very bottom, a chamber that can be manually filled with magma (strange enough, nobody remebers what it was used for).

Not much to be proud of, huh? But things will change soon!

Recently I was preparing projects and plans, that we want to implement here. I decided on the following:
1) Healthy fortress with >120 dwarves and all needs satisfied - comfortable and with strong production capacities. Good militia with at least 30 warriors. Potentially, we will be raiding southern goblins' settlements.
2) A pump stack for rising the magma to the surface. We still rely on charcoal - it is not acceptable
3) Finish Math Building. Inside - the library, and probably quarters for the best scientists and engineers of the Rackmassive.
4) Finally, The Main Station and Railway Headquarters! I still need to finish all the schemes, but it is going to be a magnificent building.

I still need to think through many parts of the plan carefully, but it is good a starting point for the first orders, lads!
« Last Edit: May 29, 2018, 08:59:52 pm by hun »
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Garfunkel

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Re: Dwarven Express
« Reply #28 on: May 22, 2019, 05:43:58 pm »

What a great project, would love to see an update if possible!
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