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Author Topic: The Marble Wall  (Read 22198 times)

shadowform

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The Marble Wall
« on: August 13, 2010, 01:14:57 pm »

Some megaprojects take five dwarf years.  Some take ten, twenty, or fifty.  A few will cover an entire embark.

This one covers multiple embarks.

This project is a part of a much larger one, one that encompasses the entire world.  I want to make a world that's just as much fun to explore as an adventurer as it is to play in fortress mode.

Thus far the wall consists of a 3x5 embark, a 3x15 embark, with another 3x5 (or so) embark planned to bridge the gap between two mountain ranges, giving the impression of an entire empire hidden behind a massive wall.  It's 4 tiles wide made from pure marble, as long as about 5-7 standard embarks, and embedded with massive 12x12 tile gold towers.  The grand gateway is also going to be something to behold:  2 5-tile wide silver bridges, bookended and separated by 5x7 towers that form a massive arch, and with a further gold tower on either side of it.

The courtyard is 23x23 tiles, decorated with gold, silver, marble, black bronze, and with 3d adamantine diamond sitting in the center (made of 25 pieces of adamantine, so not too large, but still extravagant for a simple decoration).  Aside from the silver arch, the gold towers on either side of the arch are going to be matched on the rear - creating a large 'airlock' sort of configuration for extra security.  Of course, since there are necessary gaps between maps and extra sections of 'ruined wall' for flavor, it's not actually secure, but it looks nice.  These four gold towers alone, each planned to be at least 5 stories tall, are going to take almost 3,000 gold blocks.  And yes, I use blocks for constructing structures, not normal stone or bars.  Why?  Because once you make a bar a block it serves no possible purpose other than construction: it has been 'consumed' from use, effectively raising the cost of the structure even if the difference is negligible in actual value.

On this current stretch of wall - the largest, and also the gate section - there's also a river, so I'm making a specialized 'river gate' for that.  The end goal is going to be using bridges and/or floodgates to allow the river to be stopped (to 'safeguard against aquatic attack'), but I'm still working on how I want to set it up so that the river can still flow, yet can also be stopped.  Any ideas for that would be welcome.

There's also going to be a large above-ground barracks (with a small farm below, as well as a direct line to a small forge area, to allow it to be self-sufficient) made from either marble or silver.  After the primary structure's complete, I'm going to draft everyone into the military, turn invasions back on, and sequester them all away in here, and wait for the end as the goblin and dwarf bodies pile up.

[Edit] Screenshot repository for great justice dwarfness!

First, to give a sense of scale, a crappy, shrunken-down image of the central embark:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The wall is four tiles wide, and those yellow blocks are the 12x12 gold towers.  This is the central embark.  There are smaller embarks on either side that come close to doubling its size.

Goldgates : Goldgates is the largest, and most developed, of the three embarks.  Aside from the wall it has a massive gatehouse that contains a barracks, hospital, temple, and courtyard.  Just past the gate there's also a trading hall, and several temporary domiciles for visiting humans set into an elegant boulevard.
The Main Gate:
The main gate of entry to the dwarven civilization, "The Dangerous Castle", is truly a sight to behold.  Two finely-crafted silver bridges sit beneath a massive, three-story (later expanded to four) archway crafted of pure silver, with archers housed and supplied from the adjoining towers, gives defenders ample opportunity to fire on any army foolish enough to try invading.  As to dwarven tradition, the bridges are controlled from a lever at the center of the gate house.

Main gate, gatehouse (u.c.), marble barracks (u.c.)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Main gate, gatehouse (100%), front towers (66% complete), rear towers (5% complete), courtyard (100% complete)
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Main gate, gatehouse (100%), front towers (100%), rear towers (5%), courtyard (100%)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The River Gate:
Crafted from marble and lined with windows to keep an eye on the river, this gate straddles the river that runs past Goldgates.  From here, defenders control the flow of the river, as well several other devices to thwart invaders.  Submerged spikes, mechanisms made from stone and spikes made from strong, clear glass so as to be nearly invisible underwater, skewer infantry attempting to cross into the river, while a large bridge, nestled towards the back end of the gate, could be used both to block ships access (when lowered) and smash them into the river (if lowered suddenly).  A series of hardened steel bars also prevented access by unwanted visitors as a secondary measure.

Early construction, no windows
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Nearing completion, some windows
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Structure complete, windows being placed
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
100% complete structure
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The Walls:
These walls stood three stories tall at even their lowest point during the height of the Dangerous Castle, but time has not been kind to them.  Sections have crumbled, but even still the majority of the wall stands intact to this day, and the majesty of the long length to the west of Goldgates stands as a testament to the industrial strength of this nation when it was at its height.  Human architects architects and craftsmen have always marveled at the ability of dwarves to work stone, but this wall stands as a true testament to their abilities with their natural element.

(note: the base completed, the wall in the largest section alone is 581 tiles wide, with 37 tiles of 'destroyed' wall.  For a sense of scale, this section alone would stretch, horizontally, halfway across this image that Toady posted of the new, larger villages.)
Ruined wall (u.c.)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Sample of finished wall
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Wall (u.c.)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A view of how the walls are embedded into hills
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The same section of wall nearing completion
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A length of wall keeps vicious, bloodthirsty horses at bay.  SUCCESS!
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A length of wall is invaded by vicious, bloodthirsty horses.  FAILURE!
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A section of 100% completed wall with scaffolding removed.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A complete...  er, ruined wall.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The Marble Barracks:
Built from pure marble and set aside in its own walled enclosure, this structure could at first be mistaken fore a palace or a small castle.  In truth, however, it is simply a barracks.  It is massive, bedding fifty dwarves as well as holding supplies of weapons and armor, and even its own hospital, complete with a supply of clean water and the other medical supplies necessary for such a facility.  It even has its own, albeit small, courtyard, which holds bronze statues depicting the first broker, bookkeeper, and leader at Goldgates, as well as it's foundation.  There is also an effigy of the city's first manager - though it is not dedicated as such - and one of a dwarf who went insane in his workshop, before slowly wasting away.  On my way out, I noted with a touch of grimness, that although the barracks could seal themselves off from the main courtyard in the event of an emergency, if the gates were to be sealed from the inside during a siege, the military stationed here would have no choice but to mount an offensive, or attempt to wait the invaders out...

A groundhog invades the archery range of the barracks.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Exterior view showing part of the mini courtyard
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
3rd floor of the barracks.  Identical to the 4th; just in case you wondered about the floorplan.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Ground floor of the barracks, showing the weapon/armor storage, hospital, and water supply.  It's also a natural lake, so it can potentially replenish itself when it rains.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The Depot:
Another structure built from marble blocks, the exterior depot has an interior two stories tall, to ensure any human, or other, visitors have adequate headroom for conducting business.  It's vaulted ceiling is supported by golden pillars.  Though fairly simple in its design, the precious metal used in its craft, and the black bronze used in the actual depots construction only enhances the overall grandeur of the Goldgates.  Also noteworthy is that, when the frontal bridge is raised, the interior seals, simultaneously allowing foot traffic to and from the depot while completely blocking fire from the courtyard.

100% Complete structure
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
I don't know what to call this yet.  I'm thinking of making if the main connection between the fort proper and the depot.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

the Temple:
The temple is a large, multi-level structure is easily the tallest structure in the vicinity.  The approach to it is decorated with hammered bronze tiles and lined on either side by a large marble cistern.  The temple itself consists of a massive golden pillar surrounded by smaller, but sturdily built, bronze pillars, all supporting a series of marble platforms.

(Under construction)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
More progress.  All of the statues depict the foundation of Goldgates.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Completed temple.  If I remember, those two statues are of the dwarven god of jewels.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Primary residences:
Oh my god, this place is a shithole.  The dining rooms are full of large stones with rough spaces hacked out from underneath them as 'tables' and small, misshapen lumps of rock for 'chairs'.  The exposed stone here is jagged and, in places, sharp.  I would dread to walk barefoot through these halls.  There are many large, empty rooms and just as many small, overcrowded rooms filled with stacks of trade goods, barrels of food, and...  oh god, one of these rooms is filled with ANIMAL FAT just wantonly flung about on the floor.  Vermin freely mingle with piles of biscuits as pet cats chase them throughout.  There is a large pile of decomposing animal matter right outside the door.  I take it back, I take it all back.  This place is a goddamn shithole.

One of my superiors asked for clarification when I called this place a 'goddamn shithole'.  So, here it is.  These large rooms near the entrance have food, trade goods, and other miscellany scattered in what space the cluttered workshops don't take up.  In a mining tunnel not far off, I can see rows of coffins, some with lids sealed tightly, some yet unfilled.  A grim reminder that even the mightiest settlements have skeletons in their closet - or in this case, their mines.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
A sampling of the crowded living quarters, though this is hardly a fraction of them.  How these dwarves can stand such cramped conditions is beyond me.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
It is apparent that some dwarves, desparate for more space, have walled off sections of old mined-out stone and set up inside them.  I am unsure as to how many of these there are, as these tunnels seem to go on forever, both horizontally and vertically.  Though not all are more spacious than the other rooms, most of them have floors made from precious ore or are studded with small, leftover bits of gemstone.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
This deep black stone is very curious.  The dwarves call it 'slade' and speak of it with a deep reverence and hushed tones.  I could swear that I can hear something moving around slowly on the other side, although the dwarves assure me there's nothing living over there.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Mines I
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Mines II
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Current build count (second section): 5800 gold blocks, 1050 silver blocks, 13400 marble blocks, 280 bronze blocks, 40 black bronze blocks, 40 copper blocks, 29 adamantine, and still counting.
First section build count: 930 gold blocks, 5300 marble blocks

Boulderlances: A mostly unremarkable settlement on the western edge of Goldgates, Boulderlances is only notable for the fact that it contains a much smaller rear gate and a massive marble mining operation, producing as many blocks for export as were used in the entire rest of the wall.  The real question is - where did they go?

The gate - there's a road made from massive marble slabs that leads to the main entrance of the laborer's quarters.  Alongside it are marble pillars with golden (I think) statues atop them.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Ruined wall - Another section of ruined wall.  This is how the embarks bleed into one another.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Wall - The far west side.  This bleeds into the mountainside.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Upper city - A handful of wooden houses and a few farms, plus part of a small temple.  There's a large inn on the lower edge of this screenshot.  Nothing truly interesting.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
The catacombs - the only thing of any real note or deliberate design in Boulderlances is the catacombs set far to the side of the main entrance, connected via a small path that runs past the exterior inn.  Though unremarkable in scale or scope compared to the neighboring Goldgates, the presence of wooden, above-ground housing and the wooden coffins within these tunnels suggest that there may have been a permanent or semi-permanent human population in Boulderlances at one time.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Axekiss: A settlement of little historical significance, but great myth.  It was [in terms of universe canon] the first section of the wall to be lost, overrun by hordes of foul creatures that lived in the caverns beneath the city.  One more famous legend from this settlement was of an amphibian man and a forgotten beast that supposedly have been engaged in combat since the area was first founded, with the place being periodically rocked by the enraged howls coming from the caverns below.  The spear and shield of this simple creature, said to have taken the lives of at least two of the monstrosities that called the cavern home, are rumored to still lie somewhere in the area.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Save uploaded!
http://www.megaupload.com/?d=2PSUT6OT
« Last Edit: October 03, 2010, 01:58:03 am by shadowform »
Logged
Q: What do you get when you take 100 clear glass windows, 1000 silver bars, 6700 gold bars, and 18,000 marble blocks?

A: A very large wall.

"Alright, here's Helltooth... Harborfence... Urist, come get GenericBlade... and you. Welcome to the Danger Room. First timers get good ol' Ballswallowed. Have fun and try not to take off your own toe."

existent

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2010, 01:29:00 pm »

Screenshots?

I need them badly.
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shadowform

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2010, 01:39:41 pm »

:( stonesense doesn't support .31.12.  Is there a visualizer out there that does?  Otherwise I'm stuck with crappy base game screenshots.
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Q: What do you get when you take 100 clear glass windows, 1000 silver bars, 6700 gold bars, and 18,000 marble blocks?

A: A very large wall.

"Alright, here's Helltooth... Harborfence... Urist, come get GenericBlade... and you. Welcome to the Danger Room. First timers get good ol' Ballswallowed. Have fun and try not to take off your own toe."

Untelligent

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2010, 01:59:28 pm »

DFize works with 31.12 if you replace the memory file it comes with with the one from DFHack.

Overseer also works with 31.12.

Both can be found in the first page or two of the General Discussion forum.
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regardless, the slime shooter will be completed, come hell or high water, which are both entirely plausible setbacks at this point.

AtomicPaperclip

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2010, 02:00:00 pm »

can you load the save in an older version?

Too bad you can't view the whole thing!

Fun project though.
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Dear Toady: Keep up the good work man, we appreciate you and the game beyond words.

shadowform

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2010, 02:01:21 pm »

Downloading overseer now
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Q: What do you get when you take 100 clear glass windows, 1000 silver bars, 6700 gold bars, and 18,000 marble blocks?

A: A very large wall.

"Alright, here's Helltooth... Harborfence... Urist, come get GenericBlade... and you. Welcome to the Danger Room. First timers get good ol' Ballswallowed. Have fun and try not to take off your own toe."

Stravitch

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2010, 02:11:38 pm »

Can't wait to see this!

shadowform

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2010, 02:57:02 pm »

Gonna have to wait, I work 3:30 to midnight today.  But check back later.
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Q: What do you get when you take 100 clear glass windows, 1000 silver bars, 6700 gold bars, and 18,000 marble blocks?

A: A very large wall.

"Alright, here's Helltooth... Harborfence... Urist, come get GenericBlade... and you. Welcome to the Danger Room. First timers get good ol' Ballswallowed. Have fun and try not to take off your own toe."

Solifuge

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #8 on: August 13, 2010, 03:12:00 pm »

I was thinking about bulding a 3-world-tile bridge across the sea, to connect an islands to the mainland. I'm interested to see how well this megaproject works out.

Also, the newest version of Stonesense works with 31.12, after a single patch.  Alternatively, the Lazy Newb Pack contains the updated version, in addition to some other useful utilities.
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CaveLobsterShell

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2010, 05:13:22 pm »

And yes, I use blocks for constructing structures, not normal stone or bars.  Why?  Because once you make a bar a block it serves no possible purpose other than construction: it has been 'consumed' from use, effectively raising the cost of the structure even if the difference is negligible in actual value.

I hate to tell you this, but it's possible to convert blocks back into stone or bars. It involves magma and block bins, and I haven't tried it personally - just read about it.

On this current stretch of wall - the largest, and also the gate section - there's also a river, so I'm making a specialized 'river
gate' for that.  The end goal is going to be using bridges and/or floodgates to allow the river to be stopped (to 'safeguard against aquatic attack'), but I'm still working on how I want to set it up so that the river can still flow, yet can also be stopped.  Any ideas for that would be welcome.

Make pumps across the bridge, all pumping upstream. Construct walls on both ends of the pump row, and start the pumps. Some of the water will be absorbed, which is what the walls are for, but most of the water will be absorbed back into the river, and downstream will eventually dry up. Rivers work like that!

Anyway, this will enable floodgate or bridge construction downriver, and then the pump row can be turned off or removed to return the river flow.
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Astramancer

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #10 on: August 13, 2010, 05:42:03 pm »

Don't forget that you can build walls all the way to the map edge.  Well, sorta.

Build a bridge to the edge, and raise it.
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shadowform

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2010, 01:43:38 am »

Ok!  Stonesense up and working.  I didn't know there was a patch for it.

Screenshots of the courtyard will go up as soon as my blacksmiths finish laying the silver.  In the meantime:

A section of 'destroyed' wall. 
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The in-progress river gate.  The big gap on the bottom floor of the left side is temporary access to the east side of the riverso the dwarves can finish the wall and tower over there.  The gaps on the second and third floors are (currently empty) windows.
Spoiler (click to show/hide)
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Q: What do you get when you take 100 clear glass windows, 1000 silver bars, 6700 gold bars, and 18,000 marble blocks?

A: A very large wall.

"Alright, here's Helltooth... Harborfence... Urist, come get GenericBlade... and you. Welcome to the Danger Room. First timers get good ol' Ballswallowed. Have fun and try not to take off your own toe."

ungulateman

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2010, 02:28:52 am »

The river gate alone is more impressive than anything I've done. Great job.
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That's the great thing about this forum. We can derail any discussion into any other topic.
It's not an embark so much as seven dwarves having a simultaneous strange mood and going off to build an artifact fortress that menaces with spikes of awesome and hanging rings of death.

existent

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2010, 02:31:32 am »

Can this thing be seen from space? I mean, the world/region screen? It'd be awesome if once you're done you could see it on the world map (like roads).
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[DF 0.31.13]  ۝ War of the Ring Mod ۝  [WotR 0.13.3]

War of the Ring is back baby!
A mod based on Lord of the Rings, by JRR Tolkien.

digitCruncher

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Re: The Marble Wall
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2010, 02:49:09 am »

I doubt it... but it will still be awesome to see :D

Is this just going to be one large wall, or is it going to be a large rectangle? In terms of embarks, what are its dimensions??

This is just insane... just imagine what it would look like if you were there to see it: A pure white and gold wall as far as the eye can see... the Great Wall of Dwarf Fortress.

(If you are making a large rectangle, the inner parts will likely make the largest fortress in the entire history of Dwarf fortress!!)

Posted to subscribe, and hopefully get the save so I can adventure into the giant super-fortress!
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