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Author Topic: Font, Tileset, Graphics Pack? Help a newbie?  (Read 3953 times)


  • Bay Watcher
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Font, Tileset, Graphics Pack? Help a newbie?
« on: November 24, 2010, 11:09:50 pm »

I've yet to actually play DF as I wanted to read up on the Wiki, strategy guides, and watch some tutorials first. (So far, I've watched through captnduck's video tutorials up to part 27.) And I've been reading up on some utilities and mods, too.

To be honest, I'd been sure that I would be playing already two days ago. That was before I started reading the Wiki and watching tutorials. I knew it was a huge, complex game... but I had no idea...! I'm the type of gamer that usually praises a game for complexity and providing players with a lot of choices (and mods). But this game seems daunting even for me.

Anyway, I took a look (and looked again) at the Tileset repository and the Graphics Set repository and I was lost. By reading the readme's and wikis I think I can figure out the installation. But there are a few questions I have:

1) Does the Tileset and the Graphics Pack have to use the same tile size? (16x16, 12x18, 18x18, ect...)
2) If both the Tileset and the Graphics Pack have font characters, which set will be used if I install both of them? (For example, if I try to install Ironhand and Wormslayer's Graphics Pack and then a Tileset on top of that?)
3) Is there a way to mix and match font text between different Tilesets (or Graphics Packs)? Any utilities out there to function as a Tileset editor?

4) Which font would best fit my requirements?
* Maximum screen resolution of 1280 x 960 (I usually run 1024 x 768, but I'll go up a step.) Based on the resolutions given in the Tilesets repository, I'm guessing that I will be forced to go with 16x16 or less.
* I prefer maximum readability of font (for a given size) over any other consideration. That said, I'd rather avoid a futuristic (sci-fi or Star Trek'ish) font.
* Square or Rectangle: I could go either way. But I'm leaning towards a non-square font like 16x18 or similar. That way, I can fit slightly more font resolution on my 1280 x 960 screen.

Also, could someone recommend a graphics set? I prefer a Graphics Pack with icons that are gorgeous and lots of potential for color and shading, but I can only handle so much in SDF style (Super DeFormed). For example, I do not care for the dwarves in Ironhand and Wormslayer's Graphics Pack. That said, I realize that DF is basically a rogue-like and one can only fit so much detail into text characters on a small screen with a small resolution.

I kind of liked the style in the Guybrush Tileset and Dystopian Rhetoric's graphics set (as used in captnduck's tutorials). However, I was hoping for something with more eye candy or graphics pizazz.


  • Bay Watcher
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Re: Font, Tileset, Graphics Pack? Help a newbie?
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2010, 11:19:44 pm »

Tilesets (aka character sets) and Graphic sets are mutually exclusive. You either have Graphics ON in the init and are using the graphics set or you have it off and are using the character set.

I personally prefer symbolism to detail, so I am a character set player all the way. I can't speak to graphics but what I prefer is a square set for overall symmetry. I hate having my circles look oval and it also bugs me when I map out a 10x10 storeroom and it looks rectangular. :D

My favorite is Dorten's 9x9 set and I run it windowed ~1400x900 on my 24" widescreen monitor so I can see a ton of the fortress at once. I used to be more meticulous and know the exact grid size but that's no longer necessary now that you can resize on the fly. I just make a big window and run with it.
« Last Edit: November 24, 2010, 11:21:26 pm by Scarpa »


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Re: Font, Tileset, Graphics Pack? Help a newbie?
« Reply #2 on: November 24, 2010, 11:56:26 pm »

I prefer Phoebus' graphics set (which you can find in the modding forum).  Ironhand's graphics set is smoother in a lot of ways, but I find I have issues with the contrast (and moving games around due to llamas in the RAWs).  I'd suggest going through the modding forum, checking out the prepackaged sets, and seeing which ones you like.
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Re: Font, Tileset, Graphics Pack? Help a newbie?
« Reply #3 on: November 25, 2010, 12:32:13 am »

1) They don't have to be the same size as the game resizes the graphics to fit the tileset However this might look ugly as hell so it's recommended you use tiles and graphics of the same size.

2) If you mean can you use any graphics with any tileset then yes, with the above caveat. The graphics used will be whatever you have in the "../raw/graphics" folder and the tileset will be whatever you have in the "../data/art/" folder AND is defined in the init.txt file.

3) If you mean take images from multiple tilesets then you can copy and paste tiles in any decent image editor, set the grid size and grid snap to make it really easy. For the most part this is how I made the tileset I use.

4) Tile size isn't really important, just use your mouse wheel to resize the grid on the fly as needed.

If you’re going to mess around with tilesets and change them you can use the “raw tile merger” and “raw tile selector” programs (check the modding sub-forum) to make sure your raws match your tileset. Also some tilesets use the special characters used in the language files for other purposes meaning some words look screwy unless you use the modded language raws. Also remember that each save game has it's own raws folder to allow different saves to use different mods.

You need a tileset no matter what, even if it's the default curses. Graphic sets have nothing to do with tilesets and only replace creature tiles as specified in the graphics folder. Tilesets cover everything else on screen unless you have the truetype font enabled in the init.txt, though that's still a work in progress, it replaces most text with an actual font instead of pictures of a font.

If you just want to start playing get the lazy newb pack. If you want better graphics … well, there aren't any really. Graphics support in Dwarf Fortress is a bit of a mess, but there's a guy working on it (when he's not busy with his real job) so it should improve slowly.