Several of the questions were answered by Footkerchief already, and as usual those won't be below unless I have something to add.
For the long term do you have any idea what kind of role writing will play in dwarf mode? Like writing books about whatever the dwarf wants like engravings (books about books about cheese) or where dwarves actually record information that gets used for something later on?
In our original idea for the game before it became our main game, the adventurer was going to go back and find diaries and production logs, so we'll probably have something like that in addition to the types we've already got for necromancers.
Do current interactions that are not forced have a chance of being done by the creature, will always be done by the creature, or something else entirely? For example, will a necromancer with an interaction fire breath choose between raising dead or breathing fire?
They don't have a lot of criteria to work with, aside from use-on-foe type stuff, so they basically choose at random. But they do that instead of always using the first on the list, anyway, so it's something. When we've got more to work with, they'll be able to choose better, but it'll likely be through the "hint" variable I've got in the raws now, since it's not easy or even possible to make the game guess what to do with a mod through in-game analysis.
Will we ever have to bury the dead in adventure mode, to avoid overrunning the countryside with ghosts? I can see villagers giving mundane starter quests of the nature "I found a dozen bodies about two hours walk from here. Probably from a bandit attack. But I am too busy farming, could you give them proper burials before it is too late?"
Yeah, it isn't really coherent now that we have interactions, what's going on in dwarf mode, but as soon as dwarf mode ghosts occur through an interaction rather than a hard-coded mechanic, it'll be something to be considered, and as we track more body information and add more ghost story type stuff, that kind of thing should come up. We wanted to do haunted houses this time around, but it looks like we probably won't.
Would you mind showing us an example of one of the books in the game? Like, just pick one up from a necromancer tower and tell us what it says.
Those ones from the dev log are pretty much what you get now (I think I put them up after this question was asked). There aren't any actual quotes from the text.
Will zombies continue to rot until they become skeletons or does their rotting stop once they are raised?
Are there any differences between skeletons and zombies other than the lack of tissue and organs?
How will the raise the dead interaction mesh with other interactions? For example, will were-creatures still transform?
I've seen questions about the interaction combinations between vampire were-creatures, but not about the raising interaction.
Plus, while I think a raised necromancer loses his ability to raise once dead due to the loss of his soul, were-creature interactions might be applied to the body for all I know.
Skeletons and zombies aren't distinguished in a binary named fashion anymore -- the body is just missing more or less stuff, and they can be in whatever state a regular creature body is in. They don't rot once they are raised, but I'm not sure what should be happening there in the end (not rotting is the status quo). I think if a dead werewolf is animated, it won't retain the interaction information attached to the historical figure (it's all basically soul-based now), so you'd just have a werewolf body that doesn't change back. If the werewolf is resurrected, it should retain the information, even if the resurrection effect adds new status variables (as being a new mummy does).
Toady what would have to happen for Dwarf Fortress to include an even larger world then the maximum it has now? I wonder what would go into a decision like that.
It's a memory problem the way things are now, and a world gen speed problem after that. I guess the first would be remedied with 64 bits, but it would still be slow to generate, unless there were caps on the amount of stuff it had to think about. If the number of historical figures etc. were capped, then the only speed problems would be from the occasional pathing/connectivity routines that occur as well as the weather routine. The first isn't bad (since it doesn't have to account for changes like the local map does), but weather would probably have to be curtailed a bit. Oh, and I guess the save size would increase somewhat, and I'm not sure how annoying that would get with load times in between plays.
Would the ability to state your intent for a retired character use the same framework as the hopes and dreams of the personality rewrite?
It would make the most sense to have everything under the same umbrella, since the pre-existing critters all need to act as well, so that would be my first choice.
Will books be found in bookcases, on tables, or just lying around on the floors of towers?
If we have a fort which contains one of these secret slabs or books, say by having an adventurer drop it in a location of our choice and then embarking over it, will it be treated as an artifact?
I passed on bookshelves and put the books on tables, as a time thing. The slab has the status of a mood artifact, and a book is the same extended class of item as a favorite weapon.
How extensive are you planning on making magic be? Will it simply be useful in combat or for necromancing up minions? Or will you be able to do more complex things, like enchanting objects or using spells that affect other people's actions?
For now it is just the uses I've talked about, but for later it'll be all of whatever we can do. DF Talk transcripts might be the best place to go for information at this point, though I don't remember exactly how much I've talked about it.
There is an old saying: "Even a Thief will go out of his way to help a friend"
So if you looking for pure evil people you are not going to find them either. Sociopaths, according to some psychologists, are people who took in the wrong hints and messages society sends out at a regular basis and simply follows them to their logical, and often destructive, conclusion.
Look the only point that in Dwarf Fortress Evil seems to be a force. Curses exist, cursed lands exist (as well as their mechanics to become cursed), and even creatures who are evil exist. Yet good is fanciful and just as destructive and dangerous to all life. There is no benevolence only malevolence.
which is what is essentially the question
Where is the Benevolence?
A Benevolent force whos prime goal is the benefit of all around it. A Restless Spirit of a great doctor who cures the sick, a Tree that gives of its own fruits, or a great water spirit who gives those dying in the desert live giving water and who do so for no benefit of their own (no alterior motives).
There's basically less of a return on that kind of work in terms of the game moving along, the way it's structured, but it's fair to have and I'm not against it or anything. The dwarves help each other out a bit. Inevitably there will be little fairies that live in houses and fix your shoes while you are sleeping and stuff. We already have a color and letter for them picked out -- but it's the kind of thing that will always struggle to be prioritized except by whim.
When you say 282 page, do you mean literally or informatively?
To clarify: Is it actually written out or does the game just tell you that is how long it is?
Can we read the contents of a book whatever the size of it? Does it function like an in-game legends mode viewer that's highly specific to a single creature?
... If the weight of a book is based on the number of pages it has, can a book contain so many pages, that the player can not lift it without being heavilly slowed?
If reading speed is influenced by your movement speed, and you're moving at a crawl, and it takes a long time to read just one page... "Oh i'll just read this b-" *You have starved to death*
Almost certainly it is just description.
Now that writing is in, will dwarves who enter fey moods also do writings if they have the proper skills, thus becoming legendary poets?
Now that we have books, secrets can still be find on slabs? There other places people can learn secrets?
Do apprentices learn the secrets directly from their masters or by using books/slabs found on their towers?
Only necromancers can have apprentices or the system will also allow other historical figures to have apprentices?
It just tells you the number of pages. I can't generate lots of prose. The legends are bad enough. I'm still wondering what a poetry generator would end up like, but for that, I probably will wait for the grammar rewrite to keep it all in a system.
There are no unliftable books (haven't done that old power goal yet). The books are instantly readable regardless of length. This'll be revisited sometime after we have longer term hours-long actions (which we mentioned in terms of things like tending your created site or training). There aren't dwarf book industries/jobs at this point.
The apprentices must learn the secrets immediately to avoid being killed by life-hating zombies, so they learn directly from teachers. Nobody can yet discover the book in world gen, and at that point you'd have kind of second generation necromancy going on (aside from the current adventurer, who can already do this). The apprentice system will doubtless be expanded (the framework is general) but I haven't done anything specific there.
According to the latest devblog, the layout of towers were generated on arriving in an area, rather than during worldgen. Is this true of all worldgen locations?
It keeps track of the information it needs to think about in attack AI/conversation/etc. It would take too long to generate every map from the start, and it would take more save space, especially now with the largest towns occupying up to a 17x17 embark area (which isn't all loaded at once). If it becomes important to remember one thing or another, it'll be moved into the world gen/map gen information (information about where city wall openings are, for example, which are currently generated later on but will want to be pre-known in time). The main downside of the way I'm doing it is save compatibility, since most tweaks to the map code will cause old saves to create maps differently even if you've been there before.
To what extent are we going to see randomly generated interactions/variations on interactions in this release? I know we've got, for example, some flexibility on vampires based on past FotF posts.
There are tweaks on various things like the Zombie Speed question and stuff like that, or whether or not a power is present, but there's nothing so sweeping that it would require some kind of exposition or different naming.
Are all books currently unique, or can there be copies? For example, if one entity writes a biography of the dwarven king, then several others do the same, would those that had access to the original biography copy it, or write their own. If the former, how would this be represented in-game?
It would be cool to have things like monks copying books and so on, but right now they are unique. It saves the written content with its own independent id and so on, so copies of a given id are easy enough to do later (as with art images, where copying already occurs).
is there a short term plan to integrate books in fortress mode?
I don't have a short term plan for it.
Are the pages in DF books made of a specific material at the moment? Do you intend to have paper in the game or will it be limited to vellum?
I haven't gotten into the new page materials issue, since I'm not setting up industries at this point. At the same time, the pages are made of a tracked material different from the binding, and it keeps the craft info and maker for that (as with cloth or dye), even if there aren't technically any makers right now. The writing on it is independent of that. Ink/writing material is not tracked yet.
Will the combat system ever support blowing holes through someone if a projectile is shot with enough force? Right now it just propells the target creature back.
I'm not sure when it'll happen, but if there are reasonable cases for that (and there are even now with grazed fingers and so on, stopping bolts), then I'm sure I'll get to it when we focus more on combat.
Will Items from the gods, such as the tablets that contain the secrets of life and death, be handled as magical artifacts with related powers in the future?
It makes sense to me that a divine tablet containing the power to revoke death would be rather powerfully magic even if not actively in use. I imagine it would do anything from passively raising the dead to protect itself to actively corrupting mortals into using it, Ring of power style.
They don't necessarily need to be magical, but they'd certainly be up for whatever is available as things come in, as arbitrarily powerful and magical objects.
Since raised corpses will no longer be in their coffins, will being raised cause a dwarf to also come back as a ghost?
I'm not sure, but what I think it depends on is the presence of a slab. If the body disappears from the coffin, it'll probably start looking for a slab, anyway. While the animated body is walking around, it won't count against you, but if it dies again, you might have to re-coffin it -- though that's not a sure thing. I'd have to look back to see if it wants the physical or metaphysical id on the corpse. I don't know what the right answer should be there, if there is only one.
Can Necromancers raise and command ghosts?
There's nothing like that now. When we get to constructed undead and other such things that necromancers will be playing with, a source of souls will need to be considered, which'll raise a zillion other questions. I'm not sure how ghosts are going to figure into it, but interactions that specifically target ghosts etc. are inevitable later on, and more likely when we start targeting souls and shuffling them around.