Chapter 2 - Entitas

Jul 19, 2020

(Original Post)

Year 2! What started as bright-eyed and excited new overseer quickly devolved into annoyed grunts and grumbling, as over two hours were spent figuring out how this confusing pile of... stockpiles, all worked. With a sour attitude out the gate, my first act as overseer turned out to be a whole lot of naming stockpiles:

We got this cool thing. I put it in the new dormitory, one level below the old one.

Had problems with a rotten, owned piece of food causing miasma and stressing everyone else. After some Discord convos I got the DFHack commands to unown everything, which seemed to mostly fix the problem. We still have bizarre stuff like stray prepared foods in a finished goods bin and the like.

It was about this point I realized I was still in summer even though I felt like I went through a year's worth of troubles and annoyances. Great. This sucks. I built a new dormitory area and worked on getting our Mayor a dining room and office up to standards. Weapon traps can make any room fancy!

I forgot about this lady who was in a strange mood, and she went berserk. Everyone else killed her fairly efficiently. Although only when I saw the miasma explosion did I realize they never actually hauled her now-rotting head away. Nothing an extra corpse stockpile couldn't fix.

In late summer the magma sea was found, part of my quest to dig straight down to discover such features, and I seem to have way overshot it: it's multiple Z-levels above the site of discovery too, I must have dug through a stone pocket or something. Now I have to think about how to get magma up to the main fort, unless we want our metal industry to be over a hundred z-levels below everyone's food and beds and temples.

Earlier in the year I had traded the elves for a giant kangaroo and proudly put its cage in the bedrooms. Turns out they're grazers and it starved to death. Oops.

By summer's end, the majority of the fort seems to prefer spending their time huddled around the library. Mostly since I ran out of stuff for them to and wasn't really sure how to put them to work.

In other, more mundanely annoying news, this stockpile is completely overloaded as well as not getting barrels added to it, and for the life of me I cannot figure out why.

As part of my mission to bless this fortress with magma, this random siege engineer has been promoted to a new lifelong career of smelting metal. Make us some iron, and godspeed, Lokum.

For whatever reason, the human merchants are still sticking around the trade depot, and aren't actually going anywhere. Studying it closer, I have a terrible theory:

This tree may be blocking part of the depo, as well as their horses. However, I'm not willing to cut down the tree and possibly injure the humans.

And look at that, here come more traders to occupy our favorite traffic jam. That they're able to access the depot and come over just raises more questions, really.

"So how are things going?" "Very badly."

I thought about our trade requests for not very much time at all, and decided a couple things: our seeds counts are all over the place due to nonstop planting and harvesting, and if we're starting industry we want anvils. I also threw in leather and cloth but those are always nice to get bins of.

They responded, in turn, that they'd very much like to buy seeds off us, which is not a good thing to hear from the person you're hoping to buy seeds from. I proceeded to buy instruments and what seems to be every scrap of leather that was ever created in the history of the world. I got all this for what I'd guess to be in the triple-digits of prepared meals: not even a dent in our stock.

Three of our six iron minecarts are masterpieces. What a shame they'll never be used to their full potential here. To my unspeakable horror, the minecarts aren't visible on the stocks screen. I'll have to find them in our labyrinth of stockpiles to get them into the magma chamber. Or so I thought, until learning they're still in the forge. Crisis averted.

Hauling minecarts to the bottom of the world is going to take a while, so while that was happening, I decided to focus on the rest of the fort that I was ignoring for the better part of a month and a half. First, we got dead shit. That's no good.

I dug out a bit of the remaining stone between veins here, and threw in some coffins. A memorial slab later got thrown in there. That should handily take care of whatever's dead and probably going to die before this year is over. I also made an extra z-level full of beds, but no dining room or containers around there just yet.

Meanwhile, not even 30 spaces before annoyance struck again: the dwarves dropped my minecarts and they got locked into a TSK. Turns out there's a garbage dump zone already here. Also, one of the dwarves got smashed by one of the minecarts, getting an injured lower body and guts. Why can nothing just go RIGHT?

Okay, that's at least good news, more neighbors is always fu-

uuuuuuuuuuuuuunnnnnnghhhh. I'm getting another insane dwarf, aren't I? This is about the point where Winter hit, by the way.

Huzzah! A success story! It's worth 44,400 dwarfbucks, too!

So... the artifact is a figurine, of a dwarf becoming a carpenter, and on that figurine is an image of a titan killing an elf. There's also pictures of string beans for good measure.

You, uh, certaintly have avant garde tastes there, pal. It gets thrown into the new, third bedroom chamber.

Meanwhile, the minecarts are currently stacked on top of each other in a way I definitely did NOT want them to. This quickly proves to be a logistical nightmare, especially because they stay locked in TSK hell.

The ongoing horde at the kitfox head seems to be ever-growing.

Okay, you know what, I managed to squeeze four minecarts into this space, I can't fiddle around with this any longer, it's time do to the thing, we're already at Mid-Winter and time is running out. I WILL leave my mark on the fort! In a way that isn't something terrible happening, that is!

First, I get a guy to operate this pump, pumping magma through the grates on the south into the minecarts at the north.

The minecarts now have magma inside them.

Next, this pump, one z-level above, gets the magma out of the minecart chamber, letting us happily haul those magma-filled carts to whever we want magma to be up above.

I have no idea how those intricate layouts were built initially, but I am exactly 2 months away from it not being my problem, which rounds down to not being my problem at all. You get a box.

This is the area directly below the kitfox logo: The channel is going to be filled with magma via dumping minecarts from the two track stops to the east and west of it.

And there we have it! Magma! Glorious magma! Even if nothing else has gone right this year, I at least left the tiniest ember of a legacy: the fires of a modern, civilized industry! This particular batch of magma will be a magma glass furnace, so we can start producing as many glass things as we want.

Even the common people recognize my greatness, as about a dozen people all simultaneously decided to come hang out. I even have a petition for a monster hunter to become a permanent resident! I denied it in a fit of hubris.

This is starting to get a bit ridiculous now, though.

The second magma square was a bit trickier to decide on. I could have a smelter, or a forge, but not both (giving up the glass furnace was, of course, possible, but glass is too useful to pass up). I decided on a smelter, for two reasons: First, we have a couple hundred ores of limonite alone. We can focus on getting those smelted while the next overseer works out a magma forge plan. Second, if we desperately do need to get forging done, we do have a stash of coke, though you might want to save that for steel. I'm sure some future overseer will disagree strongly with all of this, though.

Ain't it a thing of beauty? And I'm sure these will just be the first of many. Unless the next overseer has some other, better idea on how to get magma this close to the rest of the base.

These guys are still here, by the way.

The only thing of note that happened on the final month was realizing just how close I was cutting it with those channels. For the love of Armok do NOT dig those walls, lest my legacy be ruined. Also, you'll get magma everywhere, and that's just nasty.

And with Spring, my year comes to an end. From the looks of it, the fort seriously exploded this year: we tripled the population and have over quadruple the wealth. I suppose I was hit with the growing pains part of the fort, which definitely did not help my initial disposition... but in general I think I turned things from a high point, to, uh, a low point... then... back up... to a solid position? Maybe?

At the least, by mid-autumn my attitude about the fort itself was on the rise, so ultimately I'm ending my time as overseer a lot happier than I was when I started. Maybe this whole thing wasn't so bad after all. I even started and completed a miniature project! How about that?

Although, speaking of dwarvenly projects...

...have I forgotten something?