18 October 2013

Another Dwarf Fortress part 2: The First Siege

I have started playing Dwarf Fortress again. Let me tell you about my exploits!

After year 2 of my new fortress, the population had grown. I had dug out spacious housing for the dwarves, the militia counted twenty dwarves, the first two of which were armored with chainmail shirts and -leggins and the wall surrounding the area above the fortress was done too. There was a channel of water, protected by a grate underneath the wall leading through the water-hole in the pasture and into the cistern below, which held ten by ten by seven squares of water and had a well connected to the bottom floor of it in a room beside it, separated by a wall so dwarves couldn't fall into the cistern itself.

Food production was going great. Animals were being butchered as well as hunted, honey and eggs were produced, plump helmets and wild strawberries grew and sometimes I would even get my dwarves specialties from the caravans, such as cheese or rum. The masons and stoneworkers were working on making a really nice new meeting hall and carving appartments and offices for the nobles of the fortress. The defenses included a path inside the wall that was overlooked by a ballista behind an arrow-slit and there was a central room for crossbowdwarves to fire out of without being endangered themselves. I was getting giddy for action. That is never good in Dwarf Fortress...

When action found me, I felt quite ready. The fortress had only had four casualties before the first goblin siege arrived, one dwarf died of dehydration after going insane, a baby started a fight with a ram, things like that. The invaders butchered everyone who was outside the walls when they came. A woodcutter was the first to die, unable to outrun the band of goblins. The same happened to fisherdwarves and hunters. Then the goblins entered the fortress entrance.

I had tried to build the entrance with floodgates that would stop an enemy from fleeing once they had entered my designated murder-zone that was overlooked by both the ballista and the arrow-slits of my crossbow-squad. Sadly, a goblin standing on one of the floodgates prevented it from rising, thus leaving a way of escape open. The crossbowdwarves refused to be of much use too while the ballista arrow went wild above the heads of the goblins and only two of my close-combat dwarves found themselves in the murder-zone, while the rest was stuck behind the inner gate. It was a mess.

The two fighters among the goblins more than made up for it though. The goblins were unable to do them much harm and after killing four of the attackers, the rest of them decided it wasn't worth it and fled. Both of my heroes had only light injuries that could actually be treated. One injured civilian was also rescued to be treated, although I am unsure whether he will ever wake up again. Having lost a dozen dwarfs to the attack, all of them civilians, I had to move on with the game, creating more burial space and re-evaluating my battle plan. The next attack would surely come and would have to be more ready than this...

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