During the Guerrilla Collective stream today, Bay 12 Games showed off Dwarf Fortress' upcoming graphics update. It will be coming to Steam and Itch sometime soon, and when it does, it will receive its graphical face-lift and be a little more accessible. Bay 12 is working with two artists who have been longtime modders on the game to breathe life into its new visuals.
The graphics will show more details of each environment and of the different terrain. There will be three-dimensionality to the graphics as well: you can discern different grades of levels, lower levels and such, for example.
Originally, text like triangles had indicated uphill surfaces. Dwarf Fortress once mostly had squiggles and arrows for all of its graphics. There used to even be only text descriptions for the dwarves' appearances, but now you will be able to see the dwarves themselves.
Despite coming to Steam, the original version will remain free. What was shown today was preliminary, so it's still a work-in-progress.
Dwarf Fortress has been around since 2006 and is a settlement management game. Its world is procedurally-generated. In it, you guide a band of dwarfs as they go out into the world to build the titular fortress. You begin with a few dwarves, a wagon, some tools, and alcohol (very important for dwarves). The idea is to dig into mountains, make bedrooms, build workshops, and such. The game can grow at a huge scope: civilizations can develop and the game can go on for years.
You have wide latitude in the game, and can even build settlements above ground. There is also a roguelike adventure mode if you tire of settlement management and want to travel the land.
Dwarf Fortress is currently available for PC, Mac, and Linux.
Are you a long-time, dedicated Dwarf Fortress player? Have you never played it before, perhaps because its lack of graphics? Either way, let us know what you think of this update in the comments below!