Getting Started with Dwarf Fortress

Hi there! You might be here looking for information about my book, “Getting Started with Dwarf Fortress“, which is available at O’ If you’re here for my old blog, click the blog menu link above. I also run and which may be of interest.

“Getting Started with Dwarf Fortress” is a fantastic introduction to one of the most complex games ever made. Reviewers have described it as a “must have for new players and a great read for old ones” and as “your single best resource for learning Dwarf Fortress”. The book guides you through the process of creating a world, establishing your first fortress and then how to productively manage your dwarves, the military, industry and engineering. By the time you’ve finished this book you will be a confident Dwarf Fortress player and you will have had some fun too!

At O’ you can pick the book as an eBook or, paperback or both for a great discount. The book is also available on Amazon and other retailers. If you buy your eBook through O’Reilly you will automatically be subscribed to lifetime book updates for free. As Dwarf Fortress changes I will be updating the book and O’Reilly customers will be alerted and able to download the book for free. “Getting Started with Dwarf Fortress” will never be out of date!

If you have bought the book from somewhere else you can register your copy on O’ and for $5 gain access to the lifetime book updates.

For those interested, here’s the chapter list:

  • Foreword by Tarn “Toady” Adams
  • Preface
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: Playing God
  • Chapter 3: First Steps
  • Chapter 4: Filling Dwarf Bellies
  • Chapter 5: Merchants and Trading
  • Chapter 6: Dwarf Resource Management
  • Chapter 7: Digging Deeper
  • Chapter 8: Industry
  • Chapter 9: Justice, Healthcare and Vampires
  • Chapter 10: The Military
  • Chapter 11: Engineering
  • Afterword: Farther
  • Appendix

The book is 238 pages and 80,000 words. It features nine full-page illustrations and a half-dozen diagrams by Tim Denee. The illustrations are based on stories from Dwarf Fortress submitted by players on the forum. You can see one to the left. If you buy the book, I hope you enjoy it! And please, feel free to let me know if there are any problems with the book. I’ll be updating it, after all!

Peter Tyson

What people are saying about the book:

“This is the single most valuable asset I’ve found in trying to learn Dwarf Fortress” – thebrassthief, Reddit

“It is definitely a good book and fills a gap that the Wiki can’t provide. I had been reading the wiki for a while. But once I got this book it gave me a quick and very useful introduction to aspects of the game I hadn’t yet even begun to deal with. I would recommend it to anyone who isn’t an experienced DF player.” – rjcroy, Reddit

…read more on and at!

Action Shots!

I love these photos of the book in use.

  • Get my book from O’Reilly!

    Getting Started with Dwarf Fortress
  • FAQ

    Q. Won't the book get out of date?
    A. No, O'Reilly ebook owners get updates for free for life as the game changes and I edit the manuscript. Others can register their book at O' for $5.

    Q. Does Toady, the designer, approve?
    A. It was Toady who suggested O'Reilly contact me to write the book when they were looking for an author, and he wrote the foreword. He's a big fan!

    Q. Does Toady get a cut of profits? A. I am making donations to Toady each month based on my own royalties. Toady will also benefit from the donations brought by all the new players!
  • Webcast!

    Watch my O'Reilly webcast on engineering, minecarts and design in Dwarf Fortress.
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