It’s been a scant two weeks since the launch of Dwarf Fortress on Steam, and Dwarf Fortress mods are already stacking up in the Steam Workshop like logs in a lumber stockpile. While many of these add nice little quality of life improvements, others have gone straight for the weird and wacky, with mods that allow dwarves to fashion furniture out of cheese and, regrettably, milk the cats.
There are a couple of things you should know about this if you’ve never played Dwarf Fortress. The first is that the cats in this colony management game enjoy a unique pride of place among the many animals that can become part of your fortress. Cats can’t be adopted like dogs and hens, for instance – they have to choose a dwarf to bond with on their own.
The second important element to this is how Dwarf Fortress handles dairy operations. You’ll create milking orders from a farm workshop, and dwarves will, by default, check to see if any animals are available for milking, bring one to the workshop with a bucket, and fill the bucket with milk. The Milkable Cats mod makes cats available for this process. We have not yet been able to test whether this has a negative impact on the cats’ feelings toward the dwarves.
Milk can be used to make cheese, in Dwarf Fortress as in real life. Cheese is handy because it’s food you can keep around for a while. With the Cheese Crafting mod, craftsdwarves can use the kitchen workshop to make furniture items out of any cheese you have in the pantry. Cheese chairs, cheese tables, even masterpiece cheese statues – the kind you might find at the Wisconsin State Fair, in fact.
There’s plenty more available too. There are mods for playable orc and kobold civilisations, trainable war possums, and even a total conversion mod called Vvardenfell that transports Dwarf Fortress to the Elder Scrolls universe.
Mods have always been the lifeblood of PC gaming, and our list of the best mods on PC has some of the most historic and important mods ever created.