In the Dwarf Fortress options menu, the Music and Sound option allows you to set the desired volume, however this is a single option that will turn off both music and sound is set to 0.

For the moment I would like to play without the music on, but as a new player, I'm a bit worried that I might miss something important if I do this, like a sound effect indicating that something fun has happened.

Will turning the sound off affect anything other than the music volume?

  • Only the great music.
    – Russell
    Mar 19, 2012 at 15:39

2 Answers 2


No. The only sound in the game is the music. If you turn the sound off, you'll miss nothing beside a guitar track by the creator of the game himself.

  • 1
    I agree. Sound in dwarf fortress is for relaxating purposes. And don't carry other functions Sep 8, 2011 at 12:53
  • 2
    +1 I've played through many successful (and some "successful") fortresses without sound.
    – Poindexter
    Sep 9, 2011 at 16:06

Turning off the sound will affect something other than the music volume – it will skip running the sound code, giving somewhere between an infinitesimally small and a noticeably large speed boost depending on your system.

Of course, I know that's not what you meant to ask, but it is a pedantic answer to what you wrote. ;)

  • Are you sure about this? I really doubt that it "skips running the sound code" with the sound off, the computer probably just doesn't power/send signal to the jack. Sep 9, 2011 at 0:28
  • 3
    @Nick: No, just like video, sound has to be "rendered", which doesn't need to happen when there is no sound. If you'd run an application in console-mode, it would skip over the video rendering, right? Well, good chance the same goes for DF when the sound is turned off.
    – orlp
    Sep 9, 2011 at 0:35
  • Yep. That's what the single option that turns them both off is for. It's not much of a difference, but low-end systems have shown a few FPS of improvement by setting that option to 0. Sep 9, 2011 at 16:22

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