In the current version of Dwarf Fortress (0.47.4), you can build temples to deities in your fortress in Fortress Mode, and dwarves will go there to pray to their various gods and deities and receive the positive "enraptured" thought. You can designate a temple for a specific god, or just a general temple not dedicated to any specific god, so that presumably all dwarves can pray there regardless of their deity.

However, I'm curious if dwarves who are part of one religion are able to worship in the temple of a different deity. I've never observed this happening in my own fortresses - i.e. when I dedicate a temple to a god of death (for very valid reasons), only the death worshippers will go there to pray as far as I can tell. So usually I just make one general temple that suits everyone, but sometimes I wonder if I need to make a bunch of temples, each dedicated to one specific god, to make everybody happy.

The wiki doesn't really clear this up, and the Temple page only states:

If you read the thoughts of certain dwarves, you can note that some have been "unable to pray to (x deity)". If you designate a temple to that specific deity, they will then go pray or meditate with purple text and satisfy their religious needs. This mechanic needs more research. In some cases a dwarf who worships multiple deities may not ever pray to them all. Using burrows to force these dwarves to pray only in generic temples will usually make them eventually (sequentially) satisfy all their needs to pray, given no other tasks.

Similarly, there is this forum thread that discusses how temples work, but it doesn't answer the question fully either.

So, can dwarves who worship one deity successfully pray at another deity's temple? Or do they absolutely, positively need to have their own god's temple or a generic temple available?

1 Answer 1


It doesn't fully answer my given question as written, but I recently discovered another bay12 forum thread from July 2020 that offers an explanation for stressed-out dwarves not worshipping correctly in designated temples, at least for the older versions of Dwarf Fortress. This seems to be what was going on in the thread that I linked in the question.


This is a known problem with the stress system, which is discussed at length here. Right now, the dwarves are allowed to belong to too many gods, which means that they can't worship them enough. It'll be fixed someday.

This seems to indicate that polytheistic dwarves who worship too many gods in previous versions (and maybe still in the current version?) didn't worship correctly at temples to resolve their need for worship, due to a bug in the stress system. This would seem to explain my observation that dwarves don't always resolve their need for worship despite having multiple temples that are designated for their gods and generic gods, which is what led me to ask this question to figure out if I was designating temples correctly and what kinds of temples dwarves needed.

I still can't definitively answer my main question, though, which is whether dwarves can pray at a temple that is dedicated to another god and not their own. However, this stress bug is sufficient evidence for me that polytheistic dwarves don't worship correctly in some versions despite sufficient temple space, and that generic vs. specific temple designations don't seem to matter much anyway, so I'm posting this as a "mostly-answer" until a more definite answer is found.

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