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Most of my dwarves are not happy, and I don't know how to make them happier in general.

So, how can I properly make at least the angrier of them less unhappy/more happy?

I really want to prevent them from starting a killing spree due to going Berserk. This is the number two cause of deaths on my Fortress.

Version: 0.50 (Steam).

What has been tried so far:

  1. "Therapy Squad" suggested by the wiki: didn't work in reducing the number of really angry dwarves. The number was reduced, but only due to some of them dying/being killed. I checked some of the dwarves on the "Therapy Squad", and what they were doing, and, although they were attendind their needs, they still kept angry on the end. The "Therapy Squad" was not worth the loss of workforce it caused. As the info about this strategy is 3 years old already, and was added to the wiki by an anonymous user (which tend to be low-quality contributors on Wikipedia, at least), it is outdated or completely fake.
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    Therapist: "Why are you so angry?" Dwarf: "It all started when I was wee high. I blame it all on my pa." (proceeds to die) Commented Apr 28, 2023 at 16:16

2 Answers 2

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I can't promise you the following advice will save your fort; it might be too late for that, I don't know.

That said, you need to pile on as many positive effects as you can, while keeping negative effects to a minimum. In no particular order:

  1. Make varied, high-quality meals. Better meals provide better mood boosts, and using varied ingredients makes it likely dwarves will get some of their favorites now and then, adding further boosts.

  2. Provide every dwarf with a high quality bedroom; a bed, a cabinet, and engraved walls and floors.

  3. Provide a dining room; the more extravagant the better.

  4. Provide a temple; again, the more extravagant the better.

  5. Provide lots of clothing and crafts; jewelry isn't just for sale, dwarves take some for themselves now and then.

  6. Properly bury any dead.

  7. Carefully manage sunlight exposure. If dwarves go too long without seeing sunlight, it makes them sick when they finally do. So anybody who may have to go outside now and then (hunters, woodcutters, soldiers) should do so often, to stay accustomed to it.

There are many other ways to make dwarves happy, but these are the most important/reliable.

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  • I'm afraid of "Make varied, high-quality meals" resulting in no seeds on stock. Maybe would you like to answer there too? Commented Apr 9, 2023 at 17:57
  • Having varied drinks is important. I noticed this when I saw the thoughts of some dwarves complaining that they 'got to drink the same old booze again'. So I guess they could become bored with the food monotony too, even if it is of a high quality type. Commented Apr 10, 2023 at 23:48
  • "Provide every dwarf with a high quality bedroom" The quality is determined just by the total monetary value of the space? If it is more complex than that, I'll open a new question, because it will have merit on its own. Commented Apr 13, 2023 at 16:27
  • It's my understanding that it's the monetary value of the room, including walls and floors if they're smoothed and engraved. I know dwarves will use a cabinet in their room to store things as well, but I'm not sure if that has an effect on their mood.
    – Ryan_L
    Commented Apr 13, 2023 at 17:21
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I've found a simple indoor waterfall works wonders over the span of a year or two. I have the entry room right inside a high traffic area where I just put 4 spaced out statues in a square and then in the layer above put 4 pumps with holes above the statues. Just make one of the holes a pit for water, let it get level 2 (dont forget to remove the pit zone afterwards) and the pumps will start moving it around the square making a waterfall below of spray. Dwarves get happy thoughts every time they walk past it.

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  • "works wonders over the span of a year or two" Do you mean that it takes 1~2 years to start generating happy thoughts, or that it ceases to generate happy thoughts after 1~2 years? Commented Apr 28, 2023 at 13:55
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    No, I meant that over the course of 1-2 years I noticed that I no longer had any red/orange faces in my list of dwarves. It's a constant thing. Of course I'm doing other things to make sure the dwarves are happy but the waterfall seemed to be a big and very noticeable contribution Commented Apr 28, 2023 at 15:21

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