Revolutionary PC game Dwarf Fortress is coming to Steam and Itch.io in the form of a remake that remakes the original game’s graphics in order to enhance the accessibility of the original title.
This new version of the game will replace the original title’s ASCII graphics (symbols) with actual sprites. The result is being able to see actual visual representations of what is happening in Dwarf Fortress for the first time ever (outside of mods). What’s more is that this visual update will allow the game’s modders and unparalleled level of freedom as they no longer to have to follow certain rules designed to adhere to the game’s original and unusual visual base. While Dwarf Fortress‘ developers are not handling all of the new artwork and visual design themselves, they have outsourced the job and are working closely with the artists given this daunting task.
While this is a fascinating move for the game, what’s even more interesting is that the game’s creators are apparently porting the game now in order to deal with the rising costs of healthcare in the United States.
“We don’t talk about this much, but for many years, Zach has been on expensive medication, which has fortunately been covered by his healthcare,” says Dwarf Fortress‘ developers through the game’s Patreon page. “It’s a source of constant concern, as the plan has changed a few times and as the political environment has shifted…That said, crowdfunding is by far our main source of income and the reason we’re still here. Your support is still crucial, as the Steam release may or may not bring us the added stability we’re seeking now and it’s some months away.”
There’s no word on when Dwarf Fortress will be released on Steam (in place of a release date on the game’s Steam page, the studio notes that “Time is Subjective,” but it sounds like the team is just working out the final details. That means we might see it as soon as 2019.
If you’re unfamiliar with Dwarf Fortress, then you really just need to know that it’s arguably the deepest and most complicated game ever made. This title touches upon the creation elements of games like Minecraft but affords you so many possibilities that that game’s biggest fans have lost years of their lives to exploring everything you can do in this game and still haven’t discovered it all.
Matthew Byrd is a staff writer for Den of Geek. He spends most of his days trying to pitch deep-dive analytical pieces about Killer Klowns From Outer Space to an increasingly perturbed series of editors. You can read more of his work here or find him on Twitter at @SilverTuna014.