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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    ClericGirl

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    Default What do dwarves eat?

    I know they dont have cattle in the caves since they cant effectively keep them and I know they are notorious for holding a siege indefinitely, so how do they sustain their population?
    This question refers mainly on the forgotten realms world though I'd be happy to hear some ideas I could include in my campaign

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Urpriest's Avatar

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    In the Forgotten Realms there are Deep Rothe, which are essentially Underdark bison. There are also lots of edible mushrooms to farm.
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    Orc in the Playground
     
    Sneaky Weasel's Avatar

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Rats. Generally fried, and only if vast quantities of ketchup are available.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Flumph

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    In the Forgotten Realms there is a type of underdark radiation Farenzness (sp) that basically acts like sunlight above ground in that it provides an energy source for the base of the food chain. Instead of plants there are many kinds of fungi.-not just mushrooms but those are the most famous

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Spiryt's Avatar

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    I guess it would depend - almost completely cave dwarves would be tricky, but in most settings, caves are for, unsurprisingly, mining first of all.

    So assuming dwarves that sleep/eat in some really big caverns etc. that are prevalent in the settings, they still can hoard sheep, goats, mountain goats and some other more exotic/fantasy herbivores. So pretty much standard highland food source.

    Then hunting and collecting different stuff - fishing also, there are streams in the mountains and below surface. Maybe with some interesting fantasy fish.
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    Orc in the Playground
     
    blackspeeker's Avatar

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Don't know much about the realms but fish living in underground lakes isn't that uncommon, also mushrooms should be easy enough to cultivate underground.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    DruidGuy

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Clearly dwarves eat gems and precious metals, which is why they're always digging around looking for the stuff.

    But probably mushrooms, lots and lots of mushrooms and other fungi. Violet fungus souffle, hearty dark breads made of brown mold, and for desert: black pudding. Of course they follow the universal rule of not eating anything with green slime on it.

    Then there's the question of whether the dwarves really live underground, or if they hide their towns so well and spend so much time there that people assume they live under the mountains.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Terumitsu's Avatar

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sneaky Weasel View Post
    Rats. Generally fried, and only if vast quantities of ketchup are available.
    They also make bread sometimes but the actual edibility of it is rather questionable. Generally, most folk will think that there is something wrong when pastries can be used as paving stones.

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Terumitsu View Post
    They also make bread sometimes but the actual edibility of it is rather questionable. Generally, most folk will think that there is something wrong when pastries can be used as paving stones.
    Or as Holy relics of long gone wars against those lumbering, stupid rocks.

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    Pixie in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    It's embedded in a worldbuilding religions page (also worth a look), but this section in particular might help:
    http://web.archive.org/web/200904061...html#Heading67

    If they grow anything on the mountains above their homes, barley would make sense- it's the main crop in Tibet. It also give them somewhere to get those gallons and gallons of ale from, if you have Ye Old Drunkard Dwarves™.
    Mountaintop yak and goat herders would make sense too, so that could give them dairy and meat.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    They eat rocks.
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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    scarmiglionne4's Avatar

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    In my latest campaign I had them raising rams just outside the dwarf hold. They had numerous entrances and exits that were secret so they could hold out during a siege and still let their rams out onto secret mountain ledges to graze what little plant-life grew up there.

    That and potatoes. They have fields of them. Also raised outside the dwarf hold. They grow them and preserve them like you might do meat or fish. What you end up with is like a thick-sliced very salty potato chip.

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    Gunslinger in the Playground Administrator
     
    Roland St. Jude's Avatar

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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Liquid bread. Hey, it worked for the Egyptians and the mudders on Higgins' Moon.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Like others mentioned, having the dwarves build impressive terrasses on the mountains and growing food/herding animals up there makes sense. The more well off mountainholds establishing true feats of engineering in the style of Machu Picchu, Petra or the Himalayan monasteries in the mountainpasses. Fits with the theme of dwarves being great builders and engineers as well.

    Lower class dwarves are then those that work these farms, whereas the rich and powerful live safe, content lives deep in the holds (but way above the mines). As another addition, you could probably toss in "sunkissed" as a dwarven slur for those that dwell in the sun (like lowerclass dwraves and elves)

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Mushrooms. Small, easily herd-able mammals. Fish. Underground wildlife. Probably plants that rely on Chemosynthesis rather than Photosynthesis.
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    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    In Dwarf Fortress, that most ridiculous of simulation games, they farm, hunt, fish, raise livestock for meat, eggs, milk and cheese, and keep bees. They can also trade. It may well be that all the player needs to do is to build a couple of underground farms (alcohol is much more important anyway) and set a couple of dwarves to raise different crops. Fortunately, the player base is as crazy as the game.

    Underground farms seem to support a small but adequate number of crops, mostly mushrooms. Open-air crops are more varied, but they're a security risk or a cause for projects like building enclosed glass-roofed valleys. I've only played a short succession game, and there our fortress was built into the back wall of a canyon with strawberry patches in front of the gates. It's also possible to grow underground lumber, like tower-caps and tunnel tube.

    Underground rivers are great for fishing. The wiki also discusses building traps on the riverbed, but retrieving the fish requires damming or redirecting the river. It even mentions eating whales, but there are no boats and that probably involves draining parts of the sea. Overground pastures for grazing animals are a hazard, but they can be sent to underground caverns to eat cave moss or floor fungus.

    Dwarves may also eat kittens, but that's not crazy, that's a necessity. The furry things can breed like Tribbles and kill the framerate, and once they adopt dwarves as their owners you're pretty much stuck with them.
    Last edited by Kizor; 2012-09-09 at 08:14 AM.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: What do dwarves eat?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kizor View Post
    In Dwarf Fortress, that most ridiculous of simulation games, they farm, hunt, fish, raise livestock for meat, eggs, milk and cheese, and keep bees. They can also trade. It may well be that all the player needs to do is to build a couple of underground farms (alcohol is much more important anyway) and set a couple of dwarves to raise different crops. Fortunately, the player base is as crazy as the game.
    Don't forget the purring maggots. They make good milk and cheese. Traditionally served with mushroom wine, of course. (I'm totally not making this up, these are actually in the game.)
    Last edited by Thomar_of_Uointer; 2012-09-11 at 02:05 PM.
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