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This article is about the current version of DF.
Note that some content may still need to be updated.

Invader is a catch-all term for creatures that come to your fortress with the sole purpose of killing and/or enslaving your dwarves. Outside of hostile wildlife, they serve as the main source of fun of a playthrough as more and more critters choose to try and destroy you. Whenever an invader is discovered, the game will pause, center on them, and a red message will alert the player of what exactly they are.

Whether a fortress is targeted by invaders is mainly related to its total population, its accumulated wealth and its distance from the invader's base of operations, though some types of invasions may skip certain prerequisites. Most invaders also require a land path to the fortress in order to invade it, meaning some invasions can be avoided by settling on an island.

The presence of invaders can be customized in SettingsDifficulty; changing to Enemies: Off will disable invaders (though this will not prevent intrigue or HFS), or by clicking the Custom Settings button, more fine-tuning (such as adjusting the type and frequency of enemies) may be done.

Types of invaders[edit]

D4Dwarf.png This article or section has been rated D for Dwarf. It may include witty humour, not-so-witty humour, bad humour, in-jokes, pop culture references, and references to the Bay12 forums. Don't believe everything you read, and if you miss some of the references, don't worry. It was inevitable.

Back in the good ol' days we could just say "Goblin" and everyone would know what you meant. But what with goblin merchants popping up every year (admittedly only at a few new-age dwarven forts that proclaim "free love" and "tolerance" and "baloney"); and both humans, elves and even other dwarves mustering their forces for war, such racist remarks are no longer tolerated in today's modern dwarven society,

No, when someone visits your fort to stick the pointy end of their sword through your beer-soaked belly you should be politically correct and say "Oh drat! An invader! Curse them!" We don't want goblins creatures getting upset.


  • Invading creatures can do so regardless of their age, which can lead to rare and unusual events such as being attacked by a werebeast child or a roc hatchling.
Military and defense
Managing soldiers
Design tips