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This article is about an older version of DF.

A mandate is a noble's request that your dwarves produce a certain item or type of item, or an export ban on certain items. Starting nobles such as the expedition leader will not make mandates, upgraded nobles like the mayor will. Fulfilling the mandate gives the noble a happy thought.

Mandates should not be confused with demands.

Only some nobles make mandates, and the number of mandates that can be active simultaneously varies:

Mandates are announced at the bottom of the screen, but if you miss the message, you can see if a noble is mandating anything on the noble's screen. If the uppercase bracketed word '[MANDATE]' next to a noble's name is grey, he is making no mandates. If brown, he is making a production mandate, and you have a lot of time to complete it. If yellow, you have a couple seasons before the mandate expires. If red, the mandate will expire very soon. If white, then it is an export ban.

Production Mandate[edit]

When a noble makes a production mandate, you will have about a year to fulfill it. These mandate the production of certain goods, and can specify type or material, just like export bans. If a material is specified, then the finished product must be of that material; the material of the ingredients is irrelevant.

Getting the required items from a caravan will not fulfill a mandate, but imported metal ore and bars can be used for further processing. Making metal items includes smelting ore to create metal bars of that type, notable for metal that can't directly be made into anything: pig iron and bismuth. If you are on a map without flux and a noble is requesting pig iron products, order some flux stones from the dwarven caravan. If the trade liaison isn't offering any, see below.

If your noble is demanding production using a specific ore such as native gold or native silver, note that smelting that ore won't suffice (the finished bars have a different material type); nor will smithing the smelted bars suffice. You'll need to treat the ore as a stone and have a mason build something from it (this may also require going into the z -> Stone menu and temporarily marking the stone type as non-economic) or, if any unmined ore exists nearby, simply put your miners to work. Note that this only occurs in worlds generated prior to version 0.31.12, as said ores were incorrectly treated as being both stone and metal.

If a production mandate expires without being fulfilled, the noble will get an unhappy thought, and one or more dwarves will be sentenced to punishment for the 'violation of production order' crime. The dwarf chosen tends to have a skill appropriate to the mandate, but random dwarves may be chosen as well. If the noble can't sentence any dwarves for punishment because all your dwarves are nobles, or the sentenced dwarves can't be punished because no officer is assigned, he will get another unhappy thought.

Delaying fulfillment of a production mandate may prevent another, worse, mandate from being enacted (for a few months, at least). The color of the mandate indicator on the Nobles screen changes from brown to bright yellow to red, as the deadline approaches.

You can determine your progress towards fulfilling the mandate by viewing the n (then hit enter on the Noble with a mandate), and you will see the mandate listed like this example "Mandates: Make floodgates (2/3)", where in this example we have produced one floodgate and still need to produce two more.

In case of running out of materials[edit]

There are several ways to stretch your supplies of raw materials if nobles routinely mandate more exotic metal alloys or other raw materials you might put to better use yourself:

  • mugs are produced in bundles of 3 from one raw material. Similar to mugs, waterskins are also produced by threes.
  • Gauntlets and Boots/High boots in case of mandates for armor-grade materials produce two items for one metal bar. Other clothing items that come in pairs also apply.
  • Smelting bars also counts as making items. Some smelting jobs produce up to four bars per job (bismuth bronze, fine pewter, rose gold...) and of course count as four created items.

You can stretch your supplies even a bit more by melting existing items.

Export Bans[edit]

Export bans forbid the export of some goods, and can be for either goods of a certain type, like greaves, or goods of a certain material, like copper items.

Violating an export ban by trading any of the item away is a crime for each of the haulers who brought a prohibited item (that was sold) to the trade depot - each dwarf will be incriminated the instant the item is carried off the map (whether by a pack animal or a wagon). While selecting goods to be brought to the depot, the "culling on mandates" option will prevent banned objects from being selected, though if a finished goods bin contains a single banned object, the entire bin will be excluded. Items that are subject to export bans are displayed in purple text in the trade window. Note that if an item is traded to a caravan and is subsequently placed under an export ban, dwarves will be punished even though the trade took place before the ban went into effect, so if the caravan hasn't already left, any banned goods should be immediately purchased back from the traders; if a good was offered, then nothing can be done (aside from exploiting various oddities in the trade system, or arranging an unfortunate accident). Oddly, trading banned items which were carried to the depot in bins (but not the bins themselves) does not result in any perceived crimes, perhaps because only the bin was brought to the depot, not the items inside it; however, the noble that issued the mandate will receive an unhappy thought that nobody could be punished.[Verify]

Mandates & preferences[edit]

Personal preferences have a strong influence on what type of items and what type of materials a noble bans for export or wants to have produced via mandates. Nobles with a preference for a specific item will often either ban that item or mandate its production; nobles with a preference for a specific material will, likewise, either ban the export of items made from that material, or mandate similar production.

Nobles with extraordinary preferences or preferences for items or materials that are either unavailable on your map or are just too hard to produce (a judgment call) will be a problem for your fortress. You only have (limited) control over choosing one noble who makes mandates, for example when appointing your baron, or choosing your Expedition leader who will later become your Mayor (the starting dwarf with the most social skills will almost always become the expedition leader). Choose your baron or mayor wisely: take a look at their preferences, and decide if they might be a problem - while you can import many materials via trade, producing for example dragon bone items may be impossible, depending on your game map. Even producing pig iron or steel items, or banning an export on all obsidian items or mugs could be problematic, depending on your playstyle and fortress. If unavoidable, such nobles may be destined for an unfortunate accident - for the good of the fortress as a whole.