Here’s my shameful admission of the month: I’ve never got past the first 20 minutes or so (not counting initial map generation) with Bay12’s unbelievably epic ASCII RPG Dwarf Fortress. I am fully convinced it’s brilliant — quite possibly one of the most deeply rewarding open-world games in recent memory — and I am fully convinced that given more of a chance I would probably have a transcendent experience with it, but I am instantly stricken with crippling anxiety just sitting at its opening play-screen.
I suspect I’m not the only one, too, and for us, there’s now a similarly epic video tutorial set from ‘captain_duck’ that will guide you through all of both its basic and advanced mechanics (and by epic I mean a full 10 minute video simply on mining and making beds). In the last of his original series, duck even showcases a 3D map visualization that might help get your head a bit more into the game.
I hate to say it, though, but I really do think that until someone comes up with a tileset as pixel perfect as the proof of concept above (via SpriteAttack via RockPaperShotgun) (why can’t we make it so?) there’s not much chance of me getting much further into the game, though this set is a massive leap in the right direction.