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DF2014:The Non-Dwarf's Guide to Rock
|This article is about the current version of DF.|
Wondering what that new kind of rock your dwarves just struck is good for? Possibly nothing, but when you're just getting started it can be tough to tell the trash from the treasure. The following table summarizes the types of stone and ore found in Dwarf Fortress; gems are covered in their own article.
The Uses column lists any special uses or properties of this particular stone type; if no uses are listed, you can always use the stone for general construction and crafting. Note that many "low-value" materials are still very useful in a Dwarf Fortress. "Colors" are useful for color coding or creative aesthetic uses.
During the game, you can pressand then navigate to "stone". The list there covers all types of rocks and ores, and tells you what rocks can be smelted into.
 Table of Rocks
(Some materials are worth an additional comment; these are numbered, with footnotes below the table.)
|Adamantine, raw||ore, special1||Becomes Adamantine1, by far the most valuable substance|
|Alabaster||stone||Low-value stone; used for making plaster|
|Aluminum, native||ore, high-value||Smelt into Aluminum, a high-value decorative metal|
|Alunite||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Andesite||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Anhydrite||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Basalt||layer stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Bauxite||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone; only source of some high-value gems|
|Bismuthinite||ore, rare||Smelt into bismuth, ingredient of bismuth bronze|
|Bituminous coal||stone||Smelt into Fuel, flammable|
|Calcite||stone||Flux, mid-value magma-safe stone|
|Cassiterite||ore, uncommon||Smelt into Tin, a low-value metal; ingredient of Bronzes; magma-safe|
|Chalk||layer stone||Flux, mid-value stone|
|Chert||layer stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Chromite||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Claystone||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Conglomerate||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Copper, native||ore, low-value||Smelt into useful Copper; ingredient of Bronzes|
|Dacite||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Diorite||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Dolomite||layer stone||Flux, mid-value magma-safe stone|
|Gabbro||layer stone||Low-value magma-safe stone; only source of some ores & gems|
|Galena||ore||Smelt into Lead, a low-value metal, with a 50% chance2 for Silver; magma-safe|
|Garnierite||ore, uncommon||Smelt into Nickel, a low-value magma-safe metal|
|Gneiss||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Gold, native||ore||Smelt into Gold, a high-value metal|
|Granite||layer stone||Low-value stone; only source of some ores; relatively rich in content|
|Graphite||stone||Low-value stone, flammable|
|Gypsum||stone||Low-value stone; used for making plaster|
|Hematite||ore||Smelt into Iron, a mid-value metal; ingredient for Steel; magma-safe|
|Horn silver||ore||Smelt into Silver, a mid-value metal|
|Ilmenite||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Kaolinite||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone; used for making porcelain|
|Kimberlite||stone||Low-value stone; only source of diamonds|
|Lignite||stone||Smelt into Fuel, flammable|
|Limestone||layer stone||Flux, mid-value stone|
|Limonite||ore, high-value||Smelt into Iron, a mid-value metal; ingredient for Steel|
|Magnetite||ore, high-value||Smelt into Iron, a mid-value metal; ingredient for Steel; magma-safe|
|Malachite||ore, low-value||Smelt into useful Copper; ingredient of Bronzes|
|Marble||layer stone||Flux, mid-value stone|
|Mica||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Mudstone||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Obsidian||layer stone||High-value magma-safe stone;Sharpenable hard rock (used to create stone short swords);
signifies nearby magma if not a layer
|Olivine||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone; may contain Platinum|
|Orthoclase||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Periclase||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Petrified wood||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Phyllite||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Pitchblende||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Platinum, native||ore, high-value||Smelt into Platinum, a highest-value decorative metal|
|Quartzite||layer stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Rhyolite||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Rock salt||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Rutile||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Sandstone||layer stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Satinspar||stone||Low-value stone; used for making plaster|
|Schist||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Selenite||stone||Low-value stone; used for making plaster|
|Shale||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Siltstone||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Silver, native||ore||Smelt into Silver, a mid-value metal|
|Slade||stone, special||Not workable by dwarves|
|Slate||layer stone||Low-value stone|
|Sphalerite||ore, uncommon||Smelt into Zinc, a low-value metal; ingredient for Brass|
|Talc||stone||Low-value magma-safe stone|
|Tetrahedrite||ore, low-value||Smelt into useful Copper; ingredient of Bronzes;
has a 20% additional chance2 of Silver; smelt into Billon
- (* Each stone is one of 16 colors in the game. Different un-mined stone of the same color have a different symbol to distinguish between them. Once mined, the individual stones themselves can sometimes look identical if the color is the same. Use to loo at items or the terrain for specific information.)
- Adamantine is not exactly like other metals, although it works almost the same. It has a value multiplier of x300 (yes, three hundred). See adamantine for a full discussion of this unusual and wondrous material.
- % chance for additional metals: when Galena and Tetrahedrite are smelted, they produce (respectively) four lead or copper bars, 100% of the time. They also produce 0-4 additional bars of the second metal, with the percent chance to produce each additional bar listed above.
- Ice has some very unusual properties in Dwarf Fortress, and can be disastrous if misused. See article on ice for a more complete discussion.
 The Value of Rocks & Metals
You won't find the terms "low-value" or "highest-value" used in the game, but they're handy here for rough comparison. "Values" are all relative to each other, on a common scale. The "material value" number multiplies any final product that is created with that material by that number. An average generic statue (base value 25) is worth much more than an average generic throne (base value 10), but a throne carved from raw gold nuggets (10 x 30 = 300) will be worth far more than a common-stone statue (25 x 1 = 25). (Note - "quality" also factors into total value of a final product, as do some other considerations, but those are outside the scope of this intro article). Bottom line - when in doubt, go for the more valuable stuff.
Common stones (the vast majority) have a value multiplier of x1, mid-value (all flux stones like marble) are x2, and high-value (obsidian only) is x3. This affects things like stone tables and doors, statues or stonecrafts - anything made from stone. Metal ores have varying values, from 2-40, and can either be treated as stone or smelted into bars of metal.
For metals, low-value (like copper or nickel) is x2. Mid-value (silver or iron) is around x10, high-value (gold, steel) is x30, and highest-value (platinum, aluminum) is x40.
Note that the raw mined ore and the smelted pure metal often have different value multipliers, but not always. Alloys like brass or bronze are often more valuable than the sum of their pure metal ingredients, and have a true spectrum of values between 3-23. (Alloy values are not listed in this article.)
Any metal can be crafted into decorations, furniture, or buildings. Only copper, bronzes, iron, steel, and adamantine can make weapons, armor, and picks, with silver also able to be forged into melee weapons.
(For comparison, all wood has a value of x1, equal to common stone.)