The mechanics are so diverse and involved that pretty much anything can be done in the game; Game maps can be made into computers, stories are created from gameplay sessions, and all the characters have individual personalities and relationships.
|An example of possible future graphics|
|The Ascii graphics of Dwarf Fortress|
One of the more interesting parts of Dwarf Fortress are the mechanisms. The dwarfs can set up complicated machines including floodgates, retracting bridges, and traps. In addition to the normal traps, players can set up groups of mechanisms to trap and kill the invaders using water, magma, or other more exotic means.
By default the game comes with ASCII art graphics, that I found very hard to read, but luckily their are many great graphics packs and other useful utilities and mods. As well as a many useful tutorials [1, 2] to help you get into the complex world of Dwarf Fortress.
|A currently available graphics set (Phoebus)|
And now for some interesting Dwarf Fortress stories:
The tragic but inspiring tale of BronzeMurder (illustrated).
An harrowing tale from the Dubious Quality blog.
Find more stories of Dwarf Fortress by looking under the category Dwarf Fortress.