Underwater adventuring

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The Sea (and a few other bodies of sea water) contains a number of underwater zones which involve special mechanics.

Air supply

In order to access underwater zones, the player must equip a source of air such as old SCUBA tank or have an air-supplying effect.

Trying to adventure underwater without an air supply yields the message:

You can't adventure there without some way of breathing underwater...

Trying to adventure underwater with insufficient adventures remaining yields the message:

You don't have enough time to adventure there...

Trying to access The Sea Monkees' Castle without an air supply yields the message:

You can't visit the Sea Monkees without some way of breathing underwater.

Trying to access the Mer-kin Temple without an air supply yields the message:

You can't go in there without being able to breathe water.

Trying to access Anemone Mine with a Mer-kin digpick equipped yields the message:

You need some way of breathing underwater to mine there. Maybe something in your inventory can help?

Because of this, adventuring underwater can factor in a large penalty to Combat Initiative and Item Drops, as most current air supply equipment has those effects.

The following is a list of all sources of air:

Name Source Air duration Notes Restrictions
aerated diving helmet Hat (requires quest) Always
  • Serious Stench Resistance (+3)
  • -25% Item Drops from Monsters
  • Combat Initiative -50%
  • Cannot be traded
  • All components other than the bubblin' stone can be traded
crappy Mer-kin mask Hat (requires quest) Always
  • Serious Stench Resistance (+3)
  • -25% Item Drops from Monsters
  • Combat Initiative -50%
  • Cannot be traded
Mer-kin gladiator mask Hat (requires quest) Always
  • Serious Stench Resistance (+3)
  • -25% Item Drops from Monsters
  • Combat Initiative -50%
  • Cannot be traded
Mer-kin scholar mask Hat (requires quest) Always
  • Serious Stench Resistance (+3)
  • -25% Item Drops from Monsters
  • Combat Initiative -50%
  • Cannot be traded
old SCUBA tank Back Always
  • -50% Item Drops from Monsters
  • Combat Initiative -100%
  • Sold by An Old Man
    • Offered post-level 11
    • 10,000 Meat
  • Flagged as Quest Item
  • Often better than the other options (besides the crown of Ed) as back slot items tend to have smaller bonuses than head slot items.
The Crown of Ed the Undying Hat Always
  • Maximum HP/MP +50
  • Combat Initiative +25%
  • Ed's servants will level up faster
  • Allows you to read thoughts
  • Cannot be traded
  • golden fish must be installed
Driving Waterproofly Asdon Martin 30 Adventures
  • Makes you a better diver
  • Your familiar can breathe underwater
  • Costs 37 fuel
Mer-kinny Flavor mer-kin paste 10 Adventures
  • Fills 4 spleen
  • Level 4 required
Oxygenated Blood ballast turtle 20 Adventures Only Turtle Tamers can obtain this item
  • These items cannot be traded.
  • Only one of each of these items may be used per day.
Pneumatic pressurized potion of pneumaticity 20 Adventures Only players with Deep Saucery can craft this item
Pumped Stomach tempura air 20 Adventures Only players with Tempuramancy can craft this item
Really Deep Breath hyperinflated seal lung 20 Adventures Only Seal Clubbers can obtain this item
fish juice box 30 Adventures Item also gives 20 adventures of Fishy

Adventure cost

Adventuring in an underwater zone costs two (2) adventures unless you have the Fishy effect active. This applies to any underwater encounter, including special holiday monsters encountered while adventuring underwater. At the end of any combat which costs two adventures, the following message appears:

"Being underwater makes it hard to move -- it's really slowing you down!"

This extra adventure cost is applied after the combat has been completely resolved. This means, amongst other things, that escaping from combat with items like tattered scraps of paper will still result in you losing one adventure, not 0 or 2, if you are not Fishy. Similarly, status effects gained at the end of combat, such as Beaten Up, will lose one more turn of duration than normal, if you are not Fishy.

Pressure Penalties

Furthermore, underwater zones all give a penalty to meat drops, item drops, and initiative, depending on how much pressure there is in the zone.

These effects are demonstrated in-game by dolphins snagging not-quite-dropped items, and some of the Meat sinking beyond your grasp:

Meat.gifYou manage to grab X Meat, but the rest sinks into the murky depths.
Underwater zones by pressure penalty
Pressure Zone Penalty
Minor The Briny Deeps -25%
Moderate The Brinier Deepers -50%
The Sunken Party Yacht
High The Briniest Deepests -75%
The Sea Floor An Octopus's Garden -100%
The Wreck of the Edgar Fitzsimmons
Madness Reef
The Mer-Kin Outpost
The Skate Park
The Coral Corral
Crushing The Ice Hole
The Mer-Kin Deepcity Mer-kin Colosseum -150%
Mer-kin Library
Mer-kin Gymnasium
Mer-kin Elementary School
Intense The Marinara Trench -200%
Anemone Mine
The Dive Bar
The Caliginous Abyss

Certain items and effects help to reduce these penalties. The reductions stack up to the penalty the zone imposes. For example, equipping a diving muff while having a Brined Liver in The Briny Deeps changes the pressure penalty of the zone to 0%; not a bonus of +5%. Penalty-reducing equipment and effects are labeled with the description "Makes you a better diver."

The following is a table of all known penalty-reducing effects.

Name Type Reduction Requirement Other
aquamariner's necklace Accessory 10% 85 mys
  • Regenerate 10-15 MP per adventure
  • +15% Meat from Monsters
aquamariner's ring Accessory 10% 85 mys
  • Regenerate 10-15 HP per adventure
  • +10% Meat from Monsters
Brined Liver Effect 20%   Obtained by drinking Salacious Cocktails (20 turns / 30 turns garnished) and other underwater booze
cozy bazooka 2-handed weapon 30% 85 mox
  • Moxie +15%
  • +20% Meat from Monsters
  • Wears out after ? Adventures
cozy scimitar 2-handed weapon 30% 85 mus
  • Muscle +15%
  • Weapon Damage +50%
  • Wears out after ? Adventures
diving muff Accessory 10% 85 mys  
Donho's Bubbly Ballad Effect 20%   AT song
Driving Waterproofly Effect  ?   Asdon Martin effect
Finstrong Effect 30%   Obtained from Comet, the Roller Skate (30 turns, 1/day)
gnomish swimmer's ears Familiar Equipment 10%   Reagnimated Gnome equipment. Also allows gnome to breathe underwater.
Hairless and Airless Effect 20%   Obtained from using a shavin' razor (30 turns)
Juiced Up Effect 10%   Obtained from using Mer-kin fastjuice (10 turns)
saltwaterbed Campground furnishing 10%   Replaces any other bed at your dwelling
Salty Dogs Effect 10%   Obtained from using a sea salt crystal (5 turns) or eating salty sushi (10 turns).
Staff of the Cozy Fish 2-handed weapon 30% 85 mys
  • Mysticality +15%
  • Spell Damage +150%
  • Wears out after ? Adventures
Swimming with Sharks Effect 20%  
teflon swim fins Accessory 10% 85 mus

Dolphins

Dolphins steal an item with a chance equal to the base chance of you getting the item, multiplied by the pressure penalty. So, if an item has a 30% drop rate, in a 50% pressure zone, dolphins will steal it 15% of the time post-combat. However, dolphins can only collect an item if you wouldn't have gotten it anyway (because of this, if you can cap an item to 100% drop rate, dolphins will never steal it). The steal rate does not change as your item increases: in the 15% example, if you have an adjusted 30% drop rate for the item, dolphins will steal it half as often as you get it, and if you had an 85% chance of getting it, dolphins will always steal it when you miss. It is important to note that despite the tie-in with the pressure, negating the pressure does not change the appearance rate of dolphins.

Realdolphin r.gif
Confused.gifYou are slowed too much by the water, and a stupid dolphin swims up and snags <an item> before you can grab it.

As it swims away, it flippers you off. What a jerk!

or

As it swims away, it wags its fluke as if to say 'fluke you, Adventurer.' Man. That dolphin is a jerk.

or

To add additional insult to insult, it sprays you in the face with a blast from its blowhole as it swims away. Man, dolphins suck.

In order to get the item, you must use a dolphin whistle from Big Brother and beat up the dolphin who stole your item.

Immunities

CLEESH

All monsters encountered while underwater are immune to CLEESHing. This includes special holiday encounters such as the Feast of Boris monsters. Trying to cast CLEESH on any of the monsters gives the message:

"You cast CLEESH at your opponent, but it apparently doesn't work on things that already live underwater."

Pickpocket

All items found on undersea monsters are, by default, unable to be pickpocketed. This includes pickpocket, divine crackers, and V for Vivala mask critical hit item steal.

Exceptions to this rule are bazookafish bubble gums, bottles of Alewife™ Ale and booze slugs from monsters in The Dive Bar.

Yellow Ray

Since all underwater item drops are conditional drops, any effects that disintegrate an underwater monster will not force its items to drop. The only exception to this is the pulled yellow taffy.

Familiars

To adventure underwater, your familiar must be able to breathe underwater. Otherwise, this message appears:

"You can't adventure there now -- <familiar name> wouldn't be able to breathe!"

Most familiars cannot breathe underwater without help in one of the following forms:

Name Type Notes
das boot Familiar equipment -10 to Familiar Weight
Driving Waterproofly Effect (Asdon Martin) 30 Adventures. Costs 37 fuel.
little bitty bathysphere Familiar equipment -20 to Familiar Weight
Wet Willied Effect (willyweed) 30 Adventures. Sent by your pen pal.

Water-breathing familiars are innately able to breathe underwater and don't need your help. The following are the only water-breathing familiars in the game:

ID Familiar Notes
8 Familiar8.gif Barrrnacle Delevels
30 Familiar30.gif Emo Squid Combines the properties of a Levitating Potato and a Barrrnacle
100 Cuddlefish.gif Cuddlefish 75% Levitating Potato and 75% Ghuol Whelp on land. 100% Levitating Potato and 150% Ghuol Whelp in water.
102 Crab.gif Imitation Crab Attacks enemies twice per round. Caps at 10 damage per hit on land, 20 with imitation whetstone.
104 Dragonfishfam.gif Magic Dragonfish Spell Damage +X%. Caps at 100% on land.
106 Midgetclownfish.gif Midget Clownfish Sleaze alignment Star Starfish: 100% Star Starfish on land, 150% Star Starfish in water.
114 Rocklobster.gif Rock Lobster Hot alignment Star Starfish: 100% Star Starfish on land, 150% Star Starfish in water; sometimes drops floaty sand at the end of combat.
115 Urchin.gif Urchin Urchin Acts as a full Leprechaun on both land and sea.
116 Grouper2.gif Grouper Groupie Acts as a full Baby Gravy Fairy on both land and sea.
117 Gibberer.gif Squamous Gibberer Acts as a full Levitating Potato and Ghuol Whelp. Also grants bonus rollover adventures like the Wild Hare (double underwater)
119 Dancfrog.gif Dancing Frog Acts as a full leprechaun/fairy but must have the amphibious tophat equipped to breathe underwater.
162 Frankengnome.gif Reagnimated Gnome Acts as a fairy but must have the gnomish swimmer's ears equipped to breathe underwater.
172 Starbuddy.gif Adorable Space Buddy Acts as a Spooky Lime/Ghuol Whelp with huge stat bonus every 300 combats.
209 Spacejelly.gif Space Jellyfish Drains your enemies and makes "delicious" jelly, grants stats & items underwater, plus some surprises.

Familiar Equipment

Certain special pieces of familiar equipment have unique effects when adventuring underwater:

Equipment Effect
fishy wand Causes damage or produces meat sometimes
Li'l Businessman Kit Produces a sand dollar sometimes
oversized fish scaler Produces a dull fish scale sometimes

Underwater-specific items and effects

Besides the pressure penalty mitigation effects and familiar equipment listed above, there are other items and effects which operate differently underwater.

Source Source
Type
Underwater effects Duration Cost Prereq Notes
Busker Do Effect Acquire a sand dollar at the end of every underwater combat. 30 turns None Obtained from visiting The Bandshell 1/day
Colorfully Concealed Item Monsters will be less attracted to you. (Underwater only) 10 turns Item loss None Obtained from Mer-kin hidepaint
Crocodile Tear Item Familiar weight +10 lbs (underwater only) 15 turns Item loss None Obtained from temporary teardrop tattoo
eelskin shield Off-Hand Item Damages Attacking Opponent (Underwater Only) Always 85 Musc Maximum HP/MP +55
eelskin hat Hat Damages Attacking Opponent (Underwater Only) Always   85 Myst Spell Damage +15%
eelskin pants Pants Damages Attacking Opponent (Underwater Only) Always   85 Mox Mysticality +5%
Emotion Sickness Item Item drops: +X% Item drops from Monsters

Meat drops: +2X% Meat drops from Monsters

5/50 turns
  • Item loss
  • 1 Spleen or 3 Spleen
None
Eyes of the Dragon Effect Item Drops: +100% Item Drops from Monsters (Underwater only) 20 turns None Obtained from Dragon the Line
Familial Ties Effect Familiar weight +10 lbs (underwater only) 30 turns None Obtained from visiting The Eclectic Eels 1/day
Fishbreath Item Monsters in The Briniest Deepests flip out, increasing their attack. Allows shark cartilage, eel battery and temporary teardrop tattoo to drop. 5 turns Item loss None  
Fishy Several (items + effect) Underwater adventures take one turn instead of two Varies Varies Varies
  • Many sources, see the Fishy page for details.
  • The Warm Belly effect grants 10 additional turns of Fishy when eating either sushi or fish meat.
Glowing esca Off-hand item Item Drops: +20% from Monsters (Underwater only) Always   85 Mys Obtained from Fisherfish
Greased-Up Familiar Item Familiar weight +5 lbs (underwater only) 40 turns Item loss None Obtained from sea grease
It's Electric! Item Damages Attacking Opponent (30-40 damage above water, 60-80 damage underwater) 15 turns Item loss None Obtained from eel battery
Mer-kin sneakmask Hat Monsters will be less attracted to you. (Underwater only) Always 85 Mox
  • Moxie +5%
  • Combat Initiative +30%
Mer-kin takebag Off-Hand Item Item Drops: +5% Item Drops From Monsters (+15% Underwater) Always   85 Mys  
octopus's spade Weapon (1H, melee) Enables the Sunken, Buried adventure in An Octopus's Garden Always   85 Musc
  • +5% Item Drops from Monsters
  • Combat Initiative +10%
  • Weapon Damage +15
pearl diver's necklace Accessory +30% Item Drops from Monsters (Underwater only) Always   85 Mys
  • +4% Chance of Critical Hit
  • +20 to Monster Level
pearl diver's ring Accessory +20% Item Drops from Monsters (Underwater only) Always   85 Mys
  • +3% Chance of Critical Hit
  • +15 to Monster Level
straw hat Hat Enables the In the Shade adventure in An Octopus's Garden Always   85 Mox
  • +10% Item Drops from Monsters
  • +15% Food Drops from Monsters
  • +15% Booze Drops from Monsters
Swimming Head Effect Item Drops: +25% Item Drops from Monsters (Underwater only) 30 turns None Obtained from visiting A Merry-Go Round 1/day
Ze™ goggles Hat Item Drops: +25% from Monsters (Underwater only) Always   None Found while diving for treasure in an Olympic-Sized Swimming Pool

Combat Items

Some combat items work differently or only when used underwater:

Notes

  • Violet Fog flashbacks can happen even if you lack the ability to breathe underwater.
  • An extremely helpful guide to Seaventuring was compiled by cannonfire40 and is available here.
  • The May 22, 2013, trivial update on removed the previous 10 turn refractory period between dolphin whistles. As a result, you can now obtain any item a dolphin steals, regardless of how often he appears.