The Ocean Puzzle

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What is this puzzle?

Back when the pirate cove got a revamp in December 2007, Riff and Jick mentioned that there was still a puzzle to do with the ocean content that remained unsolved. This has still remained unsolved over 3 months later, and so this page is being created to help organise the spading of this puzzle.

The facts

The following is all the information we have gathered directly from what Riff and Jick have stated. This is the only information we can be sure about.

  • This puzzle was created due to the new ocean content, sailing on the ocean.
  • Solving this puzzle no longer requires adventuring on The Poop Deck, but this does not mean that it does not require the use of items obtained from sailing on the ocean. Basically, the prize isn't claimed by sailing on the ocean, but the puzzle may require items collected from the ocean.
  • It has nothing to do with the Plinth, and therefore the El Vibrato portal, spheres, and all related content. This puzzle was created before all that was implemented.
  • The first person to solve this puzzle will receive a grand prize that is one-time only, but it will also have an effect for other players.
  • Shouldn't require knowledge about outside references and trivia. "You don't, like, have to guess what movie I was thinking of or what I had for lunch that day." - Riff
  • "At least twice, way back in the early days of this whole rigmarole, I saw people make comments and suggestions that were so close, I was sure the whole thing'd be over in a matter of days, if that path of inquiry were followed up on. It never was, though" - Riff

10th April radio show, pretty near the start, comparing the relative difficulties of the new pasta-esque puzzle with the pirate one:-

r: well it's, I mean, we wanted to make a puzzle that would be hard enough to take about 1000 people about a month to do it. & I guess we overshot that, but trying to do that is a way more difficult to hit that mark than it is to make a puzzle that's going to take one-to-three people an hour to do it...
h: you're right - it is solvable, just there's like, nothing which tells you you're on the right track till you've made 2 or 3 intuitive leaps all at the same time...
r: you have to, you have to, it's a /lot/ of experimentation & trial & error before you find it, and you have to, not only with what you're trying to do, but with how you try & test your guess.

Early Ideas

Please give these ideas priority over other ideas, as Riff has stated that a few ideas in the early stages were so close that he "was sure the whole thing'd be over in a matter of days.".

Suggestions and Ideas

Please add any ideas you may have about solving this puzzle into this section, so people can spade them. Use the talk page or this thread if you need to discuss these.

  • Experiment with the special rare items in the ocean: strange tiki idols and rainbow pearls. This seems promising given the clue that only a single player benefits from the puzzle, and the other special items (the stone triangles) were used to create the plinth by a single player.
  • Experiment with the cursed pirate encounter and the cursed zombie pirate costume.
  • Cap'm Caronch specifically says that he'll invite you into his cabin if you buy him a few drinks. There is no obvious way to do this; failed attempts include:-
    • Sending K-Mail to "Cap'm Caronch" or similar usernames. The account does not exist.
    • Adventuring in the pirate ship with various drinks in inventory.
  • Using combat items on the Scary Pirate (cursed). (Maybe break the curse?)
  • Maybe the puzzle is island-related, rather than just the new pirate content. If so, could adventuring at the pre- or post-war Island areas with various effects give something new?
  • Rainbow sand/altar fragment. Maybe combine these (with each other or with something else)? Why have they such a high autosell price?
  • Finding a way to upgrade the dingy dinghy to make it "seaworthy"?
  • Undisguised adventures? Would likely have been found randomly, but worth checking for hints.
  • Cursed pirates in Wormwood?
  • Fernswarthy's Letter/Tower? (This is an NS13 riddle, though, and may be related to forthcoming Nemesis Quest revamp(s).
  • Does it require both sides in the war to be destroyed? (i.e. Order of the Silver Wossname, and the ability to adventure in the postwar Hippy/Frat camps)
  • Charrrms?
  • Typing: Leaflet? Summoning chamber? Chat? We may need to find a text puzzle first.
  • Pattern of tiki idols on the map? Not the arrow made by the rainbow pearls.
  • Sunken chest reimplemented? New items from the ocean do nothing to it.
  • Dungeons?
  • Pirate books?
  • Snakehead charrrms. How about adventuring with those?
  • Riff's brick in Hangks says "The secret word is marmalade". A Jar of "Creole Lady" marrrmalade was added as an item in the new pirate content. The adventure in which you get the marmalade references a voodoo lady who lives in the swamps by the camp logging camp.
    • Adv with CP outfit, tiki idol, Curse magnet effect, 11 fragments, and 11 sands did nothing different in that area, both before and during the level 12 quest. --Blastphemist 13:24, 11 April 2008 (CDT)
    • Adventuring at Camp Logging Camp with Savage Beast Inside (the effect gained from marmalade) and potentially the other curse effects as well?
  • Go through the previous ocean threads and find all ideas that were blown off or dropped almost immediately. Test them all and someone should hit upon what Riff mentioned in the second quote above.

Unsuccessful Ideas

These ideas have been spaded and do not work. Please try to be as specific as you can, and try not to remove the idea from the above section unless it has been completely spaded, as the solution may be related to it.

  • The cursed keys for opening the cursed chests/footlocker do not work in A Perplexing Door
  • The arrow shape made by the locations of the rainbow pearls has been confirmed by Jick to not "point to anything interesting".
  • The sunken chest cannot be opened when wearing a Zombie Pirate costume, when one of each of the cursed chest items and keys are in your inventory, or with the curse of the black pearl onion and curse magnet effects on.
    • Same goes for the all purpose cleaner.
  • Pirate names in each area begin with the same letter. Some items can be used on some of these enemies to have further effects in combat, and these items begin with the same letter as the pirates. This got spaded pretty well early on, and nothing concluded from it. There are only two Combat Items that begin with the letter "w" (wussiness potion and water pipe bomb) and neither has a special effect on any of the five pirates on the Poop Deck.
  • Adventuring on the pirate ship with Reassembled Blackbird appears to do nothing.
  • Shiny discs? No-one knows what to do with them. The idea was commended but nobody could think of a way to progress. However, weren't available when Riff first mentioned the puzzle.
  • Adventuring in Little Canadia with some marrrmalade and the Zombie Pirate outfit does nothing.
  • Using various decoding methods on the co-ordinates of the tiki islands does not come up with any noticeable results. If decoding co-ordinates is required, then we should wait for a clue, as it's just too vague otherwise.

Riff's Hint

On August 8, 2008 Riff posted a hint consisting of the following image (slightly reduced in size for the Wiki) Riff's puzzle slightly shrunk.

Forum Threads

These were the catch-all threads in Gameplay that related to the pirate content. Putting these here for easy referencing.


The-dots on the ocean map of the Small Tropical Islands connected in groups of 5-5-2-8-4-5-4-4-6 (the solution of the Riff's hint) Ak'gyxoth, a demon name. The puzzle was solved by player Seventh. Everybody else reaps the benefit of using the name too to get three random DB drinks.