This article is a work-in-progress

Do you want to be a zailor? Do you have what it takes to be the captain of your own ship? Then be welcomed to the Neath's Unterzee, where the sibilants are voiced and the girls are mermaid zombies.

Introduction[edit | edit source]

In order to own a ship, you must be A Person of Some Importance. Until then, you may travel to Polythreme via A Ticket to Polythreme at the Wolfstack Docks, or to Mutton Island via Board (only during the Fruits of the Zee Festival).

Once you're a PoSI, you can start working towards Acquiring a Ship. The PoSI Item Crafting guide includes details on getting ships. It is generally recommended to start with the Rusty Tramp Steamer, as the Clipper, Zub, and Yacht are significantly more expensive. It is possible to trade in ships at any time.

The following acronyms will be used throughout this guide:

Preparations[edit | edit source]

Once you have your own ship, you can finally set zail and explore the Zee. However, zailing entails more than just hopping into your ship and heading off. First, not all locations are immediately unlocked:

There are two places you can Zail to immediately, Mutton Island and Hunter's Keep.

Progress Quality Wipes[edit | edit source]

Whenever you set zail, you completely lose several progress qualities. If possible, you should cash them in before you leave to benefit from them.

The cleared qualities are:

You may also consider stocking up on Zee-Ztories (x20) and Partial Maps (x4). These can save zailing time in unfortunate situations, as will be discussed below.

Planning Routes[edit | edit source]

Before you set zail from most places, you can shorten your zailing trip by spending resources up-front. This is not possible from the three scientific expedition locations, or in other specific circumstances.

When possible, however, you may Plan a more ambitious route and spend Zee-Ztorys and/or a Puzzling Map to decrease your time spent at Zee. These increase both AJE and TW.

Spending 5 Zee-Ztories increases your AJE by 6 CP (up to Level 7) and TW by 5 CP.

Spending a Puzzling Map increases your AJE by 25 CP and TW by 20 CP.

Note that the Puzzling Map option locks with any amount of AJE, so it may only be done once, and must be selected first.

Zailing Mechanics[edit | edit source]

Lay in supplies and sail (which costs 100 Rostygold, if setting out from London) usually includes a Watchful challenge. Success at this challenge will give 2 Zee-Ztories, or possibly a more valuable item; failure will not give the Ztories but has no other penalty.

All Zee-trips include a Anglercrab top.png Zailing Difficulty of 6; this value is only different for trips in certain Exceptional Stories.

In some locations, there are restrictions on when you may set sail:

Setting Zail[edit | edit source]

When you zail you have two progress qualities to worry about: Waves3.png Approaching Journey's End and Sidebartroubledwaters.png Troubled Waters. These may be gained through (undiscardable) Opportunity Cards, from preparations before zailing, or the storylets Steam Boldly and Steam Prudently.

The primary goal of Zailing is to increase AJE to 10 (55 CP). This lets you pick a destination and disembark. At 7 (28 CP), AJE allows you to move from the Broad Unterzee to the Sea of Voices or vice-versa. This clears your AJE quality and reduces TW by around 25 to 50 CP.

TW is basically the Zee's Menace quality. Depending on how high it is, you may draw different cards. Cards drawn at high TW are typically more punishing or more difficult to succeed at than those available at low TW. There are three tiers of TW:

  • Calm Seas: TW < 8 (36 CP)
  • Lashing Waves: TW = 8-9 (36-54 CP)
  • Fury of the Unterzee: TW > 9 (55+ CP)

Fury of the Unterzee cards will often force you to take a 50% Luck challenge that either slightly lowers TW or resets TW and sets AJE to 5. This will typically add a significant number of actions to your trip, so the cards are best avoided if possible.

Listed below are the Zee storylets and possible cards. The table includes possible actions, any requirements and challenges, and outcomes for success or failure along with the average result.

Note that the Zee has an infinitely replenishing Opportunity Deck, but only allows three cards to be held in your hand regardless of your Lodgings. Also note that cards from the Broad Unterzee will be carried over to the Sea of Voices (and probably vice versa).

Pinned Storylets[edit | edit source]

Storylet[1] Branch Req. Odds Success Failure Average[2]
Steam Boldly Extrapolate from the charts (BU & SoV) Sidebartroubledwaters.png <8 50% Waves3.png +7
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +6
Waves3.png +5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +12
Waves3.png +6
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +9
Make it up as you go (BU & SoV) Sidebartroubledwaters.png <10 30% Waves3.png +10
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +9
Waves3.png +7
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +18
Waves3.png +7.9
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +15.3
Ignore the warning signs (BU) Sidebartroubledwaters.png 8 30% Waves3.png +6
Sidebarnightmares.png +1
Waves3.png -4
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +6
Waves3.png -1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4.2
Sidebarnightmares.png +0.3
Can it get any worse? (SoV) Sidebartroubledwaters.png 8 30% Waves3.png +6
Sidebarnightmares.png +1
Waves3.png -4
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +6
Waves3.png -1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4.2
Sidebarnightmares.png +0.3
Steam Prudently A cautious captain (BU & SoV) Sidebartroubledwaters.png <8 (5 Actions) 100% Waves3.png +14
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +11
Waves3.png +2.8
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2.2
  1. The SoV storylets are the same but with some different names.
  2. This is the average result per action.

Regular Cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards can be drawn at any Sidebartroubledwaters.png Troubled Waters level.

Card Action Req. Chal. Success Failure Average
A Corvette of Her Majesty's Navy
(BU)
Exchange pleasantries via semaphore Sidebarsuspicion.png <5 None Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -2
- -
They're not slowing Sidebarsuspicion.png 5 Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +4
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Sidebarsuspicion.png +3
Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +10
Waves3.png +3.5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +6.5
Sidebarsuspicion.png +1.5
A Mountain of the Unterzee
(BU)
'Hard to port! Reverse engines!' None Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +7
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Appallingsecret.png x2
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +7
Waves3.png +4.5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +5
Appallingsecret.png x1
She's Going Down!
(BU)
Stop and rescue them None None Waves3.png -2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -2
Quirksteadfast.png +3
Quirkheartless.png -3
- -
Let the Unterzee have them None None Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +1
Quirkheartless.png +3
Quirkmagnanimous.png -3
- -
The Clinging Coral Mass
(BU)
'Put your backs into it, lads!' None Fox.png 120 Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Rare:
No Sidebartroubledwaters.png
Scrawl1.png x3
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
-
Grab a hammer yourself None Bear.png 120 Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
-
The Killing Wind
(BU)
Outrun the storm front None Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +7
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +8
Waves3.png +4
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +6
Make ready to dive Submarine.png Zubmarine None Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -3
- -
Those engines don't sound healthy
(BU & SoV)
Offer to help out None None Waves3.png -2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -2
Quirkmagnanimous.png +3
Quirkruthless.png -3
- -
Hoist the black flag None None Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Quirkmagnanimous.png -3
Quirkruthless.png +3
Sidebarsuspicion.png +3
Bag.png 300
- -
The Fleet of Truth
(BU & SoV)
Villainy! Ship.png 3 Bear.png 120 Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Paperstack.png x5
Papers2.png x5
Papers3.png x5
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
-
Good weather for a Zee-Clipper
(BU & SoV)
Full speed ahead Ship3.png Swift Zee-clipper None Waves3.png +9
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +8
- -
Submerge
(BU & SoV)
Run deep, run quiet Submarine.png Zubmarine None Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -4
Skull.png +?
- -
Zailing in style
(BU & SoV)
Days of black and gold Shipbig.png Majestic Pleasure Yacht None Waves3.png +2
Sapphire.png x1
Horsehead.png x10
Honey.png x50
Fox.png +1CP
- -
A Good Meal
(SoV)
And a little bonus Ship.png 3 Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Paperstack.png x3
Papers2.png x3
Papers3.png x3
Moonpearl.png x1
A Hazard to Shipping
(SoV)
Set a course around the thing Owl.png 120 Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Rare:
Waves3.png +3
No Sidebartroubledwaters.png
Sunset.png x2
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
A Light in the Fog
(SoV)
Get as close as you dare Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Waves3.png x13
Ruins.png +5 CP
Keep away from the lighthouse Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +1
Crossing Paths
(SoV)
Hail the ship and have a chat with the captain Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -1
Waves3.png x1
Ruins.png +5 CP
Steam on by Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Listen to the Wind
(SoV)
Listen to the Voices Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +7
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Waves3.png x1
Ruins.png +5 CP
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +7
Waves3.png +4.5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4.5
Waves3.png x0.5
Ruins.png +2.5 CP
Steam the way the voices tell you Library.png 1 Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +5
A Wily Zailor
(BU & SoV)
Sidebartroubledwaters.png < 10
Zail around the Pelagic Upheavals Shipbig.png 1 Waves3.png +6
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Skirt the Howling Shoals Shipbig.png 4 Waves3.png +7
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Steam straight through the Beechey Currents Shipbig.png 6 Waves3.png +8
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Waves3.png x1
"I'll be in my bunk." Shipbig.png 1 Costs 8 Fate

Calm Seas Cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards can be drawn only when Sidebartroubledwaters.png Troubled Waters is less than 8.

Card Action Req. Chal. Success Failure Average
A Huge Terrible Beast of the Unterzee!
(BU)
Delicious, delicious lumps Bear.png 120 Waves3.png +1
Appallingsecret.png x1
Scaryeyesmall.png x1-3
Sidebarunaccountablypeckish.png 1
Follow2.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2 -
Steam on by None Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
- -
A Spit of Land
(BU)
Stop briefly at the island Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -1
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +5
Waves3.png +2.5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Steam on by None Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
- -
A Steamer full of Passengers
(BU)
Invite them aboard for a party Shipbig.png Majestic Pleasure Yacht None Door.png x5
Stockingsfakesmall.png x1
Sidebarscandal.png +2
Quirkhedonist.png +3
Quirkaustere.png -3
- -
Steam past them None Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
- -
Creaking from Above
(BU & SoV)
Glim-fall! Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Shard.png x300
Follow2.png +1
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +5
Shard.png x20
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Shard.png x160
Follow2.png +0.5
Fair Zailing
(BU & SoV)
Take advantage Waves3.png +6
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Follow2.png +1
-
Correspond with a Fellow Scholar Socal ActionBat.png x10

You and a friend need; Paperstack.png x50,
Papers2.png x50 and
Papers3.png x50

Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Bat.png -10

Once accepted;

Paperstack.png x10,
Papers2.png x10
Papers3.png x10 and
Bat.png x4-8

Meeting a Local Steamer
(SoV)
Hail the steamer to exchange news Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -2
Waves3.png x1
Ruins.png +5 CP
Steam on by Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +1
I say, must you do that? Shipbig.png Majestic Pleasure Yacht Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -2
Waves3.png x1
The Giant of the Unterzee
(SoV)
Erm, hello? Fox.png 120 Waves3.png +4
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3

Lashing Waves Cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards can be drawn only when Sidebartroubledwaters.png Troubled Waters is 8-9.

Card Action Req. Chal. Success Failure Average
A Blanket of Fog
(BU & SoV)
Is there someone out there? Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +6
Appallingsecret.png x1
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +8
Sidebarnightmares.png +1
Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +7
Appallingsecret.png x0.5
Sidebarnightmares.png +0.5
A Shape in the Depths
(BU)
Steam briskly away Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Take a closer look Owl.png 120 Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +5
A Ship of Zealots
(BU)
See them off Bear.png 120 Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +2
Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
Race away from these lunatics Ship3.png Swift Zee-clipper Waves3.png +5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4
A Stowaway!
(BU)
Let him off at the next port Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Quirkmagnanimous.png +3
Quirkruthless.png -3
Heave him over the side Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Quirkmagnanimous.png -3
Quirkruthless.png +3
A Tiny Coral Island
(BU)
Record it and move on Waves3.png +3
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
What's that down there? Submarine.png Zubmarine Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -2
Appallingsecret.png x5
The Iceberg
(SoV)
Keep a prudent distance Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +3
Ruins.png +5 CP
Waves3.png +1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +1.5
Ruins.png +2.5 CP
Have a look around under the iceberg Submarine.png Zubmarine Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -?
Waves3.png x2
Ruins.png +5 CP
Unfinished Pirates!
(SoV)
Repel Boarders! Bear.png 120 Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Waves3.png x1
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +3
Outpace them Ship3.png Swift Zee-clipper Waves3.png +5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png +4

Fury of the Unterzee Cards[edit | edit source]

The following cards can be drawn only when Sidebartroubledwaters.png Troubled Waters is at least 10.

Card Action Req. Chal. Success Failure Average
A Blank Space on the Charts
(BU)
There's an island here Cardfan.png 50% Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5 Waves3.png =5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png =0
Sidebarnightmares.png +3
Fortuitous fragments Mapfragment.png x4 Mapfragment.png -4
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
The Stone Pigs Cough
(BU)
At your earliest convenience Cardfan.png 50% Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
Skull.png +?
Waves3.png =5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png =0
Race away Ship3.png Swift Zee-clipper Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
Hardship and Want
(BU)
Tighten your belt and make the best of it Cardfan.png 50% Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5 Waves3.png -3 Waves3.png -1.5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -2.5
Let them eat pies Shipbig.png Majestic Pleasure Yacht Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
What are Those?
(BU)
Something is wrong here Owl.png 160 Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5 Waves3.png =5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png =0
Learn from those who failed before Waves3.png x20 Waves3.png -20
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
Taken
(SoV)
Oh no Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
Ruins.png +? CP
Waves3.png =5
Sidebartroubledwaters.png =0
Use your store of sea-lore Waves3.png x20 Waves3.png -20
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
Lost but not Alone
Sidebartroubledwaters.png 11
(SoV)
A tapping on the hull Cardfan.png 50% Waves3.png +2-6
Sidebartroubledwaters.png - 2-6
Waves3.png =0
Sidebartroubledwaters.png =0
Sidebarnightmares.png +3
Avert what comes Diamondblue.png x20
Whispered Secret.png x100
Waves3.png +2
Sidebartroubledwaters.png -5
Diamondblue.png -20
Whispered Secret.png -100

The aim is to raise AJE to 55 CP as fast as possible, while avoiding having to play any Fury of the Unterzee cards. Almost every action that gives AJE also gives TW, and as many of them are Luck challenges it is not possible to guarantee success in most cases.

There are three main things to consider in an action: How much AJE it gives, its relative rate of AJE and TW, and its Echo profit. The average card gives about 3 AJE, 3 TW, and few or no Echos. While Zailing, try to keep AJE higher than TW, making use of actions that lower TW such as Exchange pleasantries via semaphore. However, if AJE is obtained in large amounts, it may be possible to simply wrap up the journey before your hand fills with undesirable cards.

Keep in mind that the storylet actions are useful to obtain large amounts of AJE, and may be as or more reliable than the Opportunity Deck in many circumstances. However, Steam Boldly carries the risk of significantly increasing TW, and Steam Prudently is less action-efficient than most card options.

Particularly useful cards at Zee include:

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