Sunless Sea

Sunless Sea

47 ratings
Captain Johnbert's No-Bull___t Guide To Immortality
By Nausicaä of the Worms
A comprehensive and possibly entertaining guide to the new Death Hath No More Dominion ambition. If you'd like to be surprised by the story, stay well away from me; if you'd like to cover it expediently and learn the details of the somewhat spoilery skeleton I've provided, well, gather round ...
Gather round, young shavers ...
Gather round, my young shavers, and listen to a captain who’ll happily let the Ministry of Public Decency hang …

So, you may have achieved immortality by deed, finding your father’s bones and bringing them back to London for burial. Or you may have achieved immortality by word, travelling the whole zee to gather every tale you can and writing the Zong of the Zee. You may have achieved immortality by wealth, or by founding a kingdom, or by going so far into Salt’s country notions like “life” cease to apply.

But, if you want true immortality, you’re going to have to achieve it by not bl__dy dying.
Part 1: Tales and Tales
I’ll assume you’ve already made your ship capable of zubmarine travel; if you haven’t, start with that and come back to me.

Your first step is to speak to a Salt-Scarred Navigator, right here in London. It’ll cost you a Cask of Mushroom Wine, but you can pick that up easily enough at the Wolfstack Exchange. He’ll direct you to the Isle of Cats to discuss the matter of a Well-Travelled Notary’s memories with Isery.

Once you get there, amuse the Pirate-King with your antics. Lamentable Relics and Recent News come in useful for a point of notice at Cavendish Abbey, although the latter grants you 5 Casks of Mushroom Wine, which might come unexpectedly on an over-full hold. If you have 5 spare drums of Fuel, the Abbey takes that, too. 60 Fragments or 5 Zee-Ztories is the exchange for notice at the Honeyed Tongue. With 5 points of the Pirate-King’s Notice, you’ll be allowed to accept a patron on the Isle. I believe you must accept Isery’s Patronage, not Zaira’s, but I don’t know for sure. I sided with Isery; didn’t want to risk it.

Now, if you’ve got 600 Echoes burning a hole in your pocket, you can skip straight to the tasting; I’m a cheap old b___er and decided to pursue Isery’s errands. Oh, sure, call me a “honey-smuggler”, a “kidnapper”, a “dealer in a substance that causes people immense pain for other people’s pleasure”, but since you’re already drinking red ____ing honey, in for a penny, in for an echo says I. Doing this will take a trip back to London, though you’ll want to enter it without SAY (Hunter’s Keep is useful here); SAY and 10 Echoes when you return to the Isle of Cats; and then a Veils challenge (117 for 100%) in the Cumaean Canal.

Either way, your next stop is Port Carnelian, to take some sherry with the Fierce Philanthropist. Her husband, Lytton, was one of the Seven Against Nidah, which sounds like an excellent Veilgarden singing troupe, I know, but team up with them and Death Hath No Dominion.
Part 2: Looking for Lytton
This part’s pretty wide-open. The Fierce Philanthropist will tell you that he’s been lost, and you’ll have to visit the underzee ports to find him. You may be familiar with Maybe’s Daughter’s questline; it works like that. I found the b_____d’s location in three ports; it might take more for you. Information can be gained in Aigul, Anthe, Dahut, Hideaway, Nook, Scrimshander, and Wrack, but the b_____d is actually in Low Barnet, fused to a lump of coral.

Talk to him for your next step, and do take care to explore all the story options. A good number of stories in the underzee ports are tied into this storyline, and if you are, as I am, hungry for stories, you’ll learn a lot. You’ll be asked to take the Fierce Philanthropist’s locket back to her, and you’ll need to find Mariam, in the depths of the Archives at Scrimshander. I began by finding Mariam, so your tale may proceed somewhat differently.

I headed straight for Scrimshander. Mariam is b_lls deep in the Archives; take at least 4 Sacks of Darkdrop Coffee Beans to trade for Time in the Archives, or 5 if you’re worried about the Veils check you can do with SAY that grants you 2 Time in the Archives (I think I had 100% with 50-60). It takes Mirrors checks to proceed through the archives; again, I think I had 100% chance with 50-60 (having legacy books really helps a captain out, I can tell you!). There’s also the occasional Iron or Hearts check while making progress that are considerably tougher; I think failure mostly increases Terror. Success usually grants Strange Catch or a Tale of Terror!!; there may also be a Mirrors or Veils in there that I’m not remembering.

Keep going down into the archives until things start looking peligin. You’ll want to explore Mariam’s story options, but, in the end, she spills the beans and says that to proceed, you’ll need to reassemble the Seven Against Nidah.

Oh yeah.

That Veilgarden singing troupe bit wasn’t a throwaway joke.

We're getting the band back together.
Part 3: Getting The Band Back Together
So, who are the Seven Against Nidah, and how do I get them back together for their lifetime tour?

  • Arik, the Fleet-Captain, who’s busy being the Sprightly Visionary in Hideaway. I believe he signs right back on once you show up, but I’d also given him the 5 Fuel and fixed his control-board issues, so I don’t know.
  • Batuk, the Soldier, who’s busy being the Flinty Latitudinarian in Nook, the one you can find in the Etched Tooth-House when you swim up to the Maw. He’s too d__n stubborn to get back into the band, but I believe 4-7 Secrets (I forget exactly how many) will make him angry at the Presbyter enough to join up.
  • Bourdain, the Propagandist, who’s busy being trapped in a mirror in Wrack. Do NOT get fooled by Mariam saying he disappeared in Frostfound; I sat and watched those stats draiiiiiiiin away only to find absolutely no trace of him. (At least I got the Mechanic’s Secret out, too, so it wasn’t a total loss.) I hate b____y Frostfound. The Fair King wants a Judgement’s Egg; I recommend the Last Tour. Once you buy Bourdain, you can speak to him when you leave port and he’ll do his mirrory magic for you. The Voracious Diplomat can be used as a replacement, but you need Networks 3 in both Khan’s Heart and Port Carnelian.
  • Lorenzo, the Guide, who’s busy being a useless gay man full of moths in the Undercrow. (Well, bisexual.) Isery’s his replacement; you need a Key to the Cage-Gardens to discuss it with them, and 7 Favour to have them sign on willingly. If their Favour is lower, I’m not sure what happens. (I started the Incomparable Aurelian questline before I found Mariam, so if you refrain from doing so you may be able to get Lorenzo himself to guide you. I didn’t check.)
  • Lytton, the Financier, who’s busy being bound to a lump of coral in Low Barnet. However, his wife, the Fierce Philanthropist, will take his place; you’ll need to travel to Port Carnelian with 5 Bales of Parabola-Linen and 5 Zzoup for her animescence charity.
  • Mariam, the Schemer, who’s busy being a chronicler back in Scrimshander. You can revisit her without spending Time in the Archives once you’ve found her.
  • Rosalina, the Healer, who’s busy being animescent in Anthe, sitting in a tub of ice while doing everything she can to be bored. Due to the crystal transhumanists enforcing stupid class distinctions, you’re gonna have to pass that Hearts challenge and say goodbye to having anger or a spleen, bucko; you can always Wound yourself to get it out later, or stop in Polythreme to have it painlessly dissolve. You’re gonna have to cure Rosalina of animescence to get her on board. I cannot stress enough that giving her Needles of Fortas is an awful, awful idea. I got sore b____red. Talking to her with SAY and Visage: Expertise in Parts 3 does help, a lot, though you’ll need Acumination of Tongue. Once her condition reaches 20, she’ll get over the animescence; I had a 98% chance with 82 Hearts to get an Extraordinary Implication out of it; failure looks like it increases Terror.
  • If one of them is unavailable, you can give Mariam Strategic Information to recommend a replacement. I never tried this for any of them.

Once you’ve gotten the rest of the Seven back on board, return to Scrimshander and talk to Mariam.
Part 4: The Attack
Once you’ve gotten the band back together, you’ll have another talk with Mariam. And you’ll learn that Mariam’s peligin deal with His Complexity means she can’t Scheme if she leaves Scrimshander.

You, my bonny young shaver, are going to have to do the Scheming with her.

There are three obstacles betwixt you and immortality in Nidah: the Presbyter’s armies, the route to Nidah, and Nidah’s walls. Resolving these grants you a Secret each.

  • The Presbyter’s armies can be defeated by spywork or by popular uprising. The former requires 7 Networks: Port Carnelian (which means you’re dependent on random fetch-quests); the latter requires a Searing Enigma (a good source is committing sacrilege at Visage, which only costs a Flare) and 2000 Echoes.
  • The route to Nidah can be followed by a fleet of living ships or by a trek over three deserts. The former requires 2 Colossal Fluke-Cores; the latter requires a Captivating Treasure (1500 Echoes at Khan’s Shadow; the First Curator in Venderbight also hands them out), 21 Carboys of Primordial Shrieks (a Firkin of Prisoner’s Honey each at the Gant Pole), and 2 Sunlight-Filled Mirrorcatch Boxes (boxes available in Khan’s Heart or Shadow, fillable at Aestival or on the Surface, though the former is Wounding).
  • Nidah’s walls can be breached by Temtum or explosions. The former simply requires you to take Arik’s side in Hideaway (5 Fuel and >20 Terror to advance the matter of maintaining the beast, and delivering the Impolite Investigator from Khan’s Heart to uncover the truth, which will also take a Firkin of Prisoner’s Honey, a Sack of Darkdrop Coffee Beans, and a Cask of Mushroom Wine); the latter requires a Searing Enigma (there’s Visage, of course, but the Nuncio questline and “Invent a fanciful tale” event in Varchas are also easy ways to pick one up), a piece of Vital Intelligence (save that Strategic Information, kids!), and 100 Torpedo Components (5 Echoes each at Carrow’s Naval Surplus). The quest that allows you to use Temtum also hands out a Searing Enigma at the end, which could be used to defeat the Presbyter’s armies.

Now, I don’t have much patience for spywork or taste for monster-hunting, and, honestly, while a really big explosion is, as the young folks say, “smashing!”, imagine how much more “smashing” it would be if you stormed the city with a b____y great zee-monster! If you’d rather be subtle, or kill flukes instead of making tortuous journeys to the Surface and the Gant Pole, or if you have “reservations” about “not preventing a poor giant crab from moulting by force”, then go ahead and be my guest, but you asked for my advice, and I’ve given it.
Part 5: The Conclusion
Once you’ve made all these preparations, that’s it. There’s an option to retire from zeefaring life right there in the Archives; I don’t know if there’s an option back at your Lodgings in Wolfstack, didn’t bother to check. I’d recommend putting your affairs in order before you storm Nidah; I didn’t have that many affairs to put, so I went right ahead.

After that? The decision’s up to you. Betray the rest of the Seven and become the absolute Presbyter, stand firm with the Seven and democratize death, or decide you’d rather have a lifetime of pleasure than an eternity of possible trouble and accept a kingdom in Nidah (faltering b_____d that you are). I walked into the Garden with the Seven, crying “Liberty, Equality, Eternity!”, and …

Well, come back in 199_, and we’ll see!
spaghettiandsauce Jan 20, 2020 @ 3:43am 
Thanks. This game is a lot more enjoyable if you've got some idea where you're supposed to go and what you're supposed to do!
Yawn Sep 17, 2018 @ 6:11am 
Thanks for the guide it actually helped aswell as a gave a bit of humour too.
NevermoreStarsign Mar 7, 2017 @ 9:55pm 
Nice work. Thanks for the guide!