Sunless Sea – Beginners Guide

Sunless Sea - Beginners Guide
Sunless Sea - Beginners Guide

Easy to use guide to get you started and stay afloat in Sunless sea.

What to Consider in the Beginning

  • Taking notes! The game can sometimes be a little unclear on what to do and where to go next. Have a pen and paper ready. Wasting time at sea is the real killer and knowing where to go next and planning your trips/rescourses accordingly will make the journey alot easier. 
  • Explore the islands around London. Accept quests and make money or items to sell. 
  • When you have saved enough, travel further and visit new islands to get more quests. 
  • Accept all quests, even the shady ones, you will need the money and future jobs from these characters. 
  • Wait until later in the game to buy candles/specimens/eloiths and all other expensive or “hard to get” items. When you have more money and a bigger ship. 
  • Prioritaze supplies before fuel when buying. When fuel runs out you can always use supplies to scrape together extra fuel. 
  • Buy enough fuel/supplies!!! Always buy more than you need unless you want to get stuck in the middle of the ocean!
  • Dont buy a larger ship until you have more than enough. The small ship will to fine for a large portion of the game. Dont rush buying a bigger one, save money, do missions and increase your skill set. 
  • Get the cladery heart (a boat with 80 storage and 450 hull) instead of buying a new ship. You can obtain this ship by doing the cladery heiress quest so I suggest doing this as soon as possible.

Money / Resource Manegment

Early game

  • Selling things to the scholar or venturer will get you money. Trade stories or items for extra cash and favours.
  • Avoid trading away Zee-stories (especially not for your crew!) and Enigmas for money since they can be used to trade for more important quests and items later in the game. Try to save up as many of these as possible. 

Ways to make money early on and remember planning your trips so you can take as much cargo as possible and sell it on the way!

  • Transfer sphinx stone from ‘The salt lions’ (norht east of london), back to london. You will need 20 cargo hold but you can do with less by dropping items (so make sure you have room and wont have to be forced to drop important/expensive items. You need a 200 echo deposit for this one. 
  • Deliver Clay men from Polythreme. These are free and you will get 600 when they arrive in london. (Less if you drop).
  • Choosing to smuggle goods for the shady fellow in London. -Choosing this option will allow you to continue doing so and make 200 echoes each turn. He also buys sunligth for 400 echoes per box so you might want to keep him on since he close to the cumean canal (where you can get sunlight). Or you can choose to steal and sell the shipment which will give u a 1000 echoes right away but you wont be able to do buisness with him anymore. 
  • Killing pirates/monsters. You can defeat these pretty simple. Buy circling them and always stay behind them and shoting them and they cant fire back. With monsters you just shoot them while backing and staying out of range so they cant hit you. You can take on pretty big enemies early on using these tactics. 30/90/300 in health should be fairly simple with a smaller ship and a cheap cannon. Taking on larger enemies should be done later one with a bigger ship and more powerful guns.

What to consider later on (when you have more space in your hold)

  • Gather devil dice bones and stygian ivory to make a weapon in the iron republic Then sell it in khans shadow.
    7 Stygian ivory = 189 echoes (can be found in khans shadow!) + 12 devil bone dice = 264 (can be found in mt palmerston!) = 453 echoes.
    Bring these to iron republic with one secret and they will create a weapon for you that you can equip or sell in khans shadow for 500/750 (depending on your hearts). This can be done infinite times and is a good thing to think about on your trading route.

Selling red honey.

  • Do the quests in the isle of cats to gain favors. I chose the prince. And once you finnish all quests you will have acces to red honey for 600 echoes wich can be sold in london for 999 echoes, venderbrigth for 300 or gaiders moern for 625 echoes. London will have customs control so be sure to have a secret compartment and plenty of favors from the general or scholar to avoid losing your shipment and being fined a large sum of money.
  • Selling boxes of angry dream snakes. If you have done some of the mechanic quests. You will know that you need to go to hunters keep with a clay man, mirror catch box a zee story/horror story and supplies and you can put his bad dreams in the box and sell it back to Khans shadow.
    This is only profitable as long as the sisters are alive as they will follow you down and bring their own stories. If you finnish their quests and the house burns down you will need 5 supplies for each box and its just not worth the time and cargo space to do this. I recommend just delivering clay men instead whe making the trip from east to west.
  • Selling sunlight. This also you will need plenty of cargo space and money and should not be attempted until later in the game. Buy 10 (or more) mirror catch boxes (in khans terretory) for 250 each, get 25 fuel from iron rep (8 echoes) or london (10 echoes) and go to cumean canal. Travel to surface and fill your boxes with sunlight. The descend. ( You will need at least 21 fuel to go up to the surface)
    Warning: To much sunligth will kill you, so remember to rest in a hotel in london everytime you do this. Rest several times to reduce your addiction for the sun. Check your journal under ‘meneces to see how much you need to rest for the addiction to go down.
    Sell this in london for 400 per box, Gaiders mourn for 300 and Venderbright for 300. You can sell this in isle of cats (veils challenge).

This is the main source of money and by doing this you can make thousands each trip. These boxes can be sold in gaiders mourn 300, vanderbelt 300, isle of cats (depends on your veils) and london (400) and the risk of customs.

  • The last tour. (should also be done later on since this will cost you 12 supplies, cargo space and plenty of stories/visions/tales etc) Bring tomb colonists to three destinations and home again and you get 1500 echoes. These colonists can be used in secrets quests on some islands so be sure to stop and check along the way to advance your story.
  • Sooth and copper boxes can be found in irem for three secrets or demeux island for two strange cathes and sold at station 3 for 100 echoes. Not the most lucrative of all the runs. But if you are in irem you can buy strange catch for 25 echoes each. And having a few in your inventory doesnt hurt and its a good run especially when the cherry man ask you to go to khans glory (which he often does). 
  • Blemmigans. Found in the ottershroom. Trade one for a thing of honey and the place it on an island. Keep placing these on different island and the ottershrooms will give you rewards. 

The scholar

Dont finnish the scholar quest (giving him 7 engimas). Keep giving him stuff that you have to many of. Sell monster meat to him to make money (flukes etc 500 each) Keep gaining his favors and you will be able to talk your way out of having your ship searched. (really useful when smuggling sunligth and honey).

The admiral

Same here, dont waste his favors on repairs and fuel. Gain fuel (and money) from port reports and use his favours in the docks.

The venturer

Bringing him things for scientific research is a good way to make money without to much hassle. It usually involves brining devil dice, soup, salt, hunting trophies, sapphires or other exotics and he will pay you handsomely for them.


Keep exploring, gathering information and stuff to sell, do the stories and and dont push your limits and keep these ‘tricks’ in mind as you travel around. This is a long game so take your time and enjoy!

Helena Stamatina
About Helena Stamatina 2706 Articles
My first game was Naughty Dog’s Crash Bandicoot (PlayStation) back in 1996. And since then gaming has been my main hobby. I turned my passion for gaming into a job by starting my first geek blog in 2009. When I’m not working on the site, I play mostly on my PlayStation. But I also love outdoor activities and especially skiing.

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