The all-important Boatiness Quotient

Folks, it is time. There’s been entirely too much chatter about the subject, and we need to nip this confusion in the bud right now.

10: takes place completely on a boat (or spaceship, which counts as a void-boat)
9: takes place on a boat, with possible death/cop-out ending for leaving the boat mistakenly
8: boats with brief stop-offs at islands and such, or spaceship that stop off at worlds (think: 4x4 Galaxy.)
5-7: significant chunk of game with boat travel. This is flexible, but the simple way to look at it is, rivers get 5, lakes get 6 and oceans get 7.
4: boat only used to get from one location to another
3: boat travel is implied but not present. Places you can’t get to by boat, perhaps. Or maybe it indicates another way around. Maybe 2 and 3 should be flipped?
2: boat as scenery, immobile
1: no boats. Why oh why does this author hate 70% of the Earth’s surface?

I’m open to adjusting this rubric, and I’ve devoted considerable thought to this, but I can’t do it on my own. I need help. Perhaps we should even make a spreadsheet and have heated debates over whether something is X or X+1!

Anyway, I’ll start with this joke, but only with entries I know. Here’s hoping others string it along!

Bright Brave Knight Knave: 4. a boat takes you from one location to a handful of others. You never actually spend a turn on it.
DICK MCBUTTS GETS KICKED IN THE NUTS: 1. Lots of adventure once things get rolling, but nothing involving water transportation (I think!)
Eat the Eldritch: 10. It’s in a submarine. Perhaps we should make submarine 11 or reorganize the points from 5-7 downwards to 5-6. The taxonomy here isn’t fixed, yet.
The Enigma of Solaris: 10. It’s in a spaceship that you need to get running again. You never dock in-game.
Explore Your Psychosis: 1. There’s a park, and often there are toy boats on small lakes at parks, but folks, a 2 is a real stretch here.
Fix Your Mother’s Printer: 1. Fortunately, you don’t have to go to such great lengths to find a printer part. There’s discussion of visiting another continent, but this is the 21st century, so it’s probably by plane.
LAKE Adventure: 6. About 1/3 of the rooms are a lake to navigate. Perhaps 7, since you are 13, so the lake may feel as big as an ocean.
To Sea in a Sieve: 10. Whole game on a boat. You actually leave it at the very end. But you’re not forced to. You can be oblivious and drown.
Trail Stash: 3. There is a location called Small Isles, as well as a lake, a shore, and a rock that wasn’t intended to be in a desert.
The Vambrace of Destiny: 1. We can’t be having a small pool you can drink from bumping things up to 2, here. Or that underground river that temporarily blocks passage. Spoiler-not-spoiler: you don’t summon a boat to get across it.
Who Iced Mayor McFreeze? 1. Alas, Mayor McFreeze’s melting remains can’t really count as a body of water.

What say you all? I’m willing to tally everyone’s observation.


The original ADVENTURE is actually a holodeck program. So 10.

(Phew… Had to save the flagship somehow…)


Bali B&B has a single very minor and skippable scene involving some fishing boats as scenery, so I score a 2, yay! (I would be terribly ashamed to miss out on the nautical theme altogether, so I therefore approve this rubric).

(Now that I’ve mentioned this, I feel I should offer readers a prize for reaching that scene. Ah, I know! I shall send you a very pretty ocean postcard to ANY LOCATION ON EARTH if you find the scene with the fishing boats, and PM me your postal address!)


Does a whale count as a boat? I think it should.


Death on the Stormrider is a 10, as long as you consider an airship to be a boat. It’s meant to be much more boat-like than airplane-like, at any rate. (In the air for a long time with a crew working in shifts.)


Oh shoot! I totally forgot about the 100% unskippable scene in Bali B&B involving a makeshift raft. Which technically brings me up to a 4!


I remember your thread about this:


The Ship takes place on two different ships; a pirate ship and a space ship. I’m assuming that’s a BIG ten.


And since I live in the Midwestern US, a BIG ten counts as fourteen or, in a few years, eighteen!


I have a river and a ferry to cross it,
so I guess that means my entry “One King to Loot them All” gets a 4 :smiley: .

The ferryman's unseen gaze fixes upon you. His hand, gnarled and weathered,
emerges from the folds of his robe, fingers outstretched. His demand is unspoken,
but his gesture is clear: payment for passage across the boundary. 

If it’s the one I think it is–well, as rivers go, that’s a pretty major one. So yeah, that gets a 4. Maybe a 5, since it’s a big journey.

Wonder what score is for Andromeda Apocalypse. You get out of the ship at the end, but not exactly unwillingly. 9.5?
(Also, there are earthbound flashbacks, although on a somewhat floating continent…)

This is important and necessary work, Andrew, but I feel like you’re missing a higher plane:

11: The player is the boat.


Hmm, I think Sting is a 6.5 (boat racing sequence in a harbor). Will have to do better next time!


Depending on where the player steers the conversation, Galatea has some serious shipping going on between the PC and the statue…


This is incredible.

That is all I have to say on the topic.


Like the Golden Banana of Discord, there needs to be a BOAT GOAT prize.

Maybe like a Lego boat where it is passed from previous winner to current winner, except one piece is replaced every year.


Detective Osiris includes a boat as scenery in one area, and in addition to that, during one conversation, a character uses a nautical metaphor. I guess that makes it a 2 or a 3?


Assembly lets you build many things, but a boat is sadly not one of them. Similarly, Honk! has plenty of clown car goodness but nothing to take to the high seas.


Oh now that you mention it… I also have the GOAT:

With the goat secured in your powerful grasp,
you step onto the ferryman's boat.