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Thirst is Caves of Qud's implementation of a “hunger clock”, a resource management mechanic that forces the player to move forward or die. (Contrast with hunger, which can cause debuffs but not kill.)
The player character (but no other characters) slowly becomes more and more thirsty over time. Thirst can be quenched by consuming , which is done automatically by default when the player character reaches a specific stage of thirst (by default, Thirsty; see below). (This can be disabled in the options, and may be advantageous to do if the player character has glotrot.) Water can't be consumed by a frozen character.
Levels of Thirst
|Thirst level||Thirst level ()||Thirst|
Consuming water adds 10,000 to the thirst meter. There is also a hidden max water level one creature can hold, which is 50,000. The game will advise the player if drinking something will put this over the limit. Drinking too much will force the creature to vomit and have their thirst level set to 20,000-30,000 less than the max water level. A pool will also spawn.
Effects of Thirst
If the player character is at 0 water, every action causes the character to save against a penetration roll against toughness, 1d(toughness modifier) and a save target of 2. If all three penetration attempts fail, the character will take2 damage.
How fast thirst decreases is calculated by the creature's Quickness divided by 5. If the creature has Amphibious, this amount is divided by 3 instead. Assuming that the creature has normal quickness, the water amount will decrease by 20 every action.
- Fasting Way will be multiplied by by 0.66.
- Mind over Body, will multiply the amount by 0.16.
- Thirst will not decrease if asleep.
- If the creature has Fatty Hump, thirst will decrease by a flat 1 instead.
Thirst in Combat
Several creatures have ways of removing or increasing a creatures thirst level. If the creature is , The amount increased or decreased is divided by 10. Amphibious creatures are unable to go past their max water level (50,000) through this method.
- are stationary plant turrets that attack with their . If an attack hits, thirst is decreased by 1-60,000 units.
- with are able to force the creature into quenching 60,000 units of thirst. This guarantees that the creature will vomit.
- Sludges bearing will dessicate target instead, setting their thirst level to 0.
Additional mechanics details referenced on this page are based on data from