Frigid Water Is Harmless
Spend as much time skinny-dipping in the Arctic Ocean as you want; it won't hurt you.
Often in video games (and occasionally other works of fiction as well), there is no difference between swimming off the coast of Florida and swimming off the coast of Antarctica. Water is water, and the only hazard it ever presents is drowning (if even that). So you can spend all day swimming right outside Santa's workshop on the North Pole and be no worse for wear. In real life, this is of course a good way to get hypothermia. Water that is just above freezing will sap the heat from your body much faster than air of the same temperature. Some children's cartoons and games will acknowledge the dangers of frigid waters by having a character who falls into them be be encased in a rectangular block of ice, but this doesn't seem to actually hurt them. These examples are for when a character takes a dip in freezing waters and doesn't suffer any effects whatsoever.
- In Ocarina of Time, Link can spend all day swimming in the waters of Zora's Fountain after it gets frozen over.
- Skyrim: The Dragonborn suffers no harm from swimming in the icy northern oceans. While this may be justified in the case of Nords, who have a 50% racial resistance to cold damage, the other Player Character races have no such excuse.
- Averted in Super Mario 64. The only frigid bodies of water deep enough for you to become immersed in are in the level Snowman's Land. There are two such bodies of water here: one slowly drains your health while you swim in it, and the other is so intensely cold that it acts as reskinned lava.
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