This is where you can find the best comedy under the alien seas of 4546b.
WARNING: Spoilers are unmarked.
- Your PDA is a wonderful source of dry snark, when it isn't being a Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant.
- Your AI's assessment of your condition after waking up in the lifepod: "You have suffered minor head trauma. This is considered an optimal outcome."
- "Congratulations. You have exceeded your weekly exercise quotient by 500%. Data indicates swimming was your favorite activity."
- When you find your first bit of copper, allowing you to start making powered devices, your PDA helpfully informs you that "Your probability of survival has just increased to: unlikely, but plausible."
- The famous quote when entering the Dunes biome: "Detecting multiple leviathan-class lifeforms in the region. Are you certain whatever you're doing is worth it?"note
- In a darkly funny example, the PDA entry of each creature you scan ends with an assessment of said creature, summarizing what the player should do with it, whether it be eat it, ignore it, or avoid it. The assessment for the Mesmer? "Draw closer."
- Should you make the courageous/suicidally stupid decision to scan a Reaper Leviathan, its data entry will include "Motivational note: Congratulations on getting close enough to scan it and living to see the results!"
- Upon picking up your first diamond, the PDA reminds you that the the planet is property of the Alterra Corporation, and that you are liable to reimburse the full market price of any materials you gather and use. It then goes on to inform you that your current bill stands at 3 million credits. Becomes a Brick Joke once you leave the planet, as upon being welcomed back to Alterra space, you will be cleared to land once your outstanding bill of one trillion credits has been settled.
- The death of Medical Officer Danby is darkly funny. According to his crew log, he cheated on his medical exams, and so had no idea how to treat his injuries.
- Poor guy also likely got his probable cause of death wrong. He was so focused on his injuries and the green pustules of bad news that the local Warper probably came as quite the nasty surprise. Since it still cruises the area when you find the pod.
- The second crew log from Lifepod #6. In which a not-too-bright passenger lights what she thinks is a distress flare. Right next to the fuel line. The last thing the log records is a very loud explosion, and the pod's hull has, unlike most others, been ruptured from the inside.
- You can find and scan an "unusual doll" in one of the destroyed lifepods. It's a bobblehead of Markiplier, which plays samples from his playthrough of Subnautica. That includes his yelps of terror.
- Not only that, but it's only one of a number of random useless knick-knacks in that pod, which the voice log reveals were coughed up by its crash-damaged fabricator that the occupant was struggling in vain to get something practical out of.
- Eventually Alterra HQ sends a message that includes the code to the captain's cabin, so you can download schematics for a rocket to get you home... except there's a guy in the background asking the speaker about his sandwich order, which nearly manages to cut the first speaker off when he gives you the code.
- When you get the Seamoth and drive it for the first time, you probably aren't expecting the morbidly comedic little thuds that come from running down innocent little fish.
- The Cyclops is little different, except since the bubble viewport is so much bigger, sometimes you're treated to a Magmarang or something going smack into the windshield, then sloooowly sliding sideways and out of sight. All that's missing is a wet-finger-on-glass sound effect.
- Get out of the Seamoth too quickly and you can run yourself over.
- Spider Exo!
- On the topic of the Prawn Suit's grappling hook upgrade, it works on organic targets as well. Like, say, leviathans. Cue the most fearsome creatures in the game freaking out as some maniac in power armor lassos them and gets carried halfway across the map.
- One of the possible suit designs is the Stillsuit, which can be extremely useful as it provides you with a regular source of water. Not only does this lead to some perfectly timed "water reclaimed" notifications during the scarier moments of the game, but whenever you load a save the PDA will offer you the choice of chemically neutralizing the taste—during the loading screen, for about two seconds before it accepts your "choice."
- When you build the scanner room, you can use two remote-controlled cameras to check out the area for natural resources. This is not funny. What is, however, absolutely hilarious, is that stalkers can and will take every available opportunity to steal your camera drones, leading to seeing a video feed of down a stalker's gullet as it swims off with your expensive equipment and stashes it somewhere, only to grab it again as soon as you try to escape.
- The fact that Gasopods releasing their gas pods sounds like farting. You can even hear them laughing after they do so.
- Go underneath a mob swimming close to the surface and shoot it with the repulsion canon. Team Rocket, blasting off again!
- Watching a Biter try to gnaw on the Seamoth.
- Using a Vortex Torpedo on a group of Gasopods, Stalkers or other medium sized creature results in a whirlwind of very confused and dizzy creatures being spun unceremoniously around before being launched in a random direction. Better yet, they remain in a stunned state for a few seconds before recovering.
- Taken up to eleven when used on a Reaper or Ghost Leviathan. The Vortex effect basically twists them into pretzels before letting them go. The effect has to be seen to be believed.
- Lava Larva are the Goddamned Bats of the Inactive Lava Zone, grabbing onto your vehicles to drain their batteries in a place where you do not want to be stranded. Except there's something humorous about being in a Cyclops or Prawn Suit and having a Larva smack right onto the viewport in front of you. Then when you knife them, odds are good that on the second swing, their physics will bug out and they'll go shooting away like a rocket.
- When the player returns to the Quarantine Enforcement Platform to deactivate it after he's been cured, the probe once more has to take a blood sample from his arm (which he tries to dodge). He then punches the device... and hurts his hand.
- Also the reaction of the probe after you dodged it. It seems to look at you with the needle, extends and retracts it multiple times, as if it's saying: "Really? We're going to do this one way or another!" before taking the sample, striking much faster than before.
- When the Scanner was first implemented during Early Access, it could glitch into... this abomination.
- Sometimes creatures clip into the terrain, then remember how physics work and fly back out, getting launched into the void while spinning uncontrollably. Funny with smaller creatures, hilarious when a hostile Leviathan is subjected to it.
- For reasons likely pertaining to Ryley and a door, if you were to exit out the Neptune Rocket, it can sometimes tilt into the ocean, looking as if it'll capsize, only for the rocket platform to slowly right itself. As showcased by Sethorven twice in his endgame.
- The PDA in this game is even snarkier than the one from the first:
- After making an oxygen tank, your PDA notes that it can be upgraded for "deluxe and VIP breathing."
- Upon building your first Scanner Room, it explains that you can use it to scan for various useful materials... "And titanium. If you need help finding it... for whatever reason."
- Building a rebreather has your PDA explain how it recycles air to extend dive times, then unconvincingly adds "Breathe the freedom" like someone contractually obligated to plug a sponsor.
- On building an air bladder: "If you are tired of hearing the word "oxygen", the Air Bladder provides a significant upward thrust..."
- After making your Habitat Builder, your PDA advises against "exploring a frozen water continent without a base. No bed? No storage? No place to put a fabricator module? No fun."
- After adding a jukebox to your habitat, your PDA notes "No one said survival couldn't be funky."
- Build a coffee machine? "Ah, the sweet scent of dirty bean water."
- Your growbed is noted to provide "flavorful options for evading scurvy."
- It's funny enough that it takes incredibly-advanced alien technology to build a Recyclotron to break down your old water storage lockers into their constituent titanium, then your PDA points out that the real miracle is that this recycling happens "without rinsing and sorting them into bins first."
- When you build the new Control Room module for your base, your PDA explains that it can help you manage power consumption and hull integrity. "But not the integrity of societal power structures."
- Your PDA explains that an Alien Containment system can be "An aquarium just for looks, or your own personal sushi factory. You decide."
- Upon finding the wreck of the Mercury II, the PDA identifies the ship and notes that it is "inoperative". Yes, the ship split into three parts and lying half-rotten on the seabed is inoperative, thanks PDA.
- A lot of Robin and AL-AN's interactions certainly qualify.
- Shortly after they meet for the first time, AL-AN is honestly confused that Robin is objecting to him uploading himself into her brain, and decides to "allow you a moment to process" by going quiet and not responding to her demands. Robin decides to cope in her own way.Robin: This is not happening. That's the explanation. It's not happening.
- Robin's introduction to a sentient alien species.AL-AN: You may call me AL-AN.
Robin: ...I waited my whole life to meet a spacefaring alien, and you're telling me your name is "Alan"!?
AL-AN: Is it not sufficient?
Robin: No, it's great. It's perfect.
- After you use the bed for the first time after picking up AL-AN, he expresses his bewilderment over Robin's dreams, in which he was "pulled from illogical world to illogical world with you at the center of them all." She explains that there are good dreams, like flying, and bad dreams, like defending her thesis in her underwear.AL-AN: Your biofeedback indicates that flying is your most enjoyable dream. I therefore hope you have more of those. Mainly for my own safety.
- A couple of hours into your Alien Artifact Scavenger Hunt, Robin's got the formula down.AL-AN: Robin, I have something important to share.
Robin: Another artifact.
AL-AN: Yes. Although-
Robin: You "cannot know for sure what it is, but it is certainly of significant import," I know.
- As the search goes on and AL-AN can find no sign that any of his people are still alive, Robin tries to reassure him that maybe he can't connect to the network because he's missing a few centuries' worth of software updates, which fails to work ("That would make me incompatible. How would I even begin to plan my upgrades?") Then she describes the concept of "hope" to AL-AN, referencing an Emily Dickinson poem that compares it to a bird. AL-AN misses the point entirely, and adds an entry for Hope to the "Fauna" portion of your PDA databank.The presence of Hope seems to inspire humans to persevere in the face of adversity. Perhaps humans keep a Hope with them at all times.
From this notation, Hope appears to be a hardy avian creature. It is capable of surviving at sea and in cold climates. Having "kept so many warm," Hope might be observed to produce exothermic chemical reactions.
Assessment: find and maintain Hope.
- AL-AN is unimpressed with the limitations of human bodies (though he will admit that "The opposable thumb is excellent"), since they're not just lacking compared to his old form, but will eventually wear out and die.Robin: My body is my own, and I cherish it. It grows with me. Humans have one life, we plant trees we can never experience the shade of. We build for the next generation.
AL-AN: Noble. But again, truly inefficient.
Robin: You are incredibly frustrating, you know that?
- AL-AN's not impressed with human brains, either, what with their capacity for forgetting information.AL-AN: When you die, some quantity of knowledge is lost forever to the next generation. Isn't that-
Robin: I'm warning you, if you call humanity inefficient one more time, I will swim us both into the mouth of a leviathan.
AL-AN: Is that sarcasm? I am still having trouble differentiating.
Robin: How inefficient.
- Upon finding Parvan Ivanov's quarters, AL-AN wonders "Did the person who worked here also live in storage?"
- After hatching a Trivalve, AL-AN mentions that the Architects also kept pets around as "curiosities that bring some sense of presence and energy." And also to study for potential genetic upgrades. Robin objects to calling test subjects "pets."Robin: There's a distinction. Pets are something that you care for simply for the pleasure of doing so.
AL-AN: Would humans consider me to be your pet?
Robin: No, I said "pleasure," AL-AN. This is more like a job.
AL-AN: Where I come from, you might be a pet.
Robin: I find that thoroughly disturbing.
- After getting your Architect tissue scan, AL-AN explains that their cells are pluripotent, capable of changing form as needed.Robin: So, what's to prevent you from, I don't know, ending up with hooves where your eyelashes should go?
AL-AN: That does not happen. ...At least, not since the fourth iteration.
- As you near the end of your search for Architect body components, AL-AN notes "This is as close as I have come to autonomy in a long time."Robin: You have such a way with words.
AL-AN: Is that sarcasm?
Robin: It was. You're learning.
AL-AN: Hopefully I will not have time to complete my study.
- Then, once you're nearly done:AL-AN: You have scanned all the components we need to make a storage... uh, body.
Robin: Are you excited?
AL-AN: Using the chemical compounds available in your body, I am able to approximate what you might call "cautious optimism."
- Then when you have finished, and succumb to the urge to whip out your Scanner whenever you see something new:AL-AN: What are you doing?
Robin: Research. Tit for tat. You've probed my mind, I scan your body.
- Shortly after they meet for the first time, AL-AN is honestly confused that Robin is objecting to him uploading himself into her brain, and decides to "allow you a moment to process" by going quiet and not responding to her demands. Robin decides to cope in her own way.
- Your databank is pretty clinical in its scan of Marguerit's customized Prawn Suit, noting the stylistic addition of bony ribs to its exterior, and the use of a juvenile Chelicerate tooth as an arm attachment. Then it reaches its conclusion.Assessment: The owner doesn't want you messin' around.
- Likewise, as much as Marguerit is deliberately ignoring you during your visits, she does notice if you decide to scan her.Marguerit: You can look all you want. There's more to Marguerit than any damnfangled gadget can see.
- Apparently, Motivational Posters are still a thing in the distant future. And they're still using the same stock images as always.
- Your Spy Pengling is a lot of fun, from The Comically Serious way it reports "Ready for my assignment," the deadpan "oops" or "ouchies" when it hits a wall, or the way it says "beep" when you try to jump with it. And then there's the fact that you can use it to take selfies of Robin, complete with gaudy photo borders and goofy poses.
- The Cryptosuchus is a constantly roaring sea lizard that flies into a jaw-snapping frenzy whenever something comes close to it, and is likely to make players new to Below Zero keep their distance. And then, at some point, a player will be forced to defend themselves with a knife, and discover that Cryptosuchus are actually enormous pansies that turn tail and haul ass at the slightest sign of resistance.
- Multiple audio logs chronicle the travails of Fred Lachance, the seatruck driver who's constantly losing tools to Sea Monkeys or having to jettison cargo modules during Squidshark attacks so not to end up "pooped out of the back-end of a sea monster." There's also the struggle between a maintenance worker named Jeremiah and the Skyrays that keep messing up the satellite antenna with their droppings, which almost drives him to quit, were it not for the fact "that's what the birds want me to do."
- Robin leaps at the offer to follow AL-AN off-planet, because it's a chance to visit the alien homeworld. "Besides... I don't have another ride."
- In the very last minutes of the game, there's something both impressive and hilarious about Robin getting to use some of AL-AN's hovering cyber-limbs to prepare the ship for launch... and nearly crushing herself with one pylon while adjusting it, and almost fumbling another over the side of the platform.
- The constant animal impersonations on the game's wiki and official Discord, ranging from mundane things like Bonesharks and Crabsnakes to A DESTROYED LIFEPOD.
- The Gameplay Trailer goes through standard gameplay and then at a point starts showing quotes from different let's players. Most of them are praising the game. All but one:"AAAGH!" - Sodapoppin
- Near the end of the game, each player has the option to create a time capsule, containing a message and a few items, and submit it to Unknown Worlds. If approved by the developers, it has the chance to appear in other players' games for them to find. Some of the approved capsules are serious and helpful, and others are... not.
- One has a fake personals ad◊ and a selection of lubricants.
- Another has deliberately terrible player/boneshark high school romance fanfiction with gratuitous fan-Japanese, including a drawing of "Bone-chan" in a sailor fuku. The writer has posted two other chapters of the fanfiction on Reddit.
- Another has nothing but Floaters.
- Markiplier once headed off in the Cyclops at full speed. Warned by the AI that the engines were beginning to overheat, he says "What're you going to do, blow up?" Cue exactly that happening and Mark having an Oh, Crap! moment as he scrambles to put the fire out!
- Markiplier hates water and much prefers space: You can imagine the terror he has playing Subnautica. You can also imagine how glorious that terror is to watch.
- Jacksepticeye refers to The Lost River and everything else below it, nightmares and all, as "The Deep Down Dark Deep Down." This is both hilarious and utterly correct. He also, on occasions, refers to it as "hell". This is also utterly correct and also still hilarious, mainly because he looks incredibly uncomfortable while going down there.
- Which is faster, the Seamoth or the Prawn suit? Using the propulsion cannon glitch to fly a cave crawler across the map, of course!
- The fandom has evidently come up with names for every single leviathan in the game◊ (spoiler warning). The one that most players encounter on their way into the Aurora is Sammy the Safety Reaper, for example.
- The Return of the Ancients mod has a "cinematic mode" from the developers that allegedly makes the Gargantuan Leviathan passive so you can observe it without being eaten. As the players IGP and Anthomnia found out, cinematic mode not only doesn't make the Leviathan passive, but what it does is turn it into a giant Trollface before it kills you. It also spouts voice clips (and screams) from both players right back at them. That's what you get for test driving a mod so soon after April 1st.